Tag Archives: UAE

Lemon of the Century

Yes, you have seen it, we have all seen it in some form, but when was the last time you saw a genuine Lemon? Not to mention a Lemon of the century. You would think it is a near impossible task, but Lockheed Martin, an American company pulled it off. In thee cases it is so much sweeter if the accomplishment is American.

I made a case to sell (as a corporate individual) to sell the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia either the British BAE Typhoon, or the somewhat better match the Chinese Chengdu J-20. Now, this is not on principles, but the US making Saudi embargo after embargo, all whilst it is mere puppet play and there was no direct need to stop the sales, especially as the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia was under direct attack by Houthi forces directly sponsored from Iran and the people were eager to ignore that fact. So there I was taking a stab at a 3.75% sales commission, and in light of a $11,000,000,000 sales ticket could bank me $412,500,000 over a few years. Now, I know, am I greed driven? Nope! But I am not walking away from such a massive mealticket! 

All that happened and was mentioned before, but now there are more reasons as ABC news gives us. The article ‘F-35 program’s future uncertain owing to design flaws, parts shortages and cost blowouts’ (at https://www.abc.net.au/news/2021-09-08/f35-program-design-flaws-part-shortages-costs-opinions-divided/100431664) there we see “He said the combat jet currently had almost 900 design flaws, with seven considered critical.” This is given to us via Former US Marine Corps Captain Dan Grazier. So this is not out of thin air, this comes to us by decently informed people and at what point is anyone accepting a lemon with 900 design flaws? We get it, a plane with a current whole of life cost estimate of $2.3 trillion we need to consider that there is a massive flaw in the entire process. It becomes worse when you see and consider the Naval failure called Zumwalt class destroyers. That is two out of three, so now we merely need to add an army failure and the US forces will be 3 for 3. So how often do major projects on these scales fail? There is optionally the second stage where both China and Russia are not afraid for a war with the US, because the US is lacking in functional equipment. They have functioning 5th generation planes. I cannot tell if they are better, merely that they are. And I am am the mouse who loves that 412 million dollar cheese wheel, whether I retire or eat myself to death is all equally similar and there is a customer base who would want something that actually works so overall there is more than one seller and there is a definite buyer, so I am game.

Yet the article also gives us “It said that would grow to 40 per cent of jets grounded by 2030, if the repair backlog didn’t improve” this implies that the US airforce needs to grow by 250% to keep the effectiveness numbers of 2017, that is one hell of an investment. I am not denying what the pilots are saying, that it is a game changer that it will be effective, we get that, but it has 900 flaws, and there are a lot of questions in the background when we consider the seven critical problems. So when we consider the claim “Mr Grazier said the cost per flight hour in the United States was around $36,000” and the math man in me consider that at present there are (unverified numbers) “1,763 F-35As for the USAF, 353 F-35Bs and 67 F-35Cs for the USMC, and 273 F-35Cs for the USN” it would require the DoD $88,416,000 an hour to get it all in the air, in light of the Afghanistan clambake, which lasted 2 decades, count your losses today. Is someone doing the math here (apart from me)? This is a plane with 900 design flaws. So if China (or the United Kingdom) can beat these costs they have a real chance in getting a new customer in their arsenal and it is one that has money, so that part will be the smallest of concerns.

We could go all (overly) marketing and say:

Chinese
Hellbringing
Equalising
Negotiating

Goalseeking
Defence

Unit

But that might be slightly over the top, what matters is that the US has a real problem and, oh, that reminds me. Is that why they pulled out of Afghanistan? 40% of their flying capabilities wasn’t up to it? I know, it is grasping and it is speculation, but I am trying to get my hands on that 3.75% and that makes me a little giddy. With the Zumwalt it was the principle that it didn’t meet its need, it was too expensive and it was ugly as hell. I still hope to test my new stealth anti naval weapon on it, merely because it is just too ugly to see and congress never approved the shells needed to fire these guns, and a stealth ship with a Raytheon solution is just not a stealth ship. And as a $22,500,000,000 failure it is too expensive for such a failure be allowed. Consider that ABC ends the article with “To respect that dependency, we remain laser-focused on continuing to enhance the capability, affordability and availability of the F-35. With the help of partners and customers, I have no doubt we will succeed.” Which is all fair enough. Now consider that 12 nations have committed to ordering, now consider that if 3 leave that group (Singapore being the most interesting one) and China gets Saudi Arabia, Egypt and the UAE on board as well, the stage changes on a global scale at that point. Now reconsider the military power play where we accept “There are developmental issues that come up because it is a very high technology advanced aircraft. Over time, these issues are resolved.” Yet 900 flaws imply that this will not be resolved until 2029, with spare parts and shortages of equipment lasting until an expected 2036. That implies that these players will not have a real effective airforce for well over a decade, so how many nations will get nervous on that premise and how many will consider a change (please do not change to Russian option, as they give me nothing). So in that light is there really nothing to worry about? And that is before we see the other 9 nations with billions invested all for… what for? 

So whilst I have nothing against Lockheed Martin (I really do not), being in the stage where they are now with 900 design flaws is just too weird. Yes we accept that it is a developing project, but design flaws imply that it is not developing, it was wrongly developed and as such the F-35 should still be in an earlier stage, that is until well over 600 flaws (and the 7 critical ones) were resolved ahead of where they are now. 

So here I am, just a man, a (really) poor man, hoping for his 3.75% before he retires and retirement is not that far away. And in all this, I remain optimistic, because I have things to smile at, especially if I get to test my creative sinking idea on the USS Zumwalt. Yes, it is a gasser (in more ways than one). So feel free to agree (or disagree) but when you see something that should be the lemon of the century, would you not shout that from the tallest building? Especially if it was your neighbour who bought the Ford Edsel. So Ford can now relax, Lockheed Martin surpassed their failure with an impressive larger one.

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Would it still be news?

We get that at times. A question regarding the news, not what they bring, but what they are. I was left with a few questions today when I took notice of ‘Saudi news channels start moving operations out of Dubai’ (at https://www.aljazeera.com/economy/2021/9/1/saudi-news-channels-start-moving-operations-out-of-dubai). Just as the BBC is in London, the NOS is in the Netherlands (Hilversum), Swedish News is predominantly in Stockholm. I always assumed that Saudi News was in Riyadh, so to see that they were in Dubai which is a nice and large town in another nation was a little bit of a surprise. So as I take notice of “Riyadh has told international firms to put their MidEast hubs there by the start of 2024 or risk losing out on business” has a certain amount of sense.

The question becomes who offers more, Dubai or Riyadh? I am not talking money, even though for the international stations that will be some part of it. Dubai has its yachts, its connected jet-setting, yet what does Riyadh offer? It is a genuine question. I must admit that I only recently saw Riyadh through the eyes of YouTuber Jason Billiam Travel, and he did an excellent job, if you have never been to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the view that (at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xk_4wPK6oks) where I got my first glimpse of the Kingdom Tower at the beginning of the video no less. He was able to give me a clear impression that Riyadh, the capital is larger than the entire nation of Bahrein and he gives us a lot more over several movies, more on Riyadh and more on the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. There is one element that there is no yacht club in Saudi Arabia. If I had the ability to create one in Riyadh, I would. Even if it is just to set aside my sense of humour as the nearest decent amount of water is almost 400Km away (Sea of Dammam, aka the Persian gulf), so the idea to have a restaurant in the building that represents a yacht would be a fun idea. A place where 8 million people live and most have never seen a boat with their own eyes, so to create a concrete yacht that is a restaurant and optionally an international hotel will get the eyes of a lot of people. But we were talking about the news and Al Jazeera also gives us “Saudi Arabian news channels are starting to transfer operations out of Dubai amid a push by the country’s crown prince to get multinational companies to relocate their headquarters to the kingdom” and it makes sense, although it would have made initial more sense to have Saudi news offices in Saudi Arabia, but that is merely me and it is a thought that is based on the idea that news channels should be local. So when I see “Saudi Arabia has been pressuring international companies to put their Middle East hubs in the kingdom by the start of 2024 or risk losing out on business in the region’s largest economy” I do realise that too many people will focus on ‘pressuring international companies’, yet is that fair? Consider that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia should award business to its local parties, so Dubai has benefitted with its Media centre to the largest degree for well over a decade. And the reason seen in “The move is intended to limit “economic leakage” and boost job creation” makes perfect sense. 

There are actually two additional reasons to contemplate, whether it is all news is in the middle. With that shift the media will get a lot more exposure to Neom city as well as the tourist visibility places that Riyadh has to offer, the Kingdom Tower is merely one of them. The Grand Mosque of Riyadh is according to many another one.  

The entire setting made me wonder why Saudi news was not set on a local premise in the first place. I am not saying it was wrong, I am merely wondering what was the reasoning in the first place. There are many valid reasons that come to mind, yet none of these have been tested at present and with Neom City now a mere 9 years away, the local presence seem to make more and more sense. There is of course more, there is a larger stage to promote Jeddah as well, we can argue that this could be done from either place, but I have seen on how minds get distracted from other places as the distance increases and Dubai is very far away from Jeddah, it is not enough a reason, but it is one and consider that in the last 24 hours globally ‘Neom’ was mentioned 10 times. One in Chinese, three in Arabic and the rest in English, in a world where there are thousands of publication, 10 mentions? Yes the news needs adjusting and perhaps it starts with getting the international news stations local. As I see it it is a lot less about economic leakage and more about ignoring Saudi events, in this the Houthi attacks on civilian Saudi targets might finally get the exposure it deserves. 

Will it still be news after the switch? I hope not, as it had been happening for too long, but that is merely my 2 coins on the subject. 

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The limits of an intellect

We all have them, we all see we have them, but do we realise the limitations we have? I am confronted by this, confronted in me. We all want to see the BBC as the big evil one, yet they are not evil. The issue that Martin Bashir brought to the forefront in not the evil in the BBC, yet I wonder how strong the needs and the facilitation of the Shareholders and stakeholders are in the larger setting of the BBC. I know that data leads to information, which leads to knowledge, leading to insight and optionally to wisdom. Yet we seem to forget that the lines of wisdom are really thin at times and some lead to shape a dragon of the conspiracy theorists. Any person not on the setting there is lost. Consider a cloud, you are looking at the clouds in the sky, then you see one shaped as the island of Crete, one is shaped like a sheep and one is a face. Is it real? Is the likeness a coincidence, or is it shaped due to your imagination, and the connections it makes? If all clouds are randomly shaped (well within the limits of liquid particles), there is every chance that one cloud will look just like Crete, so what (optional missing) part did the brain fill in? 

That is the stage we face, or better it is the stage I face. I get it, Martin Bashir has made me more angry than anything else. I personally always believed that the BBC was above certain matters and now I see this is a kitten, in the dark just as grey as all the other kittens. And it matters here.

Consider the BBC middle East page, we see all kinds of information, on ‘Princess Latifa: Dubai photo appears to show missing woman’, a day old. So who cares? I do not mean this in any negative way, there is news that is 5 days old, news from the 16th of May, yet the news from Yemen, news like the Arab News gave us 16 hours ago ‘Saudi project clears 2,500 more mines in Yemen’ and Reuters, who reported 4 hours ago ‘Saudi-led coalition in Yemen foils Houthi attack south of Red Sea’ we are shown news that the BBC should have been on top of, but they were not, why not? Or perhaps what ABC News gave us 11 hours ago ‘US military presence has deterred Iranian aggression on Saudi Arabia’, where we see statements by US general McKenzie. Why is the BBC not all over that? Why do we see a setting of limitations, limited exposure to what is happening, as I personally see it, the Martin Bashir setting is one that has larger ramifications. And here we see the problem, and I see the problem optionally within me, do I see lines of knowledge leading to wisdom, or are they showing me the lines that will form a unicorn, an Afreet or a dragon? Some roads will feed the conspiracy theorist, some will feed the wise and the nance is at times not visible, too small to spot the difference, and what we see is not always a given, or as Freud would say, sometimes a cigar is just a cigar, but we are here now and we will be in this stage for some time, it will be this way because the BBC now correlates to the CIA, two organisation that decided to wash away their credibility and we are all a little more paranoid and largely distrusting because of it all.

That is the road  the BBC faces, so when we get “أنا سائح مرتبك أحاول فهم إشارة الطريق”, will we know what to do? And is this any better? “المهرجون إلى اليسار حيث توجد المناجم ، يمزحون إلى اليمين حيث توجد الثعابين”, it is limited to what we know, what we understand, the Vatican does understand “laqueis mortis sinistra dextrorsum anguis mortem”, so what will they chose? Perhaps they will wait for option three or four to open up and that is the problem, we do not know what drives the BBC at present, and we might never know, yet we need to act, we want to act but is any act by those who do not know what is the situation bare value, or bear recognition? (Sorry, I could not resist that pun), yet in intelligence analysts, business analysis and geologic, we do not always know and it is the fate of missing data, the recognition of data that I not there and more important, some decisions are arbitrary, not valid, not invalid, merely arbitrary, and in this we merely ignore the shareholders and stake holders. Is it right, is it wrong? I cannot tell, it depends on the data and there is none, recognising that is a first in the difference towards the lines making insight and the lines showing a unicorn, we need to accept and understand that, or we are lost.

We would like to blame the BBC for all kind of things, let’s make sure that the reason of blame is a valid one.

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And then there was delusion

Yup, we all see it, we all recognise it, yet who has ever called on it? I know I do, but the list is getting smaller and fading as the news is absent in too many cases. As Reuters gave us ‘Major arms sales flat in 2016-20 for first time in more than a decade’ (at https://www.reuters.com/article/us-arms-trade-sipri/major-arms-sales-flat-in-2016-20-for-first-time-in-more-than-a-decade-idUSKBN2B60QD), it is my believe that some might overlook “three of the world’s biggest exporters – increased deliveries, but falls in exports from Russian and China offset the rise”, which is interesting as those three nations include USA, France, Germany, all whilst Germany, UK and US have been in a spin to not deliver to Saudi Arabia, losing them billions in sales, sales that China is working hard to deliver on. In addition there are voices that give us that the US was in a WYSINWYG stage (What you see is not what you get) in the last year, and the buyers are taking notice. As the arms industry is trying to find appeal and aspiring new technologists for their arms industry, all whilst I had an Ice-coffee and a sandwich and I rolled out a new solution to sink the Iranian fleet, it’s all in a day’s contemplation. So whilst we are trying to make sense of “The United Arab Emirates, for example, recently signed an agreement with the United States to purchase 50 F-35 jets and up to 18 armed drones as part of a $23 billion package. Middle Eastern countries accounted for the biggest increase in arms imports, up 25% in 2016–20 from 2011–15. Saudi Arabia, the world’s biggest arms importer, increased its arms imports by 61% and Qatar by 361%”, we see the absence of the Saudi blockade of goods by the US Congress, something that China is soon to be rather happy about. And as we see the numbers ($23 billion) for the UAE alone, my reflection on the amount approaching $7 billion for Saudi Arabia does not seem that far fetched, does it?

So whilst we get to the end of the message handing us ““For many states in Asia and Oceania, a growing perception of China as a threat is the main driver for arms imports,” said Siemon Wezeman, Senior Researcher at SIPRI, said” the part avoided is that the non-sales by Germany, the UK and the US is driving their sales, and it does not stop there. Even as the filtered information bringers are giving us the golden newslines on Raytheon and Northrop Grumman, there is a larger stage to consider. It is my speculation (which means absent of factual data) that the arms driven pie slices will decrease as the slices for the US, Germany, UK and France will add up to 10%-19% less, whilst those shares will largely go to China. I believe that the increase in Russia and China will be roughly 30% and 70% of the total amount lost by other parties. There is every chance that players like Saudi Arabia will try to get a deal with both, but that remains speculation at present. This is information that is partially out in the open, as such I wonder what the drive of Reuters was, perhaps it was as simple as giving the limelight to SIPRI. The stage that the UK is mentioned to increase its nuclear platform is taken out of the equation, it is for the most a buy once, go nowhere solution that has 1-2 specific vendors, but that out in the open after the laughingly deceptive Iranian story (at https://www.cnbc.com/2021/03/16/iran-reveals-underground-missile-city-as-regional-tensions-rise.html), yes they might have something, but apart from the concrete bunkers, the footage showing 100 missiles (twice), do they actually work or are they defence movie props? The dozens of launchers next to one another, are they real, or are they faulty equipment? Answers that cannot be given and the sources giving us answers might not be that trustworthy, but it happens at the same time that SIPRI is shouting that arms sales are down, it is one way to start a fire sale with increased prices. So consider the timeline and feel free to wonder whether I am the delusional one, or the other players. I know a few have seen me as the delusional party and I have no issue with that, I give you the links, and for the most I hand the information that you can decide what is real, but in all this, who gave us any indication of looking at the Iranian video handing out any expected clarity on how real it was and when does Iran give the goods on their military? Is anyone looking into that part?

Have a fun day!

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Filter by Gender.

Yup we have all done it, we tend to filter. The horny (especially teenagers) want to talk, chat and video whatever to the members of the other gender (well, most of them anyway). We filter by the needs we have, business needs, personal needs and artistic needs, we filter. There is for the most nothing wrong with that. Yet it also tends to keep you in a little box. I come from the previous internet era, I never got into Napster but I loved Audiogalaxy. I had it so I could listen to music when I was travelling and it opened up doors. I learned about the Corrs, Bond, the Dixie Chicks, Linkin Park, Orbital and a few others. It grew my CD collection by leaps and that made me happy, in an age where my work kept me from MTV, Audiogalaxy showed me other venues of music. I forwent the filter and I learned about and got to appreciate bands I would never have considered. Filtering is not all bad.

Yet what happens when filtering goes overboard in another direction? Today I learned a new word, I word I should have been aware of but I do not remember hearing it. The word is ‘Femicide’ and it is not a good word. It was Al Jazeera that made me aware, the article ‘Rage boils over amid Argentina’s unrelenting femicide crisis’ (at https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2021/2/24/rage-boils-over-amid-argentinas-unrelenting-femicide-crisis). It got my attention in the first as it was about Argentina and my mother was from there. In the second it was the by-line “Femicide of 18-year-old Ursula Bahillo pushed thousands into the streets of Buenos Aires this month to demand action”. In this there are two parts, the first is “About 87,400 results” (when we look for Ursula Bahillo) and the second part is that the big newspapers are missing on the news search result on the first page. A Spanish version from the BBC is at the bottom of the page, no Washington Post, no NY Times, no Times, no Guardian (the list goes on) and it sickens me for another reason. You see, one hour ago the Guardian gives us ‘Princess Latifa letter urges UK police to investigate sister’s Cambridge abduction’, some princess gets the news on optionally being abducted and whilst Al Jazeera reports “Nearly 300 femicides were reported in the country in 2020”, other newspapers keep us in the dark and these idiots demand money from Facebook and Google, whilst not informing us? I see this as one of the clearest ‘What the Fuck?’ moments of the year.

I never felt comfortable bout honour killings. I understand that it exist and in those countries there is an issue, I am massively against that setting in other nations. I cannot convict it as I am not Muslim, yet outside of Muslim nations it is an issue, yet femicide should not be ANYWHERE and the fact that we are kept in the dark by most papers is a larger issue, but I will let you worry about that. It kind of intersects with ‘Australia urged to follow allies in denouncing China’s repression of Uighurs as ‘genocide’’, the fact that genocide is happening and someone needs to ‘urge’ Australia shows that we are not as evolved as we think we are. By the way, the first 5 pages of that search shows no Australian papers at all, as such should they be allowed to exist? That is a more serious question than you think. If the ACCC are all about media laws and the need to blame tech companies, in this my message after seeing ‘ACCC chief claims victory after Facebook standoff’ to Australian Competition and Consumer Commission chair Rod Sims will be “Sir, I consider you to be a fucking joke! You are hereby responsible to make sure that the events around Ursula Bahillo are to be seen in EVERY Australian newspaper as per immediate. If you (as it seems) champion discrimination, you need to be openly told this”, my issue here is that Microsoft was left out of the media consideration, they were waiting all their resources on their Azure cloud and now that we see “Microsoft will ensure that small businesses who wish to transfer their advertising to Bing can do so simply and with no transfer costs.  We recognise the important role search advertising plays to the more than two million small businesses in Australia” (source: Microsoft) all whilst we see western media absent to the plight of Ursula Bahillo and hundreds more shows that the media was never to be considered any options (if the Leveson report was not enough evidence). As such, how much action did the UN take to the Femicide cause? I know they have done some work, yet when I see ‘United Nations asks UAE for proof that Princess Latifa is alive’ all whilst the Google Search “Ursula Bahillo United Nations” gives no real links on the western media, why is that? That is even beside the fact on how active UN essay writers became against the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia, they even went so far to push for issues regarding  cyber crimes on an American Industrial (Jeff Bezos) all whilst the presented evidence had several shades of debatability. As I see it, we need larger changes and if the media relies on political bitches (as one might say) to do their revenue work for them, they will need to be held liable, yet I reckon that some editors will cry like little bitches and point towards ‘freedom of the press’, I wonder how long it will take for someone to consider that ‘accountability of the press’ is also a matter that needs consideration. Al Jazeera brought more to the surface than some media players are happy with. Consider your paper, or their website (whichever it is) and look for Ursula Bahillo, how many articles did you find? What we are shown matters, whether is be Femicide in Argentina, persecution of Uighurs or any other news. As I personally see it when we filter by gender and the filtering agent is the media we have lost control and the insane are at the helm of a ship called sanity. That’s merely my $0.02 on the matter.

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Our Disney lives

Yes, we have a life, it is staged on the Disney mould, but we do have it. We are empowered by the marvel characters, we are defended by the Jedi, we feel entrusted by Frozen, a Disney production. It has to be, there is no other explanation. You see there was a story that I saw on BBC, and now on the Dutch NOS. We are given “The Royal Family of Dubai, one of the United Arab Emirates, has released a statement about Princess Latifa, the Emir’s daughter. Videos appeared this week in which she says that she is being held hostage by her family and that she fears for her life” (source: NOS), I get it, it plays nice yet it is a princess, one princess. Yet in this, who remembers “Yemeni minister accuses Houthis of using displaced people as human shields in Marib” (source: Arab News), over the last two weeks, the NOS was all about reporting on how the Houthi movement is not a terrorist one, and that is it. We now see ‘UN: Houthi Attacks in Northern Yemen Risk Triggering Humanitarian Crisis’ (at https://www.voanews.com/middle-east/un-houthi-attacks-northern-yemen-risk-triggering-humanitarian-crisis), there we are given “The Marib governorate has been relatively unaffected by Yemen’s six-year long civil war. That is until Houthi rebels recently mounted a military offensive to try to seize control of the region from Yemeni government forces. Because of its relative safety, hundreds of thousands of people have fled there to escape fighting in other parts of Yemen. At least 800,000 of them are now in the region” and they are not alone we also have ‘Yemeni minister condemns Houthi bombing in Taiz’ (at https://www.arabnews.com/node/1813001/middle-east) mere hours ago where we are given “Mubarak said the militia had drafted students to frontlines instead of schools, and was working to change school textbooks to “lay the landmines of death and extremism in the minds of young generations instead of dialogue and peace.”” All less than a day ago, most of the western media ignores it, merely the Disney approach towards a frozen stage, a stage of a princess. So at what point have you, the reader become obsessed with the Disney life? 

Consider the stage that Yemen has and stop blaming the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Iran has been fuelling this from day one, but the news ignores it. Terrorist actions by Houthi’s against children and civilians, yet the media ignores it. Why is that? Why are these actions not on the front pages of EVERY newspaper in the west? This is what I meant with filtered information. I wonder if you investigate the news not given which share holders and stakeholders are seen with their fingers in the pie. Yes, there are several issues, there are hard times. The people in Texas are seeing that. In the UK we are given ‘More than 7,500 families across north-east given winter hardship payments’, which is fair news, it is news yet it seems that the BBC did not pick it up, yet the princess story did.

We seem to be given an emotional charged Disney life, are you not sick of that? There are huge problems out there and someone is trying to make us look somewhere else. When is that ever a good idea?

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Sleight of hand

We know the term, we see what is connected and we see just how it tends to work, yet the term is larger than that. The term is to some “Sleight of hand refers to fine motor skills when used by performing artists in different art forms to entertain or manipulate”, it is also know to some as ‘skilful deception’ and that is where we are at. To see, and to understand this sleight of hand, we need to consider a few items. The first element in this is seen in the BBC with ‘Princess Latifa: UN to question UAE about Dubai ruler’s daughter’, we get that there might be an issue, yet what was also happening is seen in the Arab News ‘Houthi snipers accused of targeting children in Taiz’, interestingly enough there is no mention in the BBC of that. What would be your interest? The daughter of a ruler, or people using children for target practice? I will let you decide. Yet linked to this is the news that Al Jazeera and several other newspapers gave us ‘Biden admin ends Trump-era Houthi ‘terrorist’ designation’. Yes, you do not need to be a terrorist to use children for target practice, it makes perfect sense. A normal person uses children to align his sights and make sure to test their sight in case actual soldiers drop by and what is better than trying to shoot children? They are much smaller than adults, so you need to aim better.

And in this we get back to the Princess Latifa story, it is not about her, but about one part that was in the article. ““I’ve seen some of the footage and it’s deeply troubling”- Dominic Raab”, I will agree that a cushy life in the UK is optionally all that UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab knows, or so we can presume. So what does that have to do with the other parts? Yes that is a good question, you see last November Dominic Raab Tweeted (see image), and he was eager to condemn the Houthi people, yet in this he seems to forget that the Houthi forces could not have done it. The distance, the precision and a few other facts make the setting that Iran was the only perpetrator. The hardware could not be made in Yemen, the hardware could not be operated by Houthi forces and there is no way that Houthi forces got over half a dozen targets with almost 100% precision when an inverted setting (one in six) is all they could have hoped for (at best). So how come Dominic Raab was that badly informed? As I see it this is a political sleight of hand and the USA whilst showing a short-minded slight of brain (aka delusional setting) is adding to the Fues of chaos and confusion. So how come that the BBC will do whatever it can to avoid settings? I am not ignoring ‘Yemen: The boy who saved his sister from a sniper’ (source: BBC), but when you see the amount of visibility a princess gets (with Dominic Raab rhetoric) whilst the actions of Iran are ignored again and again is a massive issue. When I look at the top 50 articles on “Houthi” and “Iran” the BBC does not show up once, yet Fox News (you know the channel that is criticised by all others) gives us ‘UN experts find ‘growing’ evidence Iran sending weapons to Houthi rebels in war-torn Yemen’, personally I believe that they are a bit late to the party and we should accept that they showed up at all, so how much evidence on Iranian involvement in Yemen did the BBC (and a few others) give us? So when one MP gives the other MP (Dominic Raab) ‘Classifying Houthis as Terrorists will Worsen Famine in Yemen’ we need to consider that NOT designating them terrorists does not help matters. The Houthi transgressions have been going on month after month. I gave voice to that in ‘Be the bitch’ (at https://lawlordtobe.com/2019/07/07/be-the-bitch/) well over 198 months ago. As such they are to be seen as terrorists, a stage where Iran is equally guilty, so after a years, it is time for these so called ‘distinguished’ journalists to come to the party and properly identify the players as well as their acts. 

Consider over the larger regions, what news we are given and what news we are not given, that is beside the setting of what information makes the news and what not. The setting that we are ‘offered’ with ‘EU has role in salvaging Iran deal, says Tehran UN envoy’ (source: Euronews) all whilst Iran has transgressed set limits by well over 1000%, so well over ten times the allowed amount. But the larger groups of newspapers are unlikely to show the flim-flam show that Iran gives us, and those who do see it as an opportunity,  all whilst no one is stopping the stage of Iran and more, they are trying to limit that protection and military options that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia gets, all whilst the proxy war between Iran and Saudi Arabia continues. It is the Financial Times that gives optional light to that. The article ‘New Iran envoy shows Biden is serious about reviving nuclear deal’ (at https://www.ft.com/content/eae24633-844a-4bb5-b5a9-28deead96ab7), an interesting stage, especially when we consider “Mr Malley was an important actor in the 2015 negotiations with Iran. Before stepping down last month as head of the ICG he published what amounts to a calibrated road map for negotiating with Tehran — an approach the Biden team now seems to embrace.” We can look at the article in a few ways, but for me the stage will be set to ‘calibrated road map’, I merely wonder how much news will end up becoming ‘filtered information’, that is the setting and the silence on Houthi transgressions (to a larger degree) as well as the ignorance of Iranian actions in all this is a stage that we cannot ignore. 

Yet, I will not be surprised for some of the International politicians to give us a weighted ‘it is a complex situation’, or perhaps ‘we are still looking into some of the data we are given’, all whilst gave light to a lot of it well over 18 months ago. I will let you figure out what you missed (if you care that is), because I do accept that not everyone is interested in what is going on in the middle east. 

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Anticlimactic

Yup we all have these moments, it usually comes after a ‘watch this’, or ‘you’ll never believe what I just heard’. There is no escaping these moments and anyone reading this has a few instances where this happens, or as some married women say, welcome to my life, I get this at least once a day. Such things happen and for one station one could argue that they should not have married that person (40% divorce ratings proof me right).

Oh, and before I forget, the next instalment of the free RPG IP for Sony products comes next. So that is one part that will be coming, I was actually about to work on it when ‘Sheikh Khalifa’s £5bn London property empire’ (at https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/ng-interactive/2020/oct/18/revealed-sheikh-khalifas-5bn-london-property-empire) passed my eyes. I wanted to add a comic I remembered, but I cannot find it. It was the early 80’s and in that instance you see three Arabs talking, one saying ‘Shopping was nice, today I bought Bond street and Piccadilly’, which was a reality around 1985, the shops would worship you if you came with German Marks or American Dollars, it was that bad, so the idea that a lot of prime real estate is not British owned is not really a surprise. In 2014 the Daily Mail gives us ‘How wealthy Gulf Arabs are buying up huge swathes of the capital – and now make up a tenth of all buyers in exclusive Mayfair’, as such what the Guardian had in mind to make it some exclusive ‘revealed’ story seems to be a bit of a stretch. In addition to this we can argue (and no disrespect intended) that Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan with a £5,500,000,000 real estate empire is according to some sources not really super wealthy, but he is getting up there. Yes, how sad are we when we gawp at an amount that other refer to as ‘Meh!’. The article goes on with “Now, leaked documents, court filings and analysis of public records have enabled the Guardian to map Khalifa’s property holdings in the UK, revealing how the oil-rich nation’s president became a major landlord in London. Khalifa’s London property empire appears to surpass even that of the Duke of Westminster, the 29-year-old billionaire aristocrat who owns swathes of the city”, which makes me go ‘Really?’ Consider 1 Hyde Park, how many British owners are in that building? Can we get a rundown per nationality please? In 2019 we got (source: Elite Traveller) “London’s luxury real estate market has been given a well-timed boost with the news that a super-prime penthouse has sold for a reported $72million. The sale represents one of the biggest in the United Kingdom in the last year. The property is the largest in the new Clarges Mayfair development on Piccadilly, which has proved popular with the global elite since its completion last year. The purchase was completed by Quintessentially Estates working on behalf of an international client”, there are actual Arab run investment firms in the UK who specialise in real estate projects, and they are pretty much the only ones who can afford living in London, so why is anyone surprised? Why is the Guardian (in this instance) going all ‘revealed’ over one person who might not be the biggest investor in London, and in a stage where the London city administration is pushing these events, why is there a lack of that part of the equation? Even as Forbes gave us earlier this year ‘Is It Time To Move Out Of London?’, we see stage where the Coronavirus is hitting landlords with almost no manoeuvring space, they are all panicking. Even as they focus on “Similarly, rents in the capital are also extortionately high for many, with the latest Rightmove Rental Index putting average London rents at £2,119 per month in Q4 2019, compared with £817 in the same period for properties outside of London. And although the latest ONS Index of Private Housing Rental Prices showed that London prices increased 1.3% year on year in January, compared to 1.6% for the rentals outside of the capital, it’s of little meaning in the bigger picture where capital rentals are on average more than twice of their surrounding neighbours” the stage of landlords is less clearly stated, some when on a limb because it was a sure deal, as such no-one was ready for an even outlier like Covid-19, and no-one was expected to, so nw we see that others are taking over with discount a large setting of the housing available. London will grow back to strength and those with a few millions here and there and not needing them will make a rather nice profit over the next 3-4 years. That is how it works, so when I look at “Analysis of Land Registry data suggests Khalifa’s commercial and private property portfolio includes about 170 properties, ranging from a secluded mansion near Richmond Park to multiple high-end London office blocks occupied by hedge funds and investment banks” I merely shrug and say ‘Meh!’, and the stage of “hedge funds and investment banks” has been the stage of London properties for decades, so why is this big news? Was it so you could avoid reporting on ‘Islamic State calls to attack Saudi Arabia over Israel’s deals with UAE, Bahrain’, yes it makes perfect sense to attack nation A, because nation B and C had a deal with nation D. Yes, that might actually have revolutionary details (sorry, pun intended). And as I go over the Guardian article, I cannot say that it is a bad article, it is actually a good article, yet the entire ‘revealed’ part is a little anti-climatic and the idea that a decently wealthy person from the United Arab Emirates is investing in London might not even constitute news, or newsworthy. That  has been going on for well over a decade. So when we consider “housing a secretive Liechtensteinian company, Holbein Anstalt, which manages the royal family’s private affairs”, an optional actual fact (I did not check the fact), we might consider asking the editor of the Guardian (Katharine Viner) if she has been drinking the other cool-aid. 

The issue is not the current owners, it is the setting where the City of London is doing actual work to set a stage where affordable housing becomes more readily available. I wonder if the waiting list of that part has diminished below 10 years yet. London is one f the few plays in the world where a first house is only affordable for people at the END of their career, it is quite the achievement for the City of London.

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Israel is to the right

Yup, we can see Israel from where some are standing, that is if you are standing in Egypt. You see, we look at the middle east and we seemingly forget that Egypt is a player here (even as it is in Africa), so when I see Israel Hayom giving us ‘Egypt-Jordan-Iraq: Another Middle East axis in the making?’ I am not overly surprised. I am a little surprised on the use of the word ‘axis’, but that is not the greatest breach of settings. For the most, we tend to look at that word negative, but the clean meaning is “an agreement or alliance between two or more countries that forms a centre for an eventual larger grouping of nations”, it does make sense in a few ways, especially Jordan, for them the issue is not Israel, it is the setting of any escalation coming from Syria. Even as we are given “all three countries are poor and dependent in for economic largesse on more wealthy partners, so their regional aspirations and strategies will necessarily be limited”, we see a setting that is correct, but not essentially right. Let me explain, there is a mess from both Palestine and Syria flowing over, these three nations will get the first brunt, for a player like Saudi Arabia or the UAE aligning with their needs in some form of support would go a long way and whatever countering is required could happen that way. In all Jordan is due to location the weakest, but they all need to set the security of their nation and as such there others might consider chipping in towards that security, let’s not forget that Saudi Arabia is linked to the north to both Jordan and Iraq. In this whatever comes for Saudi Arabia (Hezbollah and Iran) would most likely be spilled through Jordan and Iraq. 

There are several reasons for the choices the the three nations seem to advocate, but for the most it he’s towards the ‘needs’ of Hezbollah, who ignored options for the longest time, as such I am not in favour of them, in this Hezbollah made its own best and for them becoming the tool of Iran sends a much larger problem equation than any solution thrown the way. Yet, in all Jordan requires support and protection, yes we can go towards another pipeline, but the setting here is not merely what can be, but the future of what is and for that the (by official count) a solution needs to be found for the 750,000 refugees there, I reckon that the actual size is well over twice that. So to find support on those settings to deviate pressures in Jordan is essential and that is before you realise that 750,000 people tend to get thirsty and water is not something that Jordan has an abundance of, so the pressures are only increasing. Even as sources give us “Jordan is struggling to deliver enough fresh water to its population and farmers. Water access is particularly erratic during drought events, which have been increasing in frequency and severity. Groundwater levels drop by roughly a meter annually, the result of prolonged drought and of the proliferation of thousands of illegal wells that are pumping the country’s aquifers to extinction”, we see a text that does not mention those refugees, they too will dig out of thirst and there we get a much larger issue on all of it. As the situation in Jordan is not improved, this so called axis will depend on Iraq and Egypt, a small change that ISIL, Al Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood would like very much, because the pressures over there work to their advantage. You forgot about those players, didn’t you?

Even as some sources give us ‘Islamic State steps up attacks in Syria and Iraq: UN experts’, here the text “The experts monitoring sanctions against the Islamic State and al-Qaeda said it is unclear whether the Islamic States’ new leader, Abu Ibrahim al-Hashemi Al-Qurayshi, can effectively lead the extremist group’s diverse and far-flung supporters and affiliates” would relax the wrong people for too much, especially when we consider “Parts of Iraq, especially areas in Anbar province near the Syrian border, “also represent a permissive security environment for the movement of ISIL fighters,” I believe (a personal speculation) that the setting is actually worse, thee is every setting where people seem to shoot allegiances in Egypt and Iraq, it is not merely there, there is a much larger ‘permissive security environment’ in both Egypt and Jordan, in some cases not intentionally, but the refugee setting seems to fuel adherence to extremism and it is there the Jordan has a much larger problem, for the simple reason the it creates a funnel between Iraq and Egypt via the Sinai and when we consider ‘Egypt says 18 suspected armed fighters killed in Sinai firefight’, Egypt needs to consider that the setting might be much worse, I have actually been there, if you see 18, there is every chance you missed 60 more and where would they go to? The Sinai is a strategic point that allows for incursions in Egypt, Israel AND Jordan, so who would get hit and more important, who would get hit next? I do not know but the field is open from the point onwards, especially when ISIS, ISIL and the Muslim Brotherhood thrive on chaos.

So whilst you wonder whether I am exaggerating (always an option), consider my setting the next flame up in that region and the stage that is behind it.

 

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Blaming the wrong party

Yup, we’ve all done that. The blame game is notorious in two aspects. The first is the party blamed, the second is the reason for blaming. So it is not just on how blame is designed, it is the intended and actual party of blaming the comes to mind. We tend to get both wrong when it is an emotional setting. There is one elements that we tend to forget, detachment is the drive that tends to set the matters of the mind straight. So I went through all the stages of the blame game when I saw ‘World’s richest urged to do more to keep millions from starving’ in Al Jazeera (at https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2020/09/world-richest-millions-starving-wfp-200918090724645.html). In this:

  1. Why is that up to the world’s richest?
  2. When millions are starving, why are individuals called upon, why are governments flaccid?
  3. Who created this situation in the first place?

These three elements are important. Because the article gives us “He cited the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) where violence has increased and instability has already forced 15.5 million people near starvation. He also said a lack of funding has forced cutbacks in assistance to feed people in war-ravaged Yemen”, with the additional quote ““Worldwide, there are over 2,000 billionaires with a net worth of $8 trillion,” the former South Carolina governor said, noting reports that some of the wealthiest Americans have made “billions upon billions” during the pandemic

So here is where the blame game comes into effect. As I personally see it, David Beasley has his heart in the right place, but not his brain. In the first, governments have been playing credit card jockey for well over a decade, this is the result. In the second, places like Yemen are in a stage of committed non-action by both NATO and commonwealth forces. They simply didn’t care and for close to 5 years nothing happened and this is the result. In the third, it was essential for tax laws to be overhauled for well over a decade in the US, Japan and EU nations, none of that happened. I offered an optional solution in 1998, yet is was thrown out, remarks like ‘too complex’ and ‘hindrance of free trading’, well these things come at a price. In the setting of “some of the wealthiest Americans have made “billions upon billions” during the pandemic” we see a cheap shot at Jeff Bezos and a few others. Now, I have no real interest in Jeff, but he (his company) made that revenue fair and square. If the blame game parties had acted over the last 10 years, the situation might not be as dire as it is now. We seem to forget that part.

In case of Jeff, there might be plenty to blame him for, but this is not one of these things, this is not the station to make a reference to Jeff Bezos and his Amazon, but to the governments and their greed driven short sightedness.

This is the price of capitalism, this is the consequence of free trading. Everything has a price and now that you are seeing the consequences, you do not get to be the blamer, you all went along with the setting for far too long and most governments set the station of revenue and the lack of options for well over the next decade is the consequence of choices made between 1998 and 2020. And in all this, it might blow over, you see, the media gives us again and again “a potential “hunger pandemic”” the media has been giving us ‘potential’ in Yemen, so when will it actually happen? 

Fair question is it not?

We need to set the record straight, we need to demand that our governments ACT, that they adjust tax laws the way they should have been from the start, but every time dome politicians will oppose, as such set these opposes in the limelight, let them explain it. Let’s not blame the people who merely used the system handed to them.  The system that we all voted into the place it is and we need to ac sept that we are all to blame by letting the elected people continue the way they did.

That is all before we get to Mark Lowcock some UN under-secretary-general for humanitarian affairs, who gives us “who have a particular responsibility, which they have discharged in recent years – have so far given nothing”, on one side he is not completely wrong, yet n the other side, the acts and hindrances by Houthi forces as well as the support given to the Houthi forces by Iran are left out of the equation, are they not? So while we are given “Continuing to hold back money from the humanitarian response now will be a death sentence for many families”, all whilst he remains silent on the acts of the Houthi forces intervening is just a big no-no. The blame game is taking a serous turn towards the people who might be partially blamed, whilst the parties who need to be fully blamed are left out of the equation. So is this how we are given the truth? Partial truths baked in larger non-truths and all whilst we see the pictures of those in need, but not the pictures of those who were actually responsible for the mess we are given nowadays. It is so nice to blame a person like Jeff Bezos, all whilst his company was able to provide to a little over 800 million in lockdown for months. Yup, it got him a few thousand million extra, but is that his fault? He merely supplied towards an outstanding demand, that is how capitalism works and he got to keep a lot of it because the laws of taxation allowed him to do that. 

There is of course the station where some very rich people are not as innocent, but are they guilty? Guilty of what? They became rich as they had the clever accountants who used the laws of taxation to the maximum, is that the fault of the wealthy, the accountant, or is this mess the fault of governments not overhauling the laws of taxation? An overhaul that had creamy be needed in 2 decades. And the lack of humanitarian acts, is that because that there is no-one to hand out humanitarian aid, or is that because the governments who did that are so deep in debt that they no longer have the ability to do that, which gets us to the laws of taxation again.

Well over a dozen governments have painted themselves into corners and we end up blaming the paint for not being dry, how does that make any kind of sense? We can blame all we like, but in the end we merely did this ourselves by elating the people who set the stage by doing almost nothing, that is the stage we need to look at and in this we need to realise that this is not a nanny state verdict, this is the stage of non-accountability and that is the part we forgot about. 

 

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