L'Autre Monde 19 mars 2012: Quand le chaos est organisé...
Pour écouter, ou pour télécharger, simplement cliquer sur le lien ici:
L'Autre Monde 19 mars 2012
120 min / Radio de l'UQAM, CHOQ FM
| Diffusion en direct : Lundi à 15:00h |
Au programme cette semaine:
Actualité mondiale: Les assoiffés de sang préparent leur guerre contre l'Iran et la Syrie, les médias qui ne méritent même plus de porter le nom de "médias", la foire aux centaines de trillions de dollars du marché des produits dérivés, la mère de toutes les bulles financières de l'histoire, passage de la loi C-10 au Canada et la mort de la liberté d'expression - naissance d'une police de la pensée et de la censure, ...et bien plus!
C'est en rendez-vous le lundi dès 15h pour l'émission la plus écoutée de CHOQ FM, la radio officielle de l'Université du Québec à Montréal !
***Hyperliens vers les sources des informations discutées sur l'émission d'aujourd'hui:
Internet law expert Michael Geist recently revealed that behind-the-scenes, Big Media is pushing for copyright legislation (Bill C-11) to include such strong powers that, if accepted, could lead to “a radical reform of the Internet in Canada”. He writes:
Taken together, the proposals would require Internet providers to block access to foreign sites, take down content without court oversight, and disclose subscriber information without a warrant.
We’re talking about mass Internet surveillance and censorship. We have to stop these restrictions on free expression, privacy, and innovation.
Par François Marginean
Image Flickr par jk5854
Poster un lien vers un site « haineux » fera de vous un criminel
Poster un lien vers un site « haineux », même si c’est fait anonymement ou sans être conscient que le site en question contient du matériel jugé comme étant « haineux », risque fort bien d’être un crime, selon le nouveau projet de loi de Stephen Harper.
Le problème est que ce qui est défini comme étant « haineux » demeurera toujours aussi vague que la guerre contre le « terrorisme ». Quiconque devient un peu trop critique du Système est susceptible d’être déclaré un potentiel terroriste par les autorités. Bien évidemment, les sites pro-palestiniens font partie du lot, classés parmi les « sites haineux ». On peut alors comprendre que nous assistons à une démolition contrôlée de notre liberté d’expression et de nos droits fondamentaux.
Bien sûr, le motif semble noble en voulant punir le langage haineux, raciste et xénophobe, mais les conséquences et risques de dérapages légaux dans la réalité, ainsi que le but ultime réel, sont des plus graves.
Voici le projet de loi omnibus sur le crime mis de l’avant par le gouvernement conservateur de Stephen Harper et qui sera introduit bientôt pour être voté au Parlement canadien. D’après le site officiel du parlement canadien:
2 Description et analyse
2.1 Modifications au Code criminel
2.1.1 Modernisation des infractions
18.104.22.168 la propagande haineuse (articles 4 et 5)
Les infractions de propagande haineuse doivent être commises contre un «groupe identifiable». L’article 4 du projet de loi ajoute «l’origine nationale» à la définition de «groupe identifiable» (8).
L’article 5 du projet de loi prévoit que les infractions d’incitation publique à la haine et la propagation volontaire de la haine peuvent être commises par tout moyen de communication et notamment en rendant accessible du matériel haineux, par exemple, en créant un lien hypertexte qui dirige les internautes vers un site Web où du matériel haineux est affiché.
Le problème est que sous le gouvernement majoritaire de Harper, qui est extrêmement influencé par la droite pro-sioniste, les campagnes de boycott et de désinvestissement d’Israël et de ses produits, l’étiquette d’État d’apartheid et la critique des actes et de la politique étrangère israélienne, sont vertement condamnés et considérés comme étant « antisémite ». En fait, la critique de l’idéologie politique et des actes perpétrés sous son égide qui peut être tout à fait légitime, tend à être considérée comme haineuse et antisémite. On cherche à faire des amalgames entre l’antisionisme et l’antisémitisme, embrouiller la frontière entre l’idéologie politique et une religion.
Le Canada sous influence
À voir et à revoir – le documentaire produit par Radio-Canada:
Le Canada sous influence: l’influence du lobby pro-israélien au sein du gouvernement Harper, qui lève le voile sur la guerre sioniste contre des ONG, telles que Droits et Démocratie, qui « aident les terroristes et sont anti-Israël », et le virage violemment pro-israélien du gouvernement canadien sous Stephen Harper.
Voici deux articles qui critiquent la dimension liberticide de cette loi:
Le projet de loi sur le crime rendrait illégal l’anonymat et les hyperliens au Canada
Soumis par Erin Brown-John, le jeu, 12/05/2011 – 00:12
Anonymat et hyperliens seront-ils illégaux au Canada?
Un nouveau projet de loi sur le crime mis de l’avant par le gouvernement conservateur laisse penser qu’ils pourraient le devenir. Le projet de loi, un des nombreux prévus pour être présentés au Parlement, imposerait de nouvelles limites sur la création d’hyperliens vers des contenus considérés comme illégaux ou à l’aide d’un pseudonyme en ligne.
En surface de l’idée paraît ridicule. Ces deux choses sont essentielles pour faire de l’Internet ce qu’il est – un véhicule pour le dialogue centré sur les citoyens et le partage d’informations. Certes, le gouvernement n’adopterait jamais une telle position!
Mais au cours de la dernière campagne électorale, Stephen Harper a clairement indiqué qu’il avait l’intention de faire adopter une série de projets de loi sur la criminalité à l’intérieur ses 100 premiers jours de son mandat. Ces projets de loi comprennent, entre autres choses, la permission au gouvernement d’accroître son pouvoir de surveiller vos activités en ligne. Ils comprennent également une disposition qui pénalise les gens pour des liens vers du contenu qui est considéré comme un «discours haineux» et pour avoir utilisé des noms qui protègent leur anonymat en ligne.
Ces lois visent à donner plus de pouvoirs aux policiers pour lutter contre le discours haineux et le harcèlement, mais comme l’indique l’article récent de Macleans, elles sont mal écrites et vagues, laissant beaucoup trop de place à interprétation.
Bien que la propagation de la haine ne doive absolument pas être tolérée, ce projet de loi mis sur le crime ne fait pas de distinction entre les personnes qui répandent la haine et celles qui la commentent. Ne devrait-il pas être de notre droit en tant que citoyens d’être en mesure de commenter les choses, indépendamment de leur contenu? Restreindre notre capacité à le faire constitue une violation grave de notre liberté d’expression.
Tel qu’il est écrit, le projet de loi sur la criminalité nous tient responsable pour les actions d’autres personnes. Le contenu des sites Internet change tout le temps. Ce à quoi vous reliez un jour donné pourrait contenir des propos haineux le lendemain, et vous n’avez aucun contrôle sur ce contenu.
Ce projet de loi inhibera le dialogue qui doit avoir lieu dans notre société et punira les gens pour avoir exercé leur droit à la liberté d’expression.
Les Canadiens ont besoin d’un Internet axés sur les citoyens et abordable, qui leur permet de parler ouvertement des enjeux qui comptent pour eux. Il est clair que ces nouveaux projets de loi sur le crime nous conduisent dans la mauvaise direction.
C’est pourquoi il est si important de cultiver notre communauté Pro-Internet et de continuer à faire pression sur le gouvernement afin de promouvoir un Internet ouvert et abordable qui sert le public. Ensemble, nous pouvons tenir le gouvernement responsable et l’internet gratuit.
Le projet de loi sur le «crime haineux» cible les Canadiens
Vendredi 6 mai 2011
Par Brian Lilley
Il est dit que le prix de la liberté est la vigilance éternelle et c’est tout aussi vrai aujourd’hui, après la victoire des conservateurs, que cela l’était avant.
Je suis sûr que certains partisans conservateurs ont dansé dans les rues en chantant Let Freedom Reign (« Laissons la liberté régner »), mais de faire un acte de foi envers un parti politique c’est de la foi aveugle.
Le gens qui sont au pouvoir sont ceux dont nous devrions souvent en fait avoir le plus peur, sans nom, des bureaucrates anonymes au pouvoir immense d’établir des règlements qui peuvent être impossible à renverser. Et puisque nous ne votons pas pour eux, ils n’ont aucune raison de nous craindre.
Les politiciens ne mènent pas vraiment la danse, ils donnent simplement des directions et j’espère que les bureaucrates le comprennent.
Nous espérons que nos élus agissent en superviseurs en notre nom, mais nous ne pouvons pas compter sur eux.
Si vous ne voulez pas que des lois intrusives viennent s’immiscer dans nos vies, si vous ne voulez pas que votre liberté s’érode, alors c’est à vous de monter la garde.
Les Conservateurs prévoient introduire, lorsque la Chambre reprendra ses travaux, un projet de loi omnibus du crime qui comprend l’ensemble de leur législation précédente en une seule loi.
Le projet de loi est présenté comme s’il devait permettre à la police de traquer et de mettre la main au collet des pervers qui font circuler de la pornographie impliquant des enfants et leur permettre de mettre à jour leurs techniques de surveillance pour traiter avec le monde informatique en constante évolution dans lequel nous vivons.
Ça m’a l’air bien. Qu’est-ce qui pourrait y avoir de mal à cela?
En fait, il n’y a rien de mal avec cette partie, mais il y a beaucoup à s’inquiéter en ce qui concerne ce qu’ils proposent de faire contre les crimes haineux.
Le projet de loi prévoit de criminaliser le fait de poster un lien vers un site Web qui diffuse de la haine.
Voici ce que la Bibliothèque du Parlement dit à propos du projet de loi sur son site Internet: «L’article 5 du projet de loi prévoit que les infractions d’incitation publique à la haine et la propagation volontaire de la haine peuvent être commises par tout moyen de communication et notamment en rendant accessible du matériel haineux, en créant un lien hypertexte qui dirige les internautes vers un site Web où du matériel haineux est affiché, par exemple. «
Pour avoir simplement posté un lien vers un site Web affichant du matériel que quelqu’un d’autre juge odieux, vous pourriez aller en prison pour deux ans et être marqué comme étant un criminel.
La police de l’Internet. Seulement au Canada.
Il ne s’agit pas de protéger les gens contre un génocide ou même des menaces de mort, la façon dont la loi est écrite aujourd’hui est beaucoup plus large.
«Quiconque communique des déclarations, autrement que dans une conversation privée, fomentant volontairement la haine contre un groupe identifiable est coupable. »
Il y a aussi la question épineuse de savoir qui décide de ce qui est « haineux »?
Est-ce que le site web promouvant la Semaine de l’Apartheid Israélien, qui occupe aujourd’hui une place importante sur les campus universitaires partout au Canada, va mener des gens en prison? Qu’en est-il des messages postés sur le web concernant le génocide des Arméniens, que ces derniers blâment sur les Turcs bien que les Turcs le contestent?
Il s’agit d’une proposition ridicule qui n’a pas lieu d’être dans un pays qui prétend chérir la liberté d’expression.
Nous avons l’habitude de dire: « Je désapprouve ce que vous dites, mais je défendrai jusqu’à la mort votre droit de le dire ». Maintenant il semble que la société canadienne croit « Je désapprouve ce que vous dites et je vais vous poursuivre en justice. »
More than 200 people were arrested and four are facing criminal charges after Thursday night's protest in Montreal against alleged police brutality.
Police Chief Marc Parent said 36 people were nabbed in isolated arrests, while 190 were detained in a mass arrest at a street corner near the downtown core.
Four people, three adults and one youth, were still in custody Friday morning facing assault, breach of probation and weapons charges.
Parent said seven officers were slightly injured, as were two civilians.
The chief defended police behaviour during the protest as professional.
In a scene resembling a war zone, Montreal police fire explosives, tear gas canisters and other weapons directly at the heads of student protestors.
I previously wrote about a reported Occupy protest who suffered a detached eye retina after Police threw stun grenades at the crowd he was with.
A peaceful protestor loses an eye after police fire stun grenades at students trying to occupy a building during a rally against college tuition hikes in Montreal.
Caton rougue also reports the police refused to help him.
“TVA also reports that apparently after Grenier ran from the scene badly injured to find help from a police officer, the officer refused to help him or to call him an ambulance. He was eventually helped to the hospital by fellow students.”
Retrait du programme des « compteurs intelligents » – Les frais demandés sont discriminatoires, dénonce Option consommateurs
Publié par : Option consommateurs
Montréal, le 15 mars 2012 – Option consommateurs juge inacceptable la décision d’Hydro-Québec d’exiger des frais de la part des ménages qui ne veulent pas prendre part au programme des nouveaux « compteurs intelligents » et estime que cette mesure est discriminatoire à l’endroit des ménages à faible et à moyen revenu.
La société d’État a annoncé hier que les clients qui ne veulent pas de ces nouveaux compteurs devront assumer des frais initiaux de 98 $ et des frais mensuels de 17 $ avant taxes. « Ces frais mensuels constituent un moyen détourné d’inciter les consommateurs à accepter les « compteurs intelligents », surtout les ménages à faible revenu, indique Maryse Guénette, responsable du service de recherche et de représentation à Option consommateurs. Au cours des dernières années, les consommateurs se sont faits imposés des frais de toutes sortes. Bon nombre de personnes n’ont tout simplement pas la marge de manœuvre financière pour se soustraire au programme des ‘compteurs intelligents’ ».
Option consommateurs signale également que le programme des « compteurs intelligents » ne sera pas aussi rentable que le prétend la société d’État. L’organisme fera valoir son point de vue lors des audiences qui auront lieu devant la Régie de l’énergie à partir du 19 mars.
À propos d’Option consommateurs
Créée en 1983, Option consommateurs est une association vouée à la défense et à la promotion des droits des consommateurs. Pour ce faire, elle s’est engagée dans une vingtaine de recours collectifs et s’intéresse de près aux questions reliées notamment à la santé, à l’agroalimentaire, à l’énergie, aux services financiers et aux pratiques commerciales.
Conseillère aux communications
* Lettre qui mérite d’être lue par tous les Québécois parce que là, c’est dans notre cour et dans nos maisons que la dictature s’installe. Vous avec le droit de refuser à Hydro Québec d’installer un compteur intelligent sur votre propriété privée: signifiez-leur un avis ou laissez une note sur le compteur électrique. Ils vous facturerons pour la prise manuelle du compteur, mais vous pourrez débattre votre point comme les milliers de Québécois qui ont choisi de se tenir debouts!
Les gars de l’Hydro ont déjà commencé l’installation dans plusieurs régions du Québec: si vous voyez un camion d’Hydro près de chez vous, soyez sur vos gardes.
Lettre de Jean-Serge Turcot, éditeur du Journal Vert
Chers relationnistes, péquenots et autres perroquets d’Hydro-Québec,
Je vous l’ai dit et je vous le redis: JE NE VOUS LÂCHERAI PAS.
Je vous SOMME de venir me débarrasser de mon compteur intelligent (j’ai remarqué qu’on était venu y ajouter une barrure avec un sceau d’Hydro… comme si on craignait que je l’ouvre… ce que je me garderais bien de faire).
Voici la dernière édition du journal VERT, dont la page où, entre autres, on parle ENCORE de vos m… compteurs.
Et je vais REFUSER de payer pour le changer ou pour la relève manuelle.
Je vous rappelle que mon journal est LU par pas moins de 100 000 lecteurs conscients, depuis 20 ans…
Et qu’avec André Fauteux, de la Maison du 21e siècle, nous avons été les PREMIERS MEDIAS à en parler…
Espérant que vous aimez les résultats de notre petit ramdam…
Jean Serge Turcot
éditeur, Journal VERT
100 000 lecteurs conscients depuis 20 ans
PS; MERCI AUX ANNONCEURS QUI NOUS PERMETTENT DE PRENDRE HUMBLEMENT LA DÉFENSE DES CONSOMMATEURS, DE LA SANTÉ HUMAINE ET DE L’ENVIRONNEMENT.
Compteurs intelligents: ressources à consulter
Suivez-nous dans nos démarches sur www.cqlpe.ca. Nous sommes un groupe de citoyens incluant des personnes électrosensibles qui se soulèvent contre l’installation de ces compteurs électropolluants et contrôlants. La bataille n’est pas fini mais au moins ils permettront aux gens qui n’en veulent pas de ne pas en avoir. Mais on continue notre lutte afin qu’aucun compteur »à puces » n’émettent aucune fréquence qui affecte l’humain.
Linda MacCulloch, CQLPE
Compteurs intelligents : Sommes-nous maîtres chez nous?
Maison du 21ème siècle:
Ça commence à chauffer dans ce dossier!!!! À suivre!
Former U.S. vice-president Dick Cheney has cancelled a Canadian speaking appearance due to security concerns sparked by demonstrations during a visit he made to Vancouver last fall, the event promoter said Monday.
Cheney, whom the protesters denounced as a war criminal, was slated to talk about his experiences in office and the current American political situation at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre on April 24.
However, Ryan Ruppert, of Spectre Live Corp., said Cheney and his daughter Elizabeth had begged off via their agent.
"After speaking with their security advisers, they changed their mind on coming to the event," Ruppert said.
"(They) decided it was better for their personal safety they stay out of Canada."
Everyone in the world seems to recognize the obvious crimes perpetrated by the Bush/Cheney regime. Their overwhelming negative status in the world has now confined them to personal prisons where they can no longer travel abroad for public events. It appears they're only welcome in heavily-secured private dragon lairs for the rest of their waking years. But even those locations are shrinking for these torturers and mass murderers...
In addition to drinking water contamination, earthquakes can now be added to the harmful consequences of the controversial practice of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, according to the Ohio state government. In fracking, energy companies use powerful pumps to force pressurized fluid into deep layers of rock, causing fractures, which allow the extraction of otherwise unavailable natural gas or oil. In a recently released report, the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) concluded that a rash of 12 earthquakes in the Youngstown, Ohio, area between March and December 2011 was likely due to nearby fracking operations. Those temblors began just three months after fracking began, ranged from 2.1 to 4.0 magnitude and led ODNR to shut down the wells on December 30.
This practice needs to be halted immediately.
Unfortunately, however, in this country, profit nearly always trumps the care and well-being of its citizens. It will probably take a huge catastrophe, like BP's Gulf Oil disaster, to create enough damage to cause the public - and politicians - to sit up and take notice.
A new feature story in this month’s Wired blows the lid off plans for a massive new National Security Agency data center in Utah that represents the resurrection of a program that Congress killed in 2003, known as “Total Information Awareness,” targeting literally all electronic communications all over the world — including those made by American citizens.
The proposal was to build computing systems that could suck up every electronic communication on the planet and filter them through a smart super-computer that would flag certain conversations, emails, transactions and other items of interest for further review. It was a program so monstrous in scope that after a brief legislative battle, Congress imposed strict regulations on the type of technology that could accomplish those ends, prohibiting it from ever being used against Americans.
But if well sourced intelligence reporter James Bamford is to be believed, as of this year, their efforts to stop it are moot.
According to Bamford, the NSA’s new data center in Utah will be the most all-encompassing spy machine ever conceived, capable of breaking almost any encryption, reading any email and recording any phone call anywhere in the world, even if it’s not made over the Internet. A network of ultra-sensitive satellites enhance the center’s intelligence-finding capabilities with the unique ability to sniff electronic communications from a massive distance.
More troubling still, Bamford’s three covert sources who worked for the NSA reportedly claim that the agency is dumping Americans’ communications into the mix, knowingly violating the U.S. Constitution in pursuit of a modern-day Manhattan Project.
For the NSA, overflowing with tens of billions of dollars in post-9/11 budget awards, the cryptanalysis breakthrough came at a time of explosive growth, in size as well as in power. Established as an arm of the Department of Defense following Pearl Harbor, with the primary purpose of preventing another surprise assault, the NSA suffered a series of humiliations in the post-Cold War years. Caught off guard by an escalating series of terrorist attacks—the first World Trade Center bombing, the blowing up of US embassies in East Africa, the attack on the USS Cole in Yemen, and finally the devastation of 9/11—some began questioning the agency’s very reason for being. In response, the NSA has quietly been reborn.
Under construction by contractors with top-secret clearances, the blandly named Utah Data Center is being built for the National Security Agency. A project of immense secrecy, it is the final piece in a complex puzzle assembled over the past decade. Its purpose: to intercept, decipher, analyze, and store vast swaths of the world’s communications as they zap down from satellites and zip through the underground and undersea cables of international, foreign, and domestic networks. The heavily fortified $2 billion center should be up and running in September 2013. Flowing through its servers and routers and stored in near-bottomless databases will be all forms of communication, including the complete contents of private emails, cell phone calls, and Google searches, as well as all sorts of personal data trails—parking receipts, travel itineraries, bookstore purchases, and other digital “pocket litter.” It is, in some measure, the realization of the “total information awareness” program created during the first term of the Bush administration—an effort that was killed by Congress in 2003 after it caused an outcry over its potential for invading Americans’ privacy.
But “this is more than just a data center,” says one senior intelligence official who until recently was involved with the program. The mammoth Bluffdale center will have another important and far more secret role that until now has gone unrevealed. It is also critical, he says, for breaking codes. And code-breaking is crucial, because much of the data that the center will handle—financial information, stock transactions, business deals, foreign military and diplomatic secrets, legal documents, confidential personal communications—will be heavily encrypted. According to another top official also involved with the program, the NSA made an enormous breakthrough several years ago in its ability to cryptanalyze, or break, unfathomably complex encryption systems employed by not only governments around the world but also many average computer users in the US. The upshot, according to this official: “Everybody’s a target; everybody with communication is a target.”
In the process—and for the first time since Watergate and the other scandals of the Nixon administration—the NSA has turned its surveillance apparatus on the US and its citizens. It has established listening posts throughout the nation to collect and sift through billions of email messages and phone calls, whether they originate within the country or overseas. It has created a supercomputer of almost unimaginable speed to look for patterns and unscramble codes. Finally, the agency has begun building a place to store all the trillions of words and thoughts and whispers captured in its electronic net. And, of course, it’s all being done in secret. To those on the inside, the old adage that NSA stands for Never Say Anything applies more than ever.
Welcome to the post-Constitutional, post-privacy Kingdom of Ameristan, courtesy of the last two administrations!!
More and more personal and household devices are connecting to the internet, from your television to your car navigation systems to your light switches. CIA Director David Petraeus cannot wait to spy on you through them.
Petraeus allowed that these household spy devices “change our notions of secrecy” and prompt a rethink of “our notions of identity and secrecy.” All of which is true — if convenient for a CIA director.
That’s not the only data exploit intriguing Petraeus. He’s interested in creating new online identities for his undercover spies — and sweeping away the “digital footprints” of agents who suddenly need to vanish.
Thinking Americans with skills and kids, please get out of this Post-Constitutional, post-functional, Dystopian State of Ameristan while you still can: the window is closing on that opportunity exponentially by the day.
Damaging new claims have emerged about the funding of Nicolas Sarkozy's 2007 election campaign and his links with former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi emerged.
The French investigative website Mediapart claims to have seen a confidential note suggesting Gaddafi contributed up to €50m (£42m) to Sarkozy's election fund five years ago.
Media claims Paul’s events, attended by thousands, are not newsworthy
In 2010, the developers of the municipal e-voting system that enables voters living abroad to vote via a web site, invited security experts to conduct tests. The university researchers say that the project was developed in cooperation with the Open Source Digital Voting Foundation (OSDV) and that other US states have also worked on services similar to Washington's "Digital Vote-by-Mail Service". They also praise the system's transparency as exemplary but point out that its architecture has fundamental security weaknesses and was not able to withstand a shell injection and other common hacker techniques.
Well I took a few screen shots of just one county at different times and this is what I found... This is Mississippi
http://i42.tinypic.com/15rnpz5.jpg - 100% Carroll County
http://i41.tinypic.com/11rrvh1.png - 43% & 64% Carroll County
so at 43% he has 132 votes in that 1 county, and at 100% he has 47 votes in that same county.
Researchers at the University of Michigan have reported that it took them only a short time to break through the security functions of a pilot project for online voting in Washington, D.C. "Within 48 hours of the system going live, we had gained near complete control of the election server", the researchers wrote in a paper that has now been released. "We successfully changed every vote and revealed almost every secret ballot." The hack was only discovered after about two business days – and most likely only because the intruders left a visible trail on purpose.
Tempers are flaring over a version of the American flag flying in Lake County. A veterans group says the flag is an outrage.
The flag, which features a picture of President Obama, was taken down Tuesday afternoon.
This is probably going to re-ignite the controversy over laws forbidding flag-desecration, but regardless of where you sit on that debate, the Democrats flying a flag with Obama's face instead of the stars for the states betrays the tyrannical mindset that pervades the current political structure. The states are gone, the Republic is gone, even Democracy is gone and in its place we find a personality cult which, like every other tin-pot dictatorship in the world, plasters the face of OURBELOVEDLEADER (Reg Trademark White House) on everything in sight!
Ein Volk! Ien Reich! Ein Obama!
Firm Romney Founded Is Tied to Chinese Surveillance
As the Chinese government forges ahead on a multibillion-dollar effort to blanket the country with surveillance cameras, one American company stands to profit: Bain Capital, the private equity firm founded by Mitt Romney.
Mr. Romney has had no role in Bain’s operations since 1999 and had no say over the investment in China. But the fortunes of Bain and Mr. Romney are still closely tied.
Google faces fresh privacy investigations in Europe and U.S. after 'bypassing' security to spy on iPhone users
Google is to face new investigations in both America and the EU over using hidden computer code to violate iPhone users' privacy settings.
The search giant is alleged to have 'tricked' the web browser in iPhone, iPad and PC into sending information to Google.
The information was used to build up advertising profiles on Google account users, and caused outrage among privacy groups.
This clip was leaked by CNN staff after a fake satellite newscast with Charles Jaco reporter famous for covering the 1990 Persian Gulf War.
Just in case you were wondering why ABCNNBBCBS isn't bothering to mention that Israel struck Gaza first in this latest round of Israel's favorite game; "let's shoot up the helpless people, because that is why we made them helpless in the first place!"
In the midst of what looks like it will turn out to be a massive spying scandal between the NSA and Google, like that of the NSA’s partnership with AT&T to spy on all phone calls placed within the U.S., we learn today that the Director of the Pentagon’s Premiere Research Lab, DARPA, is stepping down to take a “senior executive position” at Google.
Just three days ago, news hit the wire that the Department of Justice asked U.S. Federal courts to keep any partnerships between the Google and the NSA secret.
The request for state secrecy comes from EPIC filing a Freedom of Information request act attempting to discover why Google had not enabled encryption in Gmail by default which led to user’s email accounts being hacked and other security vulnerabilities.
EPIC apparently hit a sore spot within the government, as the NSA responded by saying they could not confirm nor deny any relationships with Google because doing so would compromise National Security.
As the story of Google’s true relationship with the NSA continues to unfold the Director of DARPA, Regina Dugan, is currently in the middle of her own scandal in which she is being investigated for contracts she has given out during her tenure.
The National Law Journal reports on the secrecy over the NSA ties to Google.
DOJ Asks Court To Keep Secret Any Partnership Between Google, NSA
The Justice Department is defending the government's refusal to discuss—or even acknowledge the existence of—any cooperative research and development agreement between Google and the National Security Agency.
The Washington based advocacy group Electronic Privacy Information Center sued in federal district court here to obtain documents about any such agreement between the Internet search giant and the security agency.
If you download potentially copyrighted software, videos or music, your Internet service provider (ISP) has been watching, and they’re coming for you.
Specifically, they’re coming for you on Thursday, July 12.
That’s the date when the nation’s largest ISPs will all voluntarily implement a new anti-piracy plan that will engage network operators in the largest digital spying scheme in history, and see some users’ bandwidth completely cut off until they sign an agreement saying they will not download copyrighted materials.
When people download a film from Netflix to a flatscreen, or turn on web radio, they could be alerting unwanted watchers to exactly what they are doing and where they are.
Spies will no longer have to plant bugs in your home - the rise of 'connected' gadgets controlled by apps will mean that people 'bug' their own homes, says CIA director David Petraeus.
The CIA claims it will be able to 'read' these devices via the internet - and perhaps even via radio waves from outside the home.
A 9-year-old boy was reportedly shocked twice with a stun gun for refusing to leave his home with an Ohio police officer.
The boy’s mother said she never expected Mount Sterling police officer Scott O’Neil would use hA 9-year-old boy was reportedly shocked twice with a stun gun for refusing to leave his home with an Ohio police officer.
The boy’s mother said she never expected Mount Sterling police officer Scott O’Neil would use his Taser on her child during a truancy arrest last week, her lawyer said.
The mayor of Mount Sterling, Ohio has suspended the entire police force for 3 days after an officer tased a 9 year old child and the police subsequently covered it up.
The small town, with a population just under 2,000, is now being policed by the Sheriffs department while a state investigation into the police chief and the five part time police officers takes place.
Fox news analyzes the argument of requiring ID to vote versus the epidemic of voter fraud being used to steal federal elections happening the country right now.
Law enforcement near Houston, Texas will soon have a $300,000 robotic surveillance drone in their arsenal, and if Montgomery County’s chief deputy has his say, it’s only a matter of time before that aircraft will be equipped to fire from above.
Discussing a new deal that will give the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office near Houston, Texas an unmanned, robotic spy drone, Chief Deputy Randy McDaniel tells The Daily that he hasn’t rule out adding weaponry to the lightweight aircraft.
The deputy says that while the department doesn’t have any plans at the moment to acquire an army of drones equipped with weapons, he opines that it could be advantageous for some endeavors.
Downing Street officials hope the hi-tech system will crack down on the 1.4million motorists who drive without insurance
Cameras at petrol stations will automatically stop uninsured or untaxed vehicles from being filled with fuel, under new government plans.
Downing Street officials hope the hi-tech system will crack down on the 1.4million motorists who drive without insurance.
Automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) cameras are already fitted in thousands of petrol station forecourts. Drivers can only fill their cars with fuel once the camera has captured and logged the vehicle’s number plate. When a car is flagged as being uninsured or untaxed, the system will prevent the fuel pump being used on that vehicle.
ATK Awarded Contract to Supply 450 Million Rounds of .40 Caliber Ammunition to the Department of Homeland Security
ATK has secured a major Indefinite Delivery/Indefinite Quantity deal to supply up to 450 million rounds of .40 caliber ammunition to the Department of Homeland Security.
The 1 year contract with four option years comes at a time when many Americans believe that DHS, along with certain aspects of the military, will soon turn their sights on the American people during some sort of martial law scenario.
“We are proud to extend our track record as the prime supplier of .40 caliber duty ammunition for DHS, ICE,” said Ron Johnson, the president of ATK’s Security and Sporting group,” reported a PR Newswire release.
The Department of Homeland Security has been extremely busy in the last few months.
Whether it be mastering their surveillance of social media, planning to build level 4 bio weapons labs in the middle of the country, defending Globalism, lying to Congress about their big brother policies, labeling people who believe in conspiracy theories as potential terrorists, or taking over cyber security, DHS seems to be actively working against the American people on every front.
Considering this, the fact that they are openly ordering millions more rounds of ammunition should at the very least give the American people pause.
As 2012 continues to move forward and the awakening of the sleeping giant that is the American people kicks into high gear, federal agencies seem hell bent to continue to gear up for a possible confrontation with the people of this once great country.
Source:The Intel Hub
A sensation of unbearable, sudden heat seems to come out of nowhere -- this wave, a strong electromagnetic beam, is the latest non-lethal weapon unveiled by the US military this week.
There is another name for intentionally causing excruciating pain without killing the subject.
It's called "torture."
People no longer trust the goverment.
The right to keep and bear arms is one of the most fundamental rights that have been a part of our heritage as Americans. When Congress passed the NDAA authorizing, the President to use the military to arrest American without charges to be held indefinably at the will of the Commander in Chief really has awoken the sleeping giant. There have been record sales in new purchases in firearms as well as ammunition. Why is there this surge in gun sales?
People are seeing the obvious that the government has failed them. The courts will not apply the law to stop government abuses. Congress refuses and looks the other way when it comes to abuses of power by the President. The Police are getting very bug eyed crazy being brutal to the law abiding. The TSA groping people at the airports is now coming on city streets in a town near you. People see that peaceful recourse of correcting injustices is almost gone. The government has a culture of corruption now with no end in sight of retreating from such carnage. So what choice does Americans have?
When we see the Federal Government shoots a Mother holding a baby at Ruby Ridge, the burning down the religious community in Waco Texas. It is when we see Police beating up a homeless man to death, in Orange county California, a non-threatening person. Police acting like thugs instead of peace officers… When we see, the Police shoot a man in the back on a subway platform in Oakland. It is when we see an old woman and children being tazed by a potbelly thug, wearing a uniform abusing the use of force to people that posed no threat to the safety of the officer. When a marine is shot in front of his kids in LA parking lot and a Sunday school teacher gunned down for no good reason. When a cop shoots kids dead in the school hallway that was no threat to the officer. Finally yet importantly, the former marine in Arizona shot dead in his home with multiple wounds to his body defending his home and family from cops on a rampage kicking in doors without identifying themselves. All the officers have not been punished or held accountable for their crimes violating their oath. There is no real punishment for the crime, no justice and no answers. People are now seeing that the system protect itself with no justice for the people.
What choice do the people have when there is no real justice? When the government that was supposed to exist to secure our rights and property, now has become destructive being the threat to the very thing they are supposed to protect? The people know there will be a flashpoint coming where people will have no choice but to defend themselves from a tyrannical government. It can be the Feds, the Military and even a sell out local police department being an extension of homeland security. There will be no seeking a peaceful end or a solution. There will be no talking to the other side or no more deals.
It is my hope the surging sales in firearms will be a deterrence of a hot tyranny coming in to most of the states.
A marine who started the Tea Party Armed Forces group is under Pentagon review for posting he will not follow Obama’s unlawful orders.
Three veterans groups are seeking class-action status for a lawsuit they filed in 2009 against the Defense Department, the CIA and the Army on behalf of thousands of soldiers who participated in research programs at Edgewood Arsenal and Fort Detrick, the trade publication U.S. Medicine reported.
The lawsuit alleges that chemical and biological weapons were tested on soldiers, that the military failed to provide follow-up care for the symptoms they developed, and that nearly all disability claims related to the tests have been denied.
If any young person you know is thinking about enlisting in the military, please make sure that they talk to a Vet who has been exposed to depleted uranium in this last set of immoral and illegal wars, and make sure that this person finds out what they have to say.
FBI Director Robert Mueller is unsure if the decision to use extrajudicial killings against US Citizens on American soil has been made yet.
(RT) – United States Attorney General Eric Holder recently explained how the president can order the assassination of his own citizens abroad. But did his rationalization justify executions within the US? Apparently, the FBI wouldn’t exclude it.
Editors Note: A few decades ago, there were thousands of independent media outlets in the US. Today in America, six multi-national global media mega corporations run by six individuals control 96% of the content Americans see on TV and watch at the movies; read in books, magazines and newspapers, and hear on the radio.
- Time Warner
- Walt Disney
- News Corp
- General Electric
These 6 corporations own the major entertainment theme parks, movie studios, television and radio broadcast networks and programing, cable and satellite channels, video news, magazines, book publishers, sports entertainment, integrated telecommunications and the communications satellites themselves, wireless phones, video games software, electronic media, internet, the music industry and more.
“Our job is to give people not what they want, but what we decide they ought to have.”- Richard Salent, Former President CBS News. 12,700,000 Google References
“News is what someone wants to suppress. Everything else is advertising” – former NBC news President Rubin Frank 147,000 Google References
“For better or worse, my company is a reflection of my character, my thinking, my values” – Rupert Murdoch 297,000,000 Google References
“We are here to serve advertisers. That is our raison d’etre” – CBS C.E.O. Michael Jordan 308,000 Google References
“We have no obligation to make history. We have no obligation to make art. We have no obligation to make a statement. To make money is our only objective” – Michael Eisner, CEO, The Walt Disney Co 364,000 Google References
“We are going to impose our agenda on the coverage by dealing with issues and subjects that we choose to deal with.” – Richard M. Cohen, Senior Producer of CBS political news. 1,360 Google references
“We live in a dirty and dangerous world. There are some things the general public does not need to know and shouldn’t. I believe democracy flourishes when the government can take legitimate steps to keep its secrets, and when the press can decide whether to print what it knows.” – Katherine Meyer Graham, Washington Post publisher 41,500 Google References
“People shouldn’t expect the mass media to do investigative stories. That job belongs to the ‘fringe’ media.” – Ted Koppel – (American broadcast journalist, best known as the anchor for Nightline) 2770 Google References
“The Central Intelligence Agency owns everyone of any significance in the major media.”–William Colby, former CIA Director, quoted by Dave Mcgowan, Derailing Democracy 167,000 Google References
Following this brief introduction is an attempt to enumerate powerful propaganda techniques being used on the American public and the world population by the corporate or so called “mainstream” (MSM) or mass media.
Having familiarized yourself with these techniques, you will be able to spot them as they are being deployed against you. The best way to counter propaganda is to understand the techniques and how they are used.
Perhaps it is fitting that what Donald Rumsfeld once disparagingly called “Old Europe,” should seek to impose a “Drudge” tax on the powerful new world system of news aggregating and commentary.
Although some might see The Washington Times itself as part of the Old World dinosaur media, they penned an excellent editorial highlighting the essence of bureaucracy and crony capitalism in Germany’s push for a tax which actually punishes those providing a service that the public clearly desires: independent news service.
This action has far more to do with protectionism than protecting intellectual property rights. Websites such as the indispensable Drudge Report, Times 24/7, Real Clear Politics, Digg, Fark and Reddit collect news from sources spread across the Web. These sites are wildly popular because they draw the important stories together in one convenient place, fulfilling a very specific need among a news-hungry public. (Source)
The war on news aggregators by government interests should be the clearest sign of all that this is a product we must defend.
The WT editorial is shortsighted in only one respect: they imply that Google is a stalwart of the entrepreneurial spirit, and the great protector of the common man fighting against government bureaucracy and overreach.
Google has repeatedly done the bidding of those who would silence the voice of alternative media. Back in January 2011, Google changed its algorithm to punish the loosely defined “content farmers;” 12% of search results were affected.
Google has also been exposed as having connections to U.S. intelligence agencies, and now DARPA, which has all but guaranteed that aggregators of anti-establishment articles will be targeted. The result has been that even massive websites like Infowars have been de-listed from Google News.
Agree or disagree with Alex Jones, but his sites receive hundreds of millions of views on their many media platforms; that they would have their news and commentary de-listed, as well as censored from Google-owned YouTube, illustrates exactly how corporate-owned media silently colludes with government to silence alternative voices even when overt government regulation is absent. Furthermore, Google has responded to an increasing number of U.S. government content removal requests, and they have complied with recent country-wide censorship in India, while having an on-again, off-again relationship with China.
YouTube in particular has employed a strategy of restricting certain videos critical of government to the over-18 category, even though many of these do not contain profanity, or anything that would normally be interpreted as offensive — except the criticism itself. In doing so, potentially viral videos like the one below have been relegated to common status. Luckily, mirror videos are being posted:
Like in the movie Wag The Dog mainstream news channels have been caught carrying dubious footage from Syria to cook up drama to legitimize military intervention
According to former European MP, journalist, and author Richard Cottrell, the Lord Resistance Army is backed by the CIA and Mossad.
The author of the blog aangirfan writes: "In Uganda, Joseph Kony is the leader of the Lord's Resistance Army, 'which is a US and Mossad-backed guerilla force.'" He quotes Richard Cottrell, a former European MP, journalist, and author of the book, "Gladio: NATO’s Dagger At The Heart of Europe," who wrote in an article in October 2011 called, "African ping pong: US plays both sides in Uganda":
"The Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) rampaging around Uganda is nothing more than a US and Mossad-backed guerilla force.
Its task is to destabilize wide areas of Africa rich in minerals like Uganda, ex-French and Belgian Congo, and Sudan.
Invisible Children Inc. is a charity organization that wants Joseph Kony to be apprehended for his war crimes in Uganda. It sounds like a righteous enough cause doesn't it? But where do the donations actually go? According to Invisible Children's official financial reports from last year over 68% of the money donated went towards film-making, merchandising, and salaries for organizers while the remaining 32% actually went to Uganda. They claim they support the direct action of the Ugandan Government, The Ugandan army, and Sudan People’s Liberation Army in the capture of Kony. Meanwhile the Ugandan army and the Sudan Peoples Liberation Army are guilty of many of the same crimes Kony himself is being charged with.
This clip was leaked by CNN staff after a fake satellite newscast with Charles Jaco reporter famous for covering the 1990 Persian Gulf War.
Thanks to relentless promotion by corporate media, government, celebrities and politicians of both corporate parties, along with right wing church groups and foundations, the Kony 2012 video has "gone viral." Viewed on YouTube more than a hundred million times by now, it paints a vivid and simple picture, clear enough, its narrator says, for a five year old. But is it real, or is it propaganda, and for what purpose?
I imagine that the propagandists are feeling very frustrated right now. They can't get any traction in the public mind regarding Iran. Mostly because the public remembers the same bullshit regarding Iraq. The two most war-mongering nations on Earth, the US and Israel, cannot convince the rest of the world that Iran, who hasn't invaded anyone in hundreds of years, is a threat. And now the propaganda hoax to expand war in Africa started in Libya has suffered a very public epic failure.
I imagine that the powers-that-be in Tel Aviv and in Washington DC (meaning Tel Aviv) are screaming at the corporate media, "Your job is to make them believe we have to have another war!"
But in this age of the Internet and alternative media, the rules of propaganda that worked back when Joe Goebbels was selling the Nazi wars to the German people simply do not work any more.
This, in the long run, is a good thing, because peace always has and always will be inversely proportional to the degree to which governments can lie to their own people with impunity.
Attached are pictures from when I/we were deployed to Kuwait at Camp Navistar. Not "good" ones, but it should give an idea of how gates
hard it would be to walk off a post. Those on guard duty should also be held accountable.
More reasons to doubt the official "lone nut" story of the massacre in Afghanistan.
The hidden agenda in Uganda, Central Africa and the Horn of Africa is the conquest of oil and strategic mineral resources. Going after Joseph Kony and protecting Ugandan children is a cynical smokescreen, a pretext for a "humanitarian intervention" in a region where US sponsored "civil wars" (Sudan, Rwanda, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Somalia, Ethiopia) have in the course of the last 20 years resulted in more than eight million deaths:
Unflipping believable; disgustingly and cynically true.
The US government never approached Uganda or the African Union or its predecessor, the Organisation of African Unity, to ask how the United States could help. Now there is discovery of oil in Uganda. Almost immediately, there are reports that US government has sent an army to Uganda to find Joseph Kony and rescue Uganda’s children. Why did America not make this offer long before Uganda discovered this oil wealth? Acquisition of Africa’s resources is the chief purpose of Africom, not the development of Africa.
Every time there is an alleged US "humanitarian intervention", it's all about the natural resources of that country, and how the US and the West can possibly control them, period, end of discussion.
The founder of Invisible Children, the San Diego nonprofit that garnered worldwide attention for an African warlord video posted last week, was detained by officers responding to a report of indecent exposure Thursday afternoon, San Diego police confirmed Friday.
NBC San Diego reported that Russell was found masturbating in public, vandalizing cars and possibly under the influence.
I think this just set a new world's record for self-destruction of a corporate media propaganda star!
Not to mention the unintended double meaning in that headline!
There goes his credibility. But then, we all knew this was a false-flag attempt to get an invasion of Uganda.
Over the past week, as Invisible Children and their corporate sponsors performed desperate damage control, ties between the alleged "charity" and the US State Department, Wall Street speculator George Soros and his Open Society Institute, and a myriad of corporate-funded foundations began surfacing and spreading just as quickly as their documentary Kony 2012 rose to fame.
Image: (via Infowars) A visual representation of Invisible Children's true backers and master minds. They will gladly shed their front group in the name of self-preservation and making a clean escape.
Perhaps most importantly, the term AFRICOM began gaining wider notoriety as did the mission of AFRICOM - the neo-colonial plundering of all of Africa. And as this single backfiring propaganda stunt threatened to unhinge a continent-spanning corporate-military industrial campaign, the plug was abruptly pulled with news of Invisible Children's director Jason Russell being arrested for lewd behavior in public.
Image: The coat of arms of the British South Africa Company (BSAC) - a predecessor of modern neo-imperialism. The BSAC was a company chartered by the British Empire, lent the resources and capabilities of the Empire, to help loot the natural wealth of Africa. This mirrors exactly AFRICOM and the legion of corporations and NGOs carrying out the modern-day looting of Africa. Note the terms "justice" and "freedom" used upon the company's coat of arms. Clearly masking exploitation with good intentions is nothing new.
The growing legions of critics and skeptics arrayed against this latest Wall Street-London psychological operation will undoubtedly seize this irresistible bait laid out, either by chance or by design, to focus on finishing off the already mortally wounded "Invisible Children" organization. It is already turning out to be a spectacular crash and burn.
However, the focus must be maintained on the mechanics behind Invisible Children, the fact that they are backed by USAID and that they participated in the US State Department's Alliance for Youth Movements (Movements.org) summits which laid the groundwork years in advance for the US-engineered "Arab Spring." It must also be remembered that while they pretend to be a movement of the people, Invisible Children is in fact backed by (page 22) Soros-funded foundations, JP Morgan, Chase, and others.
And as satisfying as many will find it to stomp Invisible Children out of existence for intentionally misleading them, preying on their emotions, insulting their intelligence, and literally lying to them, they must remember that all they've managed to do is hack away but a tentacle of a much larger monster. While we have a firm grip on Invisible Children, let's pull up the whole monster from its murky lair.
Let us expose the International Criminal Court and its fraudulent head, Luis Moreno-Ocampo who enthusiastically supported the fraud that is Kony 2012. And the Hollywood propagandists who abused their fame and the misplaced trust of millions to promote Invisible Children, as well as other, more established but equally fraudulent NGOs like Soros-funded (annual report page 8) Amnesty International and the Neo-Con run Freedom House who skillfully rode the wave of publicity Invisible Children created, but ran concurrent anti-Kony/pro-AFRICOM invasion campaigns of their own, safely isolated from what they knew was experimental, unpredictable, and potentially disastrous propaganda.
As the plug is pulled on Invisible Children, the system will gladly sacrifice an easily replaceable tentacle in exchange for its overall self-preservation. Do not allow the writhing tentacle pulled into the boat distract us from the grander prize at hand.
This sinister progression from the Berlin Mandate to the Balochistan Bill has laid down the road map for future US designs on Balochistan, Pakistan!
The US’ imperatives for this proposed policy shift are multifarious.
The Geopolitical Imperatives:
Such a US dominated independent unified Balochistan would literally cut Pakistan to size threatening her existence as a politically and economically viable state. It will unleash very strong centrifugal forces that will cause a further splintering of Pakistan with horrendous geopolitical and geostrategic consequences for the region. It will sound the death knell for Pakistan and may cause a regional chain reaction that even India would find hard to handle.
Even the best laid plans of mice and men turn sour sometimes. This is never more true than in the cointelro corporate mainstream media sphere.
Dayem was caught conducting what appears to be staged media reports from Syria. Although the seasoned spin doctor Cooper is able to coolly direct their conversation, Syrian Danny cannot hide the obvious panic which had already set in as a result of being exposed as a stage actor manufacturing news in his alleged home country. The video below shows CNN’s point man Anderson Cooper conducting damage control with the mainstream media’s public face of the Syrian opposition, Danny Dayem who can be seen pleading on air, “Why would we have to manipulate anything?”.
The dissemination of "faux" news is one of the many reasons people are leaving corporate media like CNN, and seeking out reports by the alternative media, where, if you know where to look, the truth is respected, and not fabricated in support of a specific agenda.
A US war against Syria may well have Russia coming to its aid militarily; and Russia is a nuclear-armed country.
The U.S. is planning to restart programs for military aid and training to Yemen, reviving its support for dictatorship after a protest movement drove out the former client, President Ali Abdullah Saleh.
The Pentagon is considering as much as $75 million in military assistance to be sent to Yemen in 2012, pending authorization from Congress. This would be in addition to the $120 million in economic aid planned for this year. The U.S. has given more than $326 million in security and civilian assistance to Yemen since 2007.
Memo to the Pentagon, State Department, White House and Congress: when peaceful revolution is impossible, violent revolution is inevitable, as the late President Kennedy said.
By replacing one American puppet with another, the US government has not done one bit about changing the fundamental problems in the country which have led to chronic unrest in the first place. The duel ugly realities in Yemen of intense poverty and massive corruption go unabated.
I frankly don't think that, were this country not bordering on Saudi Arabia, an oil-producing titan in the region, which is dealing with social unrest issues of its own, that the US government wouldn't even be considering this aid at all.
But if there are no fundamental changes for the people of Yemen, look for another massive revolution, one that the US cannot suppress, and the election of a non US-centric government.
And I can almost bet you that those in the bowels of power will scream loudly about how they never saw it coming.
U.S. drone attacks killed at least 25 al Qaeda-linked fighters including one of their leaders while a Yemeni air force raid killed 20 more in the south, sources said on Saturday, in the biggest air strikes since Yemen's new president took office.
***Comment - Death by push button remote controlled planes. If another country was bombing your people would you be upset about it enough to take up arms. The press calls these people militants/al Qaeda-linked to dehumanize them, to justify naked aggression and kill people. - kdtroxel***
PARLER DE L’IRAN
The administration stunned human rights groups last month by sidestepping a commitment to help countries curb the military exploitation of children. Josh Rogin at Foreign Policy reported that President Obama issued a presidential memorandum granting waivers from the Child Soldiers Prevention Act to four countries: Chad, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Sudan and Yemen. The memo instructed Secretary of State Hilary Clinton that it is in our “national interest” to continue extending military aid to those countries, despite their failure to comply with the rules Congress passed and George W. Bush signed in 2008.
A thumbs-up for child soldiers from the pen of President Obama? Whitehouse spokesperson P.J. Crowley explained it was a strategic decision to ease the 2008 law. The rationale is that on balance, it’s more effective for the U.S. to keep providing military assistance that will help countries gradually evolve out of the practice of marshaling kids to the battlefield, rather than isolating them.
According to the Christian Science Monitor, Crowley argued, “These countries have put the right policies in place… but are struggling to correctly implement them.” The New York Times reported that administration spokespeople also cited the countries’ crucial role in global counter-terrorism efforts.
The PUC will use state authority to help the industry achieve its aims.
The law also prevents heath professionals from discussing medical impacts. On page 99, it requires oil and gas companies to tell medical professionals what chemicals are used in drilling fluids—but only after they sign “a statement of need and a confidentiality agreement.” However those details—the chemicals in drilling fluid and medical significance—it states a page later, are secret and “shall not be a public record.”
“I know exactly why that is in there,” said Shields. “That makes it extremely difficult to bring a civil suit if the information is locked away behind confidentiality agreements.
The people who will suffer the most from this process will be the rural poor, about whom those in the bowels of power in Harrisburg dismiss as "useless eaters", and many times have little or no access to health services which will be necessary to fight the cancers and other problems which will come from the fracking being done in their neighborhood.
And ironically, if the same poisonous chemicals found in the water where fracking was done were deliberately placed in the water in the neighborhoods of those who own these fracking operations, that would be considered an act of terror!
Obama agency rules Pepsi's use of aborted fetal cells in soft drinks constitutes 'ordinary business operations'
The Obama Administration has given its blessing to PepsiCo to continue utilizing the services of a company that produces flavor chemicals for the beverage giant using aborted human fetal tissue. LifeSiteNews.com reports that the Obama Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) has decided that PepsiCo's arrangement with San Diego, Cal.-based Senomyx, which produces flavor enhancing chemicals for Pepsi using human embryonic kidney tissue, simply constitutes "ordinary business operations."
Juice laced with uranium is just one of many clinical trials allegedly conducted at Israel's Negev nuclear plant, claims investigative journalist Yossi Melman.
Melman has accused the plant's management of forcing its workers to take part in life-threatening experiments for the sake of nuclear developments.
They also claim the government and the military are involved in a cover-up of the tests.
It's taken a decade for them to speak out, but workers at Israel's nuclear reactor facility claim their managers gave them uranium to drink -- as part of an experiment. With no medical supervision or explanation of the risks, the workers now want compensation.
Egyptian parliament votes unanimously in favor of expelling Israeli ambassador, describes Israel as "number one enemy"
Egypt's Islamist-dominated parliament has unanimously voted in support of the expulsion of Israel's ambassador in Cairo and for a halt to gas exports to the Jewish state.
The Egyptian government has balls the American government can only dream of!
Israeli forces opened fire on a funeral procession east of Gaza City on Tuesday, injuring three Palestinians, hours after a truce was agreed to halt cross-border violence.
I think Israel's plan is to go on slaughtering the Palestinians in the most offensive way possible daring Iran and Syria to react, or possibly setting the stage for a false-flag attack to be blamed on Iran, claiming Iran is responding to Israel's aggressions against Palestine.
Overnight Monday, Israel and militant factions in the Gaza Strip reportedly agreed to an Egyptian-mediated truce to end four days of cross-border violence, but on Tuesday morning, five mortar shells were fired toward southern Israel. They exploded in open areas and there were no reported casualties.
Any time you have a bottle-rocket or a mortar shell flying into Israel and hitting absolutely nothing, it is probably fired by Israeli agents provocateurs so that Netanyahu, frustrated that he can;t get the US to murder Iranians for him, can go on murdering Gazans.
Israeli aircraft targeted two "terror activity sites" in northern Gaza, the Israel Defense Forces said early Wednesday, in another round of tit-for-tat that appeared to end a shaky truce.
Please take note that it is Israel which has broken this truce.
Five people were killed Monday in Gaza, the latest deaths in days of airstrikes that marked the worst escalation of violence in the coastal territory in months, Palestinian officials said.
Israel has said its airstrikes have targeted militant rocket launching sites across the Palestinian territory in response to more than 100 rocket attacks from Gaza into Israel since Friday.
What CNN does not mention is that, as was the case November 4th, 2008 leading into CAST LEAD, Israel attacked first and without provocation. Netanyahu is throwing a tantrum, because he could not get the US to attack Iran, and is taking out his frustration on the Gazans.
“A slow but methodical massacre has been taking place in Palestine since the early 20th century,” said Erdogan, according to a report on Channel 10 News. “I reiterate the call for Israel to stop the inhumane attack on Gaza and the Palestinian territories.”
The Turkish prime minister also directly turned to the citizens of Israel and, referring to the Holocaust, said, “I call on the citizens of Israel, themselves victims of genocide, to oppose any attempt of genocide against the Palestinians and to ask their country to stop the terror.”
Erdogan said Turkey will continue to stand firmly against the “injustice” and alongside the people of Gaza.
I have to wonder, since most of these Palestinian missiles cannot hit the broad side of a barn, if perhaps Israeli agents-provocateurs have been lobbing some of the missiles which have, unfortunately, struck targets in Israel, to create a "justification" for a "Cast Lead II": there has already been speculation that this is what Netanyahu is getting ready to do.
Soldiers released an attack dog on unarmed Palestinians at a Friday anti-occupation demonstration in the West Bank village of Kufr Qaddoum, report eyewitnesses that include an AP photographer. According to a report from Jonathan Pollack, a political activist, Border Police officers released an army dog at a group of protesters who were standing several dozen meters away. The dog chased the protesters, then locked his jaw on the arm of one of them – Ahmad Shtawi – sinking his teeth into the man’s arm. The dog refused for several minutes to respond to his handler’s order to release Mr. Shtawi’s arm.
Welcome to "normal" for peaceful Palestinian protestors.
Of the hundreds of Palestinian children locked in Israeli jails each year, the vast majority suffer nightmares, bed-wetting and anxiety after their release, Save the Children said in a report published on Monday.
The charity said that since 2000, the Israeli army had detained more than 8,000 Palestinian children in the occupied West Bank and prosecuted children as young as 12 in military courts, most of them suspected of rock-throwing.
Ninety-eight percent of detained children reported being subjected to violence, either physical or verbal, by Israeli soldiers, the charity's programme adviser Eyad al-Araj told a news conference in the West Bank, an ordeal that left psychological scars on almost all of them.
Wow, jailing and inflicting violence on Palestinian children must make IDF soldiers feel SOOOO BUTCH!!!!
But of course, the design intent of such treatment of these children is to create post-traumatic stress disorders, and I just have to wonder what medals the IDF gives to their military for their "services" in these cases.
Noam Shalit, who announced earlier this year that he would be standing for the opposition Labour party in the next Israeli elections, has provoked outrage among the Israeli right with the comments. His son, Gilad, was released in a prisoner swap in October 2011.
Shalit added that the kidnapping of Israeli soldiers by Hamas militants was comparable to the techniques used by Israeli paramilitary fighters the Haganah against the British, arguing "we also kidnapped British soldiers when we were fighting for our freedom".
Seven year-old, Baraka Al Mughrabi, died, on Wednesday midday, after succumbing to wounds he sustained during an Israeli air raid targeting Gaza City on Monday. His death brings the death toll due to Israeli military escalations targeting the coastal enclave since last Friday to 26.
Four days of Israeli terror bombing left at least 25 Palestinians dead and dozens injured, some seriously. Human rights groups expressed outrage. So did Arab League states, Iran, Turkey, and Malaysia.
Israel’s UN envoy Ron Prosor wants the Security Council to condemn Palestinian victims. Like Netanyahu and other Israeli officials, his audacity gives chutzpah new meaning.
On March 12, Egypt’s lower parliamentary house unanimously approved a text declaring Israel Egypt’s number one enemy. It called for expelling its ambassador, halting gas exports at below market prices, and reevaluating its 1978 peace treaty. It followed the 1978 Camp David Accords.
Its text said:
Israel is criticized for violating the right to equality in a new report by the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD).
An advance version of the CERD report indicates that racial prejudice can be found in almost every facet of Israeli life ("Concluding observations of the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination," 9 March 2012 [PDF]).
I could have imagined, having been founded by the children of Holocaust survivors, that Israel would have become the poster child for tolerance, human rights, and democracy.
However in the 21st century, Israel can only be reasonably characterized as a wretchedly apartheid, self-proclaimed theocracy with nuclear weapons; and that is unfortunate for not only Israel, but the world.
The Legal Forum for the Land of Israel has approached the chairman of the Knesset’s Finance Committee, MK Carmel Shama-Hacohen (Likud), asking that he summon Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz to discuss his refusal to add Gaza to the list of enemy countries with which trade is forbidden.
According to the Forum, Steinitz has refused to add Gaza to the list, saying that such a move could have political, economic and security consequences and that Israel would be accused of violating the interim agreements it signed with the Palestinian Authority.
Memo to Knesset Member Carmel Shama-Hacohen: such a designation of Gaza as "enemy territory" gives the Israeli government and the IDF carte blanche to go in militarily and ethnically cleanse every Palestinian left standing.
Are your fellow and sister Knesset members, and the world, to understand that this is precisely the outcome you would like to see happen in Gaza?
Because in making that statement, it sure as heck looks like it is.
The fourth day of Israeli attacks against the Gaza Strip continued, killing at least seven people, including three civilians. The toll of the recent bombing campaign so far is 25 killed.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is openly talking of a full-scale ground invasion, and the Israeli military says it is “ready” to launch such an operation, the first of its kind since 2009?s Cast Lead, which killed about 1,400 people.
I have to wonder if it was actually Israeli agents-provacateurs doing the lobbing of missiles at Israel as the "justification" for a ground invasion, since complete ethnic cleansing and genocide against all Palestinians is a huge part of Netanyahu's political and personal credo.
Looking at the tranquil sea that is the S&P one may be forgiven to ignore the rapid intraday surge in Brent which was up over $3 in a few hours, approaching $126 once again. But why? After all the FOMC minutes were oh so very slightly hawkish, and not to mention that the Fed's scribe Hilsenrath told everyone at best the Fed would proceed with sterilized QE which would leave risk prices untouched. Maybe it has something to do with this. According to Israel's NRG, in a just completed cabinet vote, for the first time Netanyahu has gotten a majority (8 over 6) supporting an Iran attack. [my emphasis] NRG also notes that at this point Israel has decided to not wait until the US elections in November before proceeding with sending crude to the stratosphere. From NRG (google translated): "Israeli political sources believe that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu a majority Cabinet support Israeli military action against Iran without American approval....He announced that he would not hesitate to perform the operation without the approval of President Obama mentioned the precedent of the decision to attack the Iraqi reactor, Prime Minister Menachem Begin, and with the comments heard yesterday some cabinet ministers say privately that "It sounds like a speech preparation for attack." Political - Security Cabinet 14 ministers. According to estimates, at this stage tend to support Netanyahu and
Barak's approach eight ministers, and six against it...
This one intends to provide security at Synagogues and Jewish Community Centres and if it works in Toronto, the plan is to roll it out nationwide.
The Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs is launching the Community Security Network, which is almost like a neighbourhood watch for Jewish targets.
They're looking for volunteers between 25 and 50 years of age, to train for everything from counter surveillance to physical fitness, but the organization stresses it is not looking for vigilantes and will conduct background checks and psychological tests to weed out anyone with their own agenda.
On their website it reads, "This program does not replace police officers, but rather complement their efforts with well trained and informed community members, all of whom would bring much-needed aid the Jewish community."
Organizers say the goal of the network is to work with police, not to engage in or provoke those they come into contact with.
"Because you Canadians are just a bunch of anti-Semites ... like those untrustworthy Americans!" -- Nodding Yahoo
The explanation given by the Prime Minister’s office is a bit strange, especially in light of the fact that it was released after a renewed ceasefire was announced in the Gaza Strip. Thus, the cancellation brings up the question of whether the Prime Minister’s Office expects another round of fighting in the coming days. The Prime Minister’s Office refused to comment or offer a response over the cancellation.
Either the Spanish and/or French leadership had given Netanyahu to understand that they would not side with Israel if Israel attacks Iran (which may well be imminent), or there will be a ground offensive in Gaza soon.
Israel will continue air strikes against Gaza "as long as necessary," Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Sunday, giving no indication that a ground operation was likely for now.
"We extracted a high price from them and will continue to do so," he said at the start of the weekly cabinet meeting. "We will act as long as necessary."
The Israel lobby tries to portray Jewish Canadians as members of a monolithic community that supports Israel and Zionism. In reality however, many Jews denounce Israeli crimes against the Palestinians as well as its war mongering policies against Iran. In fact Jewish groups particularly Independent Jewish Voices of Canada have played a major part in organizing rallies against a war with Iran.
A recent policy paper published by the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation brings to light a number of cases in which weapons and ammunition produced by and financed by the United States over the past decade have been used by Israel to kill defenseless Palestinians.
The Iranian revolution and the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq war is estimated to have cost the US a total of $355 billion in higher oil prices (T. Stauffer, 2003)2. The oil strikes leading up to the 1978-79 Iranian revolution reduced Iranian oil production by 3.8 million barrels per day for 3 months. Although outside production increased by 1.8 million barrels to make up for the loss, the net loss to the world was 150 million barrels of oil, this fact alone had a compounding result which resulted in a net loss to U.S. economy of an estimated billions of dollars in 1979 and 1980 (Deese & Nye 1981)3. It is crucial to note that in this period China was a net exporter oil and became a net importer in 1993.
In the last two days, Israeli forces have killed at least 15 residents of the Gaza Strip and wounded over 30. Among the dead are two young boys (see here and here), while the wounded included a reporter from the Ma'an News Agency and his pregnant wife. Militant factions in Gaza have responded to the Israeli assault by launching several homemade rockets at Southern Israel, leaving two injured and no one dead.
The Israeli army claimed that it initiated the assault on Gaza in order to kill two alleged militants who supposedly "masterminded" a brazen and deadly terror attack near the Israeli city of Eilat in August of last year. The army also claimed the two were planning a new operation.
The Israeli government and military lie and kill and lie and kill again, deliberately creating an environment in which peace is impossible to achieve.
Israel has cost the American taxpayer four times the entire cost of the Apollo Moon program. There has been no giant leap for mankind from all that money being spent.
What we did get for all that money was ...
1. 34 Americans murdered by Israel on the USS Liberty.
2. Another American, a 19-year old kid from New York, murdered by Israel in international waters.
3. More Americans murdered by Israel that didn't even rate a story in the US press.
6. The Israeli spy ring.
7. The AIPAC spy ring.
9. The Lavon Affair
11. The Berlin Disco bombing.
Etc. etc. etc. etc.
US nuclear expert paid to see witches thinks he maybe sort of kind of might if he squints really hard see a witch in Iran!
I was going to point out the sheer impossibility of having an explosives testing facility on a military development base, then I noticed the rows and rows of plants across the street. If you take away all the damning labels, it looks like this is some kind of a commercial farm. One thing is clear, the claimed "berm" is a natural geological feature of the landscape.
The above is a reminder that we should be wary of photos that have nothing on them but damning labels. Following the invasion, it turned out the "decontamination vehicle" was just an ordinary fire truck.
Then there were the "Iraqi mobile biological weapons labs"...
... that turned out to be British-manufactured weather balloon inflators.
"Fool me once ... ummmmmmmmm." -- George W. Bush
The United States asked Russia to send Iran a message that the upcoming round of nuclear talks is its last chance to avoid a military confrontation this year, Russian newspaper Kommersant reported Wednesday according to a diplomatic source.
The unusually stark warning by the US was passed on by Secretary of State Hilary Clinton to her Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov, after the two met in New York on Monday, the diplomatic source told the Russian newspaper.
The P5+1 - a group of Iran mediators that includes the permanent UN Security Council members and Germany - received a letter earlier this month from Tehran which indicated that Iran sought to resume international discussions at the earliest opportunity.
Clinton is asking something of the Iranian government she fully understands it will not do, so it is obvious that the fix is in here for some kind of military confrontation.
As a signatory to the NNPT, Iran is doing everything by the book. To date, no nuclear material has been found to have been diverted from its nuclear energy program. To date, there is no concrete, incontrovertible evidence that any Iranian nuclear weapons program exists.
but what this article is very careful not to mention is that governmental representatives of nuclear-armed China, Russia, and Pakistan have gone on record, stating that if Iran is attacked, these countries will come to its aid militarily.
So what we have here is the potential for a global thermonuclear war over an alleged Iranian weapons program which cannot, to date, be proven to exist.
The USS Enterprise has set sail on its final voyage.
Officials say the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, which was featured in the film “Top Gun,” left Norfolk, Va., around noon on Sunday.
Congress has authorized research into the feasibility and cost of developing a robust nuclear earth penetrator (RNEP), with up to $15 million slated to go to U.S. nuclear weapons laboratories in fiscal year 2003 to work on modifying existing nuclear warheads. Permission was contained in the 2003 Defense Authorization Act, which the House of Representatives passed November 12 and the Senate passed the following day.
Is the US giving nuclear bunker busters to Israel? Will these nuclear weapons be used against Iran? Will the US media conceal the use of nuclear weapons behind stories of conventional "superbombs"?
Is the US giving nuclear bunker busters to Israel? Will these nuclear weapons be used against Iran? Will the US media conceal the use of nuclear weapons behind stories of conventional "superbombs"?
According to the article, main importers of Iran's crude including China, India, Japan, South Korea, Turkey, Italy, Spain, Greece, South Africa and France will be adversely affected by any disruption in Tehran’s oil exports.
The article says when European Union (EU) sanctions are put into place on July 1, nearly 600,000 barrels of oil per day will come off the market as a result of which the price of Brent Crude would rise to about USD 138 per barrel.
"But it's worth it, really, because it will make Israel happy, and you don't want to make Israel unhappy, right?" -- Official White Horse Souse
Sending more aircraft carriers to the waters near Iran, it turns out, was just the start. Yes, the U.S. currently has more seapower aimed at Iran in the Persian Gulf than in the fleets of most countries on Earth, Iran included. But that was just the Navy cracking its knuckles.
In the next few months, the Navy will double its minesweeper craft stationed in Bahrain, near Iran, from four to eight. Those ships will be crucial if Iran takes the drastic step of mining the Strait of Hormuz, one of the global energy supply’s most crucial waterways. Four more MH-53 “Sea Stallion” helicopters, another minesweeping tool, are also getting ready for Bahrain, to give the U.S. Fifth Fleet early warning for any strait mining.
The "Global Force For Good" gets ready to destroy another innocent nation and loot their wealth.
A senior Iranian official on Friday said Tehran is prepared to allow "permanent human monitoring" of its nuclear program in exchange for "Western cooperation."
The remarks by Mohammad Javad Larijani, a key advisor to Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, are seen as a signal from Tehran ahead of expected nuclear talks.
Larijani said the West should accept Iran's "peaceful nuclear program," sell Iran 20 percent enriched uranium, and provide the customary assistance nuclear nations provide to those building nuclear power plants.
In return for cooperation from the West Iran would offer "full transparency," Larijani said.
I would love nothing more than to see the world powers embracing this proposal.
Unfortunately, however, the US and Israel will most likely strike down what appears to be a completely reasonable offer by Iranian officials in favor of war against Iran; the decision appears to have already been made.
The global signs of a coming military conflict with Iran continue to build, and today the U.S. Navy made clear its intentions by announcing it's sending four additional mine countermeasure ships to the Strait of Hormuz.
In response to Netanyahu's AIPAC speech, Haaretz's editor-in-chief says that what looks like a preparation for war, acts like a preparation for war, and quacks like a preparation for war, is a preparation for war.
If Israel wants to attack Iran, let them. But when Iran retaliates, not one penny of American money and not one drop of American blood should be wasted protecting Israel from the consequences of its own mistakes.
Swift, the body that handles global banking transactions, says it will cut Iran's banks out of the system on Saturday to enforce sanctions.
Proof that the global banking system is a dictatorship.
The Israel military and media are being very quiet after Israeli warships were spotted passing through the Suez canal into the Red sea and toward Iran.
Israel is being awfully tight-lipped about two warships spotted in the Suez canal following 4 days of strikes on Gaza.
The exact destination of the ships is unknown due to the secrecy over the deployment but the ships are moving along the path they would take to Iranian waters.
Here is a series of reports highlighting what is known so far.
Press TV reports:
Israeli warships leave Port Said after crossing Suez Canal
Two Israeli warships and a French vessel have reportedly left Port Said north of the Suez Canal after crossing the canal under heavy security.
(Press TV) -According to a report published by Egyptian al-Ahram newspaper on Tuesday, the two vessels and the French ship left the northern Port Said to an unknown destination.
The Suez sailing supervisor Ahmad al-Manhali said that it took 14 hours for the two Israeli warships — INS Lahav and INS Yafo — and Imidisi, an accompanying French vessel, to cross the canal and arrive at Port Said in the north.
The warships were also accompanied by a Suez authority tow vessel for security purposes.
Israeli officials have not commented on the report yet.
Henry Kissinger, former US Secretary of State has signaled to the public and globalist alike, to essentially expect Israel to launch on Iran. This rhetoric is clear.
Kissinger was quoted by CNN saying;
“I am very uneasy with the so-called intelligence report that say we don’t know whether they are actually working on nuclear weapons…
….I think we should start from the premise that they are undergoing all this in order to achieve a military capability. I don’t think that is a disputable point.”
Kissinger is talking preemptively in context, spouting war mongering propaganda to the masses.
Meanwhile, President Obama has been under fire lately via the press in more ways than one.
The UK would not support Israel if it decided to launch a strike against Iran, Prime Minister David Cameron has said.
In an interview with NBC's Brian Williams aired last night, Cameron said his government had warned the Israelis against taking military action in a bid to prevent Iran potentially developing nuclear weapons.
"I don't think as we stand today that military action by Israel would be justified," Cameron said. "I don't think the Israelis should take that action now. We told them they shouldn't and said we wouldn't support it if they did."
DEAR BRITISH READERS; AVOID THE TUBE TRAINS FOR A FEW WEEKS, OKAY?
Viktor Ivanov, Federal Drug Control Service Director, gave NATO a failing grade in its efforts to wean Afghan farmers away from poppy in favor of wheat production.
The Russian minister recently revealed that the heroin flow from Afghanistan has increased to dangerous levels.
"The production of hard drugs such as heroin, opium, and hashish in Afghanistan remains at a high level. Opium production in Afghanistan went up 61 percent in 2011, while areas used for poppy production have increased by some 7 percent,” Ivanov said.
This indicates that the narcotic production infrastructure continues to grow stronger in Afghanistan, which leads to drug trafficking…in the direction of Russia, he added.
It is no accident that heroin production soared after the US and NATO invasion and occupation of Afghanistan; one only has to remember the days of the "golden triangle" in Southeast Asia, during the Viet Nam War, to understand this clearly.
Additionally, the flow of cheap, very pure narcotics into Russia can only be characterized as a form of asymmetric warfare.
Panetta disarms Marines in Afghanistan
amid fears of possible rogue Marine
Despite efforts to downplay the action, that U.S. Marines have
never before been asked to DISARM in a war zone or in the presence
of the Defense Secretary, it is still going raise questions.
Questions that aren't being answered beyond assurances that it's
not a big deal or unusual.
Well, if it's a FIRST then it's unusual.
And I believe asking Marines to DISARM IN A WAR ZONE is kind of a
big deal, and reveals a level of distrust towards our own troops.
Marines disarmed for Leon Panetta speech
By TIM MAK
Hundreds of U.S. Marines were suddenly told Wednesday to leave and return unarmed to a venue where Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta was scheduled to speak, according to reports — an unusual move that illustrates the military’s heightened security concerns.
Typically, American forces in Afghanistan have kept hold of their weapons when Panetta addressed them.
But on Wednesday, about 200 Marines were told to take their weapons outside of the large tent at Camp Leatherneck where Panetta spoke and to leave them there, while Afghan troops already were unarmed, as is customary for these events, reports The Associated Press.
The commander on the scene, Sgt. Maj. Brandon Hall, said he was acting on orders from highers-up.
“Something has come to light,” Hall told the troops, according to the wire service. “I was told to get the weapons out.”
“All I know is, I was told to get the weapons out,” he told The New York Times. “Somebody got itchy, that’s all I’ve got to say. Somebody got itchy; we just adjust.”
Read more here
Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta arrived in the central Asian nation of Kyrgyzstan today with an eye toward convincing the nation’s government to accept continued US military presence at the nation’s Manas Air Base beyond 2014.
Things don’t look promising for Panetta, however, as President Atambayev has insisted that he has “no intention” of renewing the US lease on the base, and wants to see it as a commercial, not military, enterprise.
Defense officials say that the loss of Manas could force the US to rely entirely on direct flights to Afghanistan over the North Pole, a dramatically more expensive prospect.
It's obvious, looking at the history of US military interventions in the region, that Kyrgyzstani President Atambayev wants absolutely no part what is coming here in the not too distant future.
Azerbaijan on Wednesday said it arrested 22 citizens suspected of plotting on behalf of Iran to attack the American and Israel embassies in Baku.
Officials said that the men were working with the Iranian Revolutionary Guards.
The arrests come nearly a month after the arrest of a terrorist cell whose members belonged to Hizbullah and who held Iranian passports. Police said the terrorists had been gathering intelligence and acquiring weapons.
In January, Azerbaijan officials said they uncovered an Iranian-linked Muslim gang that plotted to assassinate Chabad rabbis who teach at the Chabad Jewish school in Baku.
It was later reported that the terrorists who were arrested were planning an attack against the Israeli Ambassador to Azerbaijan, Michael Lotem.
Congrats to the Azerbaijani police for having nipped this in the bud, because his SO REEKS of a Mossad false flag gone wrong that I am ready to hurl.
The leadership of Iran is many things, but stupid isn't one of them. Why would they bring down upon their heads the kind of US/Israel military response such an attack would generate?
And the short answer is, THEY WOULDN'T.
The village is Balandi, outside Kandahar in Afghanistan. Thus far the dead are 16, shot in their homes, not just said to be “women and children” but actually infants murdered in their mother’s arms and set afire.
The US claims the perpetrator to be an unnamed “Army Staff Sergeant who has turned himself in.” There are inconsistencies.
The village is outside the gate of an American base. A single soldier without a vehicle would have had to evade security and tunnel under the wire and walls to reach the village or, much more likely, this was more than one man?
While U.S. officials rushed to draw a line between the rogue shooting and the ongoing efforts of a U.S. force of around 90,000, the incident is sure to further inflame Afghan anger triggered when U.S. soldiers burned copies of the Koran at a NATO base.
U.S. officials said an American staff sergeant from a unit based in Washington state was in custody after the attack on villagers in three houses. Multiple civilians were also wounded, a spokesman for the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) coalition said
President Barack Obama called his Afghan counterpart Hamid Karzai promising to establish the facts quickly and "to hold fully accountable anyone responsible."
This story is starting to stink to high heaven!
The nature of the murders, including 9 children, seems almost designed to provoke the maximum shock and anger among the Afghani people.
There are two possible reasons for doing this.
The first is to provoke violence among the Afghani people as a justification to renege on the promise to get American troops out of Afghanistan by 2014. But to be honest, this seems weak.
So, that leaves "Plan B". The US and Israel want war with Iran but cannot get public support. Clearly a false flag of some kind is needed, but as always, the first question people will ask when something goes "Bang" is why the nation being framed for the false-flag would do something that will bring on the very war they wish to avoid. This massacre in Afghanistan may be a manufactured event so when the false-flag happens, the media can claim it is retaliation for the murder of 9 children, then condemn the "over-reaction" to the death of 9 children (meaning the false-flag will be something really major) and launch a "retaliatory" strike.
Afghans expressed doubt on Monday that a single US Army soldier could have shot and killed 16 civilians in houses over 2km apart and burned the bodies afterward. The killings in southern Afghanistan have reignited fury at the US presence following a wave of deadly protests over Americans burning Qurans.
The US military has said there is no indication that more than one soldier carried out the attacks in two villages in Kandahar province before dawn Sunday. The soldier blamed for the shootings is in custody. But villagers told Afghan officials they heard shots being fired from several directions.
The official US story keeps changing on this. Personally, I trust the Afghans more than I do Washington DC on this, given the Afghans never fibbed to us about Saddam's nuclear weapons.
Taliban forces have launched a missile attack against a US airbase in Afghanistan following a failed assassination bid against US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta.
Suspected insurgents opened fire on Tuesday on senior Afghan investigators of the massacre of 16 civilians by a lone U.S. soldier
"Hey Karzai, haven't you heard of the Phoenix programme which included the organised killing of 504 Vietnamese women and children at Mai Lai. It was official policy; not an accident."
The Pentagon organises the killings of innocent civilians.
Up to 20 US troops carried out the Kandahar-Panjwai massacre: according to a parliamentary probe
In connection with the massacre in Panjwai, where at least 16 civilians were killed, showed Karzai is unhappy that the occupying powers attributed the massacre to a single, "runaway" military. "According to our people, the act is not performed by a single man and it was a conscious and deliberate act," said Karzai. He suspects that the massacre was a carefully planned action.
Speaking today in a meeting with tribal elders and other top officials, Afghan President Hamid Karzai angrily condemned the US for its refusal to cooperate in the ongoing investigation into last weekend’s massacre of civilians in Kandahar Province.
“This has been going on for too long,” Karzai insisted, “this is by all means the end of the rope here.” The US has promised its own investigation of the attack, but has removed the accused from Afghanistan.
Karzai went on to say that his delegation rejected the current US narrative of a single shooter, and that “this was not carried out by one man and was a deliberate and intentional act.”
Of course it was. Israel and the US will never convince the American people to go to war in Iran absent a new false-flag attack, and no false flag attack by the 'eeeeevil mooslims' will be credible unless there appears to be some motive. This attack created the illusion of a motive and already the FBI is warning of an impending 'terror' attack inside the United States as 'retaliation.'
KABUL — President Hamid Karzai demanded Thursday that the United States pull back from combat outposts and confine its troops to military bases in Afghanistan, an apparent response to Sunday’s shooting rampage by a U.S. staff sergeant.
Meanwhile, the Taliban said it was suspending preliminary peace talks with the United States because of Washington’s “alternating and ever-changing position,” and accused U.S. officials of reneging on promises to take meaningful steps toward a prisoner swap.
An Afghan parliamentary investigation team has implicated up to 20 US troops in the massacre of 16 civilians in Kandahar early on Sunday morning. It contradicts NATO's account that insists one rogue soldier was behind the slaughter.
The team of Afghan lawmakers has spent two days collating reports from witnesses, survivors and inhabitants of the villages where the tragedy took place.
“We are convinced that one soldier cannot kill so many people in two villages within one hour at the same time, and the 16 civilians, most of them children and women, have been killed by the two groups,” investigator Hamizai Lali told Afghan News.
Two members of the fact-finding mission, Hamidzi Lali and Shakiba Hashemi, told the general meeting of Afghanistan’s parliament on Saturday that the American troopers raped two Afghan women before starting the massacre.
Pentagon chief says he is ‘confident’ that the United States and Afghanistan would work out a treaty allowing the US military to stay longer in the country beyond the withdrawal deadline of 2014.
"Or we have the 'lone nut' murder more of your children!" -- Official White Horse Souse
Syrian authorities have intercepted a car loaded with various weaponry made largely in the US and Israel, on a highway in the western city of Homs.
Press TV – The weapons confiscated on Thursday included four RPG’s, five Israeli-made mortars, three anti-tank missiles, snipers and rifles, the Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) reported on Friday.
In the past year Syrian officials have intercepted large numbers of weapons, including many that came into the country from neighboring Turkey.
In late February, armed terrorist groups in Syria admitted that they had received weapons from French and American sources.
Syria has been experiencing unrest since mid-March and many people, including security forces, have lost their lives in the violence.
The West and the Syrian opposition accuse the government of killing the protesters. But Damascus blames ”outlaws, saboteurs and armed terrorist groups” for the unrest, insisting that it is being orchestrated from abroad.
Uploaded by 91177info (UK)
Deadly attacks on Iranian nuclear scientists are being carried out by an Iranian dissident group that is financed, trained and armed by Israel's secret service, U.S. officials tell NBC News, confirming charges leveled by Iran's leaders.
Qatar's aggressive stance towards Assad has led to a string of resignations at the country's al-Jazeera TV news channel. Those who left describe bias at the station which they say has become a tool to target the Syrian regime. RT's Paula Slier describes those accusations.
Informed diplomatic sources have reported to the Wayne Madsen Report (WMR) that Bahrain, representing the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), offered Russia a bribe of $5 billion if it did not use its veto in the Security Council to defeat an Arab League-sponsored resolution calling for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to step down. In the February 4 vote on the resolution, Russia, along with China, used their vetos to shoot down the resolution.
To Russia, $5.5 Billion is an insult.
The Obama administration and its allies have begun serious discussions about potential military intervention in Syria, as political approaches have failed to stem the conflict.
Any such U.S.-led intervention would be illegal under international law, since Russia and China vetoed resolutions at the UN Security Council amounting to that.
Military intervention carries a high probability that the violence will consequently escalate, spread across the region, and embroil the United States in another deadly, protracted war in the Middle East.
Were I a betting human being (which I am not), I wouldn't bet against a reinstitution of a military draft in this country, disguised as "National Service", and very soon.
In a bombing attack that has the signature of Al Qaeda, three nearly simultaneous explosion rocked Syrian government and state media buildings in the capital city of Damascus
A lot of people have already made up their minds on Syria and will
not be satisfied until we rain some humanitarian love bombs down on
Before that actually happens, I will continue trying to make the
point that much of what the establishment dinosaur media is telling
us about Syria is a hoax.
Yes, people are dying, but the who-what-why-and-how are all mixed
up in the media to convince the public that intervention is the way
From more fake/staged newscasts, Syrian rebels with Israeli
weapons, and fighters from Iraq; the situation in Syria is being
created by the very forces that want to intervene.
The Voice of Russia
The recent appeal of the Syrian National Council for a joint Western-Arab military intervention in Syria puts the United States, NATO and their allies before a very serious dilemma. Since sending troops to the area with the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq not yet finished appears to be out of the question, the only possible solution is supplying the rebels with arms. But whose hands are these arms going to fall into? The rhetorical question recently asked by US State Secretary Hillary Clinton: “Are we supporting Al-Qaeda in Syria?” is getting a more and more affirmative answer.
The French daily Le Figaro yesterday came out with a detailed analysis of the situation on the ground in Syria which confirms the State Secretary’s worst suspicions. “Thanks to its collaboration with the Iraqi intelligence services the CIA managed to infiltrate some of the rebel groups which crossed the border between Iraq and Syria,” Le Figaro reports with reference to a close associate of the Iraqi prime minister Nouri al-Maliki. “On the photos, the CIA people recognized some of the mujahideen they had been searching for in Iraq.” During the much publicized fighting in Homs, a rebel stronghold, the Iraqi agents spotted a lot of the fighters previously active in the so called “Islamic Emirate of Iraq,” the local al-Qaeda franchise, Le Figaro reports. American intelligence expert James Clapper and Israeli anti-terrorism experts expressed concern over the “Salafist imprint” in Latakia and Idlib, the two cities in north-western Syria, where the anti-government rebels transferred their operation after their defeat in Homs.
Salafism is the most reactionary current in modern Islamism, advocating strict observance of medieval Islamic norms and “war against the infidels.” It is often associated with al-Qaeda.
Since autumn 2011, Iraq became one of the main routes for foreign fighters’ infiltration into Syria. Professor Adel al-Kayar, a Baghdad-based scholar of militant Islamism, says that among the infiltrators one can see not only Iraqis, but also Saudis and Kuwaitis. The veterans of the recent war in Libya are being shipped to Syria via Turkey and Lebanon. In Iraq, most of the “volunteers” leaving for the war in Syria are Sunni radicals, who view their “jihad” against the Syrian president Bashar al-Asad as a part of their anti-Shia crusade in Iraq. Assad is reported to have a good relationship with Iran, a Shia-dominated country.
So, can the United States indeed rely on such “allies” as these ones? Iran, despite its professed Muslim radicalism, did not attack other countries and was not involved in the 9/11 bombings in the United States. The vast majority of terrorist acts against the American citizens in the last 20 years were committed by Sunni radicals from Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Lebanon, Persian Gulf emirates – the very states who now ally themselves with the United States in a bid to destabilize al-Assad’s regime.
Read original here
Two huge bomb blasts killed at least 27 people in the heart of the Syrian capital on Saturday, state media said, as international envoy Kofi Annan warned of regional fallout from the year-long bloodshed in Syria.
The early morning “terrorist” attacks, apparently car bombings timed minutes apart, targeted criminal police headquarters in the Duwar al-Jamarek area and air force intelligence offices in Al-Qasaa district, state television said.
“Twenty-seven people, mostly civilians, were killed and 97 others wounded in the two explosions,” Health Minister Wael al-Halaqi said on Syria News, another official television channel.
This appears to be the next phase of the destabilization of the Assad government.
Look for an increase in pace of demolition of large Government buildings to become a "signature" of "opposition tactics" in the not too distant future here.
Just because being officially the first broke Eurozone country, having 50%+ youth unemployment, and a collapsing economy is not enough, adding absolutely insult to injury is the following chart from Reuters, which shows that compared to other European economies, Greece now has the highest gas price in the old continent. And indicatively while America complains over what is now the highest gas prices in 2012 per AAA, at $3.80 average for a gallon of regular, 30 cents higher than a month ago, and 35 cents higher compared to a year earlier, gas in Greece now sells for over $9.00/gallon.
As $5 a gallon gas hits major U.S. cities UK gas prices shoot to $9.00 a gallon and Paris passes the $10 a gallon in the wake of tensions with Iran.
As Gasonline prices continue to pass the $5 dollar a gallon mark in the US, EU nations are facing even higher gasonline prices.
Recently gas in the UK spiked to $9.00 a gallon and now Paris becomes the first city to break the $10 a gallon mark.
Experts say the EU is getting hit with higher gas prices than the US due to weakness in the EU, higher government taxes on petrol, and the fact Euro-nations were directly importing Iranian oil before Iran cut oil supplies to Britain, France and other EU nations ahead of an embargo on Iranian oil scheduled to go in effect this summer.
The out of control gasoline prices are sparking fears of inflation and economist further warn the fallout out will be a deep recession spreading throughout the entire Eurozone.
The website Carbeo.com , which lists prices throughout France, was alerted by a visitor using their mobile application and went on site to verify the information. The gas station that dared cross that psychological threshold is 16-18 rue Saint-Antoine in the fourth arrondissement of Paris. A liter of Unleaded 95 is displayed at 2.02 euros per liter, according Carbeo.com
The average price of a gallon of self-serve regular is now $3.81 across the US with Los Angeles having the highest average gas price at $4.35 a gallon
$15 TRILLION is equivalent to the the federal debt of the U.S. Treasury Department. Lord James of Blackheath has spoken in the House of Lords holding evidence of three transactions of 5 Trillion each and a transaction of 750,000 metric tonnes of gold and has called for an investigation.
My Lords, it starts in April and May of 2009, with the alleged transfer to the United Kingdom, to HSBC of a sum of 5 trillion dollars and seven days later, in comes another 5 trillion dollars to HSBC, and then 3 weeks later another 5 trillion. 5 trillion in each case.
Where did it come from? Where did it go? These are the two principal questions being framed today, after Lord James of Blackheath (a member of the UK House of Lords) unveiled documentation (and accusations) concerning a mounting of illegitimate cash: $15 trillion USD.
What I think is happening with this mysterious $15 trillion, the billions in bonds seized in 2009, and the more recent seizure of another $6 trillion in Italy, is that the United State is covertly transferring bullion and bearer bonds payable in gold into Europe so that can be put on the balance sheets of Europe's banks without a corresponding debt obligation, to keep the European banks solvent to prevent triggering the trillions of dollars in Credit Default Swaps against the European debt sold by Wall Street banks. Once again the American people are being looted to pay for Wall Street's crimes. More detailed analysis tomorrow.
While there is precious little in terms of detail coming out of the latest and literally greatest "fake" bond story in history, the BBC has been kind enough to release the pictures of the boxes that the supposedly fake bonds were contained in. While we reserve judgment on the authenticity of the bonds, what we wonder is whether the boxes were also fake. Because while we can understand why someone would counterfeit the Treasury paper itself, what we don't get is why someone would go the extra effort to also create a "fake" compartment in which to store it.
Italy Said to Pay Morgan Stanley $3.4 Billion
The cost, equal to half the amount to be raised by Italy’s sales tax increase this year, underscores the risk derivatives countries use to reduce borrowing costs and guard against swings in interest rates and currencies can sour and generate losses for taxpayers. Italy, with record debt of $2.5 trillion, has lost more than $31 billion on its derivatives at current market values, according to data compiled by the Bloomberg Brief Risk newsletter from regulatory filings.
How would you feel if you worked for a state or local government for 20 or 30 years only to have your pension slashed dramatically or taken away entirely? Well, this exact scenario is playing out from coast to coast and in the years ahead millions of elderly Americans are going to be affected by broken promises and vanishing pensions.
There simply is not enough money out there to keep all of the pension commitments that have been made. Something has got to give. In the end, millions of elderly Americans will likely be plunged into poverty as pensions disappear.
So what should Americans do in light of all this?
Do not plan your financial future around a pension plan. If you do, you are likely to be bitterly disappointed.
Even those thoughtful people who have put away money for retirement have had that money eaten away by inflation, the hidden tax.
If you can possibly do it, please consider physical gold or silver for your portfolio. We may well come to a point where US paper currency may only be good for fish-wrapping, and not in the far too distant future either.
Massive paper silver dumping continued with today's March FOMC statement. Beginning exactly at 2:15 pm EST, 90 million ounces of paper silver were dumped on the market over the next 15 minutes, and a total of 132 million ounces over a 30 minute period from 2:15-2:45pm EST.
CME Clearing Europe Vacates Registration as Derivatives Clearing Organization Prior to Greek CDS Payouts
Why does one suppose the CME might ask to be vacated from CFTC registration only 6 days prior to March 19th when the Greek debt auction is held?
So it appears that the CME is scared of the possibility of an imminent $50 trillion credit default swap seize up/ conflagration once the Greek CDS payouts begin after the March 19th Greek debt auction. There is simply no other explanation for the CME to voluntarily request to vacate its registration as a derivatives clearing organization!
Goldman has been quick to push back on Smith's claims, portraying him as just a disgruntled employee. Some employees told Fox Business' Charlie Gasparino that Smith doesn't know what he's talking about because he "never made more than $750,000 a year."
"... And he dresses funny. Like he shops at @#%ing Old Navy. And, and, and ... he wears a friggin' Casio, for goodness sake. The Goldman Sachs dress code clearly states Rolex, Omega, or Patek only so this clown obviously was never a team player!" -- Gold in My Sacks
OK, here is some back atcha, you money-junkies.
Goldman Sachs Group Inc. saw $2.15 billion of its market value wiped out after an employee assailed Chief Executive Officer Lloyd C. Blankfein's management and the firm's treatment of clients, sparking debate across Wall Street.
One out of every 10 Wall Street employees is likely a clinical psychopath, writes journalist Sherree DeCovny in an upcoming issue of the trade publication CFA Magazine (subscription required). In the general population the rate is closer to one percent.
"A financial psychopath can present as a perfect well-rounded job candidate, CEO, manager, co-worker, and team member because their destructive characteristics are practically invisible," writes DeCovny, who pulls together research from several psychologists for her story, which helpfully suggests that financial firms carefully screen out extreme psychopaths in hiring.
I know, big shock, right?
Obama Takes Control of ALL of the US in Prep For WWIII (done late on a Friday afternoon, of course!)
Sec. 103. General Functions. Executive departments and agencies (agencies) responsible for plans and programs relating to national defense (as defined in section 801(j) of this order), or for resources and services needed to support such plans and programs, shall:
(a) identify requirements for the full spectrum of emergencies, including essential military and civilian demand;
(b) assess on an ongoing basis the capability of the domestic industrial and technological base to satisfy requirements in peacetime and times of national emergency, specifically evaluating the availability of the most critical resource and production sources, including subcontractors and suppliers, materials, skilled labor, and professional and technical personnel;
As dry and obfuscated as this is, you probably need to read it all the way through. Much of this is a rehash of claims to authorities made by previous Presidents under a series of Executive Orders collectively called the FEMO E.O.s.
So, has the President taken over the country? Technically, no. What this order states is that the President will be prepared to take over the nation in the event of a National Emergency, but again, this is not a new concept as it already occurs in prior E.O.s.
Part II assigns direct control over the nation's assets to various cabinet positions under that national emergency, but again this is merely a clarification of earlier power-grabs.
So, why now, and for what reason?
Although couched in terms of National Defense, I take special note of Part III, which sets forth several fiscal authorities not previously mentioned in the earlier Presidential E.O.s. The authorities set forth include direct purchase by the government of assets, loans and loan guarantees, subsidy payments, and so forth. These are normally authorities which would originate in legislation in the House, as they involve spending. The end result of this E.O. is that Obama is usurping the spending authority of the U.S. House of Representatives. So, while presented as a proactive plan to deal with the coming invasion of Iran, Part III suggests that the real purpose of this E.O. is to prepare for the coming collapse of Greece and the E.U. by transferring spending authority to the White House ahead of the collapse of the dollar.
Fed To Take Propaganda To The Schoolroom: Will Teach Grade 8-12 Students About Constitutionality Of… The Fed
Most importantly, the “Listening Platform” should be able to “Handle crisis situations, Continuously monitor conversations, and Identify and reach out to key bloggers and influencers.” While it is unclear just how successful the Fed has been in eavesdropping on various critical blogs, and divining “sentiment”, it now appears that the propaganda masters at the Office of Central Planning have decided to go for young American minds while they are still pliable.
Every time the US has borrowed its money from a private central bank (and this is the 3rd incarnation of this hydra-headed monster in American history), the country wound up in a world of financial hurt, and this time is no different.
The Constitution gives the President the right to have the US government print money on its own, with no central bank in the way. Lincoln and Jackson did away with the Fed in their times, and Kennedy issued an executive order for the government itself to print US notes, very much like silver certificates. Lincoln was assassinated, as was Kennedy, and Jackson survived an assassination attempt.
Coincidence?!? I think not.
Five major US banks has been forced to pay $25 billion in settlements for fraudulent foreclosures affecting hundreds of thousands of homeowners.
On March 6, 2012, I wrote an article entitled, “Mass Banking Resignations Signal A Purging Has Begun?” in which I discussed the seemingly large number of banking resignations taking place all over the world. At the time the article was published, the number had reached 122 announced resignations.
This past week saw yet another high-profile resignation where an executive from Goldman Sachs quit in a blaze of glory taking aggressive swings at his former company and the finance industry as a whole in a widely publicized resignation letter in the New York Times. As a result of Greg Smith's damning indictment of the "culture of greed" at Goldman Sachs, they lost over $2 billion in market share because of the bad press...
Citigroup was one of four large US banks that flunked stress tests aimed at seeing how they would hold up in a new economic crisis, Federal Reserve data showed Tuesday.
Three others — Ally, Suntrust and MetLife — also failed the tests, while 15 other large bank holding companies passed the exercise, the Fed said.
That any of these banks failed a stress test at this time is deeply worrying.
‘When this Ponzi scheme finally comes down it will be unlike anything we’ve ever seen in terms of economic collapse and financial asset annihilation’
According to many top financial analysts and the revealing news articles below, the $700 trillion financial derivatives market may be a time bomb waiting to explode with catastrophic consequences. $700 trillion is more than 10 times the GDP of the entire world and equivalent to $100,000 for each of the 7 billion inhabitants of our planet. These financial instruments have a legitimate place in hedging risk, yet the recent explosion of growth in the global derivatives market has created a huge potential for massive instability.
According to the most recent report from the U.S. government's Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), the total value of derivatives has increased approximately 1000% since 1996, and 250% since 2006 (see graph on page 12 of the OCC report). Derivatives continued their rapid climb even in the midst of the global recession that started in 2008. Most disturbing is the fact that 95% of all U.S. derivatives are monopolized by just five megabanks and their holding companies.
The below verbatim excerpts from major media and government reports speak for themselves.
A Secretive Banking Elite Rules Trading in Derivatives
December 12, 2010, New York Times
On the third Wednesday of every month, the nine members of an elite Wall Street society gather in Midtown Manhattan. The men share a common goal: to protect the interests of big banks in the vast market for derivatives, one of the most profitable — and controversial — fields in finance. They also share a common secret: The details of their meetings, even their identities, have been strictly confidential. Drawn from giants like JPMorgan Chase, Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley, the bankers form a powerful committee that helps oversee trading in derivatives, instruments which, like insurance, are used to hedge risk. In theory, this group exists to safeguard the integrity of the multitrillion-dollar market. In practice, it also defends the dominance of the big banks. The banks in this group ... have fought to block other banks from entering the market, and they are also trying to thwart efforts to make full information on prices and fees freely available. Banks’ influence over this market, and over clearinghouses like the one this select group advises, has costly implications for businesses large and small. The size and reach of this market has grown rapidly over the past two decades. Pension funds today use derivatives to hedge investments. States and cities use them to try to hold down borrowing costs. Airlines use them to secure steady fuel prices. Food companies use them to lock in prices of commodities like wheat or beef.
Note: To explore highly revealing news articles on the powerful secret societies which without doubt back these top bankers, click here.
OCC’s Quarterly Report on Bank Trading and Derivatives Activities: Third Quarter 2011
December 2011, OCC (U.S. Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, Administrator of National Banks)
The OCC’s quarterly report on trading revenues and bank derivatives activities is based on Call Report information provided by all insured U.S. commercial banks and trust companies, reports filed by U.S. financial holding companies, and other published data. The notional amount of derivatives held by insured U.S. commercial banks decreased $1.4 trillion, or 0.6%, from the second quarter of 2011 to $248 trillion. Notional derivatives are 5.7% higher than at the same time last year. Derivatives activity in the U.S. banking system continues to be dominated by a small group of large financial institutions. The five banks with the most derivatives activity hold 96% of all derivatives. Insured commercial banks have more limited legal authorities than do their holding companies.
Note: Graphs in this OCC report (pg. 25 & 26) show that five U.S. banks, JPMorgan Chase, Citibank, BofA, Goldman Sachs, and Morgan Stanley, hold $235 of the $248 trillion above, while their holding companies control an additional $311 of the $326 trillion in derivatives held by holding companies. So these five banks and their holding companies combined hold $546 trillion in derivatives, 95% of the U.S. derivatives market, nearly 80% of the global market, and equivalent to over $75,000 for every person on the planet. If the above link fails, click here. For quarterly derivative reports by the OCC going back to 1995, click here.
The $700 trillion elephant
March 6, 2009, MarketWatch (Wall Street Journal Digital Network)
There's a $700 trillion elephant in the room and it's time we found out how much it really weighs on the economy. Derivative contracts total about three-quarters of a quadrillion dollars in "notional" amounts, according to the Bank for International Settlements. These contracts are tallied in notional values because no one really can say how much they are worth. But valuing them correctly is exactly what we should be doing because these comprise the viral disease that has infected the financial markets and the economies of the world. Try as we might to salvage the residential real estate market, it's at best worth $23 trillion in the U.S. We're struggling to save the stock market, but that's valued at less than $15 trillion. And we hope to keep the entire U.S. economy from collapsing, yet gross domestic product stands at $14.2 trillion. Compare any of these to the derivatives market and you can easily see that we are just closing the windows as a tsunami crashes to shore. The total value of all the stock markets in the world amounts to less than $50 trillion, according to the World Federation of Exchanges. To be sure, the derivatives market is international. But much of the trouble we're in began with contracts "derived" from the values associated with U.S. residential real estate market. These contracts were engineered based on the various assumptions tied to those values. Few know what derivatives are worth. I spoke with one derivatives trader who manages billions of dollars and she said she couldn't even value her portfolio because "no one knows anymore who is on the other side of the trade."
Note: The GDP of the entire world is estimated at around $60 trillion. Banks and financial firms deemed "too big to fail" were bailed out worldwide at taxpayers' expense. But what will happen if losses in the derivatives market skyrocket? No government in the world has the resources to save financial corporations from a collapse in their derivatives trading. For a treasure trove of reports from reliable sources detailing the amazing control of major banks over government and society, click here.
OTC derivatives market activity in the first half of 2011
November 16, 2011, Bank for International Settlements (Intergovernmental organization of central banks)
After an increase of only 3% in the second half of 2010, total notional amounts outstanding of over-the-counter (OTC) derivatives rose by 18% in the first half of 2011, reaching $708 trillion by the end of June 2011.
Note: The Bank for International Settlements (BIS) is an intergovernmental organization of central banks which "fosters international monetary and financial cooperation and serves as a bank for central banks." It is not accountable to any national government. Their accounting shows a total global derivatives market controlled by the banks of over $700 trillion. That's $100,000 for every man, woman, and child on the planet. As reported in Reuters, the derivatives market is largely unregulated. Do you think there is any manipulation going on here? BIS helps the bankers to work together to keep their hidden power.
Buffett warns on investment 'time bomb'
March 4, 2003, BBC News
The rapidly growing trade in derivatives poses a "mega-catastrophic risk" for the economy and most shares are still "too expensive", ... investor Warren Buffett has warned. The derivatives market has exploded in recent years, with investment banks selling billions of dollars worth of these investments to clients as a way to off-load or manage market risk. But Mr Buffett argues that such highly complex financial instruments are time bombs and "financial weapons of mass destruction" that could harm not only their buyers and sellers, but the whole economic system. Derivatives are financial instruments that allow investors to speculate on the future price of, for example, commodities or shares - without buying the underlying investment. Outstanding derivatives contracts - excluding those traded on exchanges such as the International Petroleum Exchange - are worth close to $85 trillion, according to the International Swaps and Derivatives Association. Some derivatives contracts, Mr Buffett says, appear to have been devised by "madmen". He warns that derivatives can push companies onto a "spiral that can lead to a corporate meltdown", like the demise of the notorious hedge fund Long-Term Capital Management in 1998.
Note: Investor Warren Buffett was ranked the world's richest man by Forbes magazine in 2008. Though written in 2003 when the value of the derivatives market was about 1/4 of what it is now, the excellent article above reveals Buffett's thinking on the incredible risk of creating derivatives that have many times more value than the entire GDP of the world. The risk has increased tremendously since then.
Deregulation of derivatives set stage for collapse
January 30, 2011, San Francisco Chronicle (San Francisco's leading newspaper)
"We certainly applaud the efforts of the commission," said White House press secretary Robert Gibbs, referring to the Financial Crisis Inquiry Report. "Frankly, I'm not sure much has changed," said one of commissioners, Byron Georgiou. "The concentration of assets in the nation's 10 biggest banks is bigger now than it was five years ago, from 58 percent in 2006 to 63 percent now." Referring to executives who remain at the head of those banks that almost ran aground, Georgiou said ... "Either they knew and didn't want to tell us, or they really didn't know. Either way, they put their institutions at risk." And have yet to be held accountable. Commissioner Brooksley Born can enjoy a certain sense of vindication. Not only had "over-the-counter derivatives contributed significantly to this crisis," ... but the enactment of legislation in 2000 to ban their regulation "was a key turning point in the march toward the financial crisis." As head of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission in the 1990s, Born was aware of the damage the largely unregulated instruments had already caused. Born suggested some more regulation. [She] was squashed like a bug by Clinton administration heavyweights, including Lawrence Summers and Robert Rubin, [and] Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan. One of the results: The Commodity Futures Modernization Act of 2000 eliminated government oversight of the OTC market. As the report documents, the use of such derivatives ... helped bring the entire financial system to its knees. Born hasn't seen much change in terms of accountability. One thing the report makes clear ... is just how preposterous were the "Who knew?" and "Who could have predicted?" statements offered up by chief executives and top government officials.
Note: So the 10 biggest banks now control 63% of total U.S. bank assets. According to the New York Times, the total for all U.S. banking assets as of the second quarter of 2010 were calculated at $13.22 trillion. Yet four of these megabanks also control an astounding 95% of the $574 trillion derivatives market, a sum over 40 times the amount of bank assets! Do you think there might be a problem with a derivatives bubble?
JPMorgan's Dangerous Derivatives
May 7, 2009, Bloomberg/Businessweek
Gillian Tett [is the author of] Fool's Gold: How the Bold Dream of a Small Tribe at J.P. Morgan Was Corrupted by Wall Street Greed and Unleashed a Catastrophe. Tett is a respected business journalist at the Financial Times. Tett successfully pieces together the colorful backstory of the bank's work to win acceptance in the market for its brainchild, turning credit derivatives "from a cottage industry into a mass-production business." With the benefit of hindsight, we know that while these inventions were intended to control risk, they amplified it instead. This novel idea turned noxious when applied broadly to residential mortgages, a game that the rest of Wall Street later entered into with gusto. We learn in deep detail about not only how collateralized debt obligations are assembled but also their many iterations. Perhaps it's noteworthy that Tett's book begins when JPMorgan had the face-value equivalent of $1.7 trillion in derivatives on its books. Today that number has jumped to a mind-boggling $87 trillion. Part of that portfolio includes almost $8.4 trillion in credit derivatives, more than Bank of America's (BAC), Citi's, and Goldman Sachs' (GS) holdings combined.
Note: So JP Morgan has $87 trillion in derivatives, a mass market it helped to create. That is greater than the GDP for the entire world! To verify, click here. For a New York Times review of this revealing book, click here.
Derivatives the new 'ticking bomb'
March 10, 2008, (Part of the Wall Street Journal's digital network)
"In our view, however, derivatives are financial weapons of mass destruction, carrying dangers that, while now latent, are potentially lethal." That warning was in [Warren] Buffett's 2002 letter to Berkshire shareholders. He saw a future that many others chose to ignore. Wall Street didn't listen to Buffett. Derivatives grew into a massive bubble, from about $100 trillion to $516 trillion by 2007. Despite Buffett's clear warnings, a massive new derivatives bubble is driving the domestic and global economies, a bubble that continues growing today parallel with the subprime-credit meltdown triggering a bear-recession. Data on the five-fold growth of derivatives to $516 trillion in five years comes from the most recent survey by the Bank of International Settlements, the world's clearinghouse for central banks in Basel, Switzerland. Keep in mind that while the $516 trillion "notional" value (maximum in case of a meltdown) of the deals is a good measure of the market's size, the 2007 BIS study notes that the $11 trillion "gross market values provides a more accurate measure of the scale of financial risk transfer taking place in derivatives markets." The fact is, derivatives have become the world's biggest "black market," exceeding the illicit traffic in stuff like arms, drugs, alcohol, gambling, cigarettes, stolen art and pirated movies. Why? Because like all black markets, derivatives are a perfect way of getting rich while avoiding taxes and government regulations. And in today's slowdown, plus a volatile global market, Wall Street knows derivatives remain a lucrative business.
Note: Do you think the financial industry is out of control? For lots more powerful, reliable information on major banking manipulations, click here.
How Goldman gambled on starvation
July 2, 2010, The Independent (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
This is the story of how some of the richest people in the world – Goldman, Deutsche Bank, the traders at Merrill Lynch, and more – have caused the starvation of some of the poorest people in the world. At the end of 2006, food prices across the world started to rise, suddenly and stratospherically. Within a year, the price of wheat had shot up by 80 per cent, maize by 90 per cent, rice by 320 per cent. In a global jolt of hunger, 200 million people – mostly children – couldn't afford to get food any more, and sank into malnutrition or starvation. There were riots in more than 30 countries, and at least one government was violently overthrown. Then, in spring 2008, prices just as mysteriously fell back to their previous level. Jean Ziegler, the UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food, calls it "a silent mass murder", entirely due to "man-made actions." Through the 1990s, Goldman Sachs and others lobbied hard and the regulations [controlling agricultural futures contracts] were abolished. Suddenly, these contracts were turned into "derivatives" that could be bought and sold among traders who had nothing to do with agriculture. A market in "food speculation" was born. The speculators drove the price through the roof.
Note: For a very powerful New York Times article by a top Goldman Sachs executive who recently quit for reasons of conscience, click here. Some researchers speculate that the global elite are aware that alternative energies will eventually replace oil, which has been a prime means of control and underlying cause of many recent wars. As a replacement for oil, the elite and their secret societies are increasingly targeting control of the world's food supply through terminator crops which produce no seed, and through the patenting of seeds.
Stock market time bomb?
May 10, 2010, Washington Times
Even the world’s most savvy stock-market giants (e.g., Warren E. Buffett) have warned over the past decade that derivatives are the fiscal equivalent of a weapon of mass destruction. And the consequences of such an explosion would make the recent global financial and economic crisis seem like penny ante. But generously lubricated lobbyists for the unrestricted, unsupervised derivatives markets tell congressional committees and government regulators to butt out. While banks all over the world were imploding and some $50 trillion vanished in global stock markets, the derivatives market grew by an estimated 65 percent, according the Bank for International Settlements. BIS convenes the world’s 57 most powerful central bankers in Basel, Switzerland, for periodic secret meetings. Occasionally, they issue a cry of alarm. This time, derivatives had soared from $414.8 trillion at the end of 2006 to $683.7 trillion in mid-2008 - 18 months’ time. The derivatives market is now estimated at $700 trillion. What’s so difficult to understand about derivatives? Essentially, they are bets for or against the house - red or black at the roulette wheel. Or betting for or against the weather in situations in which the weather is critical (e.g., vineyards). Forwards, futures, options and swaps form the panoply of derivatives. Credit derivatives are based on loans, bonds or other forms of credit. Over-the-counter (OTC) derivatives are contracts that are traded and privately negotiated directly between two parties, outside of a regular exchange. All of this is unregulated.
Note: This incisive article lays bare severe market manipulations that greatly endanger our world. The entire article is highly recommended. And for a powerful analysis describing just how crazy things have gotten and giving some rays of hope by researcher David Wilcock, click here.
With real unemployment approaching 25% of the population, 50 million Americans on food stamps, and the prices of essential goods rising every month, it’s no surprise that black market peddlers are turning to new product offerings to make a buck.
In What Is Money When the System Collapses? we highlighted some items that would take the place of traditional currency in the event of a catastrophic financial and economic collapse – things like food, fuel, firearms and footwear.
Law enforcement officials across the country are puzzled over a crime wave targeting an unlikely item: Tide laundry detergent.
Tide has become a form of currency on the streets. The retail price is steadily high — roughly $10 to $20 a bottle — and it’s a staple in households across socioeconomic classes.
As Americans, we live in two worlds; the world of mainstream fantasy, and the world of day-to-day reality right outside our front doors. One disappears the moment we shut off our television. The other, does not…
When dealing with the economy, it is the foundation blocks that remain when the proverbial house of cards flutters away in the wind, and these basic roots are what we should be most concerned about. While much of what we see in terms of economic news is awash in a sticky gray cloud of disinformation and uneducated opinion, there are still certain constants that we can always rely on to give us a sense of our general financial environment...
In recent weeks, Theodoros Mavridis has bought fresh eggs, tsipourou (the local brandy: beware), fruit, olives, olive oil, jam, and soap. He has also had some legal advice, and enjoyed the services of an accountant to help fill in his tax return.
None of it has cost him a euro, because he had previously done a spot of electrical work – repairing a TV, sorting out a dodgy light – for some of the 800-odd members of a fast-growing exchange network in the port town of Volos, midway between Athens and Thessaloniki.
In return for his expert labour, Mavridis received a number of Local Alternative Units (known as tems in Greek) in his online network account. In return for the eggs, olive oil, tax advice and the rest, he transferred tems into other people’s accounts.
We're already seeing this kind of activity in the US, as the economy becomes worse. Bartering may well skyrocket in the not too distant future in the US.
We live in a world that is becoming increasingly unstable, and the potential for an event that could cause "sudden change" to the U.S. economy is greater than ever. There are dozens of potentially massive threats that could easily push the U.S. economy over the edge during the next 12 months. A war in the Middle East, a financial collapse in Europe, a major derivatives crisis or a horrific natural disaster could all change our economic situation very rapidly.
The following are 15 potentially massive threats to the U.S. economy over the next 12 months....
#1 War With Syria - U.S. Senator John McCain is now publicly calling for U.S. airstrikes against Syria. A military conflict with Syria becomes more likely with each passing day.
#2 War With Iran - A war in the Middle East involving Iran could literally erupt at any time. The following is from a Reuters news report that was issued on Monday....
President Barack Obama appealed to Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday to give sanctions time to curb Iran's nuclear ambitions, but the Israeli prime minister offered no sign of backing away from possible military action, saying his country must be the "master of its fate."
#3 A Disorderly Greek Debt Default - Many reporters in Europe seem to think that this is becoming increasingly likely. So what would a disorderly Greek debt default mean for the global financial system? A leaked report that was authored by the Institute of International Finance says that a disorderly Greek debt default would have some very serious consequences. You can read the full text of that leaked report right here.
#4 An Economic Collapse In Spain - Spain has one of the largest economies in Europe and it is rapidly becoming a basket case. As I have written about previously, the unemployment rate in Spain has hit 19.9 percent, and the unemployment rate for workers under the age of 25 is up to 49.9 percent. Unfortunately, the situation in Spain continues to deteriorate. The following is from a recent article by Marc Chandler....
However, the devolution in Spain is particularly troubling. The new fiscal compact had just been signed last week, which includes somewhat more rigorous fiscal rule and enforcement, when Spain's PM Rajoy revealed that this year's deficit would come in around 5.8 percent of GDP rather the 4.4 percent target. This of course follows last year's 8.5 percent overshoot of the 6 percent target.
The problem that for Spain is that the 4.4 percent target was based on forecasts for more than 2 percent growth this year. However, in late February, the EU cuts its forecast to a 1 percent contraction. This still seems optimistic. The IMF forecasts a 1.7 percent contraction, which the Spanish government now accepts.
#5 The Price Of Gasoline - The average price of a gallon of gasoline in the United States has risen for 27 days in a row and is now up to $3.77. Virtually all forms of economic activity are affected by the price of gasoline, and if the price of gas keeps going up it is eventually going to have dramatic consequences for the U.S. economy.
#6 The Student Loan Debt Bubble - Just like we saw with the housing bubble, the student loan debt bubble just continues to grow and grow and grow. At some point the nearly 1 trillion dollar bubble is going to burst. What effect will it have on our financial system when that finally happens?
#7 State And Local Government Debt Crisis - It is being reported that California is running out of cash again and there are cities all over the country that are on the verge of bankruptcy. Could we see a significant municipal bond crisis in the next 12 months?
#8 The Collapse Of A Major U.S. Bank - A number of top U.S. banks are looking increasingly shaky. In a recent article, David Trainer explained why he has such serious concerns about Bank of America right now....
In my opinion, there are four actions taken by financial services that signal the company is headed to serious trouble.
1. Management shake-up and major layoffs - lots of layoffs over the past year
2. Exploiting accounting rules to boost earnings - SFAS 159
3. Drawing down reserves to boost earnings: to the tune of $13.3 billion in 2011 and 2012
4. Bilking customers with new fees: tried it before and trying it again
Bank of America has taken all four steps.
#9 A Derivatives Crisis - The International Swaps and Derivatives Association recently ruled that the Greek debt deal will not trigger payouts on credit default swaps. This is seriously shaking confidence in the global market for derivatives. But the global financial system simply cannot afford a major derivatives crisis.
Estimates of the notional value of the worldwide derivatives market range from $600 trillion all the way up to $1.5 quadrillion. The notional value of all derivatives held by Bank of America is approximately $75 trillion. JPMorgan Chase is holding derivatives with a notional value of approximately $79 trillion.
When the derivatives bubble finally bursts it is going to be a financial horror show unlike anything we have ever seen.
#10 The Fall Of The Japanese Economy - The Japanese economy shrank at a 2.3 percent rate during the fourth quarter of 2011. Japan has a debt to GDP ratio of over 200 percent and a major debt crisis involving Japan could erupt at any time.
#11 A "Solar Megastorm" - Scientists tell us that there is a "1 in 8 chance" that a "solar megastorm" will hit the earth by 2014. A recent Daily Mail article detailed what some of the consequences of such an event would be....
'We live in a cyber cocoon enveloping the Earth. Imagine what the consequences might be,' Daniel Baker, of the University of Colorado's Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics told National Geographic when asked about a potential 'megastorm'.
'Every time you purchase a gallon of gas with your credit card, that's a satellite transaction.
'Imagine large cities without power for a week, a month, or a year. The losses could be $1 to $2 trillion, and the effects could be felt for years.
#12 A Major West Coast Earthquake Or Volcanic Eruption - On Monday, there was a 4.0 earthquake in San Francisco and a 6.1 earthquake in Argentina. Is the "Ring of Fire" waking up again?
#13 Tornado Damage To Major U.S. Cities - Last year, the U.S. experienced one of the worst tornado seasons of all time. This year, we have already seen the worst tornado outbreak ever recorded in the United States in the month of March. A couple of towns in Indiana were completely wiped out by that outbreak. So what should we expect when we get to the heart of tornado season this year?
#14 Severe Drought In The United States - Last summer was one of the driest summers on record in the United States, and in many areas there is simply not enough water available for farmers this year. Some are even projecting that we could see "dust bowl conditions" return to some areas of the country eventually.
#15 An Asteroid Strike In 2013 - Although scientists tell us that the probability is extremely low, the truth is that there is a slight chance that a sizeable asteroid could hit the earth in February 2013. The asteroid is estimated to be between 60 and 100 meters wide, and it is projected to pass by our planet "at a distance of under 27,000 km". If it did hit us (and scientists say that the odds of that happening are very low) it would potentially be as serious an event as the Tunguska Event in Siberia in 1908. Mac Slavo of shtfplan.com recently described how awesome the Tunguska Event really was....
Greek Credit Default Swaps surged to a new all time high as hit a new all time high of 77 points yields on 1 year sovereign Greek debt soars above a record 1006%
UK Government prepares for Euro collapse and nuclear financial fallout of Moody’s officially declaring a Greece default on their sovereign debt.
03/05/12 Melbourne, Australia – In today’s Daily Reckoning, we’ll do something we can barely stand to do: we’re going to write one more time about Greece. If you can stand to read it, you may come to the same conclusion we reached.
That conclusion is simple: what’s going on Europe has nothing to do with solving a debt crisis and everything to do with preserving a corrupt system based on limitless debt and growing government power. The sooner you understand that fact, the sooner you’ll be able to prepare for what happens next. There are two options for what happens next, and we’ll get to those shortly.
First, though, doesn’t it strike you as strange that all of Europe can be brought to its knees by tiny little Greece? Greek GDP is just 2.4% of Europe’s GDP. In economic terms, Greece doesn’t matter. Its lack of growth or economic competitiveness shouldn’t be factors that can destroy Europe’s 13-year single currency experiment. Yet, Greece obviously does matter; otherwise the European financial markets wouldn’t be celebrating the latest €130 billion bailout that’s on its way to Athens.
So here’s our question: Why do Greek finances matter to anyone outside of Greece? If you rule out the obvious things that don’t matter, that leaves everything else. Or as Sherlock Holmes was fond of saying, “when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.”
First, let’s see why the possible explanations for Greece’s importance to the world are actually impossible. Take the issue of debt reduction. As we wrote last week, the deal before Europe would reduce Greek debt to 120% of GDP by 2020. The IMF says that level is sustainable.
Back in a universe where common sense prevails, you can see that the plan is a joke, at least in terms of debt reduction. A plan to reduce Greek’s debt to 120% of GDP…EIGHT YEARS FROM NOW…is not a serious plan about debt. Therefore, the plan cannot be about debt reduction.
Will the plan make Greece more competitive in the long run? Well, probably not. In order to get more money by March 20th, the Greek Parliament had to agree to certain structural reforms. Some of those reforms might even be a good idea. But cutting the minimum wage isn’t going to be popular. And with Greek GDP shrinking by 7% in the fourth quarter, years of austerity won’t make Greece more competitive. The lifestyle of the Greeks will be destroyed and the debt will remain. Therefore, the plan cannot be about making Greece more competitive.
Does saving Greece save the euro? Not at all. The euro would be better off without Greece and Greece would be better off without the euro. The Germans are even planning for a euro that doesn’t include Greece. With its own currency, Greece could default, devalue, inflate and start over. Argentina did it in the last 10 years. It’s not rocket science. Therefore, saving Greece is not about saving the euro.
If saving Greece is not about saving the euro, and if it’s not about reducing Greek debt, and if it’s not about making Greece a more competitive economy…then just what IS it about? Well, now that we’ve rule out what’s impossible, let’s look at what’s left.
Saving Greece means preventing a technical default…even though Greece has already defaulted in a real-world sense. So why is avoiding a technical default so important to the European Central Bank (ECB) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF)? The current plan certainly looks like a default. Under the plan, €100 billion worth of Greek debt would disappear, thanks to a debt swap agreement with private sector investors. The ECB has twisted enough arms to get creditors to accept a 70% haircut on their current Greek debt without actually calling it a default.
And yet, bizarrely, Greece’s creditors could be forced to accept this not-a-default default losses recourse to the credit default insurance they purchased. That’s right; they might lose 70% of their capital and still be denied a payout on the default insurance they purchased. That would be like an insurance company refusing to honor a fire insurance policy because only 70% of your house burned to the ground.
It gets kind of wonky here. But really, it’s about who gets to make the rules. To you and me and everyone else in the universe where common sense prevails, a non-voluntary 70% loss on your government bonds is a default. But you and I don’t get to decide what constitutes a credit default. That honour belongs to the International Swaps Derivatives Association (ISDA). The important thing to keep in mind here is that the ISDA is a trade group made up of banks and financial firms. Those are the firms that have the most to lose if Greek bonds default. It’s in the interest of the members of the ISDA that a non-voluntary credit event in Greece NOT be called a default.
It gets even murkier here. The ISDA essentially represents the global banking system. In Europe, the banking system is full of government bonds. Those bonds are nominally assets. If Greece defaults, it sets a precedent for how other countries might deal with unsustainable debt levels. This imperils the collateral of Europe’s entire banking system.
If you want to put it in simpler terms, let’s say that Europe’s banking system is full of rotting meat. Some investors bought that meat thinking they were going to get prime rib. But they can smell the stink of the meat from a mile away. They want to be compensated for the bad meat. The ISDA, which owns the freezer in which the meat went bad, says, “Well, we’ve decided the meat isn’t bad after all. And you have less of it than you thought anyway, as of now.”
This is a crude analogy. But this is exactly what happened last week. A “determinations committee” of the ISDA ruled that Greece’s default is not a default. The committee determined that “no credit event has yet occurred” for holders of credit default protection on Greece.
You can see the basic problem: everyone else knows that if Greece defaults (officially), the value of other government bonds in Spain and Italy and Portugal will plummet too. A Greek default wouldn’t be important because of the size of the default (although French and German banks would stand to lose a fair bit). It would be important because it would begin the process of blowing up bank balance sheets all over Europe.
When you realize that the ISDA and the ECB and the EU are in league to save their financial skins, you realize that the Greek rescue plans is about preventing other countries from realizing that default is an option. In fact, it’s not even about preventing the realization. It’s about making it impossible for a country to default on its obligations…even if it means erasing the word “default” from the English language.
If the centralized European Welfare State model is to survive, banks must not take losses on their government bond holdings. Individual and private investors, on the other hand, will be forced to take losses through a “collective action clause.” This clause allows your securities to be revalued without your consent if a majority of other bondholders agree to it.
Now we’re coming to the real nuts and bolts of what’s at stake. The technocrats in Europe are at war with private investors. The members of the ISDA are in league with the technocrats to preserve their system. That part is easy to understand.
The technocrats are employed by government and get to spend your money. This system is good for them. It’s good for the members of the ISDA too. Loaning money to the government is good business. Collecting rent off the expansion of credit is easy money. They want the system to last as well.
Who is the system not good for? Everybody else who’s on the outside looking in. Investors who want their capital to be productive are out of luck. And taxpayers who question the value of austerity measures and debt reduction plans that don’t really reduce debt are also out of luck. No wonder they are angry.
We’ve come a long way, then. Greece isn’t about saving Greece. The only reason something so small and insignificant could matter so much is that it matters in a way no one is willing to say. It’s about the subversion of sovereignty and democratic processes by removing decisions from people and giving them to trans-national financial elites. It’s about preserving a global system that’s based on the accumulation of debt and growing government power because there are two groups of people who benefit tremendously from that system, even if most people don’t.
This is simply the latest example of corrupt government operatives colluding with the financial elite to steal money, liberty and big chunks of “the pursuit of happiness” from “we, the people.”
for The Daily Reckoning
Following Iran’s move to cut oil sales to British and French firms, the price of Brent crude has hit an eight-month high in Asian markets, reaching USD 121.10 per barrel.
The money, power, and influence is vastly larger on the side that benefits from the alarm
On the skeptical side, Exxon chipped in all of $23 million over ten years, but it’s chump-change. The fossil fuel industry doesn’t like carbon legislation, but it’s not life or death, unlike the situation for wind and solar, which would be virtually wiped out without the subsidies provided by the scare.
The US government has poured in $79 billion and then some. But the pro-scare funding is pervasive: for example — the Australian government spent $14 million on a single Ad campaign, and another $90 million every year on a Department of Climate Change. The UK government paid for lobbyists to lobby it, and the BBC “partners” with the lobby groups. The EU doesn’t just subsidize renewables, it also pays them to push for more subsidies. Even the dastardly Exxon paid more than 20 times as much for a single renewables research project than it did to skeptics.
Last year in carbon markets $142 billion dollars turned over, and $243 billion was invested in renewables. If the carbon market idea went global it was projected to reach $2 trillion a year. Every banker and his dog has a bone in this game. Why wouldn’t they?
Frozen continent! Europe's rivers, lakes and even seas are iced over as bitter Siberian cold leads to temperatures of almost -40C
You would be forgiven for thinking these stunning vistas lay deep in the heart of Antarctica.
But they are, in fact, what has become of the European landscape as temperatures plummet to nearly -40C - the coldest snap in decades.
Rivers, lakes, beaches and even seas have been iced over by a Siberian freeze, creating some incredible sights, but also more tales of tragedy.
The Federal Reserve has operated almost entirely behind closed doors as it rewrites the rule book governing the U.S. financial system, a stark contrast with its push for transparency in its interest-rate policies and emergency-lending programs.
While many Americans may not realize it, the Fed has taken on a much larger regulatory role than at any time in history. Since the Dodd-Frank financial overhaul became law in July 2010, the Fed has held 47 separate votes on financial regulations, and scores more are coming. In the process it is reshaping the U.S. financial industry
The New World Order is a global banking dictatorship.
Former foreign secretary Jack Straw has claimed that failing to give voters across Europe a proper say about joining the Euro has contributed to the problems facing the single currency, and warned against any further major EU treaties being passed without the direct approval of the public.
... even though that is exactly what the Greek people were NOT allowed to do in this latest bailout "deal!"