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Category: topSource: yahooDec 3rd, 2023

The FBI-Tainted Whitmer "Kidnap Plot" You"ve Heard Next To Nothing About

The FBI-Tainted Whitmer 'Kidnap Plot' You've Heard Next To Nothing About Authored by Julie Kelly via RealClear Investigations, In a fiery exchange last month, CNN anchorwoman Abby Phillip told GOP presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy that there was “no evidence” to support his claim that federal agents abetted protesters at the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. Ramaswamy shot back that the FBI conspicuously has never denied that law enforcement agents were on duty in the crowd. He argued that federal officials have repeatedly “lied” to the American people about not only that investigation but one that has gotten much less attention: the alleged failed plot to kidnap and kill Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer of Michigan in 2020. “It was entrapment,” Ramaswamy said. “FBI agents putting them up to a kidnapping plot that we were told was true but wasn’t.” His zeroing in on the Michigan case highlighted an uncharacteristic development in contemporary politics, where progressives vigorously defend law enforcement power while conservatives view it with deep suspicion. Further, Ramaswamy’s linking of Jan. 6 and the Whitmer plot resonated with many on the right who want similarities between the two episodes exposed to the general public, especially the FBI’s reliance on informants and other paid operatives. On Oct. 8, 2020, Whitmer announced the shocking arrests of several men accused of planning to kidnap and possibly assassinate her. The case produced alarming headlines just weeks before Election Day; Democrats, including Whitmer, used news of the plot to blame Trump for inciting violence. Joe Biden commended the FBI for thwarting the abduction plan and, in a written statement issued the same day, claimed that “there is a through line from President Trump’s dog whistles and tolerance of hate, vengeance, and lawlessness to plots such as this one.” Biden continued that line of attack during campaign speeches in Michigan, a swing state that voted for Trump in 2016, and one Biden needed to capture to win the presidency. In the years since the election, the national press has given little attention to the case since the initial arrests, even though court documents have recast the episode as something more sinister. Instead of a heroic effort by the FBI to safeguard the country from domestic terrorists, it now appears to have been a broad conspiracy by law enforcement to entrap American citizens who held unpopular political views. The FBI’s tactics were first exposed by BuzzFeed in July 2021, when reporters Ken Bensinger and Jessica Garrison disclosed startling details based on court filings as the matter headed to trial. They found that the number of FBI confidential human sources involved in the scheme was equal to the number of defendants. “An examination of the case by BuzzFeed News also reveals that some of those informants, acting under the direction of the FBI, played a far larger role than has previously been reported,” they wrote. “Working in secret, they did more than just passively observe and report on the actions of the suspects. Instead, they had a hand in nearly every aspect of the alleged plot, starting with its inception. The extent of their involvement raises questions as to whether there would have even been a conspiracy without them.” Would there have been a conspiracy without the FBI? Shown: Defendants Kaleb Franks, Brandon Caserta, Adam Dean Fox, and from bottom left, Daniel Harris, Barry Croft, and Ty Garbin. Kent County Sheriff Six men ranging in age from 22 to 44 – Adam Fox, Barry Croft Jr., Brandon Caserta, Daniel Harris, Ty Garbin, and Kaleb Franks – faced federal charges of conspiring to kidnap and use a weapon of mass destruction. Eight others faced state charges. BuzzFeed recreated much of the defendants’ movements between March and October 2020, including attendance at “field training” exercises and the surveillance of Whitmer’s properties. While BuzzFeed offered the first account of the entrapment operation, further reporting by RealClearInvestigations, along with details revealed in court filings and trial proceedings, make the operation sound like something out of a Hollywood script. It features secretive cash payouts; drug- and booze-fueled parties; a convicted wife-beating FBI investigator; a career felon revealed as a longtime FBI asset and later accused of acting as a “double agent”; and a dramatic takedown scene at the end. Public defenders representing the accused have identified at least 12 FBI informants and three undercover FBI agents managed by FBI officials in numerous field offices responsible for framing the men. “In this Case, the undisputed evidence … establishes that government agents and informants concocted, hatched, and pushed this ‘kidnapping plan’ from the beginning, doing so against defendants who explicitly repudiated the plan,” defense lawyers wrote in a Dec. 25, 2021 motion. “When the government was faced with evidence showing that the defendants had no interest in a kidnapping plot, it refused to accept failure and continued to push its plan.” At the center of the action was the FBI’s ringleader, Dan Chappel, 34 years old at the time, an Iraq war veteran and contract truck driver for the U.S. Postal Service. Chappel, the official story goes, joined a group called the “Wolverine Watchmen” in early 2020 to burnish his firearms skills. Members generally interacted on social media. The government claimed Chappel became alarmed at alleged online chatter about killing police and took his concerns to a friend in law enforcement in March 2020. A week later, the FBI hired Chappel as an informant. "Captain Autism": Portrayed as a military leader prepping to overthrow governments, Adam Fox was actually a homeless man living in the dilapidated basement of a vacuum repair shop without running water or a toilet. X Over the course of the next seven months, Chappel “ingratiated” himself with the men, as one defense attorney described his method, with his eye particularly on Fox, 37, the reported mastermind of the plot. While the media portrayed Fox as a military leader prepping an army of “white supremacists” to overthrow state governments across the country, he was, in reality, a homeless man living in the dilapidated basement of a vacuum repair shop without running water or a toilet in a Grand Rapids strip mall. One co-defendant referred to him as “Captain Autism.” Fox’s lawyer, Christopher Gibbons, said Chappel took on a “father figure” role to his fatherless and destitute client. Fox and Chappel exchanged thousands of texts. Chappel drove Fox, who did not own a car, to various meetups and staged events while recording every moment to preserve as evidence against him. On at least three occasions, according to testimony offered at trial, Chappel offered Fox a prepaid credit card authorized by the FBI with a $5,000 limit to help him buy guns and ammunition; Fox, despite being broke, declined each time. Informants and their targets mulled over how to blow up a bridge outside Whitmer’s summer cottage in Elk Rapids; kill her security detail; take her to a nearby boat launch; and either abandon her on Lake Michigan or bring her across the lake to Wisconsin for a “citizen’s trial” over her lockdowns. Google Maps Chappel, known as “Big Dan” to the group, created encrypted chats and gave real-time access to his FBI handlers working out of the Detroit FBI field office as the farfetched plan unfolded. Informants and targets mulled over how to blow up a bridge outside Whitmer’s summer cottage; kill her security detail; take her to a nearby boat launch; and either abandon her in the middle of Lake Michigan or bring her across the lake to Wisconsin to stand a “citizen’s trial” over her COVID-19 lockdown policies. One discussion involved the implausible use of a military helicopter. From appearances, a demonstration at the Michigan state Capitol in Lansing on April 30, 2020 might well have been a law enforcement dress rehearsal for Jan. 6. Chappel traveled to the event with three members of the Watchmen later held on state charges. Some protesters were clad in military gear and carried firearms but could not enter the building. When Chappel told his FBI handler what was happening, the FBI ordered the Michigan State Police to stand down and allow protesters inside. News photographers captured the moment when protesters “stormed” the Michigan Capitol and called out for Whitmer, resulting in the same sort of optics produced on Jan. 6. The incident took on greater significance when it was revealed that Steven D’Antuono, head of the Detroit FBI field office during the Whitmer caper, was promoted to head up the Washington, D.C., FBI field office three months before the events of Jan. 6. In exchange for his work, the FBI paid Chappel at least $54,000 in cash. Part of that haul included an envelope, handed over by his primary FBI handler in December 2020, filled with $23,000 in cash as payment for a mission accomplished. (Department of Justice policy requires informants to be paid in cash.). The bureau also supplied Chappel with other personal items, such as a laptop computer and tires for his car.  Chappel also used a rented SUV, again funded by the FBI, to drive his targets to various locations as part of the trap. An FBI undercover agent known as “Red” showed defendants a video of a Chevy Tahoe being blown up, above, as a way of demonstrating his bona fides. Other informants were involved, too. A longtime FBI source named Steve Robeson, from Wisconsin,  organized a “militia” meeting in Ohio in June 2020 and pressured the government’s targets, including Fox and Croft, to attend as he wore a wire to record what was said during the event. Robeson arranged other events throughout the summer including at his remote property in Cambria, Wisconsin. He constructed a so-called “kill house” for the men to practice shooting. At one point, Robeson suggested the exercises could be used to “storm” a state Capitol building or governor’s residence. Robeson is a convicted felon several times over, including on charges of sex with a minor, with a rap sheet spanning at least nine states. He was paid roughly $20,000 for his involvement in the Whitmer caper. Prosecutors later accused him of acting as a “double agent” for allegedly tipping off one of the defendants that his arrest was imminent. Steve Robeson, an FBI informant with a multi-state rap sheet, built a remote Wisconsin “kill house” for the men to practice shooting. WOOD TV8/YouTube At least two other informants were tasked with managing Croft, who had been under FBI surveillance since 2019 for his “extremist” views, according to documents. It was later revealed that the informants, including Chappel, violated FBI protocol by getting drunk and high on drugs with their targets numerous times, sleeping in the same hotel, and suggesting ways to advance the kidnapping plan. At one point, Chappel took an oath to join a separate group called the “Three Percent Patriot Militia” group – one fabricated by the FBI – then convinced Fox to become the head of the Michigan chapter, all in an effort have the men believe Chappel was part of a nonexistent “militia” movement. Defense lawyer Gibbons described the ruse during the April 2022 trial as “free money, free bombs, daily contact for months, fake militia, build up vulnerable adult with a fake militia and a title of commanding officer, send him a federal agent to join his militia.” More behind-the-scenes machinations were disclosed when the defense uncovered hundreds of communications between the agents and informants that showed how they guided the plot every step of the way. One text suggests that the FBI and Chappel attempted to lure a disabled Vietnam War veteran named “Frank” into initiating a similar plan against Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam. “Mission is to kill the governor specifically,” Chappel’s FBI handler texted him in August 2020. Despite the FBI’s best efforts, the group of so-called kidnappers started to disband by August 2020. Chappel asked his handlers how to “put more pressure” on the individuals so no one would break off. To rally the increasingly uninterested group that month, Chappel proposed firing live rounds into Whitmer’s cottage and the residences of other governors, then sending the shell casings to news reporters. “Look at you bringing people together,” one of Chappel’s FBI handlers texted to him after he successfully kept the group intact. Even that wasn’t enough to solidify a kidnapping scheme so, according to numerous exchanges between the FBI assets and trial testimony from one cooperating witness, the FBI ran another undercover agent into the plot in September 2020 to tempt the men into trying to purchase bomb-making material. During a get-together in mid-September, an FBI undercover agent known as “Red” showed the group a video of a Chevy Tahoe being blown up as a way to demonstrate his credentials. The video had been produced by the FBI. At the same get-together, several FBI informants and “Red” took their targets on a reconnaissance mission to stake out Whitmer’s vacation cottage, the scene of the alleged prospective crime. It was the second time Chappel drove Fox to the property. (The governor and her staff were in communication with authorities for months as the entrapment scheme was under way; the FBI installed pole cameras and 3D devices around her property to record any activity to be used as evidence.) Chappel also drove the men to the location of the FBI arrest point in Ypsilanti, Mich., on Oct. 7, 2020, under a ruse to meet “Red,” who promised to sell them military-style garb, not explosive materials. Members of the FBI’s Hostage Rescue Team, whose missions include “high-risk arrests,” were there waiting. Richard Trask, fired FBI investigator: Charged in July 2021 for brutally assaulting his wife after a swingers’ party in Kalamazoo. WOOD TV8/YouTube But things went downhill for the government after that. Richard Trask, one of the main FBI investigators on the case, who signed the complaint against the federal defendants, was criminally charged in July 2021 for brutally assaulting his wife after a swingers’ party in Kalamazoo. Police body cam video showed a partly clothed, bloody, and apparently intoxicated Trask talking with police during his arrest. Reporters also found profane anti-Trump posts on Trask’s social media account. Trask was removed from the case and fired by the FBI in September 2021. Prosecutors removed Chappel’s two primary FBI handlers, Henrik Impola and Jayson Chambers, from the government’s witness list after defense attorneys accused Impola of committing perjury in a previous case and discovered that Chambers was moonlighting as head of a security firm on the side and posting inside information about the pending arrests on social media as a way to attract business. Henrik Impola, FBI handler: Removed from the witness list after being accused of perjury in a previous case. UpNorthLive/YouTube Robeson and his wife, Kimberly,  were charged with fraud  in December 2021 for convincing a couple to purchase a used SUV and donate it to the Robesons’ nonexistent charity, a crime committed while Robeson was working the Whitmer plot. Robeson also was charged separately with illegally purchasing a firearm as a felon; he threatened to plead his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination, so he also was not called as a witness. By the time the federal case went to trial in western Michigan in March 2022, Ty Garbin and Kaleb Franks had accepted plea offers and planned to testify against their remaining four co-defendants: Fox, Croft, Harris, and Caserta. Judge Robert Jonker allowed the defense to raise the entrapment issue but only after the government presented its case. That plan, however, did not last beyond the first day as defense attorneys struggled during opening remarks to explain their clients’ behavior without mentioning the key role of FBI informants and agents. Jonker suspended his own order – at which point the FBI essentially went on trial. The trial lasted four weeks. Prosecutors insisted the defendants were solely responsible for conceiving the plan but the defense argued the group’s activities amounted to little more than “crazy, stoned talk.” Chappel took the stand for the prosecution but his testimony appeared to backfire as his central role in the plot came into view. He also admitted he became an informant to pad his resume in hopes of pursuing a job in law enforcement. During closing arguments, the four defense attorneys emphasized the FBI’s misconduct while asking the jury for not-guilty verdicts. “[This] is unacceptable in America,” Gibbons said during closing arguments on April 1. “That’s not how it works. They don’t make terrorists so we can arrest them.” On April 8, 2022, after nearly four days of deliberation, the jury found Caserta and Harris not guilty on all charges; after 18 months behind bars, both men went free. The jury, however, could not reach a unanimous verdict for Fox and Croft, resulting in a mistrial. It was a shocking blow to the government. In what the Justice Department considered its biggest domestic terror case over the past few decades (until Jan. 6), prosecutors did not yet have a single conviction – an outcome practically unheard of for a department with a more than 90% conviction rate. “It felt so good, I was so happy. We did it, we beat them. We got justice,” Caserta told me in a post-trial interview in 2022. Prosecutors immediately announced they would retry Fox and Croft. A different version of Judge Jonker appeared on the bench in August 2022; the trial was marked by open hostilities between the judge and defense attorneys. Judge Robert Jonker: Declined to dismiss a juror accused of bias and of ties to Black Lives Matter. That juror became the foreman. At one point, Jonker took the rare step of setting a time limit for cross-examination of a key government witness. He also refused to allow defense attorneys to interview a juror suspected of bias against the defendants based on comments he had made to co-workers during jury selection and his affiliation with Black Lives Matter. Jonker repeatedly admonished both lawyers in front of the jury, accusing counsel of causing jurors to “tune out” and rushing them through important lines of questioning. Over objections by the defense, Jonker kept the man on the jury. He became the foreman. Croft and Fox were convicted on August 23, 2022 of conspiring to kidnap and use a weapon of mass destruction, and are serving out multi-year sentences in supermax prisons reserved for the country’s worst criminals. They are now appealing their convictions. In an August 2023 brief, Croft’s new appellate attorney, Timothy Sweeney, wrote: “It is staggering the extent to which the FBI and its agents/informants used excessive pressure, exploited the anger from COVID lockdowns and destructive summer riots, and manipulated emotional issues among vulnerable and excitable citizens. This included: nearly constant real-time monitoring of FBI’s communications with Fox, plus thousands of government-initiated texts/chats; the deployment of multiple paid agents/informants who sought to elicit and encourage extremist and violent behavior; and the FBI’s instigating, planning, promoting, and conducting of nearly all key events.” In response, the government wrote in a December 2023 motion that “there was no evidence that government agents or informants suggested the plot or offered more than opportunity and facilities.” Sweeney and Fox’s new appellate attorney, Steven Nolder,  further accused Jonker of severely hamstringing the defense by refusing to admit into evidence the hundreds of messages that showed extensive communication between FBI agents and informants as they advanced the plot. Jonker, in both trials, denied defense motions to allow the jury to see the communications. “These communications – constituted relevant evidence of the shocking degree to which Chambers, Chappel, and the other FBI agents/informants orchestrated this scam and generally engaged in incessant and oppressive inducement,” Sweeney wrote. Acquitted: The last three defendants charged in the Michigan state case.  Antrim Co. Sheriff's Office/ABC 7 Chicago/YouTube A recent verdict for the last three defendants charged in the Michigan state case may add weight to the appeal. An Antrim County jury in September 2023 found Willam Null, his brother Michael Null, and their co-defendant Eric Molitor not guilty of providing material support to an act of terror and illegally possessing firearms. The acquittals represented another blow to the overall case and a poor showing for the government; of the 10 defendants who went to trial, five were found not guilty and two were convicted after a second trial. Four others pleaded guilty—outcomes that represent a poor showing for both the DOJ and Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel. Nessel was so infuriated by the acquittals for the Null brothers and Molitor that she publicly criticized jurors as coming from “a very, very right-leaning county (were) seemingly not so concerned about the kidnapping and assassination of the governor.” Fox and Croft and the DOJ have asked for oral arguments. An appellate court in western Michigan could render a decision by mid-2024. “When I look at what happened in this case,” Croft’s public defender, Joshua Blanchard, said during closing arguments in the April 2022 trial, “I am ashamed of the behavior of the leading law enforcement agency in the United States. This investigation was an embarrassment, and we have to tell them this isn’t how our country operates. This isn’t how our justice system is supposed to work.” Tyler Durden Wed, 01/03/2024 - 21:00.....»»

Category: dealsSource: nytJan 3rd, 2024

The Rise Of Propaganda-Dependent Elites And Lonely Masses

The Rise Of Propaganda-Dependent Elites And Lonely Masses Authored by Robert Malone via Substack, In my opinion, one of the more important speeches provided at the recent Fourth International COVID/Crisis Summit, held last month in Bucharest Romania, was delivered by my friend and colleague Dr. Mattias Desmet. Many but perhaps not all readers of this substack will be familiar with his groundbreaking synthesis published under the title The Psychology of Totalitarianism. Others may recall my discussing Mattias’ theories and insights on various podcasts and with Mr. Joe Rogan, and the subsequent censorship response by Google and others when the terms “Mass Formation” and “Mass Formation Psychosis” were suddenly and explosively trending. Dr. Desmet, Dr. Jill Glasspool-Malone and I have spent many hours together since then, in our home, in his home, in Spain shooting the “Headwinds” films which were broadcast by the Epoch Times, visiting mutual friends, and in conferences such as ICS IV. I worked hard to make it possible for him to attend that meeting while maintaining his teaching schedule. He writes to me that there has been a concerted effort to convince him that I am “controlled opposition,” and to convince that he should disassociate from me. But, unfortunately for the propagandists and chaos agents, that is unlikely to happen as we have spent these many hours building a collaborative friendship and have been through thick and thin together. I steadfastly supported him through the academic attacks he has had, helped him build his Substack following, and defended him when the Breggins maliciously attacked and defamed him. These many concerted censorship and defamation attacks have taken a toll on him, as they have on me, but we both remain standing and continue our efforts to discern truth through the fog of the psychological war, the fifth generation warfare, which swirls around us. Mattias is now focusing on his next book, which looks forward towards how we can win the PsyWay battle for our minds, thoughts, and souls being waged against all of us by globalist Elites. As I listened to his speech at the ICS IV, I was amazed at how his thinking has continued to mature, and by the clarity of his thought and insights. Strangely, a few minutes into his speech the video feed cut out, and those watching the streaming video were not able to see what I was watching in person. Returning to the United States, his was among the first that I wanted to transcribe and post to this Substack, together with those of MEP Christian Terhes, Dr. Harvey Risch, Dr. Jill Glasspool-Malone, and Dr. Denis Rancourt. But no one seemed to be able to find or recover video or even audio recordings of Mattias’ speech. Finally, a recording was identified, and has now been uploaded both above and at the ICS IV website. Since that time, recordings of some of these speeches have been removed from youtube, and there have been efforts by unknown actors to even remove material from the ICS IV website archives. If you are interested in any of this material, you may wish to view and/or download copies sooner rather than later, or they may become scrubbed from digital history as has been happening with so many key resources concerning the global mismanagement of the COVID crisis. The history of the CIA since its founding is intimately wrapped up in Operation Mockingbird, a concerted campaign continuously developed since the 1940s to control U.S. and global media, reporting (and “reporters”), and academia. Together with MI5/MI6 in the UK, this “Mighty Wurlitzer” has been used to shape a narrative—a series of carefully promoted U.S. Government lies—which have dominated the worldview of literally all Western nation citizens. As Mattias explains in this lecture, the continuing advancement of these propaganda capabilities has been considered necessary to prop up, “legitimize,” and provide cover for a wide range of nefarious, self-serving actions on the part of a very small group of hereditary “Elites” who have sought to control the peoples, governments, and economies of the world—at the expense of the interests of humanity at large. The rest of us have paid an enormous price in suffering and psychological damage, which is rooted in a sense of disaffection from each other and society—loneliness. Perhaps one of the most positive aspects of the COVID crisis is that many, including myself and perhaps also yourself, have become aware that we are being manipulated, lied to, and forced to comply with the wishes of these Globalist Elites who exert their will via force, violence, and coercion on a global scale. The work of reporters Michael Shellenberger, Matt Taibbi (The Racket News) and so many others have picked up where Carl Bernstein once left off in documenting the Censorship-Industrial complex. We now have the documents and receipts demonstrating how thoroughly we have all been played. The question now is what to do about it. In his speech at ICS IV, Dr. Desmet provides a glimpse into his prescription for healing those of us who have been damaged, and his vision for how we can recover our sovereignty, personal psychological autonomy, and rebuild a more functional society devoid of the nefarious hidden hand of Elite-sponsored propaganda and psychological manipulation. I heartily recommend reviewing and carefully considering his thoughts, and I eagerly look forward to his new book in which he provides further details. Dear friends, A few weeks ago I gave a speech at the fourth International Crisis Summit in the Romanian Parliament. Below you find the text of the speech I prepared and the video recording of the speech I actually gave. I usually don’t prepare a speech, simply because for some reason I never stick to the plan. Ultimately, I always express the words as they come on the spot and at the moment. This time was no different—the text below and the actual speech are different. That being said, I hope you will read it. In the beginning I repeat some things about totalitarianism that you might be familiar with if you’ve listened to my interviews. But the rest of the text is all about the perversion of political discourse in our society and the need for a new type of politician who leaves propaganda and rhetoric behind and re-appreciates truth speech. Warm wishes, Mattias Prepared Remarks [ZH: emphasis ours] Dear members of the Romanian parliament, Dear audience, Dear ladies and gentlemen, As some of you might know, I wrote a book, titled “The Psychology of Totalitarianism.” It is about a new kind of totalitarianism that is emerging now, a totalitarianism which is not so much a communist or fascist totalitarianism, but a technocratic totalitarianism. I have articulated my theory on totalitarianism on so many occasions. I will only present the gist of it here and move on to a problem which is particularly relevant for an address in a political institution such as this parliament: the perversion of political discourse in the Enlightenment tradition. Here is in a nutshell what I articulated on totalitarianism throughout the last years: totalitarianism is not a coincidence. It is a logical consequence of our materialist-rationalist view on man and the world. When this view on man and the world became dominant, as a spontaneous consequence, a new elite ánd a new population emerged. A new elite that excessively used propaganda as a means to control and steer the population; and a population which lapsed more and more into loneliness and disconnectedness, both from its social and its natural environment. These two evolutions, the emergence of an elite that uses propaganda and a lonely population, reinforced each other. The lonely state is exactly the state in which a population is vulnerable for propaganda. In this way, a new kind of masses or crowds emerged throughout the last two centuries: the so-called lonely masses. People fall prey to mass formation to escape a pervasive feeling of loneliness and disconnectedness, induced by the rationalization of the world and the ensuing industrialization of the world and the excessive use of technology. They merge together in fanatic mass behavior because this seems to free them from their lonely, atomized state. And that is exactly the big illusion of mass formation: belonging to a mass doesn’t liberate a human being from its lonely state. Not at all. A mass is a group that is formed, not because individuals connect to each other, but because each individual separately is connected to a collective ideal. The longer a mass formation exists, the more solidarity they feel for the collective and the less solidarity and love they feel for other individuals. That’s exactly why in the end stage of mass formation and totalitarianism, every individual reports every other individual to the collective, or to the state, if they think that other individual is not loyal enough to the state. And in the end, the unthinkable happens, with mothers reporting their children to the state and children their parents. The lonely masses distinguish themselves in several respects from the physical masses of earlier times: they can be much better controlled, they are less unpredictable than physical masses, and they last longer, in particular if they are constantly fed by propaganda through mass media. The creation of long-lasting lonely masses through propaganda was the psychological basis for the emergence of the large totalitarian systems of the 20th century. Only if a mass formation exists for decades can it be made the basis of a state system. The emergence of lonely masses led to Stalinism and Nazism in the beginning of the 20th century and now it might lead to technocratic totalitarianism. I described the psychological processes involved in the emergence of lonely masses on many occasions, and I won’t repeat it here. Today, here, in the Romanian parliament, a political institution, I address politicians. I want to tell you that politicians have a particular responsibility in these times of emerging totalitarianism. Totalitarianism, as Hannah Arendt said, is a diabolic pact between the masses and the political elites. Political elites need to contemplate –scrutinize the ethical qualities of their speech. There is something wrong with political discourse. This is what I intend to say: political discourse is perverted. For instance, we got used to the fact that politicians, once they are elected, never do what they promised to do in their election speeches. How far are we removed from political virtue as described by Aristotle. For Aristotle, the core of political virtue was the courage to speak the Truth, or, to use the Greek term, Parrhesia, bold speech, in which someone says exactly this what society doesn’t want to hear, but which is necessary to keep it psychologically healthy. I am not so much accusing individual politicians here; I am addressing political culture in general. And even more, I am talking about a perversion that is inherent to the entire tradition of Enlightenment. Our society is in the grip of a specific type of lying, a kind of lying that is historically speaking relatively new, that emerged for the first time after the French Revolution, when the religious view on man and the world was replaced by our current, rationalist-materialist worldview. What am I talking about when I refer to this ‘new kind of lie?’ I am talking about the phenomenon of ‘propaganda.’ Propaganda is everywhere around us. Public space is saturated with it. Recent years have illustrated that abundantly, during the coronacrisis, during the Ukraine crisis, and now, even more clearly, during the coverage of the Israel-Palestine conflict on both mainstream and social media. It is not that I do not understand the motivation of those who choose for propaganda. They often start from good intentions. Or at least: somewhere, they do believe in their good intentions. Read the work of the founding fathers of propaganda, such as Lippman, Trotter, and Bernays. They believe that the only way for the leaders to keep control in society and to prevent society of lapsing into chaos is propaganda. The leaders cannot overtly impose their will anymore to the population. Nobody would accept that within a materialist-rationalist society. Hence, the only way to make the population do what the leaders want, is to make them do what the leaders want without them knowing that they do what the leaders want. In others words: the only way to control the population is through manipulation. The people in favor of propaganda will argue that we can never tackle the challenges of climate change and viral outbreaks through democratic means. They will ask: ‘Do you think people will voluntarily give up their cars and flying holidays? To escape disaster, we need technocracy, a society led by technical experts, and to install technocracy, we need to mislead the population, we need to manipulate them into technocracy.’ First of all, I want to tell you that I don’t believe technocracy is a solution to the problem. But that’s not what matters most. Let me tell you something: to try to create a good society for the human being through manipulation, is a contradictio in terminis. The essence and core of a good society is exactly the ethical quality of public discourse. Man, in the end, essentially is an ethical being, and to pervert man’s speech is to pervert man itself; to pervert political speech is to pervert society itself. To give up sincerity in order to create a good society is to try to build a good society by giving up immediately, from the beginning, the essence of a good society (!). Truthful speech is not a means towards an end, it is the end in itself; sincere speech is what makes us human and humane. This is crucial to understand: propaganda is not a historical coincidence, it is a structural consequence of rationalism. If you consider the psychological structure of our current society, it’s fair to say that propaganda is the major guiding principle. In a remarkable way, the pursuit of rationality during the tradition of Enlightenment didn’t lead to more Truthful speech, as the founding fathers of this tradition believed. Science would replace questionable religious and other myths; society would finally be organized according to reliable information instead of subjective conjectures. Now, a few centuries later, this turned out to be an illusion. There has never been as much unreliable information as now in public space. The materialist-rationalist view on man and the world, in a strange way, rather led to the opposite of what it expected. As soon as we started to conceive the human being as a mechanistic, biological entity, for whom the highest attainable goal was survival, it became rather unfashionable to try to speak the Truth. Speaking the Truth, the Ancient Greeks knew that very well, doesn’t maximize your chances on survival. The Truth is always risky. ‘No one is hated more than he who speaks the Truth,’ Plato said. Hence, within a materialist-rationalist tradition, speaking the Truth is something stupid to do. Only idiots do it. That’s how the fanatic pursuit of rationality led us astray, straight into the dark wood of Dante, ‘where the right road is wholly lost and gone.’ This materialist-rationalist view on man and the world—why do we actually cling to it? It loves to present itself as the scientific view on man and the world. Let me tell you that this is nonsense. All seminal scientists concluded exactly the opposite: in the end, the essence of life always escapes rationality, it transcends the categories of rational thinking. To name only one major scientist: in the preface of a book of Max Planck, Einstein claimed that it is a mistake to believe that science originates from supreme logical-rational thinking; it originates from what he called a capacity for ‘einfühlung’ in the object one investigates, which means as much as ‘a capacity to empathically resonate with the object you are investigating.’ Rationality is a good thing and we need to walk the path of rationality as far as possible, but it is not the end goal. Rational knowledge is not a goal in itself; it is a stairway to a kind of knowledge that transcends rationality, a resonating knowledge, the kind of supreme intuition the martial arts of the Samurai culture aimed for throughout their technical training. It is at that level that we can situate the phenomenon of Truth. This brings us closer to an answer to the question: what is the remedy to the disease of totalitarianism? Can we do something about totalitarianism? My answer is simple and straight: yes. The powerless do have power. Propaganda-induced mass formation is a fake, symptomatic solution for loneliness. And the real solution lies in the Art of Sincere Speech. My next book, which I am writing now, is all about the psychology of Truth. Truth, by definition, from a psychological point of view, is resonating speech, it is speech which connects people, from core to core, from soul to soul, speech that penetrates through the veil of appearances, through the ideal images we hide behind, the imaginary shells we seek refuge in, and reconnects the shivering and disconnected soul of one human being to that of another human being. Here we observe something crucial: sincere speech is the real cure for loneliness—it reconnects people. As such, it takes away the root cause of the major symptom of our rationalist culture—mass formation and totalitarianism. And at the same time, sincere speech also inhibits this symptom in a more straightforward way. It is well known that, if there are some people who continue to speak in a sincere way when mass formation is emerging, the masses do not go to the ultimate stage where they start to think it is their duty to destroy each and everyone who doesn’t follow the totalitarian ideology. At every moment we chose to speak out in a sincere way, no matter where this happens, in a newspaper or a television interview, but equally well in the presence of only one other person at the kitchen table or in the supermarket, we help to cure society from the disease of totalitarianism. You have to take this literally. Society, as a psychological system, is a complex dynamical system. And complex dynamical systems have the fascinating characteristic of so-called sensitivity to initial conditions. To put it simple: the smallest changes in one minor detail of the system affect the entire system. For instance, the smallest change in the vibration pattern of one water molecule in a boiling pot of water changes the entire convection pattern of the boiling water. Nobody is powerless. And hence, every single one of us is responsible. Each and everyone who speaks a sincere word and succeeds in truly connecting as a human being to another human being, in particular a human being with a different opinion, deserves to be mentioned in the books of history, much more than a president or a minister who engages in propaganda and fails to show the courage to speak sincerely. The more I study the effects of speech on the human being and on humans living together, the more hopeful I become and the more I see that we will overcome totalitarianism. We shouldn’t be naïve when we talk about the Truth. Endless are the atrocities in history committed by people who believed they possessed the Truth. Truth is an elusive phenomenon; we can enjoy its presence from time to time, but we can never claim it or possess it. Sincere speech is an art. An art we have to learn step by step. An art we can progressively master. That’s exactly why I started workshops on the Art of Speech—workshops in which we practice that art in the same perseverant, disciplined way as any other art is practiced. Practicing this art implies that we overcome our own fanatic convictions, and even more, our own narcissism and ego. Truth speech is this kind of speech which penetrates through what I call ‘the veil of appearances.’ To practice it, you have to be willing to sacrifice your ideal image; your public reputation. That is exactly what the Parrhesia in Ancient Greek culture meant: speaking out, even if you know that those who find their stronghold in the world of appearances will target you. Truth-telling can make you lose something. That is for sure. But it also gives you something. To be more psychologically precise: Truth speech makes you lose something at the level of the Ego and win something at the level of the soul. I am quite fascinated by the way in which sincere speech leads to psychological strength. I think Mahatma Gandhi provides us with a splendid historical example. A few years ago, I started to read his autobiography. I did so at the moment I started to realize that the only efficient resistance against totalitarianism is non-violent resistance. Of course this only applies to internal resistance, resistance from within the totalitarian system. External enemies can destroy totalitarian systems from without. That’s for sure. But internal resistance, as I mentioned, can only be successful if it is non-violent in nature. All violent resistance will rather speed up the process of totalitarization, just because it is always used by the totalitarian leaders to create support in the masses to destroy each and everyone who goes against the system. Once I realized that, I became interested in what Gandhi had to say in his autobiography. I was happily surprised to see the title: “Experiments on Truth.” And from the first pages, I learned that for Gandhi, the core and essence of non-violent resistance is sincere speech. His entire life, Gandhi tried to improve the sincerity of his speech. He did so in a simple, almost childish and naïve way, wondering every evening how sincere he had spoken that day, where he had lied or when he could have spoken more accurately or sincerely. And here is something important: in the beginning of his biography, Gandhi mentions something magnificent. He says: I actually had no major talents. I was not handsome as a man, I didn’t have much physical strength, I was not intelligent at school, I was not a good writer, and I was not talented as a speaker. But he had this passion for sincerity and Truth. And this man, devoid of any major talents, but with a passion for sincere speech, this man did something even the strongest army in the world couldn’t do: he kicked out the English of India. The better you start to see the almost endless horizon of possibilities offered by speech, the more you realize: it is words that rule the world. The human being can use words in a manipulative way, as pure rhetoric, indoctrination, propaganda, or brain-washing trying to convince the Other of something it doesn’t believe in itself. Or it can use words in a sincere way, trying to convey something to a fellow human being it feels inside itself. That is the most fundamental and existential choice human beings face: to use words in one or the other way. Dear politicians of Romania and abroad, this is what I want to tell you today: it’s time for a metaphysical revolution. And you are ought to play a major role in it. The series of crises our society goes through are nothing else than a metaphysical revolution, which, essentially, boils down to this: the switch from a society that functions according to the propaganda principle to a society that is oriented towards Truth. We need a new political culture, a culture that re-appreciates the value of Truth Telling. We need a new political discourse, a political discourse that leaves the shallow, hollow rhetorics, and propaganda behind and speaks from the soul, from the heart; we need politicians to become true leaders again, leaders who lead rather than mislead the population. *  *  * Watch the full speech below: *  *  * Transcript of Speech (00:12): Some of you might know me. I wrote this book titled The Psychology of Totalitarianism, a book in which I warned about two years ago that we have seen the collapse of fascist and Nazi totalitarianism in the 20th century, but that we might be at risk of ending up in a new kind of totalitarianism now, which is technocratic in nature, technocratic totalitarianism. I’m sure I’m telling nothing new to the people here, but for some other people this was quite shocking. Meanwhile, they banned my book at the Ghent University where I work as a professor from using it in my classes. So it’s a little bit strange to ban a book on… In which there is one for totalitarianism at the university, but they did so. (01:05): Well, I will tell you in a nutshell what my final analysis was on totalitarianism. I concluded in my book that totalitarianism ultimately is rooted in our materialist rationalist view on man and the world, which emerged or became dominant in our society about two centuries ago, and which put in motion at least two processes, one at the level of the elite and one at the level of the population. The new elite that emerged starting from the French Revolution onwards, I think made excessive use of propaganda to keep control over society. And throughout the last 200 years, propaganda became ever and always more important for the elite to steer society, to keep control of the population. And you can explain that which I won’t do now. (02:10): But in a psychological way, this is a straightforward consequence of a rationalist view on man in the world, I think the fact that the elite used more and more propaganda. And at the same time at least as important, was that there was a very strange evolution at the level of the population, the psychology of the population. Throughout the last few hundreds of years, more and more people started to feel lonely. They started to feel disconnected, disconnected from their fellow human beings and disconnected from their social environment. And the combination of the two, the emergence of an elite which used more and more propaganda and the emergence of a lonely population reinforced each other in a strange way. The lonely state, if a population is in a lonely state, then she is extremely vulnerable for propaganda. (03:07): So we had on the one hand, an elite who used more and more propaganda, who relied more and more on propaganda to keep control in the population, which became more and more vulnerable to it. And it was this combination of this elite and this population that led to what Hannah Arendt called the diabolic pact between the masses and the elite, the diabolic pact that ended up in the emergence of a completely new kind of state in the 20th century, the totalitarian state. That’s in a nutshell my analysis of the problem we find ourselves in now. And at the moment, I’m writing a new book in which I do not so much focus on the problem, but in which I try to focus on the solution. Can we do something about it? Can we do something about this emergent totalitarianism? I think we can. I really believe we can. And the longer I think about it, the more convinced I am that we can and that we shall find a solution. I think to put it in a nutshell, very concisely, totalitarianism in the first place is a psychological problem. It’s a psychological problem and the solution at a psychological level for totalitarianism is the rediscovery and the reappreciation in our culture, which is sick of propaganda, this new kind of lie that emerged about two centuries ago. Before the French Revolution, there was no such thing as propaganda as we know it now. Well, the solution for the disease of this society in a certain way, it’s very logical, is the rediscovery and the reappreciation of what I call truth-telling, true-speech, sincere-speech. My new book is about the psychology of truth, psychology of sincere-speech, and you can clearly see that truth-speech in the first place is resonating speech. (05:00): It’s a kind of speech that connects people from soul to soul, from core to core. I will describe this in a very technical and concrete manner in my new book. So in this way you can see two things. If you consider mass formation and totalitarianism to be the ultimate symptom of our enlightenment tradition, the ideology of reason, of our rationalist view on men in the world, then you can see that truth-speech or sincere-speech both inhibits the symptom and takes away the root cause of the symptom. And there’s a respect that it’s well known since the 19th century that if a mass formation, the crowd formation emerges in a society. And there are people, there are some people who continue to speak in a sincere way and they will usually not succeed in waking up the masses, but they will make sure that the masses don’t go to this ultimate stage where they start to be convinced that they have to destroy and eliminate each and every one who doesn’t go along with them. (06:06): That’s the first thing. Sincere-speech, you can understand that logically and you can prove it empirically inhibits the symptom, it inhibits mass formation. And at the same time, true-speech as a kind of resonating speech, as a kind of connecting speech takes away is the real solution for the root cause of the problem, namely the loneliness. True-speech, sincere-speech is what really connects people to each other. Mass formation in the first place seems to take away the loneliness. Lonely people become sensitive and vulnerable for mass formation because as soon as they start to belong to a mass, they feel not lonely anymore. But that’s an illusion. (06:53): A mass is a group that is formed not because individuals connect to each other, but because they all connect to a collective ideal. And the longer the mass formation exists, the more solidarity is sucked away from the relationship between individuals and injected in the relationship between the individual and the collective, meaning that in the end people feel much, much more love and solidarity for the collective than for other individuals. And in the final stage, this leads to this jarring situation in which parents start to report their children to the state. And the other way around, children start to report their parents to the state just because even the solidarity with their parents becomes less strong than the solidarity with the collective. So you can understand that perfectly if you understand the psychological mechanism of mass formation. (07:49): I think that the better you understand the psychological mechanisms involved, the better you see that truth-speech or sincere-speech indeed is the solution and that we are all responsible for contributing to the solution to the problem of totalitarianism. Society as a psychological system is always a complex dynamical system, literally. And complex dynamical systems in nature always have this fascinating characteristic of sensitivity to initial conditions, meaning that at a small change in a minor detail of the system has an impact on the entire system. For instance, a small change in the vibration pattern of one water molecule changes the entire convection pattern in a boiling pot of water. And in the same way, a minor sincere word spoken will have an impact on the entire society. (08:51): So we all have the responsibility to speak out and no matter where. We can do it in a television program, in a newspaper, but also at the kitchen table and in the supermarket. Also there, we will have an impact on the entire system. We can all contribute to the solution. We shouldn’t feel powerless. We all have power and that makes us all responsible. We should all do our best no matter where we are to speak out in a sincere way and maybe to really try to learn the art of truth-speech. I don’t think we should think in a naive way about truth. Thinking in a naive way about truth has caused a lot of trouble in this world, I think. Truth is something elusive, something that we can be in the presence of for a moment, but that we can never possess. Truth-speech is an art, an art we can learn and we should try to learn it because I think it’s the only way out of totalitarianism. If you want to… One of the best examples, I think one of the most inspiring examples at that level is Mahatma Gandhi, I think. (10:00): A few years ago I started to be interested in nonviolent resistance because I know that resistance inside of a totalitarian system can only be successful if it is nonviolent. That’s something very typical for resistance against totalitarian systems. And that’s why I started to read the autobiography of Mahatma Gandhi. And the first thing I learned there was that Mahatma Gandhi considered sincere-speech to be the core and the essence of nonviolent resistance. And he mentioned something wonderful in the introduction of his book. He says, “I had no major talents at all. I was not handsome, I was not physically strong, I was not intelligent at school. I was not a good writer and I was not a good speaker, but I had this passion for truth-speech,” He said, for sincere-speech. And time and time again, day after day, he tried to become more honest and more sincere every evening, admitting for himself. If he lied that day or if he could have been spoken in a more sincere way, then he did. (11:01): And in this way, this man, without any great talent became the most powerful man of India. He did something that even the strongest army in the world couldn’t do at that moment. He kicked out the English of India and that’s what we can do as well. Even a small minority of us is sufficient if we are determined and dedicated to truth and to sincerity, to break the power of the most impressive propaganda system the world have ever seen. We can and will and must do it. I think there are very hopeful historical examples of minorities, of people who changed the world, who changed the world. (11:40): I’d like to give only one example, Friedrich Nietzsche, the German philosopher thought that 100 people had been sufficient to change medieval society in the society of the Renaissance. The same can happen now. We are at the verge of a big metaphysical revolution, I think to use a concept of Michel Houellebecq. A revolution, which in the end boils down to this. We have to change from a society which is based on the organizing principle of propaganda, to society which is based on the organizing principle of sincerity. And I think each and every one of us who is here can contribute to it. And I hope we will all do so. Thanks. Tyler Durden Sun, 12/31/2023 - 07:00.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: nytDec 31st, 2023

3 dead, 1 injured in attack at University of Nevada, Las Vegas, just a few miles away from the deadliest mass shooting in US history

Three people were fatally shot and a fourth person critically injured in a shooting at University of Nevada, Las Vegas, campus, on Wednesday, police said. The suspected shooter also was found dead. Las Vegas Metro Police respond to a shooting reported on the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, campus, on December 6, 2023, in Las Vegas.Lucas Peltier/AP3 people were killed in a shooting at University of Nevada, Las Vegas, on Wednesday, police said.Another person was critically injured and the shooter was found dead, according to authorities.The incident occurred just a few miles away from the site of the deadly 2017 Las Vegas shooting.Three people were fatally shot Wednesday and a fourth person was critically wounded in an attack on the University of Nevada, Las Vegas campus, police said. The suspected shooter also was found dead.The attack just before noon sent police swarming onto the campus, which is just a couple of miles from the world-famous Las Vegas Strip while students barricaded themselves in classrooms. The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department advised the public to "avoid the area."Authorities gave the all-clear about 40 minutes after the first report of an active shooter.Police haven't released the identity of the suspect or the motive for the attack. The shootings took place in a city still scarred by an October 2017 attack by a gunman at the Mandalay Bay casino that killed 60 people and wounded hundreds more.It was the deadliest mass shooting in modern US history.Alerts went out across the campus after callers reported an active shooter to police at 11:45 a.m. Wednesday, said Adam Garcia, a university police official. He said officers found and "engaged" a suspect, who is now dead. It was not immediately clear how the suspect died.Students and professors on the campus of 30,000 barricaded themselves inside classrooms and dorm rooms.Student John Harris heard what he later realized was a gunshot as he was getting out of his car in the parking garage of an on-campus apartment complex. In the elevator, Harris said he got an emergency text alert text from the university."I wasn't sure what to believe," said Harris, 21, who ended up sheltering at a friend's dorm. "But as I came down to the street, and I saw there were a bunch of cops in the parking lot at the student union, I knew what I heard was a gunshot and this wasn't a drill."Professor Kevaney Martin took cover under a desk in her classroom, where another faculty member and three students took shelter with her."It was terrifying, I can't even begin to explain," Martin said. "I was trying to hold it together for my students, and trying not to cry, but the emotions are something I never want to experience again."Martin said she was texting friends and loved ones, hoping to receive word a suspect had been detained. When another professor came to the room and told everyone to evacuate, they joined dozens of others rushing out of the building. Martin had her students piled into her car and drove them off campus."Once we got away from UNLV, we parked and sat in silence," she said. "Nobody said a word. We were in utter shock."The university said on X that the shooter was at the Beam Hall, Frank and Estella Building, home of UNLV's Lee Business School, and that police were responding to an additional report of shots fired at the nearby student union.Las Vegas police posted on X that a suspect "has been located and is deceased" about 40 minutes after the initial alert was posted.Students and the community were alerted to the emergency by a university post on X."This is not a test," the university wrote. "RUN-HIDE-FIGHT."Student Matthew Felsenfeld said he and about 12 classmates barricaded their door in a building near the student union."It's the moment you call your parents and tell them you love them," said Felsenfeld, a 21-year-old journalism student.He said he didn't hear gunfire or see anyone injured but said he saw out the windows as police staged to enter the neighboring building. a short while later, police came and ushered them out.Pierre Lescure, a UNLV senior, was riding his bicycle from home to campus for a meeting when he said about 10 police cars drove past him."They drove too fast and there was no ambulance, just cops. It was clearly a shooting," Lescure said. "It could not be something else."UNLV's 332-acre (135-hectare) campus is less than 2 miles east of the Las Vegas Strip.In response to the campus shootings, the Federal Aviation Administration issued a ground stop for all flights coming into Harry Reid International Airport. The university is roughly 2 miles (3 kilometers) north of the airport.Tony Molinaro, an FAA spokesperson, referred a request to comment to Las Vegas law enforcement.Classes were canceled at the university, and UNLV's basketball game at the University of Dayton, Ohio, was canceled Wednesday night because of the Las Vegas shootings.The shooting occurred in a city still scarred by one of the worst mass killings in U.S. history, the Oct. 1, 2017, mass shooting at the Mandalay Bay casino in Las Vegas, in which 60 were killed and hundreds more wounded. The UNLV campus is just over 3 miles (5 kilometers) from that location.Associated Press reporters Terry Tang in Phoenix and Russ Bynum in Savannah, Georgia, contributed to this report.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: nytDec 6th, 2023

The Most Infamous Cases That Rocked the FBI

Over its long history of taking down terrorists, spies, killers, and thieves, the FBI has solved many of America’s most sensational crimes through painstaking investigation. Though the suspects were often men, women also landed on the FBI’s radar for their misdeeds. To compile a list of 40 of some of the biggest cases the FBI […] The post The Most Infamous Cases That Rocked the FBI appeared first on 24/7 Wall St.. Over its long history of taking down terrorists, spies, killers, and thieves, the FBI has solved many of America’s most sensational crimes through painstaking investigation. Though the suspects were often men, women also landed on the FBI’s radar for their misdeeds. To compile a list of 40 of some of the biggest cases the FBI has ever worked on, 24/7 Tempo drew information from the FBI website. These intriguing crimes captivated the public, fueled extensive media coverage, and required tremendous effort to crack – or in some instances, remain mysteries to this day. Our choices fall into a number of categories, including murder, kidnapping, and fraud. The FBI has not solved every case, as evidenced by some notorious unresolved crimes. For example, the murderer of the Black Dahlia, a young 1940s actress in Los Angeles, still remains a mystery. Additionally, airplane hijacker D.B. Cooper vanished without a trace after parachuting from a plane with stolen cash. (These are but two of the 22 famous unsolved crimes in America.) Other crimes reverberate beyond their criminality. The horrific church bombing in Alabama and murders of three civil rights activists served as turning points for the 1960s civil rights movement, helping spur the passage of landmark legislation. Additionally, the 1916 Black Tom explosion in Jersey City, later revealed to be orchestrated by German spies, prompted reforms to America’s espionage laws. While the 1956 kidnapping of infant Peter Weinberger from Long Island may not be widely remembered today, it prompted a pivotal change enabling the FBI to open abduction investigations after 24 hours rather than waiting a week, as previously mandated by law. (These are the most notorious kidnappings in American history.) Black Tom bombing > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1916 On July 30, 1916, German agents, trying to keep the U.S. – not yet fighting in World War I – from shipping armaments to the British and Russians, set off explosions at a munitions depot on Black Tom Island, off Jersey City, New Jersey, injuring at least a hundred people and killing four, including a baby. In addition, some $20 million worth of materiel was destroyed (amounting to about $500 million’s worth in today’s dollars). The event helped convince the U.S. to enter the war the following year. All 260 agents of the Bureau of Investigation, the FBI’s predecessor, worked the Black Tom case, eventually identifying most of the saboteurs, and Germany paid reparations after the war. The explosions led to the passage of the Espionage Act and the Sabotage Act, giving the bureau jurisdiction over the investigations into these crimes. Murder of an Federal agent > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1925 Agent Edwin C. Shanahan of the Bureau of Investigation was on the tail of habitual car thief Martin James Durkin – who had a long criminal record, including shooting and wounding police officers in Chicago and California – and tracked him to a garage in Chicago. When he attempted to arrest Durkin on Oct. 11, 1925, Durkin shot and killed him, marking the first time a BI agent had been killed in the line of duty. Durkin evaded capture until 1926, but was eventually captured, tried, convicted of Shanahan’s murder, and sentenced to 35 years at the penitentiary in Joliet, Illinois. 24/7 Wall St. The Most Notorious Kidnappings in American History George “Machine Gun” Kelly kidnaps an oil magnate > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1933 George “Machine Gun” Kelly and another gunman kidnapped wealthy oil tycoon Charles F. Urschel and a friend, Walter R. Jarrett, at Urschel’s home in Oklahoma City. The kidnappers released Jarrett, but held Urschel for a ransom of $200,000. Urschel was released nine days after the ransom was paid. Following an extensive investigation, agents zeroed in on Kelly and his wife, Kathryn Thorne Kelly, as partners in the crime. When agents confronted Kelly, he allegedly uttered the famous line: “”Don’t shoot, G-Men! Don’t shoot, G-Men!” as he surrendered. On Oct. 12, 1933, George and Kathryn Kelly were convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment. John Dillinger gang > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1933 Depression-era citizens were looking for an anti-hero, and they found it in John Dillinger. From September 1933 until July 1934, he and his henchmen robbed banks and staged jailbreaks, killing 10 men and wounding seven others along the way. By stealing a sheriff’s car and driving it over the Indiana-Illinois state line, Dillinger violated the National Motor Vehicle Theft Act, a federal offense that brought in the FBI. Agency director J. Edgar Hoover assigned Special Agent Samuel A. Cowley to head the bureau’s investigation of Dillinger. Cowley set up headquarters in Chicago, where he and Melvin Purvis, the special agent in charge of the Chicago office, worked with East Chicago policemen in tracking down all tips about the criminal. A tip from a madam of a brothel in Gary, Indiana, led agents to a theater in Chicago where agents opened fire and ended Dillinger’s life of crime. Yet Dillinger’s legend has lived on in several movies, including the 2009 film, “Public Enemies,” in which Johnny Depp played the criminal. Kansas City Massacre > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1933 Famous outlaw Charles Arthur “Pretty Boy” Floyd, along with associates Vernon Miller and Adam Richetti, hatched a plan to free their friend, Frank Nash, a federal prisoner. Nash was in the custody of several law enforcement officers who were returning him to the U.S. Penitentiary at Leavenworth, Kansas, from which he had escaped on Oct.19, 1930. At the Union Railway Station in Kansas City, the gang took action to free their friend and a shootout ensued, leaving two police officers, two FBI agents, and the prisoner dead. The brutality of the crime shocked the nation. Floyd was later killed by FBI agents, his last words being, “I’m done for; you’ve hit me twice.” Kidnapping and murder of Charles Ross > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1937 Late one evening in September 1937, Charles S. Ross, the wealthy president of a greeting card company, was driving toward Chicago when he was kidnapped by a gang led by John Henry Seadlund, a career criminal. When a fight broke out among the kidnappers, Ross was killed along with one of the criminals. In one of the most far-reaching FBI investigations at that time, Seadlund was later caught when agents traced the serial numbers of the $50,000 ransom money to him in Los Angeles. He later confessed to the kidnapping and murders, and was electrocuted in Chicago on July 14, 1938. Nazi spy ring > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1941 Before America and Germany battled each other on the battlefields in Europe, German spies had infiltrated the U.S. One Nazi spy ring, wih some 33 members, was organized by Frederick Joubert Duquesne, a South African native with a shady past (there were allegations of insurance fraud) who emigrated to this country in 1902, becoming a naturalized citizen 11 years later. The ring was busted with the help of William Sebold, a German-American who became a double agent for the FBI. By Dec. 13, 1941 – six days after Pearl Harbor – every member of the ring had either pleaded guilty or been convicted at trial. 24/7 Wall St. The Most Infamous White Collar Criminals of All Time Murder of the Black Dahlia > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1947 The grisly murder of 22-year-old Elizabeth Short, an aspiring actress, has fascinated filmmakers for years. “The Black Dahlia”, a fictionalized retelling of the murder, was made into a movie in 2006. When Short’s mutilated body was found in Los Angeles, she was quickly identified by police because of fingerprints taken when she applied for a job as a clerk at the commissary at an Army Air Force base in Lompoc. She had been arrested by the Santa Barbara police for underage drinking seven months later, so the Los Angeles police and the FBI had her mugshot. Short was dubbed the Black Dahlia for her dark outfits and as a reference to a recent movie, “The Blue Dahlia.” The FBI crisscrossed the country looking for clues, but to this day, no killer has been identified. Atom bomb spy ring > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1949 After World War II, Russia raced to build an atom bomb to keep up with the U.S. In 1949, the FBI learned that the blueprint for the American version of the bomb had been stolen several years earlier and turned over to a foreign power. The subsequent investigation led agents to Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, who were identified as the ringleaders in the plot to steal the information. Both were charged under the Espionage Act and found guilty. Although a campaign by sympathizers urged clemency, the two were executed in 1953. Robbing Brinks, Inc. > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1950 On the evening of Jan. 17, 1950, five heavily disguised thieves surprised employees of Brinks, Inc. in Boston as they were stowing away undelivered cash. They tied the employees up and made off with more than $1.2 million in cash and another $1.5 million in checks and other securities – amounting to about $15 million and $19 million in today’s dollars. It was the largest robbery in the U.S. at the time. The heist was the brainchild of Anthony Pino, a criminal well-known in Massachusetts. On Jan. 12, 1956, six members of the gang, including Pino, were arrested. Pino, along with eight others, were later tried and convicted, receiving life sentences for robbery, two-year sentences for conspiracy to steal, and sentences of eight years to 10 years for breaking and entering at night. Though it took many years, the FBI got their men. Downing of United Air Lines Flight 629 > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1955 A long-simmering quarrel between a mother and son led to a horrific crime over the skies of Colorado. On Nov. 1, 1955, United Air Lines Flight 629, left Stapleton Airport in Denver for Portland, Oregon. But soon after takeoff, a bomb on the plane exploded, and the aircraft crashed on a beet farm near Longmont, Colorado, killing all 39 abroad, including an infant, five crew members, and the wife of an aide to President Eisenhower. After combing over the passenger list, agents honed in on Daisie E. King, whose son, Jack Graham, would receive a substantial inheritance after her death. He was later identified as the maker of the bomb, convicted of first degree murder, and sentenced to death in the gas chamber. Kidnapping and murder of Emmett Till > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1955 The recent movie “Till” recounted the racially motivated killing of Emmett Till, a 14-year-old from Chicago who was visiting family in Money, Mississippi. When the young man was accused of whistling at a white woman, two men kidnapped and killed him, shooting him in the head and throwing him into the Tallahatchie River. Roy Bryant and his half-brother J.W. Milam, were accused of the murder, but an all-male, all- white jury acquitted them. Long after the crime, Bryant and Milam confessed to a magazine journalist. Both are now deceased. The killing galvanized the Civil Rights movement in the 1950s. ALSO READ: 22 Famous Unsolved Crimes in America Kidnapping of Peter Weinberger > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1956 The kidnapping of one-month-old Peter Weinberger was unusual because the Weinbergers were not well-to-do, but a middle-class family on Long Island, New York. At the time, the law required the FBI to wait seven days before investigating a kidnapping. After that period had elapsed, agents pinpointed Angelo LaMarco, a Long Island taxi dispatcher and truck driver, through analysis of his ransom note, demanding $2,000. LaMarco abandoned the baby, who was later found dead in a wooded area. He was tried and convicted of kidnapping and murder and executed in Sing Sing. Because of the crime, the FBI waiting period for kidnapping cases was shortened to 24 hours. Theft of a 33-carat diamond > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1959 Vera Krupp, a German actress and wealthy divorcee of a German industrialist, owned the massive diamond. The center blue-white stone weighed more than 33 carats and was valued at $275,000 in 1959 (almost $3 million today). When the diamond was stolen from the owner’s ranch outside Las Vegas, a cross-country hunt led the FBI to John William Hagenson, a fugitive wanted in connection to a similar robbery in California. Hagenson and several accomplices were found guilty, but Hagenson, the ringleader, was freed on appeal. Vera Krupp got her diamond back. After she died, Richard Burton bought it for his then-wife, Elizabeth Taylor. It was sold again after Taylor’s death. Alcatraz escapes > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1962 Stuck in the middle of forbidding San Francisco Bay, Alcatraz once housed hardened criminals such as Al Capone and George “Machine Gun” Kelly. Between 1934 and its closing in 1963, 36 prisoners tried to escape in 14 separate attempts. Nearly all were caught or died in the rough waters surrounding the prison. Three men, however, may have succeeded – John and Clarence Anglin and Frank Morris. When guards found their beds occupied by realistic looking dummies, the search began. The men were never found, but it’s considered unlikely that they ever made it across the bay to Angel Island. The FBI officially closed the case on Dec. 31, 1979, but the U.S. Marshals Service continues to investigate. Clint Eastwood starred as Morris in a film based on the episode, “Escape from Alcatraz.” Kidnapping of Frank Sinatra Jr. > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1963 Two former high school classmates from Los Angeles – Barry Keenan and Joe Amsler – hatched a plan to kidnap the 19-year-old son of singer Frank Sinatra, looking to grab a huge ransom. On Dec. 8, 1963, the younger Sinatra was abducted from a lodge where he was performing in Lake Tahoe. The kidnappers, along with a third man, John Irwin, demanded a ransom of $240,000 (about $2.3 million today), which the elder Sinatra collected and gave to the FBI. Sinatra Jr. was released and most of the ransom money was recovered. The three men were convicted of kidnapping after Irvin’s brother tipped off the FBI. Assassination of JFK > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1963 The nation still asks, “Who Killed JFK?” The assassination of the 35th president during a Dallas motorcade shocked the country. Lee Harvey Oswald was identified as the shooter after being spotted at the Texas School Book Depository. He also killed Dallas policeman J.D. Tippit. Oswald was later killed by Jack Ruby. Because Oswald was never brought to trial, we’ll never know if he really did it or what his motives were if he did. In 2013, special agent Robert Frazier discussed his part in the investigation as the bureau’s lead firearms and ballistics expert. At age 94, Frazier said he firmly believed Oswald was the assassin. “There has never been anything to indicate positively that anybody else was involved,” he said. Yet numerous conspiracy theories still abound about the killing. ALSO READ: The Most Infamous Cases of Betrayal in US History Church bombing in Alabama > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1963 The bombing of a church in Birmingham that killed four young African-American girls served as a pivotal moment in the fight for civil rights. The bureau focused on four KKK members – Robert E. Chambliss, Bobby Frank Cherry, Herman Frank Cash, and Thomas E. Blanton, Jr. – as the culprits. For lack of evidence and the reluctance of witnesses to talk, charges weren’t filed, but in 1977, Alabama attorney general Robert Baxley got a conviction of Chambliss and he was sentenced to life in prison. Cash died in 1994, but Blanton and Cherry were tried and convicted in 2001 after new evidence was discovered. Both were sentenced to life in prison, and both died while incarcerated. Mississippi Burning > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1964 June 1964 was “Freedom Summer,” a time when civil rights advocates went on a campaign to register African-Americans in the South to vote. The move incensed the KKK, who burned a church where Freedom Rider volunteers Michael Schwerner and James Chaney had recently spoken, hoping to lure the men back to the area. Schwerner, Chaney, and a third man, Andrew Goodman, were arrested for speeding by a Neshoba County deputy sheriff named Cecil Price. They were released but Price followed them, and their burnt station wagon was later found with no sign of the three men. After an extensive search, their bodies were found on a local farm. In 1967, seven of the 18 men charged in the crime, including Price, were found guilty – not of murder but of conspiring to deprive the victims of their civil rights – and sentenced to three to ten years in prison. One of the men who was acquitted, Edgar Ray Killen, was later charged with manslaughter and convicted in 2005. The horrific nature of the crime pushed Congress to pass the Civil Rights Act of 1964. D.B. Cooper Hijacking > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1971 D.B. Cooper appeared as a non-descript passenger when he boarded a Northwest Orient flight from Portland, Oregon to Seattle. Soon after liftoff, Cooper told a stewardess to get him four parachutes and $200,000 in $20 bills when the plane reached Seattle. After it landed, the flight’s 36 passengers were freed, and Cooper ordered the plane to fly to Mexico City. He never got there, instead parachuting out of the plane with the cash. The plane landed safely, but Cooper’s whereabouts remain a mystery to this day. He may have not survived the fall. A man named Richard Floyd McCoy (see below) was considered a suspect, but flight attendants couldn’t positively identify him as Cooper. The FBI dropped the case in 2016. Hijacking a flight and parachuted from the plane > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1972 On April 7, 1972, a passenger on a United Airlines plane en route from Newark to Los Angeles showed a flight attendant a grenade and demanded ransom. After landing in San Francisco, the hijacker commandeered the aircraft, releasing all passengers and one flight attendant. Threatening the crew with an explosive if any plane followed the aircraft, he then jumped out over Utah. An acquaintance of the hijacker fingered 29-year-old Richard Floyd McCoy, a Vietnam veteran, helicopter pilot, and avid skydiver. He claimed innocence, but was found guilty of aircraft piracy and interfering with flight crew members and sentenced to 45 years in prison. His appeal was denied by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1973. A year later, he and several other prisoners made a daring jailbreak. When the FBI tracked him down, he opened fire and was shot and killed. Because of the similarity in the crimes, he is thought by some to have been earlier hijacker “D.B. Cooper.” Kidnapping of Patty Hearst > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1974 Heiress Patty Hearst was a 19-year-old college student living in San Francisco when she was snatched by the Symbionese Liberation Army, an anti-government terrorist group. The SLA’s leader, Donald DeFreeze, wanted to gain attention by kidnapping the offspring of a rich and prominent. However, a tape surfaced in which Hearst claimed that she had joined the group, and she was seen holding a gun during a bank robbery with other SLA members. An investigation led agents to a SLA safe house in Los Angeles. Police surrounded the house and during a gun battle, the structure caught on fire. Six members of the group, including DeFreeze, were killed. Hearst wasn’t present, but was later captured and charged with robbery and other crimes. The heiress claimed she was brainwashed, but was nevertheless sentenced to seven years in prison. President Carter commuted her sentence after two years and she was later pardoned. 24/7 Wall St. 17 of the Most Terrifying Cults in History Donnie Brasco undercover > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1976 Breaking up an organized crime family often depends on having an agent infiltrate the gang. FBI agent Joe Pistone (aka Donnie Brasco) did this brilliantly for six years, fooling the hardened mafiosi of the Bonanno, Gambino, Colombo, Genovese, and Lucchese crime families in New York City. The information Pistone gathered eventually led to the downfall of those criminal enterprises. The life of Pistone was made into a 1997 movie, titled with his alias, and starring Al Pacino and Johnny Depp. ABSCAM > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1978 What started as a sting operation to snatch some art thieves turned into a massive public corruption scandal. The FBI set up a fictitious company Abdul Enterprises (AB(dul)SCAM) to lure in crooks selling stolen art. With the help of an informant, the agency recovered two paintings worth a combined $1 million. The operation also netted nearly $600 million worth of fraudulent securities. But there was more. As the investigation progressed, politicians in New Jersey and Washington, D.C. offered to help the fake company’s fake sheik obtain asylum in the U.S. There was also a bribe having to with gambling licenses in Atlantic City. In the end, Senator Harrison A. Williams, Jr. (D-NJ), six congressmen, and other corrupt officials were found guilty. Although questions were raised around possible entrapment, the guilty verdicts were upheld. A fictionalized version of the events were later made into a 2013, “American Hustle.” The Unabomber > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1978 For nearly two decades, Theodore Kaczynski, known as the Unabomber, had the country on edge, sending bombs through the mail that killed three people and injured two dozen. When Kaczynski sent the Bureau a 35,000-word screed, the agency took an unusual step and published it in the Washington Post, hoping someone could identify the author. It worked. The Unabomber’s brother, David Kaczynski, recognized his troubled sibling’s writings. The FBI arrested Theodore Kaczynski at his cabin in Montana on April 3, 1996, ending his reign of terror. Operation Greylord > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1984 Judges are supposed to uphold the law, but in Operation Greylord – named after the wigs worn by British judges – 92 public officials in Cook County, Illinois, were indicted, including 17 judges, 48 lawyers, eight policemen, 10 deputy sheriffs, eight court officials, and one state legislator. How did the FBI make its case? On a wiretap, the “bagman” Harold Conn was heard accepting bribes to be given to judges for fixing tickets. The most damaging spy in Bureau history > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1985 In 1976, Robert Hanssen began his career as an FBI agent, but by 1985, he was working for the former Soviet Union, slipping the Russians classified secrets in exchange for more than $1.4 million in cash, bank funds, and diamonds. The FBI knew they had a mole in their midst for many years, but Hanssen was adept at covering his tracks and wasn’t unmasked until 2001 when Russian documents pinpointed him as a double agent. After pleading guilty to 15 counts of espionage, Hanssen was sentenced to life in prison without possibility of parole. ALSO READ: The Most Notorious Kidnappings in American History Operation Illwind > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1988 Public corruption was once again the subject of an FBI investigation into bribery among defense officials and contractors. In 1988, the FBI, the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, the Defense Criminal Intelligence Service, the Air Force Special Investigations unit, and the IRS worked together to crack open the scheme. A tip from a whistleblower revealed that some Defense Department employees had taken bribes from businesses in exchange for inside information on procurement bids. The information aided some of the nation’s largest military contractors to win lucrative weapons systems deals. All told, more than 60 contractors, consultants, and government officials were prosecuted – including a high-ranking Pentagon assistant secretary and a deputy assistant secretary of the Navy. The case also reaped a total of $622 million worth of fines, recoveries, restitutions, and forfeitures. When the dust settled from the shocking case, the Procurement Integrity Act was amended in 1996 to tighten up procurement rules. Pan Am 103 bombing > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1988 Prior to 9/11, the world endured a shocking act of terrorism when Pan Am Flight 103 was blown up over Scotland, killing all 259 passengers, 190 of them Americans, as well as 11 people on the ground. A painstaking review of the wreckage led the U.S. and the U.K. to charge Libyan nationals Abdel Basset Ali al-Megrahi and Lamen Khalifa Fhimah with planting a bomb in the aircraft. A 2000 trial in a Scottish court acquitted Fhima but the following year convicted al Megrahi, sentencing him to life in prison. The Libyan government admitted to its part in the bombing and agreed to pay nearly $3 billion to the victim’s families. Al-Megrahi was released from prison after being diagnosed with cancer in 2009 and died in Libya in 2012. Transmitting images of minors online > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1993 A missing child report accidentally led agents to break up a child pornography ring. When a 10-year-old boy was reported missing in Brentwood, Maryland, agents went door-to-door to solicit clues. They came upon two men who had been luring children with gifts and the offer of vacations. It was discovered that the men had taken their criminal activities online, “chatting” with young children and setting up meetings and sharing child pornography images. The men were eventually convicted of abusing children, although there was no evidence that they were involved in the missing child case. In 1995, the FBI launched the Innocent Images Initiative (now renamed as part of the Violent Crimes Against Children Unit) to catch child predators. Since 2007, the FBI has won 6,800 convictions. Sadly, the missing Maryland boy was never found. Oklahoma City bombing > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1995 The morning of April 19, 1995, began like any other at the Federal Building in downtown Oklahoma City – but at 9:02 a.m., a bomb exploded in a truck parked outside the building, killing 168, including 19 children. Although it was first assumed the bombing was the act of foreign terrorists, the investigation led the FBI to ex-soldier Timothy McVeigh, who had rented the truck. McVeigh resented the government for its actions at Waco, Texas, two years earlier when the agents stormed the compound of a cult leader, killing more than 80 people, including at least 20 children. He was convicted and sentenced to death for the mass murder and executed on June 11, 2001. Atlanta and Birmingham bombings > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 0 Eric Robert Randolph went on a bombing spree from 1996 to 1998, setting off explosives in Atlanta and Birmingham, Alabama, that killed two and injured hundreds. The first was a bomb detonated at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta, killing one woman, though Randolph had called police to warn them about the bomb. (Security guard Richard Jewell was unjustly accused of being the bomber, and was considered the FBI’s prime suspect for some time.) Randolph subsequently bombed a lesbian bar and an abortion clinic in the Atlanta area and an abortion clinic in Birmingham – the latter explosion claiming the life of an off-duty policeman. Put on the FBI’s most wanted list, Randolph eluded agents until he was captured in 2003. He pled guilty to Federal charges stemming from the bombings and is currently serving multiple life sentences with no possibility for parole. 24/7 Wall St. The Most Infamous White Collar Criminals of All Time Bombing of American embassies in East Africa > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1998 Before 9/11, al-Qaeda was behind the bombings of the American embassies in Nairobi in Kenya and Dar es Salaam in Tanzania on the same day – Aug. 7, 1998. The blasts killed 224 people, including 12 Americans. FBI agents rushed overseas to comb through clues, which eventually linked the terrorist group to the crime. In 1998, Osama Bin Laden and several members of his network, including his military commander, Muhammad Atef, were named in an indictment based on the investigation. Both have since been killed. More than 20 people have been charged in connection with the bombings. Seven are serving life sentences in U.S. prisons. The violent acts prompted the agency to step up its anti-terrorism efforts abroad. The Melissa computer virus > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1999 Anyone using a computer today is hyper-aware of computer viruses. Less so a decade ago, when a programmer named David Lee Smith infiltrated an AOL account and used it to spread a virus under the guise of giving people access to adult content. By late March, the virus, named after a stripper Smith knew, had taken over the Internet. Although Smith had no intention of stealing money or information, his virus clogged up the email servers at 300 corporations and government agencies. Luckily, service was restored in a matter of days. With a tip from an AOL representative, the FBI and New Jersey law enforcement traced the virus to Smith, who was sentenced to 20 months in federal prison and fined $5,000. After the crime, the FBI established the National Cyber Division to stop online crimes. Anthrax attacks > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 2001 A nation on edge after the 9/11 attacks was again terrorized by a series of mailings carrying the poison anthrax. The anthrax-filled letters killed five and sickened 17. The FBI, the U.S. Postal Service, and other law enforcement agencies, including Federal prosecutors from the District of Columbia and the Justice Department’s Counterterrorism Section, banded together to track down the sender. The investigation narrowed the culprit down to Dr. Bruce Ivins. Before he could be charged, Ivins took his own life and the investigation formally concluded in February 2010 – but not before the FBI developed new scientific techniques to combat bioterror attacks. The collapse of Enron > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 2001 In 2001, the FBI broke open one of the most complex and far-reaching white collar crimes in the country’s history. After the Texas-based energy and commodities company Enron declared bankruptcy in December 2001, investors and employees were left penniless. And what started as a two-agent investigation expanded to a 45-member Enron Task Force, which combined investigators and analysts from the FBI, the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation Division, and the Securities and Exchange Commission, and prosecutors from the Department of Justice. After combing through 3,000 boxes of evidence and interviewing more than 1,800 people, agents uncovered shady accounting practices that enriched Enron executives. In the end, 22 people, including the chief executive of the company, were convicted of fraud. Beltway snipers > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 2002 In 2002, a pair of snipers terrorized the citizens of the Washington, D.C., area. It began with the murder of a 55-year-old man in a parking lot in Wheaton, Maryland. The next day, four more people were killed in a similar fashion while going about their everyday lives. All told, 10 people were gunned down and three critically injured, including FBI agent Linda Franklin. A cross-country investigation led agents to two men – John Allen Muhammad and Lee Boyd Malvo. Both were identified from their arrest records in Alabama and Washington state. Agents were able to identify the car registered to Muhammad, a blue Chevy Caprice with New Jersey plates. On October 24, FBI agents and other law enforcement officers arrested Muhammad and Malvo along with and seized the rifle they used in the killings. Malvo later admitted that he and Muhammad had earlier shot people in California, Texas, Florida, and Louisiana. Both were tried several times in different jurisdictions. Malvo is serving a life sentence without parole, and Muhammad was executed on Nov. 10, 2009. 24/7 Wall St. 22 Famous Unsolved Crimes in America Hurricane Katrina fraud > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 2005 Damage to the FBI’s New Orleans office did not stop the Bureau from investigating fraud related to Hurricane Katrina. Soon after the flood waters receded, the agency established the Hurricane Katrina Task Force to uncover fraudulent claims against the government. In 2006, The Government Accountability Office released a report estimating that potentially fraudulent individual assistance payments related to hurricanes Katrina and Rita (which hit the Gulf Coast a month after Katrina) ranged from $600 million to $1.4 billion. As of 2009, a total of 1,300 individuals have been indicted for Katrina-related crimes, and the Bureau now operates a Disaster Fraud Hotline where similar crimes can be reported. History’s biggest Ponzi scheme > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 2008 Outwardly, Bernie Madoff was a successful investment manager, while in reality, he was running the biggest Ponzi scheme in U.S. history. Promising high returns to investors, he instead took money from new clients to pay back earlier investors or for his personal use. When questions about Madoff’s business practices arose in business publications, his books were audited by the SEC. With his firm running out of money, Madoff was arrested on Dec. 11, 2008, after admitting to his sons that he was running a Ponzi scheme. Madoff was sentenced to 150 years in prison, but died in 2021 while in a correctional facility in North Carolina at age 82. The Bureau continued to investigate his associates, with 14 charged. Victims of his fraud can recoup some of their losses through a compensation fund managed by the Department of Justice. The monies come from assets held by Madoff that were seized by the government. Last year, the Justice Department announced that it had distributed more than $4 billion to Madoff’s victims. Sponsored: Tips for Investing A financial advisor can help you understand the advantages and disadvantages of investment properties. Finding a qualified financial advisor doesn’t have to be hard. SmartAsset’s free tool matches you with up to three financial advisors who serve your area, and you can interview your advisor matches at no cost to decide which one is right for you. If you’re ready to find an advisor who can help you achieve your financial goals, get started now. Investing in real estate can diversify your portfolio. But expanding your horizons may add additional costs. If you’re an investor looking to minimize expenses, consider checking out online brokerages. 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Category: blogSource: 247wallstNov 17th, 2023

The Most Notorious Cases in FBI’s History

During its long history, the FBI has solved some of the most famous crimes in U.S. history. From terrorist bombings of airplanes and Nazi spy rings to massive white collar crimes, the FBI nearly always gets their man (or men) – and occasionally their woman (or women) – after years of painstaking investigations.   To compile […] The post The Most Notorious Cases in FBI’s History appeared first on 24/7 Wall St.. During its long history, the FBI has solved some of the most famous crimes in U.S. history. From terrorist bombings of airplanes and Nazi spy rings to massive white collar crimes, the FBI nearly always gets their man (or men) – and occasionally their woman (or women) – after years of painstaking investigations.   To compile a list of 40 of some of the biggest cases the FBI has ever worked on, 24/7 Tempo drew information from the FBI website. Using editorial discretion, we chose high-profile crimes that captivated the public’s interest and generated significant media coverage and required a significant amount of effort to solve (or remain unsolved). Our choices fall into a number of categories, including murder, kidnapping, and fraud. Some of the cases on the list have set records in FBI history, while others have resulted in new laws being passed.   The FBI doesn’t catch every criminal. The killer of a young starlet dubbed the Black Dahlia in 1947 in Los Angeles has yet to be identified. The hijacker D.B. Cooper jumped from an airplane with a bundle of cash and disappeared. (These are but two of the 22 famous unsolved crimes in America.) Other crimes reverberate beyond their criminality. The deadly bombing of a church in Alabama and the killing of three young Freedom Rider workers galvanized the civil rights movement of the mid-1960s, and led to the passage of the Civil Rights Act. The 1916 Black Tom bombing in Jersey City forced the nation to change its espionage laws after it was found German agents were behind the act. The public may not recall the kidnapping of one-month-old Peter Weinberger on Long Island in 1956, but because of the crime, the FBI can now begin investigating abductions after only 24 hours, instead of the seven-day waiting period previously prescribed by law. (These are the most notorious kidnappings in American history.) Black Tom bombing > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1916 On July 30, 1916, German agents, trying to keep the U.S. – not yet fighting in World War I – from shipping armaments to the British and Russians, set off explosions at a munitions depot on Black Tom Island, off Jersey City, New Jersey, injuring at least a hundred people and killing four, including a baby. In addition, some $20 million worth of materiel was destroyed (amounting to about $500 million’s worth in today’s dollars). The event helped convince the U.S. to enter the war the following year. All 260 agents of the Bureau of Investigation, the FBI’s predecessor, worked the Black Tom case, eventually identifying most of the saboteurs, and Germany paid reparations after the war. The explosions led to the passage of the Espionage Act and the Sabotage Act, giving the bureau jurisdiction over the investigations into these crimes. Murder of an Federal agent > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1925 Agent Edwin C. Shanahan of the Bureau of Investigation was on the tail of habitual car thief Martin James Durkin – who had a long criminal record, including shooting and wounding police officers in Chicago and California – and tracked him to a garage in Chicago. When he attempted to arrest Durkin on Oct. 11, 1925, Durkin shot and killed him, marking the first time a BI agent had been killed in the line of duty. Durkin evaded capture until 1926, but was eventually captured, tried, convicted of Shanahan’s murder, and sentenced to 35 years at the penitentiary in Joliet, Illinois. ALSO READ: The Most Notorious Kidnappings in American History George “Machine Gun” Kelly kidnaps an oil magnate > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1933 George “Machine Gun” Kelly and another gunman kidnapped wealthy oil tycoon Charles F. Urschel and a friend, Walter R. Jarrett, at Urschel’s home in Oklahoma City. The kidnappers released Jarrett, but held Urschel for a ransom of $200,000. Urschel was released nine days after the ransom was paid. Following an extensive investigation, agents zeroed in on Kelly and his wife, Kathryn Thorne Kelly, as partners in the crime. When agents confronted Kelly, he allegedly uttered the famous line: “”Don’t shoot, G-Men! Don’t shoot, G-Men!” as he surrendered. On Oct. 12, 1933, George and Kathryn Kelly were convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment. John Dillinger gang > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1933 Depression-era citizens were looking for an anti-hero, and they found it in John Dillinger. From September 1933 until July 1934, he and his henchmen robbed banks and staged jailbreaks, killing 10 men and wounding seven others along the way. By stealing a sheriff’s car and driving it over the Indiana-Illinois state line, Dillinger violated the National Motor Vehicle Theft Act, a federal offense that brought in the FBI. Agency director J. Edgar Hoover assigned Special Agent Samuel A. Cowley to head the bureau’s investigation of Dillinger. Cowley set up headquarters in Chicago, where he and Melvin Purvis, the special agent in charge of the Chicago office, worked with East Chicago policemen in tracking down all tips about the criminal. A tip from a madam of a brothel in Gary, Indiana, led agents to a theater in Chicago where agents opened fire and ended Dillinger’s life of crime. Yet Dillinger’s legend has lived on in several movies, including the 2009 film, “Public Enemies,” in which Johnny Depp played the criminal. Kansas City Massacre > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1933 Famous outlaw Charles Arthur “Pretty Boy” Floyd, along with associates Vernon Miller and Adam Richetti, hatched a plan to free their friend, Frank Nash, a federal prisoner. Nash was in the custody of several law enforcement officers who were returning him to the U.S. Penitentiary at Leavenworth, Kansas, from which he had escaped on Oct.19, 1930. At the Union Railway Station in Kansas City, the gang took action to free their friend and a shootout ensued, leaving two police officers, two FBI agents, and the prisoner dead. The brutality of the crime shocked the nation. Floyd was later killed by FBI agents, his last words being, “I’m done for; you’ve hit me twice.” Kidnapping and murder of Charles Ross > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1937 Late one evening in September 1937, Charles S. Ross, the wealthy president of a greeting card company, was driving toward Chicago when he was kidnapped by a gang led by John Henry Seadlund, a career criminal. When a fight broke out among the kidnappers, Ross was killed along with one of the criminals. In one of the most far-reaching FBI investigations at that time, Seadlund was later caught when agents traced the serial numbers of the $50,000 ransom money to him in Los Angeles. He later confessed to the kidnapping and murders, and was electrocuted in Chicago on July 14, 1938. Nazi spy ring > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1941 Before America and Germany battled each other on the battlefields in Europe, German spies had infiltrated the U.S. One Nazi spy ring, wih some 33 members, was organized by Frederick Joubert Duquesne, a South African native with a shady past (there were allegations of insurance fraud) who emigrated to this country in 1902, becoming a naturalized citizen 11 years later. The ring was busted with the help of William Sebold, a German-American who became a double agent for the FBI. By Dec. 13, 1941 – six days after Pearl Harbor – every member of the ring had either pleaded guilty or been convicted at trial. ALSO READ: The Most Infamous White Collar Criminals of All Time Murder of the Black Dahlia > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1947 The grisly murder of 22-year-old Elizabeth Short, an aspiring actress, has fascinated filmmakers for years. “The Black Dahlia”, a fictionalized retelling of the murder, was made into a movie in 2006. When Short’s mutilated body was found in Los Angeles, she was quickly identified by police because of fingerprints taken when she applied for a job as a clerk at the commissary at an Army Air Force base in Lompoc. She had been arrested by the Santa Barbara police for underage drinking seven months later, so the Los Angeles police and the FBI had her mugshot. Short was dubbed the Black Dahlia for her dark outfits and as a reference to a recent movie, “The Blue Dahlia.” The FBI crisscrossed the country looking for clues, but to this day, no killer has been identified. Atom bomb spy ring > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1949 After World War II, Russia raced to build an atom bomb to keep up with the U.S. In 1949, the FBI learned that the blueprint for the American version of the bomb had been stolen several years earlier and turned over to a foreign power. The subsequent investigation led agents to Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, who were identified as the ringleaders in the plot to steal the information. Both were charged under the Espionage Act and found guilty. Although a campaign by sympathizers urged clemency, the two were executed in 1953. Robbing Brinks, Inc. > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1950 On the evening of Jan. 17, 1950, five heavily disguised thieves surprised employees of Brinks, Inc. in Boston as they were stowing away undelivered cash. They tied the employees up and made off with more than $1.2 million in cash and another $1.5 million in checks and other securities – amounting to about $15 million and $19 million in today’s dollars. It was the largest robbery in the U.S. at the time. The heist was the brainchild of Anthony Pino, a criminal well-known in Massachusetts. On Jan. 12, 1956, six members of the gang, including Pino, were arrested. Pino, along with eight others, were later tried and convicted, receiving life sentences for robbery, two-year sentences for conspiracy to steal, and sentences of eight years to 10 years for breaking and entering at night. Though it took many years, the FBI got their men. Downing of United Air Lines Flight 629 > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1955 A long-simmering quarrel between a mother and son led to a horrific crime over the skies of Colorado. On Nov. 1, 1955, United Air Lines Flight 629, left Stapleton Airport in Denver for Portland, Oregon. But soon after takeoff, a bomb on the plane exploded, and the aircraft crashed on a beet farm near Longmont, Colorado, killing all 39 abroad, including an infant, five crew members, and the wife of an aide to President Eisenhower. After combing over the passenger list, agents honed in on Daisie E. King, whose son, Jack Graham, would receive a substantial inheritance after her death. He was later identified as the maker of the bomb, convicted of first degree murder, and sentenced to death in the gas chamber. Kidnapping and murder of Emmett Till > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1955 The recent movie “Till” recounted the racially motivated killing of Emmett Till, a 14-year-old from Chicago who was visiting family in Money, Mississippi. When the young man was accused of whistling at a white woman, two men kidnapped and killed him, shooting him in the head and throwing him into the Tallahatchie River. Roy Bryant and his half-brother J.W. Milam, were accused of the murder, but an all-male, all- white jury acquitted them. Long after the crime, Bryant and Milam confessed to a magazine journalist. Both are now deceased. The killing galvanized the Civil Rights movement in the 1950s. ALSO READ: 22 Famous Unsolved Crimes in America Kidnapping of Peter Weinberger > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1956 The kidnapping of one-month-old Peter Weinberger was unusual because the Weinbergers were not well-to-do, but a middle-class family on Long Island, New York. At the time, the law required the FBI to wait seven days before investigating a kidnapping. After that period had elapsed, agents pinpointed Angelo LaMarco, a Long Island taxi dispatcher and truck driver, through analysis of his ransom note, demanding $2,000. LaMarco abandoned the baby, who was later found dead in a wooded area. He was tried and convicted of kidnapping and murder and executed in Sing Sing. Because of the crime, the FBI waiting period for kidnapping cases was shortened to 24 hours. Theft of a 33-carat diamond > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1959 Vera Krupp, a German actress and wealthy divorcee of a German industrialist, owned the massive diamond. The center blue-white stone weighed more than 33 carats and was valued at $275,000 in 1959 (almost $3 million today). When the diamond was stolen from the owner’s ranch outside Las Vegas, a cross-country hunt led the FBI to John William Hagenson, a fugitive wanted in connection to a similar robbery in California. Hagenson and several accomplices were found guilty, but Hagenson, the ringleader, was freed on appeal. Vera Krupp got her diamond back. After she died, Richard Burton bought it for his then-wife, Elizabeth Taylor. It was sold again after Taylor’s death. Alcatraz escapes > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1962 Stuck in the middle of forbidding San Francisco Bay, Alcatraz once housed hardened criminals such as Al Capone and George “Machine Gun” Kelly. Between 1934 and its closing in 1963, 36 prisoners tried to escape in 14 separate attempts. Nearly all were caught or died in the rough waters surrounding the prison. Three men, however, may have succeeded – John and Clarence Anglin and Frank Morris. When guards found their beds occupied by realistic looking dummies, the search began. The men were never found, but it’s considered unlikely that they ever made it across the bay to Angel Island. The FBI officially closed the case on Dec. 31, 1979, but the U.S. Marshals Service continues to investigate. Clint Eastwood starred as Morris in a film based on the episode, “Escape from Alcatraz.” Kidnapping of Frank Sinatra Jr. > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1963 Two former high school classmates from Los Angeles – Barry Keenan and Joe Amsler – hatched a plan to kidnap the 19-year-old son of singer Frank Sinatra, looking to grab a huge ransom. On Dec. 8, 1963, the younger Sinatra was abducted from a lodge where he was performing in Lake Tahoe. The kidnappers, along with a third man, John Irwin, demanded a ransom of $240,000 (about $2.3 million today), which the elder Sinatra collected and gave to the FBI. Sinatra Jr. was released and most of the ransom money was recovered. The three men were convicted of kidnapping after Irvin’s brother tipped off the FBI. Assassination of JFK > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1963 The nation still asks, “Who Killed JFK?” The assassination of the 35th president during a Dallas motorcade shocked the country. Lee Harvey Oswald was identified as the shooter after being spotted at the Texas School Book Depository. He also killed Dallas policeman J.D. Tippit. Oswald was later killed by Jack Ruby. Because Oswald was never brought to trial, we’ll never know if he really did it or what his motives were if he did. In 2013, special agent Robert Frazier discussed his part in the investigation as the bureau’s lead firearms and ballistics expert. At age 94, Frazier said he firmly believed Oswald was the assassin. “There has never been anything to indicate positively that anybody else was involved,” he said. Yet numerous conspiracy theories still abound about the killing. ALSO READ: The Most Infamous Cases of Betrayal in US History Church bombing in Alabama > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1963 The bombing of a church in Birmingham that killed four young African-American girls served as a pivotal moment in the fight for civil rights. The bureau focused on four KKK members – Robert E. Chambliss, Bobby Frank Cherry, Herman Frank Cash, and Thomas E. Blanton, Jr. – as the culprits. For lack of evidence and the reluctance of witnesses to talk, charges weren’t filed, but in 1977, Alabama attorney general Robert Baxley got a conviction of Chambliss and he was sentenced to life in prison. Cash died in 1994, but Blanton and Cherry were tried and convicted in 2001 after new evidence was discovered. Both were sentenced to life in prison, and both died while incarcerated. Mississippi Burning > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1964 June 1964 was “Freedom Summer,” a time when civil rights advocates went on a campaign to register African-Americans in the South to vote. The move incensed the KKK, who burned a church where Freedom Rider volunteers Michael Schwerner and James Chaney had recently spoken, hoping to lure the men back to the area. Schwerner, Chaney, and a third man, Andrew Goodman, were arrested for speeding by a Neshoba County deputy sheriff named Cecil Price. They were released but Price followed them, and their burnt station wagon was later found with no sign of the three men. After an extensive search, their bodies were found on a local farm. In 1967, seven of the 18 men charged in the crime, including Price, were found guilty – not of murder but of conspiring to deprive the victims of their civil rights – and sentenced to three to ten years in prison. One of the men who was acquitted, Edgar Ray Killen, was later charged with manslaughter and convicted in 2005. The horrific nature of the crime pushed Congress to pass the Civil Rights Act of 1964. D.B. Cooper Hijacking > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1971 D.B. Cooper appeared as a non-descript passenger when he boarded a Northwest Orient flight from Portland, Oregon to Seattle. Soon after liftoff, Cooper told a stewardess to get him four parachutes and $200,000 in $20 bills when the plane reached Seattle. After it landed, the flight’s 36 passengers were freed, and Cooper ordered the plane to fly to Mexico City. He never got there, instead parachuting out of the plane with the cash. The plane landed safely, but Cooper’s whereabouts remain a mystery to this day. He may have not survived the fall. A man named Richard Floyd McCoy (see below) was considered a suspect, but flight attendants couldn’t positively identify him as Cooper. The FBI dropped the case in 2016. Hijacking a flight and parachuted from the plane > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1972 On April 7, 1972, a passenger on a United Airlines plane en route from Newark to Los Angeles showed a flight attendant a grenade and demanded ransom. After landing in San Francisco, the hijacker commandeered the aircraft, releasing all passengers and one flight attendant. Threatening the crew with an explosive if any plane followed the aircraft, he then jumped out over Utah. An acquaintance of the hijacker fingered 29-year-old Richard Floyd McCoy, a Vietnam veteran, helicopter pilot, and avid skydiver. He claimed innocence, but was found guilty of aircraft piracy and interfering with flight crew members and sentenced to 45 years in prison. His appeal was denied by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1973. A year later, he and several other prisoners made a daring jailbreak. When the FBI tracked him down, he opened fire and was shot and killed. Because of the similarity in the crimes, he is thought by some to have been earlier hijacker “D.B. Cooper.” Kidnapping of Patty Hearst > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1974 Heiress Patty Hearst was a 19-year-old college student living in San Francisco when she was snatched by the Symbionese Liberation Army, an anti-government terrorist group. The SLA’s leader, Donald DeFreeze, wanted to gain attention by kidnapping the offspring of a rich and prominent. However, a tape surfaced in which Hearst claimed that she had joined the group, and she was seen holding a gun during a bank robbery with other SLA members. An investigation led agents to a SLA safe house in Los Angeles. Police surrounded the house and during a gun battle, the structure caught on fire. Six members of the group, including DeFreeze, were killed. Hearst wasn’t present, but was later captured and charged with robbery and other crimes. The heiress claimed she was brainwashed, but was nevertheless sentenced to seven years in prison. President Carter commuted her sentence after two years and she was later pardoned. ALSO READ: 17 of the Most Terrifying Cults in History Donnie Brasco undercover > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1976 Breaking up an organized crime family often depends on having an agent infiltrate the gang. FBI agent Joe Pistone (aka Donnie Brasco) did this brilliantly for six years, fooling the hardened mafiosi of the Bonanno, Gambino, Colombo, Genovese, and Lucchese crime families in New York City. The information Pistone gathered eventually led to the downfall of those criminal enterprises. The life of Pistone was made into a 1997 movie, titled with his alias, and starring Al Pacino and Johnny Depp. ABSCAM > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1978 What started as a sting operation to snatch some art thieves turned into a massive public corruption scandal. The FBI set up a fictitious company Abdul Enterprises (AB(dul)SCAM) to lure in crooks selling stolen art. With the help of an informant, the agency recovered two paintings worth a combined $1 million. The operation also netted nearly $600 million worth of fraudulent securities. But there was more. As the investigation progressed, politicians in New Jersey and Washington, D.C. offered to help the fake company’s fake sheik obtain asylum in the U.S. There was also a bribe having to with gambling licenses in Atlantic City. In the end, Senator Harrison A. Williams, Jr. (D-NJ), six congressmen, and other corrupt officials were found guilty. Although questions were raised around possible entrapment, the guilty verdicts were upheld. A fictionalized version of the events were later made into a 2013, “American Hustle.” The Unabomber > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1978 For nearly two decades, Theodore Kaczynski, known as the Unabomber, had the country on edge, sending bombs through the mail that killed three people and injured two dozen. When Kaczynski sent the Bureau a 35,000-word screed, the agency took an unusual step and published it in the Washington Post, hoping someone could identify the author. It worked. The Unabomber’s brother, David Kaczynski, recognized his troubled sibling’s writings. The FBI arrested Theodore Kaczynski at his cabin in Montana on April 3, 1996, ending his reign of terror. Operation Greylord > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1984 Judges are supposed to uphold the law, but in Operation Greylord – named after the wigs worn by British judges – 92 public officials in Cook County, Illinois, were indicted, including 17 judges, 48 lawyers, eight policemen, 10 deputy sheriffs, eight court officials, and one state legislator. How did the FBI make its case? On a wiretap, the “bagman” Harold Conn was heard accepting bribes to be given to judges for fixing tickets. The most damaging spy in Bureau history > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1985 In 1976, Robert Hanssen began his career as an FBI agent, but by 1985, he was working for the former Soviet Union, slipping the Russians classified secrets in exchange for more than $1.4 million in cash, bank funds, and diamonds. The FBI knew they had a mole in their midst for many years, but Hanssen was adept at covering his tracks and wasn’t unmasked until 2001 when Russian documents pinpointed him as a double agent. After pleading guilty to 15 counts of espionage, Hanssen was sentenced to life in prison without possibility of parole. 24/7 Wall St. The Most Notorious Kidnappings in American History Operation Illwind > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1988 Public corruption was once again the subject of an FBI investigation into bribery among defense officials and contractors. In 1988, the FBI, the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, the Defense Criminal Intelligence Service, the Air Force Special Investigations unit, and the IRS worked together to crack open the scheme. A tip from a whistleblower revealed that some Defense Department employees had taken bribes from businesses in exchange for inside information on procurement bids. The information aided some of the nation’s largest military contractors to win lucrative weapons systems deals. All told, more than 60 contractors, consultants, and government officials were prosecuted – including a high-ranking Pentagon assistant secretary and a deputy assistant secretary of the Navy. The case also reaped a total of $622 million worth of fines, recoveries, restitutions, and forfeitures. When the dust settled from the shocking case, the Procurement Integrity Act was amended in 1996 to tighten up procurement rules. Pan Am 103 bombing > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1988 Prior to 9/11, the world endured a shocking act of terrorism when Pan Am Flight 103 was blown up over Scotland, killing all 259 passengers, 190 of them Americans, as well as 11 people on the ground. A painstaking review of the wreckage led the U.S. and the U.K. to charge Libyan nationals Abdel Basset Ali al-Megrahi and Lamen Khalifa Fhimah with planting a bomb in the aircraft. A 2000 trial in a Scottish court acquitted Fhima but the following year convicted al Megrahi, sentencing him to life in prison. The Libyan government admitted to its part in the bombing and agreed to pay nearly $3 billion to the victim’s families. Al-Megrahi was released from prison after being diagnosed with cancer in 2009 and died in Libya in 2012. Transmitting images of minors online > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1993 A missing child report accidentally led agents to break up a child pornography ring. When a 10-year-old boy was reported missing in Brentwood, Maryland, agents went door-to-door to solicit clues. They came upon two men who had been luring children with gifts and the offer of vacations. It was discovered that the men had taken their criminal activities online, “chatting” with young children and setting up meetings and sharing child pornography images. The men were eventually convicted of abusing children, although there was no evidence that they were involved in the missing child case. In 1995, the FBI launched the Innocent Images Initiative (now renamed as part of the Violent Crimes Against Children Unit) to catch child predators. Since 2007, the FBI has won 6,800 convictions. Sadly, the missing Maryland boy was never found. Oklahoma City bombing > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1995 The morning of April 19, 1995, began like any other at the Federal Building in downtown Oklahoma City – but at 9:02 a.m., a bomb exploded in a truck parked outside the building, killing 168, including 19 children. Although it was first assumed the bombing was the act of foreign terrorists, the investigation led the FBI to ex-soldier Timothy McVeigh, who had rented the truck. McVeigh resented the government for its actions at Waco, Texas, two years earlier when the agents stormed the compound of a cult leader, killing more than 80 people, including at least 20 children. He was convicted and sentenced to death for the mass murder and executed on June 11, 2001. Atlanta and Birmingham bombings > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 0 Eric Robert Randolph went on a bombing spree from 1996 to 1998, setting off explosives in Atlanta and Birmingham, Alabama, that killed two and injured hundreds. The first was a bomb detonated at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta, killing one woman, though Randolph had called police to warn them about the bomb. (Security guard Richard Jewell was unjustly accused of being the bomber, and was considered the FBI’s prime suspect for some time.) Randolph subsequently bombed a lesbian bar and an abortion clinic in the Atlanta area and an abortion clinic in Birmingham – the latter explosion claiming the life of an off-duty policeman. Put on the FBI’s most wanted list, Randolph eluded agents until he was captured in 2003. He pled guilty to Federal charges stemming from the bombings and is currently serving multiple life sentences with no possibility for parole. ALSO READ: The Most Infamous White Collar Criminals of All Time Bombing of American embassies in East Africa > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1998 Before 9/11, al-Qaeda was behind the bombings of the American embassies in Nairobi in Kenya and Dar es Salaam in Tanzania on the same day – Aug. 7, 1998. The blasts killed 224 people, including 12 Americans. FBI agents rushed overseas to comb through clues, which eventually linked the terrorist group to the crime. In 1998, Osama Bin Laden and several members of his network, including his military commander, Muhammad Atef, were named in an indictment based on the investigation. Both have since been killed. More than 20 people have been charged in connection with the bombings. Seven are serving life sentences in U.S. prisons. The violent acts prompted the agency to step up its anti-terrorism efforts abroad. The Melissa computer virus > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 1999 Anyone using a computer today is hyper-aware of computer viruses. Less so a decade ago, when a programmer named David Lee Smith infiltrated an AOL account and used it to spread a virus under the guise of giving people access to adult content. By late March, the virus, named after a stripper Smith knew, had taken over the Internet. Although Smith had no intention of stealing money or information, his virus clogged up the email servers at 300 corporations and government agencies. Luckily, service was restored in a matter of days. With a tip from an AOL representative, the FBI and New Jersey law enforcement traced the virus to Smith, who was sentenced to 20 months in federal prison and fined $5,000. After the crime, the FBI established the National Cyber Division to stop online crimes. Anthrax attacks > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 2001 A nation on edge after the 9/11 attacks was again terrorized by a series of mailings carrying the poison anthrax. The anthrax-filled letters killed five and sickened 17. The FBI, the U.S. Postal Service, and other law enforcement agencies, including Federal prosecutors from the District of Columbia and the Justice Department’s Counterterrorism Section, banded together to track down the sender. The investigation narrowed the culprit down to Dr. Bruce Ivins. Before he could be charged, Ivins took his own life and the investigation formally concluded in February 2010 – but not before the FBI developed new scientific techniques to combat bioterror attacks. The collapse of Enron > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 2001 In 2001, the FBI broke open one of the most complex and far-reaching white collar crimes in the country’s history. After the Texas-based energy and commodities company Enron declared bankruptcy in December 2001, investors and employees were left penniless. And what started as a two-agent investigation expanded to a 45-member Enron Task Force, which combined investigators and analysts from the FBI, the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation Division, and the Securities and Exchange Commission, and prosecutors from the Department of Justice. After combing through 3,000 boxes of evidence and interviewing more than 1,800 people, agents uncovered shady accounting practices that enriched Enron executives. In the end, 22 people, including the chief executive of the company, were convicted of fraud. Beltway snipers > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 2002 In 2002, a pair of snipers terrorized the citizens of the Washington, D.C., area. It began with the murder of a 55-year-old man in a parking lot in Wheaton, Maryland. The next day, four more people were killed in a similar fashion while going about their everyday lives. All told, 10 people were gunned down and three critically injured, including FBI agent Linda Franklin. A cross-country investigation led agents to two men – John Allen Muhammad and Lee Boyd Malvo. Both were identified from their arrest records in Alabama and Washington state. Agents were able to identify the car registered to Muhammad, a blue Chevy Caprice with New Jersey plates. On October 24, FBI agents and other law enforcement officers arrested Muhammad and Malvo along with and seized the rifle they used in the killings. Malvo later admitted that he and Muhammad had earlier shot people in California, Texas, Florida, and Louisiana. Both were tried several times in different jurisdictions. Malvo is serving a life sentence without parole, and Muhammad was executed on Nov. 10, 2009. 24/7 Wall St. 22 Famous Unsolved Crimes in America Hurricane Katrina fraud > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 2005 Damage to the FBI’s New Orleans office did not stop the Bureau from investigating fraud related to Hurricane Katrina. Soon after the flood waters receded, the agency established the Hurricane Katrina Task Force to uncover fraudulent claims against the government. In 2006, The Government Accountability Office released a report estimating that potentially fraudulent individual assistance payments related to hurricanes Katrina and Rita (which hit the Gulf Coast a month after Katrina) ranged from $600 million to $1.4 billion. As of 2009, a total of 1,300 individuals have been indicted for Katrina-related crimes, and the Bureau now operates a Disaster Fraud Hotline where similar crimes can be reported. History’s biggest Ponzi scheme > Year of the crime or start of the investigation: 2008 Outwardly, Bernie Madoff was a successful investment manager, while in reality, he was running the biggest Ponzi scheme in U.S. history. Promising high returns to investors, he instead took money from new clients to pay back earlier investors or for his personal use. When questions about Madoff’s business practices arose in business publications, his books were audited by the SEC. With his firm running out of money, Madoff was arrested on Dec. 11, 2008, after admitting to his sons that he was running a Ponzi scheme. Madoff was sentenced to 150 years in prison, but died in 2021 while in a correctional facility in North Carolina at age 82. The Bureau continued to investigate his associates, with 14 charged. Victims of his fraud can recoup some of their losses through a compensation fund managed by the Department of Justice. The monies come from assets held by Madoff that were seized by the government. Last year, the Justice Department announced that it had distributed more than $4 billion to Madoff’s victims. Sponsored: Attention Savvy Investors: Speak to 3 Financial Experts – FREE Ever wanted an extra set of eyes on an investment you’re considering? Now you can speak with up to 3 financial experts in your area for FREE. By simply clicking here you can begin to match with financial professionals who can help guide you through the financial decisions you’re making. And the best part? The first conversation with them is free. Click here to match with up to 3 financial pros who would be excited to help you make financial decisions. The post The Most Notorious Cases in FBI’s History appeared first on 24/7 Wall St.......»»

Category: blogSource: 247wallstNov 8th, 2023

16 Most Profitable Malls in the World

This article will look at the 16 most profitable malls in the world. It will also cover the latest trends observed in the world of shopping malls while highlighting the changes the pandemic has brought to the functioning of malls today. If you want to skip our detailed analysis, you can head straight to the 5 […] This article will look at the 16 most profitable malls in the world. It will also cover the latest trends observed in the world of shopping malls while highlighting the changes the pandemic has brought to the functioning of malls today. If you want to skip our detailed analysis, you can head straight to the 5 Most Profitable Malls in the World. During the height of the pandemic in April 2020, mall visits dropped by a staggering 91%. This decline was even more significant than the impact of the Great Recession. However, shopping malls started experiencing a resurgence in 2021, particularly in major cities, as people sought opportunities to venture out after months of restrictions. According to a study by INRIX, there was still demand for in-person retail experiences, and retailers are optimistic about the future. The recent surge in mall visits may have been driven by factors such as “revenge spending” and pent-up demand, indicating that people were not completely avoiding physical retail experiences. However, the rise of e-commerce and online shopping posed challenges to brick-and-mortar retailers and malls even before the pandemic. Online platforms like Amazon.com Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) gained popularity, diverting consumer spending away from traditional retailers. Shopping malls faced closures and declining foot traffic amid the pandemic like never before. Despite the struggle, in 2022, there was a notably high resurgence in mall visits driven by people seeking a sense of normalcy after the pandemic. Yet, this is unlikely to be a long-term trend as online shopping offers convenience and competitive pricing. Traditional retailers and malls will face ongoing challenges in the coming years. Interestingly, how profitable it is to own a shopping mall can be closely tied to the ongoing debate about the death or revival of malls in today’s age. This profitability hinges on three crucial factors: the property’s purchase price, management efficiency, and the shopping mall’s distinctive features. When these elements align as intended, investors can expect an annual return from 5% to 20%. 2023 Trends to Observe Shopping malls are evolving into lifestyle centers offering shopping and entertainment, catering to post-pandemic consumers seeking retail experiences and leisure activities. Outlet malls are rebranding as destination shopping centers to attract digitally native brands and provide a comprehensive customer experience. The Superette in Boston Seaport, launched recently, is one such example that offers a unique concept inspired by European-style settings. The center features a charming tree-lined courtyard where visitors can find a mix of digitally-native brands, such as Lunya and Framebridge, and local cafes, bars, and restaurants. The design aims to capture the attention of people passing by, encouraging them to explore the boutiques and retailers while going about their daily activities, whether working out or getting a manicure. By creating an inviting atmosphere, The Superette aimed to merge leisure and shopping seamlessly, providing a vibrant space where people can engage with various experiences and discover new brands. Mall kiosks drive international expansion for retailers, allowing them to establish a presence in new markets. Moreover, pop-up stores have become a powerful tool for young retail brands, offering visibility and the flexibility of short-term leases to generate excitement and encourage repeat visits. For example, EssilorLuxottica has launched its first Prada Eyewear pop-up store in collaboration with Gebr Heinemann and Unifree Duty-Free at Istanbul Airport. The pop-up store, which will run until July 16th, is inspired by Prada’s spring/summer 2023 campaign. Furthermore, malls are embracing the digital age by exploring retail media, live streaming, and other digital shopping strategies to adapt to changing consumer behaviors and attract foot traffic. This indicates a shift towards a more dynamic and diverse mall landscape that seeks to meet the evolving demands of modern shoppers. Majid Al Futtaim has announced the launch of the Mall of the Metaverse, Dubai’s first virtual mall, catering to customers seeking enhanced digital experiences across retail, entertainment, and leisure. The mall will feature well-known brands such as Carrefour, VOX Cinemas, and Samsung Store. This development highlights the increasing demand for digital experiences as Futtaim aims to leverage behavioral science and data to deliver what customers desire to improve their shopping experience. While Iran mall is the biggest mall in the world, area wise at 21 million sqft, the Dubai Mall is considered to be world’s most popular shopping and entertainment destination, covering over 13 million sqft with 1,200 stores, including 70 high-fashion outlets and renowned brands from The Estée Lauder Companies Inc (NYSE:EL), Ralph Lauren Corp (NYSE:RL), and Tiffany and Co (NYSE:TIF). In the 2019 expansion, Dubai Mall Zabeel added 15,000 sqm of lifestyle space, new dining and retail options, and 3,000 parking spaces. On the other hand, the largest mall in the US is the Mall of America, with an area of 5.6 million sqft. The New Era for Shopping Malls According to a report by analytics firm Placer.ai, mall owners are adopting innovative strategies to reinvent themselves and attract visitors, resulting in increased foot traffic. The report analyzed nine US malls that introduced unique tenants and experiences, such as a casino, kids’ play spaces, improved food options, and an American Ninja Warrior Adventure Park. Each of these malls witnessed a rise in visitor numbers. The reinvention of malls reflects a shift in their purpose, focusing on entertainment and enhanced dining experiences. Ethan Chernofsky, Vice President of Marketing at Placer.ai, stated that malls are undergoing a fundamental reimagining and transitioning from a retail-centric model to one that offers diverse entertainment options. This shift is driving positive impacts on mall businesses. For instance, the MainPlace Mall in Santa Ana, California, experienced an 18% increase in monthly visitors compared to the pre-pandemic period after opening the American Ninja Warrior Adventure Park. Similarly, the York Galleria Mall in Pennsylvania saw a 31.4% spike in visits after introducing the Hollywood Casino. The report indicated that foot traffic at Westfield Valley Fair increased by more than 20% compared to pre-pandemic levels during Eataly’s opening week. Similarly, 99 Ranch Market’s presence turned Westfield Oakridge Mall into a popular one-stop shopping destination, leading to a 10% rise in visits. Including entertainment-focused spaces like Surge Entertainment at Pierre Bossier Mall in Louisiana led to longer waiting times for visitors, with median waiting times consistently exceeding 75 minutes. Pixabay/Public Domain Methodology We have determined the ranking of the most profitable malls in the world by their sales per square foot, a standardized measure of profitability. Data for most shopping centers were collected from reputable sources such as Yahoo Finance. However, the Sawgrass Mills Mall and Yorkdale information was obtained from news articles published by the Miami Herald and Oxford Properties, respectively. By calculating the sales per square foot metric, the malls have been arranged in ascending order of high sales per square foot to determine their relative profitability. Here is a list of the 16 Most Profitable Malls in the World: 16. Westfield Garden State Plaza Sales per Square Foot: $950 Westfield Garden State Plaza is an expansive shopping center in Paramus, New Jersey. Spanning over 2 million square feet, it houses more than 300 stores and a range of shopping options. There’s something for everyone, from luxury brands like the LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton SE (OTC:LVMUY), to popular fashion retailers like H&M and Adidas AG (OTC:ADDYY) and specialty stores. As one of the largest malls in the US, the plaza also offers numerous dining choices, catering to various types of clientele. With its ideal location, Westfield Garden State Plaza continues to be a popular destination for those seeking a pleasing shopping experience. 15. The Americana at Brand Sales per Square Foot: $1,100 The Americana at Brand one of the most profitable malls in the world. It is a vibrant shopping, dining, and entertainment destination in Glendale, California. It offers an incredible blend of upscale retail stores like Tiffany and Co (NYSE:TIF), delicious dining options, including the Bourbon Steak Los Angeles, and beautiful outdoor space. With its stunning architecture, lively atmosphere, and various events throughout the year, Americana at Brand provides a memorable experience for visitors seeking luxury, leisure, and entertainment. 14. Short Hills Mall Sales per Square Foot: $1,110 Short Hills Mall, located in Short Hills, New Jersey, is a premier upscale shopping hub. It has a sophisticated ambiance and features a curated selection of luxury brands like Ralph Lauren Corp (NYSE:RL) and high-end retailers like Micheal Kors, now known as Capri Holdings Ltd (NYSE:CPRI). Shoppers can enjoy a world-class shopping experience while exploring fashion, accessories, beauty, and home decor. With its elegant atmosphere and variety of options, Short Hills Mall is a haven for discerning shoppers seeking luxury and style. 13. Sawgrass Mills Mall Sales per Square Foot: $1,149 Sawgrass Mills Mall in Sunrise, Florida, is a massive shopping outlet mall that offers luxury brands and beauty stores that include high-end cosmetic brands like Estee Lauder Companies Inc (NYSE: EL). With over 2.3 million square feet of retail space, it features distinct sections like Fashion Avenue, Oasis, and the Colonnade Outlets, catering to different shopping preferences. While it can be busy during peak seasons, the mall provides ample parking, amenities, and services, including dining options and entertainment venues, making it a favorite destination for bargain hunters and fashion enthusiasts. 12. Chadstone Shopping Center Sales per Square Foot: $1,157 In Melbourne, Australia, Chadstone is the largest shopping center in the Southern Hemisphere. It offers a variety of shopping, dining, and entertainment options spread across its expansive space. With over 500 stores, including luxury brands like Capri Holdings Ltd (NYSE:CPRI), fashion boutiques, and international retailers like Nike Inc (NYSE:NKE) and Adidas AG (OTC:ADDYY), Chadstone caters to a myriad of tastes, and preferences, making it one of the most valuable malls in the world. 11. Ala Moana Center Sales per Square Foot: $1,200 Ala Moana Center in Honolulu, Hawaii, is one of the world’s largest open-air malls. With over 350 stores, it offers various brands, including flagship stores of luxury names like Capri Holdings Ltd(NYSE:CPRI) and LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton SE (OTC:LVMUY). The center attracts locals and tourists with scenic views, extensive retail options, and various dining choices, such as Morton’s steak house and Moana Sushi. It is a vibrant shopping destination, showcasing many products and hosting cultural events yearly. 10. Mall of Millenia Sales per Square Foot: $1,250 The Mall of Millenia is a premier shopping destination known for its upscale retailers like Nike Inc (NYSE:NKE) and Tiffany and Co (NYSE:TIF), luxurious ambiance, and extensive selection of fashion, beauty, and dining options. With its sophisticated architecture and high-end brands, it offers a truly indulgent shopping experience for selective and smart shopaholics. 9. CF Pacific Center Sales per Square Foot: $1,255 CF Pacific Centre is a prominent shopping center in the heart of Vancouver, Canada. It offers an impressive collection of high-end brands, such as the Estee Lauder Companies Inc (NYSE: EL), varied retail options, and a central location, making it a preferred destination for shopping enthusiasts and visitors in the area. 8. The Grove Sales per Square Foot:$1,400 The Grove is a bustling shopping and entertainment complex in Los Angeles, California. Known for its beautifully landscaped outdoor setting, it features a variety of high-end fashion stores, including LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton SE (OTC:LVMUY). Beauty retailers like Estee Lauder Companies Inc (NYSE: EL), eateries, a movie theater, and live performances make it a favorite choice amongst locals and tourists. 7. Mall of Emirates Sales per Square Foot: $1,423 Mall of the Emirates is an iconic shopping and entertainment destination in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Its grand architecture houses an extraordinary array of luxury and global brands, including the Ralph Lauren Corp (NYSE:RL) and high-end retailers like Nike Inc (NYSE:NKE), providing an unparalleled shopping experience. Beyond shopping, visitors can also enjoy thrilling activities inside its most popular indoor ski resort, entertainment options like the Dubai Community Theatre and Art Center and Magic Planet, with a remarkable selection of dining venues, making it a must-visit destination for both residents and travelers looking for quality time with excitement. 6. Westfield Sydney Sales per Square Foot: $1,500 Westfield Sydney is a vibrant shopping destination in the heart of Sydney, Australia. Its modern design and prime location showcase a wide selection of fashion, lifestyle, and dining choices, including an exclusive store for Adidas AG (OTC:ADDYY). It is a bustling hub for retail therapy and culinary thrill in the lively city of Sydney and is one of the most profitable shopping malls in the world.  Click here to see the 5 Most Profitable Malls in the World. 25 Largest Shopping Malls in the United States 25 Most Exclusive Luxury Brands in the World Top 20 Online Shopping Websites in the World Disclosure: None. 16 Most Profitable Malls in the World is originally published on Insider Monkey......»»

Category: topSource: insidermonkeyJun 22nd, 2023

Quinn: Rise To Rebellion - A Fourth Turning Perspective

Quinn: Rise To Rebellion - A Fourth Turning Perspective Authored by Jim Quinn via The Burning Platform blog, “I do not say that democracy has been more pernicious on the whole, and in the long run, than monarchy or aristocracy. Democracy has never been and never can be so durable as aristocracy or monarchy; but while it lasts, it is more bloody than either. … Remember, democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There never was a democracy yet that did not commit suicide. It is in vain to say that democracy is less vain, less proud, less selfish, less ambitious, or less avaricious than aristocracy or monarchy. It is not true, in fact, and nowhere appears in history. Those passions are the same in all men, under all forms of simple government, and when unchecked, produce the same effects of fraud, violence, and cruelty. When clear prospects are opened before vanity, pride, avarice, or ambition, for their easy gratification, it is hard for the most considerate philosophers and the most conscientious moralists to resist the temptation.” – John Adams “A Constitution of Government once changed from Freedom, can never be restored. Liberty, once lost, is lost forever.” – John Adams I have bookshelves filled with books I haven’t read yet. I’m a collector of books who doesn’t have much time to read but plans to spend my waning years catching up on all the reading I’ve been unable to do while working, blogging, and raising a family. Still, I always have one or two books on my nightstand being read in fits and starts. After finishing a Grisham novel, I sought another book to occupy my time from my living room bookshelf. I grabbed Rise to Rebellion, a Jeff Shaara historical novel I had purchased at a used bookstore in Wildwood, NJ many years ago. I don’t know why I chose that book from the dozens of options on the bookshelf, but it seems to have been a wise choice given the current state of affairs in the world. I always find the wisdom and courage of our founding fathers to be a beacon of light in the darkness slowly engulfing the world as we approach the denouement of this Fourth Turning, the fourth, and hopefully not last, in U.S. history. Probably without knowing it, most of Shaara’s historical novels revolved around events during the first three Fourth Turnings. It started with his father Michael Shaara’s brilliant 1973 Pulitzer Prize winning novel The Killer Angels, and Jeff’s bookend novels Gods and Generals (1996) and The Last Full Measure (1998) to complete the trilogy. They captured the essence of the Civil War Fourth Turning. Then he captured the spirit of the American Revolution Fourth Turning with Rise to Rebellion and The Glorious Cause. And then he attacked the World War II Fourth Turning with his four-part series: The Rising Tide, The Steel Wave, No Less Than Victory, and The Final Storm. The novels documenting the glorious victories, tragic losses, heroes, and villains of this Fourth Turning are yet to be written. What will be written depends upon the actions we take or don’t take during the remaining five or so years of this period of Crisis. You never know how or when your words or actions will have an impact, but if you remain resolute and true to yourself, maybe even after death your words can provide inspiration for future generations. Michael Shaara’s The Killer Angels was rejected by 15 publishers, received mixed reviews, and even after winning a Pulitzer Prize was still a commercial failure. He died in 1988, a broken man, dismayed his novel never received the notice it deserved. Five years after his death his book was adapted into the epic film Gettysburg, and his novel was propelled to number one on the NYT bestsellers list, 19 years after its publication. Jeff had been a coin dealer, but after the success of the movie and novel he was approached to continue the story, his father had started, despite no background in writing. He took up the challenge and has had a prodigious career bringing history to life for millions of readers. You never know when life will offer opportunity or thrust you into a cataclysm. What struck me as I read Rise to Rebellion, capturing the time period from the Boston Massacre in 1770 to the signing of the Declaration of Independence in 1776, told through the eyes of John Adams, Ben Franklin, George Washington, and British General Thomas Gage, was the extremely long odds of farmers, merchants, shop owners and tradesmen successfully defeating the greatest empire in history and their professional army. The chances of these undisciplined, underfunded, under armed militiamen, led by George Washington and a few professional officers, of winning their independence from an imperial empire and an army and navy unmatched on earth was virtually nil. It’s the kind of perspective valuable at this juncture of a Fourth Turning, rapidly accelerating towards conflict against a seemingly invincible arrogant Deep State imperial empire. The odds are heavily against those who have refused to knuckle under during the covid scam and continue to oppose the government’s efforts to disarm us and destroy the moral fabric of the nation. From their writings and correspondence at the time, utilized by Shaara in his novel, you realize Adams, Franklin, and Washington were all reluctant revolutionaries. Firebrands like Sam Adams and Patrick Henry had no doubts about going to war. Adams and Franklin did everything in their power to defuse the brewing conflict over many years. Adams even defended the British soldiers accused of murder during the Boston Massacre and got them acquitted by an American jury. Franklin spent years in London trying to negotiate on behalf of the colonies, while constantly being ridiculed, scorned, and humiliated by arrogant parliamentarians and an ego-maniacal king. When chosen to lead the Continental Army, Washington was hesitant to accept the position. He didn’t believe the martial skills he gained during the French & Indian War were sufficient to lead a ragtag army of militia misfits against the greatest military on earth. These men did not conclude a military revolution was necessary to end the British tyranny lightly. After much soul searching and angst, they realized there was no choice. They had been pushed far enough and it was time to push back. They also knew if they failed, they would hang. In 1770, Franklin was 64 years old, suffering from gout and bladder stones. With life expectancies of less than 40 years in those days, he had far outlived most, while accomplishing more as a scientist, writer, publisher, and statesman than almost anyone in history. He had every right to just live out his remaining years in peace and tranquility. But instead, he risked it all on helping birth a new nation, using all his wisdom, guile, and political acumen to help guide the younger revolutionaries Adams, Jefferson, Washington, among others. He was 70 in 1776 when he signed the Declaration of Independence and died in 1790, shortly after the U.S. Constitution was ratified in 1789. He spent his twilight years working tirelessly to birth this Republic. As I and many others enter our 60s, it feels like it is too late for us to make a difference in helping change the course of our troubled nation. But Franklin should be an inspiration to all real patriots fighting impossible odds to try and defeat an arrogant brutal regime bent on crushing those who believe in freedom, liberty, personal responsibility, and a Constitution written in the blood of patriots 250 years ago. When narrow minded linear thinkers scoff at the notion of the common people rising up and taking down a corrupt, evil, traitorous government, which no longer works in the best interest of the people, but for their own enrichment, I must anchor my thinking in the cyclical nature of history and inevitability of the existing social order being swept away in a river of blood during Fourth Turnings. The acolytes of the regime in political offices, government bureaucracy blood suckers, the media propaganda outlets, the woke military, and corporate boardrooms scoff at the thought of losing their wealth and power. They control the narrative. They control the technology. They control the government. They control the media. They have superior firepower in the hands of their police and military mercenaries. Their hubris knows no bounds. Their comprehension of history and human nature is non-existent as their sociopath desires overwhelm their ability to think critically and see what lies ahead. No matter how far advanced the world has become technologically over the last 250 years, one thing never changes – human nature. Technological progress has certainly made it easier to kill each other today than during the American Revolution. “Smart” phones, the internet, and 70-inch HDTVs have made it far easier to amuse and distract ourselves, and effortless for Bernays’ invisible government to control and manipulate the masses through propaganda and psychological exploitation, as proven by the last three years of this fake covid crisis. As Huxley pointed out, technology is just making us go backwards more efficiently. “Technological progress has merely provided us with more efficient means for going backwards.” ― Aldous Huxley, Ends and Means Technology hasn’t made us smarter. Technology hasn’t made us kinder. Technology hasn’t made us less violent. Technology hasn’t made us less likely to kill or wage war. Technology hasn’t made us safer. Mankind is just as prideful, greedy, wrathful, envious, lustful, gluttonous, and slothful as they were in centuries past. Human nature never changes; therefore, we can analyze the actions of King George, Lord Dartmouth, General Gage, and other key characters of the American Revolution Fourth Turning to assess how Biden, Schumer, and Miley will react and over-react to events unfolding during this Fourth Turning. There are numerous parallels between the political, societal, and military dynamics of the American Revolution Fourth Turning and our present day Fourth Turning, which is accelerating towards its bloody climax, yet to be labeled by future historians – if there are any historians left to write the history. “Once vigorous measures appear to be the only means left of bringing the Americans to a due submission to the mother country, the colonies will submit.” – King George III “A traitor is everyone who does not agree with me.” – King George III The attitude and actions of King George III and his parliamentary aristocracy leading up to and during the rebellion are consistent with the attitudes and actions of our current day monarch – Joe Biden – and the Deep State ruling elite who lord dominion over us lowly peasants. It was duly noted King George battled bouts of mental illness from 1765 until his death in 1820. He lorded over an empire constantly at war in Europe and North America. His empire was deeply indebted and sought to fill the treasury through taxing its far-flung colonies across the globe, without allowing those colonies representation in Parliament. When faced with resistance and dissension from America, his response was dismissive and threatening. In 1775, after the initial hostilities around Boston, the Continental Congress was still split between war and reconciliation. John Dickinson, the Loyalist delegate from Pennsylvania, wrote the Olive Branch Petition seeking reconciliation with the Crown. King George’s unequivocal Proclamation For Suppressing Rebellion and Sedition  declared war upon the colonists and proclaimed the members of the Continental Congress to be traitors and conspiracists. He left no room for negotiation or compromise. Were these words written by King George, or the arrogant war-mongering toadies in his court who didn’t have to do the marching and dying on battlefields on another continent. The derision and threatening language are eerily reminiscent of another dictator’s speech 247 years later, ironically given bathed in blood red in front of Independence Hall, where the founding fathers had held their rebellious proceedings. WHEREAS Many of Our Subjects in divers Parts of Our Colonies and Plantations in North America, misled by dangerous and ill-designing Men, and forgetting the Allegiance which they owe to the Power that has protected and sustained them, after various disorderly Acts committed in Disturbance of the Public Peace, to the Obstruction of lawful Commerce, and to the Oppression of Our loyal Subjects carrying on the same, have at length proceeded to an open and avowed Rebellion, by arraying themselves in hostile Manner to withstand the Execution of the Law, and traitoroursly preparing, ordering, and levying War against Us. AND whereas there is Reason to apprehend that such Rebellion hath been much promoted and encouraged by the traitorous Correspondence, Counsels, and Comfort of divers wicked and desperate Persons within this Realm: To the End therefore, that none of Our Subjects may neglect or violate their Duty through Ignorance thereof, or through any Doubt of the Protection which the Law will afford to their Loyalty and Zeal; We have thought fit, by and with the Advice of Our Privy Council, to issue this Our Royal Proclamation, hereby declaring that not only all Our Officers, Civil and Military, are obliged to exert their utmost Endeavours to suppress such Rebellion, and to bring the Traitors to Justice; but that all Our Subjects of this Realm and the Dominions thereunto belonging are bound by Law to be aiding and assisting in the Suppression of such Rebellion, and to disclose and make known all traitorous Conspiracies and Attempts against Us, Our Crown and Dignity. AND We do accordingly strictly Charge and Command all Our Officers, as well Civil as Military, and all other Our obedient and loyal Subjects, to use their utmost Endeavours to withstand and suppress such Rebellion, and to disclose and make known all Treasons and traitorous Conspiracies which they shall know to be against Us, Our Crown and Dignity: and for that Purpose, that they transmit to one of Our Principal Secretaries of State, or other proper Officer, due and full Information of all Persons who shall be found carrying on Correspondence wit, or in any Manner or Degree aiding or abetting, the Persons now in open Arms and Rebellion against Our Government within any of Our Colonies and Plantations in North America, in order to bring to condign Punishment the Authors, Perpetrators, and Abettors of such traitorous Designs. Given at Our Court at St. James‘s, the 23d Day of August, 1775, in the Fifteenth Year of Our Reign. God Save the King. The symbolism of Biden making the most divisive presidential speech in history at the most important location in the founding of the United States, Independence Hall, with blood red lighting and soldiers in the background was as clear a declaration of war against half the country as King George’s proclamation in 1775. Biden spewed hatred and vitriol towards the 74 million Trump voters, essentially proclaiming them traitors and insurrectionists. Biden and his handlers, who wrote the satanic verses demagoguery delivered by Biden, clearly were threatening to use the military against their opponents and use any means at their disposal to retain their power. Their illegal incarceration and persecution of average Americans who sauntered around the Capital taking selfies, instigated by dozens of undercover FBI agents trying to provoke violence, is proof they have declared war. The barrage of frivolous lawsuits and criminal charges against Trump by the Biden regime and their Deep State acolytes is a blatant attempt to use the power of the State against a political opponent. “MAGA forces are determined to take this country backwards — backwards to an America where there is no right to choose, no right to privacy, no right to contraception, no right to marry who you love. They promote authoritarian leaders, and they fan the flames of political violence that are a threat to our personal rights, to the pursuit of justice, to the rule of law, to the very soul of this country.” – King Joe I – September 1, 2022 – Independence Hall bathed in blood “Donald Trump and the MAGA Republicans represent an extremism that threatens the very foundations of our republic. MAGA Republicans do not respect the Constitution.  They do not believe in the rule of law.  They do not recognize the will of the people. MAGA Republicans look at America and see carnage and darkness and despair.  They spread fear and lies – lies told for profit and power.” – King Joe I – September 1, 2022 – Independence Hall bathed in blood Another quote from Dementia Joe (aka Pedo Pete per Hunter) references Thomas Jefferson saying the tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time by the blood of patriots and tyrants. It seems Joe knows he is the tyrant in this scenario, as he threatens to use F-15s against his political opponents. Whether we are talking 250 years ago or today, it always comes down to guns. “I love my right-wing friends who talk about the tree of liberty is water of the blood of patriots. If you need to work on taking on the federal government, you need some F-15s. You don’t need an AR-15.” – King Joe I – January 17, 2023 Animosity between the Crown and the colonists had been brewing for a decade. The Boston Massacre didn’t start the revolution. The Boston Tea Party didn’t start the revolution. The Intolerable Acts of 1774, which were designed to punish Massachusetts for the Boston Tea Party, was the trigger for all that followed. When you treat human beings like dogs, beating them, starving them, and caging them, you better be prepared for them to bite back. John Adams realized the time to act was upon them. “So instead, you will punish us by reducing us to non-citizens. If there was an argument before about which rights, which privileges we expect to be granted, there is no argument now, no discussion about vague principles. We will have soldiers in our homes; our town, cut off from her source of survival, is plainly under siege.” – John Adams – Rise to Rebellion It wasn’t until Gage sent his men on a mission to Lexington and Concord to confiscate the guns and ammunition of the colonial militias, the revolution began in earnest. Gun confiscation is always the final straw, which pushes peaceful non-confrontational common men to justified violence, aggressive defense of their liberties, and unrestrained retribution against their enemies. The farmers, merchants and tradesmen, warned of the coming attack by Dawes and Revere, rallied and stood their ground at Concord, and then using guerilla tactics picked off dozens of British regulars during their retreat, inflicting three times as many casualties as incurred. In retaliation the panicked British soldiers burned the homes of non-combatants and killed innocent women and children. The arrogance of General Gage was again borne out at the Battle of Bunker Hill (most fighting occurring on Breed’s Hill) where his frontal assault resulted in over 1,000 casualties to 450 for the militiamen. If the rebels had not run out of gunpowder, the slaughter would have been worse. The cruel and inhumane burning of Charlestown and Falmouth by the British Navy terminated any possible reconciliation and set in motion a domino effect of events leading to great bloodshed and eventually a humiliating defeat for the British Empire. Biden and his ruling regime relentlessly threaten and use un-Constitutional means to overturn and render the 2nd Amendment null and void. Every “mass shooting” event is utilized as a means to enact restrictions on the ownership of guns. This despite 90% of mass shootings being committed by young black men against young black men in Democrat run urban shitholes with the strictest gun control laws. Up until now, those running the show and fearful of the “deplorables” legally owning approximately 400 million firearms, have tried to use regulation, registration, restrictions, and sanctions to restrict the Second Amendment. They have essentially declared half the country rebels, inflaming emotions on both sides with their rhetoric, purposeful non-enforcement of the law, witch hunts against opposition leaders, censorship and cancelling of those on the right, illegal executive orders designed to ignite rebellion, and to treat them like sub-humans. What they have not dared to do yet, is forcefully attempt to confiscate our guns. That would be the bridge too far, just as the British expedition to Lexington and Concord proved to be the action which generated the violent reaction and subsequent Revolutionary War. When Biden and his cohort of authoritarian governors and mayors attempt to use their police state to confiscate guns door to door, the unanticipated violent response will be heard round the world. The confiscators have names, addresses and families, so they may realize treating their neighbors like criminals may lead to dreadful consequences for them and their loved ones. The truth is the nation has been in a state of rebellion since the election of Trump in 2016. The divisions within the country haven’t been this deep since the Civil War. Biden’s divisive rhetoric and threats to use the military against his opponents clearly reveals his desire for confrontation. Robert F. Kennedy Jr. believes the country is in rebellion against both parties, while Trump’s words on January 6, 2021, revealed his belief we were already warring tribes. “I think there’s a rebellion happening in our country now — there’s a populist rebellion — and if we don’t capture that rebellion, for the forces of idealism and the forces of generosity and kindness, somebody else is going to hijack that rebellion for much darker purposes. I don’t think it’s a good idea to say we’re not going to talk to American populists because they’re deplorable. Americans are our brothers and sisters, and we need to listen to them. And their backs are against the wall because of policies that have come from both Republican and Democratic parties.” – Robert F. Kennedy Jr.– May 6, 2023 “Today we will see whether Republicans stand strong for integrity of our elections, but whether or not they stand strong for our country. Our country has been under siege for a long time, far longer than this four-year period.” – Donald Trump – January 6, 2021 The assault on the First and Second Amendments to the Constitution have been persistent and more strident over the last three years. We have entered the more volatile phase of this Fourth Turning where any spark can ignite the powder-keg of animosities, grudges, and disputes opposing forces have been seething over for years. The unbridled censorship unleashed by government conspiring with social media companies (aka corporate fascism) was the initial step in the regime’s plan to control, monitor, and suppress any truth which contradicts the approved narrative. The founding fathers knew 232 years ago the dangers of a tyrannical government subduing the people’s right to freedom of expression, leading us down a path to destruction. That’s why they insisted on the Second Amendment as redress in case a tyrannical regime needed to nourish the tree of liberty with their blood. “Whoever would overthrow the liberty of a nation must begin by subduing the freeness of speech.” ― Benjamin Franklin “If freedom of speech is taken away, then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter.” ― George Washington Once they silence you, they believe they can then disarm you, imprison you in their 15-minute cities, control you by using central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) to restrict your purchases and punish you for social credit score violations, turn off your mandated EV at their whim, monitor your every communication, and essentially treat you like a prisoner in their electronic gulag. Jeff Shaara captured the gist of how all tyrannical governments act throughout history, and today is no different. “a dangerous thing for any state to maintain its power by plugging up the vent of complaints, stifling the voices of the people. When complaining becomes a crime, hope becomes despair. He finished” ― Jeff Shaara, Rise to Rebellion Frankly, the odds of defeating such a goliath regime, backed by the Deep State, the largest military on earth, local militarized police thugs, billionaire oligarchs, compliant media corporations, the Wall Street cabal and their central banker puppets, and millions of sheep-like government indoctrinated drones, seem impossibly long. But the truth is, the uni-party inhabiting the swamp in Washington D.C. is desperately attempting to retain control as their last act is looting the treasury, foretold by George Washington over 200 years ago. The true support of the regime is a mile wide and an inch deep. When the current “non-banking crisis” detonates into a full-fledged panic and vaporizes the 401ks of millions of angry citizens who have already been supremely screwed by the massive Federal Reserve/Wall Street created inflation, the simmering pot will be brought to a boil and all hell will break loose. The repressed anger created by the totalitarian lockdowns and vaccine mandates, which destroyed small businesses and the lives of millions of good middle-class people, is on the verge of exploding in the faces of the regime. A recent comment on my blog perfectly encapsulates the vengeance which will be doled out: “I did get fired. Specifically for non-compliance with Biden’s XO mandating the vax for all federal workers/contractors. 6 figure salary gone. Employer matched 401k contributions gone. Had to live most of 2022 off of what I had in savings, $80,000 gone. And now every fucking one of their “mandates” has been rescinded and the WHO has declared the pandemic over. White hot seething vengeance fueled rage doesn’t even begin to describe what I (and millions of others) have boiling deep inside us that we for now are somehow still able to conceal behind a smiling face. When the collapse comes, and it will, hanging is not good enough. I want these people and their families fed to packs of wild dogs.” – Anonymous Commenter on TBP blog “Now remember, when things look bad and it looks like you’re not gonna make it, then you gotta get mean. I mean plumb, mad-dog mean. ‘Cause if you lose your head and you give up then you neither live nor win. That’s just the way it is.” – Josey Wales We are now in the fifteenth year of this Fourth Turning, with a resolution likely within the next five or six years – good, bad, or disastrous. The Great Depression/WWII Fourth Turning lasted 17 years, while the American Revolution Fourth Turning took 21 years. It is a certainty violent conflict will drive this Fourth Turning to its gripping unknown climax, with both civil and global conflict playing a major role. The men who were pushed too far by the British in 1775 and pushed back had virtually no chance of victory and they won. Will those of us constituting Hillary’s deplorables, who face equivocally long odds, summon the inner-strength, resolve, fortitude, and courage to support and sustain our fellow modern-day patriots in the coming battles for the heart of the nation? We certainly aren’t going to vote our way out of this, as both parties are captured and corrupt. We’ve been pushed as far into a corner as we can be pushed. And the time for pushing back approaches. The futures of our children and grandchildren will depend on how we respond during the coming trials and tribulations. It will require tremendous sacrifice and cooperation between all generations to accomplish the task of saving this country from the forces of evil currently in control. Once the sword is drawn there will be no turning back or compromise. An elderly Ben Franklin knew what would happen if they failed. The same would apply today – ask the men kept in a D.C. dungeon for the last two years.  “We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately.” ― Benjamin Franklin Strauss and Howe provided four possible outcomes to the current Crisis, each more dire than the next. I now believe this outcome is the most likely, unless Biden accidentally pushes the nuclear button, thinking he was just ordering chocolate ice cream with jimmies. “The Fourth Turning could mark the end of modernity. The Western saecular rhythm – which began in the mid-fifteenth century with the Renaissance – could come to an abrupt terminus. The seventh modern saeculum would be the last. This too could come from total war, terrible but not final. There could be a complete collapse of science, culture, politics, and society. Such a dire result would probably happen only when a dominant nation (like today’s America) lets a Fourth Turning ekpyrosis engulf the planet. But this outcome is well within the reach of foreseeable technology and malevolence.” – Strauss & Howe – The Fourth Turning Many have already given up their liberties and freedoms for the promise of government safety and welfare payments, but will ultimately realize they aren’t safe, and the promises were hollow and false. The nation is financially and morally bankrupt, and the fall of the American Empire will be the most spectacular in world history. Thomas Paine never fired a shot during the American Revolution, but his Common Sense became the inspiration for others to stand up to tyranny. We all have a part to play in this historic episode in our nation’s history. If not us, then who? As darkness descends upon our land of liberty, it’s time to light a candle and make a stand against evil and tyranny. *  *  * It is Jim's sincere desire to provide readers of his site with the best unbiased information available, and a forum where it can be discussed openly, as our Founders intended. But it is not easy nor inexpensive to do so, especially when those who wish to prevent us from making the truth known, attack us without mercy on all fronts on a daily basis. So each time you visit the site, he asks that you consider the value that you receive and have received from The Burning Platform and the community of which you are a vital part. To donate to The Burning Platform blog via Stripe, click here. Tyler Durden Tue, 05/09/2023 - 16:20.....»»

Category: blogSource: zerohedgeMay 9th, 2023

Ambarella, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMBA) Q4 2024 Earnings Call Transcript

Ambarella, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMBA) Q4 2024 Earnings Call Transcript February 27, 2024 Ambarella, Inc. beats earnings expectations. Reported EPS is $-0.24, expectations were $-0.33. Ambarella, Inc. isn’t one of the 30 most popular stocks among hedge funds at the end of the third quarter (see the details here). Operator: Good day, and thank you for standing […] Ambarella, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMBA) Q4 2024 Earnings Call Transcript February 27, 2024 Ambarella, Inc. beats earnings expectations. Reported EPS is $-0.24, expectations were $-0.33. Ambarella, Inc. isn’t one of the 30 most popular stocks among hedge funds at the end of the third quarter (see the details here). Operator: Good day, and thank you for standing by. Welcome to Ambarella’s Fourth Quarter and Fiscal Year 2024 Earnings Conference Call. [Operator Instructions] Please note that today’s conference is being recorded. I would now hand the conference over to speaker host, Louis Gerhardy, VP, Corporate Development and Investor Relations. Please go ahead. Louis Gerhardy: Thank you, Lydia. Good afternoon, everyone and thank you for joining our fourth quarter and full year fiscal 2024 financial results conference call. On the call with me today is Dr. Fermi Wang, President and CEO; and John Young, CFO. The primary purpose of today’s call is to provide you with information regarding the results for our fourth quarter and full year fiscal 2024. The discussion today and the responses to your questions will contain forward-looking statements regarding our projected financial results, financial prospects, market growth and demand for our solutions, among other things. These statements are based on currently available information and subject to risks, uncertainties and assumptions. Should any of these risks or uncertainties materialize or should our assumptions prove to be incorrect, our actual results could differ materially from these forward-looking statements. We are under no obligation to update these statements. These risks, uncertainties and assumptions as well as other information on potential risk factors that could affect our financial results are more fully described in the documents we filed with the SEC. Access to our fourth quarter and full year fiscal 2024 results press release, transcripts, historical results, SEC filings and a replay of today’s call can be found on the Investor Relations page of our website. The content of today’s call, as well as the materials posted on our website are Ambarella’s property and cannot be reproduced or transcribed without our prior written consent. Fermi will now provide a business update for the quarter. John will review the financial results and outlook, and then we will be available for your questions. Fermi? Fermi Wang: Thank you, Louis, and good afternoon. Thank you for joining our call today. In the fourth quarter of fiscal 2024, our revenue increased about 2% sequentially, and we slightly exceeded the midpoint of our guidance range. Thanks to the early actions we took to help our customers navigate their excess inventory, our business continued to stabilize, and it’s beginning to recover. For the full fiscal year 2024, our revenue declined 32.9% year-over-year, as our customers digested inventory resulting from the industry-wide semiconductor cyclical downturn. Looking ahead to fiscal year 2025, we continue to expect both our automotive and IoT business to grow. As the cyclical challenges went and the secular growth of AI strategy emerges. Our customers currently have a cumulative install base of more than 20 million AI inference SoCs, all from our 10-nanometer CV2 family and the 5-nanometer CV5. This is based on approximately 280 customer products that have a rich production on a cumulative basis. The CV2 family is expected to continue to be the key driver of our revenue growth in fiscal year 2025. Our AI inference business, all in-age applications, represented approximately 60% of total fiscal 2024 revenue, and it was the key factor in the meetings percent year-over-year increase in our blended ASP. The trend to a richer mix of AI revenue and higher averaging selling price is expected to continue. In particular, the CV3 SoC family enters production. At this time, virtually all of our customers’ new design activity involves our AI inference processors. In fact, this was the first year at the CES where all of our SoC demos, more than 30, were based on our AI inference products. Fiscal 2024 was certainly challenging for most of the industry. However, there were key industry developments and the company’s specific achievements that we believe leave us very well positioned for growth as the market recovery plays out. For the industry, in the past, the AI process opportunity had primarily been represented by training GPUs in server located in data centers, and this is a market that we do not serve. However, in the last year, the important role and opportunity for inference processors, in particular at that age, has become better understood, and this is exactly where we have been focused on. Internally, we achieved four key milestones during the last year. First, we have now shipped more than 500,000 units of our first 5-nanometer SoC, CV5, and we expect our shipments in fiscal year 2025 to possibly double. Most of CV5 volume is currently in our IoT business, although we expect an automotive OEM to start production in the second half of the year. The fact that we have already achieved a high volume mass production at 5-nanometer helps pave the way for our other 5-nanometer SoC, such as the CV3 family. Second, the automotive market resembles both the high-end production version of our 5-nanometer CV3, as well as a 5-nanometer version for China. At the high end, we sample CV3-AD685, targeting L3 and above autonomy, and this central domain controller is currently evaluated, is in evaluation at multiple OEMs and tier ones globally. So far, we are finding success in L3 and above commercial vehicles. For the basic highway L2 plus opportunity in China, we introduced a CV72AQ, and we have numerous tier one design wins and OEM discussions underway. Third, we introduced our generative AI, Gen AI strategy for the age of the network, and we are sampling our 5-nanometer N1 processor, targeting age applications, ranging from IoT devices to age servers. Fourth, we’ll continue to build out the CV3 automotive platform to offer our Tier 1and OEM customers turnkey options with our software stack and our centrally processed HD radar algorithms. We started the new year at the Consumer Electronics Show, CES, where we hosted over 200 customer meetings and made a number of significant announcements for automotive, Gen AI, and our new Cooper Development Platform. We were pleased to receive a CES Innovation Award for the second year in a row, this time for our centralized radar processing architecture. In December, we unveiled our latest software stack for Level 2 Plus and the higher autonomous driving applications. This software is optimized and can scale across our entire CV3 processor family, enabling OEM to get to market faster and reduce development costs. The new software stack, including the perception, fusion, and planning layers, is primarily deep learning based, which allows software development to scale more easily, resulting in a more accurate solution. Finally, most important, we rely on high resolution camera and the radar perception data to create a real-time map inside the vehicle. And for this reason, we eliminate the use of stored HD maps that may contain stale data, which results in improved results and a reduced cost for OEM. If needed, the software stack is available in modules and can be combined with an OEM’s own software intellectual property. During the CES show, we demonstrated a stack running on a single CV3 automotive AI domain processor in our own autonomous vehicle, successfully completing over 150 autonomous drives. The demonstration integrated our Oculii radar algorithm for the first time. We also announced the expansion of our CV3 processor family with the addition of our CV3 AD635 and the 655 SoCs. The new CV3-AD635 supports a sensing suite that includes multiple cameras and radars to enable mainstream level 2 plus feature set, such as highway autopilot and automated parking, in addition to meeting the GSR2 and NCAP standards. Additionally, the 655 enables advanced level 2 plus with urban autopilot, as well as the support for additional cameras, radars, and other sensors. With the previously announced flagship 685 SoC, along with the ChinaFolk’s CV72 AQ SoC, the CV3 family of four processors now covers the full range of AD and ADAS solutions, from mainstream to premium passenger vehicles. The new CV3-AD SoCs were endorsed by our partner Continental. Kodiak Robotics, a leading autonomous vehicle company focused on trucking and defense, announced that it had selected our CV3-AD685 AI domain controller for its next generation autonomous vehicles. In IoT markets, during CES, we announced we are bringing Gen-AI capabilities to the edge through the introduction of our N1 processor for on-premises applications. This SoC supports up to 34 billion parameters, multimodal large language models, LLMs, with low power consumption, enabling Gen-AI for edge applications. We demonstrated multimodal LLMs running on the new N1 processor at a fraction of the power per inference of leading GPU solutions. Ambarella aims to bring Gen-AI to a wide range of edge applications, including video security, robotics, and industrial applications. Quanta Computer announced it was partnering with Ambarella to develop products based on our CV3-AD685, CV72, and new N1 processor to address cutting-edge AI devices. This offering addresses the up growing market demand for a diverse range of neural networks and LLMs and the well-empowered business across sectors, including autonomous vehicles, smart surveillance, robotics, and healthcare. Quanta demonstrated PCIe add-in cards based on our N1, as well as showing automotive ECUs based on CV3-AD685. We also introduced and demonstrated our new Cooper developer platform. Cooper offers seamless integration of software, hardware, state-of-the-art, fine-tuned AI models, and services that provide universal support across Ambarella’s entire portfolio of AI SoCs. We have now successfully deployed Cooper to some of our IoT customers worldwide. I will now quickly highlight some of the customer products announced and made during the last quarter. In the Chinese automotive market, we continue to expand our position in this important market. During the quarter, GAC Auto announced Aion S Max passenger car with combination driver monitoring and in-cabin sensing based on our CV25 AQ automotive AI vision processor. GAC also introduced this Trumpchi M8 passenger car with driver monitoring and the multi-channel occupancy monitoring also based on our CV25 AQ. And in January, XPENG unveiled its X9 minivan including an electronic mirror system based on our A12 automotive SoC. And in the enterprise IoT market, career market leader Hanha [ph] Vision introduced multiple models based on AI vision SoC including 4K and the four-channel multi-directional cameras based on our CV2 SoCs. And the AI thermal camera based on our CV22 SoCs. All Korean camera supplier IDIS introduced a 2-megapixel voice-over-IP video intercom based on our CV28 SoC. And Taiwan-based VivoTech also introduced this new 87-V3 family of IP camera based on our CV22 AI SoCs and featuring fixed-on and bully models with advanced AI capabilities. And in the home monitoring market, Canadian service provider TELUS announced its home view doorbell camera based on our CV28M AI SoC and featuring advanced AI detection. In summary, looking forward our key objectives to restore revenue growth and profitability while continuing to drive our strategic R&D priorities for AI inference process opportunities at the edge. To achieve this goal, we’re highly focused on commercialization of technology and products we have developed. And in particular, converting the multiple RFIs and RFQs we are currently working on for CV2 and CV3 into awarded business. Furthermore, returning our IoT business to its positive secular growth trajectory is very important. And this includes our early business development for our new Gen AI and one-price. In conclusion, we have not been distracted by the prolonged industry-wide cynical downturn. And we see the secular trends we address, safety, security, and automation remaining very strong. The increased market attention on inference processing, in particular at the edge, is aligned with where we have been investing. In the new year, we are very excited about the opportunities we are working on and look forward to move more business into one column. And I’m excited about what we will achieve in the years ahead. With that, John will now discuss the Q4 and the full-year fiscal year 2024 results and outlook in more details. John Young: Thank you, Fermi. Before I begin, I would like to say that I’m honored to assume the CFO role. I’ve been working with the team for seven years and I’m very excited to help the company as it pursues growth in its target markets. I’ll now review the financial highlights for the fourth quarter and full fiscal year 2024, ending January 31st, 2024. I will also provide a financial outlook for our first quarter of fiscal year 2025, ending April 30th, 2024. I will be discussing non-GAAP results and ask that you refer to today’s press release for a detailed reconciliation of GAAP to non-GAAP results. For non-GAAP reporting, we have eliminated stock-based compensation expense, along with acquisition-related and restructuring costs adjusted for the impact of taxes. Fiscal year 2024 revenue decreased 32.9% to $226.5 million. IoT revenue was about two-thirds of the total revenue and declined about 40% for the year. Auto revenue represented the balance of revenue and declined about 14% for the year. From a product point of view, a large majority of our fiscal 2024 revenue decline was from our human viewing video processor, SoCs. For fiscal year 2024, non-GAAP gross margin was 63.3% versus 63.9% in fiscal 2023. Non-GAAP operating expense increased 3.9% for the year versus 17.6% in the prior year. Ending cash and marketable securities totaled $219.9 million up from $206.9 million at the end of the prior year. For fiscal Q4, revenue was $51.6 million, slightly above the midpoint of our prior guidance range, up 2% from the prior quarter, and down 38% year-over-year. Non-GAAP gross margin for fiscal Q4 was 62.5% in line with our prior guidance range. Non-GAAP operating expense was $44.1 million, approximately flat with the prior quarter, and below our prior guidance range of $45 million to $48 million, driven by continued expense management and the timing of spending between quarters. We remain on track to our internal product development milestones. Q4 net interest and other income was $2.1 million. Q4 non-GAAP tax provision was approximately $119,000. In fiscal Q4, we recorded a one-time GAAP non-cash tax charge of $22.7 million, establishing a valuation allowance on certain U.S. deferred tax assets that were deemed more likely than not to be unrealizable in the foreseeable future. This valuation allowance was excluded from fiscal Q4 non-GAAP tax provision, consistent with our historical practice for changes to tax valuation allowances. This adjustment is a non-cash tax charge required by GAAP based on the proportion of taxable income in the United States. We reported a non-GAAP net loss of $9.8 million, or a $0.24 loss per diluted share. Now I’ll turn to our balance sheet and cash flow. Fiscal Q4 cash and marketable securities decreased $2.4 million from the prior quarter to $219.9 million. Receivables days of sales outstanding increased from 42 days in the prior quarter to 44 days, while days of inventory decreased from 145 to 131 days. Inventory dollars declined 6% sequentially and declined 28% from a year ago. Operating cash outflow was $4 million for the quarter, and for the full year we generated operating cash inflow of $19 million. Capital expenditures for tangible and intangible assets were $1.9 million for the quarter and $12 million for the year. We had two logistics and ODM companies representing 10% or more of our revenue in Q4. WT Microelectronics, a fulfillment partner in Taiwan that ships to multiple customers in Asia, came in at 55% of revenue for the fourth quarter and 53% for the full fiscal year 2024. Chicony, an ODM who manufactures for multiple end customers, was 14% of revenue for both the quarter and the full fiscal year 2024. I’ll now discuss the outlook for the first quarter of fiscal year 2025. Our early actions during the cyclical downturn in the semiconductor industry have helped our customers navigate their high inventory balances, and these actions are now enabling our business to stabilize and begin to recover. For fiscal Q1, we estimate our total revenue will be in the range of $52 million to $56 million. We expect sequential growth in both IoT and auto. We expect fiscal Q1 non-GAAP gross margin to be in the range of 61.5% to 63%. We expect non-GAAP OpEx in the first quarter to be in the range of $46 million to $49 million, with the increase compared to Q4 driven by new product development costs and employee-related expenses, which we were able to delay in previous quarters. We estimate net interest income to be approximately $1.5 million, our non-GAAP tax expense to be approximately $500,000, and our diluted share count to be approximately 40.8 million shares. Ambarella will be participating in a fireside chat and hosting one-on-one and group meetings on February 29th in New York City at Susquehanna’s Technology Conference. We will also be participating in Morgan Stanley’s TMT Conference in San Francisco on Monday, March 4th. On March 18th, we will participate in the ROTH Conference in Southern California. We hope to see you at one of these events. Please contact us for more details. Thank you for joining our call today, and with that, I will turn the call over to the operator for questions. See also Top 55 Video Games Of All Time: 2024 Rankings and 16 Longest Lasting Jeans Brands of 2024. Q&A Session Follow Ambarella Inc (NASDAQ:AMBA) Follow Ambarella Inc (NASDAQ:AMBA) or Subscribe with Google We may use your email to send marketing emails about our services. Click here to read our privacy policy. Operator: Thank you. [Operator Instructions] Now, first question coming from the line of Quinn Boulton from Needham. Your line is open. Neil Young: Hey, this is Neil Young on for Quinn Boulton. Thank you for taking my questions. So you said you were seeing project delays from Tier 1s and OEMs, as well as volume reductions in planned projects, which you called out more of an inventory issue. How’s that inventory improvement — or I should say, is that inventory improvement progressing ahead of where you thought it would? And if so, are you starting to get the sense that these projects will resume soon? And then I had a follow-up. Fermi Wang: So you are referring to what we said a quarter before? Neil Young: Yes. Fermi Wang: So I think in November, when we provide, I think early December, when we provide our final guidance for this year, I think we talk about there’s a project got pushed out, and OEM Tier 1s, also some decision for a new project also got delayed. And also there’s some inventory. I think what we are saying is still consistent with what we have said in December last year. I think there’s no new updates. I don’t think — we haven’t seen new development in terms of a further project got delayed or pushed out. Neil Young: Okay. So on the auto side, regarding inventory, you aren’t seeing any improvements? Fermi Wang: We haven’t seen any improvement, but we are not saying there’s — it’s getting worse. Neil Young: Okay. Thanks. And then for my follow-up. So in the past, you talked about how the first CV3 revenue would come from China. I believe in your opening remarks, I heard you say you’re engaged in discussion with multiple Tier 1s and already have multiple design wins on the way. If that’s the case, when do you think you’ll see first revenue from those wins? And then maybe just an update on the demand environment in China. Fermi Wang: Right. So for CV70 to 8Q, we expected that the first revenue from those design wins would be in calendar year 2026. We have talked about this in a previous call. And basically, that was a low end CV70 to 8Q is basically the low end of CV3 family and addressing first level of Level 2+, for example, for the ADAS plus smart parking. So that’s the no market in China, and we’re working on. We already have design with Tier 1 and working with OEM design wins right now. But I think for the market development point of view, I think China continues to be one of the focus areas that we are in because I think that — I think everybody sees the EV development in China and we believe autonomous driving also will happen in China faster than other areas. So that’s definitely we believe we can monetize our CV3 technology in China faster than any other areas. Operator: Thank you. And our next question coming from the line of Christopher Rolland with Susquehanna. Your line is open. Christopher Rolland: Hi, thanks for the question. Just about your N1 product, maybe any more thoughts on how large this could be for you guys? Have you considered or has anyone talked about combining multiple chips into a server or appliance? And then lastly, does this meet the Chinese compute restrictions for import as well? Thanks. Fermi Wang: Right. So first of all, in terms of N1, we definitely believe that — first of all, technically we can put multiple chips together and to serve a high-end solution. But so far, we believe a single chip solution at the edge will meet demands for a lot of our current customers, maybe even new customers. But I do see a point if you want to go to the edge server side that with multiple chips will provide a better solution. Definitely that’s the direction we are looking at. And the current solution that, for example, we demo with our partners building PCIe card today is a single chip solution, but it can be multiple chips in the future. In terms of the American regulation, I think N1, because our architecture, although we can provide high performance at very low power consumption. But our total tops, top number as well as the bandwidth, is much lower than our competition. And that’s our strength, our architecture, that we can use a smaller top number and lower bandwidth to achieve similar or higher performance. Christopher Rolland: Great. Thank you for your comments. John Young: Chris, in terms of the market size, we’ve had many discussions at CES and afterwards with customers on our Gen AI and LLM products. And we see really good feedback about what these products can do. And many customers, we found out, just were not aware that Gen AI models like Lava could run so efficiently on a sub 50-watt SoC. And so this has triggered a lot of discussions with our customers and how they’re going to use the product. And we’re going to wait to put some market sizing figures out until we’re a little bit farther down that process. But the feedback’s really good, especially doing this on a sub 50-watt SoC. Fermi Wang: Great. Do you have a follow up, Chris? Christopher Rolland: Yeah. Maybe around the kind of edge AI and camera opportunity. Maybe if you could describe that. I mean, there’s so much focus on auto. But Next Gen, like security cameras with all this AI functionality, what are growth rates for that market? Do you have now visibility into a funnel to kind of refresh that and to revigorate that market? And what kind of growth could we be talking for kind of that edge market as well with your products? Thanks. John Young: Well, for our SAM, we haven’t updated it for Gen AI, kind of like the prior discussion, so we’re still sizing that up. But the prior SAM CAGR, if you will, that we talked about was in the low teens range, thinking of a five-year SAM CAGR for that market. But that does not include the Gen AI products. And we’re going to take a little bit longer to put those numbers in. In terms of kind of the insight into building momentum in this market and any sort of funnel, I’ll pass that off to Fermi. Fermi Wang: Yes. In fact, although we talk a lot about auto because that’s a huge opportunity, but we never underestimate the importance of security camera market for us. This is really a big portion of our revenue. And we continue to believe that the edge AI application for security cameras is important for us. And we continue to develop new platform. For example, we announced the CV72 and we’ll announce new chips for this market in the near future. So, I think we believe that the AI performance demand in security camera will continue to grow. And we want to continue to be the player and the dominant player on the mainstream high-end product line. Operator: Thank you. And our next question coming from the line of Matt Ramsey with TD Cowen. Your line is open. Matthew Ramsay: Good afternoon, guys. Thank you. I guess, Fermi, I wanted to follow up with you on some of the initial feedback on the N1 from an inference perspective. And I guess it’s not a surprise to me, given that the engineering and architecture team is getting good feedback on low power inference. I guess my question is, as you get that good feedback and you’re interacting with customers that can potentially ramp this product over time, given where the P&L is for you guys right now during the correction, what’s the business model over the next 12 month to 18 months to start to really build a business around this and get something that could ramp at scale, given the software investments that you need, etcetera? Are customers willing and are you willing to do sort of NRE payment arrangements? Are people willing to invest alongside you on software? I’m just trying to figure out. I can see big potential here, but there’s also some limitations on capital, given where the business is. And I’m trying to understand what the discussions are to get you from point A to point B if this is going to be a big product. Fermi Wang: Right. So I think you make a good point. I think for the N1 development, it’s going to be significant for us. But that’s why we are open for any kind of business model, including from partnership to NRE numbers. I think with N1, we only can address some of the cost, particularly our existing customer demand. And also on the software, in fact, we can demo and show you that our investment on the software and tools and the silicon can be leveraged for our first-generation chip. So from that point of view, I think the majority of our investment for N1 is done. So the real question is what’s our roadmap moving forward? And for example, if we look at the Cooper development, although we define Cooper for other purposes, but definitely directly apply to our N1 development. So let’s talk about for our LLM or Gen AI roadmap. I think that’s where the difficulty is, right? I think it’s from the PR point of view, if we want to do this, we need to continue to invest in R&D for new chips and maybe even new software. So from that point of view, I agree with you that we have to look at all the possible scenarios, including a partnership as well as NDA. So some of the NRE payment for us to pay for the current cost. But I think based on the feedback, it’s become very clear that LLM is not only for the data center. LLM will penetrate to the H device and our current existing customer and future customer all want LLM as a part of the roadmap. So I think that we need to be flexible to develop a roadmap for our customer and we have to figure that out sometime this year. Matthew Ramsay: Thank you for all the thoughts there for me. I guess this is my follow up question where the revenue levels are right now, you guys have been consistent the last couple of quarters that you’re working with the customer base to burn through inventory that they had built. And you’re clearly under shipping and sell through by a pretty significant margin to do that. So, I mean, I asked this last quarter and maybe it was too early to ask, but now that we’ve had three more months, do you have a field now as to what the steady straight sell through revenue level of the business is currently just with the designs you’ve won, particularly in the security camera businesses. What sell through and what the market size right now after we’ve gone way up and then way down on the inventory correction, what’s kind of the steady state sell through that you’re under shipping to burn through inventory? You have an estimate for that, thanks. Fermi Wang: Yes, so we are trying very hard to understand numbers. So let me give you my thoughts. I think, when I look at the number that at peak we shipped probably 92 million a quarter, at the bottom we ship roughly 50 million. And when we look at all of the statistics and the numbers that the model we built, we feel the midpoint of that two number is probably the comfortable level for us. And we are definitely working hard to go to that to reach that level. So I think roughly in the $70 million range is probably the number we are shooting for when everything get equal, equalized. Operator: Thank you. And our next question coming from the line of Tore Svanberg with Stifel. Your line is open. Tore Svanberg: Yes, thank you. My first question for me, so you talked about fiscal 2025 you expect to see growth in both auto and IoT. I was just hoping you could give us a little bit more sort of the puts and takes and how you think the year to progress. Obviously, there’s still probably some lingering inventory, especially on the auto side. But yes, any more color you can give us as far as the growth you’re expecting in both segments this year? Fermi Wang: You are talking about CV5 or overall? Tore Svanberg: No, I’m talking about your — you mentioned you expect both segments to grow this year. So if you could just give us a little more sort of the dynamic. Fermi Wang: Right. So I think for the — let’s talk about IoT first. I think for IoT, it’s pretty clear that with the CV2 product line that we’ve been growing CV revenue from close to 60% last year. And we believe that the momentum of CV2 family will continue, particularly after the inventory problem is behind us. So I think at that point, I think CV2 family will drive the growth for us. But more importantly, I think in our script, we talk about CV5, what’s our ramping. Last year, we did half a million units, and this year, we’re probably going to double it. And that will also, if you consider ASP, that could be meaningful growth for us. So I think that’s square on the IoT side. On automotive side, I definitely think that, first of all, we’ll continue to announce the CV2 design win in ADAS, in the OMS, CMS, on the electronic mirror, and the recorders. Those continue to be a big portion of our revenue, but also we are announcing some partnership with CV3 early customer that we have started delivering samples and also partnership with NREs. That will definitely play a role in our automotive revenues in there. So I think overall, although that automotive market continues to be weak based on the feedback from the market, but I still believe that we are a small player in the automotive space and we are trying to be a big one throughout the process. Because we’re looking at more along the line, our growth with the current design wins. So I think that’s how we feel comfortable that automotive will also have growth this year. John Young: Yes, Tore, from a product point of view in fiscal 25, our AI inference products, it’s almost all CV2, will be more than 100% of our growth. That means the video processor business will, which was down substantially, as John mentioned, in fiscal 2024, it dropped about $80 million. That rate of decline in video processors will begin to really taper off in fiscal 2025. Did you have a follow-up, Tore? Tore Svanberg: Yes, that was very helpful. As my follow-up, I was pretty impressed with the new Cooper development platform when I saw your samples at CES. And I was just wondering how that development platform is helping you secure more business activity? Because it does seem like it was an important piece of the pie that was missing, but obviously now that you have it readily available. Fermi Wang: In fact, all our existing customers are eager to get their hands on Cooper. Tells me a lot about how much they like this development because now it’s become very easy for them to port software to different umbrella platforms, different silicon means. And also it’s easy to transfer the software and the functional AI algorithm from chip to chip. So this whole development is important not only for us, but also for our customers. And I think for the existing customer, that will make their development work even more comfortable and faster. So it will help us to keep those customers, but also for the new customer, even in the LLM part, I think that we can provide an environment for customers to quickly convert their software algorithm to run on our chip. It’s important for our designers. Operator: Thank you. And our next question coming from the line of Ross Seymore with Deutsche Bank. Your line is open. Ross Seymore: Hi guys. Thanks for — asking the question. When I think about the ASPs that you mentioned, going from CV2 to CV5 or even backwards looking to the CV2 itself, can you just walk us through again, kind of orders of magnitude or pricing ranges, how much for ASPs a tailwind in calendar year 2024 and what do you expect them to be in calendar 2025? Fermi Wang: Right. So first of all, right. So for CV2 family, I think we talk about the price can be anywhere from the high single digit to the probably $30 range. And that’s the average ASP probably high teens. That’s a CV2 family. And CV5, we’re talking about anywhere from the low 30s to high 40s in that range. And that’s, and with our run rate, we think that we can maintain very healthy, not only ASP but also cost margin in that product line. Then CV5, in fact we have CV72 that we mentioned. The price range is similar to CV5, but for AIoT, it’s a different part of the line. So I think, and then we talk about CV3, the ASPs anywhere from the $40 to $400 from CV72 to a CV3, 685. So that just gives you an idea of ASP changes. Ross Seymore: Great. Thanks for that detail for me. And then I guess you talked about the year and growing in both sides of the business. Obviously we have the first quarter guidance and talked about a little bit of the trajectory in a prior question on both your two sides of your business. But if we think about the kind of the second half versus the first half, it seems like you need some relatively sizable sequential increases on a percentage basis to get to that sort of number. Do you think you will be well within those kind of those average of roughly 70 million true sell through numbers? And if so, is that kind of a second half dynamic? And I guess, is that more just about shipping to demand? So the inventory headwinds debate, or is it about new products ramping? Fermi Wang: Right. First of all, we didn’t guide any quarter to be 70 million in our guidance. We talk about, we believe that we’re going to have growth this year and also believe that our Q1 guidance. But overall, I think when I look at the number that Street’s predicting, I think it’s reasonable. And also that based on what we have seen with our customer demands and as well as our booking, I feel comfortable with the current Q1, Q2 guidance. Of course, Q3, Q4, we haven’t seen enough booking, but however the momentum is there. So I think I’m comfortable that we’re going to grow. But in terms of our quarter-to-quarter growth, we haven’t provided any guidance on that yet. John Young: Yes, and Ross, just to follow up on the ASP question, our ASP in fiscal 2024 grew about 15% year-over-year. And looking into the next year, it really depends on the mix of video processor versus CV, but even within the CV2 family, the ratio of CV5s to some of the lower end CV2s, then of course we won’t have CV3 revenue contributing in fiscal 2025. So should be some increase, but it’s just hard to say how much now. Lydia, we can move on to the next question. Operator: Certainly. And our next question coming from the line out, Kevin Cassidy with Rosenblatt Securities. Your line is open. Kevin Cassidy: Yes, thanks for taking my question and congratulations on the strong results. Just on your N1, as you’re talking to customers about it, what is the competitive landscape What are some of the alternative designs that they’re looking at? And is the GPU still being considered even as an edge processor? Fermi Wang: Well, some low-end GPU being considered, but as an edge processor, you really need an SoC with very low power consumption. And with that, GPU is much less considered. But however, I do believe that Qualcomm definitely have an ambition to come to this market. And when we compare to them, just like when we compare to them in the automotive space, I think we can deliver higher performance at low power consumption. That’s consistent to be the case. So I do believe we are looking at very similar competitors like our automotive market. Kevin Cassidy: Great. Thanks. And it seems to me you’re getting a lot of leverage out of the 5-nanometer process. You’ve got lots of parts, price performance ranges with this 5-nanometer. Is there anything in your roadmap looking to go below 5-nanometer now? Fermi Wang: Yes, we have to. I think there’s no chance we’ll stay at 5-nanometer for long. But however, I think it’s really driven by two things. One is whether we can justify the cost and also whether the performance requirement. But I definitely believe that you’ll start hearing us talk about next generation of process selections in the near future. Operator: Thank you. [Operator Instructions] And our next question coming from Joe Moore with Morgan Stanley. Your line is open. Joe Moore: Great. Thank you. Fermi, you had alluded to some OEM wins for CV5 that start to ramp in the second half of the year. Can you talk about what applications you’re addressing there? Fermi Wang: It’s an EV truck in western space. And we definitely have been working on this case for several years. And the customer doesn’t allow us to talk about it just yet. But I think that since they are close to announce their product, and I feel that we should, we feel comfortable to share with this news, but not to mention the customer names. Joe Moore: Great. Thank you for that. And then I guess as far as the N1 product goes, you guys have kind of always shied away from doing anything in a phone because you don’t want to become a feature in a chipset. But obviously a lot of the potential large language model inference could be in devices like phones. So can you just talk about are there opportunities around that to do co-processors or where do you kind of draw the line at your participation? Fermi Wang: Since both Qualcomm and MediaTek are very eager to come in to introducing products in the phone space for LLM, I feel that our opportunity is limited. Because my idea is that even LLM on the phone, because you have 5G connectivity, you might be able to use some LLM at edge but still leverage the 5G so you can connect to the cloud to run most of the LLM functions on the server side. So with that, cell phone become a limited opportunity for us, not only because Qualcomm MediaTek has an advantage in terms of a market share there, but also the usage model is really not purely age, it’s a combination of age and the cloud. So my feeling is we are going to look at pure age devices that focusing on the battery sensitive and also the latency sensitive applications just like what we had before. Joe Moore: Great, thank you very much. Fermi Wang: Thank you. Operator: Thank you. And I’m showing no further questions in the queue at this time. I will now turn the call back over to Dr. Fermi Wang for any closing remarks. Fermi Wang: And I want to thank all of you for joining us today. I’m looking forward to talk to you in a different conference. Thank you. Operator: Ladies and gentlemen, that does conclude our conference for today. Thank you for your participation. You may now disconnect. 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Category: topSource: insidermonkey13 hr. 26 min. ago

28 TV shows that were canceled and never got the closure they deserved

Unfortunately, not every show gets wrapped up in a nice bow: many end in cliffhangers, leaving beloved characters' fates completely up in the air. "GLOW" was renewed, only for Netflix to reverse its decision and cancel the show.Netflix Not all shows can be hits — those that aren't usually end up canceled. As a result, some shows end on brutal cliffhangers, such as "No Tomorrow" and "My Name Is Earl." Warning: Spoilers ahead for many different TV shows. Now shows like "Ted Lasso" and "Succession" have come to an end, it's worth it to take a look at some of the all-time most unsatisfying conclusions on TV.Some shows like "The Society" and "Pitch" were only given one season to find their audiences, and, when they didn't, were canceled on huge cliffhangers.Keep scrolling to read about some TV shows we still think deserve better than what they got.We'll never know if Ruth rejoins the Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling in "GLOW," which aired on Netflix from 2017 to 2019.Alison Brie as Ruth.Netflix"GLOW," a drama set in the over-the-top world of '80s women's wrestling, wasn't a smash hit for Netflix, but it had a very dedicated fan base who were distraught when it was canceled in October 2020, over a year after it had been renewed. According to Deadline, the COVID-19 pandemic made returning to filming logistically impossible, and, instead of delaying further, the streamer decided to cancel it instead.The third season ended with Ruth, the main character, deciding to leave Las Vegas and get on a plane, without giving a definite answer if she'd return to film another season of "GLOW," the in-universe show that the characters starred in.With a large ensemble, there were plenty of unresolved plots that a fourth season would've tied up, but fans won't get to see them.Katy Keene confronted the man who might be her father in the series finale of "Katy Keene."Lucy Hale as Katy Keene.The CW"Katy Keene" was a spin-off of "Riverdale" that only lasted one season from February to May 2020, before getting canceled in July 2020, as TVLine reported.It followed aspiring fashion designer Katy Keene and her group of friends who were all trying to make it in New York City, including "Riverdale" character Josie McCoy, of Josie and the Pussycat Dolls.Throughout the season, Katy's late mother is mentioned frequently and seen in flashbacks, but one of the great mysteries of her life is the identity of her father. At the end of the finale, Katy meets Leo Lacy, the son of Katy's boss — and potentially her father?Unfortunately, the show was canceled and Katy's parentage remains a mystery.The 2019 series "The Society" was canceled after just one season by Netflix, failing to answer the big question: What happened to the residents of West Ham?Kathryn Newton as Allie.NetflixIn "The Society," a group of high schoolers return from a field trip to find their town has vanished into thin air, including their parents and the rest of their families. They also discover a dense forest has surrounded the town, and the outside world has seemingly ceased to exist.While most of the season revolves around a "Lord of the Flies"-esque story of the teens trying to build a society, there's a running background mystery of what, exactly, is going on. The first (and only) season finale seems to imply the kids are in a parallel universe of some kind — we see the "real" West Ham, with a group of schoolchildren reading a plaque with the names of the missing teenagers.The show was originally renewed for a second season in 2019, but, due to the pandemic, it wound up getting canceled in 2020, as Deadline reported."Prodigal Son" ended with Bright stabbing his father, but it's unclear whether he survived.Tom Payne and Michael Sheen as Malcolm Bright and Martin.Fox"Prodigal Son," which lasted from 2019 to 2021, was about Malcolm Bright, a former FBI profiler turned NYPD consultant, who brought some special firsthand knowledge to his job — his father, Martin, is a serial killer known as the Surgeon who killed 23 people. The show saw Bright lean on his father for help understanding the minds of the murderers he profiles.At the end of season two, Martin saves his son's life, only to turn on him in the end and attempt to kill him, but Bright, who had always been afraid of killing someone, stabbed his father first.Fox canceled the series before the finale aired in May 2021, so we may never know what happened to Martin.At the end of "Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist," it seemed Zoey's musical gift had transferred to Max, but we may never know why.Jane Levy as Zoey.Sergei Bachlakov/NBC"Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist," which aired from January 2020 to May 2021, followed Zoey, a programmer who, after an accident involving an MRI machine and an earthquake, can hear people's innermost thoughts via song. Throughout two seasons, Zoey learned secrets she didn't want to know due to this "gift," and she had to deal with the consequences.In the series finale, it's revealed that Zoey's musical gift had transferred to her best friend/boyfriend Max — he finally hears her sing a song to him for the first time.Unfortunately, "ZEP" was canceled soon after season two concluded. This was a shock, according to star Jane Levy, who told Vanity Fair she kept all her stuff in storage in Canada (where the show films), because "I was like, 'Of course we're coming back.'""Last Friday it seemed like it was a green light," said Ley. "And then Monday morning it was a red light."The sudden cancellation left viewers to speculate what it meant for Max to hear Zoey's heart song.A wrap-up holiday film was released on The Roku Channel in December 2021, but it didn't really conclude the story, and the explanation given for why Max got powers (to learn ... empathy?) was silly."Pitch" was canceled after a critically acclaimed (but low-rated) first season that aired in 2016, leaving viewers to wonder what happened to Ginny, her relationship with Mike, and her potential injury.Mark Paul Gosselaar and Kylie Bunbury as Mike and Ginny.Fox Network"Pitch," the story of the first female pitcher in the MLB, has a stellar 93% on Rotten Tomatoes and was loved by critics. Unfortunately, it couldn't find its audience, and executive producer Kevin Falls announced its cancellation in May 2017 on X (formerly known as Twitter), a few months after the first season had wrapped.For fans, this couldn't have come at a worse time.The season finale's last shot was of Ginny, the pitcher, entering an MRI machine after pitching a no-hitter and potentially injuring her elbow. Plus, Ginny and her will-they-or-won't-they relationship with Mike, the team's catcher, was also teetering toward a they-will by the end of the season — too bad we'll never know."No Tomorrow" ended with Xavier, an apocalypse truther, finally being taken seriously and announcing to the world that an asteroid was on course to collide with Earth ... and then it was canceled.Joshua Sasse and Tori Anderson as Xavier and Evie.The CW Network"No Tomorrow" aired on The CW in 2016 and 2017. It was about a girl (Evie) who met a guy (Xavier) who believed the world was going to end in eight months and 12 days. They fall in love and decide to spend the rest of their "remaining" months together, checking items off their "apoca-lists." Hijinks ensue.The first (and only) season of "No Tomorrow" ended with Xavier being proven right by NASA and moving to Washington, DC, to save the world, while Evie meets a cute doctor.Obviously, the end of the world is a ridiculously huge cliffhanger, and The CW broke a lot of hearts when they canceled the show in May 2017, even though they did end up releasing a three-minute epilogue tying up some loose ends."The Family" had more than a few twists and turns in its 12 episodes across March, April, and May 2016 — and the finale was no different.The titular Warren family.ABC Studios"The Family" examines what happens to the Warren family after one of their kids is kidnapped and then returns years later.Of course, the show became much more complicated when it was revealed that Adam, the miraculously returned son, wasn't Adam at all, but a different missing boy named Ben. And that wasn't even the finale.The finale set up two big cliffhangers back in May 2016. First, the real Adam, who had been presumed dead, was revealed to actually be alive and well (and understandably angry at Ben).Second, Willa, the morally dubious daughter of the Warren clan, murdered a journalist named Bridey because she was going to release all the dirt she had on her family. Plus, Bridey had been sleeping with Willa and Willa's brother, Danny. Too much drama, perhaps?However, it was canceled the day after the finale aired."Finding Carter" ended with a beloved character confessing to murder, while another was left badly beaten on the side of a road.Kathryn Prescott and Alex Saxon as Carter and Max.MTV"Finding Carter" started as a show about a girl, Carter, who discovered that the woman she believed was her mother was actually her kidnapper.Over the show's two seasons in 2014 and 2015, it evolved into a web of relationships, secrets, and lies, which is why it was so disappointing when the show got axed in January 2016.The second season's (and the series') finale ended with Max, Carter's best friend, confessing to killing Carter's abusive ex-boyfriend, Jared. And if that wasn't enough drama, the finale also left Carter's brother, Ben, beaten up on the side of the road by a drug dealer named Rick after Ben had agreed to testify against Rick in court."The Whispers" ended with the show's main character sacrificing herself to aliens to save her son (yes, really).Lily Rabe and Milo Ventimiglia as Claire and Sean Bennigan.American Broadcasting Company (ABC)"The Whispers" was marketed as a show about kids and their not-so-imaginary friends, but it evolved into a conspiracy theory-heavy, alien-invasion drama.The show's sole season ended in August 2015 with the main character, Claire, sacrificing herself to the aliens to save her son, Henry, from being zapped into dust ... or maybe she was transported to the alien's ship. We'll never know, because ABC canceled the show in October 2015, soon after its finale aired."Chasing Life" ended with its main character traveling to Italy ... to die.Italia Ricci as April.ABC Family"Chasing Life," which was on the air from June 2014 to September 2015, was about a leukemia diagnosis: It followed April's battle with cancer, her attempt not to let it affect her career and personal life, and how it impacted the rest of her family.The show's second and final season was emotional, with April's new husband, Leo, dying in his sleep soon after their wedding and April finding out that her cancer had returned.In the show's finale, April is told that the clinical trial she is participating in has been ineffective and that she could try chemotherapy and other avenues of treatment, but that they might not work. So April decides to move to Italy and live out the rest of her days drug-free. And that's it! It was canceled the next month.Executive Producer Patrick Sean Smith told TVLine the creative team behind "Chasing Life" had hoped for a third season, but when that didn't materialize, the producers asked to "wrap everything up in a two-hour movie or in a couple of episodes," but that didn't happen either."Southland" faded to black and left its main character's fate in question after a fellow police officer mistakenly shot him.Michael Cudlitz as Officer John Cooper.TNT"Southland" had a difficult journey: NBC renewed it for a second season in 2009, and then, according to The Hollywood Reporter, the network rescinded its renewal and canceled the show after producing six episodes.TNT then bought it and renewed the show until its fifth season in April 2013. That season ended with Officer Cooper getting into a physical altercation with his neighbors.During the fight, the police show up and mistakenly take Cooper as an aggressor, shooting him twice. And then it ended, without viewers knowing if Cooper would survive or not."TNT has made the difficult decision not to renew 'Southland' for another season. We are enormously proud of 'Southland,' which stands as one of the best police dramas ever made," the network said in a statement to Deadline in May 2013."Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman" (1993 to 1997), ended with Lois and Clark receiving a mysterious Kryptonian baby from a time traveler.Dean Cain and Teri Hatcher as Clark and Lois.Warner Bros. Television"Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman" was the defining version of Superman for many '90s kids.However, the show's fourth season was running out of tension once Lois and Clark finally stopped dancing around each other and got married.The fourth season finale's 1997 cliffhanger, in which Lois and Clark find a baby in their basement with a note claiming it belongs to them, wasn't supposed to be a series finale. In an interview given to the "Superman" fansite Kryptonsite in 2003, writer Brad Bucker spoke about a fifth season the show's writing team had planned."Bored to Death" had one big twist in its finale: The main character's girlfriend, Rose, turned out to be his half-sister.Zach Galifianakis and Jason Schwartzman as Jonathan and Ray.HBO"Bored to Death's" premise — a struggling writer who moonlights as a private investigator — lent itself to many ridiculous scenes, only made more hilarious by its all-star cast, which included Ted Danson, Patton Oswalt, and Kristen Wiig. It was on HBO from September 2009 to November 2011.The show's final season ended with Jonathan, the struggling writer/private investigator, finally finding his dad (a sperm donor) and discovering that his father is also the father of his girlfriend, Rose, played by Isla Fisher.Audiences thought he would come clean about their shared heritage, but instead, Jonathan keeps it a secret and kisses her. Roll the credits — and cue a cancellation that December.Creator Jonathan Ames told Vulture that he was in a "numb state" after the cancellation news and that he had plans on how to resolve the show's various plotlines, but never got the chance."Flashforward's" inventive premise of characters seeing six months into the future wasn't sustainable in the long run. It was canceled after one season airing in 2009 and 2010, but not before blowing up a building with a main character inside.Joseph Fiennes as Mark.American Broadcasting Company (ABC)The " Flashforward" series finale in May 2010 had characters see years into their own futures instead of six months.During this flash-forward, Mark, one of the show's protagonists, sees himself inside the FBI headquarters as it explodes, potentially killing him. Or maybe he lived. We'll never know, since the show was canceled that month.In 2015, Robert J. Sawyer, the author of the 1999 novel that the show was based on and a writer on the TV series, shared a memo on his blog he'd written in 2010 that was sent to the writers of "Flashforward."It detailed his plans for a potential second season, and explained how he thought "Flashforward" could stand to be more like "Lost." But the network didn't pick up the show, and these plans were never put into action."Joan of Arcadia" was canceled right as it was implied that Joan's journey was just beginning and that the first two seasons had only been preparing her for the real fight.Amber Tamblyn and Hilary Duff as Joan and Dylan.CBSThe first two seasons of "Joan of Arcadia," airing from September 2003 to April 2005, saw Joan communicating with God and doing his bidding to better herself and the world around her, though viewers never really knew why she could communicate with God or what the end goal was.That all changed with the second-season finale when God informed Joan he had been training her to fight a battle against someone who could also speak to God but was using their powers for evil.Too bad the show was canceled in May 2005, and viewers were left wondering, "What if God was one of us?""Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles" took place four years after the events of "Terminator 2: Judgment Day." It followed Sarah and John Connor attempting to stop the creation of the destructive SkyNet, and aired from January 2008 to April 2009.Lena Headey and Thomas Dekker as Sarah and John Connor.20th Century Fox TelevisionA huge plot point for all of the "Terminator" movies is that John Connor is the chosen one who will defeat the evil software SkyNet.So fans were understandably shocked when season two of "Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles" ended in April 2009 with John traveling to a future where no one seems to know who he is.Even more shocking? The show was canceled in May 2009, and viewers were left wondering what exactly happened in the past to change the future and wipe John from existence."Sliders" ended with the show's last remaining character injecting himself with a virus and "sliding" into a parallel universe.Cleavant Derricks and Kari Wuhrer as Rembrandt and Maggie.Fox NetworkThe concept of "Sliders" (which aired March 1995 to February 2000), is a bit complicated. In every episode, the titular Sliders would "slide" into a new parallel universe, encountering alternate versions of themselves, aliens, and other wacky circumstances.In the show's final episode, the only original Slider left — Rembrandt, a former singer with no scientific background — injects himself with a virus that would destroy the show's main antagonists, the Kromaggs (a type of alien).The show ended with a virus-infected Rembrandt in a new universe without closure on what happened to him or the rest of the Sliders, most of whom had left the series in previous seasons.Even 23 years later, fans online are still wondering why "Sliders" was canceled."Kyle XY" is best remembered as the show about the guy with no belly button, but it ended abruptly with an attempted murder, a surprising revelation, and no closure for the show's love triangle.Matt Dallas as Kyle.ABC Family"Kyle XY" was about a teenage boy who woke up in a forest with the abilities of a newborn and no memory of life before. It aired from June 2006 to March 2009, but was canceled in January 2009, months before the finale even aired.While the show started as one of the most successful ABC Family (now Freeform) shows of all time, as Entertainment Weekly reported, the plot eventually shifted from a sci-fi series to teen drama, causing viewership to drop.The show's final season was just 10 episodes long, making it hard to wrap up the story satisfactorily. The last episode ended with Kyle choking Cassidy (the season's villain) until Cassidy revealed that the two were brothers.The final episode also didn't provide closure for the show's main love triangle between Kyle, Jessi, and Amanda.According to TVLine, the producers shared what would have happened on a season three DVD boxset, including that Cassidy would have remained a bad guy and Kyle would've picked Jessi, but they would have broken up eventually."Las Vegas" ended with a main character walking into his own funeral with no explanation.Molly Sims and Josh Duhamel as Delinda and Danny.NBC"Las Vegas" was about a surveillance team overseeing a casino's security, and aired from September 2003 to February 2008. While the finale looked like it would be a tribute to one of the team's fallen members, it ended with a twist when the colleague they were all mourning walked into his own memorial service. It was canceled later that month.Fans were so upset with this development that a Change.org petition was created to bring back the show and provide closure."My Name Is Earl" ended with the dreaded "To be continued..." and then never was.Ethan Suplee and Jason Lee as Randy and Earl Hickey.NBCLow-level criminal Earl's life takes a turn when he wins the lottery. He decides to pay it forward and atone for the bad things he's done across 96 episodes from September 2005 to May 2009.The fifth and final season of "My Name Is Earl" ended with two big reveals. The first was that Earl's adopted son, Dodge, was his biological son. The second was that Earl's other son, Earl Jr., assumed to be the result of his ex-wife's affair with Darnell, wasn't Darnell's.In a 2014 Reddit AMA with the show's creator, Greg Garcia asked the network if they were safe to end the season on a cliffhanger, and NBC told him yes (clearly, they were wrong).While he's talked about how he would have ended the series, until a "My Name Is Earl" movie appears, it's all up in the air."The Dead Zone's" series finale left viewers with a jaw-dropping revelation: The apocalyptic future Johnny had been trying to prevent might be his fault.Chris Bruno, Anthony Michael Hall, and John L. Adams as Walt, Johnny, and Bruce.USA Network"The Dead Zone" is based on the characters of Stephen King's novel of the same name but not the plot, so viewers couldn't even find closure in the book.In the show, Johnny wakes up from a six-year coma to discover that he can see a person's past and future by touching them or related objects.The show lasted six seasons from June 2002 to September 2007, which makes the lack of a real ending even more frustrating for devoted fans. Throughout the show, Johnny is dedicated to stopping a hellish future in which Greg Stillson, an evil politician, takes power and turns the world upside down.By the beginning of season six, the apocalyptic future had been averted by the death of another character. But in the finale, the "bad" future was seen again by Johnny and his son JJ, who was revealed to have inherited his father's powers. It was also hinted that the terrible future may have been Johnny's fault.But, as The Hollywood Reporter wrote in December 2007, "The Dead Zone" was "vaporized" by USA before these questions could be answered."Hannibal" ends with the two main characters flinging themselves off a cliff.Mads Mikkelsen and Hugh Dancy as Hannibal and Will.NBC"Hannibal," a prequel to the events of the horror classic "The Silence of the Lambs," was critically adored and quickly gained a cult following upon its premiere in April 2013, but the numbers were never large enough to justify the show's high production costs, Deadline reported in June 2015.The show ended that August with Hannibal Lecter, a cannibalistic forensic psychiatrist, and his frenemy Will Graham, an FBI agent, defeating their nemesis, the Tooth Fairy Killer, once and for all. But in a final act of love and hate, Graham flings them both off a cliff.Arguably one of Marvel's best TV shows to date, "Agent Carter," suffered from low ratings and was canceled after season two — it ended with a main character bleeding on the floor due to a gunshot wound.Hayley Atwell as Agent Peggy Carter.ABCIn a then-rare Marvel failure, "Agent Carter" could never find its audience across its 18 episodes from January 2015 to March 2016, even though Peggy is one of, if not the, best female characters in the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe. It was canceled in May 2016.The show revolves around Peggy Carter, Captain America's former true love and a secret agent who needs to balance her work with life as a single woman in the 1940s.The show's second season ended with Peggy's nemesis-turned-friend Jack shot by a mysterious figure, who then stole a heavily redacted file containing incriminating details about Carter.The ending of "Agent Carter" was further complicated by the events of 2019's "Avengers: Endgame" and season seven of "Agents of SHIELD" in 2020, with characters from "Agent Carter" seemingly negating the ending of the show, as Captain America and the main characters of "AoS" both traveled back in time to the events of "Agent Carter" — which directly goes against what was shown in "Agent Carter.""Popular," a perfect satire on the ridiculous plot twists of teen dramas, got to end on an absurd cliffhanger of its own: Queen Bee Brooke getting run over by drunk and jealous Nicole.Leslie Bibb and Carly Pope as Brooke and Sam.The WBRyan Murphy's very first entry into the teen dramedy playing field (he was previously known for "Nip/Tuck") was near perfect, but "Popular," which aired from September 1999 to May 2001, was canceled after just two seasons on The WB. The show revolved around two teenage girls — one super popular (Brooke), one very much not (Sam) — who were forced to get along when their parents got engaged.Season two ended with Brooke fleeing prom after forcing her and Sam's shared love interest, Harrison, to choose between the two before getting hit by a drunken driver, who turned out to be an angry and jealous Nicole, Brooke's former best friend.Fans never found out who Harrison chose or if Brooke survived the car crash.Murphy later spoke with Entertainment Weekly in 2016 about his experience making the show. "I wanted it to work so I did the notes and thus I ended up jeopardizing my own sensibility and it got cancelled after year two," said Murphy.No one expected "Moesha," a sitcom, to end the way it did, with one of the girls in Moesha's dorm pregnant, Myles abducted, and Moesha deciding whether to move in with her boyfriend.Countess Vaughn and Brandy as Kim and Moesha.UPN"Moesha" was about the life of an average, middle-class Black family. But, in an unexpected, soapy plot twist, it ended with a character in potentially mortal peril, a surprise pregnancy, and a longtime couple in serious trouble. It aired from January 1996 to May 2001.According to a 2001 report in Entertainment Weekly, some of these plots were supposed to be resolved in the "Moesha" spin-off "The Parkers," a show that followed Moesha's best friend Kim Parker who left "Moesha" after season four, but the cross-over never materialized over "The Parkers'" five seasons.In 2014, Brandy, who played the show's titular Moesha, even apologized to fans of the show for its unresolved ending in an interview with Keke Palmer for her BET show "Just Keke.""Mork and Mindy" was canceled after a steady decline in ratings, leaving the fate of its two main characters up in the air.Robin Williams and Pam Dawber as Mork and Mindy.ABCThis unlikely spin-off of "Happy Days" lasted four seasons from 1978 to 1982 before getting the boot, two years before "Happy Days" ended in 1984. It revolved around Mork, an alien, and his friend-turned-wife, the human Mindy."Mork and Mindy" ends with Mork discovering that his new friend, fellow alien Kalnik, is evil and trying to kill him. To save his and Mindy's lives, he outs himself to the world as an alien, and the two escape using magical shoes that allow them to time travel.But they end up stranded in prehistoric times ... and that's it. Viewers never discover if Mork and Mindy ever return to their own time."Terra Nova," a time-traveling epic about what would happen to Earth if it becomes too populated, was canceled after just one season, leaving viewers to wonder what became of the citizens of Terra Nova.Jason O'Mara as Jim.Fox"Terra Nova" is a bit complicated. The premise is essentially that the Earth will become overcrowded and almost inhospitable by the mid-22nd century, so technology is developed to help citizens travel back 85 million years to inhabit the untouched Earth in a settlement called Terra Nova.The show's conflict arises from a rebel group called the Sixers, who are helping an evil corporation travel back and forth in time to exploit the past Earth's natural resources for usage in the future.The series' sole season aired in 2011 with the main character, Jim, destroying the portal to the past and narrowly making it back to Terra Nova.However, even though the portal was seemingly destroyed, an artifact from the 18th century was found in Terra Nova, left behind by the Sixers, suggesting that another portal to a different time had opened up.What would that mean for the people of Terra Nova? Fans will never know since Fox canceled the show soon after, Entertainment Weekly reported in May 2012.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderJan 23rd, 2024

Lindsay Lohan got in trouble filming "Mean Girls" because she kept trying to look Plastic before Cady"s transformation

The hit 2004 movie is explored in "So Fetch: The Making of 'Mean Girls' (and Why We're Still So Obsessed With It)," by Jennifer Keishin Armstrong. Lindsay Lohan as Cady Heron in "Mean Girls," before and after becoming one of the Plastics.Paramount PicturesLindsay Lohan rushed to transform into the Plastics version of Cady on the set of "Mean Girls."According to a new behind-the-scenes book, the director "fought to stop her from curling her hair too early."One day on set, Lohan "snuck off and curled her hair," even though it wasn't needed for a scene."Mean Girls" star Lindsay Lohan was so eager to transform into one of the Plastics that she got in trouble for curling her hair too soon, according to a behind-the-scenes book."So Fetch: The Making of 'Mean Girls' (and Why We're Still So Obsessed With It)," written by Jennifer Keishin Armstrong and released on Tuesday, gives fans an inside look into how the hit 2004 movie came together.Chapter five focuses on the transformations the stars underwent to embody the Plastics, the trio of glamorous high schoolers played by Rachel McAdams (Regina George), Lacey Chabert (Gretchen Wieners), and Amanda Seyfried (Karen Smith). This also included Lohan's character, Cady Heron, a formerly homeschooled teen who becomes part of their clique and morphs into a superficial Plastic as she spends more time with them.Lindsay Lohan, Amanda Seyfried, Lacey Chabert, and Rachel McAdams in "Mean Girls."Paramount PicturesAccording to the book, which included interviews with cast and crew members, hair was integral to the storytelling. Director Mark Waters was specific about how it should appear, to the extent that the film's hairstylist, Carol Hartwick, was always nearby to make adjustments.Just as Cady succumbs to the Plastics' emphasis on appearance, Lohan was more than ready to ditch her character's plaid shirts and ponytail to dress as one of the cool girls."Lohan would constantly rush to wear pieces meant for later in the timeline or vamp up her hair when it was still supposed to be straighter and simpler," Armstrong wrote. "The wardrobe, hair, and makeup people had to keep pulling her back. Waters constantly fought to stop her from curling her hair too early in Cady's metamorphosis."Lindsay Lohan in "Mean Girls."Paramount PicturesWaters explained to Lohan why her hair needed to be straight and simple until Cady's transformation later in the movie. But still, the "Parent Trap" star wanted her hair curled."Once, they shot half a scene with her hair straight, as planned," Armstrong wrote. "They broke for lunch. She snuck off and curled her hair. When they resumed shooting, Waters was pulling his own hair out, though he maintained his usual calm. 'Lindsay, what are you doing?' he asked. 'We can't shoot the scene with your hair curled. We already shot half without it.'"Lohan started crying, resulting in the makeup team needing an hour to get her camera ready. Waters, who previously worked with Lohan for the 2003 "Freaky Friday" remake, reportedly didn't fume over the incident."She is watchable," Waters said, "but she's also a handful. The movie wouldn't be successful without that energy."Even though the timing of Cady's transformation was out of Lohan's control, the actor did get to influence her character's hairstyle. According to the book, she took inspiration from Jennifer Aniston, whose haircut on "Friends" was well-known and sought after in the '90s."As Lohan's character transitioned from regular girl to Queen Bee, she asked for hair that looked like that of the ultimate hair icon at the time, Jennifer Aniston," Armstrong wrote. "Lohan's would be a longer, redder version, with extensions, of Aniston's famous layered look as Rachel Green on 'Friends.'"Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: worldSource: nytJan 17th, 2024

The Air Force said its nuclear missile capsules were "free of health hazards." But documents show the hidden toxic risks missileers were exposed to on the job.

The safety of Air Force nuclear missile capsules is under scrutiny after hundreds of current and former missileers self-reported cancer diagnoses. Doreen Jenness, the widow of Air Force Capt. Jason Jenness, clutches one of Jason's sweatshirts.Tommy Martino/APNuclear missile crews have worked in underground capsules and silos since the 1960s.The Air Force said the nuclear missile capsules were safe from occupational hazards.But decades later, hundreds of current and former missileers self-reported cancer diagnoses.A large pool of dark liquid festering on the floor. No fresh air. Computer displays that would overheat and ooze out a fishy-smelling gel that nauseated the crew. Asbestos readings 50 times higher than the Environmental Protection Agency's safety standards.These are just some of the past toxic risks that were in the underground capsules and silos where Air Force nuclear missile crews have worked since the 1960s. Now many of those service members have cancer.The toxic dangers were recorded in hundreds of pages of documents dating back to the 1980s that were obtained by The Associated Press through Freedom of Information Act requests. They tell a far different story from what Air Force leadership told the nuclear missile community decades ago, when the first reports of cancer among service members began to surface:"The workplace is free of health hazards," a Dec. 30, 2001, Air Force investigation found."Sometimes, illnesses tend to occur by chance alone," a follow-up 2005 Air Force review found.The capsules are again under scrutiny.The AP reported in January that at least nine current or former nuclear missile officers, or missileers, had been diagnosed with the blood cancer non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. Then hundreds more came forward self-reporting cancer diagnoses. In response, the Air Force launched its most sweeping review to date and tested thousands of air, water, soil, and surface samples in all of the facilities where the service members worked. Four current samples have come back with unsafe levels of polychlorinated biphenyls, or PCBs, a known carcinogen used in electrical wiring.In early 2024, more data is expected, and the Air Force is working on an official count of how many current or former missile community service members have cancer.Some current missileers told the AP they were concerned by the new reports but believe the Air Force is being transparent in its current search for toxic dangers. Many of them take some of the same precautions missileers have for generations, such as having "capsule clothes," the civilian attire they change into once inside the capsule to work the 24-hour shift. The clothes go straight into the laundry after a shift because they end up smelling metallic."Whenever you hear 'cancer,' it's a little concerning," said Lt. Joy Hawkins, 23, a missileer at Malmstrom Air Force Base in Montana. To Hawkins and fellow missileer Lt. Samantha McGlinchey, who spoke to a visiting AP reporter as they completed an underground shift at launch control capsule Charlie, the news meant they would need to be diligent about medical checkups. "There's more testing, things to come, cleanup efforts," McGlinchey, 28, said. "For us early in our careers, it's better to be caught so early."Others worry the dangers will again be played down.When the latest rounds of test results were released, the Air Force did not initially reveal that samples showing contamination had critically higher PCB levels than EPA standards allow — and dozens of other areas tested were just below the EPA's threshold, said Steven Mayne, a former senior enlisted nuclear missile facility supervisor at Minot Air Force Base in North Dakota who now runs a Facebook group that is dedicated to posting Air Force news or internal memos."At this point, the EPA, OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration), and senators from North Dakota and Montana need to look into this matter," Mayne said.In December 2022, former Malmstrom missileers Jackie Perdue and Monte Watts, both of whom have been diagnosed with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, asked the Defense Department's inspector general to investigate."I believe health and safety standards have been violated, or not considered, and should be investigated," said Perdue, who served as a nuclear missile combat crew commander at Malmstrom from 1999 to 2006, in an inspector general complaint obtained by the AP.Past exposuresTwo missile launch officers at a launch control center at Malmstrom Air Force Base.US Air Force via APThere are currently three nuclear missile bases in the United States: F.E. Warren Air Force Base in Wyoming, Minot, and Malmstrom. Each base has 15 underground launch control capsules that act as hubs for fields of 10 Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile silos each. The capsules are manned around the clock, 365 days a year. Missileers spend 24 hours or more each shift working underground in those capsules monitoring the ICBMs, ready to launch them if directed by the president.The Air Force acknowledges the current review can't provide full answers on what past missileers were exposed to, but the data will establish a health profile likely to help them apply for veterans benefits.However, there are plenty of warning signs about past toxic risks in the documents obtained by AP."Type and content of asbestos, please phone ASAP," a handwritten note reads on memo dated Nov. 9, 1992. All of the documents obtained by the AP have been redacted to have the names blocked out, but the urgency was evident. "PRIORITY," the handwritten note says, in all caps.An environmental team at Malmstrom capsules Hotel and Juliet got worrisome asbestos readings from underneath a generator in the capsule equipment rooms. The equipment room is also underground, contained within the same sealed-in workspace. The EPA's threshold for asbestos exposure is 1% for an eight-hour workday. But missileers were locked in there for 24 hours at a time, at least. If the weather was bad and the replacement crew couldn't make the drive to the site, a team could be stuck underground for as long as 72 hours. Hotel and Juliet recorded solid samples of chrysotile asbestos — a white asbestos that can be inhaled — between 15% to 30%.In the official report published just seven days later, however, the risks were downplayed."Asbestos presents a health hazard only when it is crushed (able to be crushed or pulverized by hand pressure.) All suspect (asbestos) was found to be in good condition," the annual review on Hotel said.At missile silo Quebec-12 in 1989, it found levels of up to 50% amosite asbestos, a brown asbestos found in cement and insulation. And a team looking at Malmstrom's Bravo capsule that same year had warned that even if it was left undisturbed, it could be dangerous. "Diesel room — when running leaks asbestos," it warned.In his inspector general complaint, former Malmstrom missileer Watts said there was asbestos in the floor tile as well and that missileers also "routinely removed, handled and replaced these tiles as part of required survival equipment inventories."The documents also reveal multiple PCB spills throughout the decades. A 1987 report talks about a missileer calling his commander to report a severe headache and lightheadedness. The crew finds a clear, sticky syrup leaking under the capsule's power panel. "I suggested the blast door be opened for more ventilation and no contact with the substance be made," a bioenvironmental engineer documents. "All the team needed to do was open the blast door and stay away from the spill. There was no need to close the capsule.""It's frustrating to know they had thought of this back then," said Doreen Jenness, whose husband, Jason Jenness, was a Malmstrom missileer who died of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma in 2001 at the age of 31. "It makes me frustrated and angry that they can keep telling these young men and women that they are not finding anything — knowing that back in 2001, 2003, and the early 2000s that there was something going on there."Capsule SierraDoreen Jenness, the widow of Air Force Capt. Jason Jenness, holds up a photo of her late husband, who was a Malmstrom missileer who died of non-Hodgkin lymphoma in 2001.Tommy Martino/APDoreen and Jason Jenness met while he was assigned to Malmstrom. They married and lived on base in the mid-1990s. Their missileer friends used to tease them because they had a golden Labrador named Sierra, the same name as one of the capsules that Jason's squadron operated.The environmental reports from Malmstrom when Jason was assigned there show Sierra had a long list of hazards. In 1996, a medical team reported there were more than 25 gallons of fluid overrun with biological growth festering on Sierra's capsule floor. An intake that collected outside air for Sierra was located by the parking lot, and the team watched a running car idle near it for 20 minutes. The team documented that a fan needed to pull clean air down into Sierra had been broken for at least six months, so the only way crews could get fresh air was if they left the capsule's steel vault door open.At the other capsules, the team said the air quality was "marginal, but should not cause serious health problems." Sierra was dangerous. In March of 1996, the medical team measured carbon dioxide levels of 1,700 parts per million in the air. "At these levels, you can expect complaints of headache, drowsiness, fatigue and/or difficulty concentrating from a majority of the occupants. Worker removal should be considered."Nothing changed. That May, the medical team again recorded exposure levels of 1,800 ppm, and advised again that the missileers should be removed.Leaking computer consolesThe original underground launch capsules where missileers still spend 24 to 48 hours sitting alert duty.US Air Force via APBy the mid-1990s, a new missile targeting system was needed, and each capsule began a refurbishment to install a wall-sized computer console called REACT, for Rapid Execution and Combat Targeting System. The new system would allow the US more quickly to reprogram and retarget its nuclear missiles in case of war. Demolition of the old computer and construction of REACT began inside each of the 15 Malmstrom capsules.Missileers wonder if the REACT refurbishment further disturbed asbestos and PCBs that were still in the capsules. But once installed, the new console also exposed missileers to a new toxic danger."Crew members reported a malfunctioning video display characterized by a clicking sound," a report on a May 1995 incident at Malmstrom's Bravo capsule said. "After the click, the video display shut down with only a white line visible to crew members."A clear liquid began to leak, followed by a fishy, ammonia-like smell. The crew began to complain of headaches and nausea, and the capsule was evacuated two hours later.Malmstrom's team learned that the liquid was dimethylformamide, an electrolyte used in REACT's video display unit capacitors, because F.E. Warren, the Wyoming base, had recently reported similar leaks."The capacitors overheat and vent into the capsule in lieu of catastrophic failure," a 1996 memo found after a second dimethylformamide leak at Bravo. "To date, we have no idea how much of this material is contained in the capsules nor do we have any idea of the relative hazard to missile crews and maintenance personnel who come in contact with this material."Medical studies on dimethylformamide's link to cancer are split; some report a clear tie to liver cancer, others say more study is needed.Changes comingPortions of Air Force Capt. Jason Jenness' uniform are displayed on a table.Tommy Martino/APAll of the capsules will be closed down in a few years, as the military's new ICBM, the Sentinel, comes online. As part of the modernization, the old capsules will be demolished. A new, modern underground control center will be built on top of them. Air Force teams working on the new designs are aware of the cancer reports and are applying modern environmental health standards in the new centers — requirements that did not exist when the Minuteman capsules were first built, said Maj. Gen. John Newberry, commander of the Air Force's nuclear weapons center."We are absolutely learning from or understanding what's going on with Minuteman III, and if there's something that we need to look at from a Sentinel side," Newberry said.The old capsules will remain in use until then, though, which makes it even more important that the Air Force is completely open with its missileers now, Doreen Jenness said.Because they were so young, neither she nor Jason suspected cancer when he started to feel fatigued in the fall of 2000. Nor when his hip started to ache that December.When he finally gave in and saw a doctor in February 2001, he was admitted to the hospital the same day. By March, Jason and Doreen knew his lymphoma was untreatable. He died that July."We can all pretend to not know, because knowing is really hard," Doreen Jenness said. "Knowing and doing something about it is even harder. Now, 23 years after Jason's been gone there's a whole bunch of young men and women that are having to go through the same things that we had to go through. They have to live the same lives and maybe have the same future as me, and it's just sad. Really sad."This story has been corrected to show the documents recorded toxic dangers, not toxins.The Associated Press receives support for nuclear security coverage from the Carnegie Corporation of New York and Outrider Foundation. The AP is solely responsible for all content.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: dealsSource: nytDec 29th, 2023

Russia Unleashes Biggest Aerial Attack On Ukraine Since Opening Days Of War

Russia Unleashes Biggest Aerial Attack On Ukraine Since Opening Days Of War Ukraine has said on Friday Russia launched the largest single day of airstrikes ever conducted throughout nearly two years of war. At least 18 people were reported killed, and over a hundred wounded after several Ukrainian cities were pummeled in drone and missile attacks. The Ukrainian Armed Forces cited that up to 158 missiles and drones were launched, describing that this was a "record number" and the "most massive missile attack" of the conflict, excluding the very opening few days of the invasion. This was said include ballistic and supersonic missiles, launched from air and sea. Ukraine's military claimed its anti-air defenses downed and intercepted the majority of these. President Volodymyr Zelensky also said, "Today Russia hit us with almost everything it has in its arsenal." The attacks began overnight into Friday, with large explosions rocking Kiev, Dnipro, and places like Odessa in the south and Kharkiv in the east. Inbound projectiles were also seen as far from the front lines as Lviv, in the country's far west. "It’s been a long time since we have seen so many enemy targets on our monitors in all regions and all directions," Ukrainian air force spokesman Yurii Ihnat told a television broadcast. "Everything was being fired." Ukrainian officials said that among places hit were shopping centers, apartment blocks, schools and a hospital. Map showing expands of Russia's major missile and drone operation on Friday. Widespread rescue operations continued into the day Friday: There was a strong smell of burning plastic as firefighters wearing oxygen masks tackled the blaze and a huge column of black smoke billowed into the sky, an AFP reporter saw. There were believed to be 10 people trapped under the rubble, said the head of the city's military administration, Sergiy Popko. AFP journalists also saw smoke near the building of Lukyanivska metro station close to the city center. Popko said the metro station had been damaged but it reopened later in the day. Scenes in the far Western city of Lviv, which is rarely touched by the war, were as follows based on Ukrainian officials: In Lviv, one person was killed and 15 wounded by drones and missiles that damaged high-rise blocks of flats and two schools, the interior ministry said. An image released by the emergency services showed window frames blown out in a nine-story block of flats. As expected, Ukraine is referencing the large-scale aerial assault as reason for allies to urgently authorize more defense funds for 2024. Tens of billions are currently being held up in US Congress and the European Union.  A maternity ward, educational facilities, a shopping mall, multi-story residential buildings and private homes, a commercial storage, and a parking lot. Kyiv, Lviv, Odesa, Dnipro, Kharkiv, Zaporizhzhia, and other cities. Today, Russia used nearly every type of weapon in its… pic.twitter.com/q5q8Q98Njr — Volodymyr Zelenskyy / Володимир Зеленський (@ZelenskyyUa) December 29, 2023 Zelensky aide Andriy Yermak said the war-ravaged country needs "more support and strength to stop this terror" while US ambassador to Ukraine Bridget Brink immediately emphasized "Ukraine needs funding now". EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell described Friday's assault as "yet another cowardly and indiscriminate" attack on civilians. The EU has been seeking to sidestep Hungary as it has sought to pass some €50 billion in funding, which remains blocked. Smoke billows over Kiev on Friday as a result of the strikes, via Reuters. Meanwhile, Orthodox Church Christmas is around the corner, and it's as yet unclear whether there might be a hoped-for "Christmas truce" between Russia and Ukraine - as was speculated last year (but didn't really materialize). Orthodox Christians in both countries celebrate the holiday on January 7 (according to when Dec.25 appears on the ecclesiastical/or Julian calendar). Tyler Durden Fri, 12/29/2023 - 10:40.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: nytDec 29th, 2023

Born In A Police State: The Deep State"s Persecution Of Its Most Vulnerable Citizens

Born In A Police State: The Deep State's Persecution Of Its Most Vulnerable Citizens Authored by John & Nisha Whitehead via The Rutherford Institute, “When the song of the angels is stilled, when the star in the sky is gone, when the kings and princes are home, when the shepherds are back with their flocks, the work of Christmas begins: to find the lost, to heal the broken, to feed the hungry, to release the prisoner, to rebuild the nations, to bring peace among the people, to make music in the heart. - Howard Thurman, theologian and civil rights activist The Christmas story of a baby born in a manger is a familiar one. The Roman Empire, a police state in its own right, had ordered that a census be conducted. Joseph and his pregnant wife Mary traveled to the little town of Bethlehem so that they could be counted. There being no room for the couple at any of the inns, they stayed in a stable (a barn), where Mary gave birth to a baby boy, Jesus. Warned that the government planned to kill the baby, Jesus’ family fled with him to Egypt until it was safe to return to their native land. Yet what if Jesus had been born 2,000 years later? What if, instead of being born into the Roman police state, Jesus had been born at this moment in time? What kind of reception would Jesus and his family be given? Would we recognize the Christ child’s humanity, let alone his divinity? Would we treat him any differently than he was treated by the Roman Empire? If his family were forced to flee violence in their native country and sought refuge and asylum within our borders, what sanctuary would we offer them? A singular number of churches across the country have asked those very questions in recent years, and their conclusions were depicted with unnerving accuracy by nativity scenes in which Jesus and his family are separated, segregated and caged in individual chain-link pens, topped by barbed wire fencing. Those nativity scenes were a pointed attempt to remind the modern world that the narrative about the birth of Jesus is one that speaks on multiple fronts to a world that has allowed the life, teachings and crucifixion of Jesus to be drowned out by partisan politics, secularism, materialism and war, all driven by a manipulative shadow government called the Deep State. The modern-day church has largely shied away from applying Jesus’ teachings to modern problems such as war, poverty, immigration, etc., but thankfully there have been individuals throughout history who ask themselves and the world: what would Jesus do? What would Jesus—the baby born in Bethlehem who grew into an itinerant preacher and revolutionary activist, who not only died challenging the police state of his day (namely, the Roman Empire) but spent his adult life speaking truth to power, challenging the status quo of his day, and pushing back against the abuses of the Roman Empire—do about the injustices of our  modern age? Dietrich Bonhoeffer asked himself what Jesus would have done about the horrors perpetrated by Hitler and his assassins. The answer: Bonhoeffer was executed by Hitler for attempting to undermine the tyranny at the heart of Nazi Germany. Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn asked himself what Jesus would have done about the soul-destroying gulags and labor camps of the Soviet Union. The answer: Solzhenitsyn found his voice and used it to speak out about government oppression and brutality. Martin Luther King Jr. asked himself what Jesus would have done about America’s warmongering. The answer: declaring “my conscience leaves me no other choice,” King risked widespread condemnation as well as his life when he publicly opposed the Vietnam War on moral and economic grounds. Even now, despite the popularity of the phrase “What Would Jesus Do?” (WWJD) in Christian circles, there remains a disconnect in the modern church between the teachings of Christ and the suffering of what Jesus in Matthew 25 refers to as the “least of these.” Yet this is not a theological gray area: Jesus was unequivocal about his views on many things, not the least of which was charity, compassion, war, tyranny and love. After all, Jesus—the revered preacher, teacher, radical and prophet—was born into a police state not unlike the growing menace of the American police state. When he grew up, he had powerful, profound things to say, things that would change how we view people, alter government policies and change the world. “Blessed are the merciful,” “Blessed are the peacemakers,” and “Love your enemies” are just a few examples of his most profound and revolutionary teachings. When confronted by those in authority, Jesus did not shy away from speaking truth to power. Indeed, his teachings undermined the political and religious establishment of his day. It cost him his life. He was eventually crucified as a warning to others not to challenge the powers-that-be. Can you imagine what Jesus’ life would have been like if, instead of being born into the Roman police state, he had been born and raised in the American police state? Consider the following if you will. Had Jesus been born in the era of the America police state, rather than traveling to Bethlehem for a census, Jesus’ parents would have been mailed a 28-page American Community Survey, a mandatory government questionnaire documenting their habits, household inhabitants, work schedule, how many toilets are in your home, etc. The penalty for not responding to this invasive survey can go as high as $5,000. Instead of being born in a manger, Jesus might have been born at home. Rather than wise men and shepherds bringing gifts, however, the baby’s parents might have been forced to ward off visits from state social workers intent on prosecuting them for the home birth. One couple in Washington had all three of their children removed after social services objected to the two youngest being birthed in an unassisted home delivery. Had Jesus been born in a hospital, his blood and DNA would have been taken without his parents’ knowledge or consent and entered into a government biobank. While most states require newborn screening, a growing number are holding onto that genetic material long-term for research, analysis and purposes yet to be disclosed. Then again, had Jesus’ parents been undocumented immigrants, they and the newborn baby might have been shuffled to a profit-driven, private prison for illegals where they first would have been separated from each other, the children detained in make-shift cages, and the parents eventually turned into cheap, forced laborers for corporations such as Starbucks, Microsoft, Walmart, and Victoria’s Secret. There’s quite a lot of money to be made from imprisoning immigrants, especially when taxpayers are footing the bill. From the time he was old enough to attend school, Jesus would have been drilled in lessons of compliance and obedience to government authorities, while learning little about his own rights. Had he been daring enough to speak out against injustice while still in school, he might have found himself tasered or beaten by a school resource officer, or at the very least suspended under a school zero tolerance policy that punishes minor infractions as harshly as more serious offenses. Had Jesus disappeared for a few hours let alone days as a 12-year-old, his parents would have been handcuffed, arrested and jailed for parental negligence. Parents across the country have been arrested for far less “offenses” such as allowing their children to walk to the park unaccompanied and play in their front yard alone. Rather than disappearing from the history books from his early teenaged years to adulthood, Jesus’ movements and personal data—including his biometrics—would have been documented, tracked, monitored and filed by governmental agencies and corporations such as Google and Microsoft. Incredibly, 95 percent of school districts share their student records with outside companies that are contracted to manage data, which they then use to market products to us. From the moment Jesus made contact with an “extremist” such as John the Baptist, he would have been flagged for surveillance because of his association with a prominent activist, peaceful or otherwise. Since 9/11, the FBI has actively carried out surveillance and intelligence-gathering operations on a broad range of activist groups, from animal rights groups to poverty relief, anti-war groups and other such “extremist” organizations. Jesus’ anti-government views would certainly have resulted in him being labeled a domestic extremist. Law enforcement agencies are being trained to recognize signs of anti-government extremism during interactions with potential extremists who share a “belief in the approaching collapse of government and the economy.” While traveling from community to community, Jesus might have been reported to government officials as “suspicious” under the Department of Homeland Security’s “See Something, Say Something” programs. Many states, including New York, are providing individuals with phone apps that allow them to take photos of suspicious activity and report them to their state Intelligence Center, where they are reviewed and forwarded to law-enforcement agencies. Rather than being permitted to live as an itinerant preacher, Jesus might have found himself threatened with arrest for daring to live off the grid or sleeping outside. In fact, the number of cities that have resorted to criminalizing homelessness by enacting bans on camping, sleeping in vehicles, loitering and begging in public has doubled. Viewed by the government as a dissident and a potential threat to its power, Jesus might have had government spies planted among his followers to monitor his activities, report on his movements, and entrap him into breaking the law. Such Judases today—called informants—often receive hefty paychecks from the government for their treachery. Had Jesus used the internet to spread his radical message of peace and love, he might have found his blog posts infiltrated by government spies attempting to undermine his integrity, discredit him or plant incriminating information online about him. At the very least, he would have had his website hacked and his email monitored. Had Jesus attempted to feed large crowds of people, he would have been threatened with arrest for violating various ordinances prohibiting the distribution of food without a permit. Florida officials arrested a 90-year-old man for feeding the homeless on a public beach. Had Jesus spoken publicly about his 40 days in the desert and his conversations with the devil, he might have been labeled mentally ill and detained in a psych ward against his will for a mandatory involuntary psychiatric hold with no access to family or friends. One Virginia man was arrested, strip searched, handcuffed to a table, diagnosed as having “mental health issues,” and locked up for five days in a mental health facility against his will apparently because of his slurred speech and unsteady gait. Without a doubt, had Jesus attempted to overturn tables in a Jewish temple and rage against the materialism of religious institutions, he would have been charged with a hate crime. More than 45 states and the federal government have hate crime laws on the books. Had anyone reported Jesus to the police as being potentially dangerous, he might have found himself confronted—and killed—by police officers for whom any perceived act of non-compliance (a twitch, a question, a frown) can result in them shooting first and asking questions later. Rather than having armed guards capture Jesus in a public place, government officials would have ordered that a SWAT team carry out a raid on Jesus and his followers, complete with flash-bang grenades and military equipment. There are upwards of 80,000 such SWAT team raids carried out every year, many on unsuspecting Americans who have no defense against such government invaders, even when such raids are done in error. Instead of being detained by Roman guards, Jesus might have been made to “disappear” into a secret government detention center where he would have been interrogated, tortured and subjected to all manner of abuses. Chicago police have “disappeared” more than 7,000 people into a secret, off-the-books interrogation warehouse at Homan Square. Charged with treason and labeled a domestic terrorist, Jesus might have been sentenced to a life-term in a private prison where he would have been forced to provide slave labor for corporations or put to death by way of the electric chair or a lethal mixture of drugs. Indeed, as I make clear in my book Battlefield America: The War on the American People and in its fictional counterpart The Erik Blair Diaries, given the nature of government then and now, it is painfully evident that whether Jesus had been born in our modern age or his own, he still would have died at the hands of a police state. Thus, as we draw near to Christmas with its celebration of miracles and promise of salvation, we would do well to remember that what happened in that manger on that starry night in Bethlehem is only the beginning of the story. That baby born in a police state grew up to be a man who did not turn away from the evils of his age but rather spoke out against it. We must do no less. Tyler Durden Mon, 12/25/2023 - 00:00.....»»

Category: personnelSource: nytDec 25th, 2023

Before my first solo van trip, 7 women living on the road shared their tips for feeling safe while traveling alone

Business Insider's author spoke to seven women before embarking on a two-week trip alone in a campervan. Their advice is helpful for anyone considering a solo trip on the road. The campervan the author rented for two weeks.Monica Humphries/Business InsiderI recently went on a two-week solo trip in a campervan.The idea of sleeping in unfamiliar places left me unnerved before my trip, so I sought advice. Seven women living in vans told me to trust my gut. They also suggested parking facing an exit.  As a frequent solo traveler, I figured I'd head into a two-week solo campervan trip without fear.But I was wrong — as the trip got closer, nerves set in.The concept of sleeping in a vehicle parked in some unfamiliar places — from remote, service-less campsites to outside a Walmart — made me feel a bit uneasy.So, I reached out to seven women living in vans, RVs, and campers for their advice on how to feel safer on the road.They told me that they rarely feel unsafe while traveling and all encouraged me to trust my instincts."I don't find it that much more dangerous than living in a city," Casey Hogan, a 31-year-old living in a Ford Transit, told Business Insider.Here's their advice to navigating the lifestyle.Every single woman I spoke with told me to trust my gut while traveling on the road.Phyllis Grover and the van she calls home.PhyllisFindsFreedomAll the women I spoke with reminded me that my intuition and gut are the strongest tools I could pack on my trip."If someone comes up and starts trying to talk to me and I get a bad vibe, I do not ever give them the benefit of the doubt. I will just pack up and leave," Christian Schaffer, who lives out of a Ram ProMaster, told BI.Schaffer, 38, added that it's not always fair, but it's served her well so far in the four years she has been living in a van.Phyllis Grover agreed."If you're ever in a place and the hair was raised on the back of your neck and you just don't feel right, don't stop and try to figure out why," the 59-year-old living in a Ram ProMaster, told BI. "You put your key in the ignition and you leave."Brittany Newson, who lives in a travel trailer, also recommends listening to your gut.One day, Newson, 36, was making pancakes in her bus when she got a feeling that something was wrong. Newson closed and locked up her doors, and, just a few minutes later, another traveler started banging pots and pans to scare a bear away."Your gut instinct is there for a reason," Newson told BI.One person recommends preparing for emergencies just in case.Side-by-side images of Casey Hogan on solo trips.@towingwildoats/InstagramHogan said that when she first moved into her Ford Transit, she didn't overlook preparation.For example, Hogan added an alarm system in her van. She said there hasn't been a moment yet where the system has saved her, but the peace of mind it's provided has been major.In addition to a security system like an alarm, Hogan recommends having a mental plan for what to do in the event of an emergency."Put in that work to figure out how you're going to keep yourself safe and then trust that preparation," Hogan said.And once you've done that, don't overthink it, she said. "No one is any safer being hyper-vigilant about what could happen than someone who prepared for all those scenarios and then just chilled and enjoyed their experience," she said.One woman said she parks strategically. Christian Schaffer looks out of the van she calls home.@christianschaffer/InstagramAfter living in a van for over four years, Schaffer said that each time she parks for the night, she always makes sure the front of her vehicle is pointed toward her exit route.That way "if something happens, I can just take off," she said.The people I spoke to said they felt safest in different environments, so they suggested finding spots where I felt the most comfortable to sleep. Tracey Tischler inside her van.Tracey Tischler/YouTubeMaddy Garrett said staying at established campsites when she first started living on the road helped her feel safer."When I was doing my Subaru road trip, I mostly stayed at campgrounds because I was not super comfortable traveling by myself," the 25-year-old, who has since upgraded to a Mercedes Sprinter, told BI. "I would get scared at night and being around other people and in an established area where there was a camp host and I felt safe made all the difference."Tracey Tischler, 58, told BI that she predominantly stays at well-lit truck stops when she's traveling between destinations in her Roadtrek van.On the other hand, Schaffer said she prefers complete solitude. "It's funny, I feel a little bit safer if no one is around," she said.Every person living in a van has a different preference when it comes to who is — and how many people are — around, and they suggested figuring out what that looks like for me.One person encouraged me to get to my overnight stops while the sun was still out. Brittany Newson in her travel trailer.@whereis_brittany/InstagramNewson said each time she gets to a new site, she checks out the area before deciding if that's where she wants to spend the night.For example, a bunch of empty beer cans might indicate that the area is full of parties, which isn't what she's looking for.Broken glass is another thing she keeps an eye out for so her dog can stay safe.If it's dark outside, she isn't able to fully scope out her camping spot. So she makes sure she arrives before the sun sets.Some women said they carry items to help them feel safer. Side-by-side images of Maddy Garrett.@whoa_maddy_actually_/InstagramWhether it's something like pepper spray or a satellite phone to call for emergencies, the women I spoke with all said that they usually have some form of protection with them in their vans."It's totally up to your personal preference, but I definitely recommend having some sort of protection on you," Garrett said.If you're traveling, it's important to check the local laws of each state you'll be visiting before carrying items such as a taser or pepper spray, which may be restricted in certain areas.On top of protection, others said they make sure that friends and family have access to their location. Sierra Fernald in her van.@sierra.fernald/TikTokSierra Fernald told BI her family always has her location when she's traveling in her Ram ProMaster. Plus, she overcommunicates with them so that they'll always know where they can expect to see her on a map.For example, if Fernald is heading into a remote area that lacks service for a few days, she gives her family a timeline of when they can expect to hear from her again."I tell them that I might not have service for three days, so if you don't hear from me on the fourth day, then maybe start worrying," Fernald, 23, said.Newson said she also always checks in with her family so that someone knows she is safe."I always have my GPS location and share it with my family," Newson said."When I get to a new destination, I take a picture of my setup, and I send it to my family as well," she said.Finally, one van lifer said she puts out items at her campsite to make it look like she's not alone.Sierra Fernald with her van.@sierra.fernald/TikTokFernald said that on top of never telling strangers that she's traveling alone, she also makes it look like there's more than one person at her camping spot.For example, she might throw her boyfriend's hat in the dash of her van or lay out a pair of his shoes at the campground."I make it look like there's someone else with me," she said. "When you set up at camp, put out two or three chairs to make it look like there's multiple people there."The women's words of wisdom helped me safe throughout my trip. Business Insider's author in front of a campervan.Monica Humphries/Business InsiderSure, I was on edge during the first night in my campervan, but, after that, I was comfortable in the van I called home for two weeks.I have this set of nomads to thank for that.Beyond reminding me to pack my bear spray, they also provided helpful tips I wouldn't have considered.For example, I made sure I was always parking toward an exit route throughout my trip and got to my destinations before the sun had set.With their tips in mind, I felt safe throughout my two-week journey — regardless of where I was parked.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderDec 23rd, 2023

Prague Mayor Laments Mass Shootings "Cannot Be Solved Preventively" After Sniper Kills At Least 15

Prague Mayor Laments Mass Shootings "Cannot Be Solved Preventively" After Sniper Kills At Least 15 Update(1423ET): Typically after a school shooting or any mass killing incident in the United States, the smoke is not so much as cleared before there are shrill calls from activists and politicians for banning all firearms, or especially assault-style rifles. Within hours, American mainstream media turns such tragedies into an abstract debate over the ability of citizens to keep and bear arms (to quote the second amendment). But Prague Mayor Bohuslav Svoboda had a very different, and more realistic or reasoned response to Thursday's Prague University shooting, which took the lives of 15, including the killer. "The thing is, of course, a tragedy, it is a tragedy that occurs in the modern world. We know very well that for a number of years we have been hearing from the United States that there has been an excess of some shooter shooting in a school or on the street or somewhere," Svoboda said in a press briefing. "We have always thought that this is a matter that does not concern Europe and us, that this is a matter that is also a given in the United States due to the fact that everyone there is armed, etc." "Now, unfortunately, it turns out that our world is also changing and we have the problem of the individual shooter whose reasons for what he does are not entirely clear. And the worst thing about it is that these are things that cannot be solved preventively,” he emphasized. This logic is even more applicable in the US, where there are literally tens of millions of firearms kept legally in households across the land. However, we don't expect to hear such down-to-earth discourse in the American mainstream. And interestingly the Prague mayor made such observations within a mere hours of one of the Czech Republic's worst shootings in its history. According to The New York Times: The police partially identified the assailant as David K. Speaking at a news conference in Prague, the chief of the national police force, Martin Vondraska, said the assailant “got inspired by a similar terrible event abroad.” He did not specify where. The shooter, now deceased. Image via Mash According to a summary by The Telegraph: More than 15 people were killed and 24 injured in the shooting at Charles University in central Prague, police say The gunman was a student at the university's faculty of arts. He began shooting on the fourth floor and his body was later found by police Up to 200 students were moved to safety across the road from the faculty, and footage gathered by a passer-by showed a crowd fleeing through the streets of central Prague Police said the gunman was a 24-year-old from a village 21km (13m) outside Prague, and the suspect's father was found dead earlier today Police say it's thought the shooter was inspired by similar massacres that have taken place abroad It's the worst fatal shooting since Czech independence 30 years ago Czech President Petr Pavel said he was "shocked by the events" and expressed his "sincere condolences" * * * Update(1245ET): The tragedy is already being called one of the Czech Republic's worst mass shootings in its history, as the police have revised to death toll to at least 15 killed, including the shooter - who committed suicide - and his own father. "Where tourists, students and others would normally be enjoying the view of the iconic monument instead reflected chaos and terror on Thursday afternoon," the Associated Press described of the chaotic scene. According to the latest from Axios: The shooter, who was a student at the university, has been "eliminated," per police. His father was found dead earlier on Thursday, the BBC reported. "I would like to express my deep regret and sincere condolences to the families and relatives of the victims that the shooting claimed," Petr Pavel, the president of the Czech Republic, said on X. According to new statements from Interior Minister Vit Rakusan, "There is no indication that this crime has any link to international terrorism" - in reference to the 24-old shooter. Rakusan added:  "I want to assure the public that there is no immediate danger now," he said after the gunfire at the university’s Philosophical Faculty ended. #WATCH : Eyewitness video- Gunshots are audible in the corridor as students take refuge in classrooms.#Shooting #Prague #Czech #CharlesUniversity #DavidKozak pic.twitter.com/QzDDvd3DUN — upuknews (@upuknews1) December 21, 2023 * * * Update(1105ET): Emerging news wire statements citing Prague emergency response services cite a much larger than expected death toll. Initially, vague police reports said several were dead and wounded, but there may have been at least 11 killed, including the gunman, and nine more seriously wounded. This means twenty or more people were struck by bullets, from a shooter who appeared to have taken up position sniper-style on a high rooftop: SHOOTING IN PRAGUE LEFT 11 PEOPLE DEAD,CTK CITES RESCUE SERVICE SHOOTING IN PRAGUE LEFT NINE PEOPLE SERIOUSLY WOUNDED, CTK SAYS Police say the shooter has been killed, but likely there are still bystanders holed up in buildings: An email sent to staff and students at the Faculty of Arts of Charles University, seen by Reuters, had said a shooter was in one of its buildings and had told staff to "stay put". "Don't go anywhere, if you're in the offices, lock them and place furniture in front of the door, turn off the lights," the email said. One X user posted a photo of a group of students, hiding crouched on a ledge of the building. Students at the University of Prague climbed onto a ledge to hide from the gunman. At least 11 dead including the suspect who fell from his rooftop position. pic.twitter.com/feofDoDTyy — Citizen Free Press (@CitizenFreePres) December 21, 2023 The below unconfirmed image appears to show the shooter with a high-powered rifle with optics taking out people in the university square below... * * * Multiple fatalities are being reported in an active situation amid a mass shooting in Prague, Czech Republic. Bystanders have been observed fleeing the grounds of Charles University's Faculty of Arts in Prague as a huge police response ensues. One unverified report describes the developing scene as follows: "Prague According to media reports, the attacker used a long-barreled weapon with optics. There are reports of casualties and injuries. At the moment, the entire Jan Palach Square and the surrounding area are completely closed off." A police statement has confirmed that several are dead and wounded at the scene, and police soon after have announced that the Prague shooter has been "eliminated". The below bridge which people are fleeing across, the Charles Bridge (aka Karluv Most), is among the most popular central tourist attractions in Prague.  BREAKING: Shooting with multiple fatalities at Charles University's Faculty of Arts in Prague pic.twitter.com/Rs0u9RHsXi — BNO News (@BNONews) December 21, 2023 The shooter with a rifle may have been on a roof of one of the university buildings, a newly emerged (but unverified) photo suggests. According to the Associated Press: Czech Interior Minister Vit Rakusan told Czech public television the person who opened fire was dead. Rakusan said there’s no other shooter at the scene and there’s no imminent further danger, but he urged people to cooperate with police. BREAKING: Photo of armed man on roof of Charles University Faculty of Arts following shooting in Prague that left multiple dead pic.twitter.com/MVFTKm4iLP — Insider Paper (@TheInsiderPaper) December 21, 2023 A scene inside a barricaded classroom at the university as police begin clearing and securing buildings: Currently stuck inside my classroom in Prague. Shooter is dead, but we are waiting to be evacuated. Praying to make it out alive. Locked the door before the shooter tried to open it. Fucking hell. pic.twitter.com/wYyhOe5U6p — Jakob Weizman (@jakobweizman) December 21, 2023 And students and bystanders hiding out on the ledge of a roof, in a precarious situation... developing... Tyler Durden Thu, 12/21/2023 - 14:23.....»»

Category: dealsSource: nytDec 21st, 2023

Not "Trump The Dictator" Again...

Not "Trump The Dictator" Again... Authored by Victor Davis Hanson, It is “Trump Will Destroy Democracy” season again. And predictably the Left has gone hysterical, after experiencing a trifecta of frightening 2024 news. One, current polls in the primaries and in a general election for now show that Trump would win. Meanwhile, Joe Biden’s popularity dives below 40 percent. His policies on the economy, abroad, at the border, concerning crime, and about energy poll even more feebly. Never has an American president utterly and deliberately destroyed immigration law for the sole purpose of inviting in millions of illegal aliens, to establish political constituencies supportive of agendas that otherwise have scant public support. Two, unequivocal evidence is mounting that the Bidens are one of the most corrupt political families in American presidential history. Hunter, the Leona Helmsley of our times, is now indicted for massive tax evasion, despite his earlier, government-aided efforts of running out the statute of limitations on the full array of his crimes. When asked about his grifting, Biden angrily denies the undeniable. He can only become animated these days, when asked to square his denials about knowing what Hunter was up to with a multitude of facts and data to the contrary. And so in exasperation he shouts, “Lies!,” “Lies!,” and “Lies!” There is now conclusive proof that Biden himself lied repeatedly when he swore that he knew nothing about his wayward son Hunter’s grifting business. He used several aliases to communicate directly with his son’s grifting and quid pro quo partners. Canceled checks show the president was paid substantial sums by family members after they received money from foreign governments—for nothing other than being related to the future president. The pay-offs were hidden by “loan repayment” lies; no one expects ever to find any such evidence that there were formal loan documents or agreements between Biden and his family. Former Hunter Biden associates, explicit messaging on his laptop, IRS whistleblowers, and bank records all explain why an opulent Joe Biden enjoyed a lifestyle impossible on either a senator’s or Vice President’s salary. While Biden toured the country sermonizing that the rich must “pay their fair share,” it is increasingly likely that he had received huge amounts from foreign governments eager to purchase him as an influencer—and never paid taxes on such occult income. Three, Joe Biden’s cognitive decline and feebleness have reached a point where he is one fall, one bad cold, or one long brain-freeze away from incapacity. He clearly is not running the country. How could he be, when he cannot finish a sentence without mangling the syntax, slurring the vocabulary, and confusing his listeners? So Biden’s blank stares lengthen. His disorientation and uncertainty where to enter and exit occur hourly. And his bizarre, repulsive fixation with young girls, and his desire to call them out, hug them, breathe on their hair, or nuzzle their necks become all the more embarrassing. Had a U.S. senator engaged in such reprehensible behavior he would long ago have been censored. Add all this news up that Biden is fading, Trump apparently is outpolling him, and suddenly the Left has rebooted the tired “Trump will destroy democracy” boilerplate. Almost nightly now TV anchors warn of a dictatorship. Columnists predict the “end of democracy.” Essayists vie to see who can become the most absurd in predicting Trump’s planned takeover America. There are several considerations, however, about these bankrupt and discredited Nostradamuses that the American people should note—aside from the fact the “democracy will die” mob is the same herd that assured us of Russian collusion, laptop disinformation, and the integrity of the Biden family. First, ex-president Trump is now a known quantity. A comparison of his four years with the first three years of Biden’s tenure is instructive. Biden’s border is nonexistent–and by design. Eight-million illegal aliens—unaudited, from all over the world, the vast majority without legality, diversity, English, or skill sets—have swarmed the country to the extent that even swamped leftwing blue-state governors and mayors are opposed to the Biden nihilism. Biden stopped catch-and-release, and phony refugee statuses, and pressured Mexico to patrol their side of the border. He destroyed immigration law as we knew it. Biden’s flight from Afghanistan was the greatest foreign policy humiliation in modern American history. It destroyed U.S. deterrence and greenlighted Vladimir Putin to invade Ukraine, Hamas to craft an intricate plan of slaughtering Israeli civilians, Iran to arm to the teeth its terrorist surrogates, and China to send a spy balloon over the U.S. and serially to threaten Taiwan. The common denominator abroad was a correct appraisal that Biden’s controllers would talk tough, but always equivocate. There was zero inflation before Biden; 30-year mortgages were less than 2 percent. Now prices for staples like gas, food, power, health care and housing have spiked well over 30 percent since Biden took office. Mortgages are hitting 7 percent and the housing market is comatose. Real wages have eroded. It seems hard to accuse Trump of being a dangerous demagogue when his four years saw effective government action on the economy, foreign policy, energy, and crime. Afterall, was the Trump Middle-East Policy (e.g., branding Houthis as terrorists, the Abraham Accords, moving the embassy to Jerusalem, a non-negotiable Israeli Golan Heights, cutting off aid to Hamas, junking the Iran deal, slapping sanctions on Iranian oil, eliminating Soleimani, etc.) or Biden’s antithesis (sending money to Hamas, lifting sanctions on Iran, begging to reenter the Iran Deal, freeing the Houthis from their terrorist classification, cutting back on oil production, maligning/then courting Saudi Arabia, distancing from Israel, etc.) the more beneficial to the U.S. and the Middle East at large? Two, who exactly has weaponized the government in dictatorial fashion? Who by fiat pandered illegally to cancel student loans before a midterm, or suddenly drained the strategic petroleum reserve to lower gas prices before an election? What do former FBI directors, former “intelligence authorities.” and the former Directors of National Intelligence and the CIA all have in common? They lied, often under oath, and always in service of weaponizing the government for political agendas. Who hired a foreign national Christopher Steele to concoct a silly file of lies to destroy a political rival? Why did the FBI sequester the Hunter laptop for a year? Who subcontracted out Twitter for $3 million to suppress information deemed harmful to the Biden campaign? Who squashed an IRS investigation of the Biden family? It was not the would-be dictator Donald Trump who secretly routed money to the Wuhan virology lab, and who then manipulated government agencies to hide that fact—at the expense of the welfare of the American people. Who called up a former CIA director to round up 51 intelligence retirees to lie to sabotage an election? Did not the current national security advisor Jake Sullivan try to concoct the Alfa Bank ping ruse to destroy the Trump campaign and administration? When a former Pentagon lawyer and military officers called for a military coup to remove Trump, for which political agenda were they working? Did Trump prompt the acting Attorney General and FBI Director to consider in secret wearing a wire to entrap and remove a president through the 25th Amendment? What was “Anonymous” about—if not to destroy an administration from within through use of the deep state bureaucracy? Who coordinated Pfizer executives to delay announcement of the vaccine rollout until after the election to ensure Trump’s Operation Warp speed received no prelection credit? Liberal journalist Molly Ball, in her notorious Time essay, outlined what she called a “cabal” and “conspiracy” to destroy the 2020 Trump reelection campaign and indeed his presidency, through modulating Antifa/BLM protests, suppression of the news, and huge infusions of corporate money to augment or indeed absorb the work of the registrars in key states. Who exactly cooked up the phony Letitia James suit? Or the Alvin Bragg joke of an indictment? Or the weaponized Fani Wallis vendetta? Or the partisan and asymmetrical hunt of Jack Smith? Who impeached a president twice and tried him as a private citizen, without a report of a special counsel? Who revived the ossified Logan Act to destroy General Michael Flynn? And who is trying to strip Trump’s name off the 2024 ballot, convinced that such a Third-world dictatorial effort can alone stop dictatorship? In contrast, the supposed “dictator” Trump appointed a special counsel, Comey pal and insider Robert Mueller, to run a witch hunt against him for 22 months. He did not fire Anthony Fauci who worked to undermine Trump at every turn, and used government monies to fund gain-of-function, dangerous viral research in China, while spending most of the Trump administration covering that fact up, most often by serially lying. Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Gen. Mark Milley despised Donald Trump to such an extent that he called his Chinese communist counterpart to advise him that he, Milley himself, would not follow a Trump order, should he deem it too dangerous, without warning the Chinese in advance. Milley faced no repercussions. Nor did Trump fire immediately Comey when many called on him to go, given Comey’s effort to use the FBI in the 2016 election to undermine the Trump campaign and sabotage a FISA court. Why did retired generals and admirals with impunity violate Article 88 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice by smearing their Command-in-Chief as a liar, Mussolini, Hitler-like, and deserving of early removal?  Were any even reminded that they were in violation of statutes? Is it a dangerous thing for the U.S. military to attack their civilian overseers and in private to negotiate with the communist Chinese military? Most of the Russian collusion hoax was discussed in the waning days of the Obama administration inside the Oval Office, as Obama greenlighted illegal CIA and FBI involvements. Who cooked up the idea that Mark Zuckerberg could infuse $419 million to warp balloting in key swing states? What did Lois Lerner do as an IRS adjudicator, as the 2012 Obama reelection loomed? Trump may well have at times trolled the Left wildly, but the Left seriously sought to undermine the government, cancel existing laws, lie under oath, deceive a federal judge, and enlist the FBI and CIA to conspire to destroy a presidential campaign. All that seems a bit dictatorial. Three, after nearly nine years of Trump demonization - celebrities vying publicly with each to dream up ways of killing Trump (incineration, decapitation, shooting, stabbing, dismemberment, explosives, etc), lawfare used to deny the American public the right to vote for or against Trump, a deranged media shouting pseudo-conspiracies of “collusion” and “disinformation” for years, and billionaires spending hundreds of millions of dollars to ensure Trump was never elected or reelected or even on the ballot - why have the American people still not bought into the “dictator” Trump meme? Is because they have enough common sense to grasp that those who protest too much, do so for obvious reasons? In sum, we have seen a 24/7 effort of leftwing presidents, deep-state bureaucrats, and the media to break the law and weaponize the government. The only rationale for such illegality has been the sick notion that the ends of destroying the supposed “dictator” Trump justified any dictatorial means necessary to achieve them. So what else is behind the latest epidemic of DNC talking points that spin Trump as an existential threat to democracy? The Left knows that in dictatorial fashion it has turned a federal republic into a government run wild, lawless, and in service to partisan agendas. It again talks of what Trump will supposedly do only because the Left surely would do exactly what it accuses Trump of planning to do if it were Trump. In other words, the Left projects itself onto Trump, and understandably finds itself all too terrifying. Tyler Durden Tue, 12/12/2023 - 16:20.....»»

Category: dealsSource: nytDec 12th, 2023

The WWII Tokyo firebombing was the deadliest air raid in history, with a death toll exceeding those of Hiroshima and Nagasaki

The US air raid killed up to 100,000 Japanese people, most of them civilians, signaling an escalation in WWII tactics. One million Japanese people lost their homes after the US bombing of Tokyo during World War II.Galerie Bilderwelt/Getty ImagesOn March 10, 1945, US Army Air Forces dropped nearly 1,700 tons of fire bombs on Tokyo.The attack was an escalation of Allied air raids on Japan during World War II.The attack killed up to 100,000 Japanese people and injured another million, most of them civilians.In the opening scene of Hayao Miyazaki's latest semi-autobiographical film, "The Boy and the Heron," fighter planes drop bombs on Tokyo, setting the city ablaze.The movie begins in 1943, two years after the Pearl Harbor attack that catalyzed US involvement in World War II. The Pacific War, as the theater of the war fought in eastern Asia and its surrounding regions was called, saw Allied powers pitted against Japan and resulted in millions of casualties on both sides.Massive air raids over Japan, like the one portrayed in the movie, were key to the Allies' fighting tactics.One 1945 air raid on Tokyo became the deadliest bombing raid in human history — its death toll exceeding those of the infamous atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki that effectively ended the war later that year.Strategic bombing campaigns by US air forces during WWII left Tokyo in ruins.Galerie Bilderwelt/Getty ImagesOperation MeetinghouseIn the early hours of March 10, 1945, 279 American B-29 bomber planes swept low over Tokyo, dropping close to 1,700 tons of incendiary bombs on the sleeping city below.Code-named Operation Meetinghouse, the attack was an escalation of previous air raids on Japan, which had begun in June 1944. In those early attacks, the US Army Air Force relied on a precision bombing campaign targeting Japanese industrial facilities, but they were generally unsuccessful.Gen. Curtis LeMay, whose unyielding and demanding leadership earned him the nickname "Iron Ass," threw the Air Force's tactics out the window. He replaced precision bombing with area bombing, and conventional bombs with incendiary ones.LeMay chose the night of March 9 and the early hours of March 10 for its dry and windy weather, which could enable the fire to spread across the wooden structures of Tokyo most effectively.General Curtis LeMay, left, formulates plans for the next strike on Japan with his chief of staff.Bettmann/Getty ImagesHistory's deadliest air raidThe air raid was swift, deadly, and merciless. The napalm inside the bombs devoured everything they touched, and the fires spread rapidly across the city.Almost everything burned — the wooden homes, tatami mats, people's hair, clothes, and animals, according to eyewitness accounts."Babies were burning on the backs of parents. They were running with babies burning on their backs," Haruyo Nihei, who was then eight years old, recalled to CNN.The charred remains of Japanese civilians after the Operation Meetinghouse air raid.Galerie Bilderwelt/Getty ImagesThe smell of burning flesh was so strong that the bomber pilots had to put on oxygen masks to keep from vomiting. Historical accounts detail how some of those who sought refuge in water were boiled alive, while others were trampled to death in the stampede to escape the firestorm. Most died from carbon monoxide poisoning and the lack of oxygen following the fires.The attack killed up to 100,000 Japanese people and injured another million, most of them civilians, making it the most destructive single air attack in human history. One million people were left homeless. (The estimated initial death tolls for Hiroshima and Nagasaki are 70,000 and 40,000, respectively, according to the US Department of Energy.)Remembering the pastLeMay later acknowledged the brutality of the Tokyo air raids, though he stood by his decision."Killing Japanese didn't bother me very much at that time," LeMay is widely quoted as saying. "I suppose if I had lost the war, I would have been tried as a war criminal."After World War II ended, LeMay was hailed as a hero and continued to have a career in the military. He was made chief of staff of the US Air Force in 1961, and pushed for the bombing of nuclear missile sites in Cuba.Japan's Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko bow after placing flowers as offerings at Tokyo Memorial Hall, dedicated to the victims of the Great Kanto earthquake and the Tokyo firebombing.Eugene Hoshiko/AFP via Getty ImagesIn Tokyo, a group of air raid survivors have since crowdfunded the opening of the Center of the Tokyo Raids and War Damage in 2002. The small museum seeks to commemorate the deadly raid and pay respect to those lost."I'm fearful of history repeating itself," Nihei, one of the survivors, told CNN in 2020.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderDec 9th, 2023

5 Reasons To Avoid Macy’s Today

Department stores have been slowly losing the allure they once had. Shopping malls were the place to be in the 2000s and early 2010s. One of the most popular stores you’d see in any mall is Macy’s (NYSE: M). One of the reasons Macy’s is so popular is because they have such a wide variety […] The post 5 Reasons To Avoid Macy’s Today appeared first on 24/7 Wall St.. Department stores have been slowly losing the allure they once had. Shopping malls were the place to be in the 2000s and early 2010s. One of the most popular stores you’d see in any mall is Macy’s (NYSE: M). One of the reasons Macy’s is so popular is because they have such a wide variety of things to choose from. You can get makeup, clothes, sports jerseys, shoes, jewelry, and so much more. It also was nice that most were attached to a mall where you could get food from. However, Macy’s has started to not do as well. It’s sad to see so many parts of our childhood being taken down and destroyed. It might be for the better, though. This is why you shouldn’t spend your time and hard-earned money shopping at Macy’s. Macy’s Isn’t as Nice as it Used to Be One of the downsides of malls going out of business is the surviving businesses inside aren’t quite as nice anymore. When you used to go to Macy’s, it would be crowded and energetic. These days, it’s quiet and calm and seemingly empty, minus a few people. If you do, you might start to feel down and depressed because of the lack of energy and people around you. This isn’t good for your mental health. While it’s still good to go out and buy new things, don’t do so just for nostalgia. You might end up feeling worse if you do. Macy’s is Becoming More Expensive Another negative thing associated with the downfall of these stores is the products are becoming more and more expensive. This is to try and keep profits as high as they can. Unfortunately, this is done at the expense of the paying customer, you. There were times when Macy’s was reasonably priced for what you were getting. Now, the high prices aren’t worth what you’re paying for. With how much things like groceries and rent costs these days, it’s better to set aside your money for the things you need. You can’t rely on Macy’s for sales you used to experience, so it’s not worth even checking anymore. Macy’s Isn’t Keeping Up with Current Styles and Trends It’s normal to want to feel trendy and stylish when going out, especially after going through Covid-19. People are making up for those two lost years of going out and feeling free. One of the best ways to ensure a fun night out is to dress as well as you can. Unfortunately, the styles Macy’s has don’t align with what’s going on fashion-wise right now. It’s a lot easier to go online to places like Fashion Nova where they have fun shirts for guys and cute dresses for girls to wear. Macy’s has them, but as talked about before, the prices just aren’t competitive at all. This story is kind of like Blockbuster and Netflix. Macy’s didn’t think people would ever want to stop shopping in person and that their name would carry them through anything. Unfortunately, online shopping has taken over. Online Shopping is Easier and More Fun Who wants to waste gas driving somewhere, trying to fight with other people about parking, hoping they have your size, and having to go to a whole different location if they don’t? Nobody, that’s who. The explosion in popularity of online shopping makes it easy to shop for yourself. The stores usually have your size in whatever you want, and if they don’t, then you can sign up to be notified when they do. You don’t have to drive around and waste a whole day trying to find something. You can also bookmark something to buy when you do have the funds for it. When you go in person, you might be surprised at what some things can cost you. There are also two different highs you get as an online shopper, when you purchase the item and when it officially gets to you. When you shop in person, you only get the first high of purchasing the item. You Don’t Need What Macy’s Sells The cost of living is at an all-time high. People are living paycheck to paycheck, hoping to make ends meet each month. Unfortunately, this means we all have to sacrifice some of the things we love. One of the first things to do is always buy new clothes. Since Macy’s is a fashion and design store, it makes sense to not be concerned with what they sell. You can always buy something cheaper, you just have to look hard enough. One day, you’ll be in a position where you can splurge even more on the things you like. Until that day comes, it’s best to not force yourself into buying things. Sponsored: Tips for Investing A financial advisor can help you understand the advantages and disadvantages of investment properties. Finding a qualified financial advisor doesn’t have to be hard. SmartAsset’s free tool matches you with up to three financial advisors who serve your area, and you can interview your advisor matches at no cost to decide which one is right for you. If you’re ready to find an advisor who can help you achieve your financial goals, get started now. Investing in real estate can diversify your portfolio. But expanding your horizons may add additional costs. If you’re an investor looking to minimize expenses, consider checking out online brokerages. They often offer low investment fees, helping you maximize your profit. The post 5 Reasons To Avoid Macy’s Today appeared first on 24/7 Wall St.......»»

Category: blogSource: 247wallstDec 2nd, 2023

The Life And Public Assassination Of President John F. Kennedy By The CIA

The Life And Public Assassination Of President John F. Kennedy By The CIA Authored by Edward Curtin via Off-Guardian.org, What is the truth, and where did it go? Ask Oswald and Ruby, they oughta know “Shut your mouth,” said the wise old owl Business is business, and it’s a murder most foul Don’t worry, Mr. President Help’s on the way Your brothers are coming, there’ll be hell to pay Brothers? What brothers? What’s this about hell? Tell them, “We’re waiting, keep coming” We’ll get them as well Bob Dylan, Murder Most Foul Why President Kennedy was publicly murdered by the CIA sixty years ago has never been more important.  All pseudo-debates to the contrary – including the numerous and growing claims that it was not the U.S. national security state but the Israelis that assassinated the president, which exonerates the CIA – the truth about the assassination has long been evident.  There is nothing to debate unless one is some sort of intelligence operative, has an obsession, or is out to make a name or a buck.  I suggest that all those annual JFK conferences in Dallas should finally end, but my guess is that they will be rolling along for many more decades.  To make an industry out of a tragedy is wrong.  And these conferences are so often devoted to examining and debating minutiae that are a distraction from the essential truth.  As for the corporate mainstream media, they will never admit the truth but will continue as long as necessary to titillate the public with lies, limited hangouts, and sensational non-sequiturs.  To do otherwise would require admitting that they have long been complicit in falsely reporting the crime and the endless coverup.  That they are arms of the CIA and NSA. The Cold War, endless other wars, and the nuclear threat John Kennedy worked so hard to end have today been inflamed to a fever pitch by U.S. leaders in thrall to the forces that killed the president. President Joseph Biden, like all the presidents that followed Kennedy, is JFK’s opposite, an unrepentant war-monger, not only in Ukraine with the U.S. war against Russia and the U.S. nuclear first-strike policy, but throughout the world – the Middle-East, Africa, Syria, Iran, and on and on, including the push for war with China.  Nowhere is this truer than with the U.S. support for the current Israeli genocide of the Palestinians in Gaza, a slaughter also supported by Robert Kennedy, Jr., who, ironically, is campaigning for the presidency on the coattails of JFK and his father Senator Robert F. Kennedy, who would be appalled by his unequivocal support for the Israeli government.  By such support and his silence as the slaughter in Gaza continues, RFK, Jr. is, contrary his other expressed opinions, supporting a wide range of war-related matters that involve the U.S.- Israel alliance, which is central to the military-industrial forces running U.S. foreign policy.  To say this is dispiriting is a great understatement, for RFK, Jr., a very intelligent man, knows that the CIA killed his uncle and father, and he is campaigning as a spiritually awakened man intent on ending the U.S. warfare state, something impossible to accomplish when one gives full-fledged support to Israel.  And I believe he will be elected the next U.S. president. The Biden administration is doing all in its power to undo the legacy of JFK’s last year in office when on every front he fought for peace, not war.  It is not hard to realize that all presidents since John Kennedy have been fully aware that a bullet to the head in broad daylight could be their fate if they bucked their bosses.  They knew this when they sought the office because they were run by the same bosses before election.  Small-souled men, cowards on the make, willing to sacrifice millions to their ambition. I believe that the following article – my final one on this matter – which I published two years ago, is worth reading again if you have once done so, and even more important if you have never read it. It is not based on speculation but on well-sourced facts, and it will make clear the importance of President Kennedy and why his assassination lay the foundation for today’s dire events.  In this dark time, when the world is spinning out of control, the story of his great courage in the face of an assassination he expected, can inspire us to oppose the systemic forces of evil that control the United States and are leading the world into the abyss. Despite a treasure-trove of new research and information having emerged over the last sixty years, there are many people who still think who killed President John Fitzgerald Kennedy and why are unanswerable questions. They have drunk what Dr. Martin Schotz has called “the waters of uncertainty” that results “in a state of confusion in which anything can be believed but nothing can be known, nothing of significance that is.” Then there are others who cling to the Lee Harvey Oswald “lone-nut” explanation proffered by the Warren Commission. Both these groups tend to agree, however, that whatever the truth, unknowable or allegedly known, it has no contemporary relevance but is old-hat, ancient history, stuff for conspiracy-obsessed people with nothing better to do. The general thinking is that the assassination occurred more than a half-century ago, so let’s move on. Nothing could be further from the truth, for the assassination of JFK is the foundational event of modern American history, the Pandora’s box from which many decades of tragedy have sprung. PRESSURED TO WAGE WAR From the day he was sworn in as President on January 20, 1961, John F. Kennedy was relentlessly pressured by the Pentagon, the Central Intelligence Agency, and by many of his own advisers to wage war – clandestine, conventional, and nuclear. To understand why and by whom he was assassinated on November 22, 1963, one needs to apprehend this pressure and the reasons why President Kennedy consistently resisted it, as well as the consequences of that resistance. It is a key to understanding the current state of our world today and why the United States has been waging endless foreign wars and creating a national security surveillance state at home since JFK’s death. A WAR HERO WHO WAS APPALLED BY WAR It is very important to remember that Lieutenant John Kennedy was a genuine Naval war hero in WW II, having risked his life and been badly injured while saving his men in the treacherous waters of the South Pacific after their PT boat was sunk by a Japanese destroyer. His older brother Joe and his brother-in-law Billy Hartington had died in the war, as had some of his boat’s crew members. As a result, Kennedy was extremely sensitive to the horrors of war, and, when he first ran for Congress in Massachusetts in 1946, he made it explicitly clear that avoiding another war was his number one priority. This commitment remained with him and was intensely strengthened throughout his brief presidency until the day he died, fighting for peace. Despite much rhetoric to the contrary, this anti-war stance was unusual for a politician, especially during the 1950s and 1960s. Kennedy was a remarkable man, for even though he assumed the presidency as somewhat of a cold warrior vis-à-vis the Soviet Union in particular, his experiences in office rapidly chastened that stance. He very quickly came to see that there were many people surrounding him who relished the thought of war, even nuclear war, and he came to consider them as very dangerous. A PRESCIENT PERSPECTIVE Yet even before he became president, in 1957, then Senator Kennedy gave a speech in the U.S. Senate that sent shock waves throughout Washington, D.C. and around the world.[2] He came out in support of Algerian independence from France and African liberation generally and against colonial imperialism. As chair of the Senate’s African Subcommittee in 1959, he urged sympathy for African independence movements as part of American foreign policy. He believed that continued support of colonial policies would only end in more bloodshed because the voices of independence would not be denied, nor should they be. That speech caused an international uproar, and in the U.S.A. Kennedy was harshly criticized by Eisenhower, Nixon, John Foster Dulles, and even members of the Democratic party, such as Adlai Stevenson and Dean Acheson. But it was applauded in Africa and the Third World. Yet JFK continued throughout his 1960 presidential campaign raising his voice against colonialism throughout the world and for free and independent African nations. Such views were anathema to the foreign policy establishment, including the CIA and the burgeoning military industrial complex that President Eisenhower belatedly warned against in his Farewell Address, delivered nine months after approving the Bay of Pigs invasion of Cuba in March 1960; this juxtaposition revealed the hold the Pentagon and CIA had and has on sitting presidents, as the pressure for war became structurally systemized. PATRICE LUMUMBA One of Africa’s anti-colonial and nationalist leaders was the charismatic Congolese Prime Minister Patrice Lumumba. In June, 1960, he had become the first democratically elected leader of the Congo, a country savagely raped and plundered for more than half a century by Belgium’s King Leopold II for himself and multinational mining companies. Kennedy’s support for African independence was well-known and especially feared by the CIA, who, together with Brussels, considered Lumumba, and Kennedy for supporting him, as threats to their interests in the region. So, three days before JFK’s inauguration, together with the Belgian government, the CIA had Lumumba brutally assassinated after torturing and beating him. According to Robert Johnson, a note taker at a National Security Council meeting in August 1960, Lumumba’s assassination had been approved by President Eisenhower when he gave Allen Dulles, the Director of the CIA, the approval to “eliminate” Lumumba. Johnson disclosed that in a 1975 interview that was discovered in 2000. On January 26, 1961, when Dulles briefed the new president on the Congo, he did not tell JFK that they already had Lumumba assassinated nine days before. This was meant to keep Kennedy on tenterhooks to teach him a lesson. On February 13, 1961, Kennedy received a phone call from his UN ambassador Adlai Stevenson informing him of Lumumba’s death. There is a photograph by White House photographer Jacques Lowe of the horror-stricken president sitting in the oval office answering that call that is harrowing to view. It was an unmistakable portent of things to come, a warning for the president. DAG HAMMARSKJÖLD, INDONESIA, AND SUKARNO One of Kennedy’s crucial allies in his efforts to support third-world independence was United Nations’ Secretary-General Dag Hammarskjöld. Hammarskjöld had been deeply involved in peacekeeping in the Congo as well as efforts to resolve disputes in Indonesia, both important countries central to JFK’s concerns. Hammarskjöld was killed on September 18, 1961 while on a peacekeeping mission to the Congo. Substantial evidence exists that he was assassinated and that the CIA and Allen Dulles were involved. Kennedy was devastated to lose such an important ally. Kennedy’s strategy involved befriending Indonesia as a Cold War ally as a crucial aspect of his Southeast Asian policy of dealing with Laos and Vietnam and finding peaceful resolutions to other smoldering Cold War conflicts. Hammarskjöld was also central to these efforts. The CIA, led by Dulles, strongly opposed Kennedy’s strategy in Indonesia. In fact, Dulles and the CIA had been involved in treacherous maneuverings in resource rich Indonesia for decades. President Kennedy supported the Indonesian President Sukarno, while Dulles opposed him since he stood for Indonesian independence. Just two days before Kennedy was killed on November 22, 1963, he had accepted an invitation from Indonesian President Sukarno to visit that country the following spring. The aim of the visit was to end the conflict (Konfrontasi) between Indonesia and Malaysia and to continue Kennedy’s efforts to support post-colonial Indonesia with non-military economic and development aid. His goal was to end conflict throughout Southeast Asia and assist the growth of democracy in newly liberated post-colonial countries worldwide. Of course, JFK never made it to Indonesia in 1964, and his peaceful strategy to bring Indonesia to America’s side and to ease tensions in the Cold War was never realized, thanks to Allen Dulles and the CIA.  And, Kennedy’s proposed withdrawal of American military advisers from Vietnam, which, in part, was premised on success in Indonesia, was quickly reversed by Lyndon Johnson after JFK’s murder and within a short time hundreds of thousand American combat troops were sent to Vietnam. In Indonesia, Sukarno would be forced out and replaced by General Suharto, who would rule with an iron fist for the next 30 years. Soon, both countries would experience mass slaughter engineered by Kennedy’s opponents in the CIA and Pentagon. THE BAY OF PIGS In mid-April 1961, less than three months into his presidency, a trap was set for President Kennedy by the CIA and its director, Allen Dulles, who knew of Kennedy’s reluctance to invade Cuba. They assumed the new president would be forced by circumstances at the last minute to send in U.S. Navy and Marine forces to back the invasion that they had planned. The CIA and generals wanted to oust Fidel Castro, and in pursuit of that goal, trained a force of Cuban exiles to invade Cuba. This had started under President Eisenhower and Vice President Nixon. Kennedy refused to go along with sending in American troops and the invasion was roundly defeated. The CIA, military, and Cuban exiles bitterly blamed Kennedy. But it was all a sham. Classified documents uncovered in 2000 revealed that the CIA had discovered that the Soviets had learned the date of the invasion more than a week in advance and had informed Cuban Prime Minister Fidel Castro, but—and here is a startling fact that should make people’s hair stand on end—the CIA never told the President. The CIA knew the invasion was probably doomed before the fact but went ahead with it anyway. Why? So, they could blame JFK for the failure afterwards. Kennedy later said to his friends Dave Powell and Ken O’Donnell, “They were sure I’d give in to them and send the go-ahead order to the [Navy’s aircraft carrier] Essex. They couldn’t believe that a new president like me wouldn’t panic and save his own face. Well, they had me figured all wrong.” This treachery set the stage for events to come. Sensing but not knowing the full extent of the set-up, Kennedy fired CIA Director Allen Dulles (who, as in a bad joke, was later named to the Warren Commission investigating JFK’s assassination) and his assistant, General Charles Cabell (whose brother, Earle Cabell, to make a bad joke absurd, was the mayor of Dallas on the day Kennedy was killed.) It was later discovered that Earle Cabell was a CIA asset. JFK said he wanted “to splinter the CIA in a thousand pieces and scatter it to the winds.” Not sentiments to endear him to a secretive government within a government whose power was growing exponentially.[8] KENNEDY RESPONDS AFTER THE BAY OF PIGS TREACHERY The stage was now set for events to follow as JFK, now even more suspicious of the military-intelligence people around him, and in opposition to nearly all his advisers, consistently opposed the use of force in U.S. foreign policy. In 1961, despite the Joint Chiefs’ demand to put combat troops into Laos – advising 140,000 by the end of April – Kennedy bluntly insisted otherwise as he ordered Averell Harriman, his representative at the Geneva Conference, “Did you understand? I want a negotiated settlement in Laos. I don’t want to put troops in.” The president knew that Laos and Vietnam were linked issues, and since Laos came first on his agenda, he was determined to push for a neutral Laos. Also in 1961, he refused to accede to the insistence of his top generals to give them permission to use nuclear weapons in a dispute with the Soviet Union over Berlin and Southeast Asia. Walking out of a meeting with his top military advisors, Kennedy threw his hands in the air and said, “These people are crazy.” In March 1962, the CIA, in the person of legendary operative, Edward Lansdale, and with the approval of every member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, presented the president with a pretext for a U.S. invasion of Cuba. Code-named Operation Northwoods, the false-flag plan called for innocent people to be shot in the U.S., boats carrying Cuban refugees to be sunk and a terrorism campaign to be launched in Miami, Washington D.C., and other places, all to be blamed on the Castro government so that the public would be outraged and call for an invasion of Cuba. Kennedy was appalled and rejected this pressure to manipulate him into agreeing to terrorist attacks on Americans that could later be used against him. He already knew that his life was in danger and that the CIA and military were tightening a noose around his neck. But he refused to yield. As early as June 26, 1961, in a White House meeting with Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev’s spokesperson, Mikhail Kharlamov, and Khrushchev’s son-in-law, Alexei Adzhubei, when asked by Kharlamov why he wasn’t moving faster to advance relations between the two countries, JFK said “You don’t understand this country. If I move too fast on U.S.-Soviet relations, I’ll either be thrown into an insane asylum, or be killed.” JFK refused to bomb and invade Cuba as the military wished during the Cuban missile crisis in October 1962. The Soviets had placed offensive nuclear missiles and more than 30,000 support troops in Cuba to prevent another U.S.-led invasion. American aerial photography had detected the missiles. This was understandably unacceptable to the U.S. government. While being urged by the Joint Chiefs and his trusted advisors to order a preemptive nuclear strike on Cuba, JFK knew that a diplomatic solution was the only way out as he wouldn’t accept the death of hundreds of millions of people that would likely follow a series of nuclear exchanges with the Soviet Union. Only his brother, Robert, and Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara stood with him in opposing the use of nuclear weapons. Daniel Ellsberg, a former Pentagon and Rand Corporation analyst, reported a coup atmosphere in the Pentagon as Kennedy chose to settle rather than attack. In the end, after thirteen incredibly tense days of brinksmanship, Kennedy and Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev miraculously found a way to resolve the crisis and prevent the use of those weapons. Afterwards, JFK told his friend John Kenneth Galbraith that “I never had the slightest intention of doing so.” THE FATEFUL YEAR 1963 In June, 1963, JFK gave an historic speech at American University in which he called for the total abolishment of nuclear weapons, the end of the Cold War and the “Pax Americana enforced on the world by American weapons of war,” and movement toward “general and complete disarmament.” A few months later he signed a Limited Test Ban Treaty with Nikita Khrushchev. In October 1963 he signed National Security Action Memorandum 263 calling for the withdrawal of 1,000 U. S. military troops from Vietnam by the end of the year and complete withdrawal by the end of 1965. All this he did while secretly engaging in negotiations with Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev via Saturday Evening Post editor and anti-nuclear weapon advocate, Norman Cousins, Soviet agent Georgi Bolshakov, and Pope John XXIII,as well as  with Cuba’s Prime Minister Fidel Castro through various intermediaries, one of whom was French Journalist Jean Daniel. Of course, secret was not secret when the CIA was involved. Kennedy, deeply disturbed by the near nuclear catastrophe of the Cuban missile crisis, was determined to open back channel communications to make sure such a near miss never happened again. He knew fault lay on both sides, and that one slipup or miscommunication could initiate a nuclear holocaust.  He was determined, therefore, to try to open lines of communications with his enemies. Jean Daniel was going to Cuba to interview Fidel Castro, but before he did he interviewed Kennedy on October 24, 1963.  Kennedy, knowing Daniel would tell Castro what he said, asked Daniel if Castro realizes that “through his fault the world was on the verge of nuclear war in October 1962….or even if he cares about it.”  But he also added, to soften the message: “I approved the proclamation Fidel Castro made in the Sierra Maestra, when he justifiably called for justice and especially yearned to rid Cuba of corruption. I will go even further: to some extent it is as though Batista was the incarnation of a number of sins on the part of the United States. Now we will have to pay for those sins. In the matter of the Batista regime, I am in agreement with the first Cuban revolutionaries. That is perfectly clear.” Such sentiments were anathema, shall we say treasonous, to the CIA and top Pentagon generals. These clear refusals to go to war with Cuba, to emphasize peace and negotiated solutions to conflicts rather than war, to order the withdrawal of all military personnel from Vietnam, to call for an end to the Cold War, and his willingness to engage in private, back-channel communications with Cold War enemies marked Kennedy as an enemy of the national security state. They were on a collision course. THE ASSASSINATION ON NOVEMBER 22, 1963 After going through the Bay of Pigs, Cuban Missile Crisis and many other military cliffhangers, Kennedy underwent a deep metanoia, a spiritual transformation, from Cold Warrior to peacemaker. He came to regard the generals who advised him as devaluing human life and hell-bent on launching nuclear wars. And he was well aware that his growing resistance to war had put him on a dangerous collision course with those generals and the CIA. On numerous occasions, he spoke of the possibility of a military coup d’état against him. The night before his trip to Dallas, he told his wife, “But, Jackie, if somebody wants to shoot me from a window with a rifle, nobody can stop it, so why worry about it.” And we know that nobody did try to stop it because they had planned his execution from multiple locations to assure its success. WHO KILLED HIM? If the only things you read, watched, or listened to since 1963 were the mainstream corporate media (MSM), you would be convinced that the official explanation for JFK’s assassination, the Warren Commission, was correct in essentials. You would be wrong, because those corporate media have for all these years served as mouthpieces for the government, most notably the CIA that infiltrated and controlled them long ago under a secret program called Operation Mockingbird. In 1977, celebrated Watergate journalist, Carl Bernstein, published a 25,000-word cover story for Rolling Stone, “The CIA and the Media,” in which he published the names of many journalists and media, such as The New York Times, CBS, Time, Newsweek, etc., who worked hand in glove with the CIA for decades. Ironically, or as part of “a limited hangout” (spy talk for admitting some truths while concealing deeper ones), this article can be found at the CIA’s own website. Total control of information requires media complicity, and with the JFK assassination, and in all matters they consider important, the CIA and the MSM are unified. Such control extends to literature, arts, and popular culture as well as news. Frances Stonor Saunders comprehensively documents this in her 1999 book, The Cultural Cold War: The CIA And The World Of Arts And Letters, and Joel Whitney followed this up in 2016 with Finks: How the CIA Tricked the World’s Best Writers, with particular emphasis on the complicity of the CIA and the famous literary journal The Paris Review.  Such revelations are retrospective, of course, but only the most naïve would conclude such operations are a thing of the past. The Warren Commission claimed that the president was shot by an ex-Marine named Lee Harvey Oswald, firing three bullets from the 6th floor of the Texas School Book Depository as Kennedy’s car was already two hundred and fifty feet past and driving away from him. But this is patently false for many reasons, including the bizarre claim that one of these bullets, later termed “the magic bullet,” passed through Kennedy’s body and zigzagged up and down, left and right, striking Texas Governor John Connolly who was sitting in the front seat and causing seven wounds in all, only to be found later in pristine condition on a stretcher in Parkland Hospital. And, any lone assassin looking out the 6th floor window would have taken the perfect shot as the limousine approached within forty feet of the TSBD on Houston St. The absurdity of the government’s claim, a ballistic fairy tale, was the key to its assertion that Oswald killed Kennedy. It was visually shattered and rendered ridiculous by the famous Zapruder film that clearly shows the president being shot from the front right, and, as the right front of his head explodes, he is violently thrown back and to his left as Jacqueline Kennedy climbs on to the car’s trunk to retrieve a piece of her husband’s skull and brain. This video evidence is clear and simple proof of a conspiracy. WHO WAS LEE HARVEY OSWALD? But there is another way to examine it. If Lee Harvey Oswald, the man The Warren Commission said killed JFK, was connected to the intelligence community, the FBI and the CIA, then we can logically conclude that he was not “a lone-nut” assassin or not an assassin at all. There is a wealth of evidence to show how, from the very start, Oswald was moved around the globe by the CIA like a pawn in a game, and when the game was done, the pawn was eliminated in the Dallas police headquarters by Jack Ruby two days later. James W. Douglass, in JFK and the Unspeakable: Why He Died and Why It Matters, the most important book on the matter, asks this question: Why was Lee Harvey Oswald so tolerated and supported by the government he betrayed? This is a key question. After serving as a U.S. Marine at the CIA’s U-2 spy plane Atsugi Air Force Base in Japan with a Crypto clearance (higher than top secret, a fact suppressed by the Warren Commission) and being trained in the Russian language, Oswald left the Marines and defected to the Soviet Union. After denouncing the U.S., rejecting his American citizenship, working at a Soviet factory in Minsk, and taking a Russian wife—during which time Gary Powers’ U-2 spy plane was shot down over the Soviet Union—he returned to the U.S. with a loan from the American Embassy in Moscow, only to be met at the dock in Hoboken, New Jersey, by Spas T. Raikin, a prominent anti-Communist with extensive intelligence connections recommended by the State Department. Oswald passed through immigration with no trouble, was not prosecuted, moved to Fort Worth, Texas where, at the suggestion of the Dallas CIA Domestic Contacts Service chief, he was met and befriended by George de Mohrenschildt, an anti-communist Russian, who was a CIA asset. De Mohrenschildt got him a job four days later at a photography and graphic arts company that worked on top secret maps for the U.S. Army Map Service related to U-2 spy missions over Cuba. Oswald was then shepherded around the Dallas area by de Mohrenschildt. In 1977, on the day he revealed he had contacted Oswald for the CIA and was to meet with the House Select Committee on Assassinations’ investigator, Gaeton Fonzi, de Mohrenschildt allegedly committed suicide. Oswald then moved to New Orleans in April, 1963 where he got a job at the Reily Coffee Company owned by CIA-affiliated William Reily. The Reily Coffee Company was located in close vicinity to the FBI, CIA, Secret Service, and Naval Intelligence offices and a stone’s throw from the office of Guy Banister, a former Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Chicago Bureau, who worked as a covert action coordinator for the intelligence services, supplying weapons, money, and training to anti-Castro paramilitaries. Oswald then went to work with Banister and the CIA paramilitaries. From this time up until the assassination, Oswald engaged in all sorts of contradictory activities, one day portraying himself as pro-Castro, the next day as anti-Castro, many of these theatrical performances being directed from Banister’s office. It was as though Oswald, on the orders of his puppet masters, was     enacting multiple and antithetical roles in order to confound anyone intent on deciphering the purposes behind his actions and to set him up as a future “assassin” or “patsy.” James Douglass persuasively argues that Oswald “seems to have been working with both the CIA and FBI,” as a provocateur for the former and an informant for the latter. Jim and Elsie Wilcott, who worked at the CIA Tokyo Station from 1960-64, in a 1978 interview with the San Francisco Chronicle, said, “It was common knowledge in the Tokyo CIA station that Oswald worked for the agency.” When Oswald moved to New Orleans in April, 1963, de Mohrenschildt exited the picture, having asked the CIA for and been indirectly given a $285,000 contract to do a geological survey for Haitian dictator “Papa Doc” Duvalier, which he never did, but for which he was paid. Ruth and Michael Paine then entered the scene on cue. Ruth had been introduced to Oswald by de Mohrenschildt. In September, 1963, Ruth Paine drove from her sister’s house in Virginia to New Orleans to pick up Marina Oswald and bring her to Dallas to live with her, where Lee also stayed on weekends. Back in Dallas, Ruth Paine conveniently arranged a job for Lee Harvey Oswald in the Texas Book Depository, where he began work on October 16, 1963. Ruth, along with Marina Oswald, was the Warren Commission’s critically important witness against Oswald. Allen Dulles, despite his earlier firing by JFK, got appointed to a key position on the Warren Commission.  He questioned the Paines in front of it, studiously avoiding any revealing questions, especially ones that could disclose his personal connections to the Paines. For Michel Paine’s mother, therefore Ruth’s mother-in-law, Ruth Paine Forbes Young, was a close friend of his old mistress, Mary Bancroft, who worked as a spy with Dulles during WW II. Bancroft and he had been invited guests at Ruth Paine Forbes Young’s private island off Cape Cod. Ruth and Michael Paine had extensive intelligence connections. Thirty years after the assassination, a document was declassified showing Ruth Paine’s sister Sylvia worked for the CIA. Her father traveled throughout Latin America on an Agency for International Development (notorious for CIA front activities) contract and filed reports that went to the CIA. Her husband Michael’s step-father, Arthur Young, was the inventor of the Bell Helicopter, a major military supplier for the Vietnam War, and Michael’s job there gave him a security clearance. From late September through November 22nd, various “Oswalds” were later reported to have simultaneously been seen from Mexico City to Dallas. Two Oswalds were arrested in the Texas Theater, the real one taken out the front door and an impostor out the back. As Douglass says: There were more Oswalds providing evidence against Lee Harvey Oswald than the Warren Report could use or even explain. Even J. Edgar Hoover knew that Oswald impostors were used, as he told LBJ concerning Oswald’s alleged visit to the Soviet Embassy in Mexico City. He later called this CIA ploy, “the false story re Oswald’s trip to Mexico…their (CIA’s) double-dealing,” something that he couldn’t forget. It was apparent to anyone paying close attention that a very intricate and deadly game was being played at high levels in the shadows. We know Oswald was blamed for the President’s murder. But if one fairly follows the trail of the crime, it becomes blatantly obvious that government forces were at work. Douglass and others have amassed layer upon layer of evidence to show how this had to be so. WHO HAD THE POWER TO WITHDRAW THE PRESIDENT’S SECURITY? To answer this essential question is to finger the conspirators and to expose, in Vincent Salandria’s words, “the false mystery concealing state crimes.” Neither Oswald, the mafia nor anti-Castro Cubans could have withdrawn most of the security that day. Sheriff Bill Decker ordered all his deputies “to take no part whatsoever in the security of that [presidential] motorcade.” Police Chief Jesse Curry did the same for Dallas police protection for the president in Dealey Plaza. Both “Chief Curry and Sheriff Decker gave their orders withdrawing security from the president in obedience to orders they had themselves received from the Secret Service.” The Secret Service withdrew the police motorcycle escorts from beside the president’s car where they had been on previous presidential motorcades as well as the day before in Houston and removed agents from the back of the car where they were normally stationed to obstruct gunfire. The Secret Service admitted there were no Secret Service agents on the ground in Dealey Plaza to protect Kennedy. But we know from extensive witness testimony that, during and after the assassination, there were people in Dealey Plaza impersonating Secret Service agents who stopped policeman and the public from moving through the area on the Grassy Knoll where some of the shots appeared to come from. The Secret Service approved the fateful, dogleg turn (on a dry run on November 18) where the car, driven by Secret Service agent William Greer, moved at a snail’s pace and came almost to a halt before the final head shot, clear and blatant security violations.  The House Select Committee on Assassinations concluded this, not some conspiracy theorist. Who could have squelched the testimony of the many doctors and medical personnel who claimed the president had been shot from the front in his neck and head, testimony contradicting the official story? Who could have prosecuted and imprisoned Abraham Bolden, the first African-American Secret Service agent personally brought on to the White House detail by JFK, who warned that he feared the president was going to be assassinated? (Douglass interviewed Bolden seven times and his evidence on the aborted plot to kill JFK in Chicago on November 2 is a story little known but extraordinary in its implications.) The list of all the people who turned up dead, the evidence and events manipulated, the inquiry squelched, distorted, and twisted in an ex post facto cover-up clearly point to forces within the government, not rogue actors without institutional support. The evidence for a conspiracy organized at the deepest levels of the intelligence apparatus is overwhelming. James Douglass presents it in such depth and so logically that only one hardened to the truth would not be deeply moved and affected by his book, JFK and the Unspeakable. But there is more from him and other researchers who have cut the Gordian knot of this false mystery with a few brief strokes. OSWALD, THE PREORDAINED PATSY Three examples will suffice to show that Lee Harvey Oswald, working as part of a U.S. Intelligence operation, was set up to take the blame for the assassination of President Kennedy, and that when he said in police custody that he was “a patsy,” he was speaking truthfully. These examples make it clear that Oswald was deceived by his intelligence handlers and had been chosen without his knowledge, long before the murder, to take the blame as a lone, crazed killer. First, Kennedy was shot at 12:30 P.M. CT. According to the Warren Report, at 12:45 P.M. a police report was issued for a suspect that perfectly fit Oswald’s description. This was based on the testimony of Howard Brennan, who said he was standing across from the Book Depository and saw a standing white man, about 5’10” and slender, fire a rifle at the president’s car from the sixth-floor window. This was blatantly false because photographs taken moments after the shooting show the window open only partially at the bottom about fourteen inches, and it would have been impossible for a standing assassin to be seen “resting against the left windowsill,” (the windowsill was a foot from the floor), as Brennan is alleged to have said. He would have therefore had to have been shooting through the glass. The description of the suspect was clearly fabricated in advance to match Oswald’s. Then between 1:06 and 1:15 P.M. in the quiet residential Oak Cliff neighborhood of Dallas, Police Officer J.D. Tippit was shot and killed. Supposedly based on Brennan’s description broadcast over police radio, Tippit had stopped a man fitting the description and this man pulled a gun and shot the officer. Meanwhile, Oswald had returned to his rooming house where his landlady said he left at 1:03 P.M., went outside, and was standing at a northbound bus stop. The Tippet murder took place nine-tenths of a mile away to the south where a witness, Mrs. Higgins, said she heard a gunshot at 1:06 P.M., ran outside, saw Tippit lying in the street and a man running away with a handgun whom she said was not Oswald. Oswald is reported to have entered the Texas Theater minutes before the Tippit murder. The concession stand operator, Warren Burroughs has said he sold him popcorn at 1:15 P.M., which is the time the Warren Report claims Tippit was killed. At 1:50 P.M., Lee Harvey Oswald was arrested in the Texas Theater and taken out the front door where a crowd and many police cars awaited him, while a few minutes later a second Oswald is secretly taken out the back door of the movie theater. (To read this story of the second Oswald and his movement by the CIA out of Dallas on a military aircraft on the afternoon of November 22, 1963, documented in great detail by James W. Douglass, is an eye-opener.) The official narrative of Oswald and the Tippit murder begs credulity, but it serves to “show” that Oswald was a killer. Despite his denials, Oswald, set up for Kennedy’s murder based on a prepackaged description, is arraigned for Tippit’s murder at 7:10 PM. It was not until the next day that he was charged for Kennedy’s. THE MESSAGE TO AIR FORCE ONE Secondly, while Oswald is being questioned about Tippit’s murder in the afternoon hours after his arrest, Air Force One has left Dallas for Washington with the newly sworn-in president Lyndon Johnson and the presidential party. Back in D.C., the White House Situation Room is under the personal and direct control of Kennedy’s National Security Advisor, McGeorge Bundy, a man with close CIA ties who had opposed JFK on many matters, including the Bay of Pigs and Kennedy’s order to withdraw from Vietnam. As reported by Theodore White, in The Making of the President 1964, Johnson and the others were informed by the Bundy controlled Situation Room that “there was no conspiracy, learned of the identity of Oswald and his arrest …” Vincent Salandria, one of the earliest and most astute critics of the Warren Commission, put it this way in his book, False Mystery: This [announcement from the Situation Room to Air Force One in flight back to Washington, D.C] was the very first announcement of Oswald as the lone assassin. In Dallas, Oswald was not even charged with assassinating the President until 1:30 A.M. the next morning. The plane landed at 5:59 P.M. on the 22nd. At that time the District Attorney of Dallas, Henry Wade, was stating that “preliminary reports indicated more than one person was involved in the shooting … the electric chair is too good for the killers.” Can there be any doubt that for any government taken by surprise by the assassination — and legitimately seeking the truth concerning it — less than six hours after the time of the assassination was too soon to know there was no conspiracy? This announcement was the first which designated Oswald as the lone assassin…. I propose the thesis that McGeorge Bundy, when that announcement was issued from his Situation Room, had reason to know that the true meaning of such a message when conveyed to the Presidential party on Air Force One [and to a separate plane with the entire cabinet that had turned around and was headed back over the Pacific Ocean] was not the ostensible message which was being communicated. Rather, I submit that Bundy … was really conveying to the Presidential party the thought that Oswald was being designated the lone assassin before any evidence against him was ascertainable. As a central coordinator of intelligence services, Bundy in transmitting such a message through the Situation Room was really telling the Presidential party that an unholy marriage had taken place between the U.S. Governmental intelligence services and the lone-assassin doctrine. Was he not telling the Presidential party peremptorily, ‘Now, hear this! Oswald is the assassin, the sole assassin. Evidence is not available yet. Evidence will be obtained, or in lieu thereof evidence will be created. This is a crucial matter of state that cannot await evidence. The new rulers have spoken. You, there, Mr. New President, and therefore dispatchable stuff, and you the underlings of a deposed President, heed the message well.’ Was not Bundy’s Situation Room serving an Orwellian double-think function? OSWALD’S PREPACKAGED LIFE STORY Finally, Air Force Colonel Fletcher Prouty adds a third example of the CIA conspiracy for those who need more evidence that the government has lied from the start about the assassination. Prouty was Chief of Special Operations in the Pentagon before and during the Kennedy years. He was the liaison between the Joint Chiefs and the CIA, working closely with Director Allen Dulles and others in supporting the clandestine operations of the CIA under military cover. He had been sent out of the country to the South Pole by the aforementioned CIA operative Edward Lansdale (Operation Northwoods) before the Kennedy assassination and was returning on November 22, 1963. On a stopover in Christchurch, New Zealand, he heard a radio report that the president had been killed but knew no details. He was having breakfast with a U.S Congressman at 7:30 AM on November 23, New Zealand time. A short time later, at approximately 4:30 PM Dallas time, November 22, he bought the Christchurch Star 23 November 1963 newspaper and read it together with the Congressman. The newspaper reports from the scene said that Kennedy had been killed by bursts of automatic weapons fire, not a single shot rifle, firing three separate shots in 6.8 seconds, as was later claimed for Oswald. But the thing that really startled him was that at a time when Oswald had just been arrested and had not even been charged for the murder of Officer Tippit, there was elaborate background information on Oswald, his time in Russia, his association with Fair Play for Cuba Committee in New Orleans, etc. “It’s almost like a book written five years later,” said Prouty. “Furthermore, there’s a picture of Oswald, well-dressed in a business suit, whereas, when he was picked up on the streets of Dallas after the President’s death, he had on some t-shirt or something… Who had written that scenario?  Who wrote that script…So much news was already written ahead of time of the murder to say that Oswald killed the President and that he did it with three shots…Somebody had decided Oswald was going to be the patsy…Where did they get it, before the police had charged him with the crime?  Not so much ‘where,’ as ‘why’ Oswald? Prouty, an experienced military man working for the CIA in the Pentagon, accused the military-intelligence “High Cabal” of killing President Kennedy in an elaborate and sophisticated plot and blaming it on Oswald, whom they had begun setting up years in advance. The evidence for a government plot to plan, assassinate, cover-up, and choose a patsy in the murder of President John Kennedy is overwhelming.[42] Five years after JFK’s assassination, we would learn, to our chagrin and his glory, that the president’s younger brother, Senator Robert F. Kennedy, equally brave and unintimidated, would take a bullet to the back of his head in 1968 as he was on his way to the presidency and the pursuit of his brother’s killers. The same cowards struck again. Their successors still run the country and must be stopped. EPILOGUE BY JAMES W. DOUGLASS John F. Kennedy was raised from the death of wealth, power, and privilege. The son of a millionaire ambassador, he was born, raised, and educated to rule the system. When he was elected President, Kennedy’s heritage of power corresponded to his position as head of the greatest national security state in history. But Kennedy, like Lazarus, was raised from the death of that system. In spite of all odds, he became a peacemaker and, thus, a traitor to the system…. Why? What raised Kennedy from the dead? Why did John Kennedy choose life in the midst of death and by continuing to choose life thus condemn himself to death? I have puzzled over that question while studying the various biographies of Kennedy. May I suggest one source of grace for his resurrection as a peacemaker? In reading his story, one is struck by his devotion to his children. There is no mistaking the depth of love he had for Caroline and John, and the overwhelming pain he and Jacqueline experienced at the death of their son Patrick. Robert Kennedy in his book Thirteen Days has described how his brother saw the Cuban Missile Crisis in terms of the future of his children and all children. I believe John Kennedy was at least partially raised from the dead of the national security state by the life of his children. The heroic peacemaking of his final months, with his acceptance of its likely cost in his own death, was, I suspect, partly a result of the universal life he saw in and through them. I think he believed profoundly the words that he gave in his American University address as his foundation for rejecting the Cold War: ‘Our most basic common link is that we all inhabit this small planet. We all breathe the same air. We all cherish our children’s future. And we are all mortal.’[43] Tyler Durden Mon, 11/27/2023 - 23:40.....»»

Category: blogSource: zerohedgeNov 28th, 2023

"You"ve Tarnished The Face Of Human Civilization" - Head Of Bombed Gaza Hospital Blasts Biden

"You've Tarnished The Face Of Human Civilization" - Head Of Bombed Gaza Hospital Blasts Biden Authored by Brett Wilkins via Common Dreams, The director of the aid group that runs the Indonesian Hospital in Gaza - where Israeli attacks killed at least a dozen people on Monday - appealed directly to US President Joe Biden, imploring him to push Israel to accept permanent ceasefire in a war that's killed or maimed more than 40,000 Palestinians [a four-day truce is set to begin Thurs]. "Gazans are facing death every day. Every five minutes, a Palestinian child is killed," Sarbini Abdul Murad, head of Medical Emergency Rescue Committee (MER-C) Indonesia, wrote in a letter to Biden. Noting that Israeli forces have attacked "babies, children, women, the elderly, the disabled, hospitals, ambulances, medics, schools, teachers, residential complexes, worship places, and much more," Murad asserted that "this is completely genocide and ethnic cleansing." "It is very unfortunate that your siding with Israel by facilitating weapons of mass destruction has actually made the conflict even wider," Murad continued. "Your action clearly contradicts various international treaties and agreements that apply to the existence of Palestine. You have destroyed the international rules of the game, insulted the authority of the [United Nations], torn apart the sense of justice, hurt human values, and tarnished the face of human civilization." Via Reuters "Mr. President, we believe you still have a conscience," Murad wrote. "Your great country certainly wants to be seen as honorable for its humanitarian defenses. Moreover, your administration has determined to make the principles of multilateralism, justice, and human rights the foundation of United States foreign policy. So, actually, this is the right to prove it." Urging Biden to "avoid double standards in dealing with the Palestinian-Israeli conflict," Murad added: "For the sake of peace and humanity, we demand that you immediately do [a] cease-fire. Restore the dignity of the United States as a country that upholds human rights. The cease-fire must be implemented now, so as not to increase the loss of life on both sides." Murad's letter came as Israel Defense Forces tanks surrounded the Indonesian Hospital in northern Gaza after IDF artillery shelling killed 12 people in the facility's compound, including patients and their companions, according to the Gaza Health Ministry. The ministry also said many people were wounded in the attack, including patients in critical condition. "The attack is a clear violation of international humanitarian laws. All countries, especially those that have close relations with Israel, must use all their influence and capabilities to urge Israel to stop its atrocities," Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi said Monday. According to Gaza officials, there are about 700 patients, staff, and other Palestinians trapped in the Indonesian Hospital. People trying to flee the compound have reportedly come under Israeli fire. Marwan Abdallah, a medical worker at hospital, told Al Jazeera that Israeli tanks could be seen maneuvering around the compound. "You can see them moving around and firing," Abdallah said. "Women and children are terrified. There are constant sounds of explosions and gunfire." The World Health Organization (WHO) said it is "appalled" by the attacks on Indonesian Hospital. "Health workers and civilians should never have to be exposed to such horror, and especially while inside a hospital," the agency said in a statement. "There have been multiple and ongoing attacks on health facilities in the last six weeks, that have resulted in forced mass evacuations from hospitals, and multiple fatalities and casualties among patients, their companions, and those who had sought refuge in hospitals," WHO continued. "The Indonesian Hospital had already reportedly sustained damages due to at least five attacks since October 7," the organization added, referring to the date when Israel began bombarding Gaza by air, land, and sea following the Hamas-led attacks on southern Israel that killed around 1,200 people, with another 240 or so taken hostage. "WHO has recorded 335 attacks on healthcare in the occupied Palestinian territory since October 7, including 164 attacks in the Gaza Strip and 171 attacks in the West Bank," WHO noted. "There were also 33 attacks on healthcare in Israel during the violent events of October 7." "The world cannot stand silent while these hospitals, which should be safe havens, are transformed into scenes of death, devastation, and despair," the agency added. Northern Gaza’s Indonesian Hospital is being targeted by Israeli forces. With hundreds of people trapped, we take a look at the current conditions inside the facility. pic.twitter.com/xhrGPGGCvH — Al Jazeera English (@AJEnglish) November 21, 2023 On Tuesday, Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), or Doctors Without Borders, said two of its physicians—Drs. Mahmoud Abu Nujaila and Ahmad Al Sahar—were killed along with another doctor, Ziad Al-Tatari, in a strike on al-Awda Hospital in northern Gaza. "We condemn this strike in the strongest terms, and call yet again for the respect and protection of medical facilities, staff, and patients," MSF said in a statement. Israeli officials claim Hamas and other Palestinian militants are using hospitals as headquarters. However, Israel has provided no proof to support its allegations, which Palestinian and international medical professionals working in the facilities resoundingly refute. According to Palestine's WAFANews Agency, at least 205 Palestinian medical workers have been killed by Israeli bombs and bullets during the war. The WHO said Tuesday that one of its employees, Dima Alhaj, was killed in an Israeli attack on Gaza alongside her husband, their 6-month-old baby, and two of the woman's brothers. Gaza officials said Tuesday that the death toll from Israel's 46-day onslaught rose to at least 14,128, including over 3,900 women and 5,800 children. Tens of thousands more Palestinians have been wounded, nearly 1.7 million others have been forcibly displaced, and around half of all homes in the embattled strip have been damaged or destroyed. Tyler Durden Wed, 11/22/2023 - 19:00.....»»

Category: blogSource: zerohedgeNov 22nd, 2023