PressWatch: Venezuela Coltan War; Porkachoo!
Nov 12 2009 PressWatch
Coltan is an abbreviated word for colombite-tantalite ore. It’s used in the tiny transceivers that have made cell-phone and wi-fi usage possible. It’s a lumpy looking grey substance when it’s pulled from the ground. So far, in Africa, it has been the McGuffin for a series of conflicts and for the decimation of mountain gorilla populations. There’s nothing particularly evil about the substance itself, of course, it’s just this decade’s whale oil, and woe betide the cavorting cetaceans who might get in the way of the harpoons, as the corporate greed fest sends out its Ahabs. Bearing this in mind, think of Venezuela, where there is not only oil in abundance but a new-found supply of coltan.
Forcible annexation of the Venezuelan people into the corporate serfdom has therefore been marked onto the PowerPoint agendas and is proceeding apace. Annoyingly, the Venezuelans are the difficult sort and have yet to succumb to a pro-corporate dictator, at least in the last few years. To make things worse, they have diverted some of the profits from the oil industry as it drains away their subsoil bonanza, and they have bought tanks and planes. This means that a quick takeover by, say, Aegis or Executive Outcomes or Xe is quite a bit more difficult; the coltan industry will have to get together with the oil industry, and hire out the big dogs to get the job done. That’s Uncle Sam, of course, and though he is already drooling with bloodlust to crush the life out of those unprofitable humans there in Caracas, he can’t be properly unleashed without a lengthy and expensive propaganda campaign directing the US population to snarl with hatred at Venezeula. That’s where you and I come in, and some of the cue-cards are already available, so let’s get cracking with our chants, to be delivered at every television-led Hate Minute:
Chavez is a dictator!
Chavez is in league with Ahmedinajad!
Chavez is a Communist in league with FARC!
Of course the real pros will come out with shorter versions of those chants, as they currently have too many syllables for Fox news watchers. Have no doubt that it will be done, however, because we’re talking about oil and coltan, and that means profits. No not profits for you, silly, profits for our betters, who have the sense to put those profits into euros and gold and hide them in the Cayman Islands or the lesser Antilles brass plate operations generally. Otherwise they’d turn into tax money and the blood—I mean profit—would get spread around rather than properly piling up with the super-rich. For you and I, the blood can only spill from our children’s bodies as we send them in uniform to get the job done. The worse the horror, the more the corporate media polls will show that we approve. The more die pointlessly, the more we support the troops. Support the troops! Support the troops! You support the troops, don’t you? What kind of Unamerican monster wouldn’t support the troops?
Here’s the Venezuelan take on the issue. If you’re listening on radio, better turn it down now, and be careful who’s listening, if you want to keep your job. And if you just downloaded it on kboo.fm, well, better download some Fox News too, so you can say you were just keeping up with those disloyal nuts ‘cause somebody has too. The Feds are currently demanding Indymedia records, and this is no different, really. Ready? ‘k.
Mérida, November 10th 2009 (Venezuelanalysis.com) -- Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez declared on Sunday that his country is prepared to defend itself against a possible act of aggression from Colombia or the United States, countries which recently signed a military pact that will allow the U.S. to use Colombian bases to increase its military and intelligence operations across Latin America.
Chavez called on the commanders of the Venezuelan Armed Forces to “lose no time; we are going to form militias of revolutionary students, workers, women, everyone ready to defend this sacred homeland.”
“Don’t make the mistake, President Obama, of ordering an overt aggression against Venezuela utilizing Colombia,” said Chavez. “In Venezuela we are ready for anything, and Venezuela will never, never be a Yankee colony again,” Chavez declared on his weekly television talk show.
If the U.S. and Colombia start a war with Venezuela, Chavez warned, “It would be the start of a hundred year war, and this war would extend across this entire continent.”
The best way to avoid war, Chavez said, is to prepare for it. “If we lived in a world where the most powerful countries respected the least powerful ones and were ruled by human principles and values, then we could dedicate ourselves to anything other than war,” the president explained.
Colombia and the U.S. signed a deal on October 30th that will expand the U.S. military presence on seven Colombian air, naval, and army bases, grant U.S. personnel diplomatic immunity for crimes committed in Colombia, and facilitate the movement of the U.S. military throughout the country.
………………………………..[snip]…………more at venezuelanalysis.com…………………..
Here’s some mainstream media on the situation, from Reuters:
….BOGOTA, Nov 11 (Reuters) - Colombia brought what it called threats of war from neighboring Venezuela to the U.N. Security Council on Wednesday after Hugo Chavez, leader of the neighboring country, told his army to get ready to fight.
[Note that Chavez spoke of a defensive war, not an invasion of Colombia.]
For months Chavez has said that a military pact signed in October between Bogota and Washington could set the stage for a U.S. invasion of Venezuela from Colombian territory.
The United States and Colombia dismiss that idea, saying their cooperation is aimed strictly at combating drug traffickers and Marxist insurgents within Colombia.
[Meanwhile the US is setting up the same armed dromes that are bombing Afghanistan.]
During a televised address on Sunday, Chavez ordered his military to prepare for war as the best way to preserve peace.
Colombia responded with a letter to the U.N. Security Council "about Venezuela's threats of using force against Colombia", a foreign ministry statement said, asking that the letter be distributed to all members of the council.
[…and by doing so to the war-approving Security Council, they are asking for war.]
The formal complaint could further anger Chavez, the fiery leftist revolutionary who once called former U.S. President George W. Bush "the devil".
"We've handed over a letter explaining in detail concerns Colombia has about remarks by President Chavez and other sensitive matters," Foreign Minister Jaime Bermudez told Reuters at an Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation Summit in Singapore. [Note that Bermudez is not called a “fiery fascist comprador.”]
"We have always said the door for dialogue is open ... we have still not had any contact," he said.
[A typical pre-war incrimination phrase, intended to show the other side as unreasonable.]
Recriminations have increased recently, with Colombia accusing Chavez of not helping to combat drug-running rebels hiding out on Venezuela's side of the border and Chavez characterizing Colombia as a lap-dog of the U.S. "empire". [“Empire” in quotations, because it’s not OK to call the US empire an empire.]
…………………………………….[snip]………………..more at Reuters.com…………….
And now, turning to the swine flu issue:
Media Myths on Swine Flu in Ukraine Raise Concerns
Recombinomics Commentary 13:36
November 11, 2009
Some 1.1 million people were infected with the flu on Wednesday, according to the ministry's estimates, down from a Tuesday high of 1.3 million.
At least 30 people had been infected by the virulent A/H1N1 swine flu virus, according to the most recent official data.
The …[preceding] comments in the same English language report continue to confuse. The Ukraine Ministry of Health has been putting out daily updates on influenza/ARI cases (see map), which now top 1 million. Since there is virtually no seasonal flu circulating in Europe, the vast majority of these cases are due to swine H1N1. Moreover, the clinical presentation of ninety fatal cases was presented. These patients were coughing up blood and their lungs totally disintegrated. A small number were tested and were shown to be H1N1 positive.
However, the number of lab confirmed cases is small because of limited testing. Consequently, the reports of over 1 million flu cases and 30 H1N1 cases gives the false impression that the number of H1N1 cases is a tiny fraction of the flu cases, when just the opposite is true.
The situation is further distorted by official reports of flu in European countries, which show the absence of serotypes other than swine flu (which represent well over 99% of flu cases), yet show one fatality in Ukraine, when the official tally of influenza/ARI pneumonia deaths is 189.
These media and agency reports create significant confusion, which is true for countries throughout Europe. H1N1 testing in most countries is minimal, so the vast majority of cases are not tested. However the flu0like cases are reported, creating an illusion that only a small portion of flu cases are due to H1N1. In neighboring Belarus, almost ¼ million cases were reported in the past week, but only a small percentage at classified as lab confirmed H1N1.
Thus, media and agency reports continue to confuse, by reporting influenza cases based on symptoms followed by numbers for lab confirmed cases which are a tiny fraction of the number of cases.
Moreover, even though the number of cases and deaths in Ukraine continue to rise, the sequences from the Ukraine cases have not been released.
There is an odd situation with the World Health Organization in Ukraine, regarding the viral analysis sequences. They normally release the results within a day or two, but in this case they’ve been holding on to the results for more than a week. It’s not clear to me why this is so, but there is quite a serious situation in Ukraine. You wouldn’t know that from reading some press reports, such as this one from the right-wing organ The New American, which says in part,
“Ukrainian health officials on November 6 claimed on the ministry’s website that over 800,000 people had been infected with some sort of acute respiratory ailment, and that at least three deaths were linked to the swine flu. Some news reports have claimed the number of confirmed swine flu deaths is actually above 10. But the outbreak is showing signs of easing, according to the Deputy Health Minister.”
“However, the government still responded with a heavy hand.”
Three deaths? Ten? But the official number, passing 213, can only reflect the available A-H1N1 testing kits in Ukraine, which are known to be few and far between. So the fact that there is indeed a crisis and not just a scare in the Ukraine is invisible to the right-winger, but it eludes the lefties as well, as in this piece from global Research:
“The World Health Organization (WHO) is continuing to deceive the world by stating sweeping assumptions about the Ukraine pandemic. Despite huge differences in transmission and deaths rates, the agency stated Tuesday that it was valid to assume that most of the cases of influenza reportedly combing through the Ukraine were caused by the pandemic A(H1N1) virus.
“There is very little left to be respected of the WHO. After months of using junk science and contradictions to conceal actual swine flu cases, they are now launching phase two of their deceptive operation: Convince the world that a more lethal strain of flu is still the same H1N1 virus.
“Infectious disease expert Dr. Donald Lau explained that the chances of the Ukrainian pandemic being the same H1N1 virus that has infected the world are very low. “The statistical probability of this being the same H1N1 virus are infinitesimally small.” Dr. Lau stated that the high viral transmission rates are extremely unusual for H1N1 and there is almost certainly some type of new virus, or a lethal recombination that has occurred.
The first thing to know is that Dr. Lau is apparently a dermatologist, not an infectious disease expert. When Dr. Lau says that the high viral transmission rate is unusual for H1N1, he is completely wrong. And he has no right to claim the WHO is using “junk science.” Dr. Henry Niman, who has been interviewed twice on this KBOO program, is in fact a respected virologist—I checked. And that is the difference between my reports and ideologically slanted reports on the Swine Flu: I have been checking my facts constantly on this subject since April. There is no new virus in the Ukraine, it is as the WHO has been saying, pretty much entirely swine flu. Due to the nature of its swift replication—and this is my opinion now—it has a secondary nature, just as it did in 1918, which at that time was confused with the plague. The hidden capacity for hemorrhagic disease has always been present in the oh-so-mild swine flu. And if you’re wondering why I said “just as in 1918,” it’s because this virus has been determined by real researchers right here in the United States to trigger immune responses in survivors of the 1918 pandemic, and that is documented in my blog URLs from months ago on KBOO.fm.
More of my opinion, which is based not on any medical expertise but on the assimilation, sorting, grading, and gestalt of the best research on the subject, is as follows: The H1N1
Virus has the capacity to create an overloading, massive attack on the immune system. It does this by passaging, which means that the virus grows in one person, is passed to another in amounts of some hundreds of thousands of viruses at a time, is passed to the next person in line in the millions, the next in the hundreds of millions, and somewhere down the line a sneeze expels billions of viruses. At that point in the series the Rubicon has been crossed, and the victim of that sneeze will suffer the “monster version,” the famous 1918 etiology, and will die swiftly with blue lips and disintegrated lungs. That is what is happening to some in the Ukraine today. At that point, the flu appears to be an entirely different, terrifying, Ebola-like disintegrator of bodies. Also at that point, anyone approaching the sufferer will be showered with billions of viruses, overwhelming the immune system, even in persons who have previously had the Swine flu, and those persons will be in mortal danger, and the pandemic deaths will spread quickly.
That is my opinion. And though we do not suffer the post-World War One malnutrition in this country, our diet is disastrous for other reasons. We don’t have masses of troops going off to war in crowded trains, but we crowd into buses and stadiums and prisons and churches, and the opportunity for infection is still there. This is the time to stop sneering at Ukrainians as if they were some silly and umbrageous population, and pay attention to the fact that we must prepare for the worst with Swine Flu. That means we need more ventilators and hospital beds available now and in the future, and if that degrades the profitability of the Health Denial insurance agencies, so be it. As for the vaccine, I deem it likely that it will be contaminated with thimerosal mercury and/or with squalene or other adjuvants, and I would take it in a minute if it were available, though in this amazing technologically advanced society of America in the Twenty-First Century it is not available. I get plenty of mercury from tuna and salmon, and I deal with it by purging it, and I’m not happy that it should be in the vaccine, but it won’t kill me. It might make me sick, but it won’t kill me. Whether children below a certain age should get it, I’m not sure, but I lean towards vaccination. Second-wave hemorrhagic Swine Flu could kill me, and you and your loved ones, too. There is a reason that our corporate masters at Goldman Sachs got the vaccine first: they have the privilege and the tax-supported riches to get the goods. Whatever problems the vaccine causes will, in my opinion, be negligible in the context of a full-blown 1918-style pandemic.