- China's military buildup continues 'unabated'
- Venezuela's Hugo Chavez in good condition after surgery
- France's Constitutional Council strikes down Armenian genocide law
- Terror group Jundallah claims credit for attack on Shias in Pakistan
- Jundallah-linked IMU operative calls for jihadist attacks in Germany
- Hizbollah becomes 'most hated organization in the Arab world'
- Dow Industrials cross 13,000
China's military buildup continues 'unabated'
Admiral Robert Willard, head of U.S. Pacific Command, told the Senate Armed Services Committee that China is continuing its military building buildup "unabated," and independent of anything that the U.S. does. "They continue to advance their capabilities and capacities in all areas," he said, including in the maritime, cyber and space domains. As I wrote several months ago in "New Pentagon report outlines China's military buildup," China's plans for total war with the United States appear to be coming to fruition, and an attack within 12-18 months is a reasonable expectation. China will be unveiling its 2012 military budget in the next few weeks, and this will provide a more detailed update. Reuters
Venezuela's Hugo Chavez in good condition after surgery
Venezuela's Vice President Elias Jaua announced on Tuesday that President Hugo Chávez was in good condition after undergoing a fresh round of surgery to remove a lesion that he feared might be malignant. Miami Herald
France's Constitutional Council strikes down Armenian genocide law
France's top court, the Constitutional Council, ruled Tuesday that a crazy law backed by President Nicolas Sarkozy that requires a one-year jail term for anyone who denies that Turkey committed genocide of Armenians in 1915. Passage of the law in December created a great deal of tension between France and Turkey, and between Sarkozy and Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who denounced the law as "tantamount to discrimination and racism." Turkey's deputy prime minister Bulent Arinc the court ruling "has averted a potentially serious crisis in Turkish-French ties," accusing Sarkozy of pandering to an estimated 400,000 voters of Armenian origin ahead of an April-May presidential election. The court labelled the law an "unconstitutional attack on freedom of expression" and it said it wished "not to enter into the realm of responsibility that belongs to historians." Sarkozy swiftly vowed to draft a new version of the law, taking the court's objections into account. Agence France Presse (AFP)
Terror group Jundallah claims credit for attack on Shias in Pakistan
Al-Qaeda linked terror group Jundallah ("Soldiers of God") has claimed responsiblity for an attack on a bus in northwest Pakistan, killing 18 people. The terrorists opened fire on the bus, forced the passengers to leave the bus, asked for identification, and killed those whose names indicated they were Shia. This is the latest in a recent series of attacks on Sufi and Shia Muslims by Sunni terrorist groups, particularly Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), the Pakistan Taliban. Jundallah has conducted some major terrorist attacks in Iran, including a major 2009 attack on the Revolutionary Guards. (See "Furious Iran blames Pakistan, US and Britain for Sunday's terrorist attacks".) Most of the victims in Tuesday's attack were returning from holy Shia shrines in Iran. Express Tribune (Pakistan)
Jundallah-linked IMU operative calls for jihadist attacks in Germany
Jundallah is linked to the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU), a group that seeks to achieve the glorious international status of the Yemen-based al-Qaeda on the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), which is widely regarded as the most dangerous international terrorist group today. One of the IMU's German operatives, Munir Chouka, also known as Abu Adam Al-Almani, who released a recent video:
"Abu Adam begins by introducing his audience to the main theme of his message, namely that Germany is an ally of the U.S. and an enemy state.
Abu Adam discusses at length Germany's role in and commemoration of the Holocaust. Remembering a trip he took with his workplace to several memorial sites for Jews, noting that Germany is full of such sites, he recalls being told that less than 1% of Germans actively opposed Hitler's plans to exterminate the Jews. After Hitler's regime fell, he says, most Germans were awestruck and regretted the Holocaust, and even today, tax money goes to the Jews, not to mention toward erecting the Jewish memorials scattered throughout the country. He notes German human rights laws passed after the war, which he attributes to German guilt and pangs of conscience over the Holocaust, and which he says were hypocritical, as the Germans are actually a discriminatory people. Thus, they came to regret these laws once Islam began spreading among them."
Abu Adam points out that Germany is an ally of the U.S. and an enemy state. Memri
Hizbollah becomes 'most hated organization in the Arab world'
Hizbollah General Secretary Hassan Nasrallah
The bloody extermination attacks on innocent Arab civilians by the regime of Syria's president Bashar al-Assad has already deeply affected one terror group, Hamas, and is now threatening Hizbollah and its General Secretary Hassan Nasrallah as well. Hamas, a Sunni organization, has virtually ended its close relationship with Iran, because of Iran's alliance with and support of al-Assad. But Hizbollah, a Shia organization, has retained its loyalty to al-Assad and to Iran, even though Iran's own sanctions-based financial troubles are forcing it to sharply cut its funding to Hizbollah. Hizbollah is a "two-headed" organization, one head allied with Iran, and the other head a domestic political party in Lebanon. As its alliance with Iran founders, it is also being harshly criticized by Sunni Arabs throughout the region for its support for al-Assad. Ynet
Dow Industrials cross 13,000
They're popping champagne corks again on Wall Street, as the Dow Industrials closed at 13005 for the first time since 2007. In fact, it feels exactly like the party atmosphere of 2007, as I expressed my frequent astonishment that Wall Street could be so oblivious to the huge stock market bubble that was being created. And I must admit that I'm astonished again at how they've learned no lessons from that experience, or the Nasdaq crash of 2000. As I described in "11-Feb-12 News -- Price/earnings ratio (valuations) trending toward collapse," stock valuations have been above historical averages since 1995, and by the Law of Mean Reversion, the Dow will be falling to the 3000 level or lower. This is absolutely certain. I strongly urge all readers of this to do everything possible to protect your assets.