Thursday, 13 July 2017

NEW Raw Footage of #Yemen Bunker Buster from ZigZag and Nafeez Ahmed on War Crimes #SaudiArabia #Israel #UN #MiddleEastEye



...and this goes unchallenged because?
 It was more than two years ago now that these videos were first published and the international community and media are silent still. The toothless United Nations is so deeply mired in the slough of uncontested Interventionism that it is unable to act and the Pro-Saudi/Pro-Israel lobby are in the ascendant, it is the West's base craving for the black-stuff that ensures that the people of Yemen are left to starve, this is what we are capable of.

A former State Department war crimes expert warns that arms sales to Saudi Arabia is ‘prohibited’ under US law - but the lethal exports still go ahead

Quote; "Britain and America are above the law. Our complicity in Saudi Arabia’s war in Yemen proves it.
This week, the High Court in London ruled that British arms sales to Saudi Arabia are lawful, dismissing a judicial review filed by Campaign Against Arms Trade (CAAT), which had demanded that weapons exports be halted over humanitarian concerns.
Our laws are not fit for purpose - the rule of law has become a farce, a figleaf to enable the US and Britain to outsource illegal wars to their Gulf proxies
CAAT are appealing the ruling, and no wonder – it was ultimately decided on the basis of largely secret evidence supplied by the UK government, heard in closed court. This is not open justice: it is evidence of how the Whitehall foreign policy establishment abuse "national security" as a carte blanche to protect themselves from legal accountability.
The same thing is happening across the pond. According to a former senior war crimes advisor to the US State Department, US arms sales to Saudi Arabia are “prohibited” under US laws due to “credible allegations” of illegal actions during the kingdom’s bombing campaign in Yemen.
The analysis is set out in a compelling white paper published in May by Professor Michael Newton, who teaches the International Law Practice Lab at Vanderbilt University Law School. The American Bar Association sent Newton's paper to the US Senate saying that "questions had arisen" concerning whether the sales were "consistent with US statuatory obligations".
Unfortunately, despite the robustness of the legal argument, it did not prevent the US Senate from narrowly backing the sale of $500m worth in precision-guided munitions to Saudi Arabia in mid-June.
If our domestic laws have no power to prevent our governments from becoming complicit in Saudi state terror in Yemen, this does not make those arms sales legitimate. It means, simply, that our laws are not fit for purpose - that the rule of law has become a farce, a figleaf to enable the US and Britain to outsource illegal wars to their Gulf proxies." Go to: http://www.middleeasteye.net/columns/us-and-uk-acting-above-law-support-saudi-war-yemen-613554453?utm_content=buffer8b54d&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=buffer For full article.

Also from The Middle East Eye

Quote; "A former British ambassador to Saudi Arabia has said the kingdom has been funding mosques across Europe that promote an "extremist" version of Islam, the Guardian has reported.
Sir William Patey, who served as ambassador to Saudi Arabia from 2006 to 2010, told an event in parliament on Wednesday that while Saudi Arabia was not directly funding terrorism, it was promoting an ideology that leads to extremism, according to the newspaper.
"It is unhealthy and we need to do something about it," he said at a roundtable debate organised by the Conservative Middle East Council, a campaign group linked to the ruling Conservative Party.
The intervention from the former senior diplomat, who also served as head of the Middle East desk at the Foreign Office, comes after the government released a summary of a Home Office report on Wednesday into the funding of extremism in the UK." Go to: http://www.middleeasteye.net/news/saudi-arabia-funding-extremism-europe-former-british-diplomat-687597543 For full article.

Monday, 10 July 2017

Welcome to the 21st Century: #EMPWeapons #TheSpaceMarine #UNNuclearBan

Quote; "WASHINGTON — Lawmakers on Tuesday took the first step towards establishing a ‘Space Corps’ within the Air Force — similar to the way the Marine Corps functions in the Navy — by drafting legislation that would require the new organization to be set up by January 1, 2019. As the House Armed Services Committee prepares to vote on the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), the strategic forces subcommittee — which oversees military space matters — released its proposed additions to the bill. The subcommittee has scheduled a formal legislative mark-up session for its portions of the bill on Thursday.
The subcommittee’s top Republican, Rep. Mike Rogers of Alabama, and top Democrat, Rep. Jim Cooper of Tennessee, said the subcommittee’s mark would require the Air Force to establish the Space Corps to serve “as a separate military service within the Department of the Air Force and under the civilian leadership of the Secretary of the Air Force.”
“There is bipartisan acknowledgement that the strategic advantages we derive from our national security space systems are eroding,” Rogers and Cooper said in a prepared statement. “We are convinced that the Department of Defense is unable to take the measures necessary to address these challenges effectively and decisively, or even recognize the nature and scale of its problems.”
“Thus, Congress has to step in,” the statement continues. “We must act now to fix national security space and put in place a foundation for defending space as a critical element of national security.  Therefore, our Mark will require the creation, under the Secretary of the Air Force, of a new Space Corps, as a separate military service responsible for national security space programs for which the Air Force is today responsible.  We view this as a first, but critical step, to fixing the National Security Space enterprise.”
The Space Corp would be led by its own chief, who would sit on the Joint Chiefs of Staff with a six-year term, the bill says. It would be a position equal to the Chief of Staff of the Air Force, and would answer to the Secretary of the Air Force.
The subcommittee’s markup of the bill would also set up a U.S. Space Command that would be a sub-unified command under U.S. Strategic Command, a move lawmakers hope would improve the integration of space operations in warfighting.
The subcommittee’s action on the NDAA  is one of the early steps in a lengthy legislative process. The bill would still need to get approval from the full committee before it could be debated by the House, but the chamber isn’t expected to vote on the NDAA until after the Fourth of July holiday." Go to: http://spacenews.com/house-panel-takes-first-step-towards-military-space-corps/ For full article.
  
HASC BACKS SPACE CORPS

Quote; "The committee rebuffed an amendment from Rep. Mike Turner (R-Ohio) that would strip a provision from the Strategic Forces mark creating a Space Corps and replace it with a report on the need for a separate space services.
Turner argued the reorganization of the Air Force's space mission needed more study, saying the bill was "asking us to do something we haven't done something since 1947."
Still, the proposal drew opposition from both parties, and Strategic Forces Chairman Mike Rogers (R-Ala.) defended his panel's development of the measure. "To delay this, in my view, would be irresponsible," he said, adding not implementing the measure would be "legislative malpractice." Go to: http://www.politico.com/tipsheets/morning-defense/2017/06/29/hasc-approves-ndaa-just-before-midnight-221115 For full article.
 

Secret Missions of the X-37B.
  
Quote; "WASHINGTON – Alarms once again are being sounded over North Korea’s capability to launch satellites that could carry a nuclear weapon and be detonated at a high altitude over America, creating an extremely powerful electromagnetic pulse that would knock out the nation’s vulnerable electrical grid system, according to a report from Joseph Farah’s G2 Bulletin.
It is on that grid system that the nation’s life-sustaining critical infrastructures, from food supplies and utility services to financial and even communications, depend.
Pyongyang already has demonstrated it can launch such satellites. Two already are in orbit, even though experts don’t know what the satellites are doing.
Peter Pry, who already has expressed concerns about Pyongyang’s satellite launches, has warned that North Korea would not need a missile capable of reaching the U.S. mainland. Instead, it could put a nuclear weapon on a satellite that could be detonated on command over the United States.
Pry, who is executive director of the congressional advisory Task Force on National and Homeland Security and U.S. Nuclear Strategy Forum, has said Pyongyang has been testing smaller nuclear kiloton warhead that emit greater amounts of gamma rays, a form of electromagnetic energy, rather than devices with physical destructive capability.
Now Jim Oberg, who is one of the few American scientists to visit North Korea’s Sohae space launch site in the northwest corner of the country, has expressed similar concerns about the content of North Korean satellites.
Oberg is a retired space shuttle Mission Control specialist with NASA and worked for U.S. Space Command.
For the rest of this report, and more, please go to Joseph Farah’s G2 Bulletin.
“There have been fears expressed that North Korea might use a satellite to carry a small nuclear warhead into orbit and then detonate it over the United States for an EMP strike,” Oberg said in a Space Review article. “These concerns seem extreme and require an astronomical scale of irrationality on the part of the regime.
“The most frightening aspect, I’ve come to realize,” he said, “is that exactly such a scale of insanity is now evident in the rest of this ‘space program.'”" Go to: http://www.wnd.com/2017/02/new-alarms-sounded-over-north-koreas-emp-potential/ For full article.



Nb. Date of projection.

Quote; "US military boffins are preparing highly sophisticated technical defences against the dreaded electromagnetic pulse bomb, a weapon which has long been anticipated but never successfully built*.We know about the counter-electropulse defence technology because the company which will develop it - HRL Labs of Malibu, California - announced their contract win yesterday. The programme is referred to by the Pentagon as Electromagnetic Pulse-tolerant Microwave Receiver Front-end, or EMPiRe*.
The idea of the attacking e-weapon is that it would release a hugely powerful radio-frequency or microwave pulse. In the same way that a normal, very weak emission is picked up by a radio or radar antenna to produce a measurable current, the weapons-grade pulse would induce a vicious surge in exposed electronic equipment - potentially frying it for good, or at least shutting it down for a bit.
Such weapons, it's often thought, might be driven by explosions or other rapid processes rather than normal batteries or generators, because of the need to release large amounts of power very fast: hence pulse bomb rather than pulse raygun etc.
Normally, the defence against this sort of thing is simple. You merely enclose your electronics in a conductive metallic Faraday cage, perhaps fashioned of trusty tinfoil if nothing better comes to hand. The problems of generating and focusing powerful electropulses are already enormous* - so enormous, in fact, that decades of secretive US effort have failed to produce any working EMP weapons**. Producing an EMP which has range, focus and power sufficient to sizzle its way through a decent Faraday cage is just not on.
But there are problems here. Some kinds of electronics are no use if you wrap them up in a radio-proof box. In particular, a microwave receiver in a communications or radar set needs to pick up RF radiation - but if you let it, an EMP bomb or whatever might fry the electronics of the connected system.
HRL's proposed solution is to isolate the "front end" of the receiver, which will "sense incoming electrical fields through a high-performance microwave photonic link". The new HRL front end will pass information to the signal processors optically, meaning that no electric surge through into the protected back end is possible.
"The thermal effects of a high-energy attack will be insignificant because our sensor head absorbs negligible radio-frequency power," says HRL Senior Scientist Dr James Schaffner.
HRL's research is funded by DARPA, the Pentagon's elite group of paradigm-punishing, technonoclastic nerd-wranglers. DARPA's goal often appears to the outsider to be that of rendering America's latest military tech obsolete well before it actually comes into service. In this case the Pentagon brainboxes may well excel themselves, as even the more ambitious ongoing US pulse-bomb efforts only see themselves starting a useful weapons programme from 2012. (To be fair, DARPA might be more worried about EMPs from nukes*.)" Go to: https://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/08/28/darpa_pulse_weapon_countermeasure/ For full article.

*Italics mine. This article strikes me as both disingenuous and misleading (unlike the one above that just appears to be ill informed on the threat), civilian technology is not usually encased in a Faraday Cage, working EMP weapons would appear to be fact (see below), and have been for a long time (esp. the nuclear variety), and indeed DARPA are worried about EMPs from nuclear weapons (underplayed), but surely they've already developed (or are developing), countermeasures to their own technology?....

CHAMP

Quote; "The Pentagon’s Counter-Electronics High-Power Advanced Microwave Project (CHAMP) has been one of the sci-fi like weapons programs that has the ability to change warfare as we know forever. Now it looks like the CHAMP has found an ideal delivery vehicle, the stealthy Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile-Extended Range.
  The technology has been around conceptually for many years and something like it was even rumored to have been deployed secretly before. For instance, there were reports that during the fall of Qaddafi, unmanned aircraft orbited over Libya’s most volatile weapons stockpiles and zapped vehicles engines and electronics that approached."
  .."CHAMP, which is a Boeing and Air Force Research Laboratory project, was successfully tested in 2012 aboard a AGM-86 Conventional Air Launched Cruise Missile (CALCM). During the test, which occurred over a bombing and testing range in Utah, the CHAMP equipped CALCM flew over a two story building filled with computers and other powered technology and initiated a high-power, directed microwave burst above it as it passed by. The burst knocked out all the equipment inside. The test went on to zap six more targets successfully before the missile crashed itself in a pre-designated area. Other test flights are set to have followed, and even hardened targets were not completely immune to CHAMP’s zapping power." Go to: http://foxtrotalpha.jalopnik.com/this-stealth-missile-will-use-emps-to-cripple-enemy-ele-1705441209 For full article.


Quote; "THE United States Air Force wants to fry your phone. And your computer. And your car. It’s investing millions into modifying missiles into weaponised microwave ovens.
The devastating power of electromagnetic pulse (EMP) has long been associated with nuclear war.
It’s a flash of raw electromagnetic energy through the atmosphere that fuses delicate electronics into irreparable smoking scrap.
The problem has always been the nuclear bit: Using one to fry a phone network would have been overkill.
Not to mention a trigger for an almost inevitable ‘mutually assured destruction’ escalation.
So the US military has been seeking less lethal ways of sowing confusion among its enemies.
Enter flying microwave ovens.
The idea was tested as far back as 2012 when Boeing flew an EMP missile off a B-52.
It didn’t get the contract, though.
Flightglobal reports defence contractor Raytheon has just been handed $US4.8 million to attach a microwave generator to two conventional cruise missiles." Go to: http://www.news.com.au/technology/innovation/inventions/us-air-force-modifies-cruise-missiles-to-carry-electromagnetic-pulse-generators--to-destroy-electronics-from-a-distance/news-story/f1898c65dd851fe23f2fca578db83b2b For full article.

Arafel: All of these articles downplay the threat (EMP nukes are very much in the armoury esp. for use against non-nuclear powers). Not effective against military installations? Maybe so but only the properly shielded (and this would need to be considerable in the case of air-burst nuclear EMP weapons). We are a technologically reliant culture, the likelihood is we'd end up like this...


Instilling panic in civilian populations has been a weapon of war since the beginning and if this were to include parts (or all) of the vital services and administration? Khaos.



UN Nuclear Ban

 
Quote; " "None of the nine countries known or believed to possess nuclear weapons — the United States, Russia, Britain, China, France, India, Pakistan, North Korea and Israel — is supporting the treaty. Many of their allies also did not attend the meeting*.

Instead of a ban, the US and other nuclear powers want to fortify the pre-existing Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty.

That pact, which has been widely criticised as being ineffective, originally sought to limit the spread of atomic weapons beyond the five already in possession at the time of its inception – the US, Russia, Britain, France and China. It compels non-nuclear signatory nations to promise not to purse atomic weapons. In return, those who already own nuclear weapons would be obliged to commitment towards nuclear disarmament and guarantee non-nuclear states access to peaceful nuclear technology for producing energy*." Go to: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/politics/g20-summit-120-countries-adopt-nuclear-weapons-ban-treaty-arms-war-prohibition-disarmament-a7828581.html For full article.

*That's oxymoronic too (and indicates the true direction of Time's Arrow), nuclear power is essential for nuclear weapon production and the truth is even those countries which do not possess them but run reactors underpin proliferation. A nuclear powered world without nuclear weapons? Ludicrous..." Go to: http://members5.boardhost.com/xxxxx/msg/1499501028.html

For full post. 

*Italics mine. 

 

Saturday, 24 June 2017

Leith Hill: Another Desecration; Sacred Site, SSSI, Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and Early Medieval Battlefield #SaveLeithHill #TwyfordDown #FrackOff



...and "Frigg-off" as-well! I know Leith Hill having visited several times whilst living in West Sussex during my twenties, it is a remarkable place, one would hardly credit that such exist in the Home Counties but they do (some might observe that in Britain ancient history is beneath your feet all the time -but I digress-). The hill has a tale as long as the reputed "Green Dragon" (you'll find both a pub and a school of that name on the slopes), the hill tops nearly 1000ft and is the highest point in Southern England, it is also the only place I've ever seen a wild lizard anywhere in Britain!


The Battle

Quote; "The hill's first notable role in history was as a battlefield in the ninth century struggle between Saxons and Danes. In 851AD the Danes planned a full scale invasion, after raiding the country regularly for many years. The Danes invaded up the Thames and burnt Canterbury and then London. The next target was Winchester, but on their march towards Winchester they met the army of Ethelwulf, father of Alfred the Great. Ethelwulf, it seems, took up a position on the slopes of Leith Hill - an ancient mass grave found in 1882 seems to point to this area as the sight of battle (Stories of the Surrey Hills published by the Surrey Society). Ethelwulf was able to use position on high ground to win the huge battle that followed. This battle ended the Danes immediate prospects of conquering the whole of Britain.
In later history Leith Hill was to become a symbol of peace. As the Industrial Revolution gathered pace in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, there was a romantic reaction against the new society. Wordsworth and Coleridge started idealising nature at the end of the eighteenth century, and this theme was soon taken up by Keats in the early nineteenth century. Now that nature was considered beautiful, people started taking trips to places where nature could be enjoyed. Leith Hill was a popular picnic spot for nineteenth century tourists. A tower, or "Prospect House" had been built here in 1766, by Richard Hull. From then on visitors started to climb the hill to see the tower and use the "prospect glasses" which Richard Hull had provided. Leith Hill Tower was rebuilt in 1796, and restored in 1864.
 In 1835 the poet Alfred Tennyson visited. Walking among the trees of Leith Hill he wrote The Sleeping Beauty and began The Black Bird and Sir Galahad. Sir Galahad, like Tennyson, climbs a hill in search of something:

I leave the plain I climb the height;
No branchy thicket shelter yields;
But blessed forms in whistling storms
Fly o'er waste fens, and windy fields" Go to: http://www.infobritain.co.uk/Leith_Hill.htm For full article.


 Apparently the Norsemen had "adopted" (as is the way of empires when "faiths" conquer), a Well of Brygyd for Frigga and the clash also represents one of the last stands pantheistic paganism ever made on a British battlefield, it is said that the battle was unusual in its ferocity  (were "bear-skin-wearers" -"Berserkers"-, involved? It is possible as this "sacred-elite" were oft associated with the worship of the Gods and the protection of their sites and customs). The battle was hardly however the site's; "first notable role in history" for as intimated there are legends and evidence of worship dating far back into the Bythonic past.
 Now however all the above is being brushed aside by the "money-grubbers" of fracking's debased currency, a more worthless undertaking of which it is difficult to conceive (at least The Twyford Cutting was designed to save lives -and has, on the roads-, although the methodology was faulted from the start), for there are no upsides to people or the planet, only the rich will ever benefit from the rake-offs and the subsidies that fracking provides and that merely temporarily.


..doesn't the horrible evidence of abuse that is "The-Scar-of-Twyford" carry any lessons? Temporary fixes may give a feeling of security for a while but that's the point, only long term planning based on the notion that is better to create than destroy is capable of providing a legacy, stealing will leave a debt the very next generation (now), will be paying all their lives. The Optimus Prime of "Progress" was never wrong, but surely he asks; "what sort of "progress" do you need?"

Quote; "Very few electors read manifestos, let alone debate the detail of them. That's a pity, as it might change the nature of the tired debates we see at every election.
For this week's general election, the Conservative Party's manifesto[1] outlines a sharp break in British planning and environmental policy of a scale not seen since the 1980s.
Ostensibly their aim is to make 'fracking' require more exacting regulation.
That sounds really great in theory. In practice it depends what your legal definition of 'fracking' is.

 

Elections don't do details, just sound-bites

 

In Britain, elections are probably the worst method by which we try to decide complex issues.
For the last few months I've been working on[2] the Conservatives failed fossil fuel policy for Talk Fracking[3] – supporting their report, Whitehall's Fracking Science Failure[4].
That centres on the Conservative's claim[5], repeated in their manifesto for this election, that fracking produces gas that is "cleaner than coal".
During the election campaign, while some media have covered[6] the 'permitted development' issue, nearly all have missed the nuances of 'definition' behind the policy – and thus its practical implications.
For example, if government ministers systematically override local councils and regulators on fracking, imposing their will directly on the public[7], does making fracking permitted development really make a difference in the end? The results would be the same.

 

An English 'Halliburton Exemption'

 

First and foremost – this is an English problem.
Scotland currently has a moratorium on unconventional oil and gas development. Wales has a bar in planning law, but can't actually control Whitehall's licensing powers." Go to: http://fraw.org.uk/mei/musings/2017/20170605-conservatives_planning_frackageddon.html For full article.

How is it one asks oneself that those who call themselves "Conservative" should fail to conserve on such a regular basis?


Oil protestors hide in tunnels and tree houses to avoid being evicted from Leith Hill 



Quote; "The rescue team from Specialist Group International at the site at Leith Hill

Comments (0) Oil protesters from the Leith Hill "protection camp" took to man made tunnels and tree houses as bailiffs arrived to evict them from the site.
Bailiffs, officers from Surrey Police and a fifteen-person team from Specialist Group International - which is based in Dorking and specialises in safely removing people without injury - arrived at the camp on land at Bury Hill Wood at around 5am this morning (Wednesday, June 21).
The site has been occupied by protesters since last October as part of their demonstrations against planned oil drilling in the Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB).
A spokeswoman for Specialist Group International confirmed the had a team on site attempting to remove protesters from the area but feared lives were at risk*." Go to: http://www.dorkingandleatherheadadvertiser.co.uk/oil-protestors-hide-in-tunnels-and-treehouses-to-avoid-being-evicted-from-leith-hill/story-30402390-detail/story.html For full article.

*They can be, a friend of mine was run over whilst D-locked to the axle of a lorry during the Newbury area protests.

For updates please see my Twitter "moment"; #SaveLeithHill #FrackOff #TwyfordDown Go to: https://twitter.com/i/moments/877626054579499008

Also see; "The Philosophy of "The Loss Leader" (re: Nuclear Power, Incineration and Fracking)" Go to: http://www.arafel.co.uk/2014/08/the-philosophy-of-loss-leader-re.html, "Twyford Down" Go to:
http://www.arafel.co.uk/2016/10/twyford-down.html
and; "Oppose; "plans for a tunnel to bypass the neolithic site" Go to: http://www.arafel.co.uk/2014/12/oppose-plans-for-tunnel-to-bypass.html
 #SaveStonehenge #StonehengeAlliance


Freya and Frigga

Quote; "Freya and Frigga . . . one goddess or two? It's easy to get confused.
Some authors claim that we get the name for the day Friday after the goddess Freya, others say it was named after Frigga.
Because of frequent overlapping that occurs in their myths and symbols, some authorities believe they are just regional variations of a single goddess. Others insist that they are separate entities. All agree they were among the most ancient of the Norse deities.
Together they represent the two aspects of the original Great Goddess with Freya serving as the maiden and Frigga the wife/mother aspect.  As you will see below, their traits varied considerably." Go to: http://www.goddessgift.com/goddess-myths/frigga-freya-goddesses.htm For full article and links.


Frigg 
Quote; "Frigg (pronounced “FRIG;” Old Norse Frigg, “Beloved”[1]), sometimes Anglicized as “Frigga,” is the highest-ranking of the Aesir goddesses. She’s the wife of Odin, the chief of the gods, and the mother of Baldur.
Strangely for a goddess of her high position, the surviving primary sources on Norse mythology give only sparse and casual accounts of anything related to her personality, deeds, or other attributes. The specifics they do discuss, however, are not unique to Frigg, but are instead shared by both her and Freya, a goddess who belongs to both the Aesir and the Vanir tribes of deities. From these similarities, combined with the two goddesses’ mutual evolution from the earlier Germanic goddess Frija, we can see that Frigg and Freya were only nominally distinct figures by the late Viking Age, when our sources were recorded, and that these two figures, who had formerly been the same deity, were still practically the same personage in everything but name."... 
..."Like Freya, Frigg is depicted as a völva, a Viking Age practitioner of the form of Norse magic known as seidr. Seidr is concerned with discerning destiny and altering its course by re-weaving part of its web.[2] This power could potentially be put to any use imaginable, and examples that cover virtually the entire range of the human condition can be found in Old Norse literature. In the Old Norse poem Lokasenna, after Loki slanders Frigg, Freya warns him that Frigg knows the destiny of all beings, implying that she also has the power to alter them if she so chooses.[3] Frigg’s weaving activities are likely an allusion to this role as well. Freya owns falcon plumes that she and the other Aesir use for shapeshifting into that bird, and Frigg possesses her own set of falcon feathers that are used for the same purpose.[4]" 

Saturday, 17 June 2017

"Not worth the candle!" Keeping-up-with-the-Joneses defines British bankruptcy #JusticeforGrenfell #Gentrification #Libor #ParisAccords



"The chief editor of Breitbart London is spreading fake news about the Grenfell tower fire"

Quote; "..the chief editor of Breitbart London has posted a brazen "fake news" Tweet about the Grenfell tower fire that's now been shared over 5,000 times, but instead of holding him to account, hacks at the Daily Telegraph somehow decided to falsely accuse named left-wing websites of spreading "fake news" on their front page instead.

The Breitbart editor Raheem Kassam has had it pointed out to him by hundreds of people that his Tweet begins with an outright lie and is nothing more than a pathetically tasteless bit of right-wing victim complex crying, but he's not taken it down nor apologised for outright lying to the public.


  • The fact that the new Labour MP for Kensington Emma Dent Coad once had a powerless position on the Tory dominated Kensington and Chelsea council betrays a very weak understanding of how local government actually works.
  • Ignoring the fact that Sadiq Khan was not even mayor of London when the decision to cover Grenfell tower in highly flammable plastic is obviously absurd, as is the ridiculous implication that the mayor of the biggest city in western Europe should micromanage every building renovation project in the city.
  • Trying to pin responsibility on Labour because the original construction date for the tower coincided with a Labour government is absolutely pathetic grasping. The problem isn't that there are 4,000 odd tower blocks in the UK, it's that many of them are deadly firetraps thanks to seven years of abject Tory neglect of housing policy*, and their refusal to listen to expert advice that flammable cladding should be banned.
  • Describing a list that begins with an outright lie as "Grenfell tower facts" is absolutely outrageous stuff that even Kellyanne Conway of "alternative facts" fame would blush at.
  • Making up lies and deliberately distorting and misrepresenting the facts in order to recast the Tory party as the true victims of the Grenfell tower fire is a disgusting new low, even for the editor of a despicable website like Breitbart.
Unsurprisingly there is no outrage in the mainstream media over this deliberate lying and sick emotional manipulation from the head of a right-wing news outlet." Go to: http://anotherangryvoice.blogspot.co.uk/2017/06/the-chief-editor-of-breitbart-london-is.html?spref=tw
For full article.

*Although this was presaged by the deregulation and enthusiasm for The Wider European Adventure that were New Labour's.

Quote; "There are two children that we know really well who were in the block. One family got out, the father was able to shield their little girl and thank God she’s fairly oblivious to everything that happened. But the other is in hospital, critically ill from smoke inhalation.
Another went missing and was separated from her mum. We heard from mum and found her utterly distraught. She spent the day looking for her daughter and finally found her. Their dog and their neighbour’s dog are missing – we’ve got the kids looking for the dogs, putting up posters so they’ve got something to do and don’t feel so helpless.
The scale of the loss is far bigger than anyone is admitting. One of my employees has 15 friends missing and believed dead. Another has two friends missing.
One of the little girls that got out with her family, she has 7 friends missing, all from [near the top of the block]. Her mum believes they’re the only survivors. At least two of her other friends have already been confirmed dead – one just 13 years old and the other fourteen.
My friend has a son in the same class as those girls. She went back to the block to find one little girl who’s in the hospital now. She’s been collating names of missing people and she’s already up to around two hundred.
200 is the figure everyone is saying locally, but it might be much worse.
One family got out from the [upper third]th floor. A neighbour came out of a flat at the same time but his elderly mum was still in the flat so he went back in.
The dad of that family told me that the whole way down from that floor he only counted eight others coming down the stairs and the firemen coming up were telling people to get back into their flats. That’s no blame on the firemen, they were just doing what they’d been told to do.
There’s burnt polystyrene everywhere – a local builder told me that it’s not from the panels – it’s too thick. He said it’s insulation – there were burning pieces as big as telephone boxes falling down on people as they came out of the block.
Are people angry? On Wednesday they were very silent. Everyone was in shock – nobody was visibly angry, although a lot of people were frustrated at the absence of the authorities.
People were saying they expected things to be more in place for a major incident, given the terror alert, but it was just chaos and we felt badly let down by the council.
Some council people came in but it was obvious they were just there to say they’d been there. They sat around and ate takeaways, then all left promptly at 6pm having done nothing. They had a face-mask on the table and one of the volunteers went to put it on while she went outside and they took it off her, told her that was only for staff – but they never did anything to need it.
My staff have been brilliant, the community has been brilliant. Some of the police have been fantastic but others just seem uninterested. We went with one mother to talk to a policewoman about her missing child and she just shrugged, no empathy at all.
This has been a community under siege in a way. We’re surrounded by £3.5m houses, there’s a little park to walk dogs. All the time we see people moving out because it’s too expensive.
The area started to gentrify couple of years ago. One family I know, they’re the only people in their block – the rest are empty or only occupied one week a year. The idea of requisitioning them to house people that have no home now is spot on." Go to: https://skwawkbox.org/2017/06/17/grenfell-survivor-only-passed-8-people-on-stairs-all-the-way-from-upper-floor/ For full article.


"With land in your hand, you'll be happy on earth
Then invest in the Church for your heaven." Go to: http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/genesis/getemoutbyfriday.html

Un-safety Culture

Quote; "Prime Minister David Cameron today said that his new year's resolution was to "kill off the health and safety culture for good".
Health and safety legislation has become an "albatross around the neck of British businesses", costing them billions of pounds a year and leaving entrepreneurs in fear of speculative claims, he said.
He announced plans to cap the amount which can be earned by lawyers from small-value personal injury claims against employers and to reduce overall costs in cases funded by "no-win no-fee" deals."...
""It's a year when the Government's going to roll up its sleeves and ask, 'what can we do to help business, to help consumers, to help our economy get moving and to help our economy provide jobs for young people?'," he said.
The Government is "waging war against the excessive health and safety culture that has become an albatross around the neck of British businesses", said the PM.
He added: "This coalition has a clear new year's resolution: to kill off the health and safety culture for good."
Go to: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/david-cameron-i-will-kill-off-safety-culture-6285238.html For full article.

‘They tried to get lawyers’: Devastating cuts to legal aid prevented Grenfell Tower residents accessing advice

Quote; "Grenfell Tower’s residents tried to obtain legal advice over safety concerns but were prevented from doing so due to devastating cuts to legal aid.
Pilgrim Tucker, who has worked with the local campaign organisation Grenfell Action Group, made the damning claim yesterday evening during an emotionally-charged Newsnight.
Having cited a number of alleged structural and maintenance issues with the Kensington tower block, Tucker (pictured bottom right) said: “They [residents] can’t afford lawyers. They tried to get lawyers but because of the legal aid cuts they couldn’t get lawyers.”
Her point resonated on Twitter. Daphne Romney QC, a barrister at Cloisters specialising in employment law, tweeted:
Elsewhere, Laura Clenshaw — editorial manager at the Solicitors Regulation Authority — wrote:
Meanwhile, Tom, an ex-lawyer according to his Twitter bio, said:
In an attempt to save around £350 million a year, the government introduced a series of significant changes to civil legal aid in England and Wales. This meant certain types of cases — including divorce, welfare, employment and housing (except in limited circumstances) — were no longer eligible for free legal support. The cuts, introduced back in April 2013, were strongly opposed by professional legal bodies and lawyers alike.
Grenfell Tower, home to around 600 people, caught fire during the early hours of Wednesday morning. Hundreds of firefighters and 45 fire engines were involved in efforts to control the blaze as it ripped through the 27-storey building. At the time of publication, 17 people have been confirmed dead and dozens more injured." Go to: https://www.legalcheek.com/2017/06/they-tried-to-get-lawyers-devastating-cuts-to-legal-aid-prevented-grenfell-tower-residents-accessing-advice-over-safety-concerns/?utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=SocialWarfare For full article.

Arafel: Clearly its easier to marginalise and disenfranchise people when they can't access legal representation (couldn't be that such and "The Health and Safety Culture" were preventing those ever bigger profits for the "glorious few" could it?). The rub will be that this was Govt. legislation (and therefore negligence and corruption), therefore no private company will bear the burden of providing compensation, no it will come out of the public purse.

"I love the smell of vacancies in the morning"

 "
"

Tweet by Dr.Frances Ryan, from The Guardian.

LOOK BACK IN ANGER, a poem by Les Nicholls

"Timber plastic concrete and steel
Burned with a fury that hardly seems real
Taking with it the old the young of varying races
Scenes etched on our minds of their terrified faces
Babies mothers husbands and friends
The names of the missing on a list without end
Look back in anger now with total disgust
Betrayed by those people in whom they should trust
This was no act of god this was utter neglect
This was a lack of compassion and social respect
Look back in anger at the warnings ignored
Shunned by their landlord to whom they implored
We are shocked as a nation as this horror unfolds
And full of emotion as the stories are told
We have seen religion and culture all put aside
United in anger for all those that died
A public inquiry will not bring back the dead
it will not help those people who need to be sheltered and fed
Look back in anger as they talk and debate
While anger and despair haunt those left to wait
Look back in anger at the political spin
But the anger now rises as our patience grows thin
This tragedy occurred in a land of prosperity
In a home for the poor besieged by austerity
This suffering was caused by ignorance and conceit
It was an avoidable  horror we must never repeat"

GOD BLESS ALL THOSE AFFECTED BY THIS TRAGEDY" Go to: http://www.thelondoneconomic.com/tle-pick/look-back-in-anger-a-poem-for-grenfell/16/06/


"A tale of two posts... Boris Johnson tries to deflect criticism over



Compliance on the Cheap  

Quote; "Fire safety experts called for a ban on the use of combustible materials in the construction of high-rise buildings in the UK as contractors confirmed that panels used to clad Grenfell Tower were the cheaper, more flammable version of two available options.
A Worcester-based firm, Omnis Exteriors, said it had supplied Reynobond PE cladding panels as part of the refurbishment of the west London tower block that was overseen by the construction firm Rydon Maintenance in 2012.
The panels contain flammable polyethylene and are £2 cheaper per square metre than the alternative, fire-resistant Reynobond FR. Rydon Maintenance subcontracted the installation of the panels to a smaller company called Harley Facades, which confirmed that it had used the panels.
At least 20 tower blocks across the capital, ranging from 11 to 23 storeys, are believed to have the same cladding used at Grenfell, according to Construction Enquirer, a trade publication." Go to: https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2017/jun/16/experts-urge-ban-on-use-of-combustible-materials-in-tower-blocks?CMP=Share_AndroidApp_Tweet For full article.

Quote; "Boris Johnson is being reminded he once told a Labour politician to “get stuffed” for daring to ask about cuts to the London Fire Brigade (LFB), in the wake of the devastating Grenfell Tower blaze.
The fire has killed at least 17 people and police expect the death toll to rise. Hundreds have been left homeless and many remain missing, with firefighters saying they do not expect to find any more survivors.
Firefighters were at the scene within minutes and worked long shifts to save as many as they could from the burning 24-storey tower." Go to: http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/grenfell-tower-fire-boris-johnson_uk_594267c2e4b0d31854872fed For full article.


Quote; "Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson faces questions over his decision to slash London's fire service while being the Mayor of London.
Johnson presided over the closure of 10 fire stations and the removal of 27 fire engines, despite previously promising not to remove them.
There are fears that many more tower blocks in London could be vulnerable to the type of blaze seen at the Grenfell tower.
Johnson repeatedly denied he had any plans to cut fire engines or fire stations, telling the London Assembly in 2010 that there were "no plans" to remove engines. Pressed on the issue, he said in a filmed meeting that "I don't want to get rid of them. What's the problem?"
When confronted by his opponents on the London Assembly about the broken promise in 2013, Johnson told Labour's Andrew Dismore to "get stuffed." Go to: http://uk.businessinsider.com/boris-johnson-faces-questions-over-fire-brigade-cuts-following-greenfell-fire-2017-6
For full article.

Reduced Counseling for Firefighters

Quote; "Counselling services available to the firefighters who responded to the Grenfell Tower fire were drastically cut back, it can today be revealed, under Boris Johnson’s leadership as the former Mayor of London.

The number of counsellors trained to help firefighters process the traumatic scenes they witness on the job in the London Fire Brigade was cut from 14 to just 2 under Johnson, who also took 13 fire engines off the run.   The current management of the LFB are now grappling with this unfortunate legacy of cuts.

So far 17 people have been confirmed dead in the harrowing disaster but that figure is expected to rise dramatically.   The numbers of casualties are expected to run into hundreds.

Matt Wrack, general secretary of the Fire Brigades Union, said: “The absolutely devastating scenes that firefighters witnessed at Grenfell will stay with them for the rest of their lives. They are heroic men and women who just get on with the job and don’t complain but at the end of the day, they’re human and will be affected by what they see. The priority today is to make sure that everything possible is done to take care of their mental wellbeing after such a horrific disaster.  We need more counsellors to look after them, not less.”

A London firefighter who attended the scene, who asked to remain anonymous, said:

“It was absolutely horrific at Grenfell, and it’s still very very raw.  I have seen some really horrible things that I’ve never experienced seeing before and hope I will never see again.  It will stay with me all my life.  We were offered a session with a counsellor which I took up, and it did help, but nothing will get those images out of my mind.”" Go to: https://www.fbu.org.uk/news/2017/06/15/fury-counselling-services-firefighters-involved-grenfell-cut-back For full article.

"London Residents Speak The Truth About The Grenfell Tower Fire" (unavailable for Blogger embed), go to: https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=4&v=-AX8DYTPJKc
For video.

"Every Flat in a New South London Development Has Been Sold to Foreign Investors"


Quote; "When Elephant and Castle's Heygate Estate was eventually torn down in 2014, many tenants were forcibly evicted from their homes, given compensation at less than 40 percent of the market value. In its place, Londoners were promised a shiny new development that would provide affordable, accessible homes for key workers desperate to get on the property ladder.
As the first properties hit the market, a report claims that 100 percent of those sold so far have gone to offshore foreign investors."..
"Sales of these properties began in Singapore on the 11th April 2014, with flash brochures and slick marketing conferences. Not a single unit was for sale in London at this time. Lendlease don't even seek to hide the fact they are selling investment opportunities, not homes, as they list exactly how much rental income – around £25,000 a year for the cheapest – foreign investors can cream off without ever touching the front door.
Transparency International, a not-for-profit organisation which exposes global corruption, state in their 2017 report "Faulty Towers" that the number of South Gardens units sold abroad is 51 out of 51 properties, as per Land Registry documents." Go to: https://www.vice.com/en_uk/article/every-flat-in-a-new-south-london-development-has-been-sold-to-foreign-investors For full article.

Toxic gases released during Grenfell Tower fire may have caused some deaths

Quote; "Insulation boards fitted to the outside of Grenfell Tower gave off highly toxic hydrogen cyanide gas which may have contributed to the deaths of some of the 79 confirmed victims.
Fire toxicity experts have told Sky News the insulation boards installed during a refurbishment of the tower produce the deadly gas when they burn, and their positioning meant every flat could have been filled with enough gas to kill those inside.
At least three of those injured in the fire have been treated with an antidote for hydrogen cyanide poisoning in hospital, and the number of those affected may be higher.
The gas could have incapacitated some residents, but establishing its role in the cause of death may be impossible because of the condition of the victims." Go to: http://news.sky.com/story/toxic-gases-released-during-grenfell-tower-fire-may-have-caused-some-deaths-10922685?dcmp=snt-sf-twitter 
For full article.




For updates on this story please see my Twitter "moment"; "#JusticeforGrenfell #Austerity #Gentrification" Go to: https://twitter.com/i/moments/876873047508123648

ADVERTISEMENT -Quote; "But the capital lost 600 firefighter jo

bs and 10 fire stations while Johnson was London Mayor.Quote; "Counselling services available to the firefighters who responded to the Grenfell Tower fire were drastically cut back, it can today be revealed, under Boris Johnson’s leadership as the former Mayor of London.

The number of counsellors trained to help firefighters process the traumatic scenes they witness on the job in the London Fire Brigade was cut from 14 to just 2 under Johnson, who also took 13 fire engines off the run.   The current management of the LFB are now grappling with this unfortunate legacy of cuts.

So far 17 people have been confirmed dead in the harrowing disaster but that figure is expected to rise dramatically.   The numbers of casualties are expected to run into hundreds.

Matt Wrack, general secretary of the Fire Brigades Union, said: “The absolutely devastating scenes that firefighters witnessed at Grenfell will stay with them for the rest of their lives. They are heroic men and women who just get on with the job and don’t complain but at the end of the day, they’re human and will be affected by what they see. The priority today is to make sure that everything possible is done to take care of their mental wellbeing after such a horrific disaster.  We need more counsellors to look after them, not less.”

A London firefighter who attended the scene, who asked to remain anonymous, said:

“It was absolutely horrific at Grenfell, and it’s still very very raw.  I have seen some really horrible things that I’ve never experienced seeing before and hope I will never see again.  It will stay with me all my life.  We were offered a session with a counsellor which I took up, and it did help, but nothing will get those images out of my mind.”" Go to: https://www.fbu.org.uk/news/2017/06/15/fury-counselling-services-firefighters-involved-grenfell-cut-back For full article.