It hasn’t, and now the US is scrambling to protect a key oil-producing area.
President Donald Trump’s claim that he has “secured the oil” in Syria as the US withdraws troops from the country is incorrect, and US forces are scrambling to figure out how to protect key oil fields in the country, both US and Kurdish officials say.
Trump tweeted Sunday that the US was withdrawing from Syria having “secured the oil” in the country’s eastern oil fields.
Officials in the region said talks were ongoing about redeploying US troops to the Deir Al Zor region to protect a series of contested oil fields that provide a key revenue stream to whoever controls them.
“Trump is changing his mind again, and it looks like his people reminded him about the million dollars a day in revenue those fields produce for whomever controls them,” said a Western military official who works closely with the anti-ISIS coalition in Syria
President Donald Trump’s claim that he has “secured the oil” in Syria as the US withdraws troops from the country is incorrect, and US forces are scrambling to figure out how to protect key oil fields in the country, both US and Kurdish officials say. US Defense Secretary Mike Esper told reporters accompanying him on a trip to the Afghan capital, Kabul, that US forces could be redeployed from their abandoned bases in northeastern Syria to areas along the Iraq-Syria border to support the fight against the Islamic State terrorist group as well as to protect key oil installations coveted by all sides of the conflict. The statement came on the heels of a tweet by Trump announcing that he had ordered some troops to remain in Syria and that the country’s key oil fields had been “secured.”
Contradicting the president, however, both Esper and Kurdish officials said that no such move had taken place and that while discussions over how the US could deploy were underway, no agreement had been reached.
Nick Note: the US has not secured shit. Sources tell me the US military is in complete disarray. Commanders are receiving conflicting orders sometimes on a hourly bases. Hear my words they will soon enough be getting around to bombing the Iraq pipelines that got north to Syria and end up flowing into Turkey….
Bercow continues to defend himself under questioning, saying that one of the reason for the rules he has invoked was to prevent “conflicting” rulings on similar issues coming soon after the other “in short order” “And what could be shorter order than the next sitting day after the last judgement was made.. and that was the rationale for the perfectly reasonable judgement that I have made,” says the speaker. Bernard Jenkin, the Brexit supporting Tory MP, is on his feet insisting that the motion which the government wanted to be voted on today was very different from the one which MPs considered on Saturday. To ‘ooohs’ he adds that the Public administration committee, which he chairs, will be holding hearing on the role of the speaker. Bercow replies that that it is absolutely right for the committee to do what it wanted to to and he was “entirely untroubled” by it. Bercow breaks off into a (not unconvincing) Tony Benn impression to repeat the Labour MP’s lament that politics should be about issues, not personalities, as he comes under further questioning about his ruling. The veteran Eurosceptic and Brexit, Bill Cash, has been on his feet urging Bercow to reconsider his decision in the light of the “law of the land” with regards to Britain’s scheduled Brexit date. Bercow says he is stating the obvious: “When you make a judgement on these matters that is controversial, some people are going to be pleased and some are going to be displeased.” “I have simply sought to discharge my obligations and to do what I believe to be right, and that is what the speaker has to do.”
Bercow refuses to allow ‘meaningful vote’ on Brexit deal today
The House of Commons Speaker, John Bercow, has ruled that he will not permit MPs to have a “meaningful vote” on Boris Johnson’s Brexit deal today. “My ruling is that the motion will not be debated today as it would be repetitive and disorderly to do so,” he told MPs. Bercow says he hopes that the ruling and explanation are helpful to the house, before allowing the Tory MP Peter Bone to come in with a point of order. To laughter, Bone tells him that no one knew that the prime minister was going to send a letter or not to the EU seeking a Brexit extension. Surely this something that changed the circumstances in which the vote would take place. Bercow says that the question of whether a minister of the crown “would obey the law” would be a material consideration on his part was not one that he took into account.
LONDON (Bloomberg) – The trouble with Saudi Aramco’s off-again, on-again initial public offering has always been the valuation. Ever since Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman insisted the world’s largest oil producer was worth $2 trillion in 2016, he’s been determined to prove the skeptics wrong. His optimism met the reality of the global capital markets on Thursday, when the latest plan to float the state-owned company was delayed by at least a few weeks. At a meeting to give a green light for a deal, bankers made clear that international investors had little appetite to buy at a $2 trillion valuation, according to people familiar with the matter. To draw widespread interest Aramco’s value would need to be closer to $1.5 trillion, one of the people said, asking not to named discussing private conversations. What happens now will depend on how keen the crown prince is to attract foreign money to the Aramco offering and whether he’s finally willing to compromise on the valuation to get it. The outlook for what could be the largest IPO ever is likely to dominate Future Investment Initiative at the end of the month, Saudi Arabia’s annual showcase for the crown prince’s economic agenda that’s been dubbed Davos in the Desert. Many of the Wall Street banks hired to work on the IPO will send senior executives to Riyadh, where they’ll rub shoulders with the crown prince and the rest of the Saudi leadership as well as some of the world’s largest investors. Aramco said in a statement that the timing of the IPO will depend on market conditions and that it continues to engage with shareholders on activities related to the listing. One leading international money manager, who recently met Aramco executives in Saudi Arabia to discuss the IPO, said the main problem is officials in Riyadh believe Aramco should trade at a premium to other international oil companies. Many investors disagree and argue the risks of investing in Saudi Arabia merit a discount — or at very best parity — to the likes of Exxon Mobil Corp. and Royal Dutch Shell Plc. There’s little question Aramco merits a unique valuation. Drilling from some of the world’s largest fields under the barren Saudi desert, the company pumps more than twice the volume Exxon does and has some of the lowest production costs in the world. But there are also concerns for potential Aramco investors that don’t apply to Exxon, Shell and their ilk. Last month’s attack on the company’s largest crude processing plant at Abqaiq showed the political risk associated with the kingdom. There are also governance issues: the IPO would offer only a sliver of Aramco’s equity, leaving strategy in the hands of the Saudi state. As OPEC’s most important member, Saudi oil production would remain a political decision. One rough and ready way to value Aramco is to look at dividend yield. As part of the campaign to attract outside investors, Aramco pledged to soup up investor payments to $75 billion next year. At $2 trillion that means a dividend yield of 3.75%. That’s a lot less than the 5.1% currently offered by Exxon and the 6.6% Shell shareholders are getting. Bringing the dividend into line with Exxon would mean a valuation that’s much closer to $1.5 billion. If Saudi Arabia accepted that benchmark, it would still create the world’s most valuable company — outstripping both Apple Inc. and Microsoft Corp. — and a sale of 2% of the equity would yield $30 billion, more than the $25 billion Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. raised in its 2014 IPO. If the crown prince doesn’t want to compromise on valuation, he has another option to get the deal done and raise money for the kingdom’s sovereign wealth fund. He can rely on Saudi money by securing big pledges from rich Saudi families — some of whom had members held in the Ritz-Carlton hotel during 2017’s corruption clampdown — pitching a retail offering to small investors and leaning on banks to lend to potential buyers. Even though it ditched plans for an international listing in New York or London, the Saudi government is still keen to get some foreign institutions to invest, one person involved in the deal said. Nick Note: This deal wlil get done and we want to gt in on it!
KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — While President Donald Trump insists he’s bringing home Americans from “endless wars” in the Mideast, his Pentagon chief says all U.S. troops leaving Syria will go to western Iraq and the American military will continue operations against the Islamic State group. They aren’t coming home and the United States isn’t leaving the turbulent Middle East, according to current plans outlined by U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper before he arrived in Afghanistan on Sunday. The fight in Syria against IS, once spearheaded by American allied Syrian Kurds who have been cast aside by Trump, will be undertaken by U.S. forces, possibly from neighboring Iraq. Esper did not rule out the idea that U.S. forces would conduct counterterrorism missions from Iraq into Syria. But he told reporters traveling with him that those details will be worked out over time. Trump nonetheless tweeted: “USA soldiers are not in combat or ceasefire zones. We have secured the Oil. Bringing soldiers home!” The president declared this past week that Washington had no stake in defending the Kurdish fighters who died by the thousands as America’s partners fighting in Syria against IS extremists. Turkey conducted a weeklong offensive into northeastern Syria against the Kurdish fighters before a military pause. “It’s time for us to come home,” Trump said, defending his removal of U.S. troops from that part of Syria and praising his decision to send more troops and military equipment to Saudi Arabia to help the kingdom defend against Iran. Esper’s comments to reporters traveling with him were the first to specifically lay out where American troops will go as they shift from Syria and what the counter-IS fight could look like. Esper said he has spoken to his Iraqi counterpart about the plan to shift about 1,000 troops from Syria into western Iraq. Trump’s top aide, asked about the fact that the troops were not coming home as the president claimed they would, said, “Well, they will eventually.” Acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney told “Fox News Sunday” that “the quickest way to get them out of danger was to get them into Iraq.” As Esper left Washington on Saturday, U.S. troops were continuing to pull out of northern Syria after Turkey’s invasion into the border region. Reports of sporadic clashes continued between Turkish-backed fighters and the Syria Kurdish forces despite a five-day cease-fire agreement hammered out Thursday between U.S. and Turkish leaders. The pullout largely abandons America’s Kurdish allies who have fought IS alongside U.S. troops for several years. Between 200 and 300 U.S. troops will remain at the southern Syrian outpost of Al-Tanf. The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss ongoing operations, said the U.S. military is not closely monitoring the effectiveness of the cease-fire, but is aware of sporadic fighting and violations of the agreement. The official said it will still take a couple of weeks to get forces out of Syria. Nick Note: this is called betrayal… and turn tail and run! Tell me are you still proud to be American? I can tell you many in the military are NOT proud! Are you still free? i suggest you enjoy it while it lasts. It OK China and Russia will be the policeman of the world.. That is your world….I can’t wait to see how they divide up America between them. And the country will fall without putting up a fight.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump was surprised at the resistance to his now-revoked decision to host next year’s Group of Seven summit at his Florida golf resort, his acting chief of staff said on Sunday, adding that Trump still considers himself to be in the hospitality business. Trump on Saturday announced on Twitter that he was abandoning the move to host the meeting at Trump National Doral near Miami in June, citing “Crazed and Irrational Hostility” from Democrats and the news media. He said he would look for another site, possibly the Camp David presidential retreat. “He was honestly surprised at the level of pushback” to the original announcement, White House acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney told “Fox News Sunday.”“At the end of the day, he still considers himself to be in the hospitality business, and he saw an opportunity to take the biggest leaders from around the world and he wanted to put on the absolute best show, the best visit that he possibly could and he was very confident of doing that at Doral,” Mulvaney said. The G7 is a group of leading advanced economies comprising the United States, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and Britain. “I think it was the right decision to change,” said Mulvaney, who said he had discussed the matter with Trump on Saturday evening. Mulvaney had made the initial announcement that the Trump property would host the annual meeting at a White House news conference on Thursday. Ethics experts and many lawmakers quickly attacked the decision. The Republican president faces criticism and a number of congressional investigations over his finances and potential conflicts of interest stemming from his real estate business, which he still owns, and an impeachment inquiry into accusations that he pursued political interests in his dealings with Ukraine.The U.S. Constitution’s emoluments clause prohibits government officials from receiving salaries, fees or profits from foreign and domestic governments without congressional approval. Pressed about his comment that Trump still considers himself to be in the hospitality business, Mulvaney said: “It’s his background.” “He wanted to put on a show, he wanted to take care of folks,” he added. “He’s in the hotel business, at least he was.”
One (not signed by him) asks to delay Brexit beyond Oct 31, the second makes clear the first is from Parliament – not the Government, and the third urges Brussels NOT to grant an extension
The first was letter demanded by the Remainer rebel Benn Act which asks the EU to delay Brexit until January
The second was a covering letter saying the first letter was from Parliament and not from the Prime Minister
The third was from the PM to Donald Tusk disavowing the first letter and making clear he does not want delay
In the third letter to Mr Tusk the Prime Minister insisted that any further hold-up would be ‘deeply corrosive’
Mr Tusk said EU would consider how to respond but bloc is likely to wait to see if PM can win a vote on his deal
Late yesterday – just before the midnight deadline stipulated by ‘wrecker’ MPs – a total of three letters were due to be sent from the Government to Donald Tusk, the president of the European Council. The first was the letter demanded by the Benn Act, which asks the EU to delay Brexit beyond the October 31 deadline – but not signed by Boris Johnson – using the exact wording specified in the legislation. The second was a covering letter, written by Sir Tim Barrow, the UK’s Permanent Representative in Brussels, which made clear that the first letter was from Parliament, not the Government. And the third was a letter from Mr Johnson, which was also sent to the leaders of the other 27 EU nations, in which he disavowed the first letter by making clear that he does not want any delay to Brexit. In it, the PM said any further hold-up would be ‘deeply corrosive’, and would ‘damage the interests of the UK and our EU partners’. He said UK would continue to ratify the deal and urged Brussels to do the same. Nick Note I urge you to click the more button see the letters and read my commentary at the end
In a major blow to British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, U.K. lawmakers voted Saturday to postpone a decision on whether to back his Brexit deal with the European Union, throwing a wrench into government plans to leave the bloc at the end of this month.
BORIS Johnson has been forced to ask the EU for a third Brexit delay after today’s vote defeat – but tonight told MPs Brussels could reject it anyway. In a letter written to MPs the Prime Minister warned EU bosses didn’t want delay anymore than he did, urging colleagues “on all sides of the House” to push his sabotaged deal through if more delays are rejected.
Boris Johnson promises we’ll leave the EU in… The Commons voted in favour of a rebel plot to delay Brexit yet againCredit: PA:Press Association
Washington (CNN)Career diplomat George Kent told congressional investigators in his closed-door testimony this week that Rudy Giuliani asked the State Department and the White House to grant a visa to the former Ukrainian official who Joe Biden had pushed to have removed when he was vice president, according to four people familiar with Kent’s testimony. Kent, the deputy assistant secretary of state for European and Eurasian affairs, testified that around January 2019 Giuliani requested a visa for former Ukrainian prosecutor-general Viktor Shokin to travel to the United States. Shokin had been pushed out of his position as Ukraine’s top prosecutor in 2016 after pressure from Western leaders, including Biden, over concerns that he was not pursuing corruption cases. Giuliani has previously told CNN he wanted to interview Shokin in person because the Ukrainian promised to reveal dirt on Democrats. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State George Kent testified before congressional lawmakers on Oct. 15. Kent told congressional investigators the State Department had objected to the request, and State did not grant the visa. Giuliani, Kent said, then appealed to the White House to have State reverse its decision. Shokin’s visa was never granted, although Giuliani eventually spoke with Shokin over Skype. The incident reveals how Giuliani’s work to dig up dirt on Democrats went much further than previously understood — and included an attempt to directly influence the actions of the federal government. Concerns that Giuliani was inappropriately involved in shaping and driving the administration’s Ukraine policy form a significant part of the intelligence community whistleblower’s complaint, which prompted the ongoing impeachment investigation into President Donald Trump. Giuliani did not reply Friday to questions from CNN. The White House did not respond to request for comment. Kent’s lawyer declined to comment for this story. When asked about the matter, a State Department official said that visa records are confidential under US law and the department does not discuss the specifics of individual cases. Generally, visa applicants are required by US law to be interviewed by a consular officer at a US diplomatic mission. A visa application can be denied for a number of reasons, including if the reviewed information falls “within the scope of one of the inadmissibility or ineligibility grounds of the law,” the State Department’s website says. In their January 23 Skype interview, Shokin provided information, Giuliani has told CNN, about supposed coordination between Democrats and people in Ukraine, as well as claims about Biden’s son Hunter Biden, who had sat on the board of a Ukrainian energy company, Burisma Holdings. Shokin’s successor as prosecutor general, Yuriy Lutsenko, did travel to the US and spoke with Giuliani about these claims later. Details from those interviews were included in a cache of documents Giuliani delivered to the State Department earlier this year, in hopes that the administration would investigate those claims. The State Department inspector general eventually turned the documents over to congressional investigators. According to a write-up of his interview with Shokin included in the documents, Giuliani claimed that Shokin “believes the current Ambassador Marie L. Yovanovitch denied his visa” and noted that Yovanovitch was “close to Mr. Biden.” In her recent testimony to the House Intelligence Committee, Yovanovitch said she has met Biden “several times over the course of our many years in government, neither he nor the previous Administration ever, directly or directly, raised the issue of either Burisma or Hunter Biden with me.” Giuliani’s efforts to push a smear campaign against Yovanovitch ultimately led to her removal from her post in May. But Shokin also had a damaged reputation among plenty of US and European diplomats. Dogged by criticism he had not pursued corruption aggressively enough, Shokin was forced to resign as Ukraine’s top prosecutor in 2016 after both internal pressure and pressure from Western governments and financial institutions. Among the leading advocates for Shokin’s resignation was Biden, who at the time led the Obama administration’s anti-corruption efforts in Ukraine. Shokin has claimed, Giuliani has told CNN, that Biden pushed for his removal in order to stop an investigation into Burisma. There has been no evidence the Obama administration’s push to remove Shokin was linked to stopping this investigation, which had been dormant for two years before the time of Shokin’s resignation.
The total count of active drilling rigs in the U.S. falls by 5 to 851, resuming its steady decline after last week’s small gain broke a streak of seven straight weekly declines, according to Baker Hughes’ latest survey. The oil rig count rose by 1 to 713 while gas rigs slipped by 6 to 137; 1 rig remains classified as miscellaneous. Nick Note: If you don’t have a way to ship the oil and if you only recover half your costs after fracking because production falls off to fast AND if your screwing your investors because you can’t pay them back… And worst of all if you can’t find new suckers to give you even more money to punch in the ground even more money losing holes you got to send the drilling rigs home AND worst yet you got to sell that lacquer covered rusty ole pick up you paid over $30,000 from the monkey guy!
One of the world’s ten largest banks is set to lower interest rates on its multi-million Swiss franc deposit accounts to below zero, to the chagrin of well-heeled individual investors. Credit Suisse will start charging wealthy clients with large cash deposits in Swiss francs, according to Reuters. Switzerland’s second largest lender will apply a rate of -0.75% on deposits of over 2 million Swiss francs ($ 2.02 million) for individuals and legal entities. A rate of -0.85% will be set on deposits of legal entities exceeding 10 million francs. The new rules come into force on 1 January for individuals and from 15 November for corporate clients. Several banks in Switzerland and the Eurozone have also introduced negative rates for corporate investors, although most large players refrain from applying negative rates to individual customers.
“As other banks have been doing for some time, Credit Suisse is introducing negative interest rates for clients with very high Swiss franc cash holdings,” Credit Suisse said on Friday.
“The reason for this is the persistent negative interest rate environment,” the bank added. Since January 2015, the National Bank of Switzerland had set a negative rate of -0.75% on deposits placed with commercial banks in the central bank. According to reports, UBS Group AG predicts that the National Bank of Switzerland will lower interest rates at the beginning of next year amid further easing of monetary policy by other central banks. Nick Note: As i have told you for a long time negative interest rates are the only way out from the coming global depression. A GUARANTEED EVENT. Especial when intelligent people realize that Trump is the equivalent of a case of C4 wired to the front door of a china shop. His administration is crumbling before your very eyes. Trump corrupt officials are ducking in their fox holes… Talented people like Rex Tillerson and General Mathis are long gone. Trump is losing his cookie going stark raving mad. It is impossible for him to govern. AND these endless trade wars and allowing Americas enemies to take over global assets like oil in the middle east and strategic minerals in Africa and Chinese companies like Haweii to take over new technologies. All this will insure this coming depression will be Americas last her society torn apart in class warfare and her infrastructure crumbling. Fortunately we have the tools to proper and protect our wealth from the coming double digit interest rates.