The definition of what makes an “enemy” may vary from person to person. But we would say that, generally, an enemy is one who has an active ability to do irreparable harm to you or your essential values. He is motivated by destruction, the destruction of all that you hold dear. He is capable and unrelenting. He is a legitimate threat. He will not compromise. He will not waver. He will do anything to wound you. He will not stop. He is possessed. Americans have spent the better part of a century being told who their enemies are with very little explanation or substantiation. We have blindly rallied around our patriotic prerogative without knowing the root cause of the conflict or the nature of the target we are told to annihilate. We have been suckered into war after war, conjured by international interests in order to lure us into accepting greater centralization and concentrated globalism. As a culture, we're sorry to say, we have been used. We are a tool of unmitigated doom. We are the loaded gun in the hand of the devil. When one applies the above definition of “the enemy” to Syria, one comes away with very little satisfaction. So, the question arises: If Syria is not the real enemy, who is?
"I estimate the US fiscal gap at US$200 tn, 17 times the reported US$12 tn in official debt in the hands of the public.... Our country is broke. It’s not broke in 50 years or 30 years or 10 years. It’s broke today. Six decades of take as you go has led us to a precipice. That’s why almost the entire economics profession is talking as one at www.theinformact.org. Economists from all political persuasions are collectively sending our government a warning about what is, effectively, a nuclear economic bomb. I’ve been around economics for a long time. I’ve never seen such a strong response to a proposed Congressional bill. This is the profession sending a statement to the President and Congress that’s not unlike the warning physicists sent via Einstein to Roosevelt about the bomb." Larry Kotlikoff
UPDATE 2: French draft UN security council resolution would give Syria 15 days to make complete declaration of entire chemical arms program
UPDATE 1: NASDAQ Futures are fading the Obama "Pause" spike after AAPL is not announcing a China Mobile deal
Starting just 1 minute late, the President begab by unapologetically conjuring images of WWI and WWII and stuck to the line that "we know" Assad was responsible for killing his own people with Sarin. Then moved to fear-mongery over what Iran might do, adding that he was very much for strikes. But, in giving Congress the hot potato he knew decision would be difficult. The US military does not do 'pin pricks' and a "targeted" strike will send a message to Assad. While recognizing the need for a diplomatic solution, Obama made it clear that those efforts would follow a military strike. But then, after all the angry banter, he then backed down and said, will work for peaceful solution by putting the strike on hold and will bring a resolution to UN. Ending on a more aggressive note, he warned Republican and Democrat lawmakers to rethink their opposition to the strikes should they be needed.
A COMEX default on delivery of precious metals and specifically of gold bullion bars remains a risk. It is of significant importance and that is why we have covered its possibility since 2011. A COMEX default would have serious ramifications not just for precious metals markets but for the wider commodity markets, for the U.S. dollar and all fiat currencies and our modern monetary system.
White House – NOT U.S. Intelligence Agencies – Prepared Report about Syrian Chemical Weapons
US Refuses To Admit Checkmate By Russia And Syria, Redirects Purpose Of Military Incursion: Admits Regime Change IntentionSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 09/09/2013 13:15 -0400
Rice: "Our overarching goal is to end the underlying conflict through a negotiated, political transition in which Assad leaves power" #Syria
— White House Live (@WHLive) September 9, 2013
Update: Just as suspected, Syria promptly complies with the Russian check: SYRIA WELCOMES RUSSIA'S PROPOSAL FOR DAMASCUS TO PUT ITS CHEMICAL WEAPONS UNDER INTERNATIONAL CONTROL- FOREIGN MINISTER WALID AL-MOUALEM.
In a time when Obama is pitching his entire campaign around one core, if strawman, theme - preventing future chemical weapon attacks by the Assad regime, Putin once again shows why when playing geopolitical chess, it is safe to bet on the pesky Russian. Moments ago, Russia suggested that Syria skip straight to step 2 of the US military campaign, and hand over its chemical weapons to "international control" which would immediately obviate the US campaign completely, whose entire premise for public consumption is just that - to put Syrian chemical weapons under adult supervision and third party control.
- RUSSIA SAYS WILL URGE SYRIA TO PUT CHEMICAL WEAPONS UNDER INTERNATIONAL CONTROL IF THAT WILL AVERT MILITARY STRIKES
- SYRIA SHOULD GIVE UP WEAPONS IF IT WILL AVOID STRIKE: RUSSIA
- LAVROV SAYS SYRIA’S CHEMICAL WEAPONS COULD BE DESTROYED
And now the ball is in Obama and Kerry's court following this surprising move of appeasement by Russia, and implicitly by Syria.
The Secretary of State, his emotional appeal to populist empathy using hundreds of YouTube clips showing the alleged aftermath of a chemical attack but not one piece of evidence proving Assad launched said attack, falling on deaf ears and eyes, has revised his track for a Syrian intervention. The latest spin from John Kerry: the Syrian attack would be "unbelievably small" as he characterized it today at a London press conference. Or, in the parlance of our times, "just the tip." Bloomberg adds: "We’re not talking about war, we’re not going to war." He spoke of a “limited, very targeted, very short-term effort." This happened while Syria’s Foreign Minister Walid al-Muallem left for Moscow today, seeking a joint approach with Russia to defuse Western assertions that the Syrian regime is using chemical munitions against its own people." In other words: Gazpromia refuses to be denied the "most unfavoured nation" status when it comes to being the marginal supplier of natgas to Europe.
While the US president is spinning his Nobel Peace Prize-backed case on the national media to garner support for yet another "defensive" war of moral and ideological US aggression against Syria, his Russian counterpart is already planning the next steps in the middle east, and solidifying his anti-western alliance, whose key oil-producing member is Iran. According to RIA, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Iran Hassan Rouhani will meet in the near future, said the deputy head of the Russian Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov at a meeting with his Iranian counterpart Hoseynamirom Abdollahiyanom. "In the near future there will be a summit with the new President of the Islamic Republic of Iran. Additionally, we now have new leadership in the Foreign Ministry," - said Bogdanov. The immediate reason for such a meeting is clear: to provide Russian support to Iran ahead of what may be a conflict that "inadvertently" drags Iran into a confrontation with Israel. Both moral and military. The bigger reason behind the meeting, however, probably has something to do with this chart...
In the US, retail sales on Friday will be the main data release. In addition, Congress will return from its 5-week recess on Monday and will likely keep their focus on Syria this week. Finally, San Francisco Fed President Williams (who does not vote on FOMC policy this year) will speak on Monday. Last week, Williams argued that the FOMC should maintain its focus on the unemployment rate, despite its limitations. After Friday's employment report saw the unemployment rate drop again due to falling participation, this issue is likely to resurface. The Fed's communication blackout period begins on Tuesday so Williams will be the last FOMC speaker before the September meeting ends on the 18th.
The conflict in Syria is very complex, given the country’s diverse ethnic mix and the influence of foreign powers. This implies a high risk of a further dramatic escalation of the conflict, with negative spillovers into the broader region. Short term, UBS notes that the response of the Assad regime to a potential military strike will be crucial, while a key question for the medium term will be whether state structures can be preserved in Syria, so that contagious chaos can be avoided. UBS sees the impact on the international economy comes mainly via risk appetite and oil prices. Should the conflict be contained, the global economic fallout should be limited. However, the worst-case scenario of a regional spread of hostilities, involving Iran, Israel or the GCC, would be a lot more damaging.
As most know by now, over the past month or so, pressure on the currencies of EM deficit countries has intensified again. Goldman's EM research group, however, remains negative on EM FX, bonds, and even stocks suggesting using any strength, like this week's exuberance to add protection or cover any remaining longs. Central banks in most of these countries have become more active in attempting to stem pressure in the last two weeks. But with a Fed decision on ‘tapering’ looming, investors have also become more cautious and are now focused on the parallels with prior crisis periods. In what follows, Goldman provides some concise answers to the questions on the EM landscape that we encounter most often, confirming their longer-held bearish bias.
Numerous Intelligence Officials Question Administration’s Claims
So totally unexpected:
SYRIA GOVT FORCES SHELL QABUN, DAMASCUS WITH GAS: AL-ARABIYA
AL-ARABIYA CITES UNIDENTIFIED ACTIVISTS - so the same CIA-trained, al Qaeda funded, Qatari mercenaries?
Actually it is surprising: the odds were today's false flag would take place in Iran to get the Israel card in play. Apparently nobody was dumb enough to assume the government would go with two false flags in a row in the same place. And now bring on the 1000 YouTube clips of "undisputed proof."