Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
by Oui (Oui) on Sat Jun 1st, 2024 at 05:18:26 PM EST
ChatGPT | With inflation soaring argentina will start printing 10,000 peso note (08.05.24)
"The new denomination note—five times the value of the previous biggest bill—is expected to hit the streets next month [JUNE] in a bid to 'facilitate transactions between users,' the central bank said. The 10,000 peso note is worth USD 11 at the country's official exchange rate and USD 9 at the ["blue peso"] market exchange rate."
Milei puts on a show musical at Luna Park as he launches new book (23.05.24)
"I wanted to do this because I wanted to sing," he said before singing along with an amateur band on a single song: his warped version of 'Panic Show' by Argentine rock trio La Renga. After his performance, the economist gave a lengthy economics lecture based on his 13th book Capitalismo, socialismo y la trampa neoclásica ("Capitalism, Socialism and the Neoclassical Trap"). Milei gave a lesson in liberal economics stretching from ancient Egypt to the fall of the Berlin Wall. In his speech, the President railed against socialism, defended monopolies, denied the existence of market failure and said that abortion was a "mechanism to massacre populations.
Read the book! La presentación del libro, A/V (ES) 02:54:28
archive May 2024 MICmarket penetration, April Bidenecómicas!
by Cat on Sun Jun 2nd, 2024 at 03:43:51 PM EST
[ Parent ]
londonstockexchange | CLEANSING ANNOUNCEMENT, 17 June
Kyiv, Ukraine: The Government of Ukraine ("Ukraine") announces today that over a twelve-day period from 3 to 14 June 2024, representatives of Ukraine held meetings with members of the ad hoc creditor committee (the "Ad Hoc Creditor Committee") comprised of a number of major institutional asset managers and other long-term investors in Ukraine representing around 20% of the outstanding amount of Ukraine's Eurobonds, as well as with certain other holders of Eurobonds ("Investors") on a bilateral basis. Ukraine entered into the consultation period with the Ad Hoc Creditor Committee and the Investors to discuss, under non-disclosure agreements, the potential terms of a restructuring of Ukraine's thirteen series of outstanding Eurobonds (the "Eurobonds") listed in Annex
As detailed in Annex B, Ukraine's proposal (the "Sovereign Proposal") consisted of the exchange of the Eurobonds for either (i) a package of fixed income instruments (the "Vanilla Bonds") and state-contingent instruments (the "SCDIs") ("Option 1") or (ii) a package of Vanilla Bonds ("Option 2"). In relation to Option 1, the SCDIs would be converted into Vanilla Bonds based on a single test in 2027 with a face value dependent upon Ukraine's performance on tax revenues, subject to meeting conditions around real GDP levels projected in the IMF's baseline scenario. As such, if the revenue test and GDP target is met, the SCDIs would be replaced by fixed-income instruments of Ukraine whose cash flows would be certain. Both options have been designed to deliver holders cash flows during the IMF program period and provide for a nominal haircut ranging between 25 and 60% depending on the country's recovery over the IMF program period. The Sovereign Proposal also incorporated certain legal terms, including a "loss reinstatement" provision and a "most-favoured creditor" clause....
reuters | Ukraine's international bond rework derailed with little time left, 17 June
Ukraine has not been able to reach an agreement with a group of bondholders over restructuring some $20 billion of international debt during formal talks, it said on Monday, raising the spectre that the war-torn country might slip into default. An agreement with holders of international bonds that allowed Ukraine to suspend payments after Russia's invasion of the country in 2022 ends in August....Bondholders said the government's proposal had demanded a write down that was "significantly in excess of market expectation" which was consistent with a 20% "haircut".
alarabiya reuters | Ukraine's Marchenko says
"Strong armies must be underpinned by strong economies to win wars," he said, adding the country's economy was a "fragile balance" that hinged on consistent and substantial support from its partners. "Timely debt restructuring is a critical part of this support."
by Cat on Tue Jun 18th, 2024 at 05:55:59 PM EST
[ Parent ]
tabloid Today EV startup Fisker files for bankruptcy, aims to sell assets, 18 June IRA tax credit and rebate Reduction Act
...Fisker went public in late 2020 in a merger with a blank-check firm, valuing it at $2.9 billion and infusing its balance sheet with more than $1 billion in cash.

The listing was a second chance for its Danish CEO [Henrik Fisker, former consultant at TSLA] and founder to build an auto business after his first venture, Fisker Automotive, filed for bankruptcy in 2013, falling victim to the 2008 financial crisis and a battery failure in the Karma hybrid sedan that had led to a substantial recall....

archive most favored EV, PHEV models May
by Cat on Tue Jun 18th, 2024 at 06:03:06 PM EST
[ Parent ]
venezuelanalysis | Venezuela Edges Closer to Losing CITGO as Corporations Submit Binding Offers, 17 June
A total of 18 creditors are looking to collect a $21.3 billion combined debt, with a final sale decision expected in mid-July.
According to Reuters, at least five groups of investors put forward proposals. Sources disclosed that Wall Street banks JPMorgan, Morgan Stanley, and investment groups Rothschild & Co, and Elliott Investment Management, secured financing for auction bids.
Rusoro Mining, another Canadian company presented a non-binding offer in the previous round in January but did not disclose whether it submitted a second-round bid. It is owed $1.6 billion. Other rumored interested parties include hedge fund Elliott Investment and Centerview Partners. The latter has reportedly tried to join forces with ConocoPhillips. The US oil giant is looking to enforce two arbitration awards worth $1.3 and $10.2 billion, respectively. It did not state publicly whether it had submitted a bid.
The present CITGO board might lobby the court to open a third round of bidding if offers remain far from the company's $11-13 billion valuation. The highest amount put forward in the first round was just $7.3 billion. CITGO's board was appointed by the since-defunct Venezuelan self-proclaimed "interim government" headed by Juan Guaidó with US support.
reuters | Financial alliances build as Citgo share auction enters last mile, 17 June
by Cat on Wed Jun 19th, 2024 at 09:09:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Venezuela's Dual Power In Its Last Year?

The AN 2015's term was due to end in January 2021, and had been formally dissolved by President Maduro in 2017. However, it survived in exile with support from the U.S. government and allies.

The decision meeting took place on December 15th virtually, as most lawmakers are based in the U.S., Colombia, and Spain. Many of them are also substitutes, as some withdrew when their formal term ended in 2021 and for other reasons.

A failed regime change plan

In January 2019, a lawmaker from the AN 2015, Juan Guaidó, proclaimed himself as the interim president of the country. The argument was that the elections in 2018, where President Maduro was re-elected for a second term, were fraudulent. Guaidó was swiftly recognized by the U.S. and allied administrations.

Decision makers then in the Trump administration believed that they could trigger an uprising or military coup in Venezuela, by using a tough sanctions regime, diplomatic isolation, and the threat of invasion.

The European Union was a compliant commodity for the US capital vultures. UN Charter guarantees sovereignty of nations and non-intervention. American Century Pax and the NWO. The Replacement Theory of Colour Revolutions, a promising new era of fascism driven by Big Tech and today's AI.

U.S. Republican administration of George Bush and electronic voting systems [manipulation] sold to Venezuela ... after the successful  intervention in Palm Beach County butterfly ballots (John Bolton) to get GWB elected in the first place. American jewels of democracy expanded.

Behind-the scenes look at the political battle of battles: Bush v. Gore in 2000

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Thu Jun 20th, 2024 at 07:02:52 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Supreme Court will review Holocaust survivors' lawsuit against Hungary, 24 June
ECJ impunity that keeps on giving
In 2010, a group of Hungarian Holocaust survivors and their heirs brought a class-action suit against Hungary and its national railway, seeking compensation for their stolen property.
The district court dismissed the suit, holding that FSIA's treaty exception grants the Hungarian defendants immunity, that the 1947 Peace Treaty between the Allied Powers and Hungary set forth an exclusive mechanism for Hungarian Holocaust victims to obtain recovery for their property losses and that permitting the plaintiffs' lawsuit to proceed under FSIA would conflict with the peace treaty's terms. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit affirmed the dismissal as to the non-property claims and reversed as to the property-based claims.
The parties in the 14 years since have battled over whether American courts have jurisdiction to hear the case.
scotusblog | Republic of Hungary v Simon "expropriation exception" docket
[The Questions] before the Supreme Court is the exception's requirement that the property have a "commercial nexus" with the United States [eNTiTIeS?].
Petitioners Republic of Hungary, et al. ("Hungary") contend that federal courts can decline jurisdiction in this case because the FSIA does not destroy the federal court's discretion to exercise international-comity-based abstention. Hungary explains that comity-based-abstention allows U.S. courts to avoid "judicial interference in the conduct of foreign policy." Such abstention, Hungary continues, gives another, more appropriate sovereign the first opportunity to address a dispute relating to that sovereign.
The survivors claim Hungary co-mmingled the [sale] proceeds of their stolen property with other ["]funds["], and some of the proceeds are [80 years later] present in the United States in connection with Hungary's [eNTiTIeS?] commercial activity.
by Cat on Mon Jun 24th, 2024 at 04:49:38 PM EST
[ Parent ]
japantimes.co.jp | U.S. adds Japan to currency watchlist, 21 June
but stopped short of labeling it or any other trade partner as a currency manipulator.

While pointing out that Japan intervened to support the yen earlier this year, the Treasury took aim, instead, at Tokyo's large bilateral trade and current account surpluses.

"Treasury's expectation is that in large, freely traded exchange markets, intervention should be reserved only for very exceptional circumstances with appropriate prior consultations," the department said Thursday in its semiannual foreign-exchanges report. "Japan is transparent with respect to foreign exchange operations."

The other countries on the monitoring list were unchanged from the previous report in November: China, Germany, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan, and Viet Nam.

U.S. interest rates at the highest in more than 20 years have kept the value of the dollar elevated against most other currencies. That, in turn, has put severe strain on major importers of dollar-priced commodities such as oil, as well as on those countries bearing dollar-denominated debt.

by Cat on Sat Jun 22nd, 2024 at 01:51:22 PM EST
[ Parent ]
obektivno.bg | Western leaders gathered for a secret meeting , 30 May - 2 June, Madrid, Spain
70th Bilderbergite Summit this weekend.
This year's meeting in Madrid started on Thursday and ends on Sunday. Among those present were US Deputy Treasury Secretary Wally Adeyemo and Vice National Security Adviser Jonathan Finer, Finnish President Alexander Stub, European Council President Charles Michel, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, as well as the Prime Ministers of the Netherlands and Estonia, the Foreign Ministers of Spain, Ukraine, Sweden, Poland and the Deputy Prime Minister of Ireland. Pfizer CEO Albert Burla, BP Chief Executive Officer Murray Auchinclos and former Google CEO Eric Schmidt will take part in the world of business, along with several AI executives from Google, Microsoft and the Anthropic PBC. Despite the fact that Russia is one of the topics, there is not a single Rusnak among the invited guests.
"To say that we want one world government is an exaggeration, but it's not entirely unfair," commented Dennis Healy [10.03.01], one of the group's founders. "Those of us in Bilderberg we felt that we couldn't go on forever fighting each other about anything so we kill people and leave millions of people homeless. So we think a community around the world would be nice""
treasury.gov | Remarks by Deputy Secretary of the Treasury Wally Adeyemo at Atlantik Brücke and the Transatlantic Business Initiative Event, 31 May
We should not be blind to the fact that a growing Russian military with material support from Chinese companies will only grow in ambition.

Our Response

That's why we must be explicit with every individual, company, and country that providing the Russian military-industrial complex [MIC] with support is unacceptable.

This needs to start at home, including with companies within our countries. As Ukrainians have directly raised with me, Russian weapons found on the battlefield have American- and European-branded components. The United States is engaging with our manufacturing, distribution, and freight forwarding firms to build out better compliance regimes to prevent our goods from ending up in Russia. We need our allies to do the same housekeeping with their private sectors, and we need companies around the world to take similar steps.

by Cat on Sun Jun 2nd, 2024 at 09:51:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]
ChatGPT | EU looks at using its own budget as guarantee for huge loan to Ukraine, 4 June collateral reparations cock up
The European Commission is floating the idea of using future interest generated [sic]  by the investment of Russian assets frozen in Europe to pay back a loan [FROM WHOM?] that would, crucially, use the might of the bloc's €1.2 trillion seven-year budget as collateral. This is similar to a joint proposal [nope] pushed by U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, but would see the EU acting alone.
The original plan, which finance ministers of the G7 gave a cautious welcome to at a meeting last month, would see the U.S., or G7 countries jointly, securing the loan for Kyiv, while using the profits [!] of the Russian assets mainly held in Europe to pay back the interest [?!] on it.
The U.S. signaled the size of the loan [TO EU?] should be €50 billion, but the amount hasn't been agreed yet. Washington's idea would be for the frozen assets to be used to pay back [humanitarian OR weapons assistance?] the remaining [?] share of the loan [TO UKRAINE?] after the end of the war. While Washington initially suggested the U.S. would issue the loan [nope] to Ukraine with Europeans guaranteeing the funding RUSSIA reparations payment to UKRAINE, EU officials privately dismissed the idea.
USD 61B supplement PLUS "G7+ contributions"
They noted that the U.S. administration is keen to transfer risks to EU countries because < wipes tears > President Joe Biden does not want to involve Congress in ratifying the agreement appropriating moar Yermak "non-repaybable" Rassmussen "financial assistance", fearing that opposition from < wipes tears > Republican lawmakers will drag out the process past November's presidential election.
reuters | ECB cuts rates, keeps next move under wraps, 8 June
The European Central Bank cut interest rates for the first time in five years on Thursday but kept [Green MIC] investors in the dark about its next move given increasing uncertainty over inflation after a sharp slowdown in the past year. The ECB lowered its record-high deposit rate by 25 basis points to 3.75%, joining the central banks of Canada, Sweden, and Switzerland in starting to unwind some of the steepest rate hikes used to tame a post-pandemic inflation surge. Some economists say the biggest risk to the rate cut schedule is actually the U.S. Federal Reserve, not wages and inflation. The Fed has clearly signalled a delay in policy easing and a further delay in U.S. rate cuts is likely to make the ECB more cautious too, as a widening interest rate differential would weaken the euro and raise imported inflation.
ecb.europa.eu | Why we adjusted interest rates, 8 June
by Cat on Sun Jun 9th, 2024 at 04:34:33 PM EST
[ Parent ]
BRENNAN: Your republican colleague Senator Tommy Tuberville just this past week said on Steve Bannon!s show that Volodymir Zelensk* is a dictator and unconstitutional, and he said this about Vladimir Putin [VIDEO CLIP: He doesn't want Ukraine. He doesn't want Europe. Hell, he's got enough land of this own. He just wants to to make sure that he does not have United States weapons in Ukraine pointing at Moscow.] Those echo some Russian talking points. Senator, I wonder if those remarks from your fellow senator represent the GOP.
CRACKER: No. It represents him and him alone. If you spend fifteen minutes studying Putin and what he wants, he wants to recreate the Russian empire. He's not going to stop in Ukraine. We celebrated the 80th anniversary of D-Day. It was a failure. It was the unnecessary war described by Winston Churchill. We had a dozen chances to stop Hitler. It's not about NATO. It's not about American weapons in Ukraine. It's about a megalomaniac wanting to create the Russian empire by force of arms. If you don't stop him, there goes Taiwan [?!]. We've been slow as hell helping Ukraine, but Senator Tuberville's analysis really misses what Putin's all about. He's an outlier, I think, in the Republican Party. I like him personally, but what did Trump [?] do to get the weapons flowing? He created a loan system. They're sitting on ten to twelve trillion dollars of critical minerals in Ukraine. They could be the richest country in all of Europe. I don't want to give that money and those assets to Putin to share with China [?!]. If we help Ukraine now, they can become the best business partner we ever dreamed of. That ten to twelve trllion dollars of critical mineral assets could be used by Ukraine and the west, not given to Putin and China. This is a very big deal, how Ukraine ends. Let's help them win a war we can't afford to lose. Let's find a solution to this war, but they're sitting on a gold mine. To give to Putin ten to twelve trillion dollars of critical minerals that he will share with China is ridiculous.
by Cat on Mon Jun 10th, 2024 at 12:12:11 AM EST
[ Parent ]
duhh 🫠

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Mon Jun 10th, 2024 at 09:10:05 AM EST
[ Parent ]
by Cat on Mon Jun 10th, 2024 at 01:44:00 PM EST
[ Parent ]
@ 02:13:26, "We Build Ukraine" infomercial (US-Eng.)
@ 02.15.10, Olaf Scholz opening speech
justice.go | neighbourhood-enlargement.ec. | Opening speech by President von der Leyen at the Ukraine Recovery Conference (11.06.24)
...The rationale of this conference has always been to look beyond Ukraine's immediate needs and chart a credible path towards its economic renaissance. In London last year, I presented the new EUR 50 billion Facility for Ukraine, to provide predictable support until 2027. And Member States supported, also thanks to your tireless personal effort, Olaf. The Facility is backed by a solid plan for reforms and investments. It is now up and running. EUR 6 billion have already reached Ukraine. And here in Berlin, we are signing the first agreements worth EUR 1.4 billion with our partner banks, to attract investments in Ukraine from the private sector. And, as you have already mentioned, Olaf, we will also launch dedicated support for equity investments in Ukraine. Our partner banks will be able to apply for EU budget support, when they invest in equity funds active in Ukraine. In that way, we, the EU, help them remove some of the risks associated with equity investments. Our aim is to improve access to finance for Ukrainian businesses, especially for SMEs and start-ups that can help modernise the Ukrainian economy, for example, in areas like IT and digitalisation, renewable energy, and critical raw materials....
urc-international.com | Ukraine Recovery Conference, 11-12 June 2024, Berlin, DE
motto United in defence. United in recovery. Stronger together.
The key goal of the URC2024 is to mobilise* continued international support for recovery, reconstruction, reform, and modernization of Ukraine.
The URC2024 will focus on the following four thematic dimensions:
Business Mobilising the Private Sector for Reconstruction and Growth
Human Social Recovery and Human Capital for the Future
Local and Regional Recovery of Municipalities and Regions
EU Ascension and Related Reforms
"Success Stories" video ribbon

* a "fraught" turn of phrase

by Cat on Thu Jun 13th, 2024 at 06:53:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]
See also NATO declaration of war on Russia at Bucharest Summit in Spring 2008.

Zijlstra admits faking story about Putin's 'greater Russia' ambitions | Dutch News |

Foreign affairs minister Halbe Zijlstra (VVD) has admitted lying about being at a meeting where Vladimir Putin supposedly set out his plans for a 'Greater Russia'.

Zijlstra claimed that he had overheard the Russian president talking about his expansionist ambitions during a gathering of businesspeople at Putin's dacha in 2006. At the time Zijlstra was working for Shell. But in an interview in De Volkskrant at the weekend he admitted that he had not been at the meeting, but 'borrowed' the anecdote from someone whose identity he wanted to protect.

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Mon Jun 10th, 2024 at 09:28:35 AM EST
[ Parent ]
ft | British army delays King Charles cap badges over China spying fears, 15 June
[T]he Yorkshire-based company contracted to make the badges, Wyedean Weaving, sources some of its manufacturing capacity from factories in China.

"There is a fear that tracking devices or a GPS transmitter could be embedded in the cap badges," a senior UK defence official said. "The result is a delay in the introduction of the cap badges as < wipes tears > the UK does not have the capacity to manufacture them as quickly or as cheaply," the official added.
Wyedean won a £2.9mn three-year subcontract in 2022 from US-listed defence services company Leidos, which has a direct contract with the UK MoD, declined to comment. Susannah Walbank, Wyedean's systems director, said the family-owned company was waiting for final approval to press ahead with the badges.

"China is part of our supply chains, we have been there for 15 years [!], have long-standing relationships, and there has never been any concern," Walbank said, adding that the new cap badges would be made "in a mix of places, including China" and that they would be quality checked in the UK.

by Cat on Sat Jun 15th, 2024 at 04:56:13 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Let's recap G7 mobilized "debt-raising"
A legal framework should be developed
Eurozone governments rush to sell bonds
collateral for a bond issued by a special-purpose vehicle

Now, this.
reuters | Biden, France's Macron reach agreement on using Russian assets for Ukraine, 10 June Macron set theory

U.S. President Joe Biden said on Sunday he had reached an agreement with French President Emmanuel Macron on the use of profits from frozen Russian assets to help Ukraine.
The Group of Seven nations and the European Union [enTitY] are considering how to use profits generated by Russian assets immobilized in the West to provide Ukraine with a large up-front loan [for UKRAINE] now and secure Kyiv's financing for 2025.
< wipes tears >
The funds [sic] generate 2.5 billion to 3.5 billion euros a year in profit, which the EU says is < wipes tears > not contractually owed to Russia
archive eur-lex.europa.eu: "they do not constitute sovereign assets. Therefore, the rules protecting sovereign assets are not applicable to these revenues." (21.05.24)
and therefore represents a windfall [sic]. The idea, championed by the U.S., is to use this [orphan] profit as a steady ["guaranteed"] revenue stream to service [pay principal and interest owed] a large loan of $50 billion [for UKRAINE] that could not be [ADVANTAGE UKRAINE rings a bell]
raised on the market.
by Cat on Mon Jun 10th, 2024 at 01:37:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
bloomberg | France's Bond Yield Reaches Highest This Year on Snap Election, 10 June
French government bonds sold off sharply on Monday amid mounting concerns over the nation's finances after President Emmanuel Macron called a snap election. and Biden agreed to embezzle RUSSIAN assets.
The vote is sharpening the growing focus on the country's < wipes tears > fiscal challenges, which culminated with a credit downgrade by S&P Global Ratings last month. France's bonds, long considered one of the safest in the euro area, have been falling out of favor as the fiscal picture worsens, with the extra yield on 10-year bonds over German securities doubling from pre-Covid levels.
by Cat on Mon Jun 10th, 2024 at 02:10:10 PM EST
[ Parent ]
ChatGPT | EU looks at using its own budget as guarantee for huge loan to Ukraine, 4 June
"The attractiveness of this option for the EU may critically depend on the nature of the assurances that the United States is seeking, other G7+ contributions, the < wipes tears > governance of the loan, and the spending as well as how the financial risk is shared," the document says.

Tricky negotiations lie ahead

The plan to secure a loan unilaterally won't be without its complications for the EU however.
In a strategic win earlier this year, Hungary secured a guarantee that the decision to keep the Russian funds frozen would be renewed unanimously by the EU's 27 countries every six months. This allows Budapest to potentially turn off the taps for Ukraine at any time. The Commission's document suggests finding a way to work around this requirement in order to give more < wipes tears > predictability to the loan.

by Cat on Tue Jun 11th, 2024 at 05:29:15 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Ukraine pushes forward with war compensation mechanism, despite lack of funding
The estimated price tag for the damage caused to Ukraine by Russia's full-scale invasion is $1 trillion.
Funding [sic] for such mechanisms has historically been tricky.
How the US pay war reparations to Viet Nam
How Japan and France evaded war reparations to Viet Nam
How Monsanto paid for loss and damages in Viet Nam
What if Euroclear offered Russia a checking account with a free toaster?
Last month, however, Ukraine won a small victory. Brussels announced it would hand over the profits from those frozen assets—the interest earned on money in a bank account, for example—to a special fund for Ukraine. The estimated 3 billion euros ($3.2 billion) per year will reimburse EU member states for weapons and ammunition they send to Ukraine, but might in the future help Ukrainians rebuild their homes and lives.
by Cat on Tue Jun 18th, 2024 at 09:43:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]
ASEAN (1967 FTA): BN, ID, KH, LA, MM, MY, PH, SG, TL, TH, VN
EAS (2005 East Asia Summit): CN, RU, IN, KR, ASEAN; US, AU, JP, NZ

bloomberg | Viet Nam Greets Putin in Boost to Ties, Ignoring US Criticism, 20 June
"The visit demonstrates that Viet Nam actively implements its foreign policy with the spirit of independence, self-reliance, diversification, multilateralism," according to a statement on Viet Nam's government website.

Viet Nam and Russia have TIES going back decades to the Soviet Union.

fmprc | Xi Jinping to Pay a State Visit to Viet Nam (12.07.23)

fmprc | Wang Yi Meets with a Delegation of the Communist Party of Viet Nam (22.03.24)

Putin said nearly 60% of trade transactions between the two countries were in rubles [RUB] and Vietnamese dong [VND]. Russia relies on alternative payment settlement systems since its banks are cut off from the international payments system SWIFT.

The Russian president is expected to participate in a wreath-laying ceremony at the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum and meet officials including Communist Party chief Nguyen Phu Trong, Chinh and President To Lam, according to Viet Nam's Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

archive US defeat by Viet Nam, financing the Viet Nam caper, NEW! Green Zone embassy garrison, Lula and Võ Văn Thưởng, Biden's high-stakes Asia sojourn, a return to normalcy and end of Viet Nam, A/RES/ES-10/21, 27 Oct 2023
by Cat on Thu Jun 20th, 2024 at 03:30:28 PM EST
[ Parent ]
state.gov | Press Briefing - June 20, 2024
QUESTION: On this, you talk about the UN Charter and the territory—sovereignty and territorial integrity. What's the U.S. record on that with regard to Viet Nam?
MILLER: So obviously we have—were involved in a conflict in Viet Nam many years ago, ancient history, and we are glad to see the—
QUESTION: It's not so ancient. I mean, I was alive during it.
MILLER: We—we are—yeah—
QUESTION: I don't know, maybe not others were, but I&mash;but it's not ancient. It's not ancient history, and—
MILLER: I wasn't trying to insult you, Matt, just to be clear. That said, we have&mDash;
QUESTION: But look, I mean, in the early 1960s, the U.S. actually went into Viet Nam and stayed there until 1975, so—
MILLER: I am full aware of the long historical record between our two countries, and in the years since you have seen a broad reconciliation between our countries and between our two peoples.
QUESTION: Okay, but when you say that you want the Russians to respect the UN Charter as it relates to Viet Nam and—
MILLER: I was speaking as it respects to Ukraine—with respect to Ukraine.
QUESTION: Well, anywhere.
QUESTION: As it relates to Viet Nam, you don't exactly have the best record, right?
MILLER: So as usual, I'm not going to litigate the full history of American foreign policy.
QUESTION: You don't have to litigate it.
by Cat on Sat Jun 22nd, 2024 at 02:45:23 PM EST
[ Parent ]
bloomberg | Europe in Talks to Keep Russia-Ukraine Gas Pipeline Flowing, 10 June transit fees
One option that's been discussed is for European companies to buy and inject gas from Azerbaijan into Russian pipelines heading to Europe, according to some of the people. Such an arrangement would allow Europe to avoid the embarrassment of buying Russian gas at a time when it's trying to crimp Moscow's revenues.
No comment: RF, Gazprom, Transneft, AZ, Socar, SK, AS, DE, Uniper
"There are two factors we should always remember," Oleksiy Chernyshov, chief executive of Ukraine's state-run Naftogaz, told Bloomberg News on Monday. "One is that Ukraine has incredible infrastructure of transit and storage gas, which should be used, and Ukraine is predisposed to use this infrastructure because it brings a lot of [income]." He ruled out any plan that involved working with Russia's Gazprom PJSC, and said bringing gas from Azerbaijan "might have some future."
Russia still ships around 15 billion cubic meters of gas to Europe a year, mainly to Slovakia and Austria, where Russia is still a dominant supplier. In Austria, Russian gas has covered more than 80% of Austrian consumption for five straight months. Europe also imports Russian LNG by ship, and despite frequent debates about whether it should, it has never sanctioned Russian gas.
< wipes tears >
"I'm doing everything to find a solution that the Ukrainian gas transportation system will continue to be operational because it's a big asset and someone should be a customer," Chernyshov said. "Otherwise it's loss generating."
archive Naftogaz, Druzhba 2022, OGTSU, Yamal, Sudzha, Togliatti-Odessa 2023, TAP
by Cat on Tue Jun 11th, 2024 at 07:55:00 PM EST
[ Parent ]

..."What Washington is proposing is, 'We [the U.S.] take a loan, Europe takes all the risk, you [Europe] pay the interest, and we [the U.S.] use the money for a U.S.-Ukraine fund,'" said one senior European diplomat.
(proof marks in original - ed)
Governments are in a race against time, not just because Ukraine desperately needs the money, but because there's no certainty that a Donald Trump presidency would back the initiative. A final agreement will now be delayed until at least the fall, according to three officials.
EU-US Treasury bonds?
To front-load that aid, Washington suggested taking on a $50 billion loan for Ukraine < wipes tears>, which would be paid back each year with the profits generated by immobilized Russian assets.
WWIII Marshall Plan for yerp?
"If it was the other way around, they would say we are crazy," said an EU official about the U.S. proposal.
"The EU can be naïve, but this goes too far," said an EU diplomat. "This would benefit mostly American companies, so we have to discuss the conditions more in detail." Officials are now discussing whether to issue the loan through the World Bank or an ad hoc instrument, with the officials saying the EU wanted to negotiate the exact conditions to avoid their companies being left out of profitable Ukrainian contracts....
yahoo! afp | G7 to agree $50-bn Ukraine loan at Italy summit, 13 June
"We are on the verge of a good outcome here," US National Security Advisor Jake Sssullivan said Thursday, adding that the details still needed to be thrashed out.
archive REPO Act "Ukraine Support Fund", the keepers of global values
by Cat on Thu Jun 13th, 2024 at 12:21:40 PM EST
[ Parent ]
whitehouse.gov | Press Briefing by Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre and National Security Communications Advisor John Kirby (17.06.24)
Q  Can you explain why you just called it a, quote, unquote, "loan"?
KIRBY: Because it's not as if—because if you're using the windfall profits, it's not as if Ukraine is going to have to pay those back. It's going to—you're going to continue to be able to source that through—through the frozen assets and the—the windfall profits from those assets.
by Cat on Thu Jun 20th, 2024 at 08:17:59 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Alex C.: "My bad. I said, the EU has devised a legal loophole, not just a loop hole. It's a legal loophole. That's important. The EU's going to legally steal the frozen assets of Russia, and use the profits. They're going to legally steal the profits from the frozen assets Russia and legally use the theft of the profits from the frozen assets to purchase weapons which they will then legally send to Ukraine. Do I have that right? I had to work that out in my head—the process, the legal process that the EU has devised."
ft | EU devises legal loophole to bypass Hungary veto on support for Ukraine (24.06.24)
EU chief diplomat Josep Borrell told the Financial Times that since Hungary abstained from an earlier agreement to set aside the proceeds from Russia's frozen assets, it "should not be part of the decision to use this money". Concerns from the US and other G7 partners over Hungary likely blocking an EU decision to keep the Russian assets immobilised indefinitely caused significant delays in the negotiation over the $50bn loan. The legal workaround for the EU use of proceeds is likely to suffice in guaranteeing the payout of the loan, according to officials familiar with the matter.
Cat: Almost. The Daleep Singh School of Workaround Loopholes sez: Income legally owed to frozen Russian assets owners are not sovereign profits. They are legally EU and US "windfall profits". EU and US legally can use 90% of windfall profits to procure weapons and 10% for dual-use goods from EU and US for Ukraine. Sovereign assets of Russia, legally frozen by EU and US, are legally not windfall profits. So, EU and US will legally proffer those legally frozen assets legally entitled to income for collateral to guarantee a $50B loan for Ukraine from EU and US lenders. Hungary legally is not one of Ukraine's lenders. Hungary refused windfall profits distribution. Hungary legally withheld its veto in EUCO proceedings to approve windfall profits and EU CDO for Ukraine but has not legally waived its veto power to cancel future EU windfall profits distributions, legally.

Malign disinfogator | Belgium warns against seizing Russian money, 22 June

"First of all, for our country there are two elements that are important: we did not touch the assets themselves, as the ownership title change would yield consequences both on the legal side and financial side that are unknown," FinMin Vincent Van Peteghem said [@ 13:39] during a press conference after the bloc's ECOFIN meeting in Luxembourg. "And second, of course, risk sharing, that I think is important in the rollout of the instruments and is a crucial element of all discussion," the minister added.
archive 21 May 2024 price cap mania exit plan
by Cat on Thu Jun 27th, 2024 at 12:41:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]

euractiv. 14th EU Russia sanctions package includes first-ever third-country LNG restrictions

...The new restrictions under the package will not hit the majority of Russia's liquid natural gas (LNG) exports to the EU. However, the ban on trans-shipments is the first restriction the bloc has applied to LNG, a first-ever far-reaching measure that would have once seemed unthinkable in terms of reaching unanimity at the EU level. Now, ports [sic] in the EU will not be allowed to resell Russian LNG, and financing Russia's planned Arctic and Baltic LNG terminals will be blocked....
euronews | EU agrees new sanctions on Russia, targeting LNG for the first time
...About 22% of these supplies (4.4 bcm) were trans-shipped globally, with 1.6 bcm sent to other member states, CREA says. The rest went to China, India, Türkiye, and other clients.
"This hard-hitting package will further deny Russia access to key technologies," said European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen. "It will strip Russia of further energy revenues. And tackle Putin's shadow fleet and shadow banking network abroad."
eunew.it | 14th sanctions package targets EU sale of LNG from Moscow to third-countries
...Official approval and publication of the package will have to wait for the EU Foreign Affairs Council on Monday, June 24. However, EU sources say the sanctions will affect "more than 100 new persons and eNtITieS, for a total of over 2,200," and include measures to cut back on "imports, investments, and transshipments of LNG."
The agreement reached today by EU ambassadors does not include an outright import ban: European companies will still be able to purchase Russian LNG, but [they] will be prohibited to re-export (or transshipment) it to other countries....
by Cat on Thu Jun 20th, 2024 at 07:50:26 PM EST
[ Parent ]
finance.ec.europa.eu | Fourteenth package - 24 June 2024
The Council adopted a 14th package of restrictive measures designed to target high-value sectors of the Russian economy, like energy, finance, and trade, and make it ever more difficult to circumvent EU sanctions. The 14th package includes the following elements:
Energy-related  [LNG import, shipment]
Anti-circumvention [EU third country subsidiaries, IPR transfer and patent registration]
Financial sector [SPFS and crypto transactions worldwide]
Transport [aviation, roads, vessels]
Protection of EU operators [NEW! legal basis for compensation claims in states' courts and arbitration]
Russian interference [EU political eNTitIeS financed by RU eNTitIeS]
Miscellaneous [restrictions on public procurement, import of "stolen Ukrainian cultural items"]
EUR-LEX | Council Regulations (EU) 2024/1712, 2024/1739, 2024/1745, 2024/1746, 2024/1776, 2024/1778, 2024/1793, etc
by Cat on Mon Jun 24th, 2024 at 05:55:17 PM EST
[ Parent ]
archive Kyiv Security Compact "authorities to seize the property", 13 Sep 2022
ibid Council Regulations, 21 June 2024
ibid ECOFIN legal loophole, 26 June 2024

Helmer, 25 June

Buried in the small print and legalese of the new European Union (EU) sanctions announced on June 24 is the re-establishment of the old European and American empires' operation of privateering. That's piracy on the high seas licensed by the monarch or the head of state on condition that the proceeds are shared with court [not those courts, the royal ones] and state [l'etat c'est] officials.
oh. 17th century admiralty justice for trophy, loot, and booty
To make sure of that, the EU has issued Council Decision (CSFP) 2024/1738 which allows the thieving to be done in secret. In Article 1 of Monday's document, the EU authorizes "the release of certain frozen funds [Russian], after having determined that the transfer of such funds is: (a) between two natural or legal persons, entities or bodies that are not listed in the Annex to this Decision". That's the stealing
And here is the cover-up: Article 4a is amended to read that the operation: "shall be subject to professional secrecy and shall enjoy the protection afforded by the rules applicable to the Union institutions. That protection shall apply to the proposals from the High Representative for the amendment of this Decision and to any preparatory documents related to them."
Then what happened?
< wipes tears >
venue shopping
by Cat on Thu Jun 27th, 2024 at 06:39:29 PM EST
[ Parent ]
GT | China slams European Commission for demanding commercial secrets in EV probe, 20 June
Asked about a closed-door meeting between major Chinese and European carmakers, where the relevant firms said that the EC demanded trade secrets about the Chinese EV industry, He Yadong, a spokesperson for MOFCOM, said that the EC requested a large amount of information on the production and operation, development plans, technical processes, product formulas, and other information from Chinese EV and battery companies.

"The type, scope, and quantity of information collected by the EU side is unprecedented and far exceeds what is needed for countervailing investigations," He said at a press conference on Thursday, while also slamming the EC's punitive tariffs based on claims that Chinese firms did not cooperate. "Chinese companies were shocked and very disappointed."

by Cat on Thu Jun 27th, 2024 at 07:01:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]
kommersant | Bank of China isolates itself from sanctions in Russia, 24 June
In the Russian market, the credit institution ranks second in terms of assets among subsidiaries of Chinese banks (592.4 billion rubles at the end of the first quarter of 2024). As noted in the May rating press release of the Expert RA agency, the bank has a "stable position in the international settlement market".

"This is not very good news for the Russian market. There will be additional costs both in terms of time and the cost of processing payments, "one of the financiers emphasizes. But the most important problem is that payments go beyond the banking sector, as a result of which the state has less and less control over them, and fraud risks arise."

As Kommersant's sources explain, recently payment traffic has already begun to shift more and more actively towards intermediaries—non-bank payment agents, which is why "the transaction chain is becoming less transparent." The work of non-bank intermediaries "is generally beyond the control of regulators and is not transparent", one of the Kommersant's interlocutors emphasizes.

< checks watch >
15th sanctions package story developing ...
by Cat on Wed Jun 26th, 2024 at 09:10:51 PM EST
[ Parent ]
ChatGPT | China is threatening EU agriculture. Should farmers squeal? , 11 June illustrated paronomasia
Pork and dairy are first at the plate, according to the state-owned Global Times. Over the last two weeks, it has reported that the Chinese government is considering anti-dumping probes into imports of both foods, which in 2023 accounted for nearly €5 billion—a quarter [25%] of EU agri-food exports to the Asian giant and 2 percent of total exports.
volume or value?
Cheaper Brazilian and U.S. protein is already cutting into Europe's margins, complained [Belgian Meat Office manager Joris] Coenen, and EU producers can't easily redirect volume to emerging markets like Viet Nam and the Philippines. Duties are currently 12 percent. Hoist them to 20 percent and exporters are in trouble.

But context is important too. Only a tenth [10%] of Europe's pork leaves the bloc, of which less than half [< 5%] goes to China.

In threatening higher pork duties, Beijing is also "piggybacking": trying to profit from a step they might take anyway due to domestic oversupply, said Jacob Gunter, lead analyst on economy for the Mercator Institute for China Studies (MERICS).
Beijing is already looking to finalize its near-complete self-sufficiency in grains, with its first "food security law" taking effect last week. The strategy "puts China first" by importing moderately and using scientific and technological advances to boost output [yield].
Spotlight on the top five EU agri-food exports to China over the past 5 years, in value in euros. Details of the product categories can be found here.
First question: Which EU states cultivate coffee, tea, cocoa, and "spices"? Second question: What are inedible agri-foods?
by Cat on Tue Jun 11th, 2024 at 03:00:50 PM EST
[ Parent ]
12 June | 17 June
bloombrg | China Launches Anti-Dumping Probe on Imports of EU Pork (17.06.24)
The investigation began on Monday, according to a statement from the Chinese Ministry of Commerce. China is the EU's biggest overseas market for pork, although [EU] export volumes have fallen off in recent years due to [CN] domestic oversupply and low prices. Still, the trade was worth $1.83 billion last year, with farmers in Spain, Denmark, and the Netherlands the biggest beneficiaries.
archive NEO Beijing autoshow 2024, third-country EV battery swapping since 2019
euractiv | OpEd | EU, China and pigs in the middle, 18 June
John Clarke is the former director for international relations at DG Agriculture at the European Commission and former head of the EU Delegation to the WTO and UN in Geneva.

China confirmed European producers' worst fears yesterday when it announced the launch of an anti-dumping investigation into imports of European pork.
Chinese officials made no secret that the launch was in retaliation against Europe's imposition last week of higher than anticipated anti-subsidy tariffs on imports of Chinese Electric Vehicles (EVs): up to 38% duty on top of the existing 10% applied to all imported cars.
But in this author's view, China's move is misguided, and it may come to regret it.
[1] ...An anti-dumping case (along with vague allegations of distorting subsidies) launched for purely political and tit-for-tat retaliatory reasons hardly inspires confidence in China's attachment to those multilateral principles....
[2] the move will not have the desired deterrent or leverage effect. Spain, the Netherlands, and Denmark are unlikely by themselves to be able to swing EU decision-makers against the imposition of definitive EV duties, expected early next year....
Wrong victims. Germany and France < wipes tears > should have been the targets if that [EV market entry]  is China's objective...
[3]...WTO law and practice assumes retaliation—where legal—to be focused where possible on the sector under dispute. Cars for cars, planes for planes, and so on. To routinely take unrelated sectors hostage in trade disputes is a risky policy with unforeseen consequences....
[4] is it wise to target commodity foodstuffs, notably in a country like China, for which food security is a perennial pre-occupation? Even the EU excluded food from its Russia sanctions list. Food politics is fools' politics. Food relies on long-term contracts between supplier and buyer.

dont-say-solidarity-lanes. dont-say-starving-africans.
by Cat on Tue Jun 18th, 2024 at 02:19:55 PM EST
[ Parent ]

telesur. Maximum Security Deployed Ahead of G7 Summit in Italy
Some 1,500 extra troops have been deployed across the country, adding to some 6,800 troops already involved in security operations leading up to the event. Border controls have been temporarily reinforced at all land, air and sea entry points. Extra checks will be in place around sensitive targets in the provinces of Bari and Brindisi until 2 p.m. local time on June 18....The agenda of this summit includes six working sessions about African development and climate change, the situation in the Middle East, the Ukraine-Russia conflict, migration, the Indo-Pacific region, and a special session focusing on [computer programming, hard skills, soft skills,] and energy. The G7 leaders are expected to agree on a plan to freeze billions of U.S. dollars in Russian assets and use the money to financially support Ukraine.
by Cat on Thu Jun 13th, 2024 at 04:27:48 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by Cat on Thu Jun 13th, 2024 at 04:29:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]
arabnews | Saudi foreign minister arrives in Russia for BRICS meeting, 10 June
Prince Faisal met with Lavrov on the sidelines of the meeting on Monday and also held talks with Yvan Eduardo Gil Pinto of Venezuela on the same day.
Hajj 14-19 June 2024
spa.gov.sa | HRH the Crown Prince Sends Regrets, 12 June
to Giorgia Meloni, Prime Minister of the Italian Republic for the kind invitation that he received to participate in the communication session of the G7 summit, which will be held in the Italian Republic on June 14, 2024, corresponding to 8 Thu Al-Hijjah 1445(H). The cable included HRH's regret for not being able to participate due to commitments related to overseeing the works of the Hajj season. HRH emphasized the depth of the relationship between the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the friendly Italian Republic, and he wished success for the summit's proceedings
ChatGPT dpa | Ukraine's Zelensk* visits Saudi Arabia ahead of Swiss peace talks, 12 June
Saudi Arabia does not want want to take part in the June 15-16 [Global Peace] conference as Russia will not attend, sources® in Riyadh said earlier this month on condition of anonymity
arabnews | Pope Francis to weigh in on 'ethical' [computer programming] at G7 summit, 13 June
..."The Church always looks to humans as the center of its mission," said Paolo Benanti, a Franciscan university professor and member of the UN's [computer programming] advisory body, who directly advises the pope. "From this perspective it is clear that the [computer programming] that interests the Church is not the technical tool, but how the tool can impact on the life of man," he told AFP....
indiatoday | PM Modi leaves for Italy, to meet world leaders tomorrow, 14 June
and is expected to arrive in Apulia later tonight. During the ["G7 Outreach"] summit, which is likely to be dominated by the raging war in Ukraine and the conflict in Gaza, India will focus on ["Outreach session"] issues such as [computer programming], energy, Africa [?], and the Mediterranean region. PM Modi is likely to hold bilateral meetings with a number of world leaders, including US President Joe Biden, Italy's Giorgia Meloni and others, attending the outreach session of the G7 summit. In a departure statement, PM Modi said issues crucial for the Global South will also be deliberated upon at the outreach session.
by Cat on Thu Jun 13th, 2024 at 10:45:37 PM EST
[ Parent ]
nasdaq | U.S-Saudi Petrodollar Pac Ends after 50 Years, 11 June G7 de-industrialization
The "petrodollar" agreement, formalized after the 1973 [OPEC EMBARGO] stipulated that Saudi Arabia would price its oil exports exclusively in U.S. dollars and invest its surplus oil revenues in U.S. Treasury bonds. In return, the U.S. provided military support and protection to the kingdom.
The global demand for dollars to purchase oil has helped to keep the currency strong, making imports relatively cheap for American consumers. Additionally, the influx of foreign capital into U.S. Treasury bonds has supported low interest rates and a robust bond market.
The agreement between the U.S. and Saudi Arabia expired on June 9, 2024. This expiration has far-reaching implications, as it has the potential to disrupt the global financial order.
archive to get a mega-deal with Saudi Arabia, price-taker's guide to the galaxy,  KSA enjoys market power in New Trade and Security, The Embargo That Must Not be Named, So what really happened in the 70s?
by Cat on Fri Jun 14th, 2024 at 10:33:31 PM EST
[ Parent ]
osu.edu | The Yom Kippur War and the OPEC Oil Embargo
Operation Nickel Grass
history.state.gov | Oil Embargo, 1973-1974
Project Independence
Initially, Secretary of Defense James Schlesinger suggested to Kissinger that the USA invade Saudi Arabia and another Arab countries and seize their oil fields. Kissinger stated in a private state department meeting that it's "ridiculous that the civilized world is held up by 8 million savages... Can't we overthrow one of the sheikhs just to show that we can do it?" They formed a plan to invade Abu Dhabi, Kuwait, and Saudi Arabia. Kissinger publicly threatened "countermeasures" in a Nov 21st, 1973 press conference if the embargo was not lifted, and the Saudis responded with threatening further oil cuts and to burn their oil fields if the US military invaded. After the CIA confirmed these threats, Kissinger gave up military intervention and decided that dealing with Israel's troop withdrawals and settled on diplomatic solutions to the oil embargo.
state.gov | Second Arab Oil Embargo, 1973-1974he United States announced Project Independence to promote domestic energy independence. It also engaged in intensive diplomatic efforts among its allies, promoting a consumers' union that would provide strategic depth and a consumers' cartel to control oil pricing. Both of these efforts were only partially successful. The Nixon Administration also began a parallel set of negotiations with Arab oil producers to end the embargo, and with Egypt, Syria, and Israel to arrange an Israeli pull back from the Sinai and the Golan Heights.
On November 7, 1973, Kissinger flew to Riyadh to meet King Faisal and ask him to end the oil embargo in exchange for promising to be "evenhanded" with the Arab-Israeli dispute.
energyhistory.eu | Oil, dollars, and US power in the 1970s
The US government played its cards skillfully: on 8 June, at a ceremony in Washington DC, Secretary of State Henry Kissinger and Crown Prince Fahd signed before cameras a framework agreement for the creation of two joint US-Saudi commissions (an economic one, and a military one), aimed at the promotion of Saudi investments in the US in exchange for US cooperation in technology and in the modernization of Saudi Arabia's armed forces.41
41. "'Milestone' pact is signed by US and Saudi Arabia", New York Times, 9.6.1974. The importance of Saudi investments in the US was repeatedly stressed in the correspondence between the two sides throughout 1975: USNA, RG 56, Chronological files of Gerald Parsky, 1975-1976, FRC 1.
Only on March 18, 1974 did the king end the oil embargo after Sadat, whom he trusted, reported to him that the United States was being more "evenhanded" and after Kissinger had promised to sell Saudi Arabia weapons that it had previously denied under the grounds that they might be used against Israel. More important, Saudi Arabia had billions of dollars invested in western banks, and the massive bout of inflation set off by the oil embargo was a threat to this fortune as inflation eroded the value of the money, giving Faisal a vested interest in helping to contain the damage he himself inflicted on the economies of the West.
history.state.gov | Shuttle Diplomacy and the Arab-Israeli Dispute*, 1974-1975
...With Jordan no longer in a position to press the United States for a negotiation with Israel, and Israel unwilling to talk with the PLO, Sadat convinced President Ford and Kissinger that they should spend 1975 pushing for a second agreement between Israel and Egypt over the Sinai. Unlike Sinai I, however, negotiations for this second agreement proved far more challenging and lasted several months....
"Democracy Shield"
Reports of the petrodollar system's demise are 'fake news'—here's why, 15 June
[1] Almost immediately, Google searches for the term "petrodollar" spiked to the highest level on record dating back to 2004 < wipes tears > according to Google Trends data.

[2] According to UBS Global Wealth Management chief economist Paul Donovan a formal agreement demanding that Saudi Arabia price its crude oil in dollars never existed. Rather, Saudi Arabia continued accepting other currencies—most notably the British pound for its oil even after the 1974 agreement on joint economic cooperation was struck. It wasn't until later that year that the Kingdom stopped accepting the pound as payment.

[3] Perhaps the closest thing to a petrodollar deal was a secret agreement between the U.S. and Saudi Arabia reached in late 1974, which promised military aid and equipment in exchange for the Kingdom investing billions of dollars of its oil-sales proceeds in U.S. Treasurys, Donovan said. The existence of this agreement < wipes tears > wasn't revealed until 2016, when Bloomberg News filed a Freedom of Information Act request with the National Archives.

[4] "The evidence for any kind of conspiracy is thin to nonexistent," Eurasia Group analyst Gregory Brew told MarketWatch in an interview on Friday. "There is a very clear record of both the Americans and the Saudis being concerned in the aftermath of the global oil shock of what Saudi surpluses would do to the global economy."

by Cat on Sat Jun 15th, 2024 at 02:04:59 PM EST
[ Parent ]
ALKHOSHID @ 21:57: Dimitry, the United States—this new movement on the part of the Unitates in the Middle Eas—is in the new article in Wall Street Journal. It says that it seems the United States is offering Saudia Arabia a formal defese treaty in return for normalizing with Israel and vowing to distance itself from China and prohibit Chinese bases. Do you think that at the end of the day they would convince Saudi Arabia to do that?
ORLOV: Well, I think that the idea of the United States offering some kind of a security deal to Saudi Arabia is eliciting peals of laughter from the Saudis. The United States can't pretend to protect anyone, not its military bases in Iraq or Syria, not Israel. If Iran wants to attack Israel using hypersonic weapons, the United States is powerless to stop it. The United States has completely failed to provide Saudi oil installations [defense] from Houthi attacks, and the Houtis are commonly portrayed with this sort of stone-age people, if you will, but for some reason they're better militarily than the United Sates at this point, to the point of being able to attack American aircraft carriers.
dodig.mil | Audit of the DoD's Revaluation of the Support Provided to Ukraine Through Presidential Drawdown Authority (Report No. DODIG‑2024‑095), 11 June
by Cat on Sat Jun 15th, 2024 at 01:01:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
We recognize the impact of AI on the military domain and the need for a framework for responsible development and use. We welcome those who have endorsed the Political Declaration on Responsible Military Use of AI and Autonomy (REAIM) and the REAIM Call to Action, and we encourage more States to do so to ensure that military use of AI is responsible, complies with applicable international law, particularly international humanitarian law, and enhances international security. [Apulia G7 Communiqué:23]
To speak of technology is to speak of what it means to be human and thus of our singular status as beings who possess both freedom and responsibility. This means speaking about ethics. [Partecipazione del Santo Padre Francesco al G7 a Borgo Egnazia]
There are a number of reasons why the discussion of the right or the ability to judge touches on the most important moral issue. Two things are involved here: First, how can I tell right from wrong, if the majority or my whole environment has prejudged the issue? Who am I to judge? And second, to what extent, if at all, can we judge past events or occurances at which we were not present? As to the latter, it seems glaringly obvious that no historiography and no courtroom procedure would be possible at all if we denied ourselves this capability. One might go a step further and maintain that there are very few instances in which, in using our capacity to judge, we do not judge by hindsight, and again this is equally true of the historiographer as it is of the trial judge, who may have good reasons to mistrust eyewitness accounts or the judgment of those who were present. [Responsibility and Judgment (2003):19]

by Cat on Mon Jun 17th, 2024 at 11:48:50 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by Cat on Thu Jun 13th, 2024 at 10:52:37 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by Cat on Sun Jun 16th, 2024 at 12:11:32 AM EST
[ Parent ]
globalnews.ca | Canada's senate passes foreign interference bill, awaits LOL royal assent,
20 June dont-say-Georgia-say-foreign-interference!
The transparency registry < wipes tears > would require certain individuals to register with the federal government to help guard against such activity.

Civil society groups called for more time to consider the legislation—introduced in the House of Commons less than seven weeks ago—saying the rush could could result in flawed provisions that violate people's rights.

openparliament.ca | Bill C-70
Part 4 enacts the Foreign Influence Transparency and Accountability Act which, among other things,
(a) provides for the appointment of an individual to be known as the Foreign Influence Transparency Commissioner;
(b) requires certain persons to provide the Commissioner with certain information if they enter into arrangements < wipes tears > with foreign principals under which they undertake to carry out certain activities in relation to political or governmental [?] processes in Canada;
(c) requires the Commissioner to establish and maintain a publicly accessible registry that contains information about those arrangements;
(d) provides the Commissioner with tools to administer and enforce that Act; and
(e) amends the Public Service Superannuation [pension] Act, the National Security and Intelligence Committee of Parliamentarians Act, and the National Security and Intelligence Review Agency Act.
Parts 1-3 are chips off ye olde Norman National Security Act 2023
EU eyes targeted sanctions, visa restrictions over Georgia's 'foreign agent' law, 21 June
EU foreign ministers on Monday (24 June) are expected to discuss the options paper, drawn up by the bloc's diplomatic service (EEAS), in response to the passing of Georgia's controversial `foreign agent' law in May. Brussels had called on Tbilisi to withdraw the law, which had sparked weeks of mass demonstrations, warning the passing of the bill would hamper its hopes of joining the bloc in the near future.
PS. Man accused of plotting to murder Sikh separatist extradited to US from Czechia: "Nikhil Gupta was arrested in the Czech Republic last year, after he was accused by US prosecutors plotting to arrange the assassination of Gurpatwant Singh Pannun, a US resident."


by Cat on Fri Jun 21st, 2024 at 12:24:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by Cat on Wed Jun 26th, 2024 at 08:20:13 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by Cat on Sat Jun 29th, 2024 at 10:55:48 PM EST
[ Parent ]


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