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Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Meet Me In Mongolia

Peaceniks,

The DMZ would be a logical meeting place for Presidents Trump and Kim, cheap and practical. There are lots of other candidates, according to the new York Time. I really like the last one best. Ulan Bator is the capital city of Mongolia, which maintains good relations with all parties. This is a picture of the central square in August. Mongolians wear sweaters,  jackets and long trousers in August.

Peace in Our Time? 
Tom Luongo looks at this from some different angles, realistically. This can be win-win-win-etc. One big question is whether the US is politically unified enough to keep negotiated agreements. It has not been at all reliable in Syria, where Kerry/Obama would negotiate, and the Pentagon would completely betray the agreement. (The left hand seems aware of what the right hand is doing, but cannot control it.)

Could the Trump/Kim Summit Succeed? 
This article is guardedly hopeful, as am I. We would not be this far along unless a basic framework had already been worked out by North and South Koreans, and tacitly approved by some in the American, Chinese and Russian power structures. The American power structure is in some kind of covert civil war, as far as I can tell. If Trump can have military assurances of backing, then he can negotiate. What might be the shelf life of those assurances? Is the deal with Iran an indicator? Trump threatens it, but has not actually broken it. North Korea will need US nukes out of South Korea for this to work. that will need to be assured by China and Russia, also. It is logical for Korea to unify and get all foreign troops out. Koreans would like that. It's the obvious solution, but holds it's own (eventual) risks for China, US, Russia and Japan.

CIA Director and incoming Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo says (among other things) that China poses a greater threat to the US than does Russia (Duh, but how odd to hear a politician say something truthy!) He fails to mention the US threat to the US, which is the elephant in the room. Pompeo is in-line with Trump. Tillerson is "thanked-for-service".

Russia just lost 20 experienced military pilots in a very-reliable Antonov-26 transport plane attempting to land at their base in Syria. There were other high ranking officers aboard. This looks like the ideal setting for an electronic warfare shoot-down. Who would do that? Only the US and Israel would seem to have the motive and means. That does not include everybody in those countries, of course...

This comment from a Russian General refers to generalities, not this specific accidental crash of a military transport bringing Russian pilots and officers to Russia's Syrian air base:
Gerasimov said Russia would respond to a U.S. strike on Syria if the lives of Russian servicemen were threatened, targeting any missiles and launchers involved: "In case there is a threat to the lives of our military, the Russian Armed Force will take retaliatory measures both over the missiles and carriers that will use them," the Russian General said. 

Opaque threats against Russia for completely fact free accusations of poisoning in UK, appear poised to justify more attacks of some kind against Russia(n interests). Foreign Minister Lavrov points out that there are channels for this, that Russia will happily proceed through these channels, and that a bit of evidence is always needed to get started, like some samples of the poison, for instance.
“As soon as the rumors came up that the poisoning of Skripal involved a Russia-produced agent, which almost the entire English leadership has been fanning up, we sent an official request for access to this compound so that our experts could test it in accordance with the Chemical Weapons Convention [CWC],” Lavrov said. So far the request has been ignored by the British side, he added. 
"We have certainly heard the ultimatum voiced in London,” Russia's top diplomat Sergey Lavrov said. “The spokesperson for the Foreign Ministry has commented on our attitude to this,” he added referring to Maria Zakharova branding of May’s appearance in Parliament as a “circus.” 

The UK kicks out some Russian diplomats and huddles the western team at the UN to decide how to counter this most recent Russian lack of response to provocation. Maybe some evidence will be presented to the club, maybe not. Why bother?

Hungary moves to repatriate gold from vaults in London. (Gold is better than trust. Global banking is due to reset "bigly" soon.)

"The Everything Bubble" is waiting for the pin, David Stockman The top 10% have "profited" from the bubble in all investments from stocks to junk bonds. This bubble has been supported, which has been part of the impoverishment of everybody else. That is a fragile system, and the repesentations of wealth are a mirage, as soon as there is a call for them. It's inevitable, but when?

These graphs point out that it is not actually about "economics". It's about clearer models of reality, more easily analyzed.
"The global economy is set to continue increasing its capacity to produce more and produce it more efficiently.  However, excluding Africa, the populations capable of childbirth and their offspring are set to accelerate their declines...and resultant global consumption hopelessly overmatched versus the significant overcapacity being created.  Significant depopulation of young populations is a given while elderly populations continue exploding.  Only through this lens can one understand the true problems facing an economic system premised on infinite growth.  We are at the end of an epoch and the hopefully the beginning of another...the confusion in the interim and messy attempts to sustain the old system shouldn't be surprising, although these attempts haven't a chance to succeed."

Eleni sends this article about the cyber-war for our minds, now being fought by active duty military and civilian contractors the world over. Let's zoom in on current champ, Israeli Defense Force and (paid) friends.
How Israel and its partisans work to censor the Internet

X-class Solar Flare is set to sweep across out home planet Wednesday (today), interrupting Israeli cyber-mind-control sorties and your smartphone.

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