The economic implosion of Europe is accelerating. Even while the mainstream media continues to proclaim that the financial crisis in Europe has been “averted”, the economic statistics that are coming out of Europe just continue to get worse. Manufacturing activity in Europe has been contracting month after month, the unemployment rate in the eurozone has hit yet another brand new record high, and the official unemployment rates in both Greece and Spain are now much higher than the peak unemployment rate in the United States during the Great Depression of the 1930s. The economic situation in Europe is far worse than it was a year ago, and it is going to continue to get worse as austerity continues to take a huge toll on the economies of the eurozone. It would be hard to understate how bad things have gotten – particularly in southern Europe. The truth is that most of southern Europe is experiencing a full-blown economic depression right now. Sadly, most Americans are paying very little attention to what is going on across the Atlantic. But they should be watching, because this is what happens when nations accumulate too much debt.
The United States has the biggest debt burden of all, and eventually what is happening over in Spain, France, Italy, Portugal and Greece is going to happen over here as well.
The following are 20 facts about the collapse of Europe that everyone should know…
#1 10 Months: Manufacturing activity in both France and Germany has contracted for 10 months in a row.
#2 11.8 Percent: The unemployment rate in the eurozone has now risen to 11.8 percent – a brand new all-time high.
September 11, 2012 U.S. Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens, Foreign Service officer Sean Smith, and former Navy SEALs Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods were murdered on the 11th anniversary of Sept. 11.
From the very beginning the Obama White House with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton by Obama’s side took to the media claiming that the torture, rape and murder of the first United States Ambassador since 1979 was the result of some obscure YouTube video (that from its uploading on July 2, 2012 to September 10, 2012 had all of 17 views) mocking the prophet Muhammad.
Thirty-five days later we are still allowing the media and the Obama Administration to hide the truth and continue in their deliberately reporting information they KNOW to be untrue while refusing to address these facts which come from US State Department and Obama White House sources.
AMB Chris Stevens was NOT surprised by his killers in Benghazi, Libya as has been portrayed thus far. According to sources in the State Department Chris Stevens was in Benghazi, Libya at the specific instruction of the Obama White House to recover weapons that the U.S. supplied to Libya rebels in the over throw of Gaddafi.
These sources who work in the State Department and the Obama White House say that Barack Obama was directly involved in negotiations with Libyan Rebels in an effort to recover weapons that the U.S. supplied them. Sources say that the arrangements were made between Barack Obama direct talks and that the White House directly arranged for AMB Stevens to travel to Benghazi, Libya on September 11, 2012 and it was by direction of Barack Obama that Stevens was to meet with the very individuals who tortured, raped and murdered him.
As tensions between the US and Iran heat up, author Michael T. Winter believes the main reason behind America’s harsh stance is Tehran’s move to seek an alternative to the dollar as an oil currency.
Economic sanctions, spearheaded by the US and, less willingly, the EU could have a disastrous effect on both of their respective economies. If Iran cannot sell their oil to Europe, there are plenty of customers waiting in the wings, and if they come bearing not petrodollars, but gold and sovereign currencies, then all the better for Iran. These sanctions, if enforced, will in effect place a serious dent in the power of the petrodollar.
Any rhetoric regarding Iran’s nuclear program and the insistence on crippling it is nothing more than a US attempt to force regime change for one more receptive to maintaining the hegemony of the petrodollar.
The world now knows the truth about the US and how they conduct their affairs. US hostilities toward Iran have nothing to do with nuclear weapons development. If that were the case, then North Korea and Pakistan would be facing similar sanctions and threats, but they aren’t. The difference of course is in what lies beneath the ground – oil. Iran has it and the other guys don’t.
At the heart of the issue is not Iran’s dubious attempt to build nuclear weapons, or even oil, but how that oil is paid for. In 1973, Richard Nixon promised King Faisal of Saudi Arabia that the US would protect Saudi Arabian oilfields from any and all interested parties seeking to forcefully wrest them from the House of Saud. It’s important to remember that in 1973, Saudi Arabia didn’t have a fraction of the military and ground forces it possesses today (almost exclusively US manufactured weapons) and the USSR was very much a threat. Continue reading
As Nigeria spirals into instability, historian and economic researcher Frederick William Engdahl argues a recent government decision to lift subsidies on imported fuel in the oil-rich nation bears the mark of Washington Consensus shock therapy.
In the article below, Engdahl explains his view.
Nigeria, Africa’s most populous nation and its largest oil producer, is from all evidence being systematically thrown into chaos and a state of civil war. The recent surprise decision by the government of Goodluck Jonathan to abruptly lift subsidies on imported gasoline and other fuel has a far more sinister background than mere corruption, and the Washington-based International Monetary Fund (IMF) is playing a key role. China appears to be the likely loser along with Nigeria’s population.
The recent strikes protesting the government’s abrupt elimination of gasoline and other fuel subsidies, that brought Nigeria briefly to a standstill, came as a surprise to most in the country. Months earlier, President Jonathan had promised the major trade union organizations that he would conduct a gradual four-stage lifting of the subsidy to ease the economic burden. Instead, without warning he announced an immediate full removal of subsidies effective January 1, 2012. It was “shock therapy” to put it mildly.
Nigeria today is one of the world’s most important producers of light, sweet crude oil—the same high-quality crude oil that Libya and the British North Sea produce. The country is showing every indication of spiraling downward into deep disorder. Nigeria is the fifth largest supplier of oil to the United States and twelfth largest oil producer in the world on a par with Kuwait and just behind Venezuela with production exceeding two million barrels a day.
Despite its oil riches, Nigeria remains one of Africa’s poorest countries. The known oilfields are concentrated around the vast Niger Delta roughly between Port Harcourt and extending in the direction of Lagos, with large new finds being developed all along the oil-rich Gulf of Guinea.Nigeria’s oil is exploited and largely exported by the Anglo-American giants—Shell, Mobil, Chevron, Texaco. Italy’s Agip also has a presence and most recently, to no one’s surprise, the Chinese state oil companies began seeking major exploration and oil infrastructure agreements with the Abuja government.
Ironically, despite the fact that Nigeria has abundant oil to earn dollar export revenue to build its domestic infrastructure, government policy has deliberately let its domestic oil refining capacity fall into ruin. The consequence has been that most of the gasoline and other refined petroleum products used to drive transportation and industry, has to be imported, despite the country’s abundant oil. In order to shield the population from the high import costs of gasoline and other refined fuels, the central government has subsidized prices. Continue reading
Despite international sanctions and certain western countries’ unilateral bans and embargos, Iran has boosted its exports by 500% during the last 8 years.
Reports show that despite the hostile policies and moves of the United States and its European allies, Iran has shown a promising trend of growth in area of economy.
The latest statistical figures presented by the Iranian commerce and economic bodies, the country has experienced a five-time growth in exports to over 160 world countries, while it imports have increase by 200% during the last 8 years.
Also, during the last 9 months of the current Iranian year (March 21 to December 21), the country’s exports have grown to $31.9bln which shows a 37.8% increase compared with the same period last year.
It is noteworthy that Iran has imported goods from 37 European countries and exported its products to 35 of them in the last 8 years.
Iran is under four rounds of UN Security Council sanctions for turning down West’s calls to give up its right of uranium enrichment.
The United States and its allies accuse Iran of pursuing a military nuclear program and have used their influence on the UN Security Council to press for fresh sanctions against Tehran. Continue reading
[ Editor's note: Artcle translated into French HERE ]
by Paul Craig Roberts
Political mass strike dynamics have been at work in the United States since the Wisconsin and Ohio mobilizations of February and March. Now, there are demonstrations in lower Manhattan and Boston specifically directed against the Wall Street banks. Another protest demonstration is scheduled for Washington, DC, starting on October 6. Good: a political challenge to Wall Street is indeed long overdue.
The Occupy Wall Street demonstrators are skeptical in regard to Obama. There is no sizable constituency for Ron Paul, and the crackpot Austrian school of economics is hardly represented. Above all, there is a desire to break the power of Wall Street. This much is promising, but still not enough to win.
The demonstrations appear initially as leaderless groups, engaged in an organic process of discussion Continue reading