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Neocons Are Still Writing The Script

Today’s Stunted Oil Prices Could Cause Oil Price Shock In 2020

Today’s Stunted Oil Prices Could Cause Oil Price Shock In 2020

Refinery

As oil prices remain unsteady and OPEC continues to make headlines every hour, the world is focused on oil’s immediate future. As Saudi Arabia announces plans to slash production and move their economy away from oil dependency, many industry insiders are predicting that the now over-saturated market will reach an equilibrium with higher commodity prices by 2018 and U.S. shale production will continue to grow along with global demand.

Robert Johnston, the CEO of one of the world’s biggest political risk consultancies, is unconvinced. In a speech made at the Association of International Petroleum Negotiators’ 2017 International Petroleum Summit, Johnston laid out his concerns for the future of oil.

What I don’t hear people asking is, ‘then what?’ Are the Saudis going to maintain these production cuts forever, or at some point do they have to start reversing that? I think in 2018 they will be reversing those production cuts,” he said. These important questions aren’t getting enough attention according to Johnston, whose firm Eurasia Group foresees a fast-approaching supply gap that Saudi Arabia and U.S. oil may not be able to fill.

Eurasia Group forecasts about 7 million barrels per day (MMbbl/d) of new crude supply by 2022. This includes about 5 MMbbl/d of U.S. shale growth and about 2 MMbbl/d from oil sands and deepwater extraction. But by the year 2022, another 15 MMbbl/d of new supply may be needed, as demand trends predict an annual growth rate of about 1 MMbbl/d. With this kind of impending discrepancy between supply and demand, the industry needs to start looking for new sources of oil, and quickly.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

The Horror! The Horror! (Part Two)

THE HORROR! THE HORROR! (PART TWO)

In Part One of this article I detailed how propaganda has been utilized by the Deep State for decades to control the minds of the masses and allow those in control to reap the benefits of never ending war. In Part Two I will discuss recent events, false flags, and propaganda campaigns utilized by the Deep State to push the world to the brink of war.

“We penetrated deeper and deeper into the heart of darkness”Joseph Conrad, Heart of Darkness

The use of graphic images, electronically transmitted across the world in an instant, along with a consistent false narrative promoted by the captured corporate media, is the preferred means of appealing to the emotions of those who want to believe atrocity propaganda. Instigating a march to war through the use of unfounded fear, misinformation, staged photo ops, and appealing to passions and prejudices was as revolting to Albert Einstein  in the 1930s as it is today to normal thinking individuals.

“He who joyfully marches to music in rank and file has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would fully suffice. This disgrace to civilization should be done away with at once. Heroism at command, senseless brutality, deplorable love-of-country stance, how violently I hate all this, how despicable and ignoble war is; I would rather be torn to shreds than be a part of so base an action! It is my conviction that killing under the cloak of war is nothing but an act of murder.” – Albert Einstein

It seems the level and intensity of the propaganda campaigns has ratcheted up dramatically in the last half dozen years and appears to be reaching a crescendo as we speak.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Saudi Power Struggle Could Destabilize The Entire Middle East

Saudi Power Struggle Could Destabilize The Entire Middle East

Riyadh

Political instability in Saudi Arabia is growing as King Salman bin Abdulaziz begins to overhaul the Saudi government, putting a long list of family members into positions of influence while increasing the power of his son, Deputy Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman. These actions have the potential to lead to a direct conflict with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Nayef. The expected internal power collision, predicted by many analysts, finally seems to be heating up. The real surprise, however, is that it is taking place while King Salman is still alive rather than during the succession period. King Salman’s royal decrees, in which he has appointed two of his other sons, Prince Abdulaziz and Prince Khaled as Minister of State for Energy Affairs and Ambassador to the United States respectively, has opened up Pandora’s box.

At the same time, King Salman has decided to re-establish all allowances and benefits which were canceled last September during the oil price bust. Additionally, the King has stated that two months of salary will be paid as an allowance to the military and security personnel fighting in Yemen. The latter is a complete reversal on economic measures taken in 2016 when Saudi Arabia was hard hit by the global slump in oil prices.

The power struggle in the coming months could emerge inside of King Salman’s palaces as the current government overhaul is a direct move to increase the influence of the Salman branch of the Al Saud family tree. During this time, media sources in Saudi Arabia and the GCC have indicated that King Salman’s decrees have moved several allies of his son, Mohammed bin Salman, into key positions. King Salman has also shown a keen interest, likely supported or instigated by Mohammed bin Salman, in strengthening relations with the United States. The appointment of Price Khaled as ambassador to Washington is convincing evidence of this suggestion.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Saudi Arabia Vs. Russia: The Next Oil Price War

Saudi Arabia Vs. Russia: The Next Oil Price War

Oil Refinery

International oil markets could be heading towards a new war, as leading OPEC and non-OPEC producers are vying for increased stakes. The unexpected cooperation between OPEC and non-OPEC countries, instigated by the full support of Saudi Arabia (OPEC) and Russia (non-OPEC) has brought some stabilization to the crude markets for almost half a year. The expected crude oil price crisis has been averted, it seems, leaving enough room when looking at the fundamentals to a bull market in the coming months. As long as Saudi Arabia, Russia and some other major producers (UAE, Kuwait), are supporting a production cut extension, financials will be seeing some light at the end of the tunnel.

The effects of the 2nd shale oil revolution, as some have stated, have been mostly mitigated by a reasonably high compliance of OPEC and non-OPEC members to the agreed upon cuts, while geopolitical and security issues have prevented Libya, Iraq, Venezuela and Nigeria, from entering with new volumes. Stabilization in the crude oil market, as always, is not only fundamentals but also geopolitics and national interests. The latter now could also be the main threat to a successful extension of the OPEC production cuts in the coming months.

Fears are growing that OPEC’s leading producer, Saudi Arabia, is no longer happy with the overall effects it is generating by taking the brunt of the production cuts, while at the same time, other OPEC members, such as Iran and Iraq, are looking at production increases. Saudi Arabia’s other main rival Russia is also not sitting idle. Even if Moscow is still fully behind the official production cuts, Russian oil companies have been aggressively fighting for additional market share in Saudi Arabia’s main client markets, China, India and even Japan. Iraq and Iran, in contrast to what was expected, have been cutting away share in Europe.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Trump Administration Moves to Approve New Arms Sales to Saudi Arabian War Criminals

Trump Administration Moves to Approve New Arms Sales to Saudi Arabian War Criminals

This week’s episode of “Empire Gone Wild” features our freshly inaugurated dear leader, Donald Trump, who appears determined to enthusiastically continue the Obama administration’s policy of recklessly arming Saudi war criminals.

First, here’s a little background from The Washington Post:

The State Department has approved a resumption of weapons sales that critics have linked to Saudi Arabia’s bombing of civilians in Yemen, a potential sign of reinvigorated U.S. support for the kingdom’s involvement in its neighbor’s ongoing civil war.

The proposal from the State Department would reverse a decision made late in the Obama administration to suspend the sale of precision guided munitions to Riyadh, which leads a mostly Arab coalition conducting airstrikes against Houthi rebels in Yemen.

While the U.S. military has provided support to the Saudi-led air campaign since 2015, including aerial refueling for Saudi jets and a U.S. advisory mission in the Saudi operations headquarters, the Obama administration sought to scale back that support last year amid alleged Saudi strikes on civilian targets.

Despite Saudi hopes that the conflict would quickly restore Hadi to power, it is now approaching its third year. As of January, the conflict had led to the deaths of at least 10,000 civilians, according to the United Nations.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Donald Trump, Saudi Arabia, and the Petrodollar

Donald Trump, Saudi Arabia, and the Petrodollar

 

Obama pulled out his veto pen 12 times during his presidency.

Congress only overrode him once…

In late 2016, Obama vetoed the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act (JASTA). The bill would allow 9/11 victims to sue Saudi Arabia in US courts.

With only months left in office, Obama wasn’t worried about the political price of opposing the bill. It was worth protecting Saudi Arabia and the petrodollar system, which underpins the US dollar’s role as the world’s premier currency.

Congress didn’t see it that way though. Those up for reelection couldn’t afford to side with Saudi Arabia over US victims. So Congress voted to override Obama’s veto, and JASTA became the law of the land.

The Saudis, quite correctly, see this as a huge threat. If they can be sued in US courts, their vast holdings of US assets are at risk of being frozen or seized.

The Saudi foreign minister promptly threatened to sell all of the country’s US assets.

Basically, Saudi Arabia was threatening to rip up the petrodollar arrangement, which underpins the US dollar’s role as the world’s premier currency.

Donald Trump and the Saudis

Unlike every president since the petrodollar’s birth, Donald Trump is openly hostile to Saudi Arabia.

Recently he put this out on Twitter:

Dopey Prince @Alwaleed_Talal wants to control our U.S. politicians with daddy’s money. Can’t do it when I get elected.

The dopey prince that Trump is referring to is Al-Waleed bin Talal, a prominent member of the Saudi royal family. He’s also one of the largest foreign investors in the US economy, particularly in media and financial companies.

The Saudis openly backed Hillary during the election. In fact, they “donated” an estimated $10 million–$25 million to the Clinton Foundation, making them the most generous foreign donors.

Besides Hillary Clinton, the single biggest loser from the US presidential election was Saudi Arabia.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

US Shale Production To Soar By 3.5 Million Barrels/Day Over Next Five Years: BofA Explains Why

US Shale Production To Soar By 3.5 Million Barrels/Day Over Next Five Years: BofA Explains Why

Two years ago, when Saudi Arabia launched on an unprecedented campaign to crush high-cost oil producers, in the process effectively putting an end to the OPEC cartel (at least until last year’s attempt to cut production), it made a bold bet that US shale producers would be swept under when the price of oil tumbled, leading to a tsunami of bankruptcies, as well as investment and production halts. To an extent it succeeded, but where it may have made a glaring error is the core assumption about shale breakeven costs, which as we reported throughout 2016, were substantially lower than consensus estimated.

In his latest note, BofA’s Francisco Blanch explains not only why a drop in shale breakevens costs is what is currently the biggest wildcard in the global race to reach production “equilibrium”, but also why US shale oil production could surge in the coming years, prompting OPEC to boost production in hopes of recapturing market share.  Specifically, Blanch predicts that US shale oil production could grow by a whopping 3.5 million barrels per day over the next five years.

Here’s why: as he explains “many oil companies around the world have survived the price meltdown by bringing down breakeven costs in the last two years.

But what parts of the world can grow output in the years ahead? In BofA’s view, US shale oil producers will come out ahead and deliver outsized market share gains by 2022. Shale oil output in the US may grow sequentially by 600 thousand b/d from 4Q16 to 4Q17 on increased activity in oil rigs and fast productivity gains. Importantly, breakeven costs for key major US plays now stand around the $55/bbl mark.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Trump Left Saudi Arabia Off His Immigration Ban… Here’s the Shocking Reason Why

Trump Left Saudi Arabia Off His Immigration Ban… Here’s the Shocking Reason Why

Trump Left Saudi Arabia Off His Immigration Ban… Here’s the Shocking Reason Why
On August 15, 1971, President Nixon killed the last remnants of the gold standard.

It was one of the most significant events in US history—on par with the 1929 stock market crash, JFK’s assassination, or the 9/11 attacks. Yet most people know nothing about it.

Here’s what happened…

After World War 2, the US had the largest gold reserves in the world, by far. Along with winning the war, this let the US reconstruct the global monetary system around the dollar.

The new system, created at the Bretton Woods Conference in 1944, tied the currencies of virtually every country in the world to the US dollar through a fixed exchange rate. It also tied the US dollar to gold at a fixed rate of $35 an ounce.

The Bretton Woods system made the US dollar the world’s premier reserve currency. It effectively forced other countries to store dollars for international trade, or to exchange with the US government for gold.

By the late 1960s, the number of dollars circulating had drastically increased relative to the amount of gold backing them. This encouraged foreign countries to exchange their dollars for gold, draining the US gold supply. It dropped from 574 million troy ounces at the end of World War 2 to around 261 million troy ounces in 1971.

To plug the drain, President Nixon “suspended” the dollar’s convertibility into gold on August 15, 1971. This ended the Bretton Woods system and severed the dollar’s last tie to gold.

Since then, the dollar has been a pure fiat currency, allowing the Fed to print as many dollars as it pleases.

Of course, Nixon said the suspension was only temporary. That was lie No. 1. It’s still in place over 40 years later.

And he claimed the move was necessary to protect Americans from international speculators. That was lie No. 2. Money printing to finance out-of-control government spending was the real threat.

 

..click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Stockman to Trump: It’s the Economy, Stupid

Stockman to Trump: It’s the Economy, Stupid

In a recent appearance on CNN, David Stockman suggested that Trump might best spend some time actually addressing economic issues instead of the administration’s travel ban for immigrants from Middle Eastern countries, which Stockman called “a giant misfire.”

Pointing out that Americans are far, far more likely to be struck by lightning than killed by a terrorist, Stockman asserted that it was really Trump’s opposition to Obamacare and other government regulation that got him elected. Employing the 1992 Clinton Campaign motto of “it’s the economy, stupid,” Stockman noted “Trump was elected because flyover America is hurting economically. The voters of Racine, Wisconsin and Johnstown, Pennsylvania are imperiled not because of some refugees, they’re imperiled because their jobs have all been disappearing for decades. The problem is far more the Federal Reserve, Janet Yellen, the bubbles they’re creating on Wall Street…”

Stockman went on suggest that the Trump Administration is showing decreased interest in “draining the swamp” employing a phrase Trump used when he claimed he would greatly cut federal power in Washington. Instead of doing that, Stockman contends, Trump is merely filling the swamp with ” “other creatures that will build up homeland security, border control, more money for defense, more money for spying and national security.”

Stockman might also have pointed out that the travel ban itself illustrates how the ban has nothing to do with national security given that Saudi Arabia and Egypt are not on the list of blocked countries, even though Saudi Arabia and Egypt were the two countries most closely linked ot 9/11. Moreover, the perpetrators of the 2015 San Bernardino shootings had been radicalized in Saudi Arabia and traveled there before the killings. Indeed, Trump’s list seems to be more accurately described as a list of Saudi enemies, including Saudi Arabia’s most bitter enemies Iran and Syria. Also on the list is Yemen, which is currently subject to a vicious war and starvation campaign launched by Saudi Arabia’s dictators.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Things That Make You Go Hmm… Like The Death Of The Petrodollar, And What Comes After

Things That Make You Go Hmm… Like The Death Of The Petrodollar, And What Comes After

Excerpted from “Get It. Got It. Good” by Grant Williams, author of “Things That Make You Go Hmm…”

The story begins in the 1970s when Henry Kissinger and Richard Nixon struck a deal with the House of Saud — a deal which gave birth to the petrodollar system.

The terms were simple The Saudis agreed to ONLY accept U.S. Dollars in return for their oil and that they would reinvest their surplus dollars into U.S. treasuries.

In return, the U.S. would provide arms and a security guarantee to the Saudis who, it has to be said, were living in a pretty rough neighbourhood. As you can see, things went swimmingly (chart below)

Saudi purchases of treasuries grew along with the oil price and everyone was happy.  (We’ll come back to that blue box on the right shortly)

The inverse correlation between the dollar and crude is just about as perfect as one could expect (until recently that is… but again, we’ll be back to that).

And, as you can see here, beginning when Nixon slammed the gold window shut on French fingers and picking up speed once the petrodollar system was ensconced, foreign buyers of U.S. debt grew  exponentially.

Having the world’s most vital commodity exclusively priced in U.S. dollars meant everybody needed to hold large dollar reserves to pay for it and that meant a yuuuge bid for treasuries. It’s good to be the king.

By 2015, as the chart on the next page shows quite clearly, there were treasuries to the value of around 6 years of total global oil supply in the hands of foreigners (if we assume a constant 97 million bpd supply which I think is a pretty reasonable estimate).

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

1/3 of Saudi strikes hit Yemeni hospitals, schools & other civilian targets – study

1/3 of Saudi strikes hit Yemeni hospitals, schools & other civilian targets – study

People stand on the rubble of a school destroyed by a Saudi-led air strike in an outskirt of the northwestern city of Saada, Yemen September 14, 2016. © Naif Rahma
In five of the last 18 months of the Saudi-led war in Yemen, the coalition hit more non-military than military targets, a Guardian study has revealed. Overall more than one-third of all strikes ended up hitting civilian sites including hospitals, schools and mosques.

After analyzing public source data for some 8,600 air raids conducted by the Saudi-led coalition between March 2015 and August this year, the Yemen Data Project concluded that only 3,577 sites were of a military nature. Some 3,158 were listed as non-military, while 1,882 strikes were classified as unknown, the Guardian said in its analysis of the data.

Furthermore, the data which has been collected from open sources and cross-referenced by the NGO using a wide range of information showed that Saudis flew 942 air raids on residential areas. The planes managed to strike 114 markets, 34 mosques, and 147 school buildings, in addition to 26 universities. The information also revealed that Riyadh targeted transportation network, striking some 37 transport sites.

The Yemen Data Project said that the coalition hit more non-military sites than military in five of the last 18 months, with some target areas being struck on multiple occasions. One particular school was hit nine times, a deplorable fate that is shared by one market that was hit at least 24 times.

Saudi Arabia which has been repeatedly called to world attention over its indiscriminate bombings of civilian targets dismissed the report, with Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir telling the Guardian that the figures are “vastly exaggerated.” 

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Wolf Blitzer Is Worried Defense Contractors Will Lose Jobs if U.S. Stops Arming Saudi Arabia

SEN. RAND PAUL’S expression of opposition to a $1.1 billion U.S. arms sale to Saudi Arabia — which has been brutally bombing civilian targets in Yemen using U.S.-made weapons for more than a year now — alarmed CNN’s Wolf Blitzer on Thursday afternoon.

Blitzer’s concern: That stopping the sale could result in fewer jobs for arms manufacturers.

“So for you this is a moral issue,” he told Paul during the Kentucky Republican’s appearance on CNN. “Because you know, there’s a lot of jobs at stake. Certainly if a lot of these defense contractors stop selling war planes, other sophisticated equipment to Saudi Arabia, there’s going to be a significant loss of jobs, of revenue here in the United States. That’s secondary from your standpoint?”

Paul stayed on message. “Well not only is it a moral question, its a constitutional question,” Paul said. “Our founding fathers very directly and specifically did not give the president the power to go to war. They gave it to Congress. So Congress needs to step up and this is what I’m doing.”

Watch the exchange:

Saudi Arabia began bombing Yemen in March 2015, and has since been responsible for the majority of the 10,000 deaths in the war so far. The U.S.-backed bombing coalition has been accused of intentionally targeting civilians, hospitals, factories, markets, schools, and homes. The situation is so bad that the Red Cross has started donating morgue units to Yemeni hospitals.

The war’s incredible humanitarian toll has generated an increasing outcry in the United States. Earlier this month, more than 60 members of Congress signed a letter asking the administration to delay the most recent arms shipment. Ordinarily, under the Arms Export Control Act, Congress has 30 days to block arms sales proposed by the administration — but by announcing the arms sale in August, most of those 30 days fell during Congress’s August recess.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

The 28-Pages Are Way Worse Than I Thought

The 28-Pages Are Way Worse Than I Thought

Shortly after the release of the infamous 28-pages earlier today, the White House issued a statement dismissing allegations of Saudi involvement in the attacks of 9/11. I believe such assurances are intended to prevent people from reading it in the first place, because if you actually read them, your mouth will be wide open the entire time in disbelief.

There are only two conclusions any thinking person can come to after reading the 28-pages.

1. Elements within the Saudi government ran the operations behind the 9/11 attack.

2. The U.S. government covered it up.

But don’t take my word for it. You should read it yourself.

Just to give you a little taste, here’s what was found on the first page alone (click on the images for the entire document).

Screen Shot 2016-07-15 at 4.08.04 PMScreen Shot 2016-07-15 at 4.09.45 PM

For prior articles on the 28 pages, see:

Additional Evidence Emerges That U.S. Government Officials Intentionally Whitewashed the Saudi Role in 9/11

Video of the Day – 60 Minutes Explores the Saudi Links to 9/11 Attacks

Disturbing Claim – FBI Interrogated Former Senator for Wanting “28 Pages” Declassified

Two Congressmen Push for Release of 28-Page Document Showing Saudi Involvement in 9/11

Saudi Ties to 9/11 Detailed in Documents Suppressed Since 2002

SAUDI TIES TO 9/11 DETAILED IN DOCUMENTS SUPPRESSED SINCE 2002

Many political figures who had previously seen the report led the charge calling for its release, including former Sen. Bob Graham, who said the 28 pages “point a very strong finger at Saudi Arabia,” and Minnesota Congressman Rick Nolan, who said the pages “confirm that much of the rhetoric preceding the U.S. attack on Iraq was terribly wrong.”

The suppressed pages, redacted in parts, detail circumstantial evidence of ties among Saudi government officials, intelligence agents, and several of the hijackers.

“While in the United States, some of the September 11th hijackers were in contact with or received assistance from, individuals who may be connected with the Saudi government,” reads the report, which added that FBI sources believed at least two of those individuals were Saudi intelligence agents.

The report also mentions that numbers found in the phonebook of Abu Zubaydah, a detainee currently held in Guantánamo, could be traced to a company in Denver, Colorado, connected to former Saudi ambassador to the U.S. Prince Bandar bin Sultan.

One of the most notable figures mentioned is Omar al-Bayoumi, alleged by the report to have likely been a Saudi intelligence agent. Al-Bayoumi was in close contact with hijackers Nawaf al-Hazmi and Khalid al-Midhar, providing them financial assistance during their time in the United States and even helping them find an apartment.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Olduvai II: Exodus
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Olduvai II: Exodus
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Olduvai III: Cataclysm
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