It is hardly surprising, given the drastically divided nation, that when Vitali Klitschko’s pro-European political party ventured to Kerch – a city of the eastern edge of Ukraine in the Crimea region – things did not go entirely according to plan… This is the region that Russia has stated it is willing to go to war over and is deep in the pro-Russia territory… headlines galore are coming out of Ukraine but all that matters now is the Russian response…
Especially after Tymoshenko’s earlier comments:
- *TYMOSHENKO URGES PROTESTERS TO STAY IN INDEPENDENCE SQUARE
- *UKRAINIANS OBLIGED TO BRING YANUKOVYCH BACK TO KIEV: TYMOSHENKO
- *TYMOSHENKO: UKRAINE MAY BRING CHANGES IN OTHER EX-SOVIET STATES
- *TYMOSHENKO: UKRAINE WILL HELP OTHER COUNTRIES UNDER `DICTATORS’
A EuroMaidan meeting does not go quite as planned in the east/west of Ukraine…
As is clear from this map – the nation is desparately divided (Kerch is on the eastern corner of the Crimea peninsula at the bottom on the map)…
As Russia warned before…
“If Ukraine breaks apart, it will trigger a war,” the official said. “They will lose Crimea first [because] we will go in and protect [it], just as we did in Georgia.” In August 2008, Russian troops invaded Georgia after the Georgian military launched a surprise attack on the separatist region of South Ossetia in an effort to establish its dominance over the republic.
The brief conflict with Georgia pitted Russia indirectly against the US and Nato, which had earlier tried to put Georgia on a path to Nato membership. The Kremlin regards the Georgian conflict as the biggest stand-off between Russia and the west since the end of the Cold War and it has fed determination in Moscow to push back against what it believes to be western attempts to contain Russia.
The warning of a similar scenario comes because Ukraine’s civil conflict has fanned tension in Crimea. On the peninsula, located on the northern coast of the Black Sea where Russia’s Black Sea Fleet is stationed, ethnic Russians make up almost 60 per cent of the population, with Ukrainians and Crimean Tatars accounting for the rest.
Volodymyr Konstantinov, speaker of Crimea’s parliament, said on Thursday that the region might try to secede from Ukraine if the country split. “It is possible, if the country breaks apart,” he told the Russian news agency Interfax. “And everything is moving towards that.” Russian media also quoted him as saying Crimeans might turn to Russia for protection.
Some humor might help…
But it’s pretty clear who they blame…
Russia Angered At Ukraine Government Vote To Remove President After “I Won’t Resign” Comments | Zero Hedge
Remember that (laughable) agreement that was signed less than 24 hours ago and was grandly endorsed by all European nations, and which delineated the next legal presidential election sometime between September and December? Good times.
With 328 (of the 450 seats) voting in favor, the Ukraine parliament has agreed to removed President Viktor Yanukovych:
- *UKRAINIAN PARLIAMENT VOTES TO REMOVE PRESIDENT YANUKOVYCH
- *UKRAINIAN PARLIAMENT VOTES TO HOLD EARLY ELECTIONS ON MAY 25
“Yanukovych, in an illegal manner, removed himself from his constitutional duties,” Turchynov says in chamber before vote. The Russians are not at all happy with Siluanov exclaiming these actions “pose a direct threat to Ukraine’s sovereignty and constitutional order.”
As Martin Armstrong warns:
I believe the nation will survive divided for there is far too much resentment to simply put this all behind and walk forward. Divide Ukraine along the historical language faultline and there is a chance to calm things down. Otherwise, this will flare up and take others with it.
My position is consistent – ALL governments are only a necessary evil. They should never be allowed to have such power over the people for it will also be abused to sustain that same power. It does not matter what form of government – they are all the same.
It would appear we are getting closer to a divided/split nation…
In the minds of so many western journalists, yesterday’s “deal” to reform the constitution, hold new elections in 10 months or so, and generally all ‘just get along’ was a victory but this morning it is clear that very little has changed.
- *YANUKOVYCH SAYS HE WON’T LEAVE UKRAINE OR RESIGN: INTERFAX
Late last night Ukraine time, President Yanukovych (and some of his key advisers) fled Kiev (amid so-called threats) and headed to the eastern part of the country. Then following rumors he would resign, he stated in a TV address that he would not and that pro-EU forces had staged a “coup d’etat”. This has left a troubled nation with just as divided a future as protesters have taken back control of Kiev.
Russia is not happy; blaming extremists for threatening order.
- *RUSSIA URGES GERMANY, POLAND FRANCE TO INFLUENCE UKRAINE OPPOS.
- *RUSSIA SAYS UKRAINE OPPOSITION FAILED TO FULFILL OBLIGATIONS
- *RUSSIA SAYS UKRAINE OPPOSITION THREATENS SOVEREIGNTY, ORDER
- *RUSSIA SAYS UKRAINE OPPOSITION `FOLLOWING LEAD OF EXTREMISTS’
The government has moved in his absence:
- *UKRAINIAN PARLIAMENTARY SPEAKER TURCHYNOV SPEAKS IN ASSEMBLY
- *UKRAINIAN PARLIAMENT VOTES TO REMOVE PRESIDENT YANUKOVYCH
- *UKRAINIAN PARLIAMENT VOTES TO HOLD EARLY ELECTIONS ON MAY 25
- *UKRAINE PARLT VOTES TO REMOVE PRESIDENT WITH 328 OF 450 SEATS
Putin will not be happy:
Russia’s foreign minister on Saturday accused Ukraine’s opposition of failing to fulfill its side of a peace deal intended to end the nation’s political crisis and urged Western mediators to intervene.
Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov called his German, French and Polish counterparts, who helped broker Friday’s agreement between Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych and the opposition. Yanukovych agreed to hold early elections this fall and surrender much of his powers, but opposition supporters have kept pushing for his immediate dismissal.
The Russian Foreign Ministry said Lavrov urged his counterparts to use their influence with the Ukrainian opposition, which he said “not only has failed to fulfill any of its obligations, but keeps making new demands under the influence of armed extremists and rioters.”
Their actions “pose a direct threat to Ukraine’s sovereignty and constitutional order,” he said.
From Deal to Defection…
*YANUKOVYCH SAYS SOME PARTY MEMBERS DEFECT IN BETRAYAL: UBR TV
Government authority appeared to melt away Saturday, leaving protesters in control of the capital’s center. President Viktor Yanukovych left the capital for a city in the country’s Russian-speaking east and said he would work to prevent the country from splitting up.
In a television interview Saturday afternoon in Kharkiv, where Russian-speaking supporters had gathered, Mr. Yanukovych denounced the events in Kiev as a “coup d’etat” that he blamed on “bandits.” He said he wasn’t stepping down and vowed to remain inside the country. He said parliament’s decisions today are “illegal” and that he would refuse to sign them. Asked about his plans, he said he will travel in the Russian-speaking south and east of the country, “where for the moment it’s less dangerous.”
Opposition leader Vitali Klitschko earlier had called on parliament to vote to oust Mr. Yanukovych and announce presidential elections in May, as police withdrew from the center of the capital Saturday.
Ukraine opposition leader and former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko was expected to be released from prison within hours, according to a spokeswoman for the opposition.
The army has said it will not get involved…
*UKRAINE MILITARY, DEFENSE MINISTRY `REMAIN FAITHFUL TO PEOPLE’
*UKRAINE DEFENSE MIN: ARMY WON’T BE INVOLVED IN GOVT CONFLICT
Opposition leaders signed a peace deal with Mr. Yanukovych Friday after dozens were killed in clashes between protesters and police. The deal proposed power sharing and presidential elections by the end of the year. But protesters weren’t satisfied and called for his immediate ouster.
In Kiev on Saturday, volunteer security brigades from among the protesters took over security at government buildings, and journalists reported around 300 people had entered Mr. Yanukovych’s opulent suburban residence without resistance.
Oleh Tyahnybok, an opposition leader, called on parliament to adopt a resolution calling on police and protesters’ “self-defense” forces to work to prevent looting in Kiev and other cities.
Outside the Kiev headquarters of Ukraine’s security service, plain-clothed men wearing earpieces stood at the street corners, eying those who passed. They wouldn’t say who they worked for.
With truckloads of activists armed with baseball bats driving the streets of Kiev, the security service appeared to be taking no chances. In the interior lobby and parking lot of the building, fire hoses and fire extinguishers were piled in the corners.
The Interior Ministry said in a statement that “it serves only the Ukrainian people and fully shares the desire of citizens for immediate change.” It called for cooperation from all sides to ensure public order.
A power vaccum has developed…
Opposition lawmakers in parliament called for calm amid concerns over a power vacuum, calling on state officials and religious and civic leaders to work together to ensure order.
Parliamentary speaker Volodymyr Rybak, a close ally of Mr. Yanukovych, handed in his resignation Saturday. Lawmakers elected opposition leader Olexander Turchinov to replace him. It wasn’t immediately clear whether the opposition could muster sufficient support to vote Mr. Yanukovych out.
The European Union is prepared to offer Ukraine financial support, European Commission President José Manuel Barroso said on Saturday.
“If there is a reform-minded government in Ukraine, we will work with the international community and international financial institutions to support Ukraine,” Mr. Barroso told German newspaper “Welt am Sonntag.”
Ukraine President Flees Kiev After “Coup D’Etat” As Protesters Storm Presidential Palace, Plunder Gold; Army On Hold | Zero Hedge
It has been a busy night in the Ukraine.
First, the newly-installed interior minister declared that the police were now behind the protesters they had fought for days, giving central Kiev the look of a war zone with 77 people killed, while central authority crumbled in western Ukraine. Then despite yesterday’s latest anti-crisis “agreement” which we said would last at best hours, the protesters continued their pressure against embattled president Yanukovich, demanding his outright and unconditional resignation, leading to his fleeing Kiev by airplane overnight to the far more pro-Russian city of Kharkiv located in the Eastern Ukraine, even as his arch rival, Yulia Tymoshenko, who is held in prison in the same city, was rumored to have been released on her way to the far more anti-Russian city of Kiev – it turns out those rumors have so far been incorrect.
Then there was a plethora of rumors that he has or is about to either escape the country and/or resign, sparking celebrations in Kiev, only for him to appear on TV subsequently and not only deny a resignation is coming, but that he accused the current leaders in Kiev of staging a coup d’etat and that all parliamentary decisions today have been illegitimate, saying “I did all I could to avoid bloodshed” while comparing recent events in the Ukraine to the “Fascist Revolution” in Germany. This was promptly rebutted by the Polish foreign minister Radoslaw Sikorski who tweeted there is no coup in Kiev and President Viktor Yanukovych has 24 hours to sign re-adopted 2004 constitution into law.
The just released interview is below:
Most importantly, all of this is happening as governors, and regional legislators in eastern Ukraine question authority of national parliament. Meanwhile over in the “western” Kiev, Parliament members of the opposition began laying the groundwork for a change in leadership, electing Oleksander Turchynov, an ally of the imprisoned opposition leader and former prime minister, Yulia V. Tymoshenko, as speaker. And Mr. Klitschko called for new elections to replace Mr. Yanukovych by May 25. “Millions of Ukrainians see only one choice — early presidential and parliamentary elections,” he tweeted.
The NYT reports:
Members of an opposition group from Lviv called the 31st Hundred — carrying clubs and some of them wearing masks — were in control of the entryways to the palace Saturday morning. And Vitali Klitschko, one of three opposition leaders who signed the deal to end the violence, said that Mr. Yanukovych had “left the capital” but his whereabouts were unknown, with members of the opposition speculating that he had gone to Kharkiv, in the northeast part of Ukraine.
Protesters claimed to have established control over Kiev. By Saturday morning they had secured key intersections of the city and the government district of the capital, which police officers had fled, leaving behind burned military trucks, mattresses and heaps of garbage at the positions they had occupied for months.
All of this is pointing to a national schism between the pro-Russian east, and its new de facto capital, Kharkiv, and the western part of the nation, where the EU (and CIA) influences are strongest. Luckily, for now there won’t be a military involvement:
- UKRAINE DEFENSE MIN: ARMY WON’T BE INVOLVED IN GOVT CONFLICT
… for now.This will likely change: moments ago Russia’s Foreign Minister said Ukraine’s opposition is led by “armed extremists” and their actions pose direct threat to Ukraine’s sovereignty, which means a Russian involvement in some capacity is imminent.
Perhaps more important was the following statement:
- UKRAINE TO ENSURE SMOOTH NATGAS TRANSIT TO EU, DEP PREMIER SAYS
That would the Russian gas which traverses the country, which can be halted with the turn of a spigot.
Bottom line, the situation is fluid, and is increasingly bordering on an all too real threat of civil war between the country’s linguistically and affiliation-divided west and east.
The one thing that is clear is that the former presidential compound is now in the power of the people. From CBS.
The protesters, who are angry over corruption and want Ukraine to move toward Europe rather than Russia, claimed full control of Kiev and took up positions around the president’s office and a grandiose residential compound believed to be his, though he never acknowledged it.
At the sprawling suburban Kiev compound, protesters stood guard and blocked more radical elements among them from entering the building, fearing unrest. Moderate protesters have sought to prevent their comrades from looting or taking up the weapons that have filled Kiev in recent weeks.
The compound became an emblem of the secrecy and arrogance that defines Yanukovych’s presidency, painting him as a leader who basks in splendor while his country’s economy suffers and his opponents are jailed. An AP journalist visiting the grounds Saturday saw manicured lawns, a pond, several luxurious houses and the big mansion itself, an elaborate confection of five stories with marble columns.
Protesters attached a Ukrainian flag to a lamppost at the compound, shouting: “Glory to Ukraine!”
A group of protesters in helmets and shields stood guard at the president’s office Saturday. No police were in sight.
Which brings us to the most interesting finding of the day: what has so far been plundered from the palace:
Inside Yanukovych’s private residence
Pictures emerging from the president’s private residence in the outskirts of Kyiv after protesters stormed the building.
“It’s just like being in Monaco” – man on phone next to me at Yanukovich’s residence outside Kiev pic.twitter.com/FZfU6xNHIp
— Emma Wells (@Emmawells1) February 22, 2014
— Vitalii Sediuk (@VitaliiSediuk) February 22, 2014
Protesters with an “euromaidan” flag at Yanukovych’s balcony.
— ?????????? (@euromaidan) February 22, 2014
???????’?. ?????. ????? ?? ????????. ????????????? ??????? pic.twitter.com/yFdq9BpYJx
— ????? ??? (@MichaelShchur) February 22, 2014
And as usually happens, the plundering has revealed numerous golden coins discovered in Yanukovych’s garage and a 1 kg gold coin with the president’s portrait.
?? ? ?? (?? ?? ?????????) ?????? ? ????????? ?????? ? ?????? ? ???????’? pic.twitter.com/KExRR96pOR
— ????? ??? (@MichaelShchur) February 22, 2014
?? ?? ??????? ? ?????? ? ???????’?. ??????? ?????????. 1 ?? ?????? pic.twitter.com/iQ9hwFxYtf
— ????? ??? (@MichaelShchur) February 22, 2014
Finally, for the blow by blow, or rather tweet by tweet of events in the past 24 hours, we go to Euronews which has done the best job of summairizing the constatntly changing situation:
Yanukovych on TV: “I’m not leaving the country”
On an interview broadcast minutes ago on ukrainian TV UBR, and recorded at 12h30, president Yanukovych refuses to resign saying “we’ve taken all the steps to stabilize the country, we voted an amnesty law and organised early elections”. The president that fled Kyiv to go to Kharkiv also says, “I’m trying to protect people from bandits”. Yanukovitch compares also Ukraine now to Nazi Germany in the 30s. In the interview, the president assures that he’s not leaving the country. He also denounced on Saturday what he described as a “coup d’etat”. “The events witnessed by our country and the whole world are an example of a coup d’etat,” he was quoted as saying.
Opposition leader Petro Poroshenko says Yanukovych has changed his mind about his earlier decision to resign http://t.co/wFQdXhHY4G
— KyivPost (@KyivPost) February 22, 2014
Yatseniuk says he spoke with Yanik and confirms he has resigned #euromaidan
— bruce springnote (@BSpringnote) February 22, 2014
Yanukovych resignation to be read soon at the parliament
Euronews’ correspondents in Kyiv report that the statement should be read at the parliament in the next minutes.
— Paul Waldie (@pwaldieGLOBE) February 22, 2014
Waiting for the release of jailed former Prime-Minister Yulia Tymoshenko. Conflicting reports that she was already freed from Kharkiv jail.
— MareikeAden (@MareikeAden) February 22, 2014
Tymoshenko daughter speaks to Kyiv Post at parliament, says releasing her mom won’t be easy
In first days of July 1937, Chinese and Japanese soldiers skirmished in Wanping, a few miles southwest of what is now the Chinese capital. China’s Chiang Kai-shek then knew his army was no match for Japan’s, and he had many opportunities to avoid battle with a vastly superior foe. Yet he ultimately chose war.
So why did Chiang decide to fight? And how did a minor—and probably accidental—clash turn into years of disastrous conflict? Now, analysts think today’s Asia feels like 1914 Europe, and last month in Davos Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe likened today’s situation involving his country and China to that of England and Germany a hundred years ago. The better comparison, however, is 1937. The parallels between then and now, unfortunately, are striking.
The “China Incident,” as the Japanese then called the war, began on the banks of the Yongding River in Wanping during the night of July 7, 1937. Imperial troops, shooting blanks in an evening exercise, found themselves under fire, presumably from elements of the Chinese 29th Army. After the minor exchange near Lugouqiao, commonly known as the Marco Polo Bridge, Japanese officers were alarmed when one of their soldiers failed to turn up for a roll call. They then demanded that Chinese guards let them search nearby Wanping, where the Japanese had no general permission to enter.
A refusal triggered days of skirmishes. Once the fighting started, it did not matter that the stray Japanese private, who is thought to have wandered off to urinate, eventually turned up unhurt. Soon, Chiang Kai-shek’s Republic of China was at war. The Japanese in short order would take the Marco Polo Bridge, cut off Beijing from the rest of the country, and seize that city. They would then drive Chiang’s forces from the metropolis of Shanghai, the capital of Nanjing, and most of the rest of eastern China.
Chiang could have avoided the descent into a war in July 1937. In fact, both sides had agreed to a truce after the initial fighting around the Marco Polo Bridge. Yet the agreement did not hold. Oxford professor Rana Mitter compares the events then to those surrounding the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand at Sarajevo in 1914. War, in both cases, was coming.
It is not hard to see why conflict between China and Japan was inevitable in the late 1930s. Japan was obviously determined to control portions of continental Asia. Its troops were stationed near Wanping pursuant to a 1901 treaty signed after foreign powers, including Japan, had put down the Boxer Rebellion. Japan had previously humiliated the Qing dynasty in a quick war ending in 1895, wresting control of Korea and Taiwan. Japan had also grabbed a portion of northeastern China from the Russians in the first decade of the twentieth century and invaded Manchuria in 1931, establishing puppet state of Manchukuo there. The Japanese massacred Chinese under their control.
In the late 1930s there were many incidents involving China’s troops and those of Japan. Most of these were settled quickly because Chinese commanders on the ground would give into Japanese demands or make concessions of some sort. In July 1937, officers guarding Wanping refused Japanese demands and Chiang realized he would have to make a stand. “The dwarf bandits have attacked at Lugouqiao,” he wrote in his diary, using one of his favorite terms for his enemy. “This is the time for the determination to fight.”
Whereabouts of Ukraine’s president unknown as protesters occupy office and opposition tables motion for his resignation.
Last updated: 22 Feb 2014 11:14
Ukraine’s government and opposition oN Friday signed a deal aimed at ending the violence [Reuters]
|Protesters have seized the Kiev office of President Viktor Yanukovich and the opposition has demanded a new election be held by May, as the pro-Russian leader’s grip on power eroded and his whereabouts were unknown.
Anti-government demonstrators entered Yanukovich’s compound in the capital on Saturday and were controlling the entrance, a Reuters news agency journalist at the scene reported.
Security guards were present inside the building but were not trying to expel the protesters.
The president’s residence outside the capital appeared to have been abandoned. Local media said protesters entered the sprawling grounds but it was unclear whether they were inside the building. Interfax, a Russian news agency, said some security guards were present.
Ukrainian opposition leader Vitaly Klitschko earlier on Saturday said that Yanukovich had left Kiev and that the country must hold early elections.
“Today he left the capital,” Klitschko told an emergency session of parliament, which was debating an opposition motion calling on Yanukovich to resign.
“Millions of Ukrainians see only one choice – early presidential and parliamentary elections.”
Yanukovich had been due to visit the northeastern city of Kharkiv. His residence outside the capital was empty and unguarded and journalists were entering freely, local media reported.
Parliament was sitting on Saturday in the wake of a deal to end days of carnage in the capital.
Thousands of protesters on Kiev’s Independence Square are demanding Yanukovich go immediately, sceptical of a European Union-brokered accord under which the embattled leader agreed to give up powers, hold early elections by the end of the year and form a government of national unity.
The UDAR (Punch) opposition party of Klitschko submitted the parliamentary resolution calling on Yanukovich to quit to clear the way for early elections.
Lawmakers elected a close ally of jailed opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko to the powerful post of parliament speaker on Saturday, replacing a loyalist of Yanukovich.
Oleksander Turchynov is a senior member of Tymoshenko’s Fatherland party. He was elected by 288 votes in the 450-seat parliament.
The crisis began with protests in November after Yanukovich turned his back on a far-reaching economic deal with the European Union in favor of closer ties with Russia instead.
Events were moving at a rapid pace that could see a decisive shift in the future of a country of 46 million people away from Moscow’s orbit and closer to the West, although Ukraine is near bankruptcy and depends on Russian aid to pay its debt.
Addressing the crowd on Independence Square earlier, Klitschko said he would seek support from lawmakers “to get rid of” Yanukovich.
Protesters cheered and chanted “Bandits out!”
The EU-brokered deal followed two days of violence that turned central Kiev into a war zone and left at least 77 people dead.
“I believe parliament today will be dissolved and Yanukovich will be ousted,” said 58-year-old protester Vasyl Lubarets.
As the parliament sitting opened, the pro-Yanokovich speaker of the assembly, Volodymyr Rybak, said he was standing down due to ill-health.
The GM farming system has made exposure to Roundup herbicide a daily fact of our existence, and according to the latest US Geological Survey study its probably in the air you are breathing…
A new study from the U.S. Geological Survey, accepted for publication online ahead of print in the journal Enviromental Toxicology and Chemistry, titled, “Pesticides in Mississippi air and rain: A comparison between 1995 and 2007,”[i]reveals that Roundup herbicide (aka glyphosate) and its still-toxic degradation byproduct AMPA were found in over 75% of the air and rain samples tested from Mississippi in 2007.
The researchers evaluated a wide range of pesticides currently being used through weekly composite air and rain sampling collected during the 1995 and 2007 growing seasons in the Mississippi Delta agricultural region.
- Thirty-seven compounds were detected in the air or rain samples in 2007; 20 of these were present in both air and rain.
- Glyphosate was the predominant new herbicide detected in both air (86%) and rain (77%) in 2007, but were not measured in 1995.
- Decreased overall pesticide use in 2007 relative to 1995 generally resulted in decreased detection frequencies in air and rain, but observed concentration ranges were similar between years even though the 1995 sampling site was 500 m from active fields while the 2007 sampling site was within 3 m of a field.
- Mean concentration of detections were sometimes greater in 2007 than in 1995 but the median values were often lower.
- Seven compounds in 1995 and five in 2007 were detected in ≥50% of both air and rain samples. Atrazine, metolachlor, and propanil were detected in ≥50% of the air and rain samples in both years.
- Total herbicide flux in 2007 was slightly greater than in 1995, and was dominated by glyphosate.
According to the report, 2 million kilograms of glyphosate were applied statewide in 2007, or 55% of the total herbicide flux for that year (~129 μg/m2), leading them to state the high prevalence of glyphosate in air and water “was not surprising.” Even though glyphosate was only tested in 2007, based on the 1995 figures on glyphosate use (147,000 kg state-wide) the researchers estimated that glyphosate added 3% of the total herbicide flux for 1995, or approximately 7 micrograms per centimeter (~7 μg/m2) per sample. This estimate, if correct, reveals that there has been an ~ 18 fold increase in glyphosate concentrations in air and water samples in only 12 years (1995-2007).
The researchers pointed out that, “the 2007 weekly air concentration pattern for glyphosate was similar to those of other commonly detected herbicides in both 1995 and 2007 in that the highest concentrations occurred in April and May. However, there were detectable concentrations of glyphosate over the entire growing season, which is consistent with how glyphosate is used on GM crops, including for post-emergent weed control throughout the growing season.” The longer period of exposure adds to growing concern that this ubiquitous toxicant represents an unavoidable body burden and that even small daily environmental exposures may be causing significant harm through their cumulative and synergistic effects with other toxicants.
So, what is the toxicological significance of the discovery of glyphosate in most air samples tested? In the month of August, 2007, if you were breathing in the sampled air you would be inhaling approximately 2.5 nanograms of glyphosate per cubic meter of air. It has been estimated the average adult inhales approximately 388 cubic feet or 11 cubic meters of air per day, which would equal to 27.5 nanograms (billionths of a gram) of glyphosate a day. Of course, when one considers the presence of dozons of other agrichemicals found alongside glyphosate in these samples, the interactions between them are incalculably complex and produce far more harm together than glyphosate alone (i.e. synergistic toxicity). Also, now that recent cell research has shown that glyphosate may act as an endocrine disrupter exhibiting estrogenic-likecarcinogenicity within the part-per-trillion range, there is all the more reason to raise the red flag of the precautionary principle — especially since inhaled toxicants evade the elaborate detoxification mechanisms of ingested toxicants which must pass through the microbiome, intestinal lining and liver before entering the blood and only a long time later the lung far downstream.
This study brings to the surface the extent to which GM farming has altered our daily exposure to chemicals, such that even the rain and air we now breath contains physiologically relevant levels of glyphosate ‘fall out’ from the war against any plant not part of the monocultured, genetically engineered system of production. With a significant body of research now available today showing that glyphosate and its components are far more toxic than believed at the time of its widespread approval, the implications of ubiquitous glyphosate exposure should be carefully considered.
Ultimately, findings like these reveal just how illusory is the perception of choice and health freedom when it comes to the GM/non-GMO debate, and the consumer’s right to avoid harm from GMOs by refusing to buy or consume them. Not only are consumers in the U.S. not allowed to know what is in their food with accurate and truthful labeling of ingredients, we now know thatbiopollution from GMOs produces uncontrollable and irreversible changes in the genomes of affected organisms when their transgenes escape into them, and we know that even beyond their genomic/proteomic differences the contamination of GM foods with herbicides like Roundup(glyphosate) makes them non-substantially equivalent in chemical composition to their non-contaminated alternatives. The reality is that the environment is becoming so saturated with the ‘fall out’ from the ever-expanding GM agricultural/agrichemical farming grid that even if you somehow find a way to avoid eating contaminated food, you will be forced to have to deal with its adverse health effects, as long as you need air to breath and water to drink. Ultimately, unless our food production system moves through its present chemical war-modeled phase of GM monoculturing, even non-GM food will end up being contaminated with these chemicals and transgenes, because nothing ‘natural’ lives in a vacuum – and if it does, then it really shouldn’t be called “organic,” and maybe shouldn’t even be called food.
[i] Michael S Majewski, Richard H Coupe, William T Foreman, Paul D Capel. Pesticides in Mississippi air and rain: A comparison between 1995 and 2007. Environ Toxicol Chem. 2014 Feb 19. Epub 2014 Feb 19. PMID: 24549493
This article first appeared at GreenMedInfo. Please visit to access their vast database of articles and the latest information in natural health.
The US Bureau of Reclamation released its first outlook of the year and finds insufficient stock is available in California to release irrigation water for farmers. This is the first time in the 54 year history of the State Water Project. “If it’s not there, it’s just not there,” notes a Water Authority director adding that it’s going to be tough to find enough water, but farmers are hit hardest as “they’re all on pins and needles trying to figure out how they’re going to get through this.” Fields will go unplanted (supply lower mean food prices higher), or farmers will pay top dollar for water that’s on the market (and those costs can only be passed on via higher food prices).
Federal officials announced Friday that many California farmers caught in the state’s drought can expect to receive no irrigation water this year from a vast system of rivers, canals and reservoirs interlacing the state.
The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation released its first outlook of the year, saying that the agency will continue to monitor rain and snow fall, but the grim levels so far prove that the state is in the throes of one of its driest periods in recorded history.
Unless the year turns wet, many farmers can expect to receive no water from the federally run Central Valley Project.
… the state’s snowpack is at 29 percent of average for this time of year.
California officials who manage the State Water Project, the state’s other major water system, have already said they won’t be releasing any water for farmers, marking a first in its 54-year history.
“They’re all on pins and needles trying to figure out how they’re going to get through this,” Holman said, adding that Westland’s 700 farmers will choose to leave fields unplanted, draw water from wells or pay top dollar for water that’s on the market.
Farmers are hit hardest, but they’re not alone. Contractors that provide cities with water can expect to receive half of their usual amount, the Bureau said, and wildlife refuges that need water flows in rivers to protect endangered fish will receive 40 percent of their contracted supply.
Contractors that provide farmers with water and hold historic agreements giving them senior rights will receive 40 percent of their normal supplies. Some contracts date back over a century andguarantee that farmers will receive at least 75 percent of their water.
One of those is the San Joaquin River Exchange Contractors Water Authority in Los Banos that provides irrigation for 240,000 acres of farmland.
The Water Authority’s executive director Steve Chedester said farmers he serves understand that the reality of California’s drought means it’s going to be tough to find enough water for them. “They’re taking a very practical approach,” he said. “If it’s not there, it’s just not there.”