Trump May Push, but Pakistan Won’t Budge

 Re-Blogged From Stratfor

The new year has brought renewed troubles for the already faltering relationship between the United States and Pakistan. On New Year’s Day, U.S. President Donald Trump issued a tweet accusing Pakistan of “lies & deceit” despite receiving $33 billion in U.S. aid for its cooperation in the war in Afghanistan. The next day, the White House announced that it would continue to withhold the $255 million worth of aid that had been earmarked for Pakistan in 2016, citing insufficient action against anti-NATO militants. And on Jan. 4, the White House said it would suspend $900 million in security assistance promised in 2017 and place Pakistan on a list of countries violating religious freedom.

A map shows Afghanistan, Pakistan and the surrounding region.
(LorenzoT81/iStock)
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Iranian Protesters Attack Police Stations, Raise Stakes in Unrest

By Michael Georgy – Re-Blogged From Reuters

Iranian protesters attacked police stations late into the night on Monday, news agency and social media reports said, as security forces struggled to contain the boldest challenge to the clerical leadership since unrest in 2009.

Videos on social media showed an intense clash in the central town of Qahderijan between security forces and protesters who were trying to occupy a police station, which was partially set ablaze. There were unconfirmed reports of several casualties among demonstrators.

In the western city of Kermanshah, protesters set fire to a traffic police post, but no one was hurt in the incident, Mehr news agency said.

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In Lebanon, Saudi Arabia Attempts the Impossible

Re-Blogged From https://worldview.stratfor.com

Highlights

  • In the regional competition between Saudi Arabia and Iran, Lebanon is the most recent proxy battleground.
  • Iran’s political and security connections in Lebanon mean Saudi Arabia will have a hard time countering its influence there.
  • Saudi Arabia can wield some financial tools to try to pressure Lebanon, but Iran has the means to cushion some of the impact.

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman

(FAYEZ NURELDINE/AFP/Getty Images)

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The Plan Comes Together?

By Bill Holter – Re-Blogged From http://www.Silver-Phoenix500.com

My original thought was to write further about the left turning on and eating each other. The volume of news, “who” and the timing seemed to indicate something very big coming down. However, another story broke out of the blue this morning from Saudi Arabia that supersedes (though very well may have connections to) the feeding frenzy.

Crowned Prince Mohammed bin Salman had 11 princes and 38 current and former senior officials arrested on corruption and money laundering charges. http://www.reuters.com. Prince Alwaleed bin Talal being the most notable arrested. The thought process of “why” becomes scattered after the initial and obvious thought MBS is consolidating his power after being named as next in line back in June.

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Prospects For Gold Price

By Hugo Salinas Price – Re-Blogged From http://www.Gold-Eagle.com

The Chinese have announced that they have perfected a scheme, to be launched formally in the market by the end of the year, by means of which exporters of oil to China will accept the Chinese currency, the Yuan, in payment for the oil; for this deal, the Chinese have added an incentive: the Yuan received by the oil exporters will be exchangeable for gold. This gold will be “sourced” i.e. “purchased” outside of China, for the oil exporters.

Thus, the oil exporters’ Yuan will be offered in payment to the so-called “Bullion Banks” in London, who will provide the gold in exchange for Yuan.

We know that this much is part of the plan.

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Oil Rich Venezuela Stops Accepting Dollars

By Mark O’Byrne – Re-Blogged From http://www.Silver-PHoenix500.com

  • President Maduro ‘ Venezuela will create a basket of currencies to free us from the dollar,”
  • Oil traders ordered to stop accepting U.S. dollar in exchange for crude oil
  • Order comes following calls from Russia and China to find alternatives to current reserve system
  • U.S. Dollar accounts for two-thirds of global trade
  • Venezuela has over ten-times more oil than United States
  • Super powers are gradually turning to gold to avoid using world’s main reserve currency
  • Are we seeing the beginning of the end for the U.S. dollar?

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Outlook For The Dollar Price Of Gold

By Alasdair Macleod – Re-Blogged From http://www.Gold-Eagle.com

Now that gold has become overbought on Comex, the price is vulnerable to being trashed, yet again, by the too-big-to-fail banks. It is a familiar operation in gold futures markets, where speculators buying contracts protect themselves with stop-losses. All the TBTF banks need is a pause in the speculator’s buying and a little good news (bad for gold). Ideally, the active contract will be running into maturity, so the speculators are forced to put up or shut up: in other words, sell the contract, roll it into another later maturity, or stand for delivery.

Bearing in mind these speculators are running highly leveraged positions, greed turns to fear on a sixpence. The TBTF banks will have supplied the speculators with their longs by going short. From the moment you go long, you are trapped in a trader’s version of Hotel California.

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