The Evening Blues - 11-22-23



eb1pt12


The day's news roundup + tonight's musical feature: Billy "The Kid" Emerson

Hey! Good Evening!

This evening's music features r&b singer and songwriter Billy "The Kid" Emerson. Enjoy!

Billy "The Kid" Emerson - Red Hot

"There are two things I know about life... Only the good die young but the real jerks will live forever."

-- Lewis Black


News and Opinion

This Is The Real Face Of The US Empire

Someone uploaded one of those viral “help identify this racist jerk” clips featuring a man accosting a street vendor with awful Islamophobic vitriol, and it turned out he was the former US State Department Deputy Director in the Office of Israel and Palestinian Affairs.

It sounds made up, but that’s exactly what just happened; Vice has a whole article out about it. The video was uploaded today, and within hours the man was identified as Stuart Seldowitz, who helped direct US diplomacy on Israel-Palestine from 1999 to 2003 and then served on the Obama administration’s National Security Council. 

Seldowitz’s identity was confirmed by his former employer Gotham Government Relations, who released a statement denouncing him and saying they’ve ended all affiliation with him. 

Seldowitz is seen hounding the New York City vendors in multiple different videos wearing multiple different outfits, showing a sustained campaign of harassment and abuse. He told them while fully aware he was being filmed that Israel killing thousands of Palestinian kids “wasn’t enough”, insulted their religion, threatened them, mocked their intelligence and their English, called them terrorists, and asked “Did you rape your daughter like Mohammed did?” From the videos he appears to be harassing them for no reason other than because they are Muslims selling halal food.

That such a horrible person could climb his way to the highest echelons of the world’s most powerful government — working on Palestinian affairs no less — illustrates an important point about the US empire and what it is. There are no barriers stopping such creatures from rising to the top of that power structure, just the opposite in fact — they get an express lane to the top. That’s why bloodthirsty swamp monsters like John Bolton, Lindsey Graham, Victoria Nuland and Elliott Abrams find themselves so intimately involved with US policymaking.

That’s the true face of the US empire, right there. That’s the empire at its most honest. Not dressed up in affable charm and slick PR work, but sneering and hurling racist invective at immigrants who are just trying to do their jobs in peace. Not performing carefully rehearsed faces of compassion for the Palestinians who are being tragically unintentionally killed as collateral damage in Israel’s war of defense against Hamas, but staring right into the camera and saying “If we killed 4,000 Palestinian kids, you know what? It wasn’t enough.”

Too many people look at Israel as something separate from the US empire, seeing it as a small nation run by a historically mistreated ethnic group that everyone singles out and picks on unfairly. If you look at Israel separately from the US-centralized global power structure, it feels off to have any forceful animosity toward Israel and its government, because it feels like you’re picking on the little guy.

It’s only when you see clearly that Israel is just an arm of the same empire that’s been murdering people by the millions around the world with nonstop invasions, bombing campaigns, proxy conflicts, starvation sanctions and CIA coups that you understand that, yes, Israel really is exactly as evil as it appears to be, and its behavior in Gaza is exactly what it looks like.

The US empire backs Israel for the same reason it backs most of the world’s dictatorships: because a globe-spanning empire can only be held together by nonstop violence and tyranny. Israel and other US-aligned states in the middle east are like the chair and the whip of a lion tamer — weapons used to violently abuse the populations of a crucial geostrategic region into compliance. It suits the empire perfectly to have a nuclear-armed government which exists in a constant state of war in the middle east governed by officials who speak English with American accents and interests which are reliably in alignment with those of the United States.

Stuart Seldowitz is not an aberration but a perfect manifestation of all this. This is the sort of mind which keeps the empire marching along from administration to administration no matter who Americans elect. This is the sort of mind which keeps the weapons flowing, the blood pouring, the fossil fuels burning, and the terrified screams which power the imperial machine continually erupting into the night sky.

Prof. Jeffrey Sachs: Analysis of Major Wars and Paths to Sustaining Peace

Israel and Hamas agree deal for release of hostages and partial ceasefire

Israel and Hamas have agreed a deal for the release of 50 women and children hostages held in Gaza in return for a four-day partial ceasefire, the Israeli government announced early on Wednesday.

The announcement from the prime minister’s office said the lull in Israeli military operations would be extended for an additional day for every 10 more hostages released. It did not say when the ceasefire would start, though in his address to his cabinet, Benjamin Netanyahu said the first hostages should be free within 48 hours of the agreement.

Hamas confirmed an agreement had been reached and added that 150 Palestinian women and children would be freed from Israeli jails.

“The Israeli government is committed to the return of all abductees home,” the government statement said in a WhatsApp message. “Tonight, the government approved the outline for the first stage of achieving this goal, according to which at least 50 abductees — women and children — will be released for four days, during which there will be a lull in the fighting. The release of every 10 additional abductees will result in an additional day of respite.”

The statement added: “The government of Israel, the IDF [Israel Defence Forces] and the security services will continue the war in order to return home all of the hostages, complete the elimination of Hamas and ensure that there will be no new threat to the State of Israel from Gaza.” The Israeli confirmation of the agreement followed an extended meeting of the full 38-member Israeli cabinet over the terms, in the face of opposition from far right-wingers.

Israel & Hamas Agree to 4-Day Truce & Hostage Release as Netanyahu Threatens War on Gaza Will Go On

Israeli strikes on Lebanon kill eight including journalists and Hamas official

Two Israeli strikes on southern Lebanon have killed eight people, including two journalists working for a Lebanese TV channel and a senior Hamas official, according to Lebanese state media and official sources.

The deaths bring those killed in Lebanon since the beginning of hostilities along the border to more than 80 people, mostly fighters from the Lebanese armed group Hezbollah.

Violence along the border broke out after Hamas’s 7 October attack. Israel and the Iran-backed Hezbollah – a Hamas ally – have exchanged rocket fire in fighting that has steadily escalated.

Lebanese broadcaster Al Mayadeen said an Israeli strike on Tuesday near the town of Tir Harfa, about a mile from the Israeli border, had killed two of its journalists and a third person at the site where they were filming. Al Mayadeen accused Israel of deliberately targeting the TV crew because the channel was known to be pro-Palestinian and pro-Iran’s regional military alliance.

Al Mayadeen named its killed journalists as correspondent Farah Omar and camera operator Rabih Me’mari. The third person killed was Hussein Aqil. Al Mayadeen told Reuters he was not working with the channel. Lebanon’s caretaker prime minister, Najib Mikati, said in a statement that the strike was an Israeli attempt to silence the media, adding there were “no limits to Israeli crimes”.

Gaza in Ruins: Satellite Imagery Researchers Say Israel Has Destroyed or Damaged 56,000 Buildings

Israel escalates fighting with Lebanon, as ethnic cleansing of Palestinians continues

Heavy fire was exchanged across the Israel-Lebanon border over the weekend and into Monday as the Netanyahu government presses for a wider war in the region. In an article titled “Creeping escalation along Israel-Lebanon border brings risk of bigger war,” the Washington Post notes: “Saturday saw Israeli jets strike an aluminum factory in the Lebanese town of Nabatieh, 12 miles north of the border—well beyond the traditional zone in which retaliatory fire has been considered acceptable by both sides.”

The article notes that “both sides have started using deadlier weapons,” with Israel “now regularly sending fighter jets to strike Hezbollah targets; Hezbollah is deploying drones and heavier caliber missiles.”

Last week, Israel Defense Forces (IDF) spokesperson Daniel Hagari threatened, “Lebanon’s citizens will bear the cost of this recklessness and of Hezbollah’s decision to be the defender of Hamas-ISIS. … The IDF has operational plans for changing the security situation in the north.” On Monday morning, Israel carried out another round of provocative shelling. Hezbollah returned fire against Arab al-Aramshe and Bar’am, as well as the Biranit army base. No injuries were suffered, though heavy damage was caused to the barracks.

Further exchanges of fire followed between IDF artillery, helicopters, fighter jets and tanks and Hezbollah missiles and drones. Since October 7, nearly 100 have been killed in Lebanon, including 74 members of Hezbollah, and nine in Israel, including six IDF soldiers.

On Friday, Britain’s leading foreign policy think tank Chatham House published, “The closer Israel gets to destroying Hamas, the more likely war with Hezbollah becomes.” It noted, “There are those in the Israeli government, including Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, who want to more aggressively punish Hezbollah for its shelling of Israeli military positions along the border.” Gallant is leading the charge, telling US Secretary of State Antony Blinken of his desire to strike Hezbollah pre-emptively, which has until this point been overruled by his colleagues in Israel’s war cabinet. But his view is widespread among senior officers, who “believe that a war in the north is inevitable.”

Col. Douglas Macgregor: Will Israeli War on Gaza Soon be Regional?

US has wrecked chances of peace in Middle East, Putin tells Brics summit

US unilateralism has wrecked the chances of peace in the Middle East, Vladimir Putin, the Russian president, told a crisis Brics meeting on Gaza as he attempted to woo leaders of the global south. The virtual meeting of 11 nations, convened by South Africa’s president, Cyril Ramaphosa, came as Arab foreign ministers toured capitals to drum up support for a fresh UN security council resolution mandating Israel to introduce a full ceasefire and end what they say are breaches of international humanitarian law. ...

Putin told the Brics meeting that the US was undermining the chances of peace by trying to monopolise diplomacy in its own self-interest. He said that “the deaths of thousands of people, the mass displacement of civilians and the humanitarian catastrophe that has unfolded are deeply disturbing”. He added: “Due to the sabotage of UN efforts, more than one generation of Palestinians are being brought up with a sense of unfairness to their state while the Israeli people cannot fully guarantee their own security.”

Putin accused the US of sidelining other members of the Middle East Quartet – a group seeking to navigate the Israeli-Palestinian peace process that also includes Russia, the UN, and the EU. Washington had attempted to “monopolise the role of the mediator” while blocking the efforts of other international actors, he said. “History has vividly demonstrated that attempts to single-handedly cut the Palestinian knot are not viable and counterproductive.” ...

The Chinese president, Xi Jinping, added his voice to the call for a ceasefire in Gaza, telling the summit: “All parties in the conflicts should immediately cease fire and hostilities, stop all violence and attacks targeting civilians, and release civilian detainees to avoid more loss of lives and suffering.” Xi said: “The root cause of the Palestinian-Israeli situation is the fact that the right of the Palestinian people to statehood, their right to existence, and their right of return have long been ignored.”

However, the eventual joint statement was relatively mild and called only for Israel to comply with international humanitarian law and accept “full, immediate, safe, unhindered and sustained humanitarian access”. It also warned Israel not to attempt to displace Palestinans from Gaza.

Head of Bombed Gaza Hospital Appeals Directly to Biden

The director of the aid group that runs the Indonesian Hospital in Gaza—where Israeli attacks killed at least a dozen people on Monday—appealed directly to U.S. President Joe Biden, imploring him to push Israel to accept a cease-fire in a war that's killed or maimed more than 40,000 Palestinians.

"Gazans are facing death every day. Every five minutes, a Palestinian child is killed," Sarbini Abdul Murad, head of Medical Emergency Rescue Committee (MER-C) Indonesia, wrote in a letter to Biden.

Noting that Israeli forces have attacked "babies, children, women, the elderly, the disabled, hospitals, ambulances, medics, schools, teachers, residential complexes, worship places, and much more," Murad asserted that "this is completely genocide and ethnic cleansing."

"It is very unfortunate that your siding with Israel by facilitating weapons of mass destruction has actually made the conflict even wider," Murad continued. "Your action clearly contradicts various international treaties and agreements that apply to the existence of Palestine. You have destroyed the international rules of the game, insulted the authority of the [United Nations], torn apart the sense of justice, hurt human values, and tarnished the face of human civilization."

"Mr. President, we believe you still have a conscience," Murad wrote. "Your great country certainly wants to be seen as honorable for its humanitarian defenses. Moreover, your administration has determined to make the principles of multilateralism, justice, and human rights the foundation of United States foreign policy. So, actually, this is the right to prove it."

Urging Biden to "avoid double standards in dealing with the Palestinian-Israeli conflict," Murad added: "For the sake of peace and humanity, we demand that you immediately do [a] cease-fire. Restore the dignity of the United States as a country that upholds human rights. The cease-fire must be implemented now, so as not to increase the loss of life on both sides."

Murad's letter came as Israel Defense Forces tanks surrounded the Indonesian Hospital in northern Gaza after IDF artillery shelling killed 12 people in the facility's compound, including patients and their companions, according to the Gaza Health Ministry. The ministry also said many people were wounded in the attack, including patients in critical condition.

"The attack is a clear violation of international humanitarian laws. All countries, especially those that have close relations with Israel, must use all their influence and capabilities to urge Israel to stop its atrocities," Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi said Monday.

According to Gaza officials, there are about 700 patients, staff, and other Palestinians trapped in the Indonesian Hospital. People trying to flee the compound have reportedly come under Israeli fire.

Marwan Abdallah, a medical worker at hospital, toldAl Jazeera that Israeli tanks could be seen maneuvering around the compound

"You can see them moving around and firing," Abdallah said. "Women and children are terrified. There are constant sounds of explosions and gunfire."

The World Health Organization (WHO) said it is "appalled" by the attacks on Indonesian Hospital.

"Health workers and civilians should never have to be exposed to such horror, and especially while inside a hospital," the agency said in a statement.

"There have been multiple and ongoing attacks on health facilities in the last six weeks, that have resulted in forced mass evacuations from hospitals, and multiple fatalities and casualties among patients, their companions, and those who had sought refuge in hospitals," WHO continued.

"The Indonesian Hospital had already reportedly sustained damages due to at least five attacks since October 7," the organization added, referring to the date when Israel began bombarding Gaza by air, land, and sea following the Hamas-led attacks on southern Israel that killed around 1,200 people, with another 240 or so taken hostage.

"WHO has recorded 335 attacks on healthcare in the occupied Palestinian territory since October 7, including 164 attacks in the Gaza Strip and 171 attacks in the West Bank," WHO noted. "There were also 33 attacks on healthcare in Israel during the violent events of October 7."

"The world cannot stand silent while these hospitals, which should be safe havens, are transformed into scenes of death, devastation, and despair," the agency added.

On Tuesday, Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), or Doctors Without Borders, said two of its physicians—Drs. Mahmoud Abu Nujaila and Ahmad Al Sahar—were killed along with another doctor, Ziad Al-Tatari, in a strike on al-Awda Hospital in northern Gaza.

"We condemn this strike in the strongest terms, and call yet again for the respect and protection of medical facilities, staff, and patients," MSF said in a statement.

Israeli officials claim Hamas and other Palestinian militants are using hospitals as headquarters. However, Israel has provided no proof to support its allegations, which Palestinian and international medical professionals working in the facilities resoundingly refute.

According to Palestine's WAFANews Agency, at least 205 Palestinian medical workers have been killed by Israeli bombs and bullets during the war.

The WHO said Tuesday that one of its employees, Dima Alhaj, was killed in an Israeli attack on Gaza alongside her husband, their 6-month-old baby, and two of the woman's brothers.

Gaza officials said Tuesday that the death toll from Israel's 46-day onslaught rose to at least 14,128, including over 3,900 women and 5,800 children. Tens of thousands more Palestinians have been wounded, nearly 1.7 million others have been forcibly displaced, and around half of all homes in the embattled strip have been damaged or destroyed.

US Shared Location of Aid Groups With Israel. Israel Bombed Them Anyway.

POLITICO reported Tuesday that the US has been sharing with Israel the location of humanitarian groups in Gaza in an attempt to prevent strikes on the sites. But Israel has been bombing them anyway.

The information has included GPS coordinates of a number of medical facilities and the movement of aid groups inside Gaza. Among the sites the US shared with Israel was al-Shifa hospital, which Israeli forces raided last week, causing the medical facility to cease functioning and the deaths of dozens of patients, including eight premature babies.

The US has tried to deflect blame for Israel’s attack on al-Shifa and other hospitals. The White House has said it doesn’t “want to see hospitals as battlegrounds,” but the US continues to provide unconditional military aid for Israel’s operations despite the massive civilian casualty rate.


South African Lawmakers Vote to Cut Diplomatic Ties With Israel

South Africa's Parliament on Tuesday voted overwhelmingly for a suspension of diplomatic ties with Israel over what numerous lawmakers called its "genocidal" war on Gaza, a move that came a day after the country's government urged the International Criminal Court to issue an arrest warrant for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Lawmakers voted 248-91 for the resolution calling on South Africa to cut ties with Israel until it agrees to a cease-fire in Gaza, where authorities say that 46 days of relentless bombardment by air, land, and sea has left more than 14,000 Palestinians—including more than 3,900 women and 5,800 children—dead, with tens of thousands more wounded, thousands missing beneath the rubble, and nearly 1.7 million people, or about 70% of the population, forcibly displaced. ...

Applause and chants of "Free, Free Palestine" and "From the River to the Sea, Palestine Will Be Free" rang out in South Africa's legislative chamber as the results of Tuesday's vote were announced.

The nonbinding motion, which requires presidential approval to take effect, was introduced by the left-wing opposition party Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF). The measure is backed by the ruling African National Congress (ANC) and opposed by the mostly white, largely pro-Israel Democratic Alliance.

"We support the amendment. We want to applaud the ANC for its maturity on this matter," said EFF leader Julius Malema. "It doesn't matter; politically we disagree, but when it comes to the issue of humanity, we must protect the human rights of all human beings all over the world."

The lawmakers' vote came on the same day that ANC South African President Cyril Ramaphosa asserted during a virtual meeting with leaders of the so-called BRICS nations—Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa—that "the collective punishment of Palestinian civilians through the unlawful use of force by Israel is a war crime."

"The deliberate denial of medicine, fuel, food, and water to the residents of Gaza is tantamount to genocide," Ramaphosa said. ...

Israel recalled its ambassador to South Africa, Eli Belotserkovsk, on Monday for consultations following Pretoria's call for an International Criminal Court (ICC) arrest warrant against Netanyahu.

South Africa's government on Monday called on the International Criminal Court (ICC) to issue an arrest warrant for far-right Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

"The world cannot simply stand by and watch," ANC Minister in the Presidency Khumbudzo Ntshavheni said Monday. "The global community needs to rise to stop this genocide now."

"Given that much of the global community is witnessing the commission of these crimes in real-time, including statements of genocidal intent by mainly Israeli leaders, we expect that warrants of arrest for these leaders, including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, should be issued shortly," she added.

Earlier this month, South Africa recalled all of its diplomats from Israel over what Ntshavheni called "the genocidal acts that the Israeli government is doing to the Palestinian people."

Gaza 4 day ceasefire. The Sun, Putin tried to kill me 5 times. Shoigu, 13.7K November losses.

South Korea to partially suspend military deal with North after launch of spy satellite

South Korea has moved to partially suspend a 2018 military agreement with North Korea, which said it had successfully launched its first military spy satellite into orbit, the Yonhap news agency reported.

“North Korea is clearly demonstrating that it has no will to abide by the 19 September [2018] military agreement designed to reduce military tension on the Korean Peninsula and to build trust,” the South’s prime minister, Han Duck-soo, told an extraordinary cabinet meeting that approved suspending the deal.

Seoul’s national security council said the suspension would mean the restoration of reconnaissance and surveillance operations around the military demarcation line. The move came after what is believed to be North Korea’s third attempt to place a spy satellite into orbit this year. The previous two failed. ...

Officials in South Korea and Japan, which first reported the launch, could not immediately verify whether a satellite was in orbit. Pentagon spokesperson Sabrina Singh said the US military was assessing whether the launch was a success.

Video captures California officer fatally shooting aspiring actor on freeway

A California highway patrol officer fatally shot a man on Sunday during a confrontation in the middle of a Los Angeles highway, state authorities said as they announced an investigation into the incident. The Los Angeles county medical examiner’s office on Tuesday identified the man as Jesse Dominguez. The 34-year-old was walking along the westbound lanes of Interstate 105 in south Los Angeles county when the deadly encounter unfolded, the California highway patrol said.

A video captured by a passerby and posted online showed the officer on top of Dominguez as they fought on the pavement. Authorities said an officer responding to the scene tried to convince Dominguez to leave the highway, but he refused and the pair began to struggle. During the altercation, the man allegedly grabbed the officer’s Taser and used it on him, the CHP said in a statement. “Following the pedestrian’s use of the weapon against the officer, and in fear for his safety, the officer fired his service weapon.” ...

Dominguez was an aspiring actor who struggled with homelessness, mental health issues and substance use disorder, his family told the Los Angeles Times. Family members said they believed that Dominguez was in the midst of a mental health or drug crisis at the time of the incident.

“He was not trying to hurt anybody. Why did he have to use that type of force? After [the officer] had already discharged his firearm once, why did he stand up and then do it again and again and again?” his stepmother said to the newspaper.



the horse race



Jill Stein formally launches 2024 White House bid as Green party candidate

A new front opened in the growing threats to Joe Biden’s presidency on Tuesday when the left-wing environmentalist Jill Stein formally launched her third presidential bid in an online conversation with two fellow progressive activists.

Stein, 73, who is bidding to become the US Green party’s nominee, is the latest in a series of mostly leftist figures to announce candidacies with the potential to erode Biden’s core support in an expected re-match against Donald Trump in next year’s poll.

Having previously announced her candidacy with a video posted on X, formerly Twitter, she gave added substance to her campaign in a live Zoom conversation with Chris Smalls, a US trade union organiser for Amazon workers, and Miko Peled, an Israeli-born pro-Palestinian activist. ...

Stein’s entry into the race has special resonance because of her supposedly decisive role in tipping battleground states to Trump in his 2016 presidential election victory over Hillary Clinton.

While winning just 1.4m votes nationwide, Stein won more votes in Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Michigan than Trump’s narrow victory margins, prompting many analysts to conclude that her presence on the ballot was decisive in drawing progressive voters away from Clinton.

Democracy Is Bad – For Democracy! -Says MSNBC Host

RFK Jr SURGES With Black Voters In Battleground States, Biden HEMORRHAGING Key Support: Rising

Wisconsin supreme court appears poised to strike down legislative maps and end Republican dominance

The Wisconsin supreme court appeared poised to strike down the current maps for the state legislature after three hours of oral argument on Tuesday, a decision that could end more than a decade of Republican dominance and eliminate some of the most gerrymandered districts in the United States.

The four liberal justices on the court all seemed ready to embrace an argument from challengers in the case, Clarke v Wisconsin elections commission, that the maps violate the state constitution because they include more than 70 districts. It was unclear, however, how the justices would handle the redrawing of a map and whether it would immediately order elections for the entire legislature next year in new districts. Wisconsin voters elect 99 assembly members every two years, but only about half of the 33-member state senate would normally be up for election next year. ...

In 2011, Republicans drew districts for the state legislature that were so distorted in their favor that it made it impossible for them to lose their majorities. Last year, the state supreme court implemented new maps that made as little change as possible from the old ones when lawmakers and the state’s Democratic governor reached a redistricting impasse.

The court’s liberal wing seemed unsettled on how they would proceed with a potential remedy to fixing the maps (state election officials have said they would need a new map in place no later than 15 March 2024 for use in next year’s elections). The justices asked all of the lawyers in the case on Tuesday to submit the names of non-partisan mapmakers who could serve as a special master to advise them in coming up with new maps. The request signaled the court was aware of the need to move quickly if they are going to strike down the map.



the evening greens


US Coast Guard looking for source of pipeline leak in Gulf of Mexico

The US Coast Guard said on Tuesday it is still seeking the source of a leak from a pipeline linked to a Houston-based firm, off the Louisiana coast in the Gulf of Mexico which it estimated has released more than 1m gallons of crude oil.

The 67-mile long undersea pipeline was closed by Main Pass Oil Gathering Co (MPOG) last Thursday after crude oil was spotted around 19 miles offshore of the Mississippi River Delta, near Plaquemines Parish, south-east of New Orleans.

The Coast Guard is leading a multi-agency response, which includes the US Fish and Wildlife Service. Local reports said oiled pelicans had been spotted in the area while overflights and boat surveys were part of the response, which included underwater devices looking at the pipeline. Operations of seven energy companies have been impacted by the spill, officials said.

Third Coast Infrastructure, which reportedly completed the pipeline last year, has declined to comment about the spill and referred questions to the Coast Guard. ... MPOG is a subsidiary of Houston-based Third Coast Infrastructure, 50% of which is owned by private equity company IIF, and which is controlled by banking giant JPMorgan, according to the non-profit group Public Citizen, citing a ruling by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in September.

EPA considers approving fruit pesticide despite risks to children

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is considering approving a pesticide for use on Florida oranges and grapefruits despite the fact that agency scientists have repeatedly found the chemical does not meet safety standards designed to protect children’s health, internal agency records show.

EPA emails indicate how for years, agency scientists have wanted to deny new uses of aldicarb, but appear to have not done so because of persistent pressure from chemical industry lobbyists, politicians and political appointees.

The records indicate how, during the Trump administration, the agency’s Office of Pesticide Programs approved the pesticide, moving from a position favoring public health to one that critics say prioritized the interests of a North Carolina-based company called AgLogic that is seeking to expand sales of the insecticide. The EPA’s approval was later rejected by the state of Florida and a federal appeals court.

Aldicarb is still, however, being considered for approval by the Biden-era EPA. The EPA communications were obtained by the non-profit Center for Biological Diversity through a Freedom of Information Act (Foia) lawsuit.

In one 2020 email, for example, an EPA regulatory specialist wrote to AgLogic that while the EPA was not yet able to make a safety finding, the agency has “spent time brainstorming possible solutions”. The emails also show that scientists within the agency appear to have felt they had to defend their concerns about aldicarb as top agency administrators and lawmakers made expanded approval of the chemical a priority.

“What this shows is just how difficult it is for the agency to say no,” said Nathan Donley, environmental health science director at the Center for Biological Diversity. “They were going to reject it so many times, and [AgLogic] just said, ‘No, no no.’”

‘Breakthrough battery’ from Sweden may cut dependency on China

Europe’s energy and electric vehicle industries could reduce their dependency on scarce raw materials from China after the launch of a “breakthrough” sodium-ion battery, according to its Swedish developer.

Northvolt, Europe’s only large homegrown electric battery maker, has said it has made a lower cost, more sustainable battery designed to store electricity which does not use lithium, nickel, graphite and cobalt.

Britain and Europe’s electric battery industry is reliant on raw materials, or completed batteries, sourced from China and other Asian nations.

Northvolt said its new battery, which has an energy density of more than 160 watt-hours per kilogram, has been designed for electricity storage plants but could in future be used in electric vehicles, such as two wheeled scooters.

“Using sodium-ion technology is not new but we think this is the first product ever completely free from critical raw materials. It is a fundamental breakthrough,” said Patrik Andreasson, Northvolt’s vice-president of strategy and sustainability. “This provides an option that is not dependent on certain parts of the world, including China.”


Also of Interest

Here are some articles of interest, some which defied fair-use abstraction.

Hamas-Israel Hostage Deal Only a Pause in Destruction of Gaza

Invoking the Genocide Convention Against Israel

“From The River To The Sea” Is Genocide, But Actual Genocide Is Not Genocide

As War Rages, Israeli Settlers and Soldiers Try to Block the Palestinian Olive Harvest

Israel ‘deliberately destroying’ cultural and historical sites in Gaza

Sunday’s Gaza Guests Linked to Military Industry, Pro-Israel Funding

Haaretz confirms Grayzone reporting it dismissed as ‘conspiracy’ showing Israel killed own festivalgoers

Full Text Of Bin Laden’s “Letter To America” (With Brief Commentary)

Lawsuit Against Alleged CIA Spying on Assange Visitors: A Rare Court Hearing

2023 ocean photographer of the year – in pictures

America’s Addiction To War Exposed!


A Little Night Music

Billy "The Kid" Emerson - When It Rains It Pours

Billy (The Kid) Emerson - Move Baby Move

Billy (The Kid) Emerson - Hey Little Girl

Billy (The Kid) Emerson - Something for Nothing

Billy (The Kid) Emerson - The Woodchuck

Billy (The Kid) Emerson - Little Fine Healthy Thing

Billy 'The Kid' Emerson - I Never Get Enough

Billy 'The Kid' Emerson - The Pleasure Is All Mine

Billy 'The Kid' Emerson - Dancin' Whippersnapper


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Comments

ggersh's picture

Who have we heard about since 10-7, Hamas-Iran. So instead of hearing
about our last hope JFK, all over the news we get this

https://www.bitchute.com/video/Q8Dki3D7Z03k/

Well guess who became a suicide bomber(first Iranian on ever)
funny how passports are bomb proof

Stay safe everyone, winter is coming

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12 users have voted.

I never knew that the term "Never Again" only pertained to
those born Jewish

"Antisemite used to be someone who didn't like Jews
now it's someone who Jews don't like"

Heard from Margaret Kimberley

@ggersh in a fake leather case for its' protection. Hell, I should wear my passport for my protection! They can withstand bombs and airplane crashes and remain in mint condition!

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14 users have voted.

"We'll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false." ---- William Casey, CIA Director, 1981

joe shikspack's picture

@ggersh

happy thanksgiving!

heh, i better go get a passport to keep me safe from bomb blasts. thanks for the tip!

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10 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

@ggersh

Look at how far the car traveled in the air. Top of the video

Zero Hedges has great coverage of this with lots of tweets and updates.

What started out with Fox News reporting a terrorism incident involving explosives is now believed to be the fault of a 56-year-old man who lived in a wealthy area, went to a casino after KISS canceled its farewell-tour dates in Ottawa and Toronto, and then drove his $300,000 (after taxes) Bentley Excelsior X into the border checkpoint, killing himself and his wife.

So what’s with the passport?

P.S. love your new sigline! Right on.

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8 users have voted.

Which AIPAC/MIC/pharma/bank bought politician are you going to vote for? Don’t be surprised when nothing changes.

@snoopydawg

maybe the rich bastard was having a bad day after getting dissed at a kiss concert
the passport means nothing but you know how the authorities are still working
the terrorist angle: be vewwey scaird

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8 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

@QMS

You’re saying that you didn’t see the flying car? It’s hard to miss if you’re looking at the top of the video. It goes through the whole screen.

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5 users have voted.

Which AIPAC/MIC/pharma/bank bought politician are you going to vote for? Don’t be surprised when nothing changes.

Guess this is just par for the course, but c'mon man. Can't you keep it in your pants?
Ahh wtf, a few oily pelicans. The oil industry is destroying the planet.
That is a fact jack.

thanks for the blues joe
you da best

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9 users have voted.
joe shikspack's picture

@QMS

heh, it was only a million gallons this time, not like the 200 million gallons last time. it takes a lot to corexit.

happy thanksgiving!

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@joe shikspack

feel not to be crude about spilt oil
may have lost a few drops today

cheers

Q

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Cassiodorus's picture

November 22, 1963

RIP

John_F._Kennedy,_White_House_color_photo_portrait.jpg

John F. Kennedy

32395_0.jpg

C.S. Lewis

Aldous_Huxley_psychical_researcher.png

Aldous Huxley

All on the same day.

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15 users have voted.

"The war on Gaza, backed by the West, is a demonstration that the West is willing to cross all lines. That it will discard any nuance of humanity. That it is willing to commit genocide" -- Moon of Alabama

joe shikspack's picture

@Cassiodorus

wow, that was indeed a big day.

happy thanksgiving!

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7 users have voted.

@Cassiodorus

given the circumstances of this date
60 years gone by, it becomes a backdrop
to our current mal-infestations
how does this pertain to the madness
in these times?

that was the beginning and this is
close to the end

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Cassiodorus's picture

@QMS Peter Kreeft, who wrote a "dialog":

Between Heaven and Hell: A Dialog Somewhere Beyond Death with John F. Kennedy, C. S. Lewis & Aldous Huxley

I haven't read it. With Kennedy's death you had a certain unmasking, and so for instance you had Bill Hicks' famous routine:

"The Kennedy assassination was when America lost its innocence," the authors like to say. Here's what I'd like to know. When does America lose its taste for "lesser-evil" voting? For some time now you've got "lesser-evil history," Rick Perlstein and Heather Cox Richardson and -- to a lesser extent, I think -- Thom Hartmann, whose solemn duty appears to be to report upon the greater evil's evil without reflection upon what the "other party" was doing at the time. So here are my questions for the lesser-evil historians:

1) During the Sixties and early Seventies we learned about what The Man was capable of doing. We learned about J. Edgar Hoover's spying on Martin Luther King Jr., we learned about COINTELPRO, we learned about what our boys in Vietnam really did over there (esp. thanks to the My Lai inquiries and W. D. Ehrhart and those of his tribe, yeah, sure, shout-out to Oliver Stone), we learned that the FBI destroyed the Black Panthers, we learned what Noam Chomsky and William Blum and Howard Zinn and James W. Loewen told us, we learned what William Westmoreland and Henry Kissinger and their most zealous subordinates were about, we learned about Nixon's War on Drugs, we learned to suspect official stories about assassinations, and so on. So here's my question: Did we decide, collectively, that the Democrats were not The Man simply because we disliked the Republicans more?

2) Did the ostensibly evil Donald Trump engage in foreign policies which killed -- in very short order -- at least tens of thousands and probably hundreds of thousands of people for no good reason (e.g. Ukraine, Gaza)? Well? Did he?

CS Lewis I don't know that well. He was clearly very sophisticated, but ended up writing a lot of Christian apologetics and Narnia fantasy which pales in comparison to that of his good friend J. R. R. Tolkien.

In my forthcoming book "Utopian Dreams Against the Grain," currently being held hostage by Brill, I portray Aldous Huxley as primarily a learner. Ram Dass, in his various memoirs, seemed to regard him as such as well. He was definitely the inspiration for the current vogue in psilocybin therapy. His last book Island (1962) was a high point in what I am calling the "Age of Utopian Dreaming." On the day of November 22, 1963, the dying Huxley was with his second wife Laura while the doctor and the nurse were in the other room watching the assassination broadcasts on TV. Aldous wrote a note to Laura, being unable to talk:

100 µg LSD

Try it

And so Laura injected 100 micrograms of LSD into Aldous. He peaced out soon thereafter.

Huxley wrote a letter in 1949 arguing that his dystopia Brave New World was more accurate a prediction than Orwell's 1984. I think we can say now that the extent to which some parts of the world are like the Brave New World is what makes 1984 in other parts of the world possible.

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"The war on Gaza, backed by the West, is a demonstration that the West is willing to cross all lines. That it will discard any nuance of humanity. That it is willing to commit genocide" -- Moon of Alabama

@Cassiodorus

thanks for your astute observations

He peaced out soon thereafter.

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@Cassiodorus
https://www.archives.gov/files/research/jfk/releases/2022/docid-32146594...

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dystopian's picture

Hi all, Hey Joe! Hope it's all good yonder!

Stuart Seldowitz makes quite the poster child for 'Here is a racist zionist bigot', and idiot.

The Guardian still selling this rotten tripe!?!

While winning just 1.4m votes nationwide, Stein won more votes in Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Michigan than Trump’s narrow victory margins, prompting many analysts to conclude that her presence on the ballot was decisive in drawing progressive voters away from Clinton.

They obviously were neither Hillary or Trump voters FFS!

It has seemed clear to me that for some time the EPA has been working more for Big Development, Big Ag and Big Chem than for the little people or environment. Exactly like the CDC and FDA work for Big Pharma and Big Food more than those pesky plebes.

So Biden's admin goals to approve this poison has the same goals as Trump teams. Just like both teams like what DeJoy is doing to the USPS. Such a big difference between the two heads of the two-headed venomous snake.

Have a leaking oil pipeline? First thing, look for any Texas oil company involvement.

We appear to have been invaded and taken over by that virulent cryptic species, Homo recticephalus. Best characterized by their having shit for brains.

Thanks for the great sounds, can't help the news but to make fun of it. Shall we laugh or cry?

be well all!

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We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.
Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.
both - Albert Einstein

enhydra lutris's picture

@dystopian

That's a good thing, is it not. Otherwise HER might've become presnit. do quibble with the idea that she could've drawn "Progressive voters" away from HER. There are Damn few progressives in thie sountry, fewer still who vote, and none who would
ve ever considered voting for HER.

be well and have a good one

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11 users have voted.

That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

@dystopian

recti = plural of rectus
rectus = straight, upright
homo = human being
therefore Homo recticephalus
if you give pahalus 2 els
works out to: uptight human with a dick
that pretty much describes politicians

(Arctocephalus = seals)

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dystopian's picture

@QMS Hi Capt.! Good work there. Smile

I was thinking along the lines of the specific epitaph for the crowd favorite Butt-nosed Shrimp, which is rectirostris. Which translates to butt nosed, from I think latin roots. Similar recti usage has to do with all things rectal. Then cephalus pertains to the head. Recticephalus = butthead, or colloquially, shit-fer-brains. Wink

be well friend!

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4 users have voted.

We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.
Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.
both - Albert Einstein

joe shikspack's picture

@dystopian

yeah, what is really amazing is that a(n) (insert expletive of choice) like that could become a high-ranking government official. apparently the screening is even worse than i thought.

that idea that stein caused hillary to lose will never go away. all of the other more reasonable explanations hurt democrats feelings.

yep, the epa is a fine exhibit in the display of who government really works for.

happy thanksgiving!

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Pluto's Republic's picture

Hey, @dystopian

Regarding the Guardian's view of Stein's campaign:

Stein won more votes in Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Michigan than Trump’s narrow victory margins, prompting many analysts to conclude that her presence on the ballot was decisive in drawing progressive voters away from Clinton.

.
I've been thinking about this lately, when it suddenly dawned on me:

This is exactly what People should think — because it is 100 percent correct. The legal barriers that the Duopoly has erected to block the establishment of a third, fourth, or fifth Party to represent all the People — will be the enduring cause of their election angst.

This is exactly what happens when you try to force 200 million people into two parties that have extremely limited vision and ethics.

Two Parties that are both heading to the same dystopian destination. Both parties that are captured by the extinction insanity of the Neocons and the Defense Industry shills. They are embedded in the Executive branch, the Pentagon, the State Department, the Intelligence Operators, and the Media monopolies. The Two Parties that are beholden to foreign lobbyists and Zionist operatives who push their shameless Sense of Entitlement — based on their prehistoric religious superstitions.

.

This is what happens when voters on the Left are forced into a Center-Right Party, where none of their top positions and values are represented.

This is what happens when there is no Political Party that truly represents the desires and domestic needs of US workers and the Americans People.

This is what happens when the corrupt election laws in the US allow political candidates to be funded and enriched by corporations and psychopaths, who work against the well being of the People and the Planet.

Until the Party system is expanded with sufficient Parties to represent the governing ideals of all of the American people — the Democrats should expect an endless supply of 'Jill Steins' and an army of US voters with Leftist values, to spoil all of their cynical, bait-and-switch elections.

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____________________

The political system is what it is because the People are who they are. — Plato
Cassiodorus's picture

@Pluto's Republic

Did we decide, collectively, that the Democrats were not The Man simply because we disliked the Republicans more?

2) Did the ostensibly evil Donald Trump engage in foreign policies which killed -- in very short order -- at least tens of thousands and probably hundreds of thousands of people for no good reason (e.g. Ukraine, Gaza)? Well? Did he?

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7 users have voted.

"The war on Gaza, backed by the West, is a demonstration that the West is willing to cross all lines. That it will discard any nuance of humanity. That it is willing to commit genocide" -- Moon of Alabama

https://thehill.com/homenews/campaign/4323917-democratic-senate-candidat...

A Democratic candidate for a U.S. Senate seat in Michigan said Wednesday he rejected a $20 million offer to drop out of his race and challenge Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) for her House seat.

“I didn’t intend for a private phone call to turn public,” Hill Harper posted Wednesday on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter, linking to a Politico report on the offer.

“But now that it has, here’s the truth. One of [the American Israel Public Affairs Committee’s] biggest donors offered $20m if I dropped out of the U.S. Senate race to run against @RashidaTlaib. I said no. I won’t be bossed, bullied, or bought.”

Politico named Michigan businessman Linden Nelson as the person behind the reported offer in mid-October.

Nelson has been involved with the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) in the past. However, in an emailed statement to The Hill, AIPAC said it “was absolutely not involved in any way in this matter.”

I wonder much this dude got?

https://missouriindependent.com/briefs/wesley-bell-drops-out-senate-race...

St. Louis County Prosecutor Westley Bell has decided to abandon his run for the U.S. Senate and will instead challenge incumbent U.S. Rep. Cori Bush in the Democratic primary.

Bell, who shocked the Missouri political establishment in 2018 by defeating a seven-term incumbent to become St. Louis County prosecutor, announced his decision to challenge his fellow Democrat for the St. Louis-based seat on Monday.

“..over the last several weeks, as I’ve campaigned around the state, I’ve heard one refrain from Democrats above all else: Yes, we need you in Washington, but St. Louis needs you in the House of Representatives,” Bell said in a statement announcing his decision.

By jumping into the 1st Congressional District Democratic primary, Bell is setting up a showdown with someone who, like him, emerged on the political scene in the wake of the 2014 Ferguson protests.

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joe shikspack's picture

@humphrey

i would imagine that bush's opponent got good graft. aipac said it was committing $100 million to defeat the squad, so there's plenty of money for opponents.

in a better country, the federal election authorities would be all over this and aipac would have to register as a foreign agent.

happy thanksgiving!

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snoopydawg's picture

.

It’s only when you see clearly that Israel is just an arm of the same empire that’s been murdering people by the millions around the world with nonstop invasions, bombing campaigns, proxy conflicts, starvation sanctions and CIA coups that you understand that, yes, Israel really is exactly as evil as it appears to be, and its behavior in Gaza is exactly what it looks like.

It’s why Biden said that if Israel didn’t exist America would have to create it. Kennedy also recently said that.

Oh look more collective punishment by Israel.

Last week, Israel Defense Forces (IDF) spokesperson Daniel Hagari threatened, “Lebanon’s citizens will bear the cost of this recklessness and of Hezbollah’s decision to be the defender of Hamas-ISIS. …

56,000 buildings have been blown up by Israel! Further proof that Israel wants to push Palestinians out of Gaza and never let them return. Just imagine how many people’s belongings from a lifetime have been destroyed. I really try not to imagine how many people are buried in the rubble… how will we ever find out?

I too wish everyone a happy turkey day. I’m not going to the island this year because it’s going to be very rainy and cold. I can go anytime I want this winter. I’m having crockpot steak and potatoes. I’m not found of turkey.

Thanks Joe!

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joe shikspack's picture

@snoopydawg

yeah, i am pretty amazed at what high-level israeli government officials are saying these days. i would guess they assume that they have complete impunity. i hope that they are very wrong.

you and sam have a great thanksgiving!

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ps I hope that this Zionist dude spends his thanksgiving in the slammer.

https://abc7ny.com/halal-cart-confrontation-former-obama-adviser-harassm....

UPPER EAST SIDE, Manhattan (WABC) -- A former Obama administration adviser was taken into police custody Wednesday and faces hate crime charges after a confrontation at a halal cart in Manhattan was caught on camera, police say.

Stuart Seldowitz lives around the corner from the halal cart. Several videos captured the former diplomat allegedly harassing the vendor about his Egyptian roots and Islamic faith. Seldowitz was fired from his work with lobbying and communications firm Gotham Government Relations.

A hate crime investigation was opened by the NYPD after Seldowitz was filmed allegedly harassing a food cart vendor on the Upper East Side.

He was taken into custody on Wednesday and now faces one count of aggravated harassment of race or religion and four counts of stalking as a hate crime. All of the charges are considered misdemeanors.

Mohammed Hussein, 24, was back to work at the cart Wednesday after filing a complaint of aggravated harassment with police. Hussein recorded at least one of the videos of Seldowitz.

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joe shikspack's picture

@humphrey

what an annoying little man. it's good to hear that he seems to have reached the end of his tether and now cooler heads can restrain him from annoying people further.

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@joe shikspack

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@humphrey is saying, "I decline to take your case, sir."

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"We'll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false." ---- William Casey, CIA Director, 1981

Sima's picture

@humphrey
Very glad he was arrested.

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If you're poor now, my friend, then you'll stay poor.
These days, only the rich get given more. -- Martial book 5:81, c. AD 100 or so
Nothing ever changes -- Sima, c. AD 2020 or so

snoopydawg's picture

the Geneva Convention because they are already on uncle Sam’s shit list. I can understand why smaller countries aren’t doing it, but there is NO excuse for why Abbass hasn’t done it. I think that’s his name? Maybe the media hasn’t covered it, but I’ve rarely heard him speaking out about Israel’s crimes.

Thanks. I let Sam choose what we’re having for dinner tomorrow. She says that she doesn’t like turkey either…I think she’s just fooling me and just likes steak more. I doubt she would turn her nose up if I put turkey before her.

Meant to reply to Joe. Still fighting my cold.

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joe shikspack's picture

@snoopydawg

yeah, perhaps there's just no country on earth that really wants the retaliation that will surely come its way from globocop if israel and its supporters are brought up on charges.

heh, i can't tell whether our dog prefers gristly bits of beef to leftover turkey, she eats both with considerable alacrity. Smile

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soryang's picture

...try try again.

South Korea unilaterally breaches 9.18 military agreement in part, ostensibly because North Korea launched a satellite. Yoon and his crack pot defense minister intended to do this all along. It's a part of their theory that the South Korean democratic party represents communist sympathizers of the North, an absolutely absurd contention. While these preprogramed Yoon developments went on, Yoon himself was away from home as usual where he could avoid the debacle he and his cabal of loyalists have created. The US opposed the 9.18 restrictions on military activities near the DMZ and the maritime demarcation lines from the outset. They were negotiated by the prior Moon Jae-in administration with Kim Jong-un.

In response North Korea repudiated the 9.18 military agreement in its entirety. Well I surely feel safer now, don't you? At about the same time of the satellite launch, a US SSN docked in Busan. These subs carry Tomahawk cruise missiles as well as mines and torpedoes.

The USS Carl Vinson, an aircraft carrier arrived in Pusan on Tuesday.

N. Korean spy satellite seems to have entered into orbit: Seoul military

SEOUL, Nov. 22 (Yonhap) -- North Korea's military spy satellite appears to have entered into orbit, but more time would be needed to determine if it is operating properly, Seoul's military said Wednesday.

The North launched the Malligyong-1 satellite from the country's west coast late Tuesday in its third attempt this year, claiming it has successfully entered into orbit.

"After a comprehensive analysis of its flight track data and other signs, the satellite is assessed to have entered into orbit," the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) said in a text message sent to reporters.

"However, determining whether the satellite is working properly will take time as additional analysis is required under coordination between South Korea and the United States and relevant agencies."

N. Korea vows to restore all military measures halted under inter-Korean military accord

This means they are not going to abide by the agreement anymore. "Mission accomplished."

N. Korea fires ballistic missile toward East Sea, but launch apparently failed: S. Korean military

SEOUL, Nov. 23 (Yonhap) -- North Korea fired an unspecified ballistic missile toward the East Sea, but the launch appears to have failed, the South Korean military said Thursday.

The North fired the missile from the Sunan area in Pyongyang at 11:05 p.m. Wednesday, according to the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

It did not provide other details, adding that South Korean and U.S. intelligence authorities are conducting an analysis into the launch.

The latest launch came after South Korea suspended part of the 2018 inter-Korean military tension reduction agreement in response to the North's latest launch of a military spy satellite.

Before the North's anticipated space rocket launch on Tuesday, USS Carl Vinson, a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, visited a naval base in Busan, 320 kilometers southeast of Seoul.

Apparently, this is a separate launch from the satellite launch by North Korea the day before. This may be confusing to some observers.

So Yoon and the US did their best to undermine the understandings left from the Singapore summit, and have now succeeded in dismantling the 9.18 accord between the two Koreas which the US had opposed. I listened to "experts" on VOA Korea for several weeks after the September 2018 agreement bitching about how it undermined security. It actually enhanced security, by reducing the opportunities for confrontations. This is not to say there weren't adverse events in the zones, but they weren't as explosive as those had occurred during the Lee Myung-bak administration, which the Yoon administration resembles in terms of its national security outlook and personnel.

Yoon received short shrift from Xi Xinping at the APEC conference. Xi basically refused to meet with him, although Xi met with the US and Japan. I read a head a couple of critiques of Yoon's policy vis a vis China as regressively ideological, leading to Yoon's isolation and "Yoon passing," not only by China but also by the US and Japan, who take Yoon's submissive posture toward them for granted. TK of the Blue Roof reported that Yoon met with Biden and Kishida for ten minutes! If Yoon's policies don't have any independent/sovereign South Korean elements, why should Xi bother talking to him? Yoon gets his orders from Washington. The South Korean presidential office and some newspapers claim that Yoon had a brief encounter with Xi, where they shook hands, that lasted something over 3 minutes. I saw the video of Yoon's slavish bowing and scraping to Xi, which was really embarrassing. Critics said it lasted 64 seconds. Yoon is desperate to pose as the great statesman. He uses his interminable overseas travels photo ops to compensate for his pathetic domestic policy vacuum, which is devoid of all but repression and budget cuts. The truth is the more direct press coverage Yoon gets, the more unpopular he becomes.

I saw an article on Kishida's flagging public support.

Kishida Cabinet approval rating lowest since LDP regained power

The approval rating for Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s Cabinet slid to 25 percent, the lowest level for any administration since the Liberal Democratic Party returned to power in 2012, an Asahi Shimbun survey showed.

The figure fell from 29 percent in the previous survey last month, while the disapproval rating rose to a record 65 percent, up 5 points from the 11-year high recorded in October, the survey showed.

And although the support rating for the ruling LDP is also declining, the opposition bloc has failed to take advantage, with the main parties languishing with single-digit support ratings.

The nationwide telephone survey was conducted on Nov. 18 and 19.

Yoon's public approval polls look a lot like Kishida's although Yoon never had support in excess of 50 percent that I can recall. He was elected with 48.56% percent. I saw one poll that had Yoon support at 22 percent currently. Assuming that's a low ball figure, he had already broken down into the high twenties recently. Yoon's unpopularity is driven, like Kishida's, in large part by economic hardship.

There are rifts in both major South Korean parties at this point. The more conservative candidates in the Democratic party (DINOs or subak in Korean) don't like the proposed new rules for the party nomination process which are increasing the weighting of party rank and file voting and polls in candidate selection. Similarly, in the conservative PPP party, the rift is caused by multi-term sitting Assembly members who don't want to give up their sure bet seats in the southeast Korean Gyeongsangdo region, which is the regional conservative stronghold for seats likely to lose to the democrats in Seoul and surrounding Gyeonggido region. The Southwest Honam region is traditionally progressive or liberal in outlook, so conservatives don't want to run there either. The Yoon faction wants to place their loyalists in the favorable conservative regional seats. The old hands don't want it. Supposedly the proposals were advanced by a PPP reform committee, but it appears on its face, to be a Yoon proposal, and the committee chair as much as said so.

Thanks for the EBs Joe!

edit- note that I have called the military agreement between North and South Korea the 9.18 agreement, because it was accomplish at the North South summit in September 2018. Because it was signed on September 19, 2018, it is elsewhere commonly referred to as the 9.19 agreement in accordance with the Korean custom of naming historical events, but is confusing to westerners like me. So I just call it the 9.18 agreement, my bad. Here's a good Diplomat article explaining the dispute over the agreement shortly after it was signed:

North and South Korea’s New Military Agreement

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語必忠信 行必正直

joe shikspack's picture

@soryang

thanks for the regional update of the activities of people who appear to feel they have more to gain from tension and conflict than peaceful coexistence.

have a great thanksgiving!

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soryang's picture

@joe shikspack Happy Thanksgiving to you and everyone here at C99! Of course it's already Thursday in Korea. When I spoke to my wife on Kakao talk earlier today she had forgotten it was Thanksgiving.

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語必忠信 行必正直

Thanks as usual for all the news you bring us to peruse as we sit and wonder what will happen next.! Taking a break for it all and heading out for some rest and relaxation.

Have arrived in Zion today and is busy as always. There was a sign that said no parking available in the visitor center parking lot and they really meant it. Checked into the motel and took my bike out of the back and was ready to explore the park. The last time I was here in pre-2019, e-bikes had not gotten the seal of approval but now……they are almost a menace. Regular rules of behavior such as ringing bell when passing or calling out when you approach do not exist. Will leave early tomorrow and see what I can see before attempting on my bike.

Hope you have a happy Thanksgiving and some time of peace and quiet!

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Life is what you make it, so make it something worthwhile.

This ain't no dress rehearsal!

joe shikspack's picture

@jakkalbessie

wow, you've certainly picked a scenic location to celebrate turkey day in! i hope that you have a great time and get an eyeful of the amazing beauty there.

take care and have a great thanksgiving!

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snoopydawg's picture

@jakkalbessie

I’m very glad that I got to see Zion and Arches in the 80's when the parks were not so crowded as they are now. Utahns told the advertising agency to stop advertising how great Utah is over decade because they were getting so many visitors…they didn’t. There is no way I could take this picture now because it’d be full of people.

IMG_2929.jpeg

Have a great time there.

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snoopydawg's picture

.

Biden Admin Worries the Pause in Gaza Will Give Journalists More Access to Expose Israeli Atrocities

The US doesn't want public opinion turning more against Israel
There has been concern within the Biden administration that a pause in fighting in Gaza will give journalists the opportunity to expose more of the atrocities Israel has been committing, POLITICO reported on Tuesday.

The report said there was “some concern in the administration about an unintended consequence of the pause: that it would allow journalists broader access to Gaza and the opportunity to further illuminate the devastation there and turn public opinion on Israel.”

Pssst….hey Biden I guess you haven’t noticed that public opinion has already turned against both Israel and America and especially you and your handlers. Haven’t you seen the tens of millions of people who have come out in support of Palestinians?

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joe shikspack's picture

@snoopydawg

somebody should tell biden that he can't have it both ways - the pause was a pr gambit meant to give the world a sense of security about the killing of civilians in gaza, the pause will also allow data to be collected - all of which will likely be unfavorable for israel.

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joe shikspack's picture

@humphrey

all over the world israelis are alienating people from their cause.

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8 users have voted.

@humphrey they will not be heard.
If Israeli government reps can't stifle their insults, crudeness, why do they need to be heard anyway?
Dark Israel, coming soon?

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"We'll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false." ---- William Casey, CIA Director, 1981

lotlizard's picture

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@lotlizard Thanks for bringing it.

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"We'll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false." ---- William Casey, CIA Director, 1981

snoopydawg's picture

@lotlizard

But let us not despair. Progress has never relied on a liberal’s courage to recognize that change is necessary. Progress occurs when enough people are moved to reject not only neofascist populism, but liberalism’s racist hypocrisies masquerading as humanism. And there are millions of such people marching for Palestine all over the world. Ultimately, the American liberal will be transcended by his own irrelevance. Palestinians have no need of his allyship; they will secure their own freedom and future. When that day eventually arrives, we can look forward to the liberal’s revisionist memory that he was on the right side of history all along.

This is exactly what the shitlibs are doing with their support of Ukraine. They think it’s just Russian propaganda that it’s fighting Nazis there even though they had to have seen tons of articles about them before this war. And that Obama overthrew the government which brought the Nazis into power. Plus they are very racist against Russians and say that the military is losing because all the troops are drunk on vodka.

But it’s not just liberals who think like this. I see many people on the right that fit this description.

But I’m very glad that I and most people here are not liberals like what’s described here. Thanks for posting this! I’ll be posting it in the many articles I see on this topic. I’m sure I’ll get lots of flack for it too. People just don’t want to admit that they are wrong.

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