We begin with the nagging thought (with the markets closed, and all, which we’ll get to) that 2014 could be the year that sets us firmly on the path toward global war. It’s not a pretty thought, but it may have some basis in fact.
Let’s begin by taking a look at spiraling events in Ukraine, which our Winnipeg news analyst sums up this way:
Dear Mr. Ure,
“Espreso TV” has a live feed on “YouTube” scanning the locale of recent Ukrainian confrontations. Beneath such moving pictures of confusion, Wikipedia’s page of Ukraine’s ruling Party of Regions offers helpful links for reading of well-heeled support, as well as pointing to a Ukrainian president allegedly schooled with American lobbyist knowledge. One trusts the Black Sea naval fleet will maintain order should democracy require.
So this morning we see a nervous standoff in the government quarter of Kiev as demonstrators are blocking access to government offices and officialdumb (sic) is trying to figure out what to do next.
What’s important here is the larger picture, methinks.
Back in November, Ukraine was about to do a big “free trade” deal with the EU. After getting leaned on by the Russians/Vlad Putin’s boyz, the Ukraine president recognized that Moscow didn’t want Ukraine sucking up to the EU.
A look at a map explains why: Kiev (Kyiv) is just 480 miles from Moscow. That’s as far as from Washington to Cincinnati, or about the distance from San Diego to San Francisco.
A further read of the map show Kiev is 755 miles from Berlin, 1,270 miles from Paris, and 1,320 miles from London.
Given that Russia has a huge history of being killed by Europeans, the Russians are quite naturally slow to bend to “free traders” who, one might suspect, are keenly interested in picking up another country to exploit for economic reasons.
So if you were sitting in the Kremlin, slamming shots with Putin, for example, do you think the disappearing buffer zone between his country and the West would be a major concern? Russia is loaded with natural resources, and the way the West works from his perspective is certainly a lot less warm and fuzzy than the corporate mythology ground into Americanized consumers.
What the Europeans seem to have forgotten is that Russia likes its buffers and those Western-back agitators who are whipping up descent need to see how close Moscow is and how critical the Ukraine port city Odessa, home of the Black Sea Fleet is to folks in the Kremlin who’ve “been there, done that” with pushy Europeans before.
They are likely to be inclined to fight over its potential lose or even political dilution. Expect more violence to follow.
Iran: Nuke Materials in Two Weeks?
Then there’s this from our war-gamer pal:
This comes against the backdrop of letting Iran participate in the Syria peace talks which is the diplomatic equivalent of letting the fox watch the hen house.
But then there’s no real shock here, as Iran is nestled comfortably into at least 7 of the top 29 UN organizations. The Islamic Theocracy, officially titled a “republic,” is surprisingly adept at positioning itself on the global stage.
With Iran participating in the Syrian peace talks, expect no earth shattering diplomatic breakthroughs. In fact, Syrian President Assad has to feel pretty dang confident with his top military and economic sponsor participating. On the other hand, the Syrian “Rebel Alliance” (nods to George Lucas), which includes al Qaeda factions, is surely dazed and confused.
The U.S. certainly didn’t hold Assad to the infamous chemical weapons “red line” and now Iran is at by Assad’s side, so what hope do the rebels possibly have? Who is their champion?
Watch the Saudi’s. They are turning up as the wild card in this deliciously complicated affair. While they’d prefer to avoid openly supporting the terrorist organization, al Qaeda is the lesser evil to letting Shi’ite Iran gain power and influence in the Middle East.
And as we’ve pointed out, in this “enemy of my enemy is my friend” world, the Saudis (where the 9/11 perps were from) now become odd bedfellows with the Israeli’s.
All that’s missing now is identifying the latter-day Archduke Ferdinand.
When that triggering event happens, we can foresee a dominos-style cascade of Middle East events busting loose. And war gaming theory says it’s the regional war that ‘blows up’ into global war.
A key religious leader on either side, might be all it takes. And our word-frequency studies at www.nostracodeus.com keep mentioned ‘dead’ and ‘president’ in near proximity. We hope it’s just a fluke in the data.
Could it be that the global elites are trying to redesign and rebuild the watch while it’s still running and failing that, they’ll simply smash everything and begin again?
Some branches of cryptoarchaeology suggests that may have happened before.
More after this…
Holiday News Notes:
Federal offices, county offices, city offices, post offices, banks, stock and bond markets are all closed today for Martin Luther King Day. If you have the misfortunate of not having a tax-paid job, or live off interest or commissions on financial instruments, welcome to the working class.
If you’re a fire fighter, policeman, restaurant worker, in urgent healthcare, working in retail, or selling cars, this is anything but a holiday. On a typical day, the average drive-though at a burger joint sees 250-300 cars during a busy day shift. This will likely be a “typical day” for lots of people.
Humans, being addicted to information as they are, still want their news. So you will find lots of stories today like this one, that go into great local details about what’s open and what’s not.
I suppose I could run through a list of cities where parking is free (like Toledo) and compare the financial condition of those cities with places like Sacramento, where only six days include free parking at meters and this ain’t one of them. You’ll have to wait for Memorial Day to roll around…one of only six meter-free days.
Here in the Outback of East Texas, though, we don’t go in much for finery as meters. Perhaps it’s because we’ve paid for our streets once, and maybe that should be enough. But, of course, in Sacramento, it’s not.
Then there are cities like New York, where alternate side parking rules are suspended today.
Not surprisingly, Martin Luther King day is not a factor elsewhere in the world. Europe’s markets are open for the seriously addicted, but not doing much. German was down about a third of a percent when I looked; hardly worth noting.
Reporters have a hell of a time on days like this: We’re all on edge waiting for something “big” to report. When nothing comes up, the half-hour news shows scramble to come up with new material.
This morning’s refried news seems to revolve around NJ gove3rnor Christie supposedly withheld hurricane funds unless a redevelopment plan he favored was approved. This is – predictably – being denied by the Christie folks.
Other stories being *(you’ll appreciate the word choice here) rehashed, involve “Why Colorado and Washington we wise to legalize pot.”
And no, pointing out that the Seahawks Broncos game could be called the “Pot Bowl” just goes to show how desperate writers are to make today seem like a newsworthy one.