ASIA | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

ASIA

Mar 11 13:01

Washington Wants to Pour Millions of Dollars in This Country

US warhawks have focused their efforts on the further encirclement of Russia, US author Jonathan Marshall writes, adding that Washington is taking aim at Russia's "underbelly."

The Great Game for dominance over Central Asia that started almost two hundred years ago is far from being over, American author Jonathan Marshall notes; this time, Washington is maneuvering to beef up its military presence "on Russia's underbelly."

"Last month, the Pentagon announced plans for $50 million in new military aid to Central Asia — with a focus on Tajikistan — to 'counter the Taliban, ISIL [an acronym for Islamic State], and other regionally-based terrorist groups, and to promote stability in the region.' The aid will also help the US military get its feet in the door by enabling 'interoperability and collaboration' with local partner armed forces," Marshall writes in his article for Consortiumnews.com.

Russian Ties in Central Asia Threaten US Interests - CENTCOM Chief Nominee

Webmaster's Commentary: 

50 million dollars of US military aid to... Tajikistan?!?

Are you flipping kidding me?!?!?

As reported on 17 February of this year at hrw.org:

The Tajik government is arresting, imprisoning, and torturing members of the country’s peaceful political opposition, Human Rights Watch and the Norwegian Helsinki Committee said today. The government is also targeting perceived critics abroad, seeking their detention and extradition back to Tajikistan, and has forcibly disappeared critics abroad only to have them reappear in Tajik custody. Tajikistan’s deteriorating human rights situation worsened dramatically in the last year with the forced closure of Tajikistan’s leading opposition party, the Islamic Renaissance Party of Tajikistan (IRPT) in September 2015. In March, an opposition figure, Umarali Kuvvatov, was shot dead in Istanbul in circumstances that point to involvement or acquiescence by the Tajik government. “Tajikistan is in the midst of the worst political and religious crackdown since the end of the country’s civil war, with hundreds of people landing behind bars for no other reason than their peaceful political work,” said Steve Swerdlow, Central Asia researcher at Human Rights Watch. “Tajikistan’s human rights crisis is expanding by the day, but the response of Washington, Brussels, and other international partners has fallen seriously short.” Recent research by Human Rights Watch and the Norwegian Helsinki Committee uncovered a wide-ranging campaign by Tajik authorities to detain, imprison, and silence peaceful opposition activists and perceived critics at home and abroad. Dushanbe has sought the detention and forcible return to Tajikistan of peaceful political activists in Belarus, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Moldova, Russia, Turkey, and elsewhere. Since a wave of arrests that began on September 16, Tajik and other observers, including the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom, estimate that Tajik police and security services have arrested hundreds of members of the Islamic Renaissance Party on politically motivated charges. A major trial of 16 senior party leaders began on February 9, 2016.

The alleged "President" of Tajikistan, Emomali Rahmon, has a human rights record JUST to the right of that of Attila the Hun; and THIS is the guy the US government wants to deal with here?!?

Apparently, in DC-Speak, "stability" in Central Asia means suppressing political processes in places like Tajikistan.

However, I would very strongly caution the author Johnathan Marshall, that such actions can have a very distinct, and negative blow-back for the US; every Iranian who lived through the 1979 revolution, which kicked out the US-installed puppet Shah of Iran, understands how that can happen.

The late President Kennedy said it best: "When peaceful revolution is impossible, violent revolution is inevitable."

Mar 10 14:27

Islam liquidation may set Bangladesh afire

Demand to deprive Islam of the official state religion status was sent to the Supreme Court of Bangladesh. The reason is terror attacks, carried out by the IS adherents, and other radical groups. The initiative is backed by the Hindus and secularists - the same people, who are at the back of massacres of the Jamaat al Islamiya party leaders. Azhdar Kurtov, chief editor of the RISS journal "National Strategy Issues" told Pravda.Ru that demand to legislate against Islam was a strange measure and doubted that such a decision would be taken. Bangladesh is a relatively young state, that was formed on the wreckage of the British India, which had divided into two great conglomerations: a Muslim and mainly Hindu parts. Under the totality of population poverty, long-felt social and economic problems, growing numbers of population, there is risk of religious persecution generating government overthrow with terrorist methods.

Mar 10 08:29

MYANMAR IS QUIETLY EXPERIENCING ITS LARGEST UPRISING IN YEARS

You won’t hear much about it from international media. But Myanmar, exalted by the West for veering toward democracy, is in the middle of its largest civilian uprising in nearly a decade. Like practically all uprisings in Myanmar, where a domineering army still holds immense power, this revolt is turning bloody.

Mar 09 06:10

Why This Sucker Is Going Down——The Case Of Japan’s Busted Bond Market

The world financial system is booby-trapped with unprecedented anomalies, deformations and contradictions. It’s not remotely stable or safe at any speed, and most certainly not at the rate at which today’s robo-machines and fast money traders pivot, whirl, reverse and retrace.

Indeed, every day there are new ructions in the casino that warn investors to get out of harm’s way with all deliberate speed. And last night’s eruption in the Japanese bond market was a doozy.

Mar 07 17:35

Nancy Reagan is dead but her 'war on drugs' continues to terrorize Americans

Nancy Reagan in her later life never did much in the way to revisit or retract her statements made in 1982 as she launched her iconic War on Drugs campaign and it’s easy to see why.

In 1982 drug use was viewed as an epidemic by the public and a major target to blame for domestic unrest and urban crime. To put it simply that sentiment is completely changed in 2016 with more than 50% of the nation’s population at least having tried marijuana and a snowballing base of support for blanket nation-wide legalization and Nancy looks sort of foolish in retrospect when approached canonically.

n/a
Mar 01 19:52

Medical Marijuana Legalized on Entire Continent of Australia

Waking Times

Australia’s population is roughly 23 million – while the US has approximately 318 million potential medical marijuana patients. All the same – lawmakers in the country have just legalized medical marijuana for the entire country, with a vote made by the Australian Parliament last Wednesday.

Feb 28 09:11

Afghanistan Part III: Central Asia Grand Chessboard

The timing of both Brzezinski’s book and the Bush Jr. Administration “carpet of bombs” threat to the Taliban are instructive since both occurred prior to the 911 attacks, which provided the perfect pretext for the massive Central Asian intervention that Brzezinski, Bush and their City of London bosses were advocating.

Dr. Johannes Koeppl – former German Defense Ministry official and adviser to NATO Secretary General Manfred Werner – explained of this rash of “coincidences” in November 2001, “The interests behind the Bush Administration, such as the Council on Foreign Relations, the Trilateral Commission and the Bilderberger Group, have prepared for and are now implementing open world dictatorship (which will be established) within the next five years. They are not fighting against terrorists. They are fighting against citizens.”

Drugistan

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Unfortunately, the biggest drug deal in the country of the United States, and around the world, is the country of the United States!!

Feb 27 08:28

What is America doing in the South China Sea?

Washington is playing a dangerous game of 'chicken' with the Chinese and Russians, who are attempting to defend themselves from the Washington Consensus, which reduces subject populations to that of serfs.

While the Russians, following the collapse of the Soviet Union, seemed willing to accept a sort of vassal statehood, it is increasingly today clear that such an assignation is intolerable. Thus, Vladimir Putin enjoys immense popularity as he stands up to the pro-Washington forces inside and outside of the US.

Meanwhile, the Chinese remember all too well the sting of British colonialism: opium addiction and the lasting effects of British presumptions of superiority. The Chinese place in the Washington Consensus has been staked out as, in the case of Russia, supplier of inputs to feed the hungry capitalism of the US and the Western European former colonial masters.

Feb 25 21:19

Poisoned Mind: Social Media in the 21st Century

Waking Times

According to an article on the website of ‘Radio Free Europe’, a nondescript modern 4-storey building on Savushkina Street, St. Petersburg, houses the innocuously titled ‘Internet Research Centre’.

Feb 25 14:30

Presidential Elections 2016: The Revolt of the Masses

Commentators grossly oversimplify when they reduce the revolt to incoherent expressions of ‘anger’.

The presidential elections of 2016 have several unique characteristics that defy common wisdom about political practices in 21st century America.

Clearly the established political machinery – party elites and their corporate backers -have (in part) lost control of the nomination process and confront ‘unwanted’ candidates who are campaigning with programs and pronouncements that polarize the electorate.

But there are other more specific factors, which have energized the electorate and speak to recent US history. These portend and reflect a realignment of US politics.

In this essay, we will outline these changes and their larger consequences for the future of American politics.

We will examine how these factors affect each of the two major parties.

Feb 25 08:48

The Pentagon Readies Backup Island in Case of Chinese Missile Onslaught

The United States can no longer count on its Pacific air bases to be safe from missile attack during a war with China. On the contrary, a 2015 paper from the influential RAND Corporation noted that in the worst case scenario, “larger and accurate attacks sustained over time against a less hardened posture could be devastating, causing large losses of aircraft and prolonged airfield closures.”

Kadena Air Base in Okinawa, due to its relative proximity, would be hardest hit. To up the stakes, China in September 2015 publicly revealed its DF-26 ballistic missile, which can strike Andersen Air Force Base in Guam — nearly 3,000 miles away — from the Chinese mainland. Andersen and Kadena are among the U.S. military’s largest and most important overseas bases.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I would be willing to bet that construction on Tinian will begin very quickly, with the escalation of tensions between Korea, the US, and China.

Feb 25 08:47

The Globalists and the Islamists:

The Globalists and the Islamists:

Fomenting the "Clash of Civilizations" for a New World Order

Part Two:

The Muslim Brotherhood – The Globalists' Secret Weapon

I. The Roots of Islamic Terrorism
II. Creating the 'Arc of Crisis'
III. The Muslim Brotherhood Branches Out
IV. Osama Bin Laden: The Early Years
V. Bin Laden In Exile
VI. World Trade Center 1993
VII. Bin Laden's Money Problems
VIII. The Brotherhood Revolution Continues

Feb 24 10:24

Abe Ignores Obama's Advice Not to Visit Putin

U.S. President Barack Obama urged Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to cancel his trip to Russia in May, but Abe refused to follow the advice, reported Kyodo agency, citing other sources. According to the agency, a telephone conversation between Obama and Abe took place on February 9. "Now is not a good time", — quotes RIA Novosti the words of Obama, who had advised Abe to postpone the visit to Russia. Sources claim that the Japanese Prime Minister did not budge and the conversation did not bring the desired result.

Feb 24 05:45

Russians Ride Fast – Israel Shamir

If the rebels grasp the chance and enter serious negotiations for a coalition government, peace is possible.

The Russians accepted the US proposal to cease fire in Syria (or rather to end hostilities). They had made a similar proposal a few weeks ago, so this is in line with their thinking. Russians have made huge successes in Syria; they achieved an astonishing and unexpected victory with very few losses.

It was a reputational victory it was as well as a military one. Russia entered the Syrian war at a low point internationally.

Feb 22 05:38

FBI GATHERS CLUES IN MASSIVE GOLDMAN SACHS MONEY SCANDAL

Fallout from Goldman Sachs’ involvement with the controversial Malaysian state fund continued last week. US law enforcement officials are gathering sensitive documents — and identifying potential witnesses — in the massive money scandal that has ensnared the bank and one of its regional chairmen in a global probe, an international investigator told The Post.

Feb 21 05:20

The Empire Doesn’t Retreat or Compromise

Reading mainstream media news, analyses, and opinion pieces about this war is completely useless, as everything is either uninformed and clueless gibberish or propaganda and deception.

I wrote this text over several days and every time I sat down again to continue there came another headline to my mind. The first headline was “Nobody said, that it will be easy,” the second “Waiting for the Turkey-Russia showdown,” the third “Playing the terrorism game,” the fourth “Everything is better than war.”

In the end I settled for the header “The empire doesn’t retreat or compromise.”

This statement stands the test of time, it has been proven throughout human history, and there is only one single exemption, only one short period where retreat and compromise are a possibility. This short period is the time when the empire is in terminal decline and in the process of collapsing.

Feb 20 05:17

China Accuses US of Militarizing South China Sea

Military.com: BEIJING -- China on Friday accused the US of militarizing the South China Sea, just days after it was revealed that Beijing had deployed surface-to-air missiles on an island in the hotly disputed area.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei told reporters that patrols by US military aircraft and Navy vessels, along with joint exercises involving regional partners were the true reason why concerns were growing over peace and stability.

"The above actions have escalated tensions in the South China Sea, and that's the real militarization of the South China Sea," Hong said.

Feb 19 12:24

U.S. rejects Chinese offer of peace treaty talks with North Korea

The United States said Thursday that denuclearization remains its top priority when it comes to North Korea, rejecting a Chinese proposal to begin peace treaty negotiations with Pyongyang in tandem with denuclearization talks.

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi made the offer earlier this week after talks in Beijing with his Australian counterpart. A peace treaty with the United States, which would formally end the 1950-53 Korean War, is one of the North's long-running demands.

"Denuclearization remains our top priority. We remain in close contact with the other five-party partners on our shared goal of the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula in a peaceful manner," State Department spokeswoman Katina Adams said.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

To President Xi Jinping and the government of China; what you have proposed is completely logical and reasonable. Thank you for your suggesting this approach.

Having said that, it pains me to confess that I am sometimes dumbfounded by the ham-fisted, pig-headed stupidity of the US government, which more than occasionally, collectively, appears to be pathologically incapable of thinking anything through.

Using the peace treaty here would be the "carrot" in the negotiations which would ultimately lead to denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula. That the US government willfully refuses to see this logic is unfortunate.

Feb 15 10:52

Why the Syria ceasefire is a long shot

Washington and its allies are not interested in peace. They want regime change – by hook or by crook.

An end to the Syrian conflict is desperately needed. But the latest plan for a cessation of violence is unlikely to take hold, as the deal struck by international powers is based on fundamentally opposing premises.

In short, Washington and its allies want regime change, while Russia and Iran insist that President Bashar Al-Assad and his government are the legitimate ruling authorities in Syria. All sides are mandated by UN resolutions to respect the sovereign will of the Syrian people – to determine the political future of their country.

Feb 15 10:49

A Syrian Breakthrough – Israel Shamir

Now the deed is done, the corridor is blocked.

If and when Aleppo and the whole Aleppo district will be taken by the Syrian army, we would be able to congratulate Putin and Assad – and Syrian people – with a great victory.

The Russians raise alarms that a Turkish invasion into Syria is imminent. Russian media is foaming at the mouth about the perfidious Turks; a veritable Two Minutes Hate ritual (vide Orwell) on the state-managed TV channels being repeated a few times a day. The idea is to scare Turks stiff so they will not move while the operation in the North lasts. On the other side, the Russian opposition draws frightful scenarios of Janissaries slaughtering the Russian boys on the Syrian terrain. The Turkish media also tries to instil fear in the Russkies by saying what they can do.

Feb 15 10:45

Presidential Debates and Iran

The presidential candidates’ irresponsible remarks about Iran - as though it is a politically convenient football to be kicked around...

After watching both the Republican and Democratic debates on TV, I intend to exclude two main categories from my principle concerns in the upcoming presidential elections that will determine who will replace President Obama next year: one is the entire roster of the Republican Party, and the other, anything other than the foreign policy issues; the main area of my personal interest.

I am disregarding the entire Republican roster because I don’t think any Republican has a chance to beat Ms. Clinton in the general elections, at least this time around.

Feb 13 10:00

US sends extra Patriot missiles to S Korea amid rising tensions with North

The US military has deployed additional Patriot missile systems in South Korea, citing Pyongyang’s recent rocket launch.
The Seoul HQ of the US Forces Korea (USFK) said Saturday that the deployment of additional assets is part of an emergency readiness exercise being carried out in cooperation with the South Korean military.

"North Korea’s continued development of ballistic missiles against the expressed will of the international community requires the Alliance to maintain effective and ready ballistic missile defenses. Exercises like this ensure we are always ready to defend against an attack from North Korea," said Lt. Gen. Thomas Vandal, Commanding General of Eighth Army, the commanding formation of the USFK.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This deployment, coupled with the potential deployment of the THAAD system, is yet one more glaring demonstration (as if the American people need more demonstrations) of the reality that just because something is the most ham-fistedly, pig-headedly stupid thing the US government can do, is absolutely no guarantee that the US government won't do it.

And I have a short memo, and question, to the White House, Congress, the Pentagon, and the State Department: why is it that the only time you tend to pay attention to North Korea is when they test another, bigger, more sophisticated bomb?!?

Has it not occurred to you that this is the only way Kim Jung-un believes he can get your attention?!?

Instead of sanctioning and hurriedly deploying more weapons to South Korea, will someone, please pick up the damned phone, and call China's President, Xi Ping, and start the dialogue leading to a 4 way conference between North Korea, China, South Korea, and the US to replace the Armistice (which is just a cessation of fighting) with a genuine peace treaty?!?

Because when this happens, and with one of the iron-clad articles in the treaty stating that North Korea never develops weapons again, these countries would do a great job of ratcheting down the tensions in the region, noticeably.

Of course, what I am suggesting is...logical, which it may never have occurred to the American government, at least not so far.

Feb 13 08:13

FOIA REQUEST: U.S. BASE RELEASED 21,000 LITERS OF CHEMICAL AGENTS INTO OKINAWA DRINKING WATER SUPPLY

It seems Okinawan residents had good reason to sue the Japanese government and spend over 500 days protesting the relocation of a U.S. base on their land. They had long suspected that U.S. bases were polluting their waterways, and documents released by Freedom of Information Act request appear to prove them right. A recent drinking water contamination in Okinawa may have been caused by a series of accidents at Kadena Air Base, which led to the release of a minimum 21,000 liters of fire extinguishing agents over the period of 15 years. Some of these agents are toxic.

Feb 11 10:45

Indonesia to replace US-made F-5 fighters with Russia's Su-35 jets

The government of Indonesia intends to purchase ten Su-35 fighter aircraft from Russia, Indonesian Defense Minister Ryamizard Ryacudu said after the talks with the head of the Russian Security Council Nikolai Patrushev. "I am going to Russia in March to sign the contract," the minister said, Defenseworld.net reports. According to the Indonesian official, it goes about the acquisition of ten aircraft, even though it was earlier said that Indonesia was planning to purchase 12 jets. Indonesia is sending its pilots and technical staff to Russia soon for training. It is expected that the state-of-the-art Russian-made fighter jets will replace the US-made F-5 aircraft for the Indonesian Air Force. Indonesia also has eleven Su-30 and five Su-27 aircraft. The Sukhoi Su-35 is a deeply modernized super-maneuverable multifunctional 4 ++ generation fighter jet. The aircraft uses fifth-generation technology that makes it superior to other similar class fighters.

Feb 09 14:55

US using Pyongyang nuclear tests as pretext for pivoting more towards Asia

UN sanctions imposed on North Korea over the past decade have failed to prevent Pyongyang from expanding its nuclear and missile programs, a UN panel of experts says, while the US has used the North’s activities as a pretext for expanding its military build-up in Asia.

Feb 09 14:44

5th Russian-built Kilo-class submarine arrives in Vietnam

The fifth of the six Kilo-class submarines that Vietnam purchased from Russia has arrived at Cam Ranh Bay, Thanh Nien news reported. The submarine, which was delivered by a Dutch-registered cargo ship, laid anchor near the Cam Ranh Port, according to the report. The sixth submarine is undergoing sea trials in Russia and is expected to arrive in the middle of 2016. Vietnam purchased the six submarines for $2 billion in 2009.

Feb 09 09:19

Asian markets: Japan's Nikkei down more than 5% following weak close on Wall Street

While China, Hong Kong, South Korea among other markets remained closed for the Lunar New Year holiday, remaining stock exchanges in Asia were trading lower on 9 February. This followed a negative Wall Street and FTSE close overnight.

Fears over a sell-off in the European banking sector gathered pace overnight after Stoxx Europe 600 Banks Index – the gauge of the banking sector in Europe – recorded its sixth consecutive weekly decline, the worst streak since 2008. Worried investors as a result pulled out of Asian stock markets in search for safer havens.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The PPT is fighting gravity today on the US markets.

Feb 08 14:19

The Neocons Do Not Want Peace In The World:Paul Craig Roberts

endless wars and endless reaping to benefit the banksters

Feb 06 08:59

Why the ‘Sultan of Chaos’ is freaking out

Picture sleepless nights at ‘Sultan’ Erdogan’s palace in Ankara. Imagine him livid when he learns the Syrian Arab Army (SAA), backed by Russian air power, started a preemptive Battle of Aleppo – through the Bayirbucak region - cutting off Ankara’s top weaponizing corridor and Jihadi highway.

Who controls this corridor will control the final outcome of the war in Syria.

n/a
Feb 05 16:20

East Asia Is Invisible

Americans don’t care about East Asia.

That’s a strong statement. So, let me make a few qualifications. First, Americans love Chinese, Japanese, and (increasingly) Korean food. They like to visit East Asia. They will, on occasion, watch a Hong Kong action film or the latest from Park Chan-Wook.

Feb 04 08:15

Beijing Vs DC: The Battle for Southeast Asia

By Tony Cartalucci

The Straits Times published an opinion piece by the London-based Rob Edens. Wishfully titled, “South-east Asia fast becoming unfriendly territory for China,” it attempts to portray Southeast Asia as increasingly pivoting West toward Washington, coincidentally just as Washington was “pivoting” East toward Asia...

Feb 03 09:42

US SEEKS JOINT NAVAL PATROLS WITH PHILIPPINES IN DISPUTED SOUTH CHINA SEA

A U.S. diplomat said on Wednesday that the U.S. was open to the possibility of joint naval patrols with the Philippines in the South China Sea aiming to continue to exercise “freedom of navigation” in the disputed waters. Philippines has asked the U.S. to patrol the area together after China began test flights from Fiery Cross Reef an artificial islands where Beijing has built airfields. “We do discuss that principle (joint patrols) with the Philippines and so I am not discarding that possibility,” U.S. Ambassador in Philippines Philip Goldberg told reporters.

Feb 01 13:57

Laos: The New Cold War Battleground You Don’t Know About

The “New Cold War” could be a potential description for the unfolding geopolitical lay of the planet as Russia reemerges as a world power, and China rises as a new one in the face of a prevailing Wall Street-Washington-London international order.

The most obvious battlegrounds taking shape in this “New Cold War” are Ukraine, Syria, and the South China Sea. Perhaps not as high-profile but no less important are the ongoing conflicts in and around Libya, the proxy war being waged across Yemen, and America’s enduring occupation of Afghanistan in Central Asia.

However, there are other struggles taking place that go virtually unseen by the general public, or are briefly mentioned – out of context in the news – before being quickly forgotten.

Feb 01 04:46

Asian Markets Close Mixed: Weak PMI Data Weighs on China

Asian markets traded mixed on Monday with China taking the biggest hit to close in the red. The weak Chinese PMI manufacturing data coupled with decline in oil prices, drove the equity stocks in the region to close mix.
***
SSE Composite index in China closed down 1.78% on Monday after PMI index disclosed contraction in manufacturing and services sector of the country. The Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) for manufacturing sector in January dropped to 49.4, its lowest level in three years, from December’s 49.7, according to National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).
***
>The People’s Bank of China (PBOC) also injected around $1.5 billion in cash in the country’s financial system
>China’s Energy sector performed poorly during today’s trading session.
>Hang Seng in Honk Kong closed down 0.45%, erasing early gains.
>Oil prices plunged on Monday during Asian trading hours

Jan 30 07:02

Sexual counter-revolution: how the "celibacy syndrome" is ruining the economy of Japan

The Japanese youth no longer wants to go on dates, get married and even have sex. This phenomenon, dubbed "celibacy syndrome", was recorded a few years ago, and the situation is only getting worse. A natural consequence of the "celibacy syndrome" — what a surprise! — reduction of fertility. In 2015 in Japan came to light one million eight thousand newborns, and one million three hundred two thousand old people died. Some simple calculations show that for the year the population decreased by almost 300 thousand people. According to demographic calculations, there will be 30 per cent less Japanese by mid-century... By the end of 2014, the debt of Japan has reached to 1.03 quadrillion yen. Quadrillion! A normal person need a dictionary to understand that we are talking about the one with 15 zeros. You can transfer this amount to more than the usual US dollars, but no relief will bring. Eight trillion 654 billion dollars too incredibly much.

Jan 30 06:08

Japan joins negative interest rate club

Jan 30 05:03

Islamic Extremism in Southeast Asia

The recent wave of international terrorism, which has swept across the world over the last couple of years, is a strong reminder that no region, not even remotest corner of our planet is secure. January 2016 has seen deadly blasts in different cities - from Turkey to Indonesia - taking too many innocent lives... RIAC gives an overview of extremist organizations present in the ASEAN countires.

Jan 29 04:50

Japan adopts negative interest rate in surprise move

In a surprise move, the Bank of Japan has introduced a negative interest rate.

BBC: The benchmark rate of -0.1% means that commercial banks will be charged by the central bank for some deposits.

It is designed to encourage them to use their reserves to lend to businesses in an attempt to counter Japan's economic slump.

The charge does not directly apply to ordinary customers' accounts.

The country is desperate to increase spending and investment.

Desperate

One of the side effects of a moribund economy is falling prices - something that can send an economy into a downward spiral

Jan 28 11:07

The admiral in charge of Navy intelligence has not been allowed to see military secrets for years

For more than two years, the Navy’s intelligence chief has been stuck with a major handicap: He’s not allowed to know any secrets.

Vice Adm. Ted “Twig” Branch has been barred from reading, seeing or hearing classified information since November 2013, when the Navy learned from the Justice Department that his name had surfaced in a giant corruption investigation involving a foreign defense contractor and scores of Navy personnel.

Worried that Branch was on the verge of being indicted, Navy leaders suspended his access to classified materials. They did the same to one of his deputies, Rear Adm. Bruce F. Loveless, the Navy’s director of intelligence operations.

More than 800 days later, neither Branch nor Loveless has been charged. But neither has been cleared, either. Their access to classified information remains blocked.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Why on earth has the Navy allowed this to fester in this way?!?

the only answer that makes sense is the scope of the corruption here is mind-blowing, that any prosecution of the case would forever shake the public's confidence in Naval acquisition programs.

As reported in November of the New York Times last year:

The U.S. Navy is being rocked by a bribery scandal that federal investigators say has reached high into the officer corps and exposed a massive overbilling scheme run by an Asian defense contractor that provided prostitutes and other kickbacks. Among those arrested on corruption charges are a senior agent for the Naval Criminal Investigative Service and a Navy commander who escaped Cambodia’s “killing fields” as a child only to make a triumphant return to the country decades later as the skipper of a U.S. destroyer. The investigation has also ensnared a Navy captain who was relieved of his ship’s command this month in Japan. The chief executive of the Singapore-based defense contractor, Glenn Defense Marine Asia, and another company official were arrested last month at a San Diego harborside hotel after federal investigators lured them to the United States by arranging a sham meeting with Navy officials, according to court records and people involved in the case. The unfolding investigation is shaping up as the biggest fraud case in years for the Navy. Federal prosecutors allege that Glenn Defense Marine, which has serviced and supplied Navy ships and submarines at ports around the Pacific for a quarter-century, routinely overbilled for everything from tugboats to fuel to sewage disposal.

Jan 27 15:40

Japan superior immigration policies?

Jan 27 07:59

The War on Cash: A Country by Country Guide

slaves ARE property. they don't OWN property

Jan 26 03:57

Asian stocks drop as oil retreats

***
Chinese and Japanese shares drove losses in the region with markets in Australia and India shut for holidays and U.S. index futures declined. American oil extended last session's selloff, falling to $29.47 amid expectations U.S. stockpiles data will intensify concerns over the global glut.

Jan 25 16:42

Petraeus: ‘It’s Time To Unleash America’s Airpower in Afghanistan’

In an Op-Ed printed in the Washington Post, former General David Petraeus says it is time to “unleash our airpower in support of our Afghan partners in the same way that we support our Iraqi and Syrian partners against extremists.”

Jan 25 09:00

East Asia cold snap 'kills 85 in Taiwan'

A cold snap sweeping across East Asia has killed at least 85 people in Taiwan and stranded 60,000 tourists in South Korea.

Taiwanese media reported deaths from hypothermia and cardiac disease following a sudden drop in temperature over the weekend.

Meanwhile heavy snow forced the closure of the airport on the Korean holiday island of Jeju, cancelling flights.

The cold spell has also hit Hong Kong, southern China and Japan.

Jan 22 08:08

Missoula Doolittle Raider Thatcher to join Living Legends of Aviation

Missoula’s David Thatcher, one of two remaining crew members of the famed Doolittle Raiders of World War II, will be feted again Friday night.

Thatcher and his wife, Dawn, are in Beverly Hills, California, where he’ll be inducted into the Living Legends of Aviation at a $5,000-a-plate dinner ceremony hosted by John Travolta.

Thatcher, 94, will be joined by the other Doolittle survivor, Dick Cole of Texas, who turned 100 in September.

Jan 21 06:05

Every false flag in the making is detected ahead of time by somebody’s intelligence services

Every false flag in the making is detected ahead of time by somebody’s intelligence services—usually more than one country—because spying today is so effective and so universal. Officials in possession of this secret information often pass it on to the country that’s targeted, in the sincere belief that a heads-up will be appreciated.

But often the information isn’t welcomed—-because the fix is already in. Treasonous assets within the targeted country’s chain of command, who are prepared for the possibility of a leak, take measures to block the information from reaching those who might act on it in a meaningful way.

Jan 21 05:50

Terrorists interested in recruiting adherents among prisoners — CIS anti-terrorism center

"The expert meeting was held not only due to a general increase in terrorist activities in the world and the activities of international terrorist and extremist organizations but also due to the need to promptly track and prevent major threats to the national security for CIS member-countries in Central Asia," the Anti-Terrorism Center said. "Currently, we register interest of international terrorist organizations in recruiting adherents from among prisoners with a view to using the destructive potential of criminal elements while committing acts of violence up to incitement to carrying out terrorist attacks and involvement in anti-constitutional actions."

Jan 20 14:45

Planet of Fear

same silliness different day

snip: And that once again feeds the warmongering hordes, for which that «good old-fashioned world war» is the easiest ticket out. Cancel all the old debt; issue loads of new debt; turn ploughshares and iPhones into cannons. And after a little thermonuclear exchange, welcome to full employment and a new (waste)land of opportunity.

Jan 19 23:29

Offensive propaganda or new propaganda offensives?

Obama administration announced new online initiatives to bolster its foreign policy narratives and as a means to counter others, for example, this network, RT.

Maybe a better course of action would be for the US State Department to ask itself why fewer and fewer people trust and believe it?

CrossTalking with Mark Sleboda, Don DeBar and James Carden.

Also see: Uncle Sam Got a Shiny New Propaganda Bullhorn for Christmas

Jan 19 23:25

Russian Red Scare No Longer Works

The EU has no-one else to blame for its present stresses and strains but itself, owing to its craven subservience to Washington's reckless policies.

The American and British governments are launching yet another media campaign to demonize Russia, with tall claims that the Kremlin is infiltrating European political parties and news media. The dastardly Russian aim, we are told, is to destroy the European Union.

Twenty-five years after the end of the Cold War and the dissolution of the Soviet Union, Washington and its trusty sidekick in London are desperately seeking to turn back the clock to the “good old days” when they could control their public through scare stories.

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