Conflict Coming To A Ukraine Near You?
An unexplained death occurred at the Russian embassy in Berlin. According to information from SPIEGEL, property protectors of the Berlin police discovered a lifeless body on the sidewalk in front of an embassy building in Berlin on October 19 at around 7:20 a.m. Resuscitation attempts by rescue workers who were called were unsuccessful, reported Der Spiegel.
I’m sure 35-year olds regularly “accidentally fall” out of the upper windows of buildings.
Apparently the man fell from an upper floor of the embassy complex on Behrenstrasse in the Mitte district of Berlin. According to an official list of diplomats, the 35-year-old had been accredited as second embassy secretary in Berlin since summer 2019. The German security authorities, however, saw him as a disguised employee of the Russian domestic secret service FSB.
Ok, so a Russkie spy is taken out by the Germans. A warning? Who the hell knows? Surely not me, but I do know that Davos man has been heavily, and I mean heavily, investing in fomenting conflict in Ukraine.
And now just days ago..
With tensions increasing the risk is that someone somewhere miscalculates and this triggers events that spiral quickly out of control.
In the meantime, NATO has an increasingly obvious problem in front of them.
More Russian Hydrocarbons or Stick Up For Ukraine?
British PM Boris Johnson has warned Western European leaders that they will have to decide between “mainlining ever more Russian hydrocarbons in giant new pipelines and sticking up for Ukraine and championing the cause of peace and stability.”
Johnson also weighed in on what he called Belarus president Alexander Lukashenko’s “abhorrent” use of migrants to splinter European border policy and unity.
His comments come after US Sec of State Anthony Blinken suggested Lukashenko was trying to help distract from “Russia’s activities on the border with Ukraine”, which Kremlin spox Dmitry Peskov labelled “cheap fake news”.
The truth is Bobo and the EU can’t really do anything. The US is uninterested in NATO, and without them it’s pretty meh.
Take out Turkey, which we’ve discussed before, and NATO is simply a club of increasingly irrelevant and toothless pointy shoes who’ve yet to understand they have no power.
The thing is I don’t believe Russia necessarily wants Ukraine. What they don’t want is a hostile Ukraine on their border filled with NATO warheads pointed at Moscow. If that means they want Ukraine, fine, but it’s more a matter of a long-lasting defense measure.
There is the not so little fact that Russia’s only warm water port on the Black Seas must at all costs be secure because without it Russia’s navy is dead in the water come winter. Russia will NEVER give up that security. Ukraine, or should we say enemy forces and hardware in Ukraine, remains a threat to Russia’s warm water port.
Staying With Energy Markets…
So from where I sit this looks like those energy wars we warned about three years ago now are becoming all the more likely than ever.
Energy wars are not, ahem, bearish for energy prices.
Something else to consider is how capital inflows at a time of heightened geopolitical tensions tend to be invested or reinvested.
This is where the geopolitical component of this oil megacycle can be particularly insidious.
As oil capitals like Moscow, Riyadh, Abu Dhabi, Doha, and Tehran reap massive profits with a sudden influx of petrodollars, it is important to realise that this influx is not easily recycled into domestic economies. The most egregious of this is the UAE due to its small population. That is why I believe that Dubai is going to boom.
In any event, these significant financial reserves become available for — wait for it — arms purchases. This is never more critical than when the threat of global instability is high. That is certainly the case today, and we don’t think it’s going to get better for some years.
The massive inflow of petrodollar revenues when oil prices are high creates disposable incomes that can be easily dispensed on regional arms races, especially since oil consuming countries like the United States are incentivized to increase arms sales as a means of solving oil import related trade deficits.
Besides transferring wealth from industrialized countries to oil producers in the Middle East and North African (MENA) region and Russia, this typically stimulates renewed drilling for oil and gas in the US and Canookland. But this time we don’t see that happening. Sure, Texas, Oklahoma, and the Dakota's may do so, but they’ll be fighting against sleepy Joe and his handlers who are hell bent on destroying anything with carbon in its name. Look north and tell me again that Canookland is going to bring supply.
“We’ll cap oil and gas sector emissions today and ensure they decrease tomorrow at a pace and scale needed to reach net zero by 2050.” – Justin Trudeau (COP26)
Nah, I didn’t think so either. In a nutshell, it’s going to be a helluva bull run.