"Why are Western leaders expressing their determination to “destroy” ISIS using all means necessary, while avoiding the most significant factor of all: the material infrastructure of ISIS’ emergence in the context of ongoing Gulf and Turkish state support for Islamist militancy in the region."
Mass surveillance at home and endless military projection abroad are the twin sides of the same coin of national security, which must simply be maximized as much as possible. Conspicuously missing from President Hollande’s decisive declaration of war however, was any mention of the biggest elephant in the room: state-sponsorship. A senior Western official familiar with a large cache of intelligence obtained this summer told the Guardian that “direct dealings between Turkish officials and ranking ISIS members was now ‘undeniable.’”
At the core of global power stands the conflict between the Sauds (and their Sunni clergy) and the Iranians (and their Shiite clergy). One can’t understand U.S.-Russian relations, nor much else of what is happening in the world, without knowing the relevant historical background; and the origins and nature of the Sunni war against Shiia are arguably the most essential part of that to comprehend just how the United States came to back the Sunnis, and how Russia came to back the Shiites, in this war.
Bombing wont stop them; it will just make more of them. Ironically, what can stop them is the Assad government and the ground forces of its Hezbollah and the Iranian Republican Guard allies. Its time to let them settle an ancient quarrel that has never been any of America’s business anyway. But Imperial Washington is so caught up in its myths, lies and hegemonic stupidity that it can not see the obvious. And that is why a quarter century after the cold war ended peace still hasn’t been given a chance and the reason that horrific events like last week’s barbarism in Paris still keep happening.
"It’s going to take years. Air power is extremely important. It can do a lot but it can't do everything. Ultimately it cannot occupy territory and very importantly it cannot govern territory."
The Land of the Free - America has just been stripped of its favorite longstanding self-designation. The official title of ‘Land of the Free’ now belongs to its neighbor to the north, Canada. In fact, Legatum notes that America is an
There's a long way to go for the Saudis and the UAE to get back into the black and indeed, even Qatar is now set to post red ink...
When Saudi Arabia moved to Plaxico themselves last November by killing the petrodollar in an effort to bankrupt the US shale space and tighten the screws on Moscow, Riyadh set in motion a series of events that culminted in a 20% fiscal deficit and, most recently, an S&P downgrade. Now, the kingdom is not only running out of money, but water and food as well.
"We expect the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia's general government fiscal deficit will increase to 16% of GDP in 2015, from 1.5% in 2014, primarily reflecting the sharp drop in oil prices. Hydrocarbons account for about 80% of Saudi Arabia's fiscal revenues."
It is possible that we might witness the formation of two blocks within OPEC during the next December 4 meet in Vienna. One, led by Venezuela, Ecuador, Libya and Algeria that would want to reduce production levels and the other led by Saudi Arabia, UAE and Kuwait that would stick to the current strategy of defending market shar. In the end, it will come down to survival of the fittest. Players who have higher breakeven costs will be the ones who will blink first and thereby reduce their production levels.
America is a nation divided, not only upon the means we should use to attain our ends in the world, but upon the ends themselves.
With FIFA executive heads falling faster than Glencore stock (with Blatter and Platini most recently and today the entire Kuwait FA), it appeared we had reached some kind of peak debacle.. but no! German newspaper Der Spiegel reports that the German bidding committee created a slush fund in its effort to garner votes from Asian FIFA officials, land the rights to host the 2006 World Cup (which they did by 12 votes to 11).
There is no time to lose. Russia is on the march, in unison with the emboldened and enriched Iranians, thanks again to our president. Putin and the ayatollahs know they will enjoy only another 464 days with this president and that none of his likely replacements will be so complacent and flexible, to use his own term. We should therefore expect that they will want to make as much hay as they can while the sun reflects off of Obama’s insouciant grin.