Tag Archives: Mohammed bin Salman

The size and shape of a stage

Yes that is at times what we face and it was weirdly enough Yahoo News that got me there. Their article ‘Biden’s Saudi Arabia trip denounced as ‘frightening and enraging’ by dissidents’ (at https://au.news.yahoo.com/bidens-saudi-arabia-trip-denounced-as-frightening-and-enraging-by-dissidents-140526416.html), and yet the small part ignored is that a dissident is a person who opposes official policy. So as the US is trying to make nice with the people they need, they are hindered by the people they do not need. So when we see “the street was in front of the Saudi Embassy, and its new name was Jamal Khashoggi Way.” So in all this, how much hay is being made by a nation (Brazil) where 100% more journalists were murdered in the last week? There is a lack of the 78 million articles, a lack of some CIA report (via the UN) that it is highly likely, there is a need to paint one person white, the other person black and hoping that no one will notice that Al Jolson was not African American. That is a stage we see, that is a stage people play for and we are caught in the middle. You see, the report was dubious in a few ways. It does not make the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia innocent, but it clearly shows that Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud is not guilty. And this all takes a harder sharp turn because the person no one (well almost no one) gives a hoot about was a columnist for the Washington Post. And the setting merely escalates from there.  

So as we see the pressing need for the US to postpone its dollar default for as much as possible, it needs business with the KSA (it is close to the only one who can afford this), they need the oil from them to be cheaper, because the US does not have enough and they all need it yesterday and the people who opposed official policy are trying to make that impossible. 

I have nothing against dissidents, some are validly so, some are to make a quick buck and get out of the mess they were in. That first group needs consideration, yet beyond them getting out they need to realise that if the dollar defaults they could end up back in Riyadh and how will they fare then? So now we get Bethany al-Haidari of the Human Rights Foundation, who gives us “Now she is worried that Biden will be sending to authoritarians around the world the message that political expediency trumps core conviction. And while that may always be the case in the world of realpolitik, the images sure to emanate from Riyadh will starkly contrast the divide between American values and practices.” It is a valid point, yet the validity is under fire from the setting of values and practices where social commitments have lost to the profits of big business. And the US government is not innocent here either. I spoke out about the essential overhaul of tax laws 24 years ago, they all called me crazy, it would sort itself out. And now? The US national debt has surpassed the $30,500,000,000,000 They are now well over $5,000,000,000,000 past the point of no return. At this point they need to reduce debt by $500,000,000,000 per year and it would still take 3 generations for the debt to become manageable. What do you think will go out the window first? Values or practices? A setting where the larger gain for the US will be Elon Musk, they know it and that is why they hate him. Mobile and energy power in the hands of one man, one man who is seemingly a lot more clever than Bill Gates and Larry Ellison combined and one generation later.  The politicians are scared, they opened a door they refused to close and now they are setting down with a mess all over the place, because they could not adhere to values and they are left with the practices that re out there at tax laws that are still unadjusted. 

The USA is about to become a mess for well over two generations and the media is silent, because they want their digital dollars, it is all they have left and it does not adhere to values, merely to the painting of flames and flaming targets. Elon Musk can wait until desperation takes over, Google, Amazon and IBM can wait and over that time Microsoft will merely become more desperate to spin their failures. Big tech in a world that merely adheres to the practices that they can adhere to for their board members and share holders. That is the world that needs to appease  to either Bethany al-Haidari or Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud. I reckon that the Bethany al-Haidari in this world are figuring out that they will be getting the short end of the stick, one that was handed to big business, not merely big tech. And Biden might be the last president before the Dollar buckles completely and the US becomes a third world nation. 

Are you depressed yet? 

Good, you need to see what is coming and for the longest of times, even as the media is trying to spin that all is well, all is not well and all is getting worse. As I stated, I do not give one hoot. It was clear to me when I saw the UN report that this was a hack job, that this was a well articulated magician’s trick and in the end how much visibility did we see on the 42 murdered journalists in Brazil? Journalists, not some columnist. And that is before we realise that Turkey has it own skeletons in their closet and when that gets out in the open we see the media is not indifferent, it is and has been actively hostile towards the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, as such the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia can take its time and wait and watch the US go under one step at a time and at present quicker than several months ago. That is the reality, that is the impact of what some call realpolitik. It sounds nice on paper, but realpolitik is all about the practices, especially those who bring profit, values be damned. But the people who are lulled to sleep will see and face that part soon enough. 

So consider what you read and do your own research, do not take my word as gospel. I try to be as honest as possible, but I too adhere to practice more than value. I accept values and I admire those fighting for values, but in a place with 30 trillion in debt values will not last long, because every politician will see revenue as for the good of all and in that world people like Elon Musk are the options of tomorrow and no one has a better plan, because when that was an option the flaccid politicians saw it was easier to call me (and others) crazy and not in touch with reality, and that was not that long ago, these same people will now hide behind “It is difficult, it is a complex situation”, you tell me how I could see what was coming and I do not have an economy degree. I have three degrees, none in economy.

Enjoy your Friday and try to have a little fun.

Leave a comment

Filed under Finance, Law, Media, Politics

Speculation versus reality

That is what I am facing now. Yes, this article has massive speculations, that I will tell you upfront. The setting we usually see is that the media (with better sources than me) will give a more realistic view and that is how it USED to be. Yet in this day and age, the media has (as I personally see it) become the play tool of stakeholders and that means we do not get the news, we get filtered information, but filtered in what way? 

This setting started yesterday when I got confronted with ‘A source close to the family of Saad al-Jabri reveals to CNN the details of the settlement with Mohammed bin Salman’ (at https://www.dubaiweek.ae/a-source-close-to-the-family-of-saad-al-jabri-reveals-to-cnn-the-details-of-the-settlement-with-mohammed-bin-salman/) the weird part is that this is the Dubai Week, CNN has NOTHING. This is about Saad bin Khalid Al Jabri. In addition we are given “in a statement to CNN, said the White House Arranges for the meeting The meeting between US President Joe Biden and the Saudi prince is likely to take place next month. He pointed out that attempts to organise the meeting came amid a number of controversies, such as the assassination of Jamal Kashoki and the al-Jafri case. Sources said al-Jabri had recently told the White House that he would settle all legal and financial disputes with Saudi Arabia if he returned his two sons.” As such I wonder what is real. The Dubai Times gives us “US President Joe Biden” instead of US President Biden. As well as “the Saudi prince”, which prince exactly? Then we see “assassination of Jamal Kashoki” instead of ‘alleged assassination of Jamal Khashoggi’? You might remember the columnist no one cares about, his name was Jamal Ahmad Khashoggi. My first question becomes, who is this clown Bill Dittman? What gave the editor of this magazine the idea that this was journalism? Then we get “the al-Jafri case” named after Saad bin Khalid Al Jabri, when we try to name our expected traitors and alleged thieves, can we at least get some part right?

So far the Dubai Times is not impressing anyone with minimal fact requirements. Then the use of the CNN logo and the mention of CNN the way they did gives a massive question on the quality of news people are exposed to and as we see one paragraph of what ails the media, we also need to consider the fact that CNN did not allegedly state anything against this article. 

And I almost fell for it, I almost fell for the fact that this is not journalism, so how many do fall for it and how many who read the Dubai Times and do not have the knowledge of multiple languages. How many will fall for fake news? And then we have “he would settle all legal and financial disputes with Saudi Arabia if he returned his two sons.” Apart form the bad English, the setting is larger. He is accused of stealing a lot more than $990,000,000 (exact amount unknown to me). More important the US government (CIA) has been protecting him, they went so far to play the national security card to avoid evidence being shown. This is one of the larger amount of issues that President Biden is facing. He wants cheap oil, but his administration keeps on messing with the basic rights of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as well as give shelter to expected traitors and alleged thieves. At what point does he expect to have a chance in this? 

We have all kinds of options, but they are drawn to the facts and what we believe, when the media plays these games what is fact becomes debatable and the amount of options that we trust and expect diminish into nothing. Don’t get me wrong there is no way that the Dubai Times is alone in this, yet the others are more subtle, more careful. They filter what we see and make the filtering smaller until only one side remains. It is a game that has been played for the longest of times, yet in this day and age, in the age where digital media is the choice of many and industrials are setting the digital voice, that stage becomes overwhelmingly large and at some point no one will be able to differentiate between the sources. That is how I see it. So in this case, how far did speculation, presumption and reality get transgressed on?

Leave a comment

Filed under Media, Politics

Soup with sarcasm

There is a setting we all know, we go to a restaurant, we order menu 2 instead of menu 1 and the waiter tries to apologise when we ‘accidentally’ receive menu 1, however menu 2 will be ready in 15 minutes, and with that he hopes that we will accept what we never ordered in the first place. That is the setting I see when we are given ‘Saudis’ Biden snub suggests crown prince still banking on Trump’s return’. The article (at https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/apr/24/saudi-arabia-kushner-trump-biden-mohammed-bin-salman) gives us “Refusal to help US punish Russia and $2bn investment in Kushner fund signal crown prince’s displeasure with Trump’s successor”. You see, President Biden is playing the wrong game, he did so because he never played the right game to begin with. The US has trampled on friendships with the Middle East for too long. Russia is one option and Saudi Arabia is considering any ally that has a positive approach towards them and that puts both China and Russia on the map for Saudi Arabia. We see the news, we see the implications, but the number one setting they all overlook (whether intentional or not) Saudi Arabia must do what is best for Saudi Arabia and that is not what America wants, it is not what President Biden wants. They want ‘vassals’ yet they want them with an empty treasury coffer and at present Saudi Arabia can buy them out. That is what the US fears the most, they have become the paper tiger the feared they one day might be. 

So when we see “Prince Mohammed shows signs of betting on the return to office of Trump in 2024, and the resumption of the Trump administration’s cosy relationship with Riyadh.” We see Saudi reason. The US has not achieved anything regarding the insurrection. It has not exposed the lack of wealth of Donald Trump and as such Trump continues to incite the far right to his causes and with every win he polarises the right further and more of the centre will move to the right. We see all the news that this will never happen, but they also told us that Trump would never become president in the first place. They were wrong then and they might be wrong now. Successful prosecution of Donald Trump was essential for that, but we all forget the stage of “Trump investigations set to accelerate in coming weeks”, yes, and this has been going on for over a year and nothing was achieved and with every delay, every inability to prosecute more and more Americans start wondering if Donald Trump was right all along and that matters for Saudi Arabia, it matters a great deal. So whatever we might think of Saudi Arabia, it did come at the expense of stupid political games by the Democratic party, and Saudi Arabia is hoping for a renewed Republican White House. Will it happen? I have no idea, but the lack of success against Donald Trump implies that Biden is not in a good place and his actions against Saudi Arabia implies that Saudi Arabia has absolutely no intentions of making Russia less of a ‘friend’ Russia is heard by all the 15 OPEC members and alienating them is not in the interest of Saudi Arabia. So yes, Saudi Arabia seems to be banking on the return of Donald Trump, mainly because is serves the interest of Saudi Arabia a lot better. So when we see the view of John Jenkins, a former UK ambassador to Saudi Arabia with “He probably thinks Biden is politically weak and he can therefore afford to spite him. That sends a signal not just to the Dems but also to the Republican party. And – judging by the debate raging in DC policy circles on these matters – it’s working.” Yet I believe that the larger station is that President Biden has not shown himself to be a friend of Saudi Arabia and that is the larger station. You see, we can debate every angle we are shown, but the larger station is missing:

Saudi Arabia does and must do what is best for Saudi Arabia 

And that missing part is where it all revolves around and the media seems to ignore that part, it does not make for good flames. You see that is the other part of any sarcastic view, when it backfires it is merely irony.

Leave a comment

Filed under Finance, Media, Military, Politics

The three day delay

Yes, it is not new, I had my go on this a few times, yet due to what we see now, after three days, it is time to renew this event. It started basically in 2014, the Yemen war became something serious and the west had no idea how to react. They reacted poorly and to make matters worse, events driven by Iran was kept out of the news. The people got a one sided story. Over time weapons sales went stale, were blocked and the defence of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia was a setting of debate by people who had no clue what was going on, because the ego trippers needed their Iran peace accord through a nuclear deal, something that even now is still not done. Matters became worse when the west decided to spin the events around Jamal Khashoggi in October 2018. So even as the press al invoked “By 16 November 2018, the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) had concluded that Mohammed bin Salman ordered Khashoggi’s assassination.” In this that the CIA stated that is was highly likely that this had happened, but no evidence was EVER brought to light. No evidence that could survive the rigours of academic investigations. The essay by the United Nations did not help any, that is for certain. Then we get the hack of Jeff Bezos, a disgracefully inadequate report by FTI Consulting. It is important to take notice of the Verge (at https://www.theverge.com/2020/1/23/21078828/report-saudi-arabia-hack-jeff-bezos-phone-fti-consulting) that also gives us “Facebook’s former chief security officer Alex Stamos, for example, said that there was “no smoking gun” in the report. Some researchers said that FTI should have been able to analyze the encrypted file that the crown prince sent Bezos which reportedly hacked his phone. And one said he didn’t see evidence in the report to suggest that Bezos’ phone was hacked.” I believe that Jeff got hacked, but there is no clear evidence WHO did the job, but there were some wannabe reporters that were really happy to blame the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia. Even though several newspapers earlier that week showed that certain hacks allowed people to pretend they were someone else, and that too is missing from the FTI report. 

So we have all these negativity, projected on the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia and now the US wants a favour? You have got to be shitting me!

So we get back to the article where we see “Why should America’s regional allies help Washington contain Russia in Europe when Washington is strengthening Russia and Iran in the Middle East?” And this is the larger folly, a stage where the wrong people cater to Iran, all whilst they require other stuff too, but you cannot get it both ways and now that China is stepping in gobbling up billions upon billions in sales and services, we see the US in a stage of denial. They now need cheap oil, all whilst the two largest suppliers are set to the mind that premium prices will do just as well. And I warned for these situations for years, but everyone was in denial. It would never come to that and now that it is coming to that, the US, the EU and others are in denial on what is required. So at present the oil prices are on the rise, just for how long is impossible to say, yet we also acknowledge that reserves are being used to stop the rise. Just how long until that stops? What do you think will happen when the reserves are gone, because most nations do not have that much in reserve. They can avoid the winter this year, but that will drain the reserves and even as they can build up some of those reserves during summer, winter 2022 will show to be the year that people will need to choose, be warm, avoid hunger and pay rent/mortgage and there is every consideration that many households will only be able to do one of the three, two if they are lucky. 

That is the direct impact of catering to the populist view, the price of adjusting one view for another, one deciding on what was likely, not what could be proven, ignoring what was proven (Iran attacks) and catering to something that is still not a reality (Iranian nuclear agreement) and Iran has clearly been catered to and now the kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the UAE are telling you all that enough is enough. You want oil at a premium, you got it and at a premium means that within the next 12-15 weeks oil prices might get back to the $130 marker, at that point, how much will it cost you to get groceries, to get to work, to get home and to refuel? All that whilst these two nations are now looking at China to deliver defence systems. Slap upon slap upon slap and now 19 hours ago we were given ‘Iran Says U.S. Is Responsible for Stalled Talks on Reviving Nuclear Deal’, another fiasco and the involved political players are all in hiding as not to get painted with that fiasco. So when you wonder what happened to the oil prices, it is simple. Your government royally screwed up and gave you the bill for their failure. 

So good luck with that.

Leave a comment

Filed under Finance, IT, Media, Politics

The gamer is afoot

To be honest, I only saw this in the morning. It is a day old and the Guardian (at https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2022/mar/21/saudi-arabia-expands-its-sportswashing-ambitions-to-the-world-of-gaming) gives us ‘Saudi Arabia expands its sportswashing ambitions to the world of gaming’. This is a fortunate roll for me, the $400M-$600M (low estimation) of new IP (which is not on my blog) was initially available for Google (Stadia), and more available to Amazon (Luna) is now also an option for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The third player in this hand has a few interesting benefits, not that Amazon would not prosper, but it opens a new stage and it also brings the Google Stadia into this fold. You see the article gives us “The kingdom’s sovereign wealth fund – a $500bn entity chaired by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman – announced a new gaming company in January 2022 with the intention of staking its claim in the booming industry.” Now consider a stage that this same setting gives you another arm that will allow for well over $400,000,000 which is set aside from the other avenues, but to a larger degree will offer a new income prospect and that is not something anyone would pass up, well Microsoft will have to pass up, because it is not on offer for them (so there). 

There are options opening when we see “The Savvy Gaming Group went on to purchase ESL Gaming – one of the largest independent eSport entities in the world – from Sweden-based Modern Times Group in an all-cash transaction of $1.05bn. It also purchased FACEIT, one of the biggest tournament organisers in eSports, for $500m, and later merged the two entities to form the ESL FACEIT Group.” Yet this all sets a new premise, one that I (and many others had not considered). This implies that Saudi Arabia will also set the stage that 4 clusters with up to 450,000,000 million gamers come towards the new light and there my IP will flourish, it will because I took into consideration a factor that all other gaming entities had overlooked and now my idea makes a whole lot of new sense (it was already making sense) but now more so and it is theirs for $50,000,000 post taxation (with a few additional items). So I will let you ponder how interesting a $50M investment is if you would end up with well over $400M. That is a mere 12.5% investment (expected less than that), good odds I say. 

So when we take notice of “Saudi launched a new billion-dollar initiative to transform the kingdom into a leading digital entertainment hub. The initiative, aptly named Ignite, is expected to fund the development of new games, as well as infrastructure for gaming studios and arenas. The kingdom also revealed plans to establish a big budget games studio in Neom, the proposed futuristic $500bn mega city in the Saudi desert. The studio, which is expected to produce and distribute games by a major publisher, would be the first of its kind in the Middle East.” Makes it all come full circle, a setting that we all overlooked and my IP is something they might be overlooking and a stage where you get three clusters representing well over $400M is not something one does callously. 

And at this point some will say “you are blowing your own horn”, my response would be, yes, so what? No one was looking there, Amazon could have bought it, Google decided not to go there and Microsoft is not worthy, and now the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia becomes a whole new dimension in a setting I never considered them in. In the end, it does not matter who gets me my $50,000,000 (post taxation). It is not greed, it is a mere retirement umbrella allowing me to have a kick ass vacation until I become that player that pushes up the daisies. A larger stage that was out in the open for well over a decade, and no one bothered to look there. I did and now (I hope) that my setting allows me for some platinum class R&R, can you blame me? All this is also reinforced by “Gaming consumption in the kingdom is projected to reach $6.8bn by 2030, according to the Boston Consulting Group, an entity that has worked closely with the Saudi crown prince to enhance his image.” And a stage where a prediction gets them a chunk of that money (over 5.8%) in the beginning stage is not something that should be cast aside. It will go higher, I just cannot say how high, because this has never be done before and I am not one to blow my own trumpet in an unrealistic fashion, what I have I can support (to the buyer), I reckon that the Boston Consulting Group could make that number a lot higher and support that setting, but that is an educated guess (aka presumption). And lets face it, if you got 10% of what you state will be the pot in 2030, is offered to you in 2022, would you pass up that setting? I will let you decide.

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Finance, Gaming, Science

A symphony in only two parts?

That is the question at times. We see two events, two articles and we forget that there are a dozen other connections. I am not different, at times I overlook them too, not always but frequently. It is a mix of a larger stage, more connections, more unregistered events. Yet for now we start with the first nail in the coffin of American economy. The article from Reuters (at https://www.reuters.com/world/middle-east/saudi-arabia-invites-chinas-xi-visit-wsj-2022-03-14/) gives us ‘Saudi Arabia invites China’s Xi to visit’, the article states that this could be as early as may. Right before the Midterms in November 2022 the US is now likely to face that dozens upon dozens of billions walk from the US side straight into the hands of China (and me missing out on commission, darn). Is this a given? No, of course not. There could be a dozen reasons why President Xi Jinping might be visiting. But how often has ANY Chinese president done that? And Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud is eager to set his defence and SAMI to higher values and I was clear in the two years that this was coming and as far as I can tell, President Biden has soured the waters enough for this to become a reality. Some focusses on weapons being sold, I say in THIS economy you should not ignore the nations Saudi Arabia, India, Egypt, who are the largest importers. In this stage where the US HELD 37% and China only 5.2% the stage is now set where China can progress a lot higher on that list and should they get the bulk of Saudi and SAMI attention there is a clear stage where the new numbers will represent (2023/2024) could state that the US hold 25% and China then could be holding 17.2%, it then places China right next to Russian exports and the US a lot more to that stage, a stage where it is now an almost fair fight between the US, Russia and China, but to be clear was that EVER an economic stage where you WANT a fair fight? A stage where China overtakes both France and Germany as supplier? This is the stage that could inhabit the Middle East and that is merely the beginning. You see the partnerships that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Egypt have also sets Egypt in the sights of China as a defence trade partner, a stage a few people overlooked and that drives Chinese export achievable needs up a lot more. So the damage to the US might increase over the coming year and those who want to be in denial, go right ahead, the article with ““The crown prince and Xi are close friends and both understand that there is huge potential for stronger ties,” the report quoted a Saudi official as saying. “It is not just ‘They buy oil from us and we buy weapons from them’.”” I like the part “It is not just ‘They buy oil from us and we buy weapons from them’” the best, it might not be merely just, for China that is a good deal in several ways and when that deal gives China more oil, it will mean that it gives the US less oil a stage they feared for some time and the oil market has been volatile on these fears alone. So when I was mentioning that whatever relief the oil prices give us today, tomorrow will be different and now we see that fear come to fruition, not immediately mind you, but the price of fuel will go up again and again, how high? I cannot tell but the stage where we saw the American administration make statements like “You can pump more oil, so pump more oil!”, it was nice but there is now every chance that the extra oil (plus a little more) goes to China. Will the UAE do the same? I cannot tell, but the US better become best buddies with Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Sheikh Mohammed ibn Rashid Al Maktoum, because if I see this right, the US will need every friend it can muster in their oil needs (a few others too) and in that need they better realise that catering to Iran will not merely be unrewarding, it will soon become dangerous on more than one field as well. I mentioned two years ago that yielding the Middle East to China would be one of the most dangerous things ever, and that was merely economically. Now we see one field exposed and the construction opportunities in Neom could also go towards China, a stage that makes the US (EU too) more and more irrelevant, a stage the US themselves threw upon their own economic needs. Now that it is becoming more and more realistic these people will not be allowed to cry with the “Why oh why” statement like little chihuahua’s. Or as my grandmother used to say “You do not bite the hand that feeds you” a practical lesson that the US will now face within the next 3 months and the 2 years that follow. A stage that the Biden Administration failed to spot in some stage of ignorance and now as we see it optionally unfold (it might be that President Xi Jinping is visiting to buy real estate in Neom) some might see the dangers that are coming the next year or so and the impact over the next decade. I merely loose out on commission (oh, poor poor me). 

 

1 Comment

Filed under Finance, Military, Politics

Two issues connected

It is easy to see the connection, but at that point one wonders whether the real connections are made. The first article is ‘White House faces oil standoff with Saudi Arabia and UAE as prices soar’, the article (at https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/mar/13/white-house-us-joe-biden-oil-output-prices-saudi-arabia-uae) gives us “Saudi Arabia’s de facto leader, Mohammed bin Salman, and his counterpart in the United Arab Emirates, Mohammed bin Zayed, are yet to agree to a phone call with the west’s most powerful man”, my takeaway is the question whether the ‘west’s most powerful man’ is actually that. We also get “Each capital is a major supplier of oil, with excess capacity, which would soften the effect on US consumers through fuel prices before midterm elections in November that threaten Democratic control of Congress” and this is enough for article one. We see a few issues, the oil pries are still soaring and so far that so called most powerful man has not really achieved anything, has he? 

In the second article called ‘Iran suspends talks with Saudi, slams Riyadh’s executions’ (at https://www.reuters.com/world/middle-east/iran-suspends-talks-with-saudi-arabia-nour-news-2022-03-13/), which is kinda hilarious, especially as Iran had 299 documented executions in 2021. Yet the story also gives us ““Iran has unilaterally suspended talks with Saudi Arabia,” Nor News said, without providing a reason. It said no specific date had been scheduled for a new round of talks”, not unexpected, but that is the effect of diplomacy with a toddler like Iran. You see I think there is more to it. I think Russia is trying to put the pressure on the west, the US is the weakest with its ‘nuclear deal’ ego. And as Iran suspends talks they continue to enrich uranium. Delay after delay until it is too late. 

Am I correct?
To be honest, I am not certain, I could very well be wrong. But consider Russia entanglement in the middle east and especially with Iran, it wants to play tits for dad (oops) by withholding the milk (oil) and this play seems to be actually working out. President Biden did this in part to himself. And now the larger stage is pushed into directions it should not have been going in. Yemeni’s and Syrians feel more and more betrayed by the west, and honestly, I cannot blame them for that. 

My issue is that Russia is playing a way too dangerous game, as they are now part of the delays, Iran might finish what it wants and when that goes the wrong way and Israel gets its first nuclear detonation, the bars are sealed. The USA must prove its word or be seen as flaccid and irrelevant on the political stage. And their play (as I mentioned in previous articles) in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia was badly managed and even worse constructed and now that the US is desperate for cheaper oil they will feel the sting of biting the hand that was feeding them. It was bad already and now there is every indication that Russia is making matters worse via Iran. 

Russia is the connection. It is souring the Nuclear deal, and it has a handle on the Middle East to some degree, how much I cannot tell, but some who can are not talking (for obvious reasons) and that sets the sliding scales for the US who is now on a worsening scale economically. Even as some state that oil prices are going down, I personally feel that it is temporary. It is nowhere near the old price and there are chances that it will go back to $123.70 (March 8th) and optionally higher than that. President Biden could influence it positively, but if he does not succeed then the first sign of failure is shown and the Russians want that because for them the Republicans are easier to deal with (allegedly). For President Biden it all hangs here, He is down in the senate, but if he loses even one more seat the senate will be overwhelmingly republican and that COULD happen. He has a majority in the house, but only by 11 seats and there is no guarantee that he can hold onto them. When the house is lost as well, the Democratic Party will find obstacle after obstacle and that is what they signed on for. 

The failures in the middle east, especially Iran will haunt this administration for a long time to come. And the oil prices? Well that is still up n the air, but there are indications that this will not go their way either, it is wholly due to the way they dealt with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. 

Leave a comment

Filed under Finance, Media, Military, Politics

The next Furlong

Yes, that happens. We all look at races, we all enter horse racing (not betting I mean) and then we look as the wrecks stack up. This story goes back to 2019, I am certain I made mention before then. It was ‘The seventh guest’ (at https://lawlordtobe.com/2019/06/21/the-seventh-guest/) when I wrote “I would like to discuss the purchase of 20-30 Chengdu J-20 fighters. In light of both a first order discount, as well as a student discount (we are all students on the path of life), I believe that should the talks be successful, that 20-30 planes at a unit cost of $27.35 million (with rebates, discounts and commission applied), in addition the 2 years of full service with no regards to hours flown, mileage traveled or missiles fired. This is based on 2016 flyaway cost. The benefit is that these fighters will be directly engaging Iranian forces and as such you will have access to a massive amount of data enabling you to start on the 6th generation fighter, optionally making you the first country to have one. We would also be interested in the testing of the Xian H-20 prototype that is now nearing completion. If the specs are as they are claiming to be, it will help us in removing morale from Tehran and from the IRGC as a whole. In this the unofficial word is that the sky is the limit as regarding to the price of this place (my 2.17% commission still applies). My client is ready to upgrade several army based parts (both light and heavy guns), however I hope that this part can be tabled until Iran decides to attack directly, at which point Saudi Arabian boots on Iranian ground becomes a direct first”, and certain people laughed, the laughed loud and pointed at me. It would never come this far. And now we see (at https://www.globaltimes.cn/page/202203/1254377.shtml) ’FC-31 stealth fighter spearheads display of cutting-edge Chinese equipment at Saudi Arabia’s 1st World Defense Show’, there we see “The Chinese arms industry brought a wide selection of cutting-edge weapons and equipment, including the FC-31 stealth fighter jet, to the ongoing first edition of Saudi Arabia’s World Defense Show in Riyadh. China can provide finished advanced gear and also transfer technology that enables domestic development and production, analysts said on Tuesday.” And although I lose out on a commission of 3.75% (my life sucks), the stage I saw coming in 2019 is now becoming a harsh reality for the US and the EU. Not laughing now, are they? And it is not even the worst of the setting either. That is seen when we add ‘Saudi Arabia and UAE leaders ‘decline calls with Biden’ amid fears of oil price spike’ (at https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/mar/09/saudi-arabia-and-uae-leaders-decline-calls-with-biden-amid-fears-of-oil-price-spike) the other part I discussed a few times over is coming to fruition (for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia), the entire US pariah setting on lack of EVIDENCE is a bed they themselves made. You can call the consumer names again and again, but realise that this person can shop somewhere else and can not deliver to you, ask any supermarket, ask any grocer, butcher or baker. And now these stations are coming out, China is sitting on the sidelines laughing loudly. And the entire issue in the EU is not helping any. All setting I saw YEARS ago and now it is out on the 20 yard line the US is trying to set some premise to avoid the setting that was clear in the open. So when we now see the US playing courtesan to whomever will supply cheap oil, what was the direct label for such a person? It was clear as day and I illuminated that danger years ago and the blog is ‘evidence’ that I did so. A station that could have been clearly avoided from the start and that I perhaps the biggest failure of all. If I can see it and I am not the most clever person around (around two IQ points below Alan Turing) so why did THEY not see this coming? The lack of long term vision is staggering and the need for “also transfer technology that enables domestic development and production” implies that the Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud implies that he is now on track with the promise towards 50% in house manufacturing via SAMI (Saudi Arabian Military Industries), so the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia gets even with the people playing with them, these players are massively losing out on revenue (me on commission, darn) and these players are now in a much worse position all whilst China becomes the top dog yielding the bone the EU and US are basically fighting over. 

As such we now see how much a failure (for the US especially) Davos in the desert 2019 was. So whilst some state it was a ‘shameless return of business and government leaders to Saudi Arabia’, we can now clearly see that it is about to become a massive trove of revenue that could pass the US and EU by on a few levels and they did this themselves. It was not unforeseen and as such I wonder what the next stupid act we see coming from the US and EU? Contemplating larger concession towards Venezuela and Iran? I cannot speak on the Venezuelan side, I know too little, but the concessions towards Iran will upset both the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the State of Israel even more. And both could optionally sour the milk for both the EU and US for any 5G they hope to set in Egypt. Another place of revenue loss, was that not clear to these people?

As such I wonder how the next furlong will play out, because in the end the US and the EU are in a series of horse races. One race is defence spending, another is telecom spending and then there are still the infrastructure and manufacturing races on the schedule. All now with both the US and EU degraded to second or even third choice, because whatever you think the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia needs to do, it needs to do what is best for the kingdom and that leaves Russia as a contender (for now). Several races with less than optimal choices and it could have been avoided to a much larger degree. Do not take my word, investigate and form your own opinion, but as I see it it soon becomes another stage where I get to say ‘Told you so!

Leave a comment

Filed under Finance, Media, Military, Politics, Science

How did the cow catch the hare?

Yes, that has been a question for the ages and that question popped to mind when I saw ‘How did Saudi Arabia make it to the Winter Olympics?’ (at https://www.dw.com/en/how-did-saudi-arabia-make-it-to-the-winter-olympics/a-60736077). Weirdly enough it is not the weirdest question and it had been asked before. There was the Jamaican bobsled team (1988), the event could also be seen in Cool Runnings. Then there was Michael David Edwards (also 1988), a British man doing Ski Jumping and coming from a place where the highest hill is a trashcan, seen in the Movie Eddie the Eagle with Hugh Jackman as the bad as coach. So there have been examples in the past. As such there is plenty of material and I do not know the man, but if Fayik Abdi comes from decently wealthy parents he could have spend his youth skiing the slopes of Canada, Switzerland, Austria or France to get his skills up. And for any man it would be an honour to represent his nation in any olympic event. I would be happy to be the Hockey Goalie for Australia. Oh shocks we do not have a Hockey team (not the real one on ice anyway). So another dream squashed. But for Fayik Abdi it was not a squashed dream, he gets to be there. It does not matter how good he is, how far he gets, he got there making him one in 34,810,000 Saudi’s. And the quote “The 24-year-old found his passion for skiing in Lebanon, where his mother taught him how to ski when he was 4. During his childhood, skiing was just a hobby. But when Abdi got older, he wanted to take the sport seriously. He started traveling to the Swiss Alps in search of slopes, as he didn’t have the access to the sport living in his country.

Shows us the story that matters. OK, I never would have guessed Lebanon, but I got the second part right and after 20 years he is ready to represent his nation. Yet in all this, I believe that the quote “The Saudi’s first participation in the Winter Games brings back memories of the nation’s first Olympic appearance in Munich’s Summer Games in 1972. The purported vision of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman is to explore new industries and encourage people in Saudi to be more active. He believes participation in Beijing will help achieve that goal” is equally important. Exploring new industries is always good, yet it does at times require nationalistic people with another brand of representation and there Olympians could set the larger stage. It does not matter if they do not get the first three position, participation is everything here and I believe that Fayik Abdi is doing more than representing his nation, he is cementing a different path that will bring honour to his family. As any person would be proud to do. If there is a side I have some issues with then it is “The Saudi Winter Sports Federation has had royal backing from the beginning. But it is still searching for business investors to build a planned indoor ski resort, which would help provide vital training access.” It is a natural setting against ‘indoor’ winter-sports, for the most the real feeling of that sport is the outdoors. It could be made for Curling, Bobsled, Figure skating and Hockey (the real one on ice). Curling and bobsled are out in the open, yet the other two would find all kinds of Islamic opposition in one case and with Hockey, there are two that might be surpassed over years, but that leaves Saudi Arabia 12th out of 12 and that is not a good place to be in, apart from the years of funds required. Making Curling with more nations and representation in men and women a much better option. Yes we see skiing, and that makes sense but how many people make that passion, that expensive passion a realistic option? Fayik Abdi should be seen as one in a million (35 million to be slightly more exact). And even if there is a larger need for its nation, it does not take away the achievement that Fayik Abdi reached, he became an Olympian. Just like Michael David Edwards and a few rare people who got into the stage against all odds. I remember how I could not make any Fencing team, no sponsor and no options, but that too is a sport Saudi Arabia could engage in, and they did. Lubna Al-Omair got into the 2016 Olympics, she might have lost, but she got saddled with Taís Rochel, a Brazilian who was number 80 on the world list, talk about bad luck. There are all kinds of sports and Saudi Arabia could be in many of them, yet my mind keeps on nagging towards the ‘planned indoor ski resort’, it does not sit well with me. You see, I have seen my share of snowboards on dunes and if Saudi Arabia has one thing more than oil, it would be dunes. So why not exploit that? Why not set up a station where snowboarders can board in near tropical heat? It will be a setting that requires a different bottom to keep the board intact, but that too is something that Saudi Arabia can ‘push’ for. And as we get a new stage of dune boards and  optional new kind of tracks, we will be introduced to (optional) indoor boarding. Anyway I digress, you see, the article touches on all subjects, but no one is taking that time to consider the achievement that Fayik Abdi got. He ended #51 in the first run, defeating 38 others which is a lot better than the (roughly) 38,433 people who did not get into the Olympics in the first place. Today is run 2, he might make it, he might not, yet at present he is on the short list of becoming one of the 50 best Olympians in the Giant Slalom and for a nation that never sees solid forms of water, that is quite the achievement. You see, Canada has plenty of snow (hills too) and only one made it to that list. So I think that we should make a little more noise on the achievement we see here. Because it is one I never saw coming. But then for me Jamaica was never a bobsled nation, so there is that.
Oh, and how the cow caught the hare? With a fishing rod (of course). 

Leave a comment

Filed under Media, Politics, Stories

Genuinely puzzled

Yup it happens, the news at time makes little sense, it makes little sense for several reasons and that is fair, even for me. Consider the BBC headline ‘Saudi Arabia: Authorities defend mosque speaker restriction’,  which in itself outside of any Islamic nation might be treated with a simple ‘Meh!’ This would not be a negative response, merely a response that approaches the sentiment of ‘Whatever!’, so as I read “The country’s Islamic Affairs Ministry announced last week that all loudspeakers should be set at only a third of their maximum volume. Islamic Affairs Minister Abdullatif al-Sheikh said the measure was in response to complaints from the public. But the move in the conservative Muslim nation sparked a backlash on social media”, I initially wondered why the BBC even took time to give notice to the event, for the most, what does it inform us about? Is it to give visibility to Abdullatif al-Sheikh? Perhaps it was to alarm us to “the move in the conservative Muslim nation sparked a backlash on social media”? I actually do not know, but this news also gives us that there was no space for ‘WHO to start COVID-19 vaccination in Houthi-run north Yemen’ with “Houthi authorities in control have played down the impact of the pandemic, largely denying any outbreak there”, or perhaps it is ‘UAE shows last minute unity to host Asian Qualifiers as China baulks at covid outbreaks’ with “The remaining seven matches in Group A – which will qualify teams for both the next round of the AFC’s World Cup 2022 qualifying and directly into the Asian Cup China 2023 – will be now held at the Sharjah Stadium”, neither news is seen at the BBC, so whilst we accept that speaker settings for announcements are important to the people in the KSA, the western population would all like to know the impact of Football decisions (people in the UK are weird that way), oh I reckon that the people in France, Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, Spain and Italy would react in a similar fashion.

So whilst it is nice to read “the measure was in response to complaints from the public”, I personally would reckon that the rules of Islam have been clear in many Arabic nations, and as these speakers tend to be set, why would there be complaints now? So whilst some might know that the 5 moments are “Fajr (sunrise prayer), Dhuhr (noon prayer), Asr (afternoon prayer), Maghrib (sunset prayer), and Isha (night prayer). Each prayer has a specific window of time in which it must be completed”, the internet also shows us “In a mosque, the muezzin broadcasts the call to prayer at the beginning of each interval. Because the start and end times for prayers are related to the solar diurnal motion, they vary throughout the year and depend on the local latitude and longitude when expressed in local time”, when we see that, some (including me) might wonder why the speaker settings are suddenly cause for concern. The sound of a person calling to prayer the islamic people is part of Islamic heritage, I wonder who the complaining people would be. I would go as far as stating that unless these calls are lately a lot louder, who would complain on speaker settings and the part we read “the move in the conservative Muslim nation sparked a backlash on social media” gives rise to my puzzlement. It is fair that this news would be (and is) seen in Al Jazeera, but I saw no mention in Arab News, so Islamic news made it to the BBC and not to Arab News? What is going on? 

And when we see “Mr Sheikh said that those who want to pray do not need to wait for the Imam’s call to prayer” the wondering does not top and here I found that the news also made it to Radio Athens, they give us on their website with the added “In a country where there are tens of thousands of mosques, the decision was generally welcomed. However, it also provoked reactions on social networking sites, with the appearance of a hashtag calling for a ban on loud music in restaurants and cafes”, I could not rely on the radio as I haven’t spoken proper Greek since 3575BC. And more important the information on Athens Radio is seemingly the same as the BBC, but the paragraph comes across different due to “with the appearance of a hashtag calling for a ban on loud music in restaurants and cafes”, all whilst both sides give us the one side that is seemingly strange “The restrictions come as Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman continues attempts to make Saudi Arabia more liberal and lessen the role religion plays in public life”, I am not sure how to react, optionally, I see in part a reason to disagree. I get that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia wants to make liberal moves and as we can see on YouTube, several tourists are showing the world just how pretty and how amazing Saudi Arabia looks. I have seen a few of these video’s and the view we see from the Sky Bridge Kingdom Tower is amazing. It was the first time I saw this and I wonder why other media have never given a clear view of an architectural marvel like that and what it offers. Yet even if I were to go to Riyadh, I personally feel that I would miss out on the call of prayer, not that I am Islamic, but it is part of Islamic life. As a visitor we would not want to see changes that are part of the foundation of a nation. Yet, I admit that this might merely be me. And in all this I am personally more stricken by “those who want to pray do not need to wait for the Imam’s call to prayer” I have no idea what to make of that, but I understand that as I am not Muslim, I might not get that part. Another source gives us “The decision has angered ultra-conservatives in the country”, it is fair that there are those in favour and those opposing any decision, yet the BBC (Radio Athens neither) gives us anything on the ultra-conservatives and who they are. This sparked a revisit to the Washington Post who gave us in 2018 ‘Saudi Arabia’s once-powerful conservatives silenced by reforms and repression’ with the addition of “these conservatives now tiptoe on social media outlets like Twitter. In mosques and at community gatherings, they reluctantly criticise recent changes they stridently oppose, such as the easing of social boundaries between men and women”, with that in sight we see certain patterns emerge and the BBC was not informing us of that, or perhaps they assumed we knew that, which in light of the Martin Bashir caper is massively silly on several levels. In all this the one part some people overlooked. If the speakers are to be set to 33%, what stops them from upgrading the sound equipment in Mosques from 100 Watt to 300 Watt? It is merely a thought. All parts the BBC is overlooking and I know for a fact that they have faced the ‘hardware upgrade’ in the past. So the lack of information in their article is calling for a few questions. In the end, the only useful information I got from the article was the existence of Islamic Affairs Minister Abdullatif al-Sheikh. From my personal point of view the BBC article was a blunder, one that the BBC should not have made. 

As such my genuinely puzzled setting is quite complete.

A new starts and breakfast is approximately 3 hours and 32 minutes away. Have a great Wednesday!

Leave a comment

Filed under Media, Politics