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Thursday, April 24, 2014

Ukraine Gives Russia 48-Hr Ultimatum Or "We Will Fight"

Ukraine's foreign ministry has given Russia a 48-hour ultimatum to explain its military exercises near the nation's border; or, as foreign minister Andriy Deshschytisa warns "we will now fight with Russia troops."

As AP reports,
Ukraine's foreign minister has blasted the Russian decision to start military maneuvers along Ukraine's border and said his country will fight any invading troops.

Andriy Deshchytisa said Russia's decision Thursday to launch the military exercises "very much escalates the situation in the region."

Talking to The Associated Press in Prague, Deshchytisa says his country has been taught a lesson by Russia's annexation of Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula. He says "having this experience, we will now fight with Russian troops if ... they invade Ukraine."

He says "Ukrainian people and Ukrainian army are ready to do this."

Deshchytisa says the new Russian military exercises are taking place "even closer to the Ukrainian border than it was planned earlier" and demanded the withdrawal of Russian troops.
It seems the red-line is about to be crossed by both sides... though as long as Putin does not hold an emergency press conference, it seems BTFWWIII is back on.
Credit to Zero Hedge

Senior banking regulator who helped restructure China's trust sector dies

A mainland banking regulatory official who led the opening and restructuring of the country’s trust sector died of a heart attack on Wednesday morning, mainland media reported.

The China Banking Regulatory Commission confirmed with financial magazineCaixin that Li Jianhua, director of the regulator’s Non-bank Financial Institutions Supervision Department, was found dead by his wife at home at around 6am on Wednesday morning.

49–year-old Li suffered a heart attack, several mainland financial news outlets reported.

Li was supposed to attend a conference on the performance of the country’s trust sector in its first season on Wednesday morning, and was up until midnight writing his speech, Caixin quoted a source close to the bank regulator as saying.

The news came on the heels of the new directive on the trust sector. On April 10, the regulatory commission issued stricter guidelines governing trust companies to counter systemic risks they could pose to the country’s finance industry.

Li, then deputy director of the non-bank supervision department, led the drafting of China’s 2007 legislations on trust companies, which pushed forward reforms of the country’s trust sectors.

Trust companies are non-bank lenders that raise funds by selling high-yield investments, also known as wealth management products, and fund loans to property developers and local governments, among other risky borrowers.

A source familiar with the matter told mainland business newspaper 21st Century Business Herald in 2012 that Li was one of the key reformers. He led a group in drafting the regulations, named Measure of Administration of Trust Companies and Measure of Administration of Collective Fund Trust Schemes of Trust Companies, in two weeks behind closed doors in Tianjin.

A report published by KPMG China, China’s Trust Sector: A New Chapter, in 2008 described the legislations as “a turning point” of the “fundamental restructuring of the industry” whose thrust was to help trust companies carve out “a niche serving high-net-worth investors” as well as increase transparency.

Li was assigned to chair the banking regulator in Shaanxi province in December 2007. Five years later, he returned to the state commission’s non-bank department as its director.

In the past five years, the mainland’s trust sectors, also the biggest players in the shadow banking sector, have seen a sixfold increase from 1.22 trillion yuan (HK$1.53 trillion) in 2008 to 6.98 trillion yuan (HK$8.75 trillion) in 2012.

Upon Li’s return to the non-bank department, his major priority was to tighten up the department’s control of trust companies.

“The industry grows rapidly, and so does the risk it has brought to the financial industry,” Li said during the 2012 China Trust Industry Summit.

In the face of China’s slow economic growth, Li and the non-bank department was under great pressure to strive for balance between restructuring the country’s trust sector and preventing it from collapsing in the short term, said Yuan Gangming, a research fellow at Tsinghua University’s Centre for China in the World Economy.

“The speed at which China’s trust sector is developing is not normal, even for a healthy economy,” Yuan said.

Once economic growth slows down, there would be a greater chance that risky borrowers fail to return funds on time.

However a tighter control on the trust sector would impose greater pressure on borrowers who have been struggling for cash.

“But if the bank regulator does not tighten up its control now, soon it will be too late for them to step in, with the trust sector growing at such a high speed,” he added.

Credit to South China Morning Post

If You Are Not Going to Fight, You’d Better Run

Are you tired of living under relative tyranny where every email is read, every phone call is listened to and your every movement is tracked and dissident journalists are harassed and even murdered by federal agencies such as the rogue NSA, CIA and IRS? Are you thinking about escaping our corrupt and criminal government?
The level of growing tyranny and brutal martial law enforcement is off the charts. Many are too old to fight and to fat to run. However, if you want you and your family to have chance to grow old in relative peace, my advice to all Americans is simple. If you are not going to fight, then you better get out of the country while you still can

Record Expatriation of US Citizens

expat 1Americans are leaving the country at record speed and the annual rate of expatriation is growing as over 150,000 Americans departed the former land of liberty for greener pastures overseas in the past year. In fact, there are now overfive million Americans who are choosing to live outside the United States. Just why are Americans leaving this land of “freedom” and opportunity in record numbers, with no end in sight?  
Would you renounce your U.S. citizenship if it meant you’d be sending less of your hard-earned dollars to Uncle Sam? Do you want affordable health care? Do you desire to live a long and healthy life? Do you want your children to have an affordable college education? Do you want to retire in relative comfort?  Do you desire live your life with more freedoms that you presently enjoy and not have to worry about government harassment? On balance, should most Americans stay or go?
There are reasons and myths which both favor and discourage expatriation. Below, I have listed  a set of generalized statements about the viability of leaving America and these notions are examined.

The Highest Taxes In the World

expat 3The number one reason that Americans are fleeing the country is because of high taxes. The income tax rate rose this year to 39.6% from 35% for individuals earning more than $400,000 a year and married couples earning more than $450,000. Also, 77% of Americans will pay higher federal tax rates because the cuts in Social Security payroll taxes expired when Congress passed its tax package this past New Year’s Day. The Tax Policy Center estimates that those who earn more than $1 million would pay an average of $170,341 more in taxes. If you are middle class or poor, you may not have the means to leave and your taxes have not been as dramatically impacted as the wealthy. It is a fact that expatriation does favor the upper middle class because one has to have a significant income to benefit from a potential move. In other words, if you are the owner of an Obama phone, you are better off staying in the country because you have little to tax.

We Complain About Loss of Freedom, but This Is Not the Real Motivation To Leave

1obama-and-the-consitutionBecause of the manufactured terror threat, we have lost Habeus Corpus, free speech rights to the United Nations and every form of due process that we once cherished under our Constitution. And if you don’t like the unfolding criminal enterprise brand of government which has suddenly appeared before our collective eyes, please be aware that the bankers have rolled out a technocratic police state which would make Stalin envious. Both the emerging police state and the impending martial law advocates are bolstered by the fact that the Department of Homeland Security has purchased 1.6 billion rounds, oops, make that 2.2 billion rounds of high tech bullets engraved with the names of citizens who dare to oppose this tyranny! However, if freedom was the main motivator to get people to act either by escaping the government or by standing up to the criminal elements in the government, there would have been a civil war a long time ago. The loss of liberty is rarely a primary motivator for ordinary citizens to act.
We may complain about the loss of liberty, but it is not motivating many, if any, American citizens to leave the country for these reasons.

We Can’t Leave Our Great US Pensions Behind

Meet the new robber baron, Treasury Secretary Jack Lew
Meet the new robber baron, Treasury Secretary Jack Lew
It is a myth that America has a good set of retirement systems.You are not getting the best pension package compared to other Western nations as America ranks dead last in overall pension benefits. And this is in the backdrop of the nothing-to-lose, second term Obama Administration, who is preparing toseize your 401k pensions. Secretary of the Treasury Jack Lew has already starting raided federal pension funds this past month so the government does not exceed the debt ceiling.
America, your money is not even safe in the bank as witnessed by the fact that the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals who ruled thatbanks can steal the money of its depositors and it is legal!  
There are no golden years in America unless you are in the infamous 1%.

Americans Stay for Higher Pay

Americans no longer live in the highest salary paying country in the world. In fact, the United States does not even crack the top ten list of the highest salary paying countries on the planet in which Switzerland, Germany, Denmark, Japan, Norway, Austria, Belgium, Ireland, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom round out the top ten and pay their workers more than workers in the United States. In factthe United States only ranks 20th in terms of overall gross pay! One would be very naive to call America the land of opportunity.

If We Leave Our Children’s Education Will Suffer

 The Education Policy Institute assessed the affordability of higher education costs and found that the United States ranks 13th in higher education affordability. At a time when our schools are producing students which are common coreperforming last in math and science as compared our industrialized cohort nations, leaving the country, in many cases, would benefit a child’s educational attainment. And do not forget that the Common Core Standards have come online and they will dramatically increase the dumbing down of American students.
Most Americans mistakenly think they will help their children to rise above the rest by going to college. That type of thinking can be a financial death trap. To those who think your children can borrow their way to a degree, think again. Today’s U.S. college loan practices, which serves to underwrite much of the cost of a college education, are the most predatory in the world. As of last year, bankruptcy cannot cancel out a student loan debt and delinquent college students can now go to jail for nonpayment. In fact, several federal agencies have even swat teamed many delinquent student loan defaulters. Nowhere else in the world can we find evidence of these types of predatory practices being used against college students as we do here in the United States.
Even those who are degreed and/or skilled in fields such as engineering or information technology skills, are really wasting their time working in the United States. Eight of the world’s ten highest-paying countries for information technology (IT) managers are in Western Europe, according to a new survey by Mercer Human Resource Consulting. The survey found that Swiss managers are paid the most, followed by those in Germany and Denmark. In fact, IT management is another field where U.S. workers fail to crack the top ten in income, the United States ranks 14th in IT management compensation. Even debt ridden Spain, Italy and Greece pay their IT managers more than what Americans earn on average. If you child is striving to become a high tech employee, they would be better leaving the country.

We Cannot Leave This Good Health Care Behind

The United States spends more than the next 12 nations for health care. However, it seems as if we are spending more and enjoying it less as, despite our exorbitant spending on health care, the United States ranks50th in the world in life expectancyCuba, Puerto Rico and Spain have higher life expectancies than the United States. Americans live in the only country in the world where its citizens cannot bargain shop for its medicines in foreign countries because the pharmaceuticals have convinced congress to establish apharmaceutical monopoly over U.S. citizens. Death by doctor has increased to 225,000 per year. Healthcare would be an excellent reason to leave.

 Other Factors to Consider

Although our education is substandard, our earning power is substandard, our tax rates are exorbitant and we increasingly live in a rapidly emerging police state, there are emotional factors to continue before one truly contemplates leaving the country.
happyIn a study done on the nature of tweeting and tweets expressing happiness, it was found that happy tweets decline significantly when people are more than 62 miles from their original home. Home is where the heart is and it will hard for many of us to leave our attachments behind as we emigrate to a foreign country.
According to a University of California at Riverside research study, about 40% of our capacity for happiness is actually within our power to change. This speaks strongly to the notion that life is what you make it.
Twenty percent of wealthy Americans happiness levels would not be impacted by the coming economic catastrophe according to happiness researchers. If a person is in the upper portion of the 80% which would be impacted in a dire economic downturn, they might benefit from expatriation. However, for the majority of the 80%, they do not have the means to expatriate and to maintain their present standard of living. For the non elite who would be expatriating, they do so because they want their children to have a better life than they would if they stayed in America.
Just how happy are Americans? In a research study comparing the answers to the following happiness question, countries were ranked. See where America falls on the list.
Taking all things together, would you say you are: very happy, quite happy, not very happy, or not at all happy?”
Happiest Countries
1. Iceland                  4. Netherlands         7. Norway      10. Venezuela
2. Denmark               5. Australia               8. Finland      11. Philippines
3. Sweden                6.  Ireland                 9. UK              12. Belgium
13. United States
dont worry be happy 2America is not the happiest nation on the earth, but we are happier than 180 other nations. Leaving our shores to an undetermined future will not guarantee happiness. And don’t forget the immigration rule of thumb. Generally, the first immigration generations suffers economically, socially and politically. The real gains are usually realized by the second generation in the immigrant class. So, leaving will not necessarily be a panacea.
The real game changer on whether an increasing number of Americans should leave comes down to the intentions of the powers that be and their willingness to engage in mass detentions and/or mass murder as the present tyranny is fully implemented. Certainly, with the NDAA, Executive Order 13603, the Military Commissions Act and add to the fact that we are now witnessing the persecution of whistle-blowers and we are now seeing the murder of investigative journalists like Andrew Breitbart and Michael Hastings, members of the alternative media should consider leaving before martial law is imposed.
As some of us try and determine the real intentions of the banksters who have hijacked our government with regard to how they will deal with the majority of watch nsa tyranny  keep telling yourself you are freedog journalists, this is the deciding factor on whether some of us should leave the country and fade into oblivion. Will the coming martial law bring genocide to our shores for the masses who cannot or will not be “re-educated”?  It is clear with DHS arming themselves to the teeth as we are seeing the roll out of all the precursors needed to impose a brutal martial law (e.g. presence of massive amount of foreign troops in our country). It would be remiss to not thoroughly assess this possibility.

The Most Compelling Reason to Leave

With the release of the federal government documents pertaining to entitled FM 3-39.40 Internment and Resettlement Operations (PDF) came to light. The document was originally to be kept secret, but everyone in the military command structure, as we know, is not on board with the encroaching tyranny sweeping across this country. The document is a recipe book on how to organize and maintain a FEMA camp. I would suggest that all Americans turn off the TV for an evening and read the document which spells out what life will be like for millions of Americans. The language makes it crystal clear that one of the primary purposes of these numerous camps will be slave labor. The stunning descriptions of these plans can be read here. What happens to the elderly, the handicapped and the infirm? History clearly demonstrates that when slave laborers no longer serve their intended purpose to the state, they are exterminated. Is this what these well publicized FEMA coffins are for?
Is self-preservation enough of a reason to fight or flee?

Juxtaposition for Ex-Pats

We used to joke in this country that Americans build fences to keep people out and the Soviet Union builds forces to keep people in.
The American government is presently implementing financial and new tax policies which allows you to leave, but a much greater portion of your money must stay behind. I will be writing a future article on this alarming trend.
Do you remember when American comedians used to joke about the former Soviet Union by saying “In Mother Russia, you don’t watch TV, the TV watches you?”  Some articles write their own conclusion.
Credit to Common Sense

Dutch scramble jets after Russian bombers approach

AMSTERDAM (AP) -- The Dutch defense department says several NATO member countries scrambled jets Wednesday afternoon after a pair of Russian bomber planes approached their airspace over the North Sea.

The Dutch ministry identified the planes as two Russian TU-95 Bears, and said it had launched two F-16s from Volkel air force base to intercept them. The Russian jets were escorted by aircraft from the Netherlands, Britain and Denmark until they departed.

Maj. Wilko Ter Horst said "that's why we scrambled, that's why the Danish scrambled and the English scrambled, to ensure to insure they fly out of our air space."

The ministry statement said such incidents have occurred before, citing one from March 21 and another on Sept. 10 last year.

Credit to Myfoxdc.com
Read more: http://www.myfoxdc.com/story/25320772/dutch-scramble-jets-after-russian-bombers-approach#ixzz2zoMjGFSh

Putin Says "Use Of Force In Ukraine Will Have Consequences" As Column Of Military Vehicles Seen Heading Toward Border

As expected, Russia has promptly responded to the latest "anti-terrorist" escalation in Ukraine both diplomatically...
  • Use of force against public in Ukraine would be a “very serious crime,” Russian President Vladimir Putin says at meeting w/ media in St. Petersburg.
  • Putin said consequences for people involved will depend on how vents evolve in Ukraine
  • Putin adds that events in eastern Ukraine could have happened in Crimea, show Russia was right to support referendum there and says that the Geneva accord is not being followed as extremist groups in Ukraine refuse to disarm
.. and militarily. A YouTube clip released moments ago and taken in the Rostov region, shows a large column of military vehicles moving in the direction of Donetsk region. On the highway M-4 are seen tanks, armored personnel carriers and infantry. Following the column are 12 combat helicopters. Written on the sides of vehicles "peacekeeping mission."

Credit to Zero Hedge

Rabbi Vilna Gaon Prophecy Of Russia Invasion Of Crimea

Fighting Breaks Out As Ukraine Deploys Tanks, APCs, Troops In Slavyansk: Deaths Reported

A day after the acting government in Kiev announced the Geneva agreement is void and that it would once again send special forces to deal with "terrorists" in east Ukraine, it had made good on its promise and over the past few hours, Ukrainian tanks, APCs and other special forces troops took control of a checkpoint north of Slavyansk on Thursday, following what numerous reports confirm was an exchange of gunfire.
What happened next is not exactly clear. Reuters reports that "when the armoured unit approached along a road from Sviatogorsk, which Ukraine's government said it recaptured on Wednesday, militants set up a smokescreen of burning tyres. Within half an hour, the Ukrainian force was in control of the position near the village of Khrestyshche. No shots were heard."
Reuters continues:
Ukrainian forces appear to be closing in around Slaviansk, a city of 130,000 which has become a military stronghold for the pro-Russian movement and is entirely controlled by separatist fighters.

Reuters journalists saw Ukrainian troops digging in outside the city on the main road south to the regional capital Donetsk.

Earlier in the morning, a spokeswoman for the separatist authorities in Slaviansk, Stella Khorosheva, said on Facebook that two people were killed at a checkpoint overnight.

Local online news site slavgorod.com.ua quoted other separatist representatives saying one man was dead and another seriously wounded after a group of local militia fighters from a checkpoint went to engage a group of "armed men" between Slaviansk and Sviatogorsk and were then fired on from a wood.

The Ukrainian government said troops repelled an overnight raid on a base at Artemivsk, to the south of Slaviansk on the road to Donetsk. A soldier was wounded in the attack by about 70 people who Interior Minister Arsen Avakov said on Facebook were led by Russian soldiers.
This conflicts somewhat with reports from both AFP and RT of a far more serious escalation including shooting at the Slavyansk checkpoint, and that according to @GazetaRu at least six people have been killed so far.Just out from RT:
Fighting has erupted just outside Slavyansk, a town in east Ukraine where population voiced their protest against Kiev authorities. Ukrainian troops on tanks and armored vehicles are trying to break into the town.

According to Ukrainian Interior ministry, at least five self-defense guards have been killed and one policeman injured after the ‘antiterrorist operation’ launched by Kiev in the city. Three checkpoints erected by the anti-government protesters have also been destroyed.

“Around 40 minutes ago fighting started on the outskirts of Slavyansk,” one of the leaders of self-defense forces, Miroslav Rudenko , told Interfax. We are checking reports of one dead and one injured. There are shootings at a number of checkpoints at some of Slavyansk exit-roads.”

Rudenko said it was impossible to reach self-defense leaders in Slavyansk by phone, suspecting that mobile phone connection could have been switched off. 
More from RT:
Police has announced the beginning of the crackdown via loudspeakers and a special vehicle is currently patrolling the streets warning local people about the crackdown.

The local citizens in the city are preparing for the Kiev crackdown. The majority of shops, kindergartens and schools have been closed in the city. Only the shops selling bread and water remain open. Rossiya 24 TV channel reported there was a slow offensive by Ukrainian troops on Slavyansk.

“Now armored vehicles and special forces are just 10km away from the town,” said Rossiya 24 correspondent currently on the ground. 

According to locals, at least eight armored infantry vehicles passed the village of Hrestische, near Slavyansk, on Thursday morning, reports Gazeta.ru.

At least three snipers from Ukrainian army are now at the barricades, the residents also told Gazeta.ru, adding that when one of the journalists tried to approach the barricades, the snipers opened fire.

Meanwhile, two columns of armored vehicles are heading towards Slavyansk. The first column is now 6km from the city, while the second is 3 to 4km, Mayor of Slavyansk Vyacheslav Ponomarev told Rossiya 24 TV channel.

According to the latest reports, self-defense forces have repelled the attack of the Kiev gunmen at the key checkpoint in north of Slavyansk. At least three infantry vehicles had to retreat, reports Rossiya 24.

Meanwhile, the armored infantry vehicles are currently heading towards the town of Izyum in the Kharkov Region, not far from Slavyansk.

Anti-government protesters are still controlling the checkpoints on the outskirts of Slavyansk.
A video of the events:
And here is the latest reports on the ground:

But perhaps most concerning is the so far unconfrimed report that Russian support is on its way:

We will update if the situation escalates furtger
Credit to Zero Hedge