Posts Tagged With: oil

A Possible Coup in Saudi Arabia Signals the End of US Dominance in the Mideast……


If Saudi Arabia didn’t already have enough worries in a fast-changing Middle East, yet another crisis hit home for the desert kingdom: alleged hospitalization of King Salman, thought to have Alzheimer’s disease or some form of dementia. He only assumed the throne in January.

While the 79-year-old monarch’s hospital stay surprised many in the West, the question global affairs and security analysts ask is: What might the future look like for Saudi Arabia now that the controversial king is sidelined? Will the rest of the royal family accept and allow Crown Prince Muhammad bin Nayef to lead? Or will the kingdom’s royal family see division within the ranks?
These events could coalesce into a major political storm, significantly increasing the risk of instability not only within the kingdom but across the greater, strife-torn Middle East (if that’s even possible).

This turn of events comes on the heels of shocking news. London’s Guardian credits claims by an anonymous Saudi prince who states that two letters have circulated among senior members of the royal family encouraging them to stage a coup against King Salman. The rationale is the king and his powerful 30-year-old son, Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, have pursued dangerous policies that are leading the kingdom to political, economic and military ruin. Disclosure of these memos raises serious concerns. I find myself recalling the assassination of King Faisal in 1975.

Should royal infighting reveal itself to the outside world, it’ll mark the start of the end for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as we know it. Far-reaching consequences will resound not only economically and politically but religiously and geopolitically. How?

War in Yemen: The kingdom finds itself entangled in a conflict with a next-door neighbor with no end in sight. King Salman and his son miscalculated. The longer Saudi forces continue to engage the Houthis, the more likely internal dissension within the kingdom itself grows. Images broadcast on al-Jazeera show Saudi Arabia, an outrageously rich country, pummeling Yemen, one of the poorest in the Arab world. All this generates criticism of the Saudis and sympathy for Houthi rebels.

The driving force behind the kingdom’s engagement in Yemen is the king’s son, serving as defense minister, who wants to show the world that, despite his youth, he can make tough calls. However, his actions in Yemen thus far demonstrate his reckless approach to international affairs, lack of experience and the absence of an exit strategy, leading to mounting costs for the kingdom in blood and treasure and growing international criticism.

Economic chaos: The drop in oil prices by more than 50 percent the past year is sending the kingdom’s economy into a tailspin. Thinking among Saudi elites was to (a) maintain the kingdom’s level of global oil production; (b) fight for its global market share; and (c) allow oil prices to collapse. Theoretically, this would eventually drive the competition — especially the United States — out of the energy business, paving the way for a subsequent return to higher oil prices. But the strategy proved to be ill-conceived. The result is the kingdom’s deficit approaching 20 percent — more than $100 billion. This outcome compels the kingdom to deplete its huge foreign exchange reserves at a record rate (about $12 billion per month).

Tension with Iran: While Saudi Arabia is home to Islam’s two holiest sites (Mecca and Medina), the latest tragedy — a stampede at the Hajj in Mecca that resulted in the deaths of at least 239 Iranian pilgrims (among many others) — has only fueled tensions between Iran and the kingdom. The two were already crossways over the nuclear issue and Iran’s destabilizing activities throughout the region. In addition, both countries are fighting through their proxies in Syria and Yemen.

I’ll argue Russia’s military intervention in Syria has escalated the political tensions to higher level. Of interest is the Iranian-Russian military coalition to keep the Assad regime in power and battle rebels that the kingdom and the United States support. Recently, Saudi Arabia shipped 500 TOW antitank missiles to the Free Syrian Army (FSA). These missiles, unlike other projectiles such as RPGs can be used from significant distance. This support, however, would not change the outcome.

Where from here? Russia’s airstrikes in Syria underscore a broader threat to the kingdom: Put all the problems together and Saudi Arabia, more than ever, looks politically vulnerable. Its dependence on the United States for its survival the last 70 years seems to be near an end. The United States is no longer in position to play its traditional role as the only guarantor of Middle East stability. One can only imagine the scenario in which the house of Al-Saud is forced to relinquish power to another entity from within that does not share Washington’s aspirations and/or agenda. That means our next president will face one more serious geopolitical headache: an unstable Saudi Arabia, the world’s largest exporter of oil, site of Islam’s holiest sites and a country equally bountiful in advanced American weapons and very angry Wahabi Sunni Muslims.

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The “Accomplishments” of Obama…read and weep….


Quit trashing Obama’s accomplishments. He has done more than any other President before him.

He has an impressive list of accomplishments:

First President to apply for college aid as a foreign student, then deny he was a foreigner.

First President to have a social security number from a state he has never lived in.

First President to preside over a cut to the credit-rating of the United States .

First President to violate the War Powers Act.

First President to be held in contempt of court for illegally obstructing oil drilling in the Gulf of Mexico .

First President to require all Americans to purchase a product from a third party.

First President to spend a trillion dollars on “shovel-ready” jobs when there was no such thing as “shovel-ready” jobs.

First President to abrogate bankruptcy law to turn over control of companies to his union supporters.

First President to by-pass Congress and implement the Dream Act through executive fiat.

First President to order a secret amnesty program that stopped the deportation of illegal immigrants across the U.S. ,

including those with criminal convictions.

First President to demand a company hand-over $20 billion to one of his political appointees.

First President to tell a CEO of a major corporation (Chrysler) to resign.

First President to terminate America’s ability to put a man in space.

First President to cancel the National Day of Prayer and to say that America is no longer a Christian nation.

First President to have a law signed by an auto-pen without being present.

First President to arbitrarily declare an existing law unconstitutional and refuse to enforce it.

First President to threaten insurance companies if they publicly spoke out on the reasons for their rate increases.

First President to tell a major manufacturing company in which state it is allowed to locate a factory.

First President to file lawsuits against the states he swore an oath to protect (AZ, WI, OH, IN).

First President to withdraw an existing coal permit that had been properly issued years ago.

First President to actively try to bankrupt an American industry (coal).

First President to fire an inspector general of AmeriCorps for catching one of his friends in a corruption case.

First President to appoint 45 czars to replace elected officials in his office.

First President to surround himself with radical left wing anarchists.

First President to golf 73 separate times in his first two and a half years in office, 102 to date.

First President to hide his medical, educational and travel records.

First President to win a Nobel Peace Prize for doing NOTHING to earn it.

First President to go on multiple “global apology tours” and concurrent “insult our friends” tours.

First President to go on 17 lavish vacations, including date nights and Wednesday evening White House parties for his friends paid for by the taxpayers.

First President to have 22 personal servants (taxpayer funded) for his wife.

First President to keep a dog trainer on retainer for $102,000 a year at taxpayer expense.

First President to fly in a personal trainer from Chicago at least once a week at taxpayer expense.

First President to repeat the Holy Quran & tell us the early morning call of the Azan (Islamic call to worship) is the most beautiful sound on earth.

First President to tell the military men and women that they should pay for their own private insurance because they “volunteered

to go to war and knew the consequences.”

Then he was the First President to tell the members of the military that THEY were UNPATRIOTIC for balking at the last suggestion.

First President to side with a foreign nation over one of the American 50 states ( Mexico vs Arizona ).

How is this hope and change working out for you?

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FOUND! IRAN’S SECRET BALLISTIC MISSILE BASE


MISSILE BASE
SemnanMissileBase2
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The Badr base, a center for air defense which has about 50 underground missile silos housing Iran’s Shahab 3 ballistic missiles, serves as Iran’s second-largest missile-launching site, and is under the control of the Revolutionary Guards.
The base, in the deserts of Semnan far from any city, has many underground tunnels connecting to the silo launching pads, according to a source in the Revolutionary Guards intelligence unit.

The base’s command and control are connected to other bases in Noje, Hamdan, Shahid Doran in Shiraz and the country’s air traffic control centers in Tehran, Birjand and Bandar Abass.

Last year, the Revolutionary Guards aired footage on Iranian TV showing commanders along with a reporter travel via private jet to the base to observe a test launch of a Shahab 3 from an underground silo.
==========================================================================

MISSILE SILOUndergroundMissileSilo

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At that time, Brig. Gen. Amir Ali Hajizadeh, the commander of the Revolutionary Guards aerospace division, claimed that by placing the ballistic missiles in underground silos, the country is preparing for asymmetrical warfare, which will allow the country to stand up to more powerful enemies. Asymmetric warfare is war between belligerents whose relative military power differs significantly, or whose strategy or tactics differ significantly.
Hajizadeh last September warned Israel that the Islamic regime would launch a pre-emptive attack if it felt its enemies were preparing to attack Iran.

“We cannot imagine the Zionist regime starting a war without America’s support,” he said. “Therefore, in case of a war, we will get into a war with both of them and we will certainly get into a conflict with American bases. … In that case, unpredictable and unimaginable things would happen and it could turn into a World War III.”

The regime holds one of the largest ballistic missile arsenals in the Middle East and, as reported exclusively on WND, with the help of Russian and North Korean scientists, it has developed eight microbial agents, including anthrax, plague, smallpox and SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome), with some of the microbes genetically altered to leave the world defenseless against such an attack.

Iran has 170 missiles targeted at Tel Aviv from underground silos, some of which are armed with biological warheads, according to another source who served in Iran’s Intelligence Ministry and who recently defected.

The first source said the Semnan ballistic missile base is surrounded by many smaller bases that provide training to the support forces from the Badr and Khatamol Anbia brigades. The base and the surrounding bases also serve as the center for the regime’s aerospace activities, including the launches of Safir missiles that successfully placed satellites into orbit. Those launches are part of the intercontinental ballistic missile program.
Brig. Gen. Larimi commands the missile base, with Col. Ahmad Reza Azizi in charge of security and protection.

The Guards have mapped out an extensive list of U.S. bases in the Middle East to attack with their missiles in case of a confrontation over the regime’s illicit nuclear program, disrupting the movement of U.S. forces and the operation of the U.S. Air Force, which the Guards believe will be the main thrust of any attack by America.

In their preparations, the Guards have also drawn up plans to disrupt the oil flow from the Persian Gulf. They know that about 20 percent of the world’s oil and the majority of oil exports of eight countries in the Persian Gulf pass through the Strait of Hormuz, a narrow waterway that could be blocked by the regime’s forces.
The Semnan base, the source said, serves as a key role for that purpose with its capability to target Israel, U.S. military bases in the region and targets in the Persian Gulf.

The source warned that the regime will not give up its pursuit of the nuclear bomb and therefore is preparing for war and that the time wasted by meaningless negotiations has only empowered them with their preparations, which will engulf the region and collapse the global economy.

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North Korea EMP attack could destroy U.S. – right now!!….


‘Red Dawn’ scenario is kid’s play compared with this scenario.

North Korea now has an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) capable of delivering a nuclear weapon to the United States, as demonstrated by their successful launch and orbiting of a satellite on Dec. 12, the Washington Times reports.

In fact, the Times report says, “North Korea is a mortal nuclear threat to the United States – right now.”

It’s not just the threat of conventional nuclear attack that has experts worried. Nor is the North Korea invasion scenario in the new remake of “Red Dawn” a realistic risk.
The real concern is that North Korea now has miniaturized nuclear weapons for ballistic missile delivery and armed missiles with nuclear warheads that could destroy the U.S. in a single blow with an EMP attack that would send the U.S. back to 19th century technology a la the NBC TV show “Revolution.”

And North Korea is hardly the only threat to destroy what some other nations and rogue players call “the Great Satan.”

Imagine if all the lights in America went off – never to come back on again.

Imagine if all the computers in America got fried – never to come back on again.

Imagine if all the cars in America dependent on fancy circuitry wouldn’t start – ever again.

Imagine if the grocery stores and the gas stations had to close up – for good.

That’s the kind of scenario an EMP attack can cause. The scenarios suggest massive starvation, lawlessness and chaos beyond anything Americans can imagine.
Scientists and other experts have warned for years that the nation’s electrical grid system, together with other critical infrastructures that have an almost complete dependency on electricity and electronic components, are highly vulnerable to an electromagnetic pulse event, either from natural or man-made causes.

However, Congress and the administrations of previous and current presidents largely have ignored those warnings.

Events such as the September 11, 2001, terrorist attack on the United States, then the devastating Hurricane Katrina and more recently Hurricane Sandy revealed vulnerabilities to those infrastructures, for a time heightened that concern.

Nevertheless, none of this was enough to awaken policymakers who seem more preoccupied with making you less safe by restricting your ability to get firearms.

Make no mistake about it: An EMP attack poses the biggest threat to U.S. national and economic security in our lifetime.
An electromagnetic pulse attack on our critical infrastructures, either from an impending solar storm of serious intensity expected between 2012 and 2014 or from a high-altitude nuclear explosion, could have long-term catastrophic consequences for our society and our way of life.

A few years ago, a congressional commission went into considerable depth on those consequences to our electricity-dependent infrastructures that include not only the power grid itself but also telecommunications, our banking and finance system, our transportation system that delivers the very food and water on which our society depends on a daily basis, and the fuel needed to keep our houses warm in the winter and air-conditioned during the summer.

While these critical infrastructures continue to face such an impending crisis, Congress basically has ignored its own commission report and instead has treated the threat of an electromagnetic pulse event as a political football to be weighed against the need to establish an antiballistic missile system. Out of the debate, nothing has happened in either direction.

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American hostages seized in attack on gas facility in Algeria…..


An unspecified number of Americans were taken hostage by Islamist guerrillas early Wednesday in a brazen attack on a remote gas-production facility in Algeria, the U.S. State Department said.

The attack — which reportedly resulted in the death of two people and the capture of several dozen foreign workers, most of them European — appeared to be retaliation for Algeria’s decision to allow France to use its airspace to send warplanes to neighboring Mali, where French forces have been conducting airstrikes and support operations to aid Malian troops in their battle against Islamic insurgents.

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Success of U.S. Fracking Could Neuter OPEC……


WASHINGTON — The success of American drillers in coaxing fossil fuels from shale rock has the potential to boost production so much that it may deny OPEC the power to set global oil and gasoline prices, an intelligence advisory panel concluded.

Rising domestic production from hydraulic fracturing is expanding U.S. supplies, which would shift the balance of power in global energy markets, according to the report by the National Intelligence Council released Monday. The council, an adviser to the director of national intelligence, publishes a report every four years to aid policymakers’ long-term planning.

As the United States adds supply, the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries’ influence over prices would wane, according to the report that echoes previous studies that project benefits from a drill process also known as fracking.

“In a tectonic shift, energy independence is not unrealistic for the U.S. in as short a period as 10-20 years,” the report states.

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Top Ten Liberal Absurdities…….


Only in America could liberals talk about the greed of the rich at a $35,000 a plate campaign fund raising event.

Only in America could liberals claim that the government still discriminates against black Americans when we have a black President, a black Attorney General, and roughly an 18% black federal workforce when only 12% of the population is black.

Only in America could we have had the two people most responsible for our tax code, Timothy Geithner, the head of the Treasury Department and Charles Rangel who once ran the Ways and Means Committee, BOTH turn out to be tax cheats who are in favor of higher taxes.

Only in America can we have terrorists kill people in the name of Allah and have the media primarily react by fretting that Muslims might be harmed by the backlash.

Only in America would liberals make people who legally want to become American citizens wait for years in their home countries and pay tens of thousands of dollars for the privilege while they push for legislation that would let anyone who enters the country illegally to become American citizens by the stroke of the President’s pen.

Only in America could liberals believe that balancing the budget and sticking to the Constitution could be thought to be “extremism.”

Only in America do liberals believe that you need to present a driver’s license to cash a check and enter the Democratic National Convention but not to vote.

Only in America could liberals demand the government investigate whether oil companies are gouging the public because the price of gas goes up when the return on equity invested in a major U.S. oil company (Marathon Oil) is less than half of what a company makes producing running shoes (Nike).

Only in America could the government collect more tax dollars from the people than any nation in recorded history, still spend a trillion dollars more than it has per year for total spending of $7 million PER MINUTE, and complain that it doesn’t have nearly enough money.

Only in America could the people who pay 86% of all income taxes be accused of not paying their “fair share” by people who don’t pay any income taxes at all.

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Obama does not want to help the American Economy….


The American Petroleum Institute estimates that oil exploration in the U S could create 160,000 new, well-paying jobs, as well as $1.7 trillion in revenues to federal, state, and local governments, all while fostering greater energy security and independence.”
Obama’s solution is to stop the drilling….

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Did You Know??


The American tradition of red barns came from a 17th-century wood-preserving paint made of milk, lime, red iron oxide and linseed oil.

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