Nearly five years after the Assad government carried out this atrocity to regain control of the eastern Ghouta suburbs of Damascus, international investigators have finally assigned blame for it. While a good first step, there's yet a long way to go to hold those responsible accountable for their crimes, as Moscow has blocked efforts to launch an International Criminal Court investigation in Syria.
It was predictable that the OPCW would, at some point, blame Syria for the so-called Douma chemical attack after it had engaged in evidence suppression and excluded key investigators in previous reports. Once a technical monitoring body, the organization has been corrupted to serve Western interests against Damascus by validating unfounded allegations.
There's a 45% chance that a mainstream American news outlet will report that a rebel group perpetrated the 2013 Ghauta Chemical Attack before August 21, 2033, according to the Metaculus prediction community.
Arming Ukraine is crucial to help maintain Ukraine's electricity, heating, and water infrastructure, as well as fend off Russia's systematic missile attacks. The clock is ticking loudly. It's time for Ukraine to arm up to win back its territory. Powerful tanks — both M-1 Abrams and Leopard 2 — and F-16 fighter jets could turn the tide of a war that has threatened to descend into a prolonged stalemate.
It is no secret that Ukraine's war effort would have collapsed long back without the West's support. The month-long Western intervention now threatens to escalate the Russia-Ukraine conflict into an all-out direct war between NATO and Russia. The move to arm Ukraine with modern offensive weapons is extremely dangerous and takes the conflict to a new level of confrontation.
There is a 2% chance that Ukraine will officially recognize a former Ukrainian territory (Luhansk, Donetsk, or Crimea) as independent before 2024, according to the Metaculus prediction community.
This cowardly attack was nothing more than an attempt by Israel to stir up insecurity in Iran, all while distracting from its own internal problems and heightening violence with Palestine. Having faced numerous such attacks from Israel in the past, however, Iran was fortunately well prepared to defend itself.
Though Iranian media want to pretend that the strike was a failure, a mix of Western intelligence sources and foreign sources have reported that it was a major success against the Islamic Republic. Iran will not be allowed to continually stir terror and violence throughout the region, and Israel will make sure that its influence is kept in check.
Though Western media have focused on a failed drone attack against an Iranian defense industrial complex, the Israeli strike only hours later that destroyed an Iranian convoy on the Syrian-Iraqi border loaded with food and medicine was completely ignored. Limited strikes like these will not end the resistance to the US and Israel's imperial exploits in the Middle East.
There is a 51% chance that Iran will recognize Israel before 2070, according to the Metaculus Prediction Community.
New Zealand and its people have already seen the carnage that climate change can bring. In response to the frequency and magnitude of these events, New Zealand has released its first national plan designed to protect against climate-catalyzed events. While there is tremendous work to be done, this plan and its framework are a new beginning and a step in the right direction.
While plans are a step in the right direction, New Zealand's decades-old stormwater system is outdated and can't handle the climate of today. It's necessary to make "brick and mortar" investments in bigger drains and larger pipes while also creating a more spongy surface environment to reduce catastrophic flood risk. Global warming puts more water vapor in the air, so real construction-based solutions need to begin now.
It's easy to dismiss any extreme weather event as a consequence of climate change, but in reality, they're usually influenced by a myriad of factors that have nothing to do with it. More research is needed before we can establish any direct causal link between the two.
The speech the military targeted wasn't inaccurate, only inconvenient to the government's authoritarian pandemic plans. The MOD took resources typically used for psychological warfare against foreign enemies and turned them against the British people. Academics, journalists, and politicians who simply questioned the ethics of COVID restrictions were treated like enemy combatants. This is full-on 1984.
The claims made in this report are serious, which is why the government will conduct a serious investigation into the matter. That being said, it should be emphasized that the disinformation units discussed here were not in the business of censorship, only providing reliable alternative sources to the claims made on certain public health-related posts.
In a cruel twist of fate, Pakistan is under threat from a group they once vocally supported in their fight against the US. Afghanistan has failed to take steps against the TTP, and Pakistan is helpless against insurgents launching attacks from their Taliban-controlled neighbor. They have reaped what they've sown with regards to support for rouge terror groups. More innocent civilians are being victimized as a result of this foreign policy blunder.
The situation with Afghanistan, and their support or indifference to attacks originating from their country, is a reality that cannot be wished away. It would be foolish to disengage with Kabul over the security situation, as it's clear that a solution can only come from cooperation between the two nations. Pakistan will continue the fight against insurgents the best it can. While there is disappointment that Afghanistan is not taking measures against militant groups, Pakistan's fight is against the TTP, not Afghanistan.
It’s dumbfounding that someone who inspired an insurrection just two years ago is running to return to office and actually garnering any support. However, the fact that Trump’s 2024 campaign has had a low-energy rollout could be a sign that his continued lies about the 2020 election – not to mention the damage those claims did to Republicans in the 2022 midterms – have cost him dearly, and he could be ripe for a challenge from other potential GOP nominees.
Trump is as popular and important to the GOP as ever. It would be silly to spend big money on large rallies this early in the race, so instead the former president has posted policy videos on social media and is now slowly beginning to hit the campaign trail. The GOP knows there’s no separating Trump from the policies the party loves, so it’ll get behind him 100% as the campaign rolls along.
There's a 35% chance that Trump will win the 2024 US Presidential Election if it is Biden v. Trump, according to the Metaculus prediction community.
This is a direct consequence of the Biden admin. allowing the Taliban, a terrorist organization, to get ahold of billions of dollars worth of high-tech military hardware, including aircraft and vehicles. Biden and the rest of the Democrats continue to obfuscate their failings and avoid taking responsibility for their blunders.
Though the US was forced to leave behind a sizable amount of equipment, most of it was either rendered inoperable before the end of the withdrawal or is unusable without technical maintenance and spare parts. Plus, the figure of $7B is less than half of the total $18.6B worth of equipment provided to Afghan forces since 2005.
There's an 88% chance that Pakistan will recognize the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan before 2030, according to the Metaculus prediction community.
Cox has ignored the warnings of medical organizations, civil rights activists, and the families of transgender youth. This is a horrifying violation of the rights to privacy and life-saving health care. Claims of protecting vulnerable youth with these laws ring hollow with those who know these children best their parents and doctors.
The science is far from settled on this topic and its consequences. Even the left's own studies show that hormone treatment provides no mental health benefits for boys and very little benefit for girls. Depression and suicide and depression rates are so high among these children because they lack real therapeutic care, and nothing will change until the medical establishment puts the truth over political brownie points and profits.
TikTok is a dangerous platform that is an immense threat to both US national security and everyday privacy. The incredibly popular app is directly tied to the PRC and gives a foreign adversary alarming access to Americans' personal data. Banning TikTok is the only way to prevent China from potentially accessing and abusing Americans' data.
Efforts to ban TikTok are unserious performances that are divorced from reality or any recognition of how to protect US consumers. TikTok is one of a handful of extremely large apps that generate an endless supply of US user data, yet TikTok is the only dangerous one because it was created in China. Instead of a publicity stunt, lawmakers should focus on meaningful ways to prevent and regulate the overcollection of data by big tech companies.