World View: Major Terrorist Explosion in Nigeria's Capital Kills over 70

World View: Major Terrorist Explosion in Nigeria's Capital Kills over 70

This morning’s key headlines from

  • Major terrorist explosion in Nigeria’s capital kills over 70
  • European Central Bank to adopt negative interest rates
  • Standoff continues in eastern Ukraine

Major terrorist explosion in Nigeria’s capital kills over 70

Nigeria’s terrorist group Boko Haram is being blamed for a massiveexplosion at a bus station during rush hour on Monday in Abuja, thecountry’s capital city. More than 70 people were killed, and hundredsinjured.

Boko Haram has conducted to many terrorist attacks in northeasternNigeria that they’re almost being ignored (except, of course,by the people directly affected). 1500 people, mostly civilians,have been killed this year, and 135 people were killed onWednesday and Thursday of last week alone. These attacks havereceived little or no international notice, and even in Nigeriathey were considered so remote they could be ignored in Abuja,where there hadn’t been a terrorist attack in two years.

In the past, Nigeria’s government has been largely ineffective incontaining Boko Haram, and there have been suggestions that some inthe army are either complicit or supporting. Monday’s attack mayforce a change. BBC

European Central Bank to adopt negative interest rates

The Fed’s policy of quantitative easy, which has “printed” tens ofbillions of dollars of new money every month and injected it into thebanking system, is now going to be copied by the European CentralBank, according to reports. For almost two years, the euro zone hasbeen in a deflationary spiral, with the inflation rate falling, andwith Slovakia, Portugal, Greece and Cyprus already in actualdeflation.

On Saturday, European Central Bank president Mario Draghi said:

“The strengthening of the exchange rate requiresfurther monetary stimulus. That’s an important dimension for ourprice stability.”

This Delphic remark is being interpreted by experts as indicating thatthe ECB will soon begin “printing” money and pursuing a policy ofquantitative easing. Draghi may also lower interest rates, and somereports indicate that he will implement negative interest rates.Irish Times and CNBC

Standoff continues in eastern Ukraine

The government of Ukraine in Kiev allowed its own deadline to pass onMonday morning without taking any action against the pro-Russianprotesters occupying buildings in cities across eastern Ukraine.Russia continues to have tens of thousands of troops along Ukraine’sborder, and many fear that Russia will invade and annex easternUkraine, just as it annexed Crimea. However, a number of analysts arepointing out that eastern Ukraine is very different from Crimea. InCrimea, the ethnic Russian population overwhelmingly favored beingpart of Russia. But in eastern Ukraine, polls have shown that manyethnic Russians are strongly opposed to a Russian annexation, andthere’s a possibility that if the Russians invade eastern Ukraine,then they’ll be fighting not only Ukraine’s army, but also manycivilians. For that reason, Russia’s president Vladimir Putin will bevery reluctant to order an invasion, according to these analysts.However, if violence in east Ukraine continues to escalate, then Kievand Moscow may be forced to intervene militarily. CNN

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