"The end of democracy and the defeat of the American Revolution will occur when government falls into the hands of lending institutions and moneyed incorporations." -- Thomas Jefferson

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by Tyler Durden

Friday, Apr 12, 2024 - 04:22 AM

Update(1329ET): Israeli media sources have claimed that Iran is poised to launch a major attack on Israel, but that the strikes were postponed "at the last minute".

Israeli news website Ynet reported Thursday that "Tehran decided to either delay the strike or change the nature of its response to Israel's attack on its consulate in Damascus, likely due to warnings from the administration of United States President Joe Biden. According to more:

The outlet cited Iranian semi-official news agency Mehr as claiming the attack could happen "maybe tonight," but soon after deleting the video with the assertion.

The last 48 hours has seen Washington raise the possibility that it could intervene militarily in defense of Israel if Iran retaliates for the April 1st Israeli attack on its embassy in Damascus.

Meanwhile, some international airlines, most notably German airline Lufthansa, have paused their flights to Tehran, citing heightened fears of imminent military action in the region. Russia has also taken steps to warn its citizens against travel to the region, particularly Israel, as the region remains at boiling point.

Oil Price underscores that as the waiting game continues, an Iran Strike Threat Hangs Over Inflation-Focused Oil Markets. The industry publication observes, "Oil markets have not visibly responded to the threat hanging over the Middle East, with Brent crude and West Texas Intermediate (WTI) trading down over 1% at 11:00 a.m. ET on Wednesday on inflation concerns that have led to speculation that the Federal Reserve may not implement a June rate cut."

Israel's military believes preparation for major attack currently underway...

Iranian officials have signaled they are taking a path of strategic patience but that a significant response is still coming.

We previously reported that Iran now considers Israel's embassies and diplomatic sites abroad as essentially fair game in the wake of Israel's April 1st airstrikes on Iran's embassy in Damascus, which killed two high-ranking IRGC generals and at least five others.

An analyst from the Middle East Institute, Jason Brodsky, observed last week that "There are reports Iran's regime may be eyeing hitting an Israel diplomatic compound in a third country via drones & missiles. Israel maintains embassies in Bahrain; UAE; Jordan; Egypt; Azerbaijan; & Turkey. I would keep an eye on Jordan."

Russia's Foreign Ministry had underscored in reacting to the Israeli strike on the Iranian consular compound "the inviolability of which is guaranteed by the relevant Vienna Conventions, to be categorically unacceptable." Indeed it was unprecedented for a nation's military to intentionally attack another state's sovereign embassy. Iran is outraged at the UN Security Council's silence

Claire's Observations:  The leadership of Iran may be many things, but one of the things it is not, is stupid.  They are waiting for what they believe to be the perfect time, to extract maximum value from a strike against Israel.  They've had their software crunch the numbers, and know precisely where the targets are which will offer them what they want here.  

Iranian patience is a strategic virtue, because being at full alert for a protracted period of time (as are Israel's soldiers) creates a stare of exhaustion, which , becomes very difficult to counteract.

But because Israel is desperate to see "US troops on the ground in Israel" ( considerably more than are already presently there, that is) do not discount the possibility of an Israeli "false flag", to be blamed on Iran, and off we go....

Please remember what Israel did to the USS Liberty, in their attempt to get the US to attack Egypt through a "false flag attack" on that ship.

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Iran feels obligated to punish Israel for attacking its diplomatic mission in Syria because the UN Security Council has failed in its duty, Tehran’s mission to the global organization said on Thursday.

The April 1 airstrike killed seven Iranian officers, including two generals of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) Quds Force. Israel has not officially claimed responsibility for the attack.

“Had the UN Security Council condemned the Zionist regime’s reprehensible act of aggression on our diplomatic premises in Damascus and subsequently brought to justice its perpetrators, the imperative for Iran to punish this rogue regime might have been obviated,” the mission posted on X (formerly Twitter).

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After six months of brutal fighting and the withdrawal of the Israeli army from the southern Gaza city of Khan Yunis, multiple Israeli and western commentators have argued that Hamas is winning the war and making military history in the process.

Sir Tom Phillips, a former British diplomat who served as Ambassador to Israel and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, wrote on 9 April in Haaretz that Hamas had succeeded in its objective of “obtaining the release of as many Palestinians held in Israeli prisons as possible, and of re-asserting themselves as a force to be reckoned with.”

He added that Hamas had survived “the IDF onslaught for longer than any war Israel has ever fought,” and in “doing so, they have thoroughly dented Israel’s much vaunted deterrent status. In brief, and with daunting potential long-term consequences for Israel, the IDF no longer looks invincible.”

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We've lost. Truth must be told. The inability to admit it encapsulates everything you need to know about Israel's individual and mass psychology. There's a clear, sharp, predictable reality that we should begin to fathom, to process, to understand and to draw conclusions from for the future. It's no fun to admit that we've lost, so we lie to ourselves.

Some of us maliciously lie. Others innocently. It would be better to find solace in some airy carb with a total-victory crust. But it might just be a bagel. When the solace ends, the hole remains. There's no way around it. The good guys don't always win.

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North Carolina authorities on April 10 reported that cows in the state tested positive for highly pathogenic avian influenza, as the state became the latest to impose restrictions on the movement of cows.

Testing of samples from North Carolina conducted by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) came back positive for the influenza, also known as the bird flu and HPAI, the North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services said.

We have spent years developing methods to handle HPAI in poultry, but this is new and we are working with our state and federal partners to develop protocols to handle this situation,” Steve Troxler, the state’s agriculture commissioner, said in a statement.

He noted that, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, there is presently no concern regarding the safety or availability of pasteurized milk or milk products in the United States. Some experts, though, have warned there’s not enough evidence to support that position.

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A man was arrested after he allegedly stripped naked in the women's locker room at a Planet Fitness gym in North Carolina and refused to leave even though a child was likely present.

Last Thursday, Christopher Allan Miller, a 38-year-old man sporting a beard, reportedly created quite a disturbance at a Planet Fitness in Gastonia, North Carolina, a city of 80,000 residents about a half-hour west of Charlotte. A woman inside the women's locker room there called 911 to report that Miller was allegedly "walking around, showing us his penis, and he won't leave."

She likewise told the dispatcher that the man claimed to be transgender: "It's a man, but he says he identifies as a woman." She also reiterated that Miller was "completely naked," wearing "literally nothing."

Other reports indicate that Miller also engaged in harassment, asking a woman to shower with him and petitioning her to rub him down with lotion. It is not clear whether this woman is the same woman who called 911.

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An 85-year-old woman in rural Idaho is being hailed for her heroic actions after she was the victim of a brutal home invasion.

The Bingham County Sheriff’s Office said officers were called to the home on March 13 and found a man deceased from gunshot wounds and the elderly homeowner also injured.

The home invasion began at about 2 a.m. when 39-year-old Derek Ephriam Condon parked a mile away and then broke into the home through a window with a screwdriver, according to Bingham County Prosecutor Ryan Jolley. He was wearing a military jacket and a black ski mask.

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Dopey Republican pundits and politicians have begun claiming that Joe Biden has “abandoned Israel” and has fallen under the control of Hamas, because this is a presidential election year and everything needs to be ten times dumber than usual.

Donald Trump said on the campaign trail on Wednesday that “Any Jewish person that votes for a Democrat or votes for Biden should have their head examined,” saying of Biden, “He totally abandoned Israel.”

Trump’s comments were made in response to Biden saying that Israel should declare a ceasefire of six to eight weeks, seemingly suggesting that Israel should do so without conditioning the ceasefire on the release of Israeli hostages. This hopeful statement was swiftly dispelled by Biden himself, however, with the president reiterating the same keep-killing-children-until-Hamas-gives-us-everything-we-want position that this administration has stood by for six months. Apparently Biden’s dementia-addled brain is just struggling to keep its story straight.

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What did the White House National Security Communications Advisor John Kirby say after the 1 April Israeli murder of seven aid workers in Gaza, six of them foreigners? “We were outraged to learn of an IDF strike that killed a number of civilian humanitarian workers yesterday from the World Central Kitchen (WCK).”

This seemingly strong statement by Kirby was, however, anything but. On the surface, it appears to be authentic, when in fact it is laced with poisonous intent with two clear purposes. Calling on Israel to conduct a swift investigation was nothing short of an attempt to avert demands for an impartial international inquiry into the killing. As WCK founder Chef Jose Andres told Martha Raddatz on “This Week”, ABC’s news programme, “The perpetrator cannot be investigating himself.”

Secondly, it aims to mollify the genuine outrage among the Democratic Party’s base and young American voters toward Biden’s perceived complicity in Israeli war crimes.

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More than 120 Palestinians have been killed and dozens more wounded in a single day after the Israeli military hit the war-torn Gaza Strip with airstrikes, the Palestinian health ministry says.

In a statement on Thursday, the ministry said that during the past 24 hours, 122 civilians were killed and 56 others sustained injuries after Israeli forces pounded different parts of the besieged Gaza Strip with airstrikes.

The deadly strikes were carried out on Eid al-Fitr, which marks the conclusion of the holy fasting month of Ramadan.

It added that some victims are still under the rubble and on the roads as the Israeli forces prevent ambulance and civil defense crews from reaching them.

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World Central Kitchen (WCK) announced Wednesday that another of its workers was gravely injured in a separate Israeli airstrike in Gaza on 1 April, Anadolu news agency reported.

“Just 15 minutes before our convoy was repeatedly hit, one of our brave Palestinian staff members was gravely injured in a reportedly deadly airstrike at al-Bashir Mosque in Deir al-Balah,” the food charity said in a statement.

The statement said the worker, whose name is Amro, sustained severe head and hand injuries while he was off duty at a residence near the mosque in the vicinity of the organisation’s warehouse and recently established kitchen in Deir al-Balah.

“When he was removed from beneath the rubble, Amro was brought to the same hospital that also received WCK’s fallen heroes.

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Tehran-backed Iraqi Hezbollah battalions are ready to arm and equip 12,000 fighters of “the Islamic resistance” in Jordan, Iranian semi-official news agency ISNA reported on Saturday.

“This threat is about opening a broad front against the Zionist regime, which is probably the most dangerous of all fronts because it could geographically threaten all the cities of the occupied territories and could facilitate attacks against many of the most sensitive targets, including Tel Aviv and [Israel’s] nuclear facilities,” Iran's semi-official ISNA wrote.

According to the agency, following Israel’s attacks against Iran's consulate building in Damascus, Iraq’s Hezbollah voiced its readiness to provide "Jordanian resistance forces” with light and medium weapons, anti-armor weapons, advanced missiles, and millions of tons of explosives and ammunitions.

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UN-coordinated food convoys are three times more likely to be denied access to north Gaza than other aid convoys, the UN humanitarian affairs office, OCHA, reported on Tuesday. Israeli authorities have not given a clear reason why, said OCHA Spokesperson Jens Laerke, speaking during the regular briefing by UN humanitarian agencies in Geneva. 

They very often deny and that is it, and it ends there. We do not get an explanation,” he said. 

In a widely reported telephone call last Thursday between United States President Joe Biden and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel committed to reopen the Erez border crossing into northern Gaza as well as facilitate aid delivery via the nearby port of Ashdod. 

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Turkey’s ban on some exports to Israel is poised to hit Israel’s construction industry hard at a time when the sector has already been badly damaged by the war with the Hamas terror group.

The imposed trade restrictions, mostly affecting goods upon which Israeli builders are dependent, will force importers to seek alternative suppliers from other countries, thereby incurring additional costs that will mean higher prices for consumers and businesses.

“It is a significant step by Turkey and a change in policy because until now, Turkey did not touch economic relations with Israel. Even during periods of high tensions on the political level, economic relations continued almost uninterrupted,” Gallia Lindenstrauss, a senior researcher at the Institute for National Security Studies (INSS), told The Times of Israel. “The action creates uncertainty in the business realm, which is never good for business relations.”

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Today, the Palestinian movement for national liberation is more popular than ever before and the Palestinian Resistance remains steadfast.

Israel initiated its war on Gaza last October with two clear goals, neither of which have been achieved, while meanwhile they have suffered severe blows on the military, security, political, legal, economic and public relations fronts.

When Israel began its campaign of mass murder inside the Gaza Strip, following the Hamas-led attack on October 7, it repeatedly named its two primary military objectives as the total annihilation of Hamas and the return of its political prisoners by force. 

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“Between approximately 4:15 a.m. and 6:00 a.m. (Sanaa time) on April 10, U.S. Central Command (USCENTCOM) forces successfully engaged three unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) launched from Houthi-controlled areas of Yemen,” CENTCOM said in a statement. 

US forces then “destroyed eight UAVs in Houthi-controlled areas of Yemen in self-defense” hours later, it said. 

The Armed Forces of Yemen’s Sanaa government, which is militarily aligned with Ansarallah, said in a statement on Wednesday that its drones and missiles targeted two Israeli ships and two US ships in the Gulf of Aden. 

Israeli vessels MSC Darwin and MSC Gina were targeted by Yemeni forces, as well as the US Maersk Yorktown and a US warship, the statement said. 

“The Yemeni armed forces continue to perform their religious, moral, and humanitarian duty towards the oppressed Palestinian people and in defense of dear Yemen.” whatreallyhappened.com

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The U.S. and Israel have been raising the alarm of a possible Iranian retaliatory strike in response to last week’s Israeli attack on an Iranian diplomatic facility in Damascus. The president once again pledged “ironclad” U.S. support for Israel in the event of an Iranian response, and the head of Central Command, Gen. Erik Kurilla, was reportedly headed to Israel Thursday to coordinate with Israeli leaders ahead of the expected strike. The administration is moving in the wrong direction. The U.S. ought to be distancing itself from Israel’s illegal attack, but instead the Biden administration is moving to shield Israel from the consequences of its own actions.

Israeli forces have routinely struck Iranian and other targets in Syria for more than a decade, but the attack on the consulate in Damascus was a major escalation both in terms of the location and the rank of the Iranian officers that were killed. The Israeli government appears to want to goad Iran into a military response to divert attention from the slaughter and famine in Gaza and to trap the U.S. into joining the fight. The president has made it that much easier for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu by volunteering to walk into the trap.

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One expects that anyone involved in politics will lie whenever they think they can get away with it to burnish one’s own image and while also distorting reality to promote policies that are being favored. Nevertheless, the record of high crimes committed by a series of presidents and their top aides since the so-called “war on terror” began has established a new low for government veracity. One would have thought that the fake intelligence fabricated by a group of Zionists in the Pentagon and White House to launch the misadventures in Afghanistan and Iraq would be as bad as it could possibly get, but the Joe Biden team has outdone even those unfortunately unindicted criminals by allowing itself to be maneuvered by friends in NATO and by Israel into situations that are one step short of nuclear war.

Listening to John Kirby, Lloyd Austin, and Linda Thomas-Greenfield speak suggests that a course of remedial English might be in order as they cannot articulate a sentence that is coherent, especially as they are frequently lying or being deliberately evasive. And then there is teleprompter Joe himself who can pout over the killing of 13,000 children in Palestine while also secretly sending weapons to the Israelis who are eager to slaughter still more based on the judgement that they will grow up to be “terrorists.” Joe’s idea of a exchange of views with the Israeli government is a threat to maybe do something unspecific followed by a strongly worded message from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu telling him to “Go to hell!”

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Right now, Bibi is fighting a “war.” It’s not an actual war, as there is no serious enemy that he is confronting. Basically, he is just slaughtering kids.

Hamas does exist, of course, and they do shoot rockets and sometimes blow up tanks, but the IDF rarely confronts them on the ground. The overwhelming majority of operations are bombings of civilian targets. That’s been the case for seven months.

Now, he’s planning to invade Lebanon. That is going to be an actual war. In fact, it’s a war that the Jews lost in 2006. Presumably, there is no plan to repeat that loss, and the Jews may well use so-called “tactical nukes.” They will, presumably, level Beirut almost as badly as they’ve leveled Gaza.

The Biden Administration has made it abundantly clear that this will be allowed, and will be supported unconditionally.

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All it would take would would be one phone call: “Stop now or the U.S. will do a U-turn. We will support Palestine rather than Israel tomorrow morning if you don't stop this genocide.”

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Authored by Charles Hugh Smith via OfTwoMinds blog,

We need to start thinking outside the current system, which has no solutions.

Our convictions about money are quasi-religious: heretics are burned at the stake. I'm not sure which stake I'll be tied to, because all the conventional choices--fiat currency, sound money (gold, Bitcoin) or debt-free currency (a.k.a. MMT)--are all fatally flawed.

To understand why, consider the wild cards in any monetary system: global trade and credit. Let's start with credit, which as David Graeber explained in his book Debt: The First 5,000 Years, has been an integral component of monetary arrangements since the dawn of civilization.

Taxes must be paid and seed purchased for the next crop, and so credit in some form--notched sticks, bills of sale, purchase orders, loans--is the lifeblood of commerce and state revenues. Credit naturally divides into short-term commercial credit--credit extended until the goods or payment are delivered--and longer term credit secured by collateral.

In traditional economies in which gold and silver are money, credit was generally limited to commerce, as credit based on loaning surpluses of gold and silver was limited by the scarcity of those metals. But the demand for credit did not diminish; rather, it increased, which is why small banks (that often went bust) emerged in the 1820s in America to meet the demand from small enterprises for credit to expand.

In an economy in which gold is the only money, credit is limited to a percentage of gold held in reserves, as much of the reserves must be held to fund customer redemptions / withdrawals. This limits the availability of credit.

In a fractional reserve banking system such as ours, one ounce of gold held in reserve is sufficient collateral for a loan 10 times the value of the reserve: $2,300 in gold enables the issuance of $23,000 in new money, i.e. a loan of $23,000, as every loan is new money created by the act of issuance.

What happens to "gold-backed money" when credit expands the supply of money expands 10-fold? The gold reserves are now spread over a much larger sum of money. The actual value of the gold backing each unit of money declines to a fraction of its initial value.

In other words, if credit is allowed to create money, then the "gold-backed" valuation of each unit is massively diluted. If credit is limited to surplus gold/silver loaned at interest, the sum of credit is a tiny fraction of all money in circulation.

Ancient Rome offers an example of a system in which only gold-silver were money. 

When the empire's silver mines in Spain were depleted, the supply of new money dried up and scarcity forced authorities to shave the actual silver content of coinage, the older higher-value coinage was quickly hoarded and left circulation: this is Gresham's law, that bad money drives good money out of circulation.

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The House Democrats, not the Republicans, Respond to Trump’s Plea to Kill the Unconstitutional FISA Act, while the Republicans Vote for the Police State Measure

The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) was passed as a result of the public hysteria that was orchestrated in response to a non-existent “Muslim terrorist threat” that was spun off of 9/11, the only claimed Muslim terrorist act in the US, an event now understood as a neoconservative operation to create “the New Pearl Harbor” necessary for their wars in the Middle East against Israel’s enemies.

The FISA Act was totally unconstitutional as it vitiated the US Constitution’s prohibitions against arrest and spying without warrants. The FISA Act is a police state measure and nothing else. That Americans, Congress, and the federal courts accepted it proves the absence of any commitment to freedom.

In this pre-election fundraising season we hear from Republicans how much they do for freedom and all that they are going to do to preserve it. But what do they really do?

Despite President Trump’s plea to the House Republicans, a plea from the Republican Presidential Nominee and in the opinion of many Republicans the actual President of the US as his reelection was stolen with Republican Party complicity by the Democrats, the Republican Speaker of the House and all but 19 Republicans tried to keep the unconstitutional FISA Act, which expires April 19, in force by re-authorizing it.

The Democrats, not wanting Trump, the next President, to have the power to do to them what they did to him, voted uniformly with 19 Republicans to kill the police state act Americans have lived under for many years by a vote of 226 against and 193 for.

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A former employee of Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis is reportedly giving information to Republicans amid their probe into how federal funds were used by her office.

On Thursday, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan appeared on Fox Business Network's Mornings with Maria to speak about a report from the Washington Free Beacon about an investigation into how Willis's office used federal funds, following information provided by a whistleblower.

"God bless the whistleblower [who] came forward," Jordan said. "We've talked with the whistleblower, she's giving information to the press, to us. Now the Department of Justice is looking into this. All kinds of problems with Fani Willis and this ridiculous investigation she's run on President Trump and others."

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Back in 2019, presidential candidate Joe Biden smugly vowed to, 'reverse Trump's detrimental' border policies.

Now in 2024, he declares that he'll reinstate Trump's border policies.

He takes us all for fools.

On Tuesday, the President said he's eyeing new executive action, reportedly to be revealed in the next few weeks, to institute a Trumpian shutdown of migrants arriving by the tens of thousands every month.

This is, apparently, a presidential power that's been hiding in plain sight for years - an existing authority that allows U.S. law enforcement to expel any individual caught crossing illegally into the country.

That would fix things fast.

And it would be long past due.

But, curiously, just three months ago, our 81-year-old Commander-in-Chief, who promises to single-handedly restore American democracy, complained that he was absolutely powerless when it came to immigration.

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US credit-card delinquency rates were the highest on record in the fourth quarter, according to a Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia report.

Almost 3.5% of card balances were at least 30 days past due as of the end of December, the Philadelphia Fed said. That’s the highest figure in the data series going back to 2012, and up by about 30 basis points from the previous quarter. The share of debts that are 60 and 90 days late also climbed.

“Stress among cardholders was further underscored in payment behavior, as the share of accounts making minimum payments rose 34 basis points to a series high,” according to the report.

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