Puppet Masters

Stock Down

What's the real story behind the $3.8 trillion Chinese correction?

© Stringer/Reuters
The recent Mother of All Corrections in Chinese stocks - which wiped out a $3.8 trillion on paper - inevitably led the usual US "experts" to forecast, once again, China's imminent collapse. Hong Kong even resuscitated the "regime change" meme.


The roller coaster lasted a few days. And then it was gone. Significantly, major US funds - including Fidelity and Goldman Sachs - were among the first to declare the turbulence over, and move on. Goldman Sachs, by the way, soon reverted to bullish. Its chief China economist, Kinger Lau, predicted that Shanghai will rally 27 percent over the next 12 months.

So this is not a bubble. At least not yet. Beijing has a lot of tools to - as newspeak goes - "support the market." According to Little Helmsman Deng Xiaoping's maxim, "Socialism with Chinese characteristics," which will stop at nothing to control the "irrational exuberance" of the markets.

The IMF - considering its disaster capitalism record all across the developing world, not to mention the post-1997 Asian financial crisis - is never a reliable source. But in this case, IMF chief economist Olivier Blanchard at least did not make a fool of himself; he emphasized China's casino stock market "doesn't reflect on the fundamentals" of its economy. The slump, he added, "was very much a sideshow."


South Front military updates: Iraq and Novorossia

The Iraqi Government officially announced the start of military operations to "recapture Anbar" in western Iraq from ISIS. Although the announcement did not detail the nature of these operations, ISIS's positions in the province are entrenched and distributed, challenging military operations that focus upon clearing only one city at a time under ISIS's control.

Operations led by Shia militia groups were already underway in the vicinity of ISIS-held Fallujah prior to the announcement of the ISF's new Anbar operation, indicating the independence of several groups from the command and control of the Iraqi government. Nonetheless, attacks and engagements around Ramadi increased following the announcement.

Ramadi had been mostly quiet after the fall of the city to ISIS in late May 2015, and its reemergence as a frontline suggests that the Iraqi government may intend to designate the city as its main objective while Iran-backed Shia forces prioritize Fallujah.

Black Magic

That old black magic: FBI tracked Chattanooga shooter's family for years

Once again, another convenient shooting has helped supercharge anger, hatred, fear, and division across the Western World after an alleged "Islamist extremist" opened fire on and killed 4 US Marines at a recruiting station in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

Without any knowledge of how the US has in fact created Al Qaeda and its many global affiliates, including vicious terrorist groups plaguing Southeast Asia, and the most notorious to date, the so-called "Islamic State" (ISIS), the American public will predictably react in a manner that will simply further justify America's meddling across the globe amid its self-created and perpetuated "War on Terror." It will also help in efforts to further tighten control over the American public itself, with increased justifications for expanding police state measures and future pushes to disarm the American people.

Yahoo News would report in their article, "Shootings at Chattanooga military facilities leave 4 Marines, gunman dead; act called 'domestic terrorism'," that:
A U.S. official told the Associated Press that Abdulazeez had not been on the radar of federal law enforcement before Thursday's shooting.

Comment: See also:

Eye 1

Mukachevo has become the contraband capital of Ukraine

© Reuters / Maxim Shemetov
You probably already heard that in Mukachevo there was a shootout with lethal results (three bodies)? It was an argument of pravoseki with the police and the local mafia.

But in my post I want to talk not even about the unstable and volatile situation on the borders of Ukraine, but some insider info from distributors about Mukachevo.

Delivery drivers (from Ukrainian suppliers) have said that Transcarpathia is a perfect "black hole", sucking the merchandise. One driver said that a third of all the products of his factory is sold in Transcarpathia, the other said that almost half. Others - less, but still, a disproportionate amount compared to other regions.

Comment: The most pathological elements are at each other's throats, and the ones with Washington's backing will probably win out in the end.

SOTT Exclusive: Chaos brewing in Ukraine, Right Sector gaining ground


One year later: All evidence still suggests MH17 shot down by a jet fighter


British tabloid two days after the downing of MH17. Note the 'coincidental' juxtaposition of an image of the royal baby
One year ago today over Eastern Ukraine, someone deliberately shot down Malaysian Flight MH17 killing all 298 passengers and crew, most of them Dutch citizens.

In the immediate aftermath of the event, and I mean, 'immediate', the Western media and the Western political elite it works for, blamed 'pro-Russian rebels', Russia, and even Vladimir Putin himself for bringing down the plane with a Buk M1 missile. No evidence was presented to back up the claim.

Since then, the 'trial by media' has continued, although still without one shred of evidence that 'Russia did it'. With the 1-year anniversary approaching, CNN released a 'damning' new report citing unnamed "U.S. officials" who said they had seen a draft of the final official report by Dutch investigators due in October this year. The draft apparently reveals shocking new hard evidence in the form of the statement: "Russia did it". Slam dunk!

Star of David

US offers 'to boost' military aid to Israel after Iran nuclear deal

© Kevin Lamarque / Reuters
The US has offered to increase military aid to Israel by another $1.5 billion per year to ease tensions over the nuclear deal with Iran, media has reported. Defense Secretary Ash Carter is expected to make the offer during next week's visit to Tel Aviv.

The proposed increase would see Israel getting an additional squadron of F-35 fighter jets, funding for research and development of missile defense systems, and ammunition to replenish the stocks used in last year's bombing of Gaza, Israeli sources told Jerusalem Post.

Under the current arrangement, Israel is receiving $3 billion a year, most of which is used to purchase US military hardware such as fighter jets and missile defense systems. Israeli and US officials have been discussing increasing the amount of aid to anywhere between $4.2 and $4.5 billion per year, sources familiar with the talks told the New York Times.

Comment: Washington keeps sending Israel money so they can buy more US weapons, the circus continues.


EU treating Greece like occupied hostile state


The deal will leave Greece so economically fragile that it is almost guaranteed to crash into a fresh crisis in the next global downturn
A new deal for Athens is the worst of all worlds and solves nothing

Like the Neapolitan Bourbons - benign by comparison - the leaders of the eurozone have learned nothing, and forgotten nothing.

The cruel capitulation forced upon Greece after 31 hours on the diplomatic rack offers no conceivable way out the country's perpetual crisis. The terms are harsher by a full order of magnitude than those rejected by Greek voters in a landslide referendum a week ago, and therefore can never command democratic assent.

They must be carried through by a Greek parliament still dominated by MPs from Left and Right who loathe every line of the summit statement, the infamous SN 4070/15, and have only agreed - if they have agreed - with a knife to their throats.

EMU inspectors can veto legislation. The emasculation of the Greek parliament has been slipped into the text. All that is missing is a unit of EMU gendarmes.

Such terms are unenforceable. The creditors have sought to nail down the new memorandum by transferring €50bn of Greek assets to "an independent fund that will monetise the assets through privatisations and other means". It will be used in part to pay off debts.


U.S. trains 60 moderate rebels in Syria - that's all they could find

The fact that the US can find only 60 Syrian rebels to train is quite telling.

It means that out of nearly 18 million Syrians (reduced by 4 million since the start of the conflict) the US could only find 60 that were willing to fight against the Syrian Army, only 60.(1)

In other words, only an increase of ~0.000333% of the Syrian population is deemed "moderate" by the US and willing to fight. The military is currently in the process of vetting 7,000 volunteers, so if we assume that all of them will pass inspection, that will amount to a mere ~0.039222% of the population. A far cry from 0.1%, let alone 1% of the total inhabitants.

The fact that only 60 can be deemed "moderate" is also quite telling. This coming from a government who deemed the Free Syrian Army, among others, as "moderates." In September of 2014, FSA "moderate" commander and recipient of US aid Bassel Idriss admitted that "We are collaborating with the Islamic State and the Nusra Front," the reason for this being "We have reached a point where we have to collaborate with anyone against unfairness and injustice."(2)


Russian aviation experts: 'Israeli-made Python air-to-air missile (fired from Israeli-upgraded Su-25 Scorpion) may have downed MH17'

© Maxim Zmeyev / Reuters
A report on Malaysian Airlines MH17 air disaster in Ukraine last year by a group of old-hand aviation security experts maintains that the Boeing might have been downed by an Israeli Python air-to-air missile.

The report was leaked via the private LiveJournal account of Albert Naryshkin (aka albert_lex) late on Tuesday and has already been widely discussed by social media communities in Russia.

The authors of the investigative report have calculated the possible detonation initiation point of the missile that hit the passenger aircraft and approximate number and weight of strike elements, which in turn designated the type and presumed manufacturer of the weapon.

© albert-lex.livejournal.com

Comment: When you combine this information about the probable missile being Israeli-made with the information Sott.net found about Su-25s having been upgraded by an Israeli firm...

'MH17 Who Dunnit? Western Media Silent on the Evidence', published on Sept 1st, 2014:
The Russians have stated that the jet they spotted on radar near MH17 at the time of the crash was most likely an Su-25. The Su-25 basic model is a rather 'dated' fighter aircraft that does not have a pressurized cockpit meaning that flying for any length of time above its operational ceiling of 7,000 meters is problematic for the pilot (MH17 was at 10,000 meters). The standard SU-25 also has fairly basic instruments and weapons, with only a laser guidance system for rocket and canon fire which, apart from being designed for ground target acquisition, has an error range of up to 13 feet. If the Su-25 came no closer than 3-5 kms and was only equipped with laser guidance, accurate targeting of the cockpit would not have been possible... with a standard Su-25.

Since the 1970s, several variants of the Su-25 have been produced, the most recent of which is the Su-25KM 'Scorpion' which was announced in early 2001 by the original manufacturer, Tbilisi Aircraft Manufacturing in Georgia, in partnership with Elbit Systems of Israel.
The aircraft uses a standard Su-25 airframe, enhanced with advanced avionics including a glass cockpit, digital map generator, helmet-mounted display, computerized weapons system, complete mission pre-plan capability, and fully redundant backup modes. Performance enhancements include a highly accurate navigation system, pinpoint weapon delivery systems, all-weather and day/night performance, NATO compatibility, state-of-the art safety and survivability features [...]
See also:

Bad Guys

Ukraine before and after Euromaidan: The Far Right and an underground resistance

© Reuters / David Mdzinarishvili
Dmytro Yarosh (L), a leader of the Right Sector movement, addresses during a rally in central Independence Square in Kiev February 21, 2014

Report for the International Anti-EU Forum, Athens, 26-28 June 2015.

Ukrainian fascism, whose existence is hard for even the most ardent supporters of the Kiev regime to deny today, did not emerge in 2014. Ukrainian fascism did not arise suddenly. Its development, first slowly and then rapidly, can be traced to the turn of the 1980s-90s and reached its culmination during the so-called "revolution of dignity" last winter.

This gradual fascization of Ukrainian society, the peak of which naturally came at a time of economic crisis, has long been the subject of analysis by the Ukrainian left. In 2012, two years before the Maidan, our organization, Borotba, published a report entitled "Ukrainian oligarchy prepares a creeping fascist coup." The report predicted the events of last winter with remarkable accuracy.

Here are some quotes from the document:

Comment: For more on the neo-Nazi battalions, and their reign of terror across the Ukraine, check out:

SOTT Exclusive: Chaos brewing in Ukraine, Right Sector gaining ground