Strategic Culture Foundation 6-12 October 2013

12 October 2013 — Strategic Culture Foundation

US: Debts and Back Up

12.10.2013 | 00:00 | Valentin KATASONOV

The published piece called America’s Debt: Upper and Lower Tips of Iceberg offers a wide range of assessments to determine the size of US debt. Today the country has to raise the debt ceiling again, otherwise the United States will lapse into a coma. But are there any limits to raising the ceiling? What is used as the debt backup? Is America able to serve the debt?.. The US economy assets (including financial assets) are not enough to cover even a half of consolidated debt… The total interest rates expenditure goes beyond the US national debt limits, states municipalities, banks, corporations, and households have debts of their own. The last years the experts have tried many times to estimate the total US debt service expenditure…

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The Jordanian Front of the Syrian War
12.10.2013 | 00:00 | Dmitry MININ

According to reports from Israeli intelligence sources, the night of October 6-7 the Syrian government army began a new offensive, this time in the south. Two tank brigades (around 200 tanks and armored vehicles) moved toward Quneitra. The Israelis believe that the immediate goal of this large-scale operation is to liberate territories adjacent to the occupied Golan Heights from the rebels. As a result, all contact between the illegal militant groups and the Israeli army will be cut off and they will be unable to receive military assistance from Israel…

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Israel Knocks Together an Anti-Iranian Front, or The Wolves and the Sheep
11.10.2013 | 00:00 | Dmitry MININ

For a significant part of Israel’s modern history, a strategic concept has been in operation there of a so-called peripheral Islam which maintained that the main threat to the country came from neighbouring Arab states predominantly practising Sunnism which had to be resisted by offshoots of Islam – Shiites, Druzes and supporters of secularisation. On the strength of this, Israel developed privileged relations in the region, first and foremost with Iran and Turkey. However, following the anti-Shah revolution, Iran moved from the status of friend to the status of enemy, then with the increasing Islamisation of Turkey, relations also gradually began to deteriorate with Ankara as well. And then there was an unexpected turnaround. Israel embarked upon a new strategic project – the creation of an anti-Iranian-oriented Israeli-Sunni coalition…

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APEC – «Bali Tunes»
11.10.2013 | 00:00 | Victor SUMSKY

The APEC annual summit took place on the island of Bali (Indonesia) in early October.  The APEC encompasses 21 states situated in Asia, Australia, South and North America.  The goal has never changed since the foundation; it is the economic and commercial liberalization in the Asia-Pacific region.  With over 20 summits behind, the rhetoric is forever the same saying economic growth is impossible without fostering export, providing free access to outside markets for transnational corporations as well as relentless fight against protectionism. The longer the global crisis lasts, the less convincing it sounds… 

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America’s Debt: The Tip and the Bulk of the Iceberg
10.10.2013 | 00:00 | Valentin KATASONOV

…America is in a much sorrier state today in terms of the level of its public debt than it was on the eve of the financial crisis… The media very rarely publishes figures on the United States’ total debt. This is partly because these debt figures are not so reliable. The main reason, however, is that for all their mistakes, they present a true picture of the economic situation of the world’s leading country. And it turns out that the picture is an extremely unpleasant one: it raises doubts over whether America really is the world’s leading economy… As a result, we have the size of the United States’ so-called consolidated debt, equal to USD 186 trillion. The relative level of consolidated debt exceeds the US’ current annual GDP by 11.6 times…

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Brunei is America’s East Pacific Cash Cow and Military Base
10.10.2013 | 00:00 | Wayne MADSEN

…Although Obama always enjoys visiting Indonesia, the country of his childhood, it was the cancellation of Obama’s planned trip to the oil-rich Sultanate of Brunei that not only prevented Obama from being hosted by Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah, one of the world’s wealthiest men, but prevented him from cementing ties with a nation that enjoys a special relationship with the United States, particularly the Department of Defense and the Central Intelligence Agency…

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Afghanistan and its Future (III)
09.10.2013 | 00:00 | Nikolai BOBKIN

Washington does not exclude that the repetition of Syria scenario caused by NATO withdrawal from Afghanistan may result in strategic advantage to meet its interests. Controlled chaos is a tried and true method. A would-be war in Afghanistan will enable the Americans to control the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region in China, maintain instability in the vicinity of Iranian borders and exacerbate the relations between India and Pakistan. Finally, the United States will maintain a springboard to exert pressure on Central Asia. Since 2014 Afghanistan is to become a major security problem for Russia…

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Russia in the Asia-Pacific Region: An Open Project
09.10.2013 | 00:00 | Alexander SALITZKI

The APEC summit has ended without US President attending. There is a certain symbolism in this; opinions on how to improve the economic situation in the megaregion and in the world economy as a whole are mainly being exchanged by Asian states, which have demonstrated high growth rates in the new century, despite waves of crisis which periodically roll in from across the ocean…

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Afghanistan and its Future (II)
08.10.2013 | 00:00 | Nikolai BOBKIN

The return of Taliban to Kabul is a matter of special concern for Russia and the neighboring CIS (the Community of Independent Nations) states. President Karzai believes Afghanistan is a sovereign country and has a right to determine its own fate, including the involvement of Taliban into the political process. He is self-assured and not concerned a bit about the fact that with ISAF gone the Taliban can come back to the political scene and share power. Those who took the reins after the Soviet forces withdrawal let the movement turn Afghanistan into the springboard of international terrorism. They were self-assured too… Actually the incumbent Afghan government is siding with the United States and NATO getting the country embroiled into the mess with consequences hard to predict…

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Is Turkey on the Cusp of Rethink on Syria?
08.10.2013 | 00:00 | Melkulangara BHADRAKUMAR

Through the past two-year period of turmoil in Syria, President Bashar Al-Assad has shown himself to be a master tactician who consistently outmaneuvered his regional adversaries. Syria has a tough neighborhood. Al-Assad’s regional adversaries are formidable people in their own ways. But he invariably pre-empted them, staying one step ahead of them… That’s what makes his latest interview last week with the Turkish television channel Halk rather significant. Al-Assad came down very hard on Turkey’s Syria policies and on Prime Minister Recep Erdogan personally. He warned Ankara of a blowback of terrorism that it has been promoting in Syria…

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Afghanistan and its Future (I)
07.10.2013 | 00:00 | Nikolai BOBKIN

The President of Afghanistan Hamid Karzai has decided to suspend the security agreements talks with the United States giving rise to exasperation on the part of Washington. Barack Obama threatens him with the «zero option» meaning no US soldier will be left on the Afghan soil by the end of 2014… There is a real possibility the Afghan government forces will be left face to face with the Taliban in 5-6 months. The events may unfold according to Syrian scenario. As it is forecast in Moscow, terrorism may «spill over» from one country to another…

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Everyday Life of Superpower or What US Needs Syria for?
07.10.2013 | 00:00 | Nikolai MALISHEVSKI

According to World Bank expert Eric Schwaitzern, a wave of city bankruptcies is expected to hit the United States in the next three years possibly triggering sovereign default. Today over 450 US cities are on the verge of going broke, including Los Angeles, San Diego and others. The «ghost city» Detroit started «the parade of defaults» that may be expedited in October to last all year long… Washington appears to get ready for emergency. Richard Preston, leader of the Confederate White Knights of KKK, called on Americans to get together in a civil war against Barack Obama and his supporters and do it in October, when the country marks the 150th anniversary of Gettysburg…

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Brazil and China’s Unstoppable March through Latin America
06.10.2013 | 00:00 | Nil NIKANDROV

Amid increasing criticism of the U.S. in Brazilian society, President Dilma Rousseff is expanding relations with China, this time without the traditional glances at Washington’s possible reaction… At the turn of the millennium, the Chinese promised Latin America that it would implement a program for capital investments in the region’s economy. The program is being carried out successfully, from Mexico to Chile and from Ecuador to the island states of the Caribbean Sea. Without fuss, step by step, the Chinese are opening up the region… Experts predict the further consolidation of Brazilian-Chinese relations. Dilma Rousseff is essentially giving a signal to other countries: favorable conditions are now taking shape for getting out from under imperial guardianship…

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Worldwide Jihad and the Shiite Factor
06.10.2013 | 00:00 | Nikolai MALISHEVSKI

A few days ago the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Bahrain, Khalid bin Ahmed al-Khalifa, urged the assassination of Hezbollah leader sheikh Hasan Nasrallah… The reason for this statement is that the government of the island kingdom has essentially lost control over the Shiite majority of its population, which is sympathetic to Hezbollah and oriented toward Shiite Iran… At the same time, Bahrain and other Middle Eastern allies of the U.S. – Israel, Saudi Arabia and the UAE – have been showing serious concern over the rapid, as it seems to them, rapprochement of the U.S. and Iran…

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Republishing is welcomed with reference to Strategic Culture Foundation on-line journal www.strategic-culture.org.

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