Friday, May 05, 2017

It was an honor

"Saudi Power Struggle Could Destabilize The Entire Middle East":
"The increased internal power struggle, in which Mohammed bin Salman and his allies have the upper-hand, doesn’t bode well for the months to come. Stability on political and security levels are only possible if opposition elsewhere is countered. To quell political (or royal) discord, King Salman’s government must continue to push for higher oil prices and revenues. This will present the Kingdom with a major challenge. As prices are still floundering around $50 per barrel, Saudi Arabia will have to use all of its power and international influence to get a grip on volatile oil markets. Riyadh will need a continuous influx of cash to support higher government expenses, subsidies, and salaries while also investing in the ongoing economic diversification projects. An OPEC production cut extension is the only option."
"Oil Prices Crash To Pre-OPEC Deal Levels".

"Questions for US military after doubt cast on efficiency of Afghan bombing".  RIP, 69 trees.

"First on CNN: Pentagon investigation: US hit mosque complex in Syria".

"What Are They Hiding about the USA Attack on Syria?" (those Russkies are fiendishly clever asking for a full investigation!):
"The same day on which the USA launched the attack against Syria, the UN Security Council delayed a vote for a resolution regarding the incident with chemicals in Syria. Three competing plans for a resolution were submitted to the Security Council. The joint resolution put forward by the United Kingdom, the USA and France asked the Syrian authorities to provide the United Nations and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) with all the information regarding the flights of their military air force that took place on the day of the incident, and to allow free access to their military establishments around the specific region where the attack took place.

It is worth noticing that the plan of the three does not mention any specific military establishment, despite the fact that the USA announced that they have some precise information that the attack with chemicals was launched from the Shayrat airport, the one that they hit with their Tomahawks. And of course it does not ask for the obvious: to extend the investigation in order to confirm the incident in the area that was hit with the chemicals. Why is that?

The plan that Russia proposed asks exactly for this extension. It asked for a complete investigation into the incident to be conducted by UN and OPCW specialists, first and foremost in the area that is claimed to have been hit by chemicals, and it asks for all the participants in the conflict to cooperate. The third plan was proposed by the non-permanent members of the UN Security Council in an attempt to reach a compromise between the differences of the two other plans.

In this way, Trump made a unilateral decision to hit Syria without any trace of evidence that the Assad government was responsible for the supposed attack with chemical weapons in the Idlib region. Even more, he took this decision without any kind of international justification from the UN Security Council, not even a resolution with misleading terms, as in the case of Gaddafi’s Libya.

Trump invoked as an excuse for the missile attack on Syria the “vital national security and foreign policy interests of the USA,” as he characteristically mentioned in the letter he sent to inform the Congress on the 8th of April. And in order to present himself as legitimate he invoked the authority to start military action based on a common resolution of the Congress and the War Powers Resolution (Public Law 93-148 of 1973), even though this resolution only authorises the president of USA to start military action after an official declaration of war, or in the case of a direct military threat against the integrity of the USA.

It is the first time since George Bush – and his ‘coalition of the willing’ – who declared the Third World War, that a president of the USA goes ahead with a military action against a sovereign state in such a shameless manner and lacking any shred of even a pretext of legality, even invoking the ‘vital interests’ of his country, when there is not even a virtual threat against the USA. This has not been officially heard on the international scene since the Hitler era, who entered into the Second World War in order to defend the ‘vital interests’ of his country."

"Trump Deletes Tweet Saying It Was 'An Honor' to Meet With Abbas".  Mr President, Sheldon on line 1 . . .

Comment by dontknowitall at Naked Capitalism (Huma has some kind of protection from a foreign government, probably the Saudis):
"The best part was when Comey was asked if Wiener read the emails as he was printing them and Comey says no, he doesn’t think so. How could Wiener even avoid reading them as he was printing and making sure the prints were legible…was he wearing a blindfold?…Did Comey’s investigators take this for truth…

The sweet spot was hit when Comey said Abedin did not get charged because there was no evidence she knew the law or had intent. The information security course everyone is required to take at State counted for nothing…and all those whistleblowers who argued they had no intent to spy when they took paperwork home but were sent to jail anyway because a showing of intent was not required were just mistakes…"

"Italian Prime Minister Secretly Meets With George Soros In Rome Amid Migrant Transport Scandal".

"Greater Albania and the Balkans".  The WWIIImongers have so many choices.

"President Obama's team sought NSA intel on thousands of Americans during the 2016 election".  Vague sourcing, but I'd be shocked if it wasn't true.

"The Inconvenient Truth About Electric Vehicles":
"An electric auto will convert 5-10% of the energy in natural gas into motion. A normal vehicle will convert 20-30% of the energy in gasoline into motion."
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