In a fresh turn of events, Saudi Arabia, one of the least charitable nations on the planet has announced it will siphon off a billion dollars of its oil treasure to rebuild Gaza. But Gaza was a thriving stretch of land when the Jews were living there. Enter the Arabs. Well, you know the sad unchanging story.
KUWAIT CITYThe Saudi king says his country will donate $1 billion to help rebuild the Gaza Strip after Israel's devastating three-week offensive in the Palestinian territory. King Abdullah criticizes Israel for using excessive force in Gaza and says "one drop of Palestinian blood" is more valuable than all the money in the world. Congress eliminated aid to Saudi Arabia in 2006 when the House of Representatives voted to forbid US aid to Saudi Arabia, a statement of far more symbolic importance than economic. The 312-97 vote was to eliminate $420,000 from the $21.3 billion Foreign Operations Appropriations bill. The money has financed $20,000 in military training and education and a $400,000 anti-terrorism program.
President George W. Bush considered Saudi Arabia a vital ally in his campaign against terror, which he began after the September 11, 2001, attacks on the United States. The Bush administration praised the Saudis for cracking down on terror operations within their borders but has complained about women's rights and other aspects of Saudi domestic policies.
For its part, Saudi Arabia has wanted a more active US role in mediating the Arab-Israeli problem. Saudi Foreign Minister Saud al-Faisal complained about the Bush administration's decision to shut off direct aid to the elected Hamas-led Palestinian government.
"American taxpayer dollars should not be supporting Saudi hate and terror," Congressman Anthony Weiner, a New York Democrat who sponsored the amendment, said in a statement. "The Saudis have not cooperated with American investigations, they continue to provide financial support to terrorists, and they continue to nurture fanatical Wahhabism."
Wahhabism is the fundamentalist branch of Islam followed by Saudi Muslims. Osama bin Laden, the al-Qaida mastermind whose Saudi nationality has been revoked because of his terrorist activities, advocates a particularly austere version of Wahhabism.
In his statement, Weiner said the Saudis have violated assurances that they would stop financing terror organizations that have attacked the United States and Israel, adding that Saudi schools "continue to cultivate hate and intolerance despite claims of a 'modernized' education system."
An article by Neil King, Jr. of the Wall Street Journal should have conservationist Americans dancing with joy. However, only half the story is actually good news. If these prognostications are true, then the West has some measure of hope of curtailing those runaway oil prices that help cripple our economy this past year. However, the general wisdom that oil prices need to be at a certain level in order to fuel exploration of other energy resources needs to go the way of $140 a barrel oil prices.
Because this week's outlook also included news that the frackas between Russia and the Ukraine has interrupted the delivery of energy resources to Europe, this is not the time for a return of the freewheeling energy glutton America had become. The United States cannot continue to delay its search for viable alternative fuel technologies. The following article and the news out of Russia are testament to the cold hard fact that we need inependence from our energy masters. King writes:
The recent global downturn is thwarting best efforts by Saudi Arabia and other big oil exporters to prop up prices of crude amid rising supply and dwindling demand.
Big producers in the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries have struggled for months to keep pace with global economic woes, which have sent oil prices down more than 70% since July. The world's biggest oil exporter, Saudi Arabia, tried to nudge the market up this week by announcing plans to cut output to its lowest level since 2003around 7.7 million barrels a day, which would put its production roughly two million barrels a day from the summer. Other OPEC members, including Venezuela, are calling for another round of cuts when the group meets next in March.
Global economic woes continue to trump OPEC actions amid signs of weakening energy demand in almost every corner of the world. Reports of rising crude stocks and falling retail sales in the U.S. drove oil prices down again Wednesday, with U.S. benchmark crude settling at $37.28 on the New York Mercantile Exchange, down 1.3% from Tuesday.
OPEC's 12 members last month announced the group's largest supply cut2.2 million barrels a dayafter pledging to cut two million barrels a day in the autumn, when the slowdown began to take hold. OPEC produces about 40% of the world's daily oil needs, which now run around 84.5 million barrels.
OPEC officials expressed concern that the market thus far has been unaffected by the cuts, which have been more disciplined than many analysts predicted. OPEC officials say they hope the cuts will begin to register soon and help drive prices back above $50 a barrel. But pessimists within the cartel say continuing bad news could drive prices well below $30 a barrel in coming months.
Saudi Oil Minister Ali Naimi, speaking at an oil conference Wednesday in New Delhi, said prices had fallen below the level warranted by market fundamentals. The oil market, he said, needs prices that "encourages investment, helping create a climate conducive for the development of all viable energy sources." Mr. Naimi recently put that price at $75 a barrel.
Nonsense. Development of new technology does not compete with oil production. Delivery of those technologies may one day compete, but that is no reason to delay the process of finding and perfecting an alternative to oil. If oil did not exist, what then? This general economic wisdom is bunk. Thomas Edison's perfected electric light technology was to compete with gas lighting, but buildout costs were enormous.
The battle between electric and gas lighting lasted some 30 years, and although advances were made in gas-lighting technology, electricity won out. During that time, the Cleveland OH City Council, viewing comparative costs, voted to go back to gas light in 1883 but reversed itself 17 days later. About the time that Brush was developing his arc light, Thomas Edison designed a practical incandescent lamp which later had great significance for Cleveland, because the companies that formed the National Electric Lamp Assn. in 1906 centered much of their light-bulb production in this area. When NELA became the National Quality Lamp Division of GENERAL ELECTRIC CO., it established Nela Park in the suburbs. The division took the leading role in GE’s incandescent lighting development program from 1915 until 1935, when fluorescent lighting research became prominent.
For years, the world's oil surplus was negligible. This year, OPEC's spare capacity is expected to surge to around four million barrels a day, according to the U.S. Energy Department. In 2009, global oil demand will fall by 800,000 barrels a daythe sharpest retreat since the recession of the early 1980s, the Energy Department predicts.
Gasoline demand is down almost 4% in the U.S. from a year ago, despite the drop in fuel prices. The U.S. is now importing about 750,000 fewer barrels a day than it did last year. Yet crude and refined-fuel stockpiles rose by 9.8 million barrels last week, the Energy Department said Wednesday. Stockpiles at the country's main delivery point for U.S. crude in Cushing, Okla., are at record highs.
SAUDI ARABIA, from next year, is planning to incrementally, and completely, phase out domestic wheat production over the next several years due to fears over water supplies, introducing plans to halt wheat production by 2016 because of concerns about the desert kingdom's scarce water resources, according to a US government agency.
According to the Financial Times Saudi Arabia will begin reducing production annually by 12.5 per cent from next year and will use imports to bridge the domestic consumption gap. As the Saudis gouges the West with its oil exports, some might wonder why is this a matter for concern? But perhaps we should not allow ourselves even a tiny bit of smugness.
For one, world food prices are already skyrocketing. The price of wheat alone has doubled in the last year, partly due to vehicles now competing with people for 'fuel'; partly due to developing nations like China becoming wealthier and demanding both more food, and more energy intensive foodstuffs, like meat and dairy that use significantly more land, water and fossil fuel resources; partly due to climate change reducing yields through droughts and floods; partly due to the continuing trend of soil erosion and desertification; and partly due to reduced yields from the use of genetically modified crops.
As the Financial Times article states, by 1991 the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia had become a net exporter of wheat. Turn those exports around, and make the Kingdom's almost 25 million people begin to completely rely on imports at a time where stresses on global food supplies are mounting, and the terms 'vulnerability' and 'political instability' begin to move to the fore.
Eric Brooks draws parallels between the peaking of global food production and the peaking of oil, and further outlines the worrying state of grain production around the world:
But here's the most worrisome parallel of all: Flattening productivity increases, limited land area, insatiable meat demand, population growth, ethanol, biodiesel and climate changethese factors are turning once major grain exporters such as Australia, the EU and China into minor exporters or even large grain importers. As one country after another's oil production peaked, there remained fewer and fewer net oil exporters they could rely on to fulfil their needs.
Now, just as most of the world imports much of its oil from a handful of OPEC nations, most countries source an increasing proportion of their grain from the United States, Canada and Latin America. As happened in the oil patch decades ago, most of the world now depends on just five or six countries in North America and South Americathe Persian Gulf of feed grain supplies.
At the same time, we see the list of countries that can be relied on to supply the rest of the world with feed grains steadily shrinking. Thanks to drought and biodiesel, China still imports rapeseed from Canada but no longer from the EU or Australia. The EU, once a grain exporter, now suffers serious feed grain deficits. On a recent tour of Europe to assess the severity of the situation, Ken Hobbie, USGC's president and CEO noted that, "The EU recently lifted all import tariffs and duties temporarily as a result of the ongoing grain shortages."
Chris Corry, USGC's senior director of international operations added that, "They have a real big problem over here with grain supplies. We are hearing that Europe will need 17 to 18 million metric tons of feed grains next year. That is how bad things are." For Asian countries, the EU's transformation into a net grain importer removes another major exporter from their supply chain equations.
As Europe vanishes off the feed grain export list, South America's corn exports are also fading. The USDA's December 13, 2007 Feed Outlook reports that, "Argentina's government has been keeping export registrations for corn closed, thereby limiting corn exports and keeping a lid on prices in Argentina." Apparently, even large grain exporters fear the consequences of today's global grain shortage.
At around the same time, the Korea Herald reported that "American corn achieved an 84 percent market share in South Korea." Byong Royal Min, the USGC director in Korea, said it was "a lack of corn supplies from South America that propelled the United States to this market leading position." Whether America can continue raising its ethanol production and remain a major corn exporter is itself in doubt.
Clearly, as the number of reliable feed grain exporters dwindles, large importers fear they are too dependent on a handful of large, powerful suppliers. Indeed, Chinese reluctance to import corn from the US dominated western hemisphere mirrors American anxiety about relying on Middle Eastern oil.
For a nation like Saudi Arabia to just give up growing its own grain (they do like Pita bread, after all), things are clearly getting desperate on the water front. Even without climate change, water stresses have been mounting worldwide (see also). Add climate change to the mix, and we can expect to see a growing number of nations making similar drastic decisions. Without a major change of direction, such growing national interdependencies will increase international tensions.
Some might assume that as the need for a reprioritization of basic food needs become more pronounced, the world will adjust its production systems to suit (think 'the invisible hand of the market') i.e. that people will begin to reduce the strain by moving away from meat based diets, for example. But, I would venture to say that the more likely scenario is that those who can afford to continue with the lifestyle they now have, will do so, and those that cannot afford to outbid wealthy nations like Saudi Arabia, the U.S., China, etc., will simply go without.
We're seeing this already with food, oil, and climate change issues. People on the bottom rungs of the ladder are falling off while the wealthy continue lifestyles of excess.
Essentially, money talks. The Saudi situation is a case in point. It is already believed that Saudi Arabia is consuming large amounts of water through water injectionthey pump water into failing oil wells to force the oil out. Instead of growing food with the water, it may be getting used to postpone peak oil. Oil may well be more valuable to the nation than food, at least for the moment...
There are those who perceive solutions to these issues, and it is the hope of many that these solutions will finally begin to get the long-overdue attention they deserve. For example, Permaculture techniques have been shown to create food where before there was only desert. We know that converting agriculture to organic systems can considerably increase yields, even in dry regions. Re-vegetating formerly depleted soils, and re-greening regions has the knock-on effect of enabling land to filter and hold vast amounts of water. Conversely, contemporary agricultural practices use considerably more wateras the lack of soil structure inherent with industrialized systems causes water to rapidly leech away or run off.
The monoculture systems that globalised food production requires are less productive than bio-diverse systemssystems that not only enable local populations to provide for their own needs, but also do away with the fossil fuel inputs currently used for both food production and global transport (and lets not forget that chemical-based agricultural imputs contaminate the little water we have).
Peak oil, peak soil, peak water, population growth and climate change all add up to mounting pressure on our most basic needsfood and water. If we don't wake up soon, we may well see more nations being added to the list of countries unable to provide for their own needs. Perhaps the only (short term) winners in this scenario will be the trans-nationals and transport organisations that get to make a buck on every sale and transfer.
It's grim news for everybody. The global economy is just about coping with the sub-prime crisis, the fall of the dollar and oil at $102 a barrel. But the inflationary surge in the costs of food, which now dwarfs the rise in oil prices, could prove to be the final straw. World grain reserves are at their lowest levels since records were first kept back in 1960, and the U.S. stockpile had not been this low since 1948.
This problem has been coming for some time, driven by three separate factors. The first is overall population increase. The second is that emergent economies like China and India are climbing up the prosperity chain and demanding more meat protein, which takes eight times as much land to produce as vegetable protein. The third is that short-sighted government subsidies for biofuels is eroding the amount of crops available for eating.
Inough with the pseudonyms. Western civilization isn't at war with terrorism any more than it is at war with grenades. Western civilization is at war with militant Islam, which dominates Muslim communities all over the world. Militant Islam isn't a tiny minority of otherwise goodhearted Muslims. It's a dominant strain of evil that runs rampant in a population of well over 1 billion.
Enough with the psychoanalysis. They don't hate us because of Israel. They don't hate us because of Kashmir. They don't hate us because we have troops in Saudi Arabia or because we deposed Saddam Hussein. They don't hate us because of Britney Spears. They hate us because we are infidels, and because we don't plan on surrendering or providing them material aid in their war of aggressive expansion.
Actually Ben, they hate us for each and every one of these things. They hate us because they hate life and instead love a lie.
Enough with the niceties. We don't lose our souls when we treat our enemies as enemies. We don't undermine our principles when we post more police officers in vulnerable areas, or when we send Marines to kill bad guys, or when we torture terrorists for information. And we don't redeem ourselves when we close Guantanamo Bay or try terrorists in civilian courts or censor anti-Islam comics. When it comes to war, extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice, and moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue.
Enough with the words. Talking with Iran without wielding the threat of force, either economic or military, won't help. Appealing to the United Nations, run by thugs and dictators ranging from Putin to Chavez to Ahmadinejad, is an exercise in pathetic futility. Evil countries don't suddenly decide to abandon their evil goals they are forced to do so by pressure and circumstance.
Enough with the faux allies. We don't gain anything by pretending that Saudi Arabia and Pakistan are true allies. They aren't. At best, they are playing both sides of the table. We ought to be drilling now in order to break OPEC. Building windmills isn't going to cut it. We should also be backing India to the hilt in its current conflict with Pakistanunless Pakistan can destroy its terrorist element, India should be given full leeway to do what it needs to do. Russia and China, meanwhile, are facilitating anti-Western terrorism. Treating them as friends in this global war is simply begging for a backstabbing.
Enough with the myths. Not everyone on earth is crying out for freedom. There are plenty of people who are happy in their misery, believing that their suffering is part and parcel of a correct religious system. Those people direct their anger outward, targeting unbelievers. We cannot simply knock off dictators and expect indoctrinated populations to rise to the liberal democratic challenge. The election of Hamas in the Gaza Strip is more a rule than an exception in the Islamic world.
Enough with the lies. Stop telling us that Islam is a religion of peace. If it is, prove it through action. Stop telling us that President-elect Barack Obama will fix our broken relationship with the Muslim world. They hate Obama just as much as they hated President George W. Bush, although they think Obama is more of a patsy than Bush was. Stop telling us that we shouldn't worry about the Islamic infiltration of our economy. If the Saudis own a large chunk of our banking institutions and control the oil market, they can certainly leverage their influence in dangerous ways.
Enough. After the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, the plane downed in Pennsylvania, the endless suicide bombings, shootings and rocket attacks in Israel, the Bali bombings, the synagogue bombing in Tunisia, the LAX shootings, the Kenyan hotel bombing, the Casablanca attacks, the Turkey synagogue attacks, the Madrid bombings, the London bombings, and the repeated attacks in India culminating in the Mumbai massacresamong literally thousands of othersit's about time that the West got the point: we're in a war. Our enemies are determined. They will not quit just because we offer them Big Macs, Christina Aguilera CDs, or even the freedom to vote. They will not quit just because we ensure that they have Korans in their Guantanamo cells, or because we offer to ban "The Satanic Verses" (as India did). They will only quit when they are dead. It is our job to make them so, and to eliminate every obstacle to their destruction.
So enough. No more empty talk. No more idle promises. No more happy ignorance, half measures, or appeasement-minded platitudes. The time for hard-nosed, uncompromising action hasn't merely comeit's been overdue by seven years. The voice of our brothers' blood cries out from the ground.
Here is an excerpt from a San Francisco Chronicle article suggesting that the American Blues style of popular music may actually have Muslim slave origins.
BAILEY LIVES ON Georgia's Sapelo Island, where a small community of blacks can trace their ancestry to Bilali Mohammed, a Muslim slave who was born and raised in what is now the country of Guinea. Visitors to Sapelo Island are always struck by the fact that churches there face east. In fact, as a child, Bailey learned to say her prayers facing eastthe same direction that her great-great-great-great-grandfather faced when he prayed toward Mecca.
Bilali was an educated man. He spoke and wrote Arabic, carried a Qur'an and a prayer rug, and wore a fez that likely signified his religious devotion. (Bilali had been trained in Africa to be a Muslim leader; on Sapelo Island, he was appointed by his slave master to be an overseer of other slaves). Although Bilali's descendents adopted Christianity, they incorporated Muslim traditions that are still evident today.
The name Bailey, in fact, is a reworking of the name Bilali, which became a popular Muslim name in Africa because one of Islam's first convertsand the religion's first muezzinwas a former Abyssinian slave named Bilal. (Muezzins are those who recite the call to prayer from the minarets of mosques. ) One historian believes that abolitionist Frederick Douglass, who changed his name from Frederick Bailey, may have had Muslim roots.
"History changes things," says Bailey, 59, who chronicled the history of Sapelo Island in her memoir, "God, Dr. Buzzard, and the Bolito Man."
"Things become something different from what they started out as."
The tiny community of Hog Hammock on Sapelo Island in Georgia is one of the earliest freed slave settlements, and it is still home to descendants of the original owners. That may change though, as the Gullah-Geechee people in the Hog Hammock community are being forced to sell because of soaring property taxes. The owners aren’t giving up without a fight, though, and are making their story known.
Hog Hammock has a population of less than 50, and according to resident Cornelia Bailey, the people there receive no county services. This makes it difficult for the home and business owners in the community to understand why their property appraisals (and tax bills) are soaring. The community has no school, no police station and only one paved road to maintain.
IUST AS AMERICANS ARE FINALLY beginning to reap the benefits of plunging gasoline pricesincluding more money in their pocketsOPEC is getting ready to squeeze them once again by cutting oil production and driving up prices to refineries. The 13-nation global oil cartelwhich includes Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's Iran and Hugo Chavez's Venezuelawill hold an emergency meeting in Vienna Friday to discuss the steep and rapid decline in oil prices.
"The era of cheap oil is finished," Iran's Oil Minister Gholamhossein Nozari boasted on Tuesday. When asked what price Iran would want for its oil, Nozari declared, "The more the better."
"A few member nations have voiced their intentions of pushing for a cut in production, including Qatar, Iran, as well as OPEC's president Chekib Khelil, who said that output could be slashed by as much as 2 million barrels a day," analysts for Raymond James & Associates told MarketWatch.com.
When oil peaked at more than $147 a barrel in July, gas prices soared to above $5 a gallon in some parts of the U.S., and Americans were forced to cut back on driving. With the price of oil at about $73 a barrel on Tuesday, pump prices have fallen to as low as $2.30 a gallon.
The price dip in oiland gasoline finally is working its way into the beleagured American economy, putting a few extra dollars in the hands of consumers just as the home heating and holiday shopping seasons begin.
A HEIGHTENED SENSE of being deprived of food for a month encourages such demands and concessions of infidel populations. Ramadan is nothing but a "ram-it-down-your-throat" orgasm of Islamic triumphalism. Ramadan comes from an Arabic word for intense heat, scorched ground, and shortness of rations. Oh those poor misunderstood submittersenter your local muslim-grievance-theatrics-group, interfaith re-education, one-way-bridge-to-Islam building sessions. If only the world would simply bend to their whim, there would be peace on earth. Yeah right. The proof is in their miserable death cult. Look at the map above. Are these people victims? No, what they have been, are, and will be, are ruthless deadly aggressors against peoples and cultures, and no amount of Leftist multicultural fantasy will change that fact. After all, they don't want to change. Every statement they make to the West is couched in distortion, double entendre and outlying lying, a doctrine known as taqiyya, right out of their own so-called sacred script for world domination.
The following program at YouTube, produced by Al Jazeera, unintentionally reveals, and actually confirms what we've read in the pages at JW/DW for years. Actually, Al Jiz provides quite a treasure trove for counter jihad fodder.
For example, a recent video explains the Islamic perception of immigration from an integration vs. assimilation point of view. Let's bite. Let's define these terms:
to (cause to) mix freely with other groups in society etc Example: The immigrants are not finding it easy to integrate into the life of our cities.
to take in and incorporate as one's own; absorb: He assimilated many new experiences on his European trip to bring into conformity with the customs, attitudes, et cetera, of a group, nation, or the like; adapt or adjust: to assimilate the new immigrants.
Check out the Al Jazeera English video Crossroads Europe. In this program, Al Jazeera reporter Elizabeth Filippouli interviews Midhat Ibrahim, a Kosovo national who immigrated to Sweden in 1952, in the main mosque at Rosengard, Malmo's poorest immigrant-populated district. Fast forward video to marker 8:20 where Elizabeth asks Midhat the following:
Elizabeth: "Do you think that Islam limits Muslims to fully integrate themselves into a Western society like Sweden?
Midhat: "Yes. Yes, I think Muslims can integrate. Assimilation, no. Integration, yes. The problem is that Christians don't know much about Islam. Muslims know much more about Christianity and Judaism."
Elizabeth continues: "Before I left, he cautioned me about the growing gulf between young Muslims and native Swedes. Many people accuse Islam, and young Muslims have had enough. The conflict starts because young Muslims want to defend Islam. They want Swedes to know, they are not terrorists. It's ignorance about Islam that breeds conflict."
Integrate = invade = YES
Assimilate = become a Swede = NO (Swede can be replaced Euro national of choice)
Muslim immigrants demand Euro nationals assimilate to Islam via the slow jihad. Islam demands such assimilation around the globethrough interfaith meetings demanding the West tolerate a most intolerant pseudo religious doctrine.
In the video report, Madhat stated, "Swedish Christians don't know Islam."
Of course. Only Muslims has instant knowledge. To 'know' Islam is to accept the shahada and Islamic supremacy. When those refusing to submit i.e. "know" Islam on such terms, submitters perceive such rejection as an assault on Islam triggering violent jihad to defend Islam. Thanks for clearing that up Al Jiz.
As this relates to Ramadan and Eid...
Eid marks the end of Ramadan and was first celebrated in 624 after winning the Battle of Badr, a turning point in Muhammad's struggle with the unsubmitting Quraish in Mecca. When Muhammad entered Mecca, he celebrated a great festival with his companions and family members.
Eid = Celebration of ethnic cleansing. Think about that when the next submitter proposes another infidel concession. Technically, Muslims skip lunch during Ramadan.
Quote from Isabelle the Crusader, "I knew a family where the mother told me she had to get up at 4:30 AM during Ramadan so she could make the big meal for everyone so they could eat it before the sun came up. The process was repeated at dinnertime, after the sun went down. While it's not a cake walk to skip meals for twelve hours, the illusion that these folks are fasting for an entire month is just more taqiya. I would think this is more about sleep deprivation than food deprivation."