Kurdish Militia Commander: Clashes with Turkey May Come ‘Within Days’

The head of a prominent Syrian Kurdish militia said Turkish military deployments in northwestern Syria amount to a ‘declaration of war,’ Reuters reports.
‘These [Turkish] preparations have reached level of a declaration of war and could lead to the outbreak of actual clashes in the coming days,’ YPG commander Sipan Hemo told Reuters. ‘We will not stand idly by against this potential aggression.’
The YPG, a Kurdish acronym for ‘People’s Protection Units,’ is the armed wing of the Syrian Democratic Union Party (PYD), and one of the main groups within the U. S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF). The SDF launched an operation to expel the Islamic State from its de facto capital of Raqqa in early June, taking territory along the Euphrates River to the south of the town, and just this week punching through the ancient Rafiqah Wall that surrounds Raqqa’s Old City.
Turkey, for its part, was apoplectic over the American administration’s decision to not only work with, but arm, the Syrian Kurds, and as late as April outright threatened military action. Indeed, clashes broke out over the period of several days between the two sides soon after that threat in late April; the exchange left 11 Kurdish fighters dead.

This post was published at The Daily Sheeple on July 6, 2017.

House Oversight Committee Confirms Flynn Likely Broke Law On Overseas Payments

Former national security adviser Michael Flynn likely broke the law by failing to disclose foreign income he earned from Russia and Turkey, the heads of the House Oversight Committee said Tuesday.
As The Washington Post reports, committee chairman Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) and ranking member Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) said they believe Flynn neither received permission nor fully disclosed income he earned for a speaking engagement in Russia and lobbying activities on behalf of Turkey when he applied to reinstate his security clearance, after viewing two classified memos and Flynn’s disclosure form in a private briefing Tuesday morning.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Apr 25, 2017.

TURKEY: Reverse Regime Change, Replacing Secularism with Sultanism

Since 2002, the Republic of Turkey has been ruled by the Justice and Development Party (or AKP), founded Recep Tayyip Erdoan and other prominent figures hailing from Necmettin Erbakan’s Welfare Party (or Refah Partisi, better known under the acronym RP) that had made Islamist politics mainstream in 1990′s Turkey.
At first, Erdoan and his henchmen appeared to respect the rule of law and the political traditions established by Mustafa Kemal Atatrk (1881-1938) and his followers (colloquially known as Kemalists, adhering to the ideology of Kemalism). The economic boom of the early AKP years and the concomitant political clout have allowed AKP-led Turkey to go down a post-Kemalist path into distinctly Muslim waters where authoritarianism and Ottoman nostalgia have managed to seduce the bulk of the Turkish population.
In reality, the economic boom overseen by the AKP was nothing but a mirage, after all, largely financed by borrowed money and extreme privatization – ‘a flood of near zero-interest foreign capital.’ At present, the Turkish economy appears to be in the doldrums, with unemployment currently at 11.8%, the highest level reached since March 2010 according to the Turkish Statistical Institute (or TK in acronymized Turkish).
The well-respected Turkish economist Taner Berksoy, for example, opines that the Turkish economy will experience a major downturn this year, in spite of the government’s encouragement packages, citing internal political instability as well as geopolitical risks, including Syria’s not-so civil war next door, and a general slowing down of the global economy.

This post was published at 21st Century Wire on MARCH 5, 2017.

Trader Warns – Treat The Trump Presser Like A Trending Market

In a few short hours we’ll be treated to the President-Elect’s much-anticipated first press conference. We’re not sure there’s been a more eagerly awaited event of its kind in memory. As Bloomberg’s Richard Breslow notes, global markets (ex-Mexico and Turkey) have ground to a halt. You can cut the anticipation with a knife.
Will the powerful trends we’ve seen for the last two months continue? Or reverse with a vengeance? All will be revealed. And investors will know exactly which the best trades to set up their year are.
Don’t get your hopes up. But who knows? It’s a must-listen in any case.
Investors will do their best to focus on comments and policy prescriptions specifically aimed at various sectors of the S&P 500. There will be a natural tendency to try to ignore as unpricable potential policies that affect massively important geopolitical and international economic issues. That might work in trading the S&P financials index this afternoon. But perhaps not so well for the Asia dollar index, where the countries comprising that measure are already being forced to speculate on what the acronym might be for a China-led economic and security pact.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Jan 11, 2017.

Middle East ‘Peace’ Report: Turkey Risks Kurdish War on Two Fronts as Army Advances in Syria

Mustafa Denktas had twin sons. One of them, a Kurdish militant, was killed fighting the Turkish army in 2012. Denktas was still in mourning when news arrived three weeks later that the other son had met the same fate.
Back then Turkey’s war with separatist Kurds, however bloody and protracted, was essentially a domestic issue. Now it’s an international conflict. When President Recep Tayyip Erdogan sent his army into Syria last month, he wasn’t just striking a blow against Islamic State: a second goal was to stop Kurds from creating a de facto state.
That’s the element of Erdogan’s Syrian gambit that poses the biggest political risks. It threatens to ensnare his soldiers in a civil war that’s already lasted 5 1/2 years, and drive a wedge between Turkey and its NATO allies – especially the U. S., which considers the Syrian Kurds an ally against Islamic extremists. When Moody’s Investors Service cut Turkey’s rating to junk last week, it cited ‘the persistence of geopolitical threats’ among other reasons.
Erdogan is trying to stem a tide that turned more than two decades ago, when war in Iraq left Kurds in charge of that country’s oil-rich north. Since 2011, civil war has given a similar opportunity to Syrian Kurds, who now control of much of the territory along the 900-kilometer border with Turkey. Among the world’s largest ethnic groups without a state of their own, the Kurds can now glimpse a viable one.

This post was published at David Stockmans Contra Corner By Selcan Hacaoglu, Bloomberg Business ‘ September 29, 2016.

Duck And Run – -The Robot Doth Blather

On September 9th the Washington Post featured a front page article describing how the Defense Department had used warplanes to attack targets and kill suspected militants in six countries over the Labor Day weekend. The article was celebratory, citing Pentagon officials who boasted of the ability to engage ‘multiple targets’ anywhere in the world in what has become a ‘permanent war.’ The article did not mention that the United States is not currently at war with any of the six target countries and made no attempt to make a case that the men and women who were killed actually threatened the U. S. or American citizens. Actual American interests in fighting a war without limits and without an end were not described. They never are. Indeed, in the U. S. and elsewhere many citizens often wonder how certain government policies like the Washington’s war on terror can persist in spite of widespread popular opposition or clear perceptions that they are either ineffective or even harmful. This persistence of policies regarding which there is no debate is sometimes attributed to a ‘deep state.’
The phrase ‘deep state’ originated in and was often applied to Turkey, in Turkish ‘Derin Devlet,’ where the nation’s security services and governing elite traditionally pursued the same chauvinistic and inward-looking agenda both domestically and in foreign affairs no matter who was prime minister.
In countries where a deep state dominates, real democracy and rule of law are inevitably the first victims. A deep state like Turkey’s is traditionally organized around a center of official and publicly accepted power, which means it often includes senior government officials, the police and intelligence services as well as the military. For the police and intelligence agencies the propensity to operate in secret is a sine qua nonfor the deep state as it provides cover for the maintenance of relationships that under other circumstances would be considered suspect or even illegal.

This post was published at David Stockmans Contra Corner on September 22, 2016.

Deep State America – -Fount of Phony Threats And Endless Wars

On September 9th the Washington Post featured a front page article describing how the Defense Department had used warplanes to attack targets and kill suspected militants in six countries over the Labor Day weekend. The article was celebratory, citing Pentagon officials who boasted of the ability to engage ‘multiple targets’ anywhere in the world in what has become a ‘permanent war.’ The article did not mention that the United States is not currently at war with any of the six target countries and made no attempt to make a case that the men and women who were killed actually threatened the U. S. or American citizens. Actual American interests in fighting a war without limits and without an end were not described. They never are. Indeed, in the U. S. and elsewhere many citizens often wonder how certain government policies like the Washington’s war on terror can persist in spite of widespread popular opposition or clear perceptions that they are either ineffective or even harmful. This persistence of policies regarding which there is no debate is sometimes attributed to a ‘deep state.’
The phrase ‘deep state’ originated in and was often applied to Turkey, in Turkish ‘Derin Devlet,’ where the nation’s security services and governing elite traditionally pursued the same chauvinistic and inward-looking agenda both domestically and in foreign affairs no matter who was prime minister.
In countries where a deep state dominates, real democracy and rule of law are inevitably the first victims. A deep state like Turkey’s is traditionally organized around a center of official and publicly accepted power, which means it often includes senior government officials, the police and intelligence services as well as the military. For the police and intelligence agencies the propensity to operate in secret is a sine qua nonfor the deep state as it provides cover for the maintenance of relationships that under other circumstances would be considered suspect or even illegal.

This post was published at David Stockmans Contra Corner by Philip Giraldi ‘/ September 22, 2016.

Bombs Away! A 9/11 Retrospective On Washington’s 15-Year Air War

On the morning of September 11, 2001, al-Qaeda launched its four-plane air force against the United States. On board were its precision weapons: 19 suicidal hijackers. One of those planes, thanks to the resistance of its passengers, crashed in a Pennsylvania field. The other three hit their targets – the two towers of the World Trade Center in New York City and the Pentagon in Washington, D. C. – with the kind of ‘precision’ we now associate with the laser-guided weaponry of the U. S. Air Force.
From its opening salvo, in other words, this conflict has been an air war. With its 75% success rate, al-Qaeda’s 9/11 mission was a historic triumph, accurately striking three out of what assumedly were its four chosen targets. (Though no one knows just where that plane in Pennsylvania was heading, undoubtedly it was either the Capitol or the White House to complete the taking out of the icons of American financial, military, and political power.) In the process, almost 3,000 people who had no idea they were in the bombsights of an obscure movement on the other side of the planet were slaughtered.
It was a barbaric, if daring, plan and an atrocity of the first order. Almost 15 years later, such suicidal acts with similar ‘precision’ weaponry (though without the air power component) continue to be unleashed across the Greater Middle East, Africa, and sometimes elsewhere, taking a terrible toll – from a soccer game in Iraq to a Kurdish wedding party in southeastern Turkey (where the ‘weapon’ may have been a boy).
The effect of the September 11th attacks was stunning. Though the phrase would have no resonance or meaning (other than in military circles) until the U. S. invasion of Iraq began a year and a half later, 9/11 qualifies as perhaps the most successful example of ‘shock and awe’ imaginable. The attack was promptly encapsulated in screaming headlines as the ‘Pearl Harbor of the Twenty-First Century’ or a ‘New Day of Infamy,’ and the images of those towers crumbling in New York at what was almost instantly called ‘Ground Zero’ (as if the city had experienced a nuclear strike) were replayed again and again to a stunned world. It was an experience that no one who lived through it was likely to forget.

This post was published at David Stockmans Contra Corner on September 12, 2016.

The Woes Of Interventionism – – Turkey And Saudi Arabia Are Learning The Hard Way

VIOLENTLY INTERVENING IN the affairs of other countries has brought the United States much grief over the last century. We are hardly the only ones who do it. The club of interventionist nations has a shifting membership. During the current round of Middle East conflict, two new countries have joined: Turkey and Saudi Arabia. Both have succumbed to the imperial temptation. Both are paying a high price. They are learning a lesson that Americans struggle to accept: Interventions have unexpected consequences and often end up weakening rather than strengthening the countries that carry them out.
Turkey’s long intervention in Syria has failed to bring about its intended result, the fall of President Bashar Assad. Instead it has intensified the Syrian conflict, fed a regional refugee crisis, set off terrorist backlash, and deeply strained relations between Turkey and its NATO allies. As this blunder has unfolded, Saudi Arabia has also been waging war outside its territory. Its bombing of neighboring Yemen was supposed to be a way of asserting regional hegemony, but it has aroused indignant condemnation. The bombing campaign has placed Saudi Arabia under new scrutiny, including more intense focus on its role in promoting global terror, which the Saudi royal family has managed to keep half-hidden for years.
Turkey and Saudi Arabia intervened in foreign conflicts hoping to establish themselves as regional kingmakers. Both miscalculated. They overestimated their ability to secure quick victory and failed to weigh the strategic costs of failure or stalemate. If the Turks and Saudis had studied the history of American interventions, they would have been more prudent. We know the sorrows of empire. From Iran to Cuba to Vietnam to Afghanistan and Iraq, the legacy of our interventions continues to haunt us. Ambitious powers, however, continue to ignore the stark lesson that American history teaches. Turkey and Saudi Arabia are the latest to repeat our mistake. It is the same mistake that has undermined many nations and empires. They overestimated their ability to shape events in foreign lands. Now they are paying for their delusional overreach.

This post was published at David Stockmans Contra Corner on September 6, 2016.

Private Debt Piles Loom Over Emerging Economies

The failed coup in Turkey is spotlighting a problem that threatens to sandbag emerging markets more broadly: burgeoning private debt.
In the wake of Turkey’s political turmoil, credit-rating firms warned this week that heightened uncertainty threatens to undermine the country’s economy and the ability of companies to repay their debts. Standard & Poor’s Global Ratings on Wednesday cut Turkey’s credit rating to double-B, deeper into junk territory. Moody’s Investors Service is weighing a downgrade.
Economists often point to external debt as a key danger for emerging markets. In the case of Turkey and many other such nations, however, the growing debt pile is mostly home-based.
Domestic credit to the Turkish nonfinancial sector has exploded to roughly 70% of gross domestic product, from around 20% in 2000, according to the Bank for International Settlements. By comparison, other sources of lending – which include foreign credit – have hovered around 10% of GDP for the last two decades.
Access to cheap credit means households and companies can spend more, a boon for the economy. At some point, however, this burden tends to become too large, which often leads consumption and investment to slow as everybody starts paying down debt. This is why economies often experience debt cycles.

This post was published at David Stockmans Contra Corner on July 22, 2016.

Turkey in Crisis: Another Painful Lesson Why U.S. Should Avoid Foreign Meddling

This article appeared in Forbes on July 18, 2016. Turkey was convulsed by an attempted coup last week. Nominally democratic but in practice increasingly authoritarian, the government of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has initiated a broad crackdown that goes well beyond the military. He has the makings of becoming another Vladimir Putin – except supposedly on America’s side, but even that is up for debate. Turkey’s dubious evolution should remind Americans how hard it is for U. S. officials to play social engineers to the world. Instead of constantly meddling in hopes of ‘fixing’ other nations, Washington should step back when its interests are not vitally affected, which is most of the time. The physicians’ injunction, ‘First do no harm,’ would be a good principle for American foreign policy.
Ankara joined NATO during the Cold War. The U. S. was not much concerned about whether Turkey was a democracy. Washington wanted to secure the Balkans and project U. S. power into the Middle East. Containment of the Evil Empire was the principal objective.
That policy should have expired with the collapse of the Soviet Union and dissolution of the Warsaw Pact. Friendship rather than alliance should have become America’s objective. By then Turkey was nominally a parliamentary democracy, but the military still wielded extraordinary power, overthrowing an elected government as late as 1997.
Unfortunately, Washington decided to use its new ‘unipower’ status to attempt to micro-manage the Middle East. Consecutive administrations launched a succession of ill-considered interventions.

This post was published at David Stockmans Contra Corner on July 20, 2016.

America Has Become a ‘Parasitocracy’

Dread and Denial So, let’s return to the discussion you can’t have with your congressman, your mailman, or your barmaid. It’s the important one. It concerns what the Fed is really up to.
***
We have been connecting dots… bringing new readers into the conversation and organizing our own thoughts. Already, you have met the zombies and the cronies… and you know that the government you learn about in school is not really the government you actually have.
Instead, we are ruled by a group of insiders we call the ‘Deep State’ who pay little attention to the Constitution or the ‘will of the people.’
The term Deep State is not original to us. It was first coined to describe anti-democratic elements within the military, the intelligence services, the judiciary, and the mafia that controlled the real levers of power in Kemalist Turkey.

This post was published at Acting-Man on July 19, 2016.

Another Case For Exit – – -America Should Get Out Of NATO

In its reporting on Brexit, the New York Times asks an interesting question: ‘Is the post-1945 order imposed on the world by the United States and its allies unraveling, too?’
Hopefully, it will mean the unraveling of two of the most powerful and destructive governmental apparatuses that came out of the postwar era: NATO and the U. S. national-security state. In fact, although the mainstream media and the political establishment elites will never acknowledge it, the irony is that it is these two apparatuses that ultimately led to the Brexit vote:
The Times points out:
Refugees have poured out of Syria and Iraq. Turkey, Jordan and Lebanon have absorbed several million refugees. But it is the flow of people into the European Union that has had the greatest geopolitical impact, and helped to precipitate the British vote.
But what was it that gave rise to that massive refugee crisis?
The answer: It was the U. S. national-security state’s regime change operations in the Middle East, including NATO’s bombing campaign as part of its regime-change operation in Syria.
What did U. S. and NATO officials think – that people would simply remain where they were so that they could get blown to bits with the bombs that were being dropped on them, by the U. S. assassination program, or by the massive civil-war violence that came as a result of the U. S. and NATO regime-change operations?

This post was published at David Stockmans Contra Corner By Jacob G. Hornberger, by FFF.Org ‘ June 28, 2016.

Radical Chic and the US Military: Together At Last

The first time as tragedy, the second as farce – that’s what Karl Marx had to say about the woof and warp of history as it repeats sheer folly in different forms. And that certainly describes the attraction of many American leftists to the cause of Kurdish nationalism: it’s the latest lefty fad. A recent articlein the Village Voice – where else? – depicts the journey of two ‘anarcho-communists’ as they travel to ‘Rojava,’ the northernmost Syrian enclave where a curious blend of Murray Bookchin-style anarchism and the neo-Marxist blatherings of Abdullah Ocalan, the jailed leader of the terrorist Kurdish Workers Party, holds sway.
Hristo and Guy – the former an academic, the latter a working class Irish dude – are in their twenties: their politics are ‘anarcho-communist,’ that is they are living walking contradictions who, on the one hand, advocate the abolition of all government, and on the other hand uphold the economic theories of Karl Marx, who wanted to establish a ‘dictatorship of the proletariat.’ This duo is traveling to ‘Rojava,’ where the Kurdish Workers Party – in cooperation with the US government – has set up what many American leftists imagine to be a ‘workers’ paradise.’ Government is supposedly operative only at the local level, and all decisions are made by an assembly evenly divided between the sexes: private property is outlawed. It’s ‘Occupy Wall Street’ transported to the Middle East.
The Village Voice journalist follows them on their hegira, which has all the earmarks of a cloak-and-dagger drama: they take elaborate security precautions, such as taking the SIM cards out of their phones so US government agents (who probably aren’t watching them) can’t turn their devices into microphones. Indeed, the US government is the least of their problems: Washington is sending millions of dollars in ‘aid’ to the Kurdish commies, and US Marines – who are fighting alongside the Kurdish ‘peshmerga’ – have been photographed wearing the red star patches of the ‘Kurdish Protection Units’ (YPG), much to Turkey’s consternation.

This post was published at David Stockmans Contra Corner by Justin Raimondo ‘ June 10, 2016.

Daytime Military Drills In Tampa Used To Condition The American People – Episode 982b

The following video was published by X22Report on May 27, 2016
FBI may receive the ok to read emails without a warrant. Obama admin deletes conflict of interest disclosures from website. Poroshenko places Rasmussen on his advisory board. Poroshenko places sanctions on Russian media. Russia extends food band. NATO has drill in the Baltics. UK sends more ships to coast of Libya. IS traps 100,000 Syrians between Turkey and Syria border. US has troops in Syria many more than is being reported. North Korea is being linked to the cyber attacks that stole millions of dollars from Asian banks. Daytime Military drills took place in Tampa Florida, these drills are being used to condition the American people for an upcoming event.

Could There Be A Coup In Turkey?

The situation in Turkey is bad and getting worse. It’s not just the deterioration in security amidst a wave of terrorism. Public debt might be stable, but private debt is out-of-control, the tourism sector is in free-fall, and the decline in the currency has impacted every citizen’s buying power. There is a broad sense, election results notwithstanding, that President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is out-of-control. He is imprisoning opponents, seizing newspapers left and right, and building palaces at the rate of a mad sultan or aspiring caliph. In recent weeks, he has once again threatened to dissolve the constitutional court. Corruption is rife. His son Bilal reportedly fled Italy on a forged Saudi diplomatic passport as the Italian police closed in on him in an alleged money laundering scandal. His outbursts are raising eyebrows both in Turkey and abroad. Even members of his ruling party whisper about his increasing paranoia which, according to some Turkish officials, has gotten so bad that he seeks to install anti-aircraft missiles at his palace to prevent airborne men-in-black from targeting him in a snatch-and-grab operation.
Turks – and the Turkish military – increasingly recognize that Erdogan is taking Turkey to the precipice. By first bestowing legitimacy upon imprisoned Kurdish leader Abdullah calan with renewed negotiations and then precipitating renewed conflict, he has taken Turkey down a path in which there is no chance of victory and a high chance of de facto partition. After all, if civil war renews as in the 1980s and early 1990s, Turkey’s Kurds will be hard-pressed to settle for anything less, all the more so given the precedent now established by their brethren in Iraq and Syria.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on on 03/27/2016.

The Partitioning Of Syria And The Great Game Of Empire

Russia’s decision to greatly reduce its military presence in Syria, coming as it did with little warning, has left the world struggling for explanations. Russia is to maintain a military presence at its naval base in Tartous and at the Khmeymim airbase. In fact Russia is ‘withdrawing without withdrawing’.
The partial withdrawal is seen by many as a message to the Assad government to not take Russia’s military aid for granted, and to be more flexible in the upcoming peace negotiations.
As Robert F. Kennedy Jr., attorney and nephew of US President John Fitzgerald Kennedy explains, the major reason for the west’s attempt to overthrow the Assad government was to build a natural gas pipeline from Qatar that traversed Syria, capturing its newly discovered offshore reserves, and continued on through Turkey to the EU, as a major competitor to Russia’s Gazprom.
By re-establishing the Assad government in Syria, and permanently placing its forces at Syrian bases, the Russian’s have placed an impenetrable obstacle to the development of the Qatar gas pipeline. Russia has also placed itself at the nexus point of other new offshore gas discoveries in the Eastern Mediterranean, including Israel, Cyprus, and Greece.
It’s not hard to imagine a new Russian pipeline to Europe serving these new partners. Could easing of sanctions also lead to the implementation of the long-stalled plans of Gazprom for a second pipeline under the Baltic Sea to Germany for Russia and its partners, Royal Dutch Shell, Germany’s E. ON, and Austria’s OMV?

This post was published at David Stockmans Contra Corner on March 23, 2016.

Ballooning Bad Loans in Turkey Seen Worsening as Tourists Flee

The ailments afflicting Turkey’s economy that have triggered a surge in bad loans look poised to get worse before they get better.
Non-performing loans at the nation’s lenders climbed to 3.18 percent of total credit in January, the sixth straight monthly increase and the highest proportion in almost five years, according to data this week from the Ankara-based Banking Regulation and Supervision Agency. Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Commerzbank AG said in February corporate distress is deepening in Turkey, making it harder for companies to pay down debts.

This post was published at David Stockmans Contra Corner on March 4, 2016.

Obama’s Syrian Policy At Work – -Kurds Warn Turkey of ‘Big War’ With Russia If Troops Enter Syria

Russia has promised to protect Kurdish fighters in Syria in case of a ground offensive by Turkey, a move that would lead to a ‘big war,’ the Syrian group’s envoy to Moscow said in an interview on Wednesday.
‘We take this threat very seriously because the ruling party in Turkey is a party of war,’ Rodi Osman, head of the Syrian Kurds’ newly-opened representative office said in Kurdish via a Russian interpreter. ‘Russia will respond if there is an invasion. This isn’t only about the Kurds, they will defend the territorial sovereignty of Syria.’
Conflicting interests in Syria have created a dangerous new phase in the country’s five-year war, even as world powers struggle to implement a truce agreement. Turkey fears Kurdish gains along its border will morph into an autonomous state and inspire similar ambitions among its own Kurdish minority. But a ground intervention risks conflict with Russia, which backs the Kurds militarily, and would anger the U. S., which sees the group as a major ally in the fight against Islamic State.
Turkey has been shelling Syrian Kurdish forces since the weekend, and Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu blamed them for a bombing in Ankara that killed 28 people on Wednesday.
‘We are continuing to liberate our territory and it would go faster if it wasn’t for Turkey,’ Osman said. Russian warplanes are providing support for the Kurdish offensive, which is aimed at securing full control of the Turkish border, while Russia has also promised to support the Syrian Kurds’ goal of federal status, he said.

This post was published at David Stockmans Contra Corner on February 19, 2016.

Putin Is Winning the Final Chess Match With Obama

Ron Holland Questions If the Islamic Invasion of Europe is a Washington Operation To Save NATO?
The world press is filled with violence and sexual attack horror stories about the Islamic refugees escaping from Syria and other war torn countries of the Middle East to Greece and consequently flooding into all areas of Europe. It is actually very easy to travel from Syria to Lebanon and then take the ferry to Turkey and from there to Greece and subsequently the mainland overland to Europe. This is now big business organized like a one-way tour package from the Middle East to Europe.
Although there obviously are some ISIS fighters and Islamic militants slipping into Europe under cover of the humanitarian crises most are simply Sunni Moslems escaping the poverty, death and destruction of foreign military intervention in the region. Yes the sex crimes are a real problem because the majority of those escaping the region are men looking for work coming from a conservative society to the open societies of Europe.
Most immigrants enter Europe through the economic basket case of Greece where the economy has already been destroyed by too much government debt, corruption and EU banking excesses so Greece can afford to do little to stem the Islamic refugee tide. While a case can be made that the location of Syria and Lebanon adjacent to Turkey and the ease of transportation to Greek islands just offshore is helping the flow to Europe. Still the organized nature of the operation makes me wonder if this is also an undercover operation designed to create a new mission for NATO at the same time weakening the economy of Europe to further Washington’s economic interests today in the Obama Crash of 2016.
The world is now in recession at best and maybe flirting with a global depression. This means politicians will do what is best for their national political future and the consequences for the national economy, citizens or business future is of little consequence to them. This also suggests that global alliances will mean little when domestic national politicians are fighting for survival.
Here is how the chess matches have turned out so far in the Putin/Obama competition.

This post was published at Lew Rockwell on January 23, 2016.