Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
April 01, 2021

"America Is Back" Collides With A Multipolar Reality

The World Health Organization recently published its report on the origin of the SARS-CoV-2 virus which has caused the Covid-19 pandemic. Most scientist agree that the virus is of zoonotic origin and not a human construct or an accidental  laboratory escape. But the U.S. wants to put pressure on China and advised the Director General of the WHO, Tedros Adhanom, to keep the focus on China potential culpability. He acted accordingly when he remarked on his agency's report:

Although the team has concluded that a laboratory leak is the least likely hypothesis, this requires further investigation, potentially with additional missions involving specialist experts, which I am ready to deploy.

The U.S. State Department fetched the pass and ran with it. It asked its allies to sign on to its Joint Statement on the WHO-Convened COVID-19 Origins Study which requests more unhindered access in China:

The Governments of Australia, Canada, Czechia, Denmark, Estonia, Israel, Japan, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, the Republic of Korea, Slovenia, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America remain steadfast in our commitment to working with the World Health Organization (WHO), international experts who have a vital mission, and the global community to understand the origins of this pandemic in order to improve our collective global health security and response. Together, we support a transparent and independent analysis and evaluation, free from interference and undue influence, of the origins of the COVID-19 pandemic. In this regard, we join in expressing shared concerns regarding the recent WHO-convened study in China, while at the same time reinforcing the importance of working together toward the development and use of a swift, effective, transparent, science-based, and independent process for international evaluations of such outbreaks of unknown origin in the future.

The most interesting with the above statement is the list of U.S. allied countries which declined to support it,

Most core EU countries, especially France, Spain, Italy and Germany, are missing from it. As is the Five-Eyes member New Zealand. India, a U.S. ally in the anti-Chinese Quad initiative, also did not sign. This list of signatories of the Joint Statement is an astonishingly meager result for a U.S. 'joint' initiative. It is unprecedented. It is a sign that something has cracked and that the world will never be the same.

The first months of he Biden administration saw a rupture in the global system. First Russia admonished the EU for its hypocritical criticism of internal Russian issues. Biden followed up by calling Putin a 'killer'. Then the Chinese foreign minister told the Biden administration to shut the fuck up about internal Chinese issues. Soon thereafter Russia's and China's foreign ministers met and agreed to deepen their alliance and to shun the U.S. dollar. Then China's foreign minister went on a wider Middle East tour. There he reminded U.S. allies of their sovereignty:

Wang said that expected goals had been achieved with regard to a five-point initiative on achieving security and stability in the Middle East, which was proposed during the visit.

"China supports countries in the region to stay impervious to external pressure and interference, to independently explore development paths suited to its regional realities," Wang said, adding that the countries should "break free from the shadows of big-power geopolitical rivalry and resolve regional conflicts and differences as masters of the region."

Wang's tour was topped off with the signing of a game changing agreement with Iran:

Suffice to say, the China-Iran pact deeply is embedded within a new matrix Beijing hopes to create with the Arab states of the Persian Gulf and Iran. The pact forms part of a new narrative on regional security and stability.

The "U.S. led rules based international order" is finally finished. Russia and China buried it:

Countries in Asia and further afield are closely watching the development of this alternative international order, led by Moscow and Beijing. And they can also recognise the signs of increasing US economic and political decline.

It is a new kind of Cold War, but not one based on ideology like the first incarnation. It is a war for international legitimacy, a struggle for hearts and minds and money in the very large part of the world not aligned to the US or NATO.

The US and its allies will continue to operate under their narrative, while Russia and China will push their competing narrative. This was made crystal clear over these past few dramatic days of major power diplomacy.

The global balance of power is shifting, and for many nations, the smart money might be on Russia and China now.

The obvious U.S. countermove to the Russian-Chinese initiative is to unite its allies in a new Cold War against Russia and China. But as the Joint Statement above shows most of those allies do not want to follow that path. China is a too good customer to be shunned. Talk of human rights in other countries might play well with the local electorate but what counts in the end is the business.

Even some U.S. companies can see that the hostile path the Biden administration has followed will only be to their detriment. Some are asking the Biden gang to tone it down:

[Boeing] Chief Executive Dave Calhoun told an online business forum he believed a major aircraft subsidy dispute with Europe could be resolved after 16 years of wrangling at the World Trade Organization, but contrasted this with the outlook on China.

“I think politically (China) is more difficult for this administration and it was for the last administration. But we still have to trade with our largest partner in the world: China,” he told the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Aviation Summit.

Noting multiple disputes, he added: “I am hoping we can sort of separate intellectual property, human rights and other things from trade and continue to encourage a free trade environment between these two economic juggernauts. ... We cannot afford to be locked out of that market. Our competitor will jump right in.”

Before its 737 MAX debacle Boeing was the biggest U.S. exporter and China was its biggest customer. The MAX has yet to be re-certified in China. If Washington keeps the hostile tone against China Boeing will lose out and Europe's Airbus will make a killing.

Biden announced that "America is back” only to be told that it is no longer needed in the oversized role that it played before. Should Washington not be able to accept that it can no play 'unilateral' but will have to follow the real rules of international law we might be in for some interesting times:

Question: Finally, are you concerned that deteriorating international tensions could lead to war?

Glenn Diesen: Yes, we should all be concerned. Tensions keep escalating and there are increasing conflicts that could spark a major war. A war could break out over Syria, Ukraine, the Black Sea, the Arctic, the South China Sea and other regions.

What makes all of these conflicts dangerous is that they are informed by a winner-takes-all logic. Wishful thinking or active push towards a collapse of Russia, China, the EU or the U.S. is also an indication of the winner-takes-all mentality. Under these conditions, the large powers are more prepared to accept greater risks at a time when the international system is transforming. The rhetoric of upholding liberal democratic values also has clear zero-sum undertones as it implies that Russia and China must accept the moral authority of the West and commit to unilateral concessions.

The rapidly shifting international distribution of power creates problems that can only be resolved with real diplomacy. The great powers must recognize competing national interests, followed by efforts to reach compromises and find common solutions.

Russia's president Vladimir Putin has repeatedly asked for a summit of leaders of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council:

Putin argued that the countries that created a new global order after World War II should cooperate to solve today's problems.

"The founder countries of the United Nations, the five states that hold special responsibility to save civilisation, can and must be an example," he said at the sombre memorial ceremony.

The meeting would "play a great role in searching for collective answers to modern challenges and threats," Putin said, adding that Russia was "ready for such a serious conversation."

Such a summit would be a chance to work on a new global system that avoids unilateralism and block mentality. As the U.S. is now learning that its allies are not willing to follow its anti-China and anti-Russia policies it might be willing to negotiate over a new international system.

But as long as Washington is unable to recognize its own decline a violent attempt to solve the issue once and for all will become more likely.

Posted by b on April 1, 2021 at 17:52 UTC | Permalink

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In case you missed this...

This planet has already achieved a delicate balance between all species, long before we arrived. But the self-deluded geniuses wanted more excitement to the show. There is a conspiracy to spread the flu virus at the widest coverage possible, and it’s not just a theory.

Posted by: denk | Apr 2 2021 2:47 utc | 101

Ike #89

The other interesting factoid about the Wuhan Military Games even was that China held a CBW attack scenario workshop with all of its agencies participating. You could get the impression that they expected its arrival.

This expectation arose because the Fall Army Worm from North America was devastating China crops, there had been an extraordinary outbreak of swine fever that had decimated the China pork industry, there had been an outbreak of a fowl pox that had decimated the chicken industry all in the few years prior. They were on full alert for yet another import to attack their society.

It was likely that three day virus gaming session that enabled them to move so rapidly in response. Plus they had sick US military games personnel in their Wuhan hospital.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Apr 2 2021 2:49 utc | 102

Thanks b. IMO Boeing is finished as a leader of international sales and Airbus will sweep the opportunities up. As for Washington backing down - no chance. These successive administrations are filled with strutting macho tub thumpers all giving the same advice to puppet presidents with some variations in idiosyncrasies and intellectual capacity. They are all obnoxious warmongers and a danger to humanity.

As I predicted months ago.... Neither China nor Russia nor Iran have re-certified the Boeing 737 Max. They are waiting for the data.

Just as NATO reiterates that WHO team was denied the data, so the Triumvirate (Russia/China/Iran) claim they haven't received the data from Boeing either, and are waiting.


The IL-114D. IL-96, SJ100R, and MC-21-310 go into serial production...

First customers????

China, Iran, Russia

No orders???

AirBus & Boeing

Wake up!


Posted by: Dr. George W Oprisko | Apr 2 2021 2:55 utc | 103

Aghayeh Fyi,

"Do what thou wills" is a Satanic statement.

"I do not find your assertions regarding Mr. Sistani or Najaf accurate. Mr. Sistani has not formulated a theory of government in contradistinction to that of the late Mr. Khomeini. Najaf has been defeaningly silent on Freedom in Islam, a burning issue in Muslim societies."

Ayatollah Sistani is the same company as the Shia Imams. They also kept quiet. And no, it wasn't because their feared retribution. I believe their ancestor Imam Hussein showed once and for all what a Shia Imam is capable of. There is a perfectly good, "Godly", reason they keep quiet. But this reason is beyond the comprehension of men of worldly ambition.

"All that has been achieved legally and conceptually on a form of Muslim ecumenism has been done in Iran, in Qum, for the most part, and in Tehran. All that has been achieved in organically fuse the ideas of Triniturian separation of government powers, Representative Government, and Islam have been accomplished in Iran by Najafi rejects."

I am so pleased that a little prompting has brought the venom out of you! Najafi rejects. Is this how you consider your Muslim brothers? Remember:

“My people will never agree in an error” - Muhammad

Consider this silence of the "rejects" as refusal to follow in your folly.

As to your "Triniturian separation of government powers", that is straight out of French/American revolution, which certainly did not shy from hiding their Masonic roots. And of course, is it any wonder why you Aghayoon have built a pyramid in the middle of Tehran? The essential fact is that by your speech and actions you have demonstrated that you are not Muslims.

"I do not credit Masonic cabals and all that. The reason I do not believe that there are that many smart people in the world who can work together on a common goal for so many centuries."

The reality is that there are a lot of gullible people in the world and they can be manipulated by a few. Thus "pyramid" as symbol. These are the basics. And the ones at the top, they are in fact quite intelligent. Devious, sure, but stupid, no.

"The longest-living institution on Earth is the Catholic Church and she has been clearly unsuccessful in what you ascribe to Masons to have achieved."

Check your history again, Agha. The Catholic church had a multi-century run as absolute final word and even European kings bent the knee before Vatican. The Cabal is at its 3rd century. Of course, they too, will fall.

"The Chinese that you have met clearly do not grasp the salient feature of Iran; that is she is the only sovereign Muslim state on this planet and one of the fewer than 14 sovereign states of the world. And that the Shia are the only Thinking part of Islam. They must be ignorant people with whom you communicate."

The reference was to Chinese history, culture, and behavior. And I must say, this secterian dissing of yours of the Umma is entirely unacceptable. What with "Najaf rejects" and unthinking Sunni, who is left? You lot with your "death to this and death to that"? That is a 'sign' of your intelligence?

"Future will tell which of us be correct."

Is this the same future where the Shia Qaaem is to appear and wage war against ALL governments, including your Mr. Khomeini's Velayateh Faqih?

We may not be around for that aghayeh Fyi, but as they say "It is written" so no guess work required.

Posted by: thorsday | Apr 2 2021 2:59 utc | 104

Some more on the Brazilian fascist team led by the CIA:

Wikipedia has this: Olavo Luiz Pimentel de Carvalho GCRB (born 29 April 1947)[1] is a Brazilian polemicist, self-promoted philosopher,[2][3][4] political pundit, former astrologer, journalist and far-right conspiracy theorist[5][6] living since 2005 in Richmond, Virginia.[7][8][9][10].

Former Astrologer!

He has 74,000 members on telegram.

The Inter American Institute has him as President and burnishes his record thusly:

is a Brazilian philosopher and writer who is currently living in the United States after having taught political philosophy at the Catholic University of Paraná, Brazil, from 2001 to 2005. The author of a dozen books on philosophical and political matters, he is a respected weekly columnist with a wide following in his native Brazil and an increasingly popular public speaker in this country. He has spoken at the Hudson Institute, the Atlas Foundation, and the America’s Future Foundation, and has been honored by critics as one of the most original and daring Brazilian thinkers.

The keynote of his work is the defense of man’s innermost consciousness against the tyranny of collective authority—especially when such tyranny is based upon a “scientific” ideology. To Olavo de Carvalho the objectivity of knowledge and individual consciousness are joined together by an undissolvable link, of which one loses sight when the criteria for validation of knowledge are reduced to an impersonal and uniform set of formulae designed to be used by the academic class.

Who are his stasi at this Inter american institute?

Stephen Baskerville
Roberto Micheletti, former President of Honduras
Justice Tom Parker, Alabama Supreme Court
Dr. Edwin Vieira
Dr. Paul Gottfried
Alejandro Peña-Esclusa (jailed by Chavez)
Herbert W. Titus
Dr. Judith Reisman
Vladimir Tismăneanu
Dr. Ahmed Youssif El Tassa
Jeffrey Nyquist
Colonel Alfonso Plazas Vega
Mina Seinfeld de Carakushansky
Steve Baldwin
John Haskins
Dr. Earle Fox
Miguel Bruno Duarte
Amy Contrada
John Wahl

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Apr 2 2021 3:16 utc | 105

Mr. thorsday

You have not shared with us the verses of the Quran that you had claimed contradicted my statements. Perhaps they do not exist.

Allow us then to disagree with the Quietism of Mr. Sistani, he is not an Immaculate One whose Judgements be finall. He is a man like everyone else. Iran saved Shia. That is what non-Quietism has achieved. Al Askariyyah was saved by the Soldier of Velayat Faqih and not by the Quietists

Well, Prophet's people agreed in error many times: for 20 years they tried to nullify the Imamat of Ali by selecting first the late Khalif Abu Bakr, the late Khalif Omar, and the late Khalif Osman to avoid Imam Ali as Khalif. They also agreed to assasinate every single of those 4 Khalifs. Next time you quotea hadith, try to also learn how to apply it.

I will be very clear here as to my understanding of the world of Islam. There is no Legitimate Authority of Islam among Sunni Muslims. Their ancestors rejected the Prophet's appointment of Imam Ali as the Gate to Quran as well as the political successor of the Prophet. Thus it is very clear that those who rejected Legitimate Political and Religious Authority are those that are in schism and are thus worthy of the name sectarians.

The Thinkers of Islam, for the most part, barring such men as the late Ibn Khaldun, and the late Ibn Rushd, have been Shia Muslims. Tough that so many Muslims, both Shia and Sunni, decided to put their minds on auto-pilot and stagnate when the Western Christians forged a new world. Another instance of "My people agreeing on being wrong".

Regardless of the political slogans of the Shia Iranians, it is an empirical fact that every single Muslim terrorist, attacking civilian targets, has been a Sunni Muslim. Every single Yazidi girl raped and sold into slavery was by a Sunni Muslim. In Pakistan, in Afghanistan, in Iraq, it was Sunni Muslims raping, maiming, killing their way through Shia Muslim communities. The great catastrophes of Yemen and Syria were carried out by Sunni Muslims, not by the Shia and not by Iranians.

The Umma is a fine ideal, but it has never been realized in practice. Not our fault. Shia did not drag the Honor of Islam through blood and mud. We did not make the name of Islam mud all over the world.

I see that you do unfamuar with the history of the Catholic Church.

All I have read are assertions so far.

Posted by: Fyi | Apr 2 2021 3:29 utc | 106

9 out of 10 dentists agree...
Come on, b

Most of the WORLD agrees that the virus came from China.
Be it zoological or from a lab.
The theory of the weaponization of the virus is what you are getting at, yes?

Posted by: Cadencecalls | Apr 2 2021 3:33 utc | 107

Mr. thorsday

In regards to your statement on Qaem;
whom he shall judge, we do not know.

All of our hopes is with him, and with His Holiness, Issa Massih, who will emerge out of the Greater Occultation with him. Let us hope for the kind intercession of the Spirit of God.

Of course, I know that Sunni Muslims such as yourself reject all of this and are thus left with no delicacy of feelings and are breft of any emotional connection to the Ahl Beyt.

Posted by: Fyi | Apr 2 2021 3:39 utc | 108

America is Back, indeed.

Back up to no good. Former USMC officer Carlton Meyer uploaded a new didactic video on his site G2Mil just one hour ago:

Posted by: Paul | Apr 2 2021 3:42 utc | 109

Saudis putting China ahead of USA ? Wow, I wasn’t expecting that. MBS better make sure his security is under control. KSA was the place of birth of the Petrodollar, wasn’t it ? Pivotal moments IMO.

Posted by: Featherless | Apr 2 2021 3:45 utc | 110

Mr. Dr. George W Oprisko

Iranians are broke. Any such airplanes must be sold to them on credit until they can repatriate their money. Not sure that is going to happen.

Posted by: Fyi | Apr 2 2021 3:47 utc | 111

spork @Apr2 0:34 #73: Polybasic Furin Cleavage site INSERTED into SARS-Cov-2 genome.

Perimetr @Apr2 1:25 #79: “atypical” at the very least…”

Thanks to spork, Perimetr and others that question authority. I think there's reason to be suspicious.


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Apr 2 2021 3:47 utc | 112

ArthurDent @Apr2 1:25 #80

... the same half-wit troll peddling inane drivel over the last few years with a recycled name.

Good catch.


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Apr 2 2021 3:49 utc | 113

Mr. Featherless

I speculate the Mr. MBS is a creature of Mr. Trump and not Mr. Biden's. He does not feel that he owes anything to him...

Mr. Trump told him to attack Yemen and he did, I further specukate since he owed his position to Mr. Trump; who, in fact, got the English and French governments to militarily support the war on Yemen through their special forces and naval assets.

Posted by: Fyi | Apr 2 2021 3:52 utc | 114

Whats this deep state that we keep hearing about....?

Who is behind this SARS1/SARS2 [aka COVID19] madness? I accept the risk of triggering your "conspiracy theory" buttons by identifying the widely recognized "global military-medical-petrochemical-pharmaceutical cartel" as the only suspect that can wield the powers necessary to effect these frightening outcomes

Posted by: denk | Apr 2 2021 3:58 utc | 115

Below is a report from Xinhuanet about some more of that financial multi-polarity that the West is not happy with

BEIJING, April 1 (Xinhua) -- China is exploring ways to use its digital yuan for cross-border transactions to meet market demand, the central bank said on Thursday.

The People's Bank of China (PBOC) has worked with the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) on the technical testing of using the digital yuan for cross-border payments on the Chinese mainland and Hong Kong, said Wang Xin, an official with the PBOC, at a press conference.

For this purpose, the PBOC is also cooperating with the HKMA and central banks of Thailand and the United Arab Emirates in a multilateral research project, Wang said.

China's digital yuan testing is making steady progress, with more test scenarios coming into use.

Several Chinese cities, including Beijing, Shenzhen and Suzhou, have piloted this digital currency since last year.

The shit show of the West is going to end soon, IMO and is already being replaced world wide on pilot basis.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Apr 2 2021 4:45 utc | 116

And lets further document state-owned banks in China which are scarce and non-existent at the top in the West

BEIJING, April 1 (Xinhua) -- China's major state-owned banks posted higher net profits in 2020 despite the impact of the COVID-19 epidemic and volatile market situations.

Six state-owned banks raked in nearly 1.14 trillion yuan (about 173.82 billion U.S. dollars) in net profits attributable to shareholders in 2020, up around 1.93 percent year on year, according to last year's financial results of these banks.

Postal Savings Bank of China registered the highest yearly profit growth of 5.36 percent, followed by Bank of China and Agricultural Bank of China, which reported increases of 2.92 percent and 1.8 percent in net profits, respectively.

China Construction Bank reported a 1.62-percent rise in net profits, while those of the Bank of Communications and the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China grew 1.28 percent and 1.18 percent, respectively, from a year earlier.

The six lenders also reported narrowing net interest margins, a gauge measuring banks' profitability, amid the downward trend of loan prime rates and financial institutions' efforts to concede their profits to the real economy last year.

Despite difficulties in managing interest margins, Wang Jiang, head of the China Construction Bank, forecast that the bank's net interest margins will remain generally stable this year without large fluctuations.

Meanwhile, the asset quality of all six banks remained stable on the whole while the non-performing loan ratio picked up compared with the beginning of 2020 due to the impact of the COVID-19 epidemic.

The non-performing loan ratio of the Postal Savings Bank of China went up 2 basis points from the beginning of 2020 while that of Bank of China rose 9 basis points.

Somebody still want to assert that the profits from these banks are going to some Chinese oligarchs like all of the private system in the West?

Posted by: psychohistorian | Apr 2 2021 4:52 utc | 117

I agree with Uncle Tungsten's post #52
For the past year we weren't to even suggest in many internet arenas that this virus was manmade while so much evidence was coming to light. We should have woken up after the Anthrax attacks which led to the Iraq war. The FBI under Mueller spent years chasing false culprits. In real time experts were telling us that strain of anthrax used came from one of those special labs. Back then we still had shred of responsible journalism. There was no public outcry regarding the existence of such labs and their ethics. It seems we are not allowed to discuss this. We are paying scientists to create biological weapons meant to wipe us out. Crazy. Now the US who previously insisted the virus was from animals, now insinuates the Chinese lab leaked the virus.
This is a limited hang out. A limited hangout or partial hangout is, according to former special assistant to the Deputy Director of the Central Intelligence Agency Victor Marchetti, "spy jargon for a favorite and frequently used gimmick of the clandestine professionals. When their veil of secrecy is shredded and they can no longer rely on a phony cover story to misinform the public, they resort to admitting—sometimes even volunteering—some of the truth while still managing to withhold the key and damaging facts in the case. The public, however, is usually so intrigued by the new information that it never thinks to pursue the matter further."
That's the beauty of these lab viruses is that they can easily be released without detection. Soon after this virus hit Wuhan, the Chinese were telling their populace that it was released at the Wuhan Military Games by members of the US contingent. The US is trying to dictate the WHO investigation just like they sabotaged the OPCW's Douma investigation.

Posted by: Frederick | Apr 2 2021 4:55 utc | 118

psychohistorian @116--

Ever hear the term Market Weight? It's what the emerging Eurasian Bloc has well in hand over NATO by close to 4:1 and what is used there will determine the future norm. Digital transactions in China alone beat NATO 6:1 or so and the gap is widening. The overall velocity of money increases with digital; a comparative chart between China and the USA would be very instructive. One of the big reasons acceptance of digital payment systems is high in Asia is that institutions have a higher level of trust and societies have a collectivist basis. Something unrecognized as China's strongest form of Soft Power is its longstanding philosophical dominance aver all Asia that's close to 3,000 years old. The West has nothing comparable, thus all the smears and cat calls. And its it the process of learning it's a lightweight.

Posted by: karlof1 | Apr 2 2021 5:07 utc | 119

psychohistorian @118--

Note how the banks are named after the industrial sector they support? Russian banks are like that too. And all are performing well. Maybe we should ask China if it will capitalize a public bank here in Oregon; what do we have to lose?

Posted by: karlof1 | Apr 2 2021 5:15 utc | 120

@ karlof1 | Apr 2 2021 5:15 utc | 120 with shout out to me about China banking related to industry sectors and then postal bank....YEAH!

I think Germany and some other countries have focused parts of their banking systems. It certainly looks like something to explore and probably makes sense except when you consider how they handle the flux of rise/fall of individual providers...keep corruption out and no hand on scale.....hard work

Posted by: psychohistorian | Apr 2 2021 5:45 utc | 121

I was in two minds whether to post anything in this thread when I first read it this am, Aotearoa time, but comments from the englander pseudo kiwi changed my mind.
First this decision not to sign along the dotted line would have been made by Aotearoa foreign minister Nanaia Mahuta not Ardern.
Secondly if you take a gander at the link I put in to her official profile, you will see that she sledges China more often than she supports it.
for example 23 March 2021 Joint statement on human rights abuses in Xinjiang which is about some letter condemning China which both Aotearoa & Australia signed.


13 March 2021 Joint statement on electoral changes in Hong Kong This is another sign along the dotted line when told to by Oz, letter sledging the government of China over their domestic business, in this case Hongkong.

It concerns me very little what politicians from big nations say because in all instances those types in amerika, China even shitty much diminished england are so far removed from their population that their words are meaningless.
Nevertheless someone who actually cares for their nation, should speak up when it isn't representing the honest will of the populace, not some callously engineered by media crap pushed out just to 'be seen to belong up with those remote politicians'. The types my forebears tried to leave behind when they came here more than 150 years ago.
Glomming all that garbage about "NZ being a top country that hits above its weight" isn't being loyal or patriotic. At best it lures more immigrants from the Northern Hemisphere to Aotearoa which in turn forces more indigenous and Pacifica kiwis into homelessness. The current neolibs have managed to avoid being called out for their callous actions against impoverished kiwis, because too many lap up their distractions.
They don't want to take the bull by the horns and build sufficient houses while taxing speculators out of business because, apart from the fact too many of them own rental properties, they are concerned forcing prices of houses down to the point where working families can afford them will upset the bourgeoisie, the types who lap up the 'isn't Jacinda great' tosh.
At worst glomming that tosh will get Aotearoa stuck in yet another war that is none of our business, a war which when casualties are measured by population always has kiwi soldiers up the top. In ww2 only the USSR lost more military per head than Aotearoa, ahead of germany & england or amerika. Not the sort of 'swinging above our weight' that should make anyone proud as we have previously discussed Churchill et al always put 'the colonies' Australia, Canada & Aotearoa into the tough jobs because he didn't have to worry about angry pushback from his voters or the Labour pols in the coalition government. Fuck that; supporting that carry-on by kiwi pols isn't being loyal, its being treasonous.

A decision was made not to sign up to the 'Covid is China's fault' nonsense was made because Mahuta had been told to watch her step lest Aotearoa end up like Australia has, by losing it's primary export market. That is all.
This was no idealist move, just pragmatism and I see nothing laudable in that. Next week Aotearoa will go along with the rest of 5 eyes on something really dastardly just to balance it out, most likely Syria or Yemen.

Posted by: Debsisdead | Apr 2 2021 6:11 utc | 122

Debsisdead #122

Maybe Aotearoa will send a centurion of finest right wingers to Ukraine to fight alongside Australian centurion of right wingers and those charming Uke nazis as they try their mass attack on the Donbass. The place is tanked and howitzered up to the max right now and all they need is the right flag to fall and they will be off hunting Ruskies. (They are truly mad.)

Your Prime Minister will like that and so will Australias. Maybe they can have a grand parade riding on a tank.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Apr 2 2021 6:39 utc | 123

@40 vk
The WHO also didn`t find any evidence for the zoonotic origin hypothesis (no intermediate host could be identified). According to your logic the zoonotic origin hypothesis is now disproven. Definitive.

Anyway, it might be useful to read what the WHO report actually has to say about the lab origin hypothesis. It´s linked in b`s article. Page 119 reads:

"Arguments in favour

Although rare, laboratory accidents do happen, and different laboratories around the world are working with bat CoVs. When working in particular with virus cultures, but also with animal inoculations or clinical samples, humans could become infected in laboratories with limited biosafety, poor laboratory management practice, or following negligence. The closest known CoV RaTG13 strain (96.2%) to SARS-CoV-2 detected in bat anal swabs have been sequenced at the Wuhan Institute of Virology. The Wuhan CDC laboratory moved on 2ndDecember 2019 to a new location near the Huanan market. Such moves can be disruptive for the operations of any laboratory.

Arguments against

The closest relatives of SARS-CoV-2 from bats and pangolin are evolutionarily distant from SARS-CoV-2. There has been speculation regarding the presence of human ACE2 receptor binding and a furin-cleavage site in SARS-CoV-2, but both have been found in animal viruses as well, and elements of the furin-cleavage site are present in RmYN02 and the new Thailand bat SARSr-CoV. There is no record of viruses closely related to SARS-CoV-2 in any laboratory before December 2019, or genomes that in combination could provide a SARS-CoV-2 genome. Regarding accidental culture, prior to December 2019, there is no evidence of circulation of SARS-CoV-2 among people globally and the surveillance programme in place was limited regarding the number of samples processed and therefore the risk of accidental culturing SARS-CoV-2 in the laboratory is extremely low. The three laboratories in Wuhan working with either CoVs diagnostics and/or CoVs isolation and vaccine development all had high quality biosafety level (BSL3 or 4) facilities that were well-managed, with a staff health monitoring programme with no reporting of COVID-19 compatible respiratory illness during the weeks/months prior to December 2019, and no serological evidence of infection in workers through SARS-CoV-2-specific serology-screening. The Wuhan CDC lab which moved on 2ndDecember 2019 reported no disruptions or incidents caused by the move. They also reported no storage nor laboratory activities on CoVs or other bat viruses preceding the outbreak."

Posted by: m | Apr 2 2021 6:54 utc | 124

@Posted by: thorsday | Apr 2 2021 1:52 utc | 88

The germinal question is How did the Iranian nation get into this bind?

Good question! How would you answer it yourself? Way I see it, some folks chose to punch way above their weight and got themselves into this bind. But it seems you think it is China's and Russia's responsibilities to get you out of this bind. Funny way of thinking. As a Chinese I don't think IRI thinks the way you do. Are you a Persian from way, way back ago???

Posted by: Oriental Voice | Apr 2 2021 6:57 utc | 125

Frederick #118

Thank you, There are many evidentiary scenarios whereby crimes of this coronavirus nature are considered - the balance of probabilities and the weight of evidence and then the irrefutable science. Talking first about the manner of the virus emergence, we know there there are bats, cats and pangolins at the least that carry coronavirus and share them with people. The earlier sars outbreaks confirmed that. So it is possible the current virus came from that source. But where from? The USA and Italy and many other countries other than Asia had thousands of instances of human infections. So it had years to mutate and migrate. Blaming China today is therefore stupid because the world was 'swimming' in the older form and humans provided the best incubator/transfer technology imaginable - the airplane.

Then there are the laboratories that are military CBW research centres. There were some mighty well documented issues with many that were either run by or staffed by USA personnel. There were outbreaks of disease on remote borders of China / Kazakistan? (I recall) and there were some mighty dubious activities in those locations. How many CBW centres does the USA run throughout the world and where? Dozens I imagine and we people appear to have no credible inspectorate of these most lethal, most significant threats to humanity. This era has to end and we should all work to close these labs and stop this insanity.

But then there is the research effort by so many experts eg:, read the 2010 paper written by USA Minneapolis university, Australia's CSIRO, China's Wuhan researchers. They considered the actual mechanism at the point of infection to understand how the spike protein latches. Now this is the immediate last step before gain of function - if you understand the chemistry of blockage you can identify the chemistry to enable. Innocent scientific research dedicated to improving the wellbeing of people. However at the very edge of ethical intent and one step more is an avalanche to malpractice, culpable scientific adventurism, malign purpose.

That is why I say this virus and its release by any means is worthy of an an inquiry of the highest judicial caliber because over decades we have spent billions on research and there was no immediate remedy at the beginning (or was there?). Science and pharmacology let us all down and yet the larger part of this research was likely funded from the public purse.

Then there is the question of the management of the virus and the absence of any clear pharmacology message as to prophylaxis, avoidance etc. There was no clear message of what was learned for treatments from the previous sars round of infection. (At least I did not hear of much.) In some nations the government response was vigorous and immediate and intense and yet many western nations were curiously lackadaisical. That should be the subject of a high order judicial review looking particularly at conflicts of interest as impediments to best scientific practice.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Apr 2 2021 7:14 utc | 126

m #124

Thank you for having read that report. Did it mention at all the CoV strains held at Fort Detrick and the two year long unfortunate inability for that lab to get its brand new waste liquid treatment plant up to BSL4 standard? Did it discuss the EPA statement of ten plus clinical procedure failures that led to Fort Detrick's urgent closure. The first time a civilian authority closed a military lab in USA history?

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Apr 2 2021 7:23 utc | 127

The significance of the China-Iran Agreement is not whether China is getting cheap oil, nor whether Iran gets infrastructure built cheap, nor busting oil dollar or dollar hegemony. China can get cheap energy one way or the other, Iranian oil is just one of many choices. Iran can build it's own infrastructures as its own resources allow, may just take a little longer and on somewhat smaller scale. Dollar hegemony is on the way out, with or without this Agreement. All these are just icing, not the cake.

The cake is in strategic security realm. Now Iranian weapon inventory has double, quadruble, or maybe even up a full order of magnitude in capability and precision when aided by the Chinese Beidou system. That, my friends, is a game changer as far as the Empire is concern.

Posted by: Oriental Voice | Apr 2 2021 7:23 utc | 128

Oriental Voice #128

The cake is in strategic security realm. Now Iranian weapon inventory has double, quadruble, or maybe even up a full order of magnitude in capability and precision when aided by the Chinese Beidou system. That, my friends, is a game changer as far as the Empire is concern.

Yes, that and synchronous mass drone assault technology.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Apr 2 2021 7:25 utc | 129

China is setting a jointed venture with SWIFT to promote the cross-border payments using digital yuan:

"SWIFT sets up JV with China's central bank"

Many people are confused with SWIFT. SWIFT provides messaging system for payments among banks, and it is based in Belgium. SWIFT is not under American control. However, dollar-based payments through SWIFT have to routed through US which can be withheld. This enables US to monitor and sanction banks (and countries).

With the advent of digital yuan through SWIFT, China aims to promote internationalization of yuan and its usage in international trades and payments. Eventually, it will allow citizens in the Western countries or even countries under US sanctioned (like Iran, North Korea) to be able to hold digital yuan in our cell phones.

This is the beginning of a very significant trend unnoticed by most people.

Posted by: d dan | Apr 2 2021 7:27 utc | 130

By the way, this new guy here (Mr. thorsday?) is teasing China for allowing the word 'God' to appear on state documents. I have no access to such documents nor have I seen reports in Chinese media referring to this document containing such languages, but I am quite certain in the copy of document written in Chinese, this exalted title would not appear. What Iranian choose to encrypt in their copy of document is likely not China's prerogative to contest.

Is 'God' written in Persian encapped in capital G also, just as in English? Just curious.

Posted by: Oriental Voice | Apr 2 2021 7:39 utc | 131

@vk 41: "On the contrary: we're still light years away from creating something even near a new life form artificially"

You're talking about gene engineering, I guess, but that's not the only thing done in laboratories. To produce (extract, reproduce, cultivate) virus in a lab you don't need to create a new life form.

But I see Joe @54 already address that. Myself, I wouldn't make any assumption of what "US-funded research at Wuhan lab" did or didn't do, because I have no idea. I'm just saying that it would seem weird to rule out the possibility. Especially considering that the lab is right there.

Posted by: Mao Cheng Ji | Apr 2 2021 8:46 utc | 132

I didn't read the full report, since I was mostly interested what kind of evidence the WHO has to back up it's claim to call the lab escape hypothesis "extremely unlikely".

It's essentially a repetition of the claim that lab escapes in BSL-4-labs just don't happen because everything is super safe and professional (see Fort Detrick).

Posted by: m | Apr 2 2021 9:44 utc | 133

Artificially creating a virus is perfectly possible with todays technology. In 2017 a team at the University of Alberta re-created an extinct strain of the Vaccinia virus (Orthopoxvirus vaccinia equi) just by it`s genetic code from a databank.

Posted by: m | Apr 2 2021 9:53 utc | 134


Tiwanaku/Pumapunku and geopolymer detailed analysis.

One hour presentation by Prof. Joseph Davidovits

At the 10th Geopolymer Camp in 2018, Prof. Joseph Davidovits presented during his annual keynote his last studies on the Tiwanaku / Pumapunku Megaliths.
In November 2017, an international team (a geologist from Universidad San Pablo at Arequipa, Peru and a member of the Geopolymer Institute) went on the site to carry on a survey on these stones.
After different analysis on thin sections and under the electronic microscope, Joseph Davidovits claims that he has found "organic matter in volcanic rock", which is, by nature, impossible.

Hence the large flat stones are cast by hand.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Apr 2 2021 11:12 utc | 135

m #133

It's essentially a repetition of the claim that lab escapes in BSL-4-labs just don't happen because everything is super safe and professional (see Fort Detrick).

Thank you. Of course, how could it be otherwise ;))

Perhaps the WHO might be interested in the bridge I have for sale.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Apr 2 2021 11:15 utc | 136

@uncle tungsten | Apr 2 2021 11:12 utc | 135

I will watch the video.

I have since 2017 a signed copy of Davidovits' book Why the pharaohs built the Pyramids with fake stones. I found his theories that the inner limestone blocks (different from the outer granite casing stones) of the Giza pyramids to be cast from geopolymer material quite interesting, he even made similar "fake stones" in smaller scale in France. One argument to support this was that sea-shell fossils in natural limestone should be oriented horizontally, since limestone is settled on the sea-floor. However he claims the limestone in the pyramids contain fossils with random orientation. I do have some sympathy for the the idea that casting the limestone blocks is easier and perhaps even more likely than the strange ideas of giant ramps bigger than the pyramids themselves promoted by mainstream archaeologists. Still, I am not totally convinced.

Another thing is the timeline in Davodovits' hypothesis. He claims the dynastic Egyptians built the pyramids much like mainstream science does, and that they are no older than 3000 BC, he just proposes a different method (by implication, I am guessing he believes the Puma Punku site in Bolivia is of similar age). But in that case we should have some written material from the days of the pharaos describing the building process, but we don't have that. Also, there are no hieroglyphs in the pyramids and no tombs have been found there. I still think the pyramids are much older and built in a different way.

As for Puma Punku I think there is less reason for supporting his ideas. The big slabs of 180 ton are made of sandstone as you can see in this video The Enduring Enigma Of Puma Punku And Tiwanaku In Bolivia. Notice also the so called keystone cuts in those slabs, I have personally seen and photographed almost identical keystone cuts at Angkor Wat, Cambodia almost exactly on the opposite side of the earth. A friend of mine (native peruvian) visited Puma Punku last year and showed me his images of the same thing.

In my opinion Davidovits' theories from Puma Punku would be more convincing if it also addressed the H-blocks and other phenomena made in very hard andesite rock. They are clearly not made from geopolymer as far as I can tell. The site is clearly buried in a giant mudwave coming from the direction of lake Titicaca, so any theory explaining the sandstone slabs are geopolymer slabs from e.g. the Tiwanaku culture, should ideally also explain when/how the mudwave happened.

My personal (totally speculative) hypothesis is that what we see at Puma Punku is really ancient, i.e. more than 12900 years old and made by a civilization having advanced technological skills, witnessed by the H-blocks with magnetic anomalies and the block with the narrow slit and precisely spaced bore holes. Then, building on the glacier impact hypothesis by Antonio Zamora a comet or asteroid hit the Laurentide Ice sheet in North America 12900 years ago, rained giant ice boulders over the whole continent and probably (my speculation) caused giant tsunamis hitting south america and Europe/Mediterranean sea and caused the Younger Dryas cooling period that lasted 1200 years. Maybe the tsunamis caused the mudflow from Lake Titicaca to Puma Punku on the south side. Maybe it also caused "biblical floods" in Egypt and elsewhere. That's a grand hypothesis if there ever was one....

I will check out Davidovits' presentation that you linked to. Thanks!

Posted by: Norwegian | Apr 2 2021 13:09 utc | 137

Mr. Norwegian

Something caused, around that time, the tilting of the Earth's axis of rotation, one could speculate.

Posted by: Fyi | Apr 2 2021 13:46 utc | 138

Mr. Oriental Voice

He is a Sunni Muslim and an enemy of Iran; likely an Arab with Knowledge of Persian, or an Iranian with no knowledge of Iranian history and culture.

Posted by: Fyi | Apr 2 2021 13:49 utc | 139

Mr. Oriental

Arabic script does not have capital letters.

It is likely that God is helping Iran to punch above her weight, as you stated, and to also protect her.

In God we Trust.

Posted by: Fyi | Apr 2 2021 13:56 utc | 140

@Fyi | Apr 2 2021 13:49 utc | 139

I do not think such an idea is realistic, the angular momentum of the earth is much too great.

I have watched the presentation by Mr. Davidovits', and I do not find it sufficiently convincing. He claims the andesite H-blocks have been molded from volcanic andesite sand, using chemicals 750 km away at Uyuni as solvent and using guano traded from the peruvian cost as hardener. Apart from the stretched chemical arguments, one must ask: What was the molds made from to make such smooth surfaces? How do you account for the fact that each H-block is of unique shape, the molds could not be re-used? How do you account for the fact that the inside of the H-blocks are dovetail shaped, meaning that there is no way to detach a mold without destroying it? How do you account for the fact that at least one block is shown with a rough inner surface, proving it was not molded in a fine surface mold? How do you account for the magnetic anomalies?

In my opinion his method seems to be to try to find arguments in favour of a preconceived conclusion, and that is not really how it should be done.

As Feynman stated: If the theory does not fit observation, it's wrong.

In summary, I am skeptical. Maybe some of his ideas could be valid, but probably not in the time frame he is claiming (1300 - 1400 years ago).

Posted by: Norwegian | Apr 2 2021 14:38 utc | 141

Mr. Norwegian

I understand your argument about angular momentum.

However, something seems to have happened about 12000 years ago. I am reminded of the book "Hamlet's Mill".

I do not credit the existence of any advanced (industrialized ?) human civilization. For one thing, there are no reported discoveries of heaps of advanced trash: broken or discarded pieces of machinery, ceramics, plastics, or metals from anywhere in the world. You need large populations a fraction of which then could be responsible for all those inventions and innovations the we currently enjoy.

There might have been a non-Human advanced civilization on this planet, so ancient, I would speculate, that geological processes have by now obliterated all its traces.

Moon would be a good place to explore for remnants of any such civilization.

In 1001 Nights, I read of the flying horse, a mechanical contrivance as well as of a midget submarine. The voice-activated cave entrance of the 40-Thieves, encoded with a secret password, could have been realized with 1930s electronics. The magic lamp, I speculate, was the control unit of a semi-sentient robot, abandoned, perhaps accidentally, during a visit by an extra-terrestrial vessel. It is trivial now to build the Magic Mirror of the Snow White story. "The fly on the wall" of so many Russian fables has been already a reality for more than 15 years.

Are these vestigial remains of an industrial civilization on this planet? I seriously doubt that, we have not found their trash nor their sources of energy, nor mines...

Posted by: Fyi | Apr 2 2021 15:08 utc | 142

Mr. M

Yes but it is not feasible to carry out the construction of a virus with desirable characteristics in that manner.

What I read in this connection was the usage of ferrets: infect ferrets, get the characteristic you want, infect some more ferrets with this new virus, get the next virus mutation with the next desirable characteristic that you want, and continue the process. Cheap and effective.

Posted by: Fyi | Apr 2 2021 15:17 utc | 143

@Fyi | Apr 2 2021 15:08 utc | 142

I have the book "Hamlet's Mill". It is a very tough read (I almost gave up). It collects similar stories from all over the world hinting at something far back in the past. There seems to be some kind of common memory.

Yes, I think something very dramatic happened 12000+ years ago. Even without taking possible advanced past civilizations into account, the evidence is quite clear. I recommend listening to Randall Carlson in the US explaining about the immense floods that created the Chanelled Scablands in Washington state and lots of other features all over the US, features that cannot be explained merely by gradual mechanisms, but must be sudden events. Then you have the extremely peculiar "Carolina bays" and "Nebraska rainwater basins" as explained by Antonio Zamora, the consistent mathematical ellipses and orientations reveal secondary impact sites of giant ice boulders. There are hundreds of thousands of them and it is possible to compute where the primary impact site must have been, i.e. on the 3000m thick ice sheet over Saginaw Bay, Michigan.

As for heaps of advanced trash not left over from a potential advanced civilization. Let us assume their technology was at least somewhat similar to our technology say 100 years ago, but they had some other knowledge we don't have now. If they used materials such as iron, steel and wood, none or very little of it would survive 12000+ years, wood would rot and steel/iron would corrode. Any precious metals would be taken away and reused by people coming after.

Even if some things have been found, they are often misinterpreted and assigned to "Inkas" or other more recent cultures.

But one thing is clear: We do have stone structures that are extremely advanced that nobody has been able to explain. A few examples include Sacsayhuaman in Pery, Puma Punku in Bolivia, the pyramids and other sites in Egypt, ancient sites in Iran and India and much more (Easter island). So even if you can't find the expected trash, we cannot discard the things we can see...

Posted by: Norwegian | Apr 2 2021 16:06 utc | 144

Debsisdead @ 122, pragmatism is fine, and I agree this was a smallish step by a smallish nation. Seems a bit farfetched that it would encourage mass immigration, especially as you say it is such a small step. But that it means nothing and wasn't an important sign, I will disagree on that. For the US, it's a big thing.

Best wishes for a gradual improvement of all the areas in which you see a need for that.

Posted by: juliania | Apr 2 2021 16:12 utc | 145


The significance of the China-Iran Agreement is not whether China is getting cheap oil, nor whether Iran gets infrastructure built cheap, nor busting oil dollar or dollar hegemony.

OK, not ONLY.

The significance is 25 years...

Just compare to France, lockdowned for the next 4 weeks, and even not sure to reopen Paris's "Cafés in Mai.

Posted by: Bernard F. | Apr 2 2021 16:16 utc | 146

@ Fyi 142

I only know of this due to reading an article a few years ago about items science cannot explain.

The Antikythera mechanism.

Found on a shipwreck near Greece, dating back about 2100 years. It's mechanisms and gears wouldn't be invented for another 1000 years (by your forefathers and the Chinese).

Is this the advanced trash you speak of?

Posted by: Some Random Passerby | Apr 2 2021 16:19 utc | 147

Thanks psychohistorian @ 118! How I would love a post office bank in my part of the US! I'd sign up in a wink for the convenience of that. Were it up to the US population, this would be a slam dunk, as somebody once said about something else I can't quite put my finger on. Ah well, slam dunks aren't what they used to be, so perhaps a better metaphor would simply be 'sure thing'.

Posted by: juliania | Apr 2 2021 16:25 utc | 148

Mr. Norwegian

I think you are too lightly dismissive of the significance of trash. Slag heaps, copper scraps, household garbage do not decay so fast as to leave no traces. In Europe, during the 19-th century, coal, wood, and gas were the sources of energy. All that coal ash went to garbage dumps, yet none has been discovered. So what could be their source of energy? That is another reason to be skeptical.

There seems to have been a sort of Stone-Monument culture in Western Europe, there are all manner of stone monuments and artifacts scattered over Brittany, England, Wales, and Scotland. I do not include Easter Island, we know now how the monuments were built. Generally, I think people used stones because they could not build to scale up with mortar.

Posted by: Fyi | Apr 2 2021 16:28 utc | 149

psychohistorian@117 seems to think the profits of Chinese banks are in themselves a good thing. By the same token, profits for Goldman Sachs and Citigroup are in themselves a good thing. The role of banks in a mixed economy with the commanding heights held by the working class' state is to increase production for use and advance the abolition of classes. If the banks are making money but the overall economy is not growing, or if the relative position of the working classes is falling back, then they are not so very successful.

Posted by: steven t johnson | Apr 2 2021 16:32 utc | 150

Mr. Some Random Passerby

I do not think so, it was a mechanical gadget and evidently men at the time of Romans could build such gadgets but not in a systematic way.

But you might be correct in that we could not find the garbage heaps because they are now under the Mediterranean Sea, which had been dry and was flooded, it is hypothesized, 5.33 million years ago.

But is modern man that old?

I certainly cannot convince myself that somehow, over a few hundreds of thousands of years, our negroid races were transformed into the mongoloid races of today.

Posted by: Fyi | Apr 2 2021 16:39 utc | 151

I agree with all the criticism of arrogant hostile rhetoric, bullying, all that.
But on the technical question: is it really possible to ascertain with any degree of certainty whether this virus originated from nature or a lab? Not that it matters, necessarily.
Posted by: Mao Cheng Ji | Apr 1 2021 18:16 utc | 2

Yes, curiously interesting question. I could ask a cousin who worked in the larger field (research). Assuming you know, there is no easy answer. But if it is not possible to rule it out, why do you ask?

Posted by: LeaNder | Apr 2 2021 17:36 utc | 152

@Fyi | Apr 2 2021 16:28 utc | 149

I think you are too lightly dismissive of the significance of trash. Slag heaps, copper scraps, household garbage do not decay so fast as to leave no traces. In Europe, during the 19-th century, coal, wood, and gas were the sources of energy. All that coal ash went to garbage dumps, yet none has been discovered. So what could be their source of energy? That is another reason to be skeptical.

You think I am too dismissive because of things we cannot see. Fair enough. But I think you are too dismissive of things we can definitely see. First priority is to explain the facts we have, before dismissing them because of things we cannot see.

Places that need explanation include
Sacsayhuaman, Peru
Ollantaytambo, Peru
Samaipata, Bolivia
Easter Island: The Sleeping Stone Giants Of Rapa Nui, Chile
Serapeum at Saqqara, Egypt
Axum's Ancient Clamps Prove Advanced Global Civilization?, Ethiopia
Stone of the pregnant woman, Lebanon
Gobekli Tepe, Turkey
Lost Ancient Technology Of Jordan: Petra, Jordan
Cyclopean walls Athens, Greece
Huge Megalithic Blocks at Istrum, Bulgaria
Eski-Kermen Cave Town, Crimea Russia
Dovbush Caves Strange and Unknown, Ukraine
The Astonishing "Mada'in Saleh" Rock-Cut Tombs, Saudi Arabia
Ancient Drilling Technology - Mahabalipuram, India
The Mind Boggling Kailash Temple, India
Barbar caves, India
Sigiriya , Sri Lanka
Plain of Jars, Laos
Phanum Rung, Thailand
Khmer Megaliths of Cambodia/Angkor Wat
Longyou Caves, China
Enormous ancient quarries, Japan
... and many not mentioned

There seems to have been a sort of Stone-Monument culture in Western Europe, there are all manner of stone monuments and artifacts scattered over Brittany, England, Wales, and Scotland. I do not include Easter Island, we know now how the monuments were built. Generally, I think people used stones because they could not build to scale up with mortar.

There are some in western Europe, but the most magnificent and impressive stone monuments are not there, although I am sure Western Europe would like to leave that impression (I come from and live in Western Europe). See list above.

No, Easter Island is not explained. Thor Heyerdahl tried, but the questions are still wide open.

Posted by: Norwegian | Apr 2 2021 18:27 utc | 153

CNN provides more proof that Trump hate was merely ratings-based and they have returned to their anti-progressive, anti-union, pro-war, pro-corporate agenda. Would a veiled critique like this ever find its way to FauxSnooze?

Many of these items are part of a progressive policy wish-list to be sure, but critics of the President's plan should focus on the fact that it's paid for by rolling back some of the tax relief passed during the Trump years (particularly the reduction in the corporate tax rate). And even the way in which the plan is "paid for" requires a budgetary sleight-of-hand -- Biden wants to take 15 years to pay for eight years of spending which, as one analyst noted, is the equivalent of only paying for half of the proposed spending.

Those corporate tax reduction rollbacks must have the investor/rentier class worried for CNN to be warning about them!!! OR - Is CNN just another corporate media outlet representing corporate/MIC/banker interests no matter who the President is? What are they going to do now that Orange Man Bad isn't a "thing" anymore?

Posted by: _K_C_ | Apr 2 2021 18:32 utc | 154

No, Easter Island is not explained. Thor Heyerdahl tried, but the questions are still wide open.
Posted by: Norwegian | Apr 2 2021 18:27 utc | 153

Please elaborate. I've been to Easter Island and they take you to the quarry where most of the statues are still laying around. Most of them didn't get placed, which is the only real mystery. The means by which they were transported to their eventual sites is even explained in detail.

So what's unexplained about it?

Posted by: _K_C_ | Apr 2 2021 19:24 utc | 155

Mao Cheng Ji | Apr 1 2021 18:16 utc | 2

But on the technical question: is it really possible to ascertain with any degree of certainty whether this virus originated from nature or a lab? Not that it matters, necessarily.

The two are not mutually exclusive. It could be a naturally occurring virus that was collected and then escaped/was used without being modified. As to whether it is possible to be certain about whether it is an artificial construct or a naturally occurring virus; such a decision would depend on experts with the necessary knowledge and hence will, probably, always be disputed.

Posted by: foolisholdman | Apr 2 2021 19:37 utc | 156

gottlieb | Apr 1 2021 19:17 utc | 14

The main point however that the USA has a knee on its own neck is correctomundo.

Please provide a diagram!

Posted by: foolisholdman | Apr 2 2021 19:49 utc | 157

William Gruff | Apr 1 2021 19:56 utc | 19

It is also worth noting that buying politicians or officials (which has happened) is pretty heavily punished when detected. Not fines, but jail time or even, in big cases, death.

Posted by: foolisholdman | Apr 2 2021 20:00 utc | 158


Relevant to this topic and the New Age of Barbarism upon us

Posted by: Fyi | Apr 2 2021 20:09 utc | 159

powerandpeople | Apr 1 2021 20:06 utc | 20

I think this article explains a lot that has puzzled me about US policy and politicians for decades.

Posted by: foolisholdman | Apr 2 2021 20:14 utc | 160

Fyi @ 142

For one thing, there are no reported discoveries of heaps of advanced trash: broken or discarded pieces of machinery, ceramics, plastics, or metals from anywhere in the world

Oh really? A lot of your 'advanced trash' can be found in the Egyptian Museum in Cairo. Check out the likes of thirty or forty thousand 'turned' hardstone bowls found in Saqqara...and that propeller-like piece? Awesome.

Posted by: john | Apr 2 2021 20:26 utc | 161

vk | Apr 1 2021 20:48 utc | 30

But translating from scientific language: for all intents and purposes, it discarded the hypothesis the SARS-CoV-2 came out from a laboratory. It is definitive.

Yes, but, there is a Hell of a lot left out of the WHO report and the MSM's reports on it! Such as that the leader of the group that drew up the report was fairly recently working in the WIV on Fauci's dollar on something very like SARS2-19 or (whatever it is called) took place there and in the University of North Carolina's Chapel Hill lab and that scientists from the WIV worked in the US on, either this virus or something very similar. I hope the WHO team keeps digging, there is a lot more to uncover!

Posted by: foolisholdman | Apr 2 2021 20:35 utc | 162

Norwegian all

Thank you for your herculean responses in this thread.

I should add one essential thing and that Prof. Robert Temple and Joseph Davidovits are the founder directors of the Geopolymer Institute. I have mentioned Temple before - his research and rigorous pursuit of evidence is the essence of science. He just happens to grab controversial subjects by the throat so to shake the truth from them and then discuss it freely and publicly. Good for him. But he seems to have vanished for the past five years.

The extraordinary thing about the Geopolymer Institute is that it reveals and then methodically reintroduces a brilliant technology that was used by ancients in South America and Egypt. They now manufacture with that technology today through its affiliate companies across the world. Its better that concrete. See Toowoomba Airport made entirely of it - landing strip and terminal building.

It may have been used elsewhere just as you say about the keystone clasp another extraordinary universal method found throughout the planet dating back millennia.

I use wooden forms of that clasp when joining timbers for tabletops they are called bowties or butterfly joints and are as old as carpentry itself.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Apr 2 2021 21:00 utc | 163

Some Random Passerby #147

The Antikythera mechanism is one mighty good gadget. Brilliantly made and an exemplar of human genius. There are some great videos of exact replicas remade today.

If you appreciate the technology and instruments behind the making of that mechanical calendar, then you should read Robert Temple 'Crystal Sun'. He gets into ancient lenses, telescopes, engraving lenses with tiny holes in the centre for the engraver to slide the inscribing point through and so much more. Footnotes by the hundred cross referenced to ancient Greek writers and totally stuffed with fascinating knowledge that we never heard of.

The Romans in ancient wars carried small glass spheres filled with water with them so they could cauterize wounds using solar lensing!

Did you know a Pharaoh was myopic and had reading lenses?

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Apr 2 2021 21:16 utc | 164

Canadian Cents | Apr 1 2021 21:18 utc | 42

Very interesting articles! Thanks for that. Those Chinese don't hang about! Do they?

Posted by: foolisholdman | Apr 2 2021 21:16 utc | 165

@151 Fyi

I can explain that.

Genghis Khan. Apparently, 1 in 200 of us can trace their ancestors back to him. Quite how he managed the raping and pillaging is beyond me, but he clearly managed it judging by the size of his empire.

@153 & 164

I have a great day of reading to look forward to Monday. Thank you both!

Posted by: Some Random Passerby | Apr 2 2021 22:33 utc | 166


Should have added, no I did not know about the myopic Pharaoh. Again, I have a busy Monday.

Thanks again!

Posted by: Some Random Passerby | Apr 2 2021 22:37 utc | 167

As predicted, MoA links to original sources vs the hack Josh Rogin who quotes himself. Do we find lead investigators packed by the Chinese govt as Rogin stated? No, I see 10 where most are from the EU, another from from Australia, Japan, Vietnam, the U.S. and Russia. In regard to national representation, this is not even a China friendly group. Prof. Dr. Thea Fisher, MD, DMSc(PhD) (Nordsjællands Hospital, Denmark) Prof. John Watson (Public Health England, United Kingdom) Prof. Dr. Marion Koopmans, DVM PhD (Erasmus MC, Netherlands) Prof. Dr. Dominic Dwyer, MD (Westmead Hospital, Australia) Vladimir Dedkov, Ph.D (Institute Pasteur, Russia) Dr. Hung Nguyen-Viet, PhD (International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), Vietnam) PD. Dr. med vet. Fabian Leendertz (Robert Koch-Institute, Germany) Dr. Peter Daszak, Ph.D (EcoHealth Alliance, USA) Dr. Farag El Moubasher, Ph.D (Ministry of Public Health, Qatar) Prof. Dr. Ken Maeda, PhD, DVM (National Institute of Infectious Diseases, Japan)

Posted by: Christian J. Chuba | Apr 2 2021 23:46 utc | 168

Mr Some Random Passerby

Be not snarky with me please, else I will add you to my ignore list.

Posted by: Fyi | Apr 2 2021 23:58 utc | 169

re juliania@ # 145
Maybe I didn't express my self too well, when I talk about pressure on Aotearoa by mass immigration from the Northern Hemisphere, I wasn't referring to the single act of not signing up to the anti china resolution I was talking about the media generated nonsense that has been put about since the anti-nuke thing in the 1980's that the neoliberal administrations of Aotearoa are somehow 'different' to other western nations, when in fact they are not.

That doesn't stop the brainwashed from turning up here in the belief that they can enjoy the consumerist life driven by exactly the same resource theft as other western countries but somehow with less of the guilt. The pressure on immigration has increased immeasurably since Covid as it has at other times when paranoia is high.

The ardern government claims that only returning kiwis are getting in but in fact a high % of arrivals are foreigners arriving under skilled migration visas. These are chiefly in semi-professional categories which were once filled by domestically trained kiwis. That is no longer the case as tertiary education is now an export product handing out dubious degrees to all comers. There is a double dipping element since education is an export industry at the same time as other nations education systems are plundered by encouraging their graduates to emigrate here.
The result has been an incredible, considering the amount of public housing, now privatised that used to be, shortage of housing for low income workers. Working families & their children are forced to live in their cars.

The nonsense peddled about Aotearoa has a real world effect on kiwis, yet dingbats feeling secure in their over-priced boxes continue to peddle it. Kiwis were never big nationalists but now all the americas cup, rugby, ardern rah, rah bullshit is changing that particularly when the % of people accustomed to doffing their caps to 'their betters' has grown so drastically since immigration exploded.

Posted by: Debsisdead | Apr 3 2021 0:03 utc | 170

Some Random Passerby

Have no fear of being ignored. Fyi the bar is open all easter to all excommunicated souls who have the staying power to listen up to these women giving maximum political payout to AOC and her betrayal. AOC is a sister of perpetual Biden indulgence.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Apr 3 2021 3:43 utc | 171

@ uncle tungsten | Apr 3 2021 3:43 utc | 171 with the spiritual guidance...

Amen, Excommunicated Brother, Amen!

Posted by: psychohistorian | Apr 3 2021 4:08 utc | 172

@ 143 Fyi
That`s partly true.

It`s not possible to construct a virus that has certain characteristics -with certainty-. That`s why researching the characteristics of an artificially modified virus is still necessary (=gain of function research). It is, however, possible to already have a general idea in what direction a certain modification will go (for instance increased transmisability). The subsequent research will then have to establish if the intended goal has indeed been achieved or if something unforseeable has happened.

Since 2012 with the CRISPR/Cas-method (CRISPR gene editing) it is possible to relatively easily include a specific gene into the genome of a pre-excisting virus. (The ferret-method that you describe is already obselete.)

Inserting a gene that increases transmisability in humans into a coronavirus for bats that has been shown to be lethal is possible with todays technology. This would also exactly fall into the category of "gain of function research".

In fact, this has been done at the Wuhan Institute of Virology. In 2013 scientists from Wuhan published a paper with the title Isolation and characterization of a bat SARS-like coronavirus that uses the ACE2 receptor.

Posted by: m | Apr 3 2021 7:18 utc | 173

@m | Apr 3 2021 7:18 utc | 173

Liar. In the 2013 article that you refer to, there is no mention of gain of function research or manipulation of viruses. The article descibes the isolation and characterization of a virus found in bat excrement.

The researchers at University of North Carolina Chapel Hill however did manipulate corona viruses to make them more human transmissible. Here is the article in Nature Medicine from Nov 9 2015 that spells out the damning trail all the way back to the USA.

Posted by: Lurk | Apr 3 2021 11:50 utc | 174

There has been a lot of attempted damage control by USA media trying to pooh pooh away the disconcerting facts of Baris et al.'s gain of function research.

"Arguments" employed vary from "poor UNC researchers victim of death threats for doing innocent virus research", "it wasn't the same corona virus as the one from the pandemic", "the Wuhan lab was involved in it too!1!" to "experts say that there is no evidence that the coronavirus came from a lab".

I'd say that gain of function research is never innocuous and I would not be surprised if Baris and his group at UNC have some undeclared connections to Fort Detrick military biowarfare research lab. After all, where does Ft. Detrick get its trained employees from? Surely not from laboratory tubes or from marine grunt boot camp. These specialists have to be educated in the arts somewhere.

Of course the 2015 expirimental coronavirus is not the same as the one going the rounds at the moment. The really dangerous (to human health and USA reputation) isn't put prominently in public view. Poohpoohing the likelyhood of the pandemic stemming from UNC does not negate the possibilty of it coming out of Fort Detrick.

The finger-pointing to the Wuhan lab as being involved in the dodgy research at UNC is particularly interesting, as anyone who has bothered to read Baris' article has surely noticed that the only chinese involvement was in providing the original bat virus material (not human transmissible) to the Americans. That Baris and coworkers turned the naturally sourced specimens into a Frankenstein virus (a "chymera") is in no way to blame on the Chinese. Anyone who attempts to do so nevertheless is purely disingenuous and obviously malevolent.

No proof that the virus came from a laboratory does not mean proof that the virus did not come from a laboratory. That is elementary logic. ( It is a sad sight to see a certain self-professed proponent of Marxism on this site so profoundly lacking in basic logical aptitude when it come to this issue. )

All attempts to derail serious consideration of the most likely source of the coronavirus pandemic are in themselves damning because of their crude disingenuiusness.

People (bots/trolls?) Like poster m@173 are in another category altogether by posting straightforward lies.

Posted by: Lurk | Apr 3 2021 12:27 utc | 175

If anything the WHO report is evidence for the coronavirus having been modified in a lab to make it transmissible among humans. The theory that the virus is natural and has a purely zoonotic origin hinges entirely (as in 100%) upon the existence of some intermediary host species for the virus for which no evidence has been found. If this species of animal existed then it should be easy to find. What animal not only comes into contact with both the horseshoe bat that is thought to be the host for the closest relative to the current SARS-CoV-2 and humans, but also has ACE2 receptors on some of its cells somewhat similar to those in humans? It is not as if anyone is likely to discover a hitherto unknown species of animal wandering the streets of Wuhan. There is only a handful of animal species to check, and they have all been checked.

More than a year on of intense searching and no such intermediary host species has been found.

Trying to prove the zoonotic origin theory of SARS-CoV-2 is like trying to fill an inside straight in poker... it is a losing proposition that just gets worse every day that goes by without the intermediary host being identified. The Chinese have not even been able to identify a "patient zero" yet, which indicates that disparate individuals with nothing in common except happening to live in the same city somehow became infected at the same time. That is very unexpected behavior for a supposed naturally-occurring zoonotic virus, but it is precisely what you would expect if some psycho "intelligence" operative were wandering the city spraying the virus on handrails and doorknobs. The lack of an intermediary host species and the lack of a patient zero actually makes trying to prove a natural origin for SARS-CoV-2 more like trying to fill a double inside straight in poker... it is so improbable that I don't see why anyone is still trying.

Posted by: William Gruff | Apr 3 2021 14:17 utc | 176

@ Posted by: William Gruff | Apr 3 2021 14:17 utc | 176

Wait, wait, wait. You're giving a religious logic to science.

The absence of evidence is not evidence the SARS-CoV-2 came from a lab. There's nothing sacred about the hypothesis that the virus came from a lab that makes it more precious, more elevated, more sacred or more primordial then any other hypothesis.

All hypothesis must be treated equally until the scientific investigation begins. You can't start your research with the answer already in mind. That's anti-scientific.

The WHO went with their team of experts to Wuhan and they did their scientific research. With the evidence collected and analyzed, they came to the conclusion that the lab hypothesis is the least likely (an elegant way of saying it didn't happen). Is this the absolute, philosophical truth? No, it isn't. It is a scientific truth, which is different from "The Truth" (the thing in itself; ontological truth). But, in the absence of the ontological truth, scientific truths are the next best thing humans can aspire to, so it is with them that we work with.

If you want to insist with the lab hypothesis, then you have only one option: fly to Wuhan (or to Fort Detrick, or to any other lab you think the virus came out of) with your team of experts and gather more and better evidence that disprove the WHO team's conclusion.

Posted by: vk | Apr 3 2021 15:42 utc | 177

Mr. M

There is no gene for transmisibility as fasr as I understand it. Our bodies have defenses, the idea of transmisibility cannot be fitted within the ideas of molecular genetics.

I do not believe that such knowledge exists either: i.e. pointing to segments of a viral DNA and stating that they code for proteins that through their interactions with human beings' tissue, cause faster or more virulent infections, or bypass human defenses.

The CRISP-R technique that you suggest, will need to be utilizing such prior knowledge, the gnome has to be mapped and the molecular pathways for the infection in human beings also need to be identified before CRISP-R processes could begin.

I am doubtful that such an army of researchers exists in these labs. But I am not an specialist. But even if one makes the virus more infectious, it will not be an issue if the virus lacks the famous spike that leads to severe autoimmune over-reaction.

I still think ferrets are the most efficient approach.

Posted by: Fyi | Apr 3 2021 15:44 utc | 178

Mr. Lurk

Very good reference paper. So the spike was the key to the infection in humans.

I quote here the relevant conclusion:

"Although our study does not invalidate the other emergence routes, it does argue for a third paradigm in which circulating bat CoV pools maintain 'poised' spike proteins that are capable of infecting humans without mutation or adaptation"

Posted by: Fyi | Apr 3 2021 15:56 utc | 179

Posted by: thorsday | Apr 2 2021 2:08 utc | 93

Why is this important to you? "In the name of God" is nothing but mostly an opening statement for most Islamic majority society. It is so pervasive in our live that really it has lost its sacredness a long time a go. There's a joke common among muslims how "In the name of God" being used for nefarious or sinful activity such as stealing. It might be a joke but in all honesty it has a kernel truth to it: thieves do say "In the name of God" before stealing. Not of course because they wanted a 'blessing' but out of habit.

Again, why is this important? Why do the atheist that take so much thought into this while the Muslim themselves don't?

Posted by: Hangar | Apr 3 2021 16:00 utc | 180

Mr. Lurk

Applying Bayesian approach to lab-created origin vs. Natural origin for COVID-19, one gets a 50-50 chance for it being laboratory generated in the absence of any other evidence.

It is truly a dreadful prospect at that probability of 50% for this virus being man-made.

But that need not be the end of our Bayesian analysis.

This virus has several additional interesting "accidental" properties. How likely are for those accidents to have occurred in Nature?

I cannot compute it. But, if these likelihoods be uneven, then they increases the likelihood of the artificiality of the virus hypothesis to above 50%.

Posted by: Fyi | Apr 3 2021 16:15 utc | 181

re: uncle tungsten | Apr 2 2021 7:14 utc | 126

Sourcing the COVID-19 pandemic...IMO, your post acts as an Executive Summary.

To any reader, I suggest: For an honorable and most effective Executive Summary of sourcing the Covid-19 pandemic, see Uncle Tungsten's post referenced above.

Posted by: chu teh | Apr 3 2021 18:08 utc | 182

vk @177

No WHO team has investigated Fort Detrick yet. Furthermore, the purely zoonotic origin theory for the SARS-CoV-2 virus is also one lacking in supporting evidence. We have a wild virus that is somewhat similar to SARS-CoV-2, but the WHO report only suggests, without any supporting evidence, that the virus became "...very well adapted to human cell receptors..." while transitioning through some mystery intermediary host animal that no research has been able to uncover. We know that the closest known coronavirus variant in the wild does not infect humans. This is the strain that was isolated at the Wuhan lab and was then subjected to "gain of function" research at the University of North Carolina to make it transmissible among humans. I have not yet seen the results of any comparisons of the SARS-CoV-2 strain with the coronavirus variants that resulted from the "gain of function" research at the University of North Carolina, and I suspect we may never.

There is an extremely crucial portion of the development of the virus that remains unknown; that of when the virus transformed from one that infects bats but is harmless to humans to one that is "...very well adapted to human cell receptors..." and kills people. The WHO report does not offer any evidence that this transition occurred naturally. They merely assert that this is so and reference a mystery animal that must have been involved in the process.

"There's nothing sacred about the hypothesis that the virus came from purely natural origins that makes it more precious, more elevated, more sacred or more primordial then any other hypothesis."

Well, actually there is. The idea that the virus is a bioweapon used by the United States to defeat China in a "trade war" automatically implies we live in a world that researchers with comfortable lifestyles are unwilling to accept. Even though it is beyond debate that the United States has used nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons of mass destruction repeatedly in the past, there are still many people, particularly comfortable middle class ones, who refuse to acknowledge it. Until these individuals can show the natural transition of the virus into one that infects people, the lab-origin theory remains the only one we have evidence of because this very thing was done at the University of North Carolina.

Sadly, the purely zoonotic origin theory for SARS-CoV-2 is the one that invokes mysterious unknowns. The purely zoonotic origin theory for SARS-CoV-2 is the faith-based one. The purely zoonotic origin theory for SARS-CoV-2 is the one that is based upon wishful thinking. Now, the mystery intermediary host animal might still be found, but assuming that such a beast exists with no evidence is unscientific.

Posted by: William Gruff | Apr 3 2021 19:32 utc | 183

@182 chu teh

I had read uncle tungsten's comment at the time, but on your encouragement I went back and savored it carefully. You're right, it's a very high order of commentary on the situation.

@183 William Gruff

I truly thank you for that excellent statement of fact.

It's a completely crucial point, to show that after more than a year of research, the balance of evidence, in the absence of any discovered counter, only reinforces the original suspicion that points toward the labs, and the men who love them.

Posted by: Grieved | Apr 3 2021 20:31 utc | 184

Lurk #175

Yes, thank you for the link and Boyd L. Hunt Jr seems to be the clever lad. They state the experiment was performed prior to the gain of function prohibition but then obtained consent to continue with other experiments.

They lodged their virus strains in a national registry after some delay. Looking for subsequent accessions might inform.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Apr 3 2021 21:00 utc | 185

ooops typo in the above - Boyd L. Yount Jr.

from Acknowledgements:

Experiments with the full-length and chimeric SHC014 recombinant viruses were initiated and performed before the GOF research funding pause and have since been reviewed and approved for continued study by the NIH.

from Contributions:

V.D.M. designed, coordinated and performed experiments, completed analysis and wrote the manuscript. B.L.Y. designed the infectious clone and recovered chimeric viruses; S.A. completed neutralization assays; L.E.G. helped perform mouse experiments; T.S. and J.A.P. completed mouse experiments and plaque assays; X.-Y.G. performed pseudotyping experiments; K.D. generated structural figures and predictions; E.F.D. generated phylogenetic analysis; R.L.G. completed RNA analysis; S.H.R. provided primary HAE cultures; A.L. and W.A.M. provided critical monoclonal antibody reagents; and Z.-L.S. provided SHC014 spike sequences and plasmids. R.S.B. designed experiments and wrote manuscript.

from Affiliations you will find primary author VDM and B.L.Y, T.S., J.P.,:

Department of Epidemiology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA

Vineet D Menachery, Boyd L Yount Jr, Kari Debbink, Lisa E Gralinski, Jessica A Plante, Rachel L Graham, Trevor Scobey, Eric F Donaldson & Ralph S Baric

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Apr 3 2021 21:12 utc | 186

To be clear: the (2015) paper linked by Lurk #179 outlines an experiment conducted in a BSL3 lab in the University of North Carolina.

From that (2015) paper:

SARS-CoV is a select agent. All work for these studies was performed with approved standard operating procedures (SOPs) and safety conditions for SARS-CoV, MERs-CoV and other related CoVs. Our institutional CoV BSL3 facilities have been designed to conform to the safety requirements that are recommended in the Biosafety in Microbiological and Biomedical Laboratories (BMBL), the US Department of Health and Human Services, the Public Health Service, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the NIH. Laboratory safety plans were submitted to, and the facility has been approved for use by, the UNC Department of Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) and the CDC. Electronic card access is required for entry into the facility. All workers have been trained by EHS to safely use powered air purifying respirators (PAPRs), and appropriate work habits in a BSL3 facility and active medical surveillance plans are in place...

It is likely experiments of this nature continued over the years.

Is there a coincident vaping disease map showing location and year. Vaping disease seems mostly confined to the USA. My guess is there will be plenty of papers in the epidemiology literature.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Apr 3 2021 21:47 utc | 187

Richard Medhurst gets triggered for 15 minutes by Blinken's disgusting hypocrisy for Syrian children.

Blood pressure warning:

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Apr 3 2021 22:41 utc | 188

I took a peek at vaping map and a few reports. I could not find a sequential map of time/location etc.

Apparently the symptoms are virtually identical and easily confused but are differentiated solely by covid test and ideally 2x covid tests for certainty. Covid is infectious and vaping not? I could find no report of medical support people succumbing to vaping. Vaping is a consequence of behaviour we are told.

It may be a red herring but it is important to chase them all just to arrive at some level of certainty. I guess this subject has been investigated solid.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Apr 3 2021 22:59 utc | 189

@188 uncle tungsten

Thank you. I find it beyond words to say how that was, to feel that pain from the actual field, as Medhurst tries to narrate it and also to understand it...beyond words for Medhurst to encounter that evil and to try to deal with it.

And how does it happen, that disconnect, that cognitive dysfunction? What powers that ability to radiate virtue while condoning the unspeakable?

It's a real question, and one that leaves people in the field simply aghast, as Medhurst is - blown away by the seeming authenticity of the undeniable pretense.

And for us, incomprehensibly, we are impelled to feel a seeming authenticity in Blinken.

We have to turn to Larry Romanoff for the observation that shows those two sides of the story, both combined in the one human being, and to understand how that works:
American Dystopia – The Propaganda Mask and the Utopia Syndrome

It's not so much that the one human believes both sides at the same time, as it is that the one human turns to each well of narrative in turn, to draw forth the story and the self-reinforcing narrative. It's how the US rolls. It's how the narrative is made possible. It's how the unspeakable happens, to the incomprehension of all sane people, like Medhurst.

That's how it works.

And Medhurst shows how it feels.

Posted by: Grieved | Apr 4 2021 1:01 utc | 190

Grieved #190

It's not so much that the one human believes both sides at the same time, as it is that the one human turns to each well of narrative in turn, to draw forth the story and the self-reinforcing narrative. It's how the US rolls. It's how the narrative is made possible. It's how the unspeakable happens,

Thank you, yes the unspeakable.... the 40+ extermination camps in Poland in the 1940's. POLAND

Yes each well of narrative

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Apr 4 2021 1:14 utc | 191

America is NOT back in the JCPOA and no amount of weasel words from France will alter that reality.

French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said on Saturday that he asked his Iranian counterpart to be constructive during the planned talks next week that will seek to revive the nuclear deal.

Can you believe the drivel from the USA:

Washington previously expressed readiness to join the 6 April meeting of the Joint Commission of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA, also known as the Iranian nuclear deal). The Islamic Republic, however, repeatedly stressed that the American side should lift the sanctions before offering to start any negotiations.

You cannot attend a meeting of a group you have walked out on USA. Lift the sanctions, prove they are really lifted, ask to rejoin the club, attend the meeting. That is the order of business.

And yet the dopey French poodle yaps at Iran about "act constructively".

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Apr 4 2021 1:51 utc | 192

@191 uncle tungsten

It's called the "split". It's the recognition that the human mind has a predilection for schizophrenia. The one human mind has a willingness to live in more than one mind, and is often at its greatest ease living in two minds, and in several minds.

R.D. Laing explored this mind in The Politics of Experience in the sixties. He was a great psychologist, a revolutionary and a sane person, aghast at how we are, and what we do, and trying hard to write it down in words.

It's important, I begin to think, to know how this works. I owe it to Romanoff for raising it to the national level. I am also grateful to see how evil can arise from a kind of innocence, or naivety, because this gives a way to deal with it other than on its own terms.

What we have to do is put knowledge where that naivety is. If we see the key that opens the mind to error, and if we see that this error can be magnified from single humans to global proportions, then perhaps we also have the key to turn it the other way in the lock, and to destroy the delusion, and to dial it all down, back to sanity.

And if we do this, on our little planet, and banish the Devil himself from our little planet, the universe itself will offer no haven for him, because the universe itself, outside of our little planet, never did countenance him, not ever.

The madness is ours to cure.

Posted by: Grieved | Apr 4 2021 1:51 utc | 193

Grieved #193

Thank you, yes I read Laing in the 70's - excellent writer and practitioner. I cite him often and have one or two of his remarkable tomes on my shelf. I must reread after all these years and experiences. Thank you for Romanoff - I will go there too.

As you say:

And if we do this, on our little planet, and banish the Devil himself from our little planet, the universe itself will offer no haven for him, because the universe itself, outside of our little planet, never did countenance him, not ever.

The madness is ours to cure.


Posted by: uncle tungsten | Apr 4 2021 1:57 utc | 194

My big apologies! That was of course the wrong article. While I wrote the comment my children where jumping around my (not kidding). I remembered to having read about it and was qickly browsing through the Wiesendanger compendium in search for the right article. I was in a hurry since we still had to brush teeth together. Then all hell broke loose when my kinds suddenly started to quarrel so I skiped through the headlines and made the link without actually reading the text. That was of course extremely sloppy. There is no excuse, you are right to be upset.

For a full picture I would rather recommend Nicholson Baker He writes essentially the same, but is much more readable than Wiesendanger. Both of them are rather long reads, that`s why I didn`t link them directly in the first place.

"The WHO went with their team of experts to Wuhan and they did their scientific research. With the evidence collected and analyzed, they came to the conclusion that the lab hypothesis is the least likely (an elegant way of saying it didn't happen)."
Yes, the evidence says that the lab hypothesis is extremely unlikely, that`s what we are told repeatedly. But what evidence exactly is that? In the WHO report it`s a single paragraphe which essentially says that the WHO team found everything in Wuhan very orderly and professional and that lab escapes just don`t happen because BSL4-labs are just super safe.

By the same reasoning the IAEA could send a team to Chernobyl and collect evidence which proofs that the catastrophy of 1986 had been extremely unlikely. Well, that`s even true, it had been extremely unlikely. As we know since Chernobyl and Fukushima, mankind can operate hundreds of nuclear plants at the same time and it`s only once every few decades that one of them blows up. The annual propability to produce a Chernobyl/Fukushima-like catastrophy for a single nuclear reactor must be somewhere in the range of < 1:1.000.

(I don`t a priori rule out the possibility of an US bioweapon attack. Technically it`s possible. Such a scenario just seems very unplausible to me. It would have been highly suspicious had the US or one of it`s allies a vaccine or a cure readily available once Covid-19 spreads to it`s territory. But what we could actually observe in the last year is that US authorities clearly had no clue what to do and where largely incompetent in dealing with the disease. That just doesn`t add up. Also the gain of function research in the USA has been - at least as far as we know - completely public. That doesn`t make any sense either for a clandestine bioweapon program.)

Posted by: m | Apr 4 2021 18:16 utc | 195


I read Laing in the 60s too, it was formative for me too. The first time I really said to myself, "you know you can question all this?" Like it or not all of human culture is a human creation, and the big monkeys just cannot help themselves at times.

But we still need it too. In the state of nature, a solitary human has much longer odds then a member of a coherent society. And that is true today too.

Now on the other hand, when your culture is clearly not working, or it is pernicious, it will make YOU crazy if you don't question it.

I have had acquaintance with people with "issues", lived with them, worked with them, and I found a lot of them more reliable and less inclined to bullshit than "normal" people. So there is that too.

Posted by: Bemildred | Apr 4 2021 18:43 utc | 196

@ Uncle Tungsten #192

Les Fourberies de Scapin

La France éternelle-Le Drian, a bad stage actor, always playing "Scapin the Schemer"...

In order to save Géronte from this danger, Scapin hides his victim in a bag, and hits him violently, while pretending to protect him from the swordswords who are searching for him.

Worked with Saddam

It’s unlikely to work with Iran.

Posted by: Bernard F. | Apr 4 2021 21:25 utc | 197

m #195

Thank you, the concept of 'extremely unlikely' in the context of a bio-weapon attack or even a lab accident is always hedged by the known data referred to as human folly or accidental release.

Consider the coronavirus and I will write from what happens in my land. We have very few cases, we have high competency medical practitioners, we have a rigid quarantine system. The first virus escape came about because the security people were f#king the quarantined people and they were also escorting them about on shopping sprees. The virus shut down a state for a month or two costing $billions.

The latest escape was entirely inadvertent (we are told) as a doctor and a nurse supporting infected people in quarantine walked the virus out into the world and bingo people start with symptoms and confirmed tests. Human accident! At a time of extreme attention to bio-security.

So. There are many labs running investigative work on this virus throughout the world and particularly in the USA it seems. No investigation by WHO not even a global round up of data sets and potential matching with hospitalisation or deaths prior to Military Games in Wuhan and yet their entire whitewash is ONE PARAGRAPH of dismissal.

No I do not think this is credible and I do know from my human experience that accidents happen from humans and their pursuits. From forgetting to close the gate and the chooks escape into the garden to catastrophic design failures at nuclear power stations to F35's cannons accidentally firing at take off.

I also know that humans are capable of evil. Exactly how did African swine flu arrive in China? Fall Army Worm from northern USA? Chicken fever from offshore (perhaps migratory birds)?

The probability of virus escape from any of 1000? experimental sites and perhaps 5000+ people over many years since the SARS original outbreak is HUGE. Then there are the mink farms and who knows what other convenient human follies. Don't forget the carousing cats in your neighbourhood or the flights to exotic destinations 2+ years ago.

And the WHO wont do the real data matching work in todays modern epidemiological era? THAT alone is BS.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Apr 4 2021 22:39 utc | 198

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