Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Conservative Party of Canada, just lost all credibility not backing their own

Tories demand apology

Ontario Conservative MPs pass motion demanding Sloan apologize for attack on Tam

Tories demand apology

Canadian, Liberal Government Controlled CBC, Calls Epoch Times Racist - Censorship/Dis-information ?

'Racist and inflammatory': Some Canadians upset by the Epoch Times Report that China behind a virus, made as a bioweapon

A special eight-page edition of The Epoch Times was delivered to some households across Canada. Some Canadians who received it were put off by the newspaper's content,  one person thought it 'racist and inflammatory.' 

The Epoch Times, is coming under fire for outlining the conspiracy about the origin of the coronavirus — and delivering it to Canadian people.
Some Canadians who received it by mail  a special eight-page edition of the paper exploring the conspiracy the virus that causes COVID-19 was purposely created as a biological weapon and arguing it should be called "the CCP virus.

People in Oakville, Etobicoke, Markham, and Toronto, Ont. all reported getting copies of a special edition of The Epoch Times, as did residents in North Vancouver and Kelowna, B.C., and Winnipeg. It's not clear that all those papers were delivered by Canada Post.
Lisa Armstrong in Kelowna found a copy in her rural mailbox.
"It did describe a conspiracy, you know, maybe it was manufactured, this virus was manufactured in the lab. Well, no. We think scientifically that's just not true."

A copy of The Epoch Times was delivered to Lisa Armstrong in Kelowna, B.C., though she is not a subscriber. (Submitted by Lisa Armstrong)
Some scientists have said the evidence points to the coronavirus having a natural origin.
Jason Kindrachuk, a Canada research chair in emerging viruses at the University of Manitoba, says that through studying the genome of the SARS-CoV-2 virus, scientists can see it is similar to other bat coronaviruses and that it evolved naturally. 
"There is a consensus within the  scientific community at this point that there is a very close to zero, if not zero, chance that the virus was ever engineered," Kindrachuk said.
Armstrong was also worried the issue's anti-Communist Party messaging could inflame racial tensions in Canada during the pandemic.
"It really feels racist and inflammatory," Armstrong said. "And right now, we're all scared. We're all vulnerable. We don't know what's going to happen next. Then somebody that starts playing on those fears, [it's] a very dangerous thing to do at this time."

Issue sent to 'specific neighbourhoods'

It's not clear how many households in Canada received the paper.
Cindy Gu, the publisher of The Epoch Times, declined to say how many copies of that issue were distributed. In an email to CBC News, Gu said the publication had been delivering copies to "specific neighbourhoods."
"The Epoch Times has recently been 'sampling' copies of a special edition on Beijing's coverup that led to a global pandemic in select areas because we consider that information to be important to Canadians. We regard this sampling as an act of good citizenship," she wrote. 
WATCH | Social media giants struggle to censor COVID-19 misinformation

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Gu disagrees that the paper will fuel racism against people of Chinese descent.
"Some people may have erroneously conflated criticism of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) with criticism of the Chinese people," she wrote.
"Understanding the difference is vital and will eliminate racial tension, as people come to understand that the criticism of the handling of the virus is of the CCP, not the Chinese people." 

Who's behind The Epoch Times

The Epoch Times, headquartered in New York, is part of a group of organizations under the Epoch Media Group umbrella, which also includes the Shen Yun dance troupe and the New Tang Dynasty TV channel. It says it operates in 23 languages in 35 countries. 

This article, which asked if SARS-CoV-2 was originally a bioweapon, was of great concern to a Kelowna woman who received the paper, as well as a Canada Post mail carrier. (Submitted by Carol Harman)
A sociology professor says the Epoch Media Group is affiliated with the Falun Gong movement, a religious group that began in China and was declared illegal and a "cult" by the Chinese government in 1999. Its followers say the Chinese government persecutes them and oppresses their religious rights. 
"Falun Gong followers started to organize large-scale protest[s] against the Chinese government's attempts to suppress the practice. So it evolved into a struggle  between the Communist Chinese government and this religious group," said Xiaoping Li, a professor at Okanagan College who studies media outlets that serve the Chinese-Canadian diaspora. 
"There are many stories about how group members were persecuted in China. There is definitely persecution and horrific violations of human rights."
WATCH | Health Canada cracks down on false coronavirus claims

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As for The Epoch Times, Li says it's not clear where the group gets its funding, but it can afford to employ reporters who speak English and Chinese in the many countries where it operates. 
"Typically it's funded principally by donations, in a Chinese dissident community, in a given local context," said Stephen Noakes, a senior lecturer at the University of Auckland who studies Chinese culture. "The people who staff the paper itself are normally also drawn from that context or are third-party acquaintances of the local Falun Gong community."
Noakes said that Falun Gong has been "enormously adept" at using its various media platforms "to its advantage to call attention to its own plight as a major human rights issue the world needs to know about." 
"I think the local reporting is generally trustworthy. It does report what's happening in, for example, in Vancouver, in Toronto or New York," said Li.
Li says its reporting on China is their main purpose. The Epoch Times is "an anti-Chinese government media outlet."
'Kernel of truth'
"The most effective information is that which has a kernel of truth to it, is that which kind of flies under the radar, doesn't really break any guidelines," said Claire Wardle of First Draft, which educates journalists and others about what misinformation is and how to spot it. "It's much more hyper-partisan. It's much more misleading than completely outright-false falsehoods." 
The Epoch Times has shared  conspiracies  in the past, and was banned from advertising on Facebook for trying to bypass political spending rules — though it is not alone in accusing China of the coronavirus coverup.
Wardle says people who read the special edition of The Epoch Times may not be completely convinced about its findings, and are left with questions about what their governments are telling them. 
Carrier objects to delivering the paper
It was an article about a  bioweapons link to coronavirus that set off alarm bells for a Toronto mail carrier when he saw the special edition appear in his mail station on Friday.

Bundles of Epoch Times await delivery in a Toronto-area Canada Post station. The special edition of the paper has concerned some Canadians speaking out about content they view as racist and hateful. (Submitted by a Canada Post mail carrier)
CBC News is not naming the carrier because he is concerned he could lose his job with Canada Post.
"They're saying the coronavirus is part of a bio-warfare agenda by the Chinese. That's over the line for me," he said. 
"I saw the headlines on the thing and my heart sank because I thought the world right now is full of fear and confusion and the last thing that people need is, is this kind of this kind of reporting."
The carrier told CBC News that his supervisors decided that carriers wouldn't have to deliver it, and that the station superintendent supported the decision. But then, according to the carrier, the superintendent was told Canada Post Communications had deemed the paper a political mailing and that carriers who didn't deliver it would be disciplined.
"To be honest, it makes me feel like ... humanity is facing an existential crisis. And I'm being forced to hand out weapons in a cage fight," said the carrier. 
Canada Post said in an email to CBC News, "We understand the reaction to this publication. However, as Canada's postal system, we are legally required to deliver it. The content is the sole responsibility of the publisher."
"Anyone concerned with its contents should contact the publisher, file a complaint against the publication through the appropriate institutions or place the item in the recycling box." 

Tuesday, April 28, 2020


The Chinese Communist Party is threatening a boycott of imports of Australian wine and beef if the country pushes ahead with an inquiry into the origins of the coronavirus pandemic. Australia’s proposed inquiry was proposed by Scott Morrison’s Liberal Party Government and is supported by the Labor Party opposition.
When interviewed in The Australian Financial Review, the Chinese Ambassador to Australia “refused to accept that the virus had started in a Wuhan wet market”, called Australia’s push for an inquiry into it “dangerous”, and claimed that “the Chinese public is frustrated, dismayed and disappointed with what Australia is doing now”. The Communist ambassador went on to threaten consumer boycotts and less tourism for Australia. If the Chinese Government is confident they are not to blame, then why are they so afraid of an inquiry?..

Monday, April 27, 2020

U.S. spy agencies collected raw intelligence hinting at public health crisis in Wuhan, China, in November

U.S. spy agencies collected raw intelligence hinting at public health crisis in Wuhan, China, in November

Current and former officials say there was no formal assessment in November but that there was raw intelligence that fueled formal assessments written in December.
By Ken Dilanian, Robert Windrem and Courtney Kube

WASHINGTON — U.S. spy agencies collected raw intelligence hinting at a public health crisis in Wuhan, China, in November, two current and one former U.S. official told NBC News, but the information was not understood as the first warning signs of an impending global pandemic.
The intelligence came in the form of communications intercepts and overhead images showing increased activity at health facilities, the officials said. The intelligence was distributed to some federal public health officials in the form of a "situation report" in late November, a former official briefed on the matter said. But there was no assessment that a lethal global outbreak was brewing at that time, a defense official said.
On Wednesday night, the Defense Department disputed an ABC News report that an "intelligence report" had warned about the coronavirus in November.
"We can confirm that media reporting about the existence/release of a National Center for Medical Intelligence (NCMI) Coronavirus-related product/assessment in November of 2019 is incorrect," said a statement by Dr. R. Shane Day, an Air Force colonel who is director of the National Center for Medical Intelligence, a unit of the Pentagon's Defense Intelligence Agency. "No such NCMI product exists."

But the current and former officials told NBC News that while no formal assessment was produced in November — and hence no "intelligence product," in the jargon of the spy agencies — there was intelligence that caught the attention of public health analysts and fueled formal assessments that were written in December. That material and other information, including some from news and social media reports, ultimately found its way into President Donald Trump's intelligence briefing book in January. It is unknown whether he read the information.
James Kudla, a spokesman for the Defense Intelligence Agency, declined to comment beyond the NCMI statement.
Air Force Gen. John Hyten, vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told reporters Thursday that he did not see intelligence reports on the coronavirus until January.
"We went back and looked at everything in November and December," he said. "The first indication we have were the reports out of China in late December that were in the public forum. And the first intel reports I saw were in January."
Even after public health authorities began sounding the alarm in January, the U.S. took few steps to ready itself for a pandemic. There was no effort to boost national stockpiles of medical equipment or encourage social distancing, for example. While Trump touts his decision to stop flights from China coming to the U.S. on Jan. 31, about 381,000 people had flown from China to the U.S. in January, according to an analysis by The New York Times.

Image: A rail station in Wuhan
Mask-clad passengers alight from their train at the railway station in Wuhan in China's central Hubei province on March 10, 2020.Noel Celis / AFP - Getty Images file

Experts believe the coronavirus outbreak began last fall in a seafood market in Wuhan.
The South China Morning Post, citing Chinese government data, reported that the first documented case of someone in China's suffering from COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, occurred Nov. 17.

On Dec. 31, an Associated Press report out of China was one of the first English-language news accounts of a mysterious new virus.
"Chinese experts are investigating an outbreak of respiratory illness in the central city of Wuhan that some have likened to the 2002-2003 SARS epidemic," the story began.

Initially, the World Health Organization was conservative. In a statement about the disease on Jan. 14 — discussing the first case outside China, in Thailand — the WHO said "there is no clear evidence of human-to-human transmission."
Download the NBC News app for full coverage of the coronavirus outbreak
But by mid-January, it was clear that the virus was spreading well beyond China.
In the U.S., the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warned Americans on Jan. 6 to take precautions if they were traveling to China. The next day, the CDC's Emergency Operation Center activated a COVID-19 Incident Management System — an emergency management tool used to direct operations, deliver resources and share information.
The extent to which the U.S. intelligence community was warning the White House about the potential implications of the virus remains unclear. Senior congressional aides have told NBC News that the House and Senate intelligence committees did not receive anything that would have constituted an intelligence early warning.
The first House briefing on the coronavirus was Feb. 6, an Intelligence Committee aide said, the day Trump was acquitted in the Senate on impeachment charges.
The Washington Post has reported that U.S. intelligence agencies wrote intelligence reports including ominous warnings about the coronavirus in January and February. None of the classified intelligence reports about the virus have been made public.