Tag Archives: China

Did US Navy Fleet Escort Nancy Pelosi To Taiwan?!

Did US Navy Fleet Escort Nancy Pelosi To Taiwan?!

Did a massive US Navy fleet of warships and fighters escort Nancy Pelosi safely to Taiwan?!

Take a look at the viral video, and find out what the facts really are!

 

Claim : Massive US Fleet Had To Escort Nancy Pelosi To Taiwan!

People are sharing a video which claims to show a massive fleet of warships and fighters that the United States used to escort Nancy Pelosi safety to Taiwan.

Here are some of the accompanying descriptions :

Pelosi gets more firepower escorting her flight to Asia than any US President flying anywhere ever had in history.

See, how Nancy Pelosi reached Taiwan, Escorted by fighter jets and the strength of US Blue Navy

Retired Pakistani Brigadier Ashfaq Hassan also shared the video, claiming that the US Air Force was authorised to shoot at Chinese aircraft or warships interfering with her flight.

👇Arrival of US Air Force One in Taiwan with US official Nancy Pelosi.
20 Warplanes were escorting Nancy Pelosi’s plane including US fighter jets. US air force authorized to open fire in case of any Chinese interference on the plane carrying Nancy Pelosi.

 

Truth : US Fleet Did Not Escort Nancy Pelosi To Taiwan

This is another example of FAKE NEWS circulating on social media and WhatsApp groups, and here are the reasons why….

Fact #1 : Nancy Pelosi’s Flight Had No US Escort

Nancy Pelosi flew from Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia to Taipei, Taiwan aboard a Boeing C-40C – the military version of the Boeing 737 airliner, operated by the US Air Force.

Her flight with the callsign SPAR19 flew to Taipei without US fighter or warship escort, but was met by Taiwanese fighter escorts on entering Taiwanese airspace.

Fact #2 : Video Was Recorded At Valiant Shield 2020

The video was recorded on September 25, 2020 – just over two years ago, and had nothing to do with Nancy Pelosi, or Taiwan.

If you watch the official Valiant Shield 2020 video, you will see the same aircraft fly over the same ships at around 1:39. Here was the official description of the aircraft flyover :

PHILIPPINE SEA (Sept. 25, 2020) From left, USNS Charles Drew (T-AKE 10), USS Comstock (LSD 45), USS Shiloh (CG 67), USS New Orleans (LPD 18), USS Chicago (SSN 721), USS America (LHA 6), USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76), USNS John Ericsson (T-AO 194), USS Antietam (CG 54), USS Germantown (LSD 42), and USNS Sacagawea (T-AKE 2) steam in formation while E/A-18G Growlers and FA-18E Super Hornets from Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 5, a P-8 Poseidon from Commander Task Force 72, and U.S. Air Force F-22 Raptors and a B-1B Bomber fly over the formation in support of Valiant Shield 2020.

In this screenshot, you can see the same 3 flights of aircraft flying over the same warships in Valiant Shield 2020.

Fact #3 : US Air Force Won’t Send A Bomber As Escort

The lead aircraft in the flyover has a very distinctive shape. Any military buff will immediately identify it as a Rockwell B-1B Lancer.

The US Air Force would never send the B-1B, because it’s a supersonic heavy bomber, and useless as an escort aircraft.

Fact #4 : P-8 Poseidon Is An ASW Aircraft

The aircraft that looked like a Boeing 737 is actually a P-8 Poseidon, which is based on the 737-800ERX.

It is an anti-submarine warfare aircraft, and is most certainly not a passenger transport aircraft like the Boeing C-40C.

Fact #5 : US Air Force Was Not Authorised To Open Fire

Retired Ashfaq Hassan falsely claimed that the US Air Force was authorised to open fire in case of Chinese interference with Nancy Pelosi’s flight.

It is such an absurd claim, because either party shooting at each other would have been considered an act of war.

In past confrontations, Chinese aircraft have only limited themselves to buzzing other aircraft and dumping chaff into their engines. No one ever fired a shot, because that would have led to an outbreak of war.

Read more : Did Chinese Bombers Fire On US Aircraft Carrier?!

Fact #6 : China Sent 10 Observers To Valiant Shield 2020

Interestingly, the Chinese are well-aware that this video is from Valiant Shield 2020, because that was the first time they were invited to observe the exercise.

China sent a 10-person delegation, including one high-ranking officer each from its Navy, Army and Air Force to observe Valiant Shield 2020.

Chinese Rear Admiral Zhang Leiyu – the leader of this delegation, even called it “a positive step in China-US military ties”.

Fact #7 : This Is Just Chinese Propaganda

This is just another example of Chinese propaganda created by the infamous Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛).

All of the wumao articles and videos that I looked at so far have proven to be false… at every instance. So please watch out for such false claims.

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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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US To Block New Advanced Chip Fabs In China!

The US aims to block the construction of new advanced chip fabs in China and countries of concern like Russia.

Here is what you need to know…

 

US To Fund Building Of Advanced Chip Fabs!

The US Congress just passed the historic CHIPS and Science Act (HR 4346) – a massive $280 billion bill designed to bolster innovation and tech hubs in the United States.

The legislation passed with a Senate vote of 64-33, and a House vote of 243-187, approving :

  • $76 billion of funding to revive and boost chip production in the United States
  • $81 billion for the National Science Foundation over 5 years, for research, equipment and STEM education
  • Almost $10 billion for the National Institute of Standards and Technology

TSMC, Intel and Samsung are expected to benefit from the billions of dollars of funding, which would subsidise their construction of new advanced chip fabs in the United States.

Read more : Did China Make 7nm Chips In Spite Of US Sanctions?!

 

US To Block New Advanced Chip Fabs In China!

There is however a big caveat in the legislation that the White House is expected to sign – any company that receives funding will be barred from building new advanced chip fabs in China and other countries of concern, like Russia.

The CHIPS and Sciences Act specifically bars companies that receive federal funding from “materially expanding” production of chips more advanced than 28 nanometres (28 nm) in countries of concern like China and Russia, for 10 years.

28 nm chips are not state-of-art, with production first starting more than 10 years ago – in 2011. However, they are still used in many applications, and China is free to keep producing these chips.

This move though will essentially limit development of advanced chips in China, by blocking foreign chipmakers from investing in more advanced fabs.

Intel had earlier lobbied hard against this move. In late 2021, Intel wanted to expand production in China but was pressured to sell its Dalian wafer plant to South Korea’s SK Hynix. Intel now only has chip packaging and testing facilities in China.

But that changed, and now Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger is a big proponent of the bill, even suggesting that it might forego building its Ohio mega fab and shift it to Europe if the legislation did not pass.

Read more : China Bans Taiwan Food Over Pelosi, But Not Chips!

Currently, the only semiconductor companies investing in fabs in China are Samsung and TSMC. So if they choose to accept US funding, both companies will have to stop building fabs that can produce chips that are more advanced than 28 nm.

Of the potential recipients of US funding, TSMC is the only company making relatively advanced chips in China. Its Nanjing fabs currently make 28 nm and more advanced 16 nm chips.

Unless TSMC spurns US funding, it won’t be able to invest in more advanced fabs in China. This will force China to rely on its own SMIC to develop more advanced chipmaking technologies.

While SMIC has had some success with a 7nm process using older DUV technology, it came at the expense of yield and chip complexity.

Unless China is somehow able to develop its own EUV technology, it’s pretty much end game for more advanced chip production in China… for ten years.

Read more : Did China Make 7nm Chips In Spite Of US Sanctions?!

 

US Quietly Expands Chip Equipment Ban To Fabs In China

In addition to the looming CHIPS Act, the US government also expanded its ban on the sale of machines for fabricating advanced chips.

The US government had earlier banned the sale of tools that allow China to manufacture chips at 10 nm or smaller. That ban was just extended to include tools that would allow the manufacture of chips 14 nm or smaller.

American equipment makers like LAM Research and KLA Corp. have received letters about this expanded ban, which appears to be limited to logic chips (like computer processors), but not memory chips.

According to the US Commerce Department, the move was meant to impair China’s ability to manufacture advanced chips :

The Biden Administration is focused on impairing PRC efforts to manufacture advanced semiconductors to address significant national security risks to the United States.

However, this move appears to be merely officiating what is already being practiced – the US Commerce Department had already declined many licences to sell 14nm fab equipment.

The Biden Administration is also pushing the Netherlands and Japan to ban ASML Holdings NV and Nikon Corp from selling advanced chip making equipment to China.

 

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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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China Bans Taiwan Food Over Pelosi, But Not Chips!

China just banned food imports over 100 Taiwanese companies right before US Speaker Nancy Pelosi landed in Taiwan, but unsurprisingly not microchips!

Here is what you need to know…

 

China Bans Taiwan Food Products Over Pelosi!

While US Speaker Nancy Pelosi was flying to Taiwan from Malaysia, the General Administration of Customs for China announced an import ban on food products from over 100 Taiwanese companies.

Of those 100 Taiwanese companies, 35 are exporters of biscuits and pastries, including famous Taiwanese companies like Kuo Yuan Ye Corp (郭元益), Yu Jan Shin (裕珍馨), Kuai Kuai Co (乖乖), Imei Foods Co (義美食品), Chiate Bakery (佳德) and Kuang Ta Hsiang Foodstuffs Co (廣達香).

The other companies exported food products like tea, honey and seafood. Of the 3,200 Taiwanese food products registered for export to China, 2,066 (64.6%) had their imports suspended.

Officially, Beijing says that the blacklisted companies failed to renew their export registration, and can only sell their products until the end of August 2022.

However, the late night announcement, and the fact that only Taiwanese exporters are required to file their registration documents by June 2022, instead of June 2023 like exporters from other countries; strongly suggest that this move was motivated by Pelosi’s visit.

 

China May Ban Taiwan Food Over Pelosi, But Not Chips!

Despite the dramatic late night announcement, this move was relatively benign as the banned exports only make up 0.1% or US$650 million of Taiwan’s total exports.

Last year, Taiwan exported US$44 million worth of pastries to China, but that fell to only US$10 million during the first half of 2022.

Seafood exports to China were more substantial at US$280 million, but tea exports were just under US$32 million, and honey exports was a minuscule US$35,000.

On the other hand, China does not dare to ban the import of Taiwanese microchips or electronics, because it has grown reliant on them.

After the US imposed sanctions on Chinese chipmakers in 2018, China increased imports of Taiwanese memory chips by a whopping 57% in just 3 years!

In fact, Taiwanese exports to China surged by 24.8% to an all-time high of US$188.9 billion in 2021, largely due to high demand for their computer chips.

No matter what their Wolf Warriors may threaten, China is still too reliant on Taiwan for high-end semiconductors to really threaten its supply, and it is not ready to invade Taiwan with a realistic chance of success.

By targeting only a small portion of relatively inconsequential Taiwanese imports, China is just slapping Taiwan on the wrist.

The Taiwanese should play along and moan like they have been mortally wounded to give China some face, so it can (gracefully) retreat from the uncomfortable corner it back itself into.

 

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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Is US Sending Infected Birds To Spread Monkeypox?!

Are the US and Western countries sending infected birds to spread monkeypox to China and other Asian countries?!

Take a look at the viral claim, and find out what the facts really are!

 

Claim : US Is Sending Infected Birds To Spread Monkeypox!

The Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛) and pro-CCP (Chinese Communist Party) netizens are now claiming that the US and Western countries are sending infected birds to spread monkeypox to China and other Asian countries.

Hey, guys. No matter where you are, if you see a bird that can’t fly, can’t walk or struggle on the ground, you should never catch it, for fear of monkeypox infection. The relevant community has informed you, please pay attention to it. Remember!

 

Truth : No One Is Sending Infected Birds To Spread Monkeypox!

This is yet another example of FAKE NEWS created by the Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛), and shared by pro-CCP netizens, and here are the reasons why…

Fact #1 : The West Is Not Sending Infected Birds To Spread Monkeypox

Just like their insects attack claim, the wumao are falsely blaming the West for sending birds to spread monkeypox.

This is utter nonsense, and nothing more than Chinese propaganda. It is also not very believable propaganda at that, and I will show you why.

Fact #2 : Monkeypox Not Known To Infect Birds

Birds have, so far, not been found to be infected with the monkeypox virus, or any other orthopoxviruses. So it would be absurd for anyone to suggest birds being used as a vector for spreading monkeypox.

The monkeypox virus mostly infects mammals like apes, monkeys, squirrels, shrews, chinchillas, anteaters, hedgehogs, prairie dogs… and yes, human beings. But not birds.

Fact #3 : Most Monkeypox Cases Are In The West!

It is absurd to claim that the West is intentionally spreading monkeypox to China and other Asian countries.

If they were, well, they are doing a piss-poor job of it, because nine of the top 10 countries with monkeypox cases are Western countries!

Country Confirmed
Cases
Suspected
Cases
Total
Spain 3,536 62 3,598
United States 2,891 2,891
Germany 2,268 2,268
United Kingdom 2,208 2,208
France 1,567 1,567
Canada 681 45 726
Netherlands 712 712
Brazil 696 6 702
Portugal 588 588
Italy 407 407

Read more : What You Must Know About Monkeypox!

Fact #4 : Current Outbreak Spreading Human-to-Human

In the 2022 monkeypox outbreak, the disease is being spread from human-to-human, not from birds to humans.

The global spread occurs through air travel – infected people travelling overseas, and infecting other people at those destinations.

Many of the cases have also been traced to men who have sex with men, especially those with multiple sexual partners.

This does not mean that monkeypox is a sexually-transmitted disease (STD). It is not spread through sexual activities, but through skin-to-skin contact between an infected person and other people.

Fact #5 : It Is Difficult To Train Birds

While pigeons can be trained to carry messages between two points, it is not easy to train them.

For one thing – you need to repeatedly transport the pigeons and feed them at both the origin location, and the destination, until they can fly between the two locations independently.

Only pigeons have been trained reliably this way. Other birds lack the pigeon’s ability to navigate using the Earth’s magnetic field (magnetoreception), or its ease of training.

Even if the US and other Western countries want to use pigeons to infect China and other Asian countries with monkeypox, they would need to repeatedly bring the pigeons over to the target countries and back. Do you think such activity would not catch the attention of the authorities at those countries?

Without such training, the birds will simply fly wherever they want to, and not where the Americans / Westerners want them to.

It would be much easier to just fly someone infected with monkeypox to China, and give everyone there a big hug…. which is why this fake story is so stupid!

Read more : Did EU Torture + Kill Hundreds Of African Refugees?!

Fact #6 : Most Birds Cannot Fly Vast Distances

The bar-tailed godwit (Limosa lapponica) holds the world’s record for flying over 12,000 kilometres for 11 days straight without stopping. However, most birds just don’t fly very far.

Even homing pigeons can only fly for about 1,200 km a day, which is pretty darn far… until you realise that the distance between the US and China is some 11,640 kilometres!

Only the bar-tailed godwit is capable of making that flight. The homing pigeon can only travel 10% of the way across the mighty Pacific Ocean.

Fact #7 : This Is Just Chinese Propaganda

This is really nothing more than yet another example of Chinese propaganda created by the infamous Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛).

All of the wumao articles that I looked at so far have proven to be false… at every instance. So please watch out for such false claims.

Please help us fight fake news – SHARE this article, and SUPPORT our work!

 

Please Support My Work!

Support my work through a bank transfer /  PayPal / credit card!

Name : Adrian Wong
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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Did China Make 7nm Chips In Spite Of US Sanctions?!

Did China successfully fabricate 7nm chips, despite US sanctions on advanced chip manufacturing technology?

Well, yes, but not quite. Here is what you need to know about China’s mysterious 7nm chips!

 

China Made 7nm Chips In Spite Of US Sanctions!

A TechInsights report recently concluded that China has successfully created 7nm chips since last year.

This caused quite a ruckus, because it essentially meant that China jumped two generations ahead in chip manufacturing technology!

The TechInsights team bought a MinerVa mining ASIC which used a custom chip that has been manufactured by China’s SMIC since July 2021.

When they examined the chip, they discovered that it was fabricated on a 7nm process that appears to be a “close copy” of a 7nm process used by TSMC – the Taiwanese foundry giant.

The MinerVa chip is small – at just 19.3 mm², with 120 chips populating the MinerVa board. Each mining ASIC has 3 of these boards, for a total of 360 chips and a total power consumption of 3300 watts.

This discovery is deeply concerning to many people, because it meant that China has more advanced chip manufacturing technology than is even available in the United States or EU.

After all, US sanctioned the sale of advanced chip manufacturing technology to China – which was meant to crippled China’s ability to manufacture such chips.

US Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer used this report to stress the danger of delaying the $50 billion subsidy package for semiconductor manufacturing in the United States.

Members of both sides know that America’s chips crisis is sending shock waves across the economy.

It is endangering our national security. […] China’s top chips maker has now likely advanced its tech by two generations, threatening U.S. competitiveness.

But the situation really isn’t as dire as many people make it out to be…

 

SMIC / China Barely Made Those 7nm Chips

After the report was released, the Internet fell into two main camps – American politicians and China hawks bemoaning the “loss” of Western chip making advantage, and pro-CCP netizens celebrating it.

First, let me start by congratulating China / SMIC on achieving this feat despite being hobbled by US sanctions on crucial chipmaking technology.

Whether China / SMIC “copied / stole / bought” the technology knowhow from TSMC whose 7nm process it closely resembles, it is still a remarkable achievement.

That said, SMIC / China barely made those 7nm chips, and here are the reasons why…

SMIC manufactured these 7nm chips using older Deep Ultraviolet Lithography (DUV) machines, instead of the state-of-art Extreme Ultraviolet Light (EUV) lithography machines made by Dutch company ASML.

This isn’t extraordinary in itself – TSMC and Samsung had much earlier developed 7nm process nodes using the older DUV machines. However, this comes at the cost of “increased process complexity and design rule restrictions“.

That is likely why the MinerVa chip is not only very small, it actually lacks SRAM (Static Random Access Memory) that is critical in processors that run our computers and smartphones.

The simpler design and small size allow SMIC to obtain sufficient workable chips, even with a poor yield. However, the cost of chip would be much higher than if it was manufactured on a higher-quality process.

So for all intents and purposes – this should be considered as a niche / prototype 7nm process, and not a true 7nm process node.

On top of that, SMIC apparently isn’t capable of producing large quantities of these 7nm chips, suggesting either a yield problem, or difficulty in scaling up.

MinerVa has not been able to deliver the mining ASICs based on these SMIC 7nm chips in large numbers. A Bitcoin mining company – Stronghold Digital Mining, for example, said that it ordered 15,000 miners from MinerVa but only received about 3,200 units as of March 2022.

For China / SMIC to present a true “threat” as far as chipmaking is concerned, it would have to be capable of manufacturing MILLIONS of chips, not thousands.

Regardless of whether the Americans are howling in despair, or the pro-CCP netizens are howling in delight, China really does not have true 7nm chipmaking capability for mass production yet.

And even if they somehow manage to improve and scale up this 7nm DUV process, they cannot make more advanced chips without EUV machines made by ASML.

As long as the Dutch government holds firm on blocking sale of ASML’s EUV machines to China, this is likely as far as they can go… unless they invade Taiwan, which is where TSMC is based and has the world’s most advanced chip manufacturing facilities.

 

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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Did EU Torture + Kill Hundreds Of African Refugees?!

Did the European Union torture and kill hundreds of African refugees?!

Take a look at the viral claim, and find out what the facts really are!

 

Claim : The EU Tortured + Killed Hundreds Of African Refugees!

The Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛) and pro-CCP (Chinese Communist Party) netizens are sharing a picture of African refugees apparently lying dead, together with this message.

This is massacre within NATO and European Union borders. African immigrants are being tortured and killed in numbers to prevent them from seeking refuge in Europe. This is not for Ukrainians. Do you remember how they treated Arabs and other Asians? Recorded 100 deaths yesterday alone.

For those who condemn Russian actions to restore equality and humanity across the globe let them think again.
Please share it widely and quickly before the West (read the WORST) remove this video from their Facebook.

 

Truth : The EU Did Not Torture + Kill Hundreds Of African Refugees!

This is yet another example of FAKE NEWS created by the Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛), and shared by pro-CCP netizens and websites, and here are the reasons why…

Fact #1 : The Incident Happened In Africa, Not Europe

The viral photo was not taken in Europe, but in Morocco, Africa, of what is now known as the 2022 Melilla Incident.

The 2022 Melilla Incident occurred on Moroccan soil, at the border fence separating Morocco from the autonomous Spanish city of Melilla.

Fact #2 : 2,000 Migrants Attacked The Border Fence

On June 24, 2022, about 2,000 African migrants attacked and tried to break through the Melilla border fence.

Security forces from both Morocco and Spain tried to disperse them, but ended up fighting them for two hours.

Fact #3 : Hundreds Of Migrants Did Not Die

The wumao claim that hundreds of refugees died is easily proven false.

Several refugees died in the stampede when they stepped on each other while trying to flee, while five fell and died trying to scale the fence. In the end…

  • At least 37 migrants died
  • At least 63 migrants were injured
  • Two Moroccan gendarmes (police officers) were killed
  • 140 Moroccan officers were wounded, five seriously
  • 49 Spanish Civil Guards were lightly injured

The wumao intentionally used a picture that shows most of the migrants lying down, instead of other pictures that show them sitting down after being detained.

While it may look like the migrants are dead, they are very much alive. If you look closely at the viral photo, you can see some of them sitting up.

Fact #4 : Individuals In The Photo Were Detained, Not Killed / Tortured

The wumao took the picture from Association Marocaine des Droits Humains – Section Nador (AMDH Nador), and edited out their watermark, so you cannot find the original post.

They did that to avoid people finding out that the migrants in the viral picture were not killed or tortured, from the AMDH Nador’s post :

They are currently in custody at Nador central police station. Given the large number of detained migrants and the heavy charges they may face prosecution, AMDH Nador wishes to mobilize more lawyers to defend them and ensure fair trials.

Unfortunately for them, I managed to trace the source of the viral photo, although the Rafah / Pafah Orient bus in the photo threw me off for a while.

Fact #5 : Moroccan Authorities Were Responsible

The wumao also did not want you to find out that it was the Moroccan authorities that were responsible for tackling the refugees that day.

If you traced the photo  also posted a video showing part of the migrants’ effort to storm the Melilla border fence, in which they stated that the Spanish authorities just “quietly observed” the Moroccan authorities at work :

The video that shows it all. At the moment when the Moroccan authorities were playing the role of gendarme by prohibiting asylum seekers from arriving in Melilla using very violent practices, the Spanish authorities crossed their arms and quietly observed that they getting the dirty job done.

Fact #6 : China Wants To Divert Attention From Xinjiang

The wumao is creating fake news like this, not just to support Russia, but also to divert attention from its oppression of the Uyghur people in Xinjiang.

No, it’s not all kumbaya in Xinjiang, no matter what pro-CCP netizens keep claiming. That’s just Chinese propaganda.

Fact #7 : This Is Chinese Propaganda

This is really nothing more than yet another example of Chinese propaganda created by the infamous Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛).

All of the wumao articles that I looked at so far have proven to be false… at every instance. So please watch out for such false claims.

Please help us fight fake news – SHARE this article, and SUPPORT our work!

 

Please Support My Work!

Support my work through a bank transfer /  PayPal / credit card!

Name : Adrian Wong
Bank Transfer : CIMB 7064555917 (Swift Code : CIBBMYKL)
Credit Card / Paypal : https://paypal.me/techarp

Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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China Fines Didi Global $1.2 Billion For Violating Laws!

China just fined Didi Global a whopping $1.2 billion for violating its cybersecurity, data security and privacy laws!

 

China Fines Didi Global $1.2 Billion For Violating Laws!

On Thursday, 21 July 2022, the Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) announced that Didi Global breached the country’s cybersecurity law, data security law, and personal information protection law.

The Chinese cyberspace regulator fined Didi Global 8 billion yuan ($1.2 billion), as well as a personal fine of 1 million yuan ($148,000) each on Chairman and CEO Cheng Wei, as well as President Liu Qing (also known as Jean Liu).

The facts of violations of laws and regulations are clear, the evidence is conclusive, the circumstances are serious, and the nature is vile.

Didi Global responded to the regulator’s announcement with a contrite statement “sincerely” accepting the judgement and penalties :

We sincerely accept this decision, and resolutely obey it. We will strictly follow the penalty decision and the requirements of relevant laws and regulations, conduct comprehensive and in-depth self-examination, and actively cooperate with supervision and complete rectification carefully.

We will take this as a warning and further strengthen the construction of cyberspace security and data security, strengthen the protection of personal information, and earnestly fulfill our social responsibilities. We will serve every passenger, driver and partner well, and realize the safe, healthy and sustainable development of the enterprise.

 

What Did Didi Do To Incur China’s Wrath?

According to an FAQ by the CAC, its investigators started their investigation of Didi in July 2021.

After conducting an extensive investigation, they found that Didi conducted data processing activities that “seriously affected national security”, and refused to comply with “the explicit requirements of regulatory authorities” and conducted “malicious evasion” of regulatory supervision.

They also stated that Didi Global committed 16 violations of China’s laws, including :

  1. Didi illegally collected 11.9639 million screenshots from its users’ mobile phone photo albums.
  2. Didi excessively collected 8.323 billion pieces of its users’ clipboard information, and application list information.
  3. Didi excessively collected 107 million pieces of passenger face recognition information, and 53.5092 million pieces of age group information, 16.3556 million pieces of occupational information, 1.3829 million pieces of family relationship information, and 153 million pieces of taxi address information.
  4. Didi excessively collected passengers’ evaluation of the drivers, when the app is running in the background, and 167 million pieces of precise location (longitude and latitude).
  5. Didi excessively collected 142,900 pieces of driver education information, and 53.976 billion pieces of “intent information”, 1.538 billion pieces of resident city information, and 304 million pieces of non-local business/travel information.
  6. Its users are frequently asked to provide “telephone permissions” while using its services.
  7. Inaccurate and clear description of user personal information processing, including device information.

The CAC noted that Didi started its bad practices in June 2015, and continued even after the Cybersecurity Law was implemented in June 2017, the Data Security Law started in January 2022, and the Personal Information Protection Law was implemented in November 2021.

 

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Did China Reduce 4X More Air Pollution Than US/EU?!

Did China reduce 4X more dangerous PM2.5 air pollution than the US and Europe?!

Take a look at viral claim, and find out what the facts really are!

 

Claim : China Reduced 4X More Air Pollution Than US / EU!

The Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛) and pro-CCP netizens are now promoting the story of how China reduced 4X more air pollution than the US and Europe.

This is based on a Bloomberg article, which declared “China has reduced air pollution nearly as much in seven years as the US did in three decades, helping to bring down average global smog levels in the process“.

Let’s take a closer look at the story, and see what the facts really are!

Recommended : Did US Send 7000 Insects To Destroy Crops In China?!

China Significantly Reduced Air Pollution But Still Far From US / EU Levels

One can readily see why the Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛) and pro-CCP netizens are ecstatic about this, and they have the right to be.

That said, they are turning the great progress China has made into a pissing contest with the US and Europe. So let me just set the record straight.

Fact #1 : China Reduced Air Pollution By Almost 40%

First, let me confirm that the Energy Policy Institute at the University of Chicago (EPIC) did indeed report that China successfully reduced dangerous PM2.5 air pollution by almost 40% between 2013 to 2020.

China must be congratulated for making such an incredible improvement, even though its 9% drop from 2019 to 2020 can be attributed to a drastic reduction of economic activity during the COVID-19 pandemic.

This isn’t just a technical achievement. The reduction in dangerous PM2.5 air pollution is estimated to add 2 years to the life expectancy of the Chinese people.

We should also applaud the Chinese for their very significant contribution to reducing global air pollution – without which, the global average air pollution would have increased, instead of fallen.

Fact #2 : China Air Pollution Was Incredibly High

Now, if the Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛) and pro-CCP netizens just celebrated that achievement, I would have celebrated it with them.

However, since they turned it into a pissing contest, I should point out that a big reason for China’s massive reduction was its incredibly bad PM2.5 air pollution.

Back in the early 2000s, air pollution in China grew so bad that the Air Quality Index (AQI) actually exceeded 500 points for the first time in November 2010 – far beyond the index limit of 300!

The US embassy in Beijing at that time labelled it as “crazy bad”, but later amended it to a more diplomatic “beyond index” – a feat that China repeated 3 times in the next year.

Air pollution was so bad the Chinese government asked foreign consulates to stop publishing their own air quality data. But it didn’t matter – even official Beijing data showed readings of up to 700!

It is from these dubious heights that China finally announced their “War Against Pollution”. Their incredible achievement in reducing air pollution was only made possible by the incredible air pollution they created in the first place.

China = national average, BTH = Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei, YRD = Yangtze River Delta, PRD = Pearl River Delta

Fact #3 : Air Pollution In China Still High

Despite cutting down air pollution by almost 40% from 2013 to 2020, China still has high amounts of air pollution.

The EPIC chart above shows that the national average for air pollution in China remains above 30 µg/m³ – 6X above the new WHO guidelines.

Fact #4 : Pollution Reduction Partly Due To Lower Economic Activity

The EPIC report noted that 9% of the drop in China’s air pollution was from 2019 to 2020 – when economic activity in China was drastically reduced due to COVID-19 pandemic lockdowns.

Without that 9% drop, the reduction in air pollution would be far less impressive, and China would be recording PM2.5 air pollution at about 35 µg/m³.

Fact #5 : US Has Far Lower Air Pollution

The wumao and pro-CCP netizens may cackle at how China managed to cut their air pollution 4X faster than the US, but that is only possible because the US already has relatively low air pollution.

Even though the United States actually increased its air pollution since 2019, its PM2.5 air pollution levels in the US remain 4X lower than China, at around 7.5 µg/m³.

More importantly, air pollution levels in the United States have remained under 13 µg/m³ since 1998 – at least 4X lower than China’s peak of about 53 µg/m³.

Fact #6 : Even Europe Has Far Lower Air Pollution

The wumao and pro-CCP netizens should also be wary about comparing China’s “quick” reduction in air pollution against Europe.

The EU has steadily reduced air pollution from a peak of just 16 µg/m³ to about 11 µg/m³ – just over half as much as China.

In other words – it is harder for Europe to reduce its air pollution levels which are already pretty low.

Fact #7 : US, EU + China Far From Achieving WHO PM2.5 Guideline

Now, let me end by pointing out that the US, the EU and China all FAIL to meet the updated WHO PM2.5 guideline of just 5 µg/m³.

It will take many years for either the US, the EU or China to hit that, and it would require a tremendous amount of political will and investment.

So instead of mocking other countries, can we just focus on reducing dangerous PM2.5 air pollution?

Please help us fight propaganda – SHARE this article, and SUPPORT our work!

 

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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Did US Send 7000 Insects To Destroy Crops In China?!

Did the US try to send 7,000 insects into China to destroy their crops?!

Take a look at viral claim, and find out what the facts really are!

 

Claim : US Sent 7,000 Insects To Destroy Crops In China!

People are sharing a video of a Chinese news report about Chinese custom official discovering 66 containers of some 7,000 insects in a parcel shipped from the US.

They allege that this is evidence of American sabotage – that the US sent those insects to destroy crops in China. The video is often shared with this message :

China customs found 7000 insects sent from the USA. Out to destroy crops in China.

An evil country on the way down trying to pull others down too with sickening and rather despicable tactics !
🤬🤬🤬

In addition to claiming that these insects are dangerous to crops, some pro-CCP or Chinese-sponsored websites are promoting the claim that these insects had their genes edited to become “more infectious”, like a “super mosquito”.

They also point out that each of these insects can reproduce every 10 days, laying 400 eggs in their lifetime to quickly produce a swarm that will destroy fruits in China, by corrupting them with bacteria and fungi.

 

Truth : US Did Not Send 7,000 Insects To Destroy Crops In China!

This is yet another example of FAKE NEWS created by the Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛), and shared by pro-CCP netizens and websites, and here are the reasons why…

Fact #1 : The Incident Happened In July 2022

First, let us establish what we know about this case.

Sometime in early July 2022, Qingdao customs officers examined a package sent from the United States. Its declaration form claimed that the parcel contained clothes.

When they opened it up, they found two pieces of clothes inside, with 66 sealed tubes containing eggs, larvae, pupae and adult insects.

After analysing them, Qingdao custom officers estimated that the 66 tubes contained roughly 7,000 fruit flies, specifically of the species Drosophila melanogaster.

Fact #2 : Drosophila megalogaster Is Present Worldwide

Drosophila melanogaster is known as the common fruit fly, which is commonly present across the world. Yes, this fruit fly is already present in China.

Despite originating in Africa – it is now present on all continents across the world, including islands.

Fact #3 : Drosophila megalogaster Can Lay Up To 2,000 Eggs

The Chinese media promoting this story can’t even get their facts right, claiming that these fruit flies lay up to 400 eggs in their lifetime.

Drosophila melanogaster females are far more productive than that – they can lay up to 100 eggs a day, and up to 2,000 eggs in a lifetime.

Fact #4 : Drosophila megalogaster Do Not Cause Fruits To Rot

Drosophila melanogaster is not an economic pest, even though no one welcomes them in their home.

It is often confused with Tephritidae – a different family of insects that are also called fruit flies, some of which are economic pests that destroy fruits.

Unlike Tephritidae fruit flies, Drosophila melanogaster do not destroy fruits. They are attracted to fruit that is already rotting, but do not cause fruits to rot.

The claims that the US sent Drosophila melanogaster fruit flies to destroy crops in China is nonsense.

Fact #5 : Drosophila megalogaster Is Commonly Used For Research

Drosophila melanogaster fruit flies are very popular in scientific research, for many reasons :

  • they are easy and cheap to care for, requiring little equipment and space
  • they have a rapid life cycle of 10 days, allowing several generations to be studied in a few weeks
  • each female can produce many offspring, laying up to 2,000 eggs in its lifetime
  • they have simple genetics, with only four pairs of chromosomes
  • their genome was completely sequenced and published in the year 2000

Scientists do not mention this as a reason for using Drosophila melanogaster, but I think it is important to note that it is not a pest, so accidental release of these fruit flies would not pose any danger of any form or kind.

Fact #6 : Drosophila megalogaster Is Commonly Shipped Worldwide

Because it is a model organism for research, Drosophila melanogaster is bred and shipped internationally to researchers worldwide.

The College of Agriculture and Life Science at Cornell University, for example, breeds and sells Drosophila melanogaster fruit flies, which they ship internationally including China.

Fact #7 : 2021 Seized Shipment Was Meant For Chinese Research Institute

This wasn’t the first time China seized live Drosophila melanogaster fruit flies in such tubes.

In June 2021, Chinese custom officials found 58 tubes containing more than 1,000 of these fruit flies in an imported parcel addressed to a Chinese research institute.

They seized the parcel because its contents were not declared, and it lacked an import permit.

Fact #8 : China Requires Quarantine For Live Insects

China forbids live insects from being mailed or carried into the country, without special quarantine or approval.

However, quarantine is a problem for Drosophila melanogaster because it has such a short lifespan of just 50 days.

Hence, it is possible that Chinese researchers are trying to circumvent the quarantine by importing live Drosophila melanogaster fruit flies, without an import permit which would require quarantine.

It is also possible that these fruit flies are being imported as a live food source for their pet fish, frogs and other animals.

Fact #9 : Cornell University Warned About Chinese Import Permit

Cornell University specifically warned Chinese researchers trying to purchase these fruit flies that :

As of November 1, 2014, we can only offer free replacements for shipments of live flies to China that were accompanied by an import permit.

That suggests that they lost shipments to China in the past, because they lacked import permits.

Fact #10 : This Is Chinese Propaganda

This is really nothing more than yet another example of Chinese propaganda created by the infamous Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛).

All of the wumao articles that I looked at so far have proven to be false… at every instance. So please watch out for such false claims.

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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Chinese Netizens Explode Over WPS Office Censorship!

Chinese netizens are incensed over evidence that WPS Office was monitoring and deleting their files!

Find out what’s going on, and what it means for the digital privacy of WPS Office users!

 

Chinese Netizens : WPS Office Is Monitoring + Blocking Our Documents!

Chinese company, Kingsoft, is under fire for claims that its productivity suite WPS Office is actively monitoring and deleting user documents that might displease Beijing!

At the heart of this issue is the WPS Cloud platform that works like Microsoft 365, allowing users to store their documents in the cloud, or locally.

Chinese netizens are alleging that WPS Office was actively monitoring their documents, and even deleting those that were detected to contain content that might displease the Chinese authorities.

One novelist who goes by the pseudonym Mitu, claimed that she was unable to access her unpublished 1.3 million character document. Not only was it blocked in her cloud storage, she couldn’t access the local copy using the desktop WPS client.

She was told that “the file may contain sensitive content and access has been disabled“.

Mitu shared her experience on Lkong – an online Chinese literature forum, and the social media platform Xiaohongshu, in late June 2022; and it only began trending in Weibo in early July after an influencer reposted her complaint.

A Weibo post on her complaint appears to have been deleted, but fortunately a screenshot was captured. This was the post in Chinese, machine translated into English :

Simply put, WPS seems to have some kind of sensitive word harmony function, Then after being detected, not only the ones stored on the cloud disk will be harmonized

According to the victim’s complaint, it is not only on the cloud, but also on local files. It’s hard to escape a harmony.

At present, according to some netizens, it may be checked after being saved.Sensitive words are detected and then determined to be files that may contain sensitive information,

Directly blocked, or it may be directly locked after being remotely detected by the background server local files There is no other way but to appeal (and it will be fixed in time) but this Is it remote from the server?

Now there is a lot of panic in the online literature circle, for fear that hundreds of thousands of words of manuscripts will be blocked overnight. Asking both online and offline harmony, many people re-use ms and writing pads write file

Mitu said she reported the problem to Kingsoft, which eventually apologised and restored access to the file within two days. The company admitted that “the file was not problematic”.

However, her story spurred other Chinese netizens to come forward with their own stories. A writer in Guangzhou who goes by the pseudonym Liu Hai also said that his WPS Office document of nearly 10,000 words was similarly blocked on July 1, 2022.

These incidents have sparked concerns about privacy in China. While the Chinese government routinely monitors and censors social media content, monitoring and blocking of personal documents would represent a new level of censorship in China.

 

WPS Office Admits Blocking File Access

After the online furore over claims that WPS Office deleted user files, the software developer issued a terse public statement on July 11, 2022.

It said that WPS Office does not delete the “user’s local files”, and that it was a misunderstanding. They only deleted the “online document link”, and blocked “others from access the link according to the law”.

Here is the Weibo post in Chinese, machine translated into English :

Statement on the exposure of online transmission #WPS will delete the user’s local files

A recent online document link shared by a user is suspected of violating the law, and we have prohibited others from accessing the link according to law. This has been misrepresented as #WPS delete user local files.

To this end, we specifically declare: WPS, as an office software developed for more than 30 years, has always put user experience and user privacy protection first.

WPS Office cleverly claims that it never “censors, locks or delete users’ local files”, which is technically correct but as Mitu and Liu Hai described, WPS Office blocks access to their users’ local files.

It was discovered that the files can still be opened by other software, like Microsoft Word or Tencent Docs. But the blocked files cannot be opened by WPS Office, even if they are stored locally (in the user’s computer).

It should be noted that Mitu never shared her file online. So WPS Office’s claim that they only blocked “others” from accessing the file is misleading.

 

WPS Office Not The Only Cloud Provider Monitoring Content

To be fair to WPS Office and Kingsoft, they are not the only ones monitoring content uploaded to the cloud. They just took things one step further by blocking access to local files.

By default, traffic to and from cloud-based productivity services like Google Docs, Microsoft 365 and WPS Office are not end-to-end encrypted.

That means they can and most likely are reading / monitoring EVERYTHING you type or upload. This includes files uploaded and stored in cloud-based storage services like Google Drive and Microsoft OneDrive.

That is the right of cloud service providers, because you are using their servers to store your content.

Google, for example, lists content that can be automatically removed and could even lead to a ban :

  • Account hijacking
  • Account inactivity
  • Child sexual abuse and exploitation
  • Circumvention
  • Dangerous and illegal activities
  • Harassment, bullying, and threats
  • Hate speech
  • Impersonation and misrepresentation
  • Malware and similar malicious content
  • Misleading content
  • Non-consensual explicit imagery
  • Personal and confidential information
  • Phishing
  • Regulated goods and services
  • Sexually explicit material
  • Spam
  • System interference and abuse
  • Unauthorized images of minors
  • Violence and gore
  • Violent organizations and movements

People need to be aware of this, and stop assuming that they have privacy on such cloud services, even if they paid to use them.

So it is not surprising that WPS Office monitors everything its users do. If they stopped at blocking access to the online files that contravened local laws, no one would bat an eye.

What is unusual though is that it also blocked access to the users’ local files! That means that their desktop and mobile apps were specifically designed to enforce a list of blocked files issued by WPS Office / Kingsoft.

If WPS Office / Kingsoft goes to that extent, does it mean that they would also alert the Chinese authorities about users producing content that displease them?

That is something everyone should think about, not just Chinese netizens who are justifiably concerned about WPS Office.

 

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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Is Lianhua Qingwen More Effective Than Paxlovid?!

Is the Chinese herbal medicine Lianhua Qingwen more effective than the Pfizer Paxlovid antiviral combination?!

Take a look at the viral claim, and find out what the facts really are!

 

Claim : Lianhua Qingwen Is More Effective Than Paxlovid!

People are sharing a link to a Bloomberg called “Pfizer’s Covid Pill Doesn’t Work For Healthier Patients, Will Focus On Those With higher Risk”, together with this message :

Pfizer scams the world with US$22 billion in sales of Paxlovid to treat Covid.
Now finds that Paxlovid does not work and may cause rebound of disease.
Malaysia has ordered 200,000 doses at a cost of RM500 million –
RM2,500 per dose compared to a few bucks for China’s effective Lian Hwa pills.

 

Truth : Paxlovid Is More Effective Than Lianhua Qingwen!

This is yet another example of FAKE NEWS created by the Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛) as part of their campaign to support Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), and here are the reasons why…

Fact #1 : Paxlovid Is Combination Of Two Antiviral Drugs

Pfizer PAXLOVID is an antiviral treatment that consists of two protease inhibitors :

  • two 150 mg tablets of Nirmatrelvir (the new protease inhibitor developed by Pfizer)
  • one 100 mg tablet of Ritonavir (an old antiviral approved in 1996)

Protease inhibitors work by binding to proteolytic enzymes used by the SARS-CoV-2 virus to replicate. This prevents the virus from replicating in the infected cells, stopping the infection and preventing transmission.

Drug combinations like this offer a synergistic effect, above and beyond their individual abilities. In this combination, ritonavir helps to slow down the breakdown of nirmatrelvir, allowing it to remain in the body for a longer period at higher concentrations.

Fact #2 : Paxlovid Was Proven To Work Against COVID-19

Unlike Lianhua Qingwen, Paxlovid underwent and passed an actual randomised double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial.

In the EPIC-HR clinical trial, Paxlovid was shown to reduce hospitalisation or death from COVID-19 by 88%, compared to placebo.

That statistically significant result was why the US FDA issued an Emergency Use Authorisation (EUA) for Paxlovid on December 22, 2021.

The EUA allows Paxlovid to be used for the treatment of mild-to-moderate COVID-19 in adults and children 12 years and older, who are at high risk of developing severe COVID-19.

Read more : Did Cornell Name Ivermectin Most Effective Drug vs. Omicron?

Fact #3 : Paxlovid EPIC-HR Trial Involved High-Risk Patients

I should point out that the EPIC-HR trial involved adults who have a high risk of developing severe COVID-19 :

  • 18 years and older with a risk factor for developing severe COVID-19, or
  • 60 years and older, regardless of chronic medical conditions

All these patients also were not vaccinated against COVID-19, which puts them at higher risk of developing severe COVID-19.

Fact #4 : Paxlovid Not Effective In Normal Risk Patients

After successfully proving that Paxlovid worked for patients who are at high risk of developing severe COVID-19, Pfizer tested it on “standard risk patients”.

Their study showed a 51% relative risk reduction of developing severe COVID-19, which was not statistically significant.

That was why Pfizer halted further enrolment in its Paxlovid trial for “standard risk patients”, which are people who do not have co-morbidities – health conditions that put them at risk of developing severe COVID-19.

This “failure” actually shows the value of running clinical tests, before approving any drug. Unlike Paxlovid though, Lianhua Qingwen did not undergo any clinical trial to prove that it can treat or prevent COVID-19.

Fact #5 : Lianhua Qingwen Not Proven To Work Against COVID-19

Lianhua Qingwen (连花清瘟) has been heavily promoted by the Chinese government and the Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛), leading to massive sales in the global Chinese diaspora.

It then gained oversized importance when both Hong Kong and Shanghai distributed boxes of these capsules to help stave off the surge of COVID-19 in both cities.

Yet, the mass distribution of Lianhua Qingwen has done nothing to stop the spread of COVID-19 in both cities.

That’s because, unlike Paxlovid, there never was any evidence that Lianhua Qingwen can treat or prevent COVID-19.

Its main “call to fame” was a small Chinese study conducted early during the pandemic, which showed that it had only a modest effect on symptom recovery :

  • time to recover from fever : 2 days, instead of 3 days
  • time to recover from fatigue : 3 days, instead of 6 days
  • time to recover from coughing : 7 days, instead of 10 days

There was NO DIFFERENCE in the viral load, or the risk of developing severe COVID-19.

In other words – Lianhua Qingwen only helped to reduce symptoms, and was no different from taking over-the-counter drugs like paracetamol.

Read more : Did US NCBI Confirm Lianhua Qingwen Treats COVID-19?

Fact #6 : Lianhua Qingwen Should Not Be Taken To Prevent COVID-19

Official Chinese media outlets like CGTN and China Daily have falsely claimed that that Lianhua Qingwen was “proven effective for the treatment of COVID-19” and that it was “approved to treat [COVID-19] virus”.

However, Lianhua Qingwen cannot prevent COVID-19, and should not be taken on a long-term basis to prevent it, due to potential side effects.

The medicine could cause side effects such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and rash.

Fang Bangjiang, doctor from Long Hua Hospital of the Shanghai University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, said that Lianhua Qingwen has complex ingredients and is mainly suitable for COVID-19 patients with mild symptoms of fever and pneumonia but unsuitable for prevention.

Its ingredients will affect the renal system.

Fact #7 : Chinese Official Admits Lianhua Qingwen Cannot Kill Coronavirus

When Chinese Deputy Consul General in Vancouver, Kong Weiwei, was confronted about these claims, he said that people should be “mature enough” to do their own research and understand that Lianhua Qingwen cannot kill the COVID-19 virus :

They’re not babies. We don’t want to be like a nanny telling every one of them that these [Lianhua Qingwen capsules] cannot kill the virus.

Read more : Lianhua Qingwen Finally Tumbles Over Efficacy Concerns!

Fact #8 : Singapore HSA Warns Against Lianhua Qingwen Claims

The Singapore Health Sciences Authority (HSA) continues to warn the public not to believe the many misleading claims made about Lianhua Qingwen’s ability to treat or prevent COVID-19.

To date, there is no scientific evidence from randomised clinical trials to show that any herbal product, including Lianhua Qingwen products, can be used to prevent or treat COVID-19.

All herbal products formulated for common cold and flu, including CPM, should only be used to manage symptoms such as headache, runny or blocked nose, sore throat and cough.

We strongly advise members of the public not to fall prey to unsubstantiated claims or spread unfounded rumours that herbal products can be used to prevent or treat COVID-19.

Please help us FIGHT FAKE NEWS by sharing this fact check article out, and please SUPPORT our work!

 

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Support my work through a bank transfer /  PayPal / credit card!

Name : Adrian Wong
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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Did China Edit Out Thor Insulting Chinese Military?!

Did China order Marvel to edit out insults of Chinese military capabilities in the movie Thor: Love and Thunder?!

Find out what’s going on, and what the facts really are!

 

Claim : China Edited Out Thor Insulting Chinese Military!

Some people, and an Indian website, are sharing an article about China ordering Marvel to edit out insults of Chinese military capabilities in the movie Thor: Love and Thunder?!

The article is long, so feel free to skip to the next section for the facts!

The Chinese government said in a statement on July 2 that they had to edit Marvel’s newest blockbuster Thor: Love and Thunder themselves to suppress Thor’s lengthy, well-spoken monologue about why the United States shouldn’t be afraid of China’s powerless military.

“China is a feeble country that cannot support its people,” During an unrelated fight scene, Thor tells Korg. “They are weak-willed, sluggish people that the United States can easily trounce in combat. The only reason the U.S. allows them to live is out of pity and sorrow. China is a worthless, flaccid military regime that has poor and pathetic rulers asleep at the wheel. Communism does not work. Let’s go fight some more space pirates,” he added.

On why the speech was initially included, director Taika Waititi went into further detail.

“Marvel usually asks us to shoehorn in something for Chinese audiences,” Waititi said. “I thought it would be a fun wink to Chinese Thor fans if the Asgardian warrior stopped dead in his tracks, faced the camera, and broke down how China poses no threat to the United Nations and that their military is an empty threat that could easily be quashed. It’s Easter eggs like that that get the audience really feeling seen by your film.”

Kevin Feige, the president of Marvel Studios, voiced his bewilderment on China’s editing of the film.

“I’ll never understand why China makes seemingly nonsensical edits,” Feige said. “It’s just a fantasy movie about vikings, super heroes, and how China’s current missile silos couldn’t reach the West if they tried. I’ll never know why they take it so seriously, but whatever.”

Marvel revealed that China would also be removing a funny post-credits scene wherein Thor flies to Xi Jinping’s private mansion and chokes him on live television.

 

Truth : China Did Not Edit Out Thor Insulting Chinese Military

This is yet another example of FAKE NEWS created as “satire” to go viral, and here are the reasons why…

Fact #1 : There Is No Chinese Military Monologue In Thor: Love and Thunder

First, let’s start with the fact that there is no 20-minute monologue about the Chinese military in the movie, Thor: Love and Thunder.

Can you really, REALLY imagine Thor speaking for TWENTY MINUTES about the Chinese military in the movie? Whatever for???

Fact #2 : China Was Never Mentioned In Thor: Love And Thunder

China, and the Chinese military, were never mentioned in the movie, Thor: Love and Thunder.

Fact #3 : Thor: Love And Thunder Post Credit Scene Not About Xi Jinping

Thor obviously did not fly to Chinese President Xi Jinping’s private mansion to choke him on live television. There is no reference to any Chinese person in the entire movie.

In the mid-credits scene, a recuperating Zeus sends his son Hercules to kill Thor. In the post-credits scene, Foster arrives at the gates of Valhalla, where she is welcomed by Heimdall.

Read more : Why Thor: Love and Thunder Is Likely Banned In China!

Fact #4 : Thor: Love And Thunder Still Not Approved In China

Thor: Love and Thunder was never approved in China, and will remained banned because of LGBTQ+ themes in the movie.

Fact #5 : It Is Up To Disney To Edit The Movie

The Chinese government may require edits for a movie to be approved for screening in China, but it is ultimately up to the distributor to comply with the requests, or reject them.

In this case, the Chinese government may request for the LGBTQ+ scenes to be edited out of Thor: Love and Thunder; but it is up to Disney to either comply with their requests, or reject them.

Rejecting the edits will naturally prevent the movie from receiving screening approval, but it is still Disney’s choice, not the Chinese government.

Read more : Malaysia Postpones Thor: Love and Thunder Indefinitely!

Fact #6 : It Was Just Satire

I traced the origin of this fake story to Hard-Drive – a satire website.

Even though there are no disclaimers on the entire website, or the article itself; their website appears to consist entirely of satirical content, and the article itself is clearly satirical.

However, it appears that some people actually thought that the story was genuine and reposted it on social media.

Times Now, which is part of the Times Group in India, even reposted the story on their online news portal, as if it’s genuine news!

 

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Why Thor: Love and Thunder Is Likely Banned In China!

Here’s why Thor: Love and Thunder will likely remain banned in China forever and ever…

 

Thor: Love and Thunder Has Not Been Approved In China!

Film regulators in China do not explain or comment publicly why they refuse to approve any movie, but anyone with more two neurons in their brains will be able to connect the dots.

Just like how Lightyear got banned for a brief kiss between two female characters, it seems that Chinese censors have no love for LGBT themes in Thor: Love and Thunder.

This was confirmed by two The Hollywood Reporter sources in China who said that Thor: Love and Thunder will likely remain banned because of LGBTQ+ themes in the movie.

Sources at two major cinema chains in China tell The Hollywood Reporter that they expect Thor 4 will face the same fate as Pixar’s Lightyear: denied censorship approval because of fleeting moments in the movie involving LGBTQ characters.

Read more : The Brief Kiss That Got Lightyear Banned In 14+ Countries!

 

What LGTBQ+ Scenes In Thor: Love and Thunder Concern China?

Thor: Love and Thunder was already postponed in Malaysia, allegedly over Thor’s butt cheeks. Perhaps this is also an issue for Chinese censors, but they are more concerned about its LGBTQ+ scenes.

Just how many LGBTQ+ scenes are there really? And how controversial are these scenes?

  • Bisexual Asgardian King Valkyrie (Tessa Thomson) kisses a maiden’s hand
  • At two other scenes, characters reference and discuss King Valkyrie’s late girlfriend.
  • Korg (Taika Waititi) is shown to be gay.
  • Korg references having two dads.
  • Korg settles down with a fellow Korean named Dwayne.

Read more : Thor : Love and Thunder Postponed, May Be Censored!

 

Thor: Love and Thunder Is 6th MCU Movie To Be Banned In China

Thor: Love and Thunder will just join a rather long list of Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) movies banned in China.

Black Widow : It was released in May 2021, during the Chinese summer movie season, when there is usually a blackout of foreign movies.

Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings : It was not approved in China, after 2017 comments by actor Simu Liu resurfaced, in which he called China a “third world” country.

Eternals : It was apparently not approved, after a 2013 interview with China-born director Chloé Zhao resurfaced, in which she said that “there are lies everywhere” in the country.

Spider-Man: No Way Home : Hilariously, Chinese censors wanted Sony to remove the Statue of Liberty from the movie. Perhaps they should have asked David Copperfield instead…

Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness : It was not approved because of a scene in which a newspaper kiosk appeared with the Epoch Times visible.

 

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Does Malaysia Have 2nd Most Debt In Asia, After Sri Lanka?!

Did the IMF warn Malaysia about having the second most national debt in Asia, after Sri Lanka?!

Take a look at the viral claim, and find out what the facts really are!

 

Claim : Malaysia Has 2nd Most Debt In Asia, After Sri Lanka!

This post about IMF warning Malaysia about having the second most national debt in Asia, after Sri Lanka, has gone viral.

People are sharing it as a warning of how Malaysia could very soon descent into the economic chaos and misery affecting Sri Lanka.

International Monetary Fund (IMF) has warned that Malaysia is in a huge economic dilemma.

The second largest debt country in Asia after Sri Lanka is Malaysia.

Good Luck to Malaysian… [sic]

马民有福了😱😭

 

Truth : Malaysia Does Not Have 2nd Most Debt In Asia, After Sri Lanka!

This is yet another example of FAKE NEWS circulating on social media, and here are the reasons why…

Fact #1 : IMF Did Not Say Malaysia Is In Economic Trouble

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) did not warn that Malaysia is in huge economic trouble.

In April 2022, it warned that Asian nations, like the rest of the world, are at risk of stagflation from being battered by the war in Ukraine and the slowdown in China from COVID-19.

The region faces a stagflationary outlook, with growth being lower than previously expected, and inflation being higher.

Inflation is now expected to rise 3.2% this year, a full point higher than expected in January.

Despite the downgrade, Asia remains the world’s most dynamic region, and an important source of global growth.
– Anne-Marie Gulde-Wolf, acting director of IMF Asia and Pacific

Fact #2 : Malaysia Does Not Have Second Most Debt In Asia

The claim that Malaysia has the second highest national debt in Asia is also false.

On both the GDP percentage and per capita basis, Singapore has the second highest national debt in Asia, behind Japan. Even Sri Lanka has less debt, per capita or as a percentage of its GDP, than Singapore or Japan.

Malaysia has far less national debt than Sri Lanka as a percentage of its GDP, but twice the debt on a per capita basis.

Here is a comparison I created of countries with the highest national debt in Asia :

Country Year National Debt Debt
(% of GDP)
Debt Per Capita
Japan 2020 $13,054 billion 259% $103,386
Singapore 2021 $536 billion 132.8% $98,410
Sri Lanka 2020 $81.7 billion 101.2% $3,726
Mongolia 2021 $14.3 billion 94.7% $4,294
India 2020 $2,402 billion 90.1% $1,741
China 2020 $10,115 billion 68.1% $7,164
Malaysia 2021 $239 billion 63.4% $8,644
Philippines 2021 $226 billion 57.5% $2,055

Fact #3 : IMF Optimistic Malaysia Will Expand By 5.75% In 2022

In May 2022, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) actually announced that it is optimistic that Malaysia’s economy will expand by 5.75% in 2022, driven by pent-up domestic demand and continued strong external demand.

It also said that Malaysia’s high vaccination rates, and limited movement restrictions are supporting economic expansion.

Fact #4 : High Debt Is Not Necessarily Bad

While a high national debt is not ideal, it is not necessarily a bad thing either. It really depends on how much interest needs to be paid on the debt, and what the government is using it for.

Unlike individuals who will die eventually, the government of a country can last for hundreds of years. So governments do not have to pay back all of their debts within a certain amount of time.

As long as the government can keep paying interest on its debt, it can continue to borrow money to service deficits in its budget, or to invest in projects that grow the economy.

Fact #5 : How Governments Use Money Matters More

Just like how you can use borrowed money to invest in assets or splurge on liabilities, how the government uses the borrowed money matters more than how much it borrows.

If the government uses borrowed money to invest, that will spur growth that allows it to easily repay its debts while driving down the interest it pays.

But if the borrowed money is lost through corruption or wasteful projects, the government will find it harder to pay interest on the debt and may even default on payments.

Fact #6 : High Government Spending During Pandemic Is Expected

Practically every government in the world was forced to spend significantly more during the pandemic. Most run into large deficits during the pandemic because :

  • lockdowns reduce economic activity, reducing taxes
  • governments need to spend more on healthcare to combat COVID-19
  • governments cut taxes to support citizens and businesses
  • governments provide monetary support for citizens and businesses

This isn’t unique to Malaysia, but applies across the world. That’s why Malaysia’s national debt jumped significantly after January 2020.

Fact #7 : Malaysia Has Sufficient Foreign Reserves

Malaysia’s national debt increased from $228.7 billion in 2020, to $239 billion (RM 979.8 billion) in 2021 – an increase of about 4.5% year-on-year.

While this increase pushes Malaysia close to a national debt of 65% of its GDP, it is still much lower than many other countries.

More importantly, Bank Negara Malaysia reported international reserves of $116.9 billion as of 31 December 2021, which is enough to finance 7.7 months of retained imports, and is 20% higher than the total short-term external debt.

In other words, Malaysia is not anywhere close to collapsing economically, like what happened in Sri Lanka.

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Canada Internet Outage Due To Software Update, Not China!

The country-wide mobile and Internet outage in Canada was due to a software update, not hacking by China!

Take a look at the viral claim, and find out what the facts really are!

 

Claim : China Responsible For Mobile + Internet Outage In Canada!

Within hours of news breaking that Canada suffered a massive Internet outage, Vancouver Times posted a story claiming that the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) identified China as the responsible party.

Vancouver Times also claimed that the RCMP will issue arrest warrants for the hackers responsible, who are connected to the People’s Liberation Army (PLA).

Chinese state hackers are responsible for a massive internet outage that paralyzed large parts of Canada, according to the RCMP. The federal police agency is in the process of issuing arrest warrants for several people they believe are connected to the People’s Liberation Army.

The RCMP will be holding a press conference in the next few days to announce the arrest warrants, according to sources. Canadian intelligence agencies are reportedly receiving guidance from the CIA and the FBI.

On Friday a widespread network outage from Rogers left many Canadians without mobile and internet service. The outages caused significant problems for police, courthouses, passport offices and other facilities.

The outage also disrupted services across retailers, courthouses, airlines, train networks, credit card processors and police forces, pushing many to delay business transactions. Many people were seen at Starbucks, trying to use their internet service.

The mainstream media and big tech want to hide the truth. Beat them at their own game by sharing this article!

Read more : FBI + MI5 Issue Joint Warning On Chinese Spying!

 

Truth : Canada Internet Outage Due To Software Update, Not China!

This is yet another example of FAKE NEWS created by Vancouver Times to generate page views and money from gullible people.

Fact #1 : Vancouver Times Is A Fake News Website

Vancouver Times is a “content aggregator” (copy and paste) website that is known for creating fake news to generate more page views and money.

To look legitimate, they copy and paste news from legitimate news organisations. To drive traffic, they create fake news, sometimes masked as “satire”.

To give themselves a veneer of deniability, they label themselves as a “satire website” in their About Us section.

Vancouver Times is the most trusted source for satire on the West Coast. We write satirical stories about issues that affect conservatives.

Here are some of their fake news that we debunked :

Fact #2 : Outage Only Affected Rogers Communications

On Friday, July 8, 2022, Canada was hit by a massive mobile and Internet outage that hit businesses, banks, and even police emergency lines.

However, it only affected Rogers Communications, and did not affect rivals like BCE, Telus and Shaw Communications.

The outage was extensive because Rogers is Canada’s leading telecommunications provider, with about 11.3 million wireless subscribers, and 2.25 million retail Internet subscribers.

Read more : Shanghai Police Data On 1 Billion Chinese Citizens Leaked!

Fact #3 : RCMP Did Not Blame China For Mobile + Internet Outage

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police did not blame China for Rogers Communications’ mobile and Internet outage.

This was made up by Vancouver Times to trigger right-wing conspiracy theorists, to go viral and draw more page views.

Fact #4 : Rogers Did Not Blame China For Mobile + Internet Outage

Rogers Communications themselves did not blame China for their mobile and Internet outage.

Fact #5 : Canada Confirmed Outage Was Not A Cyberattack

While the reason behind the outage was still unknown, a spokesperson for Canadian Public Safety Minister Marco Mendicino confirmed to CTV News that “the outage was not due to a cyberattack“.

Fact #6 : Rogers Confirmed Outage Due To Maintenance Update

On 11 July 2022, Rogers CEO Tony Staffieri apologised for the country-wide outage of its services.

He also said that the failure was due to “a maintenance update in our core network“. The maintenance work “caused some of our routers to malfunction early Friday morning“.

Fact #7 : Prior Rogers Outage Also Due To Software Update

This wasn’t the first time Rogers Communications’ network failed so drastically.

Just 15 months earlier – Rogers and its subsidiary, Fido, experienced a nationwide cellular service outage in April 2021.

That outage was ultimately traced to “a recent Ericsson software update” that “affected a piece of equipment in the central part” of their network, leading to “intermittent congestion impacting many customers across Canada“.

Fact #8 : It Would Have Been Considered An Act Of War

China attacking Canada’s mobile and Internet network would have been considered an act of war, if it was proven.

The Canadian government would at least have issued a strong statement, if not cut diplomatic ties with China and/or enact sanctions against the Chinese government.

Fact #9 : No One Else Reported This Story

China attacking Canada’s mobile and Internet infrastructure would have been major international news, reported across the globe.

Yet not only did no mainstream media cover this incredible story, it hasn’t even been reported in the usual conspiracy theory websites!

That’s because it was a fake story created by one publication – Vancouver Times, in their attempt to go viral again for more page views and ad money.

Fact #10 : There Is No Such Thing As A Publication Ban

Vancouver Times likes to use the “media blackout” claim, to explain why you can’t find any reputable media outlet reporting on China attacking Canada’s mobile and Internet infrastructure.

That’s utter and complete bullshit. No one – not a judge, not even the Canadian government – can control the worldwide media, or prevent anyone from writing about such an incredible story.

You can also be sure that even if the mainstream media in the Canada refused to run the story, it would have been reported by foreign media outlets, websites and blogs.

Yet, not a single foreign media outlet or online website published their account of this incredible story? That’s because IT NEVER HAPPENED…

Read more : Did Ghislaine Maxwell Just Commit Suicide In Prison?!

Fact #11 : Mainstream Media + Big Tech Would Have Loved The Hype

Vancouver Times is gaslighting you about how mainstream media and Big Tech want to hide the “truth” about China attacking Canada’s infrastructure.

They would all loved such shocking news, because it would have driven tons of traffic and engagement to their websites / platforms.

In fact, that was precisely why Vancouver Times created the fake story – to drive traffic, for the ad money.

Everything that Vancouver Times publishes should be regarded as FAKE NEWS, until proven otherwise.

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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Do mRNA Vaccines Cause Invasion Of Killer Lymphocytes?!

Do mRNA vaccines cause killer lymphocytes to attack our healthy cells, destroying our immune system?!

Take a look at the viral claim, and find out what the facts really are!

 

Claim : mRNA Vaccines Cause Invasion Of Killer Lymphocytes!

People are excitedly sharing this post on WhatsApp and on social media, claiming that mRNA vaccines cause killer lymphocytes to destroy our immune system.

It claims that this is why people vaccinated against COVID-19 are suffering from shingles, tuberculosis, cancer, monkeypox, etc.

It’s rather long, so feel free to skip to the next section for the facts!

Shingles, TB will break out very soon, all over everywhere… It is caused by our dysfunctional immune system that is caused by killer lymphocytes self attack….. because the target is all the spiked proteins…

Our killer lymphocytes, is protecting us by killing viruses. Instead, the killer lymphocytes look for all the spiked proteins that leak into all our organs and attack our own cells. Why attack our own healthy cells. Because Spiked Proteins are all spiked to our healthy cells in all the organs ..The spiked leak into our organs!

 

Truth : mRNA Vaccines Do NOT Cause Killer Lymphocytes To Destroy Immune System!

This appears to be yet another example of FAKE NEWS created by the Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛) as part of their anti-mRNA vaccine campaign.

Here are the reasons why this is just more Chinese wumao bullshit…

Fact #1 : All COVID-19 Vaccines Target The Spike Protein

First, it is important that you understand that all COVID-19 vaccines focus on the spike protein for two main reasons :

  1. It is unique to the SARS-CoV-2 virus
  2. It is what the virus uses to attach to our cells, and enter them.

Antibodies that the vaccines “create” will therefore bind to the spike proteins, and physically block the COVID-19 virus from attaching to our cells.

All approved COVID-19 vaccines target the spike protein for this very reason, even inactivated virus vaccines like the Chinese Sinovac and Sinopharm vaccine.

Fact #2 : mRNA Vaccines Do Not Leak Spike Proteins

In an effort to promote Chinese inactivated virus vaccines, China has been conducting a prolonged and extensive disinformation campaign about mRNA vaccines through their 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛).

One of the fake stories they have been spreading is how mRNA vaccines create spike proteins that “leak” or go into our organs, or all over our bodies.

The truth is the spike proteins created by the mRNA vaccines do not leak anywhere. The spike proteins are produced by a limited number of cells that received those mRNA instructions, and they are displayed on the cell surface for our immune system to see.

Once the immune system sees those spike proteins on the cell surfaces, it recognises them as “foreign”, and produces antibodies to bind to those spike proteins.

These spike proteins remain on the cell surface. Eventually, our body’s phagocytes will consume these cells, because they have been identified as “foreign”. So there are none to float around like balloons…

Read more : Did Study Show Pfizer Vaccine Altering Liver DNA In 6 Hours?!

Fact #4 : mRNA Vaccines Do Not Harm Our Immune System

mRNA vaccines do not harm our immune system. Despite what the Chinese wumao keep saying, mRNA vaccines work just like other vaccines.

All COVID-19 vaccines – mRNA or otherwise – are like training camps for our immune system. They mimic the SARS-CoV-2 virus, like “fake enemy soldiers”.

By pretending to be the SARS-CoV-2 virus, the vaccines let your own immune system learn to identify the real virus, and create antibodies to block it.

I want to be very clear – all COVID-19 vaccines – mRNA or otherwise – do not harm your immune system. They only enhance your immune system.

Fact #5 : Vaccines Do Not Stay In Our Body

Vaccines – mRNA or otherwise – do not stay in our body. If they did, we would have lifelong immunity, and we wouldn’t need booster doses!

Most of the vaccines spike proteins  vaccine will be gone within a matter of days, although some may last for up to a few weeks. This is part of how vaccines teach your immune system to identify the enemy and destroy it.

Fact #6 : Booster Doses Are Refresher Classes For Your Immune System

Unfortunately, antibody levels will naturally drop over time, which is why we need booster doses to trigger our immune system to produce more antibodies.

Booster doses work like refresher classes in college. Every time you receive a booster dose, it reminds your immune system that the virus is still a threat.

This kickstarts the production of antibodies, boosting your protection against COVID-19.

Read more : Did Pfizer Vaccine Documents Reveal 1,291 Side Effects?!

Fact #7 : Vaccines Target Specific Diseases

All vaccines are designed to target a specific disease. They cannot prevent other diseases.

COVID-19 vaccines can only help your immune system fight off the SARS-CoV-2 virus. They cannot prevent shingles, tuberculosis, cancer or monkeypox.

Getting vaccinated against COVID-19 means you are protected from severe disease and deaths from COVID-19, not from all the ills in this world.

Fact #8 : mRNA Vaccines Do Not Cause Shingles, TB, Cancer Or Monkeypox

Just to be very clear – COVID-19 vaccines based on mRNA technology do not cause shingles, tuberculosis, cancer or monkeypox.

Fact #9 : Shingles, Tuberculosis Or Monkeypox Are Not Hereditary

Shingles, tuberculosis and monkeypox are not hereditary diseases. You are not born with these diseases.

Shingles (herpes zoster) is caused by a previous chickenpox infection from the varicella zoster virus (VZV). People vaccinated against chickenpox will not suffer from shingles.

Tuberculosis is a bacterial infection caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis. It can be prevented by getting the BCG (Bacillus Calmette–Guérin) vaccine.

Monkeypox is a viral infection caused by the monkeypox virus. It can be prevented using the smallpox vaccine.

Read more : Monkeypox : What You Must Know About This Viral Infection!

Fact #10 : China Is Developing mRNA Vaccines Too

This is for those who keep getting anti-mRNA posts like these from pro-CCP netizens.

Even though the Chinese wumao keeps disparaging mRNA vaccines, China has actually been trying to develop its own mRNA vaccine called ARCoVax.

Unfortunately, it has not been able to clear Phase 3 trials, which is why China is stuck using Sinovac and Sinopharm vaccines, which have poor efficacy.

The truth is – mRNA vaccines are the future, allowing for very specific targeting of certain proteins, as opposed to a shotgun approach. They also allow for faster adaptation to changes in the proteins.

As Zhuang Shilihe, a Guangzhou-based immunological expert told Global Times, “grasping mRNA technology is very important for China, not only to control the COVID pandemic but as treatment in cancer and rare diseases“.

This is partly why China was pushing hard for a WTO patent waiver on vaccines. They need to get access to mRNA technology used by Pfizer and Moderna to improve their own mRNA vaccines.

You can be certain that when China finally succeeds in producing its own mRNA vaccines, the wumao propaganda machine will change its tune.

 

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China Introduces COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate In Beijing!

China is introducing their first-ever vaccine mandate, to protect Beijing from a new COVID-19 outbreak!

Here is what you need to know…

 

China Introduces COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate In Beijing!

From Monday, July 11, 2022 onwards, Beijing residents will be required to show proof of COVID-19 vaccination at these public locations :

  • Live performances
  • Entertainment venues like movie theatres, museums, art galleries, cultural centres
  • Gyms and training facilities, stadiums and other sports venues
  • Libraries and tutoring centres
  • Internet cafes

This vaccine mandate will apply to everyone, including medical staff, people working in community service operations, home furnishing operators, express delivery providers, and people attending conferences.

Beijing residents will also need to receive a booster dose, although exemptions will be available for people who don’t qualify for vaccination.

Beijing Municipal Health Commission deputy director Li Ang called for elderly people living in care homes, and people who plan to enter an entertainment venue, to get vaccinated as soon as possible.

He also said that care home staff and visitors, as well as tourists, should get the booster dose; and that Beijing’s health code system will be updated to show everyone’s vaccination status more prominently.

Despite the vaccine mandate, Beijing residents are still required to get tested at least every three days to enter all public venues.

It is unknown how people who received their COVID-19 vaccinations overseas can meet this requirement since the Chinese health code system does not even recognise foreign vaccines. In fact, people who were vaccinated overseas have not been able to get their vaccinations registered.

 

Why China Is Introducing COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate In Beijing

China is implementing its first-ever vaccine mandate in Beijing to tamp down a new outbreak of the more infectious BA.5.2 Omicron subvariant.

On Wednesday, July 6, Beijing CDC announced 12 new cases caused by the Omicron BA.5.2 subvariant, based on gene sequencing tests. They were from four different districts, including Yanqing and Changping in Beijing.

These cases were traced back to previously quarantined patients, although one case reported a day earlier was picked up through community testing. This suggests that community spread is still limited.

This new BA.5.2 Omicron outbreak started on July 4, apparently caused by people returning to Beijing after completing their entry quarantine period.

Chinese authorities appear to be implementing this vaccine mandate in hopes of avoiding a lockdown that had already shut down the northwestern city of Xi’an until at least next Wednesday, July 13.

As of January 2022, some 98% of Beijing’s 20 odd million residents have been fully vaccinated, including 12 million who received a booster dose. However, only 80% of Beijing’s senior citizens (60 years and older) have been vaccinated, as late as April.

 

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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

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FBI + MI5 Issue Joint Warning On Chinese Spying!

The FBI and MI5 just issued a joint warning about economic spying and hacking operations by the Chinese government!

Here is what you need to know…

 

FBI + MI5 Issue Joint Warning On Chinese Spying!

On July 7, 2022, FBI Director Christopher Wray joined MI5 Director General Ken McCallum at the MI5 London headquarters to issue a joint warning about Chinese spying and cyberattacks.

Ken McCallum said that MI5 was running seven times as many investigations into China, as it had just four years ago. He also said that MI5 planned to double that to tackle the widespread attempts.

Christopher Wray, on the other hand, stressed that the FBI had substantially increased its investigations into China, and is currently managing about 2,000 problems, and opening about two counterintelligence cases every day.

The Chinese government is set on stealing your technology – whatever it is that makes your industry tick – and using it to undercut your business and dominate your market.

Maintaining a technological edge may do more to increase a company’s value than would partnering with a Chinese company to sell into that huge Chinese market, only to find the Chinese government and your partner stealing and copying your innovation.

Both McCallum and Wray alleged that the Chinese government is engaged in a “coordinated campaign” to “cheat and steal [technology] on a massive scale“.

They also stressed that China’s hacking programme dwarfs that of any other major country, and that it has a global network of intelligence operatives.

 

FBI + MI5 : China Also Preparing To Shield From Sanctions

Even more worrying is the fact that China is working to shield its economy from any future sanctions, obviously learning from how the West punished Russia for invading Ukraine.

This suggests that China is at least preparing for the possibility, if not the eventuality, of insulating its economy from potential sanctions, should it attack Taiwan.

Wray said that China is “trying to cushion themselves from harm if they do anything to draw the ire of the international community”, and that the Chinese government is pressuring Western businesses not to criticise Beijing or its policies.

He declined to say whether an invasion of Taiwan has become more likely due to these measures, but warn that Western investments in China could be similarly impacted by such a conflict.

Just as in Russia, Western investments built over years could become hostage, capital stranded. Supply chains and relationships disrupted.

Wray also shared that the Chinese government had directly interfered in a New York congressional election, because they did not want a candidate who was a critic and a former Tiananmen Square protestor to be elected.

China has for far too long counted on being everybody’s second-highest priority. They are not flying under the radar anymore.

Both Wray and McCallum said that the intention of the joint address was to “send the clearest signal” to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), because if China decides to invade Taiwan, it would cause “one of the most horrific business disruptions the world has ever seen“.

Read more : US Mil Contractor Admits Selling Aviation Secrets To China!

 

FBI + MI5 : Examples Of Chinese Spying

McCallum shared some specific cases of Chinese spying activities that MI5 detected and thwarted.

Covert Theft

Late last year Chinese intelligence officer Shu Yenjoon was convicted in a US court on charges of economic espionage and theft of trade secrets from the US aviation sector.

Shu was active in Europe too: he’d been part of a prolific Ministry of State Security network targeting the aerospace sector.

MI5 worked with those being targeted in the UK to mitigate the risks until the FBI action could solve the problem for both of us.

Tech Transfer

Clandestine espionage methodology isn’t always necessary. Take the tale of Smith’s Harlow, a UK-based precision engineering firm. In 2017 Smith’s Harlow entered into a deal with a Chinese firm, Futures Aerospace. The first of three agreed technology transfers saw Futures pay £3m for quality control procedures and training courses.

You know how this ends: after further sharing of valuable IP, Futures abandoned the deal. Smith’s Harlow went into administration in 2020. As their Chairman put it: “They’ve taken what they wanted and now they’ve got it, they didn’t need the shell of Smith’s”.

Information Advantage

The CCP doesn’t just use intelligence officers posing as diplomats in the classic fashion. Privileged information is gathered on multiple channels, in what is sometimes referred to as the ‘thousand grains of sand’ strategy.

In Germany a retired political scientist and his wife who together ran a foreign policy think tank passed information to the Chinese intelligence services for almost ten years.

In Estonia a NATO maritime scientist was convicted for passing information to his Chinese handlers, who claimed to be working for a think tank.

Cultivating New Contacts

The deceptive use of professional networking sites is well known. Seemingly flattering approaches turn into something more insidious – and damaging.

In one example a British aviation expert received an approach online, ostensibly went through a recruitment process, and was offered an attractive employment opportunity. He travelled twice to China where he was wined and dined. He was then asked – and paid – for detailed technical information on military aircraft. The ‘company’ was actually run by Chinese intelligence officers.

Read more : China Should Worry About Russia Invading Ukraine!

 

Chinese Response To FBI + MI5 Spying Allegations

Chinese government officials naturally rejected spying allegations by the FBI and MI5.

A spokesman for the Chinese embassy in Washington, Liu Pengyu, called the accusations groundless and said that China “firmly opposes and combats all forms of cyber-attacks“, and would “never encourage, support or condone cyber-attacks“.

His statement also said that the Taiwan issue was “purely China’s internal affair” and that there was “no room for compromise or concession“. It also said that China “will strive for the prospect of peaceful reunification with utmost sincerity and efforts“, but noted that China would “reserve the option of taking all necessary measures in response to the interference of foreign forces“.

Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian did not address the claims directly, but accused the United States of being the real danger instead.

The relevant US politician has been playing up the so-called China threat to smear and attack China. Facts have fully proven that the US is the biggest threat to world peace, stability and development.

We urge this US official to have the right perspective, see China’s developments in an objective and reasonable manner and stop spreading lies and stop making irresponsible remarks.

 

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Shanghai Police Data On 1 Billion Chinese Citizens Leaked!

A hacker is selling data on a billion Chinese citizens, that he stole from the Shanghai national police database!

Find out what’s going on, and what this data breach entails!

 

Shanghai Police Data On 1 Billion Chinese Citizens Leaked!

A hacker who called himself “ChinaDan” posted in the Breach Forums that he hacked into the Shanghai National Police (SHGA) database and stole more than 23 terabytes of data.

He is offering to sell data on 1 billion Chinese citizens, including their name, address, birthplace, national ID number and mobile numbers, for 10 bitcoins – which is currently worth about US$204,285 / €200,227.

In 2022, the Shanghai National Police (SHGA) database was leaked. This database contains many TB of data and information on billions of Chinese citizen.

Databases contain information on 1 billion Chinese national residents and several billion case records, including: name, address, birthplace, national ID number, mobile number, all crime/case details.

He also posted a sample of 750,000 data entries from the three main indexes of the database, for potential buyers to evaluate.

 

Shanghai Police Database Left Unsecured For 14 Months!

ChinaDan claimed that the SHGA database was left unsecured on an Alibaba Cloud server. This was confirmed by several cybersecurity experts who had earlier stumbled upon the same database.

Even worse, the database was apparently left unsecured for at least 14 months! Vinny Troia – the founder of dark web intelligence first, Shadowbyte, said that he first discovered the SHGA database “around January” 2021.

Troia even downloaded one of the main indexes of the SHGA database, which contained information on nearly 970 million Chinese citizens (at that time).

And best of all – they made the data available to anybody who registers for an account!

The site that I found it on is public, anybody (could) access it, all you have to do is register for an account. Since it was opened in April 2021, any number of people could have downloaded the data.

Either they forgot about it, or they intentionally left it open because it’s easier for them to access. I don’t know why they would. It sounds very careless.

Read more : Did Hackers Release Pfizer + Moderna Vaccine Death Data?!

 

This Was Second Hack Of Shanghai National Police Database!

Bob Diachenko – a Ukrainian cybersecurity researcher – discovered the database independently in April, and noticed that the databased was attacked in mid-June by a hacker who copied the data, destroyed the copy on the server and left a ransom note demanding 10 bitcoins for its recovery.

By July 1, the ransom note disappeared, but only 7 gigabytes of data was available on the server, instead of the earlier 23 TB.

It is unknown if this data ransom “hack” was performed by ChinaDan, or a different hacker.

Diachenko said that the unsecured and exposed database continued to be used after that, until it was shut down over the weekend, after news of the data leak broke.

Maybe there was some junior developer who noticed it and tried to remove the notes before senior management noticed them.

This is shocking because it suggests that the database administrators were already aware of a prior breach, but did nothing to secure the database, or shore up cybersecurity measures.

Read more : Was Facebook Taken Down By 13 Year-Old Chinese Hacker?

 

Most Of China Affected By Shanghai Police Data Leak!

The Shanghai National Police data leak is currently the largest leak of public information ever.

It does not just cover people who live in, or have been in Shanghai. The database actually has information on over 70% of its 1.4 billion population in almost all counties in China.

The data contained information about almost all the counties in China, and I have even discovered data related to a remote county in Tibet, where there are only a few thousand residents.
– Yi Fu-Xian, a senior scientist at the University of Wisconsin-Madison

This massive data leak acutely demonstrates the risk of government collection of data. China notably collects a tremendous amount of data on its citizens, including digital and biological data through facial recognition, iris scanners, social media tracking and phone trackers.

Once such data is leaked, it is forever exposed, putting people at risk of scams, identity theft, or even extortion.

 

China Censors Coverage Of Shanghai Police Data Leak

The Chinese government and the Shanghai Police have both refused to comment on the massive data leak.

Instead, they started blocking related words on Weibo, like “Shanghai data leak”, “data leak”, “Shanghai national security database breach”, “1 billion citizens’ record leak”.

Censors have also scrubbed news on this data breach from WeChat, with one popular WeChat user telling his 27,000 followers that he had been summoned to be questioned by the police.

China’s major English-language media like CGTN, Global Times, Xinhua, etc. have also not published any story on the Shanghai police data leak, despite public interest and its wide-ranging consequences for China.

Read more : Chinese Media Accidentally Leaks Ukraine Censorship Order!

 

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US, Canada, Ukraine Voted Against Anti-Nazi Resolution?!

Find out why the US, Canada and Ukraine repeatedly voted against an anti-Nazi resolution in the United Nations!

 

Claim : US, Canada, Ukraine Voted Against Anti-Nazi Resolution!

Pro-Russia and pro-CCP netizens, as well as the Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛), are claiming that the US, Canada and Ukraine are the only three of four countries to vote against the anti-Nazi resolution in the United Nations.

Here is a recent example, which refers to a 2014 UN Resolution called “Combating glorification of Nazism, neo-Nazism and other practices that contribute to fuelling contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance“.

Why are the US, Canada, and Ukraine the only three of four countries in the world to vote NO to the UN resolution to combat Nazism and Neo-Nazism? In fact most European countries abstained, while the vast majority of the global south including China, India, Russia voted yes

Note : This photo has often been used as “evidence” that Ukraine and the US are pro-Nazi. The truth is – this is a digitally manipulated photo.

 

Here’s Why US, Canada, Ukraine Voted Against Anti-Nazi Resolution!

At first glance, it is easy enough to see why pro-Russia and pro-CCP netizens actually believe that the US, Canada and Ukraine are Nazi supporters.

Let’s go through the facts of this UN resolution, and find out why US, Canada and Ukraine voted against an anti-Nazi resolution.

Fact #1 : US, Canada, Ukraine Voted Against Anti-Nazi Resolution

First, let me confirm that the US, Canada and Ukraine did indeed vote No to a 2014 UN resolution called 2014 UN Resolution called “Combating glorification of Nazism, neo-Nazism and other practices that contribute to fuelling contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance“.

Here was how the voting went :

  • Total voting membership : 193
  • Members voting Yes : 132
  • Members voting No : 4 (US, Canada, Ukraine, Palau)
  • Members abstaining : 51 (including all EU member states)
  • Members who did not vote : 6

Fact #2 : This Is Old News From 2014

This is old news from 2014 that is being resurrected due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Russia calls their invasion of Ukraine a “special operation” to “denazify Ukraine”, and they justified it by claiming that Ukraine is full of Nazis.

Hence, pro-Russia and pro-CCP groups, including the Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛), have been promoting this story as “evidence” that the US, Canada and Ukraine are pro-Nazi.

Read more : Did Russia Shoot Down NATO Jets + Helicopters In Ukraine?!

Fact #3 : Resolution Was Presented By Russia To Justify Annexation Of Crimea

The 2014 UN resolution was presented by Russia as a way to justify its annexation of Crimea in March 2014.

That was why Ukraine joined the US and Canada in voting against the resolution. All European Union member states abstained en masse from the resolution for the same reason.

Speaking to European Voice before the vote, Lithuania’s foreign minister, Linas Linkevičius, said that “no one should doubt that we are condemning fascism”, but, he continued, “under cover of this condemnation, Russia is pursuing its own agenda”.

It was not that those countries support Nazism or facism. It’s because they do not agree that Russia should use it as a pretext to attack other countries.

Fact #4 : Ukraine First Voted No In 2014

This resolution has actually been presented on a yearly basis since 1980, but Ukraine only started to vote no in 2014, after Russia annexed Crimea.

Their official reason for Ukraine voting No though was because the document did not reflect the crimes of the Stalin regime :

Andrey Tsimbalyuk, Ukraine’s Representative in the UN, said in 2014: “Until Stalinism and neo-Stalinism are judged with the same degree, as Nazism, neo-Nazism and other forms of intolerance, Ukraine will not be able to support this document.”

This is why pro-Russia and pro-CCP netizens only mention the 2014 resolution, but not the earlier versions. That was the first time Ukraine voted against the resolution.

Did Russian annexation of Crimea turn Ukrainians into Nazis? Or did they simply dislike Russia’s use of Nazism to justify their illegal invasion of Ukraine?

Read more : What Should China Worry About Russia-Ukraine War?

Fact #5 : US Voted No To Defend Freedom Of Speech

Thanks to a CCP supporter, Wan Chun Hong, I confirm that United States has voted against each instance of this resolution as far back as 1985.

The United States also abstained from voting for this resolution in the 1980 resolution, together with 17 other countries.

The US reason for voting against the resolution was to defend the freedom of speech. As Nicholas Hill, the Deputy US Representative for ECOSOC explained on November 12, 2021 :

The United States Supreme Court has consistently affirmed the constitutional right to freedom of speech and the rights of peaceful assembly and association, including by avowed Nazis, whose hatred and xenophobia are vile and widely scorned by the American people. We nevertheless firmly defend the constitutional rights of those who exercise their fundamental freedoms to combat intolerance and express strong opposition to the odious Nazi creed and others that espouse similar hatreds.

For these reasons, the United States has voted against each new version of this resolution since 2005 and is, again, compelled to vote “No” on this resolution, and calls on other States to do the same.

Nazism is also far less of a problem today than white nationalism, or Russian and Chinese aggression against their neighbours.

Read more : Chinese J-16 Fighter Fired Flares, Chaff At Australian Plane!
Read more : Did Chinese Jamming Attacks Force US Navy To Withdraw?!

Fact #6 : Israel Voted No At Least Once

CCP supporter, Wan Chun Hong, intended to use the 1985 UN Resolution as evidence that Western countries were really supporters of Nazism.

There is one problem though – two countries voted No against the measure called “Measures to be taken against Nazi, Fascist and neo-Fascist activities and all other forms of totalitarian ideologies and practices based on racial intolerance, hatred and terror“.

One was the United States. The other was Israel. Does Israel voting against that anti-Nazi resolution mean that the Israelis are also pro-Nazis, like the United States?

CCP supporters would like us to believe that, because they think we are idiots.

Fact #7 : Russia Is Using Resolution To Justify Attacks On Neighbours

Russia has been using this resolution to justify its attacks on its neighbours, as Nicholas Hill also pointed out in the same November 12, 2021 explanation :

[T]he United States must once again express opposition to this resolution, a document most notable for its thinly veiled attempts to legitimize Russian disinformation campaigns denigrating neighboring nations and promoting the distorted Soviet narrative of much of contemporary European history, using the cynical guise of halting Nazi glorification.

Here is a list of territories that Russia has occupied so far :

  • Transnistria : seized from Moldova in 1992
  • Abkhazia and South Ossetia : seized from Georgia in 2008
  • Crimea, and parts of Donetsk and Luhansk : seized from Ukraine in 2014
  • Parts of Donetsk and all of Luhansk : seized from Ukraine in 2022 (ongoing)

This is really nothing more than Russian propaganda to justify their invasions of other countries, reminiscent of what Nazi Germany did in the 1930s.

Russian and Chinese propaganda have also tried to introduce fake claims like NATO had been planning to invade Russia from Ukraine, or that they created COVID-19 in Ukrainian biological labs.

Read more : Secret NATO Headquarters Under Azovstal Exposed?!
Read more : Did US Biolabs In Ukraine Create COVID-19 Virus?!

Fact #8 : Russia Colluded With Nazi Germany In World War 2

Russian and Chinese propaganda avoid mentioning how the Soviet Union colluded with Nazi Germany, and was responsible (in part) for starting World War 2 in Europe.

The fascist ideology of Nazi Germany did not gel well with the communist ideology of the Soviet Union, which was why relations between the two countries deteriorated once Hitler came into power.

But the Soviet Union warmed up to the Nazis, and actively colluded with Nazi Germany before and during World War 2… up until Nazi Germany invaded the Soviet Union in Operation Barbarossa.

  • Multiple commercial agreements provided Nazi Germany with desperately needed raw materials, including oil.
  • The Soviet Union invaded Poland in partnership with Nazi Germany.
  • The Soviet Union invaded Lithuania, Estonia and Latvia, just after Germany invaded France, the Netherlands and Belgium.
  • The Soviet Union tried to join the Axis Pact, which consisted of Nazi Germany, Japan and Italy.

The Soviet Union provided Nazi Germany with the means to avoid the economic blockade, and continue their invasion of Europe.

If Hitler did not make the mistake of invading the Soviet Union, it was likely that Europe would have been divided between the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany as per the infamous Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact.

In these pictures from 23 August 1939, you can see Soviet Foreign Minister, Vyacheslav Molotov, signing the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact; and Stalin shaking hands with German Foreign Minister Joachim von Ribbentrop, after signing the pact.

Vyacheslav Molotov signs the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact (left), Stalin shaking hands with Ribbentrop after signing the pact (right)

Fact #9 : United States Was Anti-Nazi Long Before Russia

Russian and Chinese propaganda always skim over the inconvenient fact that the United States was anti-Nazi long before Russia.

While Russia was actively colluding with Nazis, and partnering with Nazi Germany in dividing up Central Europe; the United States not only prepared for war against Germany, it shared critical technology with Britain and provided them with tremendous amounts of armaments through the Lend-Lease Act.

Russia would also end up benefiting from the US Lend-Lease Act, which saw the US producing and shipping US$50.1 billion worth of military equipment and supplies (equivalent to US$690 billion in 2020) to Allies.

Fact #10 : United States Prevented Soviet Union’s Collapse

Russian and Chinese propaganda also (intentionally?) forget to point out that it was the United States that helped to prevent the Soviet Union’s collapse during the German invasion in 1941.

It took the German armed forces less than 6 months to advance within 20 miles of the Kremlin. The complete capitulation of Russia was stopped, in part, by a prodigious amount of arms and equipment sent by the United States :

  • 400,000 jeeps & trucks
  • 14,000 airplanes
  • 8,000 tractors
  • 13,000 tanks
  • 1.5 million blankets
  • 15 million pairs of army boots
  • 107,000 tons of cotton
  • 2.7 million tons of petrol products
  • 4.5 million tons of food

Reminiscent of the military aid that Ukraine is now receiving from the United States and other members of NATO, the US Lend-Lease Act supplied the Soviet Union with $11.3 billion ($180 billion in 2020 currency) worth of aid from 1941 to 1945.

Without such large amounts of aid from the United States, it was likely that Russia would today be part of a Greater Nazi Germany, or at least a vassal state of Nazi Germany.

Stalin himself acknowledged the value of American support to his aide and future USSR leader, Nikita Khrushchev, who said :

I would like to tell about some remarks Stalin made and repeated several times when we were “discussing freely” among ourselves. He stated bluntly that if the United States had not helped us, we would not have won the war. If we had had to fight Nazi Germany one on one, we could not have stood up against Germany’s pressure, and we would have lost the war.

We should note that the US helped Russia, even though the US was at that time a neutral country, and Russia was responsible for kicking off World War 2 by colluding with Nazi Germany to invade Central European countries.

 

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Did Dutch Gov Close Farms To Fight Climate Change?!

Did the Dutch government just close thousands of farms and cattle ranches to fight climate change?!

Take a look at the viral claim, and find out what the facts really are!

 

Claim : Dutch Government Closed Farms To Fight Climate Change!

People have been sharing videos of angry farmers blocking roads with their tractors, claiming that they are protesting the closure of farms and cattle ranchers by the Dutch government.

Such videos are now being spread in pro-CCP groups as “evidence” of corrupt Western governments, or how Western governments oppress the common people.

28 June 2022
As the Dutch government closed dozens of farms and cattle ranches to reduce nitrogen by 30%.
Angry and hungry farmers blocked the roads nationwide
Corrupt Dutch govt trying to artificially create food shortage.

Following politicians’ decision to close dozens of farms and cattle ranches to reduce nitrogen to comply with absurd EU rules on nitrogen pollution, angry Dutch farmers have issued an ultimatum and are threatening to block the country’s airports, ports and distribution centers.

The Dutch government wants to close 17,000 farms out of 50,000 by 2030 to reduce Nitrogen emissions. Their “leaders” have bought into the climate change hysteria during a time of impending global food shortages. These bozos have a few screws missing.

 

Truth : Dutch Government Did NOT Close Farms To Fight Climate Change!

These posts appear to be an intentional “misunderstanding” of the facts surrounding these Dutch farmers’ protests.

These protests have been covered extensively, and so have the Dutch government’s proposal. So it seems incredulous that people would continue to lie about this issue.

Fact #1 : Dutch Government Did NOT Close Any Farm / Cattle Ranch

Let’s start with the most basic fact – the Dutch government did not close any farm or cattle ranch. This is complete and utter nonsense.

There are no laws in the Netherlands that would permit the Dutch government to forcibly take over, or shut down, any farm or cattle ranch.

This kind of blatant lie can only perpetuate in the minds of conspiracy nutcases, and Chinese netizens because only authoritarian governments (like the CCP in China) are capable of such actions.

Seizing and closing farms and cattle ranch may be possible for the government in China, but not in the Netherlands.

In fact, the Dutch government has offered BUY OUT (not close) farms near nature reserves.

Fact #2 : Dutch Farmers Have Been Protesting Since 2019!

What many of these “concerned netizens” (intentionally?) do not tell you is that Dutch farmers have been protesting against such climate change laws since 2019.

Dutch farmers protest in October 2019

Fact #3 : The Government Was Complying With A Court Order

This issue actually started way back in May 2019, the Dutch Administrative Court of the Council of State (the highest administrative body in the Netherlands) ruled that the Dutch government breached EU rules on protecting nature reserves from ammonia and nitrous oxide.

The Dutch Administrative Court suspended permits for all construction projects that pollute the atmosphere with nitrogen compounds, stalling the building of new homes, roads and airport runways… as well as the expansion of dairy, pig and poultry farms.

Fact #4 : Dutch Government Tried Other Measures First

To comply with the court order, the Dutch government tried other measures first.

For example, in 2020, they cut the maximum speed limit on roads in the Netherlands from 130 km/h to just 100 km/h for most of the day, to reduce nitrous oxide emissions.

The government also allocated more money to help farmers reduce emissions from pigs, and changed the composition of animal feed.

Fact #5 : Dutch Farms Produce A Lot Of Pollution

The problem is partly caused by Dutch farmers themselves. Their farms are highly concentrated, with four times more animal biomass per hectare than the EU average.

Dutch agriculture is responsible for 40% of the nitrogen pollution in the Netherlands. The entire construction sector, for example, is only responsible for 0.6% of nitrogen emissions.

Thanks to its large livestock sector, and intensive use of fertiliser, the Netherlands – the world’s second-largest agricultural exporter – is also one of the top greenhouse gas emitters in Europe.

Fact #6 : Only Farms Near Nature Reserves Are In Danger

Depending on their proximity to nature reserves (Natura-2000 areas), Dutch farms will have to reduce their nitrogen emissions by 12% to 70%.

Those located in or close to the Natura-2000 areas will be particularly hard-hit by the new nitrogen limits :

  • 40% of the nitrogen sensitive Natura-2000 areas must be below the critical deposition value (< 255 mole per hectare) in 2025,
  • 50% of the nitrogen sensitive Natura-2000 areas must be below the critical deposition value in 2030, and
  • 74% of the nitrogen sensitive Natura-2000 areas must be below the critical deposition value in 2035.

Fact #7 : Provincial Government To Formulate Emission Reduction Plan

While the Dutch government came up with the plan to reduce nitrogen emissions to meet EU requirements, it is up to the Dutch provinces to develop the necessary measures to hit those targets.

Provincial governments have a year to formulate their own plans, to meet the pollution reduction targets.

Fact #8 : This Is Part Of EU Natura 2000 Conservation Efforts

This isn’t just a Dutch issue, it is actually part of the EU effort to protect the Natura 2000 network of vulnerable and endangered plant and animal habitats.

The Natura 2000 sites cover some 18% of the European Union land area, and 8% of its marine territory.

Fact #9 : Dutch Government Is Financing Agricultural Reforms

To help farmers meet those targets, the Dutch government has earmarked an extra €24.3 billion (about US$25.6 billion) to finance agricultural reforms and their existing buy-out programs.

Farmers who accept the government buy-out program can still open a new farm at a less sensitive location, as long as they substantially reduce nitrogen emissions.

Fact #10 : Protests Are ALLOWED In Real Democracies

What Chinese netizens may not be aware is that protests are not only common, they are allowed in real democracies.

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, for example, defended the farmers’ right to protest, but reminded them not to break the law :

Freedom of speech and the right to demonstrate are a vital part of our democratic society, and I will always defend them.

But … it is not acceptable to create dangerous situations, it is not acceptable to intimidate officials, we will never accept that.

With the exception of a few farmers setting bales of hay on fire outside town halls and near roads, and attacking police officers, the majority of farmers have protested the proposed plan peacefully.

So what the Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛) and pro-CCP netizens are deriding as chaos, is really just people expressing their real freedom of speech, which includes the right to protest. Try that in China, and see what that gets you.

 

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He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Canadian General Cadieu “Captured” By Russia Is OTW Back!

Canadian general Trevor Cadieu, who was allegedly captured by Russia, is on the way back to face sexual assault charges in Canada!

Find out what the heck is going on!

 

Claim : Russia Captured Canadian General Cadieu In Azovstal!

Pro-Russian websites, Chinese netizens and the Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛) have claimed since May 2022 that Russia captured Canadian Lieutenant General Trevor John Cadieu when he tried to escape from the Azovstal metalworks in Mariupol, Ukraine.

General Trevor Cadieu (Trevor John Cadieu), captured by Russian troops while trying to escape from the cellars of Azovstal, was the commander of the Canadian Ground Forces, APA reports citing Mailbd.

Seated in the catacombs under the Mariupol steel plant “Azovstal” nationalists staged a provocation, trying to hide the Canadian general’s attempt to escape. After the capture of a high-ranking foreign soldier by units of the RF Armed Forces, it became clear why so many efforts were made to save him.

A high-ranking mercenary tried to break out of the encirclement at Azovstal several times. It was for this that the West insisted on humanitarian corridors for the exit of civilians: among them, foreign specialists had to leave the catacombs.

This Chinese example even claimed that NATO lost 5-6 helicopters and a ship trying to get General Cadieu out of Azovstal.

A lot of rumors that Russia has captured a Canadian general trying to escape thru sewer tunnels. Could be a few more NATO military advisers still in the plant

They have spent losing 5 or 6 helicopters and 1 ship trying to get the VVIP out.

 

Canadian General Cadieu “Captured” By Russia Is OTW Back!

Despite debunking it several times, both Russian and Chinese supporters continue to push the claims, even after Azovstal fell on 16 May 2022, and General Cadieu was nowhere to be found.

Russian and Chinese propaganda shifted course, claiming that General Cadieu was likely being held by Moscow as a bargaining chip, or being interrogated for his knowledge of Ukrainian and NATO plans to invade Russia.

There are a couple of problems with those claims :

  1. In mid October 2021, Lieutenant General Trevor Cadieu was accused of sexual assault that he allegedly committed as a cadet in 1994.
  2. He resigned and left the Canadian armed forces on 5 April 2022, after his appointment to head the Canadian army was derailed by those sexual assault charges.
  3. He only left for Ukraine in April 2022 – weeks after Azovstal was surrounded by Russian forces. So it would have been impossible for him to be captured in Azovstal.

Read more : Did Russia Capture Canadian General Cadieu In Azovstal?!

Now even their new claims are being proven false.

The months-long investigation into those sexual assault charges was completed, and he was formally charged with sexual assault on 15 June 2022.

According to the Ottawa Citizen, General Cadieu was informed of the charges, and he indicated in an email from Ukraine that he was “making arrangements to return to Canada from Ukraine“.

Yet again – Russian and Chinese propaganda have proven to be false.

Not only is former General Trevor Cadieu still not captured by Russian forces, he is arranging to return to Canada to face two sexual assault charges.

No NATO soldiers or generals were caught fighting in Ukraine, because there are no NATO soldiers or officers in Ukraine.

All NATO forces that were helping to train Ukrainian soldiers were pulled out before the Russian invasion began.

Read more : Did Russia Capture NATO Officers After Fall Of Azovstal?!

Russia is having trouble defeating Ukraine because it has a shitty army, not because thousands of NATO soldiers and officers are fighting with the Ukrainians.

No amount of fake news will change the fact that over 30 thousand Russian soldiers have been killed by the Ukrainians – twice as many Russia lost in their invasion of Afghanistan.

No amount of fake news will also change the fact that Russia lost over 1,500 tanks, and over 3,700 armoured fighting vehicles, as of 3 July 2022.

The Russian “special operation” is bogged down by tenacious Ukrainian defences, with nary a NATO soldier or officer in sight. Just a lot of NATO supplied weapons.

If NATO was truly involved, they would have rolled the piss-poor Russian army back into Russia. Instead, the Russian invasion of Ukraine has now stagnated into a slow artillery siege of the Donbas region.

Variants of this FAKE NEWS are now being shared in pro-Russia and pro-CCP websites and groups.

Please help us FIGHT FAKE NEWS by sharing this fact check article out!

 

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China Slashes COVID-19 International Travel Quarantine!

China just relaxed entry requirements, by slashing more than half of its COVID-19 international travel quarantine!

Here is what you need to know…

 

China Slashes COVID-19 International Travel Quarantine!

On June 28, 2022, the Chinese National Health Commission announced a reduction of China’s quarantine requirement for international travellers.

China had earlier mandated that most inbound travellers must undergo a 14 + 7 quarantine protocol – at least 14 days at a government quarantine facility, followed by 7 days of self-isolation at home.

The new quarantine requirement will be a much shorter 7 + 3 protocol – travellers only need to spend 7 days at a quarantine facility, followed by 3 days of self-isolation at home.

 

Shorter Travel Quarantine, But China Still Maintaining Zero COVID

While China has relaxed its international travel quarantine requirements, that doesn’t mean it is going to quit its Zero COVID policy.

On the same day China announced the shorter quarantine policy, Chinese President Xi Jinping reaffirmed the Zero COVID policy on a visit to the Wuhan – where the pandemic started.

According to Chinese state news agency Xinhua, he said that he would rather “temporarily sacrifice a little economic growth” than “harm people’s health“.

This announcement came one day after Beijing Daily – the official CCP newspaper – published a quote by a senior Communist Party official who said that Beijing would remain under the Zero COVID policy “for the next five years”.

That sparked panic, causing Beijing Daily to remove the quote after claiming it was an “editing error”. Chinese censors also went into overdrive, removing all references to the quote.

According to CNN which analysed the entire speech, Beijing party chief Cai Qi did discuss at length the possibility that Zero COVID policies may remain in place for Beijing over the next five years.

Those measures, he said, would include routine PCR tests, strict entry rules, regular health checks in residential neighbourhoods and public venues. There will also be rigorous monitoring and testing for people entering and leaving Beijing.

So Chinese citizens and foreigners willing to tolerate the travel quarantine will have to continue putting up with mass testing and lockdowns of entire cities over small outbreaks. How long that lasts is anyone’s guess…

 

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FCC Commissioner Asks Apple + Google To Remove TikTok!

FCC Commissioner Brendan Carr just publicly asked Apple and Google to remove TikTok from their app stores!

Here is what you need to know about the renewed heat on TikTok!

 

FCC Commissioner Asks Apple + Google To Remove TikTok!

On June 29, 2022, FCC Commissioner Brendan Carr publicly called on Apple and Google to remove TikTok from their app stores.

This move came after leaked TikTok audio recordings obtained by Buzzfeed News revealed that ByteDance staff in China (and possibly the Chinese government) retained extensive access to data on US citizens.

Read more : TikTok Leak Showed China Repeatedly Accessed Private User Data!

In his public letter to Apple CEO Tim Cook, and Google CEO Sundar Pichai, the FCC Commissioner asked that TikTok be removed for “its pattern of surreptitious data practices”.

It is clear that TikTok poses an unacceptable national security risk due to its extensive data harvesting being combined with Beijing’s apparently unchecked access to that sensitive data.

But it is also clear that TikTok’s pattern of conduct and misrepresentations regarding the unfettered access that persons in Beijing have to sensitive U.S. user data – just some of which is detailed below – puts it out of compliance  with the policies that both of your companies require every app to adhere to as a condition of remaining available on your app stores.

Therefore, I am requesting that you apply the plain text of your app store policies to TikTok and remove it from your app stores for failure to abide by those terms.

FCC Commissioner Carr also labelled TikTok as a “sophisticated surveillance tool” that is designed to harvest “personal and sensitive data“.

At its core, TikTok functions as a sophisticated surveillance tool that harvests extensive amounts of personal and sensitive data.

Indeed, TikTok collects everything from search and browsing histories to keystroke patterns and biometric identifiers, including faceprints – which researchers have said might be used in unrelated facial recognition technology – and voiceprints.

It collects location data as well as draft messages and metadata, plus it has collected the text, images, and videos that are stored on a device’s clipboard. The list of personal and sensitive data it collects goes on from there.

This should come as no surprise, however. Within its own borders, the PRC has developed some of the most invasive and omnipresent surveillance capabilities in the world to maintain authoritarian control.

Carr ended his letter with an “ultimatum” of sorts – if Apple and Google do not remove TikTok from their app stores, they need to provide “separate responses” to him by July 8, 2022, explaining why TikTok does not contravene their App Store policies.

As of June 30, 2022, TikTok is still available to download in the US app stores of both Apple and Google.

If Apple and Google acts on the FCC Commissioner’s request, TikTok will only be removed from their US app stores. It won’t affect downloads in other countries.

Neither would it prevent users in the US from continuing to use TikTok. They just won’t be able to download it any longer, or update to newer versions.

 

FCC Commissioner Lists History Of TikTok Data Practices!

While the leaked TikTok audio recordings may have precipitated this open letter to Apple and Google, FCC Commissioner Carr pointed to a list of questionable data practices by TikTok in the past.

The list makes for really interesting reading, especially for those who are not up to date on TikTok’s privacy and data security issues :

  • In August 2020, TikTok circumvented a privacy safeguard in Google’s Android operating system to obtain data that allowed it to track users online.
  • In March 2020, researchers discovered that TikTok, through its app in the Apple App Store, was accessing users’ most sensitive data, including passwords, cryptocurrency wallet addresses, and personal messages.
  • In 2021, TikTok agreed to pay $92 million to settle lawsuits alleging that the app “clandestinely vacuumed up and transferred to servers in China (and to other servers accessible from within China) vast quantities of private and personally identifiable user data and content that could be employed to identify, profile, and track the physical and digital location and activities of United States users now and in the future.”
  • In March 2022, a report included current and former TikTok employees stating in interviews that TikTok delegates key decisions to ByteDance officials in Beijing and that an employee was asked to enter sensitive information into a.cn domain, which is the top-level domain operated by the Chinese government’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology.
  • Earlier, in 2019, TikTok paid $5.7 million to settle Federal Trade Commission allegations that its predecessor app illegally collected personal data on children under the age of 13.
  • India- the world’s largest democracy–has already banned TikTok on national security grounds for stealing and surreptitiously transmitting user data in an unauthorized manner.
  • Multiple U.S. military branches have also banned TikTok from government-issued devices due to national security risks, including the Navy, Army, Air Force, Coast Guard, and Marine Corps.
  • U.S. government officials have also urged troops and their dependents to erase the app from their personal phones.
  • U.S. national security agencies have similarly banned TikTok from official devices citing national security risks, including the Department of Defense, Department of Homeland Security, and the TSA.
  • The RNC and DNC have warned campaigns about using TikTok based on security concerns and the threat of officials in Beijing accessing sensitive data.
  • Citing data security concerns, private U.S. business operations have also banned TikTok from company devices, including Wells Fargo.
  • Once accessed by personnel in Beijing, there is no check on the CCP using the extensive, private, and sensitive data about U.S. users for espionage activities because compliance with the PC’s 2017 National Intelligence law is mandatory in China.

 

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Are Western Media Covering Up Riots In US West Coast?!

Are the Western media covering up massive riots with looting and vandalism on the US West Coast?!

Take a look at the viral claim, and find out what the facts really are!

 

Claim : Western Media Are Covering Up Riots In US West Coast!

People are sharing a video of a recent riot in America, claiming that Western media is actively concealing the news.

Allegedly, only the Chinese media and netizens are exposing the riots on the US West Coast by releasing such videos to show the world how decadent and lawless the United States really is.

The viral video is often shared with comments like these :

Protests, vandalism and looting rage across the west coast of US on 31/5 and 1/6/22 but not reported by CNN & BBC . Also not by Singapore’s CNA

Lawlessness in the country supposed to be icon of justice

这就是美国

This is America

 

Truth : Western Media Are Not Covering Up Riots In US West Coast!

This is yet another example of FAKE NEWS created and propagated by the Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛), and pro-CCP netizens.

After investigating the viral video, here are the facts that I was able to ascertain…

Fact #1 : Video Was Recorded In Cleveland, Ohio

The viral video does not show riots in the US West Coast. I geolocated the precise location of this riot to East 4th Street (E 4th St.) in Cleveland, Ohio.

If you look closely at the video, you can spot these landmarks and their signboards :

  • Butcher and the Brewer (Old-World Cuts and Hand-Built Brews)
  • Windsor Apartments
  • Mabel’s BBQ
  • Society Lounge
  • Zocalo Tequileria
  • Flannery’s Pub
  • Buckeye Apartments

Those landmarks allowed me to precisely geolocate the entire video to that one street – East 4th Street in Cleveland, Ohio.

Fact #2 : Ohio Is A Midwestern State, Near The East Coast

Ohio is an American Midwestern state. But despite that classification, it is actually located next to the Eastern seaboard.

It is most definitely not on the US West Coast, which comprises of the states of California, Oregon and Washington.

I have no idea why the wumao would lie about the riot happening on the US West Coast. Perhaps, it is the American region most familiar to Chinese netizens, since it is located next to the Pacific Ocean.

Fact #3 : Cleveland Riot Happened In 2020

The video does not depict a riot that happened on May 31 and June 1, 2022. It actually showed people rioting over the death of George Floyd on June 2, 2020 – two years ago.

Chinese netizens may not be aware, but people in the United States are allowed to participate in peaceful protests, like the 2020 protests against police brutality and racism, epitomised by George Floyd’s death.

But violent riots are against the law, and so 99 people were arrested in the 2020 Cleveland riots.

Fact #4 : There Are No Riots Happening On The US West Coast

Just in case Chinese netizens are “confused”, there are no riots happening on the US West Coast, at the end of May or early June 2022.

There are no acts of vandalism or looting raging across the US West Coast, which is precisely why there is ZERO COVERAGE of these riots.

No one is covering these riots because they did not happen. This is just Chinese disinformation using a legitimate video from two years ago.

Fact #5 : Western Media Covered The Cleveland Riots

Unlike in China, where the media is muzzled and “inappropriate news” are censored, Western media are under no such restrictions.

If there are riots in the United States right now, you can be sure they would be covering it. Bad news sells best, after all!

The truth is – the Western media covered the Cleveland riots extensively… when it happened in 2020! In fact, you can see a man who looks like a press photographer taking photos in the viral video.

Fact #6 : Video Is Part Of Wumao Disinformation

This isn’t the first real video being used in a wumao disinformation campaign, to drive the narrative that the United States is in a perpetual state of anarchy.

I have personally fact checked many videos and stories that were deliberately spread by the wumao as part of their disinformation campaign :

So why are the Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛), and pro-CCP netizens promoting such videos and stories?

More importantly – why is the Chinese government spending money on such disinformation campaigns?

While you ponder on those questions, watch out and be wary of similar videos and stories being spread in Chinese and pro-CCP groups.

 

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US Mil Contractor Admits Selling Aviation Secrets To China!

A US military contractor just pleaded guilty to selling classified aviation secrets to China!

 

US Mil Contractor Admits Selling Aviation Secrets To China!

On 23 June 2022, Shapour Moinian, 67, of San Diego, pleaded guilty to selling classified aviation secrets to “representatives of the Chinese government”.

Moinan admitted that he knew that those individuals were employed by, or directed by, t he government of the People’s Republic of China.

He also admitted making false statements to cover that up, by lying on his government background questionnaires in July 2017 and March 2020 that he did not have any close or continuing contacts with foreign nations, and that no foreign national had offered him a job.

He now faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison, and a fine of up to $250,000 for action as an agent of a foreign government, and up to 5 years in prison and a $250,000 fine for making false statements.

His sentencing is scheduled for August 29, where federal prosecutors have agreed to recommend a sentence of no more than 20 months, as part of his plea agreement.

As Special Agent in Charge Stacey Moy of the FBI’s San Diego Field Office explains :

The defendant admitted to being an unregistered agent of a foreign power, lying on his background check paperwork to obtain his security clearance, knowingly providing proprietary information to people controlled by the Chinese government, and willingly receiving payments from them. This is another example of how the Chinese government enhances its defense capabilities through the illicit exploitation of U.S. technology.

When someone holds a security clearance, they know what information should be reported to security officials. In this case, the defendant betrayed his sacred oath, knew his actions were wrong, and subsequently lied about it. The FBI and our partners on the Counterintelligence Task Force will pursue anyone who abuses their placement and access to obtain proprietary information on behalf of a foreign government. I specifically want to thank the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) for their continued partnership on this case.

 

How This Military Contractor Sold Aviation Secrets To China!

Moinan was a former US Army helicopter pilot who served in the United States, Germany and South Korea from 1977 to 2000. After leaving the US Army, he worked for various “cleared” defence contractors in the United States.

The term “cleared” indicates that the contractor has been vetted and cleared to work on projects involving classified information.

While working for a cleared defence contractor on various aviation projects involving the US military and intelligence agencies, Moinan was contacted by an individual in China, who claimed to be working for a technical recruiting company.

This Chinese individual offered Moinan the opportunity to consult for the aviation industry in China. In March 2017, Moinan travelled to Hong Kong to meet with this recruiter.

At that meeting, he agreed to provide information and materials related to multiple types of aircraft designed and/or manufactured in the United States, in exchange for money. Moinan accepted between $7,000 to $10,000 during that meeting.

On returning to the United States, Shapour Moinan began gathering aviation-related materials for the Chinese government.

In one instance, he copied classified materials obtained from a cleared defence contractor into a thumb drive, which he handed over to Chinese government officials during a stopover in the Shanghai airport in September 2017.

Moinan arranged for payment for this transfer to be paid through his stepdaughter’s South Korean bank account. He told her that these funds were payments for his overseas consulting work, and instructed her to transfer the funds to him in multiple transactions – to avoid scrutiny.

Moinan also accepted a mobile phone, and other equipment from these Chinese government officials to securely communicate with them, and to aid in the electronic transfer of classified materials and information.

At the end of March 2018, Moinan travelled to Bali to meet with the same individuals again. After that meeting, his step daughter received thousands of dollars in her South Korean bank account, which she wired to him in multiple transactions.

Later in 2018, Moinan went to work for another cleared defence contractor, and in August 2019, he travelled with his wife to Hong Kong to meet with the same Chinese government officials.

This time, he received $22,000 in cash for his services, which Moinan and his wife smuggled into the United States that trip.

It is currently unknown how the US government discovered Moines’s activities, but he was investigated by the FBI’s Counterintelligence Division and the Naval Criminal Investigation Service (NCIS).

 

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The Brief Kiss That Got Lightyear Banned In 14+ Countries!

Take a look at the scene that got the Disney-Pixar movie, Lightyear, banned in 14 countries, and likely China too!

 

Lightyear Movie Banned In 14 Countries + Maybe China Too!

Lightyear – the long-awaited Toy Story prequel from Disney-Pixar – has been banned in  14 Asian and Middle Eastern countries, and quite likely China too!

The ban started in the UAE, whose Media Regulatory Office of the Ministry of Youth and Culture announced on 13 June 2022 that Lightyear was banned from screening in all cinemas for “its violation of the country’s media content standards“.

A Variety report claimed that the UAE initially approved Lightyear for release, but revoked the licence after social media posts accused the movie of insulting Muslims and Islam.

That ban was then followed by other countries. The current list includes, but is not limited to :

  • United Arab Emirates
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Egypt
  • Indonesia
  • Malaysia
  • Singapore
  • Lebanon
  • Oman
  • Qatar
  • Kuwait
  • Bahrain

Although not confirmed yet, it is very likely that Lightyear will also not be allowed to screen in China.

Lightyear producer, Galyn Susman, said that Chinese authorities “asked for cuts”, which Disney declined to make. So she assumed that the movie would not be allowed to screen there either.

I’m assuming it will not make it to China. I know we’ve gotten requests for things to cut, Disney isn’t going to modify the material.

We’re not going to cut out anything, especially something as important as the loving and inspirational relationship that shows Buzz what he’s missing by the choices that he’s making, so that’s not getting cut

 

The Brief Kiss That Got Lightyear Banned In 14+ Countries!

The reasons why Lightyear has been banned in at least 14 countries, and possibly China too, is over a brief kissing scene.

In the first 30 minutes of Lightyear, Alisha Hawthorne (voiced by Uzo Aduba) – a female space ranger and a close friend of Buzz Lightyear – shares a brief kiss with her same-sex partner.

That kiss was part of a scene showing milestones in the couple’s relationship. It also shows the couple’s son, although it is not known if he was adopted or conceived through assisted reproduction.

But it was the brief kiss between two fictional characters that broke the camel’s back for censors in those countries. They demanded that the scene be cut from the film.

Normally, Disney would quietly cut such a controversial scene from the movie to comply with “local sensibilities”, since it doesn’t affect the plot.

However, Pixar employees had earlier penned a letter complaining that Disney corporate executives were censoring “nearly every moment of overtly gay affection” in their projects.

We at Pixar have personally witnessed beautiful stories, full of diverse characters, come back from Disney corporate reviews shaved down to crumbs of what they once were.

Nearly every moment of overtly gay affection is cut at Disney’s behest, regardless of when there is protest from both the creative teams and executive leadership at Pixar.

Disney caved to the pressure, and decided not to censor the kiss from Lightyear. And so, all those countries refused to grant a licence to screen the movie in theatres.

Read more : Lightyear Movie Banned In 14 Countries + Maybe China Too!

 

Lightyear Stars On Why Lightyear Was Banned…

Chris Evans, who voiced Buzz Lightyear in this prequel, labelled such objections as “frustrating”.

It’s great that we are a part of something that’s making steps forward in the social inclusion capacity.

But it’s frustrating that there are still places that aren’t where they should be.

He also told Variety magazine that he was frustrated that news coverage of the movie would be focused on such an issue :

It’s tough to not be a little frustrated that it even has to be a topic of discussion. That it is this kind of ‘news.’

The goal is that we can get to a point where it is the norm, and that this doesn’t have to be some uncharted waters, that eventually this is just the way it is.

Taika Waititi, who voices the character of Mo Morrison in the film, added :

We’re hoping for a time when we don’t even have to have this conversation. We can watch a movie and we don’t even have to bat an eyelid.

We don’t have to think ‘Oh wow, weird’. It’s not weird, it’s normal and it should be normalised.

Whenever you have these small steps that studios are making – sometimes they may feel small but also, they are steps – and it’s steps towards normalising humanity and love. I really feel sorry for countries who don’t want this film because of a tiny, weird little thing like that

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Chipmakers Brace For Noble Gas Shortage, After Russia Cut Supply!

Chipmakers worldwide are bracing for a noble gas shortage, after Russia cut supplies! Here is what you need to know…

 

Chipmakers Brace For Noble Gas Shortage, After Russia Cut Supply!

On June 2, 2022, the Russian government issued a decree stating that export of noble gases will be subject to Moscow’s approval until December 31, based on the recommendations of the Ministry of Industry and Trade.

This effectively cuts or limits the export of critical noble gases to “unfriendly” countries, and was a direct response to the fifth round of sanctions imposed by the European Union in April.

Russia and Ukraine were leading producers of noble gases since the days of the Soviet Union, and jointly supplied about 30% of the chipmaking industry’s supply of neon gas.

Both countries were closely intertwined in their noble gas supply to the world. Russia produced raw neon gas as a byproduct of its steelworks, and sent it to Ukraine for purification. That ceased with the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

 

How Badly Will Russia Noble Gas Cut Affect Chipmakers?

Noble gases like neon, argon, xenon and helium are critical in the production of microelectronics that power everything from computers to smartphones and cars.

Neon, in particular, plays a critical role in the optical lithographic process used to etch patterns on silicon wafers, creating circuits in semiconductor chips.

The state-of-the-art excimer pulsed laser used to create semiconductors, for example, requires an argon-fluorine-neon mixture, up to 95% of which is made up of exceptionally pure neon gas.

That’s why about 70% of the world’s supply of neon gas (about 540,000 tonnes) is used by the semiconductor industry.

Fortunately, Russia’s decision to cut noble gas supplies may have less impact that they assumed, because chipmakers prepared for such an eventuality.

The semiconductor industry used to rely on Ukraine and Russia for about 80% to 90% of their neon gas supply, but they started diversifying their noble gas supplies after Russia invaded and annexed Crimea in 2014.

Over the last 7-8 years, they managed to cut down their dependence on Ukraine and Russia to about 30%. And the industry generally maintains gas reserves that would last 3-6 months.

China is the main beneficiary of reduced noble gas supply from Russia. Since the war started, Chinese noble gas producers said that their daily order enquiries have jumped 5X to 6X.

For now, the semiconductor industry does not need to reduce production, but the reduced market supply will mean noble gas prices will remain elevated for some time to come.

Needless to say – this will increase the cost of semiconductors, the cost of which will be passed onto consumers.

 

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TikTok Leak : China Repeatedly Accessed Private User Data!

Leaked audio from internal TikTok meetings show that private user data has been repeatedly accessed from China!

Here is what you need to know…

 

Privacy Promise By TikTok : Overseas Data Stored In US + Singapore

For many years now, TikTok has repeatedly assured users that all data collected from users outside of China, stays out of China and is thus, not accessible to anyone in China.

To ensure that the Chinese government has no access to the data, one of the measures they took was to store all data collected overseas in servers located in the United States, with backups in Singapore.

This was explicitly stated in their New Privacy Policy :

We store the information described in the What Information We Collect section in servers located in the United States and Singapore.

Most people may not realise this, but they also added a caveat right after that, stating that their Corporate Group (in China) may remotely access the data…

When entities in our Corporate Group need information to help us provide the Platform, they remotely access the information pursuant to authorised and secure access controls.

 

TikTok Leak : China Repeatedly Accessed Private User Data!

Buzzfeed News recently received audio recordings from more than eighty (80) internal TikTok meetings, in which employees admitted that engineers in China accessed private user data.

This was despite a TikTok executive’s sworn testimony at an October 2021 US Senate hearing at the same time period, that a “world-renowned, US-based security team” decides who gets access to the private user data.

Instead, the leaked audio revealed that US staff did not have permission or knowledge of how to access the data. Rather, it was their colleagues in China who determined how and who accessed the private user data.

The leaked tapes ultimately show that TikTok may have misled lawmakers, users, and the public by downplaying the fact that their private data is readily accessible by employees in China, and potentially, the Chinese government.

Everything Is Seen In China

Eight different employees stated in nine statements that they had to refer to their colleagues in China to make those decisions.

Everything is seen in China“, said a member of TikTok’s Trust and Safety department in a September 2021 meeting.

In another September 2021 meeting, a TikTok director referred to a Beijing-based engineer as a “Master Admin” who “has access to everything“.

There’s Some Backdoor To Access User Data…

Fourteen of the leaked audio recordings were with, or about, a team of Booz Allen Hamilton consultants that TikTok brought in to investigate how data flows through TikTok and ByteDance’s internal tools.

In September 2021, one Booz Allen Hamilton consultant told colleagues that the tools felt like they had backdoors to access user data :

I feel like with these tools, there’s some backdoor to access user data in almost all of them, which is exhausting.

Oracle Only Providing Storage For Project Texas

TikTok has been working on what they call Project Texas – securely storing overseas data in Oracle cloud servers to comply with CFIUS (Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States).

Project Texas is limited to protecting the private information of US users, like phone numbers and birthdays – details that are not publicly visible, or have been set to private.

Such data will be stored at an Oracle datacenter in Texas – hence the name, and would only be accessible to specific US-based TikTok employees.

However, TikTok’s head of global cyber and data defense made clear that Oracle was only providing the data storage space for Project Texas. Ultimately, TikTok would be setting up the servers, and controlling everything.

It’s almost incorrect to call it Oracle Cloud, because they’re just giving us bare metal, and then we’re building our VMs [virtual machines] on top of it.

Unique IDs Not Protected Information

In one of the leaked audio recordings from a January 2022 meeting, TikTok’s head of product and user operations announced with a laugh that the Unique ID (UID) will not be amongst the protected content under the CFIUS agreement.

The conversation continues to evolve. We recently found out that UIDs are things we can have access to, which changes the game a bit.

Other Data Not Stored On Oracle Servers

The problem with Project Texas is that it only addresses US users… and only a small subset of their data.

Everything else – including private user data from non-US countries – will stay in their US and Singapore servers that remain accessible to ByteDance’s Beijing offices.

 

Response By TikTok : 100% US Data Traffic Routed To Oracle

TikTok publicly announced on the same day – June 17, 2022, that it changed the “default storage location of US user data“, and that “100% of US user traffic is being routed to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure“.

Although they “expect” to fully pivot to Oracle cloud servers located in the US, they will continue to use their existing US and Singapore servers for backup, and delete US users’ private data over time.

While this may address some of the privacy concerns for US users, it does not address the other privacy concerns revealed in the leaked audio recordings… or the privacy concerns of non-US users.

 

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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Lightyear Movie Banned In 14 Countries + Maybe China Too!

The Disney-Pixar movie, Lightyear, has been banned in 14 countries, and quite possibly China too!

Here is what we know so far…

 

Lightyear Movie Banned In 14 Countries + Maybe China Too!

Lightyear – the long-awaited animated feature film from Disney-Pixar – has reportedly been banned in 14 Asian and Middle Eastern countries.

The ban started in the UAE, whose Media Regulatory Office of the Ministry of Youth and Culture announced on 13 June 2022 that :

The Media Regulatory Office announced that the animated film Lightyear, which is scheduled for release on 16th June, is not licensed for public screening in all cinemas in the UAE, due to its violation of the country’s media content standards.

A Variety report claimed that the UAE initially approved Lightyear for release, but revoked the licence after social media posts accused the movie of insulting Muslims and Islam.

That ban was then followed by other countries. The current list includes, but is not limited to :

  • United Arab Emirates
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Egypt
  • Indonesia
  • Malaysia
  • Singapore
  • Lebanon
  • Oman
  • Qatar
  • Kuwait
  • Bahrain

Although not confirmed yet, it is very likely that Lightyear will also not be allowed to screen in China.

Lightyear producer, Galyn Susman, said that Chinese authorities “asked for cuts”, which Disney declined to make. So she assumed that the movie would not be allowed to screen there either.

I’m assuming it will not make it to China. I know we’ve gotten requests for things to cut, Disney isn’t going to modify the material.

We’re not going to cut out anything, especially something as important as the loving and inspirational relationship that shows Buzz what he’s missing by the choices that he’s making, so that’s not getting cut

 

Why Lightyear Was Banned In Those Countries…

In Lightyear, the character of Alisha Hawthorne (voiced by Uzo Aduba) shares a brief kiss with her same-sex partner.

That’s it – a little kiss between two fictional characters. Unfortunately, it was a kiss too far for those countries.

Normally, Disney would quietly cut such a “controversial” scene from the movie to comply with “local sensibilities”, since it doesn’t affect the plot.

However, Pixar employees had earlier penned a letter complaining that Disney corporate executives were censoring “nearly every moment of overtly gay affection” in their projects.

We at Pixar have personally witnessed beautiful stories, full of diverse characters, come back from Disney corporate reviews shaved down to crumbs of what they once were.

Nearly every moment of overtly gay affection is cut at Disney’s behest, regardless of when there is protest from both the creative teams and executive leadership at Pixar.

Disney caved to the pressure, and decided not to censor the kiss from Lightyear. And so, all those countries refused to grant a licence to screen the movie in theatres.

Read more : The Brief Kiss That Got Lightyear Banned In 14+ Countries!

 

Lightyear Stars On The Movie Ban By 14+ Countries

Chris Evans, who voiced Buzz Lightyear in this prequel, labelled such objections as “frustrating”.

It’s great that we are a part of something that’s making steps forward in the social inclusion capacity.

But it’s frustrating that there are still places that aren’t where they should be.

He also told Variety magazine that he was frustrated that news coverage of the movie would be focused on such an issue :

It’s tough to not be a little frustrated that it even has to be a topic of discussion. That it is this kind of ‘news.’

The goal is that we can get to a point where it is the norm, and that this doesn’t have to be some uncharted waters, that eventually this is just the way it is.

Taika Waititi, who voices the character of Mo Morrison in the film, added :

We’re hoping for a time when we don’t even have to have this conversation. We can watch a movie and we don’t even have to bat an eyelid.

We don’t have to think ‘Oh wow, weird’. It’s not weird, it’s normal and it should be normalised.

Whenever you have these small steps that studios are making – sometimes they may feel small but also, they are steps – and it’s steps towards normalising humanity and love. I really feel sorry for countries who don’t want this film because of a tiny, weird little thing like that

Please Support My Work!

Support my work through a bank transfer /  PayPal / credit card!

Name : Adrian Wong
Bank Transfer : CIMB 7064555917 (Swift Code : CIBBMYKL)
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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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