By Jerry Gordon and Rod Reuven Dovid Bryant[i]
Best-selling author and intrepid journalist Ken Timmerman and his wife have been locked down in their vacation home in southern France for 72 days since March 16, 2020. They have tickets to leave France on July 2nd, but do not know whether French President Macron will extend confinement beyond June 16, 2020. They came in late February after a ski vacation with their son in the Spanish Pyrenees expecting to stay only three weeks to return home. But they are trapped. It reminds us of those bizarre lyrics from the Eagles ‘hit “Hotel California”: “you can check out any time, but you can never leave”. Jerry Gordon and Rod Reuven Dovid Bryant of Israel New Talk Radio – Beyond the Matrix Zoomed in to find out how Ken and his wife were faring under what Timmerman deems French President Macron’s draconian ‘authoritarianism’ and impact under COVID-19.
Ken Timmerman tending to olive groves on Southern France vacation home while on COVID-19 confinement
Among the geo-political topics, we addressed were:
- how the surge of ISIS in Syria and Iraq is different this time;
- how the US and especially Israel bombing may have sent Iran packing from Syria;
- the bizarre Iranian reaction to the COVID -19 pandemic that is ravaging the senior Ayatollahs and IRGC leaders;
- US Secretary of State Pompeo’s real agenda behind his hurry up trip to visit with Netanyahu, Gantz and Ashkenazi just before the formation of the new unity government;
- an update on corruption in the Republic of Georgia and US concerns about Russia and Iran influence; and
- a brief discussion of his latest book, a political thriller about how the 2020 US election was “stolen” due out on August 11, 2020, The Election Heist.
On Macron’s “authoritarianism”.
French President Macron’s controlled press and scientific advisors, backed by an unemployment system that delivers 97% of wages has the support of French unions, but not the socially conservative small business, restaurateurs, vintners, construction firm owners in the south of France. Further, Macron has no exit strategy. The borders, airports and most trains are closed. Timmerman thinks that France is in love with authoritarianism He cited the dystopian example of a French family of 15 caught by a police helicopter on a walk on a forested mountain crest detained for not wearing masks and fined $100 each for walking in a group beyond the 2 kilometer restriction. He spoke about French unions shutting down Amazon in France with aid of courts for not adhering to social distance restrictions. Timmerman cites Dennis Prager comment that lockdown was a historic economic blunder. As to the comparative impact of fatalities from the novel coronavirus, he cites his friend, former South Carolina Governor, David Beasley, now head of the UN World Food Program who is more concerned about the estimated 136 million fatalities in the hunger pandemic caused by COVID-19. Germany and Austria appear to be opening up, Sweden’s control of targeted groups rather than complete lockdown appeared to be working. Belgium has the worst per capita fatality rates from COVID-19. Timmerman thinks that is largely due to its large Muslim immigrant population and crowded living conditions.
Absurdity of Iran’s Mullahcracy view of COVID-19.
Timmerman cited reports of the aging Ayatollahs rushing to kiss the holy Shrines in Qum, believing that Allah would spare them from the dreaded novel Coronavirus. Instead Iran Mahan airlines flights from China spread the COVID-19 pandemic taking its toll of Ayatollahs and senior IRGC leaders, as well as the population in key hot spots. Perhaps the reason why thousands of Iranians are texting messages to Israel seeking immigration, given the Jewish nation’s success in curbing the COVID-19 epidemic, developing tests, therapies and vaccines potentially curbing the outbreak.
The Surge of ISIS in Syria and Iraq.
Unlike the late Jihadist state, the ISIS surge in Syria and Iraq is targeted assassinations and car bombings. Both the US and Israel know where these lay behinds are and through bombing and special ops have prevented ISIS from holding terrain.
Is Iran leaving Syria due to Israel and US Bombing?
Timmerman cites the relentless bombing by Israel’s Air Force targeting IRGC bases and missile depots in Syria resulting in deaths of senior IRGC generals as contributing to reports of Iran possibly leaving Syria. That and perhaps the estimated $30 billion spent in propping up Assad Regime in the face of punishing sanctions by the US may be factors behind a possible strategic retreat by Iran.
Secretary of State Pompeo’s real agenda behind his hurry up visit to Israel.
Secretary of State Pompeo’s recent trip to Israel just before the formation of the new unity government, had nothing to do with cultivating the split US Jewish vote in the November 2020 national elections. Besides touching base with the new government with Netanyahu, Gantz and Ashkenazi it was to obtain a return favor in the form of annexation of the historic Judea and Samaria of the Land of Israel. Trump had secured the turnout of millions of US Evangelical Christians in his 2016 electoral victory who believe that God had designated the land for the Jewish people. This Timmerman contends is important for the US special relationship with Israel.
Update on Republic of Georgia corruption.
Timmerman was supposed to return to Tbilisi in the Republic of Georgia for a court hearing on the freeing of his friend and 9/11 Iran Links case Iran intelligence defector Alireza Soliemanpak who was jailed on trumped up charges by Iran’s Ambassador and intelligence asset in league with corrupt former Interior Minister, now Prime Minister Giorgio Gakharia. That hearing was cancelled. However Texas US Senators Ted Cruz and John Cornyn, members of the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee and Republican Congressmen from Texas and Oklahoma sent a letter on May 15, 2020 to Secretaries of State Pompeo and Treasury Mnuchin requesting an investigation into the corrupt head of the ruling Georgia Dream Party billionaire Bidzina Ivanishvili for Russian and Iranian evasions of sanctions and money laundering via a bank owned by three Iranians in Tbilisi. Add that to returning the country, an aspiring NATO ally to a transparent governing system.
China -Israel Relations and COVID -19 Pandemic.
Timmerman says that China Israel relations has been the bone of contention with the US since the days of the transfer of the Israeli Lavi fighter technology to China. Now with China Haifa port contracts and sizeable investments in Israeli high tech, it is problematic. One flashpoint has been settled with the award to an Israeli consortium of the Sorek-2 desalination project instead of the Hutchinson Water Company of Hong Kong. Timmerman believes revelations about China’s transmission of the COVID-19 pandemic around the globe has resulted in pushback by the US. He cited legislation introduced by US Arkansas Senator Cotton and US Texas Representative Crenshaw seeking to remove sovereign immunity protection for China to enable Americans to bring suit for damages occasioned by the COVID-19 virus. There are Trump’s ban on Huawei purchase of US semiconductors and threats to cut off US permanent funding of the World Health Organization for cooperating with the XI-jinping regime delaying information on the Wuhan virus outbreak. Timmerman says the US should refocus on bringing back pharma production and research to the US, as Japan has done.
For more on what Ken Timmerman is doing and writing about, see his website at: kentimmerman.com.
[i][i] Jerome B Gordon is a Senior Vice President of the New English Review, author of The West Speaks, NER Press 2012, and co-author of Genocide in Sudan: Caliphate Threatens Africa and the World, JAD Publishing, 2017. Mr. Gordon is a former US Army intelligence officer who served during the Viet Nam era. He is producer and co-host of Israel News Talk Radio—Beyond the Matrix. He was the co-host and co-producer of weekly The Lisa Benson Show for National Security that aired out of KKNT960 in Phoenix Arizona from 2013 to 2016 and co-host and co-producer of the Middle East Round Table periodic series on 1330amWEBY, Northwest Florida Talk Radio, Pensacola, Florida from 2007 to 2017.
Rod Reuven Dovid Bryant is creator and host of Israel News Talk Radio—Beyond the Matrix and founder of Netiv.