Qatar Balks At Saudi Ultimatum That Would Force It To Surrender Sovereignty

Immediately after Saudi Arabia and its Gulf State client shiekdoms released an ultimatum containing 13 demands to which Qatar must agree as a precondition for the resumption of diplomatic ties and an end of the Saudi economic and naval blockade, the tiny kingdom on the Persian Gulf described the ultimatum as neither “reasonable” nor “realistic”, and claimed it would infringe on Qatar’s sovereignty. 

“This list of demands confirms what Qatar has said from the beginning – the illegal blockade has nothing to do with combating terrorism, it is about limiting Qatar’s sovereignty, and outsourcing our foreign policy” said  Sheikh Saif Al Thani, of Qatar’s official communications office, according to Bloomberg.

The full list contained demands  such as reducing Qatar’s diplomatic representation in Iran, cancelling the Turkish military base being established there (Turkey has already balked at the threat), severing ties with terrorist organizations, shutting down Al Jazeera and all affiliated channels, and so on. The demands are explicitly aimed at dismantling Qatar’s two-decade-old interventionist foreign policy, which has reflected the clout generated by its vast natural gas and oil wealth but incensed conservative Arab peers over its alleged support for extremist groups they regard as threats to their dynastic rule.

Al Thani dismissed the demands and said the list is “under review”, but only “out of respect for our brothers in Kuwait” whose emissary delivered the Saudi demands on Friday (22 June). Al Thani said that the demands do not meet the US and UK criteria for “reasonable and realistic measures.”

Meanwhile Qatar’s Foreign Ministry said it will soon issue an official response, one which we doubt Saudi Arabia will like as the bid/ask in the early stage of the negotiations is being established. 

“The State of Qatar is currently studying this paper, the demands contained therein and the foundations on which they were based, in order to prepare an appropriate response,” the ministry told Channel News Asia.

On Friday, Qatar’s news outlet Al Jazeera responded to Saudi demands that it be shut down as part of the “renormalization” process. “We in the network believe that any call for closing down Al Jazeera is nothing but an attempt to silence the freedom of expression in the region and to suppress people’s right to information,” Al Jazeera said in a statement.

“By accepting those demands and conditions Qatar will be subject to international accountability and violating its commitments regarding human rights conventions,” Qatar’s National Human Rights Committee said in a statement cited by Reuters.

Meanwhile, a senior United Arab Emirates official told Reuters what would happen if Qatar refused to comply with the Arab ultimatum, saying there would be a “parting of ways.”

“The alternative is not escalation, the alternative is parting of ways, because it is very difficult for us to maintain a collective grouping,” UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash told reporters.

Gargash urged Qatar to meet the demands. “It would be wiser that [Qatar] deal seriously with the demands and concerns of the neighbors or a divorce will take place,” Anwar Gargash said on Twitter in Arabic, adding, that “the crisis is profound.”


UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash

In other words, another attempt at a backdoor deal orchestrated by Saudi Arabia failed because someone leaked something, only this time it didn’t involve Trump being a KGB secret agent.

Gargash said that if Qatar fails to comply within the 10-day timeline set out in the ultimatum, it will be isolated. But he did not make clear what more could be done since the four Arab nations have already cut diplomatic relations with Doha and severed most commercial ties.

Despite verbal assurances that there will be no further escalation, Qatar is preparing for the worst, as two contingents of Turkish troops with columns of armored vehicles have arrived in Doha since the worst crisis among Gulf Arab states for years erupted on June 5.

The uncompromising positions adopted by both sides leave little prospect for a quick end to the crisis. The sanctions have disrupted Qatar’s main import routes by land from Saudi Arabia and by sea from big container ships docked in the United Arab Emirates. But Qatar so far has avoided economic collapse by quickly finding alternative channels (mainly through Iran which made the Saudis even more pissed off) and says its huge financial reserves will meet any challenges.

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What’s Really Happening With Saudi Arabia and Qatar Will Not Be Televised

 While mainstream media is in a frenzy over what former FBI chief James Comey will say to a Congressional hearing about Donald Trump’s alleged links with Russia and attempt to shut down an investigation into those links, the UK election, Islamic extremist terrorism, football’s latest multi – million transfer deals, etc., as usual the really big story is hardly being reported. We bring you the story from The Anti Media, published here under creative commons licence.

June 7, 2017 at 11:04 am

Egypt, the UAE, Bahrain, Yemen, Libya, and the Maldives — spearheaded by Saudi Arabia — have severed almost all of their ties with Qatar. The move comes just days after hacked emails from the Hotmail account of a wealthy, prominent UAE ambassador, Yousef Al-Otaiba, showed that a number of countries were conspiring to denigrate relations with Qatar (and Iran).

The official justification for Saudi Arabia’s rift with Qatar is that the latter country aligns with terrorists and threatens national security. However, both Saudi Arabia and Qatar have been alleged to support ISIS, and Saudi Arabia’s history of support for terrorist organizations surpasses that of almost any other state in the world (with the exception of probably the U.S.). In fact, the British Home Office is currently refusing to release a report on terrorist funding — commissioned by former Prime Minister David Cameron — because it focuses too heavily on Saudi Arabia.

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So what could really be behind this deterioration between Qatar and its former allies?

Unsurprisingly, the real issue at play consists of a Pandora’s Box of money, oil, natural gas, and geopolitics.

Qatar is the world’s largest exporter of liquefied natural gas. It is for this reason that many analysts believe Qatar was heavily involved in attempting to overthrow Bashar al-Assad in Syria. Assad had scrapped a potential deal with Qatar, Turkey, and Saudi Arabia, opting for a natural gas pipeline deal that would involve Iran and Iraq, instead.

In April 2017, Qatar lifted a self-imposed ban on developing the world’s biggest natural gas field, which it shares with Iran, in an attempt to stave off an expected rise in competition, particularly from Russia.

Iran, too, is home to large natural gas reserves, and after a shortage of domestic gas, the Islamic Republic sought to capitalize on the 2015 nuclear accord by ramping up production on their share of the gas reserve. In November 2016, Iran signed a deal with France’s Total to develop this project. Iran is expected to surpass Qatar’s gas production by next year, and Qatar has been left with no choice but to join in the venture, though they deny Iran prompted their response to lift the ban.

“What we are doing today is something completely new and we will in future of course … share information on this with them [Iran],” Qatar Petroleum’s Chief Executive Saad al-Kaabi said, as reported by Haaretz.

Qatar has no current plans to go to war with Iran, unlike the rest of the Arab Gulf states. Not long after Donald Trump sword-danced his way through the Middle East, raving incessantly about the so-called Iranian threat, Qatari state media released a report that appeared to show Qatari ruler Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani give a speech describing his respect for Iran and his support for Hamas. Qatar immediately claimed the report was actually the result of a hack, but the UAE and Saudi Arabia still believe the report to be genuine.

Saudi Arabia’s decision to cut Qatar from its so-called coalition of countries wreaking havoc on Yemen has come with its political repercussions. Iran immediately expressed support for Qatar in this struggle, as have the Houthi militias operating inside Yemen. The Houthis are already stating they are willing to cooperate with Qatar — even though Qatar was fighting against them for approximately two years.

Qatar is not following the playbook. In Libya, Egypt and Qatar are currently fighting a proxy war as they are both backing different rival camps that are vying to assert power in the war-torn nation. Though Qatar clearly shared NATO’s sentiment in ousting Muammar Gaddafi from Libya and attempting to overthrow Assad in Syria, Qatar’s support for organizations like the Muslim Brotherhood are largely seen as political challenges to the Saudi alliance.

Qatar is home to America’s largest base in the Middle East, with over 11,000 servicemen currently deployed there.

“The United States and the Coalition are grateful to the Qataris for their longstanding support of our presence and their enduring commitment to regional security. We have no plans to change our posture in Qatar,” Major Adrian Rankine-Galloway, Pentagon spokesman, said in a statement. “We encourage all our partners in the region to reduce tensions and work towards common solutions that enable regional security.”

The U.S. cannot afford to intentionally destroy its relationship with Qatar outright, but it can certainly allow its client states in the region to do its bidding for them. As Otaiba’s recently hacked emails show, some very powerful people in Washington support putting pressure on Qatar in order to bring it to its knees and force it to comply with the rest of the region.

Though the U.S. military’s statement appears to be an attempt to mitigate the damage of the fallout, as usual, the one wildcard element that no one can account for when unraveling geopolitical strategies is Donald Trump’s personal Twitter account. Trump has already tweeted his support for the economic blockade on Qatar and even appeared to take credit for the initiative.

But what will the U.S. and the other Gulf states achieve by implementing this policy? So far, all it seems to be doing is pushing Qatar even closer to Iran, and the U.S. may lose yet another vital ally from the anti-Assad alliance, further complicating the battleground as the framework continues to be set for an all-out regional conflict.

Creative Commons / Anti-Media / Report a typo

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Western Liberals Not Outraged With Terrorist Who Lured Children With Food, Then Blew Them Up?

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Strangely there has been a media black – out and not a whisper from the liberals, progressives and Social Justice Warriors about another atrocity committed in Syria against children. The difference is the one you have not heard about was actually witnessed by westerners in Syria and was undeniably carried out by a member of one of the head – amputating, sex – slave taking, human organ noshing moderate rebels.

from Eva Bartlett in Syria

When we thought it was Assad gassing kids it was an outrage, so, when somebody working with us kills 80 kids, on purpose, blows civilians trying to leave a war zone, that was agreed to, it’s a ‘hiccup’…) and the war propaganda goes on.

It couldn’t be more obvious to me that the way the media is reporting, especially the United States, referring to terrorists as ‘freedom fighters’ or ‘rebels’ or ‘moderates’…they’re ‘moderate’ crazy people and the groups they are part of ISIS affiliated. If you do not agree that mainstream media are distorting news coverage to justify the overthrow of Assad,, watch this report from Jimmy Dore inside Syria:

Kudos to Jimmy Dore for his continued honest commentary. He is well-informed and not afraid to speak the truth about what’s happening in Syria, exposing the media lies, and the dishonest propaganda of the culprit states. His information is spot on, save for the trivial error of stating the evacuation in Raqqa when it was from Idlib’s Foua and Kafraya villages to Aleppo, via terrorist-occupied areas. The terrorists comprise not just al-Nusra but also members of the terror coalitions of Jaysh al-Fattah (the so-called “Army of Conquest”), and Ahrar al-Sham (Liberation of the Levant Movement) along with other “moderates” of the umbrella organization Jabhat al-Islamiyah (the Islamic Front)

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Ever wondered why anybody trying to report news truthfully or initiate intelligent discussion is branded a conspiracy theorist, especially if their news or opinion is critical of the American government of American business interests? Read the content of this page and you will know a lot more about what is going on.

EU Boss Argues That Their Work With Banks And Corporate Interests Should Be Concealed From The Public.
Shills for global government and corporate fascism are always quick to shout ‘conspiracy theorist’ when anybody questions things like the EU federalisation project, the Trans Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and the Trans Pacific Trade Partnership (TPP) The obvious response is to ask why representatives of supra national bureaucracies are so desperate to ensure progress on these peojects is shrounded in secrecy?

Why Do The ‘Progressive Left’ Support Those Who Use Rape As A Weapon Of War
Rape as a weapon of war and genocide is not a pleasant subject but it is one that needs to be raise, like the issue of Female Genital Mutilation. Why visit such unpleasant topics? To expose the hypocrisy of the modern political left who have more in common with Hitler’s Nazis, Mussolini’s Fascist or Stalin’s brutal Soviet regime that the supporters of traditional left wing values of individual freedom, free speech and equality before the law.

Senior Obama Aide Petraeus Extols North American Superstate.
Why are we bothered about the suicide of the USA as a nation you might well ask. Well the NAFTA which would effectively weld USA, Canada and Mexicio into a single nation on the lines of what EU bureaucrats wouls like to see in Europe is being negotiated in concert with the tans atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership and the Trans Pacific Partnership and all of these ‘free’ trade treaties will make trade anything but free. What they are designed to do you see is make global corporations free to do WTF they like by sidelining elected governments

Corporatism: Government of The People By The Technocrats For The Monopoly Men Of The Global Elite
While the left wail and gnash their teeth over the evils of capitalism and when they need a change scream and shout accusations of ‘racist’ anfd ‘bigot’ at those who try to enlighten them, the problem in the world is not capitalism but corporatism. And as Italian Fascist leader Benito Mussolini said, corporatism is fascism. Learn how the dupes who think they are left wing are helping fascim succeed in the article below

Iraq’s borders are crumbling: this is a disaster for western foreign policy
It was inevitable. I started commentating on world affairs in 2005, a few years before The Daily Stirrer was set up. TRhe Iraq conflict was still going on at that time, George W Bush was boasting ‘mission accomplished’ and the Islamist militias were positioning themselves for the moment the Americans withdrew. Bush’s even more inept successor withdrew occupying troops for purely political reasons and since then Iraq has slid into the grip of fanatics who would establish an Islamic theocracy.

Is Europe Waking Up To The Threat Of Globalism Posed by Secret Trade Treaties
The U.S. is attempting to give multinational corporations a status that has hitherto been reserved to sovereign nations. According to documents recently leaked from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations, the Obama administration wants corporations to be able to challenge the laws and regulations of elected governmets, and bring the dispute to a privately-run international court. Well we did try to warn you.

Venezuela Deals Blow to Banksters, Global Fascists and New World Order.
A few weeks ago we reported that a US sponsored campaign of civil unrest aimed at destabilising Venezuela was underr way as the latest target for US / New World Order colonisation was engulfed by riots. Unfortunately for the USA’s Obama Administration and their globalist banker paymaters, Venezueal is proving just as tough a nut to crack as Ukraine, Syria, Egypt and Afghanistan.

There Is A Global Conspiracy Says World Bank Insider
We have reported on many situations that make it obvious our political leaders are collaborating with bankers and global corporations towards, it appears, a global government. Is this conspiracy in the inteerests of we the punters? You can bet your life it isn’t. So far however it has been hard to convince indoctrinated Marxists and people who believe singing Kumbaya will make things right, that big government is not our friend but our enemy.

E Bomb? Putin Has Obama Over A Fracking Barrel Again On Economic Sanctions.
While western media continue to provide immaculate body service to Barack Obama by swallowing all his shit, the US energy boom is falling short of expectations and Putin is still runnung rings round The Rent Boy President

Ukraine: Russia launches ‘armed invasion’ as Obama warns Moscow of ‘costs’ of intervention
The FUKUS axis – well mainly the US, France and the UK are just sockpuppets as any fule kno – look to have screwed up again. With proof having emerged that the USA and the EU are unrest in Ukraine, Russia has taken steps to safeguard eyjnic Russians in the country. Obama warned of ‘consequences’ if Russia intervened – Russia sent more troops

Can Washington Change Three regimes At Once
The FUKUS axis – let’s be honest, the Obama Administration in the USA, France and the UK are just sockpuppets, may have bitten off more than they can chew in trying to deliveer regime change in three nations at one to satisfy their paymasters the global bankers. The log jam has developed because of the failure to remove assad in Syria and the resolute support of Russia, China and Iran for their ally.

Competition Is Sin, Who Said That? Clue: Not one of the usual suspects.
The great appeal of the internet was that it remained free of corporate control. Well not for much longer, the global technology corporations have for years sought ways to control and monetize web traffic. Now they have hit on a solution. Establish a monopoly.

Major Disaster Neeeded To Save The New World Order? What!
A member of the new elite publicly calling for a major distaster to get the push for the so – called “New World Order” and global government back on track? Could there be any more blatant warning that a false flag event or man made catastrophe that will shock the world is coming our way? Read the article and learn that those crazy conspiracy theorists have been telling the truth all along.

Obama Sell Out American Dream: Transatlantic trade deal is an assault on democracy says left wing libertarian
Sneaking a transatlantic trade deal through with Obama, by – passing the elected parliament and British law is just about David Cameron’s style. But this latest exercise in dismantling democracy could have far reaching consequences for all of us, for example it will give global corporations the power to change British law

Leaked TPP Documents Show The Extent Of Obama’s Treason
Ever heard of the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP)? Not many people have because the American and other governments negotiating the deal are being very secretive about what is supposed to be a free trade agreement. The reason for their cover ups is the TPP is really a massive transfer of power from elected government to corporate cartels. And the USA is already engaged is negotiating a similar deal with the European Union

New World Order: How The Wealthy Elite Rule The World.
The World Bank Whistleblower Karen Hudes has been revealing from the perspective of somebody who was an insider what we Stirrers have told you from our perspective based vast experience in business and industry.

So You Think “THE NEW WORLD ORDER” Is Just A Nutty Conspiracy Theory?
Many of us libertarians, lovers of individual treaty, of national community and ethnic cultures have written of the movement towards globalism with its focuse on suppression of cultural and religious differences have been called conspiracy theorists, right wing nut jobs etc. for many years. But is the political right is about power and control, surely libertarianism is the antithesis of that? Read what the global elite say about The New World Order in their own words, then decide for yourself if the conspiracy is just a theory.

Armageddon
Pals (In Memoriam)
Living Within The Conspiracy
Humanitas

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Something Smelly About The Latest Syria Gas Attack

“At least 58 people were killed in an alleged horrific gas attack in the Idlib Governorate this morning“, was the story that greeted us in Britain today as we staggered out of bed to make that life giving first cup of tea or coffee. And as usual with the worst atrocities of recent years, the news bulletins were featuring government spokespeople falling over their tongues in the rush to blame Syria’s Assad regime and “The Russians,” before investigations could be conducted and evidence to gathered.

Federica Mogherini, the Italian politician High Representative of the European Union (EU) for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, condemned the Syrian government stating that the “Assad regime bears responsibility for ‘awful’ Syria ‘chemical’ attack.”

This immediate accusation from a high ranking EU official follows the dangerous precedent set by none other than Barack Hussein Obama, who when news of Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 broke and the cocksucker president was on TV saying he had evidence Vladimir Putin was personally responsible almost before the stricken plane had hit the ground.

We have seen the same tactic with previous alleged gas attacks in Syria when US and NATO officials blamed Russia, citing fake evidence but later United Nations investigations suggested the gas had been fired from ground based artillery within areas of Sysia held by US sponsored rebels. The theory behind this tactic is where a narrative can be constructed before the truth surrounding the tragedy can emerge the public outcry can be managed to suit the political agenda of the US / NATO / EU military – industrial complex.

In this case Israeli President, Benjamin Netanyahu, joined in on the condemnation, as did Amnesty International. Unfortunately the public have been lied to so often by the politicians, bureaucrats and mainstream media, nobody believes anything that comes from them any more. And with good reason …

Only hours after the alleged chemical weapons attack in Khan Sheikhun, supposedly by the Syrian government, the holes in the official narrative are beginning to emerge, discrediting the claims of Al-Qaeda affiliated White Helmets.

In the picture at the top of this article, White Helmets personnel are handling victims of the highly toxic gas (sarin, according to official sources) without sufficient safety gear, they have the wrong masks, no gloves and are wearing ordinary overalls rather than full body HAZMAT suits. Although this may seem insignificant, once we know how postent a nerve agent sarin gas is then the claim it was the chemical immediately looks ridiculous. The claim that in a densely populated area only 58 people died looks dodgy as well.

Within seconds of exposure to sarin, the affects of the gas begins to target the muscle and nervous system. If inhaled, tiny amounts of the gas can be fatal, but contact with exposed skin can be fatal too. Symptoms of contact with sarin can begin in minutes. When sarin is used in a concentrated area, the likleyhood is that thousands of people will be killed or mained. Yet, though dealing with one of the most dangerous substances in the world, the White Helmets are treating people exposed to the nerve agent with little concern for their exposed skin or inadequate masks. This has to raise questions around the credibility of the official story.

It also raises the question why a doctor in a hospital full of victims of sarin gas has the time to tweet and make video calls. This will probably be dismissed and forgotten however.

RELATED POSTS:

Iraq: As Carnage Continues The Media Conspires To Gover Up The War Crimes Of Western Governments

Despite all the hand wringing, the pleas for joiuning hands and singing Kumbaya and the wailing and gnashing of teeth from the west’s allegedly liberal media, broadcasters and newspapers are conspiring with government to cover up the involvement of western governments in what amounts to crimes against humanity.

War On Syria: Standoff Shows America Is No Longer The Global Superpower

So what’s happening in Syria you might well ask? After the FUKUS Axis intervention plans were thwarted by Russia and China there seems to have been a news blackout although the devastating civil war continues to devastate Syria. The really big news however (bigger that J-Lo’s arse) is that America has quietly been demoted from its position as main global military power.

Mainstream Media Ignores What UN Report on Syrian Gas Attack Actually SaidLast Tuesday (28 February, 2017), Russia and China vetoed a resolution put before the United Nations by the FUKUS axis (France, United Kingdom, United States)proposing increased sanctions against Syria. Their case was based on an OPCW-UN report on the Syrian government’s alleged use of chemical weapons in 2014 and 2015.

UK Govt Cash Funded ISIS & Al Nusra In Syrian Conflict
The Revolutionary Forces of Syria (RFS) media organisation, a propaganda operation for the US and NATO backed terrorist groups involved in trying to replace the secular Assasd regime with a Sunni Muslim theocracy is funded by the British government and is managed by Westerners operating out of Turkey, according to leaked emails.

Syria: USA & NATO scream ‘War Crimes’ as US backed rebels shell Aleppo civilians.
Turning a blind eye to the incessant heavy shelling of residential areas full of Syrians loyal to the legitimate government of President Assad in Aleppo, the US State Secretary set a new record fgor hypocrisy in accusing Moscow of committing daily “crimes against humanity.”

What’s The Point Of G20 If The Children Will Not Play Nicely Together

The G20 summit in St Petersburg should be hoding in depth discussions about global issues like Mutually Assured Destruction if America attacks Syria and Russia responds, Bee Apocalypse, Unemployment in the west, Hunger in the southern hemisphere, Same Sex Marriage, Miley Cyrus dry humping …

Syria: Lies Of Obama And Kerry Cannot Hide Real Agenda
Humanitarian intervention my arse. The world’s only terrorist state has been planning all out war in Syria since 2007, with Iran the next target once Assad’s regine falls. Only the determination of Russian and China to stand up to American bullying can curb the genocidal imperial ambitions of The neo-Nazi Obama regime.

Al Jazeera Journalist Forced Out Of Job For Telling Truth About Syria.

Truth is the first casualty of any war it has always been said and it turns out that in these days of spin and deceit truth must die in order to gove warmiongers and mass murderers like Obama, Cameron &Co their excuse to go to war, as the Syria debacle shows …

Intelligence Suggests Assad Not Behind Chemical Weapons Attack

As the clamour for war against Syria gets louder in Washington, London and Paris, s anybody surprised that that evidence stacking up points to last weeks gas attack in Damascus having been instigated by the rebels or a third party with Israel emerging as the top contender …

As FUKUS axis of evil prepares to attack Syria, Russia and China put on war alert

Another world shaking story that the free world’s mainstream media chose not to tell us about even though it should have dominated newspaper headlines and broadcast news bulletins for months. It tells of how Russia and China knew of Military / Industrial / Banking New World Order office boy Obama’s plans to start World War Three back in 2011. Everything their intelligence predicted has happened

Western media part of political elite, will never report Syrian massacre by US-led forcesThis blog has said for years news media in the west, particularly th USA and Britain are not independent; they are part of a corporate / political cartel the task of which is to shape public opinion, so that the policies of the ‘Shadow Government’, implemented by politicians, are accepted by the public,”

Iraq War Criminal Tony Blair Urges More Western War Crimes In Syria

You would think Tony Blair would have enough deaths on his conscience after his pivotal role in starting the Iraq and Afghanistan failures but no, God’s best friend is shilling for western involvement in another bloodbath, in Syria this time.

China has the back door.

In the previous post I reported that Russia had stationed six warships in the Mediterranean, presumably to deter US / Israeli / European ambitions to install a puppet govErnment in Syria and open the back door for a western strike on Iran

Slowly We Edge Closer To War

Forget all the politicians blether about positive meetings with Russian leaders and resolution of the Syrian conflict. Steadily the lines are being drawn, the trenches are being dug and the body bags are being stitched. You will not read about in …

So Much For Progress On Syria

After recent meetings with Russian leader Vladimir Putin, both USA Secretary of State John (Lurch) Kerry and UK Prime Minister David Cameron returned claiming they were more optimistic about replacing the regime of the Dictator Assad with a western style

Even the United Nations Knows Syrian Rebels Used Chemical Weapons So Why Is Obama Still Accusing Assad

Obama’s latest war is bogged down in Syria, in spite of the USA being supported by usual suspects, the United Kingdom and France the phalanx of Syrian allies which inclueds Russia, Iran and China looks a bit too formidable to persuade the limp wristed one it is safe to invade or start bombing. So all he has is a war of words, and he’s losing that.

Songs of Glory
Middle east

New World Order

US Citizens Arrested For Criticizing Obama

In Byzantium

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Vlad The Impaler Shafts The West Again

Italy’s Silvio Berlusconi might have described her as an ‘unfuckable lardarse’ but Vlad seems quite keen on Hausfrau Merkel – or is it just political expediency? (image source)

Here’s today’s scoop (well not quite a scoop as we found the story on a whistleblower site we subscribe to):

As the swaggering, vacuous windbag Obama and his administration of war loving neo-con hawks again stepped up the anti – Moscow rhetoric in the vain hope of provoking Russia into firing the first shot in the war the US military / industrial complex needs, wily old Vlad the Impaler has shafted them again. On Monday 29 June the story was leaked that Gazprom has announced it was on the verge of concluding a massive deal that would double the amount of Russian gas flowing to Germany via a second Nord Stream pipeline.

The shocking announcement made it look like the clueless clowns in Washington had no idea what was going on and that Obama’s efforts to isolate Russia were a complete flop. Make no mistake, this deal is huge, both financially and in terms of geopolitical strategy. Big enough in fact to change the political calculus of the entire northern European region.

“Once this pipeline is finished, almost all of Eastern Europe can be completely cut out of the gas picture. There will be no need for any gas to transit through Ukraine, Poland, Romania, Belarus, Hungary or Slovakia,” The Wall Street Journal reported earlier in June without beinng aware it seems, of how close the deal was to completion (Gazprom’s Dangerous New Nord Stream Gas Pipeline to Germany, WSJ)

Not long ago we reported that Russia had concluded a deal to reroute the south stream pipeline through Turkey and Greece to serve southern Europe. Ukraine is totally out of the picture then. How frustrating for Obama after he invested so much money in installing a puppet government in Kiev.

So in economic terms, Ukraine is out and Germany’s in, which means that Washington’s plan to extend US hegemony by driving a wedge between Russia and Europe has gone down the pan. Europe’s economic powerhouse is now a business partner of the old enemy.

Putin has again again completely outmanoeuvred the Americans; he waited until the last possible moment to pull the rug out from under Obama, and now he’s sitting back enjoying the show. Is it any wonder why Obama’s Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter been running around Europe with his arse on fire trying to reconstuct the effigy of the Russian bogey man.

Christmas Message: Economic Recovery, Bah, Humbug

Contributed by Phil. T. Looker

Albert Finney as Ebeneezer Scrooge
Albert Finney as Ebeneezer Scrooge (source)

These words or something near them were seen in almost every financial newspaper and website today:

“Oil prices have dropped $50 a barrel. That may not sound like much. But when you take $107 and you take $57, that’s almost a 47 percent decline…!”

To certain people not unconnected from this blog who have an easy come, easy go attitude to money this may not sound like a big deal. When the accountants and maths geeks get busy with their scientific calculators, the decline starts to look catastrophic.

The Financial Pundits seem to think so anyway. And even Ian has to agree for one the meths geeks are right. So what’s going on?

Many people who have spent the last couple of years hailing the shale revolution and crowing about the economic boom it would usher in (never mind the serious environmental concerns about fracking). Being traders rather than accountants they failed to understand the downside side of shale’s effect on business. The significance of little things like the fact that much of the day-to-day shale operation was being run on junk bond financing. Thus they had no problem in convincing themselves that in the future every day would be Christmas. Sorry but I have to be Scrooge and tell you the bubble just burst.

The bubble floated well in the zero gravity environment of zero interest rate policy (ZIRP) where investors desperate for “yield” — i.e. a better return than sweet FA on their money — ended up in the bond market’s junkyard. These investors, it turned out, were the big institutional concerns, pension funds, insurance companies, mixed bond investment trust funds. ZIRP was killing them.

In the good old days of the late 20th century boom-and-bust they would see an annual interest rate of between 5 and 10 percent which enabled them to fund their obligations, i.e. pay pensions, settle insurance claims, cover company salaries and have a bit left over for a Christmas jolly.

ZIRP ended all that. In fact zero interest destroyed the most important index in the financial world: the true cost of borrowing money. It also destroyed the entire relationship between borrowed money and the cost-structure of the endeavors it was borrowed for. Shale oil is the prime (or sub prime) example.

The fundamental constraint for investing in shale oil was that the wells were only good for about two years after which they were pretty much fracked,(hence that was the contstraint nobody in the entire fracking world talked about).

So, if you were in that business, and held a bunch of leases, you had to constantly drill baby drill and drill and drill again just to maintain production. Drilling costs between $6 and $12-million per well.
Over the past seven years is that the drillers and their investment bankers, aided and abetted by the kind of scientists who deal in mathematical models, theory, speculation and guesswork hyped the holy shite out of the shale fracking business (the scientists had no qualms about building mathematical models that exaggerated the oil and gas yield from wells by 96% with makes even the climate science fraud look reasonable).

It was not a shale revolution but another Ponzi scheme, it was Enronomics all over again; as long as the money kept rolling in they could pay out the early investors and boost confidence in their scam. In the few short years they drilled the results looked so impressive that to quote the song Evita sings “The money kept rolling in”. It was going to save the American economy, it was going to chain the Russian bear, it was going to put the arabs in their place and restore the status quo.

Sadly the shale oil and gas economic “miracle” was a rerun of the dotcom bubble, the housing bubble, the South Sea bubble, the Tulip bubble (which we generally accept was the first investment bubble). It was deja vu all over again. The frackers sucked so much oil out of the ground in a short period of time that they killed the goose that laid the black, slimy egg; in response to American over production the Arabs cut their prices, demand for oil at a price that made it worth drilling for just dropped away.

The current stage (stage 4?) will see much of the junk financing default, bankers will steer clear of junk financing just as they steer clear of sub prime mortgages now, and a lot of planned wells will be abandoned, meaning that the current crop of wells will crap out within two years, and production will not be replaced by new wells because there is no money in it (it may come as a surprise to lefties but the objective of business is to make a profit. Still, on the bright side, all those wannabe protestors can go home and spend Christmas with their dear old Mum, no point protesting against something that ain’t gonna happen.