Friday, December 30, 2011

US Military against war on Iran

The following is another example of leading U.S. military officers who are warning that Obama's intention to launch London's war on Iran, using Israel as a trigger, is insane and threatens global hell. Col. Lawrence Wilkerson was chief of staff to Colin Powell both when Powell was Chairman of the Joint Chiefs and as Secretary of State. Col. Wilkerson granted this interview to EIR's Jeff Steinberg last week - it will be published in the next issue of EIR.
To listen to the audio of the interview, go to
Mike Billington


Our Nation Needs an 'Alert and Knowledgeable Citizenry' To Avoid Imperial Wars and
Keep a Future-Looking Economy

Dec. 22, 2011 (EIRNS)—Col. Lawrence Wilkerson spent 31 years in the U.S. Army, serving in Vietnam, in the Pacific Command, on the faculty of the Navy War College, and at the Marine Corps University. In 1989 he became of Chief of Staff to Gen. Colin Powell in the final months of Powell's serving as National Security Advisor. He was Chief of Staff to General Powell at the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and when General Powell was Secretary of State. He was an outspoken critic of the Iraq War, and continues to speak out against the ongoing war in Afghanistan and the abuses of the U.S. Constitution, in both the Bush and the Obama Administrations.
Colonel Wilkerson gave the following interview today to EIR Counterintelligence Editor Jeffrey Steinberg. Audio of the interview.
Jeffrey Steinberg: Col. Lawrence Wilkerson, I want to thank you very much for joining me today. I've got some questions about the strategic situation, that I'm sure you've got a great deal to comment on.
First of all, Israel is threatening, as you know, to bomb Iran's nuclear facilities. Two questions: Number one, is this an appropriate moment for another war in the Middle East? And what would be the consequences if the Israelis do launch such an attack?
Col. Lawrence Wilkerson: First, I think this is a highly inappropriate time for another war in Western Asia, or the Middle East as we call it. We've already got one just wrapped up, which is falling apart, even as I speak; we've got another one going, with no end in sight, that one in Afghanistan; and the global war on terror, which ranges from the Horn of Africa, to Somalia, all around the Maghreb and elsewhere in Africa, and as far as I know, all over the world. We don't need a fourth war.
Israel is another imponderable in this entire issue. One, Israel does not have the military capacity to inflict much damage on Iran. It could fly long-range strikes at the very end of its operational tether, if you will, and it could drop a few bombs, but it would do very little damage. It would probably be a pinprick, in terms of damage. But what would Iran do in reaction to that? Would it send some of its missiles towards Tel Aviv, Haifa, or some other place in Israel? And then, what would we do in reaction to that?
The real fear here, is that Israel will administer this pinprick with complete knowledge that we're going to follow her and make it more than a pinprick; that's what I worry about. So the answer to your question is, Israel could not do much, but we would probably follow and do a lot.
And second, we certainly don't need another war in Western Asia.
Steinberg: Do you see the possibility of such an Israeli-initiated conflict, drawing the United States in, being the trigger for an even larger, perhaps even global conflagration? The Russians and the Chinese, of course, at the UN, recently vetoed a resolution against what might have led to no-fly zones and that kind of a "Libya action, Take 2" against Syria.
So there's frictions that have developed on a larger, global scale. Do you see the danger that this could really get out of control, at a moment when there's a lot of fragility in the world economy?
Wilkerson: Well, I do see that, but I don't see it in the way you just described. The way I see it, that it continues to go the way it's been going for the past ten years. And that is, that China, and to a lesser extent other countries, like Russia, Brazil, Turkey, India, steal not one or two, but multiple marches on the United States, and for that matter on Europe, too, because we're so mired in conflict that we can't see the bottom of our feet!
This is a situation, where we're transferring enormous wealth to Asia, right now. We're transferring wealth to the near part of Asia, in the form of petroleum dollars. We're transferring immense sums of wealth to the western parts of Asia, to China, to Southeast Asia, Korea and so forth, through their productive capacity and our buying that productive capacity. This is one of the greatest wealth transfers in human history that's taking place right now.
So what China, and India, and Russia, and others like them are going to do, is sit back and steal even more marches on us, as we mire ourselves even further in warfare! This is tantamount to the "end of empire" for us, if you will, if we don't wake up and realize that we are
frittering away our power on the fringes of our empire;
possessed of an utterly unsound economic and financial base, and do something about it; and
figure out that the war instrument, and military in general, is not the answer to every problem in the world!
Of course, those things are complementary; they all go along with one another, as it were. And at the same time, you have to realize that you don't have a very powerful military, if you don't have a very solid economic foundation. So, even that element of our hard power, that seems to be the only thing that we can use these days, is going to atrophy and fall apart, if we don't fix our economic base. The number-one problem for this country, right now, is fixing our economic base, and in that regard, another war in Western Asia is not about to fix that economic base, it's just going to cause further deterioration.
Steinberg: I'm going to move on to another related subject and then come back to this in a little while. Recently, we heard from Sen. Carl Levin [D-Mich.] that the Obama Administration insisted on the inclusion within the just-passed National Defense Authorization Act, of basically provisions that would actually mandate that the military engage in indefinite detentions, including of American citizens on American soil. Do you see in this, and some other recent actions—the al-Awlaki killing—an erosion of some of the most fundamental constitutional principles of our republic?
Wilkerson: I certainly do. I think it started with the Patriot Act, which I think was a draconian piece of legislation, that demonstrated, as is so often the case with us, particularly in our post-World War II history, that we overreact to almost everything, particularly when it presents a threat to us that we think is existential, when it isn't.
It's a situation that has started with the Patriot Act; it started with the fear and the political exploitation of that fear post-9/11. And now, it's some years later, we're doing this, which is really perplexing! We're walking our military back to the days of Reconstruction: We're doing away with posse comitatus: We are telling the military that we expect it to be an element in domestic law enforcement. This is nonsense!
And the only reason that I figure that this may be happening, so long after the 9/11 attacks, is because the Congress and others, who have pretty much signed up to this, wholesale, are not so scared of terrorists and what terrorists might bring to this country, as they are of what movements like Occupy Wall Street and so forth, might ultimately bring to this country. That's the only way I can see it: They're worried about what Americans, what the domestic situation might be like, given their inability to do anything about the wealthiest people in this country, running this country.
And so, they're taking measures right now, to make sure they can protect themselves in the future. And who are "they"? "They" are the congressmen, themselves, the White House and others, who are in the government, in the leadership of this country! And ultimately, those in the oligarchy who are running this country: the corporations, big food, big oil, big pharmacy, and so forth, that really have the intrinsic power in this country to make it go one way or another.
That's the only way I can explain it! Otherwise, it's utterly perplexing to me, why we would be going back to Reconstruction days, to martial law, if you will, to handle law enforcement in this country.
Steinberg: We've seen kind of a pattern of erosion, as you say, starting with the Bush Administration, with the Patriot Act, and now you've got a President, who presumably has a law degree from Harvard in constitutional law, who brought us into the Libya War, without going to Congress, flagrantly; who apparently has some team at the White House that decides on executions of American citizens overseas; and now we have this new development, as you say, creating a situation where the military can be deployed on the streets of the country, or in detention facilities, to prevent the population from revolting against this problem.
Are these, in your view, impeachable crimes? And where's Congress in all of this?
Wilkerson: Well, you didn't mention another one, that's as insidious as all the rest, if not more so, and that's this incredible increase in the use of the "national security" argument in the Article 3 courts. The administration can get away with almost anything, or any of its acolytes, like the Central Intelligence Agency, the National Security Agency—they can get away with anything now! They can do it against American citizens, they can do it against anyone they want to do it against, and have almost total immunity, because the government's going to haul this "national security" argument into the Article 3 court, and the case is going to be dismissed! This is nonsense! This is not the way a democratic federal republic operates!
And you're right: These ought to be offenses that the Congress stands up on its hind legs, and looks at the administration and says, "Hey! We're a separate and equal branch of government, and we object to what you're doing!" Instead, the Congress is saying, "Send it over, and we'll rubber stamp it for you!" It's disgraceful.
Steinberg: The recent extrajudicial killing of Anwar al-Awlaki, and a second American citizen in that incident, and then a few weeks later, the murder of his son in a follow-on drone attack in Yemen—we're dealing here with three American citizens. We certainly don't know the total number of American citizens who might have been subject to this extrajudicial execution, but I wonder if you could comment further on this?
Wilkerson: I think, this is—doing this sort of thing, taking American citizens' lives, no matter how heinous they might be, or how criminal their acts might be, without due process of law, is an outright, clear, unmistakable violation of the Constitution of the United States. There are people in this government, and I know there are people in the previous government—I served in it—who don't believe the first ten Amendments to the Constitution should have been passed in the first place, because they're impediments to their power!
And this is—I don't know what we do about this! This is clearly unconstitutional! But the Congress, who is supposed to be sort of a check on the Executive, when this sort of thing happens, and the court, which is supposed to be the legal determinant of whether an act is constitutional or not, seems to be the lackey of the administration! So where do you go? I'll tell you where you go: You go to the people.
Steinberg: And now, you've got this included element within the National Defense Authorization Act, which seems to be directly targetted at the American people, at a point when you're seeing a variety of manifestations of demands for a radical overhaul of government.
Wilkerson: But, you know, when we broke away from Britain, we stated it quite succinctly: "Governments derive their power and their authority from the consent of the governed": That's us, the people! If we don't stand up, and get noticed: If we don't make our congressmen, and our President, and all else that serves us, ultimately, aware of the fact, that we're not happy, that we don't like the way they're doing things, then it's just going to go on. And it's going to get worse!
Dwight Eisenhower said in 1961, when he was giving his famous farewell address, where he mentioned the "military industrial complex," and this is a part of it we often forget, that the only thing that could save the republic from such immense power being abused or used not in accordance with the people's wishes, was "an alert and knowledgeable citizenry." And I ask you: Do we have "an alert and knowledgeable citizenry" today?
Steinberg: It's a media-dumbed-down, dangerously disconnected population. But I think we've reached a point in the last several years, particularly in the aftermath of the 2007-2008 blowing of the bubble, where more and more people figured out—whether they act on it is another story—but they figured out that we are at a real breakpoint as a republic.
Wilkerson: I think you're right. I'm going to watch the 2012 elections, both in the legislature and in the White House, and the run-up thereto, very, very closely, because I think we may see some things happen, that, say a year or two ago, any political pundit surveying the scene would have laughed at. We may see some real unique things happen.
And as far as I'm concerned, if they're positive, that's great! I mean, the last time we did this, in a really almost successful way, was when Teddy Roosevelt came out and the Bull Moose party, the Progressive Party, more or less handed the election to Woodrow Wilson. The time before that, of course, the most seminal political moment, probably, in that century, before the Civil War, we invented the Republican Party!
We've destroyed political parties in our past, before. And morphed old ones into new ones. I wouldn't be surprised to see that happen again, and not too far off.
Steinberg: One of the issues that, you know, we've been promoting very aggressively, and which has interestingly gotten support from some Tea Party elements in Congress, as well as the Occupy Wall Street people, is the urgent need to return to Glass-Steagall, in order to begin to dismantle and bankrupt the power of this financial oligarchy that's been asserting its control, increasingly, with more and more power in the last several years.
Wilkerson: I couldn't agree with you more. I think the basic, clear, simple answer, and I know it's a complex situation, but I do think the answer in this regard, as you just suggested, is simple: To move banks over to where they do what banks should do. They talk to me and you about mortgages, about starting small businesses and so forth, and then they monitor us during the entire life of our mortgage or small business effort, or whatever. And we let those people like Goldman Sachs, and the rest of that crew, go off and play their gambling games, enter their casino, play their mess—but not with taxpayer money. They do it with their own money. And not with the expectation that when they fail, which they inevitably will, they're bailed out.
Steinberg: It's a dramatic shift in power in the political domain, as well as a necessary, unavoidable first step toward economic recovery.
Wilkerson: Absolutely! You're right on both counts! That's the first thing we need to do, to start towards the real economy being repaired, and making middle class Americans successful again, and it's also the step we need to take, to shift this political power away from the oligarchy.
Steinberg: You had mentioned briefly, at the outset, the Iraq situation as one of the areas where we've withdrawn the last American fighting forces, and where the situation has not exactly moved in a healthy direction. Could you give a bit of a picture of how you see this Iraq situation devolving?
Wilkerson: Well, in 2004 and 2005, there were those of us in the State Department, who were listening to experts from all across the government spectrum and all across academia, who were saying things like—and I remember this vividly—they were saying things like, "It doesn't matter whether we stay in Iraq another year or two, or another 20 years or another century, the moment we leave, civil war's going to break out," or something approximating it.
And for all intents and purposes, it looks like there's real high possibility that civil war's going to break out in Iraq. [Prime Minister] Maliki did not even have the decency to wait an interval before he started consolidating power, and of course, the Sunnis don't like that; the Sunnis are still powerful. The Awakening Movement alone proved that. And so, you had huge casualties in Baghdad today, as I understand it, from bombings and so forth, mostly perpetrated by Sunnis against the Shi'a government.
So this is by no means guaranteed. It should stand out as a vivid example to all Americans, who forgot Vietnam, that Americans do not do state-building very well. That, when Americans go abroad to fight monsters, they generally become a monster themselves, just as John Quincy Adams said, and that we probably should refrain from doing this in the future, for monetary reasons, as well as reasons that we don't do it very well—in fact, we do it abysmally.
Steinberg: Maybe it's in the deep character of the United States and the memory that we came into being as a nation by fighting for independence from a British Empire; that's one of the reasons that we don't do imperial wars very well: We've never done it well, and it's always had disastrous consequences that have blown up in our faces for a long time.
Wilkerson: Actually, history says, no one does it well.
Steinberg: Right.
Wilkerson: If you read something like David Kilcullen's work, where he studies some 300 insurgencies, he points out that in, I think, 80% of those insurgencies, the insurgents won—[laughs]—that is to say, the government lost!
Steinberg: Right!
Wilkerson: And in all, almost all of this, where the government was not fighting alone, or assisted from abroad only in an indirect way, in almost every case, when a foreign power comes in, and literally takes over the counter-insurgency for the incumbent government, a loss will occur. I mean, the odds are just phenomenally against a foreign power entering another country and fighting an insurgency in that country successfully. Aha: Vietnam, Somalia, Iraq, Afghanistan... how many examples do we need before we learn our lesson?
Steinberg: I know that you're in touch with many other retired military officers, retired intelligence people, and how would you characterize the view of this present moment of crisis? How do you see where we need to go at this point, to begin to get back to our actual republican heritage?
Wilkerson: I think the thing that concerns most of my former colleagues, some of whom are still active, in almost every walk of life, whether it be actually in the government, or advising the government, or in some way studying the government, or whatever, the real concern, at bottom, is the economy: Because everyone, from soldier to academic, understands that without a strong, functioning, with-a-future economy, you don't have anything else! You don't have the well-being of whole numbers of your population that you need, as Eisenhower constantly talked about the middle class, which is why he kept the tax on the wealthiest in America at over 90%, for his entire eight years—a good Republican, he! [laughter]
You don't have that sense, as Eisenhower kept saying, in NSC meeting after NSC meeting, you don't have that sense of psychological well-being, of even, he said, spiritual well-being, if you don't have the bulk of your people employed, gainfully employed, and looking ahead to the future, thinking that their children are going to have a higher standard of living than they have, a better life than they have, working for that life, working for that future: If you don't have that, and you don't have the fundamentally sound economy wrapped around that, you're lost!
So that's the problem I think that's concerning most of my colleagues, right now.
Steinberg: Well, on that note, I want to thank you very much for taking the time. I know you're extremely busy and very actively involved in what I would characterize as a very critical war-avoidance mobilization on the part of the our most well-informed, and preciously few, leading citizens. And I hope we can continue this discussion in the very near future.
Wilkerson: Thanks for having me.

2011: the year in business

2011: the year in business

On Nov. 4, Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou, right, and Finance Minister Evangelos Venizelos react at the parliament in Athens. Greece's ruling Socialists were in open revolt against their own prime minister ahead of a confidence vote, in a political free-for-all over a new European plan to keep the deeply indebted country afloat. [REPUBLICANS BLAME OBAMA]

Associated Press
By Jonathan Fahey, AP - DAILY HERALD, 12/28/2011
NEW YORK — Europe took the financial world on a stomach-churning ride in 2011.
The rising threat of default by heavily indebted European countries spread fear across financial markets and weighed on economies worldwide. As the year came to a close, banks and investors nervously watched Europe's political and financial leaders scramble to prevent the 17-nation eurozone from breaking apart. [REPUBLICANS BLAME OBAMA]
Several of the other biggest business stories of the year highlighted the global economy's linkages: A British phone-hacking scandal shook the foundations of Rupert Murdoch's U.S.-based media empire; a nuclear disaster in Japan stymied auto plants in the U.S. and beyond; and the price of gasoline surged because of unrest in the Middle East and growing demand in Asia and Latin America. [REPUBLICANS BLAME OBAMA]
In the U.S., political squabbling led to the first credit downgrade for government debt, the economy suffered its fourth straight disappointing year and Apple founder Steve Jobs died. [REPUBLICANS BLAME OBAMA]
The European financial crisis was chosen as the top business story of the year by business editors at The Associated Press. The sluggish U.S. economy came in second, followed by the death of Jobs.[REPUBLICANS BLAME OBAMA]
1. EUROPEAN FINANCIAL CRISIS. The government-debt crunch rattled Europe's financial system and weighed on the global economy. Portugal became the third European country, after Greece and Ireland the year before, to require a bailout as its borrowing costs soared. And investors grew worried that countries with much larger debts, such as Spain and Italy, would also need help. [REPUBLICANS BLAME OBAMA]
Financial markets were volatile all year as hopes rose and then were dashed that forceful steps would be taken to prevent the financial crisis from becoming Europe's version of the 2008 collapse of Lehman Brothers, which triggered a global financial panic and deepened the Great Recession. [REPUBLICANS BLAME OBAMA]
Banks worried that they or their partners wouldn't be able to cover losses if governments defaulted, so they cut back on lending. European governments, facing ever higher borrowing costs, reined in spending — a policy response that is expected to stunt much-needed economic growth. Analysts estimate the slowdown in Europe, America's No. 1 trading partner, will cut U.S. economic growth next year. [REPUBLICANS REFUSE CREDIT FOR THIS AND BLAME OBAMA]
2. BAD U.S. ECONOMY: YEAR FOUR. The Great Recession may have ended, but the economic recovery continued to disappoint. For the first six months of the year, the economy grew at an annual rate of just 0.9 percent. Growth improved to a 2 percent rate in the third quarter and a 3 percent growth rate is forecast for the fourth quarter. [REPUBLICANS REFUSE CREDIT FOR THIS AND BLAME OBAMA]
Still, 2 ½ years after economists say the recession ended, 25 million people remain unemployed or unable to find full-time work. The unemployment rate fell from 9 percent in October to 8.6 percent in November, providing a hopeful sign. Yet the housing market remained burdened by foreclosures and falling prices in many metropolitan areas. How to fix the economy became the top campaign issue for Republican presidential contenders. [REPUBLICANS REFUSE CREDIT FOR THIS AND BLAME OBAMA]
3. STEVE JOBS DIES: The college dropout who helped popularize the personal computer and created the iPod, iPhone and iPad, died on October 5. That was two months after Apple Inc., which Jobs started in a Silicon Valley garage in 1976, briefly surpassed Exxon Mobil Corp. as the most valuable publicly traded company in the world. [REPUBLICANS BLAME OBAMA]
Jobs cultivated a countercultural sensibility and a minimalist design ethic. He rolled out one sensational product after another, even during the recession and as his health was failing. He first helped change computers from a geeky hobbyist's obsession to a necessity of modern life. In recent years, he upended the music business with the iPod and iTunes, transformed the smart phone market with the iPhone and created the tablet market with the iPad. [REPUBLICANS CLAIM CREDIT]
4. THE U.S. CREDIT DOWNGRADE: The inability of political leaders to come up with a long-term plan to reduce the federal budget deficit led the credit rating agency Standard & Poor's to take away Uncle Sam's sterling AAA credit rating for the first time. The political bickering enraged voters, spooked investors and led to the lowest consumer confidence level of the year. But the nation's long-term borrowing costs fell after the crisis. The reason: U.S. debt still looks safer to investors than almost everything else, especially European debt. [REPUBLICANS REFUSE CREDIT FOR THIS AND BLAME OBAMA]
5. RUPERT MURDOCH AND THE HACKING SCANDAL: The man whose worldwide media empire thrives on covering scandal became the center of a dramatic one. A British tabloid newspaper owned by Murdoch's News Corp., which also owns Fox News and The Wall Street Journal, hacked the phone of a murdered schoolgirl. Murdoch was not charged with a crime, but an investigation by British authorities raised questions about Murdoch's ability to run his worldwide media empire. News Corp. fired several executives and closed the newspaper at the center of the scandal, the News of the World. [REPUBLICANS BLAME OBAMA]
6. JAPAN EARTHQUAKE: An earthquake and tsunami that crippled the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear reactor, owned by Tokyo Electric Power Co., cut off supplies of crucial Japanese parts and idled factories thousands of miles away. Auto companies, especially Toyota and Honda, were hit hardest. Inventory of certain models, especially hybrids, fell short at dealerships, reducing sales and sending retail prices higher. The worst nuclear accident since Chernobyl led countries around the world to reconsider nuclear power. Germany decided to abandon nuclear by 2022. [REPUBLICANS BLAME OBAMA]
7. GASOLINE PRICES HIT ANNUAL RECORD: The retail price of gasoline averaged $3.53 per gallon for the year, eclipsing the 2008 record of $3.24 per gallon. Americans drove less and switched to more fuel efficient cars, but it wasn't enough to offset the higher prices. A bigger percentage of household income went into the gas tank in 2011 than any year since 1981. Economists say the high prices shaved half a percentage point off U.S. economic growth. [REPUBLICANS REFUSE CREDIT FOR THIS AND BLAME OBAMA]
8. SOCIAL MEDIA IPOs TAKE OFF: Shares of the business social networking site LinkedIn more than doubled when it went public in May, recalling the froth of the dot-com boom. LinkedIn was followed by large IPOs from online radio company Pandora Media, online discount site Groupon and social gaming site Zynga. But the market is treacherous: shares of Pandora, Groupon and Zynga all traded below their offering prices soon after they were listed. Market anticipation is high for a Facebook IPO in 2012. [REPUBLICANS CLAIM CREDIT]
9. OCCUPY WALL STREET: On Sept. 17, several hundred protesters gathered at a small plaza about a block from the New York Stock Exchange. They slept in tents, ate donated meals and protested income inequality and the influence of money in politics. The movement inspired protesters around the world who camped in city centers and business hubs to complain about unemployment, CEO pay and a decline in upward social mobility. [REPUBLICANS CLAIM CREDIT]
10. THE DOWNFALL OF MF GLOBAL AND JON CORZINE: The former governor, senator and co-chairman of Goldman Sachs lost control of a small brokerage firm he agreed to run in 2010. Saddled with huge debt and risky bets on European bonds, MF Global was forced to file for bankruptcy protection on Halloween after trading partners and investors got spooked. It was soon discovered that $1.2 billion in customer money was missing. Corzine told Congress he had no idea where the money went. [REPUBLICANS REFUSE CREDIT FOR THIS AND BLAME OBAMA]

Ensuring Safety at Sea: The Southern Ocean and the South China Sea

RSIS presents the following commentary Ensuring Safety at Sea: The Southern Ocean and the South China Sea by Sam Bateman. It is also available online at this link. (To print it, click on this link.). Kindly forward any comments or feedback to the Editor RSIS Commentaries, at

No. 189/2011 dated 30 December 2011
Ensuring Safety at Sea:
The Southern Ocean and the South China Sea
By Sam Bateman

The Southern Ocean and the South China Sea are very different marine environments but both face high risks of incidents at sea that endanger safety and damage international relations. Restraint is required for good order and amicable relations between parties involved.
THE GOVERNMENTS of Australia, the Netherlands, New Zealand, and the United States recently issued a joint statement calling for responsible behaviour in the Southern Ocean – the sea that completely surrounds the Antarctica and designated as such in 2000 by the International Hydrographic Organisation. It was issued in anticipation of the likelihood of clashes at sea between the Japanese whaling fleet and protest vessels, particularly those of the Sea Shepherd organisation, demonstrating against the activities of the whaling fleet.

The statement called on the masters of all vessels to ensure the safety of life at sea as the highest priority and for strict observance of the international collision avoidance regulations. It expressed both disappointment at the deployment of the Japanese whaling fleet in the Southern Ocean and opposition to commercial whaling, including so-called ‘scientific’ whaling, particularly in the Southern Ocean whale sanctuary.

Incidents in the Southern Ocean
Though they are very different marine environments, similar clashes involving vessels harassing each other have occurred in both the Southern Ocean and South China Sea. Whereas the incidents in the Southern Ocean have involved protest vessels and whale chasers, those in the South China Sea have involved patrol vessels, fishing boats or scientific research vessels of the littoral countries. The situations in the two areas are similar in that they invariably involve the flouting of international collision regulations when the vessels clash with each other, and entail high risk of the loss of life and the escalation of tension between the countries involved.

There was a serious incident in the Southern Ocean in January 2010 when the Japanese whale chaser Shonan Maru No. 2 ran down and sank the Sea Shepherd protest vessel Ady Gil. Although there was sympathy for the Japanese vessel owing to the aggressive tactics used by Sea Shepherd, the subsequent inquiry by New Zealand authorities found both vessels to be in disregard of international collision avoidance regulations. In particular, the inquiry found that the whale chaser had ample opportunity to avoid collision and should have kept clear of the other vessel. New Zealand authorities conducted the inquiry because the Ady Gil was registered in New Zealand. Unfortunately Japanese interests did not cooperate in the investigation.

Following incidents in the Southern Ocean in 2010 and 2011, the International Whaling Commission (IWC) issued a resolution calling upon governments to urge persons and entities under their jurisdiction to refrain from actions that intentionally imperil human life, the marine environment, or property during demonstrations, protests or confrontations on the high seas. It also called on all vessels to comply with the applicable instruments adopted by the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) directed at the safety of navigation, security and safety of life at sea.

Sea Shepherd has recently deployed three vessels to the Southern Ocean to protest during the forthcoming whaling season. The Japanese whaling fleet will include Coast Guard personnel and will be escorted by a fisheries protection vessel. The risk of clashes at sea is high unless all parties act responsibly. Australia, New Zealand and the United States have a common interest in avoiding these clashes because these countries, due to their search and rescue capabilities and responsibilities in the Southern Ocean, are the ones most likely to be involved in “picking up the pieces” should a serious accident occur.

Two of the Sea Shepherd vessels are registered in the Netherlands and the third in Australia. Japan has taken the unusual step of calling on these two countries to expel these vessels from their flag, but both countries rejected this demand.

South China Sea
Incidents at sea involving clashes between vessels of the different bordering countries have become regular occurrences in the South China Sea. In a recent incident depicted by video on YouTube, a patrol vessel of the Vietnamese Marine Police appeared to collide with and then attempt to “shoulder” away a Chinese research vessel.

A trend towards increased incidents in the South China Sea is likely to continue unless measures are put in place to prevent and manage such incidents. While serious escalation of tensions as a consequence of these incidents has not occurred so far, the risks are high of a situation getting out of hand leading to the possible loss of life or the sinking of a vessel. This would lead to a serious deterioration in the relations between the countries involved.

Possible measures to avert this include the development of guidelines for preventing and managing incidents at sea in the South China Sea. Such guidelines might include recognition of the principle that the International Convention for Preventing Collisions at Sea (COLREGS) should always apply, and that actions that might endanger human life should not be used. The measures to avoid incidents in the Southern Ocean are a possible model for what is required in the South China Sea.

As the IWC resolution on safety at sea noted, the safety of vessels and crew, the order of maritime navigation, and environmental protection, are, and have long been, the common interests of all nations. Excessive actions to demonstrate purpose or intent involving the harassment of other vessels can easily get out of hand leading to a process of reaction and counter-reaction as tempers fray, and normal rules of the road are ignored.

There are potentially serious consequences for good order at sea and for amicable relations between the countries involved. Restraint over such incidents is an important requirement for both the Southern Ocean and the South China Sea.

Sam Bateman is an adviser to the Maritime Security Programme at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), Nanyang Technological University. He is a former Australian naval commodore with a keen interest in good order at sea.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Little benefit from WTO

December 28, 2011
Little benefit from WTO

The Philippine economy did not benefit much from membership with the World Trade Organization, but accession was unavoidable.
This is the consensus given to Malaya Business Insight by three top bankers who all requested anonymity.
One said the globalization made mandatory by the WTO is a game for the giant economies. "It is the imperialists’ turf," he said.
The three said the most serious, in fact damaging effect, was the hauling down of tariff walls mostly on consumption goods. They pointed out that the intention is good in the sense that low tariff rates are supposed to move the producers of consumption goods to higher levels of efficiency.
It did not. Instead, the reliance on imported goods became even heavier largely because the government failed to provide incentives or create a climate that would encourage higher productivity.
In not too few cases, the Philippine government is to blame.
Jake, this was the position of our late friend, Tony Tupaz. He talked about it, upon my invitation on behalf of the Rotary Club of Pasig on February 22 ,2007. You were the club's guest on May 3, 2007 and you talk about the libel case that was filed against you and other journalists by the former FG.

The bankers pointed out that a huge fund for the modernization of agriculture, as envisioned by Edgardo J. Angara when he was agriculture secretary, was supposed to be created from tariff on imported rice.
The safety net for agriculture provides that beyond a predetermined volume, imported rice is supposed to be slapped a tariff of 50 per cent. The volume has been breached but there have been no collection at all.
They said that manufacturing is also a big victim of globalization, not only because of lowering of tariff but largely because many manufacturers chose to be importers instead of staying in the business they started with.
"All you need is a warehousing complex and a fleet of delivery trucks to make money from imports," the bankers said.
Importers do not directly create that much employment, they said.
Therefore, they explained, the importers avoid troubles with labor and the necessity of buying dollars to import raw materials.
However, they pointed out in one voice, "We would have been isolated from the world if we did not join the globalization effort."
They explained that the evil of seeing business prosper through tariff protection "was killed" by low common tariff on many products as demanded by the WTO.
That would have resulted in intense competition for survival. It did not. Importing was a better and easier alternative.
They explained that globalization is a battle between a giant and a pygmy. In the case of David and Goliath, David, the pygmy, won. A pygmy of an economy cannot "kill" Goliath with a slingshot, they said, pointing out that the Philippines does not even have the slingshot – meaning the determination which would have resulted in raising efficiency to put up a good fight.
Nevertheless, they said, membership with the WTO opened the eyes of the economy to what it is good at.
Thus, they said, the outsourcing business (BPO) and tourism-cum-gaming were born and matured rather fast.
Business process outsourcing has become so successful its leaders are now suggesting to the Department of Education that heavier emphasis be placed on English grammar.
The banking system is slowly turning to heavy lending to medium and small borrowers. That, too, they said, may have been a direct result of the inability of the Philippines to compete with the giants.
They pointed out that "small is good." They explained that the situation at present is such that the big borrowers with excellent credit records are able to raise enough funds from their own operations.
Loans are sought by borrowers the banks are indifferent to, the bankers said. Since the financial system is too liquid, depositors’ money must be invested elsewhere.
Financial institutions find lending to small-scale business a bit messy but safer. The default rate among small business people is below 3 percent.
One of the bankers explained that owners of small – sometimes backyard projects – know they would need more money to expand their business.
They cannot go back to the banks if they are discovered to be habitual defaulters. In fact, banks are slowly getting involved in micro-finance which is even more administratively messy as they have to comply with rigid requirements of the Bangko Sentral.
They pointed out that the property boom will continue because the developers have come to realize that the bulk of housing demand comes from the middle and low-middle strata of the economy.
However, they said, the developers may not be expected to take over social housing which, in the first place, is the basic function of government agencies like Pag-Ibig.
The slowdown of manufacturing, if it is a result of WTO membership, may have raised the unemployment rate. But the bankers said that is also a function of high birth rate.

North Korea’s Power Transition: Rising Instability or Regime Resilience?

RSIS presents the following commentary North Korea’s Power Transition: Rising Instability or Regime Resilience? by Lee Dongmin. It is also available online at this link. (To print it, click on this link.). Kindly forward any comments or feedback to the Editor RSIS Commentaries, at

No. 188/2011 dated 28 December 2011

North Korea’s Power Transition:
Rising Instability or Regime Resilience?

By Lee Dongmin


Kim Jong-Il’s death adds a new dimension to security challenges on the Korean peninsula and in the region. In this critical period of power transition, it is pertinent not to underestimate the regime’s political resilience amid possible instability.


THE DEATH of North Korean supremo Kim Jong-Il has, not surprisingly, triggered renewed debate about the regime's potential collapse. While there could well be political disruptions, it may be simplistic to expect the regime to implode following the death of its leader. It is also critical that we make conceptual distinctions between the notions of regime instability and the total breakdown of a state. While one cannot overlook the potential power-struggle that may break out, it may be premature to anticipate the regime to cave in under the weight of possible infighting..Indeed, the regime may prove to be politically resilient and here are a few variables that may explain this.

Political cartels and symbiotic relations

Kim Jong Il’s illness in 2008 unquestionably served as the “first shock wave” for the regime’s inner circle. As a result the political elites have been psychologically prepared to calculate the regime’s security dynamics. Prior to the appointment of Kim’s third son, Kim Jong-Un, as successor during the Party Representatives Convention on 28 September 2010, there might have been conflict between the "royalists" supporting Kim’s family and the orthodox, restorationist group that backs the traditional state-oriented system.

Nonetheless, the regime successfully brought the Kim family’s most trusted members into their power base. The addition of Kim’s sister, Kim Kyung-Hui, to the Politburo and the appointment of his brother-in-law, Jang Song Taek, to the position of Vice-Chairman of the National Defence Commission (NDC) were part of this strategic planning.

There has been a significant infusion of the descendents of the “Kimilsungist” group into the reshuffled power structure since the crisis in Kim Jong-Il’s health in 2008. A large number of Kim family loyalists have been promoted or recently appeared in North Korea’s strengthened party institutions – Politburo, Secretariat and the Central Military Commission (CMC). One notable appointment is that of General Rhee Yongho to the Workers Party’s Politburo and to the position of a Vice Chairman of the CMC – the other CMC Vice-Chairman being Kim Jong Un himself.

During this phase of power transfer, Rhee will also likely take on the role of a guardian, overseeing the succession process and keeping the military under control. Like many Kim "royalists", General Rhee represents the children of the revolutionary cadres, somewhat comparable to the "princelings" in Chinese politics. They are the most powerful political cartel, who share the same faith with Kim’s dynasty. In this context, it seems to be the rational choice for them to support Kim Jong-Un for their symbiotic survival.

Institutionalisation of Party- Army relations

One of the most notable political adjustments made in the period between Chairman Kim’s health crisis in 2008 and his death in December 2011 has been the regime’s strategic institutionalisation of mechanisms to control the armed forces. During his tenure, Kim Jong-Il effectively tightened his grip on the military by utilising an intricate web of personal loyalists. Although such personalised mechanism may well be serving the interest of particular leaders and perhaps help them to maintain supremacy, the sudden death of the figurehead could result in political instability.

In the critical period of power transition, a firmer grip over the military might therefore be sought because Kim the successor lacks the charisma and experience of his father, who relied exclusively on his direct control of the armed forces.

The recent addition of a number of active-duty military officers to the restored Korean Workers’ Party apparatus reflects the regime’s efforts to recalibrate party-Army relations for the sake of smoothing the power-transition. Accordingly, for the past few years the regime has been strengthening the party structure. Hence, the strategic move of appointing Kim Jong-Un as Vice-Chairman of the CMC.

The North Korean leadership seems to reckon that the major reason behind the collapse of the Eastern European states at the end of the Cold War had been the lack of military loyalty. The pronouncement by the party media referring to Kim Jong Un as “supreme commander” of the armed forces appears aimed at cementing the successor’s hold on the military. His latest elevation as head of the party Central Committee appears to consolidate his rise as “Supreme Leader” even before the official funeral of his father.

Central Military Commission – successor’s new power base?

In addition to the major changes in the Party politburo, the structural recalibration of the CMC is a significant event. In North Korea's traditional political structure, the head of the CMC usually has the prerogative of controlling the armed forces. During the political reshuffle, Kim Jong-Un’s resort to old school-ties from the Kim Il-Sung Military Academy has seen some members from his cohort taking the top positions in the strengthened CMC. Beside Vice-Chairman Kim Jong-Un, it is interesting to note that the top-level members of the CMC - Rhee Yong Ho, Kim Young Chun and Kim Jong Gak - are graduates of the Kim Il Sung Military Academy who have their respective expertise in military affairs.

In addition many technocrats affiliated with the defence-industrial complex are positioned to strengthen the CMC's political apparatus. Such arrangement says much about the regime’s intentions to reshape the CMC. The main purpose of restructuring the CMC is to build institutional power for Kim Jong-Un.

The North Korean political structure requires that the General Secretary of the Korean Workers’ Party head the CMC. Under the revised structure, the Vice-Chairman of the CMC, Kim Jong-Un, is likely to assume the position of General Secretary of the Korean Workers’ Party and so also head of the CMC. However, due to the peculiar nature of the regime’s succession process, the successor may further consolidate his grip during the national period of mourning.

Kim Jong-Il also assumed his position as the General Secretary of the Korean Workers’ Party in 1997 after observing a three-year period of mourning for his father, which in turn put to an end the widespread speculation about regime collapse at the time.

Shifting epicentre of power

In light of these circumstances, the purpose of streamlining the Party structure may not be merely to design a collective-leadership system for the military, but rather to reinforce the party structure to foster political capital for Kim Jong-Un. From this development, it can be inferred that the epicentre of power is shifting from the NDC to the traditional party apparatus, in particular to the CMC as a power base for the new leader.

Likewise, it is likely that the regime will continue to pursue the military-first policy and attempt to increase its defence-related economic activities to gain credit for the new leader. Until the regime firmly transfers power to the successor, the denuclearisation talks are likely to remain on hold.

Lee Dongmin is an Assistant Professor at S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), Nanyang Technological University. An earlier article was presented at a meeting of the American Political Science Association in September 2011.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Breaking: Patriot Missiles Seized, Sold To China by Israel

Breaking: Patriot Missiles Seized, Sold To China by Israel (Updates)

Iron Dome Defense Missiles Seized by Finland, Labeled “Fireworks”
69 Newest Patriot Missiles Bound For Reds

“…Thorco Shipping representative, Thomas Mikkelsen said he was unaware any such cargo was on board his vessel”…a statement that categorically “debunks” attempts at denial – Editor)
…by Gordon Duff, Senior Editor

Latest update from today’s Washington Post:
Finland says cargo ship can sail again, but without its 69 missiles, explosives or it’s Ukrainian captain

HELSINKI — “A British-registered ship (editor’s correction, ship is not “British-registered”) that was held in a Finnish port after authorities discovered 69 surface-to-air [Anti-ballistic] missiles and 160 tons of explosives onboard has permission to travel again, but without those materials or its captain, a port official said Monday.
The M/S Thor Liberty was headed to China and had docked in the southern Finnish port of Kotka to pick up anchor chains when police last week discovered and seized the missiles and explosive piric acid on board.”

Finnish authorities have confirmed the seizure of 69 Patriot missiles manufactured by Raytheon Corporation today.

During a routine search of the MS Thor Liberty, a ship flagged by the Isle of Man, at the Finnish port of Kotka, authorities found 69 Patriot missiles of a type capable of intercepting ICBMs, the most modern available and America’s most sensitive military technology.

Update: Germany officials have offered to take responsibility for the shipment to China though there is no record of Germany ever having received the missiles in the first place. There had been a shipment of PAC 2 missiles, 64, several months ago, which had been completed. No further shipment had been scheduled.

Germany is responding to a request from Netanyahu to Merkel to save Israel from a potential spy scandal.Similarly, a South Korean paper has published a story about the missiles but at no time has the South Korean embassy in Helsinki, made a statement or made contact with authorities as would be expected. This one gets more interesting every day.

Germany has a long history of working with Israel, call it “war guilt” or profiteering. The centrifuges used to develop nuclear weapons that were distributed by Israel, first to South Africa then by Israeli Johann Meyer to Libya were of Germany origin. Saddam Hussein received his biological and chemical warfare equipment from Germany, but through Bush family sources, not Israel.

We are told the missiles heading to China were to be “cloned” for sale along with radar and launch units, already there. They would be sold worldwide under Israeli branding in competition with the US. Israel is free to sell to clients the US would be likely to refuse.

The JA 20 Stealth fighter, built from plans stolen by Bush era White House Israeli “dual-citizens” is only one of dozens of defense projects stolen by Israeli spies and sent to China. China has every current nuclear weapons design and plans to upgrade its submarine fleet and will be building aircraft carriers eventually. All will be done with American technology.

Here is the photo of the ship's 'very special' explosives in shrink wrapped cardboard boxes. Do you really think this is how western Allied/NATO countries transport munitions, or would allow hugely expensive anti-ballistic missiles to be put on a ship like this? If there was a detonation device in one of these boxes that could set it off (like with a satellite phone call), it would go up like an A-bomb. No one would have been looking for the 69 Patriot ABM's listed as rockets or firecrackers. There is one rouge country's Intelligence service, an American ally, that could do this in it's sleep because it had extensive practice while building it's WMD programs, the details of which our America government still holds secret from Americans.

Attempts to represent this as a sale of “second hand” PAC 2 missiles, stories filling the blogosphere, fail to address that these are PAC 3 advanced missiles and labeled for shipment to China, not Korea.

Patriot ICBM Interceptor - PAC3

The next stop for this cargo, valued at over $4 billion even without the associated radar, which may well have been shipped via some other method, was Shanghai, China.

Yet the Chinese government has given an official denial of any knowledge of this transaction.They went even further, they claimed the missiles were heading to South Korea.

However, were China to have given the issue a second’s thought, it would have been advisable to have failed to acknowledge any familiarity with the issue whatsoever.

China walked into a trap, one that uncovered their espionage cooperation agreements that involved, not the receipt of advanced Patriot missile systems but the full plans for the F22 stealth fighter.

Initial stories from 2009 indicating China has received plans for the F35 though espionage with Israel were false.

The F22 is a far more advanced aircraft.

On April 21, 2009, the Department of Defense announced the theft of 1.5 terabytes of data on the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, the platform meant give the United States and her allies air superiority for the next 40 years.

In a flash, all that was gone, $300 billion dollars of funding down the drain, every system, defense, offense, stealth, everything needed to build one or shoot it down, all gone. Day one, China was accused but it wasn’t China, it wasn’t Iran, it wasn’t Pakistan.

The theft left a clear signature, one identical to the data Wikileaks has been receiving, sources inside the Pentagon repeating the actions of Israeli-Soviet spy, Jonathan Pollard. As vital as the F-35 is to America’s defense, Pollard’s triumph on behalf of Soviet Russia and Israel dwarfs the current espionage coup.

Since the 2009 announcement, there has been nothing but silence.

Now we learn the Pentagon story was “cover” and it was the F22 Raptor, not the F35, an “export plane,” that was compromised:

F-22A Raptors - America Top Fighter

The Lockheed Martin/Boeing F-22 Raptor is a single-seat, twin-engine fifth-generation super maneuverable fighter aircraft that uses stealth technology.

It was designed primarily as an air superiority fighter, but has additional capabilities that include ground attack, electronic warfare, and signals intelligence roles.[6]

Lockheed Martin Aeronautics is the prime contractor and is responsible for the majority of the airframe, weapon systems and final assembly of the F-22.

Program partnerBoeing Defense, Space & Security provides the wings, aft fuselage, avionics integration, and training systems.The aircraft was variously designated F-22 and F/A-22 during the years prior to formally entering USAF service in December 2005 as the F-22A.

Despite a protracted and costly development period, the United States Air Force considers the F-22 a critical component of US tactical air power, and claims that the aircraft is unmatched by any known or projected fighter.[7]

While Lockheed Martin claims that the Raptor’s combination of stealth, speed, agility, precision and situational awareness, combined with air-to-air and air-to-ground combat capabilities, makes it the best overall fighter in the world today.[8]

Air Chief Marshal Angus Houston, former Chief of the Australian Defence Force, said in 2004 that the “F-22 will be the most outstanding fighter plane ever built.”[9]

Raptor Formation

The high cost of the aircraft, a lack of clear air-to-air combat missions because of delays in the Russian and Chinese fifth-generation fighter programs, a US ban on Raptor exports, and the ongoing development of the planned cheaper and more versatile F-35 resulted in calls to end F-22 production.[N 1]

In April 2009 the US Department of Defense proposed to cease placing new orders, subject to Congressional approval, for a final procurement tally of 187 Raptors.[11] The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2010 lacked funding for further F-22 production.

The final F-22 Raptor fighter jet rolled off the assembly line on 13 December 2011 during a ceremony at the Lockheed Martin aircraft plant at Dobbins Air Reserve Base.[2]

China is testing a 5th generation fighter, 20 years earlier than estimated, the JA 20. It is based on systems from the Raptor and is considered a far superior plane to the F 35.From a January, 2011 Guardianstory suppressed in the United States:

Chinese F22 Raptor Clone, 20 Years Early

A photograph of what is reported to be a new Chinese stealth fighter and “carrier-killer” missile has prompted concerns that a tilt in the balance of military power in the western Pacific towards China may come sooner than expected.

The emergence of the hi-tech weaponry – which would make it more difficult for the US navy and air force to project power close to Taiwan and elsewhere on China’s coastline – comes at a politically sensitive time.

Later this month, President Barack Obama and his Chinese counterpart, Hu Jintao, will hold a summit in Washington aimed at patching up their differences after a niggling year in bilateral relations.

he photograph, of what appears to be a prototype J-20 jet undergoing initial tests, has been circulating on the internet since last week, fueling speculation that China’s fifth-generation fighter may fly ahead of forecast.(Attempts have been made to alter photos of the plane and misrepresent its “lineage.” The only alterations from the F22 seem to be the rear control surfaces. What has been most telling is the attempt to misconstrue the JA 20 as a “large bodied” interceptor with a weapons bay for anti-ship missiles instead of the air superiority fighter it actually is. )

The defence ministry has yet to comment on the image, which seems to have been shot from long-distance near the Chengdu aircraft design institute. The photographer is also unknown, which has added to the mystery about its origins and authenticity as well as the motive of the distributor.

But defence analysts believe this is the first glimpse of the twin-engined, chiseled-nosed plane that mixes Russian engine technology with a fuselage design similar to that of the US air force’s F-22 “stealth” fighter, which can avoid detection by radar.

If confirmed, it would be an impressive step forward for the Chinese air force, which until now has largely depended on foreign-made or designed planes. “I’d say these are, indeed, genuine photos of a prototype that will make its maiden flight very soon,” said Peter Felstead, the editor of Jane’s Defence Weekly.

The J20 is likely to be many years from deployment, but the US defence secretary, Robert Gates – who visits Beijing next week – may have to revise an earlier prediction that China will not have a fifth generation aircraft by 2020.

It is not the only challenge to US superiority in the region. China has refurbished a Ukrainian aircraft carrier and wants to build its own by 2020.

Photo corrected from "stretch" version issued to mislead public

The US and Israel had scheduled an air defense exercise this week but no Patriot missiles were to be shipped to Israel as part of their mission, DOD sources indicate.

This week’s exercise was to use Patriot missiles deployed from American ships in the eastern Mediterranean to test Israeli missile defenses. Reports indicate that all missiles for this exercise have been accounted for.

" Patriots Away "

These units, the most advanced Patriot system had only been supplied to one nation, Israel.

The 69 Patriot ICBM interceptors are believed to be a highly secret consignment demanded by Israel as protection from any retaliatory strike by Iran were war to break out in the region.

Instead of deploying them, the missiles were apparently sold to China labeled as “fireworks” according to Interior Minister Paivi Rasanen.

Though the missiles themselves were worth only $4 billion, the technology transfer itself would be worth over $125 billion, and represent a significant loss of defense capability for the United States.

Sources termed it, “An absolute disaster, even if they only received the radar systems alone, much less the missiles.That this would go unreported though the story was broken in Europe 48 hours ago is astounding.

Nobody in Washington has this although even the BBC report contains more than enough information to bring Washington to a halt.

DOD sources indicate that it would be unusual for these missiles to be moved without radar and launch facilities to have been moved in advance. It was also indicated that the Department of Defense denies shipping any such missiles to Germany or anywhere else in Europe, labeled as “fireworks” or anything else.

The owner of the ship of record is Thorco Shipping. Their representative, Thomas Mikkelsen said he was unaware any such cargo was on board his vessel.

Patriot Command Control Center

Claims were made that the missiles were destined for South Korea but an examination of documentation indicated that there were no South Korean ports scheduled.

Additionally, the likelihood that the US government would ship its most valuable and secret missile technology through Germany mislabeled as “fireworks” rather than on a C 17 under military security supports the Finnish claim.

Finnish police say they opened all 69 units, are recording serial numbers and have been unable to find any documentation indicating the real ownership of the seized cargo.

And they certainly have found nothing involving the any of the claimed “cover stories” involving Germany or Korea, otherwise, of course, the cargo would never have been seized nor would there have been arrests made.

Detective Superintendent Timo Virtanen of the Finnish National Bureau of Investigation is in charge of the case. He has stated:

”Actually, in our investigation at the moment, we have got the information that we found 69 Patriot missiles on the ship and around 160 tonnes of explosives.”

The explosives are identified as nitroguandine, a low sensitivity explosive with a very high detonation speed. These explosives have several uses, among them launching shipboard or submarine launched missiles or in the development and testing of nuclear weapons design.

Finnish authorities indicate the explosives were packed in an “informal” and highly dangerous manner and that the Thor Liberty’s captain and chief officer are under arrest on suspicion of arms trafficking. Both are citizens of the Ukraine.The government of China has denied all knowledge of the incident although the cargo was destined for their ports.

The head of Finnish Customs CID, Petri Louatmaa said this was not the first such incident but by far the most serious he has ever heard of.Finland has requested “information” from several countries.

The US Department of Defense has assured all involved that these missiles were not being sent to South Korea and that their presence on a civilian ship either being loaded in Germany or in port in Finland was in now way a part of any exercise nor any accepted methodology for the handling of this type of ultra-high technology weaponry.

American sources further indicated confusion at the odd number of missiles:

“There are two missiles per launch container. The containers can’t be easily opened and the missiles can’t be removed for examination without damage to the launch mechanism.They are delivered for mounting to ships or land based mobile launchers. Thus, the packaging indicated either demonstrates confusion or serious unprofessional tampering.”

Israeli officials have failed to respond to questions about the consignment.Air Force transport command personnel indicate that high tech transfers to Israel are routinely offloaded at Schipol Airport in the Netherlands where Israel maintains secure facilities.

Editing: Jim W. Dean

Patriot PAC3s Are Shipped in Pairs - Ground to Air Patriots are Shipped With Lauchers

Friday, December 23, 2011

Jim Willie CB, COMEX: The March to Irrelevance

Jim Willie CB, COMEX: The March to Irrelevance
DECEMBER 21, 2011

Jim Willie CB, Posted Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Divergence between paper gold and physical gold price is happening, the process begun. Actual physical shortages have kept the price up. The naked shorting of futures has kept the paper price down. The fraud cases and lawsuits, with no hint of prosecution, provide the levered force to create much wider divergence, as traders and entire firms depart the tainted crime scene that is the COMEX. Trust has vanished along with private accounts. At the center of the backdrop for the divergence, apart from the criminal events, is the economic deterioration and asset market downdraft. It leads to margin calls, loan payment obligations, fading investor confidence, negative sentiment, and a desire to avoid loss. Hence the huge liquidity concerns, selling of good assets that command a strong price, and central bank encouragement of gold sales even with lease. These forces conspire to push down the gold futures price from the discovery process, called the paper gold price. These forces, although real, are exaggerated by the Syndicate to explain all. On the other side is the desperation among central bankers to cover debt securities up for sale or rollover funding. They resort to utter hyper inflation by monetizing the many types of government bonds. They are obligated to aid their banker cohorts, and thus purchase truckloads of badly impaired sovereign bonds and other collateralized bonds. Over time these sovereign bonds have proved toxic. The compelling need to stimulate economies, to redeem toxic bonds, and to recapitalize and nationalize the big banks adds to the monetary inflation outcome. Therefore, two sides are in opposition in a battle to the death of one or the other. No middle ground can be achieved, not any longer. It is the quintessential battle between monetary hyper inflation and restoring bank system integrity to avert collapse. The insolvency has recently met illiquidity. The battle features strong forces on each side. The divergence between physical and paper gold price is widening.

The incurable speculator junkies committed to the addictive leveraged game rigged by the Forces of Evil seem stuck at the casino tables, where fingers are lost, finally entire hands and arms. If their practice was to purchase physical, they could benefit from the paper price swoon, and join the Forces of Good team, rather than fighting the evil side on their dominated turf. To be sure, many aware analysts in the news maintain a small gold position in COMEX that is rolled over constantly. Many have physical positions but keep with the paper trades as a hobby, better described as an addition to the juice. Leverage cuts both ways. Their continued activity has left them exposed to theft, while knowing the criminality was widespread within the arena. So many players and firms are departing the arena altogether like Ann Barnhardt of BCM Capital. The divergence between physical and paper gold price is widening.

The desperation of the bad team is growing. The gold cartel has benefited significantly from the fresh Libyan gold supply (144 metric tons) and Greek gold supply (111 metric tons), not to mention the ample Dollar Swap Facility. It is the bankers New Gold, as reported by intrepid Jeff Neilson. In a fresh sign of bankster desperation, the lease rates for gold have been pushed down to net negative levels. The fresh supply from the two broken nations has greatly aided the COMEX, providing new cannon fodder. Perhaps more wars to liberate the oppressed can be conjured up, to release more tyrant wealth. It is not a coincidence that negative gold lease rates came when Libyan gold was made available (heisted) and when Italian sovereign bonds went into critical DEFCON mode. The gold supply helped to aid the lack of bond demand. The gold lease story is analyzed more fully in the December Hat Trick Letter.


A preface is warranted. The paper Gold market is very different in its internal dynamics from the physical. The paper Gold market shows signs of inelasticity that borders on comical. Witness the low demand in 2001 and 2002 when Gold had a paper price tag at $300 or less per ounce. Witness nowadays the amplified selling when the paper price declines. The leverage from the corrupted paper mechanisms forces margin pressures and sales. The leveraged game goes opposite to the real world of price mechanisms. On the upside, global demand rises with a rising physical price, called the gold fever. The inelasticity on the supply side is prevalent in the paper market, while the inelasticity on the demand side is prevalent on the physical market. To confuse the mix, mining firms realize some inelasticity as price falls, they are stuck with a liquidity crunch on their forward sales ruin. A huge amount of money is required to cover their losses, urged on by Wall Street advisors. Their mining operations suffer from lack of funds, and projects are curtailed. The paradoxical differences in dynamics help to push the gap between the paper and physical Gold price. The incompatible forces work to rip apart the COMEX. The divergence between physical and paper gold price is widening.


The hypothecation battle will bring sufficient publicity to help the divergence along. As more assets are seen as committed, involved, and tainted in the process of grabbing, snatching, and securing collateral, even by illegal means, the physical assets will be removed from the system. Parties will remove accounts and metal from the COMEX in response from basic self-preservation. On the investment and speculation side, harm has been rendered to managed risk. The client funds have begun to flee. The protection and security of money in private accounts has been under siege in recent weeks since the MF Global crime scene was established and the yellow tape cordon has been put in place. Investors are pulling money out of hedge funds at a rapid rate. The COMEX will be increasingly isolated. Clients funds were redeemed to the tune of $9 billion in October, almost four times as much as they pulled in September, according to Barclay Hedge and TrimTabs Investment Research. Investors in October yanked more from hedge funds, setting a single month high over the last two years.

The redemptions are the largest for the hedge fund industry since July 2009, when $17.8 billion was returned. The Barclay Hedge office put lipstick on the corrupt pig by commenting on how investors have lost patience with lackluster investor returns. To be sure, the average hedge fund is down by about 4% this year. The global hedge fund industry size has been reduced to $1.66 trillion, still sizeable. It is always interesting, if not amusing, to read the spin from the isolated corners. Hedge funds are seeing capital depart for the simple reason of moving away from crime centers. In the process the COMEX is being isolated. With increased isolation comes the easily recognized fraud. Look for some major stories soon about the raids to the GLD and SLV inventories by their custodians engaged in naked shorting. The Exchange Traded Fund fraud story is analyzed more fully in the December Hat Trick Letter. The divergence between physical and paper gold price is widening.


Grand divergence dynamics are becoming clear. Ann Barnhardt explained in detail how the COMEX will go away. It will not default, but rather fall into irrelevance. He laid it out in credible detailed form with numerous factors coming to play. The COMEX might still suffer the shame and spotlight of criminal prosecution. It will more certainly suffer from being ignored and shunned. The physical basis market will not respond to the declines in the paper futures market. The current dominant market will go away due to lost integrity and eroded trust. The consequences and implications of the recent major scandal and coverup are enormous, staggering, and sweeping. The changes from the MF Global failure and theft of private segregated accounts will come in time, perhaps accelerated by another similar event to slam the message home. The Syndicate has turned desperate, resorting to theft in the open daylight, which has resulted in direct consequences. Hundreds of COMEX clients waited in line for delivery of gold, and had their wallets stolen by JPMorgan. Their Gold & Silver set for delivery found its way into JPMorgan accounts at the COMEX. The details of the missing silver then reappearing silver is discussed in the December Hat Trick Letter. The slow mentally overlook this fact. The alert who point to fraud consider it a smoking gun. On its face, evidence mounts that JPMorgan simply converted 614k ounces of MF Global client silver into JPM licensed vaults. Big hats off to the Silver Doctors for excellent financial fraud forensic analysis. Do not expect prosecution over the crime, for MF Global, for JPMorgan, or for the accomplices in London, not even Jon Corzine. The Fascist Business Model in the Untied States does not permit prosecution. The bigger the crime, the more likely the perpetrator is in control of the government high offices, the financial ministry, the printing press, or the regulators.

Ann Barnhardt explained how the COMEX will fade away into oblivion. Its final chapter will be marred by a grand price divergence, where the futures market price declines from shunned avoidance, while the cash physical market price holds steady then rises. Many including the Jackass had thought that a slew of delivery demands would force a drain in their gold & silver inventory, eventually leading to a slew of lawsuits, together to shut them down as a corrupt enterprise arena. The MF Global theft reveals the alternative route that seems more clear. The gold cartel led by JPMorgan and secretly by the USFed will not go quietly. They have resorted to theft of private accounts on the open stage. The money is not missing. That is the lie. It is held in JPMorgan accounts in London, where fraud laws are more relaxed. We have seen this Madoff movie before, but it will be shown on the silver screen again. The divergence between physical and paper gold price is widening.

The backlash has begun and will gain strength. Barnhardt offered many cogent arguments with detail on how the COMEX will be ignored from distrust and suspicion of further thefts, as clients remove funds and close accounts. Here are her main points. They apply to Gold & Silver. She has the Barnhardt weblog:

Arbitrage is set to kick in. Players will buy at the cheaper corrupt paper market in COMEX and sell in the higher honest physical market, wherever brokers can match to make deals. (It is the same phenomenon that ripped the Euro sovereign bond market apart, as the German Govt Bond yields remained much lower than the Spanish and Greek.) They will take advantage of a strong basis, buy at the discount offered by COMEX, and sell into the cash spot physical market.
A linchpin holds the market together. Keeping the futures markets tied to the underlying cash physical market is the fact that the futures contracts permit taking delivery. That delivery mechanism just broke as linchpin in full view. The futures market has lost viability and trustworthiness because of the MFG collapse and theft.
The entire delivery mechanism has been corrupted and undermined. Taking delivery has meant a holding of physical metal bars is stored in a certified vault with your name attached. No longer are such holdings considered safe. Thefts occurred, and lawsuits have occurred to decided upon ownership of bars in dispute.
The de-coupling process comes when arbitrageurs finally lose all confidence in market interaction dynamics, as the cash market will lose connection on price from the futures market. Players will not be willing to take the risk of having their money, positions, and physical metals stolen or confiscated.
As players flee the futures market, the paper futures prices will decline. The cash physical market will hold steady. The divergence will come and be noticed, then be widely publicized. The players will realize that the physical market is the only remaining game to be played with honest rules in effect. The cash dealers will ignore the futures prices, no longer a valid price discovery, seeing that market demand for their physical inventory is robust, and maintain their prices steady. Later, they will even raise the physical prices. Then later still, the parabolic spike comes for physical Gold & Silver.


Asset management funds are appealing to mining firms for direct metal supply. They are bypassing the COMEX in a new trend. It is a natural development, as miners seek a fair price and the funds seek a reliable supply. The COMEX is cut out of the process. The Sprott Funds have revealed how they sourced their precious metal from mining firms last year. The official exchanges are being cut off, a form of isolation as a result. The divergence between physical and paper gold price is widening.

See the Ashanti story as typical. The COMEX is seeing reduced supply lines, reduced operations, more criminal implications, horrible publicity, and fewer clients. Criminal fraud does that, as lawsuits will follow like cold rain. The trend shapes up well for higher gold & silver prices. Mark Cutifani is CEO of AngloGold Ashanti, a $16 billion mining firm. He said, "Major [asset management fund] buyers are finding it is hard to get physical gold.People are coming directly to us [for large gold purchases,] people who want tonnes of physical gold, people with serious financial muscle, because they are finding it is very difficult to secure the volume of gold they want. That is something we have noticed over the last 18 months, and it has been increasing in the last six months. People are finding its hard to get physical gold." The clear message is that the COMEX has no spare available metal at all. Cutifani has good insights into the commodities and precious metals markets, and describes a fascination new trend regarding the global picture. He pointed out that major gold buyers are emerging from the Middle East and Asia. See the Bull Market Thinking article (CLICK HERE).


New gold centers are forming, where the safety is most assured. Hong kong and Dubai have emerged as reliable honest brokers, and will continue to provide valid safe haven. Switzerland, London, and other locations are fading fast. They are the corrupt centers where fascism has become prevalent, laced through the financial system.Takahiro Morita, the Japan director of the World Gold Council, reported that Japan's gold exports in the 10 months ended October totaled 95.6 metric tonnes, their highest level since 2008, when it registered at 95.5 metric tonnes. People who bought gold and jewelry in the 1980 and 1990 decades are selling back what they purchased, according to precious metals traders. Japan has turned into a big exporter. Contrast to the official side. Central bank purchases have risen by 114% over the previous quarter. Purchases by central banks could hit 450 metric tonnes this year, concludes the investment research at the council. The volume represents the highest level of central bank buying since at least 1970, perhaps the greatest in recent history. A veteran gold trader with actual experience in these locations pitched in to explain. He said, "These are not sales in Japan. They are exports, an important distinction. Many investors are busily relocating their precious metal bullion to Hong Kong and Dubai UAE. Look for Dubai to be the HK of the Middle East. The Chinese have made that decision, and it is being implemented with lightning speed." Most of the relocation from Japan shows up as exports, which require payments.

October imports into China from Hong Kong rose 50% over September, and up 40-fold from last year. The more attractive fair price paid in Shanghai reached $50 above the corrupt controlled London price. The arbitrage has been very active. Chinese gold imports from Hong Kong hit a record. The Financial Times reported Chinese gold imports from Hong Kong hit a record high in October and astoundingly, they accounted for more than one quarter of the entire global demand. Data showed that China imported 85.7 tonnes of gold from Hong Kong in October, up 50% from the previous month and up more than 40 times from October of last year. It marks the fourth consecutive month that China's gold flows from Hong Kong have hit new highs. The article noted that the price arbitrage between London and Shanghai was favorable for Chinese imports during late September and early October, giving astute clever traders an edge. Gold on the Shanghai Exchange traded up to $50 per ounce above the main global market based in London, a record price difference. Purchases from China have fallen since October, as the recent strength in the USDollar has made gold more expensive. Also, considerable new strain has been felt inside China in recent weeks. Conclude that price arbitrage has begun to show itself across international boundaries. The divergence between physical and paper gold price is widening.


No gold chart will be shown in this article, out of disrespect deserved for the COMEX criminal activity. A story was recounted in recent days from my best source of solid reliable gold information. The aware gold community has overlooked a phenomenon that might be more profound in action here and now. A major squeeze is on that capitalizes on the artificially low COMEX price and the higher honest physical price. The Barnhardt effect can be seen, or at least recounted. A gold trader informed that some multi-$billion purchase Gold orders have been in the process of filling at or near the $1600 price per ounce. The price must remain near $1600 to complete the orders and permit them to clear. Call it Agent2000 who seeks the massive amount of Gold, one of the Good Guyz. The name fits since their goal is to force the Gold price back over $2000/oz after the sale transaction clears. Since so large, the orders take time to fill completely. The low-ball buy orders have been filling for over two weeks. At the same time, the Agent2000 buyer has enlisted the aid of numerous assistants to push down the paper Gold price by putting extreme pressure on some bad players, some nasty types from the usual list of suspects in the Western banking sector. These bankers are being squeezed out of their gold, as they contend with deep insolvency, reserves requirements, falling sovereign bond values, depositors exiting, and more. They are players in what has been widely called the Gold Cartel. The Jackass term has been applied in a wider sense, as they have been part of the Syndicate that reaches into the Wall Street banks, the defense contractors, news media, and big pharma.

The other side of Agent2000 is where additional intrigue lies. He (they) have buyers lined up on the physical side some deals ready to close at $1900 per ounce. Later the price will push over the $2000 mark. The buyers are ready. One must infer that the buyers have a great deal of money ready to devote to the battle. Maybe some is piled up to escape the clutches of the cartel, removed from the system. Maybe some is piled up at a major new slush fund to do battle with the cartel at their own game. Maybe some is piled up and kept out of sight from greedy hands in government officials, like off-shore in the Caribbean or sequestered in the Persian Gulf. This story might be perplexing to many in the gold community since the Good Guyz are pushing down the Gold price in order to facilitate a gigantic order that will work toward crushing the cartel by draining their gold. Their gold cannot be drained without the completion of a great many orders. It is only natural to attempt to achieve the lowest possible price. If the gold cartel insists on pushing the price down, then they open the door for major volume sales at the artificially low and very much bargain price. It is happening, but the gold community does not enjoy the symptoms of the process.

So a huge huge huge buyer of gold is busy, and a multi-$billion order is working through. The buyer demands a $1600 price, while on the other side of the table Agent2000 has a sale lined up for the same metal at a $1900 price on physical. The trade will take gold bullion from the Bad Boyz hands and put it into the Good Guyz hands. In the process, the COMEX supply lines will be drained more. This is consistent with mining firms removing supply lines to the COMEX. The Agent2000 buyer is pushing price down, squeezing some evil parties hard, crushing testicalia along the way. He (they) describe to the distressed seller at $1600 that pressures will continue until the deal is closed. The seller is in tremendous pain with open distress showing. So many assume the Bad Powerz are pushing down the Gold price. Not so!! This event and transaction displays how some pain comes in many isolated cases of Good Guyz pushing the Gold price down to empty the Bad Powerz vaults. My source would not reveal the identity of Agent2000 or the location of the squeeze. It seemed like London. The money is not exclusively coming from China. Word has it that Russia is also applying the pressure, with some Chinese teamwork. The Competing Currency War has a new major flank. The divergence between physical and paper gold price is widening.


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Jim Willie CB, editor of the “HAT TRICK LETTER”

Original source

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Some Asian Leaders Back Obama’s ‘War on China’

Some Asian Leaders Back
Obama’s ‘War on China’
by Michael Billington

Dec. 17—Although the majority of the Asian nations
have clearly rejected President Obama’s insane
demand for military confrontation with China, which
he pushed during his November trip to Asia, the wouldbe
dictator has won a few adherents to his war policy.
On Dec. 12, Philippine President Benigno “Noynoy”
Aquino, took steps to prepare the nation’s paltry armed
forces for a military engagement with China over contested
islands in the South China Sea—a move which
is militarily absurd, but openly positions the Philippines
as a U.S. asset (and target) in Obama’s planned
war with China.
Meanwhile, the secretary general of Japan’s opposition
Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), Nobuteru Ishihara,
speaking at the right-wing Hoover Institution in
Washington, called for Japan to build military bases on
the Senkaku Islands, contested by Japan and China, in
the East China Sea, threatening to rekindle tensions between
the two Asian powerhouses.
This follows Obama’s announcement during his
stop in Australia last month, that extensive U.S. Air
Force and Naval capacities are being introduced into a
new U.S. military facility in Darwin, out of range of
Chinese ballistic missiles. In addition, Singapore has
agreed to allow the U.S. to “station several of our
newest littoral combat ships at Singapore’s naval facility,”
according to the chief of U.S. Naval Operations,
Adm. Jonathan Greenert. Greenert said that
the ships would focus on the South China Sea, the
site of conflict between China and several other nations,
regarding sovereignty over various islands
and raw material rights. Greenert added: “Similarly,
2025 may see P-8A Poseidon aircraft or unmanned
broad area maritime surveillance aerial vehicles periodically
deploy to the Philippines or Thailand to
help those nations with maritime domain awareness.”
The “Ring around China” policy, long the dream of
the neo-conservative China-hawks in the Bush/Cheney
Administration, is being implemented by British puppet
Obama as part of his global war plan.
The Japan That Says Yes to Obama
The call by the LDP’s Ishihara for Japan to build
military bases on the Senkaku Islands (called the
Diaoyu Islands by China) is very much in keeping with
the racist anti-China sentiment of famous father, Shintaro
Ishihara, the Governor of Tokyo since 1999.
Known as the spokesman for the right-wing resurgence
in Japan, the governor was the co-author with Sony
chairman Akio Morita of The Japan That Can Say No,
promoting Japanese cultural superiority, and calling for
a break from U.S. domination of Japan. Now, with a
British asset in power in Washington, Ishihara is ready
to say “yes.”
Son Nobuteru, whose LDP governed Japan for half
a century, until its defeat in the 2009 election, has called
for building Japanese military bases on the contested
islands in the East China Sea. In the Nov. 14 Hoover
Institution speech, Ishihara said, “I further believe that
we must seriously begin contemplating the establishment
of a permanent post for the Self-Defense Force”
in the Senkaku Islands. He said China has become “assertive,
one may even say aggressive. Emboldened by
its new economic weight and growing military might,
China’s proclamations of its ‘peaceful rise’ appear more
and more at odds with the emerging reality.”
Nobuteru also announced during his visit to Washington
that he is preparing to run for the presidency of
the LDP. He met with many senior Administration and
Congressional figures while in Washington, parading
his belligerence towards China as a credential for U.S.
support for his bid to run the LDP, and potentially the
Japanese government.
Aquino: NerObama’s Clone
Philippine President Aquino played front-man for
Obama during the U.S. President’s Asia tour, by insist-
ing that China be denounced as an aggressor with respect
to the territorial issues in the South China Sea, in
the various Asian conferences which Obama attended.
On Dec. 12, at the inauguration of a newly appointed
chief of staff of the Philippine Armed Forces, Aquino
announced a military mobilization against China. “We
need to prepare for external challenges,” Aquino blustered.
“There are claimants to territories that are clearly
ours. If before, the focus of the Armed Forces was on
internal threats such as the MILF [Moro Islamic Liberation
Front] and the New People’s Army [communist
insurgents], now we have to prepare for external challenges.”
This is in keeping with Obama’s pronouncement
during his Asia tour that the “counter-insurgency
wars” of Iraq and Afghanistan were being superceded
by the large-scale war plans needed for confrontation
with China. This is known as the “Air-Sea Battle”
strategy, recently adopted by Obama to prepare for his
war (on behalf of the British Empire) against Russia
and China.
Noynoy Aquino is the son of former puppet President
Cory Aquino (1986-92), who was placed in office
by U.S. Secretary of State George Shultz and his Deputy
Paul Wolfowitz, after running the so-called “People’s
Power” coup against Ferdinand Marcos in 1986. Cory
Aquinto obediently shut down the industrial and agricultural
policies implemented under Marcos, including
the first nuclear power plant in Southeast
Asia; her polices caused the collapse
of the nation which continues
In addition to declaring the Philippines
to be a launching pad for the
U.S. military campaign against
China, Noynoy also demonstrated
that he is trying to beat Obama to the
punch in creating dictatorships in
their respective nations.
On the same day as his declaration
against China, Aquino (1) declared
war against the Catholic
Church, perhaps the most influential
institution in the largely Catholic
nation; and (2) initiated impeachment
proceedings against the Chief
Justice of the Supreme Court, to
finish off the “separation of powers”
in the (American-modelled) Philippine
While announcing his war mobilization against
China, Aquino simultaneously boycotted the installation
of Bishop Luis Antonio Tagle as the new Archbishop
of Manila. Another influential Archbishop,
Ramon Arquelles, said of the boycott: “The absence of
the President for the very first time in the history of the
Philippines was very conspicious. He snubbed the most
important religious group in the country.”
It is of crucial importance that the Church has mobilized
massive opposition to a population-reduction bill
known as the “Reproductive Health Bill,” which is virtually
the only issue Aquino sponsored during his years
in the Senate, before following his mother into the Presidency
on behalf of the same foreign financial interests
who ran her administration, and virtually all subsequent
Philippine governments.
Assault on the Court
Even more blatant is Aquino’s assault on the Supreme
Court. Chief Justice Renato Corona, a former
top aide to former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo
(2001-10), is accused of being overly partial to his
former boss in judicial proceedings against her by the
Aquino Administration. In particular, when Aquino attempted
to prevent Arroyo from leaving the country to
receive medical care, the Supreme Court ruled against
him. Aquino disregarded the Court’s ruling, and depolitekon.
Philippines President Aquino (right) is one of the few Asian leaders to join Obama’s
“Ring around China” policy; he is also mimicking the U.S. President’s dictatorial
ambitions. The two are shown here at the ASEAN-U.S. summit in New York,
September 2010.
40 International EIR December 23, 2011
tained the former President when she tried to leave,
spitting in the face of the Supreme Court’s Constitutional
The Philippine House of Representatives, controlled
by Aquino’s party, impeached Chief Justice
Corona on Dec. 12, and the Senate was sworn in to try
the impeachment over the coming weeks. Corona,
speaking on the steps of the Supreme Court, called
Aquino a would-be dictator: “If this impeachment
succeeds, what will happen? Mr. Aquino already has
his cabinet, he controls the Congress, and he will
have the Supreme Court in his hands. What he is
sowing will surely yield a dictatorship—a dictatorship
that results from deception and the poisoning of
the minds of the people. I will resist the emerging
dictatorship of President Benigno Simeon Aquino
Corona added, “The real objective is to destroy the
judiciary, destroy democracy and impose the will of the
‘beloved king.’ ” Several Filipino commentators have
compared Aquino’s actions to those of Adolf Hitler in
destroying the only checks and balances to his personal
absolute power. The Philippine LaRouche Society has
prepared a poster of Aquino modelled on the now
world-famous LaRouchePAC poster of Obama sporting
a Hitler mustache.
Aquino’s Justice Secretary Leila de Lima, asked
how she could order the detention of Arroyo, in violation
of the Court’s ruling, responded that the Constitution
must be considered “fluid”—as in Alice in Wonderland,
words and institutions can mean whatever they
want them to mean.
De Lima went even further following the impeachment
of Corona, declaring that any Justice who defended
the Chief Justice would face the possibility of
While it is true that former President Arroyo was
wildly corrupt, fixed elections, and packed the Supreme
Court with faithful allies, Aquino is lying when he
claims that his actions against her are based solely on
considerations of justice. As Philippine LaRouche
Movement chairman Butch Valdes has suggested,
Aquino may have made a deal with Arroyo before the
elections to prevent or delay criminal prosecutions
against her and her family in exchange for her control
of the electoral process to allow his victory in the Presidential
elections of 2010.
Aquino protected Arroyo for over a year, but when
the Supreme Court ruled that the massive feudal estate
known as Hacienda Lucita, owned by the Aquino
family (including Noynoy and his mother Cory), must
finally live up to the land-reform laws requiring them to
make the land available for sale to the peasants who
worked on it, this was too much for the Aquino feudal
blood. The assault on the Supreme Court was then unleashed.
It is ironic, if not surprising, that the Ishihara family,
which favors restoring feudal relations in Japan, and
joining Obama in precipitating a nuclear confrontation
with China, is famously close to the Aquino family in
the Philippines.
Impeach Obama—and Aquino?
Lyndon LaRouche has insisted that the current
total collapse of the Western financial system in
Europe and the U.S., and Obama’s mad dash for war
against Russia and China, can only be stopped with the
removal of Barack Obama from office through impeachment
or other Constitutional means. There are
those in the Philippines who recognize that the potential
for the nation to contribute to the Great Pacific Alliance—
the alliance of Russia, China, and the U.S.
under post-Obama leadership, to join forces in replacing
the bankrupt global financial system with a credit
system to facilitate great infrastructure development
as joint endeavors of the Pacific nations—will require
removing Aquino from office through Constitutional
The bishops who have battled Aquino over his population
control bill are also speaking out in regard to his
effort to assert a dictatorship in the Philippines. A
member of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the
Philippines, Deogracias Iniguez, has warned that the
next high official to face impeachment could be President
Aquino, once it is proven that he is employing a
dictatorial style in running the government.
Biship Arguelles said that Aquino’s impeachment of
the Chief Justice will fail, because many sectors of society
will oppose dictatorial rule, and he doubts if the
military would throw its support to him.
It is crucial for those opposing the dictatorial policies
of Aquino that they also identify the most drastic
aspect of this policy as Aquino’s subservience to President
Obama’s insane push for global war, and work
with those internationally who are fighting this threat to
the survival of civilization.