In The News Today

Posted at 11:18 AM (CST) by & filed under In The News.

Ukraine will face food riots – Ukrainian opposition leader
19 June 2014, 15:23

What is the best way to ruin a country? Let the IMF handle its economy. What is the fastest way to ruin a country? Let the IMF sponsor a civil war in it. Ukraine’s junta has chosen both options. According to the calculations made by Prime Minister Yatseniuk, Ukraine requires more than $35 billion to last through this year.

However, the IMF offered only half of the needed sum and forced Kiev to adopt draconian austerity measures for every type of expenses, except the ones required for its punitive operations against the rebels of the Donbass region. True to its well known modus operandi, the Washington-based lender transferred only $3 billion to Ukraine.

Sadly, the Fund also included in its documents a scandalous provision which states that the next tranches of the bailout program will be "reconsidered" if Kiev fails to retain control of the eastern regions of the country. Basically, the IMF put a price on the heads of the citizens of the breakaway republics of Lugansk and Donetsk and its offer to Kiev boils down to "if don’t you subdue the rebels, we won’t give you $11 billion." Probably, Washington-based financiers believed that such an arrangement will help the junta crush the rebellion. The plan backfired, because junta’s punitive actions led to a massive blowback. The "rebel armies" of Donetsk and Lugansk now have the overwhelming support of the locals who are being constantly threatened by the Ukrainian army and various paramilitary neo-nazi organizations . However, the people of the breakaway regions are not the only victims of the IMF-imposed policies.

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Ukraine Truce Lasts "Several Seconds" Before Latest Fighting Involving "4000 Troops, Tanks, APC" Breaks Out
Tyler Durden on 06/19/2014 09:00 -0400

It took all of "several seconds", in the NYT’s own words, for the latest proposal for a ceasefire, issued by Ukraine’s new president Petro Poroshenko, to be "rejected."

Here is how the NYT framed it, and why the truce proposal is seen as a "lose-lose" idea from the perspective of the rebels: "After Ukraine’s new president, Petro O. Poroshenko, told reporters in Kiev on Wednesday that he might soon order a temporary, unilateral cease-fire as part of a broader 14-point peace plan, it took all of several seconds for pro-Russian militants to rule it out."

“I am a condemned man,” said a stick-thin fighter who, like many others here, identified himself only by an alias, Tarik, for security reasons. Sipping tea in the gloom of the lobby of Donetsk’s rebel-occupied administration building on Wednesday afternoon, he patted the magazine of the automatic rifle slung across his chest.

Any cease-fire would certainly be violated by the Ukrainian Army, he said, adding that he and other pro-Russian separatists would be arrested the minute the government had the opportunity.

“What peace can they possibly offer me?” he asked. “If they want peace, then they can leave.”

That’s the big picture.

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United States to Send Military Advisers to Iraq
By MARK LANDLERJUNE 19, 2014

WASHINGTON — President Obama said on Thursday that the United States would deploy up to 300 military advisers to Iraq to help its beleaguered security forces fend off Sunni militants, edging the United States back into a conflict that Mr. Obama thought he had left behind.

Mr. Obama also said the United States was gathering intelligence on the positions of militant fighters to identify targets, and added, “We will be prepared to take targeted and precise military action if we conclude the situation on the ground requires it.”

The president sent a strong warning to the Iraqi prime minister, Nuri Kamal al-Maliki, the Shiite leader whose policies have fueled the deepening sectarian tensions with the Sunni Arab minority. American officials have privately concluded that Mr. Maliki cannot head a national unity government.

“The test is before him and other Iraqi leaders as we speak,” Mr. Obama said. “Right now they can make a series of decisions. Regardless of what’s happened in the past, right now is a moment where the fate of Iraq hangs in the balance.”

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Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

Lost or leases went upside down.

The Bank Of England Lost 755 Tonnes Of Gold In 2013
Written by Koos Jansen on June 17, 2014 at 4:18 pm

The Bank Of England (BoE) just came out with their annual report 2014. In the report it’s stated the BoE is the custodian of 5485 metric tonnes of gold (£140 billion pounds measured February 28, 2014). From the BoE annual report 2014:

The Bank provides custodial services for a range of customers. As at 28 February 2014, total assets held by the Bank as custodian were £594bn, of which £140bn were holdings of gold.

In the BoE’s annual report 2013 it was stated they held 6240 tonnes of gold (£210 billion pounds measured February 28, 2013). From the BoE annual report 2013:

As part of this strategy the Bank also provides custodial services for a range of customers. As of 28 February 2013, total assets held by the Bank as custodian were £699 billion, of which £210 billion were holdings of gold.

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Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

The way to end white collar crime.

Iran hangs billionaire over $2.6b bank fraud
Largest fraud case since 1979 Islamic Revolution sends four scammers to the gallows, including tycoon Mahafarid Amir Khosravi.
By The Associated Press | May 24, 2014 | 2:50 PM

A billionaire businessman at the heart of a $2.6 billion state bank scam, the largest fraud case since the country’s 1979 Islamic Revolution, was executed Saturday, state television reported.

Authorities put Mahafarid Amir Khosravi, also known as Amir Mansour Aria, to death at Evin prison, just north of the capital, Tehran, the station reported. The report said the execution came after Iran’s Supreme Court upheld his death sentence.

Khosravi’s lawyer, Gholam Ali Riahi, was quoted by news website khabaronline.ir as saying that his client was put to death without any notice.

"I had not been informed about execution of my client," Riahi said. "All the assets of my client are at the disposal of the prosecutor’s office."

State officials did not immediately comment on Riahi’s claim.

The fraud involved using forged documents to get credit at one of Iran’s top financial institutions, Bank Saderat, to purchase assets including state-owned companies like major steel producer Khuzestan Steel Co.

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Who Just Bought Half A Billion Dollars Of Gold Futures?
Submitted by Tyler Durden on 06/19/2014 08:28 -0400

Presented with little comment aside to note the surge in gold since Yellen gave markets the all-clear yesterday. It seems someone decided the open this morning was an opportune time to take on half a billion dollars of gold exposure…

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Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

Every step forward for the yuan is a step backwards for the dollar.

China Focus: Direct yuan-sterling trade begins
Published On: Wed, Jun 18th, 2014

China’s central bank announced on Wednesday direct trading of the yuan against sterling.

The announcement came after Chinese Premier Li Keqiang began his visit to London on Tuesday.

“The direct yuan-sterling trade is good for forming a direct exchange rate between the renminbi and the British pound and reducing exchange costs,” the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) said in a statement on its website.

The PBOC promised “active support” for yuan-sterling direct trading and the China Foreign Exchange Trading System said yuan-sterling direct trade will start on Thursday.

Previously, the yuan-sterling reference rate was calculated on the yuan-U.S. dollar central parity rate, and the pound-dollar rate. As the two currencies can now be directly traded, the yuan-sterling rate will be set by the average prices offered by market makers before the opening of the interbank foreign exchange market.The move should help London’s bid to become a renminbi offshore center.

China has allowed direct onshore trade in a number of currencies to lower transaction costs, including the Japanese yen, Australian dollar, New Zealand dollar, Malaysian ringgit and Russian ruble. Currency swaps with foreign governments have increased overseas circulation of the yuan.

“Yuan-sterling trade is another important step toward internationalization of the renminbi,” said Helen Wong, president and chief executive of HSBC China, one of the market makers.

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