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Thursday, April 13, 2017

Urgent: "Japan Scrambles Record Jet Fighters At China"

Trump Flips On Five Core Campaign Promises In Under 24 Hours

Image result for Trump's transformation into a mainstream politician.
Blink, and you missed Trump's blistering, seamless transformation into a mainstream politician.
In the span of just a few hours, President Trump flipped to new positions on several core policy issues, backing off on no less than five repeated campaign promises. 
In a WSJ interview and a subsequent press conference, Trump either shifted or completely reversed positions on a number of foreign and economic policy decisions, including the fate of the US Dollar, how to handle China and the future of the chair of the Federal Reserve.
Goodbye strong dollar and high interest rates
In an announcement that rocked currency marketsTrump told the WSJ that the U.S. dollar “is getting too strong” and he would prefer the Federal Reserve keep interest rates low.  “I do like a low-interest rate policy, I must be honest with you,” Mr. Trump said. “I think our dollar is getting too strong, and partially that’s my fault because people have confidence in me. But that’s hurting—that will hurt ultimately,” he added. “Look, there’s some very good things about a strong dollar, but usually speaking the best thing about it is that it sounds good.” 

Trump then said the one thing that every other currency manipulator realizes all too well: “It’s very, very hard to compete when you have a strong dollar and other countries are devaluing their currency. 
During his campaign Trump had repeatedly said that a "strong dollar" policy would be beneficial for the US economy, despite our repeat warnings that he will inevitably reverse on this, especially if and when the "Goldman" circle of advisors starts providing macroconomic advice.
It is unclear if the shift in Trump's policy will mean that US economic data will now "mysteriously" begin to deteriorate to justify not only his request for a weaker dollar, but to also hit the breaks on Yellen's plans for further rate hikes over the next 2-3 years. In any case, the debate over the Fed's balance sheet unwind, and the trajectory of Fed hikes, is now on indefinite hiatus.  
The biggest loser here, again, are America's savers who may have been hoping that their bank deposits will finally earn some interest. 
As for the most notable outcome from this Trump statement, is that it counters his "desire" for a weaker dollar with the Fed's tightening bias. Will fireworks fly as Trump realizes that Yellen's actions are prompting the strong dollar? Stay tuned for what may be the most entertaining clash yet: Trump vs Yellen. 
* * * 
Labeling China a currency manipulator
Trump also told the Wall Street Journal that China is not artificially deflating the value of its currency, a big change after he repeatedly pledged during his campaign to label the country a currency manipulator. 
"They’re not currency manipulators," the president said, adding that China hasn’t been manipulating its currency for months, and that he feared derailing U.S.-China talks to crack down on North Korea. Trump routinely criticized President Obama for not labeling China a currency manipulator, and promised during the campaign to do so on day one of his administration.
Trump's declaration also means that Peter Navarro may as well pack his bags, as the Goldman economic advisory team has now won its contest with the "Bannon nationalist" circle.
* * * 
Yellen's future
Trump also told the Journal he’d consider re-nominating Yellen to chair the Fed's board of governors, after attacking her during his campaign." I like her. I respect her,” Trump said, “It’s very early.”
Trump called Yellen “obviously political” in September and accused her of keeping interest rates low to boost the stock market and make Obama look good. “As soon as [rates] go up, your stock market is going to go way down, most likely,” Trump said. "Or possibly.”

Credit to Zero Hedge

Pyongyang Could Be Capable of Launching Sarin-Loaded Missiles, Japanese FM Says

North Korea is possibly capable of launching missiles with the sarin nerve agent, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has announced.


TOKYO (Sputnik) – In a Thursday address to the Japanese parliament, Abe warned, as cited by The Financial Times, that it was possible that North Korea could place sarin on its missile warheads.

Abe stressed that Japan and China are looking for ways to peacefully resolve tensions on the Korean peninsula.

US President Donald Trump expressed hope after meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping that Beijing could help "solve the North Korea problem" during a news conference on Wednesday with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg. Specifically, he cited Beijing’s decision to cease imports of coal from North Korea as a sign of Beijing’s support for international efforts to reign in the rogue nuclear state.


Tensions on the Korean Peninsula have escalated ever since North Korea carried out a number of missile launches and nuclear tests, one of the latest being a launch of four missiles in the direction of the Sea of Japan conducted March 6. The launches are considered to be in violation with the corresponding resolution adopted by the United Nations. In addition, North Korea reportedly launched on April 5 a ballistic missile from Sinpho, in the South Hamgyong province.

Credit to sputniknews.com

Tech Stocks Experience Their Longest Losing Streak In 5 Years As Panic Begins To Grip The Market

S&P 500 tech stocks have now fallen for 9 days in a row.  The last time tech stocks declined for so many days in a row was in 2012, and that was the only other time in history when we have seen such a long losing streak.  As I have stated before, the post-election “Trump rally” is officially done, and the market is starting to roll over as investors begin to realize that all of the buying momentum has completely evaporated.  Tech stocks tend to be particularly volatile, and so the fact that they are starting to lead the way down should definitely be alarming to many in the investing community.
Of course it isn’t just tech stocks that are falling.  The Dow was down another 59 points on Wednesday, and the S&P 500 has closed beneath its 50 day moving average for the very first time since the election.  For those that have been waiting for a key technical signal before getting out of the market, there is one for you.
The price of gold was up again, and that is definitely not surprising in this geopolitical environment.  The closer we get to war the higher gold and silver prices will go, and if we actually get into a major conflict we will see them blast into the stratosphere.
Another key indicator that I am watching very closely is the VIX.  On Wednesday it shot up above 16 for the very first time since the day after Trump’s election victory, and many believe that it could soon go much higher.  The following is an excerpt from a CNBC report
The VIX measures the size of the S&P 500’s expected moves over the next 30 days, and consequently tends to run just a bit hotter than volatility over the past 30 days. Yet one-month realized volatility is just 6.7, meaning the VIX is at a roughly 9-point premium, which Chintawongvanich calls “highly unusual.”
That said, he notes that implied volatility was also at a large premium preceding the U.K. referendum to leave the EU and the U.S. presidential election. The obvious conclusion is that the market is now similarly preparing itself for the French presidential election, which is set to be held on April 23. Some fear that a populist candidate could prevail, which may cause more problems for the European Union and thus for economic stability.
As noted in that excerpt, the upcoming French election is absolutely huge.  If the election goes “the wrong way” according to the globalists, it could literally mean the end of the European Union as it is configured today.
And of course of even greater concern is the global march toward war.  It is being reported that North Korea is on the verge of a major nuclear weapons test, and such an act of defiance could be enough to push Donald Trump into conducting a major military strike.
But if Trump does hit North Korea, it is quite likely that North Korea will hit back.  The North Koreans are promising to use nuclear weapons in any conflict with the United States, and if Trump bungles this thing we could easily be looking at a scenario in which millions of people end up dead.
Things also continue to get more tense in the Middle East.  The Russians and the Iranians are promising to respond to any additional U.S. strikes “with force”, and on Wednesday Trump declared that our relationship with Russia “may be at an all-time low”.
Of course this came shortly after Secretary of State Rex Tillerson used similar language following his face to face meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Russian President Vladimir Putin held more than two hours of “very frank” talks Wednesday in the Kremlin amid tensions over a U.S. airstrike against a Syria air base blamed for last week’s deadly chemical attack.
In remarks to reporters after the meeting, Tillerson said he told the Russian leader that current relations between the two countries are at a “low point.”
If the Trump administration conducts any more strikes on Syria, it is quite likely that the Russians and Iranians will make good on their threats and will start firing back.
And once U.S. aircraft or U.S. naval vessels come under fire, the calls for war in Washington will become absolutely deafening.
Unfortunately, Trump is not likely to back down any time soon because the recent missile strike in Syria has dramatically boosted his popularity.  According to every recent survey, the American people overwhelmingly approve of what Trump did…
Morning Consult/Politico poll released Wednesday found that 57% of Americans supported airstrikes in Syria, 58% supported establishing a no-fly zone over parts of Syria including strikes against Syria’s air-defense systems, and 63% of Americans thought the US should do more to end the Syrian conflict. Even more, 66% of respondents said they supported the Trump administration’s strike last week specifically.
This mirrored results of another recent poll from CBS News in which 57% of Americans said they approved of the US strike. A Pew Research Center survey from this week showed a similar level of support, with 58% of Americans approving of the strike.
Sadly, this is a time when the majority is dead wrong.  Many of those that are supporting military action against Syria now were vehemently against it when Barack Obama was considering it.
Even Donald Trump spoke out very strongly against military intervention in Syria in 2013, and he was quite right to do so, and so what has suddenly changed that now makes it okay?
There is nothing to be gained in Syria, but we could very easily end up in a direct military conflict with Russia, Iran and Hezbollah which could ultimately prove to be the spark that sets off World War III.
And of course a military strike on North Korea could also potentially spark a global war.  The first Korean War resulted in a direct military conflict between the United States and China, and the second Korean War could easily result in the exact same thing happening again.
Do the American people really want war with both Russia and China at the same time?
It has been said that you should be careful what you wish for, because you just might get it.

Credit to The Economic Collapse

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is leaving Moscow empty-handed

Image result for Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is leaving Moscow empty-handed

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is leaving Moscow empty-handed following two hours of frosty talks with Vladimir Putin - without even a snapshot with the Russian president to show for it.

Instead he got a public lecture on America's past actions in the Middle East from Putin's foreign minister, and reminded of Sean Spicer's Hitler gaffe by a Russian reporter.

And he could not even get agreement that Bashar al-Assad's used chemical weapons, with the Kremlin insisting that the Syrian dictator did not gas his own people and the Trump official asserting that he did.

At a joint news conference after the meeting Putin's foreign minister demanded evidence of the assault - and of Russian's meddling in the American election - as he reminded the world of the United States' rocky record with regime changes, using Iraq and Libya as examples.

The deepening split between the Trump administration and the government the Republican politician had been accused of colluding with to win his election was on full display Wednesday as the diplomats made a host of conflicting claims about current affairs.

Tillerson frankly told reporters that US-Russia relations were at a 'low point' while he issued a Cold War-style warning that the nuclear powers could not have have a bitter relationship.

Credit to Dailymail.co.uk
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4405926/Tillerson-DOES-meet-Vladimir-Putin.html#ixzz4e6enDtqY

WAR DRUMS: North Korea Prepares for Nuclear Test, Evacuates Hundreds of Thousands, Japan Joins US War Ships

Image result for north korea flag

The heat is on, and the war drums are banging louder than ever, in recent memory. The latest information coming from North Korea is that 600,000 residents have been ordered out of Pyongyang. Japan motioned for its ships to join the US Navy fleet. North Korean satellite images show new movement at the countries infamous nuclear test site.

North Korea is not backing down and has cautioned the US, stating that provocation will be met with a firm response from the Korean nation. China chimed in and created a new ‘bottom-line’ for N. Korea; saying that if N. Korea negatively impacts China with its illicit nuclear activities, the latter will respond with force. Japan also chimed in and is sending several warships to join the USA for military drills.

In war preparations, North Korea apparently ordered roughly 600,000 thousand of its residents out of Pyongyang and into the suburbs. Meanwhile, South Korea is attempting to quell fears of an impending war. This weekend happens to be a colossal anniversary for North Korea, this year N. Korea is preparing to celebrate its 105th anniversary of Kim Jong-il, who was the supreme leader of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. He died of a massive heart attack while traveling by train outside Pyongyang. To mark that celebration it would strongly appear as though Kim Jong-Un is preparing to conduct yet another nuclear missile test.

The USA is also preparing seal team six, to decapitate the regime and remove Kim Jong-Un from power, the skilled US Navy Seal team is conducting “field training operations” in South Korea.

US gov’t and other sources say #DPRK has apparently placed a nuclear device in a tunnel and it could be detonated Saturday AM #Korea time.
— Steve Herman (@W7VOA) April 12, 2017

Credit to christiantruther.com


North Korea Tells Foreign Journalists To Prepare For "Big" Event On Thursday

In a potentially concerning geopolitical development, Reuters reports that foreign journalists visiting North Korea have been told to prepare for a "big and important event" on Thursday, although the wire service says there were "no indications it was directly linked to tensions in the region over the isolated state's nuclear weapons program."

According to Channel News Asia reported Jeremy Koh, "we've been told to be ready to move out at 620am, but no idea why. Also, no cell phones allowed."

As a reminder, April 15 marks the nation's 105th birthday of founding president Kim Il Sung, North Korea's biggest national day called "Day of the Sun", and around 200 foreign journalists are in Pyongyang to cover it, however why North korea would urge particular attention to a day that falls two days earlier was unclear, although there is precedent: In April, 2012, North Korea attempted to launch a long-range rocket ahead of the 100th Day of the Sun. State media later confirmed the launch had failed.

The mystery grew when officials gave no details as to the nature of the event or where it would take place. That said, similar announcements in the past have been linked to relatively low-key set pieces. In 2016, Reuters adds, foreign journalists underwent hours of investigation by North Korean officials ahead of what turned out to be a pop concert to mark the finale of a ruling Workers' Party congress. 

Credit to Zero Hedge

Dortmund bus bomb: German police detain suspected Islamis