Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Medvedev in Turkey & Syria - Consolidates Russian Influence


                                                                 FOUNDATION FOR INDO-TURKIC STUDIES                     

Tel/Fax ; 43034706                                                          Amb (Rtd) K Gajendra Singh                                                      

Emails;                                                   A-44 ,IFS Apartments                                                                     Mayur Vihar –Phase 1,                                                                Delhi 91, India

                                                                                                             18 May , 2010.



Medvedev in Turkey & Syria - Consolidates Russian Influence


Economic Integration with Europe but Rebuff to US in near abroad


"The war in Iraq is a historic strategic and moral calamity undertaken under false assumptions – undermining America's global legitimacy – collateral civilian casualties, – abuses, – tarnishing America's moral credentials. Driven by Manichean impulses and imperial hubris, it is intensifying regional instability." Zbigniew Brzezinski, National Security Adviser to US President Jimmy Carter.
While US led West is getting scalded by the economic and financial volcano unleashed by unregulated and rampant greed of its corporate oligarchy , which is still holding Washington to ransom ,Russia, imperceptibly, with support from its former republics and China has blocked and rebuffed US incursions into Moscow's near abroad .In 2008 Russia thrashed Georgia , when its puppet ruler instigated by US and Israel with a hysterical David Milliband mouthing Western media and BBC lies ,attacked disputed South Ossetia .It sent a stern message around the Caucasus , making even Azerbaijan's leader rethink its close embrace with Washington ,and beyond .

Russia then eased out discredited US proxy president Victor Yushchenko in Ukraine and the so called 'Orange Revolution' heroine prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko with pro-Russian president Victor Yanukovich back in power. It was followed by cementing of Russian-Ukrainian strategic partnership with a long lease on the Ukrainian port of Sevastopol for the Russian Black Sea fleet in exchange for discounted Russian gas , and other agreements including renewal of joint aircraft manufacture . The recent rounds of violence and still simmering tensions in Kyrgyz capital Bishkek and elsewhere could lend to constraints on Washington's use of its Manas airfield, from where bulk of US troops and sophisticated military equipment for war in Afghanistan are trans-shipped. This gives Kabul's northern neighbours a say in its affairs .


Moscow has now re-focused its attention on the Middle East , an arena of Cold War rivalry and conflict between the US led capitalist West and USSR and its communist , socialist and nationalist allies since WWII ,from where Russian influence vanished following the collapse of the Soviet Union and the Fall of the Berlin Wall ,with Iraq and Syria left adrift without a protector .It resulted in US led illegal invasion of Iraq in 2003 and its brutal occupation. Syria's strategic relations with Iran and patch up with Turkey helped Damascus withstand intense Western pressures. Allies Hezbollah in Lebanon gave a bloody nose to the 'invincible' Israeli Defense Forces in south , as admitted even in a Israeli report on the outcome of the 2006 war with Lebanon .It is a deterrent to Israel . Caught in a quagmire of is own making in Iraq and in the harsh realities in the hills and valleys of Afghanistan , a grave yard of empires ,US and its allies are now in a bind.

In spite of immense power of destruction still at its command and the bluster , West's limitations of military power have been exposed in the killing fields of Iraq and Afghanistan. Russia , now led in tandem by prime minister Vladimir Putin , a Karate champ and his handpicked soft spoken successor president Dimitry Medvedev , have brought about far reaching changes in Russian policies , not only in Eurasia and the Middle East but even in Latin America, once Washington's backyard under Monroe Doctrine .

Remember how after a meeting in June 2001 , George Bush said patronizingly of Vladimir Putin, "I looked the man in the eye. I was able to get a sense of his soul, a man deeply committed to his country and the best interests of his country." Putin could hardly keep a straight face as Bush described him as "trustworthy" and "straightforward." How the strategic parameters have been turned around since then.

The Russian bear first growled at the 43rd annual International Security Conference held in Munich on 10 February,2007  when president Putin spoke about the importance of the role of United Nations, U.S. missile defense, NATO expansion to Russian borders, Iran's nuclear program and the Energy Charter and accused Washington of provoking a new nuclear arms race by developing ballistic missile defenses, undermining international institutions, trying to divide modern Europe and making the Middle East more unstable through its clumsy handling of the Iraq war.
The Soviet Union's collapse was ruthlessly exploited by US led West when its capitalist controlled media sang praises of economic reforms and democratization .which under Yeltsin brought about economic disintegration and ruination to Russia .The worst kind of depression in modern history with economic losses more than twice those suffered by USSR in World War II. Russian GDP was trimmed to half and capital investment fell by 80 percent. People were reduced to penury and misery, death rates soared ( by an extra one million) so the population shrank. And in August 1998, the Russian financial system collapsed. Under the charade of globalization and ushering in capitalism in Russia, as much as a trillion dollars of Russian wealth was reportedly taken out and seven oligarchs created, six of them Jews.
Stephen F. Cohen in an article "The New American Cold War " wrote in 10 July 2006 issue of US Magazine ,'The Nation" that since 1990s ,Washington has followed hypocritical policy of "strategic partnership and friendship," with Presidents being on first name basis but underneath, all US administrations have followed a ruthless policy of undermining Russia " accompanied by broken American promises, condescending lectures and demands for unilateral concessions. USA has been even more aggressive and uncompromising than was Washington's approach to the Soviet Communist Russia."
" A growing military encirclement of Russia, on and near its borders, by US and NATO bases, which are already ensconced or being planned in at least half the fourteen other former Soviet republics, from the Baltics and Ukraine to Georgia, Azerbaijan and the new states of Central Asia. The result is a US-built reverse iron curtain and the remilitarization of American-Russian relations.
" A tacit (and closely related) US denial that Russia has any legitimate national interests outside its own territory, even in ethnically akin or contiguous former republics such as Ukraine, Belarus and Georgia." Richard Holbrooke, a democrat Secretary of State in waiting roundly condemned Russia for promoting a pro-Moscow government in neighboring Ukraine, where Russia has centuries of shared linguistic, marital, religious, economic and security ties and declared ' that far-away Slav nation part of "our core zone of security."
"Even more , a presumption that Russia does not have full sovereignty within its own borders, as expressed by constant US interventions in Moscow's internal affairs since 1992. They have included an on-site crusade by swarms of American "advisers," particularly during the 1990s, to direct Russia's "transition" from Communism; endless missionary sermons from afar, often couched in threats, on how that nation should and should not organize its political and economic systems; and active support for Russian anti-Kremlin groups, some associated with hated Yeltsin-era oligarchs
After Munich speech ,Putin made a whirlwind tour of the Middle East where the Arab states, chastened , battered and frightened by irrational US policies, welcomed him. His visits included Saudi Arabia , a first for a Russian president , Qatar, sitting atop massive reserves of gas , Jordan , a key strategic stone in the middle east matrix , even for Israel. US blunders and Russian policy got Moscow observer status in the Organization of the Islamic Conference in 2005 . In 2006 the Russia-Muslim World Strategic Vision Group was established. Exchange of presidential visits with Syria in 2005 , writing off of old Syrian debts of almost $10 billion and supply of short range missiles to deter arrogant Israeli jets buzzing the presidential palace in Damascus almost restored the relationship of Cold War era with Syria.

Economic cooperation with Europe for industrial modernization !

However with American eagle's wings singed , Russian leaders need not growl .They are coming  out as sober ,responsible and constructive interlocutors .

To allay Washington's suspicions , Moscow convinienetly 'leaked' a confidential policy document  from foreign minister Sergei Lavrov to president Medvedev outlining proposals for a more pragmatic foreign policy to build closer ties with the U.S. and Europe to help modernize its outdated industries .The authenticity of the document was confirmed . But a Kremlin spokesman said it was not yet officially approved .Russian Newsweek posted the document's full text on its website." It's a document that reflects the mainstream in today's Russian political leadership," said Dmitry Trenin, director of the Carnegie Moscow Center.

Though the document reiterates Russian opposition to U.S. policy to maintain global hegemony, it patronizingly singled out the Obama administration for its "transformational potential" to stabilise and improve relations with Moscow, by giving up the missile-defense systems in Poland and the Czech Republic and staunch support for anti-Russian leaders in Georgia, and in Ukraine.

The document also gives an idea about Moscow's relationship with former Soviet republics and recommends that taking advantage of the global financial crisis ,Moscow should acquire industrial and energy assets in the Baltics, Belarus, Ukraine and Central Asia—where Russian influence is a somewhat ambiguous and sensitive political issue.

A deal with the U.S. to reduce nuclear weapons has already been implemented. But the document names Iran as a potential flash point for renewed conflict with the West, in the event of a military strike against Iranian nuclear fuel facilities, which Moscow strongly opposes. Moscow is playing the great power game and has delayed completing the neclear power station in Iran. There is little news about the delivery of long promised Sam-300 missiles which would deter bombing of Iran's nuclear facilities . Moscow extracts whatever concession it can from Washington and keeps Tehran on leash.

The document calls for creating "alliances of modernization" with European countries to attract needed technology and " find opportunities to use American technological potential." It singled out Germany, France, Italy and Spain as Russia's closest partners in Europe. [To neutralise US domination of Europe since WWII ,German leadership has been most enthusiastic to normalise and improve relation with Moscow and has many economic proposals including the ongoing project of Russian gas for Germany via a Baltic Sea pipeline , now headed by a former Chancellor Gerhard Schroder ,Angela Merkel's predecessor .  

The 'new spirit' was reflected when U.S. and European troops for the first time marched alongside Russian forces during Moscow's annual military parade marking the end of World War II in which US,UK,France and USSR were allies .Russia made the maximum sacrifice in men and treasure and the country suffered terrribly while destroying three-fourth of the Nazi war Machine .With US releuctant to expend men and treasure and open a front in Greece , Soviet forces reached Berlin .US and UK films have exagerated beyond measure their role in the defeat  of Nazi Germany though Hollywood films , which are regularly telecast as part of propaganda in Discovery ,History and other channels which many specially India's ignoranti lap up .

"The overall climate is better than it has been since the time of Perestroika," said Vyacheslav Nikonov, a foreign-policy analyst and frequent Kremlin adviser. "Russia has started to react to the more cooperative policy from the West." He and other analysts feel that the Kremlin's new approach carries some risks, as Moscow reasserts its influence in its near abroad. Medvedev's focus is on weaning Russia's economy from its dependence on oil and other natural resources and stimulating high-technology industries mandated the Westward focus. "The sources of modernization and innovation are in the West, not the East," he said. While the document covers China and other major developing countries, the focus is on ties with the U.S. and Europe. The report also suggests reduction in military buildup [If US military-industry complex would let it!]

Medvedev visits Turkey and Syria


Russian Turkish Relations; a Historical perspective


The relations between Turks and Russians have been tortuous and mostly adversarial throughout history from the days of Mongol –Turks and Russian warfare and rivalries reaching acuity during the half a millennia long Ottoman empire and the expanding Russian empire at Istanbul's cost in the Caucasus , Crimea and East Europe till WWI , when whatever was left of the Ottoman empire , which once extended from Morocco to Oman , from Crimea to Sudan and from Hungary to the Iranian border was divided up by the European powers after the defeat of the Ottoman arms .Post Bolshevik revolution at the end of WWI, Moscow extended support to  Kemal Ataturk 's new republic in Ankara which was welcomed as long as Communist ideology did not infiltrate nationalist and secular Turkey. Communist party has remained banned in Turkey.


Before his death in 1938 , with war clouds on the horizon ,Ataturk advised his would be successors to keep out of the WWII , so as not to be first run over  by the Nazis and then 'liberated' by the Soviet forces .But after the war  , during which Turkey remained neutral , USSR ,leader  of victorious coalition in Eurasia against the Axis powers led by Germany demanded return of two Turkish provinces Kars and Ertvin in North West of Turkey which were once part of Czarist Russia and role in overseeing  the Straits of Bosporus and Dardanelles , controlling access to the Black Sea and notionally separating Asia and Europe. Ankara looked around for a protector and found one in Washington in the wake of the burgeoning Cold War .It joined Nato and other Western pacts .But throughout that era till the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 ,Ankara never felt comfortable with US policies specially in regard to Greece and Cyprus where 18% of population is of Turkish origin .


After the war ,Turkey also found itself  surrounded by hostile neighbours , not only Communist Bulgaria in the West and in the North East ,Soviet republics of Georgia , Armenia and Azerbaijan and a Black Sea full of hostile naval ships. In the East ,Ankara still faced another historical enemy of the Sunni Ottomans , the Shia Iran , both now successors of geopolitical rivals in history of Romans –Byzantines and Persians .Relations with Damascus were strained ever since Syria was carved out of former Ottoman Vilayat ( provinces ) and acquiescence of Western powers to let Ankara annex Alwaite dominated sub province of Hatay -Antakya , the ancient Antioch   , to tempt Turkey to side with the Western powers in WWII. Since then building of dams and barrages on Euphrates and even on Tigris with strategic and economic ramifications made the relations even more inimical .


Damascus responded by sheltering Marxist Kurdish rebel leader Abdullah Ocalan and letting him operate guerilla training camps in Syria and Lebanese territory under its influence .The rebellion cost Turkey nearly 40.000 lives mostly Kurds and destruction of economy of Kurdish populated East and South East Turkey bordering Syria, Iraq and Iran .Ocalan was apprehended by Turkish agents , helped by Western agencies in 1999 in Kenya after he was expelled when Turkey threatened war on Syria , now without Moscow's umbrella .Ocalan was tried, convicted and is now imprisoned on a Marmara Sea island near Istanbul .


Relations with Greece have been complex and adversarial like India and Pakistan since the emergence of Turkey from the ashes of the Ottoman empire after Ataturk had beaten back Greek forces from 60 kms west of Ankara in 1922 and exchange of Christian and Muslim populations, made worse by the dispute over Cyprus , now partly under Turkish occupation since 1974 and various border and other disputes .Only with Iraq , Turkey had good relations .Ankara implemented an adroitly successful policy as a Nato ally , serving as an unsinkable aircraft career with over half a million armed men .But it felt somewhat neglected after the collapse of USSR as Washington found new allies in East Europe , Georgia and even Azerbaijan to roll back and throttle the Russian Federation.


But the US led 2003 illegal invasion of Iraq and occupation which has led to the death of over a million Iraqis , with whom Turks always had very good relations and emergence of an autonomous Kurdish state in north Iraq , as a magnet to its own Kurds in south and east Turkey has changed the strategic matrix completely in the region not only for Turkey but also for its neighbours.


Yes, after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 , with buffer states between historical enemies Russians and Turks and even between Tehran and Moscow ,Turkey and Iran have now different compulsions and options , which they are implementing . The main question is  –what will happen when US withdraws from Iraq leaving behind a whole new gamut of problems .A fractured and divided Iraq along Shia and or Sunni Arabs and Kurds lines, with a strengthened Iran , with Shias ruling in Baghdad and with full control of south Iraq .What of ramifications in the autonomous North Kurdish Iraq , under US protection since 1991 , with 'let us try once more for a Kurdish state by turbulent and new generation Kurds  in Turkey ,Iran and Syria ? What about reactions, counter reactions and policies of Iraq's Sunni neighbours like Saudi Arabia , Jordan ,Syria and even Egypt . And what about Israel ! By the invasion a veritable Pandora's box has been opened , with borders created after WWI likely to come under stresses and strains .


Strategic and political changes in the region


Russian president Medvedev's two days visit to Ankara in May is third ever head of state visit from Moscow .His predecessor and benefactor Putin was in Turkey in early September, 2004 .The first ever visit took place at the peak of the Cold War by the Soviet Union's president Nikolay Podgorny in 1973 , almost 4 decades ago ,when the author was first posted at Ankara. The invitation was to express anger at Washington's warnings that Ankara not use US arms in its dispute over Cyprus with Greece, also a NATO member. Frequent exchanges now at the highest level and signing of several economic and strategic agreements underscore the reshuffling of strategic perceptions and partnerships being forged by major players in the region after the Fall of the Berlin Wall , 119 and illegal invasion on Iraq and the so called war on terror in Afghanistan. And possible withdrawal of US troops !


March 2003 was a watershed in US-Turkish relations when the Turkish parliament rejected an AKP government motion ( which had a two-thirds majority) to allow troops of its ally the US to open a second front against north Iraq from Turkish soil. It led to much heated and bitter public exchanges and acrimony between the leaders of the two countries .It was followed by war of words when US imprisoned some Turkish special troops in Iraq and an US attack on Turcomen , Turkey's ethnic cousins in Iraq , who also sit atop a sea of oil in Kirkuk , on which Ankara has sometimes laid claims on behalf of the Turcomen .And thus began a fairly fast decline in trust and overall relations . Then there are heated exchanges regarding PKK cadre holed up in North Iraq Kurdish areas , about which US has done little in spite of promises .Ankara and even Kurdish freedom organizations in Europe believe it is only a US card against Turkey .


But aware of  the geopolitical importance of Turkey in the region and its military strength Washington has regularly sent senior officials to amend and ameliorate tense relations .Both president Bush and Obama have visited Ankara .It has been suggested that US might need Ankara's goodwill if US withdrawal becomes difficult via Basra and Kuwait ,then the route up via South East Turkey could be considered. Withdrawals can never be well organized .Remember of US forces from Vietnam , with people hanging by helicopters or even from Russia's near abroad after USSR collapsed.

Since 2003 Turkish and Iranian leaders have also exchanged visits at the highest level and intensified efforts to put aside deep-rooted historical and ideological differences, because of instability interjected in the region , whose next stage or evolution unnerves every one. They exchange information on Kurdish rebels which worries them both and even take action in tandem.

US-Iran Turbulent nuclear Tango ;

Since quite some time Turkish PM Recep Tayep  Erdogan  has pooh-poohed US led allegations about Iran's nuclear program .Now under a deal, brokered on 18 May along with Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, Iran will ship 1,200 kilograms from its stockpile of low-enriched uranium (LEU) to Turkey by the end of June in exchange for 120kg of 20% enriched uranium that is to be used at the Tehran Research Reactor to produce medical isotopes.

Wall Street Journal editorial described it as a "debacle" for US President Barack Obama's diplomacy.  ''There are a number of unanswered questions regarding the announcement coming from Tehran,'' declared US secretary of state Hilary Clinton. While Washington will pursue the UNSC sanctions for which agreement has been claimed , but first the International Atomic Energy Agency ,the UN's nuclear watchdog, has to consider details of the agreement that opens up an alternative route to sanctions. Both Turkey and Brazil are elected members of the UN Security Council and the non-aligned members generally support Tehran.

Ankara is now following a policy designed by foreign minister Ahmet Davutoglu of "zero problems with neighbors," "pro-active engagement," or "multi-lateral foreign policy" .The policy of "Look East" ,was initiated in 1995 by the first Islamist coalition prime minister Nacemettin Erbakan , who brought into politics both Erdogan and president Abdullah Gul in early 1990s . Ankara has now assiduously cultivated and improved its relations with its Muslim neighbours, with whom it had acrimonious relations except for Iraq . Under pressure and threats of further sanctions from the West , Syria put in cold storage its historic dispute over sharing of Euphrates waters with Ankara and other problems. After exchange of presidential visits Turkish Syrian relations have taken a 180 deg turn , beginning a new era of friendship with mutual benefits.

Along with closer relations with Muslim countries in east and south ,Ankara's almost ally like relations with Tel Aviv have deteriorated with public brawls between Turkish and Israeli leaders . Erdogan and other leaders have publicly accused Israel of state terrorism in Gaza , while Israeli  foreign minister publicly humiliated Turkish ambassador in Tel Aviv .Ankara feels that it no longer needs Tel Aviv .With leftist organizations in middle east , except PKK , having declined if not disappeared ,Ankara needs no intelligence inputs from Tel Aviv . Let us see how Ankara manages to fill in gaps of its military equipment obtained from US and Israel and up-gradation by Israel . It is Tel Aviv , with its hemmed in small area which has lost its only friend in the region with whom it used to hold regular military exercises , specially air maneuvers ,which have now been suspended.

Wafted from the East and West , and sensitive to cross currents ,Ankara has got together with Moscow sensing the looming collapse of the West , with even Turkish 'enemy' neighbour Greece ' in deep economic peril , which could  take down other EU members too. (How ever Erdogan did visit Athens a few days ago.)


Ankara knows there is scant chance of its joining EU as full member with freedom for 70 million Turks to potter inside Europe . The last opportunity was in 1986 when offered membership with Athens ; Ankara delined . Turkey has a Customs Union agreement with EU and a flourishing trade with it .After 119 ,EU membership will remain an impossible dream , a Chimera. Turkey's leadership and its proud people know it. The AKP leadership has used the charade of joining EU to keep the military away from apex decision making by downgrading the military dominated National Security Council so as to align with Copenhagen criteria for entry into EU .President Abdullah Gul had remarked some years ago –do Ankara or Istanbul look like European cities!


Medvedev in Ankara

During Medvedev's visit, the two countries signed 17 agreements, which are estimated to be worth  US$25 billion. The trade turnover between Russia and Turkey now exceeds $30 billion, the ambitious target for the next five years is a whopping $100 billion. "It is hard even to imagine, but this figure is an attainable one," pronounced Medvedev, "Once we achieve this goal, it becomes a model for Europe." Russia's overall trade with Europe presently stands at $200 billion. From the beginning of the Bear and Gray Wolf coming together after 2003 ,economic cooperation has led into other sectors and restoration of trust .Russian tourists who throng in millions Turkey's beaches along the Aegean, Mediterranean and even the Black Sea coast can now enter without visas.

Russian investments in Turkey total over $4 billion, and Turkey's in Russia , over $6 billion. Presently Russian energy giant Gazprom supplies 70 % of Turkey's gas needs ( next only after Berlin and Rome  ). Russia supplies approximately $1.8 billion worth of oil and between $1.1 billion and $1.3 billion of refined oil products to Turkey annually.

The two countries are building the Blue Stream gas pipeline along the Black Sea bed and have decided to build a second line of the pipeline. Turkey is also considering joining the South Stream project to transport Russian natural gas across the Black Sea to Bulgaria and on to Italy and Austria. With Turkey becoming the hub for transports of gas and oil from the Caspian and Iran , Russia is ready to help in the construction of the other oil pipelines.

A major strategic change has come in the field of nuclear energy. Ankara will allow Moscow to build - and own - a $20 billion nuclear power house. The agreement envisages the construction of four reactors on Turkey 's southern Mediterranean coast. Russia's Rosatom will operate the facilities and sell electric power . Rosatom will complete the first reactor in seven years and thereafter one reactor every three years. Significantly, Rosatom may also set up a facility in Turkey to make nuclear fuel. Turkey has followed the BOT route of development in many other sectors too.

Rosatom will first establish a fully-owned subsidiary, which will then offer up to 49% shares  to investors from Turkey or even from third countries. Rosatom expects to recoup the $20 billion cost of the project in 15 years by selling half of the electricity generated to the Turkish state distribution company and the rest to the country's private sector. But Rosatom must give 20% of its profits to the Turkish government. Russian terms would be difficult to match thus it is a strategic breakthrough .

The Russian Federal Service for Military and Technical Cooperation, meanwhile, announced recently that Russia was holding discussions to sell helicopters and air-defense systems to Turkey.

Turkey and Russia with others in the region are charting a policy of friendship based on solid economic alliances .Turkey with its pre-Ottoman and Ottoman past shares ethnic, cultural and linguistic affinities with central Asia, Caucasus and Balkans. Ankara has excellent relations with East European nations and tie ups with its former Vilayats (provinces) .With economic gains as bait Ankara can even help Moscow re-enter Balkans including new states created out of Yugoslavia , from where Russia was forced out by US and Nato during 1990s . While their interests do not always coincide , the two can help each other out in the Caucasus , as and when US power and influence ebb there .


With Gul besides him ,Medvedev proclaimed in Ankara , "Russia and Turkey are working together to maintain global and regional stability. Sitting in the president's office just now we spoke about the fact that the Black Sea countries themselves, and above all the region's two biggest countries, Russia and Turkey, bear direct responsibility for the situation in the region." Russia , certainly and even Turkey might want to forestall any attempt to make the Black Sea a "NATO lake" . Moscow hopes Ankara would help keep outside powers at bay .Russia itself is trying its best to limit NATO's activities in Georgia and even the East European Black Sea coast.


Any Russia-Turkish attempt to create a regional security system or understanding in the South Caucasus will be resisted by Washington, which has its proxy ruling in Georgia and close relationship with Azerbaijan based on exploitations of its oil and gas reserves .The Baku -Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline gives US a handle to keep Baku and Georgia in line . Azerbaijan has close relations with Ankara but an agreement between Turkey and Armenia to normalise relations has sent Baku fuming. Armenia remains allied to Russia, Georgia is unlikely to join NATO any time soon after the August 2008 war between Georgia and Russia over South Ossetia. On the whole Washington's influence is on the decline .

Syria and Middle East

Before coming to Ankara Medvedev was in Damascus , the first such visit by a ruler from Moscow since the 1917 Revolution.

In Cold War era such hyphenating would have been unthinkable. But there has been a sea change in their relations after the visit of Turkish president Ahmet Necdet Sezer to Damascus in April 2005 , despite US ambassador in Ankara Eric Edelman's public stand against it .Sezer's visit reciprocated  Syrian President Bashar Assad's visit to Ankara in January 2004, the first ever such visit since Syria broke away from Ottoman Turkey after World War I. As recently as 1998, Turkey had threatened to invade Syria unless it expelled Abdullah Ocalan, leader of the Marxist Kurdish Workers party (PKK), sheltered by Damascus as a lever against Turkey for its share of Euphrates waters and irredentist claims over Hatay province, which was annexed to Turkey in 1939.

During the Damascus visit no new arms deal were disclosed but under existing contracts, Russia is supplying MiG-29 fighter jets, Pantsir short-range air-defense systems and anti-aircraft artillery systems to Syria, according to Mikhail Dmitriyev, head of the Federal Service for Military and Technical Cooperation .Russia would also supply anti-tank weapons without specifying the type ."There are quite a few contracts to repair and upgrade systems delivered in the Soviet era," .

Expectedly, Israel, reacted angrily calling into question the solvency of Damascus.

"Syria at the present time cannot afford to pay for this sophisticated weaponry. Indeed, it has hardly enough money to buy food for its citizens. One can only wonder what is the real reason behind this dubious deal," said an Israeli official in Jerusalem who declined to be identified.

The United States has imposed sanctions on Syria for its support of militant groups and for corruption. Washington has a blow hot blow cold policy , hoping to detach Damascus from Tehran' s embrace , which is most unlikely.

Medvedev unnerved Israel by meeting with Khaled Meshaal, the exiled leader of the Palestinian group Hamas. "Russia's haste to win this contract has seen it even willing to meet with notorious Hamas leaders in Syria," an Israeli official said.

Israel's Foreign Ministry was "deeply disappointed" with Medvedevs meeting with Meshaal . In Moscow, the Foreign Ministry rebuffed Israel's criticism of the meeting ."Hamas … is a movement supported by the trust and sympathy of a significant part of Palestinians," Foreign Ministry spokesman Andrei Nesterenko said in a statement. "We have regular contacts with this movement."

While US. EU and Israel consider Hamas a terrorist group, Russia insists that Hamas should not be isolated. Russia, the United States, the EU and the United Nations make up a quartet of Middle East mediators. Russia considers Hamas a major party for a solution to the Palestine problem. Medvedev said that Hamas shouldn't be excluded from the peace process.

Medvedev described Gaza a "humanitarian disaster" and sought wider regional and international participation in seeking "actual solutions and decisions" in the Middle East , expressing regret at the slowdown in the US-brokered peace process which in turn "is having an impact on the situation in the Middle East.

Ankara has used much stronger words against Tel Aviv about the situation in Gaza , occupied West Bank and the Middle East. Ankara has hosted Hamas delegation and maintains contacts with it . During the Ottoman era , Palestinians were faithful subjects and Turks feel strongly whenever Palestinians are killed or maltreated .Books and films have been made expressing Turkish anger and repulsion at Israel.

Russian-Syrian relations after a hiatus following the collapse of USSR in 1991 were renewed in full vigour in January 2005 , when Syrian president Bashar Assad was invited for 4 day visit to Moscow  The visit marked the first stirrings of the Russian bear, which was sent into hibernation after the USSR's power was dismantled by Mikhail Gorbachev, without leveraging anything in return. A drunk or drugged Boris Yeltsin then set Russia on the road to economic ruin , decay and humiliation everywhere.


To mark the historic Syrian visit, Russia wrote off 73% of US$13.4 billion in debt owed by Syria from the days of the USSR. President Putin said this created "opportunities for long-term cooperation".


Assad defended his country's right to acquire surface-to-air missiles from Russia. "these are weapons for air defense, meant to prevent aircraft from intruding in our airspace", he said "If Israel objects to our acquisition of these defensive weapons, it is as if it is saying, 'We want to attack Syria but we do not want them to defend themselves.' That's not logical," declared Assad. He reiterated an earlier denial of a deal for SA-18 missiles and long-range Iskandar-E missiles that could reach targets all over Israel. Ever since the United States invaded Iraq in March 2003, Syria has been threatened both by Israel and the US. Assad would be furious when Israeli jets buzzed him in his palace at will .

Commented  a jittery Jerusalem Post, "Russia's planned sale of SA-18 missiles to Syria looms ominously as a throwback to the [Leonid] Brezhnev era's most misguided attitudes. Economically, Syria is a basket case whose debt-return record must make one doubt its financial commitments.'


This is funny and farcical .Where would Israel be without massive annual US aid and protection of US veto in the Security Council ? Would not Israel be a basket case too without US aid ?


For internal situation in Turkey read

President Abdullah Gul ; a distinguished visitor from Turkey , www.rebelnews.orgetc


New Delhi could learn from Ankara how to plan and conduct foreign policy .Unfortunately , Washington's soft diplomacy is flowering in India .New Delhi has too many in decision making positions who are afflicted with Washcon Syndrome

K ajendra Singh, Indian ambassador (retired), served as ambassador to Turkey and Azerbaijan from August 1992 to April 1996. Prior to that, he served terms as ambassador to Jordan, Romania and Senegal. He is currently chairman of the Foundation for Indo-Turkic Studies. Copy right with the author       


Catch the changing security environment Get it now.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

The Looming Mother of all Economic and Social Crisis

                                  FOUNDATION FOR INDO-TURKIC STUDIES                     

Tel/Fax ; 43034706                                                          Amb (Rtd) K Gajendra Singh                                                      

Emails;                                                   A-44 ,IFS Apartments                                                                     Mayur Vihar –Phase 1,                                                                Delhi 91, India .

                                                                                                              10 May .2010


The Looming Mother of all Economic and Social Crisis


"Keynes's collective work amounted to a powerful argument that capitalism was by its very nature unstable and prone to collapse. Far from trending toward some magical state of equilibrium, capitalism would inevitably do the opposite. It would lurch over a cliff," Hyman Minsky.


On 6 May, Thursday, 90 minutes before the end of the trading day, the U.S. stock market almost melted down. The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped nearly 1,000 points. The market recovered  before the end and closed down 348 points, or 3.2%, like a giant 747 narrowly averting a crash landing, but the questions of the day are: What happened? And what does it mean?


Said Robert Reich on his blog on 6 May," at this point no one knows why. Some say it was sudden burst of worries about Greece's debt and the increasing possibility of a default that might cause a run by global investors. Others point to a "trading error." Giant high-speed computers generate millions of trade based on instructions embedded in computer programs designed to move fast enough to beat everyone else."


Then again on Friday, 7th May 2010, Dow fell another 140 points in wild trading day. The decline wiped out US market gains for the year. The Dow closed down to 10,380!

World's capital markets ; an out-of-control computerized Casino!


"Regardless of why it happened, it's further evidence that the nation's and the world's capital markets have become a vast out-of-control casino in which fortunes can be made or lost in an instant — which would be fine except for the fact that most of us have put our life savings there. Pension funds, mutual funds, school endowments — the value of all of this depends on a mechanism that can lose a trillion dollars in minutes without anyone having a clear idea why. So much of the market now depends on computer programs and mathematical models that no one fully understands, so much trading is in the hands of a few people whose fat thumbs or momentary carelessness might sink the economy, so much of global wealth now depends on who can move their money quickest at the slightest provocation — that we are toying with financial disaster every day. The luck or foolishness of a few traders, and inside knowledge and information that some possess and others don't, combined with ultra high-speed computers, put us all at the whim of a system whose risk is way out of proportion to any public benefits ," concluded Reich.


Greek Sickness Infects EU -PIGS to Slaughter


The austerity plans and the bailout packet for Greece which have adversely dented the ruling coalition of Chancellor Angela Merkel's party in the just concluded regional elections in Germany , because Berlin has to foot the bill , would spread around Europe and beyond .It believed that the debt of five EU members Portugal, Ireland, Greece and Spain (PIGS) totals around $3.9 trillion . Britain's  debt is larger than any one of them.

In very strong condemnation well known US economist and political activist Lyndon H. LaRouche, Jr. accused that " the British swine have once again imposed a 1923-style hyperinflationary collapse on modern Germany, with the trillions-dollar bailout scheme imposed on the Euro zone this past weekend. Only the immediate enactment of a Glass-Steagall law could prevent the United States itself from falling into the same fate now destined for continental European victims such as, above all other targets for total destruction, as the Federal Republic of Germany.

Bank of England Chief King paints a disastrous future for the country  

London's financially precarious position , which has been known for quite some time ,was further unveiled by Edmund Conway, the Economics Editor of the Telegraph, UK. Conway revealed that US economist David Hale who recently met with Mervyn King , Bank of England boss was told by the latter that, "whoever wins this election will be out of power for a whole generation because of how tough the fiscal austerity will have to be."

Edmund Conway went on to further expose the untenable crisis awaiting
UK ,

"…no-one yet comprehends just how tough the next five years will be. For obvious reasons: we have not experienced anything like it in our lifetimes. We have been insulated from the full pain of the financial/economic crisis so far by unprecedented low interest rates and by the bank bail-outs. At some point, the anaesthetic will wear off and we will face a period of austerity that may well make the ruling party so unpopular that it effectively becomes unelectable for decades. There will be strikes; there will be stagnation; there will probably be a double dip of some variety. But this time the pain will be unmistakably imposed by the politicians."

This analysis was further strengthened by former British minister, Michael Portillo who said that the "financial crisis ravaging Britain would take 20 years to resolve, but the next five years would be critical!"


The Institute for Fiscal Studies had warned earlier that all three parties were hiding from voters the full details of their plans to cut the deficit. It said that the scale of cuts following the election could be the deepest since comparable records began just after World War II


"Instability is an inherent and inescapable flaw of capitalism. "

Hyman Minsky , a hitherto obscure macroeconomist ,who saw what was coming , predicted, decades ago, almost exactly the kind of meltdown that is hammering the global economy.


Minsky believed in capitalism, but he also believed it had almost a genetic weakness. Modern finance, he argued, was far from the stabilizing force that mainstream economics portrayed: rather, it was a system that created the illusion of stability while simultaneously creating the conditions for an inevitable and dramatic collapse.


Minsky's vision might have been dark, but he was not a fatalist; he believed it was possible to craft policies that could blunt the collateral damage caused by financial crises.


In his writings, Minsky looked to his intellectual hero, Keynes, arguably the greatest economist of the 20th century. But where most economists drew a single, simplistic lesson from Keynes - that government could step in and micromanage the economy, smooth out the business cycle, and keep things on an even keel - Minsky had no interest in what he and a handful of other dissident economists came to call "bastard Keynesianism."

Instead, Minsky drew his own, far darker, lessons from Keynes's landmark writings, which dealt not only with the problem of unemployment, but with money and banking. Although Keynes had never stated this explicitly, Minsky argued that Keynes's collective work amounted to a powerful argument that capitalism was by its very nature unstable and prone to collapse. Far from trending toward some magical state of equilibrium, capitalism would inevitably do the opposite. It would lurch over a cliff.

Minsky's "Financial Instability Hypothesis."


In the wake of a depression, he noted, financial institutions are extraordinarily conservative, as are businesses. With the borrowers and the lenders who fuel the economy all steering clear of high-risk deals, things go smoothly: loans are almost always paid on time, businesses generally succeed, and everyone does well. That success, however, inevitably encourages borrowers and lenders to take on more risk in the reasonable hope of making more money. As Minsky observed, "Success breeds a disregard of the possibility of failure."

As people forget that failure is a possibility, a "euphoric economy" eventually develops, fueled by the rise of far riskier borrowers - what he called speculative borrowers, those whose income would cover interest payments but not the principal; and those he called "Ponzi borrowers," those whose income could cover neither, and could only pay their bills by borrowing still further. As these latter categories grew, the overall economy would shift from a conservative but profitable environment to a much more freewheeling system dominated by players whose survival depended not on sound business plans, but on borrowed money and freely available credit. Once that kind of economy had developed, any panic could wreck the market. The failure of a single firm, for example, or the revelation of a staggering fraud could trigger fear and a sudden, economy-wide attempt to shed debt.


"Minsky Moment"


This watershed moment - later dubbed the "Minsky moment" - would create an environment deeply inhospitable to all borrowers. The speculators and Ponzi borrowers would collapse first, as they lost access to the credit they needed to survive. Even the more stable players might find themselves unable to pay their debt without selling off assets; their forced sales would send asset prices spiraling downward, and inevitably, the entire rickety financial edifice would start to collapse. Businesses would falter, and the crisis would spill over to the "real" economy that depended on the now-collapsing financial system. ( Note .The write up on Minsky has been extracted from " Why Capitalism Fails " by By Stephen Mihm in 'Boston Globe " of 14 September ,2009.)

"Humanity faces the most serious crisis in modern history."


In a book titled "The Global Economic Crisis, the Great Depression of the XXI Century," edited by Prof Michel Chossudovsky and Andrew Gavin Marshall ( to be released by end May ) , over a dozen distinguished economists and writers, Ellen Brown, Tom Burghardt, Michel Chossudovsky, Richard C. Cook, Shamus Cooke, John Bellamy Foster, Michael Hudson,  Tanya Cariina Hsu, Fred Magdoff,  Andrew Gavin Marshall, James Petras, Peter Phillips, Peter Dale Scott, Bill Van Auken, Claudia von Werlhof and Mike Whitney look under the glittering facade of western Capitalism and reveal a complex web of deceit and media distortion which serves to conceal the workings of the global economic system and its devastating impact on people's lives.

Despite the diversity of viewpoints and perspectives presented within this volume, all of the contributors ultimately come to the same conclusion: humanity is at the crossroads of the most serious economic and social crisis in modern history

The economic recession is deep-seated in all major regions of the world, resulting in mass unemployment, the collapse of state social programs and the impoverishment of millions of people. The crisis in tandem with a worldwide process of militarization, a "war without borders" led by Washington and its NATO allies is intimately related to the restructuring of the global economy.  The global financial architecture sustains strategic and national security objectives of US led West and their powerful business elites which control and dominates the functions of civilian government.

This book explains how the Federal Reserve ( a private body ) , the Council on Foreign Relations, the Bank for International Settlements, and corporate boardrooms on Wall Street take far-reaching financial transactions routinely from computer terminals linked up to major stock markets, at the touch of a mouse button.

"The meltdown of financial markets in 2008-2009 was the result of institutionalized fraud and financial manipulation. The "bank bailouts" were implemented on the instructions of Wall Street, leading to the largest transfer of money wealth in recorded history, while simultaneously creating an insurmountable public debt."

This process of economic decline is cumulative. The payments system of money transactions is in disarray. Payments of wages are no longer implemented, credit is disrupted and capital investments are at a standstill. Meanwhile, in Western countries, the "social safety net" inherited from the welfare state, which protects the unemployed during an economic downturn, is also in jeopardy.

The Myth of Economic Recovery

While the existence of a "Great Depression" on the scale of the 1930s, is often acknowledged, but is veiled by false claims : "The economy is on the road to recovery". [ US recovered from the 1930s depression by the booming economic industrial production during and post WWII , when it had a vibrant and expanding industrial economy with European powers dependent on it – a process carried on after the War's end which shifted the financial centre from the City, London to the Wall Street ]

The financial meltdown is not simply composed of the housing real estate bubble – which has already burst but there are many more bubbles, all of which dwarf the housing bubble burst of 2008.

About the so called economic recovery, already in early 2010, the "recovery" of the U.S. economy was predicted and confirmed through a carefully worded barrage of media disinformation. The social plight of increased unemployment in US has been scrupulously camouflaged. Economists view bankruptcy as a microeconomic phenomenon. The media reports on bankruptcies, fail to provide an overall picture of what is happening at the national and international levels. When all these simultaneous plant closures in towns and cities across the land are added together, a very different picture emerges: entire sectors of a national economy are closing down.

Public opinion continues to be misled as to the causes and consequences of the economic crisis, not to mention the policy solutions. People are led to believe that the economy has a logic of its own which depends on the free interplay of market forces, hiding the role of powerful financial actors, who pull the strings in the corporate boardrooms, and have willfully influenced the course of economic events.

"The American Dream" morphs into a nightmare for the majority

The relentless and fraudulent appropriation of wealth is upheld as an integral part of "the American dream", as a means to spreading the benefits of economic growth. A myth becomes entrenched that "without wealth at the top, there would be nothing to trickle down."  This is pure hogwash .

Media disinformation largely serves the interests of a handful of global banks and institutional speculators which use their command over financial and commodity markets to amass vast amounts of wealth. The "bank bailouts", presented to the public as a requisite for economic recovery, have facilitated and legitimized a further process of appropriation of wealth. With inside information and foreknowledge, major financial actors, using the instruments of speculative trade, have the ability to fiddle and rig market movements to their advantage, precipitate the collapse of a competitor and wreck havoc in the economies of developing countries. These tools of manipulation have become an integral part of the financial architecture; they are embedded in the system.

The Failure of Mainstream Economics

The economics profession rarely addresses the actual "real world" functioning of markets. Theoretical constructs centered on mathematical models serve to represent an abstract, fictional world far removed from reality. By failing to examine the interplay of powerful economic actors in the "real life" economy, the processes of market rigging, financial manipulation and fraud get overlooked. The concentration and centralization of economic decision-making, the role of the financial elites, the economic thinks tanks, the corporate boardrooms: none of these issues are examined in the universities' economics programs. The theoretical construct is dysfunctional; it cannot be used to provide an understanding of the economic crisis.

Economic science has become an ideological construct to camouflage and justify the New World Order. The powers of market manipulation which serve to appropriate vast amounts of money wealth are rarely addressed. And when they are acknowledged, they are considered to belong to the realm of sociology or political science. This means that the policy and institutional framework behind this global economic system, which has been shaped in the course of the last thirty years, is rarely analyzed by corporate hired economists.

Poverty and Social Inequality

The global political economy thus enriches the very few at the expense of the vast majority. The crisis has contributed to widening social inequalities both within and between countries. Under global capitalism, mounting poverty is not the result of a scarcity or a lack of human and material resources. The structures of social inequality have, quite deliberately, been reinforced, leading not only to a generalized process of impoverishment but also to the demise of the middle and upper middle income groups.

Bankruptcies have hit several of the most vibrant sectors of the consumer economy. The middle classes in the West have, for several decades, been subjected to the erosion of their material wealth. It exists in theory, built and sustained by household and other debts. With the demise of the civilian economy, the development of America's war economy, supported by a whopping near-trillion dollar defense budget, has reached new heights. As stock markets tumble and the recession unfolds, the advanced weapons industries, the military and national security contractors and the up-and-coming mercenary companies (among others) have experienced a thriving and booming growth of their various activities.

War and the Economic Crisis

Wars lead to the impoverishment of people at home and around the world. The provision of essential goods and services to meet basic human needs has been replaced by a profit-driven "killing machine" in support of America's "Global War on Terror". While the poor are made to fight in Iraq and elsewhere , wars enrich the upper class, which controls industry, the military, oil and banking. "Western nations, particularly the United States, spend hundreds of billions of dollars a year to murder innocent people in far-away impoverished nations, while the people at home suffer the disparities of poverty, class, gender and racial divides."

An outright "economic war" resulting in unemployment, poverty and disease is carried out through the free market. In the last twenty years of global "free market" economy have brought poverty and social destitution in the lives of millions of people. Instead of tackling the impending social catastrophe, Western governments, to serve the interests of the economic elites, have installed a "Big Brother" police state, with a mandate to confront and repress all forms of opposition and social dissent. [George Orwell's 1984 is being created in USA]

The economic and social crisis has by no means reached its climax and entire countries, including Greece and Iceland, are at risk. One need only look at the escalation of the Middle East Central Asian war and the U.S.-NATO threats to China, Russia and Iran to witness how war and the economy are intimately related.

The Decline of the West and a Depressing Scenerio
In blog Global Guerilla , John Robb writing on " THE DECLINE OF THE WEST" states , the current sovereign debt crisis is another battle in a war for dominance between "our" integrated, impersonal global economic system and traditional nation-states.  At issue is whether a nation-state serves the interests of the governed or it serves the interests of a global economic system.
The global economic system is winning . The 2008 financial crisis, the first real battle of this war (as opposed to the early losses in skirmishes in Russia, Argentina, the Balkans, etc) was a resounding defeat for nation-states.  The current crisis in the EU will almost certainly end with the same results.
When this war ends, and it won't be long, the global economic and financial system will be the victor.  The nation-states of the West will be join with those of the global south ,mere shells of states that serve only to enforce the interests of the global economic system.  More market-states than nation-states, citizens incomes will fall to developing world levels (made easy to due highly portable productivity), and wealth will stratify.  Regulatory protections will be weak.  Civil service pensions will be erased and corruption will reign.  The once dominant militaries of the West will be reduced to a small fraction of their current size, and their focus will be on the maintenance of internal control rather than on external threats.  The clear and unambiguous message to every citizen of the West will be he is on his own .
It will fragment society and lead to perpetual stagnation/depression, endemic violence/corruption, and squalor.  New sources of order will see the rise of the criminal entrepreneur, whether they be the be-suited corporate gangster or the gang tattooed thug.  For in the world of hollow states (without a morality that limits behavior) and limitless connectivity to the global economic system, these criminal entrepreneurs quickly become dominant, violently coercing or corrupting everyone in the path to their enrichment. [ in former socialist states of east and central Europe local and migrant mafias form an important segment of the new ruling elites ]
The author has kept a watch and written about the decline and fall of US hegemony since 11 September , 2002 , when a declining US empire appeared  at its most dazzling power like the after noon sun past its prime .
The decline of the American Century   Sept 11, 2002 Atimes:

The US Empire –Beginning of the End Game   24 Nov, 2006

The Decline And Coming Fall Of US Hegemony  March 30, 2008

-- An editorial titled ' Collapse of U.S. economy ' in Belleville Intelligencer of 27 Feb, 2008 confirms, by now generally accepted ill health of US economy. Harry Koza in the Globe and Mail recently quoted Bernard Connelly, the global strategist at Banque AIG in London, that the likelihood of a Great Depression is growing by the day. Martin Wolf of U.K.'s Financial Times cited Dr. Nouriel Roubini of the New York University's Stern School of Business, who outlines how the losses of the American financial system will grow to more than $1 trillion, an amount equal to all the assets of all American banks.

The next domino to fall will be credit card defaults, and after that... who knows? There are so many exotic funds out there, with trillions of dollars in paper - or rather computer-screen money - all carrying assorted acronyms, and all about to disintegrate into nothingness. Over the next couple of years, scores of banks that have thrived on these devices, based on quickly disappearing equities, will fail.

The most frightening forecast so far comes from the Global Europe Anticipation Bulletin (GEAB), "The end of the third quarter of 2008 (thus late September, a mere seven months from now) will be marked by a new tipping point in the unfolding of the global systemic crisis.

"In the United States, this new tipping point will translate into - get this - a collapse of the real economy, (the) final socio-economic stage of the serial bursting of the housing and financial bubbles and of the pursuance of the U.S. dollar fall. The collapse of U.S. real economy means the virtual freeze of the American economic machinery: private and public bankruptcies in large numbers, companies and public services closing down."

"We are not experiencing a "remake" of the 1929 crisis nor a repetition of the 1970s oil crises or 1987 stock market crisis. What we will have, instead, is truly a global momentous threat - a true turning point affecting the entire planet and questioning the very foundations of the international system upon which the world was organized in the last decades."
Western Military-Capitalist Civilization in Disarray  September 25, 2008;

"Credit easing does not and cannot substitute for earnings, wages or tax revenues." Max Fraad Wolff

"The [US] financial system is out of control and has led the economy into a wildly turbulent sea of heavily leveraged speculation. -- the road ahead is dark and unknown." Steve Fraser author of" Wall Street: America's Dream Palace."

"Before the US economy can truly begin to expand again, the savings rate must rise to pre-bubble levels of 8pc--$2 trillion of household debt must be eliminated", Economist David Rosenberg

Corporate Culture and Greed Sink the American Republic 17 May, 2009

"Over-grown military establishments are under any form of government inauspicious to liberty, and are to be regarded as particularly hostile to republican liberty." --George Washington (1732-1799), First US President.

"It is part of the general pattern of misguided policy that our country is now geared to an arms economy which was bred in an artificially induced psychosis of war hysteria and nurtured upon an incessant propaganda of fear." --General Douglas MacArthur, Speech, May 15, 1951

"[The] conjunction of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience. . . . In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist." --Dwight D. Eisenhower (1890-1969), 34th US President, Farewell Address, Jan. 17, 1961
Confirmation of Pressure on Dollar and US 8 October, 2009

And finally,

Falling Empires and their Currencies Rome, France,
England and the USA 
Part 2: From England to the United States of America Rolf Nef
January 16, 2007

K Gajendra Singh, Indian ambassador (retired), served as ambassador to
Turkey and Azerbaijan from August 1992 to April 1996. Prior to that, he served terms as ambassador to Jordan, Romania and Senegal. He is currently chairman of the Foundation for Indo-Turkic Studies. Copy right with the author.  




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