If you're not concerned about AI safety, you should be. Vastly more risk than North Korea. pic.twitter.com/2z0tiid0lc — Elon Musk (@elonmusk) August 12, 2017
Elon Musk is leading 116 ‘experts’ around the globe to petition the United Nations for an all out ban on killer robots. Musk, along with others like Alphabet’s Mustafa Suleyman, demand the ban to prevent a third ‘age of war.’ Musk has been outspoken about the dangers of artificial intelligence and robotics for years, and now his fear is leading to him to demand that killer robots be banned. Specialists from 26 countries around the globe have joined Musk and Suleyman in calling for the ban on autonomous weapons. The United Nations is scheduled to vote on the ban on these weapons as well.
With the anti-neocon Steve Bannon out, and nobody left in Trump’s inner circle to halt the simmering push for war in Aghanistan, North Korea, the Middle East and virtually everywhere else courtesy of Generals Kelly and McMaster, this morning Reuters reported, quoting Defense Secretary Mattis that Trump has a made a decision on the United States’ strategy for Afghanistan after a “sufficiently rigorous” review process. However, Mattis did not provide details on when the White House would make an announcement or what the decision was on Afghanistan, where fighting still rages more than 15 years after U. S. forces invaded and overthrew a Taliban government. The Defense Secretary said he is satisfied with how the administration formulated its new Afghanistan war strategy. But he refused to talk about the new policy until it was disclosed by Trump. “I am very comfortable that the strategic process was sufficiently rigorous and did not go in with a pre-set position,” Mattis told reporters traveling with him aboard a military aircraft to Jordan. “The president has made a decision. As he said, he wants to be the one to announce it to the American people.”
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Aug 20, 2017.
Residents of Japanese coastal towns are holding evacuation drills as North Korea warned Sunday that the upcoming US-South Korea military exercises are “reckless behavior driving the situation into the uncontrollable phase of a nuclear war.” Nearly 130 people took part in the drill in Kotoura, which has a population of 18,000, a town official said. Reuters reports that for 10 minutes, people ducked down covering their heads with their arms. Many of those taking part said they were worried. North Korea has in the past threatened to attack Japan, a staunch U. S. ally and host to U. S. military bases. As sirens blared from speakers in the town of Kotoura, children playing soccer outside ran to take shelter in a school, along with their parents and their team coach. “I’ve been concerned every day that something might fall or a missile could fall in an unexpected place due to North Korea’s missile capabilities,” said the coach, Akira Hamakawa, 38.
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Aug 20, 2017.
When just three weeks ago today Trump fired Reince Priebus and replaced him Gen. John Kelly, we said that “with a military veteran now whispering in Trump’s ear every day, Kim Jong-Un’s days are now numbered.” Then, just two days ago, Steve Bannon himself confirmed in an interview with The American Prospect, that when it comes to matters North Korean Bannon had been the biggest “dove” in the White House, and the natural anti-neocon foil to Kelly and Mattis, both of whom are quite eager and itching to launch a some military engagement against the Kim regime with the following surprising, “off the record” statement: Contrary to Trump’s threat of fire and fury, Bannon said: ‘There’s no military solution [to North Korea’s nuclear threats], forget it. Until somebody solves the part of the equation that shows me that ten million people in Seoul don’t die in the first 30 minutes from conventional weapons, I don’t know what you’re talking about, there’s no military solution here, they got us.’ Bannon went on to describe his battle inside the administration to take a harder line on China trade, and not to fall into a trap of wishful thinking in which complaints against China’s trade practices now had to take a backseat to the hope that China, as honest broker, would help restrain Kim. Bannon said he might consider a deal in which China got North Korea to freeze its nuclear buildup with verifiable inspections and the United States removed its troops from the peninsula, but such a deal seemed remote. Given that China is not likely to do much more on North Korea, and that the logic of mutually assured destruction was its own source of restraint, Bannon saw no reason not to proceed with tough trade sanctions against China. Of course, the implication is that with Bannon now out, the probabilities of a real war with North Korea are substantially higher. How much higher? Well, for the answer take the following analysis from Nomura of 5 specific “scenario” outcomes, and 5-10% to the bellicose ones. As they stand currently, the breakdown is as follows: Continuation of current trajectory: 60% “Killer” saanctions by year end: 20%
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Aug 18, 2017.
The liberal/progressives, lost as they are in their emotionalism, do not realize that their rantings about white supremacists are also discrediting themselves and not merely their foes. The rest of the world doesn’t differentiate between good whites and bad whites. As one reader who wrote to me from India said, ‘All whites are guilty.’ That is the position of the left who assert that White Supremacy is institutionalized in the United States and has been from day one. The white liberal/progressives should read Jean Raspail’s book, The Camp of the Saints and discover that the world does not differentiate them from white nationalists. Whites – not ‘some whites’ – are seen as a plague on the world. If a book is too much for them, they can read Ajamu Baraka in Counterpunch: ‘What is the character of racist right-wing politics today? Is it the crazed white supremacist who plows into an anti-fascist demonstration in Charlottesville, VA or can it also be the assurance by Lindsay Graham that an attack against North Korea would result in thousands of lives lost…. but those lives will be ‘over there’? What about the recent unanimous resolution by both houses of Congress in support of Israel and criticism of the United Nations for its alleged anti-Israeli bias? Would that qualify as racist and right-wing, since it appears that the ongoing suffering of the Palestinians is of no concern? And what about the vote by the U. S. House of Representatives to go even beyond the obscene proposal of the Trump administration to increase the military budget by $54 billion dollars and instead add a whopping $74 billion to the Pentagon budget? ‘What I find interesting about the current discussion around what many are referring to as the emboldening of the radical white supremacist right is how easy it is to mobilize opposition against the crude and overt white supremacists we saw in Charlottesville. So easy, in fact, that it’s really a distraction from the more difficult and dangerous work that needs to be done to confront the real right-wing power brokers.
Traders barely had time to enjoy the lull from the “Armageddon trade” – the rising possibility of a nuclear exchange between the US and North Korea, which peaked over the weekend when various US officials said a nuclear war is not imminent, echoed by a statement by N. Korea’s state-run news agency KCNA, before a new set of worries promptly took over, chief among them the ongoing slow motion train wreck in Donald Trump’s administration coupled with yesterday’s double terrorist attacks in Spain. Alas, “nuclear war” risk is about to come back with a vengeance because on Monday US and South Korea are scheduled to begin joint military exercises, a massive show of force which every time in the past has infuriated North Korea, sometimes triggering a show of force. Held every fall in South Korea, the Ulchi-Freedom Guardian war games are the world’s largest computerized command and control exercise. Some 30,000 U. S. soldiers and more than 50,000 South Korean troops usually take part, along with hundreds of thousands of first responders and civilians, some practicing for a potential chemical weapons attack. Scheduled long before the recent diplomatic fallout between Washington and Pyongyang, the U. S. and South Korean militaries will simulate warfare with North Korea from Aug. 21 to 31, well aware that North Korea could respond with another missile test, according to McClatchy. In light of this perceived provocation by North Korea, which will almost certainly prompt some reaction, Scott A. Snyder, a Korea specialist with the Council on Foreign Relations said ‘Over the course of the next two weeks I expect tensions to escalate. This is always a sensitive issue, but it is more hair-trigger as the North Koreans are very sensitive to the likely additional nuclear-capable aircraft flyovers.’
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Aug 18, 2017.
While the storm over North Korea may appear to have passed, Bloomberg FX strategist David Finnerty warns that it’s possible we’re only in its eye. Investors may want to think twice before jumping back into risk assets… The good news is that it appears North Korea has, at least temporarily, backed down from plans to fire missiles toward Guam. But there hasn’t been any indication that the country plans to halt, let alone dismantle its nuclear program. The trend is not your friend when it comes to this Asian country’s behavior. The firing in July of an intercontinental ballistic missile had Secretary of State Rex Tillerson calling it a ‘new escalation of the threat’. And that comes after the other launches this year.
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Aug 17, 2017.
While the focus on North Korea has been their improvement of missiles and a potential nuclear strike against the United States, many have missed an equally sinister weapon lingering in the rogue nation’s arsenal. And experts say that it’s time to take notice of it. Experts say there’s another weapon in Pyongyang’s arsenal the globe should keep a very close and watchful eye on. ‘Nuclear weapons are not the only threat,’ Kelsey Davenport, director of non-proliferation policy for the Arms Control Association told the McClatchy Washington Bureau. ‘North Korea could respond to a U. S. attack using chemical weapons. That would be devastating.’ And according to Fox News, Kim Jong Un’s military has been collecting large stockpiles of nerve agents, such as sarin and VX, which is the most dangerous and potent of all nerve gas agents. North Korea could always choose a chemical attack, rather than a nuclear one; one that could target U. S. military bases in the region and large cities like Seoul and Tokyo, according to a new report. Pyongyang denies that they have chemical agents, yet back in May, it was reported that the UN was helping North Korea obtain a patent for a banned nerve gas agent.
This post was published at shtfplan on August 17th, 2017.
While the international media remains concerned to the point of being fixated on the US-DPRK (North Korea) stand-off, in terms of sheer firepower, the much more pressing stand-off between China and India holds the potential to be far more destructive. Indian Nuclear Weapons While the best intelligence about North Korea’s weapons delivery capabilities indicates that North Korea is in possession of intermediate range ballistic missile systems which are incapable of hitting the US mainland, India’s intermediate range systems are not only more advanced but due to India’s proximity with China, these missiles could easily strike targets within China. Of course, China has a vastly more equipped army and nuclear capacity, but any war between China and India that would involve the use of intercontinental ballistic missiles would be a world-changing event. While many have focused on the possibility of a short land-based border war, similar to that which the two countries fought in 1962, due to the rapid advance of both the Chinese and Indian militaries in the decades since 1962, there is every possibility that such a war could escalate quickly.
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Aug 17, 2017.
On August 21st, approximately 25,000 U. S. troops will join ‘tens of thousands’ from the South Korean military to conduct a ‘major military exercise’ that is already triggering threats from North Korea. Considering the fact that any sort of provocation could cause a nuclear war to erupt on the Korean peninsula, is this really a wise thing to do? The more research that I do on this upcoming solar eclipse, the stranger things become. When I first started hearing about this eclipse many months ago, I didn’t pay too much attention, but now after looking into it extensively I do believe that it is going to be quite significant. And I didn’t even know about this major military exercise that will happen during the eclipse until today. The following comes from MSN… The U. S. military is preparing to launch a major military exercise with South Korea in coming days, and faces a dangerous balancing act: How do you reassure allies in the region that you are ready for a war with North Korea without provoking an actual conflict in the process? The annual Ulchi-Freedom Guardian exercise is scheduled for 10 days beginning Aug. 21, and will include about 25,000 U. S. troops along with tens of thousands of South Koreans. The exercise focuses on defending South Korea against an attack from the north, and each year triggers threats and rebukes from North Korea. But it comes at an especially sensitive time now, following the exchange of a series of threats between President Trump and North Korea.
The following video was published by X22Report on Aug 16, 2017 The corporate media is pushing the agenda of pushing race wars in the US. They are pushing very hard just like they pushed the Russian collusion, which turned out to be fake. Lavrov states that US should back off with making threats to Venezuela. US and Japan hold drills near North Korea. Germany is now siding with China and Russia in regards to North Korea. Syrian forces pushing very hard in Syria and they are pushing through IS. As the terrorists are pushed out of Syria 600,000 refugees are returning home to Syria.
With geopolitical uncertainties injecting more volatility into the markets, Financial Sense Newshour sat down with Todd Mariano at Renaissance Macro to get his thoughts on North Korea and other hot spots around the globe, including Turkey, which, he said, is one of the greatest and overlooked concerns right now. Here’s what he had to say in our recent podcast, which aired Saturday on our site and on iTunes (see Art Hill on Technicals; Todd Mariano on N. Korea, China, and Geopolitics for audio). Is Nuclear War Imminent? The short answer is that no, it isn’t, believes Mariano. What we’re observing is that markets are reacting to uncertainty, specifically due to the shifting approach Washington is using to engage with North Korea, he noted. However, the situation really hasn’t changed all that much from a policy perspective, even under the new administration in Washington. ‘What markets are really reacting to amounts to headline risk because of the comments that the president made,’ he said. ‘The way I think this goes is certainly not a preemptive strike by North Korea. No one understands better than the North Korean military and Kim Jong Un that a preemptive strike coming from them would spell the end of the regime.’
Authored by Jacob Hornberger via The Future of Freedom Foundation, By suggesting that he might order a U. S. regime-change invasion of Venezuela, President Trump has inadvertently shown why North Korea has been desperately trying to develop nuclear weapons – to serve as a deterrent or defense against one of the U. S. national-security state storied regime-change operations. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Venezuela and, for that matter, other Third World countries who stand up to the U. S. Empire, also seeking to put their hands on nuclear weapons. What better way to deter a U. S. regime-change operation against them? Think back to the Cuban Missile Crisis. The U. S. national-security establishment had initiated a military invasion of the Cuba at the Bay of Pigs, had exhorted President Kennedy to bomb Cuba during that invasion, and then had recommended that the president implement a fraudulent pretext (i.e., Operation Northwoods) for a full-scale military invasion of Cuba. That’s why Cuba, which had never initiated any acts of aggression against the United States, wanted Soviet nuclear missiles installed in Cuba. Cuba’s leader Fidel Castro knew that there was no way that Cuba could defeat the United States in a regular, conventional war. Everyone knows that the military establishment in the United States is so large and so powerful that it can easily smash any Third World nation, including Cuba, North Korea, Iraq, Afghanistan, and Venezuela.
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Aug 16, 2017.
Anyone who thinks our toxic financial system is stable is delusional. Why are we doomed? Those consuming over-amped “news” feeds may be tempted to answer the culture wars, nuclear war with North Korea or the Trump Presidency. The one guaranteed source of doom is our broken financial system, which is visible in this chart of income inequality from the New York Times: Our Broken Economy, in One Simple Chart.
By now everyone is thoroughly inundated with information regarding the stances and standoff between President Trump and the U. S., and Kim Jong-Un and North Korea. This is where ‘oversaturation’ can lead to ignoring what is going on, followed up by complacency. Americans in general have low attention spans and become easily bored with or tired of a situation that is ongoing. The Vietnam war is a prime example of this, and that was followed with the second war in Iraq. In both instances, growing public dissension and the time factor were the two biggest ‘death rattles’ for both conflicts being discontinued prior to completion. The point here is that the American people had more ‘patience’ with World War II…a clear and real danger on all fronts by numerous enemy nations. The standoff with North Korea is not anything new: it has been in full gear, now, for about ten years. It was only through the intentional ‘laissaiz-faire’ policy of Obama that North Korea has been able to reach its present state, where it constitutes a real threat: ‘real’ meaning that it can strike the United States with a nuclear attack. In the past three to four years, that capability has increased exponentially, and now their response (if we attack) or their own first strike is viable. There is an important article that was submitted to All News Pipeline on August 12, 2017. As a matter of fact, the article is so important that it truly eclipses all the different pieces previously released. Stefan Stanford and Susan Duclos of All News Pipeline have been tireless and undaunted in their efforts to release as much information as they have over the years concerning North Korea, EMP Strikes against the U. S., and the current march toward a second Cold War. I am printing it here because this time right now is almost a ‘limbo’ period…awaiting the two nations and their leaders’ decisions whether there will be a war or whether it will be avoided. The bottom line: there are people who need this information, and it just may help them to make the decision to prepare or not. Stefan and Susan should receive an award for their timely and accurate reporting on such a subject as this potential war with North Korea. I have also written this before, and I stand by it now:
This post was published at shtfplan on August 15th, 2017.
North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un is getting more confident in his nuclear weapon arsenal. And now some say Kim is showing signs of war, as he’s vanished from the public eye for two weeks. The last time Kim went days without being seen was prior to the Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) test launch in late July. At that time, Kim remained in hiding for two weeks before making another grandiose public appearance. But the timing of this disappearance is a little unsettling, as tensions between North Korea and the United States are almost at a breaking point. Nuclear war tensions continue to mount between Washington and Pyongyang, and on the heels of theleader’s threat to attack the U. S. island territory of Guam, analysts think the rogue dictator’s disappearance is a bad sign.
A day after US Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Joseph Dunford promised him that the US would exhaust all diplomatic options, including another round of UN sanctions, before resorting to a ‘military solution’ in its simmering conflict with North Korea, South Korean President Moon Jae-in reminded Washington during a forceful Tuesday speech that the US would need to seek, and receive, South Korea’s consent before risking another armed conflict on the Korean peninsula, signaling his country will no longer stay quiet as tensions escalate with its northern neighbor. As Bloomberg summarizes, “Moon asserted the right to veto any military action against Kim Jong Un’s regime, saying that decision should be made by ‘ourselves and not by anyone else.’ He vowed to prevent war at any cost – a statement that drew a sharp contrast with President Donald Trump, who has warned of ‘fire and fury’ if North Korea continues to threaten the U. S.” Some highlights from his speech: “Without South Korea’s consent no one can determine military actions on the Korean peninsula” South Korea govt will prevent war at any cost; “There will be no war repeated on the Korean peninsula” South Korea will work closely with U. S. to overcome security threats posed by North Korea’s nuclear missiles South Korea govt will “strengthen diplomatic efforts in order not to shake principles for a peaceful resolution” Sanctions and talks should go together; “Sanctions are not to heighten military tensions but to bring North Korea to talks” Moon’s speech coincided with the Korean independence-day holiday on Tuesday, which is celebrated in both the North and the South. The holiday commemorates the defeat of the Japanese during World War II. According to Yonhap news agency, Moon marked the occasion by visiting the graves of independence fighters. Meanwhile, Moon’s counterpart, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, “”celebrated by backing off his threat to launch a nuclear strike against Guam, a US territory in the Pacific Ocean that’s about 2,000 miles away from the Korean Peninsula – well within the range of the North’s missiles. According to KCNA, the North Korean news agency, Kim has received a report from the army about its plans to strike the area around Guam and said, “he will watch the actions of the United States for a while longer before making a decision.”
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Aug 15, 2017.