Saturday, June 15, 2024

Oh look, Will Smith bitches at THE ROOT, an actual blockbuster

INSIDE OUT 2 is hilarious and it's a film my girlfriend and I loved last night and that I loved just as much today with my nieces and nephews who loved it as well.  You have to be heartless and humorless not to love this film. 


And in one day, pay attention useless bitches who work for THE ROOT, it's made more than BAD BOYS WILL RIDING MARTIN'S POLE FOR LIFE OR AT LEAST WHENEVER HIS CAREER FALTERS.

$62 million on Friday domestically.  That's a blockbuster.  $50 million?  That's Julia Roberts' SOMETHING TO TALK ABOUT -- not a bomb but not one of her big hits. 


Little Willie and his pinky sized penis -- as his employee that walked in on him getting railed saw -- just can't deliver.  


It's a good thing Martin was there or Little Willie's short comings would have been even more obvious. 


But don't worry, there are cheap whores at THE ROOT who will go out of their way to block a Black man in order to whore for Will Smith.

While trying to turn this into a racial issue -- Wah Wah the racist press won't cover this movie without noting that Will Smith attacked Chris Rock live on stage on a world broadcast that the whole world still talks about it's racism!!!!! -- the whores at THE ROOT made the film all about Will and refused to give Martin Lawrence one damn bit of credit this despite the reality that more people like Martin, his TV show MARTIN has never died in syndication, he has been a huge part of these BAD BOYS movies since they started, etc.


Paid content whores at THE ROOT exposed as the garbage that they truly are.  


Oh, and Little Willie Smith's little willie at the box office exposed as well. 

 

To THE ROOT I say: Kiss my Black ass.

Going out with C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"

 

Friday, June 14, 2024.  Crooked Clarence Thomas lies again, a lifeguard backed by right-wing nuts is trying to further erode LGBTQ+ rights, Jeffrey St. Clair reflects on the recent slaughter in Gaza and much more.

Starting in the US where confidence in the Supreme Court remains at an all time low.  As Mike noted earlier this morning "Crooked Clarence Thomas can't stop lying."  Now lying would be a problem for anyone -- even a young child.  However, Crooked Clarence isn't a young child.  He is a justice on the Supreme Court  who has now served (poorly) for over thirty years.  And when he can't follow the rules, who is he to offer judgment on anyone?  The hypocrisy leaves the mind reeling.  

So there are three more trips that his billionaire sugar daddy paid for that, oops!, Crooked Clarence forgot to disclose.  This is not the behavior of an ethical judge.  This is the behavior of a crook and crooks are not supposed to be judges.  They're certainly supposed to appear before judges but they are not supposed to sit on the bench.  

It is past time for Crooked Clarence and Offending Alito to be pulled from the Court.  But we also desperately need term limits on the Supreme Court.  That is long overdue.

Stephen Johnson Field sat on the Supreme Court from 1863 to 1897.  From WIKIPEDIA:

Field insisted on breaking John Marshall's record of 34 years on the court, even when he was no longer able to handle the workload. His colleagues asked him to resign due to his being intermittently senile,[14] but he refused, at one point John Marshall Harlan urged Field to retire. Finding him dozing in the robing room. Harlan later related what happened next: “The old man listened, gradually became alert, and finally, with his eyes blazing with the fire of youth, he burst out, ‘Yes, and a dirtier day’s work I never did in my life.'”[15]

In March 1896, he wrote what would be his final opinion on behalf of the Court, but remained on the bench for another twenty months, finally retiring on December 1, 1897.[16] Field would become the last veteran of both the Taney Court and the Chase Court to remain on the bench. He would remain the longest serving member of the Court until his record was surpassed by William O. Douglas, who served from 1939 to 1975.


We need laws changing this from a life time appointment because for the American people this is now becoming a lifetime sentence -- where we have to wait for these corrupt bastards to die in order to get justice.


When Crooked Clarence refuses to properly disclose, he stains his own image and he stains the Court's image.  This should not be allowed to happen.


Let's note this from Ava and my "Media: The lying pundits with a focus on Jonathan Turley:"


MEDIAS TOUCH is a good outlet and produced good content.  But we cringed over one this week where a woman wanted to talk about the assault on women's rights.


We don't think the assault exists?

We know it does.  And it's a good topic for a commentary -- for many commentaries.  But the woman seemed to doubt that or to feel that she needed to shore up the case by citing an attack on Civil Rights.  Citing?  A whispered aside, at best.  And why do that?


There's more than enough reason to make a commentary on the assault on Civil Rights -- many commentaries (and Roland S. Martin regularly does a great job with those commentaries on his own podcasts).  The way the woman utilized this was confusing and weakened her presentation.


If she was attempting to note the reality that the fright-wing wishes to strip all of us of our rights (which is, in fact, true), she left out the LGBTQ+ community and that's a huge omission because that community is and has been the test case for the fright-wing in their efforts to destroy rights and to create a climate of hate.


And it has been with those efforts that the hate mongers have shown their hand; however, too few want to see reality -- or maybe their own latent homophobia prevents them from seeing reality.


The Supreme Court is a dishonest and crooked body that has handed down outrageous rulings over the last four years.  And, yes, DOBBS is one of those outrageous rulings.  So were the rulings in ALEXANDER V SOUTH CAROLINE NAACP and SFFA V HARVARD/UNC.  They are disgusting rulings that ignored precedent and trashed settled law.  


But the worst attack on Americans came in 303 CREATIVE LLC V ELENIS. 


And this is where Turley comes in.  He had already begun his flirtation with The Federalist Society.  Within a few years, his exposure had led to full blown hate.  He began offering pro bono help behind the scenes to many offensive and disgusting cases.  On CREATIVE LLC, he began insisting that Lori Smith -- the homophobe -- was being denied her religious right to practice homophobia.  He worded differently but that's the reality.


Lori was a known liar who had no standing to sue and her case was a joke that only became more outrageous after the verdict when it was learned that the person she cited in court papers as having requested she make a same-sex wedding site for him (a) never made that request, (b) was straight and (c) was married to a woman and had been for over 15 years. She's just a cheap little liar and you have to wonder how she justifies that in her so-called faith?


The verdict in that case created two sets of citizenship.  Straight people are entitled to all rights but gay men and lesbians only have rights if those rights do not offend the homophobia of some religious nutcase. That's what the verdict was. 


Turley went all in on that case and you can read his Tweets and his columns -- even if he kept hidden his interactions with Lori Smith's attorneys.  With DOBBS and the other cases?


He was less vocal and had to keep things hidden.  In our society, sadly, you can fully attack the LGBTQ+ community and get away with it. Turley and the fright-wing know that they have to step more lightly when it comes to attacking others.  So with attacks in other areas, these are steps to eliminating rights.  Steps.  Affirmative action has largely been struck down in college admissions due to the Crooked Court. DOBBS?  It, as Turley repeatedly insisted, turned the issue over to the states.  Many of these states,Turley failed to note, had already prepared for this day and had laws in place to destroy reproductive rights.


They chip away at a specific right.  But with Lori Smith's case, they went back to overturning equality and all the decisions that involved equality over the Court's history to argue that gays and lesbians only have rights if 100% of America agrees they should have them.


That's what they want to do with reproductive rights and with Civil Rights but they know they have to move slowly there.  And part of the slow move is to lie and attack the rights of women and people of color in an attempt to soften public reaction to the coming onslaught.


The fakery is part of the process and the plotting and scheming start long before we're aware of it. 



And again, we're seeing how destructive that case was.  They've got a new on teed up thanks to a priss pot named Jeffrey Little who's an appalling piece of work and whose 'delicately' aged face would have gotten him cast in a late 80s TV movie as an AIDS patient.  Sadly, Little wants to do his acting in court.  Piece of garbage is a lifeguard in California and by golly he can't be expected to raise flags because he's a delicate flower so nutso is suing. Robin Abcarian (LOS ANGELES TIMES) reports:


Little claims in his lawsuit that the Progress Pride flag in question symbolizes and advances “a range of controversial religious and moral views, including about the family, the nature of marriage and human sexuality including the promotion of certain sexual practices, and the identity, nature and purpose of the human person.”
Sexual practices? I think he’s reading an awful lot into a swatch of brightly colored fabric.

Little also claims that he is opposed to the flag because it has been “featured prominently during Gay Pride parades around the world, including those in which adults wear little to no clothing while in the presence of children.”

Excuse me, Los Angeles lifeguard says what?

Has the good captain not noticed how many people are running around L.A. beaches nearly naked on your average sunny day? I mean, you’d be hard pressed to tell the difference between a bikini and dental floss these days. In fact, it’s sometimes hard to tell who is wearing a thong and who is actually naked.

But hey, as long as they don't ask for your sexual orientation while you are caught in a rip tide, even lifeguards are allowed to be bigots, at least in private.

Imposing their religion on the rest of us is where I draw the line, though. Same-sex marriage was legalized in 2015. Gender is not binary. Trans people exist and deserve respect. Flying the Pride flag is a symbolic way of saying, "You belong too."


There is so much wrong with this nonsense and garbage and the Crooked and Corrupt Supreme Court brought us here.  In a functioning legal world, even with that disaster opinion  from 303 CREATIVE LLC V ELENIS on the books, Little wold have no right to hide behind his so-called religious beliefs to refuse to do his job duites.

Raising flags?  That's part of the job.  And whatever the flag is?  That's also part of the job.


B-b-b-but my religion!!!!

Your religion may tell you that  you can't work on the Sabbath.

Your religion does not tell you that you can't raise a flag.

In addition, you raising flags for your job?

If we work, we have job duties.  And the whole world knows that our job duties do not necessarily reflect our own personal beliefs no matter how deeply felt.  

Little Jeffrey Little was big enough to express his distaste for LGBTQ+ people.  He can do that anytime he wants.  Doing so on the clock might get him fired -- probably should.  But raising a series of flags is not an endorsement of anything other than what the state says should be displayed.

If he doesn't want to do what the state says, he is free to quit.

His bigotry does not get rewarded in a functioning legal system.  

Pamela Manson (UPI) notes that he is pressing this court case (with right wing backing, I'm sure) despite the fact that the state attempted to work with him:


The Fire Department issued assurances last week that Little will not be personally responsible for the raising or lowering of the Progress Pride flag as part of his job for the remainder of June, according to attorney Paul Jonna, special counsel for the Thomas More Society, a public interest law firm that represents the lifeguard captain.

However, the department insisted that Little must still ensure his subordinates comply with the requirement and that he will need to renew his request for a religious accommodation every year, Jonna said Monday.

Nothing's good enough for these freaks.

And I get  some of the homophobia, it is understandable.  Ava and my piece that we pulled from above,  that piece was re-written three different times over three different days before it was published and the original draft included some reality:  Little boys are horny.

Meaning?

They play with themselves, they play with animals, they play with each other, they will stick their erect penises in a vaccume extension, in spout water pours out of into  tub, they will stick it anywhere.  .  Then they grow up and some are in such a panic that they go overboard like little Little's doing.

As children, they did circle jerks and mutual masturbation and what have you.

And they do that because they're horny.  And then some of them start to mess around with females.

You do get how that f**ks with their minds?

These same-sex experiences that they don't want anyone to know about -- but that many of had in childhood -- are left behind.  Their shame over what they did as horny boys is replaced with the lie of what happened and they then lie to themselves  that they are so big and strong that they overcame The Big Gay and so others can as well!  


That's the lie that's always been behind conversion 'therapy.'  So when you find yourself talking to man who believes in conversion' therapy' or wants to insist that it's a matter of choice, you need to grasp that this idiot believes that because they've confused humping, handly, squeezing and mouthing whatever was handy when they were horny with actually being gay and so they think they fought off being gay and if they did it then everyone can.

 These idiots were not gay, they were horny.  

And if we would grasp that basic fact about these homophobes, if we would grasp and discuss it, it would cut down on some of the homophobia -- mainly because these homophobes would stop expressing his homophobia as they grasped what their words revealed to the rest of us and how every time they went off on this topic, we were all looking them in the face trying to figure out whether they just gave each other hands jobs, went down on each other or maybe went all the way to cornholing -- a term so well known by so many males for a reason.

Jeffrey Little does not belong working for the state.

If his so-called 'religious' beliefs are so firm that he can't raise a flag?  He needs to quit.  Because other people have religious rights as well.

Me?  As a cancer survivor a few times over, it's my deeply held belief that no God would want us to harm any group of people.  No God would preach or teach intolerance.

Guess what?  A lot of people hold religious beliefs in this country that incorporate that attitude.

If his religious view is intolerant, he needs to find another job and not work with the public.  Maybe he could become a minister.  I'm sure he'd love to be around young kids.  

But whatever he does, he shouldn't be allowed to work in his current job.

If he's given the right not to raise the flag because of his passionate fantasies -- sorry, 'beliefs,' -- about gay people, he doesn't need to be employed.

And if you don't live in California and you disagree with me?  SHUT THE F**K UP.

That's where I live.  And you're telling me that a lifeguard is going to be given a pass to be homophobic.

Let's travel this slippery slope.  

Where does it end?

I do not feel safe having my tax money paying his salary.  He's not a real life guard.

He's a loon who won't raise a flag.

So if someone's drowning in the ocean, is he going to try to save them?  Even if he thinks they might be gay?  Or knows that they are?



My concern is that  he's just going to watch them drown and again say, “as I was under the impression that I would not have to deal with working in these conditions.” 

He is a danger to himself in others and cannot work public safety.

Today, his religious views say no to the Pride flag.  Tomorrow?  His religious views say he can't give  Mouth-to-mouth resuscitation to certain people.  


He is not fit and he is not qualified for a public safety job.

Public safety is a social contract in which we are all equal and we are all deserving.  Jeffrey Little doesn't believe that.  His ass needs to be fired and fired immediately.  Him on the beach is a big question mark for public safety and questioning whether or not a lifeguard will rescue someone in need is the first indication that they are not qualified for their job.



And the hate group backing him up is the Thomas More Society.  They're a group of Catholic freaks who are okay with priests molesting children but not okay with women having rights or with public safety measures (see their cases during COVID) and they're part of the crazy liars who tried to overturn the election:


The Thomas More Society has been aligned with the presidential administration of Donald Trump.[37] Trump appointed Sarah Pitlyk, a special counsel to the society, to a federal district judgeship.[38]

In 2020, after Trump was defeated by Joe Biden in the 2020 presidential election, the Thomas More Society established the Amistad Project as part of an attempt to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election.[6] Trump repeatedly and falsely claimed that the election was marred by voter fraud.[6] The project was led by former Kansas Attorney General (and later Liberty University professor) Phillip Kline,[6][39] although his law license was suspended.[39] The effort was tied to Jenna Ellis, a senior legal adviser to the Trump campaign who was also special counsel to the Thomas More Society.[6] The Amistad Projects filed lawsuits on behalf of supposed "grassroots" groups (with titles such as the "Pennsylvania Voters Alliance" and "Wisconsin Voters Alliance") in the swing states won by Biden (ArizonaGeorgiaMichiganPennsylvania, and Wisconsin). All the suits were rejected or dismissed by the courts.[6] Ellis's tie to the society and the project suggested "a coordinated effort to flood the nation's courts with repetitive litigation" allowing Trump to continue to claim that the election results remain contested.[6]

On December 14, 2020, ahead of the electoral college vote, Amistad Project attorney Ian Northon accompanied a group of self-described "Republican electors" in Lansing who were attempting to cast Michigan electoral votes for Trump, despite Biden winning Michigan and being previously certified as the winner. Northon claimed the "electors" were "fulfilling their constitutional duty."[40] The fake "votes" cast by the pro-Trump "alternate electors" have no legal standing.[41][42]

On December 22, 2020, after the electors had cast their votes, the Amistad Project sued in D.C. federal court on behalf of a variety of plaintiffs: ten voters, five organizations, and eight state legislators. The two Michigan legislators listed as plaintiffs later requested to be dropped from the suit, feeling that the suit that was filed differed too strongly from what they had agreed to.[43] The project sued, among others, Vice President Mike Pence, governors, election officials, and legislative officials in the battleground states; the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate, and the electoral college itself.[44] The group asked the court to (as the district court later described in denying the request) "declare unconstitutional several decades-old federal statutes governing the appointment of electors and the counting of electoral votes for President of the United States; to invalidate multiple state statutes regulating the certification of Presidential votes; to ignore certain Supreme Court decisions; and, the coup de grace, to enjoin the U.S. Congress from counting the electoral votes on January 6, 2021, and declaring Joseph R. Biden the next President."[45] The suit was derided by legal community for the substance of its arguments, the broadness of its goals, and for naming the Electoral College as a defendant, with notes that the Electoral College is not something that exists, but a process that happens.[46]

On January 4, 2021, U.S. District Judge James E. Boasberg denied the society's motion for a preliminary injunction, noting that plaintiffs lacked standing, the case was filed in the wrong court, and that plaintiffs made no effort to serve the other side. Boasberg wrote that in addition to those procedural problems, "the suit rests on a fundamental and obvious misreading of the Constitution. It would be risible were its target not so grave: the undermining of a democratic election for President of the United States."[47]

Michael Gableman, the former justice of the Wisconsin Supreme Court who led a state-funded investigation into unfounded allegations of fraud in the 2020 presidential election in Wisconsin, was hired by the Thomas More Society[48] after being fired by the politician who hired him, Speaker of the Wisconsin State Assembly Robin Vos, in August 2022.[49]



By the way, does Jeffrey Little's religious beliefs  allow Paul Jonna -- Jeffrey Little's attorney -- to wear lipstick?  There are hardly any public photos of him where he's not wearing lipstick and that's not just my opinion, I've got a photo shoot later today and an artist is already here to do her magic.  I checked with her -- you know my eyes -- and she's an expert and, yes, Paul Jonna is wearing lipstick in photo after photo.

I can't imagine that if your religious beliefs tells you that you can hate LGBTQ+ people these same beliefs also tell you it's okay to hang out with men who wear cosmetics.  So maybe Jeffrey Little needs to start praying and maybe Thomas More needs to stop being so desperate for attorneys that they take in men who wear make up.


We've got so much to cover but we have stop for a moment for Barbra Streisand.  Some people are e-mailing the public account insisting that I'm not calling her out when I should be.  If you missed it, this week Barbra made a statement about the mythical rapes of October 7th.  I really have more important things to do -- as should you -- then get caught up in that.  It was a stupid comment from an uniformed woman.  If you've missed it -- and maybe this isn't in the media? -- James Brolin and his woman-beating son Josh have been all in on go-go-go Israel.  So she's surrounded by that.  THE NEW YORK TIMES -- her gospel (because she's an idiot) has repeatedly pimped the lie of rapes.  (Again, no woman has come forward.  There is no proof.  The allegations made were just more lies from a corrupt government.)


Barbra is an idiot.  She reads NYT, she praises it.  She even praised Frank Rich when Bully Boy Bush occupied the White House.  If you're not familiar with Rich's body of work, before politics he did movie reviews.  And no one, not even John Simon, trashed her more than Frank Rich.  But there was idiot Babs praising him and linking to him because he said what she wanted to hear about Bully Boy Bush.  Despite the huge and preening ego -- or maybe because of -- Barbra praised a man she should hve ignored.  

This is a woman, please note, who has bragged for years about her lack of education and laughing about how she was close to 30 before she knew who won The Civil War.  And not just bragged about to those of us who know her, you can find her bragging and laughing about it to the press.


So, no, the fact that Barbra has hopped onto the lie about the mythical rapes does not surprise me.  Nor should it surprise anyone.


Now we are jumping into Jeffrey St. Clair's latest COUNTERPUNCH column:


The bodies of children and women, the old and young, shredded by shrapnel, riven with bullets, some with severed limbs and others with perforated eyes. 

“There were children everywhere, there were women, there were men,” said Karin Huster, who was working at Al-Aqsa with Médecins Sans Frontières. “We had the gamut of war wounds, trauma wounds, from amputations to eviscerations to trauma, to TBIs, traumatic brain injuries. Fractures, obviously, big burns. Kids completely grey or white from the shock, burnt, screaming for their parents — many of them not screaming because they are in shock.”

The tempo of the attack increased. The bombings and the gunfire and the tanks and the helicopters. The frenzied sounds of a war machine at full-throttle. For thirty minutes it went on. For an hour. For an hour and a half. It seemed interminable for those seeking shelter on the ground, cowering in buildings and the hospital. And then it was over, finally. And there were only the cries for help from the shattered streets and collapsed buildings. The cries of parents carrying dead children in their arms, the cries of children looking at the gutted bodies of their parents.

What had just happened? Why had this refugee camp at Nusierat, home of so many homeless people, so many Palestinian families who had been displaced by bombs time and time again, come under such a savage sustained attack from the air and the ground, an attack that destroyed 90 homes and apartment buildings? An attack of such fury that it left the streets scattered with severed arms and legs, the bodies of children and their mothers and grandfathers left to bleed out in the marketplace that seemed to be a target of the attack. What could possibly justify this slaughter, this killing, this destruction that one Palestinian refugee in Nuseirat said felt like “Doomsday”?

When the Israelis finally left, they took four people with them, four hostages who had been rescued by Israeli commandos and evacuated in helicopters that were stationed at or near Biden’s hapless “humanitarian” pier that had, coincidentally or not, just been reassembled and re-moored to the beach in central Gaza, after breaking apart in high seas last month. 

When the Israelis finally left with the four rescued hostages, who’d been captured by Hamas on October 7 while attending the Nova rave just outside the Israeli security fence that pens in and isolates northern Gaza, they left behind 274 dead Palestinians, including 64 children and 57 women. They left behind 700 wounded, many in critical condition, many of whom seem likely to die in the coming days and weeks.

The great rescue mission turned into the worst massacre to date in Israel’s genocidal war on Gaza, leaving the streets of Nuseirat, in the words of Abu Asi, “halls of blood.” 

This morning, ALJAZEERA reports:


Medical sources have told Al Jazeera that 20 Palestinians have been killed in Israeli raids on different areas in the Gaza Strip since dawn today.

Al Jazeera’s Hind Khoudary reports that Israeli forces targeted a house in Deir el-Balah, and killed at least two Palestinians. Four others were critically injured, among them children.

“Talking to the parents, they said they were playing in the courtyard when the air strike took place,” Khoudary said.

“There has been a couple of targets in Nuseirat and Bureij. The air strikes are ongoing from north to the south, despite the ceasefire negotiations.”


THE NATIONAL notes, "Three women were killed in an attack on a home near Hedar roundabout, in western Gaza city, and a child was killed in bombardment on the city, sources said."  And THE GUARDIAN notes:

In the north of the Gaza Strip where Palestinians have been hit hardest by hunger, residents say they are surviving on bread alone due to acute shortages of vegetables, fruit and meat.

Reuters reports that food that can be found in markets is being sold at exorbitant prices: a kilo of green peppers, which cost about a dollar before the war, was priced at 320 shekels or nearly $90. Traders demanded $70 for just a kilo of onions.

Um Mohammed, a mother of six in Gaza City, told the news agency:

We are being starved, the world has forgotten about us.

Except for the flour, bread, we have nothing else, we don’t have anything to eat it with, so we eat bread only.


Gaza remains under assault. Day 252 of  the assault in the wave that began in October.  Binoy Kampmark (DISSIDENT VOICE) points out, "Bloodletting as form; murder as fashion.  The ongoing campaign in Gaza by Israel’s Defence Forces continues without stalling and restriction.  But the burgeoning number of corpses is starting to become a challenge for the propaganda outlets:  How to justify it?  Fortunately for Israel, the United States, its unqualified defender, is happy to provide cover for murder covered in the sheath of self-defence."   CNN has explained, "The Gaza Strip is 'the most dangerous place' in the world to be a child, according to the executive director of the United Nations Children's Fund."  ABC NEWS quotes UNICEF's December 9th statement, ""The Gaza Strip is the most dangerous place in the world to be a child. Scores of children are reportedly being killed and injured on a daily basis. Entire neighborhoods, where children used to play and go to school have been turned into stacks of rubble, with no life in them."  NBC NEWS notes, "Strong majorities of all voters in the U.S. disapprove of President Joe Biden’s handling of foreign policy and the Israel-Hamas war, according to the latest national NBC News poll. The erosion is most pronounced among Democrats, a majority of whom believe Israel has gone too far in its military action in Gaza."  The slaughter continues.  It has displaced over 1 million people per the US Congressional Research Service.  Jessica Corbett (COMMON DREAMS) points out, "Academics and legal experts around the world, including Holocaust scholars, have condemned the six-week Israeli assault of Gaza as genocide."   The death toll of Palestinians in Gaza is grows higher and higher.  United Nations Women noted, "More than 1.9 million people -- 85 per cent of the total population of Gaza -- have been displaced, including what UN Women estimates to be nearly 1 million women and girls. The entire population of Gaza -- roughly 2.2 million people -- are in crisis levels of acute food insecurity or worse."  THE NATIONAL notes, "Gaza death toll reaches 37,232 with 85,037 injured."   Months ago,  AP  noted, "About 4,000 people are reported missing."  February 7th, Jeremy Scahill explained on DEMOCRACY NOW! that "there’s an estimated 7,000 or 8,000 Palestinians missing, many of them in graves that are the rubble of their former home."  February 5th, the United Nations' Phillipe Lazzarini Tweeted:

  



April 11th, Sharon Zhang (TRUTHOUT) reported, "In addition to the over 34,000 Palestinians who have been counted as killed in Israel’s genocidal assault so far, there are 13,000 Palestinians in Gaza who are missing, a humanitarian aid group has estimated, either buried in rubble or mass graves or disappeared into Israeli prisons.  In a report released Thursday, Euro-Med Human Rights Monitor said that the estimate is based on initial reports and that the actual number of people missing is likely even higher."
 

As for the area itself?  Isabele Debre (AP) reveals, "Israel’s military offensive has turned much of northern Gaza into an uninhabitable moonscape. Whole neighborhoods have been erased. Homes, schools and hospitals have been blasted by airstrikes and scorched by tank fire. Some buildings are still standing, but most are battered shells."  Kieron Monks (I NEWS) reports, "More than 40 per cent of the buildings in northern Gaza have been damaged or destroyed, according to a new study of satellite imagery by US researchers Jamon Van Den Hoek from Oregon State University and Corey Scher at the City University of New York. The UN gave a figure of 45 per cent of housing destroyed or damaged across the strip in less than six weeks. The rate of destruction is among the highest of any conflict since the Second World War."



We'll wind down with this from Marjorie Cohn (TRUTHOUT):

On June 4, a coalition of active-duty service members, veterans and G.I. rights groups launched a campaign called Appeal for Redress V2 to encourage military personnel to tell Congress to stop funding genocide in Gaza. Israel’s genocidal operation, now in its ninth month, has killed more than 37,000 Palestinians and wounded nearly 85,000.

The campaign is sponsored by Veterans For Peace (VFP), the Military Law Task Force of the National Lawyers Guild, About Face: Veterans Against the War and the Center on Conscience & War. It is modeled after the 2006 Appeal for Redress issued during the occupation of Iraq. During that campaign, almost 3,000 active-duty, Reserve and Guard personnel sent protected communications to their members of Congress urging an end to the wars and occupations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Appeal for Redress V2 was formulated to help G.I.s directly tell their representatives that they oppose U.S. support for Israel’s genocide in Gaza.

“We will not stand by silently while genocide unfolds,” Senior Airman Juan Bettancourt, an active-duty member of the U.S. Air Force, stated at a June 4 press conference announcing the campaign. “We refuse to be complicit” in the “unspeakable carnage,” said Bettancourt, who is seeking separation from the U.S. military as a conscientious objector.

Kathleen Gilberd, executive director of the Military Law Task Force of the National Lawyers Guild and my coauthor for Rules of Disengagement: The Politics and Honor of Military Dissent, told Truthout there has been an increase in the number of applications for conscientious objection (CO) and other types of honorable discharge from the military. “Many military personnel have serious objections to the U.S. support for Israel’s genocide against the Palestinians,” Gilberd said.


The following sites updated:

Thursday, June 13, 2024

Annie Potts needs to shut up

Annie Potts?  I liked the film she did with Margot Kidder (HEARTACHES).  But I never liked Annie.  She was a dope and dishrag on DESIGNING WOMEN and she wasn't supportive to, for example, Delta Burke when Delta was being attacked.  Then she just knew she could save LOVE & WAR and replaced Susan Dey and the ratings tanked.  The series regularly got 20 million viewers an episode when Susan Dey -- hilarious and attractive -- starred in the series.  Short, pudgy, urine soaked nag Annie Potts takes over and ratings drop as low as four milllion an episode. 

Let's repeat that.  When Susan starred in the show it got at least 20 million viewers an episode.  Ugly and pathetic Annie Potts takes over and the ratings sink and sink some more and end with four million viewers an episode.  She ran off 16 million viewers.

 

She's just not likeable.  She always comes off like a woman who's peed her panties and the smell is just lingering in the room sickening everyone.


She's pissy now.  She was mad that YOUNG SHELDON was being cancelled. Stupid idiot Ana Dumaraog (SCREEN RANT) types:


Before the show entered its final month, Potts openly criticized Young Sheldon's cancelation, citing how it was a bad business move, considering how popular the series was. She also revealed that they were ambushed by the decision to end The Big Bang Theory prequel. Several weeks after the project officially wrapped up its run, the official viewership data from the shortened 2023-2024 TV season confirms her claims, with Young Sheldon being the most-watched comedy of the year (via TV Line). Overall, it posted 9.3 million weekly viewers, a far cry from the second place, Ghost, with 8.2 million.


Let's go over some basics.  YOUNG SHELDON has not done well in syndication.  Not a big surprise because single-cam sitcoms rarely do well.  It will  not turn a big profit in syndication.  That is one reason the show is being axed.  THE NEIGHBORHOOD is doing very well in syndication and CBS can continue to keep filming that show for that reason.  Last night "" went up.  After the ding, when the timer went off, they stayed on the phone for a little longer and I asked them what they might be covering Sunday.  They are considering "financials" because most people do not grasp those numbers.  They were going to do it with films.  I brought up whether or not THE NEIGHBORHOOD doing so well in syndication would help it and they said yes and pointed out another thing -- CBS is a co-owner of that series so it earns more money off it.  YOUNG SHELDON is owned by WARNER BROS and CHUCK LORRIE PRODUCTIONS.  It may not seem fair but when a network owns a show, they're more likely to renew it because they're getting money from it.  C.I. pointed out that anti-trust actions broke film studios off from owning theaters years ago -- and that this is changing -- but they never did anything about studios owning shows.  Each spring, shows that do well end up getting the axe because the network doesn't own the show.

So that's one issue -- not owning the show -- in part or in whole.  

The idiot at SCREEN RANT insists that 9 million viewers is proof of big viewership.

No.  

The first season, the show had 16 million viewers for their season average.

It has dropped every season since.

9.10 was the reported average for this season -- a loss of seven million viewers.  With the trend being that it loses viewers each season, there was no reason to keep it.  (Reported because that figure is false.  You can do the math on each episode and see that 9.1 is inflated by WIKIPEDIA.)

Not done yet. 

The finale pushed up the ratings.  Prior to that, every episode struggled with only 7 or 6 million viewers.  Again, that 9.1 is pumped up and not accurate.  You can't have twelve episodes that never even reach eight million (and most don't reach seven million) and then have the finale deliver 9.15 million for the first episode and 9.32 and the season average be 9.10.  That's not how math works.  In fairness to SCREEN RANT, I don't believe they addressed the yearly average -- either the misreported yearly average or the actual yearly average.

So the show as struggling and when you look at other single cam sitcoms, you see once they've dropped down to regularly getting six million viewers an episode, that's it for them.

CBS also owns GHOSTS and YOUNG SHEDLON wasn't providing it with enough of a lead in -- plus GHOSTS has actually gotten higher ratings since season one -- a show that builds.

So, no, we didn't need YOUNG SHELDON.  And most of us hated the show for many reasons including that the little punk who played the title role was the grandson of the pro-Iraq War neocon that outed Valerie Plame as a CIA agent (she was undercover) when her husband US Ambassador Joe Wilson published his NYT column "What I Didn't Find in Africa."  From WIKIPEDIA:

Joseph Charles Wilson IV (November 6, 1949 – September 27, 2019) was an American diplomat who was best known for his 2002 trip to Niger to investigate allegations that Saddam Hussein was attempting to purchase yellowcake uranium; his New York Times op-ed piece, "What I Didn't Find in Africa";[1] and the subsequent leaking by the Bush/Cheney administration of information pertaining to the identity of his wife Valerie Plame as a CIA officer. He also served as the CEO of a consulting firm he founded, JC Wilson International Ventures, and as the vice chairman of Jarch Capital, LLC.



[. . .]

In late February 2002, Wilson traveled to Niger at the CIA's request to investigate the possibility that Saddam Hussein had purchased enriched yellowcake uranium. Wilson met with the current US Ambassador to Niger, Barbro Owens-Kirkpatrick (1999–2002) at the embassy and then interviewed dozens of officials who had been in the Niger government at the time of the supposed deal. He ultimately concluded: "it was highly doubtful that any such transaction had ever taken place."[1][a]

Wilson learned that the Iraqis had in fact requested a meeting to discuss "expanding commercial relations" but that Niger's Prime Minister Mayaki had declined, due to concern about U.N. sanctions against Iraq.[notes 1][23][24][25]

"What I Didn't Find in Africa"[edit]

President Bush's 2003 State of the Union Address included these 16 words: "The British government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa."[26][27] In response, in the July 6, 2003, issue of The New York Times, Wilson contributed an op-ed entitled "What I Didn't Find in Africa," in which he states that on the basis of his "experience with the administration in the months leading up to the war" he has "little choice but to conclude that some of the intelligence related to Iraq's nuclear weapons program was twisted to exaggerate the Iraqi threat."[1]

Wilson described the basis for his mission to Niger as follows: "The vice president's office asked a serious question [about the truth of allegations that Iraq was seeking to purchase uranium yellowcake from Niger]. I was asked to help formulate the answer".[1]

In the last two paragraphs of his op-ed, Wilson related his perspective to the Bush administration's rationale for the Iraq War:

I was convinced before the war that the threat of weapons of mass destruction in the hands of Saddam Hussein required a vigorous and sustained international response to disarm him. Iraq possessed and had used chemical weapons; it had an active biological weapons program and quite possibly a nuclear research program—all of which were in violation of United Nations resolutions. Having encountered Mr. Hussein and his thugs in the run-up to the Persian Gulf war of 1991, I was only too aware of the dangers he posed. But were these dangers the same ones the administration told us about? We have to find out. America's foreign policy depends on the sanctity of its information. For this reason, questioning the selective use of intelligence to justify the war in Iraq is neither idle sniping nor "revisionist history", as Mr. Bush has suggested. The act of war is the last option of a democracy, taken when there is a grave threat to our national security. More than 200 American soldiers have lost their lives in Iraq already. We have a duty to ensure that their sacrifice came for the right reasons.[1]

They outed his wife for that, blew her cover.  And over a million Iraqis are dead because YOUNG SHELDON's grandfather.  That's the story of the little priss pot Iain Armitage.  He is in the position he is in because of his corrupt grandfather who was also part of the Iran-Contra scandal (he ran it) and who carried out bombings around the world including in Nicaragua.  That's who Annie Potts got in bed with.  May she rot in hell.  Ilain benefitted from his grandfather's heroin smuggling in Burmese . . .

His rap sheet is pages and pages.  He is a War Criminal.  And karma should devour little priss pot Iain Armitage.  I didn't applaud for Big Sheldon when I saw MOTHER PLAY because of this.  There are plenty of young actors out there and there was no reason to cast a War Criminal nepo baby.

 

Going out with C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"

 

Thursday, June 13, 2024.  Fred Kaplan demonstrates all that's wrong with US journalism, a US soldier apparently took part in War Crimes alongside Israeli forces, children continue to starve, and much more.



Another cease-fire proposal appears to be going down in flames.  If you want to see why, ignore Antony Blinken's flapping gums.  He should have been replaced by the White House long ago.  Instead, let's zoom in on Fred Kaplan's writing for SLATE.  Kaplan blathers on as he blamed the media -- didn't report it accurately -- and others and then gets to his conclusion:


The problem at the moment is that the leaders of both Israel and Hamas think they have a chance of winning. In a speech leaked to the Wall Street Journal, Yahya Sinwar, the leader of Hamas, said the deaths of Palestinian civilians work to Hamas’ favor—they are “necessary sacrifices” to defeating Israel, if not on the battlefield, then in the arena of world opinion. On the other side of the conflict, the more Israel alienates world opinion, the more many Israelis are determined to ignore that opinion. (“If they can’t sympathize with us after the attack of Oct. 7,” this line of thinking goes, “then screw ’em.” The recent pro-Palestinian protests in the U.S. and Canada that included masked radicals waving Hezbollah flags and chanting Hamas slogans probably harden both Sinwar and the Israelis in their views.)


And that's why it may fail.  It's one-sided, just like Fred's supposed 'analysis.'  So Hamas says deaths work in their favor.  And Israel's just upset about the way the world sees them and needs a big old hug.  Fred, you lying whore, there are repeated remarks by Israeli officials about the deaths of Palestinians.  Owen Jones has done dozen of commentaries about these remarks -- Owen, among others, has noted these comments.

But they elude your mind?  Maybe you're the wrong person to comment on this issue professionally since you are so biased and everything in your too long career -- shouldn't SLATE being paying someone else to write -- someone who needs a check and isn't on Social Security -- has made that case over and over.  


Fighting “human animals.” Making Gaza a “slaughterhouse.” “Erasing the Gaza Strip from the face of the earth.”

Such inflammatory rhetoric is a key component of South Africa’s case accusing Israel of genocide at the U.N. world court, a charge that Israel denies. South Africa says the language — in comments by Israeli leaders, soldiers and entertainers about Palestinians in Gaza since Hamas’ Oct. 7 attack sparked war — is proof of Israel’s intent to commit genocide. 


And that's from a January 18th report.  It's only gotten worse in the many months since.  SLATE needs to fire Fred Kaplan.  He's a bad writer and he always has been. But he hits seventy next month and in this economy there are working age people who need jobs.  He can set up his own site, do his own blog, whatever.  But it's time for people like him to retire.  He should be out of the work world now and there are plenty of unemployed people in this country under the age of 65 who need jobs.  

While corrupt and biased voices like Fred Kaplan minimize the words and actions of the Israeli government, Palestinian civilians continue to die.  And though liars like Fred want to pretend it's only bombings doing the killing, it's much more vile than that. 

Hanan Al-Zaanin was eight-years-old.  Was -- she's dead now.  


She didn't die from a bomb, she died from starvation.  That is the goal of the Israeli government, to starve as many Palestinians as they can.  But elderly Fred Kaplan's not concerned with children starving to death, he's more interested in spinning for a genocidal government.  He hits 70 next month.  She died at eight-years-old.  It really is time for trash like Kaplan to be shown the door.

ALJAZEERA notes, "Thousands of Palestinian children in Gaza have been diagnosed with malnutrition, the World Health Organization (WHO) has said, as Israel continues to severely restrict supplies of food, water, medicine and fuel to the territory." And they quote Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus of WHO stating, "A significant proportion of Gaza’s population is now facing catastrophic hunger and famine-like conditions."  Ruth Michaelson and Kaamil Ahmed (GUARDIAN) report

The UN’s relief agency for Palestinians, the largest aid organisation operating in Gaza, has said Israeli authorities are frequently preventing it from delivering aid and hampering its operations in the territory.

“We are getting very few positive responses to our requests for aid delivery and permits to move around Gaza,” said Tamara Alrifai, the director of external relations for Unrwa.

Alrifai said the organisation maintained contact with Cogat, the Israeli body that oversees the Palestinian territories and coordinates with aid groups, but “this contact doesn’t always bring positive results – as we can see, from the obstructions to delivery, to our ability to receive [aid] trucks”.



Thousands of starving Palestinian children in southern Gaza are at risk of “dying before their families’ eyes,” according to the United Nations — a stark warning as Israel’s continued assault on Rafah cuts off access to the region’s health care facilities and life-saving treatment for malnutrition.

The nearly 3,000 affected children make up about three-quarters of the Palestinian youth in southern Gaza who were estimated to have been receiving care for moderate to severe acute malnutrition before Israel expanded its military offensive into Rafah, according to reporting from nutrition partners working with the United Nations Children’s Fund, or UNICEF.


Do you get it?  Because Fred Kaplan doesn't.  A month away from 70, he doesn't care about children.  He just wants to stuff his bank and hold onto a job he never deserved and he especially doesn't deserve when journalists are being laid off left and right.  But he thinks he's a Supreme Court judge and that his post is a lifetime appointment.


The Israeli government has lied nonstop over the last months -- another detail Freddy Kaplan doesn't want to recognize.  

Kaplan's far from the only liar.  At FAIR, Robin Andersen explores how many in the press worked to lie about the massacre of refugees in Rafah:

Over the Memorial Day weekend, Israel bombed starving Gazan refugees crowded in tents in Rafah, where Israel had told them to go. As Jeffrey St. Clair (CounterPunch, 5/31/24) wrote, leaflets dropped in Rafah a few days before told them to go to “Tel al-Sultan through Beach Road,” an area set up by the UNRWA refugee agency and designated a UN humanitarian safe zone. The leaflet added, “Don’t blame us after we warned you.”

Nevertheless, without warning, Israel hit the camp with at least eight  missiles  spreading fire though the encampment of plastic tents (Quds News, 5/26/24). Some refugees burned to death, mostly women and children, leaving them dismembered and charred.

The world saw the terror of the massacre on international and social media. Images showed the area of the strike engulfed in flames as Palestinians screamed, cried, ran for safety and sought to help the injured. “They told people to move there then killed them,” Richard Medhurst (5/28/24) posted.

A boy cries in horror and fear as he watches his father’s tent burn with him inside. A man holds up the body of his charred, now-headless baby, wandering around, not knowing what to do or where to go. An injured, starving child convulses in pain as a medic struggles to find a vein for an IV in her emaciated arm (Al Jazeera, 5/27/24).

Al Jazeera (cited by Quds News, 5/26/24) quoted a Civil Defense source: “We believe that the occupation army used internationally prohibited weapons to target the displaced in Rafah, judging by the size of the fires that erupted at the targeted site.”

US news media reported the tent massacre, some more truthfully than others. But most establishment media repeated Israel’s false claims that it was an accident, weaving disinformation messaging into toned-down descriptions of the scene. With confused syntax, they omitted words like “genocide,” “massacre” and “starvation.” Most left out the language of international law that is best able to explain the unprecedented crimes against humanity that Israel is committing. Corporate reporting left the tent massacre devoid of context and empathy, ignored actions that need to be taken, and ultimately facilitated the ongoing Israeli genocide of Palestinians.

When NBC News (5/28/24) reported from Gaza that “Israeli tanks reached the city center for the first time, according to NBC News‘ crew on the ground,” it failed to say that the NBC crew was embedded with Israel’s invading force.

The same sentence continued that Israel was “defying international pressure to halt an offensive that has sent nearly 1 million people fleeing Rafah.” But Israel was not just “defying…pressure”; it was in violation of a direct order from the International Court of Justice ICJ to halt its attack on Rafah. Yet NBC reporters rode into Rafah with an army that was ignoring international law to commit further genocide in Gaza.

Compare NBC’s words to those used by Ramy Abdu (5/26/24), chair of Euro-Med Human Rights Monitor, who posted: “In the deadliest response to the International Court of Justice’s decision, the Israeli army targeted a group of displaced persons’ tents in Rafah, killing approximately 60 innocent civilians so far.”

In a post, Francesca Albanese (5/26/24), UN special rapporteur for human rights in Palestine, included International actions that needed to be implemented:

The #GazaGenocide‌ will not easily end without external pressure: Israel must face sanctions, justice, suspension of agreements, trade, partnership and investments, as well as participation in int’l forums.

Such sanctions are rarely discussed in establishment media, but are becoming more urgent, given the New York Times report (5/29/24) that Israel intends to extend the genocide through the remainder of 2024. Though the Times reported on the global outrage and demonstrations against the Rafah massacre, the words “genocide” and “massacre” were not used, nor was there any mention of the possibility of sanctions against Israel.


Let's note this from yesterday's DEMOCRACY NOW!



AMY GOODMAN: An independent United Nations panel has concluded Israel and Hamas have committed war crimes since October 7th. In a new report, the U.N. Commission of Inquiry outlined a number of war crimes committed by Israel, including using starvation as a method of warfare and intentionally directing attacks against civilians. Part of the report details how Israel has also committed crimes against humanity for its, quote, “widespread or systematic attack directed against the civilian population in Gaza.” The report goes on to accuse Israel of committing numerous crimes against humanity, including, quote, “extermination; murder; gender persecution targeting Palestinian men and boys; forcible transfer; and torture,” unquote.

The U.N. commission accused Hamas of also committing numerous war crimes, including “intentionally directing attacks against civilians,” as well as torture and, quote, “indiscriminately firing projectiles towards populated areas in Israel,” unquote. The U.N. accused both sides of committing sexual violence.

The United Nations’ top human rights office also accused Israel of committing war crimes on Saturday, when Israeli forces killed at least 274 Palestinians in the Nuseirat refugee camp during an operation to free four Israeli hostages. This is Jeremy Laurence, spokesperson for the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights.

JEREMY LAURENCE: We are profoundly shocked at the impact on civilians of the Israeli forces’ operation in al-Nuseirat at the weekend to secure the release of four hostages. Hundreds of Palestinians, many of them civilians, were reportedly killed and injured. The manner in which the raid was conducted in such a densely populated area seriously calls into question whether the principles of distinction, proportionality and precaution, as set out under the laws of war, were respected by the Israeli forces.

AMY GOODMAN: The U.N.’s top human rights office also accused Palestinian armed groups of committing war crimes for holding hostages in densely populated areas.

This comes as Israel and Hamas are being urged to accept the three-phase ceasefire and hostage deal outlined by President Biden, endorsed by the U.N. Security Council. On Tuesday, Hamas submitted its response to mediators from Qatar. The U.S. claims Israel has already agreed to the plan, but numerous Israeli officials have publicly attacked the deal.

Israel is continuing to bombard Gaza, where the official death toll is 37,100, but that’s believed to be an undercount since thousands of bodies remain under the rubble.

We’re joined right now by Sarah Leah Whitson, executive director of DAWN, a group working to reform U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East.

Sarah, welcome back to Democracy Now! Sarah Leah, start off by responding to the ceasefire deal and where you think it stands. This is the one proposed by President Biden almost two weeks ago, the first time the U.S. didn’t veto a ceasefire deal at the U.N. Security Council but actually sponsored it.

SARAH LEAH WHITSON: Yeah, I mean, it’s a welcome proposal, if only eight months and 40,000 dead Palestinians too late. Absolutely nothing of value has been achieved in this eight months of carnage in Gaza. And the Biden administration is basically trying to pressure Israel into accepting a ceasefire proposal by pretending it’s an Israeli ceasefire proposal. While Hamas has accepted this, Israel has not yet accepted this ceasefire proposal, and, in fact, has communicated its unwillingness to abide by a ceasefire by continuing its heinous military incursions into Gaza.

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: Yeah, and this specific issue of whether Israel supported it or not, we’ve heard Secretary of State Blinken repeatedly say that they were just waiting for Hamas to respond. What do you sense is the situation here between the U.S. government and Israel on the ceasefire?

SARAH LEAH WHITSON: I think that the United States is trying to — has been trying to push Israel to halt its operations, begged Israel for several months not to make an incursion into Rafah, all of which Israel has repeatedly ignored. I don’t know whether the attack on the Nuseirat refugee camp, that was part of a so-called rescue operation, is something that the United States offered up its acquiescence and participation in, in exchange for Israel agreeing to a ceasefire. I imagine that the timing of this raid, certainly after the ceasefire proposal had been made, raises questions about that. But what we repeatedly hear from Israeli officials — not American officials purporting to speak on their behalf — is that they will not accept a ceasefire proposal until they achieve their mission of destroying all of Hamas.

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: And in relationship to this weekend raid, your perspective on the reports that the United States provided intelligence and logistics support to the operation?

SARAH LEAH WHITSON: Well, it has been widely reported, and confirmed by a number of U.S. government sources, that the United States has been involved in the planning of this raid for several months and specifically provided intelligence as well as logistical support for this operation, which, of course, resulted in the murder of over 270 Palestinians — entirely predictable, when you randomly drop bombs all over a refugee camp, that many, many people will die.

Not only is it a grotesque, indiscriminate attack on civilians, the Israelis deployed perfidy to carry it out. They dressed themselves up as civilians, in a broad daylight attack. They used an aid truck, that was videotaped approaching the area, as well as a civilian vehicle, pretending to be refugees fleeing with a mattress on their car, in order to trick Hamas forces and to allow the operation to go forward.

There’s also been a report by Hamas, which has not been verified, that the operation also resulted in Israel killing three other hostages, including a U.S. citizen, but we’ve not yet been able to confirm that.

AMY GOODMAN: I wanted to go to a clip of Jake Sullivan, the national security adviser. He was on CNN, and he was being questioned by Dana Bash about what took place in al-Nuseirat. He was being questioned while in Paris.

JAKE SULLIVAN: The United States has been providing support to Israel for several months in its efforts to help identify the locations of hostages in Gaza and to support efforts to try to secure their rescue or recovery. I’m not going to get into the specific operational or intelligence-related matters associated with that, because we need to protect those. I can only just say that we have generally provided support to the IDF so that we can try to get all of the hostages home, including the American hostages who are still being held.

DANA BASH:* So, I understand that intelligence, U.S. intelligence, assisted. But will you say anything about U.S. personnel, U.S. weapons?

JAKE SULLIVAN: Well, the one thing I can say is that there were no U.S. forces, no U.S. boots on the ground involved in this operation. We did not participate militarily in this operation.

AMY GOODMAN: So, if you can talk about that distinction that he’s making, and then go on, Sarah Leah Whitson, to respond to these two U.N. reports?

SARAH LEAH WHITSON: Well, as I’m sure Jake Sullivan actually knows, military participation is not defined by boots on the ground. And his rebutting or refuting that there were American boots on the ground, and therefore America was not militarily participating in the attack, is absolutely false and wrong under international law. During the Yemen war, for example — and this is why Mr. Sullivan should know this — U.S. lawyers advised the White House that American intelligence and logistical support for the Saudi war in Yemen would make the United States and makes the United States a party to that war. Similarly, American logistical and intelligence support for an active military operation means that the United States has actively participated in the conflict and is a party to the war.

Why this is particularly bad, bad policymaking, is that not only does it make the United States liable and complicit for prosecution for war crimes, including the war crimes that took place in the attack on the refugee camp, but also opens up U.S. forces to reprisal attacks and counterattacks as a party to the conflict, as a legitimate military target. If the Biden administration has not sought a war powers resolution to enter the United States into such active participation in military operations, that is obviously a violation of our own Constitution and yet another example of the Biden administration entangling us in military conflicts in the Middle East without congressional approval and ratification.

With respect to the U.N. reports that have just been issued, they conclude what everybody else who is an expert in law and has observed, which is that the — number one, the attack on Nuseirat refugee camp was itself a war crime, and it involved deliberate targeting of civilians, as well as indiscriminate targeting of civilians. Sadly, this is just piling up on top of ceaseless, relentless war crimes and crimes against humanity that have been underway in Gaza for the past eight months. And that is the conclusion that the Commission of Inquiry’s report released today reveals. We now have mountains of U.N. reports, U.N. experts, the International Court of Justice, the International Criminal Court shouting from the rafters that Israel is carrying out war crimes and crimes against humanity in Gaza, and yet all of this is showing us, sadly, that Israel has no interest in international law, and the United States has no interest in demanding that Israel actually comply with the international law, besides rhetorical flourishes added in statements to the press in the United States. The continued military support to Israel is really not just a savage attack on the Palestinian people, it is a savage attack on international law itself. And it will come to haunt and hurt America for decades to come.

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: And I wanted to ask you, Sarah Leah Whitson, in a related issue in terms of the attacks on Gaza — on May 15th, your organization DAWN sent the State Department a dossier documenting how a group has been attempting to disrupt and prevent aid reaching the people of Palestine, the Palestinians in Gaza. Could you talk about that group and others that support it?

SARAH LEAH WHITSON: That’s right. The Israeli group — I don’t to mangle the pronunciation — Tzav 9 is an organized group of settlers in the West Bank that have deliberately and repeatedly attacked humanitarian aid convoys headed to Gaza. This has been an organized effort, coordinated on WhatsApp and other social media, to announce exactly when and where the attacks would take place.

We are urging the Biden administration to sanction this group, but not only to sanction this group, but to sanction the Israeli companies and NGOs, nonprofit organizations, that have been actively fundraising to pay for these attacks on humanitarian aid convoys. I mean, it just boggles the mind that we have vigilante groups who are deliberately attacking food and medicine trucks meant for civilians. I think it raises a tremendous concern and question about the psychology of Israelis who would do such a thing. But more significantly, we want the Biden administration to exercise its sanctions, that it has announced for violence in the West Bank, not only against these individuals, not only against this group. They are not just rogue, lone-wolf operators. They are supported by an infrastructure and network of companies and businesses and nonprofit organizations that are funding their efforts. It’s particularly appalling that an American NGO has been involved, as well, in fundraising for these really disgusting attacks on humanitarian aid convoys. And we think that the IRS should closely examine whether these contributions violate their rules under the IRS as charitable donations.

AMY GOODMAN: We spoke to an Israeli human rights lawyer who tried to interrupt the settlers who were trying to stop the aid convoys, that group, Tsav 9. “Tsav” in Hebrew means “command.” Sarah Leah Whitson, we want to thank you so much for being with us, executive director of DAWN, an organization working to reform U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East.

Next up, we turn to the conviction of President Biden’s son Hunter Biden on all three felonies in that gun trial for buying a gun at a time when he was using illegal drugs. Stay with us.

 

Gaza remains under assault. Day 251 of  the assault in the wave that began in October.  Binoy Kampmark (DISSIDENT VOICE) points out, "Bloodletting as form; murder as fashion.  The ongoing campaign in Gaza by Israel’s Defence Forces continues without stalling and restriction.  But the burgeoning number of corpses is starting to become a challenge for the propaganda outlets:  How to justify it?  Fortunately for Israel, the United States, its unqualified defender, is happy to provide cover for murder covered in the sheath of self-defence."   CNN has explained, "The Gaza Strip is 'the most dangerous place' in the world to be a child, according to the executive director of the United Nations Children's Fund."  ABC NEWS quotes UNICEF's December 9th statement, ""The Gaza Strip is the most dangerous place in the world to be a child. Scores of children are reportedly being killed and injured on a daily basis. Entire neighborhoods, where children used to play and go to school have been turned into stacks of rubble, with no life in them."  NBC NEWS notes, "Strong majorities of all voters in the U.S. disapprove of President Joe Biden’s handling of foreign policy and the Israel-Hamas war, according to the latest national NBC News poll. The erosion is most pronounced among Democrats, a majority of whom believe Israel has gone too far in its military action in Gaza."  The slaughter continues.  It has displaced over 1 million people per the US Congressional Research Service.  Jessica Corbett (COMMON DREAMS) points out, "Academics and legal experts around the world, including Holocaust scholars, have condemned the six-week Israeli assault of Gaza as genocide."   The death toll of Palestinians in Gaza is grows higher and higher.  United Nations Women noted, "More than 1.9 million people -- 85 per cent of the total population of Gaza -- have been displaced, including what UN Women estimates to be nearly 1 million women and girls. The entire population of Gaza -- roughly 2.2 million people -- are in crisis levels of acute food insecurity or worse."  THE NATIONAL notes, "At least 37,232 Palestinians have been killed and 85,037 injured in the Israeli operation in Gaza since October 7, the enclave's Health Ministry said on Thursday.  This includes 30 people killed and 150 injured in the past 24 hours, the ministry said.."   Months ago,  AP  noted, "About 4,000 people are reported missing."  February 7th, Jeremy Scahill explained on DEMOCRACY NOW! that "there’s an estimated 7,000 or 8,000 Palestinians missing, many of them in graves that are the rubble of their former home."  February 5th, the United Nations' Phillipe Lazzarini Tweeted:

  



April 11th, Sharon Zhang (TRUTHOUT) reported, "In addition to the over 34,000 Palestinians who have been counted as killed in Israel’s genocidal assault so far, there are 13,000 Palestinians in Gaza who are missing, a humanitarian aid group has estimated, either buried in rubble or mass graves or disappeared into Israeli prisons.  In a report released Thursday, Euro-Med Human Rights Monitor said that the estimate is based on initial reports and that the actual number of people missing is likely even higher."
 

As for the area itself?  Isabele Debre (AP) reveals, "Israel’s military offensive has turned much of northern Gaza into an uninhabitable moonscape. Whole neighborhoods have been erased. Homes, schools and hospitals have been blasted by airstrikes and scorched by tank fire. Some buildings are still standing, but most are battered shells."  Kieron Monks (I NEWS) reports, "More than 40 per cent of the buildings in northern Gaza have been damaged or destroyed, according to a new study of satellite imagery by US researchers Jamon Van Den Hoek from Oregon State University and Corey Scher at the City University of New York. The UN gave a figure of 45 per cent of housing destroyed or damaged across the strip in less than six weeks. The rate of destruction is among the highest of any conflict since the Second World War."

The world watches as the ongoing assault coninues.  THE NATIONAL's Sinan Mahmoud reports:

Iraq and Iran discussed on Thursday “dangerous signs” of Israel attacking Lebanon, Iraqi Foreign Minister Fuad Hussein said after meeting with visiting Iranian Acting Foreign Minister Ali Bagheri Kani.

“If there is an attack on southern Lebanon, God forbid, it will affect the whole region,” Mr Hussein said during a press conference in Baghdad.

He warned that “expanding the war is not only a danger to Lebanon but to the entire region".

For his part, Mr Bagheri Kani said: “The Zionists, due to their failure in Gaza, might make another mistake and expand their aggression”.

Both countries called for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza.


And 'an American' has apparently embarrassed us all on the world stage.  Dual loyalties and dual citizenship.  It really does need to end.  CAIR notes:

Muslim civil rights group calls on Pentagon to ban U.S. soldiers from participating in Gaza genocide

The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, called on the Biden administration to investigate reports that an American soldier is taking part in the far right Israeli government’s genocide in Gaza and reportedly posted an image of herself and a destroyed mosque defaced with insults targeting Islam’s Prophet Muhammad.

[NOTE: More than 23,000 American citizens currently serve in the Israeli military.]

Israel has slaughtered more than 37,000 people in Gaza, mostly women and children.

In a statement, CAIR National Deputy Director Edward Ahmed Mitchell said:

“These disgusting and despicable images of an American soldier in Rafah celebrating desecration of a mosque and the slandering of the Prophet Muhammad (may peace be upon him) are an example of why the Pentagon should not allow any U.S. servicemembers to serve in the Israeli military, much less participate in its Gaza genocide. 

“We call on the Biden administration to investigate this incident, take appropriate action against this reported U.S. soldier, and ban all American servicemembers from taking part in the Israeli government’s war on the people of Gaza.”

Yesterday, CAIR called on the Biden administration to act after UNICEF reported that almost 3,000 children have been cut off from treatment for malnutrition in southern Gaza by Israel’s ongoing offensive, which President Biden previously called a “red line.”

Previously, welcomed a United Nations Security Council resolution supporting a ceasefire in Gaza. CAIR also commended Rep. James Clyburn (D-S.C.) after he announced that he would not attend Netanyahu’s speech.

CAIR urged all Americans to use its click-and-send action alert to call on members of Congress to follow suit and boycott or protest Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech to a joint session of Congress on July 24th due to his openly racist views, genocidal war crimes, disrespect for the United States, and opposition to a Palestinian state.

TAKE ACTION: URGE CONGRESS TO BOYCOTT OR PROTEST WAR CRIMINAL NETANYAHU’S SPEECH TO CONGRESS

Over the weekend, CAIR condemned the “horrific massacre” of almost 300 Palestinians at the Nuseirat refugee camp in central Gaza.

CAIR’s mission is to protect civil rights, enhance understanding of Islam, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.             

La misión de CAIR es proteger las libertades civiles, mejorar la comprensión del Islam, promover la justicia, y empoderar a los musulmanes en los Estados Unidos.            

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Social media identifies the woman as Yael Sendler.  If that is her name, if she did what she's accused of and if she is an American citizen she should be arrested the minute she sets foot on US soil.


The following sites updated: