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11/30/18

USA: California Earthquakes: Seismologists Search Depths, But Cause May Be in Heavens

Last week, two separate geologic faults generated swarms of earthquakes on the west coast of the United States. While seismologists searched the depths of the earth for clues, a Nibiru expert suggested that scientists should instead lift their eyes to the heavens to better understand the bigger picture.

The beginning of November witnessed a swarm of 39 earthquakes hitting Northern California over the course of 24 hours. The largest tremor, registering 4.1 on the Richter Scale, hit recently and was followed by 20 aftershocks. The seismic activity originated in the volatile San Andreas Fault.

The day before the San Andreas swarm of quakes hit Northern California, the Cascadia subduction zone, a fault in the tectonic plates running 700 miles from Vancouver Island in Canada down to California’s Cape Mendocino, shook, generating a 4.9 magnitude earthquake. Ten days earlier, the same region was hit by three quakes measuring 6.5, 6.6 and 6.8, w

Note EU-Digest: The Alaska quake today is another warning of what California might still be facing. As if the fires and flooding have not done enough damage to the State. As it has been written  in Revelation 14:7 And he said with a loud voice, "Fear God and give him glory, because the hour of his judgment has come, and worship him who made heaven and earth, the sea and the springs of water."
Read more: California Earthquakes: Seismologists Search Depths, But Cause May Be in Heavens

Argentina: World leaders (including murderers,dictators, and manipulators) in Argentina showboating or giving the impression of finding solutions to problems ?

NAFTA 2: Canada, Mexico, USA sign new deal

USA - Global warming: Trump leading America to a Co2 disaster

Saudi Arabia: Khashoggi killing part of Saudi Royal family feudal cutthroat rule

11/29/18

EU - British relations Brexit: Gibraltar issue could lead to a Spanish Veto

Threatening Brexit 'veto,' Spain demands written commitment
from UK on Gibraltar - agreement reached, between Spain and EU Commission

Saudi Arabia Murder G20 : Macron to meet with Crown Prince at G20 to get more information on Prince's involvement

Macron to meet Saudi crown prince despite Khashoggi uproar French President Emmanuel Macron will meet with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman on the sidelines of a G20 meeting in Argentina in 


what would be a first meeting with a Western leader since the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Read more at: 

UKRAINE: Trump cancels meeting with Putin over Ukraine Crises

Trump cancels Putin meeting over Ukraine crisis U.S. President Donald Trump on Thursday suddenly canceled a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin scheduled for this week's Group of 20 industrialized nations summit in Argentina, citing the current Ukraine crisis.

Read complete report at: 

Britain - Brexit: Extending article 50 would invalidate Brexit deal says May

EU: A new political narrative is essential

11/28/18

Britain - Brexit is a bad idea whichever way you look at it, economically speaking

Under any scenario, the UK’s exit from the European Union will leave the country worse off. Free trade deal or not. Cuts to migration or not. Trade barriers or not. Every way you look at it, Brexit will make the the economy smaller compared with remaining in the bloc. That’s the assessment of both the UK Treasury and the Bank of England in separate assessments released today.

As British prime minister Theresa May tries to get the public and her parliamentary colleagues behind her plan for Brexit, these assessments show that there is a stark and unavoidable economic cost to the UK’s divorce from its biggest trading partner.

On Sunday (Nov. 25), the UK and EU signed off on a 900-plus page withdrawal agreement and a political declaration on future ties after Brexit. May said this deal “delivers on the vote” by ending the free movement of people between the UK and EU, slashing payments to Brussels, and mostly taking the UK out from under jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice. These commitments also mean the UK will be out of the EU’s single market and customs union.

 The government is banking on the supposed political benefits of the deal outweighing the economic costs.

May’s deal is now being scrutinized before the British parliament votes on it on Dec. 11. Both the Treasury and Bank of England are keen to stress their reports are not economic forecasts, but possible scenarios based on changes to trade and migration, all else being equal, after Brexit becomes official in March next year. The results aren’t pretty.

Read more: Brexit is a bad idea whichever way you look at it, economically speaking — Quartz

Ukraine Russia Conflict: Trump refuses to condemn Russian aggression - by Nicole Gaouette

As world leaders denounced Russia's aggression against Ukraine, President Donald Trump waited more than a day before offering a muted response about the clash, leaving the task of criticizing Moscow to the outgoing US ambassador to the UN.

When asked how he felt about the clash, Trump said, "not good. Not happy about it at all." He seemed reluctant to blame Russia, adding, "we do not like what's happening either way. And hopefully it will get straightened out.

Trump spoke to reporters just days before he is expected to meet with President Vladimir Putin at a G20 meeting in Argentina.

In the 24 hours after Russian ships opened fire on and seized three Ukrainian vessels near Crimea, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, a spokesman for British Prime Minister Theresa May, the foreign ministers of Germany, the UK and Canada,

European members of the Security Council, including France, Sweden, Poland, the Netherlands and the UK, as well as several US lawmakers expressed grave concern and called for a de-escalation.

During that time, the President and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo remained silent on the serious escalation in tensions between the two countries. After Trump spoke to reporters, a day and a half after the confrontation, Pompeo released a statement expressing "deep concern," condemning Russia and calling for restraint from "both parties.

But it fell to Ambassador Nikki Haley to reprise her role as the administration's leading and toughest voice on Russia, leaving analysts concerned that the White House silence and then Trump's low-key response would be read as encouragement, if not acquiescence.

Read more: Ukraine Russia: Trump refuses to condemn Russian aggression - CNNPolitics

11/27/18

Tunisia Saudi Arabia relations: Hundreds of Tunisians demonstrate against Saudi MBS visit - putting US President Trump to shame as to his silence on MSB's involvement murder Khashoggi

Hundreds of Tunisians took to the streets of Tunis last night to protest against the state visit of Saudi Crown Prince

Photos of demonstrators on Habib Bourguiba Street were shared hundreds of times on social media, with protestors rejecting the welcome offered to the Crown Prince by the Tunisian government.

Hashtags were set up to rally support online, including “There is no welcome for Bin Salman”, and “No to the killer of Khashoggi in Tunis”. Many also condemned the Crown Prince’s role in the war of Yemen, amid news last week that some 85,000 children have died from malnutrition over the past three years.

A smaller protest was also held outside Tunis’ municipal theatre, with demonstrators putting on a short play mocking the prince and holding him responsible for the killing, and reported dismemberment of Khashoggi.

Note EU-Digest: While Tunisians demonstrate in the street against the Saudi Crown Prince visit, we look across the Atlantic to America and unfortunately don’t see a champion of freedom and human rights in the White House anymore, instead we see a preening, clueless clown's non-reaction – to the Saudi regime’s brutal killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi . 

Yes indeed lavish Trump with praise. Treat him like a king. Wave a fistful of money in front of his face. And if you want to, kill an inconvenient journalist; he’ll look the other way. 

Come on Republicans and Democrats, take off your blinders and get rid of this ever increasing danger to what little is still left of American democracy.

 Read more: Hundreds of demonstrate over MBS visit – Middle East Monitor

EU Brexit negotiations - reverse Brexit: EU High Court to give ruling on whether Britain can reverse Brexit on its own.

EU's top court to give 'quick' verdict on whether U.K. can reverse Brexit on its own.

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EU Health Report: EU residents living longer but pay-gap and mental health still cause for concern

EU Health report: we’re living longer but the pay-gap and mental health still cause for concern

Read more at: 

Space exploration NASA: Insight spacecraft lands successfully on Mars

NASA spacecraft InSight lands successfully on the Red Planet NASA's $993 million (€876m) Mars InSight lander has successfully touched down on the Red Planet to listen for quakes and study how rocky planets formed, the US space agency said Monday.


Read more at: 

EU Elections: British nationals in the Netherlands can't vote in EU elections -

British nationals living in the Netherlands will not be able to vote in next May’s European parliamentary elections, a spokesman for the European parliament’s office in The Hague has confirmed to DutchNews.nl. ‘Brits living in, for example, the Netherlands before Brexit will have their residency rights protected,’ the spokesman said. ‘However they will not have the right to vote post-Brexit in the European elections 2019. They will enjoy the same voting rights as any non-EU residents in the Netherlands.’ The next EU elections take place on May 23 and non-Dutch EU citizens living in the Netherlands are allowed either here or in their home country. The Netherlands currently has 26 seats but this will go up to 29 in May. The total number of seats in the European parliament will be cut from 751 to 701 after the election, because of Britain’s withdrawal from the EU.

Read more at DutchNews.nl:
British nationals living in the Netherlands will not be able to vote in next May’s European parliamentary elections, a spokesman for the European parliament’s office in The Hague has confirmed to DutchNews.nl.

"Brits living in, for example, the Netherlands before Brexit will have their residency rights protected,’ the spokesman said. ‘However they will not have the right to vote post-Brexit in the European elections 2019. They will enjoy the same voting rights as any non-EU residents in the Netherlands.’

The next EU elections take place on May 23 and non-Dutch EU citizens living in the Netherlands are allowed either here or in their home country. The Netherlands currently has 26 seats but this will go up to 29 in May. The total number of seats in the European parliament will be cut from 751 to 701 after the election, because of Britain’s withdrawal from the EU.

British nationals in the Netherlands can't vote in EU elections - DutchNews.nl

Ukraine: Trump Administration wants to throw the EU under the Russian bus: Trump's Ukraine Response Muted as He Punts the Problem to Europe - by Nick Wadhams

Trump wants to throw the EU under the bus of Buddy Putin
The Trump administration’s expressions of frustration with Russia over its latest conflict with Ukraine did little to mask a conviction that the flare-up in Crimea is largely Europe’s problem to solve.

After almost a day of silence from the White House and State Department, Ambassador Nikki Haley went to the United Nations Security Council on Monday to condemn Russian forces for firing on Ukrainian ships near Crimea. But she also made clear that the U.S. would refrain from further action and would instead play a supporting role to European efforts to ease tensions.

Though Ukraine warned of a potential new Russian invasion and imposed martial law in some areas of the country for 30 days, Haley’s muted response reflected President Donald Trump’s inclination to distance himself from a conflict that he’s long blamed on predecessor Barack Obama. Trump says Obama failed to stop Russia from annexing Ukraine’s Crimea region in 2015.

Obama “allowed a very large part of Ukraine to be taken,” Trump said at a news conference this month. As a presidential candidate, Trump tweeted in 2016: “Russia took Crimea during the so-called Obama years. Who wouldn’t know this and why does Obama get a free pass?”

That the U.S. was so slow to condemn the incident suggested that the administration was wrestling with how to best to navigate the president’s ambivalence.

Note EU-Digest: This once again shows very clearly that the EU must stop pussyfooting with the US, specially now it is very clear that Donald Trump wants to throw the EU under the Russian bus of his buddy Vladimir Putin. 

Priority number one for the EU is to set a unified and independent course, when it concerns, international relations, trade and military preparedness. 

 European Council President Donald Tusk on Monday condemned Russia's seizure of Ukrainian navy vessels in the Kerch Strait.

"I condemn Russian use of force in the Azov Sea. Russian authorities must return Ukrainian sailors, vessels and refrain from further provocations," Tusk said after a phone call with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko.
   
Read more: Trump's Ukraine Response Muted as He Punts the Problem to Europe - Bloomberg

World War III ? Russia vs Ukraine War? Ukrainian President Says Neighbor Is Preparing Ground Attack - by Cristina Maza

During a televised speech on Monday in which he outlined his case for imposing martial law, Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko claimed that his country’s intelligence service had evidence that Russia was preparing a ground attack.

Poroshenko's speech was given after Russia blocked three Ukrainian navy vessels from passing from the Black Sea into the Sea of Azov via the Kerch Strait on Sunday. The incident was a major escalation of the tensions that have existed between the two countries ever since Russia annexed the Crimean Peninsula from Ukraine and began backing armed separatists in the country in 2014. Poroshenko is close to imposing martial law in Ukraine, which would allow the military to run the country, saying it was necessary for Ukraine’s security.

Many experts said Russia’s attack on Ukrainian naval ships on Sunday was a game changer.

“The big story here is that Russia’s armed forces, in broad daylight, launched an attack on Ukrainian navy ships. This crosses a new line. Moscow, of course, seized Crimea with its military, but under the guise of unidentified ‘little green men.’

 Moscow has been conducting a not-quite-covert war in Donbass. Yes, there are thousands of Russian officers there and they control the fighting, but Moscow denies it. In this case, there is no denial,” John Herbst, U.S. ambassador to Ukraine from 2003 to 2006, told Newsweek.

Note EU-Digest :  For those of us remembering our history classes, this is starting to resemble very much how the second world war started, when on October 1, 1938, Adolf Hitler's army marched into the Sudetenland in Czechoslovakia.

This accelerating Nazi Germany's aggressive World War II offensive. 

At that time Europe also was divided, as it is now over Brexit, and to make natters even worse, the US, which used to be the West's major defender of Democracy, has now taken an isolationism turn under the leadership of a not too bright, ego-maniac President, who is in charge of a dysfunctional government, and a population, divided in two polarized camps. 

Putin looking at this picture is probably thinking in the same way as Hitler thought back in 1939. "this is a window of opportunity and it appears there is no need to pull down the shades." Bottom-line, we in the West, and specially the EU,  could become involved in a major war pretty soon, if we don't get our act together.

Read more: Russia vs. Ukraine War? Ukrainian President Says Neighbor Is Preparing Ground Attack

11/26/18

Auto Industry: GM slashing 14,700 jobs in North America, putting five plants up for possible closure

General Motors will lay off 14,700 factory and white-collar workers in North America and put five plants up for possible closure as it restructures to cut costs and focus more on autonomous and electric vehicles.
The reduction includes 8,100 white-collar workers, some of whom will take buyouts and others who will be laid off. Most of the affected factories build cars that won’t be sold in the US after next year.

11/25/18

European Defense Force: European army may march on immediate and future threats - by Carl Bildt

After French president Emmanuel Macron recently proposed the idea, US president Donald Trump disparaged it (in a tweet, of course), but German chancellor Angela Merkel endorsed it (while urging caution).

The issue came to the fore this month with the centennial of the end of the First World War, which naturally focused Europeans’ attention on matters of war and peace. While touring the war battlefields, Macron observed that “peace in Europe is precarious”, and that “we will not protect Europeans unless we decide to have a true European army”.

The goal of establishing a European army dates back to the earliest stages of European integration after the Second World War.

In 1954, the French parliament refused to ratify a treaty that would have established a European Defence Community and joint military force comprising West Germany, France, Italy, Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg.

Although the US has expanded its military capabilities in Europe in recent years, it has previously regarded the continent primarily as a platform for operations in other theaters. And now that Trump has cast doubt on America’s commitment to defend Europe, renewed proposals for a European army should come as no surprise.

Read more: European army may march on immediate and future threats | Irish Examiner

Saudi Arabia: Republican senators break with the president over his embrace of Saudi Arabia's (Murdererous) Regime


Several U.S. Republican senators on Sunday rejected President Donald Trump‘s embrace of Saudi Arabia after the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, with some lawmakers from his party saying Congress must take additional action.

Trump vowed last week to remain a “steadfast partner” of Saudi Arabia and said it was not clear whether Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman knew about the plan to kill Khashoggi last month at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.

Read more: Republican senators break with the president over his embrace of Saudi Arabia - National | Globalnews.ca

EU Defence Force: Germany may increase troop numbers to 203,000 by 2025

The defense ministry is set to approve a plan to create 5,000 more Bundeswehr jobs than initially foreseen, according to a newspaper report. Whether officials can convince young Germans to sign up is another matter.

Germany's military is planning to increase the number of active soldiers to 203,000 by 2025 — some 5,000 more than originally planned, the Bild am Sonntag newspaper has reported.

The plan by German Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen foresees creating a total of 20,000 active duty and reservist jobs to bolster Germany's cyber defense capabilities and meet the country's NATO and European commitments.

Read more: Germany may increase troop numbers to 203,000 by 2025 | News | DW | 26.11.2018

Brexit: UK, EU leaders finalise divorce at Brexit summit in Brussels -

European Union leaders on Sunday approved a historic Brexit deal, handing the baton to British Prime Minister Theresa May who must now convince her sceptical party and country to support it.

Read more: UK, EU leaders finalise divorce at Brexit summit in Brussels - France 24

USA: Recent Pew Survey shows it is getting harder for Latinos to live in America

Pew survey: It’s getting harder to be Latino in America

Read more at:
http://flip.it/7EF4D6

11/24/18

Sweden: Cash Versus Plastic Cards": Sweden’s Push to Get Rid of Cash Has Some Saying, ‘Not So Fast’ - by Liz Alderman

Few countries have been moving toward a cashless society as fast as Sweden. But cash is being squeezed out so quickly — with half the nation’s retailers predicting they will stop accepting bills before 2025 — that the government is recalculating the societal costs of a cash-free future.

The financial authorities, who once embraced the trend, are asking banks to keep peddling notes and coins until the government can figure out what going cash-free means for young and old consumers. The central bank, which predicts cash may fade from Sweden, is testing a digital currency — an e-krona — to keep firm control of the money supply. Lawmakers are exploring the fate of online payments and bank accounts if an electrical grid fails or servers are thwarted by power failures, hackers or even war.

“When you are where we are, it would be wrong to sit back with our arms crossed, doing nothing, and then just take note of the fact that cash has disappeared,” said Stefan Ingves, the governor of Sweden’s central bank, known as the Riksbank. “You can’t turn back time, but you do have to find a way to deal with change.”

Ask most people in Sweden how often they pay with cash, and the answer is “almost never.” A fifth of Swedes, in a country of 10 million people, do not use automated teller machines anymore. More than 4,000 Swedes have implanted microchips in their hands, allowing them to pay for rail travel and food, or enter keyless offices, with a wave. Restaurants, buses, parking lots and even pay toilets depend on clicks rather than cash.

Read more at: Sweden’s Push to Get Rid of Cash Has Some Saying, ‘Not So Fast’ - The New York Times

Oil Production: Oil plunges to lowest in a year despite potential OPEC cut

 Oil prices slumped more than 6 percent to the lowest in more than a year on Friday amid fears of a supply glut even as major producers consider cutting output.

Oil supply, led by US producers, is growing faster than demand and to prevent a build-up of unused fuel such as the one that emerged in 2015, the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries is expected to start trimming output after a meeting on December 6.

But this has done little so far to prop up prices, which have dropped more than 20 percent so far in November, in a seven-week streak of losses. Prices were on course for their biggest one-month decline since late 2014.

A trade war between the world’s two biggest economies and oil consumers, the United States and China, have weighed upon the market.

“The market is pricing in an economic slowdown - they are anticipating that the Chinese trade talks are not going to go well,” said Phil Flynn, an analyst at Price Futures Group in Chicago, referring to expected talks next week between US President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping at the G20 summit in Buenos Aires.

“The market doesn’t believe that OPEC is going to be able to act swiftly enough to offset the coming slowdown in demand,” Flynn said.

Brent crude fell $3.13, or 5 percent, to $59.47 a barrel by 1:01 p.m. EST (1801 GMT), after earlier touching $58.41, its lowest since October 2017.

If OPEC decides to cut production at its meeting next month, oil prices could recover, analysts say.

“We expect that OPEC will manage the market in 2019 and assess the probability of an agreement to reduce production at around 2-in-3. In that scenario, Brent prices likely recover back into the $70s,” Morgan Stanley commodities strategists Martijn Rats and Amy Sergeant wrote in a note to clients.

If OPEC does not trim production, prices could head much lower, potentially depreciating toward $50 a barrel, argues Lukman Otunuga, Research Analyst at FXTM.

Read more: Oil plunges to lowest in a year despite potential OPEC cut - Al Arabiya English

Global Warming: Report shows climate change will adversely affect US way of life general and the Economy

Climate change: Report warns of growing impact on US life -

Spain: Gibraltar deal clears the way for Sunday EU Brexit summit

Gibraltar deal clears way for Sunday Brexit summit

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via the CBC News Android App

11/23/18

Britain - Brexit: No new better deal if Britain rejects draft agreement

Brexit: May says EU will not offer 'better deal' if agreement rejected -

EU MIGRANTS CRISES : New EU policies increase dangers for migrants

Migrant deaths spike as new European policies push people towards more dangerous sea routes

Read more at: 


Shared via the CBC News Android App

The Netherlands: Climate change helping to sink parts of the Netherlands quicker than expected, say experts - by Chris Harris

Climate change is playing a major role in the Netherlands sinking more than expected, say researchers.

A team from Delft University of Technology made the conclusion after publishing the first nationwide figures on subsidence.

They used GPS and radar data as well as gravity measurements to produce a special subsidence map.

It shows the western city of Gouda, for instance, is sinking by three millimetres per year, on average.

Ramón Hanssen, a professor of geodesy and earth observation at the university, told Spanish newspaper El Pais: “We have been pumping water for 400 years to cultivate and raise animals on dry land, and the ground has been falling below sea level.

"We already knew this, but with this new map we see clearly that in the west of the country, with clay soils and peat, the latter disappears once exposed due to the periodic suction of water, it oxidises when it comes into contact with the air and contributes to CO2 emissions.

"If the subsidence continues at its current pace, it could mean the end for the typical Dutch landscape of meadows, cows and windmills or cause huge damage to historic city centres."

Read more:Climate change helping to sink parts of the Netherlands quicker than expected, say experts | Euronews

11/22/18

EU The Academic view: A vision for Europe is desperately needed – by Maria Graczyk

 Liberals are better at pointing out others’ faults than at doing self-reflection. They spend more time explaining away the popularity of populism than explaining the fall of liberalism, says Jan Zielonka, adding that the EU has become a caricature of a neo-liberal project and needs a new vision.

For now, we are treading water. We are faking reforms, re-heating old ideas we did not accomplish at a time when there was a better economic situation. Real changes will therefore probably have to be forced by external shocks and therefore will be chaotic and painful.

Nevertheless, nothing happens, politicians dig into the wells. And they return to their discredited policy in previous years. Example? Refugees. For many years we have dealt with warlords and we know how it ended. Today, we are returning to the same model. We have become hostages of Erdogan’s policy with his refugee camps. First of all, I would not like to be hostage to his policy, and secondly – it is a denial of all the values on which liberal Europe was built.

It takes two to tango. Not only is Erdogan responsible for what is happening in Brussels-Ankara relations. When he came to power, he was very pro-European. Nevertheless, none of his efforts to get closer to Europe were successful. He was always told “tomorrow, tomorrow, tomorrow.” In this way, we have deprived ourselves of credibility and instruments of influence on Turkey.

Most EU countries were reluctant towards this enlargement. Just as the Turks were stuck in the EU’s waiting room for years.

Turkey must either be accepted or it needs to be said openly that “we do not accept, but we want to expand our relations in specific areas”. Instead, Turkey has been a candidate for years while we have set its terms.

 It was unbelievable. We left our cosmopolitan, pro-European friends in Turkey on the ice. It was similar with Ukraine. I’m not saying that all these problems were solvable, but I know that if we had followed what we declared, it would have not been as bad as it is. We did everything to destroy these good relations.

Read more: Academic: A vision for Europe is desperately needed – EURACTIV.com

USA the Rise and Fall of Donald Trump

The noose around Trump's neck is getting tighter.....

Sweden - Furniture Industry: Ikea to slash 7,500 jobs, focus on smaller stores in city centers - by James Rufus Koren

Furniture giant Ikea plans to cut 7,500 jobs worldwide as part of a plan to cater more to online customers, the company said Wednesday.

The shakeup at the Swedish firm, first reported by the Wall Street Journal, shows that even Ikea - known for its massive suburban stores and affordable assemble-yourself furniture - is not immune to the online competition that has affected other brick-and-mortar retailers.

Most of the job cuts will not hit Ikea's retail workers, but rather those in office positions including human resources and communications, the Journal said.

Read more: Ikea to slash 7,500 jobs, focus on smaller stores in city centers

11/20/18

Saudi Arabia: Britain, EU collaborating for sanctions against Saudi Arabia - by Ahmet Gurhan Kartal

Britain on Tuesday said they are looking into ways to introduce global sanctions against Saudi Arabia in the wake of the brutal killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

“The U.K. has been clear that we need to see accountability for the horrific murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi,” a Foreign Office spokesperson said. 

“The actions Britain and our allies take will depend on two things: firstly the credibility of the final explanation given by Saudi Arabia, and secondly on our confidence that such an appalling episode cannot -- and will not -- be repeated,” the spokesperson added in a statement.

The U.K. is “exploring with EU partners the potential for an EU global human rights sanctions regime, which could address such brutal human rights violations".

Read more: Saudi Arabia: Britain, EU collaborating for sanctions against Saudi Arabia

Middle East: Saudi Arabia paid US$ 100 million on day Pompeo visited the country

BREXIT: Gibraltar does not belong to Britain says Spain

Spain threatens to vote ‘no’ on Brexit deal over peninsula

Read more at::
https://www.euronews.com/2018/11/20/gibraltar-doesn-t-belong-to-the-uk-spain-threatens-to-vote-no-on-brexit-deal-over-peninsu

USA: Trump becomes an accomplish in Khashoggi murder by saying "no new Saudi punishment for Khashoggi murder to guarantee weapons sales"

President Donald Trump said Tuesday the U.S. will not punish Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman at this time nor cut arms sales to Saudi Arabia for the killing of U.S.-based columnist Jamal Khashoggi.

Trump called the killing of Khashoggi inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul a "horrible crime" that the U.S. does not condone, but said Saudi Arabia is a "great ally" and canceling billions in arms sales would only benefit China and Russia, which would be glad to step in and make the sales.

Trump's decision, announced in a statement released just before he left for the long Thanksgiving weekend in Florida, will disappoint and anger critics who have called for a much firmer rebuke to the kingdom and especially bin Salman.

Note EU-Digest: This is unacceptable by any human rights respecting Government, specially that of the United states. Shame on you Donald Trump. 

Read more: Trump says no new Saudi punishment for Khashoggi murder

To My Facebook Friends - "Changing for the better"

In trying to avoid spending too much time on Facebook's ever increasing trivialities, I have decided to only focus on major "personal events", mainly concerning family and friends on Facebook.

I will also discontinue some of my own contributions on Facebook of a more economic, social and political nature. May I suggest, however, that if you are still interested to read these observations, to check out our electronic publications (Blogs), which focus on readers in the EU, USA and Turkey.

These publications have been around for over 10 years,. Together they attract more than one million viewers yearly - Check them out:  EU-Digest,  Almere-Digest, Insure-Digest and Turkish-Digest  

My Facebook friends also get 30% off our regular advertising fees, if they place an advertisement in any of our electronic publications, either for themselves, or for their own friends and clients. 

Need more information about our advertising opportunities? Contact : freeplanet@protonmail.com  - Attention: JFM  Advertising-Digest Network

The Netherlands: Record immigration and emigration in 2017

In 2017, 235 thousand immigrants arrived in the Netherlands whilst 154 thousand emigrants left the country.

The two flows have never been larger since official migration statistics became available in 1865. Net migration has also reached a record level at 81 thousand.

The high net migration rate can be explained by increased immigration from other EU member states as well as by asylum seekers and following family members. This is evident from the definitive migration figures over 2017 which have been released by Statistics Netherlands (CBS). 

Read more: Record immigration and emigration in 2017

11/19/18

USA - Gun violence - when will it stop ? Hopefully the new Congress will act

Today a Chicago police officer and three other people were killed in an attack at a South Side hospital Monday afternoon that sent medical personnel and police scrambling through stairwells and even the nursery in search of victims and the shooter before he was found dead.

Also today, one person was killed and three others were wounded in a shooting on downtown Denver streets, authorities said.

Compared to 22 other high-income nations, the U.S. gun-related murder rate is 25 times higher. Although it has half the population of the other 22 nations combined, the U.S. had 82 percent of all gun deaths, 90 percent of all women killed with guns, 91 percent of children under 14 and 92 percent of young people between ages 15 and 24 killed with guns.

Looking at this list of people killed by gun violence in the US only during the year 2018 will be sending chills up your spine.  

The BBC did a most comprehensive report about the American gun culture, which shows that fortunately among the 18-29 years old generation, there is a declining interest in gun ownership.

When will this gun violence stop ? All eyes are now on the new Democratically controlled Congress to take some action. Lets hope so.

EU-Digest

EU: Migration Into Europe: A Long-Term Solution? - by Branko Milanovic

Why has migration become such a big problem? Many reasons can be adduced: the war in Syria, the integration of Eastern Europe, lack of new jobs in many Western countries following the Global Financial Crisis etc. But listing individual reasons is insufficient to understand it and think what to do about it.

The origin of the problem, in most general terms, is twofold: (1) globalization that has made the knowledge of differences in income between countries much better known and has reduced the cost of transportation, and (2) large gaps in real incomes between the European Union (especially its more prosperous North) and the Middle East and Africa.

The first point is well known. Many studies show that the more people know about the rest of the world (especially if that rest of the world is richer than their country) the more they compare their own standard of living with that of presumed peers in the richer countries, and the more likely they are to do something about it: namely, to migrate.

The second point has to do with the fact that the gap in GDP per capita between the original EU-15 and sub-Saharan Africa has risen from seven to one in 1980 to 11 to one today. (This is the gap obtained after factoring in the lower price level in Africa; without it, the gap would be even greater.)

At the same time as real incomes have become so unbalanced, population growth rates have become even more so. In 1980, the EU-15 had more people than sub-Saharan Africa; today, sub-Saharan Africa has twice-and-a-half as many people.

Within the next two generations, sub-Saharan Africa should reach 2.5 billion people, five times more than Western Europe. It is totally unrealistic to think that such large income gaps (in one direction) and population gaps (in the other) can persist without generating a very strong migration pressure.

Thus, Europe faces a long-term issue and the following dilemma. As we just saw, if there is globalization and countries involved in globalization have highly uneven incomes, there must be migration. You can stop migration only if you give up on globalization by closing off national borders, or help emitting countries get as rich as Western Europe. The latter would obviously take, under the best of circumstances, at least a century. So, it is not a feasible solution. What then remains is to shut down globalization, at least when it comes to the movement of people.

Read more: Migration Into Europe: A Long-Term Solution? • Social Europe

Global Automobile Industry: Carlos Gosn chairman - Nisan, Renault, Mitsubishi arrested on fraud charges

Nissan boss Carlos Ghosn arrested over 'misconduct' -

11/18/18

Weapons Industry: How Did ISIS Get Its Weapons? Europe Wants to Limit U.S. and Saudi Arabia Arms Sales Because Guns Went to Militant Group - by Tom O'Connor

GettyImages-991476808The European Union's top legislative body has issued a call to control arms exports in order to avoid perpetuating human rights abuses and allowing weapons to fall into the wrong hands.

The European Parliament warned that "member states have systematically failed to apply" EU rules when selling arms abroad, and called for "a mechanism to enforce sanctions on EU members that break the rules," according to a press release issued Wednesday. The document cited specific examples of taking measures to cut weapons exports to Saudi Arabia and the United States in order to ensure they were not acquired by banned organizations such as the Islamic State militant group, commonly known as ISIS or Daesh.

The document quoted parliamentarians as saying they were "shocked at the amount of EU-made weapons and ammunition found in the hands of Da’esh, in Syria and Iraq." The lawmakers highlighted EU protocols designed to prevent arms intended for a legitimate customer from then being transferred to a restricted one, but called out Bulgaria and Romania specifically for not adhering to them.

Due to the risks associated with such sales, the lawmakers said member states should "refuse similar transfer in the future, notably to the US and Saudi Arabia."

Note EU-Digest: Almost half of the total  US Weapons Industry sales end up in the Middle East 


Read more: How Did ISIS Get Its Weapons? Europe Wants to Limit U.S. and Saudi Arabia Arms Sales Because Guns Went to Militant Group

Middle East: Israel: Top 12 reasons Netanyahu will lose the upcoming early elections - by Chemi Shalev

The headline above is pure click-bait. In today’s Israel, forecasting the end of Netanyahu’s political career is so outlandish, it attracts attention. After all, we’ve been there and done that: Convinced ourselves that the signs point to a Netanyahu loss only to find out that the Israeli public didn’t see them and voted him into office. The collective memory holds that Netanyahu is perennially written off up until the polls close, at which time it turns out that news of his political demise was premature.

History, on the other hand, has a different version of events. No one can take from Netanyahu either his phenomenal rise from UN ambassador in 1988 to prime minister in 1996 or his lock-hold on power and trifecta of electoral victories since 2009. But Netanyahu is far from invincible: He lost badly to Ehud Barak in 1999, was trounced by Ariel Sharon in the Likud primaries in 2002 and was drubbed by Ehud Olmert and Kadima in the 2006 elections, in which his Likud mustered a measly 12 seats in the Knesset. So it can be done.

Now that we’ve established that a Netanyahu defeat is not a physical impossibility, we can approach the task at hand. His “Call me Mr. Security” address to the nation on Sunday night showed that despite his best efforts, Netanyahu realizes that his efforts to save his right wing coalition have failed. Elections are likely to be held within six months, probably at the end of March. 

Prudence and experience caution us to steer clear of firm assertions, so let’s just say that in the unlikely chance Netanyahu does fall in the elections, these will be the 12 cardinal reasons:

Read more at: Top 12 reasons Netanyahu will lose the upcoming early elections - Israel News - Haaretz.com

Middle East: Saudi Arabia and U.S. on collision course as Mohammed bin Salman's standing ebbs

Trump has pledged that he won’t whitewash the murder and that the United States will do what’s necessary regarding whoever was involved, though he hasn’t mentioned Prince Mohammed’s name. The time to cash the check has come earlier than Trump expected. 

Saudi Arabia tried last week to lighten the load for the president by announcing the arrests of 21 suspects and the indictment of 15, while the attorney general said he would demand the death penalty for five, though he didn’t provide any names. 

Earlier King Salman fired Ahmed al-Asiri, the deputy intelligence chief, and Saud al-Qahtani, Mohammed’s senior adviser. In so doing the king set a ceiling on how high the punishment could go. But now it seems there will be no choice but to examine his own son’s future. 

According to The Washington Post, Prince Mohammed’s brother Khalid, the Saudi ambassador to Washington, was the one who phoned Khashoggi and encouraged him to go to the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul. The prince’s adviser and aide, intelligence man Maher Abdulaziz Mutrib, allegedly led the ring and after the murder phoned Qahtani and asked him to tell the boss that it was mission accomplished. 

Mutrib didn’t explicitly say the boss’ name but Qahtani has only one boss and that’s Prince Mohammed. The Saudi ambassador has strongly denied having any telephone conversation with Khashoggi, and a Post reporter has written that their last meeting came in 2017; afterward they corresponded several times. The top Saudi prosecutor said Thursday that Khashoggi was murdered by a “lethal injection” and that his body was dismembered, with his organs handed to someone outside the consulate for disposal.

Read moire: Saudi Arabia and U.S. on collision course as Mohammed bin Salman's standing ebbs - Middle East News - Haaretz.com

Singapore - ASEAN Meeting: The Trump Administration: What effect does the Trump circus have on the world? - by Fareed Zakaria

 Attended by all of the major Asian countries, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and East Asia summits in Singapore and the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) conference in Papua New Guinea are particularly important, because countries in the region are trying to navigate the once-in-a-lifetime power shift taking place: the rise of China. For this, it is crucial that they understand the role of the world’s current superpower, the United States.

But the president of the United States is MIA. Donald Trump chose to skip the summits and send Vice President Pence in his place. Yet China’s Xi Jinping, Russia’s Vladimir Putin and India’s Narendra Modi are all visiting either Singapore or Papua New Guinea, while Japan’s Shinzo Abe and South Korea’s Moon Jae-in are traveling to both. Really, everyone except President Trump is going.

A persistent complaint from Asian countries has been that while the United States worries about the rise of China — as Pence did in his speech at the ASEAN summit — it is abandoning the field to Beijing. It does not take the time to attend meetings, shape the agenda, shore up its alliances or deepen its ties in the region. Trump’s continued lack of interest will only feed this fear.

Read more:What effect does the Trump circus have on the world?

European Soccer: Dutch soccer team is red hot again

Via Euronews: Dutch revival downs French as Germany drop down in the Nations League

11/16/18

Saudi Arabia: CIA believes Saudi Prince ordered Khashoggi killing

CIA thinks Saudi Prince ordered Khashoggi killing: 

Note EU-Digest: This certainly complicates the Trump administration’s efforts to preserve its relationship with a close ally. Hopefully no more business as usual between, Saudi Arabia, the USA, Israel, and the EU

"The Anglophile Drama": How the U.S. and U.K. are partners in chaos - by Ben White and Aubree Eliza Weaver


This happens when idiots like Farage and Trump call the shots
A little thought bubble as we head into the weekend and the short Thanksgiving week. Morning -Money" spent some time over the last several days in Washington and New York with a variety of executives who are sifting through the 2018 midterm election results and trying to make some sense of the path of U.S. politics.

Many are trying to figure out where America is headed with a growing schism between a metro-area dominated, more highly educated electorate trending toward the Democrats and smaller town and rural voters sticking with President Donald Trump and the GOP and embracing the president’s hardline trade and immigration policies and his culture war appeals.

Consensus among these executives (and frankly among anyone else) is that American politics is a directionless wreck with no path forward on anything from health care to education to retirement savings to climate change and gun violence and long-term fiscal deficits. One British banker mused about how he’s never seen the U.S. so screwed up or derelict on the world stage.

Then he stopped himself almost immediately to say how the U.K. really wasn’t any better with no consensus on how to deal with Brexit, a potential end to Prime Minister Theresa May’s tenure, a civil war inside the Conservative party and a plunging pound. It remains largely unclear in the U.K. whether May’s softer Brexit plan will somehow survive or no deal will emerge leading to a hard Brexit or a new referendum will take place to reverse Brexit entirely.

Tensions in the U.S. and U.K. are different in many ways but they share commonalities of fractured politics and deep divisions on fundamental identities as either insular and nationalistic or more globally integrated and diverse. We got no revelatory insight in these conversations beyond a morbid sense that only grave and immediate crisis that cannot be ignored will jolt either nation into clarity. And maybe not even then.

Happy thoughts for your Friday! 

Read more: How the U.S. and U.K. are partners in chaos - POLITICO

USA - First Amendment: Washington, D.C. Judge has ordered the White House to immediately restore CNN reporter Jim Acosta’s press credentials

A victory for Freedom of Speech

A judge in Washington, D.C. has ordered the White House to immediately restore CNN reporter Jim Acosta’s press credentials.

US District Court Judge Timothy Kelly, an appointee of President Donald Trump, announced the decision Friday.
The White House revoked Acosta’s credentials after he and Trump tangled during a press conference last week.

First Amendment of the US Constituation - Religion and Expression. Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances. 

 

EU-Digest

11/15/18

Brazil-EU Relations: As Brazil moves right, what is left for Europe in Latin America? – by Gustavo Müller

The election of Jair Bolsonaro as Brazilian president continues the regional trend in Latin America that has seen the rise of a variety of right-wing governments. As the world’s 4th largest democracy turns to the extreme right, the European Union will be forced to review its foreign policy towards Latin America.

Notably, it will have to adapt to the weakening of the region’s cooperative projects and organisations. If the polarising discourse of Bolsonaro and its campaign team shapes Brazilian foreign and domestic policies over the next four years, the EU should expect a growing gap regarding interests and values between both regions.

The EU’s multi-layered foreign policy towards Latin America has been laid out in its 2016 Global Strategy which emphasises region-to-region relations with the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) – a consensus-based intergovernmental organisation of 33 sovereign members – as its counterpart.

The Global Strategy also mentions an approach that builds on “competitive advantages” of various regional groupings, including the current negotiations of the EU-Mercosur free trade agreement, as well as an open relationship with Cuba and support for the implementation of the peace agreement in Colombia.

Read more: As Brazil moves right, what is left for Europe in Latin America? – EURACTIV.com

Brazil and the environment: Why Brazil’s New President Poses (the Troppical Trump) an Unprecedented Threat to the Amazon "and the world" - by Philip Fearnside

For people concerned about the environment and climate change, U.S. President Donald Trump has proven to be as bad, or worse, than feared. He is in the process of pulling the United States out of the Paris Agreement, continues to flatly dismiss the science of human-caused global warming, and has worked ceaselessly to undo environmental regulations and weaken environmental agencies.

or people concerned about the environment and climate change, U.S. President Donald Trump has proven to be as bad, or worse, than feared. He is in the process of pulling the United States out of the Paris Agreement, continues to flatly dismiss the science of human-caused global warming, and has worked ceaselessly to undo environmental regulations and weaken environmental agencies.

Not for nothing is Bolsonaro known as the “tropical Trump.” The parallels are many, including their embrace of the far right and their inflammatory rhetoric. And among their similarities is the way that a constant barrage of outrageous comments diverts discussion from the environmental damage that their policies portend.

A 63-year-old retired army captain who had served as an undistinguished member of the lower house of Brazil’s National Congress, Bolsonaro won the October 28 presidential runoff. Marshaling an unprecedented social media effort, Bolsonaro’s campaign reflected his nationalist, authoritarian, racist, misogynistic, anti-press views. The vote represented a widespread rejection of the Workers’ Party, which had ruled Brazil for 13 years and was characterized by massive corruption scandals and an economic collapse. Brazil’s high crime rate made personal security a paramount issue, and Bolsonaro’s tough image appealed to many voters.

With Bolsonaro’s ascension, Brazil — home to the largest rainforest in the world — is facing an “Apocalypse Now” moment for the Amazon. When he takes office on January 1, Bolsonaro — with deep support in Brazil’s Congress, military, and agribusiness sector — has vowed sweeping changes. These include an effective end to environmental licensing for infrastructure projects, which would open up vast areas of the already beleaguered Amazon to development, and a ban on creating new protected areas or indigenous territories. If these scenarios play out, the deforestation rate in the Amazon — already on the rise in recent years — could nearly triple, according to a recent study. This environmental disaster would unfold at a time when climate change and diminishing rainfall already pose a serious threat to the Amazon, whose vast stores of carbon could be released to the atmosphere. 

Read more: Why Brazil’s New President Poses an Unprecedented Threat to the Amazon - Yale E360

Canada registers sixfold increase in US citizens seeking asylum in 2017 - by Martin Patriquin

Tiroude and Gislyne are Haitians by birth and migrants by necessity.

The couple’s 18-month-old daughter, however, was born in Fort Lauderdale, and – as an American by birth – she is part of a growing number of US citizens seeking refuge in Canada.

In 2017, some 2,550 US citizens applied for asylum in Canada – an increase of more than sixfold from 2016 and the largest such number since at least 1994, according to data from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada.

Americans were the third largest contingent of asylum seekers in 2017, after Haitians and Nigerians. The vast majority are children born to Haitian parents, according to experts.

“Most of the Americans applying for refugee status are the children of non-residents,” says Stéphane Handfield, a Montreal-based immigration lawyer. “They are US citizens because they were born there, but they come across the border with their parents because they don’t want to be separated.”

US President Trump has repeatedly said he wants to find a way to end birthright citizenship, although legal scholars say this is impossible.

Read more at: Canada registers sixfold increase in US citizens seeking asylum in 2017 | World news | The Guardian

US-Saudi Relations: U.S. sanctions 17 for role in hideous murder of Saudi journalist Khashoggi - a US smokescreen to protect business interests with Saudis?

Khashoggi murder:  Business as usual between US and Saudi Arabia
The U.S. Treasury will announce today 11/15/2018 sanctions on 17 Saudis for their role in the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, according to a source familiar with the administration's plans.

Those to be sanctioned include Saud al-Qahtani, a former top aide to Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, as well as the Saudi Consul General Mohammed Alotaibi, the source said.

The sanctions will be implemented under the Global Magnitsky Act, which imposes sanctions over human rights abuses, the source said.

Among others facing sanctions are Maher Mutreb, an aide to Qahtani who has appeared in photographs with Prince Mohammed on official visits this year to the United States and Europe.

Note EU-Digest: The US sanctions announced by the Trump Administration are an indication the US Administration "has accepted the confusing explanations and statements" about the hideous murder of Saudi journalist Khashoggi by the Saudi Government in the Saudi Istanbul consulate", and as such concludes, "case closed and business as usual",  between the US and Saudi Arabia . 

U.S. sanctions 17 for role in killing of Saudi journalist Khashoggi

The Netherlands recall embassy staff from Pakistan over threats says FM

The Netherlands said Monday it has pulled several embassy staff members from Pakistan over persistent threats from religious groups angry over tweets by the far-right politician Geert Wilders.

Although the Dutch embassy in Islamabad remains open and visa requests are still being handled, “a whole number of people” have returned to the Netherlands, Foreign Minister Stef Blok said.

“Unfortunately Dutch citizens are being threatened, Dutch diplomats,” Blok told a news programme on the NPO public broadcaster’s Radio 1 channel.

“That is serious enough already” for the step to be taken, said Blok, adding that he had spoken with his Pakistani counterpart Shah Mehmood Qureshi about the issue.

Blok did not specify how many embassy staff were affected by the move.

Last week, the Pakistani lawyer, who represented Aasia Bibi, a woman acquitted of blasphemy from death row, fled to the Netherlands.

The Dutch gave Saif-ul-Malook a temporary stay after he fled Islamabad when violence erupted following the Pakistani Supreme Court’s historic decision to acquit her.

Thousands of protesters poured on to the streets in protest, calling for her death after Supreme Court judges overturned the conviction.

Read more: The Netherlands recall embassy staff from Pakistan over thre

11/14/18

Middle East - Palestine: Israeli Defence Minister Lieberman quits over ceasefire with Palestine

Israeli defence minister quits over ceasefire, splitting ruling coalition

Turkey: German Kurdish singer sentenced to 6 years

Turkish court sentences German-Kurdish singer to six years in prison

 Read more at:
https://p.dw.com/p/38FnM

The Netherlands: Dutch hit back at "over - tourism"

Not Disneyland': Dutch hit back at 'over-tourism' -

USA: Trump Press secretary becomes the Liar in Chief

Brexit: Britain's messy EU divorce faces new showdown - by Kim Hjelmgaard

 British Prime Minister Theresa May will try to win the support of her divided Cabinet on Wednesday for a draft deal to leave the European Union after months of stalled talks, bickering and setbacks that have threatened the messy divorce known as Brexit and May's leadership.

Britain is due to leave the bloc in March. On Tuesday, it broke a four-month-long logjam with EU negotiators over the terms of its withdrawal, including a plan to keep the border between the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland open after Brexit.

But pro-Brexit lawmakers in May’s divided Conservative Party are angry, saying the agreement will leave Britain tethered to the EU after it departs the bloc. Failure to secure Cabinet backing will leave May’s leadership in doubt and Brexit in chaos.

"Theresa May’s Brexit agreement is the worst deal in history," Nigel Farage, the British politician and broadcaster who helped engineer the June 2016 Brexit vote, tweeted. Farage represents Britain in the European Parliament in Brussels and is also under investigation by the US Mueller probe as to his involvement with the Russians and Donald Trump's "Hanky Panky" with the Russians during his Presidental election campaign, and after his election as President.

May herself told lawmakers on Tuesday that the draft deal "takes us significantly closer to delivering what the British people voted for" when they decided to leave the bloc. She said the deal means that Britain will "take back control" of its laws and borders "while protecting jobs, security and the integrity of our United Kingdom."

Note EU-Digest: a majority of the British population in the latest polls show they want a new Referendum on Britain's  EU membership. 

 Read more: Brexit: Britain's messy EU divorce faces new showdown

11/13/18

US- North Korea Relations: North Korea Is Still Developing Its Deadly Missile Program at 16 Hidden Bases - by David Brennan

New satellite images indicated that North Korea was continuing work on its ballistic missile program, despite President Donald Trump’s assurances that the regime no longer posed a security threat.

At least 16 different bases were identified in the images, The New York Times reported, all of which were part of an existing network known to American intelligence services.

It would appear that North Korea's highly publicized promise to dismantle a major missile research center was in fact a cover for upgrades and continued work at other locations. The research aims to improve the North’s missile arsenal, allowing it to carry larger warheads, whether conventional or nuclear, farther.

The ballistic missile sites were identified in a new study published Monday by the Beyond Parallel program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies think tank.

That flies in the face of Trump’s assertions that he has neutralized the North Korea threat. The president may tout improved relations with Pyongyang as one of his greatest foreign policy achievements, but the U.S. has achieved nothing of substance in disarming or denuclearizing the secretive dictatorship.

Though no new nuclear or missile tests have taken place for almost a year, U.S. intelligence officials believe research in both areas is continuing. Meanwhile, Pyongyang’s trade with China and Russia is helping it sidestep the worst effects of the sanctions Trump appears to believe will bring Kim Jong Un to the negotiating table.

The report included a map of North Korea indicating three belts of missile bases with varying ranges, from short-range to the longest-range missiles that could hit the continental U.S.

Read more: North Korea Is Still Developing Its Deadly Missile Program at 16 Hidden Bases

European Army: In Strasbourg, Merkel brings European army one step further – by Alexandra Brzozowski and Claire Stam

"A EU army to protect itself with respect to other nations"
In an eagerly awaited speech on the future of Europe before what she called ‘the biggest democratic parliament of the world’, German Chancellor Angela Merkel called on Tuesday (13 November) for a “real, true European army” and a common asylum framework.

Speaking to MEPs in Strasbourg, she, however, did not make any concrete proposals on the reform of the eurozone, in this regard leaving the field to French President Emmanuel Macron’s proposals.

The picture of the German Chancellor and her French counterpart in Compiègne, jointly marking the centennial of the Armistice that ended World War One, has made headlines – and must have left a mark on Merkel.

Recalling the lessons of the First World War and the divisions that led to the conflict, Merkel in Strasbourg endorsed the idea of a common European defence concept, clearer than she has done ever before.

“We should work on a vision of one day establishing a real, true European army,” Merkel told MEPs during her speech, drawing applause – and booing – in the chamber.

Although Merkel left open how such a step could materialise in practice, she backed the forming of a European rapid reaction force and a common arms acquisition policy. According to a previous French proposal, a small group of states could go forward and build up a powerful intervention force for crisis operations, for example in Africa.

Echoing Macron’s catch-phrase of a “European army”, she also made a huge step towards Paris. Only last week, the French president argued for more European strategic autonomy when urging that the EU should be able “to protect itself with respect to China, Russia and even the United States.”

Read more: In Strasbourg, Merkel brings European army one step further – EURACTIV.com

USA: The Mueller Probe: Mueller seeking more details on Nigel Farage, key Russia inquiry target says

Robert Mueller is seeking more information about Nigel Farage for his investigation into Russian interference in US politics, according to a target of the inquiry who expects to be criminally charged.

Jerome Corsi, a conservative author, said prosecutors working for Mueller questioned him about Farage, the key campaigner behind Britain’s vote to leave the European Union, two weeks ago in Washington.

Corsi said investigators for the special counsel also pressed him for information on Ted Malloch, a London-based American academic with ties to Farage, who informally advised Donald Trump and was interviewed by FBI agents earlier this year.

“They asked about both Nigel and Ted Malloch, I can affirm that they did,” Corsi told the Guardian on Tuesday. “But I’m really not going into detail because I respect the special counsel and the legal process.”

Mueller’s interest in Farage comes amid questions in the UK about whether Russia attempted to influence the June 2016 vote to leave the European Union, and Brexit’s most vocal political supporters.

Note EU-Digest: Nigel Farage - the King of the British Brexit drama is now also eyed by the Mueller investigation, in particular, as it relates to his connection with the Russians and Donald Trump. 

Once again we see how dangerous populism is to basic human rights values, whether it comes from Donald Trump, Marian LePen, Nigel Farage, Geert Wilders, Jörg Haider ,Jair Bolsonaro, Victor Orban, Lech Kaczyński, and the list goes on and on.

 Populism is a fast growing danger and must be stopped, before it destroys humanity..

Read more: Mueller seeking more details on Nigel Farage, key Russia inquiry target says

Britain and E.U. Agree on a Plan for Brexit - by Stephen Castle

British and European Union officials reached a long-awaited draft agreement on Tuesday on Britain’s troubled withdrawal from the bloc, opening the way for a high-stakes meeting of Prime Minister Theresa May’s most senior ministers to consider the plans, the prime minister’s office said.

Cabinet ministers will have a chance to review the draft text before a critical meeting of the full cabinet at 2 p.m. Wednesday, the prime minister’s office said.

After months of deadlock over the terms of Britain’s exit from the bloc, the presentation of the draft agreement is a moment of truth for Mrs. May, who is desperate to avoid a chaotic and disorderly “no-deal” Brexit. But she cannot be assured of support from hard-line Brexiteers in her cabinet, whom she may need to face down.

n the worst case, defections from the cabinet or an outright rejection of the pact could threaten her leadership.


Aircraft Industry - Alternative Energy: Electric flying taxi service - Lilium poaches key hires from Audi, Airbus - by Jonathan Shieberby

Major Changes Are Coming In The Aircraft Industry
Lilium, the developer of a new electric vertical take-off and landing vehicle for a novel flying taxi service, has poached some pretty big former executives from Airbus and Audi as it builds out its technology and gets ready to bring its service to market.

Mirko Reuter, the former head of automated driving at Audi, has come on board as the head of autonomous flight at Lilium. Jakob Waeschenbach, who worked as the head of equipment installation at Airbus, and Rochus Moenter, former vice president of Airbus’ finance and leasing group, have joined Lilium as head of aircraft assembly and general counsel and head of legal, respectively.
 
Co-founded in 2015 by Daniel Wiegand, Sebastian Born, Patrick Nathen and Matthias Meiner, 

Lilium’s vision is to create a network for its proprietary vertical take-off and landing vehicles that will slash the costs of air travel and can ostensibly take a passenger from Paris to London in about an hour.

Read more: Electric flying taxi service Lilium poaches key hires from Audi, Airbus | TechCrunch