EUROPE | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


EUROPE

Jan 25 10:27

Greek anti-austerity party Syriza leads exit polls with 35.5% to 39.5% of votes

Radical-leftist party, Syriza, has won from 35.5 to 39.5 per cent of the votes in the parliamentary election in Greece, leaving ruling New Democracy party more than 10 per cent behind, the exit-polls revealed.

The New Democracy party, led by Greece prime minister, Antonis Samaras, has received between 23 and 27 per cent of the vote.

Jan 25 10:04

Greeks elect new parliament amid EU withdrawal concerns

Greeks are going to polling stations on Sunday to elect a new parliament. The populist radical-leftist party Syriza has won the hearts of many austerity-ridden people with its message of reverting wages cuts and renegotiating debt obligations.

Prime Minister Antonis Samaras was forced to call a snap vote in December after the parliament failed to elect a president. His center-right New Democracy party is now running behind Syriza, with opinion polls showing a gap of several percentage points.

Syriza leader Alexis Tsipras urged his voters to give his party an outright victory of 40 percent, which would allow him to form a government with no help from other parties.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

That is because the last time Greece held elections, Syriza won, but the pro-banker politicians refused to form a coalition government, forcing a second election that Syriza lost by a razor thin margin amid reports of wide-scale election fraud.

Jan 25 09:37

Ekloges 2015: Greece Votes In Historic For Europe Election

What is at stake for Greece today? Largely the same things as in 2012, which means an appropriate question is what is at stake for Europe. The answer: a lot, because suddenly the fate of the European monetary union is in the hands of some 9.8 million eligible to vote Greeks: something the unelected bureaucrats in Brussels had hoped to avoid in perpetuity. And with the leading candidate on war footing with Brussels (if only for the time being) the next few days in Europe will be quite interesting: "In Greece, democracy will return," the party's 40-year-old leader Alexis Tsipras told a throng of cameras as he voted in Athens. "The message is that our common future in Europe is not the future of austerity."

Jan 25 09:36

Euro crisis looms as Greek Left lead poll: Fears victory for anti-austerity party could trigger panic - and force country into bankruptcy

The euro stands on the brink of its biggest ever crisis today as Greeks vote in their general election – with the anti-austerity party Syriza maintaining a four-point lead in the polls.

With the euro at its lowest value against sterling in seven years, a Syriza victory could trigger panic in the EU and the eurozone – risking bankruptcy for Greece and its exit from the euro.

Jan 25 08:09

Syriza Leads Final Polls Before Greece's Election

The last nine polls published on Friday — the last day of campaigning — showed Syriza's lead over the ruling New Democracy conservatives trending upward. Syriza led by anywhere from 2.8 to 6.7 percentage points.

Jan 25 07:04

Ukraine crisis: Angela Merkel 'offers Russia free trade deal for peace'

Angela Merkel has reportedly offered Russia negotiations on a free trade agreement with the EU in exchange for a peace deal in Ukraine.

The German chancellor made the offer at the World Economic Forum in Davos, where she spoke of a free trade area “from Lisbon to Vladivostok”, according to a report in Süddeutsche Zeitung newspaper.

Mrs Merkel said Germany was “ready” to discuss “possibilities of cooperation in a common trade areas”. But she made it clear talks could not start until Russia abides by the Minsk Agreement, the ceasefire agreed in September, which it has so far failed to honour.

Jan 24 16:54

This is the beginning of the end for the Euro

When you print more money, you drive down the value of your currency

Jan 24 14:44

Western fawning to shore up Saudi House of Cards

The fawning by the American and British governments toward Saudi Arabia over the death of King Abdullah is for good – albeit unspoken – reasons. The oil-rich feudal kingdom is a lynchpin of Western hegemony in the strategically vital Middle East region. At a time when the region is gripped by instability more than ever, the House of Saud now enters a dangerous period of transition, which presents deep alarm to the Western patrons.

Jan 24 14:38

ECB to launch €1.1 trillion of quantitative easing

By buying eurozone governments’ bonds using electronically created money – so-called quantitative easing– the ECB hopes to shore up confidence, boost inflation, and drive down the value of the euro on foreign exchanges, helping to boost exports and kickstart growth.

The €60bn a month figure includes the purchases of private sector assets that the ECB had already begun to try to unlock credit markets.

Jan 24 14:35

Congress Seeks Netanyahu’s Direction

Showing who some in Congress believe is the real master of U.S. foreign policy, House Speaker John Boehner has invited Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to address a joint session and offer a rebuttal to President Barack Obama’s comments on world affairs in his State of the Union speech.

Boehner made clear that Netanyahu’s third speech to a joint session of the U.S. Congress – scheduled for Feb. 11 – was meant to counter Obama’s assessments.

“There is a serious threat in the world, and the President last night kind of papered over it,” Boehner said on Wednesday. “And the fact is that there needs to be a more serious conversation in America about how serious the threat is from radical Islamic jihadists and the threat posed by Iran.”

Jan 24 10:24

Greek Right Fears First Left Government in Greek History

Dimitri Lascaris reports from Greece that a near six point lead for SYRIZA is raising memories of the fascist coup and civil war

Jan 24 09:32

Currency wars in the EU

Jan 24 05:05

Draghi's "No-growth" QE - Money for Stocks, Zilch for the Economy

Most experts agree that QE will do almost nothing to stimulate growth or reduce soaring unemployment, they also agree that it will push bank stocks higher, intensify their gambling operations, and help them to conceal their lack of capital.

Jan 23 17:45

Jon Stewart Shocked By Fox News Apology Over Muslim ‘No-Go Zones’ In Europe

What did they say that was so much wronger than usual that it required a network-wide apology?” Stewart asked. “How bad does bullshit have to smell before the odor is detected by people who live on a mountain made out of that substance?”

Jan 23 16:42

NATO Scrambles Fighters After Russian Il-20 Spotted Over Baltic Sea

NATO scrambled Typhoon fighters after a Russian Il-20 reconnaissance aircraft was spotted over the Baltic Sea, Bloomberg reports.

Jan 23 16:12

This Is the Beginning of the End for the Euro

The long-anticipated collapse of the euro is here. Over the next 18 months, the European Central bank will create more than a trillion euros out of thin air and will use that money to buy debt.

Jan 23 15:53

El-Erian: QE in Europe not the answer

Jan 23 13:58

EU Expansion Ideology: Gunnar Wiegand, Alain Le Roy and Federica Mogherini

58 year-old German Gunnar Wiegand is the European External Action Service (EEAS) Director for Russia, Eastern Partnership, Central Asia, Regional Cooperation and OSCE. Formally his position does not put him at the top of European External Action Service which is the equivalent of Foreign Ministry. But it’s him who is responsible for EU policy toward Russia and other post-Soviet states, including the abrupt deterioration of the Russia-EU relationship in recent months.

Jan 23 11:35

Now Begins The Greatest Heist Since Bernanke Bailed Out Wall Street In September 2008

Well, he finally launched “whatever it takes” and that marks an inflection point. Mario Draghi has just proved that the servile apparatchiks who run the world’s major central banks will stop at nothing to appease the truculent gamblers they have unleashed in the casino. And that means there will eventually be a monumental crash landing because the bubble beneficiaries are now commanding the bubble makers.

Jan 23 11:15

Greece Set To Reject Austerity And Financial Oligarchy

In two days time Greece is due to go to the polls and Syriza, a party looking to say no to ridiculous and unmanageable debts, is set to take power. This has the potential to cause a huge shift in economic policy throughout the world as it identifies austerity as a failed policy route. But not everyone in the Euro thinks it is a bad idea for the Greeks to do this, Hollande had no issue here but subsequently had his nation fall victim to a terrorist attack. This has the potential to cause huge changes in a world currently dominanted by Anglo-American financial hegemony.

Jan 23 11:13

SYRIZA Heads Towards a Majority in Greece as Elections Approach

The coalition of the radical left SYRIZA Party is poised to win the parliamentary elections on January 25 in Greece. If SYRIZA win, they could form the next government and confront the catastrophic austerity agenda that has plagued Greece and thrown it into a severe economic crisis. The possibility of SYRIZA-led government is sending chills down the spines of the European power centers in Berlin and in Paris and at the European Union headquarters in Brussels.

Jan 23 08:14

Unhappy economics in Europe...

Jan 22 23:38

Financial markets celebrate European Central Bank launch of €1 trillion quantitative easing program

The official rationale for the decision is that the QE program is needed to combat deflationary pressures in the euro zone—inflation turned negative last month—and boost the region’s economy, which has still not reached the levels of output attained in 2007.

Jan 22 19:07

Currency expert: Euro going ‘well below parity’

The euro plunged to an 11-year low on Thursday, after the European Central Bank announced that it would begin a 60-euro monthly asset purchasing program. But it could still have a ways to fall.

Jan 22 17:59

Harvey Organ: Zurich Set to Become Key Center of Gold Trading As Swiss to Set Up Chinese Currency Exchange!

The real news is that the Chinese are setting up a currency exchange with the Swiss in Zurich and this no doubt was the cause of Switzerland immediately abandoning the peg with the Euro.

China will also use Switzerland as a key centre of gold trading.

Jan 22 17:55

Danish Central Bank Just Cut Rates For A Second Time This Week; Intervenes In Market To Preserve Peg

It was just on Monday when the Danish central bank, clearly panicking about the peg of the Danish Krone to the EUR, surprised the world when in an unexpected rate cut it went NIRPer, sending its deposit rate from -0.05% to 0.2%. Moments ago it doubled down with its second rate cut for the week, this time sending the rate from -0.20% to -0.35%. At this rate we should hit -0.5% next Tuesday and be well into the -1% territory two weeks from today. And not only that, but as Bloomberg observes, "The Danish central bank “also seems to have been intervening in the market prior to the ECB meeting,” Jes Asmussen, chief economist at Svenska Handelsbanken AB in Copenhagen." In other words, the Danish Krone's peg days are most likely numbered.

Jan 22 16:01

Dutch opposition says it has documents proving Turkey sent arms to Syrian jihadists

The Dutch opposition Christian Democratic Party (CDA) announced that it has confidential documents proving that Turkey had sent weapons to al-Qaeda militants in Syria and that it conveyed the documents to the Dutch government, according to a BBC Turkish report published on Sunday.

Jan 22 15:57

ECB QE Assures Economic Collapse 2015

Jan 22 15:06

Oh how much these Poles hate Russia...

Asked on Polish radio on Wednesday why Putin was not invited to the commemoration of the liberation of Auschwitz, the Foreign Minister of Poland, Grzegorz Schetyna, declared: "The 1st Ukrainian front and Ukrainians liberated [the concentration camp], as on that January day there were Ukrainian soldiers, so they opened the gates of the camp".

Jan 22 14:56

The ISIS comedy continues…

Much of the Western world has reluctantly signed up with America’s counterfeit crusade against the radical group. And now Japan has been suckered into the madness...

One can’t help but laugh at the way in which our loathsome leaders try to pull the wool over our eyes time and again.

These cowards in high places have resorted to fantastical lies and clownish frauds to keep us complacent and ignorant.

This latest chicanery should make you grin.

Just hours after Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe made an “anti-terrorism” pact with Israel and pledged $200 million towards the anti-ISIS coalition led by the United States, ISIS released a video threatening to kill two Japanese hostages.

The infamous British-accented Islamic State fighter, who allegedly beheaded a string of hostages over recent months including American photojournalist James Foley, appears in a new video demanding a ransom of $200 million in exchange for the release of the two Japanese captives.

Jan 22 14:55

The Intimidation of Greek Voters - Punishment and Regressive Social Engineering by the EU

Here we go again. There is talk of Greece exiting the euro, and the German government has tried to say that it would be no big deal for Europe, then apparently walked back from that position. At the same time, the German government appears to be trying to influence the Greek election scheduled for January 25 by saying that if the left party Syriza wins, a Greek exit will follow. Syriza, led by the popular and charismatic Alexis Tsipras, is not threatening to leave the euro but promises to renegotiate Greece’s unsustainable debt. Syriza also calls for reversing Greece’s devastating austerity policies, imposed by the European authorities, which have brought the country 6 years of depression and more than 25 percent unemployment.

Jan 22 14:53

The ‘hasbara’ tweeps who brought down Jim Clancy, and their ties to Israel and the Israel lobby

As the hardly left-leaning Thomas Friedman has explained, even espousing the U.S. State Department’s official policy that settlements are illegal and East Jerusalem is an occupied city can stop a career before it starts.

Veteran CNN journalist Jim Clancy’s resignation this week is one of the odder media fallouts from the Charlie Hebdo Paris attack. On January 7, Clancy got into a late night Twitter spat regarding the French satirical magazine with online adversaries. When he told them they were ganging up on him and practicing “hasbara,” the Hebrew word for “explaining” that describes pro-Israel advocacy often at the behest of the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs, they lashed back as if the term were libelous.

Jan 22 14:49

“Civilization” of the Neocons

The power of the msm – in combination with the brainless masses works wonders.

Imagine – a bunch of French, CIA and Mossad special forces, one of them or a combination of the three, attack a racist, Moslem-insulting publisher in Paris and a kosher supermarket at another end of town – killing altogether 17 people, notwithstanding the ‘suicide’ of the French police chief in charge of investigating the atrocity.

A million and a half people in Paris take to the streets – about 6 million throughout Europe – all screaming or carrying posters with a maddening, inexplicable “Je Suis Charlie” – depicting an utterly brainwashed mindset, brainwashed for decades with Washington directed mind control.

Jan 22 14:38

EU foreign ministers discuss attacks on democratic rights, provocations against Russia

The deliberately engendered atmosphere of fear and hysteria is being used to implement anti-democratic measures increasing the repressive powers of the state. The foreign ministers discussed greater sharing of passenger flight data within the EU, the re-introduction of border checks, and proposals to withdraw passports and identity cards from EU citizens considered “public threats.”

Jan 22 14:27

Rewriting history? Polish FM says Ukrainians liberated Auschwitz. Russia puzzled

The Polish FM’s statement that it was the Ukrainians who liberated the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp has puzzled Moscow. Russia’s UN envoy remarked that the Soviet Army, which liberated the camp, was actually multinational.

Jan 22 14:17

The Intimidation of Greek Voters by MARK WEISBROT

snip: Syriza, led by the popular and charismatic Alexis Tsipras, is not threatening to leave the euro but promises to renegotiate Greece’s unsustainable debt. Syriza also calls for reversing Greece’s devastating austerity policies, imposed by the European authorities, which have brought the country 6 years of depression and more than 25 percent unemployment.

Jan 22 13:31

SocGen Explains That Since The ECB's QE Will Fail, It Will Need To Be Increased To €3 Trillion, Include Stocks

There are a bunch of things in the ECB post-mortem note just released by SocGen's Michel Martinez, reproduced below, but here are the punchlines.

First, on the impact of ECB QE on the economy: "we argue ECB QE could be five times less efficient than in the US. In December, press reports suggested that the ECB had run studies suggesting that a €1000bn QE programme would only boost price levels by 0.2-0.8 after two years, five to nine times less efficient than the studies for the US or the UK. The impact on GDP is not provided, but it would be reasonable to assume the same impact as on inflation on a cumulated basis."

In other words, it will be an outright failure as it "triest" to boost inflation expectations and the European economy in its current format. That, as a reminder, is its stated purpose.

So what does SocGen suggest? Simple: the same thing every Keynesian says when justifying why a piece of occult economic voodoo fails to work: it wasn't big enough. To wit:

Jan 22 12:37

Ukraine requests fresh IMF bailout

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has asked the IMF for a new and broader rescue package, IMF head Christine Lagarde said on Wednesday (Jan 21) as the war-torn country fights to save its reeling economy.

Lagarde met Poroshenko on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos and said Ukraine requested that the Washington-based IMF deepen its relationship with Kiev.

The meeting took place soon after Poroshenko told an audience of the world's financial elite in Davos that 9,000 Russian troops were backing Ukrainian separatist fighters.

Jan 22 12:35

European Commission's Clever Ruse To Introduce Corporate Sovereignty Regardless Of Ratification Votes In EU

Because of the complicated nature of power-sharing in the European Union, some international agreements require the approval of both the European Parliament and of every Member State -- so-called "mixed agreements." It is generally accepted that both the Canada-EU trade agreement (CETA) and TAFTA/TTIP are mixed agreements, and will therefore require a double ratification: by the full European Parliament, and all the EU governments. Indeed, the European Commission has frequently cited this fact to bolster its assertion that both CETA and TAFTA/TTIP are being negotiated democratically, since the European public -- through their representatives -- will have their say in these final votes.

Jan 22 12:34

European Commission's Clever Ruse To Introduce Corporate Sovereignty Regardless Of Ratification Votes In EU

Because of the complicated nature of power-sharing in the European Union, some international agreements require the approval of both the European Parliament and of every Member State -- so-called "mixed agreements." It is generally accepted that both the Canada-EU trade agreement (CETA) and TAFTA/TTIP are mixed agreements, and will therefore require a double ratification: by the full European Parliament, and all the EU governments. Indeed, the European Commission has frequently cited this fact to bolster its assertion that both CETA and TAFTA/TTIP are being negotiated democratically, since the European public -- through their representatives -- will have their say in these final votes.

Jan 22 12:31

Greek Bank Withdrawals Reached €4.2 Billion in 3 Days

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Yep; It's a bank run!

Jan 22 11:29

Euro plummets as ECB unleashes €60bn-a-month QE bazooka

European Central Bank (ECB) president Mario Draghi unveiled bigger-than-expected quantitative easing measures on Thursday but still faced a fierce fight from Germany over any policy that could mutualise debt in the eurozone.

"The combined monthly purchases of public and private sector securities will amount to €60bn euros,” said Mr Draghi at a press conference following a meeting of the ECB’s governing council.

“They are intended to be carried out until end-September 2016 and will in any case be conducted until we see a sustained adjustment in the path of inflation," he added, meaning the package will amount to at least €1.1 trillion.

Mr Draghi’s package of asset purchases, including bonds issued by national governments and EU institutions such as the European Commission, is intended to boost the eurozone’s flagging economy and to ward off the spectre of deflation.

Jan 22 10:31

Greece - By The Numbers

Greece is reeling from the effects of the biggest economic crisis in its recent history. Here are 12 statistics, via The Wall Street Journal, underscoring the severity of the crisis now reaching into all aspects of Greek life...

Jan 22 10:01

SNB official defends 'best option' for franc

Switzerland would have had to spend more than $100 billion this month alone if it had continued efforts to hold down the value of its currency, a senior central bank official said on Thursday.

Jan 22 09:55

Greece Elections – Why The Entire World Is Watching!

This Sunday the citizens of Greece will be voting in a national election that will serve as a referendum on the EU-invoked austerity program that the country has been living through!

At stake is the decision that a newly elected government might make to pull Greece out of the Eurozone in what has widely become termed Grexit.

At stake also is the impact that a win by an anti-austerity and anti-EU party might have on the politics of other Eurozone countries that face similar issues and, perhaps, on the viability of the Eurozone itself.

Jan 22 09:41

QE clearly hurting German economy.

Jan 22 08:42

BEX Alert - "Putin playing with fire in Europe: Brzezinski"

US foreign policy pundit Zbigniew Brzezinski says Russian President Vladimir Putin is playing with fire in Europe, adding that the United States and its allies should deploy troops to the Baltic states of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia to stop Russia from capturing them.

Brzezinski, who served as national security adviser to President Jimmy Carter, told the Senate Armed Services Committee on Wednesday that Putin might attempt to take over Baltic countries in a sudden attack. . .

. . . "And then we'll say how horrible, how shocking, how outrageous. But, of course, we can't do anything about it," said the Polish American geostrategist, the author of The Grand Chessboard.

Brzezinski also called on Washington to provide Ukraine with lethal weapons to deter Russia.

Jan 22 08:22

EUROPOL 'TO BE GIVEN NEW INTERNET WATCHDOG POWERS

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The EU is planning to give Europe’s police intelligence agency, Europol, new powers to become a European internet watchdog and censor, according to a secret policy document. The measures also include controls to have internet content removed as a key part of a Europe-wide response to terrorism after the Paris attacks two weeks ago.

Jan 22 08:21

EU WANTS INTERNET FIRMS TO HAND OVER ENCRYPTION KEYS

A top EU official wants internet and telecommunication companies to hand over encryption keys to police and spy agencies as part of a wider crackdown on terrorism. The EU’s counter-terrorism co-ordinator Gilles de Kerchove, in a document leaked by London-based civil liberties group Statewatch, says the European Commission should come up with rules that require the firms to help national governments snoop on possible suspects.

Jan 22 07:22

The Swiss will not have more EU QE

In the ridiculous charade that passes for the foreign exchange currency markets, the ease upon which a 39% spike in the Swiss Franc to the EU has most financial journalist puzzled.

Jan 22 00:02

The ‘hasbara’ tweeps who brought down Jim Clancy, and their ties to Israel and the Israel lobby

As the hardly left-leaning Thomas Friedman has explained, even espousing the U.S. State Department’s official policy that settlements are illegal and East Jerusalem is an occupied city can stop a career before it starts.

Veteran CNN journalist Jim Clancy’s resignation this week is one of the odder media fallouts from the Charlie Hebdo Paris attack. On January 7, Clancy got into a late night Twitter spat regarding the French satirical magazine with online adversaries. When he told them they were ganging up on him and practicing “hasbara,” the Hebrew word for “explaining” that describes pro-Israel advocacy often at the behest of the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs, they lashed back as if the term were libelous.

Jan 21 23:58

The ISIS comedy continues…

ISIS’s string pullers in Washington and Tel Aviv are trying to drag the whole world into their farcical stage-play. Thanks to a slew of ‘beheading videos’ and contrived ‘terror incidents’ that struck a number of Western capitals in recent months, much of the Western world has reluctantly signed up with America’s counterfeit crusade against the radical group.

Jan 21 23:32

Europe Considers Surveillance Expansion After Deadly Attacks

In an atmosphere of fear after the deadly attack on the French magazine Charlie Hebdo, officials in the European Union are proposing an array of anti-terror initiatives, including new surveillance laws that would give security agencies greater access to personal data.

Jan 21 23:29

Distortions, lies and omissions: The New York Times won’t tell you the real story behind Ukraine, Russian economic collapse

The body blows the State Department and Treasury are dealing Russia in response to the Ukraine crisis—as precipitated by State, of course—would be irresponsible under any circumstances for the risks they carry. In the current global environment, this starts to shape up as monomania.

Jan 21 23:17

Inevitable Payback

In this globalised world, if we launch weapons of great destructive power into communities abroad, incinerating and shredding women and children, we cannot avoid the fact that those who identify with those communities – ethnically, culturally and religiously – will take revenge on people here. If we are lucky it will be revenge on combatants. If we are unlucky it will be on our innocents. But either way, the truth is this. We caused it.

Jan 21 19:31

EU's food safety agency gives green light to Bisphenol A

The European Food Safety Authority’s (EFSA) re-evaluation of Bisphenol A (BPA) exposure and toxicity states that BPA, an endocrine disruptor, poses no health risk to consumers of any age group at current exposure levels.

Jan 21 19:02

The ‘hasbara’ tweeps who brought down Jim Clancy, and their ties to Israel and the Israel lobby

Charlie Hebdo Paris attack. On January 7, Clancy got into a late night Twitter spat regarding the French satirical magazine with online adversaries. When he told them they were ganging up on him and practicing “hasbara,” the Hebrew word for “explaining” that describes pro-Israel advocacy often at the behest of the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs, they lashed back as if the term were libelous.

Jan 21 18:32

World Economic Forum 2015: Global Governance In a World of Resistance

The annual meetings of the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland, bring together thousands of the world’s top corporate executives, bankers and financiers with leading heads of state, finance and trade ministers, central bankers and policymakers from dozens of the world’s largest economies; the heads of all major international organizations including the IMF, World Bank, World Trade Organization, Bank for International Settlements, UN, OECD and others, as well as hundreds of academics, economists, political scientists, journalists, cultural elites and occasional celebrities.

Jan 21 17:26

Art Cashin - Time For Draghi Talk Is Over

Jan 21 15:38

All Eyes on Europe: Massive Money-Printing Unleashed!

Europe is on fire and the European Central Bank has just the solution: More Money-Printing!

Jan 21 13:47

Former White Official Exposes Shocking Real Reason For Historic 58-Sigma Move By Swiss

What actually happened was the Swiss National Bank realized that the balance sheet of the central bank’s ratio to the Swiss GDP had already reached a level of nearly 100 percent. And given what’s going on in the world — we’ve got inflation of 23 percent in Argentina, it’s projected to be 17 percent in Russia — inflation is picking up rapidly in many parts of the world and social unrest is unfolding. All of that gives Switzerland inbound capital flight from other countries.

They concluded that the combination of euro quantitative easing, plus the inbound capital flight and the likelihood of more geopolitical confrontation with Russia, which also pushes money into Switzerland — all of that put them on a trajectory so that if they would have continued to defend the currency peg, the Swiss National Bank's balance sheet would have been over a staggering 200 percent of GDP within one year.

Jan 21 13:32

Right on cue: ECB to flood the market with cash

A proposal from the European Central Bank’s Frankfurt-based executive board calls for bond purchases of roughly €50 billion ($58 billion) a month that would last for a minimum of one year, according to people familiar with the matter, an indication that officials are weighing massive stimulus to shore up the eurozone’s fragile economy and boost inflation.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

So the ECB (like the FED) creates a ton of cash out of think air to buy up government and corporate bonds, which means eventually the ECB (like the FED) basically own the governments and corporations ... and all for the cost of ink and paper.

Jan 21 12:48

Russian Foreign Minister: Efforts to Isolate Russia Will Not Succeed

Russian FM kicks off annual press conference by reiterating President Putin's statement: "Isolationism policies will not work"

Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov held his annual end-of-year press conference in Moscow. Fielding questions from reporters for over two hours, the country’s top diplomat spoke about the situations in Ukraine, Syria and Russia’s relations with the West.

More than 370 journalists, including three journalists from Ukraine, were accredited, and the conference was broadcasted online in Russian, English and French on the Foreign Ministry’s website.

Jan 21 11:54

Importance of being Syria’s Assad

President Bashar al-Assad whom the US regarded all through to be “ a huge part of the problem, may also now be part of the solution”

On the other hand, the latest reports from Saudi Arabia show Crown Prince huddled with a delegation of American senators led by John McCain to discuss the Pentagon plan to arm and train the Syrian rebels. It seems for a moment that the ‘regime change’ agenda in Syria is back on the front burner of the Obama administration’s Middle East policies.

However, that will be overlooking the remarks by US secretary of state John Kerry on Wednesday voicing support for the Russian efforts to kick start negotiations between the Syrian government and the opposition figures in Moscow as well as de Mistura’s efforts for an Aleppo ceasefire.

Jan 21 10:50

The Danger of an MH-17 ‘Cold Case’

The Obama administration continues to drag its feet on releasing U.S. intelligence evidence on who shot down Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 six months ago, a failure that has given the guilty parties time to scatter and has created a new breeding ground for conspiracy theories.

Now more than six months after the shoot-down of a Malaysia Airlines plane over Ukraine, the refusal of the Obama administration to make public what intelligence evidence it has about who was responsible has created fertile ground for conspiracy theories to take root while reducing hopes for holding the guilty parties accountable.

Given the U.S. government’s surveillance capabilities – from satellite and aerial photographs to telephonic and electronic intercepts to human sources – American intelligence surely has a good idea what happened on July 17, 2014, when Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 crashed in eastern Ukraine killing all 298 people onboard.

Jan 21 10:45

America Is Open for Business in Iraq (Psst… Wanna Buy an M1 Tank?)

Are Tanks Good for Anything Other Than Profits?

Washington’s rallying cry now seems to be: “Wait for the spring offensive!” In translation that means: wait for the Iraqi army to get enough newly American-trained and -armed troops into action to make a move on Mosul. That city is, of course, the country’s second largest and still ruled by the new “caliphate” proclaimed by Islamic State head Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. All in all, not exactly inspiring stuff.

You can’t have victory if you have no idea where the finish line is. But there is one bright side to the situation. If you can’t create Victory in Iraq for future VI Day parades, you can at least make a profit from the disintegrating situation there.

Jan 21 09:59

‘They beat me’: Refugees face police abuse in France

A report by Human Rights Watch has outlined the violence and brutality of French police towards migrants camped out in the northern port town of Calais. There are over two thousand refugees in the city hoping to cross the channel to Britain.

Jan 21 08:07

Why Are Central Bankers Surprised by Monetary Disasters?

Again we see the adoption of a dialectical position. The mainstream media has been in full cry over the necessity for money printing and central bank bond purchases.

Now, comes a BIS former official – apparently someone with considerable clout – who says exactly the opposite thing. William White has come onto the record warning against what the European Central Bank plans to do as soon as possible.

Jan 20 19:48

Trolling Russia – by Israel Shamir

If the initiators expected Russians to be mad at Putin, they miscalculated. The Russian public is angry with the American organizers of the economical warfare, not with its own government.

Jan 20 12:10

Central bank prophet fears QE warfare pushing world financial system out of control

Former BIS chief economist warns that QE in Europe is doomed to failure and may draw the region into deeper difficulties

The economic prophet who foresaw the Lehman crisis with uncanny accuracy is even more worried about the world's financial system going into 2015.

Beggar-thy-neighbour devaluations are spreading to every region. All the major central banks are stoking asset bubbles deliberately to put off the day of reckoning. This time emerging markets have been drawn into the quagmire as well, corrupted by the leakage from quantitative easing (QE) in the West.

"We are in a world that is dangerously unanchored," said William White, the Swiss-based chairman of the OECD's Review Committee. "We're seeing true currency wars and everybody is doing it, and I have no idea where this is going to end."

Jan 20 10:32

First It Refused To Bail Out Its Insolvent Banks; Now Iceland Set To Officially Withdraw European Union Application

Iceland may be a small country, but when it comes to dealing with big problems it is truly the modern equivalent of David in the battle against the status quo Goliath. First, it was Iceland, and only Iceland, refusing to bail out its banks, when every other western nation was being held hostage by those who stood to lose the most from a financial collapse, and even going so far as throwing some of its banking executives in prison. And now, as MBL reports, Iceland's con­ser­v­a­tive In­de­pen­dence Party will sup­port a res­o­lu­tion in par­lia­ment to for­mally with­draw Ice­land's ap­pli­ca­tion to join the Eu­ro­pean Union.

Jan 20 09:52

European Parliament resolution of 15 January 2015 on the situation in Ukraine

A. whereas on 26 October 2014 Ukraine held parliamentary elections, which were conducted efficiently, in an orderly and peaceful manner and with general respect for fundamental freedoms, in spite of the ongoing conflict in the eastern regions and the illegal annexation of Crimea by Russia;

Webmaster's Commentary: 

European Parliament Legitimizes Lies

Jan 20 09:37

Gold's New Friend: The Swiss Franc!

While I predicted a huge rally in gold would usher in the new year of 2015 in a spectacular way, the top bank economists have failed again

Most of them predicted, “No rally for gold!” Their dire predictions in 2014 all failed to materialize, and this year they are off to an even worse start.

The bank economists, quite frankly, look ridiculous. They clearly need to reset their thinking about the powerful demand coming from billions of Chinese and Indian citizens, or they risk turning themselves into clownish figurines.

Jan 20 09:25

Release the Kraken!

Thoughts from the Frontline: The Swiss Release the Kraken!
And this was not a painless policy decision for the SNB. Citibank estimates the SNB’s losses to be close to 60 billion Swiss francs. Let’s try to add a little perspective on that. The US is (very) roughly 40 times the size of Switzerland in both GDP and population. At today’s conversion rate, the Swiss lost something like $70 billion if Citibank is right. That’s like the US Federal Reserve’s losing $2.8 trillion. That, my friends, will leave a red mark on any central bank’s balance sheet. Not that the Swiss can’t afford it or that they’re going to be out on the corner with a tin cup, but they do have a considerable quantity of euros that are now much less valuable. And dollars and yen and pounds and renminbi. But then again, they are in the privileged position of having a currency that the rest of the world wants, so much that in order to hold it you will have to take a haircut on your deposits at the SNB, a haircut that is going to increase

Jan 20 08:43

BEX Alert - "Five Russians detained in France on suspicion of planning attack - prosecutor"

Five Russians have been detained in France on suspicion of planning an attack, said the French prosecutor’s office in a statement as cited by AFP.

Five Chechens were held overnight on Monday in Beziers, a town in Languedoc in southern France on suspicion of planning a terror attack, the prosecutor of the city, Yvon Calvet, said on Tuesday.

The suspects’ ages range from 24 to 37, according to BFM TV.

The Russian embassy in Paris told RIA Novosti it has no information concerning the arrests at the moment.

According to Midi Libre, the Chechens are also suspected of hiding a cache of explosives, which was found near the Sauclieres stadium in Beziers.

Jan 20 08:19

Eric Dubin: ECB QE Imminent?

Jan 20 07:51

ECB (QE) May Deliver $635 Billion

Jan 20 02:51

Charlie Hebdo, Zionism & Media Deception

Mustapha pondered whether the attack was stage-managed by the intelligence services, considering the two deceased suspects were being closely surveyed and watched by French intelligence and police for years, their names even showing up on ‘terror watch’ and ‘no fly’ lists.

Mustapha noted in the interview that in Western countries “the full force of the law” is brought down upon critics of Zionism, whereas anti-Islamic neocon zealots are given a platform on mainstream media to spout lies and deceptions intended to demonize Muslims and Middle Eastern countries such as Iraq, Iran, Syria and Libya.

Jan 19 23:22

Challenge for Pope: Seize Chance for Religious Renewal

The world now needs a fearless champion with clout, another overturner of money tables, scatterer of vested interests, exposer of hypocrisy and scourge of the unjust... a genuinely heroic figure that ordinary folk around the world can look up to.

In any month nearly 200 Palestinian children are held in Israeli military detention and the numbers remain fairly constant.

His Holiness, on reflection, must know that the situation in Palestine is wretchedly deplorable and an ugly stain on civilization generally and Christendom in particular for allowing it to happen. Praying with villains like Peres and accepting their refusal to allow access to Gaza’s communities doesn’t cut the mustard. Extraordinary evil requires extraordinary measures.

Save you prayers, Holiness, for someone and something more deserving.
Are we just people who use fine and pious words?

Jan 19 23:00

Western politics of high-octane emotion

So America's top diplomat John Kerry wants to give France "a big hug" to condole over the recent spate of alleged terror attacks in that country. Speaking in Paris while laying a wreath for the 17 victims of violence, Kerry said that "America feels the pain of our oldest ally."

Jan 19 22:08

Trolling Russia

The edifice of world post-1991 order is collapsing right now before our eyes. President Putin’s decision to give a miss to the Auschwitz pilgrimage, right after his absence in Paris at the Charlie festival, gave it the last shove. It was good clean fun to troll Russia, as long as it stayed the course. Not anymore. Russia broke the rules.

Neither willingly nor easily did Russia break ranks. Putin tried to take Western baiting in his stride: be it Olympic games, Syria confrontation, gender politics, Georgian border, even Crimea-related sanctions. The open economic warfare was a game-changer. Russia felt attacked by falling oil prices, by rouble trouble, by credit downgrading. These developments are considered an act of hostility, rather than the result of “the hidden hand of the market”.

If the initiators expected Russians to be mad at Putin, they miscalculated. The Russian public is angry with the American organizers of the economical warfare, not with its own government.

Jan 19 18:28

Swiss Shocker Triggers Gigantic Losses For Banks, Hedge Funds And Currency Traders

The absolutely stunning decision by the Swiss National Bank to decouple from the euro has triggered billions of dollars worth of losses all over the globe. Citigroup and Deutsche Bank both say that their losses were somewhere in the neighborhood of 150 million dollars, a major hedge fund that had 830 million dollars in assets at the end of December has been forced to shut down, and several major global currency trading firms have announced that they are now insolvent.

Jan 19 18:00

Germany's Bundesbank Resumes Gold Repatriation; Transfers 120 Tonnes Of Physical Gold From Paris And NY Fed

A month ago we asked the following question: who in addition to the Netherlands has been quietly withdrawing their gold from the NY Fed. Was it Belgium? Or did the Dutch simply decide to haul back some more. Or did Germany finally get over its "logistical complications" which prevented it from transporting more than just a laughable 5 tons in 2013? And most importantly, did Germany finally grow a pair and decide not to let "diplomatic difficulties" stand between it and its gold? We now know the answer, and it was, indeed, the latter with confirmation coming from the Bundesbank itself. As the German Central Bank announced earlier today, after withdrawing an embarrassing 5 tonnes of gold from New York in 2013, its rate of repatriation soared, and in what appears to have been just the past two months, has transferred a whopping 85 tonnes of gold from 80 feet below street level at Liberty 33 back to Frankfurt!

Jan 19 17:38

Denmark acts over fallout from Swiss currency turmoil

Denmark cut its deposit rate to minus 0.2% from minus 0.05%. The lending rate was cut from 0.2% to 0.05%.

It makes the krone less attractive to investors, and eases pressure on the central bank to keep buying euros.

Denmark pegs its currency to the euro to help the country's exporters and maintain stable inflation.

But the country's central bank has been forced to intervene to defend the peg as the krone appreciated.

Jan 19 15:28

Christine Lagarde Calls For World To Embrace "New Multilateralism" Order In 2015

As 2015 begins, policymakers around the world are faced with three fundamental choices: to strive for economic growth or accept stagnation; to work to improve stability or risk succumbing to fragility; and to cooperate or go it alone. The stakes could not be higher; 2015 promises to be a make-or-break year for the global community. For starters, growth and jobs are needed to support prosperity and social cohesion in the wake of the Great Recession that began in 2008. Six years after the eruption of the financial crisis, the recovery remains weak and uneven. Global growth is projected at just 3.3% in 2014 and 3.8% in 2015. Some important economies are still fighting deflation. More than 200 million people are unemployed. The global economy risks getting stuck in a “new mediocre” – a prolonged period of slow growth and feeble job creation.

Jan 19 15:07

A challenge for Pope Francis: Seize the chance for religious “renewal"

Stuart Littlewood calls on Pope Francis to go beyond using fine and pious words, challenge Israeli crime in the Holy Land, and pluck up the courage to visit the besieged Gaza Strip.

Jan 19 14:29

Challenge for Pope: Seize Chance for Religious Renewal

The world now needs a fearless champion with clout, another overturner of money tables, scatterer of vested interests, exposer of hypocrisy and scourge of the unjust... a genuinely heroic figure that ordinary folk around the world can look up to.

Not many weeks after that bizarre presidential pray-in with the Pope, Israel launched its most recent murder spree, Operation Protective Edge, slaughtering nearly 2,200 including more than 500 children, seriously injuring thousands more, making countless families homeless, wreaking massive destruction on vital infrastructure and causing lethal public health problems.

His Holiness, on reflection, must know that the situation in Palestine is wretchedly deplorable and an ugly stain on civilization generally and Christendom in particular for allowing it to happen. Praying with villains like Peres and accepting their refusal to allow access to Gaza’s communities doesn’t cut the mustard. Extraordinary evil requires extraordinary measures.

Jan 19 14:19

Swedish PM: 'It was time' to recognise Palestine

Prime Minister Stefan Löfven has given his full backing to Sweden’s decision to recognise Palestine despite strong criticism both from Israel and opposition leaders.

Jan 19 14:18

Netanyahu, Europe’s far right find common ground

Jonathan Cook says Israel’s PM and Europe’s far right’s common vision is a Europe free of Jews, who should be in Israel, and free of Muslims, who risk undermining support for Israel.

Jan 19 14:17

The Syrian Ambassador’s Complaint

This is why they want to privatize the United Nations, so that the influential donors can control the decision-making mechanisms, without giving a damn about the provisions of the Charter.

Dr. Bashar al-Ja’afari, sat down with Al-Akhbar for an interview.
The veteran diplomat, who has held his position at the UN since 2006, and lives restricted to a 25-mile radius of New York City, has much more to say than the half hour allowed. Defiant as always, he discussed the challenges he faces at the UN, explained why he thinks the organization has lost its way, and censured Western states and media for their hostility toward the Syrian government.

Jan 19 13:23

'Francogeddon' sends German cities' debts soaring

Following the shock move last week to unpeg the Swiss Franc (CHF) from the Euro, estimates suggest that debt in German municipalities has gone up by €2 billion, it was reported on Monday.

Jan 19 12:06

I'm Maurice Sinet - "I Like Charlie Coulibaly"

The Western democracies have a real problem with the concept of "freedom of speech". Their hypocrisy and double standards know no borders. The inflicted state terrorism of the West against Muslims in the Middle East or non-white peoples in Africa or elsewhere is boundless. But when these downtrodden victims of Western genocidal attacks fight back, they are called "terrorists". Insults and incitement against Muslims and their prophet Mohammad falls allegedly under the concept of freedom of speech, which is assumed unlimited, however, when this noble concept is used against the atrocities committed by the Zionist occupying regime in Palestine or its US master, it's considered a "crime" by the French judiciary.

Jan 19 12:01

Netanyahu and Europe’s far right find common ground

Israel has been having its own internal debate about the significance of the Paris killings this month, with concerns quite separate from those expressed in Europe.

While Europeans are mired in debates about free speech and the role of Islam in secular societies, Israelis generally – and their prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, in particular – view the attacks as confirming Israel's place as the only safe haven for Jews around the world.

Jan 19 11:51

Police crackdown after Charlie Hebdo attack spreads across Europe

This weekend, police and military forces were deployed across Europe on an unprecedented scale. Security forces in France, Belgium, Germany, Greece and Britain are continuing a crackdown on suspected Islamists, arresting dozens of people, after the January 7 attack on the editorial offices of the weekly Charlie Hebdo in Paris.

Jan 19 11:01

Would forgiving Greece’s debt really be that bad?

"A debt is a debt and it is a contract," IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde told The Irish Times in an interview on Monday when asked about the general idea of holding a debt conference. "Defaulting, restructuring, changing the terms has consequences on the signature and the confidence in the signature," she said.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The instant Greece's debt is forgiven, every other EU member will demand the same. That is the reason for Christine Legarde's hard line.

Jan 19 09:53

Switzerland May Be Preparing for the End of the Euro

If you haven’t been paying attention in the last 24 hours, the currency and equity markets have been rocked by a surprise move to delink the existing currency peg between the Euro and the Swiss Franc. This move has set off what many are calling a “financial tsunami” that could leave behind a path of destruction across the continent.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is a "Bash the Swiss" article, but the reality is that with the ECB about to launch QE across Europe, the Swiss saw the losses from the resulting inflation as too great to accept.

Jan 19 08:05

Netanyahu says Europe's 'Islamization' pushing Israel to expand Asia trade

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Sunday that a wave of anti-Semitism and what he called “Islamization” in Western Europe are factors in the government’s push to expand trade with Asia.

Jan 19 07:59

ECB Stimulation: The Trap Closes

European Economy ... No More Excuses for Draghi ... For months, European Central Bank President Mario Draghi has hinted that he's ready to announce a full-blown program of quantitative easing. [Now] the EU Court of Justice's advocate general cleared away a possible legal obstacle.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

... which triggered the Swiss unpegging.

Beyond that, there is a simple process at work here. In a world using a debt-based currency issued by private central banks, the process of QE is how those bankers, using just ink and paper and numbers in a computer, come to own all the hard assets of planet earth.

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