Tag Archives: Bahrain

What did I say?

I have said it again and again. The US is in several dangers, financial being a large one and Al Jazeera gives us ‘UAE arms deals: What weapons is the Gulf state buying and why?’ (at https://aje.io/pn5gad), it is the second line that should concern people. The mention of “purchases from South Korea, Israel and France”, Israel makes sense, its Iron Dome is pretty essential in any defence setting, yet the US is not one of the mentioned, so no Northrop Grumman or Raytheon. It is South Korea and France. France needs the sales, but in the end, the US is overlooked (again). There is a setting that the US could still set itself on and that is to grow UAE defence growing, Manufacturing plants in the UAE (or Saudi Arabia), but there is no real information on where the GAMI is going at present, so when we see “has one of the most potent air defence systems in the region, relying mainly on American-made weapons like the older HAWK missile, the more capable Patriot PAC-3 missile and the THAAD air defence system which was used for the first time in combat this year, destroying a Houthi missile” we also see that out with the old and the new is increasingly likely not going to be American, so when one changes, where does that leave the sales pipeline of the US? When one falls over, where do the others go? Consider that the HAWK was not the latest solution when I left the army 20 years ago, so why are the American salespeople not all over that wreck from day one? It should have been a clear path for the US to cement a better stage with Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and optionally Qatar. If they can keep one of these four it is close to a miracle. And at the edge is China, ready to sell whatever they can and when I initially stated that the US could lose hundreds of billions everyone was stating that I was nuts, that I was demented and I didn’t know what I was talking about. Over the last months we have seen activities that show that the US is in a sliding place and now Al Jazeera adds to that. People might laugh at the size of the UAE, but with the UAE the options for Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Egypt will also grow and neglecting any options is folly and it could cost the American industry a lot more than anyone bargained for. It might be merely my view, but so far I have been spot on, something the others will yet have to prove. 

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When is limelight a void?

I stumbled upon an article be Al Dia Politics. A source I do not know, but I saw something that reflects on my findings. The article (at https://aldianews.com/articles/politics/what-happened-revelations-pandora-papers-latam/68469) gives us ‘What happened to the revelations of the Pandora Papers in LATAM?’ My first feeling is ‘What Revelations?’ You see, the ICIJ and everyone parroting them is a group of emotional flamers, flamers never bring revelations, they merely say they do and then spin that shit, they always do. So when I see “After the results of an investigation last October revealed tax havens for the world’s most powerful, after-effects have been null and void.

As I see it there are two reasons

  1. There was never a summary of who was involved, it is merely a beacon to flame things as many flames as possible, especially by these essay writers (aka journalists). 
  2. Were there any crimes committed?

These two give an inkling that there was nothing to act on. The stage is that zero tax havens are legal, the UAE, Monaco, Cayman Islands, Bermuda, Andorra, Bahrain and a few others are nations that have zero tax, it is their approach to make things run and attract investment dollars. They have a legal right to do this, it is the other nations that have not cleaned up their tax laws (including the US and several other nations). 

Why does this matter?
The US has a little over 24 hours before it hits its debt limit as per Janet Yellen’s statement. So I reckon it will take a day before the media will flame leagues of tax the rich articles claiming that they are merely reporting. It is also almost a month away since I made the claim 25 years ago that tax systems needed to be overhauled. So there are two reasons to watch this from the sidelines. A stage that I will enjoy because no matter how bad my situation is, I was right all along and when I checked certain counters, it seems that other documentation will hit here too, the counter is around 75% of where it needs to be. 

Then (back to the story) we see something that might be a revelation “It is important to remember that the names revealed by the investigation have been involved in the diversion of capital and the concealment of fortunes, which translates to tax evasion. Among those involved were Sebastián Piñera, president of Chile, and Guillermo Lasso, his counterpart from Ecuador, and their respective governments investigated them seeking to find evidence to remove them from office.” There is a chance that the Pandora papers were an CIA and NSA operation to secure funds for the US whilst changing the political lands they were facing. This matters because no government has ever done this to this degree. It could show that the US is truly desperate without pissing off their friends (like the Koch family), it also means that there will be no overhaul of tax laws making matters worse for them and perhaps two other players.

There is a larger political stage, but I am not the best source for that, especially in Latin America. But it also draws a few other settings, the fact that the ICIJ would make no attempts to find the source, this reeked and the ICIJ should have known better, because there is now the need for a list of 600 essay writers that catered to the US governmental needs, people never considered that part did they? And it helps the US to get flames rolling on their ‘tax the rich’ groups, especially when the need is escalating way beyond dire. And I am not one to be nice, especially to certain groups that think that they are above anything, so there will be a need for these 600 names soon enough and then? How much credibility will these newspapers and media outlets have when that comes to light?

We see all these articles on house meetings and investigations, but we see nothing on results and reporting of that nature. OK, the Guardian did have a piece where we saw in October regarding former Prime Minister Tony Blair “While there was nothing illegal about the transaction, and there is no evidence the Blairs proactively sought to avoid stamp duty”. A hole page of wasted space, mentions of ‘could’ and no substance. And in all these months no dashboard (something I would have started in the first hour), the limelight on void issues, no illegality and merely stomping and pretending. So, yet in a trove with 12,000,000+ documents, the CIA/NSA will have something for you, but is it stuff you care about? 

At this point I care about that list of 600 essay writers and the amount of money they cost whilst not bringing anything real to the media. I have actually met troll-hunters who got more real work done in one day that these 600 essay writers in months. Ponder that for a second. 

When the media is setting up the limelights to waste it on a void, you know that they are catering to a powerful population and we get no real information because that would make some people really nervous at present. So I am guessing that there will be a new wave of ‘tax the rich’ this month, all whilst the Us (EU too) have not overhauled any of the tax laws that required overhauling. What say you?

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Terrorist claim of instability

Yes, we have seen it all. Or so it would seem. The article (at https://aje.io/tpe7wm) that gives ‘Hezbollah chief slams Saudi Arabia for Lebanon diplomatic rift’ is hilarious, if humour is your thing. To understand this we need to make a little time warp. This all started on March 21st 2015, when Houthi-led Supreme Revolutionary Committee declared a general mobilisation to overthrow the legitimately elected Hadi. Hadi called for help and the Arabic Nations came to the offensive together with Saudi Arabia. This started the war that has persisted for 6.5 years. Why? Because Iran decided to aid the Houthi’s and Hezbollah being an Iranian tool decided to help out in more than one occasion. So we now make another jump towards October 2021. Now we see “A day earlier, Lebanon’s information minister George Kordahi triggered a social media frenzy when a video of him referring to the Houthis as defending themselves emerged online” and when you see what caused the war in Yemen and all whilst several sources keep on silencing on Iranian actions, we now see Lebanon catering to Iran as well. So when we see “Nasrallah accused Saudi Arabia of violating Lebanese sovereignty and dismissed calls for the departure of embattled Information Minister George Kordahi” and this is not enough. One source less then 2 weeks ago gives us “Kordahi Meets al-Rahi who Reportedly Advises Him to Resign”, is it true? I do not know, I saw one source and several other sources make claims but not this one. In addition to this Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, and Bahrain recalled their ambassadors and expelled the Lebanese ambassadors. It seems that Nasrallah has a lot more problems, but he reckons that Saudi Arabia is the largest one and if he cries towards the UK and US he might get a bag of goodies. All whilst Lebanon is now solely relying on Iran to help out. As such I personally reckon that the Lebanese people have a lot to fear. We also are given “Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan’s remarks that Hezbollah has hegemony over Lebanon as “nonsense”” I do not think that Prince Faisal bin Farhan is wrong, the entire matter with Beirut and shootings over judge Tarek Bitar seems to point that out. Hezbollah is scared for what it might reveal and at that point the media can no longer be silent, and Iran will be all they have left. I reckon that the people are scared and the worry, in history Iran has always called on payment for their support (and then some). The people fear what that will bring this time around. 

It is a personal view and you might disagree, but personally I do not think that any terrorist gets to call anyone on instability. It is just how I am wired. And I am not dismissing some of the calls against judge Tarek Bitar, but the others started shooting, it makes me wonder just how good judge Tarek Bitar is in the place where he is now. As far as I can tell, Hezbollah has not been this nervous for the longest time and I feel that this is not a bad thing. 

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When politicians lie

This is a setting that is out in the open. What happens when politicians lie? When does a lie become a lie? That is the question I was pondering on when the BBC gave us ‘Saudi Arabia expels Lebanon ambassador amid Yemen row’ (at https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-59096578). Here we are given “Mr Kordahi, who was speaking in August before he became a minister, called the conflict “futile” and said the Houthis were acting in “self-defence”” Is it a lie? Does a terrorist organisation have the right to rely on ‘self-defence’? For those who had forgotten the origins of the disagreement, let’s go back to September 2014 when Houthi forces took over the capital city Sanaa, which was followed by a rapid Houthi takeover of the government, a legitimate government no less. Houthi forces started a more and more brutal offensive against all they saw as enemies and did not stop there, they led drone attacks on civil Saudi targets, an act that was only possible through direct funding and equipment from Iran. I reckon that this is the price of Iranian fuel for Lebanon. 

Then we get to “The Lebanese government said Mr Kordahi’s remarks did not reflect its position – but relations between the two countries have worsened in recent years. The Iran-backed militant group Hezbollah, which also backs the Houthi rebels in Yemen, has grown in strength in Lebanon”, yet in all this, we need to look at the larger picture. In Al-Arabiya we see “Lebanon’s Information Minister George Kordahi said on Wednesday his country “cannot remain subject to blackmail” in response to calls for his resignation after his statements about Saudi Arabia and the UAE’s involvement in the Yemen war.” So blackmail from who? It seems that there was a price for all that Iranian oil. There have been claims in the past from different parties that Hezbollah had been active in Yemen (no clear evidence was seen by me), and in this stage his claim to ‘self-defence’ is as empty as a peace offering from Hezbollah towards Israel. 

And as we get exposed to ““I am now part of an integrate government, and I cannot take a decision alone, it must be the government’s [decision] as a whole… I place the interests of Lebanon above all interests. And we cannot be in Lebanon exposed to blackmail by anyone, not by countries, or ambassadors or individuals,” Kordahi said in a press conference.” So when we put  ‘The Lebanese government said Mr Kordahi’s remarks did not reflect its position’ next to ‘I am now part of an integrate government’ it seems that someone here is not being truthful, so is it the Lebanese government, or is it Mr Kordahi. The fact that He was appointed on September 10th 2021, as the Lebanon’s Minister of Information. Is a larger problem. To me it implies that the Lebanese government has taken the Iranian route and when that implodes (as any agreement with Iran tends to do), the Lebanese people have nowhere to turn to and nowhere to run to. 

So now that Al Jazeera gives us ‘Lebanese president says he wants ‘best relations’ with Saudis’ (at https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2021/10/30/lebanese-president-says-he-wants-best-relations-with-saudis) and (optionally) hides behind “Lebanese politicians are scrambling to resolve a diplomatic spat with Saudi Arabia and other Gulf nations, after the United Arab Emirates (UAE) followed Riyadh with measures against Beirut to protest against comments by a cabinet minister about the war in Yemen” and whilst we see mentions of “maintain good communication”, I reckon that President Michel Aoun seemingly learns the cost of catering to Iranian needs and ignoring real facts. On the other hand they have a harbour full of evidence of what happens when Hezbollah calls the shots. And the setting Al Jazeera gave us three weeks ago “Hossein Amir-Abdollahian says Tehran willing to rebuild Beirut port and construct two power plants in Lebanon” seem to set the larger confines of the Lebanese problem and in all this Hezbollah remains part of the problem, not the solution. The problem is that a lot more people know this. They all hide behind the simple part of “The explosion resulted from the detonation of tonnes of ammonium nitrate, a combustible chemical compound commonly used in agriculture as a high nitrate fertilizer, but which can also be used to manufacture explosives. The cargo of ammonium nitrate had entered Beirut’s port on a Moldovan-flagged ship, the Rhosus, in November 2013, and had been offloaded into hangar 12 in Beirut’s port on October 23 and 24, 2014” You see, clear scientific evidence gives us “Compared to most combustible materials, ammonium nitrate itself is not exceptionally explosive. But the compound can contribute to explosions because it belongs to a chemical class known as oxidisers” It needed something more and that is the part that Hezbollah fears. When the people learn of Hezbollah stupidity too many people there will demand larger changes, that is what Hezbollah fears and for now they are willing to dance to Iranian music and there is where we see George Kordahi, no longer presenting who wants to be a millionaire, he is now catering to the millionaires Lebanon needs and we get it. But with Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, UAE and Bahrain severing ties, Lebanon is now left to the mercy and resources of Iran and when that runs out (or gets weird delays) the setting changes even more. 

So, How wrong am I?
Consider the facts, consider what happens from September 2014 onwards, it clearly shows Houthi forces as a terrorist antagonist, we see conflicting information from Lebanese spokespeople and there is the larger stage where FOUR nations have cut ties with Lebanon. In a stage where Lebanon needs all the friends they could find. A stage of segregation and separation, the first two stages or eliminating any source.

Yet in all this, There is a clear lack of critical analyses on the acts by George Kordahi, which in light of the Iranian settings is weird. Wouldn’t it be the first that the US would do and the first thing that (overly quick) gets leaked to the NY Times or the Washington Post?

OK, that previous point is somewhere between assumption and presumption, but the setting in light of all we have seen so far makes sense. 

In all, I get the stance of Saudi Arabia here, I get the stance of the other Arabian nations here, yet in all this the acts of George Kordahi and President Michel Aoun are seemingly weird. In a stage where Lebanon desperately needs Saudi Arabia, the setting of a flaccid response towards the actions of George Kordahi are off, especially as three other nations took sides with Saudi Arabia. One might think that Lebanon has no idea how to deal with the requests by Iran and that too matters. If communication lines there are presently so convoluted, Lebanon faces a lot more hardships soon enough and they are only weeks away from the December cold. December to March gives them 11 to 13 degrees on average. November and April are not far off from that and with the winter stage and without power, or 1-2 hours a day at best Lebanon is looking to one of its worst winters in decades. In all this the promised Iranian power centres sound nice, but they will not get there before late autumn 2022, so it will be a hard time for the 7 million Lebanese, that much seems a given at present. 

Were the politicians involved lying? That remains the part that is unclear, no matter how they slice it, they were stretching facts and truths far beyond points of breaking (which does not make it a lie), but it sets the premise that catering to the wrong people now comes at a price that Lebanon never considered having to pay ever before and that too matters, because that stage could determine the degrees of freedom that Iran will have in Lebanon, optionally as part of Hezbollah.

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Speculative reasoning

It is a stage we all entertain, OK, entertaining not the greatest word here, yet the stage is smitten with ‘What if’, ‘How could’ and ‘Who is’, it is an approach to critical thinking, postulating and no matter how academic we tend to make it, it remains speculation. So as CNBC gives us (at https://www.cnbc.com/2021/08/30/weapons-proliferation-risk-in-afghanistan-very-worrying-saudi-prince-turki.html) the article ‘Saudi Arabia’s former intel chief calls weapons proliferation risk in Afghanistan very worrying as terror threat grows’ the engine starts rolling. The first thing I did was take another look at the map. No matter how that corridor runs, it takes Iran to make it work. Yes, there is a one party of Pakistan, yet Pakistan fear to be taken out of nearly every international equation and siding with the Taliban sets them up to that stage. They’ll possibly still help in other ways, but Pakistan needs Saudi Arabia a lot more than the Taliban and the Taliban does not have any financial means to make it work. So we are speculatively set to the stage of Iran. So even as we accept “sparking fear in Saudi Arabia about the enduring threat of ISIS and Al Qaeda and where and with whom the equipment might end up”, ISIS and Al Qaeda still need a stage to operate on and the fear is not wrong, but it does require a path to Saudi Arabian borders and I see this as as a setting that requires Iran. 

We might take ‘solace’ from “The President also vowed to issue another retaliatory strike against the terrorists responsible for Thursday’s suicide bombing that killed 13 U.S. service members and more than 110 Afghans.” Yet in this the larger element is missed. You see the Taliban took over Afghanistan in less than 10 days, they got billions in hardware against an army that was well over 500% larger. In all this Al Qaeda could not operate unseen and there is a larger stage where someone is feeding Al Qaeda information and my speculative view is that the Taliban and Al Qaeda are in bed together, to what degree remains to be seen, but there is no way that Al Qaeda can avoid all parties by themselves. 

The larger problem is “NATO has been clear that it expected the Taliban to keep its “commitment” that it will not allow Afghanistan to become a haven for terrorists, Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg told CNBC in a recent interview, but it’s still unclear if the Taliban is capable of managing the possible contagion, or if the most recent attack in Kabul could embolden individuals or terror groups around the wider region” This implies that NATO is either dumb or clueless, optionally both. The Taliban will only keep commitments that serves them and that gives both ISIS and Al Qaeda a lot of manoeuvring space. And the leeway we see with ‘it’s still unclear if the Taliban is capable of managing the possible contagion’ I do not believe that is the right approach. The Taliban had a little over 10 years to set up their own network and I personally believe that it is in place and they now have an arms division that makes it more powerful than several middle easters nations, they could overrun Bahrain in a day and Oman within 4 days and that is a larger problem. Yes, I suddenly made an ‘error’ and mentioned the Taliban and not Al Qaeda, but I wonder how far they are in bed together, more importantly India Today told us yesterday ‘A pledge binds al-Qaeda to Taliban. Why is it a worry for Pakistan?’ I believe it to be more than a pledge. It is a personal view, but I think that the Taliban made long term arrangements and that is a problem, it is time for NATO and the media to wake up.

It speculatively puts the pressure in Saudi Arabia in too large a stage and that suits Iran just fine. So as I see it Iran is happy to help whomever goes for Saudi Arabia and that is the danger we all face, because if this escalates oil goes back to $120 a barrel, oil deliveries from the middle east will trickle down to a mere 7% and that is merely the starter in all this and all NATO players know this to be true. 

There is one part I disagree with. We see “Nevertheless, while global confidence in American leadership may have been shaken, Al-Faisal said the episode didn’t necessarily mean the end of American supremacy globally: “I think it’s still too early to judge whether America is in a watershed moment””, we all know that American supremacy is past the end, Afghanistan and how the US army tucked tail and ran is merely a symptom. Their failure in diversity, polarisation of its population, greed driven players that take chunks out of the US economy and the list goes on, one element could be fought, they face at least half a dozen of them and a few of them at the same time. Their weapon sales, even those to legitimate governments are stopped and pretty much handed to China (some to Russia as well), a stage that diminishes their revenue and they are not replacing it, they are merely handing it over. So for the most I share the fears that Prince Turki Al-Faisal is voicing here and the fact that other players are not anywhere near this is funny on a few levels. As I personally (and speculatively) see it, whomever (read: stakeholders) is mulling the view that Saudi Arabia is under attack, they are doing an excellent job, but the fallout will hit us all and then we need to ask the media, each of them, who stopped a story of a direct attack on Saudi Arabia (Houthi attacks) that included civilian targets. For TV the excuse of ‘no time’ can hold water, on the internet where the space is, where there is an abundance of space. Time and people, there it does not hold water. I think that there is one side that Prince Turki Al-Faisal was not contemplating (or he is and he isn’t talking about it). Saudi Arabia has a lot more enemies than they are aware of and they are all enabling Iran which is a concern, especially if any evidence is found that Iran is enabling a larger scenario that includes Al Qaeda. So even if you do not care about Saudi Arabia, which is understandable when you do not live there. Where do you think Al Qaeda goes next? You are all so against fossil fuels, which is fine, but when it falls away and the cost of living goes up by 75%, how will you feel then? Did you think that far ahead?

I accept and understand that my thinking is speculative, things could evolve differently but in chess we see moves ahead, we might not be able to set the string of moves made, but in the end one of the pieces will move exactly as predicted and the more moves are correctly seen the better the strategy. In all this it is time to stop beating about the bush and as the expression goes, call a spade a spade. Oh and if that is not possible (which might be true) it shows that the US is failing in yet another stage and in that one they are dragging NATO down with them.

Enjoy the weekend and consider that some time soon when fuel goes from $3.181 to $5.566 how will you afford any kind of lifestyle? And that is before the heating bill arrives and mst to the US (Canada and the UK too) will move into Winter, so consider that part too.

Have a great weekend.

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Where are we at?

That is the question I am throwing out there and as I am sitting in a mall enjoying a large cappuccino, I see the phrase “your safety is our concern” pass by, yet is that so? I am not opposing it, yet in the same stage the phrase “Our safety is your concern” is equally valid. We might ignore it, we might oppose it and for the most, the pussies in the field are all about ignoring the safety of others, their ego’s are all about setting the stage of what THEY need, whilst disregarding the simplest safety. I get it, it is not. Normal flu, but the realisation needs to be on the foreground of EVERY person around, and it is not, it there is one certainty, then it was seen in the scenes I personally witnessed yesterday. Th world moves on and whilst we see another clambake article on the hardships of Yemen, we need to realise that the Coronavirus will hit there a lot harder, it is not merely the stage of “5 yeas of hunger, 5 years of war” that the BBC gives us (they make no false claims there), we see that Saudi Arabia is trying to raise $2.41 billion in aid. In all this we see that the European support is dwindling down, support after support project is shutting down, the money is gone and pleads from the UN is seemingly falling on deaf ears. And the noise the people like Andrew Smith are making does not help anyone, even less the Yemeni people. So whilst we are given partial parts on Scotland by the Campaign Against Arms Trade, we simply ignore the massive support that the Houthis are giving by Iran. Do you think that this was was going on if Iran was not involved? If anything we could give out the considerations that the Yemeni war is going on because of Andrew Smith and his band of rascals. We see the accusations on both sides and we can draw a parallel to our own Corona issues, the  entire matter is in a stage of imbalance and the Yemeni people are paying the price. And it is important to see that this was not due to the Saudi intervention, they were asked by the rightfully elected government, a small titbit that is set not mentioned often enough, and now that the Houthis after 3 years are getting better in shooting their missiles, the mess will escalate faster and larger. The problem is not whether the Saudi government gets the support they need, it becomes the question on why full support was not given 3 years ago, now that the Yemeni children are dying left, right and centre, we are all in a stage of “Awwww!”, yet this has been going on for years and for the longest time no one cared, there is merely the presented concerns on these ‘dastardly Saudi’s and their guns’, whilst our concern should have been on ending the blatant disregard fo lives that Iran was ensuing (and ensuring). As I see it, the Saudi coalition had the high ground and even as the media is now calling it the Saudi Arabian led intervention, the Saudi coalition does include Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Sudan, and it also used to include Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar, Egypt, Jordan, and Morocco. This thing was always a lot bigger then we thought it was whilst the sources are clear to ignore the Iranian involvement and setting the stage of opposition to a revolutionary committee, the Houthi forces and the pro Sales Houthi. Did you think that this stage would still exist without Iran? We ignore the larger stage and we help it coming of age, killing thousands of children, we have due to our inactions blood on our hands and we are in a stage of ignoring that part.

Just like the corona virus, we seemingly push the responsibility onto others, whilst our actions did matter all along, but feel free to ignore that part and when you see more people die in Yemen. On TV tonight, feel free to switch to Big Brother, hoping to see one of the girls taking a shower, your life almost seem perfect, so enjoy the nightmares you have from prolonging a war that could have ended in 90 days, and consider that someone is feeding the houthi forces ballistic missiles, especially in light that thee isn’t a building left standing to produce these bad boys in the first place. Materials that the Houthi forces could not own or afford, they have them by the dozen (cheaper that way), in a stage where they have no economy, they have spend more on weapons, missiles and drones than a nation like Sweden could afford, did no one realise that part of the equation? A setting of imbalance that players like the CAAT is fuelling and no one takes notice.

When the children of Yemen start chanting “Our safety is your concern”, which excuse will a person like Andrew Smith offer? He’ll probably know someone to blame, but the fault is in us all. Iran should have been dealt with well over 10 years ago, but we were all fooled by a mediocre puppet all whilst the battle hardened IRGC was ignored, in that regard our inaction should pave an interesting highway to hell.

 

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Just Saying “Haachoo”

We all get it, there is an overreaction at present, the overreaction (for the most) is people buying too much of whatever they do not need. So Saturday I saw a person getting back to the supermarket who wanted to return some of the toilet paper he had bought, I wonder if second hand toilet paper sells. He didn’t go to see if he can offload some of the toilet paper to his neighbours and break even that way. I did because 36 rolls is all they sold and 12 should keep me in shitty paper for at least a month, keeping more than that is a little excessive. My neighbours did not mind, they both paid their $5 and as such I broke a little better then even, I made $1 and created two happy neighbours. In my  case, 36 rolls was the only option. Yet as we see the supermarkets, we see empty shelves of toilet paper, tissues, pasta and a few more items. It is panic buying in a Coronaviral atmosphere, even as Coronabeer is not sold beyond the normal amounts it does.

Why is it overreaching?

I get it, we want assurances, yet consider the numbers. Around 170,000 people got it at present. Until last week, 93% of ALL cases were in China, Italy, Iran and South Korea. As such over 3 billion people got overly angst in regards to an optional infecting 1,000 people, that was then. Now we see that Spain (7,845), Germany (5,813) and racing to the top 6 positions France with 5,423 cases. We get it, it is the flu and this one is growing fast, but in the end, France is looking at a 2.3% mortality rate, which is still better than the 3.6% that is the global number. Italy with a whopping 24,747 cases see a rising 7.3% death rate. 

Now, I get it, it is scary, yet here in Australia, the mortality rate is set to 1.67%, a lot lover and now we see the stage where fear is more likely than not killing us before the flu will.

Yet the numbers show something else too, the numbers do not add up in all this. How did that one person in Suriname get infected? The one in Mauritania, Mongolia, or Gabon? There was one case in Gibraltar, but that person is now cured. We are all pointing at China, but the setting does not add up. There is even a case on St. Barths. How is this flu spreading, because all the information does not add up. It did for a while and now we see a pandemic and it is growing and growing in numbers on a stage that is not properly identified, as such the pandemic will only get worse.

For me I see one flaw, in all this there is no mention of Yemen, or Syria. I agree with anyone who states that they have enough problems, but this flu is larger than we think and these people need a lot, they do not need the Coronavirus to help a hand in killing them, yet that is also the larger issue. Two nations where the immune system is close to destroyed to bad water, no food and other means, the flu has a free reign in those places and even as the Middle East Eye gives us ‘Syria insists it is coronavirus-free‘, I believe that this is not the case and through there (and Yemen) it will spread further still. Beyond that, as we look at the numbers, the spread of the disease is largely uncontained as there are too many unknowns and as such when there is no containment, others will get infected, how? We cannot be certain.

It becomes a lot less certain when we consider the quote “Pakistani health officials said on Tuesday that at least five of their country’s cases originated from patients travelling to Pakistan from Syria via Qatar” as such, what else is being spread? And to what extent is Pakistan involved in the Syrian escalation? Because the last time I checked, refugees cannot afford a trip via Qatar, making Qatar also a larger target in other ways.

There is also the stage of consideration around “It was not immediately clear whether the infections could have originated in Qatar, where cases have risen to 337” (401 as per yesterday), even if that is a larger rise in the Middle East where, as per yesterday, Saudi Arabia had 118 cases, Oman had 22 cases, and Bahrain had 214 cases, the stage is larger than we realise because in a setting of non clarity containment cannot be reached. In all this, humanitarian help in Syria and Yemen could be spreading it faster, they have a better immune system and as such until they get noticeably sick they might be spreading the disease to dozens upon dozens more. and whomever they give it to, those infected will hit the mortality rate hard, they are malnourished, have underlying health issues, they tend to be dehydrated and have no way of keeping clean. It is a much larger stage that we cannot predict and it will hit every one of us in one way or another.

In all this, the mortality rate went from 3.4%, to 3.6% (last week) and is now set to 3.8%, as what stage will governments take the lead and have actual solutions in place? The fact that containment is not reached implies that whatever solution they think of is merely a non solving patch on a hole that hides a few other holes that are not patched at all. 

Am I exaggerating? 

Consider that last week 4 nations had 93% of all the cases, that has now dwindled down to 75.1%, the numbers and nations with cases are growing and we see no actual answers and no factual solutions other than post event considerations, giving a much larger rise to hysteria. and in all this the mortality rate does not add up. Globally it might be 3.8%, yet in Sweden it is 0.28%, in the US it is 1.83% and Italy wins with 7.3%, which is a lot higher than China with 3.9%, the numbers do not add up and the media is not informing a hysteria driven population, all whilst the guardian gives us ‘UK coronavirus crisis ‘to last until spring 2021 and could see 7.9m hospitalised‘, in this I wonder how spring 2021 is tested? There is enough doubt on the lack of containment, as such we have much larger fish to fry than ‘A Complete List of Trump’s Attempts to Play Down Coronavirus‘ (source: NY Times).

The setting in any war and believe me, this is a war against the flu, we need to set the stage of containment, as this is not achieved we see that the flu will win in the end. Personally I am not fuzzed, I will be either dead or better employed, either way is a win for me, yet for the US government, the flu is not about the sick (at https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/12/business/economy/coronavirus-response-wall-street.html), it is seemingly about the volatility of Wall Street. And as we are being fed “The Federal Reserve, in a drastic attempt to ensure Wall Street remained functional as volatility roiled even normally staid bond markets, said it would promptly inject as much as $1.5 trillion in loans into the banking system and broaden its purchases of Treasury securities. But neither the Fed’s actions, nor a plan by the European Central Bank to offer cheap loans to banks and step up its bond-buying campaign, were enough to assuage investors, who sent the S&P 500 down 9.5 percent“, we need to consider that there is a mechanism to keep wall street afloat, even when the sick are being denied that. The lack of containment pretty much guarantees it.

And as we are being given (in this case by the Financial Times) “Spain has followed Italy’s lead in imposing a shutdown on its entire population to fight the coronavirus, while France is closing all non-essential shops and restaurants” in this we forget about one small little event. If there is no containment, how does it help and for the matter of imposing self isolation for two weeks, will that actually solve it? Consider that the people were infecting others BEFORE the disease struck them, is the idea that they are still contagious after they feel better two weeks later that strange? Consider that on  December 4th 1872 a ship was found its crew missing, we used that event (Mary Celeste) in several weird occurances, yet the idea that a cured population becomes a Mary Celeste, is that so far fetched? In this Live Science dot com (at https://www.livescience.com/can-coronavirus-be-cured.html) gives us “Currently, however, there is no cure for this coronavirus, and treatments are based on the kind of care given for influenza (seasonal flu) and other severe respiratory illnesses, known as “supportive care,” according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)“, and as we accept the numbers giving us that 77,450 have recovered, can we be sure that they are not still spreading the flu? I am not telling you, I am asking, because I do not know and it seems that there are plenty of medical specialists in the dark. The quotes we can consider in the article give a larger rise to it and as such the over acting governments are merely showing that they are at best partially limiting the events of spread of the virus implying that the virus could last a lot longer.

There are too many unknowns and the fact that the numbers show that there is no actual containment, are my thoughts out of bounds? It is in that path that I see the actions of the WHO (at https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/mar/13/european-countries-take-radical-steps-to-combat-coronavirus), slightly out of bounds. I agree with the language, but it cannot be connected to actions, actions require us to acknowledge that we know how to contain this and the numbers show a different story, containment is not reached and as far as I can tell, it was never merely a Chinese issue. It might have grown there faster and more radical, but the rest of the world got infected in other ways, and the medical world is staring in one direction all whilst they have no clue on the powers and the spreadability of the Covid-19 virus. It became a pandemic too quickly and we are now getting the smallest confirmation that the movie by Steven Soderbergh called Contagion (2011) was optimistic, it seems that we have to learn that part the hard way. In those days Manohla Gargis of the New York Times gave us :”“Contagion,” Steven Soderbergh’s smart, spooky thriller about contemporary plagues, is a paranoid freakout for the antigovernment, Tea Party age“, I merely wonder how she will react when Covid-19 comes knocking on her front door.

To support it we get Warner Brothers giving us: “the film ranked 270th in views in the company’s catalog at the end of 2019, when the existence of COVID-19 was not yet public knowledge. Now, it’s the second most-watched movie, bested only by the Harry Potter films“, it seems that the people are being made aware of what was out there and the fact that it is becoming reality will fuel more than a few wandering minds. We might all see this as providence, but it isn’t (at present), apart from the mortality rate not being on par, we have another consideration. It is the fact that there are cases in Mauritania, Mayotte, Mongolia, Suriname, Eswatini, St. Vincent Grenadines, Honduras and the Channel Islands, all with less than 5 cases, yet how did THEY get it? Containment is almost non existent and that is a larger need, when we walk the street we see 50-150 people, and there is every chance that up to 10 have Covid-19, up to ten in every street, that is the reality we face, not now, but in a weeks time? Who knows?

In a setting of non containment, the flu gets free reign, we have known that for decades, and often in the workplace.

 

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Joke of 2019: United Nations

You might remember the article I wrote a few months ago when Eggnog Calamari (aka Ages Calamard) an essay writer at the UN wrote a piece where she used boatloads of circumstantial evidence (at best) and accused the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia of ordering the murder of Jamal Khashoggi. I looked at that part in ‘Demanding Dismissal‘ (at https://lawlordtobe.com/2019/07/04/demanding-dismissal/), in that article I go over a number of issues and I also published the UN report in that article. Now, I am not stating that certain people are innocent, I cannot prove guilt or innocence either way, yet I get to question guilt in the UN report to a larger extent. So, if that organisation (or Joke) would have truly be consistent, they would have made similar steps in the the Saudi attacks that happened in September 2019, yet there we see “The UN has reportedly so far been unable to confirm Iran was involved in drone and cruise missile attacks on two key Saudi oil facilities in September“, you might remember the origins of the United Nations, It replaced the League of Nations as they were unable to limit the actions of the at that time active national bully Nazi Germany, so as we now see that the UN has been unable to modern day bully Iran, it has become the joke that the league of nations once were.

So when the BBC gave us (at https://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-50742224) a few items, I decided to search a little further. When we look at the actions that instigated the damage in September 2019 there are a few issues that need to be looked at. 

The optional attackers

Basically that is a list of any attacker that could have been involved, let’s look at the list:

Kuwait, Iraq, Iran, Jordan, Israel, Egypt, Yemen, Oman, UAE, Bahrain and Qatar. This list are all the players that optionally could have instigated any attack. So let’s look at that list: Oman, Egypt, the UAE, Bahrain and Jordan fall away as they have warm relationship with Saudi Arabia, in addition to this, there have not been any attacks or negative actions against either Saudi Arabia or Aramco, these elements take those players of the list. Iraq gets separate recognition, it seems that 15 agreements have become reality between the two countries and Saudi Arabia, whilst the Arab News gives us “Saudi Arabia donated $500M to support exports of Iraq and $267M to support development projects“. In addition to this, Iraq imports drones from China, none of the debris gives any indication that Chinese drones were in play. Even as Iraq has close relations to Iran, there is no indication that Iraq has any hostile intentions towards Saudi Arabia or any proxy agreement with Iran to attack Saudi Arabia. In addition to this, there is no indication that Kuwait has a trained drone group, or even the used cruise missiles are not in the arsenal of Kuwait, as far as I can tell Kuwait only has land based PAC-2 & PAC-3 Patriot missiles. For Qatar the issue is different, they are not on the friendliest terms and an attack (an airlift) from Qatar would be too visible from too many sides, in addition the Saudi Navy would be able to detect any missile launch from Qatar.

Israel has absolutely no plans to engage with Saudi Arabia ever, also, the materials used are not part of the Israeli defense forces. So at this point, Iran and Yemen remain.

Yemen

Yemen has every (self delusional) reason to attack Saudi Arabia and they made claim of this attack, yet let me give you a list why I doubt this.

Infrastructure, Yemen has no infrastructure left to create the drones, in addition, the entire arsenal gives rise to question Yemen as the guilty party, that is also seen in the UN through “the report also noted that the Houthis “have not shown to be in possession, nor been assessed to be in possession” of the drones used in the attacks“, there is another matter, when we consider the strike on Aramco locations and the hit percentage, we see that this in opposition against earlier strikes on Saudi Arabia over 6 months give a success rate that opposes this. In layman terms it translates to:  someone is playing on a slot machine (drone operator), and so far it got hits that do not register (which was fair enough) the attack on Aramco translate in that as getting on the same machine using 25 quarters 14 times the three sevens (jackpot) came up. Now we can consider that a machine gives a jackpot, yet to get it 14 times out of 25 quarters might be impossible, yet it is so unlikely that the likelihood is to be rejected. In an attack 25 drones and missiles were used, 14 hits that punctured storage tanks, three that disabled oil processing elements, it gives 17 debilitating hits and as such it cannot have been made by Yemeni forces. 

To be this good whilst there is no infrastructure to build drones is as far as I and several experts have been able to ascertain is impossible. 

In addition, do you remember how the Khashoggi report has that part from the CIA? The Calamard report gives us: “US officials expressed high confidence in the CIA assessment“, I looked at that in ‘Uber driving facts‘ (at https://lawlordtobe.com/2019/11/13/uber-driving-facts/), the fact that we see (regarding the attack), “US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that Iran was behind the attacks” (source Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post), yet it seems that the CIA part is not mentioned (does not come up) in the BBC article, is that not weird as well? 

In the second part, we see that Yemeni forces do not have ANYONE to fly drones to this degree, their training (mostly via Hezbollah) has been lacking for such a long flight, and all the previous attacks give rise to the fact that these drones were in the air at least 3 times longer, having to fly under the radar. After that we need to consider that to hit that many drones on that many targets could not have been done by one pilot, which makes the Yemeni claim of options and abilities almost ludicrous. Should this have been able then it could only have been with Iranian hardware usd by Iranian troops visiting, not even Hezbollah has this level of experience (as per their own history), although the likelihood that it was done by Hezbollah forces is higher than Yemeni forces, the alleged involvement of them in other Saudi raids makes the Aramco success it almost unbelievable.

From several expert sources we see that Yemen does not have the hardware, the UN even supports this view themselves, which now means that only Iran remains as the guilty party.

It is interesting that the UN dismisses any evidence to find the crown prince guilty of alleged assasination regardless of lack of evidence, yet it refuses to hold Iran to account when the list of evidence is increasingly long and showing several levels of Iranian involvement. That is just in case you were wondering why in 2019 the United Nations became a joke and a bad one at that.

The attack, whether from Yemen or from Iran would have required Iranian forces and Iranian hardware, that is the long play, the Yemenis could not have had this level of success even if they received all the hardware from Iran, their troops lack training on several fronts, the basic needs for the cruise missiles are not met by any Yemeni forces and as such the success rate of the missiles alone would have been impossible, the same can be stated for the drone operations. It is clear that it was Iran, their was too much success in this attack, if only 1-5 tanks were hit and 1-3 infrastructure buildings were hit it would be a much harder proof that Iran was guilty, they were so bound on making every hit count, that is the actual stage that sets Iran up as the guilty party, Yemen could never have succeeded to this degree, there is personally no doubt in my mind to that part in this. I also feel that several military experts share my view making the UN report, as well as the UN a joke and a bad one at that. The organisation that was created to stop the German Nazi bully now lets the Iranian bully get away with it all and as such it is my personal view that Secretary General António Guterres needs to get out whilst he can, even as the UN hides behind ‘a report that summarised the experts’ initial findings‘ (initial being the operative word, they are to be seen as the laughing stock, you see, from my point of view those people in charge have been allowing Iran to get away with too much as words like “Had we had been behind this, it would have been disastrous for Saudi Arabia“, I do not think that this is true, this was as good as it would get from Iranian forces. I agree with Saudi defence ministry spokesman Col Turki al-Malki who told reporters in Riyadh three days later (according to the BBC piece): “This attack did not originate from Yemen. Despite Iran’s best efforts to make it appear so, their collaboration with their proxy in the region to create this false narrative is clear.

The biggest issues is not the story of the UN, it is the fact that I was able to punch holes in it is, the fact that this level of consideration is given to Iran by the UN is just overwhelmingly amazing, I wonder what global event the fail to interfere in, optionally because there is a larger political need, was that why they were set up? They might hide behind “The UN was established after World War II with the aim of preventing future wars, succeeding the ineffective League of Nations“, yet what are you when you do that by ignoring the acts of a bully? It makes you a tool and a tool never prevented anything, especially wars in the long term, tools merely make sure that the systems for war are tweaked to needed perfection.

That is merely my personal view, but there have been enough wars to prove me right and regarding this situation, Sun Tzu teaches us that all war is set to deception, and in this case I personally am calling the UN a deceived party, have a great day!

 

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Desert for breakfast

There are moments where you see the road unwind in front of you, I am not meaning in some imaginary way, but in the real sense. Consider Highway 40 from Riyadh to Dammam, and you are on the road getting there, for whatever reason. Now as a driver you see the road ahead of you, yet at some point you do not merely see a mile or two miles ahead, your focus increases and suddenly you see 10-15 miles ahead, you sense all that is coming your way and whatever is driving in front of you. Ask anyone who drives a lot; it happens to all of us. A similar stage is unfolding now and in a different way. The first article in the Arab News gives us: ‘King Salman calls Aramco attacks a ‘cowardly act’ aimed at destabilizing Saudi Arabia‘, it is an important piece in all this, because in very unexpected ways, I believe that his royal highness was incorrect, specifically the part of ‘destabilizing Saudi Arabia‘, as it seems Iran pushed the wrong buttons and achieved the opposite.

We see this in the second part (at https://www.arabnews.com/node/1558581/middle-east), where we see ‘Aramco attacks solidify Iran’s ‘enemy’ status among young Arabs‘, it is not only there, we see that as the media is showing us more on the evil that Iran is doing, we see a movement where consideration towards Iran is waning and the politicians trying to broker selfish deals are now in a stage where their careers are now in question whenever they are talking about finding some political deal. The voices are changing the clearest in France, Britain and Germany, and this implies that not only is the nuclear deal coming to a clear end, there is the additional impact that the Saudi opposition we have seen over the last 6 months are waning as well. I believe that the quote “According to the Arab Youth Survey, which was published in May by the PR consultancy ASDA’A BCW, 67 percent of the region’s youth saw Iran as an enemy, as opposed to 32 percent who saw it as an ally” will shift within the next two weeks, as the Saudi Arabian population is getting more and more of the acts that Iran has been involved in, especially abroad, gives rise that the group seeing Iran as an optional ally will degrade to a mere 25% (or even lower) soon enough, as Saudi International students give rise to the acts of Iran will also give rise to contemplation to other local students wherever they are.

As the stage unfolds towards perceiving Iran as an enemy and a threat to stability in the Middle East, we see a larger group of people advocating harder acts against Iran. I personally believe that the US putting boots on the ground will also help the Saudi population towards the understanding that there is much larger unity against Iran, even as I noted and reported in the last two months that Saudi Arabia had been deserted too often when they were attacked, the last attack had international repercussions and it seems that more and more eyes are looking at what Iran is doing to others, giving a much better view of Saudi Arabia after all the targeted bad events view that the media in the west had been giving Saudi Arabia since 2018 (well, it was since before that, but it became a lot more negative since 2018).

There is an additional reason for a larger unification. As we look at the news, we see CNN report 5 hours ago that “Iran’s foreign minister has raised the prospect of a new agreement with the United States that would see permanent sanctions relief exchanged for Tehran’s permanent denuclearization“, whilst Reuters gives us an hour ago “Iran ruled out the possibility of negotiating a new deal with major powers“, in this we see Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif as the two faced monster, merely seeking the limelight at every opportunity he gets. All whilst the Washington Post reports 9 hours ago ‘Iran’s foreign minister says diplomacy with the U.S. is over‘ with the leading quote “any prospect of direct interaction between U.S. and Iranian officials is now officially eliminated“, I personally believe that the people have had enough of the banter by this petulant toddler named Iran, in addition we see that the Media is taking a less positive stance towards Iran, all these elements are seemingly polarising at the same time. Not only is there stronger unison within the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, there is also a larger awareness that stronger ties with Saudi Arabia could also result a much larger play towards actual Middle Eastern stability.

Yet the battle is not over, only 25 minutes ago, the Financial Times reports (at https://www.ft.com/content/1e818d2e-de30-11e9-9743-db5a370481bc) that ‘France and Germany add backing to call for new Iran nuclear deal‘. Clearly there are mutters in the ranks all over Europe and making sure that everyone knows what games are played becomes essential in stopping Iran. The becomes a larger issue when we see “If it was a bad deal — and I’m willing to accept that, it had many, many defects — then let’s do a better deal,” UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson said. The problem with that statement is that the EU will have to give in towards Iran to some degree and when we consider that Iran has violated conditions of the nuclear pact 4 times already, we see a larger failing. Even as we accept the larger view that the Financial Times gives with: “The time has come for Iran to accept negotiation on a long-term framework for its nuclear programme as well as on issues related to regional security, including its missiles programme and other means of delivery” (a part I do not deny or oppose) the issue is not the media, when you consider the timeline.

Mixing the message

It was interesting to see that the Arab News was on my side 3 weeks before I got here. Arab News (at https://www.arabnews.com/node/1548681) gives us in the article ‘Iran’s mixed messages on negotiations with US‘ several issues and is goes beyond the US, Iran is doing a similar tactic with the EU, the media in the last 24 hours ago are a decent indicator of that.

In the article Dr. Mohammed al-Sulami gives us: “It asserted that Zarif’s attendance provided further proof that it is actually the US president who is suffering diplomatic isolation, as it had previously claimed. Rouhani also announced that he too would not mind meeting with any foreign official, so long as this meeting would bring benefits to Iran and serve its national interests“, as well as “However, the supreme leader has found a possible way out of the current impasse by launching a new slogan, “heroic flexibility,” under the pretext that any negotiations that take place with the “Great Satan” within the framework of aiding Iran’s nuclear program could be allowed if they meet certain objectives“. These parts come to blow when we consider the final quote: “Arab countries should learn the lessons of the recent past and seek to play an effective role in any future negotiations to maintain their own interests, given the fact they are the ones most directly affected by the Iranian regime’s behavior in the region” there is a larger play and even as the limelight is on a nuclear deal and an optional deal with the US, the game that is unfolding is mixed messages that are on the second level aimed at the neighbours of Saudi Arabia.

How did I get there?

There are a few parts in this, first it is the speech by President Rouhani which is the given in the headline ‘Iran asks West to leave Persian Gulf amid heightened tensions‘ with added text “Rouhani separately promised to unveil a regional peace plan at this week’s upcoming high-level meetings at the United Nations“, with all due respect, asking a proxy war player like Iran to handle a peace plan is like asking Mr. Fox whether he could watch your chickens whilst you go out to have lunch, Mr Fox ends up getting a much better meal in the process. I believe that part of this scenario involves Bahrain and the UK Royal Navy base at Salman Port. With the British SAS now upping security, the IRGC would not be able to carry out any actions against targets, they are no match for the British SAS, it would not be a war or a skirmish, and it would merely end up being an exercise in IRGC troop extermination. It is merely one of a few handles that the mixed messages from Iran open. The mixed messages also increase pressures and stress levels in Qatar and the UAE, not to mention Oman.

How wrong am I?

That is up for debate, the entire matter is still moving along and in the end it depends on the moves and actual tactical moves that Iran will make, more important, they will not make a move until the final moment. In all this, as the Arab News reported less than an hour ago (at https://www.arabnews.com/node/1558801/business-economy) where King Hamad of Bahrain denounced the “serious escalation targeting the security and stability of the region”, I believe that this is still true, not in regards to the stability of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, yet it is my personal view that the mixed messages is about creating inactions against Iran. It is an intelligent move, with the number of opponents that Iran faces; it wants to keep Qatar, Bahrain and the UAE out of the mix for the longest of times, whilst using the non-aggression pact of Oman to keep waters as traversable as possible. All the indicators I see is that Iran is very much ready for hit and run attacks where it can and when they do take this journey they want local waters (Oman, UAE and Qatar) to be a hindrance for the non-Middle Eastern nations participating in the actions against Iran. It is my personal view and optionally in incorrect one, but I do remember my maritime training and when we take a look at the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS, Part III), we get to see in Article 41 we see that ships in transit to respect applicable sea lanes and traffic separation schemes. Such a scheme does exist in the Strait of Hormuz, adopted by the International Maritime Organization, which directs westbound traffic within the strait through Iranian territorial waters. It’s not clear where in relation to the outer limit of Iran’s territorial sea the Stena Impero was when the Iranian action took place, but Iran is not alleging the ship had no right to be where it was, and now we see that when article 41 is applied any military vessel obeying that would become a juicy target for Iran, if the bordering nations demand that sea lanes are respected and no transgressions in their local waters will be tolerated, that situation becomes very real; the NATO fleet and US fleet could optionally get stuck in the Gulf of Oman, as such, my view on trying to keep Bahrain, Qatar, Oman and the UAE on the fence would be a larger tactical problem soon enough and whilst Iran plays their mixed messages game and there is no state of war in play, Iran gets to have (for a limited time) a tactical advantage in the Sea of Dammam (aka Persian Gulf).

Basically we would all like desert for breakfast so that the day seems more sweet, however if it was up to Iran, porridge would be the only acceptable dish, salted porridge, served in the Gulf of Oman.

 

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What mattered most

I refrained from giving a view for two days, I saw the attacks on Sunday and I was ready to give voice, but then something happened, a change in the wind was there and it was important to look at that side of the equation. It all started on Sunday (at https://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-49699429) with ‘Saudi Arabia oil facilities ablaze after drone strikes‘, yet that was not the real trigger for the west, there had been other attacks and the west ignored them, as I reported in several articles. It was: “Oil prices ended nearly 15% higher on Monday, with the Brent benchmark seeing its biggest jump in about 30 years” that woke people up, now there was finally a reason to report it, not the fact that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia had been under attack for a month, it was the fact that fuel prices were going to rise.

And of couirse, the US ever willing to be late to a party gives us: ‘Attack on a major Saudi oil facility originated in Iran, U.S. intelligence indicates‘, which is weird as I had handed out evidence out weeks ago to show that Iran had been facilitating resources to attack Saudi Arabia, yet for me it is nice to know that I am more able in intelligence after 3 decades than the US has ever been. As such it is not interesting to read: “American intelligence indicates that the attack on a major Saudi oil facility originated in Iran, three people familiar with the intelligence told NBC News“, that part is not interesting, it is the part where we have known that Iran had been supplying drones to Houthi forces for the longest time, for many months, it would have been nice for US intelligence to hand out that information months ago, but I reckon until the prices of fuel soared there was no reason to show support for an ally, they claimed to be an ally of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, yet they never released the intelligence giving rise to lash out at Iran to any degree. That does not make for an ally that is the foundation for being an exploitation tool (at best).

And it gets to be worse, when you consider NBC News. The quote: “Secretary of State Mike Pompeo tweeted Saturday that Iran “launched” what he called “an unprecedented attack on the world’s energy supply.”” seems nice, but it only seems so. I wonder if the US officials are really about the ‘world energy supply‘ or the consequences of oil price hikes and the increased value it has on Aramco? It is the impact of the headline ‘Saudi Arabia oil and gas production reduced by drone strikes‘ that is scary to Wall Street, as production reduces, prices go up, the need increases and it changes the economic models for Wall Street, so again it is not really about the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, or about being their ally, is it? It is about the profit margins everywhere else that is the actual debate behind closed doors.

So when the Wall Street Journal (at https://www.wsj.com/articles/u-s-tells-saudi-arabia-oil-attacks-were-launched-from-iran-11568644126) gives us ‘U.S. Tells Saudi Arabia Oil Attacks Were Launched From Iran‘ we do not see anything new here. The issue is how the drones get moved from Iran to Yemen. We also see through the faded “Monday’s assessment, which the U.S. hasn’t shared publicly, came as President Trump said he hoped to avoid a war with Iran and Saudi Arabia asked United Nations experts to help determine who was responsible for the airstrikes“, just a moment to delay moments of decision making. The culprits are known. It is not the real fear, the real fear is “Higher fuel prices pose another threat to the world economy” and that is the real issue for the US and for Europe. The response: “Saudi officials said the U.S. didn’t provide enough proof to conclude that the attack was launched from Iran, indicating the U.S. information wasn’t definitive. U.S. officials said they planned to share more information with the Saudis in the coming days” makes perfect sense. As the attack was claimed by Yemeni Houthi, the proxy war stage stays intact, it is the intelligence on how the drones get into Yemen that counts and so far (until now) the US, UK and French have not been overly willing to keep closer eyes on it, they all need degrees of freedom to deal with Iran and their so called Nuclear treaty, that has been in the way for the longest of times.

There are two parts in this and both came from CNN. Part 1 gives us: “A Yemen armed forces spokesman was quoted by the agency as saying the Houthis successfully carried out a “large-scale” operation with 10 drones targeting Saudi Aramco oil facilities in Abqaiq and Khurais“, part 2 gives us “CNN National Security Analyst Peter Bergen said there have been more than 200 drone attacks launched by Houthi rebels from Yemen into Saudi Arabia, and none have been as effective as Saturday’s attack, lending credence to the belief that the attack did not originate from Yemen“, I personally agree with both. From my point of view the attack on Khurais has too many issues. It is close to twice the distance getting the attack from Yemen instead of from Iraq. It is dangerously close to Riyadh and when we look at the track record from Houthi attacks, we see a very different pattern. There are more reliable parts in all this when we consider Hezbollah or Iran to be the direct acting agent here. I have to mention Hezbollah as they have been involved in the past with attacks on Saudi Arabia. Abqaiq is right on the border of Bahrain and close to Qatar. The Houthi skillset does not give us any credibility on their actions, yet they claimed it, as a tool for Iran that could have been done to muddy the waters more, yet there is another matter in all this. I believe that there is a larger concern that is not open for viewing. We see this in the quote: ““It is quite an impressive, yet worrying, technological feat,” he said. “Long-range precision strikes are not easy to achieve and to cause the substantial fires in Abqaiq and Khurais highlights that this drone has a large explosive yield.”” The part not seen or spoken of is not that the attack happened, but it was completed with assistance nearby. The precision is not from the drones, it was most likely achieved as someone used a laser to paint the targets (one of a few optional examples) in the final minute. If the laser was small enough it would not be noticed, but for the drones it is like a searchlight guiding them to the explosive points. That part would make sense in more than one way, and it is the foundation that counts. The claims that were made by Yemen make sense and grow in validity when they have resources on the ground. That part is not merely on the stage of drones, there is a larger concern for Saudi Intelligence now. When they accept that the drones got their final guidance on the ground nearby, we see the impact that explosive drones would have and will have again. Iran has been staging this proxy war for the longest time and it is time for us to consider doing something about it in a more serious way (that is when Canada is done selling intelligence data to interested third parties that is).

There is additional support for my view and it comes from the BBC. They gave us: “One official said there were 19 points of impact on the targets and the attacks had come from a west-north-west direction – not Houthi-controlled territory in Yemen, which lies to the south-west of the Saudi oil facilities” to be this precise requires drone technology only the largest players have (like the US and the UK), Iran does not have software that sophisticated and to succeed to this degree required the most likely culprit Iran to have assistance nearby. Painting the targets makes the most sense, but it is not the only option, merely the most likely one. It there were 19 base stations guiding a drone, it would require resources Yemen does not have, it has merely attacks in small clusters of less than 5, the images from the US government satellites involved showed the spread and size of the targets, when you consider resources required to be this precise and the pilot skills involved the shift towards support teams nearby becomes a clear issue. Still there are gaps in the intelligence I admit to that, however, when we look at the maps, the size of the attacks and aligned parameters, an attack from Iraq or Iran are the only options remaining. That in itself is not evidence, yet the premise of what was required is clear and even as we can prove that more basic drone attacks could not have been done by Houthi forces because they lack all levels of infrastructure to create and guide drones to the degree required, we see Iran to be guilty by elimination of other players. The precision requires well trained pilots which the Houthi are not; again we are left with Iran. Actually Iraq might have been party to this, but their drone abilities (read: with additional lacking skill sets to consider) are nowhere near the level required.

This now gets us to the New York Times part which gave us: “Administration officials, in a background briefing for reporters as well as in separate interviews on Sunday, also said a combination of drones and cruise missiles — “both and a lot of them,” as one senior United States official put it — might have been used. That would indicate a degree of scope, precision and sophistication beyond the ability of the Houthi rebels alone” it is the ‘a combination of drones and cruise missiles‘ that pushes Iraq out of the consideration circle leaving Iran all alone. We should consider the skills Iran shows here, and it will also be their undoing. When we consider that only Iran remains as an optional player to do this and when we see that Europe and the US will not actually act, but ‘force’ talks, that is the first instance when Saudi Arabia needs to consider that their allies are nothing more than paper tigers, pussycats that make a lot of noise, but when you know they are sculptures the enemies will come, Saudi Arabia needs to realise this fast and we need to consider that the EU, the US and the commonwealth needs to create an actual plan of attack on Iran. This evidence was handed to us almost 2 weeks ago when we were given ‘Iran puts pressure on Europe to save nuclear deal within 60-day deadline‘, Iran keeps on holding the Nuclear deal as a juicy carrot and will use it to stop a direct attack on them, a path that should now be considered to be totally unacceptable. I for one would like to ‘loan’ a Saudi Eurofighter Typhoon (EF2000) and see if all my hours on a Microprose flight simulator (knights of the sky) were well spent and let’s face it, I do have a quirky sense of humour. I would be able to test my knowledge in guiding that Typhoon to Tehran and level a military building or two, on the other hand seeing their oil fields burn might feel equally rewarding. And there is the optional reward to answer the eternal outstanding question: Can you hear the GBU-16 Paveway II bomb explode whilst you fly a plane?

You think that I am making light of the situation and to some degree I am, the basic need for everyone to realise that Iran has been steering towards war whilst employing the oldest Italian excuse (read: It was not me, I know nothing); This stage has been months in the making and now that the drums of combat are approaching, we will see more and more politicians peaking up offering to start talks. I believe it is too late for that, it is almost 6 months too late for that, but that might just be me.

Yet there is one other voice we need to consider. It is the voice of Fabian Hinz, a research associate at the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies at Monterey (via the Washington Post). Here we get: “photos of the remnants of a missile in Saudi Arabia show a weapon both too sophisticated to be produced domestically by the Houthis and never seen in Iran“, I only partially agree here. ‘Photos of the remnants of a missile‘ is merely partial evidence that should not be ignored. A multi-tiered attack makes perfect sense, it is the scope of the attack and patterns used that makes Iran stand out; it also gives a larger consideration that their new drones are a lot more powerful. There is also his quote “Is Iran secretly designing, testing and producing missile systems for exclusive use by its proxies?” A quote that is not accurate and not wrong. I believe that earlier evidence showed the need for Iran to scrap all identifiers form their electronics, make clean system boards, in addition, it altered the export drones to trade accuracy in for yield (which maximises the Houthi outstanding debt to Iran), in addition to that they had to make a more idiot proof operating system (the Yemeni are nowhere near the academics they need to be to pilot drones). This is not because I want Iran to be guilty; this is because the elements are so overwhelmingly clear that Iran could not be innocent. There are too many parts in play that require the war machine that Iran has to develop what we see in action at present. And there is every indication that the 60 day nuclear deal deadline is used to stage more and more attacks whilst the indecision of Europe and the US remains in place. If there is one small blessing than it is the stage where the Israeli Defence Forces have even less consideration for Iran than Saudi Arabia has and there is every indication that what is created now in Iran will be shipped to Hezbollah soon enough; forcing Israel to act as well.

When this escalates beyond a point of no return the people in Washington, Wall Street, Brussels and Strasbourg need to consider that when they have no options left and they are no longer considered a voice on the issue: ‘What mattered most to them?

Because these considerations with the inaction we see is what drives the war no one can prevent. Saudi Arabia has a clear right, Israel has a duty to its citizens and Iran never cared for anyone but themselves. So when we see cries for talks when the bombs fall, remember that this did not start last Sunday, this has been going on for well over 6 months. The news merely decided not to report on much of it that was until the fuel prices went up, now they are all over it, but way too late.

 

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