It is the power of higher-order critical thinking and evidence-based research that advances skills, knowledge and a nation’s potential. Listening to, watching or reading any form of information advances knowledge. This process should also include misinformation, disinformation, propaganda or even ideological gibberish. This type of broad reading and study is part of the scientific method of research. It is the scientific method which is the most powerful method of study humanity has ever achieved. Furthermore, it is the scientific method that develops and advances rational evidence-based problem solving higher-order and critical thinking capacities. All of which then advances research potential, sophisticated analysis, knowledge and skills. It is this process which then develops a complex and highly sophisticated brain, mind and intellect; none of which can or will ever be achieved through censorship.
GENDER IS A CONSTRUCT. BIOLOGY IS AN IMMUTABLE UNIVERSAL TRUTH
Opinions and constructs
In terms of opinions and constructs, it is profoundly important to note that a construct derives its name from the fact that – a construct – is not anything more than a mental construction. As such, a construct is no more than a thought, that brings into existence a descriptor referred to as an opinion, which provides the means to bring into existence a descriptive construct.
All robust universal dictionaries concur that opinions are no more than a general subjective point of view, i.e., a personal sentiment or a feeling; which is not based on fact or knowledge. The fact of the matter is that gender is not (and it has never been, and it cannot ever be) a universal biological truth. Gender is a construct. That means gender fits into the category of a concocted descriptor, and, as such, what that axiomatically means is that the word gender is nothing more than a mental opinion, or a descriptor of convenience.
The utterance of the construct gender cannot change the universal laws of biology
Therefore, in absolute universal terms, what that means is that the word and construct gender can never be a universal biological truth. As such, the construct gender cannot change the universal laws of biology, nor can the utterance of the word ‘gender’ change the universal laws of biology.
Male chromosome pairing
Universally, ever since humans have existed, when a human male is born, he will have a genetic XY chromosome pairing. As such, in terms genome and sex, this male will, in universal biological terms always be a male. If, for example, this XY chromosome male was to ever have a finger, hand, arm, toe, foot, tonsils, appendix or even their genitals surgically removed; this male will still be a biological male, a genetic male, and this male will continue to have the pairing of his male-based XY chromosomes.
Female chromosome pairing
This same universal and biological genome-based principle, of course, and immutably, also applies to the female sex. When a female is born, she will have an XX chromosome genetic pairing. As such this female will (universally, biologically and genetically) be the sex of a female. Any surgical procedure that takes place, cannot and will never change the biological XX female chromosome pairing. And no amount of ideological shouting or any deceitful politically motivated gender-based utterances, or any social bullying or ideological ‘word-play’ manipulations, will ever change these laws of physics and/or biology.
No amount of force of any kind can change universal truths
Importantly and profoundly, nor can any forced experimental application of hormones (into the body), change this immutable XX chromosome (female) or XY chromosome (male) genetic pairing.
Denying universal truths cannot change a universal truth
Denying these universal human laws and biological truths, as history informs, brings with its catastrophic biological and social outcomes. History also unambiguously cautions and informs that any society or organisation (political or private) that allows, supports, initiates or forces anyone (irrespective of policies, laws or even orders from superiors), to engage in immoral forced actions (against any individual or collective), these actions will be declared as being illegal. That is because it has been internationally declared, in an international court of law, that moral actions supersede all laws, conventions, directives or what may even be considered as being orders by superiors, which of course can take place in many different forms, which includes publications of policies and books.
Provided a moral choice was possible
In 1945, as World War II was nearing its inevitable conclusion the Allies suspected that a Superior Orders defense might be employed by the Axis forces. As a result of this insightful moral assumption, the Allies brought into existence and legally issued the London Charter of the International Military Tribunal (IMT). This ruling unambiguously declared that following or undertaking an immoral order (which in fact makes the order unlawful) cannot be used as a defense.
As a result of this London Charter of the International Military Tribunal, ruling, it was then declared that this ruling would be placed under the directive and title of: Nuremberg Principle IV. This Principle declared that the “defense of superior orders” is not a defense for war crimes. In terms of definition and declaration Nuremberg Principle IV presents the following:
The fact that a person acted pursuant to order of his Government or of a superior does not relieve him from responsibility under international law, provided a moral choice was in fact possible to him. [The key words here of course are: “provided a moral choice in fact was possible.”]
As such this recognition must be addressed in accordance with international law, that was set down in an international court, that followed the directive of Nuremberg Principle IV. Anything less undermines all of the universal principles that were set down in accordance with Nuremberg Principle IV. All of which led to advancing universal truths, which became the guiding principles in the development of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
Biden Warns ‘Nuclear Armageddon’ Threat Back ‘For First Time Since Cuban Missile Crisis
BY TYLER DURDEN FRIDAY, OCT 07, 2022 – 11:20 AM
President Joe Biden said on Thursday that the threat of nuclear “Armageddon” is at its highest level since the Cuban missile crisis, and that the US is trying to find an “off-ramp” for Russia before they begin the use of tactical nuclear weapons.
“We’re trying to figure out what is Putin’s off-ramp? Where does he get off? Where does he find a way out?” Biden said at a fundraiser in New York City for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee at the New York home of James Murdoch, the son of News Corp. Chairman Rupert Murdoch.
“Where does he find himself in a position that he does not, not only lose face but lose significant power in Russia?”
“He is not joking when he talks about potential use of tactical nuclear weapons or biological and chemical weapons, because his military is, you might say, significantly underperforming,” Biden added, according to Bloomberg. “I don’t think there’s any such thing as the ability to easily use tactical nuclear weapons and not end up with Armageddon.”
Are Biden’s comments related to why his admin is buying up to $290 million in anti-radiation drugs?
Putin has renewed his nuclear threats as he announced the annexation of Ukrainian territory, some of which Russia doesn’t control, and with the call-up of 300,000 reservists to reinforce his flagging invasion. “When the territorial integrity of our country is threatened, we will certainly use all the means at our disposal to protect Russia and our people,” Putin said in a televised national address. “This is not a bluff.” -Bloomberg
Biden’s dire language comes in stark contrast to his National Security Adviser, Jake Sullivan, who said last week that the US doesn’t Putin is serious.
“We do not presently see indications about the imminent use of nuclear weapons,” he said. “We are, of course, monitoring that carefully and staying in close consultation with allies and partners.”
Sullivan added that the US has warned of severe consequences if Russia uses nukes.
“He shall judge between the nations, and shall decide disputes for many peoples; and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war anymore.” – ISAIAH 2:4
While one can easily denounce Russia for their illegal invasion of Ukraine, the question may be asked, “Why is there war and not peace between Russia and the West?” The answer is complex and not to be found in the mass media, who will easily condemn alternative views as propaganda without recognising their own bias and subconscious dispensation of favourable propaganda. The aim of this article is to understand the Russian perspective in the hope that war will soon cease and world leaders will speak of reconciliation and peace once more. Various sources have been selected to speak to the issues that continue to feed the conflict between the West and Russia.
NATO is literally attempting to surround Russia with military bases, troops, armor, and worst of all, missiles. The Russians have watched this situation develop for years, since the then-Soviet Union imploded in 1991.
Back in 1997, when East Germany and West Germany were re-unified, the West assured Russia that NATO “would not move one inch eastward.” That turned out to be a vulgar lie. LOOK at the map above.
And there is now factual, empirical proof that the US, UK, France and Germany did promise Russia that NATO would not move east.
So the Russians see they were LIED TO by the US, UK, France, and Germany. The Russians know they have been deceived, and now, with NATO trying to bring Ukraine into the fold, Russia faces an Existential crisis.
If Ukraine is allowed to join NATO, then NATO will be able to place US Missile defenses upon Ukraine soil.
Those missiles would have about a five minute flight time to Moscow, and about a 7-10 minute flight time to Russia’s strategic nuclear missile silos.
The trouble with these new US Missile Defenses is that the warheads can be swapped-out within about an hour. The CONVENTIONAL warheads can be swapped to NUCLEAR warheads, and the swap can be done while the missiles are in their launchers, so no one would actually know the missiles were converted from Defensive to Offensive.
Russia simply cannot defend itself from missiles that have a flight time of only five minutes from launch to impact.
For the past several YEARS, Russia has been saying this publicly. They have been openly saying they cannot (and will not) tolerate American missiles on Ukraine territory with a five minute flight time to Moscow. No one in the West listened.
So last December, Russia put forth a request for written, legally enforceable, security guarantees. They asked for certain things to be agreed to in a legally enforceable format, to assure Russia’s security.
The background and implications of the 2014 far-right coup in Kiev, which overthrew the pro-Russian President Viktor Yanukovych, is critical for understanding the current Ukraine-Russia war. This coup was openly supported by US and European imperialism and implemented primarily by far-right shock troops such as the Right Sector and the neo-Nazi Svoboda Party.
It represented the temporary culmination of long-standing efforts by US imperialism to install a puppet regime on the borders of Russia and brought the world a major step closer to a war between the largest nuclear powers, the US and Russia. Ukraine has since been systematically built up as a launching pad for a NATO war against Russia.
The regime change prompted the outbreak of an ongoing civil war in the east of Ukraine, between Russian-backed separatists and the US-backed Ukrainian army, that has claimed the lives of tens of thousands and displaced millions.
In the US, the coup was a catalyzer for an ever more aggressive campaign against Russia and a significant shift to the right among layers of the upper middle class. US imperialism and NATO have funded the Ukrainian state and far-right forces with billions of dollars.
The Woke West
Moral and Financial Bankruptcy Source:http://thesaker.is/on-liberating-europe/
Just over thirty years ago the Communist USSR went bankrupt – it could not raise enough money to pay off its debts on capital markets. The West should have gone bankrupt at the same time because it too had colossal debts, however through the financial manipulations of its Capitalism it was able to raise the capital. So it went morally bankrupt instead.
Firstly, there was the fascism of political correctness. Like so many destructive movements the initial intentions were good, but as we know that the road to hell is paved with them. It was precisely after 1991 that the use of the phrase ‘political correctness’ as a pejorative phrase became widespread in the USA. Secondly, at the same time there began the Western attack on Islam, or rather the Western grab of Arab oil and gas, by telling Saddam Hussein that he could recover Kuwait, which had been illegitimately cut off from oil-rich Iraq by British imperialism, but then withdrawing that support once he had done it and so pretexting a reason to attack him. The first Gulf War followed, with a second one to follow after the invasion and failed occupation of Afghanistan, and then chaos in the ‘Arab Spring’. Thirdly, at the same time, in 1992 there began the attempt to depopulate, dismantle and destroy the Russian Lands, culminating 22 years later in the US coup d’etat in Kiev in 2014, which cost US taxpayers $5 billion and has cost them many times more since. Inbetween there have been all manner of Western manipulations, from 9/11 to covid.
Such is hubris. ‘We are the only Superpower’. ‘The end of history has come’. And so today the Western world finds itself isolated. The ‘international community’, ‘the free world’, has only 13% of the world population and depends on the rest of the world, on the 87%. Outmatched by the population of the rest of the world and its GDP, it produces only a smallish amount of oil, gas, food, fertiliser and manufactured goods. Russia, China, India, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia, indeed nearly all of Asia, Africa and Latin America, stand together against the neocolonial manipulations and neocon lies of the Western world, whose unity is now crumbling. Moreover, the Western world is bankrupt. The USA alone owes an unpayable £30 trillion. Thus, the bankruptcy of the West that should have happened over thirty years ago is happening now.
Western Totalitarianism Source:https://www.zerohedge.com/geopolitical/new-world-order-coming-putin-blasts-globalist-ideology-totalitarian
Putin – The notorious leader claimed that the west had only achieved its global preeminence due to the historic plunder of other nations and had no moral right to enforce a unipolar model on the planet.
“The model of the total dominance of the so-called ‘golden billion’ is unjust. Why should this ‘golden billion’ among the planet’s population dominate others, impose its own rules of conduct?” Putin asked.
“Based on the illusion of ‘exclusivity,’ this model divides people into first and second class status, and is therefore racist and neo-colonial in its essence,” he added.
“And the globalist, supposedly liberal ideology which underlies it is increasingly acquiring the features of totalitarianism, holding back creative pursuit, free historical creation,” Putin claimed.
The Russian President went on to stress his view that the globalist world order was built off the exploitation of other countries.
“Of course, this ‘golden billion’ did not become ‘golden’ by accident. It has achieved a lot. But it did not only take up its positions thanks to the realization of some ideas, but to a large extent due to the robbery of other peoples – both in Asia and Africa. That’s what happened.”
He then proclaimed that western elites are terrified that their global order is being dismantled.
“No matter how much Western and so-called supranational elites strive to preserve the existing order of things, a new era is coming, a new stage in world history. And only truly sovereign states can ensure high dynamics for growth and become an example for others,” said Putin.
As we have previously highlighted, Putin has consistently blamed the west for its own downfall.
Back in March, he gave a speech in which he blamed the ‘western ruling elite’ for creating the economic hardships impacting people in Europe and the United States.
Last year, the controversial strongman blasted the west as “completely insane” for allowing children to be taught there is no biological sex, saying the woke crusade against traditional gender roles was “subverting human nature.”
Russian President Vladimir Putin, in his recent speech, said that woke ideology is fast destroying the Western civilisation. Putin condemned the far-left progressivism and compared it to Russia’s darkest days during the 1917 communist revolution, in which the Soviets seized the means of production and overthrew the government.
Speaking at the plenary session of the 18th annual meeting of the Valdai International Discussion Club, Putin presented a strong case arguing that the Western civilisation is one step away from falling. The theme of the discussion was “Global Shake-up in the 21st century: The Individual, Values and the State”.
Putin began his address by pointing out how the world is facing continuous inconstancy, unpredictability, and a permanent state of transition on almost every front, be it climate change, environmental degradation, the coronavirus pandemic, or the socio-economic problems facing humankind. Putin, citing the Covid-19 pandemic experience, argued that many global governance institutions need “fine tuning” as they failed to tackle the challenges posed by the dynamics of global processes.
“The re-alignment of the balance of power presupposes a redistribution of shares in favour of rising and developing countries that until now felt left out… We look in amazement at the processes underway in the countries which have been traditionally looked at as the standard-bearers of progress,” said Putin.
While elaborating upon the cultural deterioration of the West that is underway in the name of social justice, Putin said “some people in the West believe that an aggressive elimination of entire pages from their own history, ‘reverse discrimination’ against the majority in the interests of a minority, and the demand to give up the traditional notions of mother, father, family and even gender, they believe that all of these are the mileposts on the path towards social renewal.”
The Russian President noted that the overwhelming majority of the Russian society believes in its own spiritual values, historical tradition and multiethnic culture. “The advocates of so-called ‘social progress’ believe they are introducing humanity to some kind of a new and better consciousness,” he added. Putin went a step further as he compared the modern woke progressives to the Soviet revolutionaries and said that this wokeism is not new at all.
“It may come as a surprise to some people, but Russia has been there already,” he said. “After the 1917 revolution, the Bolsheviks, relying on the dogmas of Marx and Engels, also said that they would change existing ways and customs and not just political and economic ones, but the very notion of human morality and the foundations of a healthy society. The destruction of age-old values, religion and relations between people, up to and including the total rejection of family (we had that, too), encouragement to inform on loved ones — all this was proclaimed progress and, by the way, was widely supported around the world back then and was quite fashionable, same as today. By the way, the Bolsheviks were absolutely intolerant of opinions other than theirs.”
“The fight for equality and against discrimination has turned into aggressive dogmatism bordering on absurdity, when the works of the great authors of the past — such as Shakespeare — are no longer taught at schools or universities, because their ideas are believed to be backward. The classics are declared backward and ignorant of the importance of gender or race. In Hollywood memos are distributed about proper storytelling and how many characters of what colour or gender should be in a movie. This is even worse than the agitprop department of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union,” exclaimed Putin.
Putin said that the true value of social justice movements, like that of Martin Luther King, is seen nowhere today. “Countering acts of racism is a necessary and noble cause, but the new ‘cancel culture’ has turned it into ‘reverse discrimination’ that is, reverse racism. The obsessive emphasis on race is further dividing people, when the real fighters for civil rights dreamed precisely about erasing differences and refusing to divide people by skin colour,” he noted.
“By the way, the absolute majority of Russian people do not think that the colour of a person’s skin or their gender is an important matter. Each of us is a human being. This is what matters,” Putin said, reiterating his belief in Russian society.
“In a number of Western countries, the debate over men’s and women’s rights has turned into a perfect phantasmagoria… Zealots of these new approaches even go so far as to want to abolish these concepts altogether,” he said. “Anyone who dares mention that men and women actually exist, which is a biological fact, risk being ostracised.”
Putin also referred to the awkward usage of gender neutral terms such as “parent number one” and “parent number two”, “birthing parent” instead of “mother,” and “human milk” replacing “breast milk” because it might upset the people who are unsure about their own gender.
“Not to mention some truly monstrous things when children are taught from an early age that a boy can easily become a girl and vice versa,” said Putin, remarking on childhood gender transitions and the embrace of non-binary identities to the exclusion of parents. “That is, the teachers actually impose on them a choice we all supposedly have. They do so while shutting the parents out of the process and forcing the child to make decisions that can upend their entire life. They do not even bother to consult with child psychologists — is a child at this age even capable of making a decision of this kind? Calling a spade a spade, this verges on a crime against humanity, and it is being done in the name and under the banner of progress.”
Putin bluntly called these woke trends as “structural disruptions” and further argued that in the impending period of global reconstruction, “moderate conservatism” is the most reasonable line of conduct to tackle the multiplying risks and imminent dangers of the fragile woke realities around us.
“This conservative approach is not about an ignorant traditionalism, a fear of change or a restraining game, much less about withdrawing into our own shell. It is primarily about reliance on a time-tested tradition, the preservation and growth of the population, a realistic assessment of oneself and others, a precise alignment of priorities, a correlation of necessity and possibility, a prudent formulation of goals, and a fundamental rejection of extremism as a method,” elaborated Putin.
“The cost of ill-conceived social experiments is sometimes beyond estimation. Such actions can destroy not only the material, but also the spiritual foundations of human existence, leaving behind moral wreckage where nothing can be built to replace it for a long time,” Putin warned.
Fighting Fascism. But Who Are The Fascists? Source:http://thesaker.is/on-liberating-europe/
But in case we should be accused of being anti-American, perhaps we could generalise more widely about the state of politics in the Western world. The fact is that successful and honest businessmen and industrialists only very rarely go into politics in the Western world and have rarely done so for many decades and perhaps even generations. Generally speaking, it is not the able and the competent, but the failures who go into politics in the Western world. Either these failures want money (they are corrupt), or else they have money and therefore want power (they want to abuse), or else they are sexual perverts. So a thousand years of deviant Europe ends in ignominy, infamy and depravity.
Europe needs liberation. Its pro-Nazi leaders are now grudgingly admitting that they have lost the war they started against Russia in the Nazi Ukraine. They know that Zelensky is finished, though still for the moment propped up by Biden’s neocon backers, and that not only the Crimea and the Donbass but also many other parts of the Ukraine will forever revert to Russia, which is where they were a century ago. And as for most of the rest, if not all of it, it will also be lost to the West. Now the best lie Western warmongers can invent is that the war in the Ukraine is ending ‘in a stalemate’, without any victors, and in a stand-off along the Polish-Ukrainian border. However, the truth is far worse for them than even that lie.
Just over three years ago I remember speaking to the retired ambassador to Switzerland of a certain Western European country. Before that he had spent many years in his country’s embassy in Moscow (he is a fluent Russian speaker). He asked me why the excellent relations of the West with Russia in the 1990s had degenerated and been destroyed. I answered him that it was because the West had treated Russia like a third world colony, which it wanted to exploit and dismember. It was the West which had allied Russia with China and created not only an enemy, but an enemy which would destroy the West. He looked at me in disbelief. On this year’s French national holiday, 14 July, President Macron of France stated that he was ready to declare war on Russia and China – with his pathetically tiny and laughably underequipped and underfunded French military. If so, then expect no fuel, no food and no manufactured goods in France. The same goes for warmongers all over the rest of the Western world.
To be absolutely certain, blood is on the hands of all sides involved in the current conflict with approximately 28 000 civilian deaths and 36 000 military deaths (Ukrainian and Russian inclusive). UNICEF estimates at least two children a day are killed with many more injured. One must remember this as one considers the perspectives discussed previously.
1. Russia is being existentially threatened. With US and NATO sponsored coups and attempted coups in 2014 (Ukraine), 2021 (Belarus) and 2022 (Kazakhstan), Russia is not being paranoid. Missile placement within the Ukraine would remove any adequate response time if Russia were attacked.
2. The West has overestimated their moral power and wish to manipulate and force their liberal values onto sovereign nations. Might does not make right – pushing totalitarian powers such as China and Russia into a formidable partnership.
3. Even though ex-KGB Colonel President Putin is responsible for many deaths personally, he can recognise the hypocrisy of the woke West. It is indeed true that the new values of the West threaten core religious and family values of Russia and its allied countries. The West is no longer Christian nor moral.
4. Western Totalitarianism is hidden in the fascism of woke-ism, cancel culture, green ideology, racism and gender division. Alternative voices are surpressed, and like the Marxists of 1917, the neo-Marxists of 2022 are winning the culture war. Both the West and Russia accuse each other as being Fascists and Nazis, and indeed both sides are guilty of using fascist, totalitarian tactics within the cultural and political arenas.
NATO and the West feel comfortable that the current conflict will never affect their homelands. They are to be mistaken – Russia is willing to sacrifice everything to achieve total victory. At the end of World War II, Russia had 14 million military deaths compared to the much smaller 400 000 US military deaths. The Russian people understand sacrifice more than most nations on Earth. We should be wary of underestimating Russia or to ignore its warnings, for we poke the Bear at our own mortal peril. Conservative Christians need to ensure that they are aware of the complex global situation, behold Putin as a sinner, and pray for peace so that world leaders will have the wisdom to carve a new path away from the bloodshed of warfare.
The President of Chechnya, Ramzan Kadyrov says that he and his people are glad to support Russia’s demilitarization of Ukraine. He went on to say they are “developing a plan to demilitarize NATO. After the capture of Kiev, next is Poland.”
Given the reality that:
1) Ukraine had the largest standing army in all of Europe, which was trained, equipped, and certified by NATO, AND;
2) Given the reality that the Russian Army is now chewing-up and spitting out the Ukraine Army, defeating Ukraine in almost every confrontation, it appears to many observers that NATO training and certification makes them only a paper tiger.
This paper tiger has been roaring at Russia for decades, and now may face being swept away by the very Russians they have demonized for decades.
Russia Declares War Goals Have Expanded After West Pumped More Arms Into Ukraine
With the Donbas region now largely under control of Russian forces five months into the invasion… is Moscow setting its sights on the rest of Ukraine? It appears this could be the case, based on provocative Wednesday remarks by Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov, captured in a fresh FT report.
“Russia’s foreign minister said Moscow had expanded its war aims for its invasion of Ukraine, the strongest sign yet that it seeks to annex parts of the country currently under its control,” FT introduces, citing that:
Sergei Lavrov said on Wednesday that Russia’s goals were more ambitious than Moscow had declared at the start of the war in February, when it claimed its goal was to “liberate” the eastern Donbas border region. Moscow’s war aims now extend to the provinces of Kherson and Zaporizhzhia in southern Ukraine, which are mostly occupied by Russian forces, Lavrov said.
Lavrov also said a “number of other territories” are additionally included in the new war aims, though without naming them.
President Vladimir Putin and his top generals within the opening two months of the war made it clear that a central goal was to “liberate” the Donbas region, but speculation has since abounded over whether the Kremlin would keep going beyond this territory.
Some political analysts in the West – the University of Chicago’s John Mearsheimer foremost among them – have stated their belief that Moscow initially sought to limit operations to the East, in defense of the pro-Russian breakaway republics; however, Mearsheimer has argued that many variables have likely caused Putin to expand beyond these initial goals. Chief among the battlefield variables remains Washington and the West’s continually escalating involvement, especially in weapons shipments – including longer range missile systems.
Lavrov alluded to this in his Wednesday comments, “If the west continues to pump Ukraine full of weaponry out of impotent rage or a desire to exacerbate the situation [ . . .] then that means our geographical tasks will move even further from the current line,” he said.
The conditional, ‘warning message’ nature of his wording suggests that the Kremlin may not have extended the goal posts just yet. Lavrov referenced that the conflict is “an ongoing process” during the statements.
On Tuesday a White House statement condemned what it called Russia’s “annexation playbook” amid reports the Kremlin is installing pro-Russian officials and administrations in towns and cities now under its control. Russian media has also previewed potential “referendums” in these territories akin to Crimea in 2014.
And on Wednesday the Pentagon confirmed it is sending Ukraine four more High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS) as part the next round of security assistance, according to the words of Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin.
Thus the ongoing proxy war looks to grow hotter in at least the near term before any possibility of compromise is taken seriously by either side. The Ukrainian government responded to Lavrov’s latest words by reasserting that it will not sit down with the Russians at the negotiating table. “Russians want blood, not talks,” FM Dmytro Kuleba said, and urged yet more sanctions, more pressure to ramp up on Moscow from the West.
Source: 90 Minutes in Heaven, authored by Don Piper with Cecil Murphy (1996). Excerpts from Chapter 2 and Chapter 3.
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When I died, I didn’t flow through a long, dark tunnel. I had no sense of fading away or of coming back. I never felt my body being transported into the light. I heard no voices calling to me or anything else. Simultaneous with my last recollection of seeing the bridge and the rain, a light enveloped me, with a brilliance beyond earthly comprehension or description. Only that. In my next moment of awareness, I was standing in heaven.
Joy pulsated through me as I looked around, and at that moment I became aware of a large crowd of people. They stood in front of a brilliant, ornate gate. I have no idea how far away they were; such things as distance didn’t matter. As the crowd rushed toward me, I didn’t see Jesus, but I did see people I had known. As they surged toward me, I knew instantly that all of them had died during my lifetime. Their presence seemed absolutely natural.
After being hugged by my grandfather, I don’t remember who was second or third. The crowd surrounded me. Some hugged me and a few kissed my cheek, while others pumped my hand. Never had I felt more loved.
As I try to explain this, my words seem weak and hardly adequate, because I have to use earthly terms to refer to unimaginable joy, excitement, warmth, and total happiness. Everyone continually embraced me, touched me, spoke to me, laughed, and praised God. This seemed to go on for a long time, but I didn’t tire of it.
Everything I experienced was like a first-class buffet for the senses. I had never felt such powerful embraces or feasted my eyes on such beauty. Heaven’s light and texture defy earthly eyes or explanation. Warm, radiant light engulfed me. As I looked around, I could hardly grasp the vivid, dazzling colors. Every hue and tone surpassed anything I had ever seen. With all the heightened awareness of my senses, I felt as if I had never seen, heard, or felt anything so real before. I don’t recall that I tasted anything, yet I knew that if I had, that too would have been more glorious than anything I had eaten or drunk on earth. The best way I can explain it is to say that I felt as if I were in another dimension. Never, even in my happiest moments, had I ever felt so fully alive. I stood speechless in front of the crowd of loved ones, still trying to take in everything. Over and over I heard how overjoyed they were to see me and how excited they were to have me among them. I’m not sure if they actually said the words or not, but I knew they had been waiting and expecting me, yet I also knew that in heaven there is no sense of time passing. I gazed at all the faces again as I realized that they all had contributed to my becoming a Christian or had encouraged me in my growth as a believer. Each one had affected me positively. Each had spiritually impacted me in some way and helped make me a better disciple. I knew—again one of those things I knew without being aware of how I had absorbed that information—that because of their influence I was able to be present with them in heaven.
I wasn’t conscious of anything I’d left behind and felt no regrets about leaving family or possessions. It was as if God had removed anything negative or worrisome from my consciousness, and I could only rejoice at being together with these wonderful people.
As I stared ahead, everything seemed to grow taller—like a gentle hill that kept going upward and never stopped. I had expected to see some darkness behind the gate, but as far ahead as I could see, there was absolutely nothing but intense, radiant light. By contrast, the powerful light I had encountered when I met my friends and loved ones paled into darkness as the radiance and iridescence in front of me increased. It was as if each step I took intensified the glowing luminosity. I didn’t know how it could get more dazzling, but it did. It would be like cracking open the door of a dark room and walking into the brightness of a noonday sun. As the door swings open, the full rays of the sun burst forth, and we’re momentarily blinded.
The light engulfed me, and I had the sense that I was being ushered into the presence of God. Although our earthly eyes must gradually adjust to light or darkness, my heavenly eyes saw with absolute ease. In heaven, each of our senses is immeasurably heightened to take it all in. And what a sensory celebration! A holy awe came over me as I stepped forward. I had no idea what lay ahead, but I sensed that with each step I took, it would grow more wondrous. Then I heard the music.
As strange as it may seem, I could clearly distinguish each song. It sounded as if each hymn of praise was meant for me to hear as I moved inside the gates.
I did not see God. Although I knew God was there, I never saw any kind of image or luminous glow to indicate his divine presence. I’ve heard people talk about going inside and coming back out the gate. That didn’t happen to me. I saw only a bright iridescence. I peered through the gate, yearning to see what lay beyond. It wasn’t an anxious yearning, but a peaceful openness to experience all the grace and joy of heaven.
I paused just outside the gate, and I could see inside. It was like a city with paved streets. To my amazement, they had been constructed of literal gold. If you imagine a street paved with gold bricks, that’s as close as I can come to describing what lay inside the gate. Everything I saw was bright—the brightest colors my eyes had ever beheld—so powerful that no earthly human could take in this brilliance.
I paused—I’m not sure why—just outside the gate. I was thrilled at the prospect and wanted to go inside. I knew everything would be even more thrilling than what I had experienced so far. At that very moment I was about to realize the yearning of every human heart. I was in heaven and ready to go in through the pearlescent gate.
Then, just as suddenly as I had arrived at the gates of heaven, I left them.
On Fox News, a surgeon discusses the viability of premature foetuses as well as the fact that a foetus tries to avoid an abortion.
The left has caused abortion protection to be removed. A medical procedure that should be rarely used has been hijacked by political ideology.
RC Sproul discusses abortion through the biblical viewpoint.
The foetus is a living being that feels pain at 12 weeks gestation.
Neurological evidence suggests fetal pain – https://jme.bmj.com/content/46/1/3 In summary, current neuroscientific evidence undermines the necessity of the cortex for pain experience. Even if the cortex is deemed necessary for pain experience, there is now good evidence that thalamic projections into the subplate, which emerge around 12 weeks’ gestation, are functional and equivalent to thalamocortical projections that emerge around 24 weeks’ gestation. Thus, current neuroscientific evidence supports the possibility of fetal pain before the “consensus” cut-off of 24 weeks.
A difficulty that faces everyone trying to adjudicate on the issue of fetal pain from neuroscientific findings is the intense uncertainty of exactly how the neural activity of the brain translates into the subjective experience of pain. The association of coherent neural activity in brain stem circuits with phenomenal consciousness, such as has been suggested by Merker, has at least a similar validity to the association of coherent neural activity in the cortex with phenomenal consciousness. Coherence and location, in and of themselves, do not provide an explanation for how the underlying nerve impulses, which are inherently unconscious biophysical events, are translated into phenomenological components of experience. Overall, the evidence, and a balanced reading of that evidence, points towards an immediate and unreflective pain experience mediated by the developing function of the nervous system from as early as 12 weeks. That moment is not categorical, fetal development is continuous and not an event, and we recognise that some evidence points towards an immediate and unreflective pain not being possible until later.Nevertheless, we no longer view fetal pain (as a core, immediate, sensation) in a gestational window of 12–24 weeks as impossible based on the neuroscience.
Russia’s forces carried out a number of operations against the US-led coalition in Syria this month, raising concerns that they may result in a direct conflict between US and Russian forces in Syria, the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday.
According to US military officials, one of these operations was carried out on Wednesday when Russia conducted an airstrike at the al-Tanf garrison, southeast of Syria.
US troops at the base, which is close to Jordan’s border, manage a mission to train and advise local fighters to combat the resurgence of ISIS.
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After Russia informed the US through a communications line that it was carrying out the operation in response to a supposed attack against Syrian government forces, its military aircrafts struck “a combat outpost at the garrison,” a US military official said.
US officials believe that informing the US of the strike before carrying it out implies that Russia “wasn’t actively targeting American troops but was harassing the US mission in Syria.”
Although there weren’t American troops in the proximity of the base when Russia conducted the strike which did not cause any casualties among US or coalition troops, a US military official said the operation amounted to a “significant increase in provocation” this month.
According to the report, such moves by Russia have raised concerns among US military officials as they fear that a “miscalculation might escalate into an unintended conflict between the US and Russian forces in Syria.”
Army Gen. Erik Kurilla, the head of US Central Command, noted that the US aims to avoid conflict with Russia in Syria, adding, however, that Moscow’s latest moves are tantamount to an escalation.
“We seek to avoid miscalculation or a set of actions that could lead to unnecessary conflict: that remains our goal,” Kurilla said in a statement.
“However, Russia’s recent behavior has been provocative and escalatory.”
Tensions have run high between the US and Russia after President Vladimir Putin sent troops to Ukraine in what Moscow calls a “special military operation.”
Moscow claims its operation against its pro-Western neighbor aims to “denazify” the country. Ukraine and the West, however, reject this as a baseless pretext for an invasion.
Pope Francis last week told editors of the European cultural magazines of the Society of Jesus that, in his opinion, World War III had been declared, it was reported Tuesday by La Civilta Cattolica.
Perhaps Russia’s invasion of Ukraine “was provoked or not prevented,” the Argentine-born pontiff was also quoted as saying.
“A few years ago it occurred to me to say that we were living a Third World War in pieces. Now, for me, the Third World War has been declared. And this is an aspect that should make us reflect. What is happening to humanity that has had three world wars in a century?” Francis wondered.
“We have to move away from the normal pattern that Little Red Riding Hood was good and the wolf was bad. Something global is emerging, with very intertwined elements,” he added.
The Pope also said a head of state he had met before the start of the war had told him that someone was “barking at Russia’s doorstep,” someone who did not understand that “Russians are imperial and they don’t allow any foreign power to come near them.”
“That head of state knew how to read the signs of what was happening,” Francis explained.
For Francis, it is not wise to focus solely on “the brutality and ferocity with which this war is being waged by troops, usually mercenaries sent by the Russians, which is ”something monstrous,“ when the world does not see ”the drama that unfolds behind this war, which perhaps in some way was provoked or not prevented.“
The Catholic chief also condemned the fact that at some point the conflict seemed merely a question of ”testing and selling weapons,“ because ”basically this is what is at stake.“
Regarding criticism that he was somehow siding with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Francis said it was ”simplistic and wrong to say such a thing; but I am simply against reducing complexity to the distinction between good and evil, without thinking about the roots and interests, which are very complex.“
”What we have before our eyes is a situation of world war, of global interests, of arms sales and geopolitical appropriation, which is martyring a heroic people,“ the Pope said about Ukrainians.
”It is also true that the Russians thought it would all be over in a week. But they miscalculated. They encountered a courageous people, a people who are struggling to survive and who have a history of struggle,“ he added.
The Pope also underlined things were getting cold and that the world needed to focus beyond the concrete action of the moment, and see ”how we are going to support [the Ukrainian women] so that they do not fall into trafficking, so that they are not exploited, because the vultures are already circling“ around them.
The Pope also lamented that there were some Christians ”attached to money“ who end up ”getting bogged down“ in bad management of patrimony and goods and ”chained to an ephemeral and failed vision of life.“
Francis insisted that ”the problem is not money itself,“ but rather people ”dazzled by the idol of wealth.“ When ”the only law is that of the calculation of profits“ at the end of the day, then ”there is no longer any stop“ to move on to the ”logic of exploitation” of people, he added.