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27-Feb-12 World View: German Cabinet Minister Calls for Greece to Exit Euro Currency

This morning’s key headlines from GenerationalDynamics.com.

  • Seven U.S. soldiers killed in Afghanistan, as anti-American violence continues
  • Bombing of church in Nigeria sparks revenge killings
  • German cabinet minister calls for Greece to exit euro currency
  • Why gasoline prices are increasing
  • Egypt’s trial of American pro-democracy activists postponed

Seven U.S. soldiers killed in Afghanistan, as anti-American violence continues


Afghan president Hamid Karzai at news conference on Sunday (Reuters)
Afghan president Hamid Karzai at news conference on Sunday (Reuters)

The widespread anti-American violence triggered by the recent burning of copies of the Koran is showing no signs of abating. Seven U.S. military trainers were wounded on Sunday when a grenade was thrown at their base in northern Afghanistan. Ryan Crocker, the U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan, resisted suggestions that Americans should pullout of Afghanistan:

“Tensions are running very high here. I think we need to let things calm down, return to a more normal atmosphere, and then get on with business.

This is not the time to decide that we are done here. We have got to redouble our efforts. We’ve got to create a situation that al Qaeda is not coming back.”

Reuters

Bombing of church in Nigeria sparks revenge killings

A suicide car bomber on Sunday drove his car into the Church of Christ in Jos, a major city in central Nigeria, killing at least three people. The Islamist terrorist group Boko Haram claimed credit for the bombing. The bombing immediately triggered a violent response as Christian youths set up street blockades and attacked and killed two Muslims on motocycles.


German cabinet minister calls for Greece to exit euro currency

Germany’s interior minister Hans-Peter Friedrich has come out strongly in favor of having Greece leave the eurozone, and return to the drachma currency:

“I’m not saying that Greece should be kicked out, but rather to create incentives that it can’t say ‘no’ to. Outside European monetary union Greece’s chances of regenerating itself and become competitive are definitely bigger than if it remained inside the eurozone.”

German Chancellor Angela Merkel is opposed to Greece leaving the eurozone, so this represents a major split in her government, at a time when elections are approaching. In fact, I believe that this is the first time a political at that level anywhere in Europe has called for Greece to leave the eurozone. Telegraph

Why gasoline prices are increasing

Interview on CNN on Sunday with John Hofmeister, Former Ceo, Shell Oil, Citizens For Affordable Energy

JOHN HOFMEISTER, FORMER CEO, SHELL OIL, CITIZENS FOR AFFORDABLE ENERGY: Well, my concern is that the crude oil price could hit $120, $130 a gallon. It’s $109 today. That’s up about $10 just in the last two weeks. And it’s going to get worse, Candy, because what has changed dramatically from before, and nobody talks about it — are the actual statistics of China’s demand. Ten years ago, 4 million barrels a day. Last year, 9 million barrels a day. By 2015, 15 million barrels a day.

They have played their ace on us. What they have done, they have granted loans, $120 billion in loans, in the last three years alone, to state-owned oil companies so they get first oil. That oil is not going to come on the global trading market.

Our demand is down 6 percent year-over-year, and prices are skyrocketing. It’s going to stay that way, and it could get worse in 2014, 2015 as well. …

People should not underestimate that right behind China is India. India is going for 4 million barrels a day to 7 million barrels a day demand. That’s 10 million barrels a day, and the world seems stuck at about 88 million barrels, when we need to be getting to 96 or 98 million barrels. That’s the big problem. It’s a game of math.

And even if we’re using less and paying more or headed for gas lines, that’s not good for the economy. I worry about the future of the economy under this high price scenario. …

In the more expensive states like California, New York, and some other places, it could get beyond $5 a gallon. I don’t know if the national average would get to $5, but it could, because in addition to the crude oil price, there are three refineries closing on the East Coast.

That’s going to put the middle Atlantic states and New England in even greater jeopardy of having to bring in high cost imports from elsewhere, because these refineries are closing, because they can’t make money.”

CNN

Egypt’s trial of American pro-democracy activists postponed


Policemen sit in front of a cage holding Egyptian employees of pro-democracy groups on trial (AP)
Policemen sit in front of a cage holding Egyptian employees of pro-democracy groups on trial (AP)

A court in Egypt on Sunday opened the trial of 43 people, including 16 Americans, employees of non-profit pro-democracy groups, charged with illegal political activities and operating without licenses. The charges have angered American politicians, who have threatened to cut off America’s $1.3 billion in military aid to Egypt, especially because one of the Americans is Sam LaHood, the son of US Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. No Americans were in court on Sunday, some having left the country, and others hiding out in the American Embassy. The judge adjourned the trial until April 26.VOA

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