Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Negotiating Settlements

​Assessing Risks,​

North Korea's MAD threat against South Korea is massive artillery dug into mountains that can rain death on Seoul, killing millions​. 
The ICBM to place an EMP nuke 50 miles above Kansas and knock out half the US electric grid is far less certain. 
Having both hands empty of plausible threat must feel terribly wrong. It is what is being "asked" by the US and South Korea."​
North Korea has deployed an estimated 1,000 artillery pieces along the border, posing a significant threat to Seoul and the metropolitan area.
In a speech marking the 68th anniversary of the outbreak of the 1950-53 Korean War, Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon said that "moving (North Korea's) long-range artillery to the rear is under discussion," as he explained what types of good-will steps between the sides have been taken in recent months.
Lee's comments appear to be Seoul's first official confirmation of media reports that South Korea demanded that the North reposition its forward-deployed artillery pieces during inter-Korean military talks this month. Seoul's Defense Ministry, which has denied those reports, said it had no immediate comment on Lee's speech.​"​
http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2018/06/25/us-to-present-north-korea-with-post-summit-asks-report.html

A history of nuclear weapons on the Korean Peninsula, is interesting but uses officially released and partial military documentation. It has been
​told​ to me, for instance, that US Nuclear subs still visit the underground cave-base in Yokosuka​
that the Japanese navy made in WW-2. Official US military stance is that there are no nuclear armed vessels in the Western Pacific. That is more politically comfortable in Japan, where people are sensitive about nuclear weapons.
“Tree-Trimming Incident” in August 1976, US forces in Korea were placed on alert in response to a fatal skirmish between US and North Korean border guards over American attempts to trim a tree in the demilitarized zone. As part of the alert, the United States deployed nuclear and other forces in operations that signaled preparations for an attack on North Korea. Nuclear-capable B-52 bombers flew north from Guam in the direction of Pyongyang. It is not clear whether North Korean radars could see the bombers, but since North Korean soldiers did not interfere with tree trimming again, some people may have concluded that the US nuclear threat worked.
https://www.globalresearch.ca/a-history-of-us-nuclear-weapons-in-south-korea/5623878

The Okinawa nuclear missile attack order mistake, during DEFCON-2 status in Cuban Missile Crisis:
By Bordne's account, at the height of the Cuban Missile Crisis, Air Force crews on Okinawa were ordered to launch 32 missiles, each carrying a large nuclear warhead...
According to Bordne's account—which, recall, is based on hearing just one side of a phone call—the situation of one launch crew was particularly stark: All its targets were in Russia. Its launch officer, a lieutenant, did not acknowledge the authority of the senior field officer—i.e. Capt. Bassett—to override the now-repeated order of the major. The second launch officer at that site reported to Bassett that the lieutenant had ordered his crew to proceed with the launch of its missiles! Bassett immediately ordered the other launch officer, as Bordne remembers it, “to send two airmen over with weapons and shoot the [lieutenant] if he tries to launch without [either] verbal authorization from the ‘senior officer in the field’ or the upgrade to DEFCON 1 by Missile Operations Center.” About 30 yards of underground tunnel separated the two Launch Control Centers.
https://thebulletin.org/okinawa-missiles-october8826

Captain William Bassett received the orders to launch his four nukes. They even went through three layers of security codes, getting confirmation each time that they were correct.
https://paleofuture.gizmodo.com/another-day-another-story-about-how-america-almost-sta-1738998649

​What's to be gained from the US/Russia July summit?​  (There are lots of possibilities and good trades to be made. What will the deep state allow?)
​"​Both Russia and the United States are set to invest billions in modernizing their nuclear arsenals, which, although positive from a safety and reliability standpoint, create the impression of a new “arms race,” as the presidents acknowledged in a March phone call. An especially worrying new dimension to the nuclear risk is the possibility that cyber attacks by states or non-state actors could lead either party to raise its nuclear alert level, thus triggering a matching response from the other side, and possibly touching off a dangerous escalatory cycle.
.. A simple but vital step toward such de-escalation could be for the two presidents to reiterate the joint view of Presidents Reagan and Gorbachev from their 1986 Reykjavik summit, that “a nuclear war cannot be won, and so should never be fought.” In fact, thirty-two years ago the U.S. and Soviet leaders discussed the possibility of eliminating nuclear weapons altogether, a goal which then Presidents Obama and Medvedev confirmed and supported in 2009."

​Tom Luongo has a more in-depth view, and reminds that the US only negotiates when it is in a weak position, as in Syria. He believes this summit is mostly about getting the US forces out of their Al Tanf base in southern Syria, which will otherwise be overrun, by Syrian Army forces, backed up by 1000 elite Russian infantry now waiting near Palmyra.​ Assorted "moderate rebels" in Southern Syria have been supplied with advanced weapons, like TOW missiles, across the Jordanian border, but just now told that they are "on their own" and won't get US air support. They will have to negotiate their way out or fight...
"Trump needs to walk away with a win from any meeting with Putin and in Syria there is one.  He can Declare victory over ISIS in Dara’a and the Southwestern Syrian desert.
Negotiating a withdrawal of troops from Al-Tanf is the first part of a deal towards a new multi-party reality which lessens Iran’s future threat to Israel, which is what this is all about now anyway.
I don’t think there’s much more on the table than this officially at the moment, unfortunately.  Trump is still fully committed to trade and tariff wars to force substantive change to the way the world trades goods.  So, he’ll offer up concessions on Nordstream 2 and sanctions on Rusal, the State owned Russian aluminum company, to get Putin to give up his support of Iran and its ‘nuclear ambitions.’
This Kissinger-esque approach of offering nothing for something will not work since Putin holds all the cards on these issues.  The more likely scenario is a Singapore-like agreement to begin draw downs of U.S. troops in Central Asia, including Afghanistan and Iraq, in exchange for a security guarantee from Putin on Iran’s presence in Syria.

​How the US created Europe's Refugee Crisis (on Obama's watch, but he was just a spokesmodel...) "Arab Spring", Afghanistan, and so on. 

1% of the (surviving) humans in the world are refugees. (Thanks for the "freedom", America!) There's also a downside. "Peaceful" places are "less peaceful".

Immigrant parents are no longer being referred for criminal prosecution (They have to take the kids away from anybody jailed on criminal charges.)

“We cannot allow all of these people to invade our Country. When somebody comes in, we must immediately, with no Judges or Court Cases, bring them back from where they came.”  (Of course it is stickier than that.95% of current immigrants are fleeing undeclared-war in central America, and have legitimate asylum claims, involving American dirty-war in their home countries. The empire does not want that explored in the courts, or anywhere else.)

When are America’s global corporations and Wall Street going to sit down with President Trump and explain to him that his trade war is not with China but with them.  The biggest chunk of America’s trade deficit with China is the offshored production of America’s global corporations. When the corporations bring the products that they produce in China to the US consumer market, the products are classified as imports from China...  “Making America great again” means dealing with these corporations, not with China...  The job loss from offshoring also has had a huge and dire impact on Federal Reserve policy.  With the decline in income growth, the US economy stalled. The Federal Reserve under Alan Greenspan substituted an expansion in consumer credit for the missing growth in consumer income in order to maintain aggregate consumer demand. Instead of wage increases, Greenspan relied on an increase in consumer debt to fuel the economy... The credit expansion and consequent rise in real estate prices, together with the deregulation of the banking system, especially the repeal of the Glass-Steagall Act, produced the real estate bubble and the fraud and mortgage-backed derivatives that gave us the 2007-08 financial crash. The Federal Reserve responded to the crash not by bailing out consumer debt but by bailing out the debt of its only constituency—the big banks...  The Federal Reserve has learned that it can keep afloat the Ponzi scheme that is the US economy by printing money with which to support financial asset prices.  The alleged rise in interest rates by the Federal Reserve are not real interest rates rises.  Even the under-reported inflation rate is higher than the interest rate increases, with the result that the real interest rate falls.  If the stock market tries to sell off, before much damage can be done the Federal Reserve steps in and purchases S&P futures, thus driving up stock prices... As I have explained previously, the Ponzi scheme falls apart when it becomes impossible to continue to support the dollar as burdened as the dollar is by debt levels and abundance of dollars that could be dumped on the exchange markets.  This is why Washington is determined to retain its hegemony.  It is Washington’s hegemony over Japan, Europe, and the UK that protects the American Ponzi scheme.  The moment one of these central banks ceases to support the dollar, the others would follow, and the Ponzi scheme would unravel.

Dear High School Graduates, Charles Hugh Smith:
Here's the summary: the status quo is pressuring you to accept its "solutions": borrow mega-bucks to attend college, then buy a decaying bungalow or hastily constructed stucco box for $800,000 in a "desirable" city, pay sky-high income and property taxes on your earnings, and when the stress of all these crushing financial burdens ruins your health, well, we've got meds to "help" you--lots of meds at insane price points paid for by insurance-- if you have "real" insurance without high deductibles, of course.

An essay on 25 years of being homeless, by an Australian man with mental illness, raised in an orphanage, beaten and shunned on the streets, who moved to a forest for 10 years, and almost died. This is fairly brief and extremely good. (I suspect Gregory Smith was in the orphanage due to a parent having bipolar, which is passed down as an autosomal dominant trait, which he got. It is quite treatable for the majority of people. He seems clear and lucid.)

AT&T collaborates with NSA spying through web of secretive buildings in the US. 
https://techcrunch.com/2018/06/25/nsa-att-intercept-surveillance/

The latest study shows that the US oil and gas supply chain emits about 13 million metric tons of methane, the main component of natural gas, every year. That's much higher than the US Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA's) estimate of about 8 million metric tons.

​Our future is "crumbling before our eyes", Chris Hedges looks at how the steel reinforcement in concrete inevitably rusts and destroys the concrete. You've seen it, especially curbs, especially where salt is used on the roads, because the chloride ions work particularly quickly to cause rust where you can't see it.
The time lapse video of the building of a wind turbine is especially informative, in the middle of this essay. 96,000 pounds of welded steel rebar and 53 mixing trucks full of concrete are only the beginning.​

Here is the concrete engineering science regarding "corrosion of embedded metals".

How to Start and Maintain a Microrevolutionary Project: This is a German Commune, started in 1986, by  17 completely committed and apparently successful adults and 3 children, who bought a large property outright and began living it it with all money held communally. This is full commitment of already-saved and substantial resources, by people competent enough to have accumulated those resources. They are now 60 adults and 20 children/teens.
"To become a member, one needs to give all the property and savings to the commune. However, it is possible to negotiate a sum of money in case of exit from the commune to start a new life."

Considering the Cost

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