Tag Archives: refugees

The Euro Crisis Is Only Just Beginning, by Harry Dent

From Harry Dent at davidstockmanscontracorner.com:

I’ve been shocked over how much QE and stimulus the central banks have signed on for in the last seven years, but they’re finally starting to reach their limit.

The U.S. already did in 2014 when the Fed finally tapered. And this week, the markets are betting on a rate hike – never mind the trouble brewing in China, other emerging markets, and now Europe.

Good luck with that.

There’s just too much going on in the world suggesting deflation is the real fear, yet the Fed’s betting on 2% inflation to justify a hike. Give me a break!

There’s a reason the Fed has put off raising rates time and time again, and it hasn’t gone anywhere.

The fall in commodities prices is nowhere near its conclusion. That will only continue to ravage emerging nations as those prices continue to fall for several years.

And now Europe has its own troubles that are only getting worse… and could potentially signal the end of the euro and the economic bloc itself.

Recently I explained why the attacks on Paris were such a major issue. It was like the 9/11 wake-up call over here. Sure, our attack was larger. But Europe’s came after the recent terrorist attack on Charlie Hebdo, and while a massive refugee crisis was already calling everything into question.

This recent escalation in terrorist events, including the Russian Metrojet being bombed, only creates an atmosphere within the euro zone of individual nations re-asserting their own sovereignty over one another. And that includes controlling their own borders and trade flows.

That’s been the major flaw of the euro and the euro zone from the beginning.

These very diverse nations with long histories of shifting alliances and wars don’t really trust each other – they never did. And they’d never fully submit to a fiscal and political union. Greater trade and migration flows were just fine – until something went wrong. Something like the Paris attacks… Russian aggression in the Ukraine…

Or 800,000-plus refugees from Syria and the Middle East, with three million or more still expected to come.

It’s a giant mess! And the refugee crisis specifically is a huge expense to the many European nations accepting them, all while they’re teetering on the verge of recession again.

To continue reading: The Euro Crisis is Only Just Beginning

See also: Europe Is Toast, SLL, 12/2/15


FT Bombshell: EU Unveils Standing Border Force That Will Act “Even If A Government Objects” by Tyler Durden

As SLL recently said, Europe Is Toast. From Tyler Durden at zerohedge.com:

Last weekend we wrote that in Europe’s attempt to contain the greatest refugee crisis since WWII, it would directly take control over the border control of the one country which over the summer lost its sovereignty (but at least it still has the euro), and which serves as a springboard for tens of thousands of migrants to proceed onward with their journey to Germany (where as reported earlier, they are no longer desired, as their continued arrival results in a plunging approval rating for Angela Merkel).

We added that the deployment of additional officers will begin next week, and noted that as our friends at Keep Talking Greece wrote:

“the masks have fallen. Hand in hand, the European Union and the Frontex want to cancel national sovereignty and take over border controls in the pretext of “safeguarding the Schengen borders”. With controversial claims, they use the case of Greece to create an example that could soon happen “in the border area near you.” And the plan is all German.”

Finally, we asked whether this was merely Paranoia…

“or just another confirmation that the Eurozone is using every incremental, and produced, crisis to cement its power over discrete European state sovereignty and wipe out the cultural and religious borders the prevent the amalgamation of Europe into a Brussels, Berlin and Frankfurt-controlled superstate? “

It was not paranoia, because according to blockbuster FT report released moments ago, “Brussels is to propose the creation of a standing European border force that could take control of the bloc’s external frontiers — even if a government objected.”

As even the otherwise pro-EU FT cautiously notes, “The move would arguably represent the biggest transfer of sovereignty since the creation of the single currency.”

We agree, because this is precisely what we said would happen.

… the European Commission will unveil plans next week to replace the Frontex border agency with a permanent border force and coastguard — deployed with the final say of the commission, according to EU officials and documents seen by the Financial Times.

The blueprint represents a last-ditch attempt to save the Schengen passport-free travel zone, by introducing the kind of common border policing repeatedly demanded by Paris and Berlin. Britain and Ireland have opt-outs from EU migration policy, and would not be obliged to take part in the scheme.

Naturally, the first guniea pig wil be Greece: the state which has already lost its sovereignty courtesy of capital controls that will likely persist in some form in perpetuity, and which is most distressed and thus least equipped to say no. It will spread from there and promptly become the norm for a “project” which the European apparatchiks think is long overdue.

Indeed, as the FT adds, “European leaders have discussed a common border force for more than 15 years, but always struggled to overcome deep-seated objections to yielding national powers to monitor or enforce borders — one of the core functions of a sovereign state. Greece, for instance, only recently agreed to accept EU offers to send border teams, after months of wrangling over their remit.”

To continue reading: EU Unveils Standing Border Force



Greece Is A Nation Under Occupation, by Raúl Ilargi Meijer

From Raúl Ilargi Meijer at automaticearth.com:

Perhaps the best way to show what a mess Europe is in is the €3 billion deal they made with Turkey head Erdogan, only to see him being unmasked by EU archenemy Vlad Putin as a major supporter, financial and who knows how else, of the very group everyone’s so eager to bomb the heebees out after Paris. It could hardly have been more fitting. That’s not egg on your face, that’s face on your egg.

But Brussels thinks it’s found a whipping boy for all its failures. Greece. It’s fast increasing its accusations against Athens’ handling of the 100s of 1000s of refugees flooding the country. Everything that goes wrong is the fault of Greece, not Brussels. The EU has so far given Greece €30 million in ‘assistance’ for the refugee crisis, while the country has spent over €1.5 billion in money it desperately needs for its own people. But somehow it’s still not done enough.

The justification given for this insane shortfall is that Greece doesn’t blindly follow all orders emanating from Europe’s ‘leaders’. Orders such as setting up a joint patrol of the Aegean seas with … yes, Erdogan’s Turkey. Where Greece gets next to nothing as the children keep drowning, Turkey gets €3 billion and a half-baked promise to join the Union sometime in the future.

Which was never going to happen, the EU would blow up before Turkey joins and certainly if it does, and most certainly now that Russia’s busy detailing the link between the Erdogan cabal and Europe’s supposed new archenemies -move over Putin?!, which, incidentally, are reason for France to ponder a kind of permanent state of emergency; ostensibly, this is Hollande’s way of exuding confidence. ‘We must protect our way of life’.

Given Schengen -while it lasts-, which effectively erases all frontiers, this de facto means permanent emergency across the entire EU. And that, to a degree, though the two may seem unrelated, plays into the EU’s insistence to station foreign border guards (military police) at Greek borders. A, we can’t put it in different words, completely insane demand to which Alexis Tsipras’ government has apparently even acceded.

Insane because once you have foreigners deciding who can enter or leave your country, you’re effectively a country under occupation. It really is that simple. This latest attempt at power grabbing on the part of Brussels could have some ‘unexpected side effects’, though. And that may be a good thing.

To continue reading: Greece Is A Nation Under Occupation

The United States Is in the Refugee-Creation Business, by Shane Smith

From Shane Smith at antiwar.com:

Most of us in the United States have a vague awareness of a Second Iraq War. There was invasion, devastation, death, “victory”, and the catharsis that seemed to flood over the nation after the lynching of a Third World dictator. Satiated revenge, finally, for 9/11, was the implicit mood of many. Even after enough people shouted that Iraq had nothing to do with the attacks on the Twin Towers, there still remained the belief that that war just had to happen. Saddam had to go, because he was a bad guy, because he murdered his own people, et cetera. Regardless of rationalizations after the fact, the 2003 Iraq War was an act of nationalistic revenge. As was Afghanistan. There was an attitude that we were entitled to our own bloodbath, since one had been visited upon us. The attackers died in their attack, so no one was left in our immediate vicinity to quench our bloodthirst. The Iraq War solved that problem, at least temporarily. But while many are aware of the war, and aware of Saddam’s broken neck, few care about what really happened since the invasion, and what negative consequences may have arisen because of the invasion.

The reality of what happened has been the total destruction of Iraq as anything resembling a nation. The Iraq War has been directly responsible for the displacement of 3.5 million to 5 million or more Iraqis, according to MIT’s Iraq: the Human Cost. These are lives that, while not snuffed out, have been completely destroyed by the disintegration of Iraqi society following the invasion. The Iraqi refugees spread out to neighboring states, like Jordan and Syria, but since the U.S.-backed destabilization of Syria, the Iraqis were forced to find a new refuge. Iraq was indeed Ground Zero for the beginning of the refugee crisis, as Al Jazeera correspondent, Imran Khan, noted in a September 5th column:

“What no one talks about is the invasion and occupation of Iraq…

March 2003 was the pivotal point. Based on controversial evidence that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction (WMD), the war drums beat loudly.

What the Iraq war did was allow space for anger at the unjustified actions of the Western coalition to be moulded into a hardline movement of fighters who would join al-Qaeda in Iraq and other groups.

Before the September 11, 2001 attacks on the World Trade Centre in New York, radical and violent movements were tiny in number. Al-Qaeda and Osama bin Laden were the only real threat.”

Ignoring the self-evident long-term consequences of an Iraq invasion has proven costly.

To continue reading: The United States Is in the Refugee-Creation Business

Europe Is Toast, by Robert Gore

The United Nations Climate Change Conference (UNCCC) will someday be regarded as the spire placed atop a towering edifice of mendacity and hubris. It will momentarily reward the vanity of those who built it, but it will seem as out of place with the time and events that followed as the newly constructed Empire State Building must have seemed to New Yorkers during the depths of the Great Depression. While the aspirational quality of the Empire State Building was incongruous with the bleak Depression, at least that building contributed, and continues to contribute, to human well-being, and its soaring lines remains aspirational. The figurative UNCCC tower is like the Dark Tower in Lord of the Rings, an obsidian monument to the nether regions of the human soul, erected on a foundation that will eventually crumble.

It is ironic that the UNCCC is being held in Paris, a font of European civilization, a little over two weeks after terrorists plunged the city into chaos and bloodshed. Participants will congratulate themselves for—among many self-evident virtues—their intrepid refusal to submit to fear, neither canceling nor moving the conference, thus denying terrorism a symbolic victory. Only a curmudgeon would point out the incongruity: a gathering of egos and powers who believe they can control the world and its climate contrasted to the recent carnage, yet another demonstration of their impotence.

The command and control paradigm is being stretched to its breaking point everywhere, no place more than Europe. The continent’s intellectual elite has always looked with condescension on the American “fetish” for individual rights and liberty. Europe is the birthplace of Marxism, welfare-statism, National Socialism, Fascism, and Keynesianism. Whatever the “free trade zone” rhetoric that attended the establishment of the European Union, it was envisioned by its originators as the gateway to pan-European supranational governance.

After World War II, Europe’s non-Warsaw Pact nations made a Faustian bargain: under NATO they would outsource their defense to the US, but give up much of their autonomy in foreign and military affairs. With minimal defense spending, the European nations funded lavish welfare states. Economies were extensively regulated by national governments, and the European Union evolved into another set of bureaucrats promulgating rules. Labor regulations are particularly stultifying, making it difficult and expensive for companies to reorganize, close money-losing operations, and fire unnecessary or unproductive workers. Trend growth rates in Europe have been below those of the US and Asia. Notwithstanding the implicit US defense subsidy, many European nations run deficits and their ratios of debt to GDP have steadily climbed.

Most European nations have played a subsidiary role in the US’s war on terror. Even those that have refused to join the US have not publicly opposed it. Unfortunately for Europe, its history—from the Crusades to its acquiescence to US intervention—puts it in Islamist crosshairs. Hatred of Europe runs as deep as hatred of the US, with a special animus for the French, British, and Russians. They carved up the region for their own advantage after World War I and share a legacy of colonialism and backing corrupt puppet regimes.

Even before the latest refugee influx, many European nations had substantial Islamic populations. The percentages will inexorably grow; Muslims have far higher birthrates than native Europeans. The debt burdens, regulatory strangulation, and welfare state benefits that have driven youth unemployment rates above 50 percent in some countries have also kept many Muslims, young and old, out of the labor force, on the dole, and living in ghettos. This is not a recipe for satisfaction. Resentment has been magnified by the tendency of many of the migrants to reject assimilation and to embrace violent and often apocalyptic Islamic ideologies. The swelling flood of refugees fleeing lands that have been made uninhabitable by war and chaos stoked by US and Europe intervention, some attracted by welfare state benefits, some vowing jihad, throws nitroglycerin on the fire.

Leaders of countries who are—confronted with slow-to-no-growth economies plagued by debt, unemployment, regulatory overkill, and unaffordable benefits; playing host to hundreds of thousands of Muslim refugees joining combustible local Muslim populations and placing further demands on already strained-to-the-breaking-point immigration, police (not all of the immigrants are law-abiding), and social services; faced with the understandable and increasingly virulent backlash all this engenders—will somehow solve the problem of global climate change, a problem for which it has not been established that humanity is the cause nor that it can be the solution. Sure they will. Long before the polar ice caps melt, coastal regions submerge, and equatorial regions become uninhabitable frying pans—if any of these things ever occur—the continent as we know it will collapse. Europe is toast.

These so-called leaders have met the looming disasters (and there will be a multiplicity) with politically correct gobbledygook orchestrated by the continent’s preeminence, Angela Merkel. Big-hearted Europe can open its borders and wallets to the refugees. (It can’t; it’s bankrupt and there are millions more coming.) They’re here to work, not soak up benefits. (Some are, but even those who want to work find it tough sledding in Europe’s sclerotic economies.) They are refugees, not terrorists (True of many, but not all, and it only took a few to wreak havoc in Paris. One does not have to accept Matthew Bracken’s nightmare scenario to concede that an appreciable percentage of refugees pose a danger.) In the long run, they will assimilate and become part of Europe’s rich and diverse culture. (Who knows? In the short run, thugs among them are robbing, beating, raping, murdering, and otherwise terrorizing local populations.)

Europe has no monopoly on hubris, ideology-induced myopia, and grandiose visions detached from reality. The American representative at the UNCCC is, after all, Barack Obama. While an ocean physically separates Europe and America, they are next-door neighbors philosophically. The US is following European footsteps: intervening in the Middle East and its historic enmities and conflicts, inserting itself in myriad unsavory machinations and intrigues, and establishing ostensible puppets that invariably end up pulling the strings of their supposed puppet masters. The US marches down Europe’s ruinous economic path as well.

There is a point of no return, when the consequences of actions taken pursuant to fallacy, pretension, and venality overwhelm those who have taken them. Europe has passed that point—its fate is sealed—and fences, walls, lock downs, identity cards, surveillance, segregation, deportation, and military retaliation will not shut the Pandora’s box of evils it has opened on itself. There is no assurance that if the US leaves the Middle East and Northern Africa the flow of refugees will abate or the threat of terrorism diminish, although those outcomes are quite plausible. However, the status quo guarantees escalation, and guarantees that the US will eventually share Europe’s fate.


TGP_photo 2 FB




Sweden: “No Apartments, No Jobs, No Shopping Without A Gun” by Ingrid Carlqvist

From Ingrid Carlqvist of the Gatestone Institute via theburningplatform.com:

• The Swedes see the welfare systems failing them. Swedes have had to get used to the government prioritizing refugees and migrants above native Swedes.
“There are no apartments, no jobs, we don’t dare go shopping anymore [without a gun], but we’re supposed to think everything’s great. … Women and girls are raped by these non-European men, who come here claiming they are unaccompanied children, even though they are grown men. … You Cabinet Ministers live in your fancy residential neighborhoods, with only Swedish neighbors. It should be obligatory for all politicians to live for at least three months in an area consisting mostly of immigrants… [and] have to use public transport.” — Laila, to the Prime Minister.
• “Instead of torchlight processions against racism, we need a Prime Minister who speaks out against the violence… Unite everyone. … Do not make it a racism thing.” — Anders, to the Prime Minister.
“In all honesty, I don’t even feel they [government ministers] see the problems… There is no one in those meetings who can tell them what real life looks like.” – Laila, on the response she received from the government.

The week after the double murder at IKEA in Västerås, where a man from Eritrea who had been denied asylum grabbed some knives and stabbed Carola and Emil Herlin to death, letters and emails poured into the offices of Swedish Prime Minister (PM) Stefan Löfven. Angry, despondent and desperate Swedes have pled with the Social Democratic PM to stop filling the country with criminal migrants from the Third World or, they write, there is a serious risk of hatred running rampant in Sweden. One woman suggested that because the Swedish media will not address these issues, Löfven should start reading foreign newspapers, and wake up to the fact that Sweden is sinking fast.

During the last few decades, Swedes have had to get used to the government (left and right wing parties alike) prioritizing refugees and migrants above native Swedes. The high tax level (the average worker pays 42% income tax) was been accepted in the past, because people knew that if they got sick, or when they retired or otherwise needed government aid, they would get it.

Now, Swedes see the welfare system failing them. More and more senior citizens fall into the “indigent” category; close to 800,000 of Sweden’s 2.1 million retirees, despite having worked their whole lives, are forced to live on between 4,500 and 5,500 kronor ($545 – $665) a month. Meanwhile, seniors who immigrate to Sweden receive the so-called “elderly support subsidy” — usually a higher amount — even though they have never paid any taxes in Sweden.

Worse, in 2013 the government decided that people staying in the country illegally have a right to virtually free health and dental care. So while the destitute Swedish senior citizen must choose between paying 100,000 kronor ($12,000) to get new teeth or living toothless, a person who does not even have the right to stay in Sweden can get his teeth fixed for 50 kronor ($6).

The injustice, the housing shortage, the chaos surrounding refugee housing units and the sharp slide of Swedish students in PISA tests — all these changes have caused the Swedes to become disillusioned. The last straw was that Prime Minister Löfven had nothing to say about the murders at IKEA.

Gatestone Institute contacted to the Swedish government, to obtain emails sent to the Prime Minister concerning the IKEA murders. According to the “principle of public access to official documents,” all Swedes have the right to study public documents kept by authorities — with no questions asked about one’s identity or purpose. The government, however, was clearly less than enthusiastic about sharing the emails: It took a full month of reminders and phone calls before they complied with the request.

What follows are excerpts from emails sent from private citizens to Prime Minister Stefan Löfven:

To continue reading: Sweden: “No Apartments, No Jobs, No Shopping Without A Gun”

The Impulsiveness of US Power, by Paul Craig Roberts

From Paul Craig Roberts, on a guest post on theburningplatform.com:

Washington’s impulsive use of power is a danger to America and to the world. Arrogant Washington politicians and crazed neoconservatives are screaming that the US must shoot down Russian aircraft that are operating against the US-supplied forces that have brought death and destruction to Syria, unleashing millions of refugees on Europe, in Washington’s effort to overthrow the Syrian government.

Even my former CSIS colleague, Zbigniew Brzezinski, normally a sensible if sometimes misguided person, has written in the Financial Times that Washington should deliver an ultimatum to Russia to “cease and desist from military actions that directly affect American assets.” By “American assets,” Brzezinski means the jihadist forces that Washington has sicced on Syria. http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article43059.htm

Brzezinski’s claim that “Russia must work with, not against, the US in Syria” is false. The fact of the matter is that “the US must work with, not against Russia in Syria,” as Russia controls the situation, is in accordance with international law, and is doing the right thing.

Ash Carter, the US Secretary for War, repeats Brzezinski’s demand. He declared that Washington is not prepared to cooperate with Russia’s “tragically flawed” and “mistaken strategy” that frustrates Washington’s illegal attempt to overthrow the Syrian government with military violence. http://www.theguardian.com/world/video/2015/oct/07/ash-carter-russia-us-syria-airstrikes-video

Washington’s position is that only Washington decides and that Washington intends to unleash yet more chaos on the world in the hope that it reaches Russia.

I guess no one in hubristic and arrogant Washington was listening when Putin said in his UN speech on September 28: “We can no longer tolerate the state of affairs in the world.”

The intolerable state of affairs is the chaos that Washington has brought to the Middle East, chaos that threatens to expand into all countries with Muslim populations, and chaos from which millions of refugees are flooding into Europe.

To continue reading: The Impulsiveness of US Power