Senator Mitch McConnell Discusses Inflation Reduction Bill On Fox News’ Special Report Show

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Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) appeared on Fox News Special Report w/Bret Baier (08/03/22) to discuss the Inflation Reduction Act currently being negotiated in the U.S. Senate. Senator McConnell said he found the way Democrats characterized the bill “laughable”, because in his opinion, the bill actually increases inflation. Senate Democrats appear poised to approve the measure on a straight party vote.

Senator McConnell said this about the Inflation Reduction Act (0:27): “First, I think all of us were somewhat shocked by Senator Manchin’s reversal of positions he’d taken as recently as last week, against raising taxes. This raises taxes, it increases the burden of taxation on lower income people significantly. Calling it inflation reduction bill is rather laughable. Independent analysis indicates it actually increases inflation in the next two years, and may have an impact over ten years, and their policies from last year have already produced 40-year high inflation, so it’s a terrible package. It appears as if they are all in line, but one, it will be up to Senator Sinema from Arizona, who’s quite independent, to determine what the final contours of the bill are.”

Asked about the charge by irate Republicans, that he was “played” by Democrats regarding the reconciliation bill, McConnell responded (1:28): “Reconciliation is something done by one party only. There’s nothing we could have done to prevent the Democrats from doing a bill that only they will vote for, so it’s not a question of being played here, what’s the story line here is that Senator Manchin had agreed to something that he had said publicly and privately over the last two weeks that he would never agree to. We’re not involved in the reconciliation bill. There won’t be a single Republican vote for it. There’s nothing we could do to deter it, other than to criticize it publicly, and that’s what we’re doing right here.”

Host Bret Baier then cornered Senator McConnell with a very interesting question as to why he has repeatedly cited renowned economists Larry Summers and Jason Furman on ways to tackle the current record inflation, yet now he refuses to follow their advice that the Inflation Reduction Act will help reduce inflation? Senator McConnell accused the economists of trying to appease President Biden. He specifically said (2:41):“The quotes they used me in, were Summers’ observations about what they [Biden Administration] did last year. Two trillion dollars they dumped on the economy, that both Furman and Summers predicted would produce rampant inflation, and it did. What they’ve done this year is kind of fall in line, and I assume they wanted to get back on the White House Christmas card list, but people who are not active Democrats, independent observers have said it has no impact on inflation, at all, over the long term, and actually increases it slightly in the short term. So Furman and Summers were certainly helpful as active Democrats in describing last year’s bill, but this year they’re sort of falling in line because I think they want to get back in the good grace of the White House.”

Asked about criticism from House Republicans, some of whom don’t want him as Senate Majority Leader any more, over what they perceive as him being “played” repeatedly by Democrats, and making President Biden look good, McConnell responded(3:55): “Well, I guess they’ve forgotten the Supreme Court that I’ve helped usher into–three new Supreme Court justices, the 2017 tax bill…I think just because you have closely divided government doesn’t mean you do nothing. The past two administrations tried to achieve bipartisan infrastructure, didn’t get it done, we needed to rescue the post office. Just because it’s a Democrat in the White House, I don’t think means Republicans should do nothing that’s good for the country. In the meantime, on the big issues, we are totally opposed to what this administration is trying to do, but on things like school safety, mental health, infrastructure, postal reform, why would we not want to make progress for the country no matter who’s in the White House?”

Asked about reservation by some Republicans, that expanding NATO to include Sweden and Finland, increases the likelihood of sending our troops into combat in Europe, Sen McConnell responded (5:08): “The NATO alliance is the most successful military alliance in world history. The way to prevent Americans from having to actively get involved in combat is to prevent it in the first place, and that’s what NATO is about. It won the cold war without firing a single shot. Putin has succeeded not only in actually expanding NATO and making it even more effective as a deterrent. Remember Reagan said peace through strength, and that’s what NATO is all about, and that’s why Finland and Sweden add a lot to NATO.”

Asked to pick between the Russia-Ukraine war, and the situation at our southern border, which one was a bigger national security threat to the United States, McConnell said both were threats that needed to be dealt with seriously–probably not the answer Fox News viewers obsessed with the southern border, wanted to hear.

Importantly, when asked about his earlier prediction that there would be a “red wave” in this year’s midterm elections, McConnell appears to have had a change of mind (probably due to Kansas), saying now that it will be a “very tight” election. McConnell specifically said (7:02): “I think it’s going to be very tight, we have a 50-50 Senate now, we have a 50-50 nation, and I think when the Senate race smoke clears, we are likely to have a very, very close Senate still, with either up slightly, or the Democrats up slightly”–a far cry from the “red wave” talk we heard earlier in the year from McConnell and his fellow Republicans.

Asked about the Kansas abortion vote heard around the world, McConnell responded (7:35): “I think what the Supreme Court has done is said people who are elected by the American people are going to deal with this highly sensitive issue, and it will be playing out all year, and I don’t think we really know until the end of the year, what kind of an impact putting this issue back into the hands of those of us who are elected, as opposed to nine unelected judges, will have on the country. We’re in the process of finding that out…It tells us that there are a lot of people interested in the issue in Kansas, there’s no question about that.”

Asked whether he would survive his leadership role if “Trumpified” candidates(J.D. Vance, Oz, Blake Masters, Ted Budd etc) win this November, Sen McConnell responded (8:37): “I’ve been elected eight times without opposition. I don’t own this job, and there’s always an election every two years for leader. If anybody wants to challenge me, have at it.” McConnell added that he will still hang on as Minority Leader if Republicans don’t take over the Senate this Fall.

Asked whether, given his lengthy career in the U.S. Senate, there is a single issue the modern Republican Party gets right, which the old Republican Party got wrong, McConnell was all over the place. He didn’t give an answer that specifically answered the question.

Bottom line folks, the key takeaway from Senator McConnell’s interview on Fox News is that the “red wave” fantasy is gone. Republicans now acknowledge that even with the challenging economic times, and President Biden’s low approval numbers, the 2022 midterm elections will be very competitive. Reasonable politicos will agree that given historical trends re midterms, the fact that Dems are even still in the ball game, tells you all you need to know about the state of affairs at Trump’s GOP. 

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Trump Accused Of “Sports Washing” Saudi Arabia’s Complicity In 9/11 Attacks

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Terry Strada, the National Chair of 9/11 Families United On MSNBC’s Alex Witt Reports(07/30/22)

MSNBC’s Liz McLaughlin reported on Alex Witt Reports show(07/30/22) that outraged families of the victims of the September 11th attacks(2001) are protesting the Saudi-backed LIV Golf Tournament currently being held at former President Trump’s Bedminster Golf Club in New Jersey. The protesters are essentially accusing former President Trump and the participating golfers, of “sports washing” Saudi Arabia’s role in the horrific 9/11 attacks, and their atrocious human rights record generally.

Asked by host Alex Witt, how the families were responding to the tournament, Liz McLaughlin responded (video at 0:31):“The families say they are disgusted, disappointed, that it feels like a gut punch after losing a loved one in that horrible act, to see a former President of the United States, who by the way, has the presidential seal emblazoned on golf carts, embroidered in golf towels at this tournament, which is less than 50 miles from ground zero, to have him take what they call blood money. LIV is bankrolled by Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund, investing an estimated 2 billion in LIV Golf so far, and this new pro golf circuit is set to try to dethrone the PGA, but it has come with a lot of controversy, and Trump is set to host another one of these, later in the year.”

Trump has defended his actions saying, “nobody has gotten to the bottom of 9/11 unfortunately, and they should have”–essentially arguing that it’s unfair/inaccurate to place the 9/11 blame on Saudi Arabia. He also added that all the proceeds from the golf tournament will be going to charity, so he was not profiting from it.

As Liz McLaughlin correctly pointed out however, even though the U.S. government has never singled out Saudi Arabia as the masterminds of the 9/11 attacks, it is a fact that 15 of the 19 hijackers were from the Kingdom, and the mastermind of the attacks, Osama bin Laden, was also born there. It has also been established that a lot of the funding for bin Laden’s Al Qaeda terrorist network, came from Saudi nationals. So any reasonable person would suspect that the Saudis were behind the 9/11 attacks. And even if one gives Saudi Arabia a pass over 9/11, it is impossible to ignore the Kingdom’s atrocious human rights record, which includes the brutal murder of American journalist Jamal Khashoggi. 

Terry Strada, the National Chair of 9/11 Families United, slammed Trump’s assertion that nobody has gotten to the bottom of the 9/11 attacks, telling host Alex Witt(3:02): “He sounds foolish saying anything like that. He met with the families. He met with me in the White House and we went there for the sole purpose of asking him to declassify FBI documents that were the investigative reports into this…so he sounds completely foolish when he says that nobody has looked into it. We asked him to look into it. It was his job as President to look into it. He failed us miserably back then.”

Bottom line folks, the pundits on Fox News recently made a big deal out of President Biden’s fist bump with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman(MBS) on his official visit to Saudi Arabia. It will be interesting to see if the same pundits also make a big deal out of former President Trump’s “sports washing” of Saudi’s atrocious human rights record and involvement in the 9/11 attacks. 

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Al Gore Says This Should Be A Moment Of Global Epiphany Re Climate Change

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Former U.S. Vice President Al Gore appeared on ABC’s This Week show (07/24/22) to discuss the growing problems caused by climate change. Gore, you’ll remember was already warning about this problem way back in 2006, through his popular documentary, An Inconvenient Truth. With almost all the predictions in his documentary realized, Gore now says this “should be a moment for a global epiphany” re climate change.

Al Gore told host Jonathan Karl(video at 0:53): “Scientists have predicted these extraordinary and catastrophic events for going on decades now, and the fact that they were dead right, maybe a little  conservative even in their projections, should cause us to pay more careful attention to what they are warning us about now. They are saying that if we don’t stop using our atmosphere as an open sewer, and if we don’t stop these heat-trapping emissions, things are going to get a lot worse. More people will be killed, the survival of our civilization is at stake.”

Gore then dropped a major bombshell telling host Jonathan Karl(1:35): “Behind me you see a picture from the International Space Station, that shows how thin the atmosphere is. We’re putting another 162 million tons into it every day, using it as an open sewer, and the accumulated amount now traps as much extra heat as would be released by 600,000 Hiroshima-class atomic bombs. That’s why the heat records are being broken all the time now, that’s why the storms are stronger, why the ice is melting, and the sea level is rising, and why the droughts and fires are hitting us so hard, and so many other consequences, and they are predicting now, up to a billion climate refugees crossing international borders in this century. We have got to act.”

Asked whether President Biden should declare a climate emergency, the former VP punted, adding that there are other things the Biden administration can do via the Environmental Protection Agency(EPA). He said the EPA can limit emissions from power plants and vehicles, adding that the recent Supreme Court decision “did not take all their power away.” Gore added that the Biden administration could stop allowing drilling for oil and gas on public lands, and that President Biden could appoint a new head of the World Bank to replace “the climate denier that leads it now, appointed by his predecessor [Trump].”

Another very notable thing former VP Gore said was(4:26):“The International Energy Agency(IEA) has said that we should have zero new drilling for oil and gas reserves. We’ve already got enough to incinerate the planet. We’re seeing this global emergency play out, and it’s getting worse more quickly than was predicted. We have got to step up. This should be a moment for a global epiphany.”

Interestingly, Gore, who knows a thing or two about election outcome controversy, was asked about the ongoing January 6th investigation. Gore said(5:31):“I would like to say the[Reps]Bennie Thompson and Liz Cheney, and every single member of that Committee have performed an amazing service to our democracy. I think these hearings have been the most persuasive and effective since the Watergate hearings so long ago, and I think we’re seeing a huge impact on public opinion in our country too. They’ve done an incredible job.”

Bottom line folks, Al Gore is the classic example as to why leadership matters. Reasonable people can reasonably disagree as to whether he really lost the 2000 presidential election to George W. Bush. The can be no disagreement however, that with Gore as President, America would have tackled the climate crisis with the urgency it deserved, saving many lives and livelihoods in the process.

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CIA Director William Burns Addresses Havana Syndrome Probe And Compensation At Aspen Security Forum

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MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell interviewing CIA Director William Burns at the Aspen Security Forum((07/21/22)

CIA Director William Burns recently attended the Aspen Security Forum, where he sat down for a lengthy interview with MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell. Among the notable topics that came up during the interview was the status of the Havana Syndrome investigation and the criteria the agency will use to decide which victims get compensated and which ones don’t.

The CIA has taken a lot of incoming from critics over what many perceive as their reluctance or even unwillingness, to get to the bottom of the Havana Syndrome mystery, so it was quite refreshing to see Director Burns openly addressing Andrea Mitchell’s questions without unnecessarily hiding behind classification issues.

Andrea Mitchell(video at 37:42):“I want to ask you about something that has been going on for six years since the first known case, and that is what the government calls anomalous health incidents(AHI), and which is commonly known as Havana Syndrome. So six years later, do we know anything more about what caused these illnesses?”

CIA Director Burns(38:49):“I think we’ve made significant progress in ensuring people get the care that they need and deserve. We tripled the number of full time personnel in our medical office that deals with this issue. We’ve worked out very important relationships not just with Walter Reed, but with private medical systems to make sure people got the care. On the investigation side, over the course of the last year and a half, we’ve thrown some of our very best officers at this, working closely with partners across the U.S. intelligence community and the U.S. government. It’s fair to say that we’ve learned a lot over that time. There’s still more to learn, it’s a frustrating process, but I have great confidence in the professionalism of the people who are carrying this out, and in their commitment to objectivity. You know, a few months ago, the intelligence community across the board, made public some preliminary findings, the broadest was that we don’t assess that a foreign player, whether Russians or anyone else, is behind, or is responsible for a sustained global campaign, the scale of what has been reported, to harm U.S. personnel with a weapon or some kind of external device. We further stated publicly several months ago, that in the majority of incidents, and we’ve investigated each one as throughly as we possibly can, we’re still working on a number of them, that you could find reasonable alternative explanations, whether it was other environmental factors, or preexisting medical conditions, or other kinds of medical explanations. None of that detracts from the real nature of what people have gone through. We still have work to do despite the progress that has been made in the investigation. This is not something that CIA only is doing, as I said we work very closely with other partners, and I owe it to my officers and their families to be straight about first making sure that they get the care that they deserve, but also being straight about what we find and what we don’t find.”

There’s no other way to interpret Director Burns’ remarks other than(I’ll be happy to stand corrected of course), the CIA probe has confirmed that some of the victims have indeed suffered brain injuries that would be consistent with some kind of external attack, but the agency is not there yet on a definite attribution–that is, reasonable people could reasonably disagree on the causes of such injuries, whether that be directed energy weapons, other environmental factors, preexisting medical conditions etc. In other words, the CIA has not yet singled out directed energy weapons as the definite cause of the brain injuries to U.S. personnel.

The debate then turned to the thorny issue of who to compensate and who not to

Andrea Mitchell:“Congress has authorized compensation. How do you compensate if you don’t know what it is?”

Director Burns:“We are very careful to implement the spirit of that law, which talks in very specific terms about the kind of injuries that people have suffered, and so it’s not a question of causation, it’s a question of what people have gone through, and so we’ve already began the process of implementation and we are going to work very hard at doing that because that’s what people deserve, and that’s what Congress expects.”

Director Burns’ response, that the compensation decision will be based on the type of injury the victim suffered, and not necessarily the cause of the injury, was quite interesting because it plays right into the hands of CIA critics who say the agency is not being candid about Havana Syndrome and its real cause—RF pulsed microwaves/ directed energy weapons. In other words, a lot of skeptics will raise the same question Andrea Mitchell posed to Director Burns—how the government quickly devised a handsome compensation scheme for victims of Havana Syndrome, whose cause the government does not know. No reasonable person believes that the United States, the most technologically advanced nation on earth, does not know what caused the injuries to U.S. diplomats in Cuba and elsewhere.

As usual, the interview never touched on the taboo question as to whether the CIA is looking into claims by regular civilians in the United States(not U.S. government personnel) who started complaining about directed energy attacks way before the reported incident at our Embassy in Cuba. This is a question the corporate media has made a conscious decision not to ask, but need to be asked. Are claims of directed energy attacks only credible when they are made by current or former government officials?

Bottom line folks, it was refreshing to see Director Burns openly discussing Havana Syndrome, but at some point the corporate media will have to drop its self-imposed embargo, and ask the taboo question as to who/what is behind directed energy attacks on regular civilians. There is absolutely no reason why the media cannot pose this question to the CIA, or any other government agency. None!!

Also, if Director Burns can openly talk to Andrea Mitchell about the Havana Syndrome probe, then he surely can entertain similar questions from members of Congress in an open forum.

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Is It Time To Go To Non-Partisan Primaries To Address Growing Polarization?

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A segment on MSNBC’s 11th Hour w/ Stephanie Ruhle(06/22/22) delved into the very interesting discussion as to whether, given the staggering levels of polarization in the country, we should change adopt a non-partisan primary voting system. Ruhle’s guest Nick Troiano, Executive Director of Unite America, says this change, which is already in place in several states, notably Alaska, would incentivize candidates to look for support beyond their party affiliation thus making them more likely to seek bipartisan solutions to problems. Unite America is a national organization trying to bridge the growing partisan divide by supporting political reforms and candidates who put people over party.

Troiano told 11th Hour host Ruhle(video at 1:22):“I think we spend a lot of time focused on who we elect, not enough time focusing on how we elect, because it’s the systems of our elections that are really pushing our parties further and further apart, and I think our politicians, as a result, are much more polarized than we the people. We’re not seeing the types of solutions and bipartisan policy making in Congress as the American people want and deserve, and the core reason of that is because of our system of partisan primaries. In the last election, it was only 10% of Americans who elected 83% of Congress, because the vast majority of our elections are decided not in the general election in November, but in the primary election, and that problem is getting even worse this election cycle after the latest round of redistricting. We’re going to have the least competitive elections of our lifetime. It’s going to lead to the least accountable Congress of our lifetime. So if we want different outcomes out of Congress, we have to change the process, and fortunately, there’s a growing movement to do that at the state level all across the country.”

Below are some of United America‘s suggested reforms

Troiano singled out the primary system in Alaska as the “best example” of what should be emulated nationwide, if we are going to address the growing polarization problem. He said: “Senator[Lisa]Murkowski was one of the 14 Republicans who voted to advance the bipartisan gun legislation. She’s the only Republican up for election this year, and what’s notable is that this is the first time where the Senator doesn’t face a partisan primary. She’s standing for election in front of all Alaskan voters because in 2020, Alaskans adopted a ballot measure that replaced both parties primaries with a single non-partisan primary. So all the candidates compete in one election, all the voters get to participate on that ballot, the top four finishers go to the general election and through an instant runoff, whomever wins the majority of support gets elected, and so it gives voters more voice and choice in elections, and it incentivizes candidates and leaders to campaign and be responsive to the whole constituency, not just the 10% who may vote in a partisan primary. Now imagine if additional states were to adopt this reform, we can have dozens of our elected leaders in Congress finally being able to be responsive to the majority of Americans and not the political extremes.”

Troiano also said non-partisan primaries would encourage more people to throw their hats into the political ring without fear of being labeled “spoilers”, something he acknowledged, keeps a lot of otherwise good candidates from both parties, on the sidelines.

Bottom line folks, non-partisan primaries is a very interesting suggestion indeed, which Yours Truly hopes, will be given serious consideration given the crippling levels of polarization in our politics today. Simply put, when the likes of Boebert(CO) and MTG(GA) start showing up in Congress, then reasonable people will agree, that the selection system is surely broken!!

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Senator Jeanne Shaheen Introduces Additions To The HAVANA Act Of 2021

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President Biden signing the HAVANA Act on 10/08/2021

There were some interesting developments this week in the directed energy weapons front, the biggest one being news that Senator Jeanne Shaheen(D-NH), a senior member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, has introduced additions to the HAVANA Act of 2021, seeking to make it easier for victims of the attacks to get the medical care they deserve. Details of Sen Shaheen’s additions are included in this 06/16/22 press release sent out by her office.

Senator Shaheen said this about her additions:“No American injured in the line of duty should be forced to fight for or justify their need for medical attention. That’s why I’ve worked across the aisle for years to secure medical benefits for those suffering from ailments as a result of directed-energy attacks. I appreciate the desire from members on both sides of the aisle to make this a priority in the fiscal year 2023 defense legislation cleared by the committee, which will provide substantial funding to investigate the nature of these injuries so we can better care for those afflicted. I also appreciate the inclusion of my provision requiring the Pentagon to produce a report on anomalous health incidents to inform and improve our military’s ability to respond to the threat of AHIs. We need to have confidence in the safety we provide to U.S. personnel and their loved ones when we station them around the globe, which is why it is paramount that we get to the bottom of these attacks to prevent future instances and ensure care to those recovery.” 

The press release from Senator Shaheen’s office comes on the heels of news reports that a piece of legislation introduced by a bipartisan group of lawmakers, seeks to impose criminal penalties on the harmful use of drones. The lawmakers involved are Reps. Mike Gallagher (R-Wis.), Dina Titus (D-Nev.), Josh Gottheimer (D-N.J.) and Peter Meijer (R-Mich). Among the harmful conduct the bill seeks to penalize, is weaponizing drones with firearms and electromagnetic pulse devices or using them to interfere with aircraft, cars and boats.

This of course raises a whole host of interesting questions, chief among them, whether members of Congress have known all along, that drones armed with electromagnetic pulse devices, could be used to assault civilians? Or are these weaponized drones only used to assault government employees? Hmm, certainly a line of inquiry that the mainstream media could pursue further.

Another interesting development this week, was the unsurprising revelation by a leading national security lawyer, Mark Zaid, that the CIA is not helping out very much with the effort to get to the bottom of directed energy attacks. This prompted the frustrated Zaid to send out a tweet asking, ” What is the CIA hiding?”. Zaid has previously asserted, and backed up his assertions with a document bearing an NSA letterhead, that the agency has been aware of microwave attacks on political dissidents, way before the attack on our diplomats in Cuba.

Bottom line folks, any news that efforts are being made to get to the bottom of directed energy weapons attacks, like we got this week from Sen Shaheen’s office, is welcome news. It cannot be left unsaid however, that there are serious questions among members of the public, as to whether the Pentagon in particular, and our national security establishment generally, are totally clueless about directed energy weapons, and who may be using them for nefarious purposes. It would be very helpful if the government, to the extent possible given classification issues, would level with the public about some of these concerns. Another issue the government seriously needs to level with the public about, is whether regular civilians(not government employees) have also been victims of directed energy weapons attacks, and who’s behind such attacks. Radio silence on this issue is not helpful at all, and is instead spawning wild conspiracy theories.

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CBS Face The Nation Interview Leaves Viewers Asking “Who’s Lying?”

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Former Defense Secretary Mark Esper appeared on CBS’ Face The Nation (05/15/22) to discuss his new book “A Sacred Oath”, which chronicles his time in the Trump administration. During his interview however, there was an interesting, even awkward exchange about the infamous Lafayette Square incident, that left viewers wondering whether he, or former Attorney General William Barr, or both, were lying to the public about the incident. Specifically, Esper told host Margaret Brennan that former President Trump did indeed request 10,000 active duty troops to deal with the BLM protesters at Lafayette Square even though at his earlier appearance on the same show, with the same host, former AG Barr had called such claims “completely false.”

How can two senior officials of the Trump administration(SecDef & AG), who were both present at a seminal moment in the administration(Lafayette Square protests), end up with a polar opposite recollections of the same event? Who’s lying?

Host Margaret Brennan(video at 3:50): “You(Esper) talk about, and have spoken quite a lot this past week about the events in Lafayette Square, and it’s an important bit of the public record. You were in the Oval Office with the President, and he spoke about a very specific number, 10,000 of active duty troops potentially being sent into the streets of Washington DC. I want to play a clip for you here, because I asked the then Attorney General Bill Barr about exactly that..[plays clip with AG Barr, where he calls such claims ‘completely false’]…”

Margaret Brennan: “Why do you seem to have different recollections?”

Mark Esper: “I don’t know. I wrote about this in my book that Bill Barr and I have different recollections. Of course if you go through my story you’ll understand that the President calls into the Pentagon earlier that morning and talks about 10,000 troops. That’s when I’m first made aware of this request. Look, I don’t know why we have different recollections. I think in all these cases people hear or see different things, but I’m 110% confident of what the President was seeking that morning.”

Reasonable people will agree that these two dramatically different accounts of the same Lafayette Square event cannot both be true. Someone is clearly lying here. Who is it?

Bottom line folks, this new phenomenon of Washington insiders sitting on information of great public interest, only to release them after lucrative book deals, is getting out of control. Both Esper and Barr have written books about their experiences in the Trump administration, and have presumably been rewarded handsomely for the books. The public however is still left hanging on the question as to whether Trump requested active duty troops to deal with the Lafayette Square protests. What public good do these “bombshell” books serve?

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Why Is Putin’s Mistress Living A Life Of Luxury In Switzerland Amid Sanctions?

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President Vladimir Putin with former Olympic Gymnast Alina Kabaeva, believed to be the mother of his four children, and currently living in Switzerland

An interesting segment on CNN’s Outfront w/Erin Burnett show(04/06/22) delved into Russia’s President Vladimir Putin’s very secretive family ties, and the effect the recently imposed economic sanctions may have on them. According to Russia expert Alina Polyakova who was a guest on the show, Putin has two adult daughters, Katerina Tikhonova and Maria Putina, from his previous marriage to Lyudmila Ocheretnaya, who currently resides in the Netherlands. Alina Polyakova also dropped a bombshell on the show saying Putin’s current mistress, former Olympic Gymnast Alina Kabaeva, who he put in charge of a powerful Russia media group, is apparently living in luxury with his four children in Switzerland. Alina rightly wondered why the West has not targeted Kabaeva with the kind of stiff sanctions they’ve meted out to Russian Oligarchs worldwide?

She told host Erin Burnett: “Alina Kabaeva has been kept really like a state secret from the media, from everyone else. Reportedly, in her role as leading this media group, she makes something around $11 million a year, quite significant. There are reports that she lives in Switzerland with four of Putin’s children, supposedly two boys, and a set of twin girls that were born in Switzerland, presumably have Swiss passports, presumably she does as well. Putin as a former KGB agent sees close ties and personal connection as a potential vulnerability, which is why he is likely hiding her…he is keeping her as protected as possible because he knows that she can be used as leverage against him, so certainly, this in my view, is absolutely the time to hit Putin where it hurts, where he fears it the most, where he sees his vulnerability. The war in Ukraine is absolutely brutal and it’s frankly absurd that his closest partner, the mother of potentially four of his children is getting to live a luxurious life in Switzerland. That just doesn’t make sense.”

Spot on, Alina Polyakova, it makes zero sense. Switzerland should immediately revoke Alina Kabaeva’s citizenship and deport her, with her children, back to Russia. Whatever financial assets she has in Switzerland should remain in Switzerland, or preferably be used to assist with humanitarian efforts in Ukraine.

Bottom line folks, the Biden administration and indeed all the democracy-loving Western governments, need to see to it that Putin’s family is not allowed to live in luxury overseas, as he butchers and maims Ukrainian families. As Alina Polyakova correctly stated, “this is absolutely the time to hit Putin where it hurts, where he fears it the most, where he sees his vulnerability.”

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Hillary Clinton Slams GOP’s “Naivete” Re Putin’s Russia

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Secretary Hillary Clinton discusses Russia-Ukraine conflict on MSNBC’s Morning Joe (02/25/22)

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton appeared on MSNBC’s Morning Joe show (02/25/22) where she slammed GOP’s seeming praise of Russia’s President Putin, even as he continues with his invasion of neighboring Ukraine. Secretary Clinton called this the height of “naivete”, saying Putin, who “takes no prisoners”, would similarly kill, poison, and imprison those in the GOP who think he’s their friend. Secretary Clinton was on Morning Joe to discuss her bombshell piece on The Atlantic titled, “A State of Emergency For Democracy.”

Clinton told hosts Mika and Joe(video at 7:25 onwards): “Starting with the ascent of Trump, there has been, sadly, a total loss of spine and conscience among too many Republicans who at first saw no harm in echoing and parroting the kind of crazy stuff that Trump would say, totally against history, against common sense…and now they are kind of caught in a bit of a downward spiral, where they are afraid to stand against even the most outrageous comments. ”

She added, “There’s also another element which is, these people are naive in such a dangerous way. They somehow believe that because Putin presents himself as a strong leader on behalf of certain values that are anti-gay, that are anti-freedom and democracy that is so messy, that somehow. that corresponds with the views of certain members and elements of the Republican Party. They could not be more mistaken. This man takes no prisoners. He kills them, he poisons them, he imprisons them…The naivete that we saw starting with Trump, but which has now been accelerated, is really hard to understand but nevertheless, we have to deal with it. We have to call it out.”

Secretary Clinton singled GOP Senator Ben Sasse (Nebraska) for praise, for his unequivocal denunciation of Putin and his thuggish regime. Senator Sasse appeared on Morning Joe right before Secretary Clinton’s interview.

Secretary Clinton concluded her interview by imploring the Biden administration to deal ruthlessly with the Oligarchs who Putin relies on to move his ill-gotten wealth around. She said, “We need to call the Oligarchs out. We need to call them out by name, we need to go after their assets, whether it’s temporary suspension of access to assets like yachts and huge houses…bank accounts, because if we don’t up the pressure now, whatever we are doing…will take longer, and Ukraine will be burning. Ukraine will be devastated.” She gave kudos to this U.K. MP for calling out Putin-allied Oligarchs in Parliament.

Bottom line folks, Secretary Clinton is absolutely right. One only hopes the Biden admin will heed her advice and (1) find a way to counter Putin’s propagandists on Fox News and elsewhere, and (2) squeeze his Oligarchs out of financial relevance. Then, and only then, will Putin come to the negotiating table in good faith.

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Excellent UTSW Webinar On Havana Syndrome

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On 02/10/2022 the Department of Psychiatry and the Peter O’Donnell Jr. Brain Institute at the University of Texas Southwestern (UTSW-Dallas), hosted an excellent webinar on Havana Syndrome featuring some of the leading minds in Neurology and importantly, offering suggestions on the path forward for both government investigators, and affected families (victims).

The webinar titled “Havana Syndrome: Medical, Scientific, and Policy Perspectives”, featured this esteemed panel of subject matter experts.

Among the visiting speakers(not from UTSW) were Cipher CEO Suzanne Kelly, Fox News National Security Analyst Daniel Hoffman, Former CIA Officer and Havana Syndrome victim Marc Polymeropoulos, NPR National Security Correspondent Greg Myre, and of course, the star of the show, the undisputed MVP, Dr. James Giordano(Georgetown), who they saved for last. Dr. Giordano’s entire presentation is below.

The key takeaway from Dr Giordano’s presentation was this(video at 17:00): “What this thing allowed us to do is to examine in greater detail, the technological readiness level(TRL),of forms of energy that could be directed in ways that would be scalable, fieldable, and therefore operationalizable. Now again, please understand that there is information that simply cannot be discussed in an open forum such as this, some of it exists as confidential and classified…but suffice it to say that information both at the time(2016, 2017, and part of 2018), and subsequently 2018 and 2019…reveal that there are two primary domains of directable energy that represented not only state of the science and technology, but were at a point of technological readiness that would allow or enable possible deployability and operational use. The idea of utilizing accoustic rangeable devices in the high sonic and/or ultrasonic range, very possible, very probable. The possibility of also utilizing some form of microwave energy particularly low to moderate gigawatt microwave energy that could be generated using very very rapid pulsing, perhaps utilizing a light source or laser source to be able to develop nanosecond or perhaps even quicker pulsing, would allow the scalability, the fieldability, and the containability of microwaves, and also get by some of the power source requirements that might be necessary. Why would such devices be in operation?…These types of devices can be used for surveillance, and/or they can be used either kinetically or non-kinetically, for disruptive effects. What do we mean by that[disruptive effects]? What we mean, is that there are a number of nations worldwide that have dedicated effort to employing these devices for testing organic and inorganic substances primarily in the occupational and commercial range…They[nations]include United States and many of its allies, China, Russia, among others. So the technology exists. We know the technology is being employed at least in part for the evaluation of vulnerability and volatility for organic and inorganic substances.”

A layman’s understanding of Dr. Giordano’s scientific analysis boils down to this(feel free to offer corrections/more insight): That microwaves and sound (accoustics) are the two forms of energy that scientists agree, could be harnessed, scaled and deployed to effect the kind of attacks experienced by U.S. Embassy staff in Havana, Cuba. Scientists also agree that this kind of technology(sound and microwave directed energy) is readily available in the U.S.(and its Western allies), China, and Russia, and is currently used for surveillance and other industrial applications(testing the vulnerability of organic and inorganic substances). This scientific analysis by Dr. Giordano is very important because to this day, mainstream media reports have characterized Havana Syndrome as being caused by some hostile foreign power(prime suspect Russia), using some mysterious technology that nobody in the U.S. knows about. Clearly, per Dr. Giordano’s analysis, this technology is already being used in the United States for surveillance and other industrial applications, meaning part of the inquiry into the causes of Havana Syndrome going forward, has to look inward, as opposed to only pointing the finger at Russia and China.

The webinar also featured a joint discussion by Cipher CEO Suzanne Kelly and Fox News National Security Analyst Daniel Hoffman, which focused squarely on the national security implications of Havana Syndrome, as opposed to the other panelists who delved into the clinical aspects. Even though this was an interesting discussion, it totally sidestepped the million dollar question which many attendees, including Yours Truly tuned in for, and that is, Havana Syndrome among regular civilians(not government employees).

Interestingly, the million dollar question found it’s way into the webinar at the very end(after Dr. Giordano’s presentation), as the panelists were entertaining written questions from attendees. One of the questions directed at Dr. Giordano asked what regular civilians(ding ding ding–magic word) who suspect they are victims of similar directed energy attacks, should do?(see video below @ 1:50) Dr. Giordano’s answer was very interesting. He said regular civilians should first consult their attending physicians with their concerns, and upon a traumatic brain injury(TBI) diagnosis, have their attending physician refer them to Walter Reed for further analysis. It has to be a physician’s referral–none of that self-diagnosis stuff. A question as to whether there’s any evidence of regular civilians being victims of directed energy attacks came up at the 18:45 mark, and Dr. Giordano answered in the affirmative, saying yes, there is evidence both in Europe and domestically. WHOA!!

Hopefully Dr. Giordano’s suggestion for regular civilians suffering from directed energy attacks will encourage them to seek the much needed medical attention, and crucially, provide enough leads for scientists and government investigators, to get to the bottom of the Havana Syndrome mystery. Hopefully , it also opens up debate about the plight of regular civilians vis a vis directed energy weapons in the mainstream media, and in the halls of Congress where strangely, this remains a taboo topic, as exhibited by the tweet below.

**post updated 05/11/222 to include a recent study by Texas A&M which also concluded that pulsed high peak power microwaves can cause traumatic brain injury. Below is a major takeaway from the study

“While the peak power densities used within this simulation study are large, they are achievable with known microwave hardware. For example, to produce a power density of 1 × 106 mW/cm2 at 25 m away from a 40-dBi antenna, a microwave source would require approximately 8 MW of power per pulse. This is within the capabilities of some commercial and military systems, and we therefore consider this as a relevant approximation for the simulations here. However, we also consider some more extreme conditions in the final analysis summary for scaling purposes against known mechanical TBI thresholds.”

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