U.S. holds Navy exercise in the Gulf

U.S. holds Navy exercise in the Gulf

July 7, 2008

The U.S. Navy said on Monday it was carrying out an exercise in the Gulf, days after vowing that Iran will not be allowed to block the waterway which carries crude from the world’s largest oil-exporting region.

“The aim of Exercise Stake Net is to practise the tactics and procedures of protecting maritime infrastructure such as gas and oil installations,” Commodore Peter Hudson said in a U.S. Fifth Fleet statement.

The head of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards said in remarks published late last month that Tehran would impose controls on shipping in the Gulf and the strategic Strait of Hormuz if it was attacked.

Speculation about a possible attack on Iran because of its nuclear programme has risen since a report last month said Israel had practised such a strike.

Vice-Admiral Kevin Cosgriff, the commander of the U.S. Navy’s Fifth Fleet, said last week the United States would not allow Iran to block the Gulf.

Fear of an escalation in the standoff between the West and Iran, the world’s fourth largest oil producer, has helped propel oil prices over $140 a barrel.

Two U.S. vessels were taking part in the exercise alongside a British warship and one from Bahrain, a Gulf Arab ally which hosts the Fifth Fleet. “Stake Net seeks to help ensure a lawful maritime order as well as improve relationships between regional partners,” the fleet’s statement said.


Iran’s Revolutionary Guards Hold War Games

June 7, 2008

Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guards began military maneuvers on Monday, news agencies said, the same day the U.S. Navy said it was carrying out an exercise in the Gulf.

The war games were conducted by missile units of the Guards’ naval and air forces, the Fars and Mehr news agencies said. They said the exercises, which began a few hours ago, were aimed at improving combat readiness and capability.

The reports did not give details of where the exercise was taking place. The Guards often conduct maneuvers in the Gulf.

Speculation about a possible attack on Iran because of its disputed nuclear program has risen since the New York Times newspaper reported last month that Israel’s armed forces had practiced such a strike.

Read Full Article Here


Military action ‘would destabilise Iraq’

The Independent
July 6, 2008

Iraq will be plunged into a new war if Israel or the US launches an attack on Iran, Iraqi leaders have warned. Iranian retaliation would take place in Iraq, said Dr Mahmoud Othman, the influential Iraqi MP.

The Iraqi government’s main allies are the US and Iran, whose governments openly detest each other. The Iraqi government may be militarily dependent on the 140,000 US troops in the country, but its Shia and Kurdish leaders have long been allied to Iran. Iraqi leaders have to continually perform a balancing act in which they seek to avoid alienating either country.

The balancing act has become more difficult for Iraq since George Bush successfully requested $400m (£200m) from Congress last year to fund covert operations aimed at destabilising the Iranian leadership. Some of these operations are likely to be launched from Iraqi territory with the help of Iranian militants opposed to Tehran. The most effective of these opponent groups is the Mujahedin-e-Khalq (MEK), which enraged the Iraqi government by staging a conference last month at Camp Ashraf, north-east of Baghdad. It demanded the closure of the Iranian embassy and the expulsion of all Iranian agents in Iraq. “It was a huge meeting” said Dr Othman. “All the tribes and political leaders who are against Iran, but are also against the Iraqi government, were there.” He said the anti-Iranian meeting could not have taken place without US permission.

The Americans disarmed the 3,700 MEK militants, who had long been allied to Saddam Hussein, at Camp Ashraf in 2003, but they remain well-organised and well-financed. The extent of their support within Iran remains unknown, but they are extremely effective as an intelligence and propaganda organisation.

Though the MEK is on the State Department’s list of terrorist groups, the Pentagon and other US institutions have been periodically friendly to it. The US task force charged by Mr Bush with destabilising the Iranian government is likely to co-operate with it.

In reaction to the conference, the Iraqi government, the US and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) have started secret talks on the future of the MEK with the Iraqi government pressing for their expulsion from Iraq. Dr Othman, who speaks to the MEK frequently by phone, said: “I pressed them to get out of Iraq voluntarily because they are a card in the hands of the Americans.”

An embarrassing aspect of the American pin-prick war against Iran is that many of its instruments were previously on the payroll of Saddam Hussein. The MEK even played a role in 1991 in helping to crush the uprising against the Baathist regime at the end of the Gulf war. The dissidents from Arab districts in southern Iran around Ahwaz were funded by Saddam Hussein’s intelligence organisations, which orchestrated the seizure of the Iranian embassy in London in 1980 which was supposedly carried out by Arab nationalists from Iran.

The one community in Iran most likely to oppose the Tehran government is the Iranian Kurds. There have been an increasing number of attacks by PJAK, the Iranian wing of the Turkish PKK, which claims to be a separate party. Based in the Kandil mountains in Iraqi Kurdistan, PJAK has carried out frequent raids into Iran and has reportedly been able to win local support. But it would be extremely dangerous for the US to be seen as a supporter of PJAK as this would offend the Turks who have a military co-operation agreement with Iran against terrorism

Read Full Article Here

Senior Arab official warns of oil price hike if Iran attacked

Israel: US leaders divided on Iran war

Iran warns US against new adventurism

Kuwait: Iran strike reports exaggerated

Ahmadinejad: Israel and U.S. won’t dare attack Iran

US Pentagon doubts Israeli intelligence over Iran’s nuclear programme

Iran: Oil unlikely to surge to $250

Iran says offers talks without nuclear freeze

Coup on Iran & False Flag News Archive


Military & anti-Iran groups hold secret meeting

Military & anti-Iran groups hold secret meeting

Press TV
June 26, 2008

US officials and heads of four Kurdish anti-Iran groups have held a secret meeting in the Iraqi city of Sulaimaniyah, a Kurdish website says.

The two-day meeting was aimed at coordination of the US and the anti-Iran groups on mounting more pressure on the Islamic Republic.

Ten American military officers and leaders of four Kurdish terrorist groups attended the meeting in the Palace Hotel in Sulaimaniyah, northern Iraq, the website said.

During the meeting, the Kurdish leaders called on the US officials to pursue the same policies, which led to fall of the Iraqi Baath regime, in a bid to overthrow the Iranian government.

The latest developments within the anti-revolutionary groups indicate that winning the US cooperation and support is the groups’ objective.

Kurdistan Democratic Party’s former Secretary Mostafa Hejri, had reportedly underlined cooperation with the US against Iran as a “necessity”, in a meeting he held with students of Arbil University last year.

General Secretary of Komala terrorist group, Abdulah Mohtadi had also officially affirmed the need of monetary and arms support from the US.

Mostafa Hejri, Abdulah Mohtadi, secretary-general of a faction of the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan, Abdullah Hassanzadeh, and the general secretary of the Revolutionary Union of Kurdistan, Hussein Yazdanpanah were the four Kurdish leaders attending the meeting.

AIPAC’s Iran war resolution gets 222 bipartisan cosponsors

Iran strike in the air as US and Israeli military chiefs meet,25197,23917181-2703,00.html

Iran’s Guards say U.S. to face “tragedy” if it hits Iran

’Iran conflict could open Pandora’s box’

Congressional Resolution Demands Bush Act on Iran

Coup on Iran & False Flag News Archive


Energy expert: Gas could reach $15 per gallon

Experts Push “Peak Oil” Scam to Predict $15 a Gallon Gas Prices

May 26, 2008

Editor’s Note: The following video is a prime example of hysterical “Peak Oil” scaremongering. In fact, there is no shortage of oil — the reserves are increasing, not decreasing. Consider the following examples: In 2006, Chevron announced a huge oil discovery in the the Lower Tertiary zone of the Gulf of Mexico, described as “one of the nation’s biggest oil discoveries in decades,” and Brazil discovered giant new offshore oil fields in 2005 (expected to produce 773 million barrels of oil by 2025). Add to this BP’s discovery of new oil fields near the Shetland Islands, recent discoveries in the Timor Sea, Yemen, Tunisia, Libya, offshore Trinidad, in Pakistan, Angola, in the Ordovician Red River Strata of southeastern Saskatchewan, and elsewhere. Earlier this month, the Kurds of northern Iraq announced a major oil find, estimated at about 2 billion barrels. In the last 20 years, known reserves have doubled. Currently there are somewhere in the neighborhood of 680 billion barrels of Middle East reserve oil alone.

Add to this an “intriguing theory now permeating oil company research staffs suggests that crude oil may actually be a natural inorganic product, not a stepchild of unfathomable time and organic degradation. The theory suggests there may be huge, yet-to-be-discovered reserves of oil at depths that dwarf current world estimates,” writes Chris Bennett (see Lindsey Williams interview below). “Deeply entrenched in our culture is the belief that at some point in the relatively near future we will see the last working pump on the last functioning oil well screech and rattle, and that will be that. The end of the Age of Oil. And unless we find another source of cheap energy, the world will rapidly become a much darker and dangerous place.” It is a meticulously nurtured myth.

Peak Oil takes a page from publicly available CFR and Club of Rome strategy manuals that say global government needs to control the world population through neo-feudalism by creating artificial scarcity that will result in massive social unrest, widespread famine, and endless war. $15 a gallon gas will most certainly help this agenda along.

From David Edwards and Raw Story, May 24:

Robert Hirsch, senior advisor for Science Applications International Corporation, sat down with MSNBC’s Alex Witt to discuss the possibility of an upcoming oil crisis. Hirsch says that gas could reach $15/gallon within a few years because it is “essentially certain” the world has reached the maximum levels of oil production.

“The problem is that there’s not that much oil left in the ground,” Hirsch says. “What we’ve done is been very fortunate to have oil production increase as our economies have developed over the past decades. And now we’re reaching a point where we’re about to get, or we may be, at the maximum world oil production. After that, oil production will then decline and prices, of course, will continue to do what they’ve been doing recently. So what we’ve got today may be the ‘good old days.’”

Hirsch addressed the timeframe in which the US could see $15/gallon gas: “It could happen within a matter of months. It could happen within a matter of a few years. But it’s essentially certain that we are at the maximum of world oil production. And after that, we’ll go into decline, and when there’s much less oil available, then, of course, the price of oil is going to increase dramatically.”

Fuels, heating oil, and consumer products that rely on petroleum will all be impacted by the decline in world oil production. Hirsch estimates the world GDP declining at the same rate as oil production.

Watch The Video Here


Oil Expert: By Summer, Oil To Hit $200 Per Barrel
This is reality, energy is in the hands of profiteers and has lost touch with the real expenses. There is no logic here, says Davor Stern.

May 23, 2008

Oil prices have once again crashed through the ceiling with a record price of 135 dollars per barrel because of the concerning fall in American reserves of crude oil with 5.32 million barrels. The fact is that this is only a continuation of the crisis; food is getting more and more expensive, petrol and diesel are rising in price every other week in Croatia (as well as in many countries around the world), and there is no end in sight to the price hikes.

This is reality, energy is in the hands of profiteers and has lost touch with the real expenses. There is no logic here – Davor Stern told us in a telephone conversation. Davor is the former director of Croatia’s largest oil company INA, as well as an oil expert.

Record earnings by oil companies

He added that oil companies earn a lot. Igor Dekanic from the faculty of mining, geology and oil, said that European oil companies are breaking the borders of profitability.

– The largest companies like IBP, Shell, Exxon, the French Total and the Italian Enia have the largest profits in history. That is a general trend with privatized companies in the world – says professor Dekanic.

Stern stresses that the market itself has some sort of logic, however, the current situation is in a state of psychosis.

– By summer we can expect oil prices of 200 dollars per barrel, and that is not the opinion of the trade, but my own prediction. It is impossible to give any projections of the prices, but one thing is certain, the sky is the limit – says Stern.

Read Full Article Here

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Turkish Police Brutalize Kurds, Breaks Child’s Arm
April 2, 2008, 3:43 pm
Filed under: Child Abuse, Kurdish, Oppression, police brutality, Police State, Turkey, Turkish

Turkish Police Brutalize Kurds, Breaks Child’s Arm


US Army Bombs Camera Crew on Air

US Army Bombs Camera Crew on Air


Kosovo “Independence” and the Project for a “New Middle East”

Opening a Pandora’s Box: Kosovo “Independence” and the Project for a “New Middle East”

Global Research
February 20, 2008

Western public opinion has been misled. Unfolding events and realities on the ground in the former Yugoslavia have been carefully manipulated.

Germany and the U.S. have deep-seated geo-strategic interests in dividing Yugoslavia. Washington, D.C. and Berlin have also been the first governments to recognize the secessionist states, which resulted from the breakup of the Yugoslav federation.

The Broader Implications of Kosovo “Independence”

The February 2008 declaration of independence of Kosovo is a means towards legitimizing the dissolution and breaking up of sovereign states on a global scale.

Eurasia is the main target. Kosovar “independence” is part of a neo-colonial program with underlying economic and geo-political interests. The objective is to instate a New World Order and establish hegemonic control over the global economy.

In this sense Kosovo provides a blueprint and a “dress-rehearsal” which can now be applied to restructuring the economies and borders of the Middle East, under the Project for a “New Middle East.”

The restructuring model that is being applied in the former Yugoslavia is precisely what is intended for the Middle East — a process of balkanization and economic control.

Kosovo’s Pseudo-Declaration of Independence

On February 17, 2008, the secessionist province of Kosovo declared unilateral independence from the Republic of Serbia. The occasion was declared through an extraordinary gathering of the Kosovar Parliament and its executive bodies. Belgrade has not had any control over Kosovo since 1999, when NATO went to war with Serbia to impose control over Kosovo under humanitarian arguments.

President Fatmir Sejdiu, Prime Minister Hashim Thaci, and the Speaker of Parliament Jakup Krasniqi all marked the occasion with speeches inside and outside of the Kosovar Parliament.

Many in Kosovo’s ethic Albanian majority celebrated what they believed was a shift towards self-determination. The truth of the matter is that the Kosovar declaration of independence was a declaration of dependency and the surrounder of Kosovo to colonial forces.

Without any remorse Kosovar leaders have transformed their land into a colonial outpost of Franco-German and Anglo-American interests. February 17, 2008 also marked the day that Kosovo further entrenched itself as a NATO-E.U. protectorate. Under the so-called independence” roadmap, NATO and E.U. troops and police officers will formally administer Kosovo.

In reality, Kosovo would have had greater independence as an autonomous province in an agreement of autonomy with Serbia, which had been envisaged in bilateral talks between Belgrade and Pristina. The majority of Kosovars would have been satisfied under such an agreement.

However, the talks were never meant to succeed for two obvious reasons:

1) the leadership of Kosovo are agents of foreign interests that do not represent the Kosovar populaiton;

2) the U.S. and E.U. were determined to establish another protectorate in the former Yugoslavia.

Kosovo: Another phase in the Economic Colonization of the former Yugoslavia

One of the leading global academic figures who has thoroughly documented the foreign-induced disintegration of Yugoslavia and the situation in Kosovo is Michel Chossudovsky. He has documented the economic and geo-strategic motives that have acted as the fingers pulling the strings that have caused the collapse of Yugoslavia and the drive for the independence of Kosovo from Serbia. His work unmasks the truth behind the downfall of Yugoslavia and the tactics being used to divide nations and peoples who have lived together in peace for hundreds of years.

A glance at the restructuring of Bosnia-Herzegovina must be made before further discussing the case of Kosovo.

Bosnia’s constitution was written at a U.S. Air Force base in Dayton, Ohio by U.S. and European “experts.”
Chossoduvsky appropriately labels Bosnia-Herzegovina as a neo-colonial entity. NATO troops have dominated Bosnia-Herzegovina, closely followed by the imposition of a new political and economic framework and model.

Chossudovsky’s work also reveals that the real head of the Bosnian government, the High Representative, and the head of the Bosnian Central Bank are both foreigners that are hand-picked by the European Union, the U.S., and the International Monetary Fund (IMF). [1] This is a clear re-enactment of a colonial administration.

This model has also been replicated with some variations in several of the former republics of the Yugoslav federation. The major obstacle to the full implementation of this agenda is the popular will of the local people in the former Yugoslavia, especially the Serbs.

Serbia, like an island of resistance, is the last bastion of independence left in the former Yugoslavia and the Balkans, but even in Serbia a modus vivendi exists where the local people have made a one-sided accommodation with the foreign economic agenda to allow their way of life to go on for a little longer. However, this accommodation is not meant to last.

The same Political and Socio-Economic Model is being applied in the Balkans and the Middle East

The process in Iraq is no different than the model applied in the former Yugoslavia. Divisions are fueled by foreign catalysts, the economy is destabilized, national dissolution is induced, and a new politico-socio-economic order is established.

Foreign interference and military intervention have also been justified on bogus humanitarian grounds. It is no coincidence that a “High Representative” was appointed by the American-led coaltion to govern occupied Iraq, thereby replicating the Bosnia-Herzegovina model, which is characterised by a E.U. appointed “High Representative.” The pattern should start becoming startlingly familiar!

The parallels between Iraq and the former Yugoslavia are endless.

In the wake of the Anglo-American invasion of Iraq, the U.S. and Britain established the Office for Reconstruction and Humanitarian Assistance (ORHA), which evolved into the Coalition Provisional Authority.

The head of the Coalition Provisional Authority was also called “Special Representative,” “Governor,” “Special Envoy,” and “Consul.”

The justifications for setting up the occupying administration in Iraq, similarly to Bosnia-Herzegovina, where originally humanitarian and national stabilization. However, the main objectives of the Coalition Provisional Authority were to decentralize the state and implement a mass privatization program of Iraqi resources and wealth.

It is no coincidence that Bosnia-Herzegovina was divided alongside ethnic and religious lines: Serb, Croat, and Bosniak; Christians and Muslims. To these various ethnic-religious divisions further sectarian divisions were also added amongst the Christians: Eastern Orthodoxy versus Roman Catholicism.

A similar strategy of “divide and rule” was applied in Iraq. In Iraq the same pattern is being replicated alongside ethnic and sectarian lines: Arabs, Kurds, Turcoman, Assyrian, and others; Shiites versus Sunnis. Just like in the former Yugoslavia the centralized economic system of Iraq was also shattered by the occupying administration. Under the Anglo-American occupation and its Coalition Provisional Authority foreign corporations entered Iraq in a second wave of foreign invasion, an economic takeover.

This neo-colonial project is based on two inderdependent building blocks: a military stage executed by NATO and a process of political, social, and economic restructuring executed by the U.S. and E.U. with the help of corrupt local leaders in the occupied countries. The shock and awe of war opens the door for destabilization followed by “nation building” or the restructuring process, which even attacks the cultural and social roots of the target nation-state. The important cultural and historic aspects unifying the occupied nation-states have also been systematically attacked and errased.

Read Full Article Here

Kosovo: The US and the EU support a Political Process linked to Organized Crime

Kosovo ‘precedent’ looks set to have long-lasting implications

Large Potential Albanian Oil and Gas Discovery Underscores Kosovo’s Importance

US Embassy torched after Kosovo Independence

NATO troops called in as mobs torch checkpoints on Kosovan border

NATO Troops Seal Kosovo Border

Serbs Torch UN Border Checkpoints,kos021908.article


U.S. Has “Ethnically Cleansed Most of Baghdad”

Congressman: ‘Sure, there’s less violence, but that’s because we’ve ethnically cleansed most of Baghdad’


‘The President Has Accepted Ethnic Cleansing’

Spiegel Online
September 28, 2007

SPIEGEL ONLINE: Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was just in New York (more…) for the United Nations General Assembly. Once again, he said that he is only interested in civilian nuclear power instead of atomic weapons. How much does the West really know about the nuclear program in Iran?

Seymour Hersh: A lot. And it’s been underestimated how much the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) knows. If you follow what (IAEA head Mohamed) ElBaradei (more…) and the various reports have been saying, the Iranians have claimed to be enriching uranium to higher than a 4 percent purity, which is the amount you need to run a peaceful nuclear reactor. But the IAEA’s best guess is that they are at 3.67 percent or something. The Iranians are not even doing what they claim to be doing. The IAEA has been saying all along that they’ve been making progress but basically, Iran is nowhere. Of course the US and Israel are going to say you have to look at the worst case scenario, but there isn’t enough evidence to justify a bombing raid.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: Is this just another case of exaggerating the danger in preparation for an invasion like we saw in 2002 and 2003 prior to the Iraq War?

Hersh: We have this wonderful capacity in America to Hitlerize people. We had Hitler, and since Hitler we’ve had about 20 of them. Khrushchev and Mao and of course Stalin, and for a little while Gadhafi was our Hitler. And now we have this guy Ahmadinejad. The reality is, he’s not nearly as powerful inside the country as we like to think he is. The Revolutionary Guards have direct control over the missile program and if there is a weapons program, they would be the ones running it. Not Ahmadinejad.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: Where does this feeling of urgency that the US has with Iran come from?

Hersh: Pressure from the White House. That’s just their game.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: What interest does the White House have in moving us to the brink with Tehran?

Hersh: You have to ask yourself what interest we had 40 years ago for going to war in Vietnam. You’d think that in this country with so many smart people, that we can’t possibly do the same dumb thing again. I have this theory in life that there is no learning. There is no learning curve. Everything is tabula rasa. Everybody has to discover things for themselves.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: Even after Iraq? Aren’t there strategic reasons for getting so deeply involved in the Middle East?

Hersh: Oh no. We’re going to build democracy. The real thing in the mind of this president is he wants to reshape the Middle East and make it a model. He absolutely believes it. I always thought Henry Kissinger was a disaster because he lies like most people breathe and you can’t have that in public life. But if it were Kissinger this time around, I’d actually be relieved because I’d know that the madness would be tied to some oil deal. But in this case, what you see is what you get. This guy believes he’s doing God’s work.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: So what are the options in Iraq?

Hersh: There are two very clear options: Option A) Get everybody out by midnight tonight. Option B) Get everybody out by midnight tomorrow. The fuel that keeps the war going is us.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: A lot of people have been saying that the US presence there is a big part of the problem. Is anyone in the White House listening?

Hersh: No. The president is still talking about the “Surge” (eds. The “Surge” refers to President Bush’s commitment of 20,000 additional troops to Iraq in the spring of 2007 in an attempt to improve security in the country.) as if it’s going to unite the country. But the Surge was a con game of putting additional troops in there. We’ve basically Balkanized the place, building walls and walling off Sunnis from Shiites. And in Anbar Province, where there has been success, all of the Shiites are gone. They’ve simply split.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: Is that why there has been a drop in violence there?

Hersh: I think that’s a much better reason than the fact that there are a couple more soldiers on the ground.

SPIEGEL ONLINE:So what are the lessons of the Surge (more…)?

Hersh: The Surge means basically that, in some way, the president has accepted ethnic cleansing, whether he’s talking about it or not. When he first announced the Surge in January, he described it as a way to bring the parties together. He’s not saying that any more. I think he now understands that ethnic cleansing is what is going to happen. You’re going to have a Kurdistan. You’re going to have a Sunni area that we’re going to have to support forever. And you’re going to have the Shiites in the South.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: So the US is over four years into a war that is likely going to end in a disaster. How valid are the comparisons with Vietnam?

Hersh:The validity is that the US is fighting a guerrilla war and doesn’t know the culture. But the difference is that at a certain point, because of Congressional and public opposition, the Vietnam War was no longer tenable. But these guys now don’t care. They see it but they don’t care.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: If the Iraq war does end up as a defeat for the US, will it leave as deep a wound as the Vietnam War did?

Hersh: Much worse. Vietnam was a tactical mistake. This is strategic. How do you repair damages with whole cultures? On the home front, though, we’ll rationalize it away. Don’t worry about that. Again, there’s no learning curve. No learning curve at all. We’ll be ready to fight another stupid war in another two decades.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: Of course, preventing that is partially the job of the media. Have reporters been doing a better job recently than they did in the run-up to the Iraq War?

Hersh: Oh yeah. They’ve done a better job since. But back then, they blew it. When you have a guy like Bush who’s going to move the infamous Doomsday Clock forward, and he’s going to put everybody in jeopardy and he’s secretive and he doesn’t tell Congress anything and he’s inured to what we write. In such a case, we (journalists) become more important. The First Amendment failed and the American press failed the Constitution. We were jingoistic. And that was a terrible failing. I’m asked the question all the time: What happened to my old paper, the New York Times? And I now say, they stink. They missed it. They missed the biggest story of the time and they’re going to have to live with it.

Video: Thousands surrendered but still killed by US

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Mobile Labs to Target Iraqis for Death


Oil Could Go To $100 A Barrel This Week

Oil Could Go To $100 A Barrel This Week

Wall Street Journal
November 5, 2007

After the price of oil edged further into record territory, the $100-a-barrel bears and bulls are poised for a showdown.

If the uptrend continues, market watchers say this could be the week that oil manages to punch through the symbolic level and eclipse the inflation-adjusted record of $101.70 reached in April 1980.

But some observers are dubious as to how long crude prices might stay there.

Benchmark crude futures have jumped 27% in the past three months on concerns of global-supply shortfalls, strong demand and a flood of investment from financial firms and speculative investors. The front-month December crude contract on the New York Mercantile Exchange settled at $95.93 a barrel Friday, an all-time nominal high.


“The market doesn’t seem to have done anything on the downside to threaten the uptrend,” said Tom Bentz, senior analyst at brokerage firm BNP Paribas Commodity Futures in New York. “As long it continues to hang in there like this, traders will continue to target higher levels.”

But the steep rise by crude-oil futures could be a setup for an equally dramatic fall, some market watchers say. “The bottom line is people are keying on this geopolitical tension and speculators are running the market higher,” said Mark Waggoner, president of Excel Futures, a commodities broker in Huntington Beach, Calif. “We probably are headed to a hundred bucks, but I would expect a violent correction very soon.”

Potentially chilling the rally are investors with long positions — essentially bets that oil prices will move higher — who see $100 as a finish line and not a new floor.

Peter Beutel, president of New Canaan, Conn., energy-risk advisory firm Cameron Hanover, expects oil prices to at least clear $98.50 and may reach $100. But that may form more of a peak than a plateau as traders ditch their long positions.

“I’m not as worried about new selling coming in and ending the bull market,” he said. “I’m more worried about all the longs deciding at once that the market has gone as far as it can.”

A large cluster of options held to buy crude at $100 a barrel could continue to act as a pull on prices toward that level, as big traders seek to push futures prices to the point where their options become profitable.

Last week’s rally took flight Wednesday after the U.S. Energy Information Administration reported big drops in crude inventories nationally and at Cushing, Okla., the delivery point for Nymex oil contracts. This week analysts say they will be watching inventories closely.

A decline in stocks at Cushing or nationally, “regardless of the magnitude, will be enough to keep this bull alive,” said Jim Ritterbusch, president of oil advisory firm Ritterbusch & Associates in Galena, Ill.

The prospect of a Turkish incursion into Iraq to attack members of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK, has also weighed on crude prices in recent weeks.


Oil Traders Increase Bets on $125 Crude as Options Trades Jump

Oil Traders Increase Bets on $125 Crude as Options Trades Jump

November 1, 2007

Nov. 1 (Bloomberg) — Oil traders increased bets that December futures will reach $125 a barrel because of possible disruptions to Middle East supplies and rising demand.

Traders held call options to buy 2,526 contracts, each representing the right to buy 1,000 barrels, of December oil at $125 in New York as of Oct. 29, from 1 lot on June 29, New York Mercantile Exchange data show. Bets on $100 oil are also surging: Traders held options to buy 49.7 million barrels of December oil at that price on Oct. 30, up from 30 million barrels on Jan. 2.

Crude oil for December delivery rose to a record $96.24 a barrel in New York today, the highest since the futures began trading in 1983. Prices have soared 19 percent the past month as demand pared inventories, a weaker dollar spurred investors to switch into commodities, and political tension in Iran and Iraq attracted speculative buying.

“A few years ago, when triple-digit oil was talked about, it was tempered by negative responses,” said Anthony Nunan, deputy general manager of risk management at Mitsubishi Corp. in Tokyo. “Slowly, it’s becoming a reality. It’s not crazy anymore, it’s a reasonable target.”

Crude oil for December delivery gained as much as 1.8 percent and traded 1.1 percent higher at $95.52 a barrel in after-hours electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange at 3:10 p.m. Singapore time.

Oil rebounded above $90 after the Federal Reserve cut its benchmark interest rate for a second time in two months, prompting a drop in the dollar to a record-low against the euro.

December Options

Purchases of options to buy December oil at $125 a barrel have risen 46 percent in the week ended Oct. 30, Nymex data shows. Purchases of options to buy oil for $100 a barrel rose to a record 15,709 thousand-barrel lots on Oct. 26, from 81 contracts a month ago. Options give buyers the right to buy or sell a security by a fixed date at a specific price.

Oil prices have risen more than fourfold since 2002 as political instability disrupted supplies from producers including Iraq, Nigeria and Venezuela, while hurricanes in the U.S. damaged oil platforms and refineries.

“When it gets this high, it becomes uncertain and everyone gets scared,” Mitsubishi’s Nunan said. “Since $100 a barrel is a reality, $125 or $130 is also possible.”

Tensions between Turkey and Iraq over Kurdish militants as well as over Iran’s nuclear program have also helped drive oil prices higher.

The “Turkish-Iraq situation presents an upside risk” for oil prices, Dariusz Kowalczyk, chief investment strategist at CFC Seymour Ltd., said in Hong Kong. “The momentum is strong, and with a lot of physical risks and the supply disruption, we could move higher.”


Oil strikes record near $94

Oil strikes record near $94

Matthew Robinson
October 29, 2007

Oil jumped to a record high near $94 a barrel on Monday as stormy weather disrupted supplies from giant exporter Mexico and the dollar wallowed near record lows.

Mexican state oil company Pemex has shut a fifth of the nation’s crude production and halted the bulk of exports as storms kept ships bottled at ports across the country, a top U.S. supplier.

U.S. crude settled up $1.67 at $93.53 a barrel after striking a record $93.80 earlier. London Brent settled $1.63 higher at $90.32 a barrel.

Oil prices have soared by more than a third since mid-August as a stand-off between Turkey and Kurdish rebels, dollar weakness, easing interest rates and winter supply fears have lured a fresh wave of investment capital.

“Every new bullish factor pushes U.S. crude irrationally closer to $100 barrel,” said SGCIB, adding: “Prices will fall if the FOMC does nothing.”

The U.S. Federal Reserve’s Federal Open Market Committee meets on October 30-31, and Wall Street is betting on another rate cut as the U.S. housing downturn deepens.

Expectations of a cut have helped push the dollar to record lows against a basket of currencies and boosted the price of dollar-denominated commodities.

Full article here.


Canadian Dollar Hits 47-Year High

October 29, 2007

The Canadian dollar reached on Monday a 47-year high versus the US greenback, gaining on the US currency’s recent weakness, as well as soaring demand for oil and other natural resources.

At 1500 GMT, the American dollar was worth only 95.47 Canadian dollars, while the loonie, a sobriquet given to the Canadian dollar, was being traded for 1.0474 US dollars.

According to the Bank of Canada, the loonie had last seen such heights in March 1960.

Analysts noted that all major currencies were increasing in value against the US dollar in anticipation of an interest rate cut by the US Federal Reserve on Wednesday.

Most observers expect the Fed to cut its key lending rate by 25 percentage points, bringing it in line with Canada’s rate of 4.50 percent.

As well, demand for oil, gold and other natural resources, of which Canada is a major exporter, has given the Canadian dollar a big boost of late.

Since the beginning of this year, the Canadian dollar has increased 20 percent, and jumped 69 percent since 2002, when it was trading at a historic low of 61.70 US cents.

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Hersh: US, Israel support PKK

Hersh: US, Israel support PKK

Press TV
October 29, 2007

PKK Kurdish rebel group and its sister organization, PEJAK, have been receiving support from the US and Israel, an American journalist claims.

“In the past months, Israel and the United States have been working together in support of PKK and its Iranian offshoot PEJAK, I was told by a government consultant with close ties to the Pentagon,” said Pulitzer Prize-winning, Seymour Hersh.

In an interview with Turkish gazette, Zaman, the leading American investigative journalist also revealed that the White House has lost control over PKK which has gone rogue.

Earlier, the renowned American journalist accused Washington and the Zionist regime of providing PKK and PEJAK with ‘training and equipment’ in a secret ploy to destabilize the region.

Commenting on PEJAK, Hersh asserted that Washington considers it as “part of an effort to explore alternative means of applying pressure on Iran.”

The Party for Free Life in Kurdistan (PEJAK) has been behind a string of deadly attacks on security forces in northwestern Iran. PEJAK is considered a terrorist group by Turkey, the United States, and the European Union.


Iran says documents show U.S. backing “terrorists”

Iran says documents show U.S. backing “terrorists”

October 28, 2007

Iran has access to evidence of U.S. support for terrorist groups in the Middle East, a senior Iranian official was quoted as saying on Sunday.

Iran’s new chief nuclear negotiator, Saeed Jalili, made the allegation in comments to visiting Turkish Foreign Minister Ali Babacan, whose country may soon send troops to hunt down Kurdish guerrillas in northern Iraq.

Tehran says the rebels are operating in Iraq with U.S. forces present in the country and this shows Washington is refraining from tackling them.

Like Turkey, Iran also has faced cross-border attacks by Kurdish rebels and has shelled targets inside Iraq in response.

“Escalation of terrorism in the region is one of the direct results of the presence of occupiers in Iraq, particularly America,” Jalili, an ally of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, said according to the country’s state broadcaster.

“And there are documents and information available proving America’s support for terrorist groups in the region,” he said, without giving details. Jalili is also the new secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council.

The United States often accuses Iran of backing and training militias responsible for some of the bloodshed threatening to tear Iraq apart. Tehran denies the charge and blames the violence in Iraq on the presence of U.S. forces.

The two countries are also locked in a stand-off over Tehran’s nuclear program, which Western powers suspect is aimed at developing bombs. Iran says it only wants to generate electricity.

Washington last week dubbed Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps a proliferator of weapons of mass destruction and accused its Qods force of backing terrorists. It also imposed sanctions on more than 20 Iranian companies, major banks and individuals.

At a joint news conference with Babacan, Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki on Sunday also accused the United States and Israel of involvement in terrorism in the region.

“We see … their hand behind some of the regional terrorist activities,” Mottaki said.

Babacan, whose country’s ties with the United States have deteriorated sharply in recent weeks, thanked Iran for helping Turkey fight the PKK guerrillas and said the two sides had talked about continuing their cooperation.

The Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) launched its campaign for a Kurdish homeland in southeastern Turkey in 1984. More than 30,000 people have been killed in the conflict since then.

Jalili on October 20 replaced Ali Larijani as Iran’s chief nuclear negotiator, a move analysts saw as signaling a toughening of Tehran’s position in the atom row.


Oil Surge To $89 May Provoke OPEC Meeting

Oil Surge To $89 May Provoke OPEC Meeting

October 17, 2007

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Oil’s record rally stalled on Wednesday after an OPEC minister said the group could not rule out another output hike to cool the red hot market and may call a formal meeting next month in Saudi Arabia.

U.S. crude (CLc1: Quote, Profile, Research) dipped 27 cents to $87.34 a barrel by 2:12 p.m. EDT (1612 GMT) after touching a fresh record $89 earlier in the day. London Brent crude (LCOc1: Quote, Profile, Research) fell 51 cents to $83.04 a barrel.

Oil has climbed more than 13 percent since last week on fears of a winter supply crunch and rising tensions between Turkey and Kurdish rebels in northern Iraq, renewing worries soaring energy costs could damage the global economy.

Nigeria’s oil minister, Odein Ajumogobia, told Reuters Wednesday that OPEC could call a formal meeting November 17 when ministers meet in Saudi Arabia for a heads of state conference, nearly three weeks earlier than planned.

“There will be a meeting of ministers, initially informally, but there may be a formal meeting,” Ajumogobia said. “We are still a month away and it depends what transpires before then.” (ID:nL17763774: Quote, Profile, Research)

OPEC’s next scheduled formal meeting was set December 5 in the United Arab Emirates. The group has already agreed to boost output by 500,000 barrels per day starting November 1.

Ajumogobia said OPEC has not ruled out additional action.

U.S. Energy Secretary Sam Bodman said Wednesday that high oil prices were of “great concern” to the administration of U.S. President George W. Bush, but said there was no decision yet on whether to tap the emergency oil reserve.

The United States’ economy is already facing headwinds from the meltdown in the subprime mortgage market, and experts said soaring energy costs could worsen the economic outlook.

“Given the long-term risks of security-related disruptions to the global oil market, it would be very wrong to write off oil-induced recessions as a thing of the past,” said Gilles Moec, an economist at Bank of America.

Oil’s rally earlier in the day to $89 a barrel was propelled by news Turkey’s parliament granted its troops permission to launch an attack against Kurdish rebels inside Iraqi territory, despite international pressure.

The tensions dimmed hopes for a recovery in Iraqi oil exports via Turkey, which have been sporadic since 2003. But traders say the greater fear is the risk of further unsettling the Middle East region, source of a third of the world’s oil.

Surging oil prices, also driven by an inflow of investor money, have approached their $90.46-per-barrel inflation-adjusted peak of 1980, the year after the Iranian revolution and at the start of the Iran-Iraq war.

U.S. petroleum consumption already has showed signs of slowing, with demand growth running just 0.2 percent over last year, according to the latest government data. But experts said the slowdown is being offset by continued strong growth in demand from China and other developing economies.

Tempering oil’s rally Wednesday, U.S. crude stocks and refined fuel stockpiles rose more than expected last week, according to a government report.

Oil Reverses Course, Hits New Record


Gold price hits highest level since 1980

Gold price hits highest level since 1980

October 16, 2007

The price of gold leapt on Tuesday to the highest level since the start of 1980, winning support from runaway crude oil prices, traders said.

On the London Bullion Market, gold prices surged as high as 767.09 dollars per ounce.

Gold prices jumped higher “on a combination of a weaker dollar, geopolitical concerns, positive investor sentiment and record high oil prices,” said analysts at Barclays Capital.

They added: “Geopolitical concerns have come on the back of Turkey debating potential military action in Northern Iraq to combat Kurdish rebels while … crude oil prices have hit fresh all-time highs.”

New York’s main futures contract, light sweet crude for delivery in November, surged to an historic 87.97 dollars per barrel on Tuesday, while London Brent oil hit a record 84.31 dollars.

Gold prices are boosted by record high oil prices, which in turn spark inflationary concerns.

The precious metal is seen as a safe haven in times of both rising inflation and geopolitical uncertainty.

In addition, gold benefits from a weak US unit because it makes commodities that are priced in dollars cheaper for buyers using stronger currencies.

Since the start of September, gold has gained more than 100 dollars or about 15 percent in value.


Gates says all options on table for Iran

Gates says all options on table for Iran

Kristin Roberts
October 16, 2007

U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates said on Monday all options for dealing with Iran must remain open and called for international pressure and tougher sanctions to curb Tehran’s nuclear aspirations.

“With a government of this nature, only a united front of nations will be able to exert enough pressure to make Iran abandon its nuclear aspirations — a source of great anxiety and instability in the region,” Gates said in speech to the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs.

“Our allies must work together on robust, far-reaching, and strongly enforced economic sanctions,” he said, also noting a need for political and diplomatic pressure.


Clinton would use violence against Tehran

Guardian Unlimited
October 15, 2007

Hillary Clinton today moved to secure her position as the most hawkish Democrat in the 2008 presidential race, saying she would consider the use of force to compel Iran to abandon its nuclear programme.

In an article for Foreign Affairs magazine intended as a blueprint for the foreign policy of a future Clinton White House, the Democratic frontrunner argues that Iran poses a long term strategic challenge to American and its allies, and that it must not be permitted to build or acquire nuclear weapons.

“If Iran does not comply with its own commitments and the will of the international community, all options must remain on the table,” Ms Clinton said.

Elsewhere, Ms Clinton took the edge off her steely posture by saying she would abandon the Bush administration’s policy of isolating its enemies, and would deploy diplomacy.

“True statesmanship requires that we engage with our adversaries, not for the sake of talking but because robust diplomacy is a prerequisite to achieving our aims.”

She says she would even consider offering incentives to Iran in return for a pledge to disarm. However, she sets out a series of stringent conditions that are virtually identical to current White House policy.

“If Iran is in fact willing to end its nuclear weapons programme, renounce sponsorship of terrorism, support Middle East peace, and play a constructive role in stabilising Iraq, the United States should be prepared to offer Iran a carefully calibrated package of incentives,” Ms Clinton wrote.

The article, the latest in a series of position papers from the leading Democratic and Republican contenders for the White House, offers a glimpse at Ms Clinton’s efforts to appeal to Democrats seeking a repudiation of the current regime’s world view when they begin voting in primaries next January, as well as to the broader electorate that will vote in November 2008.

It arrives only days after Ms Clinton was severely criticised by her Democratic rivals for backing a Senate resolution calling on the US government to declare Iran’s Revolutionary Guards, the elite division of Tehran’s military, a terrorist entity.

The measure has been argued strenuously by the vice-president, Dick Cheney, and other neocons, but such a sweeping designation does not appear to have the support of the state department.

Ms Clinton was the only Democratic candidate to support the resolution, and her rivals said her vote could help the Bush administration make a future case for war against Iran.

Unlike the five other candidates to sketch out their vision of foreign policy to date, Ms Clinton gave little indication of her comprehensive world view.

However, she pledged to avoid the “ideologically blinkered” policies of the current presidency. “Avoid false choices driven by ideology,” she wrote.

On Iraq, Ms Clinton offered a small variation on her promises on the campaign trail, saying she would instruct her Pentagon chief and other military leaders to draw up a withdrawal plan within 60 days of her inauguration. However, she would consider leaving behind a residual force in the Kurdish areas of northern Iraq.

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Oil Futures Hit New Record Above $86

Oil surges near $88 a barrel

Javier Blas

Financial Times
October 16, 2007

Oil prices rose to fresh records on Tuesday, with US crude surging near $88 a barrel, and pushing gold to a new 28-year high as investors feared a spike in inflation.

The threat of a Turkish military operation against Kurdish militia in northern Iraq contributed to the oil price increase, but traders said the main factor of the rally was low US inventories, strong demand and a timid production increase from the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries.

Francisco Blanch, chief commodities strategist at Merrill Lynch, added that an early winter cold snap or a serious geopolitical problem in the Middle East “could drive oil prices even to $100 a barrel.”

Doug Leggate, of Citigroup in New York, added: “A run to $90 is now seen as reasonable.”

Nymex November West Texas Intermediate rose to a high of $87.97 a barrel and later was trading $1.57 higher to $87.70 a barrel. ICE November Brent rose to an all-time high of $84.26 a barrel.

Low inventories prompted Opec recently to agree to boost output by 500,000 barrels a day from November. The cartel opted for a meagre increase on concerns about the strength of the global economy and oil consumption. However, Opec on Monday acknowledged that demand for its crude oil will be stronger than expected this winter.

“Downward [economic] pressure has receded in recent weeks, following the US Federal Reserve’s decision to cut US interest rates by half a percent,” Opec said.

Paul Horsnell, of Barclays Capital in London, said that demand growth was strong relative to non-Opec weak supply increases.

Spot gold prices in London surged to a 28-year high of $766.60 an ounce as the oil price jump sparked worries about an inflation spike and investors continued to seek refuge against a weakening US dollar. Gold hit an all-time record of $850 an ounce in January 1980.

Precious metals traders reported strong buying from Japanese investors.

Spot platinum traded at $1,420 an ounce, just below Monday’s all-time record of $1,428 an ounce.

The World Gold Council on Monday cut its forecast for India’s gold consumption this year to 15-25 per cent, in the first sign that record high gold prices are beginning to dent jewellery demand, one of the main supports of gold’s recent price surge.

Earlier in the year, the WGC, which is backed by the gold industry, had predicted that gold consumption in India, the world’s biggest gold consumer, would rise almost 40 per cent this year.

Ajay Mitra, WGC managing director in India, said: “Due to the spike in prices, we are a little cagey.”

Base metals were also stronger, with the exception of copper with traded flat at $8,155 a tonne. Aluminum rose 0.1 per cent to $2,492 a tonne while lead rose 0.3 per cent to $3,823 a tonne.

Coffee continued to slide as rain fell over Brazil, the world’s largest coffee producer. Euronext.Liffe November Robusta coffee prices in London fell 2.3 per cent to $2,028 a tonne, below a 10-year high of $2,234 a tonne reached last Friday.

Wheat prices in Chicago fell to $8.26 a bushel, the lowest level in four weeks.

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Oil hits record $84
October 14, 2007, 2:48 pm
Filed under: Economy, gas prices, Inflation, Iran, Iraq, Kurdish, Oil, Petrol, Turkey, US Economy

Oil hits record $84

Matthew Robinson
October 13, 2007

Oil hit a record above $84 a barrel on Friday on mounting tensions between Turkey and northern Iraq and lingering supply concerns ahead of the Northern Hemisphere winter.

U.S. crude settled up 61 cents at $83.69 a barrel, after trading up to a record $84.05 a barrel earlier. London Brent crude climbed 40 cents to $80.55 a barrel.

Though oil prices have quadrupled since 2002, when adjusted for inflation the price is still below the $90-a-barrel peaks at the time of the Iranian revolution in 1979.

Prices jumped after the Kurdistan Workers Party said it would move back into Turkey from northern Iraq and target the Turkish government, highlighting tensions in a region that pumps a third of the world’s oil.

Iraq’s oil exports through Turkey have been virtually idle since the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq in March 2003 due to sabotage attacks, and most of Iraq’s oil is exported from the country’s south.

The rising tensions added to worries of a supply crunch during the Northern Hemisphere winter after declines in U.S. and European fuel inventories.

The latest snapshot of oil supplies in top consumer the United States showed a 1.7 million barrel fall in crude oil stocks last week to the lowest level since January.

European oil stocks have also slimmed.

Full article here


Gates plays down report Marines want to leave Iraq

Gates plays down report Marines want to leave Iraq

October 11, 2007

U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates on Thursday played down a newspaper report that the U.S. Marine Corps was pressing to remove its forces from Iraq and switch to a leading role in Afghanistan.

“I have heard that they were beginning to think about that and that’s all that I’ve heard. I’ve seen no plan, no one’s come to me with any proposals about it,” Gates told reporters in London after meeting his British counterpart, Des Browne.

The New York Times reported on Wednesday that the Marines’ suggestion was raised in a session last week convened by Gates for the U.S. military’s Joint Chiefs of Staff and regional war-fighting commanders. It comes at a time when Washington’s key ally in Iraq, Britain, is drawing down its presence there.

“My understanding is that it’s — at this point — extremely preliminary thinking on the part of perhaps some staff people in the Marine Corps but I don’t think at this point it has any stature,” Gates said.

Under the proposal, the newspaper said, the U.S. Army would concentrate on Iraq while the Marines would focus on Afghanistan.

Supporters of the idea argue that a realignment could allow the U.S. Army and Marines each to operate more efficiently in sustaining troop levels for two wars that have strained their forces, the New York Times said, citing senior military and Pentagon officials who requested anonymity.

The plan would require a major reshuffling and make the Marines the dominant American force in Afghanistan in a war that has broader public support than the one in Iraq, the Times said.


Some officials sympathetic to the army said such a realignment would help ease pressure on the army by allowing it to shift attention from Afghanistan into Iraq, the newspaper reported.

Currently, there are no major Marine units among the 26,000 or so U.S. forces in Afghanistan. In Iraq there are about 25,000 Marines among the more than 160,000 U.S. troops there.

Despite some signs of disquiet in Washington about British plans to withdraw troops from southern Iraq, Gates and Browne put on a show of unity and insisted their plans were closely coordinated.

“The United Kingdom has been and continues to be a stalwart ally and a major contributor at every stage of the Iraq campaign,” Gates said.

Britain said this week it planned to halve its forces in Iraq to about 2,500 troops by next spring. There is an expectation that Britain will then focus more troops on Afghanistan, although the Ministry of Defense has not confirmed such a move.

“The U.S. and the U.K. share exactly the same aspirations for Iraq — for a stable, prosperous and democratic Iraq,” Defense Minister Browne said after meeting Gates.

“But ultimately only the Iraqis themselves can deliver that,” he said. “Our job is to fulfill our strategic objective which is to get the Iraqi security forces to a stage where they can take over responsibility for their own security.”

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NATO, U.S. Aiding PKK Terrorists In Turkey

NATO, U.S. Aiding PKK Terrorists In Turkey

Attempt to crush democratic process, say newspapers

Paul Joseph Watson
Prison Planet
October 10, 2007

Turkish newspapers have slammed NATO for its support of the PKK terrorist organization, while also alleging that U.S. forces are arming the militant group in Iraq, as part of an agenda to crush the democratic process and prevent the election of a populist government in Turkey.

The PKK is listed as a terrorist organization by the U.S., the EU and NATO itself. The group espouses Marxist leanings and its goal is to create a socialist Kurdish state encompassing south-eastern Turkey, north-eastern Iraq, north-eastern Syria and north-western Iran. The group has been fingered as the culprit of thousands of bombings, assassinations, kidnappings and acts of sabotage over the past 20 years.

Allegations of international support to the PKK are long-standing. According to a report in the London Telegraph, Kurdish guerrillas are being funded by the U.S. to wage a clandestine war in north-western Iran.

The Turkish daily Zaman has accused NATO of supporting the PKK as part of a plan to destabilize Turkish elections and prevent a new Turkish constitution from being drawn up.

“Forces linked to NATO are trying to crush the democratic process of the Turkish presidential election by pushing the PKK (Kurdish Workers Party) to increase its attacks,” reports Press TV.

“During the two months leading to the presidential election, around 100 Turkish soldiers or security personnel have been killed in clashes with the PKK. PKK’s most recent attacks have left 26 people dead, 12 of them civilians.”

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s demand that NATO target the PKK has consistently fallen on deaf ears, leading Turkey to threaten an invasion of northern Iraq to quell the crisis.

NATO has a long and bloody history of fostering terrorism in order to safeguard its geopolitical agenda.

Parliamentary investigations in Italy confirmed that NATO had created “stay-behind armies” during and after the Cold War, ostensibly to repel a Soviet invasion of the west, but that this was merely a smokescreen for perpetrating violent acts of terrorism in order to install right-wing governments around Europe, in accordance with a CIA directive to launch a “strategy of tension.”

‘You had to attack civilians, the people, women, children, innocent people, unknown people far removed from any political game. The reason was quite simple: to force … the public to turn to the state to ask for greater security,” testified former Gladio agent Vincenzo Vinciguerra.

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Senate Passes Bill Adopting Iraq Balkanization

Senate Passes Bill Adopting Iraq Balkanization

Press TV
September 27, 2007

The US Senate has passed a bill, suggesting Iraq’s partition into a federation of ethnically divided regions, urging Iraqi officials to agree.

Today, in an act showing frustration over Bush’s war policies in Iraq, the Senate Republicans and Democrats joined to pass a non-binding resolution, calling for the creation of a federal system of government in Iraq with regions divided along ethnic lines.

The proposal to break up Iraq into decentralized regions came from Senator Joseph Biden, who is running for the 2008 Democratic Party presidential nomination.

Supporters of Iraqi partition believe it would let Shia, Sunni, and Kurdish factions settle their differences and make it easier for US troops to return home.

However, it is unlikely that the Bush administration will alter its policies on Iraq, in light of this resolution. Earlier this week, Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice, said that the administration supports a federal Iraq rather than a divided country.

This is the first time in over a year that the United States Senate has reached a bipartisan consensus on Iraqi policy.

US Plans to Disintegrate Iraq

Senate to vote on Iraq division plan…._070924201148

On Sunday talk show, Clinton refuses to commit to full Iraq pullout by end of first term

FLASHBACK: Plans for Redrawing the Middle East: The Project for a “New Middle East”….articleId=3882


US Plans to Disintegrate Iraq

US Plans to Disintegrate Iraq

Press TV
September 25, 2007

The US Senate is planning to vote on a proposal backed by Democratic Senator Joseph Biden to divide war-torn Iraq based on ethnic lines.

Advocates of the plan, which is to be voted as soon as Tuesday, claim that the plan would allow US troops to eventually go home without leaving chaos behind.

The Plan, which calls for an autonomous federation of Kurdish, Shia and Sunni regions has come under fire by critics, who say Iraq’s ethnic groups who live side-by-side in cities and inter-marry are not divided by lines on a map.

The bipartisan Iraq Study Group, which delivered recommendations in December, warned division could trigger mass population flows, the collapse of the Iraqi security forces and ethnic cleansing by strengthened militias.


Senate to vote on Iraq division plan

September 24, 2007

WASHINGTON (AFP) – The US Senate is expected to vote as early as Tuesday on a Bosnia-style plan to subdivide Iraq on ethnic lines, touted by backers as the sole hope of forging a federal state out of sectarian strife.

Though the measure is non-binding, and would not force a change in President George W. Bush’s war strategy even if it passes, the vote will provide a key test of an idea drawing rising interest in Washington.

Advocates say the plan, championed by Democratic senator and presidential hopeful Joseph Biden, offers a route to a political solution in Iraq that could allow US troops to eventually go home without leaving chaos behind.

A loose autonomous federation of Kurdish, Shiite and Sunni entities might look good on paper, but critics charge it ignores Iraq’s ethnic stew, such as cities where ethnic groups live side-by-side and inter-marry, and are not divided by lines on a map.

“Critics have come along and said ‘I don’t like your plan,'” Biden said, adding: “if you don’t like Biden’s proposal, what is your idea?”

The plan, drawn up with former Carter administration foreign policy expert Leslie Gelb, would provide for a federal system as permitted by Iraq’s constitution, stop Iraq from becoming a failed state and:

– Separate Iraq into Kurdish, Shiite and Sunni entities, with a federal government in Baghdad in charge of border security and oil revenues.

– Aim to defuse sectarian violence by offering Sunnis a share of oil revenues.

– Boost reconstruction aid and debt relief.

– Launch an international diplomatic effort to rally the world’s great powers and Iraq’s neighbors to the new federation’s cause.

The plan, offered as an amendment to a defense policy bill, already has achieved what many other Iraq war measures have failed to do: attract support from across the political chasm carved in Washington by the war.

Several Republicans, who back Bush’s troop surge strategy, but bemoan political deadlock in Baghdad, have signed on.

“We have a flawed political design that we are pushing currently in Baghdad,” said Republican presidential longshot Senator Sam Brownback, one of 11 co-sponsors of the bill.

Republican Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison looked for inspiration to the Dayton Peace Accords which led to the creation of a semi-autonomous Muslim-Croat federation and a Bosnian Serb Republic.

“I think what we have seen in Bosnia is a lessening of tensions when there is a capability for the security forces, the educational and the religious sects to have their own ability to govern within themselves,” she said.

Critics, who have included the White House, have argued Biden plan is a recipe for more chaos in Iraq.

US ally Turkey would oppose such an initiative, fearful of unrest among its Kurdish population, they say, adding that a partitioned Iraq would lead outside powers like Iran and Saudi Arabia to bolster rival ethnic militia.

Other critics say frontier drawing in the Middle East by western powers has caused enough historical heartache, and it should be up to Iraqis to shape their future.

Some also say that partitioning Iraq, even if Baghdad remains whole, could encourage ethnic cleansing.

US ambassador to Baghdad Ryan Crocker backed devolving of power to Iraqi regions, but opposed a formal partition during an appearance in Congress this month.

“Baghdad, in spite of all of the violence it has seen and all of the population displacements, remains a very mixed city, Sunnis and Shia together,” Crocker said.

“Any notion that that city of over five million people can be neatly divided up or painlessly cleansed of a huge number of people is just incorrect.”

The bipartisan Iraq Study Group, which delivered recommendations in December warned partition could trigger mass population flows, the collapse of the fragile Iraqi security forces and ethnic cleansing by strengthened militias.

But Biden argued that all other options have failed, and says Iraq’s ethnic groups are already separating.

“President Bush, and many Democrats continue to cling to choice number one,” he said in a campaign mailing to supporters at the weekend, arguing US troops could not “build or force unity where none exists.”

On Sunday talk show, Clinton refuses to commit to full Iraq pullout by end of first term

FLASHBACK: Plans for Redrawing the Middle East: The Project for a “New Middle East”….articleId=3882


U.S. Has Meetings With PKK Terrorists

U.S. Has Meetings With PKK Terrorists

Turkish Weekly
September 11, 2007

British Daily Telegraph claimed that the US officers have regular meetings with the PKK terrorists in Northern Iraq. Damien McElroy in his report mentioned “US army helicopters are reportedly used to shuttle officers to regular meetings with Kurdish fighters”. Mr. McElroy interview with the head of the PKK terrorists, Murat Karayilan (means ‘Black Snake’ in Turkish language). Mr. Karayilan accepted the US assistance to the PKK yet argued that the US did very little for the Kurds and can do more.

Iran accused the US last week of supporting the terrorists against Tehran. Similarly the Turkish media blamed the Americans of being supporter of the PKK terrorism although the PKK is a terrorist organization according to the US laws.

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Ihsan Bal from Ankara-based USAK, one of the leading Turkish think tanks, told the JTW that the US should do something immediately against the PKK terrorists, otherwise Turkish-American relations will be damaged. Similarly Dr. Sedat Laciner said “All signs clearly show that the US ignores the PKK terrorists in Northern Iraq”. “The PKK is a terrorist organization. Americans and the EU say so. If US ignores or supports the PKK in the region, the US’ fight against global terrorism will lose its base. Turkey’s support, as moderate Muslim country, in fighting terrorism is crucial. However if you support my terrorists, I can not help you in fighting against your terrorists. The US’ strange policies regarding the PKK terrorism nourishes anti-Americanism in Turkey. The US lost at least 30 years in Turkey. If Washington thinks the Turkish people or politicians forget all these, they are wrong. Nobody in Ankara has forgotten the Johnson Letter for instance, and they will remember how the US is not co-operative against the PKK terrorism” Dr. Laciner added.

The PKK has armed terror bases in Northern Iraq. The number of bases is about 20. The number of the PKK terrorists is about 5.000 in Northern Iraq. The US promised to remove all of the PKK bases yet no concrete step has been taken.