Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Is Ukraine Slipping Into A Civil War Which Will Lead To A World War? -- Episode 341

Jordan, US to seal eurobond deal by end of month

April 14, 2014

Jordan, US to seal eurobond deal by end of month

Washington - Jordan has agreed with the US Department of Treasury on the terms of issuing $1 billion in US-guaranteed Eurobonds in global markets, according to Minister of Finance, Umayya Toukan.

After negotiations with the US officials on the sidelines of the Spring Meetings of the International Monetary Fund, Toukan told Petra that an initial agreement was reached to conclude the issuance deal by the end of this month in Amman with the US government represented by the funding body, the US Agency for International Development (USAID).

"The issuance represents a "strong message of support from the United States to Jordan" that will enable the government to fund the current and the capital expenditure," Toukan added, noting that this type of leverage will be lower than the domestic borrowing at a rate of 2.5 percent, in addition to not having to compete with the private sector on bank liquidity.

The negotiations with the US officials also tackled economic reforms undertaken by the Jordanian government and means of increasing the rate of economic growth.

Commenting on a meeting of the governors of the International Monetary Fund representing Middle East and North Africa with Director-General of the Fund, Christine Lagarde, minister Toukan said that Jordan stressed the importance of increasing productivity through better management of the human element which will eventually lead to an increase in the gross domestic product.

"The IMF mission reviewed the Jordanian economic reforms in all sectors and will offer those revisions to the Fund's Board of Executive Directors by the end of this month in order to release a new batch of loans worth $264 million," he added, noting that the approval of the revisions is one of the main conditions of the US Department of Treasury to ensure issuance of the Jordanian eurobonds in the global market.

In response to a question about whether Jordan needs to change its economic policies if the Syrian conflict continues, Toukan said that the current economic policy is consistent with the extra burden of Syrian refugees, stressing that the greater the number of refugees becomes, the more the international support that Jordan will need.

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Iraq may need to borrow to cover USD 3bn budget deficit

related article Feb 2014 .. 

Iraq's Budget: 50 trillion dinars budget deficit


April 15, 2014

Iraq may need to borrow to cover USD3bn budget deficit


Iraq is running a budget deficit of around IQD 35 trillion (USD 30 billion), its highest since 2003, a planning ministry official told Zawya.


The deficit is a result of an increase in the amount spent on security, such as army and police wages, in addition to special allocations for states of emergency, for subsidies and ration cards, as well as payments for 75,000 salary grades," said Abdul Zahra al-Hindawi, a spokesman at the Ministry of Planning. "Furthermore, Iraq's revenue is lower than its expenses; the budget is 65% operational and only 35% is for investment.


Iraq spends roughly USD 40 billion per year on government wages, according to a recent statement from the former deputy governor of the Central Bank of Iraq.


The country's income is heavily reliant on oil revenue, which accounts for 95% of the budget. Iraq has the fourth largest oil reserves in the world and aims to export 6 million barrels per day of crude by 2017.


For 2014, a state budget of IQD 174 trillion (USD 150 billion) has been proposed but has yet to receive parliamentary approval.


Haidar Al-Abadi, chairman of parliament's finance committee, said approval had been delayed because parliament had linked the issue to a vote on a law granting immunity to the elections commission.

Abadi said that since 2003 the country had been incurring an annual deficit of around IQD 16 trillion, but that the deficit jumped to around IQD 35 trillion this year. He attributed the deficit to the large amounts allocated for wages and pensions, as well as a law granting governorates falling outside regional mandates USD 5 for each barrel of crude oil they produce.

COVERING THE DEFICIT


Dergham Mohamed, president of the Economic Information Center in Iraq, voiced concern that the government may not be able to cover the budget deficit without resorting to borrowing. He put Iraq's oil income at around USD 100 billion per year.


But Ahmed Al Atwani, professor of economics at the College of Management and Economics, University of Wasit said lack of transparency in the accounting system made it difficult to assess what the actual deficit would be.


"Some revenues such as tariffs and taxes could cover part of the deficit. The deficit could become a surplus if the allocated budget is not spent," he said, referring to development projects that could be stalled by the delay in approving the 2014 budget.


Kurdish lawmakers have boycotted parliament's sessions on the state budget, in protest against lower allocations for the semi-autonomous Kurdistan region. Baghdad is supposed to give Kurdistan 17% of the national budget after sovereign expenses, but the Iraqi government is now saying payments would depend on the region exporting oil solely under state auspices, which Kurdistan objects to.


The production capacity of Kurdistan is around 400,000 barrels of oil per day, according to a previous statement by Ashti Hawrami, the natural resource minister in the governorate.


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Iraq approves S.Korea's Daewoo USD588.8m oilfield contract

April 15, 2014

Iraq approves S.Korea's Daewoo USD588.8m oilfield contract

BAGHDAD - Iraq's cabinet approved Tuesday an $588.8 million oilfield service contract with South Korea's Daewoo Engineering & Construction (047040.KS) for the development of the Zubair oil field, the cabinet said in a statement.

Under the contract, Daewoo E&C will handle engineering, procurement and construction work for a gas separation facility at the giant Zubair oilfield in Iraq's south, whose output is forecast to reach 850,000 barrels of oil per day (bpd) in 2017.

Italy's ENI , U.S.-based Occidental Petroleum Corp

and South Korea's KOGAS signed a 20-year deal with Iraq in 2010 to develop Zubair, whose production is currently at 320,000 barrels per day (bpd).

source

The Obama Game: Is Putin Being Lured Into a Trap?

April 15, 2014

The Obama Game: Is Putin Being Lured Into a Trap?

“Russia … is now recognized as the center of the global ‘mutiny’ against global dictatorship of the US and EU. Its generally peaceful .. approach is in direct contrast to brutal and destabilizing methods used by the US and EU…. The world is waking up to reality that there actually is, suddenly, some strong and determined resistance to Western imperialism. After decades of darkness, hope is emerging.” – Andre Vltchek, Ukraine: Lies and Realities, CounterPunch

Russia is not responsible for the crisis in Ukraine. The US State Department engineered the fascist-backed coup that toppled Ukraine’s democratically-elected president Viktor Yanukovych and replaced him with the American puppet Arseniy Yatsenyuk, a former banker. Hacked phone calls reveal the critical role that Washington played in orchestrating the putsch and selecting the coup’s leaders. Moscow was not involved in any of these activities. Vladimir Putin, whatever one may think of him, has not done anything to fuel the violence and chaos that has spread across the country.

Putin’s main interest in Ukraine is commercial. 66 percent of the natural gas that Russia exports to the EU transits Ukraine. The money that Russia makes from gas sales helps to strengthen the Russian economy and raise standards of living. It also helps to make Russian oligarchs richer, the same as it does in the West. The people in Europe like the arrangement because they are able to heat their homes and businesses market-based prices. In other words, it is a good deal for both parties, buyer and seller. This is how the free market is supposed to work. The reason it doesn’t work that way presently is because the United States threw a spanner in the gears when it deposed Yanukovych. Now no one knows when things will return to normal.

Check out this chart at Business Insider and you’ll see why Ukraine matters to Russia.

The overriding goal of US policy in Ukraine is to stop the further economic integration of Asia and Europe. That’s what the fracas is really all about. The United States wants to control the flow of energy from East to West, it wants to establish a de facto tollbooth between the continents, it wants to ensure that those deals are transacted in US dollars and recycled into US Treasuries, and it wants to situate itself between the two most prosperous markets of the next century. Anyone who has even the sketchiest knowledge of US foreign policy– particularly as it relates to Washington’s “pivot to Asia”– knows this is so. The US is determined to play a dominant role in Eurasia in the years ahead. Wreaking havoc in Ukraine is a central part of that plan.

Retired German Air Force Lieutenant Colonel Jochen Scholz summed up US policy in an open letter which appeared on the Neue Rheinilche Zeitung news-site last week. Scholz said the Washington’s objective was “to deny Ukraine a role as a bridge between Eurasian Union and European Union….They want to bring Ukraine under the NATO control” and sabotage the prospects for “a common economic zone from Lisbon to Vladivostok.”

Bingo. That’s US policy in a nutshell. It has nothing to do with democracy, sovereignty, or human rights. It’s about money and power. Who are the big players going to be in the world’s biggest growth center, that’s all that matters. Unfortunately for Obama and Co., the US has fallen behind Russia in acquiring the essential resources and pipeline infrastructure to succeed in such a competition. They’ve been beaten by Putin and Gazprom at every turn. While Putin has strengthened diplomatic and economic relations, expanded vital pipeline corridors and transit lines, and hurtled the many obstacles laid out for him by American-stooges in the EC; the US has dragged itself from one quagmire to the next laying entire countries to waste while achieving none of its economic objectives.

So now the US has jettisoned its business strategy altogether and moved on to Plan B, regime change. Washington couldn’t beat Putin in a fair fight, so now they’ve taken off the gloves. Isn’t that what’s really going on? Isn’t that why the US NGOs, and the Intel agencies, and the State Dept were deployed to launch their sloppily-engineered Nazi-coup that’s left the country in chaos?

Once again, Putin played no part in any of this. All he did was honor the will of the people in Crimea who voted overwhelmingly (97%) to reunite with the Russian Federation. From a purely pragmatic point of view, what other choice did they have? After all, who in their right mind would want to align themselves with the most economically mismanaged confederation of all time (The EU) while facing the real possibility that their nation could be reduced to Iraq-type rubble and destitution in a matter of years? Who wouldn’t opt-out of such an arrangement?

As we noted earlier, Putin’s main objective is to make money. In contrast, the US wants to dominate the Eurasian landmass, break Russia up into smaller, non-threatening units, and control China’s growth. That’s the basic gameplan. Also, the US does not want any competitors, which we can see from this statement by Paul Wolfowitz which evolved into the US National Defense Strategy:

“Our first objective is to prevent the re-emergence of a new rival, either on the territory of the former Soviet Union or elsewhere, that poses a threat on the order of that posed formerly by the Soviet Union. This is a dominant consideration underlying the new regional defense strategy and requires that we endeavor to prevent any hostile power from dominating a region whose resources would, under consolidated control, be sufficient to generate global power.”

This is the prevailing doctrine that Washington lives by. No rivals. No competition. We’re the boss. What we say, goes. The US is Numero Uno, le grande fromage. Who doesn’t know this already? Here’s more from Wolfowitz:

“The U.S. must show the leadership necessary to establish and protect a new order that holds the promise of convincing potential competitors that they need not aspire to a greater role or pursue a more aggressive posture to protect their legitimate interests. In non-defense areas, we must account sufficiently for the interests of the advanced industrial nations to discourage them from challenging our leadership or seeking to overturn the established political and economic order. We must maintain the mechanism for deterring potential competitors from even aspiring to a larger regional or global role.”

In other words, “don’t even think about getting more powerful or we’ll swat you like a fly.” That’s the message, isn’t it? The reason we draw attention to these quotes is not to pick on Wolfowitz, but to show how things haven’t changed under Obama, in fact, they’ve gotten worse. The so called Bush Doctrine is more in effect today than ever which is why we need to be reminded of its central tenets. The US military is the de facto enforcer of neoliberal capitalism or what Wolfowitz calls “the established political and economic order”. Right. The statement provides a blanket justification for the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Syria and now Ukraine. The US can do whatever it deems necessary to protect the interests of its constituents, the multi-national corporations and big finance. The US owns the world and everyone else is just a visitor. So shut the hell up, and do what you’re told. That’s the message. Here’s Wolfowitz one more time:

“We continue to recognize that collectively the conventional forces of the states formerly comprising the Soviet Union retain the most military potential in all of Eurasia; and we do not dismiss the risks to stability in Europe from a nationalist backlash in Russia or efforts to reincorporate into Russia the newly independent republics of Ukraine, Belarus, and possibly others.”

Wolfowitz figured the moment would come when the US would have to square off with Moscow in order to pursue it’s imperial strategy in Asia. Putin doesn’t seem to grasp that yet. He still clings to the misguided notion that rational people will find rational solutions to end the crisis. But he’s mistaken. Washington does not want a peaceful solution. Washington wants a confrontation. Washington wants to draw Moscow into a long-term conflict in Ukraine that will recreate Afghanistan in the 1990s. That’s the goal, to lure Putin into a military quagmire that will discredit him in the eyes of the world, isolate Russia from its allies, put strains on new alliances, undermine the Russian economy, pit Russian troops against US-backed armed mercenaries and Special Ops, destroy Russian relations with business partners in the EU, and create a justification for NATO intervention followed by the deployment of nuclear weapons on Ukrainian territory. That’s the gameplan. Why doesn’t Putin see that?

Putin has agreed to a meeting this week with foreign Ministers from The United States, the European Union, and Ukraine. This is another mistake. Originally, Putin refused to acknowledge the coup-government as legitimate. Now he’s changed his mind. Now he’s agreed to meet with their representatives. This is a victory for Washington and a defeat for Russia. The Obama team will see this as a sign of weakness, which it is.

According to Al Jazeera: “The meeting will involve US Secretary of State John Kerry, EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Andriy Deshchytsia, the EU said on Tuesday. A spokesman for Ashton said the talks were aimed at “de-escalating” the crisis in Ukraine.”

The meeting has nothing to do with “de-escalating” the crisis.” It’s a public relations stunt. These talks have all the credibility of the Israel-Palestine peace talks, which is to say, none at all.

There’s no sense talking to people who don’t want peace. It just makes them look like they are being sincere, when they’re not. Obama and Co. don’t want peace. They want regime change. They want to weaken and dismember Russia. They want to reduce Moscow’s influence over energy-dependent states in Europe by disrupting the flow of gas through Ukraine. And they want to create a justification for carrying out their imperial agenda, which means they need to make Putin look like a dangerous aggressor. The coup government’s crackdown on ethnic Russians in Donetsk and Kharkiv could lead to a Russian intervention which would provide the justification that Washington is looking for. However painful it is for Putin to watch Russian speaking Ukrainians get beaten and perhaps killed by Nazi thugs and foreign mercenaries dressed up as Ukrainian Security Forces, he should avoid sending in the troops. It’s a trap.

At present, Ukraine’s currency plummeting, its debts and deficits are growing, and its economy is broken and near default. The IMF has promised to provide a $27 billion loan package that will be used to repay wealthy banks and bondholders in Berlin and Salzburg, but will do nothing to lift the economy out of the doldrums. None of the money from the IMF loans will be used to repay the $2.2 billion in unpaid gas bills to Gazprom or to compensate Russia for the more than $34.4 billion in subsidies Moscow has provided for its ailing neighbor in the last few years. Bondholders come first.

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ALERT! Evacuations, Bomb Squad Called In for 2 Backpacks Near Boston Marathon Finish Line

Going Global Headline News For Tuesday, April 15, 2014 .. check back for updates

ROOFTOP RADIO .. TUESDAY, APRIL 15, 2014 @8:00 pm est ..

BLM declares Texas is Oklahoma land

Must Listen .. Phoenix Rising Radio - Monday, April 14th Special Guest - Bob Gilpatrick , President and Co-Founder of Boomers Forever Young!

Iraqi Dinar .. revaluation was an academic economist earlier called for those in charge of the economic sector in Iraq to re-evaluate the value of the currency after it enhances the cash reserve quantities of gold


ROOFTOP RADIO .. TUESDAY, APRIL 15, 2014 @8:00 pm est ..

Something BIG is about to happen! - World Collapse 2014 - Video

ww3 - Must happen by Spring - Dollar will collapse in 2014


Looks like Russia might be next in line, although Putin knows the modus operandi ..

Vladimir Putin's Letter To America (September 2013)

BLM declares Texas is Oklahoma land

Snip .. "Today, the alternative media has begun to cover another BLM land grab. In Texas, rancher Tommy Henderson is being told the government is confiscating his 90,000 acre ranch along the Red River. Henderson is also told that once the BLM takes his ranch for public land, he might be able to arrange a grazing contract; you know, like Cliven Bundy and his neighbors used to have in Nevada.

Henderson has a clear deed to his land in the state of Texas. He has no back taxes or fines or other issues pending. So how is the BLM taking his family ranch? The BLM has decided to declare that his land is now in Oklahoma and therefore his Texas deed became invalid when the Red River moved its banks south.

If one more federal agent takes one more legal gun from one more American, the rest of us need to put a stop to it – before none of us can!
__________________
April 15, 2014

BLM declares Texas is Oklahoma land

While the world watched, these cowboys sat ready to defend their way of life against more than 200 heavily armed federal agents and snipers hiding in the hills. The agents were sent by Harry Reid’s former senior advisor, 35 year old Neil Kornze, to confiscate open range cattle from the last rancher in Clark County, Nevada

In the  days since Dave Bundy was attacked on a public state highway and arrested for interfering with federal officials (for filming them in action), the details for the reasons behind the “land grab” have become obfuscated by the propaganda machine of the federal government.  Pictures of the BLM agents’ violent actions against the Bundy family members and others began to circulate in the alternative media. Protesters were told to remain behind fences labeled “First Amendment Area” as milita men mobilized from around the country to come to “protect the citizens” from a potential slaughter of Americans that would have surely led to massive armed expansion against the tyranny of the Obama/Reid administration.

Gradually, the real back story has emerged. The original bullhocky story about the cattle endangering desert tortoises fell apart when the truth was discovered that only recently the BLM had gerrymandered the boundaries of endangered habitat and created a mitigation area needed to replace habitat where Harry Reid’s son and a Chinese energy company planned to build a 5 billion dollar solar energy project. The federal subsidies for that project have yet been fully discovered. The BLM web site has been scrubbed of details except for some limited images that got reproduced by Free Republic and now abound on the internet.

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Iraqi Dinar .. revaluation was an academic economist earlier called for those in charge of the economic sector in Iraq to re-evaluate the value of the currency after it enhances the cash reserve quantities of gold

Snip .. revaluation was an academic economist earlier called for those in charge of the economic sector in Iraq to re-evaluate the value of the currency after it enhances the cash reserve quantities of gold.  said Dr. Majid Baidhani he supposed After adding about 1.5 billion dollars to the Central Bank reserves to rise the value of the dinar to a higher level compared to its exchange rate against the dollar, praising the procedures followed in the context of monetary policy, stressing the need to speed up the move to re-evaluate the dinar to strengthen the foundations and pillars of the national economy. 

4/15/2014 

The power of the cash reserve to support the value of the national currency

Suri described Balmusdh protective oil price fluctuations 

Baghdad - represents the economic stability of any country component of equal opportunities for the supply and demand for services in it, where he sees an economist that the presence of stability as well as to isolate external influences and minimize the national economy and revitalize the work of the productive sectors and solving economic problems internal push towards strengthening and enhancing the value of the dinar. overall stability, said economic expert, Dr. Majid picture that the economy is affected by a factor of stability is totally reflected directly on the value of the currency as well as the presence of internal and external influences play a role in determining that value. He added picture in a statement (morning): 

The amount of cash reserve represents bumper biggest fluctuations in oil prices follows affect the fluctuation of the exchange rate where it not for the strength of the amount of the reserve sovereign to the value of the dinar. purchasing power and has a cash reserve of the dinar - as announced recently - more than 80 billion dollars paving the way to be because of the Iraqi currency purchasing power larger than it is now, as well as that it will contribute significantly to raise its value against other foreign currencies. 

In a time when cash reserves of some countries declines or great heights of a sudden, the cash reserves of the Iraqi paced a solid upward stable away from the fall or the sudden rise. economic reforms and pointed out the picture that enhance the value of the dinar comes by isolating external influences and mitigate the effects of Internal factors of instability in things in general and economic chaos, as the increased demand for goods and services lead to increased demand for the dollar. 

stressed that economic development impact of the strengthening of trust and strengthening of the dinar itself, where the economic reforms and the elimination of the problems that hit the Iraqi economy represented by unemployment and the housing crisis, poverty and diversify the services that will balance the need for services in the home, explaining that the activation of the productive sectors will greatly help to provide employment opportunities that reduces imports. domestic production and stressed that offers the possibility of parallel supply and demand for goods and services and local production within Iraq will lead to enhance the value of the dinar, adding that the currencies of other countries as dollar, euro, yen and the yuan and other currencies derived its strength in the currency market of the power economy of their countries. 

They also did not get the position, but to solve its economic problems of the Interior. dollarization and hinted the picture that dollarization phenomenon in Iraq, something naturally, especially that all imports of external financial relating to oil is in U.S. dollars, and therefore linked to the national economy in this currency is very large because of all exports and imports in dollars. added that the phenomenon of resorting to the dollar and Aktnazha linked to the weakness of the local currency and to go to a strong currency in which the trust to be saved, stressing that confidence in Iraqi dinars strong at the present time, because it has a reserve of sovereign strong. 

revaluation was an academic economist earlier called for those in charge of the economic sector in Iraq to re-evaluate the value of the currency after it enhances the cash reserve quantities of gold.  said Dr. Majid Baidhani he supposed After adding about 1.5 billion dollars to the Central Bank reserves to rise the value of the dinar to a higher level compared to its exchange rate against the dollar, praising the procedures followed in the context of monetary policy, stressing the need to speed up the move to re-evaluate the dinar to strengthen the foundations and pillars of the national economy. 

should be noted that the bank Central boosted its reserves of gold to up to 90 tons after announcing the purchase amounts of it for the purpose of selling them to the public in support of enhancing the value of the local currency.

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