Israel and Hezbollah are at war. On top of everything else that is going on in the world, now we have a new war in the Middle East, and nobody is quite certain what is going to happen next. Israel has been preparing for this moment for more than 8 years. So has Hezbollah...
Several days after a Japanese hostage held by the Islamic State was executed, with a second Japanese hostage, freelance journalist Kenji Goto likely awaiting the same fate unless the Jordan releases an ISIS prisoner, the middle eastern US-ally is about to dramatically breach western protocol of not negotiating with terrorists, and as the newswires reported earlier, is prepared to exchange said imprisoned ISIS would-be suicide bomber, however not for the Japanese captive of ISIS but for one of its own pilots held by the Islamic militants.
As reported earlier, several hours ago Saudi Arabia announced that its 91-year-old King Abdullah had passed away, in the process setting off what may be a fascinating, and problematic, Saudi succession fight which impacts everything from oil, to markets to geopolitics, especially in the aftermath of the dramatic political coup in neighboring Yemen. As a reminder, it is Saudi Arabia whose insistence on not cutting oil production with the intent of hobbling the US shale industry has led to the splinter of OPEC, and to a Brent price south of $50. Which is why today's event and its implications will be analyzed under a microscope by everyone: from politicians to energy traders. Here, courtesy of Ecstrat's Emad Mostaque, is an initial take at succession, the likely impact on oil, then the Saudi market & currency and finally regional politics.
When 90-year-old Saudi King Abdullah was hospitalized two weeks ago, the local stock markets crashed and oil volatility expectations surged as we noted at the time, a new king could do almost anything he wants (including changing oil policy). As Reuters' Mohammad Bazzi explains, Abdullah's 79-year-old half-brother has his own health issues and leaves larger questions over the line of succession in one of the world’s most important oil producers remain unanswered.
NYPD Put On High Alert After ISIS "Unleash Killings" Video, Feinstein Warns Of Terrorist Sleeper CellsSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 01/11/2015 15:15 -0500
NYPD cops were put on high alert Saturday night after ISIS released a propaganda video urging the killing of "intelligence officers, police officers, soldiers, and civilians" in the US, according to The NY Post. This was then further fear-mongered by Senator Diane Feinstein who said Sunday she believes there are terrorist sleeper cells in the U.S. that could carry out attacks similar to the ones in France - thoiugh not mentioning any specific threats. Of course, this heightened terror alert comes at the worst possible time, as AP confirms what we discussed previously, that NYC has seen a steep decline in the number of arrests amid a rumored work slowdown by NYPD cops on the heels of disillusionment with de Blasio.
One of the very strange non-sequiturs in today's Syndey hostage siege, now approaching its 15th hour, is that the gunman who prepared for a long standoff with authorities somehow forgot to pack the ISIS flag and as reported earlier, has been said to demand it from the outside world. Strange to say the least. But the bigger question remains: who is he? Now, courtesy of a report in Australia's The Age we know. The man who continues to hold more than a dozen people hostage, placing Sydney's CBD into lockdown is no stranger to the NSW police or the judiciary. Self-described cleric, Man Haron Monis, 50, first came to attention of police when he penned poisonous letters to the family of dead Australian soldiers seven years ago. Last year he was charged with being an accessory to the murder of his ex-wife and mother of two.
You know the Central-Bank-driven wealth-creation narrative has gone too far when... CNN Money - the bastion of personal financial advice introduces us to Mohammad Majd, graduate who opines "I changed my entire philosophy on debt. I started making minimum payments on my student loans, picked up a "Stock Investing for Dummies" book, and put whatever extra money I made into the stock market." It's great any muppet can win... "It was a really good feeling knowing that I could wipe away my entire student loan debt with just a few mouse clicks." This is how broken the market (and the mindset) has become...
HELLO ... MAINSTREAM MEDIA ... ANYONE HOME?
.Gov Tortured and Killed Innocent People for the Specific Purpose of Producing False Propaganda (U.S. Used C-O-M-M-U-N-I-S-T Techniques Specifically Designed to Produce F-A-L-S-E Confessions)
Spot the banana republic:
- Nation #1 spends and issues tens of trillions in taxpayer funds and debt, crushing the growth potential of future generations, just to bail out a banking sector full to the brim with criminal "riggers" (as today's settlements once again prove), where bubble mania was so pervasive not a single bank would have survived absent a global central bank bailout, and where bank executives wouldn't bend over for anything less than a million.
- Nation #2 just sentenced two senior officials of a bank that collapsed under (a measly by New Normal standards) $1 billion in debt to 15 years in prison each for embezzlement and fraud.
Nation #1 is, of course, the US (or any other western nation). Nation #2 is Afghanistan.
A man who had been fired from a food processing plant in an Oklahoma City suburb beheaded a woman with a knife and was attacking another worker when he was shot and wounded by a company official, police said Friday. As AP reports, while questioning the suspect's co-workers, investigators learned he had recently started trying to convert several employees to Islam. As the director of news and information for the Islamic Society of Greater Oklahoma City stated, "they have this ISIS thing on their minds and now this guy has brought it to America."
First, led by a "British-speaking" murderer, ISIS released beheading videos of US journalists. Then ISIS releases video of a British journalist hostage 'news' report to expose "the truth," and now, Australian police have raided hundreds of homes foiling a direct ISIS provocation to publicly behead a random citizen in Sydney. As Reuters reports, more than 800 police were involved in the pre-dawn security operation in Sydney and Brisbane, which was described as the largest in Australian history. A 22-year-old Sydney man was arrest, after links were found to top ISIS recruiter Mohammad Baryalei that PM Abbot stated were "clearly designed to shock and horrify, perhaps terrify" the community.
Perhaps the only question emerging from this profile of the first document US citizen casualty fighting for the Islamic State, whose name earlier was revealed as Douglas McAuthur McCain, is whether he and John are related.
With Netanyahu pulling troops back and claiming the Gaza tunnels operation will be over soon, it appears attention has been refocused on Jerusalem as two terrorist attacks have occurred this morning. The first, near Jerusalem's Hebrew University, saw gunmen riding a motorcycle open first at by-standers, seriously injuring one Israeli soldier. The second, caught on tape below, saw a young Palestinian man take control of a construction vehicle and use it to attack a bus, killing a pedestrian. The attacker was shot and killed by police. Police have not confirmed if the two attacks are related.