February 13, 2015

Quote of the day: Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis

“I was told, once, by a leftwing scholar that as a Marxist you have to do two things: always be optimistic and always have a view about everything. That advice still sounds good to me.”   Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis 

Greece Asserts Sovereignty;The Debt Cannot Be Paid

by Dean Andromidas

Feb. 9—Demonstrating a boldness not seen in a European politician in decades, Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis toured the capitals of Europe last week, asserting the sovereign right of his nation to say no to its own destruction. To the faces of rage-filled European finance ministers, he laid out Greece’s straightforward policy: Greece cannot and will not pay the debt. Greece cannot and will not continue the policy of brutal austerity. Greece demands a change not only for Greece, but for Europe as a whole, the cornerstone of which is a call for an international debt conference and a New Deal for Europe.

In every capital, the answer was no, in some cases dressed up with a few polite sophistries. All of which culminated with the European Central Bank (ECB) announcing the cut-off of the Greek banking system and government from credit. On Feb. 4, the ECB disqualified Greek government debt as collateral for ECB short-term loans to Greek banks, thus effectively terminating €30-50 billion of ECB liquidity credit lines to those banks.

The only potential substitute available to these Greek banks is through the more expensive Emergency Liquidity Assistance (ELA) program by the Greek Central Bank, at higher interest rates, and only with the permission of the ECB. Up to €50 billion worth of liquidity that had been extended under the normal ECB liquidity operations will have to be converted to the ELA. Furthermore, if Greek banks fail to pay back these loans, the loss goes on to the Greek national debt. Thus, if the ECB forces the suspension of this program, not only will the Greek banks collapse, but the Greek national debt will increase by as much as €50 billion, a move that would force Greece out of the Eurozone.

From their standpoint, the bankrupt financial oligarchy has no choice. Any “haircut” or any other change in their system would will blow up the multi-trillion euro-dollar derivatives bubble hanging over the trans-Atlantic financial system.

A Question of Survival

By the end of last week, the Obama Administration had joined the Europeans. On Feb. 5-6 a delegation from the U.S. Treasury led by Daleep Singh, the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Europe and Eurasia, and Lea Bouzis of the Europe and Eurasia Office, along with U.S. Ambassador to Greece David Pearce, held meetings with Greek ministers and all the new government’s top economic officials. After that, the U.S. Ambassador met with Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, at the former’s request.

The Ambassador then posted a statement on the Embassy website, declaring that, despite the “significant sacrifices that have already been made by the Greek people ... Greece should continue to make administrative and structural reforms and exercise fiscal prudence.” The statement further declared that “Greece must make reforms that make foreign investment in Greece more attractive so the country can meet its international obligations and return to prosperity.” In conclusion, the Ambassador is quoted: “The United States believes that it is very important for the Greek government to work cooperatively with its European colleagues, as well as with the IMF.” The message is clear: Greece must submit to its own self-destruction.

The Greek government’s answer can be summarized simply: “We were elected because the Greek people will no longer agree to the destruction of their nation.” Full stop.

This is not rhetoric. The latest opinion polls reveal that 72% of the Greek people support their new government. This includes 43% of those who voted for the former ruling party, New Democracy, in the Jan. 25 election.

This was demonstrated on Feb. 5, when tens of thousands of Greeks poured into Syntagma Square in front of the Parliament and in major squares in other cities, in support of the government. Banners were raised with the following messages: “We will not succumb to blackmail again”; “The Republic has spoken and no one has the right to not hear”; “The era of kneeling Greece and submissive governments is finished”; “Defend the republic and national sovereignty.”

Tsipras: We Don’t Negotiate Sovereignty

Presenting his government policy before Parliament on Feb. 8, Prime Minister Tsipras shot back with a resounding no to blackmail and intimidation.

“We only have one commitment—to serve the interests of the people, the good of society,” he said, adding that it was the “irrevocable decision” of his government to implement campaign promises “in their entirety.” Furthermore, his government would not seek an extension of the bailout and its notorious memorandum, which he denounced as an “extension of mistakes and disaster.” He reiterated Greece’s demands for a “bridge” deal to be put in place until a “mutually acceptable agreement” is reached with creditors. “We do not intend to threaten stability in Europe,” he said, but “we are not negotiating our national sovereignty.”

Tsipras stated that his government’s chief priority “is tackling the big wounds of the bailout, tackling the humanitarian crisis, just as we promised to do before the elections.” The bailout failed, he said. “The Greek people gave us a strong and clear mandate to immediately end austerity and change policies. Therefore, the bailout was first canceled by its very own failure and its destructive results.”

“We see hope, dignity, and pride returning to Greek citizens. Our obligation and duty is not to disappoint them.... We realize that negotiations [with foreign creditors] won’t be easy, ... but we have faith in our struggle, because justice is on our side.” In a dig at Germany, Tsipras announced that his government sees it as its “historic duty” to seek war reparations and repayment by Germany of loans Greece was forced to make to the Nazi occupiers during World War II.

While declaring that his government would achieve balanced budgets, the Prime Minister said it would no longer produce unrealistic primary budget surpluses, and announced the points in his program aimed at reversing the “barbarous measures” imposed by the Troika of the European Central Bank, the International Monetary Fund, and the European Commission. The new government will offer free electricity and food to poor households, and immediately rehire civil servants who had been fired under orders from the Troika. Reversing concessions made by the previous government as a condition for receiving bailout money, Tsipras announced that collective bargaining would be restored, and the minimum wage raised to €751 per month from €586, although this will happen gradually into 2016.

Support for Greece Spreads

In an interview with the German weekly Die Zeit, Finance Minister Varoufakis was asked “Mr. Varoufakis, in just a few days, you’ve antagonized half of Europe. Was that your plan?” To which the Finance Minister answered: “I think that’s normal. It will take some time before it’s been understood everywhere that a very fundamental change has taken place in the EU.”

Indeed. While Varoufakis might have “antagonized half of Europe,” more precisely the Europe of the bankers, the other half of Europe is showing enthusiastic support.

Less than a week after the Greek elections, some 300,000 people packed Madrid’s Puerta del Sol Plaza on Jan. 31, at the “Rally for Change” organized by the new Podemos party, the Spanish allies of Tsipras’s party, Syriza. While the rally had been called long before Greece’s elections, it expressed optimism that spread through the country following Syriza’s victory. The slogan of the day was “The time is now,” and many protesters carried Greek flags.

Podemos is a sister party of Syriza in the European Left faction in the European Parliament, a faction which includes Ireland’s Sinn Fein, Germany’s Die Linke, and others. Podemos’s lead candidate, Pablo Iglesias, who has become a close friend of Prime Minister Tsipras, said to the crowd: “We are here to win; we shall defeat the ruling Popular Party in the elections of 2015. The winds of change have begun to blow in Europe.” Spanish opinion polls indicate that Podemos could win the general elections, scheduled for next December.

While the new Greek government was being denounced in Berlin and other capitals, support for Syriza’s call for a European debt conference is rapidly growing, as indicated by new petitions in support of Greece’s proposals (see box) and sympathetic commentaries. Equally significant is support from leading political parties, especially in Ireland and Italy.

Although the Irish government refuses to support a debt conference, the Sinn Fein, which could very well win the next Irish general election, the Socialist Party, and others have voiced strong support.

Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams, in an interview with Reuters Feb. 5, denounced the ECB decision to cut liquidity to Greek banks as an “undemocratic” and “almost macho” move, which risks fueling the growth of right-wing parties across the continent.

Sinn Fein European Parliamentarian Matt Carthy called for a European Debt Conference to be held in Dublin. He said it was in “Ireland’s best interest,” since Ireland is also suffering under an oppressive EU bailout regime. On Feb. 5, Sinn Fein introduced a motion into the parliament to call for a debt conference. Although defeated 72 to 42, the issue will not go away.

In Italy, the call for a conference has even breached layers of the ruling Democratic Party, as well as the Lega Nord (Northern League).

Syriza already enjoyed support from leftist parties, such as Italy’s SEL (Left, Ecology, Freedom), during the election campaign for the European Parliament. Recently, a prominent SEL representative, former Undersecretary of State Alfonso Gianni, who is also a signer of the Schiller Institute’s BRICS petition, endorsed the proposal for a European debt conference, referencing both the 1953 Debt Conference for Germany and Franklin D. Roosevelt’s debt cancellation for Britain as historical precedents.

More surprising is the support coming from the Democratic Party, which has been so far on a strict pro-EU line. While party leader and Prime Minister Matteo Renzi limited himself to a non-belligerent attitude in his meeting with Tsipras on Feb. 2, that same day Stefano Fassina and Marco D’Attorre, leaders of the minority faction in the Democratic Party, published an open letter to Renzi proposing to “terminate the Troika phase and call for a European Debt Conference which can reduce the burden and allow an otherwise impossible recovery.” Daniele Viotti, Democratic Party member of the Budget Committee of the European Parliament, had earlier said in a newspaper interview that European Commission President Jean Claude Juncker “intervened unduly and arrogantly in the Greek election campaign, when he said that there will never be a Debt Conference. I believe instead that it is time to have it.”

And on Feb. 6, former Prime Minister Massimo D’Alema called for a dialogue with Tsipras. “Slamming the door in the face of Tsipras would be catastrophic,” he told the daily Il Messaggero.

The online publication Il Nord, run by a Lega Nord faction, covered favorably the Syriza proposal, explaining that it would concern Italy as well: “Syriza is proposing a European Debt Conference which includes also such states as Italy, Spain, Portugal and even France, where the deficit/GDP ratio keeps being well over the 3% threshold” as defined by EU rules.

Building an Alliance To Save Europe

While trying to convince their European “partners” of the reasonableness of their proposals, the Greek government is moving to create other alliances, especially with the BRICS countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa). Tsipras’s first foreign visit was to Cyprus, Greece’s closest ally, which was the Eurozone’s first victim of a bail-in to save the banks at the expense of their depositors, and which now groans under an unpayable debt.

Speaking before the Cypriot House of Representatives on Feb. 2, Tsipras declared, “In this effort for social justice, to bring back an agenda of growth and employment in Europe, in the effort for the rights of our people, we want you by our side.” In response. Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades said Greece and Cyprus will work together with other EU countries that share the same views; “We are on the same page as regards the need for change to benefit European citizens.”

Anastasiades also agreed to Tsipras’s proposal that the two countries coordinate their positions in international forums on the issue of Russia, especially their opposition to sanctions, where “Greece and Cyprus can be a bridge of peace cooperation also between the European Union and Russia.”

It should be noted that, despite its membership in the EU, Cyprus is not a member of NATO (Greece is), and maintains strict neutrality. Anastasiades is expected to make an official visit to Russia on Feb 25.

As for the BRICS, within hours of Tsipras’s swearing-in ceremony, Russian President Vladimir Putin telephoned him to congratulate him and invite him to Moscow in May, to attend the anniversary celebrations marking the end of the war with Nazi Germany.

“The conversation was very warm and constructive. Our President invited Alexis Tsipras to visit Russia,” a Kremlin aide said, according to Sputnik News.

The invitation was accepted. The two leaders are expected to discuss routes to deliver Russian gas to Europe, including such projects as South Stream and Turkish Stream. They will also discuss the situation in Ukraine.

The Defense Minister of Greece, Panos Kammenos, was also invited to Moscow to meet his counterpart, Sergei Shoigu, in the near future. According to a statement posted by the Greek Defense Ministry, they will discuss “strategic cooperation, and the organization of the year of Greek-Russian friendship in 2016, which will take place in both Greece and Russia.”

These efforts to maintain normal relations with Russia have ruffled some feathers in NATO circles. German Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen, who is said to dream of one day replacing German Chancellor Angela Merkel as Germany’s iron lady, told the daily Süddeutsche Zeitung that “Greece is jeopardizing its position in NATO by approaching Russian interests.”

In response, Kammenos issued a statement saying, “Greece always was at the side of the allies when they repelled the German occupation troops. The behavior and the statements of German officials who replace NATO and EU institutions are not only impermissible, but coercive as well. They undermine the European institutions, unless Germany aims to disband the European Union and NATO.”

He added: “Of course Greece has political relations with Russia. These relations are not hidden; these are open relations and we will continue to have those relations.”

Demonstrating that Greece respects its commitments, on Feb. 4, Kammenos, accompanied by the Chief of the Hellenic National Defense General Staff, Gen. Michail Kostarakos, met NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and NATO Deputy Secretary General Alexander Vershbow at NATO headquarters in Brussels where Kammenos issued a statement saying, “We assured each other about NATO’s good relations with Greece,” adding that he “clarified that relations with third countries, non-NATO members, will not affect our good relations with the Alliance.”

On Feb. 6, Representative of the Russian Federation to NATO Aleksandr Grushko released a statement saying that Russia will continue to develop “the most intimate relations with Greece,” as with all other European countries. He added that such relations create a “more dense” security system in Europe. Besides, he said, there are “deep historical ties” between Russia and Greece.

While the financial oligarchy has fired its first shot against Greece, it remains to be seen whether they will have shot themselves in the foot.

Greece Launches the "Movement in the Squares;" Worldwide Rallies Planned for Feb. 15

Feb. 12, 2015 (EIRNS)—As the euro area finance ministers gathered in Brussels yesterday for the Eurogroup meeting, in which they hoped to get Greece to sign an extension of the genocidal loan agreement, tens of thousands of supporters all over Europe demonstrated, to show support to the Greek government. According to a Canada-based Greek activist, the call has now gone out, for rallies worldwide on Sunday, Feb. 15, the day before the next Euro finance ministers’ session.

In Greece, pro-government rallies were held all over the nation, despite freezing weather. Though the English-language Greek media speak of "more than 10,000" demonstrators in Athens, the photographs show the entire Syntagma Square filled, which easily means 50-100,000 people. In Thessaloniki, Greece’s second largest city, more than 10,000 took part. Tens of thousands rallied in many other cities. Slogans included "Breath of Dignity" and "No Step Back."

On his Twitter account, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras wrote: "In cities around Greece and Europe, the people are battling for negotiations!"

In Athens, government spokesman Gabriel Sakellaridis commented that the Greek people have given birth to the new "movement in the squares" and support the government efforts against poverty and unemployment. "Hope has driven fear away," he said.

Rallies were held throughout Europe: Four rallies were held in Portugal, five in Italy, one in Spain, three in France, as well as rallies in Cyprus, Germany, Belgium, U.K., plus New York and Brazil. Cities in Europe included, at least, Amsterdam, Brussels, Dublin, London, Edinburgh, Copenhagen, Lausanne, Rome, Lisbon, Berlin, Paris, Vienna, Budapest, Madrid, and Helsinki.

In Ireland, Gerry Adams spoke at the Sinn Fein demonstration in front of Leinster House, the parliament in Dublin, in solidarity with Syriza. He castigated the Irish government for refusing to back a European debt conference. "It’s obvious that the Government know who they’re in bed with—the elites, and they’re not going to get out of that bed."

LaRouche movement organizers attended the rallies in Paris, Berlin, and New York.

The Greek-language NGTV station (New Greek TV Inc.) in New York City ran video of the Manhattan rally, which is now circulating widely among Trans-Atlantic Greek communities, along with a barrage of photos, featuring the LaRouchePAC.com placards, e.g. "USA & Greece Must Join the BRICS." For example: http://www.pressenza.com/2015/02/%E2%80%8Egreecesolidarity%E2%80%AC-nyc/

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War and the Dollar

Valentin KATASONOV | 21.01.2015 | 00:00

Although many funerals have been held for the US dollar, still it lives on. On the eve of the collapse of the Bretton Woods currency system, the dollar made up almost 80% of global foreign-exchange reserves (in 1970 it totaled 77.2%, and in 1972 - 78.6%). Then, after the transition to the system negotiated at the 1976 Jamaica Conference, that percentage gradually declined, reaching its lowest level - 59.0% - in 1995. In the wake of financial globalization, the dollar's positions strengthened again (reaching 70-71% between 1999 and 2001), but then a new decline was seen in the dollar component of global foreign-exchange reserves - dropping below 61% in 2014. Nevertheless, it is still higher than in 1995. 

According to the Bank for International Settlements, in April 2010, 84.9% of global foreign-exchange market transactions were carried out in dollars, a figure that had increased to 87% by April 2013. For comparison, the percentage of those transactions conducted in euros during that same period fell from 39.1 to 33.4%. The discrepancy between the positions of the dollar in world finance vs. the US positions in the global economy cannot be overlooked. The US share of world GDP is currently about 20%. China has already surpassed America in terms of GDP (based on the purchasing power parity of the currency), but in the global currency market, only 2.2% of transactions were carried out in yuan in April 2013. There is no accurate data regarding how much of the world's foreign-exchange reserves are held in yuan, but experts estimate that it is not much higher than 1%. 

These disparities are quite reminiscent of the global economic panorama of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. In those days the world's economic leaders were being reshuffled. The United States was in first place due to the volume of its industrial and agricultural output. Germany was moving into second place in some categories. And Great Britain, which for most of the nineteenth century had been considered «the world's factory», had begun to slide into third place. However, the British pound sterling remained a global currency, which served as a reserve fund and was used in international payments. Following is a breakdown of the world's reserves, by currency, in 1913 on the eve of WWI (%): the pound sterling - 47; the French franc - 30; the German mark - 16; the US Dollar - 2; other currencies - 5 (Officer, Lawrence H. Between the Dollar-Sterling Gold Points: Exchange Rates, Parity, and Market Behavior. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996). As we see, the share held by the US dollar was extremely low. The discrepancy between the level of economic development in the US and the positions of the dollar in the global financial system was similar to today's discrepancy between the economic development of China and the positions of the yuan. 

A hundred years ago global bankers who had placed their faith in the dollar needed a world war so that the dollar could assume its place in the sun. As 1913 drew to a close, the US Congress, under strong pressure from the «moneybags», voted in favor of creating the Federal Reserve System, which in 1914 began to print dollar banknotes as the unified national currency of the US, and six months later world war broke out. The war changed the balance of power between the mightiest nations and their currencies. In 1928, the world's foreign-exchange reserves were distributed as follows (%): the pound sterling - 77; the US dollar - 21; and the French franc - 2. (Officer, Lawrence H.). That meant that the pound sterling, despite Great Britain's sharp economic decline, not only retained the strength of its positions, it actually became even more robust. Compared to 1913, the US dollar had dramatically increased its footprint and had confidently moved into second place. Other competing currencies had fallen by the wayside. In order to definitively prevail over the British pound, the masters of the Federal Reserve needed to plan and wage another world war, after which the dollar was tied to gold and became, in effect, a single global currency. 

* * *

Technically, the dollar's position in the world is fairly good at present, but the biggest shareholders of the Federal Reserve System must be confounded by the growing discrepancy between America's GDP and the position of its dollar. The dollar is becoming increasingly unstable. If they wished, a few powerful countries could coordinate their efforts, pool their resources, begin to unload their dollar reserves, and cause the dollar's collapse. However, the power of the masters of the Federal Reserve lies in the fact that they have always known how to act proactively. And now there are many signs that they are taking practical steps to protect the dollar, primarily in order to prepare for a major war. The «money masters» (the owners of the Fed's banknote printing press) have several reasons to unleash such a war.

1) The owners of the printing press need to prop up the demand and price for their product. Europe's voluntary «flight to dollars» ended over 50 years ago. Globally, we see few rational economic incentives to buy them. After all, the Federal Reserve is currently printing many times more dollars than are being created by the US economy. And America's gold reserves, although the largest in the world (over 8,000 tons), suffice only to back a fraction of a percent of the supply of «greenbacks.» That leaves only one course of action: to forcibly impose upon the world the «goods» being produced by the Federal Reserve. Today only the US armed forces are capable of backing the dollar, and their primary function is to make sure that there is continued demand for these green notes. America's classical military-industrial complex was long ago transformed into a military-banking complex. 

After the collapse of the Breton Woods currency system, it was replaced with the new system devised at the Jamaica Conference. This is a petrodollar system, since the dollar became pegged to black gold in the 1970s (when oil trading began to be carried out exclusively in dollars). Oil remains the foundation of the dollar system. Although today the US is almost independent of oil imports, she controls the oil-producing countries. This control is intended to prevent any move to trade «black gold» in any currency other than the dollar. To do this, Washington has had to resort to conducting military operations in the oil-producing regions when needed. Primarily in the Middle East. Muammar Gaddafi was overthrown and brutally murdered just because he first switched from dollars to euros in his oil transactions, planning to later move to the gold dinar. 

2) When the US currency starts to decline, America employs every form of leverage to strengthen its weakening dollar (such as operations to destabilize the political situation in various corners of the world and civil/regional wars). In this context, the US, despite its increasing economic deterioration, is becoming an artificial «island of stability.» Capital from around the world is now rushing into America, inflating the exchange rate of «greenbacks.» Why does the US need a strong dollar? That's easy to answer.

First, this gives America access to cheap imports, which props up domestic consumption. A banknote printing press, coupled with an overvalued US currency, creates the perfect conditions for a parasite state. 

Second, with the help of its high-priced dollar, America (or rather, the masters of the Fed) gets the chance to buy up natural resources all over the world on the cheap, in addition to businesses, real estate, and other assets. The masters of the Fed will need the current dollar system until the rest of the world falls under their control.

3) «The money masters» (the biggest shareholders of the Federal Reserve) may require not only regional, but also global destabilization. In other words - a world war. This destabilization will lead to mutual destruction, or at least weaken all potential competitors of the US. Washington (or rather, the Federal Reserve) requires an exclusively monocentric model of the world. But such a model cannot be constructed without a major war. A global war would help solve many of America's economic problems that soon threaten to become critical issues. 

For example, at the close of 2013, the US public debt-to-GDP ratio totaled 104.5%. But that figure is lower in Europe where they have been enduring a debt crisis for several years, amounting to 92.6% in the eurozone countries at the end of 2013. The problem of foreign debt is an equally grave issue for Washington. In August 2014, this type of debt was equal to 107% of GDP. An increasing percentage of revenue is needed to service these debts. Currently only a small percentage of the US budget (about 7%) is spent on interest payments on public debt, but of course interest rates in the US have been purely symbolic as a result of its program of quantitative easing (QE). As the QE program is scaled down, the costs of servicing public debt, as well as all other types, will rise sharply. When that happens, the power cliques in the US will likely remember the history from a century ago. On the eve of World War I, America led the world in industrial production, but she also owed enormous foreign debts (primarily to Great Britain). The First World War changed that situation dramatically. The US became the largest net international creditor. At the same time, her biggest allies in the war - Britain and France - became heavily indebted to America. At the end of WWII, America held 70% of the world's gold reserves (excluding the Soviet Union). This strengthening of the US made it possible to legitimate the dollar's position as a global currency (after the decisions made at the international conference at Bretton Woods in 1944). 

If the US were to become the sole beneficiary of a third world war, the problem of her old debts would simply vanish. Washington would then be able to unilaterally erase the debts owed to other countries from its balance sheet, by arbitrarily determining which of those countries were «guilty» for the war. Any financial claims made by «guilty» countries against America would be canceled by definition, which is precisely what the Entente nations did to Germany at the Paris Peace Conference of 1919. Moreover, as the victor, the US would be able to demand reparations and restitution from the «guilty» parties. Just as the Entente nations did at that same conference in Paris in 1919. 

* * *

World War III will be fundamentally different than anything the world has ever seen. It will begin without an official proclamation. And although we remain unaware until the end, this war has most likely already begun. It will include the use of mercenaries (private military contractors), reliance on support from a fifth column within certain countries, the active use of «Maidan» technology, the involvement of the Washington-controlled media, the proclamation of economic sanctions, etc. This undeclared war is being waged under the guise of a war against terrorism, «radical Islam», «Russian aggression», violations of human rights, etc. etc. 

Over the course of this undeclared world war, the money masters (the Fed's shareholders) will resolve all the problems the dollar has amassed. For example, under the guise of fighting terrorism and «dirty money», the US might conduct a «currency reform.» The essence of that would be simple enough. The Federal Reserve would issue new dollars and arrange for them to be exchanged for the old «greenbacks.» At that time those holding the old bills must present credible evidence of the legality of their origin. Strict filters could be put in place to make sure that the majority of the old bills will not pass the «exam» and will become worthless. Thus the problem of Uncle Sam being weighed down with «dollar baggage» will be eliminated. But this is not the best option for the US – an ad hoc robbery of the whole world might prompt other countries to use their own national currencies in international transactions, to create regional currencies, or to entirely reject the dollar. 

Thus, other economic methods might also be used in this undeclared third world war. For example, despite the fact that the earth is awash in «greenbacks», the dollar's purchasing power in commodity markets is fairly high. No threat of hyperinflation looms on the horizon. It's all very simple. Most of what is printed by the banknote press enters the financial markets. However, there are 101 ways to downsize or even completely eliminate those same financial markets. Then all the «greenbacks» will flood into the commodity markets. We will see hyperinflation comparable to that experienced by the Weimar Republic in the early 1920s. At best, the dollar would retain only 1% of its current purchasing power. A disaster? Depends how you look at it. It's true that in this case the holders of trillions of dollars around the world would find themselves left with nothing but scrap paper. China alone has gold reserves that are already in excess of $4 trillion, and «greenbacks» account for at least one third of that. Afterward, America would conduct a currency reform and introduce a new official dollar. About five years ago there was a lot of talk about the possibility of conducting such a «currency reform», and a legal tender called the «amero» was slated to become the new dollar. This was proposed to be the unified currency of three countries - the US, Canada, and Mexico. The option of replacing the dollar with the «amero» could still be revived, but Washington would have to use brute force to impose it. 

In any event, there is no reason to expect global instability to abate. This instability is a sign of the dollar's weakness and of the death throes of those who own the Federal Reserve's banknote printing press. But like a wounded animal they will fight to the end. Although there has been recent talk claiming that Washington is disseminating «controlled chaos» throughout the world, now we can see that that chaos is spiraling out of control. However, even the first two world wars did not end in the way the bankers who started them had planned. 

American Information Weapon Used against European Politicians

Georgy VOSKRESENSKY | 13.02.2015 | 00:00

Anonymous first appeared in 2003 on Internet image boards as a group of hackers espousing the freedom of speech and operating as an «anarchist global digital brain». It is an instrument or a weapon designed to be used in information warfare. It has an advantage - in many cases it is extremely hard to define who exactly used it. But there was no problem of this kind when Anonymous published a 1993 photo report of Angela Merkel visiting the youth club Elbterrassen and meeting with a bunch of skinhead and other friends, one of whom makes a Nazi salute.

Berlin responded with due explanations but it's not what matters. The publication of 12-year old pictures took place right before the Chancellor Merkel's visit to Washington on February 9 and after the meeting between the German Chancellor, French President François Hollande and Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow that lasted for many hours. 

Anonymous asked if a politician who was a member of GDR's Socialist Youth Organization, an «East Berlin's spy» and who hobnobbed with Nazis could be trusted to run Germany. 

The information attack had been preceded by an important event – the Chancellor opposed the idea of providing Ukraine with lethal arms. Angela Merkel addressed the Munich Security Conference on February 7 to say «The progress that Ukraine needs cannot be achieved by more weapons.» She reiterated this stance a number of times while on a visit to the United States and Canada. In America Senator John McCain and Victoria Nuland the Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs, responded first. The Senator compared Angela Merkel and François Hollande's talks with Vladimir Putin to Neville Chamberlain's appeasement of Hitler. Mrs. Nuland as usually used obscene language talking about the head of the leading European state. 

It should be noted that since a long time ago US special services have been thoroughly collecting information to be one way or another used against the Chancellor of Germany. In October 2013 it became known that the National Security Agency tapped the Angela Merkel's cell phone and the scandal broke out to reveal that the agency had held Mrs. Merkel under surveillance for more than 10 years. The Chancellor said she did not expect and did not insist on apology, but it was a severe breach of trust and great efforts had to be applied to have it restored. Words were not enough. The situation dictated the necessity of changes. Back then the Chancellor could hardly tamp down indignation. Washington turned a deaf ear to what she said. The phone tap row was hushed up with no changes to follow. 

Angela Merkel was not the first European leader to find out in practice that Washington quelled any expression of «free thinking» on the part of European leaders, especially when it comes to Russia. The examples are well known. 

Hungary led by Prime Minister Victor Orban signed a contract with Russia's Rosatom to complete the construction of two new energy blocks for Hungary's Paks nuclear power plant located 100 km from Budapest. The United States imposed sanctions against Hungary. Senator McCain, a politician who always jumps the gun, called the Prime Minister of Hungary «a fascist dictator». Now President Putin is invited by Orban to visit Budapest on February 17… 

The US administration is frustrated over the position of Milos Zeman, the President of the Czech Republic, who dares to ask for evidence that Russian troops have invaded Ukraine and calls on the United States and the European Union to lift the sanctions. America uses its channels in this country to wage a campaign to discredit its President. 

In his days as Prime Minister of Italy Silvio Berlusconi used to say that mutual understanding between Russia and the United States was a keystone to European stability. He said the US acted irresponsibly deploying the elements of missile defense in Poland and the Czech Republic, recognizing the independence of Kosovo and pushing Georgia and Ukraine into NATO. 

Strauss-Kahn, former Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund, fell victim to a provocation well planned and organized against him in the United States when he was accused of raping a black hotel maid while staying in New York. As a result he had to face a US trial. Later it was revealed that the maid lied but it was not important. Strauss-Kahn lost his position in the International Monetary Fund and missed his chance to become President of France. 

Orban, Zeman, Berlusconi, Strauss-Kahn and now Merkel – they have all become targets for US precision strikes delivered by information weapon against those European politicians have become too independent on foreign policy issues according to Washington's opinion. 

The American establishment believes that Europe should toe the line and follow the US policy without any deviations. In their opinion that is the quintessence of Trans-Atlantic cooperation. Right after meeting Merkel, the US President complacently told Vox in an interview that the US is compelled to have «the strongest military in the world.» As he put it further, «we occasionally have to twist the arms of countries that wouldn't do what we need them to do». He said it bluntly enough to leave no doubt about the US readiness to twist the arms of any ally who would state the views on the world problems different from the vision of the United States. 

Neither European, nor Asian US allies (or vassals?) should have any doubts about it. Turkish President Erdogan is expected to be the next to have his arms twisted. He is not forgiven for signing the Turkish Stream agreement with Putin last year. The clock is ticking.