Monday, June 20, 2011


News Links, June 21, 2011

## Global economic meltdown ##
Greece protester: 'We need to leave the euro now'
Germany Sees Price Inflation Spreading From Energy
Greek crisis: EU leaders must act decisively or face disaster, says IMF
Battle lines drawn for a eurozone debt war
Professor Bernanke Warning of Japan Paralysis Meets Fed Chief Facing Same
Greece just a symptom of the REAL Problem!
Afghan row with IMF over failed bank threatens salaries
Debt and Leverage in Advanced Economies
41% Of Belgian Central Bank Gold Has Been Lent Out
The A-Z of construction projects on hold in Dubai

## Fault lines/flashpoints/military ##
U.S.-Saudi rivalry intensifies
"The quest for greater influence includes a tug of war over Jordan, just one example of the contest between the longtime allies split over the democracy uprisings sweeping the region."
Brazil police occupy Rio favela in World Cup operation
UNHCR report says refugee numbers at 15-year high
US-funded Afghan militias 'beat, rob and kill with impunity'
"American-funded Afghan militias raised to protect villages from the Taliban have begun to prey on residents and in some cases are beating, robbing and even killing with impunity it is claimed."
China's Growing Military Muscle: A Looming Threat?
Iran satellite launch signals missile push
"The real importance of Iran's recent launch of its Rasad-1 satellite, the second it's put into orbit in two years, is the Safir booster rocket used to loft the 34-pound, data-gathering craft into space. That technology produces intercontinental ballistic missiles."
Indians Uneasy As China Builds Ports Nearby
"China's hunger for energy from the Middle East and resources from Africa brings it into the Indian Ocean. And some defense analysts in India are watching uneasily as China develops commercial ports in some of India's neighbor countries."
US Arms Makers Look Overseas As Domestic Demand Shrinks
"With the Pentagon's appetite for new weapons shrinking, U.S. arms makers are finding lucrative markets overseas as demand for American-made weaponry hits an all-time high."
US Defense Official: More Private Security Needed Aboard Ships to Combat Piracy

## Global unrest ##
Unrest: Middle East and North Africa, country by country
Syrian army cuts off lifeline to thousands
Inside Syria: Defiant protesters vow to continue their fight
President Assad offers concessions but fails to stop Syrian demonstrators
Iranian protestors plan to turn Tehran into ghost town
Greek Streets 'Explosive' as PM Faces Confidence Vote
"Persistent protests in Athens' Syntagma Square show that the Greek people feel increasingly disenfranchised with their political system and analysts told CNBC that the growing separation between the government and the population over austerity could prove 'explosive.'"

## Energy/resources ##
Greece faces power outages due to strike
Fitch: Coal Shortage Impedes India's Power Sector Growth
Fuel shortage could be eased (UAE; but the article doesn't sound too promising)
China prepares for summer power crisis
"China's top five power companies reported increased losses as they cope with rising coal costs and a cap on electricity prices, the China Electricity Council said, warning that the losses would make it more difficult to ensure adequate supplies of power during the summer."
Chatter from Floor Says Oil Going to $85
A price that is likely below what many oil-producing countries need to finance their oil operations and social programs. Be prepared to pay more if you want to keep using oil. -- RF
$3.5 billion to update Ukraine's gas lines
"It would cost at least $3.5 billion to update the natural gas transmission network through Ukraine, an official at state utility Naftogaz said from Kiev."
Statoil wants to squeeze gas fields
"Norwegian energy company Statoil said it wanted to squeeze more resources out of aging subsea fields through compression."
Chile's North Power Grid 'Practically' Normal After Outage
"Chile's northern electricity grid, which supplies the world's biggest copper mines, has returned 'practically' to normal after an outage affected two-thirds of the system yesterday, the grid operator said."
Pakistan natural gas shortage to continue

## Infrastructure scavenging ##
Air conditioning theft? South Carolina passes new law.
"Air conditioning units and farm irrigation systems are being targeted by thieves for their copper. South Carolina governor signs new law that prohibits recyclers from buying copper for cash."
Dedicated Police Task-Force Set To Combat Rise In Scrap Metal Crime (UK)

## Got food? ##
China Floods Cut Vegetable Output, Raise Prices
G-20 Sets Sights on Food Markets
"Farm ministers from large economies are likely to establish an international food-stock database this week and agree to reduce some trade barriers in order to combat looming food shortages and yo-yoing prices."
Special Report: India's food chain in deep change

## Environment/health ##
World's oceans in 'shocking' decline
"The oceans are in a worse state than previously suspected, according to an expert panel of scientists.
"In a new report, they warn that ocean life is 'at high risk of entering a phase of extinction of marine species unprecedented in human history.'"
Study: Biodegradable plastics can release methane

## Intelligence/security/internet/systemic breakdown ## Website And Streaming Services Go Down
Virgin Mobile's voicemail down and out for days (Australia)

## Japan ##
Trade deficit in May second-biggest ever
"Japan logged its second-biggest trade deficit on record in May as exports continued to fall after the March earthquake and tsunami, government data showed Monday, darkening the outlook for the economy."
Fukushima Disaster Failures Kept Behind Closed Doors at UN Atomic Meeting
Beginning of the end for nuclear power in Japan?
Japan's May exports down 10.3 percent
"Japan's May exports, hit by the earthquake and tsunami, fell 10.3 percent year-on-year, leaving a trade deficit of $10.65 billion, the government said Monday."
JAL to hike fuel surcharge from Aug to Sept
25 Nonlife Insurers Bled Record Red Ink In FY10
"TOKYO (Nikkei)--Twenty-five domestic nonlife insurers suffered a record 183.2 billion yen in losses in their core operations for fiscal 2010, according to industry data released Monday."
61% Of Brokerages In Japan Logged FY10 Pretax Losses
"TOKYO (Nikkei)--A total of 176 brokerages, or 61% of the 288 brokerages in Japan, reported pretax losses for the fiscal year ended March 31, the Japan Securities Dealers Association said Monday."
Japan disaster recovery confronts funding dilemma
"As estimates add up, political infighting slows the process down."

## China ##
Shanghai to ration electricity due to power shortage
Eastern Chinese city braces for flood
China Home Prices Cool as Government Steps Up Bid to Avoid Property Bubble
Walter Kwok Says Hong Kong Home Prices Have Peaked, May Drop 15% This Year
Warning of glass falling off sides of aged high-rises
China's epic flooding: 40 miles of dikes near breach

## UK ##
U.K. Weighs Privatizing Administrative Services
London Home Asking Prices Reach Record
Greek debt crisis: Straw says eurozone 'will collapse'
Treasury plans for Greece to go bust
"Treasury ministers have admitted that the Government is drawing up contingency plans for a Greek bankruptcy after being warned by a former foreign secretary that the euro 'cannot last.'"
Water bills could increase by £4.2bn
"Water bills could increase by £4.2 billion, the equivalent of £162 for every household in the country, following a decision to switch responsibility of sewers from individuals to water companies."

## US ##
Home equity loan losses pile up for Bank of America
Banks Holding Record $1.45 Trillion to Buy Treasuries as Savings Top Loans
German Giant Says US Workers Lack Skills
Expensive energy means greater difficulty in training workers to perform high-tech jobs. -- RF
New business employment falling fast
Taxes on talking are on the rise across the US
U.S. GOA: 40 Percent of Defense Supply Chain Damaged by Chinese Parts
"The GAO claims that 40 percent of the U.S. Department of Defense's supply chain is adversely impacted by fake or defective parts. From missiles, to rifles, to vehicles, problems abound. The common thread, says the GAO, is that virtually all the suspect parts originated from contractors in China."
Downsizing — A Thousand Square Feet Per Person, A New American Standard
Safety rules loosened for aging nuclear reactors
Nuke plants are all ticking time bombs. And the need to keep all these decrepit plants running points to the decline of industrial civilization. -- RF
N.Y. Gasoline Gains After PBF Delaware Refinery Power Failure
Noise, Not a Recovery (Gregor Macdonald)
Major Marine Corps exercise on US east coast
Local Gas Shortage Leaves Driver on Empty
"The major supplier of fuel in the area is Valero refining. They've had some major maintenance issues and it has slowed down their production. Valero's problem began last Thursday, which in turn limited the supply."
Lynn: Spending Slowdown Must Preserve Industrial Base
"As defense spending slows in the face of a financial crisis, preserving the industrial base that produces military capabilities is critical, Deputy Defense Secretary William J. Lynn III said here today."

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?