Wednesday, November 27, 2019


Just why a roomful of serious-minded people decided to be lectured to about freedom of expression by a comic is hard to fathom. It was sort of like watching a football player on “Dancing with the Stars” – Cohen had no real talent as a rhetor, but he’s famous, and even when he scribbles outside the lines — folks get to say they saw him live and in person.

Cohen doesn’t like Facebook or Mark Zuckerberg. That’s fine. There are plenty of reasons not to like Zuckerberg. The fact that he won’t censor political advertising to suit the ADL is not one on those reasons.

Facebook gets immunity from suit for whatever it publishes, a privilege the press doesn’t enjoy. Facebook harvests data from users to sell to advertisers in a manner that is unaccountable. It pours its profits into the creation of proprietary algorithms that manipulate users, dividing people into silos it can target market at will. To add insult to injury, Facebook then decides on its own what content it will banish.

Because it is not a governmental entity, Facebook is not prohibited from engaging in content-based viewpoint discrimination. Thus, my client, Alex Jones is banned. The censors don’t like what he says. Want to listen to Mr. Jones or his show, Infowars? Then listen to Banned.Video. Facebook has shut Jones down.

Facebook’s power to shape desire, predict behavior and keep tabs of us is chilling.

This week, the BBC reported that China houses Uighur Moslems in indoctrination camps. You earn your way out of the camp by persuading your re-educators that you are reformed, that is, that you have learned Mandarin Chinese, lost your faith, and satisfied censors that you know how to behave. This is but an extreme version of what the Chinese are doing to their own people by means of social media – creating citizenship scores for its population. If you don’t satisfy the state-sponsored algorithm that your attitude is what the Chinese government want, you get less in terms of social services and access to goods.

Facebook is habituating us to accept the level of social control China takes for granted. That is what is terrifying about Facebook.

What is terrifying about Cohen and the ADL is that they are happy with this form of social control so long as they get to set the agenda.

Here, in condensed form, is Cohen’s argument:

1. People are free (sort of) to say hateful things on Facebook.

2. People like us – Cohen and the ADL – don’t like those hateful things said.

3. Therefore, we ought to be given the means to place limits on what can be said on Facebook.

Put bluntly – Cohen wants to be a censor. So does the ADL.

A better argument is to require that Facebook and other social media companies enjoying immunity from suit for what they publish be held to first amendment standards in deciding what they can and cannot publish. There is a body of first amendment law, principles that can be decided by jurists and that provide litigants with fair notice of what is and is not permitted. The first amendment is transparent in a way a stand-up comic and his cronies are not.

These are dangerous times from freedom of speech. The danger isn’t hate speech, whatever that is. We’ve always had vituperative speech in the United States. Hell, if someone were tarred and feathered or burned in effigy today, we’d probably declare a national emergency.

The danger is that social media creates an enormous capacity for social control. Zuckerberg misuses that ability now. Giving Cohen and the ADL the same power won’t make the world safe for freedom of expression, it will merely exchange one set of blinders for another.

I’m guessing the overlords in China watched the Cohen speech with approval. “He gets it,” they muttered. I wonder if his next gig will be in Beijing.

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Monday, November 25, 2019

State Department Releases Detailed Accounts Of Biden-Ukraine Corruption

A liberal watchdog group's attempt to nail Rudy Giuliani has backfired in spectacular fashion after their FOIA request resulted in the US State Department releasing detailed accusations of corruption against the Bidens - based on interviews with former Ukrainian officials who were in charge of the investigations.

Responding to a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit from the group American Oversight, the State Department on Friday night released almost 100 pages of records detailing efforts by Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani to investigate corruption, which include contacts with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA) earlier this year.

While American Oversight's 'gotcha' is that Giuliani had "multiple contacts" with Mike Pompeo and others while investigating Ukraine corruption, they completely ignore interview notes containing detailed allegations by former Ukraine Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin - who Joe Biden had fired, as well as his successor, prosecutor general Yuriy Lutsenko - who "believes Mr. Viktor Shokin the former Prosecutor General is honest." 

Viktor Shokin:

On a January 23, 2019 phone call between Shokin and Giuliani, Igor Fruman, Lev Parnas and George Boyle, Shokin said:

"He was appointed to the position of General Prosecutor of Ukraine from 2015 until April of 2016, when he was removed at the request of Mr. Joseph Biden the Vice President of the United States."

"He [Shokin] became involved in a case against Mr. Mykola Zlochevsky the former Minister of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine. The case was opened as a result of Mr. Zlochevsky giving himself/company permits to drill for gas and oil in Ukraine. Mr. Zlochevsky is also the owner of Burisma Holdings."

"Mr. Shokin stated that there are documents that list five (5) criminal cases in which Mr. Zlochevesky is listed, with the main case being for issuing illegal gas exploration permits. The following complaints are in the criminal case.

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Thursday, November 21, 2019

With Assange Safely Locked up, Sweden Drops ‘Investigation’

Now that WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is safely locked up in Belmarsh prison awaiting a U.S. extradition hearing, Sweden has, for a third time, dropped its rape investigation.

“After conducting a comprehensive assessment of what has emerged during the course of the preliminary investigation I then make the assessment that the evidence is not strong enough to form the basis for filing an indictment,” said Deputy Chief Prosecutor Eva-Marie Persson at a press conference in Stockholm on Tuesday.

This decision comes days after the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture Nils Melzer began making noise about the Swedish government’s refusal to answer his questions on the many enormous, glaring plot holes in the investigation, which began in 2010. These plot holes include “proactive manipulation of evidence” with the testimony of the alleged victim, a condom provided as evidence that had neither the DNA of Assange nor of the alleged victim on it, complete disregard for confidentiality rules and normal investigative protocol from the earliest moments of the investigation onward, disregard for conflicts of interest, Sweden’s refusal to provide assurance that Assange would not be extradited to the U.S. if he went there to answer questions, statements made by the alleged victims which contradict the allegations, unexplained correspondence between Swedish prosecutors and the FBI, and many others.

None of which matters anymore. He is caged, and public support for him has been deliberately demolished. The Swedish parody of an “investigation” did its job. Assange took political asylum with the government of Ecuador out of fear of U.S. extradition and was slowly squeezed off from the outside world, his own reputation, and his own physical health while the empire prepared its case against him, keeping him increasingly immobilized, silenced and smeared until he could be forcibly pried from the embassy in April of this year.

Once this was accomplished, all the feigned concern for alleged victims of sexual assault suddenly vanished, lining up perfectly with a 2010 article authored in the early days of the investigation by feminist writer Naomi Wolf who said, “How do I know that Interpol, Britain and Sweden’s treatment of Julian Assange is a form of theater? Because I know what happens in rape accusations against men that don’t involve the embarrassing of powerful governments.”

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Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Syrian President Assad: Epstein Killed Because He Knew “Vital Secrets”

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad waded into the Jeffrey Epstein case, telling an interviewer that the deceased financier, sex offender, and alleged sex trafficker did not commit suicide, but was murdered as part of a coverup of the misdeeds of high-profile figures in the western world.

In a conversation with Russia’s state-run Rossiya-24 station Thursday, Assad related Epstein’s case to the recent passing of Syria Civil Defense co-founder James Le Mesurier, who died last Monday after an apparent fall from his apartment in Istanbul, Turkey.

Le Mesurier was a British Army officer in the 1990s who also worked with the United Nations peacekeeping force in the former Yugoslavia and was director of the non-profit Mayday Rescue Foundation, which trains and equips volunteer emergency first responders.

It was the Mayday Rescue Foundation that provided the primary support and training to Syria Civil Defense, commonly known as the White Helmets, when it was founded in 2014 during the Syrian Civil War. 

According to Assad and his supporters, the White Helmets are not the rescue group they claim to be, but a group of militant operatives working on behalf of his enemies in the United States and United Kingdom. The Syrian leader speculated that the White Helmets were behind Epstein’s death in a U.S. federal prison in August.

“American billionaire Jeffrey Epstein was killed several weeks ago, they said he had committed suicide in jail,” Assad said. “However, he was killed because he knew a lot of vital secrets connected with very important people in the British and American regimes, and possibly in other countries as well.”

He continued:

And now the main founder of the White Helmets has been killed, he was an officer and he had worked his whole life with NATO in Afghanistan, Kosovo, Iraq and Lebanon. Both of us know that they [representatives of the White Helmets] are naturally part of Al-Qaeda. I believe that these people, as well as the previously liquidated [Osama] bin Laden and [ISIS leader Abu Bakr] al-Baghdadi had been killed chiefly because they knew major secrets. They turned into a burden once they had played out their roles. A dire need to do away with them surfaced after they had fulfilled their roles.

Three days before he was found dead, the Russian Foreign Ministry cited spokesperson Maria Zakharova as calling Le Mesurier “a former agent of Britain’s MI6, who has been spotted all around the world, including in the #Balkans and the #MiddleEast” and alleged he had “connections to terrorist groups were reported back during his mission in #Kosovo.”

As TNA has previously noted, Epstein was a member of exclusive globalist groups such as the Council on Foreign Relations and the Trilateral Commission and had ties to members of the international intelligence establishment. He was friends with a number of notable political leaders and celebrities, including former U.S. President Bill Clinton and the U.K.’s Prince Andrew. Epstein also had a habit of wiring his homes with video equipment and bragged about having dirt on the rich and powerful, suggesting a high-level blackmail operation.

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Friday, November 15, 2019

George Kent and the State Department’s Global Citizens

A product of Harvard, a university that has been especially effective in building global citizens, George Kent, a career official at the State Department, demonstrated during the presidential impeachment inquiry that he understands better than the rest of us what it means to be a citizen of the world. According to, “Since joining Foreign Service in 1992, he has served on behalf of the U.S. government in Poland, Thailand and Uzbekistan. He … speaks fluently 7 languages. … and is an honorary member of the Red Sox Nation fan club.”

Kent has been married since 1996 to Velida Kitaina, who was born in Uzbekistan but has strong Crimean–Tatar roots. Kitaina’s grandparents were among those who were suddenly deported after Soviet leaders suspected the Crimean Tatars of working with the Nazis. An estimated 200,000 people were forced out. None of them — including, presumably, Kitaina — is especially fond of Russia today.

Today, according to several social media sites, Kitaina’s “passion” is creating gingerbread houses that are replicas of famous Ukrainian architectural sites, including a replica of Kyiv’s St. Michael’s Cathedral, which she presented as a gift to the U.S. embassy in Ukraine. In December 2017, she made a gingerbread replica of the main square in Lviv, the largest city in western Ukraine.

In December 2017, former Ukrainian politician and controversial journalist Serhiy Leshchenko, known by most as the “Ukrainian who sunk Paul Manafort,” posted a photo of himself and George Kent with the Lviv gingerbread village. For the photo, a smiling George Kent traded his bow tie for a red Santa hat.

A Unfortunately, the Twitter post revealed that Leshchenko has significantly fewer fans than Kitaina, because several of the comments were less than flattering — one of them called Leshchenko “a goat, a ram and a bitch.” Another suggested that Kitaina build a gingerbread house of Leshchenko’s apartment — alluding to the rumors of alleged bribes that the former People’s Deputy of Ukraine supposedly helped him purchase the place.

In Leshchenko’s Twitter post, George Kent is described as a “good friend of Ukraine.” George Kent is indeed a citizen of the world — one who truly loves Ukraine. According to, Kent’s Facebook page “has plenty of photos featuring Ukrainian customs, traditions and Ukrainian cuisine. His apartment in Kiev is decorated with traditional Ukrainian embroidered cloths and he shares photos of them with friends. He also posts pictures of his clothes with Ukrainian and Crimean Tatar symbols.”

Indeed, there lies the source of Kent’s problem with President Trump. While Kent seemed to believe that “we’re all Ukrainians now,” after the invasion of Crimea by the Russians, Trump viewed Ukraine as an adversary — not an ally. According to an October 2019 Associated Press article, George Kent told lawmakers in October that Putin had “soured Trump’s attitude toward Ukraine.”

But at the impeachment inquiry on November 13, Kent began blaming Rudy Giuliani for turning Trump away from Ukraine. Kent claimed that “over the course of 2018 and 2019” he became increasingly aware of a “smear campaign” directed by Giuliani against Marie Yovanovitch, then the ambassador to Ukraine. Kent also claimed that “corrupt former prosecutors” in Ukraine peddled “false information” to Giuliani and others to “exact revenge against those who had exposed their misconduct.”

It is clear that George Kent loves everything about Ukraine — including his beautiful wife. And as the global citizen that he is, he wants President Trump to appreciate its rich cultural heritage. Trump may appreciate the culture, but he also knows that our tax dollars have been wasted in the past by corrupt Ukrainian politicians and corporations — including Hunter Biden’s dubious job with Burisma Holdings. Trump suspects that Ukraine had something to do with election tampering in the 2016 elections. But, most importantly, unlike George Kent, President Trump is not a global citizen. Trump got elected because he promised to put America first. His only crime is doing what he promised to do on behalf of the American people.

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Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Supreme Court Allows Remington to be Held Liable for Sandy Hook Shooting

The US Supreme Court is allowing a lawsuit against Remington Firearms to go forward, a move which may hold the gun manufacturer legally liable for the Sandy Hook school shooting.

On Tuesday, the highest court in the US refused to halt the lawsuit filed by parents of slain students against Remington Arms Co., which alleges the company promoted their Bushmaster AR-15 rifle “for use in assaults against human beings.”

Remington lawyers argued a 2005 law protected the company and “firearms manufacturers from being held liable for crimes committed by gun purchasers,” according to USA Today.

This “is exactly the kind of case arising from a criminal’s misuse of a firearm that ‘may not be brought in any federal or state court,’” Remington lawyer Scott Keller argued.

“Congress enacted the (law) to ensure that firearms—so central to American society that the founders safeguarded their ownership and use in the Bill of Rights — would be regulated only through the democratic process rather than the vagaries of litigation,” Remington lawyers wrote in a statement to the Supreme Court.

But lawyers for the families claim the Sandy Hook case qualifies for a marketing exception in the law because of a Remington ad which “continued to exploit the fantasy of an all-conquering lone gunman, proclaiming: ‘Forces of opposition, bow down. You are single-handedly outnumbered.’”

Remington lawyers asked for the Supreme Court to step in after a 4-3 ruling in March by the Connecticut Supreme Court allowed the plaintiffs’ case to go forward.

In that case, Connecticut Justice Richard Palmer’s majority decision stated Remington’s ad “violated CUTPA (Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act) by marketing the XM15- E2S to civilians for criminal purposes, and that those wrongful marketing tactics caused or contributed to the Sandy Hook massacre.”

The law firm representing the Sandy Hook families is also going after Infowars and Alex Jones, putting the First Amendment in as much danger as the Second.

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Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Monday, November 11, 2019

Politicians suffer identity crisis, should let veterans lead instead

President Donald Trump withdraws U.S. troops from Syria and is broadly attacked.

Hillary Clinton accuses fellow Democrat Tulsi Gabbard of being a “Russian asset,” and Congresswoman Gabbard, an Iraq War veteran and 2020 Democratic presidential candidate, calls Clinton the “queen of warmongers.”

Back when the Soviets really were the “evil empire” Reagan said they were, Democrats attacked Reagan for his aggressive stance. Today, Democrats demand hostility toward Russia, now that they’re no longer Communists.

Republicans in recent history championed a strong military, not hesitating to use it against enemies real and imagined. But Reagan’s “peace through strength” doctrine — successful in collapsing the Soviets — no longer delivers the “peace” dividend it once did. With the strongest military ever, we haven’t had peace for two decades.

Idaho’s U.S. Sen. Jim Risch, who despite his rhetoric won’t actually support bringing our troops home, favors relocating Kurdish troops to America instead, even though the FBI says we can’t vet refugees from those lawless regions sufficiently to ensure we aren’t bringing Islamic terrorists to live in Boise or Twin Falls.

Some believe Trump got elected by pledging to end U.S. involvement in endless wars, and recent polls find strong support for that pledge. An Economist poll found 57 percent of Republicans support withdrawing U.S. troops from Syria.

Astoundingly, 76 percent of Democrats oppose withdrawal.

In explaining why he opposes withdrawing U.S. troops from Yemen, a Democratic state legislator told me the question is “whether we hang on two more years in hopes that we get a competent president who can chart a decent course in Yemen.” In other words, American troops should remain in harm’s way because this guy doesn’t like Donald Trump.

Similarly, Democrats who opposed endless wars under President George W. Bush went silent when President Barack Obama took over, notching 540 drone strikes in his presidential belt, which along with intended targets are documented to have killed 324 innocent civilians.

“Turns out I’m really good at killing people,” Obama said, according to Mark Halperin and John Heilemann in their book, “Double Down: Game Change 2012.”

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Friday, November 8, 2019

A Tight Grip On Our Nuclear Toys

“Everyone wants to play with the big boys, and the only way to become one of the big boys is to have nuclear toys.”

Attention Planet Earth! Attention Planet Earth! It is time to grow up.

The words are those of Mohamed ElBaradei, then director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency, from a 2005 interview, several months before he and the agency were awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. They remain eerily relevant in 2019, summing up as they do the puerile recklessness that is in the process of regaining its grip on geopolitics. Nuclear weapons treaties are withering on the vine and proliferation threatens a triumphant return.

Hello, omnicide. We may not be as lucky as we were in the Cold War era, when the consequences of nuclear accidents and political brinkmanship were relatively contained and the victims of nuclear development were limited to the people who lived near test areas like the Marshall Islands, Kazakhstan or the Nevada Test Site in the western United States. Nuclear stockpiles have shrunk, not grown, and nuclear-armed nations number nine.

This is still insane, of course. That number should – must – find its way to zero, as declared by the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, which was passed by a United Nations vote of 122-1 in 2017 but still awaits actual ratification by 50 countries (32 have ratified it so far). Hope-inspiring as that treaty is, the big boys – who boycotted the U.N. vote two years ago – still control the game, and led by the USA, they are pulling out of the treaties that constrain them.

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Wednesday, November 6, 2019

Farage Announces He Won’t Run for Parliament, but Brexit Party Will Contest 600 Seats

On Sunday, the leader of the United Kingdom’s new Brexit Party announced that he will not stand for Member of Parliament (MP) in the coming general snap election on December 12. Nigel Farage, to many the face of the Brexit movement in the U.K., announced his decision in an interview on the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show.

Farage later confirmed his decision in a tweet: “From tomorrow, I will be going out to campaign across the length and breadth of this country. We will explain to people why Boris’ Brexit is a betrayal of 17.4 million. That means I have no time to fight a seat myself, but I will support 600 people who are.”

Last week, after three failed attempts, Parliament finally voted in favor of holding the snap general election in an attempt to break the political impasse over Brexit. Johnson hopes to regain the governing majority he lost earlier this year when 21 Conservative MPs chose to stand against him on a key vote regarding negotiations with the EU. Johnson ousted those 21 MPs from the party, leaving no party or coalition with a firm majority.

Farage may not be running, but his Brexit Party will contest at least 600 seats nationwide. The party will contest districts held by every major party in the U.K., including Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Conservative (Tory) Party.

Farage told Marr that he decided he should focus on campaigning nationwide rather than committing himself to one district. “I have thought very hard about this. How do I serve the cause of Brexit best?” Farage said.

“Do I fight a seat and try to get myself into parliament or do I serve the cause better traversing the length and breadth of the United Kingdom supporting 600 candidates, and I’ve decided the latter course is the right one.”

The announcement represents a change in course for Farage, who announced in late September that he wouldstand for MP. At that time, however, he also offered current PM Boris Johnson a deal in which the Brexit Party would not fight for Tory seats in exchange for a promise that Johnson would seek a clean or “no-deal” Brexit. Johnson flatly refused the offer, saying that the Tories do not do deals and that the only way to secure Brexit was to back the Conservative (Tory) Party.

Farage, who currently sits as a member of the European Parliament (MEP), has been extremely critical of Johnson’s new deal with the EU, calling it a “Remainer’s Brexit,” a “massive con,” and that it was “95 percent the same” as former PM Theresa May’s deal, which failed no less than three times in Parliament.

Farage has been very vocal in the past few months about aligning the various Brexit factions, believing that it might be the only way to secure a clean Brexit.

“I’ve wanted for months for there to be a Leave alliance, it seems obvious to me that no one party can own Brexit voters, there are Tory Brexit voters, there are Brexit Party Brexit voters and a lot of Labour Brexit voters,” Farage said.

“I always thought that to win an election, get a big majority so we can get a proper Brexit, a coming-together would be the objective.”

“I still hope and pray that it happens, but it doesn’t look like it will,” Farage concluded.

Some in the Conservative Party believe that Farage’s own party is now lining up against him, citing the example of longtime Farage colleague Arron Banks urging Brexit Party members to back Johnson’s new deal.

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Monday, November 4, 2019

How the Judiciary Is Chipping Away at the War on Terror

In times of war, the law often does fall silent.

The U.S. Supreme Court, in all its independence and courage, has endorsed concentration camps, censorship, sham military tribunals, and guilt by association at various points in its history. Textbooks and television sell us the caricature of heroic judges and inspiring courtroom debates, but in truth, a simple cry of “national security” frequently overpowers even the most eloquent defenses of constitutional rights.

Of course, the prevailing mythology is far from baseless. In New York Times Co. v. United States (1971), for instance, the Supreme Court condemned President Nixon’s attempts to block publication of the Pentagon Papers, with Justice Hugo Black emphatically declaring, “The word ‘security’ is a broad, vague generality whose contours should not be invoked to abrogate the fundamental law embodied in the First Amendment.”

Over a century earlier, in Ex Parte Milligan (1866), Chief Justice Salmon P. Chase found a similar mix of passion and erudition while invalidating the application of martial law to civilians. “The Constitution of the United States,” he wrote, “is a law for rulers and people, equally in war and in peace, and covers with the shield of its protection all classes of men, at all times.”

Even in the half-decade after 9/11, as George W. Bush and Dick Cheney rode a violent and unprecedented wave of executive power, the judiciary provided spirited support for Americans and foreigners ensnared in the Guantanamo Gulag.

In general, though, judges are wary of confronting politicians armed with a major crisis. Deference and capitulation are the safe options. There are many reasons for this tendency, but the simplest is that no judicial opinion can enforce itself. Especially when the president and Congress take a unified position, judges are smart enough to avoid picking unwinnable fights.

In other words, a wartime president needs to do something incredibly egregious and unilateral before fearing the law and the Constitution – and then he still might win, as Trump has on his absurd border wall “emergency” and transparently racist travel ban.

Signs of Impatience

Nevertheless, there are growing indications of judicial displeasure with the endless “War on Terror.”

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