FILE PHOTO © Mohamed Azakir / Reuters
By Martin Jay
The EU’s farcical ‘foreign policy’ in the Middle East is failing in Lebanon, where dumping toxic garbage into the Mediterranean Sea is creating a massive threat to the entire planet. But what’s the link with Syria’s refugees?
Recently, a government minister here admitted that Lebanon’s policy towards its garbage crisis was to simply dump 2 million tons of toxic garbage into the Mediterranean Sea.
My own investigation revealed, however, a side to this shocking story which few editors of giant media titles around the world could believe. Until now.
The Costa Brava ‘landfill site’ right next to Beirut airport holds a filthy secret that a large number of environmentalists, leading academics and corruption experts all know and have revealed to me in a series of recorded interviews.
Not only did the EU know about the massive sea-dumping operation, which was built at the end of the summer of last year, but the EU’s own ‘embassy’ here in Beirut deliberately kept quiet about it. Why? Because it did not want to annoy the Lebanese government, which is hosting almost 2 million Syrian refugees.
Let that sink in for a moment.
The European Commission is keeping tight-lipped about what might be the largest environmental calamity in the Eastern Mediterranean – which not only threatens marine life, but also the health of Europeans holidaying in Greece – because it is too afraid of the political fall-out in Europe [Read: Germany] if Syrian refugees start to leave Lebanon and head for Europe.
Of course, no one is suggesting that the glamorous French EU delegation here in Beirut kept quiet and played dumb, because they have their careers to consider too. But Christina Lassen, head of the Delegation of the European Union to Lebanon, has some explaining to do.
Hundreds of millions of euros are spent each year on policing EU member states and their environmental misdemeanors; hundreds more on jobs for eurocrats in EU institutions; and hundreds more on EU-sponsored films, brochures and paid TV spots. And then there’s the EU ‘External Action Service’ which has had its own number of scandals as it soaks up a cool 700 million euros a year, much of which goes to support lavish embassies around the world and ‘diplomats’ who appear to live the high life.
But what is really the job of this super diplomacy outfit?
In Lebanon, it was clearly to keep this tiny country’s government happy at any cost – even the health of Europeans who cough up a 150bn euros a year to keep the EU project running – as corruption comes in many forms.
Lebanon is ranked by Transparency International as one of the most corrupt countries in the world. And yet it receives well over 200 million euros a year in cash from Brussels just to contain 1.8 million Syrian refugees. It’s actually not even a lot of money. For this pathetic amount, Europe has to console itself that it won’t have a refugee problem from Lebanon in exchange for possibly some of its 400 million citizens getting cancer from swimming in contaminated waters or eating contaminated fish. Add to that the gradual extinction of indigenous turtles who lay their eggs on Lebanese beaches, and the stink just fills your lungs.
Fishy business snares EU holiday makers
Think this is far fetched? Not according to one of Lebanon’s leading expert academics at the American university who confirms the pollution is heading towards Europe.
“The pollution never stops at one point,” Professor Najat A. Saliba of the AUB tells me. “The ocean is a living beast and currents are always in motion. Trash and leachates will move mainly from the south to the north as this is the prevalent wind in Lebanon.”
His further explanation sounds almost apocalyptic as the entire region could be affected by dire health implications.
“The environmental impact on the water, animal life, ocean biodiversity and the whole marine ecosystem is horrific… Leachate full of toxins will be seeping through the piles to contaminate the marine life. In addition to the toxins, organic matters will use up the oxygen in the sea and as such deprive the marine life from its oxygen,” he warns.
“Health damages also come from eating fish, increase in bacteria in the air, and infiltration of sea water into the coastal wells” he adds.
This point has been seized upon by one British MEP, who slammed it as an “hypocritical and a shameful indictment on the incompetence of the EU.”
“What is going on here is an environmental disaster with this toxic waste spreading to other countries from the sea’s currents and polluting anything it gets in the way of,” says UKIP’s MEP Mike Hookem, its party’s Fisheries spokesman.
“Not only will sea life be at risk but people could be too, through contaminated food and through polluted water particularly as it spreads up through Mediterranean countries where people go on holiday,” he warns.
One explanation why the Lebanese government has allowed the EU projects to fall apart is that its leaders in Beirut have a vested interest in other, bigger garbage contracts, if the Costa Brava plan is finally scrapped. Lebanon also has a legacy of its corrupt leaders taking areas of the coast, filling it with garbage (and ultimately concrete) and them making hundreds of millions of dollars in developing the plots as luxury apartments.
Presumably, the EU’s highly informed diplomats know about that as well though.
‘Pay off for Syrian crisis’
Laury Haytayan is an anti-corruption campaigner in Lebanon who believes that the “EU surely knows about the sea dumping of the garbage” but argues that “the garbage crisis is keeping politicians in power as it brings in money” even including contracts around the sea dump so “it’s hardly surprising that the EU projects don’t work.”
What she is referring to is 13 EU-funded sorting and composting centres which are a shambles and, in reality, have only served as cash cows for corrupt politicians, which a number of experts also blame as contributing to the government’s “sea dump.”
But no one is holding their breath for the top brass in Brussels to even acknowledge what is going on with their own diplomats.
Mike Hookem scolds the EU for the massive error but takes it further. “To make matters worse the EU diplomatic corps has one of their erzatz ’embassies’ in Lebanon so Brussels can’t claim to know what’s going on – although incompetence has admittedly never been a firing offence in the EU”, adds the UKIP MEP.
“This is all just a pay off for the Syrian refugee crisis which the EU can’t get a handle on because it is more obsessed with attacking Russia and Assad than it is dealing with ISIS,” claims Hookem.
In reality, the EU is probably not guilty of incompetence. In my view, the role of its diplomatic service is to engage with corrupt, backward countries – often with appalling human rights records – to ensure that they comply with a contingent requirement of Brussels: to assist the EU in its PR campaign to make it look much more relevant and important than what it really is. Give our EU chief the over-the-top VIP treatment when she visits, get your journalists to write up our press releases verbatim and do the ‘grip-n-grin’ photos. And never criticize our policies. That’s the deal.
The Lebanon story is about refugees. The millions of refugees poised on the EU’s perimeter – in Lebanon or in Turkey – are there because of failed states which are supported by the EU through slush funds, or payouts to corrupt governments – dressed up as state-building tools – but in reality are simply bribes, pay offs. No one is kidding themselves that the Barcelona Process is really anything other than a broken URL link on the European Commission’s own website (which it really is).
In Lebanon, the EU keeps quiet not only about the garbage scandal but much more besides. Many Syrian refugees have resorted to either slavery (often child) or prostitution for young girls. This tiny country is also falling into a chasm of authoritarian rule which is usually associated with African states.
Just recently a video went viral of peaceful protesters being brutally beaten, while new measures are being adopted all the time here to crackdown on anyone who criticizes the state (similar to Gulf Arab countries). I can’t be the only one who notices the tight-lipped EU diplomats who assist in this process by tacit approval.
Remarkably, the EU’s own diplomatic service doesn’t even generate good PR though for Brussels, such is its colossal failure as a fake news conduit. But the stench of graft which reminds me of 1999 has returned to my nostrils in Beirut. The EU today has no whistleblowers or investigative journalists holding it to account, due to its own crackdown so that a 1999 scandal would never repeat itself. It is a power-crazed unhinged beast which seeks survival at any cost, even of its own people.
The EU’s relationship with Lebanon, like scores of other poor countries it uses as a means to promote itself, just stinks.
In 1999, in Brussels, I witnessed and reported on the collapse of the European Commission whose executive resigned en masse under a cloud of shocking corruption allegations involving EU commissioners themselves manipulating the system by employing friends who, in turn, scooped million dollar contracts. The scandal not only threw a spotlight on the guilty, but also on the system itself which spectacularly failed to root out corruption and embezzlement from within the EU institutions.
The Barcelona Process, a bold and ambitious plan for the EU to harness Mediterranean countries closer to the Brussels sphere kicked off four years earlier. It also aimed to guide these countries on Europe’s periphery to modernize and improve their human rights aligning themselves with the moral tutelage which European Commission Presidents used to dish out in those days, while at the same time destroying at least four whistle blowers (in 2002) and arresting and charging journalists on trumped up charges.
The case of Hans-Martin Tillack in 2004 is well documented and will be remembered for the police banging on his door at 5am in the morning and taking him and his computers away, with a Belgian cop telling him ‘it’s not as bad as Burmah, eh?’
So, fast forward to The Lisbon Treaty in 2010 which gave the EU its own foreign policy along with up to 1 billion euro a year budget to create its own ‘External Action Service’. But since the EEAS started, its own venal working methods just seem to exacerbate how corrupt Brussels is and will probably always be.
It’s not just that the Barcelona Process was such an outstanding failure – Libya, Syria, Lebanon (2006) – and not to mention the Arab Spring. Today, the EU’s farcical foreign policy is actually doing more harm than good as it’s not even serving its own corrupt masters in Brussels.
More recently you might be astounded to see how far and how desperate the EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini is prepared to go, just to give her own department credibility and serve the EU machine with PR capital. From offering jihadists in Syria hundreds of millions of dollars in cash to stop fighting, right through to planning to secure a UN mandate so EU battleships could bomb refugee boats coming from Libya, there’s plenty to read for a good laugh.
But the darker side to the EU’s diplomatic service is no joke.
Indeed, there could never have been a more febrile example of how corrupt, ill-conceived and hypocritical the EU’s foreign policy is, than in Lebanon today.
Photo: Ethan Yona/Facebook, Ethan Yona game
By Evance Ngingo
The six-year-old child, Ethan Yona, a first grader, launched an android app that features a superhero character called Ethan Man who talks about his ambitions.
He launched the App at Jakata Kikwete play ground at Kidongo Chekundu during celebrations to mark the Day of the African Child.
The character that is based on himself is super talented, writes inspirational books, creates learning games and takes kids on multi learning journeys.
Speaking with journalists yesterday during the launch, Ethan’s mother, Irene Kiwia clarified that Ethan started working on this project when he was a five-year-old kindergarten pupil as a result of his passion for games and learning.
She said, as the mother she was so impressed and started to find the company that would enable him to attain his ambition and she managed to find a consultant company that deals in education technology, i-Learn East Africa which created the first animated book known as “When I Grow Up.
” She added that the App EthanMan is available for downloads on android play store whereby kids will be able to read books, play games and keep up with the EthanMan creator, Ethan Yona.
“He has been very energetic, enjoys learning new things and loves playing games. One day he told us that he would like to create his own superhero character based on his qualities,” she said.
She added that the boy said he is a super talented who can be anything he wants to be, like a football player, a rock star, an engineer and so on and that’s how the idea of a super hero character came about.”
The Managing Director at i-Learn East Africa, Noelah Ntukamazina, said: “We were so excited to work with Ethan on this project. It was fascinating that such a young kid would want to do such a big thing. “We wanted to be a part of it from the word go.
Being an educational consulting company we saw the learning potential that this project will impart in children. Ethan’s contribution in designing the book is admirable.”
Also the Chief Executive Officer of Tujenge Tech, said that was involved in the supporting Ethan’s initiative. Mr Joseph Singano said: “When we were approached to develop EthanMan games and the app that will house the games and books, we were thrilled.”
“Being a part of such an extraordinary project was what got us into technology to start with. Our role was to integrate the EthanMan character and his many talents into a platform that will be easy to access and create a great user experience for kids,” he added.
The Head of Corporate Affairs at Tigo Mobile Company that was among the sponsors of the Africa Child celebration, Woinde Shisael, said that her company is impressed with the innovative mindset of children and promised to continue supporting them.
By Baxter Dmitry, February 1, 2017
A GROUP OF CATHOLIC LAY LEADERS HAVE ASKED PRESIDENT TRUMP TO INVESTIGATE THEIR CLAIMS SOROS, OBAMA AND CLINTON ORGANIZED A VATICAN COUP TO INSTALL RADICAL LEFTIST POPE FRANCIS
George Soros, Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton orchestrated a coup in the Vatican to overthrow the conservative Pope Benedict and replace him with radical leftist Pope Francis, according to a group of Catholic leaders citing evidence from various sources including WikiLeaks emails.
Pope Benedict XVI reigned as Pope of the Catholic Church from 2005 to 2013 before unexpectedly resigning in unusual circumstances. Becoming the first Pope to step down since Pope Gregory XII in 1415, Benedict is widely considered the first to do so on his own initiative since Pope Celestine V in 1294.
However the group of Catholic leaders cite new evidence uncovered in emails released by WikiLeaks to claim the conservative Pope Benedict did not actually resign on his own initiative, but was pushed out of the Vatican by a coup that the group of researchers are calling the “Catholic Spring.”
Soros, Obama and Clinton used the United States’ diplomatic machinery, political muscle, and financial power to coerce, bribe and blackmail “regime change” in the Roman Catholic Church in order to replace the conservative Benedict with the current Pope Francis – who has since become an unlikely mouthpiece for the international left, stunning Catholics around the world.
Now the group of Catholic leaders have sent a letter to President Trump urging him to launch an official investigation into the activities of George Soros, Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton (and others) who they allege were involved in orchestrating Catholic Spring that resulted in their goal of “regime change” in the Vatican.
The Catholic leaders cite eight specific questions they seek to have answered concerning suspect events that led to the resignation of Pope Benedict, the first papal abdication in 700 years.
“Specifically, we have reason to believe that a Vatican ‘regime change’ was engineered by the Obama administration,” say the petitioners, in their January 20 letter to President Trump.
“We were alarmed to discover,” their letter notes, “that, during the third year of the first term of the Obama administration your previous opponent, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, and other government officials with whom she associated proposed a Catholic ‘revolution’ in which the final demise of what was left of the Catholic Church in America would be realized.”
The letter includes links to documents and news stories underscoring their claims. It first directs attention to the notorious Soros-Clinton-Podesta e-mails disclosed last year by WikiLeaks, in which Podesta and other progressives discussed regime change to remove what they described as the “middle ages dictatorship” in the Catholic Church.
Regarding the Podesta e-mails in question, The New American reported last October:
“Podesta, a longtime Clinton adviser/confidante and hand-picked top activist for left-wing funder George Soros, revealed in a 2011 e-mail that he and other activists were working to effect a “Catholic Spring” revolution within the Catholic Church, an obvious reference to the disastrous “Arab Spring” coups organized that same year by the Obama-Clinton-Soros team that destabilized the Middle East and brought radical Islamist regimes and terrorist groups to power in the region. The Podesta e-mail is a response to another Soros-funded radical — Sandy Newman, founder of the “progressive” Voices for Progress. Newman had written to Podesta seeking advice on the best way to “plant the seeds of the revolution” in the Catholic Church, which he described as a “middle ages [sic] dictatorship.”
In their letter to President Trump, the group of Catholics leaders write: “Approximately a year after this e-mail discussion, which was never intended to be made public, we find that Pope Benedict XVI abdicated under highly unusual circumstances and was replaced by a pope whose apparent mission is to provide a spiritual component to the radical ideological agenda of the international left. The Pontificate of Pope Francis has subsequently called into question its own legitimacy on a multitude of occasions.”
“We remain puzzled by the behavior of this ideologically charged Pope, whose mission seems to be one of advancing secular agendas of the left rather than guiding the Catholic Church in Her sacred mission,” they say, expressing the thoughts of millions of Catholics around the world stunned by Pope Francis’s left-wing ideology. “It is simply not the proper role of a Pope to be involved in politics to the point that he is considered to be the leader of the international left.”
“With all of this in mind, and wishing the best for our country as well as for Catholics worldwide, we believe it to be the responsibility of loyal and informed United States Catholics to petition you to authorize an investigation into the following questions:
– To what end was the National Security Agency monitoring the conclave that elected Pope Francis?
– What other covert operations were carried out by US government operatives concerning the resignation of Pope Benedict or the conclave that elected Pope Francis?
– Did US government operatives have contact with the “Cardinal Danneels Mafia”?
– International monetary transactions with the Vatican were suspended during the last few days prior to the resignation of Pope Benedict. Were any U.S. Government agencies involved in this?
– Why were international monetary transactions resumed on February 12, 2013, the day after Benedict XVI announced his resignation? Was this pure coincidence?
– What actions, if any, were actually taken by John Podesta, Hillary Clinton, and others tied to the Obama administration who were involved in the discussion proposing the fomenting of a “Catholic Spring”?
– What was the purpose and nature of the secret meeting between Vice President Joseph Biden and Pope Benedict XVI at the Vatican on or about June 3, 2011?
– What roles were played by George Soros and other international financiers who may be currently residing in United States territory?”
The investigation the group of Catholic leaders is requesting of President Trump should be of interest to more than just Catholics. George Soros’s ability to co-opt leading political figures to assist his radical plans for nation states is well known; but his ability to force “regime change” in the Catholic church, an institution previously throught impenetrable from the outside, raises serious questions about his potential for global chaos. The investigation — and punishment — should begin at once.
By Baxter Dmitry
Major demonstrations have rocked Italy this past week as the government attempts to pass a new law that will triple the number of mandatory vaccinations for Italian children and threatens to remove unvaccinated children from their parents.
“Lorenzin cancel your law, we are not your herd,” tens of thousands of Italians chanted at a protest in Rome, holding banners decrying government overreach into their homes and the health of their children.
The march in Rome, the largest in the country, is believed to be the biggest free-vaxxer event in world history. They were gathering to protest the proposed law that will raise the number of mandatory vaccines received by Italian children from four to 12.
The law, proposed by Minister of Health, Beatrice Lorenzin, will become effective unless the Italian Parliament saves the day and blocks the new legislation.
Protests agains mandatory vaccinations in various cities throughout Italy during the past week (June 2017).
Under the draconian new law, Italian children who have not received the full schedule of 12 mandatory vaccinations will lose their right to attend school, the parents will be fined up to 7,500 euros ($8396), and in case the Italian government had not already made it clear they are completely in the pockets of Big Pharma, they also announced that unvaccinated children will be taken away by local child protective services.
But Italians of all stripes are rising up in defiance of the new law. Politicians, associations, doctors, lawyers, and parents came together for the first time on the streets of Rome to make their voices heard.
One protestor shared a heart-rending account of his difficulties raising a vaccine damaged child in Italy:
“I am here as a parent, as a parent of a child who, unfortunately, has been damaged by a hexavalent vaccine. I am a parent who has tried to follow the path of the law and I have found myself in front of shameful situations, when the state courts consider vaccine injured kids as, allow me to say, the town’s idiots, the losers.”
The protestors want freedom of choice regarding vaccines, informed consent, the constitution of an independent committee for vaccine research, and objective data about reactions. They are not content to blindly rely on the word of Big Pharma and government when it comes to the health of their children.
Two doctors have been struck off this year in Italy over their refusal to work as Big Pharma shills and a further 24 doctors are being investigated for declaring that vaccines are not always harmless.
Is this the start of a medical revolution in Italy? A worldwide movement against the profit-driven interests of Big Pharma and government corruption is beginning to gain traction. It is up to you to help spread the word.