Lambert and I, and many readers, agree that Ukraine has prompted the worst informational environment ever. We hope readers will collaborate in mitigating the fog of war — both real fog and stage fog — in comments. None of us need more cheerleading and link-free repetition of memes; there are platforms for that. Low-value, link-free pom pom-wavers will be summarily whacked.
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How to Gird Up You Loins Art of Manliness (Robert H)
New part of the body found hiding in the lungs LiveScience (Kevin W)
Cardiac impairment in Long Covid 1-year post-SARS-CoV-2 infection MedRxIv. Preprint, natch.
The presence of anti–SARS-CoV-2 antibodies does not necessarily reflect efficient neutralization International Journal of Infectious Diseases (Shunk). Since it seems to be making the rounds, please note the tart response from scientist GM:
This is irrelevant, it’s arguing over semantics. It is also trapped in the time warp of the publication cycle, as this whole exchange was made completely obsolete by Omicron.
Everyone will “have antibodies” at some level from here on, just as they do for the CCCs, it will not prevent reinfection.
And, of course, for the 43465436654th time, how did we spend nearly two years of pandemic with literally thousands people writing articles that show up on PubMed still not being aware that coronaviruses did not get suddenly poofed into existence in late 2019…
This is corroborating evidence of a massive program of euthanizing elderly Covid patients in Sweden, some of whom died hideous deaths! Why is there not greater outrage about this? I get people are upset about Ukraine, but a giant crime took place in Sweden, and West is mum! https://t.co/spyPGvLGlE
— Jeffrey Kaye (@jeff_kaye) April 4, 2022
Addendum: Just going to add particularly noteworthy information as it comes to hand. This piece contains a quote from a nurse that is harrowing. It can be found here: https://t.co/o11Y7jS3yp pic.twitter.com/GNGrrKfwNl
— ?Bree? (@BreezieLT) April 4, 2022
Are you surprised? pic.twitter.com/wt11zLXhCA
— Gabriel Hébert-Mild™ ⓥ (@Gab_H_R) April 5, 2022
‘All the shrapnel that’s in my back’: Defiant Robert Redfield blasts former CDC directors for criticism during Covid-19 STAT. Elite crybaby. He needs to grow a pair.
NATO to target China – Stoltenberg RT (Kevin W). The West is losing its mind:
NATO plans to deepen its cooperation with partners in Asia as a response to a rising “security challenge” coming from China, which refuses to condemn Russia’s ongoing military operation in Ukraine, the US-led bloc’s Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg revealed during a press conference on Tuesday.
US, UK, Australia to cooperate on hypersonic weapons under pact Al Jazeera (J-LS). Filed under India because one, potentially the, reason India is refusing to condemn or distance itself from Russia is that India was deeply offended by the AUKUS deal. Now the AUKUS members are kicking more sand in India’s face? This is up there with the US imposing more sanctions on China after the war broke out yet continuing to press China to side with the US and pressure Russia.
CIM @PiyushGoyal writes that Ind-Aus Economic Cooperation & Trade agreement is a harbinger of more to come.
— Dr. S. Jaishankar (@DrSJaishankar) April 4, 2022
Energy supplier gives out free electric blankets to customers as heating bills soar Independent. From earlier this week, still germane.
Le Pen’s poll surge rattles French bonds and bank stocks Financial Times
New Not-So-Cold War. Wellie, I was steeling myself to watch a Ukrainian snuff video, but was stymied because the one I was sent was on Telegram. You can use Telegram only if you have a smart phone or are willing to accept texts, which as a matter of principle I refuse (my dumbphone helps by auto deleting them after viewed, something I did not set up).
Norway’s border with Russia is the northernmost, the most stable part of the NATO-Russia frontier.The Norwegians want to keep it that way and recently have sharpened existing restrictions. You can get fined for touching ??, throwing stones at it, and now also peeing toward it. ? pic.twitter.com/bnsrrpULI0
— Mikhail Khodorkovsky (English) (@mbk_center) March 29, 2022
‘Bucha incident’ not to be used as pretext for inflaming situation: Global Times editorial. Global Times. I was waiting for China to clear its throat. Global Times is a house organ. Note:
Russia categorically denied it and presented the UN Security Council with empirical evidence of the Ukrainian side’s video falsification and other fakes….
It is rational to suspect that behind the indignation of the US and the West over the “Bucha incident” lies a profound double standard and a political purpose that is not single-minded. This is because over the years, the military forces of some countries have committed numerous crimes in killing civilians with impunity. According to incomplete statistics, as many as 100,000 Afghan civilians have died under US gunfire, and a significant number of them are children. Australian special forces have killed 39 unarmed Afghan civilians, including juveniles, by slitting their throats for “practice.” What’s more, in order to obstruct the International Criminal Court (ICC)’s investigation of US war crimes in Afghanistan, the US government went so far as to restrict the issuance of visas for ICC staff and impose sanctions on the court’s senior officials.
Press Briefing by Permanent Representative Vassily Nebenzia on the situation in the town of Bucha (Kiev Region) and related matters Permanent Mission of the Russian Federation to the United Nations
At UNSC, India Supports Call for Independent Probe Into Bucha Civilian Killings in Ukraine The Wire. J-LS: “Notice India condemns the killings but doesn’t accus Russia of being the perpetrator.”
The Bucha Provocation Moon of Alabama. Lambert: “Pre-satellite but useful timeline.”
Pentagon can’t independently confirm atrocities in Ukraine’s Bucha, official says Reuters. From yesterday, still germane.
Zelenskyy tells the United Nations Security Council to punish Russia or ‘dissolve yourself altogether’ Business Insider. All those uppers look to be getting the best of him.
Ahem…report below can be found here.
— Eva Karene Bartlett (@EvaKBartlett) April 4, 2022
Note latest Patrick Lawrence video shows Ukraine shelling a residential neighborhood in Donetsk.
I cannot verify this, but we do have some Russian-fluent readers who do prowl Russian sites who might be able to. This is from Aftershock.news, which seems to be a reader-supplied aggregator (it reminds me of Slashdot). If this story is correct, the idea that Russia is suffering from the sanctions is Western wishful thinking. Recall that financial analysts would look at China’s electricity generation and consumption to verify its GDP growth claims:
Was wird aus Gazproms Deutschlandgeschäft? Taggesschau. (guurst). Translation: What happens to Gazprom’s business in Germany?. The Internet translations of German suck, so I can’t make sense of this. But I can infer that Germany seized a bunch of storage facilities too, although though they are trying to pretend not (and in fairness, the Russian move to shift ownership into a new legal entity may not have primarily about allowing Germany to skirt secondary US sanctions but mainly about voiding the existing agreements to force Germany to enter into contracts based on current, higher gas prices). If I were Gazprom, any new deal with German utilities has to have a surcharge built in to pay off the value of the seized assets. Which is na ga happen. So no gas seems a likely outcome.
Sitrep: Operation Z Veterans Today
Zelensky Says Post-War Ukraine Will Be Like Israel, Won’t Be ‘Liberal, European’ Antiwar.com (Kevin W). Lovely. So Zelensky says he wants a super militarized Ukraine. I am sure Russia heard and is redefining its military objectives and negotiating terms accordingly.
The U.S. Has Its Own Agenda Against Russia Intercept Resilc cites:
The war in Ukraine is simultaneously a war of aggression being waged by Putin and part of a larger geopolitical battle between the U.S., NATO, and Russia. “We are engaged in a conflict here. It’s a proxy war with Russia, whether we say so or not,” said Leon Panetta, the former CIA director and defense secretary under Barack Obama. “I think the only way to basically deal with Putin right now is to double down on ourselves, which means to provide as much military aid as necessary.”
Biden’s Folly in Ukraine American Conservative. Resilc flags the subhead: “Moscow can no more lose the war with Ukraine than Washington could lose a war with Mexico.”
This was a big rumor overnight and is still getting a lot of play on Twitter but probably bogus. Nevertheless filling you in:
Total News Blackout: US General Captured Leading Azov Nazis in Mariupol (confirmations coming in) Veterans Today (jo6pac). I saw rumors about this last night but didn’t run them. This is consistent with the awfully desperate repeated failed efforts to fly clearly someone or someones important out of the Mariupol steel factory that is one of the last Azov holdouts. If the Russians do capture him, IMHO the highest and best use before returning him (assuming the stories of Ukraine torture of Russian POWs is true; I am told the videos are so graphic it is hard to see how they could be fake) is to take him to a few Russian hospitals, with cameras on him, and show him soldiers who have been castrated and blinded. That both documents that the Russians have him and gets the torture on record.
Versus “The Russian army captured the U.S Major General Roger L. Cloutier Jr. … in the besieged Ukrainian Azov camp in Mariupol” Politifact rates as False. However, the “proof” is a recent LinkedIn post, which only takes his credentials, not him, and a claim that he’s in Turkey.
However, another possibility is this rumor was the result of a big Ukie headfake to get the Russians not to simply pound the steel works back into the stone ages but instead induce them to go in to take potential high value captives alive, which would almost certainly lead to more Russian casualties.
Just so we are clear, these are communications being sent by the foreign military officers stuck at #Azovstal DIRECTLY to the #Russia|n military on site. It's not explained what means of communication are being used. #UkraineRussianWar #RussiaUkraineWar https://t.co/shDAGFth9S
— Gleb Bazov (@gbazov) April 5, 2022
I don’t see why the Russians should be shy if they nabbed some high value foreign targets in Mariupol, unless they thought embarrassing the West would reduce their cooperativeness in doing a hostage trade.
How Viktor Orbán Built His Illiberal State New Republic (resilc)
Humanitarian Catastrophe in Somalia: With the World’s Attention on Ukraine, Suffering Is Rising Elsewhere Der Speigel. Resilc: “…and Palestine, Syria, Iraq, Libya, Myanmar…….” Moi: “…and Yemen and Tigray…”
Harvard Law School ‘apartheid’ report leaves Israel’s defenders speechless Mondoweiss (guurst)
Imperial Collapse Watch
Clinton 2016 campaign, lawyer, tech exec in ‘joint venture’ to smear Trump, Durham alleges New York Post (J-LS). Um, last I checked, oppo is legal.
America’s Sexual Red Scare Matt Taibbi. One correction: the Puritans get a bum rap on sex. They advocated lustful sex….between married people. It was pre- and extra-marital sex that they opposed.
Our Famously Free Press
Twitter says no plans to bring Trump back with ‘free-speech’ advocate Elon Musk coming aboard Mercury News. We’ll see how long this stance lasts. Musk casually mentioned he might have to take over Twitter.
Facebook paid Republican strategy firm to malign TikTok Washington Post (resilc)
Nigerian humanist jailed for 24 years after pleading guilty to blasphemy Guardian. ChiGal: “Sometimes we forget what a long, hard trip it’s been and how much worse it could be.”
Ever Forward ship still stuck in Chesapeake Bay after three weeks Guardian (resilc)
Corporate Profits are Soaring as Prices Rise: Are Corporate Greed and Profiteering Fueling Inflation? Senate Budget Committee (Chuck L)
Antidote du jour. From Tracie H (send a very long time ago!): “Tricolor Poison Dart Frog at the Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach, California.”
See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.