(Natural News) It is no secret that Russia’s war against Ukraine has been disrupting food production, but one particularly frustrating aspect of the situation is the fact that it is also preventing food that has already been harvested from being exported as global hunger rages on.
The regional director of the United Nations World Food Program, Martin Frick, has warned that there are 4.5 million tons of grains sitting at Ukrainian ports right now waiting for export.
According to Frick, 20 million tons of grain have been blocked from leaving the country so far this year, which represents a significant proportion of the grain produced by the country. According to The Guardian, 55 million tons of corn and wheat combined were harvested in Ukraine in 2020.
Grain is normally moved by bulk carrier ship from Black Sea ports in the Ukraine, something that has become impossible with the Russian invasion of the country. The grain is so incredibly bulky that it is not practical to move it by truck; one ship can reportedly carry as much grain as “tens of hundreds” of trucks.
Many experts have warned that a global food crisis is impending in the wake of the war between Ukraine and Russia as Ukraine is a major global producer of many agricultural and food products. The disruption of exports is being compounded by boycotts of Russia’s production.
One of Russia’s first actions as its hostilities against Ukraine intensified earlier this year was cutting the country off from sea lanes of communication. Several merchant ships have already been damaged or sunk in the Black Sea this year, including the bulk carriers used for exporting grains and wheat to the world. These civilian craft are reportedly falling victim to missiles, bombs and sea mines.
Frick warned that with food being unable to get out of Ukraine, the global hunger crisis is getting worse, putting populations in the Middle East and Africa at particular risk. He said: “We have to open up these ports. We have to open them up and protect them so that food can move in and out of this country for the rest of the world. It’s a humanitarian need, the rest of the world demands it, we have to have those ports open. We have to!”
“Hunger doesn’t have to be a weapon”
While Frick has said that “hunger doesn’t have to be a weapon,” it appears that Russia is trying to weaponize food in Ukraine. In addition to actively blocking food from being exported from the country, there are widespread claims that they have been deliberately bombing grain silos and making off with Ukrainian grains in convoys headed north.
Ukrainian Government Deputy Agriculture Minister Taras Vysotskiy told Radio Free Europe: “There are confirmed facts that several hundred thousand tons of grain in total were taken out of the Zaporizhzhya, Kherson, Donetsk, and Luhansk regions.”
Frick believes that much like the humanitarian corridor that has been set up for Ukrainian refugees coming out of the regions impacted by the war and allowing humanitarian aid to get in, a humanitarian corridor should also be set up to help Ukraine’s significant agricultural output reach the rest of the world.
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz has pledged that his country will step in and assist with food shortages resulting from the war to help prevent mass starvation.
He said: “Right now we must concern ourselves with the fact that there are some people who will starve, that there are countries which will be unable to afford grain for their people and that this whole war situation could lead to a global hunger crisis.”
Plans are reportedly underway by several countries to enable blocked grain supplies to leave Ukraine via rail using a network of national rail operators in the region to create a “grain bridge,” but there are serious logistical challenges and other potential roadblocks that could make this difficult to achieve.
Sources for this article include:
Donald Trump Urges Dr. Oz to Declare Victory in Pennsylvania Before Votes Fully Counted
Former President Donald Trump urged Dr. Mehmet Oz on Wednesday to declare victory in the Republican Senate primary election, even as votes are still being tallied in the close race.
“Dr. Oz should declare victory,” Trump wrote on his Truth Social media platform. “It makes it much harder for them to cheat with the ballots that they ‘just happened to find.’”
Trump’s message indicated he was concerned that Oz’s opponent David McCormick had a chance of pulling ahead as more ballots are counted.
The former president endorsed Oz in the race and even held a rally for him in Pennsylvania.
Oz is currently leading the tally with 413,227 votes while McCormick is a close second with 411,048 votes.
It is unclear when all of the votes will be counted in the state, as some counties are still counting mail-in ballots, overseas ballots, and military absentee ballots.
The McCormick team believes they are receiving a greater percentage of absentee ballots than Oz, allowing them to pull ahead and win the race.
“Based on how many uncounted absentee ballots there are and the margin by which Dave has won them so far, that’s why we are confident of victory,” McCormick’s consultant wrote on social media. “Dave will win this race.”
Report: Officials Investigate Threats to ‘Murder Justices,’ DHS Warns of Increasing Violence from Pro-Abortion Extremists
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) warned of increased political violence from pro-abortion extremists before and after the Supreme Court releases an official ruling that could potentially overturn Roe v. Wade, according to an unclassified memo obtained by Axios.
“Law enforcement agencies are investigating social-media threats to burn down or storm the Supreme Court building and murder justices and their clerks, as well as attacks targeting places of worship and abortion clinics,” the outlet reported.
The memo was allegedly circulated by DHS’s intelligence arm on May 13, and says the threats that arose after Politico published a leak of the Dobbs draft opinion “are likely to persist and may increase leading up to and following the issuing of the Court’s official ruling.”
DHS warns of civil unrest after Roe ruling:
Law enforcement investigates social-media threats to burn down or storm Supreme Court … kill justices and clerks … attack places of worship, abortion clinicshttps://t.co/vOnBxJBE55
— Mike Allen (@mikeallen) May 18, 2022
The left-leaning news outlet claimed that abortion-related violence has “historically been driven by anti-abortion extremists,” though it did not mention the more than 63 million estimated deaths of unborn children since the Court’s 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling declaring abortion to be protected by the U.S. Constitution.
“Some racially or ethnically motivated violent extremists’ embrace of pro-life narratives may be linked to the perception of wanting to ‘save white children’ and ‘fight white genocide,’” the memo reportedly claims.
“But the memo warns that this time, extremist acts could come from abortion-rights proponents as well,” Axios added.
Indeed, pro-abortion activists tracked down the addresses of conservative Supreme Court justices and have been protesting outside their homes in an attempt to intimidate them and subvert the Democratic process. Pro-abortion militants have also vandalized pregnancy centers, including the headquarters of the pro-life group Wisconsin Family Action, which was likely set on fire with a Molotov cocktail.
“If abortions aren’t safe then you aren’t either,” graffiti painted on the side of the building read.
Early Sunday morning, a leftist group attacked WFA’s office in Madison, throwing two Molotov cocktails into the office, after breaking windows, and then proceeded to light a fire. The arsonists posted graffiti that read, “If abortions aren’t safe, then you aren’t either.” pic.twitter.com/H1csPzv5Kz
— ✰✰Wisconsin Family Action✰✰ (@WIFamilyAction) May 9, 2022
Additionally, pro-abortion activists have been targeting churches — Sacred Heart of Mary Church in Boulder, Colorado had its windows broken and front doors spray-painted over. A group of radical pro-abortion activists also blocked the entrance to Manhattan’s Basilica of Saint Patrick’s Old Cathedral days after the leak.
Pro-choice activists protest outside NYC Church, the Basilica of Old St. Patrick in New York, in opposition to a pro-life faith group that routinely tries to deter patients seeking abortions at the nearby Planned Parenthood.
— Scootercaster (@ScooterCasterNY) May 7, 2022
The DHS did say that “…advocacy…does not constitute domestic violent extremism…” according to Axios.
“The mere advocacy of political or social positions, political activism, use of strong rhetoric, or generalized philosophic embrace of violent tactics does not constitute domestic violent extremism or illegal activity and is constitutionally protected,” the memo allegedly reads.
A DHS spokesperson told the outlet the department “is committed to protecting Americans’ freedom of speech and other civil rights and civil liberties, including the right to peacefully protest.”
President Joe Biden’s White House has condemned much of the vandalism but indicated sympathy for the pro-abortion cause.
“We know the passion, we understand the passion, we understand the concern,” former White House press secretary Jen Psaki said during a May 9 press conference, referring to the perpetrators and their apparent support for legal abortion.
The Biden administration has also encouraged “peaceful” protests outside the homes of Supreme Court justices, despite the fact that such protests aim to intimidate the judiciary and appear to be illegal.
Katherine Hamilton is a political reporter for Breitbart News. You can follow her on Twitter.
WATCH: California Teen Plays in Concert with Pearl Jam After Drummer Gets Coronavirus
A California high school student rocked out on the drums for the iconic grunge band Pearl Jam Friday night after the band’s drummer came down with coronavirus, KGO reports.
When legendary Pearl Jam and Soundgarden drummer Matt Cameron fell ill with the Wuhan coronavirus, 18-year-old Kai Neukermans of Mini Valley figured the band needed a drummer for their concert at the Oakland Arena, according to the outlet. He reached out to his acquaintance Olivia Vedder, the daughter of Pearl Jam singer Eddie Vedder, to see if he could fill in on the sticks.
“I went to bed and forgot about it,” he explained. “And the next day I went to school and in the middle of class Olivia texted me to send her a video of me playing a Pearl Jam song because they were taking submissions.”
Before he knew it, Neukermans – who drums in a band called The Alive with his friend and younger brother – was leaving school for the day with his music teacher so the pair could get a demo ready for Pearl Jam, according to KGO.
The San Francisco Chronicle reported:
He sent Olivia Vedder a video of him playing over the track. Within the hour he was in touch with a manager who told him to come to the stadium. Pearl Jam had tapped longtime collaborators Josh Klinghoffer, formerly with Red Hot Chili Peppers, and Oakland musician Richard Stuverud to sit in for Cameron for most of the night. Neukermans would play one song partway through the first set.
“My heart started beating really fast,” he told KGO. “I called my dad and he said he nearly had a heart attack.”
Once Neukermans got to the stadium, it was time for rehearsals and to go through the band’s sets for the evening, according to the Chronicle.
“They were having so much fun,” said the drummer.
In short order, Vedder was introducing him on stage to the Pearl Jam fans in attendance.
“Please welcome to the stage, Mini Valley’s own Kai Neukermans!” Vedder said in a video of the performance, posted on Youtube by user mfc172, as the teen walked on stage, absorbing the moment in awe.
“We’re ready when you are. You’re leading the band, brother,” Vedder said as the teen counted off the beat with his sticks. They played “Mind Your Manners,” the second track from the band’s 2013 album Lightning Bolt, and once the performance ended, Vedder took the teen to the front of the stage, where they bowed together.
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