Category Archives: Technology

Meet Toka, the Most Dangerous Israeli Spyware Firm You’ve Never Heard Of, by Whitney Webb

NSO Group isn’t the only Israeli company out their peddling spyware, it just gets all the press. From Whiteney Webb at mintpressnews.com:

LONDON – This past Sunday, an investigation into the global abuse of spyware developed by veterans of Israeli intelligence Unit 8200 gained widespread attention, as it was revealed that the software – sold to democratic and authoritarian governments alike – had been used to illegally spy on an estimated 50,000 individuals. Among those who had their communications and devices spied on by the software, known as Pegasus, were journalists, human rights activists, business executives, academics and prominent political leaders. Among those targeted political leaders, per reports, were the current leaders of France, Pakistan, South Africa, Egypt, Morocco and Iraq.

The abuse of Pegasus software in this very way has been known for several years, though these latest revelations appear to have gained such traction in the mainstream owing to the high number of civilians who have reportedly been surveilled through its use. The continuation of the now-years-long scandal surrounding the abuse of Pegasus has also brought considerable controversy and notoriety to the Israeli company that developed it, the NSO Group.

While the NSO Group has become infamous, other Israeli companies with even deeper ties to Israel’s intelligence apparatus have been selling software that not only provides the exact same services to governments and intelligence agencies but purports to go even farther.

Originally founded by former Israeli Prime Minister and Jeffrey Epstein associate Ehud Barak, one of these companies’ wares are being used by countries around the world, including in developing countries with the direct facilitation of global financial institutions like the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and the World Bank. In addition, the software is only made available to governments that are “trusted” by Israel’s government, which “works closely” with the company.

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Nuclear Energy: Systemic Risk or Climate Change Cure, by Geoffrey Pohanka

The climate change activists shun the most efficient and one of the most environmentally friendly sources of energy: nuclear. From Geoffrey Pohanka at realclearenergy.org:

Many of the world’s political leaders and people of influence have made it very clear that they view climate change as an existential crisis. President Joe Biden in his first days in office declared climate change the “number one issue facing humanity.” The UN warns that we have but twelve years to avoid a climate catastrophe, that searing, unrelenting heat could lay waste to large swaths of the planet, killing millions who have no means to escape a massive climate event. Unabated carbon pollution will spawn heatwaves exceeding the absolute limit of human endurance. According to the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), net-zero CO2 requires “transformative systemic change.” The International Energy Agency calls decarbonizing the energy sector “perhaps the greatest challenge humankind has faced.”

Many of the world’s leading climate scientists state that there are only a dozen years for global warming to be kept to a maximum of 1.5C, beyond which even a half degree will significantly worsen the risk of droughts, floods, extreme heat, and poverty for hundreds of millions of people. Vice-President Kamala Harris has determined that climate change is “driving migrants to the U.S. Border.” U.S. climate envoy John Kerry says the world needs a ‘wartime mentality’ to combat climate change. Even Hollywood is engaged with Angelina Jolie saying climate change will force hundreds of millions into refugee status and Rosanna Arquette warning that fossil fuels ‘will be the end of mankind.” Rising CO2 levels are also being named as a potential cause of the condominium collapse in Surfside Florida.

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Doug Casey’s Next 5 Shocking Predictions…

In short order the world is going to be dramatically different. Perhaps the biggest question is will it be dramatically freer or dramatically more repressive. From Doug Casey at internationalman.com:

biggest predictions

Editor’s Note: The 2020s are shaping up to be a volatile time on multiple fronts. Globally, the Covid-19 pandemic has ushered in the most extreme government controls in history. Censorship is growing rapidly in the West. Economically, the US government has proven that the US dollar is no better than any other fiat currency, and the geopolitical chess pieces are changing to reflect China’s formidable role in the next decade.

Today, legendary speculator and contrarian thinker Doug Casey shares his biggest predictions for what is coming next and what it means for you, your money, and personal freedom around the world.

International Man: Big Tech’s censorship of alternative voices has been on the rise in the US, Canada, and other places.

What do you think the role of Big Tech companies will be?

Doug Casey: Trends in motion tend to stay in motion until they reach a climax, a crisis, at which point anything can happen.

We’re headed for a gigantic world crisis. My guess is that the long-standing trend towards Big Tech getting bigger and more powerful won’t continue—in other words, Big Tech is in the same position that Big Oil was in 1980. It looked like they were going to take over the world. Oil stocks were over 30% of the S&P 500, but today, they’re under 3%.

Big business in general, and now Big Tech in particular, have always had a very cozy relationship with big government—and big government likes that. The two of them fit together like a hand in glove. Big government funnels contracts to Big Tech, and Big Tech acts as the State’s handmaiden.

It’s part of why the average guy has lost faith in government, corporations, and our institutions. They’re now losing faith in the money as inflation rises. When the stock market crashes, they’re going to lose faith in the financial markets.

Massive societal change is looming. But that doesn’t mean the cultures of either Big Tech companies or the government are going to change. Why? Because throughout society, the elite are overwhelmingly statist and collectivist oriented. They’re quite comfortable and don’t want to rock the boat.

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Green That Doesn’t Fly, by Eric Peters

Has anybody pushing the idea of electric airplanes really thought about them? From Eric Peters at ericpetersautos.com:

Electric cars have trouble maintaining momentum for very long but at least when they run out of range, you just stop.

In an electric airplane, you drop.

It seems like a really bad idea, yet it’s one United Airlines reportedly just bought into – probably for many millions of dollars (the actual sum hasn’t been disclosed). It will “invest” in the development – italics to emphasize the nonexistence at present – of the ES-19, an electric aircraft that exists on the drawing board only. This hypothetical aircraft is being developed by a Swedish company with the cloying name, Heart Aerospace – which summons images of kumba-ya’ing around the campfire in a collective hug.

But will it fly?      

If electric cars are any indication, this will prove to be an airborne belly flop even more epic than the Lordstown Motors fail – in which GM got gypped into supporting the development of electric trucks that never materialized but which the supposed manufacturer thereof is alleged to have received numerous “pre-orders” for, sight unseen.

Ah yes, my little chickadee!

GM “invested” $75 million and gave a sweetheart deal on the old not-electric car factory at Lordstown, Ohio – where GM used to actually make cars. When the hilariously named susser-out of corporate shenanigans, Hindenburg Research, published a report earlier this year accusing Lordstown Motors of pretending to have orders for electric trucks it hadn’t built, confidence in the company cratered and GM pulled the .  . .  plug, leaving Lordstown a burnt-down cinder, kind of like an auto-immolating Chevy Bolt (also hilariously named).

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ASSANGE EXTRADITION: Why the Crumbling Computer Conspiracy Case Is So Vital to the US, by Catherine Vogan

The US case against Julian Assange now rests on a weak allegation of conspiracy to commit computer hacking. From Catherine Vogan at consortiumnews.com:

Since the U.S. is on shaky constitutional ground with the espionage indictment, the computer intrusion charge has served as a hook to try to get Assange, by portraying him not as a journalist, but as a hacker, writes Cathy Vogan.

While most of the talk about the Julian Assange case is about the espionage charges, which are political in nature, the U.S. case hangs by a thread for the second time on the non-political charge: conspiracy to commit computer intrusion.

There is a reason why the computer charge is so vital to the U.S. case. Charging a journalist with espionage for unauthorized possession and dissemination of defense information has been possible since 1917, but it runs the risk of violating the First Amendment.

The tradition has been instead to charge leakers and hackers for breach of an oath, contract or firewall. The legal and public perception of hacking is that it is much like burglary; something generally feared and whose punishment by the state is not subject to political debate or opposing laws; but rather welcomed. The intrusion charge shifts public and legal perception.

Since the U.S. is on shaky constitutional ground with the espionage indictment, the computer intrusion charge has served as a hook to try to get Assange, by portraying him not as a journalist, but as a hacker. Underscoring the difference between the two is fundamental to the U.S. case.

That’s why the U.S. prosecutor, James Lewis QC, on the opening day of Assange’s extradition hearing in February 2020 turned to the press in the courtroom and told them journalism was not the target of the U.S. prosecution. He said Assange was not a journalist and instead had participated in the theft of government documents. In other words: he’s not a journalist like you, but a hacker.

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Energy Hogs, by Eric Peters

Just because an electric car doesn’t guzzle any gas doesn’t mean it isn’t an energy hog. From Eric Peters at ericpetersautos.com:

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Non-electric cars haven’t “guzzled” gas – most of them – for decades. There are a few that still do, models like the V8 powered Dodge Charger and Challenger most blatantly – and they are of course on the Automotive Enemies List, compiled by people who use “gas guzzler” in the way that some people (often the same people) use “racist” or “misogynist” to cat-call that which isn’t but which they simply don’t like for reasons of general disagreement.

In any event, why it is the business of the person who didn’t buy the “gas guzzler” and isn’t the one paying for the gas it “guzzles” is a question – per The Chimp – that is rarely asked. It is like Jones bitching about his neighbor’s lawn, which is larger than his own and takes his neighbor more time to mow. The neighbor isn’t knocking on Jones’ door and demanding he mow the lawn, nor pay for the fertilizer, etc.

The whole thing is motivated by nothing more than the offense taken – how dare you! – by people who simply don’t like it that someone else has chosen to buy a car that “guzzles” more gas than they think is proper etiquette.

Oh, yes – there is the bogey about “externalities” – this idea that the guzzling of gas imposes indirect costs, shouldered by others, such as the cost of maintaining carrier groups to protect the oil supply chain (never mind that America was energy independent, oil-wise, when Orange Man Bad) and of course, “climate changing” effusions of atmosphere-warming carbon dioxide, a pre-Rona beta test of kernel-of-truth exaggerated to hysterical proportions in order to impose draconian solutions to a problem that doesn’t exist, in any meaningful sense.

The climate changes. This is news? It gets episodically warmer, then colder. Sometimes more and sometimes less. It is all a function of incredibly complex, interwoven factors (e.g., solar cycles/activity, natural events on earth such as volcanic eruptions) that the “experts” themselves have not divined though many pretend to have certain knowledge of the works, with incredibly simplistic solutions proffered that seem to always entail “sacrifices” by the average guy that always seem to redound to the benefit, financial and otherwise, of the stratified elites most unctuously sermonizing about the necessity of these “sacrifices.”

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The US Government Threatens Tech Companies To Push Censorship Agendas, by Caitlin Johnstone

It is not just Facebook that has become a de facto arm of the government, the other big tech companies have as well. From Caitlin Johnstone.com at caitlinjohnstone.com:

The elephant in the room with the ongoing controversy about the Biden administration’s push for more internet censorship is the fact that both the US government and the Silicon Valley tech companies who are being pushed to censor are acutely aware that those companies can be brought to their knees by antitrust cases and other regulation if they don’t censor people’s voices in accordance with the government’s wishes.

After Press Secretary Jen Psaki admitted on Thursday that the administration has given Facebook a list of accounts to ban for spreading “misinformation” about the Covid vaccine, she has now doubled down saying that people who circulate such materials online should be banned from not just one but all social media platforms.

“You shouldn’t be banned from one platform and not others for providing misinformation out there,” Psaki told the press on Friday.

When asked by the press for his thoughts on companies like Facebook, President Biden said the failure of those platforms to adequately censor posts about the vaccine makes them guilty of “killing people”.

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Here’s What Happened at Cyber Polygon – And You’re Not Going to Like It, by Jeff Thompson

It looks like the first goal of Cyberpolygon is to prevent internet communications, especially among people who don’t like the World Economic crowed. From Jeff Thompson at theorganicprepper.com:

Cyber Polygon 2020 – a simulation about a “cyber pandemic” – took place July 9, 2021. Many Americans felt widespread concern prior to the event.

Why is this? In short, because past simulations ended up becoming a reality. Could the Cyber Polygon simulation become a reality? Many Americans thought so. Derick Broze points out in his article that the world has experienced many simulations that came to fruition only a short time later.

For example, on October 18, 2019, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the World Economic Forum, and the John Hopkins Center for Health Security conducted Event 201. Event 201 was a simulation of how the world would react if a coronavirus pandemic swept across the planet. Less than six months later, the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 to be a pandemic.

Interestingly, just as Cyber Polygon was about to start, a real attack occurred. From NBC News:

One of the most prolific ransomware gangs, REvil, conducted its boldest attacks yet over the Fourth of July weekend, on Kaseya, which services customers who in turn contract with thousands of businesses. Though the dust has yet to settle, researchers say the hack allowed REvil to infect more than 1,500 different organizations. The gang seems to have bitten off more than it can chew and has asked for a $70 million lump sum to unlock all infected computers.

Cyber Polygon 2020 Digital Pandemic is Now Complete

Many may wonder just what in the world happened there. The convention was kind enough to publish the findings for the rest of us to peruse at our leisure.

As noted by the official website, “The central theme of the event was a ‘digital pandemic.’ No surprise to those of us who paid attention. It’s because of this moniker that so many people have been concerned in the first place.

Videos published by the World Economic Forum set mental alarms off for Americans nationwide. According to this video, a cyber attack could be 10x more prevalent than what we’ve experienced with COVID-19. The narrator within the video states, “Fortunately, at least until now, cyber-attacks have not impacted our health the way pandemics have. At least until now.”

The video goes on to state, “The only way to stop the exponential propagation of a COVID-like cyber threat is to fully disconnect the millions of vulnerable devices from one another and from the internet.” 

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Doug Casey on the End of the Nation-State

We can only hope that the end of the nation-state is coming. From Doug Casey at internationalman.com:

nation-state

There have been a fair number of references to the subject of “phyles” in this publication over the years. This essay will discuss the topic in detail. Especially how phyles are likely to replace the nation-state, one of mankind’s worst inventions.

Now might be a good time to discuss the subject. We’ll have an almost unremitting stream of bad news, on multiple fronts, for years to come. So it might be good to keep a hopeful prospect in mind.

Let’s start by looking at where we’ve been. I trust you’ll excuse my skating over all of human political history in a few paragraphs, but my object is to provide a framework for where we’re going, rather than an anthropological monograph.

Mankind has, so far, gone through three main stages of political organization since Day One, say 200,000 years ago, when anatomically modern men started appearing. We can call them Tribes, Kingdoms, and Nation-States.

Karl Marx had a lot of things wrong, especially his moral philosophy. But one of the acute observations he made was that the means of production are perhaps the most important determinant of how a society is structured. Based on that, so far in history, only two really important things have happened: the Agricultural Revolution and the Industrial Revolution. Everything else is just a footnote.

Let’s see how these things relate.

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Bless the Traitors, by Chris Hedges

Daniel Hale’s conscience wouldn’t let him keep secret what he knew about the US military’s drone programs. Too bad so many in the military and intelligence have no such qualms. From Chris Hedges at consortiumnews.com:

Daniel Hale, an active-duty Air Force intelligence analyst, stood in the Occupy encampment in Zuccotti Park in October 2011 in his military uniform. He held up a sign that read “Free Bradley Manning,” who had not yet announced her transition. It was a singular act of conscience few in uniform had the strength to replicate. He had taken a week off from his job to join the protestors in the park.

He was present at 6:00 am on Oct. 14 when Mayor Michael Bloomberg made his first attempt to clear the park. He stood in solidarity with thousands of protestors, including many unionized transit workers, teachers, Teamsters and communications workers, who formed a ring around the park. He watched the police back down as the crowd erupted into cheers. But this act of defiance and moral courage was only the beginning.

At the time, Hale was stationed at Fort Bragg. A few months later he deployed to Afghanistan’s Bagram Air Force Base. He would later learn that that while he was in Zuccotti Park, Barack Obama ordered a drone strike some 12,000 miles away in Yemen that killed Abdulrahman Anwar al-Awlaki, the 16-year-old son of the radical cleric and U.S. citizen Anwar al-Awlaki, who had been killed by a drone strike two weeks earlier.

The Obama administration claimed it was targeting the leader of Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, Ibrahim al-Banna, who it believed, incorrectly, was with the boy and his cousins, all of whom were also killed in the attack. That massacre of innocents became public, but there were thousands more such attacks that wantonly killed noncombatants that only Hale and those with top-security clearances knew about.

Starting in 2013, Hale, while working as a private contractor, leaked some 17 classified documents about the drone program to investigative reporter Jeremy Scahill, although the reporter is not named in court documents. The leaked documents, published by The Intercept on October 15, 2015, exposed that between January 2012 and February 2013, U.S. special operations airstrikes killed more than 200 people.

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