NEWS DIGEST 29.03.2020: Coronavirus quarantine U-turns and North Korean missile tests #HEM News Agency Report

The US President Donald Trump has backed down from imposing a statewide ‘lockdown’ on the state of New York, after yesterday insisting on the measure, called as New York became the worst affected area in the American coronavirus epidemic, reports Britain’s BBC News. The US has now the highest number of infections in the world. Its total of 100,000 cases has overtaken China, where the ‘Wuhan virus’ first originated – Coronavirus: Trump backs away from New York quarantine (BBC News) . In addition to New York, the neighbouring states of New Jersey and Connecticut are also experiencing a surge in cases of the virus, with all three states urged to cease non-essential travel to contain the epidemic in the New England region, reports The Guardian –  Coronavirus live news: New York, New Jersey and Connecticut told to halt non-essential travel (The Guardian UK Edition)

Photo by Mohamed Almari on


Also in The Guardian, the Dutch-operated cruise liner MV Zaandam, currently docked off Panama and struggling with an outbreak of COVID-19 onboard, was finally given permission by the Panamanian government to travel through the Panama Canal, but it was not known whether it would be allowed to dock anywhere in the central American country. Four passengers have already perished and dozens have been taken sick – Coronavirus: Panama to allow cruise liner Zaandam through canal(The Guardian UK Edition) Meanwhile, another UK newspaper, The Telegraph, released a YouTube video of a British couple aboard the Zaandam, which belongs to Holland America Lines, expressing significant concern over the situation aboard the ship. Celia and Nick Jones, in a candid video shot from their quarantined cabin, said they urgently needed to return to Britain to care for their vulnerable son, who has autism – British couple stranded on cruise ship Zaandam ‘extremely worried’ (The Telegraph/YouTube GB)

Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, the British-Iranian currently held in detention in Iran on alleged spying charges for the past four years, may soon be released by a government amnesty as Iran is battered by the worldwide coronavirus outbreak, the Daily Mirror reports. She is currently under isolation at her parents’ home in the capital Tehran (Teheran) after narrowly escaping catching the virus herself – Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe appeals for clemency as coronavirus prison leave extended (Mirror)

Staying on the trending news of the COVID-19 pandemic, military personnel in Europe have been drafted in to fly Italian and French patients to Germany for treatment, reports The German army have stepped in to assist their immediate European neighbours who are struggling with high death and illness counts brought by the outbreak. One flight from the stricken north Italian town of Bergamo has already brought six patients to Cologne – Military flies Italian and French patients to Germany for treatment (Metro) Sadly this shining example of European co-operation was overshadowed by reports Italians are becoming fed up with the European Union over its response to the continent’s coronavirus crisis, with the country threatening to quit the Union and labelling it as ‘dead’, while Portugal lashed at ‘repugnant’ fellow member states, the Telegraph reports – End of the EU? Growing fury at ‘repugnant’ response as Italy condemns Brussels as ‘dead’ (The Telegraph)

North Korea has escalated tensions in the Far East of Asia after launching a missile in the direction of regional foe Japan, heightening nuclear tensions across the globe, reports Britain’s Daily Express. The incident, reported as occurring on the 20th March, saw ‘unidentified projectiles’ fired into the Sea of Japan – Pyongyang Fury: North Korea fires fire missile towards Japan as nuclear fears rise (Express). Meanwhile, The Guardian stated that the reclusive nation also test-fired another two short-range ballistic missiles today, which was condemned as ‘inappropriately timed’ by its Korean southern neighbour – North Korea fires two missiles as Seoul condemns ‘inappropriate’ timing (The Guardian)


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Mohamed Almari/Pexels.

NEWS DIGEST 29.03.2020: Coronavirus quarantine U-turns and North Korean missile tests

NEWS DIGEST 28.03.2020: Breaking news via Facebook Hem News Agency

NEWS DIGEST 28.03.2020: Breaking news via Facebook

HEM News AgencyMarch 28, 2020

The United States president, Donald Trump, signed two new laws this past Tuesday to boost the availability of 5G services and broadband provision in the country, reported c-net magazine. The Secure 5G and Beyond and the Broadband Deployment Accuracy and Technological Availability Acts were signed into law in the White House to bring faster, more secure networks to parts of the country that need it most. – Trump signs laws to boost 5G security, broadband availability (cnet)

The UK Parliament has announced the publication of their emergency coronavirus legislation via their official portal, The Coronavirus Bill (HC Bill 122), which is currently making its way through ministerial votes, allows for provisions for the emergency registration of staff for the National Health Service (NHS) as well as other rules regarding the national food supply, schooling, statutory sick pay and the challenges facing public health as the pandemic grips Britain – Coronavirus Bill (HC Bill 122) (

RTL of Luxembourg reported that the lead singer of German rock band Rammstein, Till Lindemann, is in critical condition with COVID-19/coronavirus after a concert in Moscow earlier this month. He was admitted to hospital suffering from severe pneumonia, however confusingly, a second medical test suggests he may not have the virus after all – Till Lindemann reportedly in critical condition, second corona test was negative (RTL Today)

British newspaper The Independent expressed fears that the country’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who was diagnosed as infected with coronavirus yesterday, will escape scrutiny for his handling of the outbreak in his country after the UK parliament was effectively shuttered for a month. The PM has gone into self-isolation, but appears to be in good spirits – Coronavirus: Fears that Boris Johnson will escape scrutiny as parliament is shut down for four weeks (Independent)

Newham Council, which governs the eastern London borough of Newham, announced via its Facebook page and its official website that a total of 148 residents of the borough have now acquired COVID-19, doubling since this past Wednesday. The mayor, Rokhsana Fiaz, urged the community to follow official advice to stay at home in order to mitigate viral spread in Newham – Update about Coronavirus (Covid-19): 148 people confirmed with Coronavirus in Newham that’s why #StayAtHome this weekend is vital – From Mayor Rokhsana Fiaz 27 March 2020 (Newham London)

News magazine MyLondon has published an article showing where all new emergency supermarket jobs can be found in London as well their going rates of pay. Britain’s supermarkets are desperately trying to take on more staff as they experience a rush on basic commodities and depleted stock levels during the coronavirus crisis – London coronavirus: All the emergency jobs at Tesco, Asda, Morrisons and Lidl and how much they pay (MyLondon)

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The question not asked #WillisBryanBlog

I am quite sure by now everyone has heard the Senate passed the $2 trillion economic stimulus package to “fight off” the economic crisis brought on by the Wuhan corona virus crisis. Complete bi-partisan support 96-0, no opposition. Shortly after the Senators got the heck out of town. The House, when they(some of them)return to town, has promised swift passage(voice vote), then off to the President to sign. Of course a roll call vote could be forced therefore requiring House members return to D.C. that would slow things down a bit or for quite some time.

Keep in mind that this is the third corona virus package and a fourth is in the works.

Given all of the debate, posturing and the rest that goes along with Congressional “negotiations” I noticed one thing missing that is a mainstay with normal non-crisis partisan debates and posturing.

The question not asked was, How is this going to be paid for?

When it is a partisan plan the other side and their talking heads without fail will ask , How will this be paid for? But this is a bi-partisan plan with no opposition no one cares about the cost or how to pay for it. Not a one has said, Wait a minute we can’t afford that.

Was not all that long ago that a current sitting member of Congress suggested that two $1 trillion coins be minted and placed on deposit with the Federal Reserve. Then I got to thinking, How can you deposit money that you do not have?

That brings me to this. We are told that we as a nation are in debt, a debt that exceeds our GDP. If we are that deep in debt you would think that those in charge of the “purse strings” would be very careful when money must be spent. But they are not, they spend and give away money hand over fist like there is no bottom. We have been told for years that there is a national debt.

Suppose for a minute that there is no national debt. Suppose we have been lied to about that. The recent first time buyers of firearms have been lied to forever and only realized the extent of the lies when they attempted to make their purchase. They say that repeating a lie often enough does not make it a truth, however if you repeat a lie often enough it can be taken for the truth.

We are told we are in debt and swallow that hook, line and sinker. Has anyone out side of government ever seen the balance sheet from the Treasury? Has anyone ever seen the receipts and expenditures from the Treasury?
This little tidbit comes from a speech given by Patrick Henry 07 June 1788. …Another beautiful feature of this Constitution is the publication from time to time of the receipts and expenditures of the public money. This expression, from time to time, is very indefinite and indeterminate. It may extend to a century….

I will add this. It may extend to forever.

While I am here I might as well get this out of the way. Has anyone outside the top echelon of the Federal Reserve ever seen the balance sheet?

The question not asked

#Coronavirus: The Spanish mortality rate is 15 times higher than in Germany #TheFreeOnline

By Kaos. Kaos. Estado Español, Spanish State
Shared with thanks. Translation TheFreeOnline

On Sunday, March 22, the official number of those affected by coronavirus in Germany (22213) was similar to that of the Spanish State (28603). However, the death toll is much lower in the Germanic country (93 deaths there for 1,756 here) despite almost doubling the Spanish population. The death rate is therefore 15 times lower in Germany: 0.4% by 6.13%. How do you explain that abysmal difference?

Coronavirus: The Spanish mortality rate is 15 times higher than in Germany

SA, COVID-19, Government explains how to control the spread #SunShinySA

A Summary of government’s new steps to control the spread of COVID-19 :


From midnight on Thursday 26 March until midnight on Thursday 16 April, all South Africans will have to stay at home.

This means only absolutely essential personnel (doctors, nurses, police, emergency personnel, military medical personnel, and soldiers) and those requiring medical care will be allowed to leave home for restricted periods. Individuals will not be allowed to leave their homes except under strictly controlled circumstances. The South African National Defence Force has been deployed to ensure the lockdown is effective.

Read the Presidents entire speech…

Categories of people who will also be exempted from the lockdown include those involved in the production, distribution, and supply of food and basic goods, essential banking services, the maintenance of power, water and telecommunications services, laboratory services, and the provision of medical and hygiene products.


Alternative temporary accommodation sites will be used for the 21-day “stay-at-home” period for the homeless. Temporary shelters that meet the necessary hygiene standards will also be identified for homeless people. Sites are also being identified for quarantine and self-isolation for people who cannot self-isolate at home.


All shops and businesses will be closed, except for pharmacies, laboratories, banks, essential financial and payment services, including the Johannesburg Stock Exchange, supermarkets, petrol stations, and health care providers.


South African citizens and residents arriving from high-risk countries will automatically be placed under quarantine for 14 days.

Non-South Africans arriving on flights from high-risk countries prohibited a week ago will be turned back.

International flights to Lanseria Airport will be temporarily suspended.

International travellers who arrived in South Africa after 9 March 2020 from high-risk countries will be confined to their hotels until they have completed a 14-day period of quarantine.


Medical and other supplies will be secured and stored in bulk due to disruptions in supply and distribution of goods, including supplies such as personal protective equipment for healthcare workers.


Health care will be provided through triage to obtain “centralised treatment” for severe cases and “decentralised primary care” for mild cases. A key objective will be not to overwhelm hospitals with unnecessary care seekers.

To ensure that hospitals are not overwhelmed, a system will be put in place for ‘centralised patient management’ for severe cases and ‘decentralised primary care’ for mild cases.

Source : Msn

SA, COVID-19, Government explains how to control the spread

SCORTCHED EARTH: Toxic Agriculture and the Gates Foundation – ByColin Todhunter | RIELPOLITIK #TonyTran2105

Comment by tonytran2015: Around 1990, there was many movements organizing the donations of old Personal Computers to poor African Countries. At that time Bill Gate reminded them that Microsoft had not allowed them to donate old MS operating systems on those computers. This showed how charitable was Bill Gate! Fortunately on 8 July 2005, another billionaire Mark Shuttleworth had funded the development of the Ubuntu Operating Systems to help users of those old computers. This billionaire Mark Shuttleworth is my real hero.

SCORTCHED EARTH: Toxic Agriculture and the Gates Foundation – By Colin Todhunter

However, Rosemary Mason alludes to the fact that the Gates Foundation seems happy to ignore the deleterious health impacts of agrochemicals while promoting the interests of the firms that produce them, but it facilitates many health programmes that help boost the bottom line of drug companies. Health and health programmes seem only to be defined with certain parameters which facilitate the selling of the products of the major pharmaceutical companies which the foundation partners with. Indeed, researcher Jacob Levich argues that the Gates Foundation not merely facilitates unethical low-cost clinical trials (with often devastating effects for participants) in the Global South but also assists in the creating new markets for the “dubious” products of pharmaceuticals corporations.

SCORTCHED EARTH: Toxic Agriculture and the Gates Foundation – By Colin Todhunter | RIELPOLITIK

Escalating Quickly: Hoboken NJ Announces City-Wide Enforced Coronavirus Curfew – All Citizens Must Stay in Their Homes 10pm to 5am…

Telling people to remain calm and simultaneously forcing people to remain in their homes would seem to be a contradiction in messaging; potentially only worsening the panic.  However, this is one of those, “well, yes it’s unconstitutional except when….” moments, that may have rather profound consequences.

The Democrat mayor of Hoboken New Jersey has announced a mandatory curfew between 10pm and 5am where all residents are not permitted to exit their residence; and all bars must close due to the coronavirus.

Escalating Quickly: Hoboken NJ Announces City-Wide Enforced Coronavirus Curfew – All Citizens Must Stay in Their Homes 10pm to 5am…

President Trump Proclaims Sunday March 15th A National Day of Prayer….

~ A PROCLAMATION~ In our times of greatest need, Americans have always turned to prayer to help guide us through trials and periods of uncertainty. As we continue to face the unique challenges posed by the coronavirus pandemic, millions of Americans are unable to gather in their churches, temples, synagogues, mosques, and other houses of worship.

In this time we must not cease asking God for added wisdom, comfort, and strength, and we must especially pray for those who have suffered harm or who have lost loved ones. I ask you to join me in a day of prayer for all people who have been affected by the coronavirus pandemic and to pray for God’s healing hand to be placed on the people of our Nation.

President Trump Proclaims Sunday March 15th A National Day of Prayer….

Coronavirus case closes Melbourne school as Victoria activates State Control Centre to respond to COVID-19 – ABC News // Additional survival tricks

Severe disruptions could start in weeks……

Premier Daniel Andrews yesterday warned “extreme measures” would likely be needed when the outbreak rose to pandemic phase.

He said it was only a matter of time before schools closed across the state and large sporting and cultural events were cancelled.

The Premier also has the ability to declare a state of disaster — like the one that was declared during the bushfires — which Mr Andrews said could give “a broader suite of powers” to control the delivery of services, including public transport.

People can be detained or fined for failing to comply with orders under both a state of disaster and a state of emergency.

Emergency Management Commissioner Andrew Crisp said he and his team decided the “time was right to stand
up” the State Control Centre.

Mr Crisp explained that under the state’s emergency management protocols
there were three tiers of emergency response and the virus was now considered a Tier 2 emergency.

Victoria’s chief health officer Brett Sutton said he expected it would be “weeks, rather than months” before the number of person-to-person cases in Victoria prompted authorities to bring in “really disruptive public health measures”.

Dr Sutton said it was possible a state of emergency could be declared under the Public Health and Wellbeing Act, which would give him the power to quarantine groups of people or place areas under social distancing measures.

Source: // Additional survival tricks

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SNP risks tearing itself apart over trans rights Posted bystephenjdaisley March 9, 2020

One of the biggest dangers for a political party is to get too fond of talking to itself.

That might not be a problem for the SNP, since so many of them are barely on speaking terms these days. Scotland’s ruling party is having an ugly, public falling out over ‘gender identity’, of all things. That might seem an obscure dividing line but it is a furious one and it has opened up at the worst possible time for Nicola Sturgeon.

There are two main camps in this dispute: transgender activists, who want the law changed to allow ‘self-identification’, and gender-critical feminists, who are sceptical of such a move. Nor is this rupture limited to grassroots activists: as the Scottish Daily Mail reported last week, MPs Joanna Cherry and Mhairi Black had a ‘blazing row’ at a recent parliamentary group meeting.

Rows over ‘gender identity’ are also tearing the Labour Party apart, but disunity is nothing new there. In the SNP in recent years, this kind of factionalism has been unheard of, and is worrying for a leadership already struggling to placate activists over the failure to deliver another independence referendum.