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 Post subject: Re: PAN-CHAOS - Libya > Egypt > Syria > Iran > Iraq > US
PostPosted: Wed Nov 08, 2017 8:16 pm 
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Joined: Jul 26, 2009
Posts: 14812

Published on Oct 23, 2015
A new report reveals that eight of the 12 surviving sons of Saudi Arabia’s founding monarch are supporting a palace coup to oust King Salman.

British daily, the Independent, quoted an unnamed Saudi prince as saying that there is an increasing pressure within the royal family to end the internal power struggle that has erupted since King Salman inherited the throne early this year. He said a clear majority of powerful clerics also back the move to oust the current King and install his younger brother, Ahmed bin Abdulaziz, in his place. The prince also predicted that eventually either King Salman will step down or Prince Ahmed will become Crown Prince, with full control over the whole country. The prince, who was not named for quote-security reasons, is reportedly the author of two recently published letters calling for the royal family to replace the current Saudi leadership.

Israel’s Geopolitical Gut Check - -> ... gut-check/
September 6, 2017

A once favorable balance of power has shifted, clipping Tel Aviv's wings.

Tel Aviv has had a bad few weeks. A once favorable regional balance of power has suddenly shifted in a direction that clips Israel’s wings—all while adversaries on its borders are making swift strategic gains.

At the core of the issue is Israel’s obsession with Iranian ascendancy in the region. The 2015 nuclear deal that ended the Islamic Republic’s isolation was a real setback for the Israeli establishment, but what really hit home this summer was a steady succession of political and military victories for the Syrian government of Bashar al-Assad and his Iranian and Hezbollah allies.

So Israel’s power players headed to the United States and Russia to try to claw back some lost leverage on the ground.

They returned from Washington empty-handed, unable to wrest guarantees on keeping Iranian and allied troops out of southern Syria, where the U.S. and Russia in July established a de-escalation zone near Israel’s border.

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Palace Coup in Riyadh - Thierry Meyssan ->

While the war against Daesh is drawing to a close in Iraq and Syria, and the war against the pseudo-Kurdistan seems to have been avoided, several States of the Greater Middle East are regaining the initiative. Profiting from the fluidity of the moment, the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia has brutally eliminated the members of the royal family who may be in a position to contest his Power. So not only has the regional balance of power been modified by war, but one of the region’s main actors has just changed its objectives.
On 3 November, Israël declared itself ready to protect the Druzes, from the South of Syria, against the jihadists who had just attacked the Syrian village of Hader. Since the beginning of 2017, Tel-Aviv has been trying to create a Druze separatist movement in the South of Syria on the model of the one it had built with the Kurds from the North and Iraq. Mossad recruited Syrian Major Khaldoun Zeineddine, who attempted to declare a « Druzistan ». But he managed to raise only a dozen combatants willing to fight Damascus.

On the same day, Turkey gathered the different jihadist organisations from Idleb in order to create a « Government of National Salvation », presided by Muhammad Al-Sheikh, and including Riyad Al-Asaad as Vice-Prime Minister. For the governorate of Idleb, Ankara recycled the idea of its Qatari ally, which, in 2012, had already founded an alternative Syrian government under the title of the « Syrian National Coalition ».

There has been no sign from Teheran, probably because the Islamic Republic of Iran is the only one of the four great States which has beaten both Daesh and the Barzanis. It therefore has no interest in changing the deal.

The surprise came from Riyadh. The royal family has not sought to impose a new regional order, but Prince Mohammed ben Salame (« MBS ») has shaken up the fossilised structure of his kingdom.

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6 Nov 2017
1 \ I published on channel 10 a cable sent to Israeli diplomats asking to lobby for Saudis\Hariri &against Hezbollah
2 \ The cable sent from the MFA in Jerusalem to all Israeli embassies toes the Saudi line regarding the Hariri resignation
3 \ The Israeli diplomats were instructed to Demarch their host governments over the domestic political situation in Lebanon. Very rare move
4 \ The cable said: "You need to stress that the Hariri resignation shows how dangerous Iran and Hezbollah are for Lebanon's security"
5 \ "Hariri's resignation proves wrong the argument that Hezbollah participation in the government stabilizes Lebanon", the Cable added
6 \ The cable instructed Israeli diplomat to support Saudi Arabia over its war with the Houthis in Yemen
7 \ The cable also stressed: "The missile launch by the Houthis towards Riyadh calls for applying more pressure on Iran & Hezbollah". END

Xi Jinping: the Geo-Economic Emperor with a 15 year head start - Alfredo Jalife-Rahme ->

While the Western Press mocks the Grand Mass of the Chinese Communist Party’s Congress, Alfredo Jalife is taking President Xi’s announcements very seriously. Far from comparing him to an emperor, Jalife sees him as one of the senior officials that have made China “millénaire”. Jalife observes how Xi is following through with the planned Silk Route and is demonstrating his willingness to partner Western investors through a dollar offering. He also comments on the reform of the military’s structure of command with a view to developing it.

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Russia beats Saudi Arabia as China's top crude oil supplier in 2016 - -> ... SKBN1570VJ
January 23, 2017

BEIJING (Reuters) - Russia overtook Saudi Arabia in 2016 to became China’s biggest crude oil supplier for the first year ever, customs data showed on Monday, boosted by robust demand from independent Chinese “teapot” refineries.

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How China neatly illustrates the Saudi oil dilemma - -> ... l-dilemma/
05 June 2017

Saudi Arabia’s dilemma is shown quite neatly by its decision to raise crude oil prices for Asian refiners even though the kingdom is steadily surrendering market share in China, its biggest customer.
Saudi Aramco, the state-owned oil company, lifted the official selling price for its benchmark Arab Light grade to Asian refiners by 60c a barrel for July shipments, according to a statement released on Sunday.
Arab Light cargoes for July will now be sold at a discount of 25c a barrel to the Oman-Dubai crude price, up from a discount of 85c for June shipments.
China shows the dilemma

But while it’s relatively easy for the Saudis to increase their official selling price by more than their customers expected, it’s less easy to fight off competitors from outside the agreement to restrict production.
China, the world’s biggest crude importer, is a case in point.
Saudi Arabia supplied 3.956-million tonnes of crude to China in April, according to customs figures released on May 23, taking their year-to-date total to 18.314-million.
This gave the Saudis a share of Chinese imports of 11.5% in April, lower than their January-April share of 13.2%.
What is probably more worrying for the Saudis is that their market share in China is heading in the wrong direction, given it was 13.4% for the whole of 2016.
In contrast, the share of Chinese imports enjoyed by Brazil, a producer outside the Opec and allies agreement, is rising.

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What the Saudi Shake up Means for China - -> ... for-china/

Developments in Saudi Arabia, the world’s largest or second largest oil producer, will have major implications for China, the world’s largest oil importer. China has an interest in low oil prices: every dollar increase in the price of oil suppresses Chinese economic activity by billions of dollars. A 2015 IMF study projected that lower oil prices would, by 2020, increase global GDP between 0.4 and 0.6 percent and Chinese GDP specifically would rise between 0.5 and 2.0 percent. Other studies (in Chinese) suggest that low commodity prices save the Chinese economy approximately $460 billion per year.
China has a unique – and possibly highly constructive – role to play in Gulf security. In the short term, visits from high-level Chinese officials to Saudi Arabia (and finalizing some of the $70 billion in China-Saudi deals) could bolster support for the Crown Prince’s reform program. China has highly workable relationships with Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Iran, and could play an important role in facilitating dialogue and reducing tensions across the region.

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Moscow Outmaneuvers Washington’s Kurdistan Project - F. William Engdahl -> ... n-project/

Russian Oil Geopolitics

A crucial if little-noted factor in making the strategic shift in the geopolitical energy field of the Iraqi and Syrian Kurdish regions in the last months has been Russia, specifically Russia’s giant state-owned Rosneft.

Surprising many, just after the September 25 Iraqi Kurd referendum vote, Rosneft CEO, Igor Sechin announced that Rosneft had agreed to buy control of Iraqi Kurdistan’s main oil pipeline, boosting its investment in the autonomous region to $4 billion according to remarks by Sechin on October 18 at a conference this author attended in Italy two days before the signing of the deal.

Rosneft plans to increase pipeline capacity to 950,000 bpd. Under the agreement Rosneft will control the majority 60% with the rest held by the current operator, the Kurdish KAR Group in Erbil. In addition to investing $3.5 billion into the Kurdish pipeline, Rosneft earlier this year lent the regional Kurdish government $1.2 billion to ease a budget crisis, making Russia far and away the largest foreign investor in the Iraqi Kurdish region.

The same day, October 19, the predominantly Kurdish Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), strongly backed by US weapons and training, in the ongoing war in Syria’s oil and gas-rich Deir Ezzor province, made a surprise deal to turn over the rich gas field to troops of the Russian Ground Forces, according to a report in the Beirut Almasdar News.

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The inside story of the Saudi night of long knives - -> ... ng-knives/

Princes, ministers and a billionaire are 'imprisoned' in the Riyadh Ritz-Carlton while the Saudi Arabian Army is said to be in an uproar

The House of Saud’s King Salman devises an high-powered “anti-corruption” commission and appoints his son, Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman, a.k.a. MBS, as chairman.

Right on cue, the commission detains 11 House of Saud princes, four current ministers and dozens of former princes/cabinet secretaries – all charged with corruption. Hefty bank accounts are frozen, private jets are grounded. The high-profile accused lot is “jailed” at the Riyadh Ritz-Carlton.

War breaks out within the House of Saud, as Asia Times had anticipated back in July. Rumors have been swirling for months about a coup against MBS in the making. Instead, what just happened is yet another MBS pre-emptive coup.

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Saudi Arabia gets its first real government - David P. Goldman, Spengler -> ... overnment/

A couple of years ago I attended seminars with Chinese and Israeli counterterrorism experts in Beijing, in my capacity as a board member of a foundation that promotes Sino-Israel relations. A senior Chinese official complained that the Saudi royal family funds every radical madrassa in Xinjiang province, where Muslim Uyghurs of Turkish ethnicity form the majority. With a long and porous border stretching through sparsely-populated lands, Chinese security couldn’t prevent the funds from pouring in.

I asked our Chinese hosts why they didn’t remonstrate with the Saudi government. The Chinese official said, “We talk to the Saudis all the time, and they say they will have nothing to do with it. But this is not a government. It is a family! Some crazy cousin is always sending money to terrorists through informal finance channels.”

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