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U.S. Federal Reserve the largest holder of U.S. Treasury bonds


Federal Reserve Chair, Janet Yellen
Janet Yellen, chair of the U.S. Federal Reserve, opened the door to keeping a multi-trillion-dollar portfolio for years, saying a decision on when to stop reinvesting maturing bonds depends on financial conditions and the economic outlook.
Quantitative easing may turn out to be a gift that keeps on giving for the U.S. economy.

As the Federal Reserve prepares to end its third round of bond buying next week, the central bank plans to hang on to the record $4.48 trillion balance sheet it has accumulated since announcing the first round of purchases in November 2008.

That will continue to keep a lid on borrowing costs, helping the Fed lift inflation closer to its target and providing support to a five-year expansion facing headwinds abroad, from war in the Mideast to slowing growth in Europe and China.

Holding bonds on the Fed's balance sheet limits the supply of securities trading on the public markets, which helps keep prices up and yields lower than they otherwise would be. That provides stimulus to the economy just as a cut in the Fed's benchmark interest rate would, according to Michael Gapen, a senior U.S. economist for Barclays Plc in New York and former Fed Board section chief in charge of monetary and financial markets analysis.
Cow

Ottawa 'Terror Attacks' Lucky Break for Harper and the Warmongers

At what point do we start getting suspicious?

Three weeks ago, on October 3rd, Canadian PM Stephen Harper's Conservative party narrowly passed a motion to "launch combat missions" in Iraq alongside other Western warmongering nations and their clients in the Middle East. The motion was passed (157 for to134 against) despite stiff opposition from the NDP and Liberal opposition parties and a Canadian public traditionally averse to any kind of foreign military campaigns. On the day of the vote, an online poll showed almost 60% of respondents were against Canada joining the 'coalition'.

NDP opposition leader Tom Mulcair said that the Harper government was "plunging Canada into a prolonged war without a credible plan" and that bombing ISIS "will only create more recruits for ISIS and can, in fact, prove to be disastrously counterproductive". On Monday, former prime minister Jean Chretien again criticized Canada's military involvement in Iraq saying that it was "just the latest in a long history of interventions by western countries that have left "scars" on the Middle East" and that "Canada should be putting its emphasis on humanitarian assistance for the refugees in the region."

The pusillanimous PM Harper responded by reading a gospel from the Neocon book of public scaremongering:
"It is imperative that we act with our allies to halt ISIL's spread in the region and reduce its capacity to launch terrorist attacks outside the region, including against Canada. As a Government, we know our ultimate responsibility is to protect Canadians, and to defend our citizens from those who would do harm to us and to our families.
In urging all parliament members to support the motion, Harper admitted that involving Canada in another war was not only unpopular but politically risky in the run up to next year's general election. Then again, given the widespread allegations of vote fraud leveled against Harper's Conservative party during the last general election, Harper may not have much to worry about.

Have the thought crimes laws been passed? Can I come out now?

Two days ago, having finally emerged from the broom closet into which he bolted during the gunfire in the Parliament building, Harper responded to the two "terror attacks" saying that the events were "a grim reminder that Canada is not immune to the types of terrorist attacks we have seen elsewhere around the world, and that the attack(s) would only strengthen Canada's response to terrorist organizations". Harper also pledged to speed up a plan already under way to bolster Canadian laws and police powers in the areas of "surveillance, detention and arrest. We will not be intimidated. Canada will never be intimidated."

But of course, as a result of two very well timed 'terror attacks', Canada, or rather Canada's public, its military and its political class, have been intimidated (or rather manipulated) into backing down in the face of Harper's warmongering and becoming accomplices in more corporate war-for-profit and the destruction of their civil liberties.
Attention

Complicit Western media stay silent on the killings of journalists that are not an 'appendage' of U.S.-NATO

© Screenshot YouTube video by PressTV
Press TV reporter Serena Shim was killed in Turkey after reporting that ISIS terrorists were entering Syria from Turkey as 'undercover NGO activists'
The suspicious death of US-born journalist Serena Shim, and the deafening silence on the story in the US, is merely the latest example of the blatant double standard employed by the Western media.

Shim, a 29 year old American journalist of Lebanese descent, had been covering the ongoing war in Syria, specifically the current battle between ISIS militants and Kurdish forces near the Syrian town of Kobani, from the Turkish-Syrian border. Shim was traveling in a rental car back to her hotel after reporting from the Turkish town of Suruc near the Syrian border, when the car was allegedly struck by a heavy vehicle, killing Shim.

While Turkish authorities quickly contended that her death was an accident, many around the world, including executives and senior staff members of Press TV - the Iranian news agency for which Shim was working - have expressed doubts about the circumstances of her death, describing it as"suspicious."Such suspicions are clearly warranted as the alleged accident came just one day after Shim expressed fears for her own safety after receiving death threats from Turkish intelligence (MIT). In an interview with Press TV just after being accused of being a spy and receiving the threats, Shim stated:
"I'm very surprised at this accusation - I even thought of approaching Turkish intelligence because I have nothing to hide... I am a bit worried, because...Turkey has been labeled by Reporters Without Borders as the largest prison for journalists...so I am frightened about what they might use against me... We were some of the first people on the ground - if not the first people - to get that story of...militants going in through the Turkish border...I've got images of them in World Food Organization trucks. It was very apparent that they were militants by their beards, by the clothes they wore, and they were going in there with NGO trucks."

Comment: Let's remember all these reporters that were journalists in the true sense of the word, like Serena Shim, Andrey Stenin, Anatola Klyan, Maya Nasser and others. They reported the facts on the ground, the Truth and had to pay with their lives:

Western intel op? Press TV reporter killed after reporting that ISIS terrorists are entering Syria from Turkey as 'undercover NGO activists'

Russian war photographer Andrei Stenin was killed in Ukraine one month ago, Kiev lied

People 2

Building bridges! Syria asks for free trade zone with Russia

Syrian flag
© Reuters / Brian Snyder
Syria has applied to be part of a free trade zone with Russia. The proposal will be discussed at a Eurasian Economic Commission's (EEC) session, scheduled for December 23.

Russian Deputy Economic Development Minister Aleksey Likhachyov said Friday that Syrian authorities submitted an application earlier in October. He said talks on forming a free trade zone had been held before the war erupted in Syria.

"We have reached agreements in some sectors that are of particular importance for our country. And there are more hidden opportunities that will let us develop further cooperation," Syrian Finance Minister Ismail Ismail said Friday during a session of the Russian-Syrian Intergovernmental Commission in Sochi.

During the meeting the parties discussed bilateral projects in the areas of trade, agriculture and energy, TASS reported.

Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin stressed Russia is willing to assist Syria.

"Our government has to provide personal support to all the most important projects that exist in our relationship," he said, noting that this is the case when economic cooperation is vital in the struggle of the Syrian people for their own state and for full control over its national territory.

He believes that the main task today is to "inspire the business of both parties so that it ensured necessary security guarantees and attentive attitude towards those who are willing to come to Syria, and those who are willing to come from Syria to Russia."
Attention

German intelligence report on MH17: An admission that the West fabricated evidence

MH17
© REUTERS/ Marko Djurica
It seems the German intelligence agency the BND has provided a Bundestag committee with a report that once again attributes the MH17 shoot down to the NAF.

The report has not been published but for me the single most interesting thing in it is that it apparently finally demolishes the theory that MH17 was shot down by a BUK system secretly transferred to the NAF by the Russians. We are back it seems to the theory that the NAF shot down MH17 with a BUK missile system it captured from the Ukrainians.

There are a number of points to make here:

1. At the time when MH17 was shot down the western media were in full flood that the Russians were responsible. All sorts of stories circulated about how a BUK missile system was supposedly secretly smuggled by Russia across the border and supplied to the NAF, which the NAF then used to shoot MH17 down. These stories played a key role in influencing western public opinion against Russia. The Germans forced other EU states to impose sectoral sanctions on Russia on the grounds it was responsible for the tragedy because it was arming the NAF. The stories of a BUK missile system being secretly smuggled back and forth across the border (and films supposedly culled from social media supposedly showing it doing just that) undoubtedly played a part in giving credence to these claims. The BND has now admitted that the Russians were not involved in the shooting down of MH17 and that MH17 was not shot down by a BUK missile system smuggled by the Russians across the border. It turns out therefore that all those stores that gained so much attention and which did Russia's image so much harm were untrue. I wonder whether sectoral sanctions would have been imposed on Russia if it had been known then that those stories were untrue.

Comment: The BND seems to be playing both sides, as Germany has been doing for months now: talking bad about Russia and Novorossiya, but at the same time releasing choice tidbits that could be interpreted as veiled attacks on the puppet masters behind the current global farce of a war on Russia.

See RT's new documentary on MH17 here:

Newspaper

Saker interview: The defamation campaign against Putin brought to you by the CIA?

putin newsweek

Newsweek has been one of the most virulent Putin-bashers for years
A major topic in the Russian media is mystification with how Putin is portrayed in the Western media.

Wildly popular at home, and seen as a decent, modest, an admirable person, and Russians don't understand how there can be such a disconnect with Western impressions.

Recently, leading Russian commentators and politicians have been suggesting that this can only be explained by a deliberate campaign to defame Putin, by governments or other groups.

Yesterday, at a briefing to foreign journalists, Sergey Ivanov, Putin's chief of staff, arguably the 2nd most powerful man in Russia, spoke of an "information war" consisting of "personal attacks" on Putin.

The day before another member of Putin's inner circle, Vyasheslav Volodin, made similar remarks, telling foreign journalists "an attack on Putin is an attack on Russia."

The logic, they argue, is that by defaming the leader of a country, you weaken his power domestically by undermining popular support for him, and internationally, by rallying popular opinion to support policies against that country. The ultimate goal, they argue, is to weaken the country itself. They also talk about regime change.

They argue that if one looks at the facts, that there is evidence of ongoing character assassination which cannot be explained by a vague popular zeitgeist in the West, but is more likely the result of a dedicated effort to introduce this defamation into the news flow.

The issue of manipulation of news by intelligence services has been in the news recently with revelations that the CIA and German Secret Service (GSS) have long-running programs to influence how media executives and top journalists convey and interpret the news, including direct cash payments. Here are some examples they point to:

Comment: Like all the truly great, populist leaders in history, Putin is being actively slandered, defamed, and demonized by the psychopaths in power that see him as a threat to their monopoly on power, murder, and money. Julius Caesar, JFK, Chavez, Gaddafi...If Putin is not to suffer their fate, people need to speak up and show their support, otherwise we will be left with a vacuum in which the mad, gluttonous, bloodthirsty oligarchs will continue to ruin this world of ours.

Eye 1

Canada will introduce 'preventative detention' and other restrictions on civil liberties in wake of Ottawa shootings

© Andrew Burton/Getty Images
Constables guard the central rotunda of the Canadian Parliament one day after a deadly shooting
Prime minister Stephen Harper says he plans to strengthen counter-terrorism efforts as parliament returns day after shooting

The Canadian government indicated on Thursday that it intends to speed up proposals to toughen the country's anti-terror laws in the wake of the attack on parliament in Ottawa, including a measure that would allow "preventative detention".

As the House of Commons opened to rapturous applause for the sergeant-at-arms, the ceremonial security chief who prevented further tragedy by apparently killing the perpetrator of Wednesday's brazen assault, prime minister Stephen Harper indicated that his government was resolved to toughen the country's security legislation.

The governing Conservatives have made no secret of their plan to install new anti-terror powers, giving the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) more powers to track, investigative and detain would-be homegrown terrorists. Harper promised the proposals would be brought forward.


Comment: Here we see the true purpose for the likely false-flag attack that occurred in Ottawa. Harper previously had no good reason to remove freedoms and introduce "anti-terror" legislation. This attack gives him just the opportunity to do so, and he hasn't wasted any time.


"They need to be much strengthened, and I assure you, Mr Speaker, that work which is already under way will be expedited," Mr Harper said.

Details of those new powers have yet to be released, but justice minister Peter MacKay indicated to reporters that they will include measures to allow the preventive detention of suspected would-be terrorists.

"We're examining all those sections of the criminal code, and all measures under the law that will allow us, in some instances, to take pre-emptive measures," he said.


Comment: How long before Canadians are being detained for being friends with the wrong person, or saying the wrong thing online? If Canadians are willing to give up a little liberty for security, they will receive neither.


Comment: There is plenty of evidence that the attacks in Ottawa were all part of a plan to introduce tighter security measures in Canada and to further deepen Canadian involvement in U.S.-led warmongering in the Middle East:

Light Saber

Harold Wilson: A Russophile who consistently worked for better relations with the East

harold wilson
© wikipedia.org
James Harold Wilson, Baron Wilson of Rievaulx
Imagine a British Prime Minister who was a Russophile, not a Russophobe, and defied US pressure to send UK troops to war. A British Prime Minister who worked for better relations with the East, visited Moscow, and was on good terms with Kremlin leaders.

Well, it might sound unlikely today, but forty years ago we had such a Prime Minister. In October 1974, Harold Wilson was puffing away merrily on his pipe celebrating his fourth election victory out of five.

Looking back at the Wilson era is instructive as it shows us how much British politics has changed for the worse since the 1970s.

Harold Wilson was a mainstream Labour Party politician of his time yet anyone espousing the sensible pro-mixed economy policies he put forward in the 1960s and 70s today would be denounced as a "Stalinist." Ironically, at the time, the ultra-left accused Wilson- a man who extended nationalization and whose government increased the top rate of income tax to 83%- of being too right-wing!
Quenelle - Golden

Putin: World is being destroyed by U.S. and its satellites, who pass themselves off as 'the international community'

© AFP PHOTO / POOL / MICHAEL KLIMENTYEV
Russian President Vladimir Putin (C) sits next to former French Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin (R) on October 24, 2014 during a meeting of members of the Valdai International Discussion Club in the Russian city of Sochi.
Russian President Vladimir Putin participates in Valdai International Club discussion "World Order: New Rules or No Rules?"

The modern global and regional security system is seriously fragmented and deformed, Russian President Vladimir Putin said Friday.

"Unfortunately, there is no guarantee that the existing system of global and regional security can protect us from disruption. The system is seriously weakened, shattered and deformed. International and regional institutions of political, economic and cultural cooperation are going through a very difficult period," Putin said at the plenary session of the 11th meeting of the Valdai International Discussion Club.

The winners in the Cold War seem to be bent on reshaping the world so that it could better accommodate their own needs, Russian President Vladimir Putin said Friday in a comment on US foreign policy.

"It looks like the so-called 'winners' of the Cold War are determined to have it all and reshape the world into a place that could better serve their interests alone," Vladimir Putin said at the 11th conference of the Valdai Discussion Forum in the Russian city of Sochi.

Comment: What Putin left unsaid at the end there is that ISIS/ISIL too is a US creature.

Here is the final-day discussion at the Valdai Conference, held in the mountains above Sochi:


You can read a transcript of his speech here.

Sherlock

Moscow airport chiefs fired, staff arrested as investigation considers possibility of traffic control error in death of pro-Russian French oil company CEO

The general director and a deputy general director from Moscow's Vnukovo International Airport have resigned after the fatal crash that killed French oil giant Total's CEO earlier in the week, the airport's press service reported Thursday.

"In line with the tragic event that occurred [late Monday night on October 20], the following [individuals] have resigned: Vnukovo International Airport General Director Andrei Dyakov and Deputy General Director Sergei Solntsev," the press release reads.

Vnukovo accepted both resignations, according to the statement.

Several other airport managerial staff were dismissed as well on Thursday.

Total CEO Christophe de Margerie died in the crash of a Falcon 50 business jet late Monday night at Vnukovo-3 Airport. The incident happened when the aircraft, which was to fly to Paris, hit a snow removal vehicle when taking off. De Margerie was the only passenger on board along with three crew members, also French citizens. The crew also died in the crash.
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