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Mark's Market Blog

3-1-15: ISIL destroys 3000 year old statues

By Mark Lawrence

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Slow week. Nothing happened and the markets went nowhere on minuscule volume. This looks to me a lot like the tops in late November and late December; I think we're likely to see more volatility in March.

S&P 500 September 8 2014 to February 27 2015

Greeks continue to pull their money out of Greek banks. I can't imagine why there's any money left in the banks at all; I would have pulled mine months ago. At the current rates of losing deposits, the banks will last about another couple of weeks, tops. Greece is still to continue with their EU imposed economy-wrecking austerity plan. Current estimates are that a Greek default would cost Europe $350 billion and wipe out all the capital of the European central bank. And Tsipras is being accused at home of folding under German pressure. As I see it, if Greece stays in the EU under anything like the current plan they will be all but destroyed, and if they leave the EU they will have enormous trouble and Europe will almost certainly fall into a serious recession with more political problems to come. Europe has brought themselves into a lose-lose situation.

Russia has offered to sell Iran their latest Antey-2500 anti-aircraft missiles, apparently to help Iran protect against air strikes on their nuclear facilities by the US or Israel. Russia needs the money, Iran wants the protection.

I met a young Ukrainian woman this week. She said her parents were in Mariupol, and in the evening when the city noise quieted down they could hear the Russian guns. She said her parents hoped they would stop outside the city. I told her I was sorry that my country helped start this - something that she understood well - and that unfortunately it was obvious to me that the Russians would continue through Mariupol until they linked up with Crimea. Debaltseve fell ten days ago, of course, that portion of the map is out of date. In the German popular press the headlines already call the cease fire a joke, a charade.

ISIL has become very active in Mosul, Iraq's second largest city. They're pulling books out of libraries and burning them, and tearing down 3000 year old statues in museums and destroying them. This infuriates me even more than the beheadings - Iraq is likely the cradle of human civilization, and these artifacts, imho, belong to all mankind. They're destroying the common history of all of us, claming that god wants the statues destroyed as they are idols and represent idol worship. Idiots. Congenital idiots. This is what happens when your prophet is a pedophile and you all marry your 1st cousins.

Obama has a plan to free Mosul, but with no American boots. He plans to trains 20,000 - 25,000 Iraqi soldiers and they will attack from the south. Meanwhile Kurds will circle the east, north and west of Mosul to contain ISIL. The problem? So far we're only in the process of training the first 2500 Iraqis. We're having problems keeping even this group on the same page, as Shi'ites and Sunnis hate each other and won't cooperate, and Baathists hate everyone. To get to Mosul they're going to have to march through three major villages held by ISIL so you can forget about surprise. The Iraqi government is feeling great political pressure and wants to start immediately - something the Pentagon thinks is doomed to historic failure. Obama wants to keep everyone happy until late fall, then attack. Of course I know all this and I'm just some nutcase american, so there's no mystery, no surprise in Iraq. Some in the pentagon are already worried this will be a major "Charlie Foxtrot." I'm not worried at all. You worry about uncertainties. This will certainly be a major "Charlie Foxtrot."

I'm pretty upset about how Obama has allowed, one could even say encouraged Iran and N.Korea to jointly develop nukes. I believe sincerely that the result will be a second holocaust within this decade - another 7 million Jews killed. When this happens I will personally think Obama has a significant amount of blame. Liberals, imho, live in deep denial believing that Obama is a christian because he hid out in a "christian" church for years while developing his political career. Those of us on the right never believed it. Well, here's what's called the Muslim Salute - one finger meaning "one God, Allah, one prophet, Mohammed." The second picture is from the August 2014 U.S.-African Leaders' Summit in Washington D.C.

Global Warming Watch: The east coast is having the coldest and snowiest winter on record. Niagra falls partially froze over. Boston had to dig out from under about seven feet of snow. And New York harbor froze over in record low temperatures of 2° requiring the city to hire an ice breaker.

Meanwhile out here in the People's Republic of California there continues to be essentially no rain or snow. The snow pack is at 19% of normal for March 1, with no rain scheduled for the coming week. It's looking pretty grim for farmers this year. In the foothills wells are drying up and cities are passing new laws and major fines protecting their water. Contractors all over the state are stealing water from fire hydrants; residents are too. Farmers are illegally diverting water through new secret ditches. In North San Juan, a little city in the hills where I used to live, someone stole 800 gallons out of the fire truck.

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