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We always knew that this would start happening. Earlier this month, I wrote about the severe economic problems that are plaguing South America, but up to this point I have neglected to discuss the horrific famines that are breaking out all over Africa. Right now there is a desperate need for food in South Sudan, Somalia, northeast Nigeria, Eritrea and Kenya. And Yemen, even though it is not technically part of Africa, is being affected by many of the same factors that are crippling nations all over eastern Africa. The United Nations says that more than 20 million people could die from starvation and disease if nothing is done. When I write about economic collapse, this is the kind of thing that I am talking about, and we are starting to see alarming conditions spread across the globe. Many believe that we could never possibly face this kind of food crisis in the western world, but unfortunately wishful thinking will only get you so far.
After serving in the Georgia Legislature, in 1992, Cynthia McKinney won a seat in the US House of Representatives. She was the first African-American woman from Georgia in the US Congress. In 2005, McKinney was a vocal critic of the government’s response to Hurricane Katrina and was the first member of Congress to file articles of impeachment against George W. Bush. In 2008, Cynthia McKinney won the Green Party nomination for the US presidency.
By Cynthia McKinney
Millions of barrels of oil have been spilled in Nigeria’s Delta region. Tired of the abuse, Nigerians just blew up a pipeline and a platform in an attempt to rectify what politicians and courts have been slow to do.
As a result of the deteriorating security situation, the Nigeria oil union announced that Shell and Chevron workers have been evacuated.
One hundred groups representing over five million Nigerians, comprising of farmers, faith-based organisations, civil society groups, students and local community groups, are vehemently opposing Monsanto’s attempts to introduce genetically modified (GM) cotton and maize into Nigeria’s food and farming systems.
In written objections submitted to the Nigerian biosafety regulators Monday, the groups have cited numerous serious health and environmental concerns and the failure of these crops, especially GM cotton, in Africa.
The Pentagon is prepared to approve a new plan to redeploy ground troops already in Nigeria to the front lines of that nation’s war against Boko Haram, saying they will be positioned close to fighting but in a purely “non-combat role.”
The troops were originally sent to Nigeria for “training” of that nation’s military for the war on terror, and the redeployment would have them in “advisory” roles, putting them right in the middle of the action.
Having urged “don’t panic” just 4 short months ago, it appears Nigeria just did just that as the global dollar short squeeze forces the eight-month-old government of President Muhammadu Buhari to beg The World Bank and African Development Bank for $3.5bn in emergency loans to help fund a $15bn deficit in a budget heavy on public spending amid collapsing oil revenues. Just as we warned in December, the dollar shortage has arrived, perhaps now is time to panic after all.
In September, Nigerian central bank Governor Godwin Emefiele ruled out a naira devaluation on Thursday and told people not to panic about a government order which risks draining billions of dollars from the financial system.
Having told banks and investors “don’t panic” in September, amid spiking interbank lending rates and surging default/devaluation risks, it appears the massive shortage of dollars that we warned about in December has washed tsunami-like ashore in oil-producing Nigeria. Following the Central bank’s decision this week to halt dollar sales to non-bank FX market operators, black market exchange rates spiked to 282/USD (vs 199 official) and CDS spiked to record highs implying drastic devaluations loom.
With the western world facing high terror alerts, the biggest meeting of top CEOs and world leaders comes at a delicate time. As Bloomberg’s Tom Gibson exclaims in this brief clip, “it feels like half the Swiss army is here,” but officials play down the security presence as ‘business as usual’. With a special no-fly-zone and snipers overhead, Davos is protected by 3,000 military personnel for these few days… no wonder the billionaires aren’t worried about leaving their private jets unlocked on the Davis runways.
Having proclaimed it is not Zimbabwe, Nigeria’s currency is starting to look a lot like a hyper-inflating mess. After devaluing to a 168 peg in November, the Naira has crashed to 200 / USD today – smashing above the upper peg band of 176 as it appears Nigeria is losing control. The collapse of Oil Producer currencies had abated for a week or two but the last 2 days have seen the Ruble and Naira tumble (even as The USDollar weakens modestly ahead of the ECB QE tomorrow).
Because nothing says ‘stability’ like a Central Bank in charge of things, the
smartestrichest men in the world have proclaimed in Davos this week that “we need a central bank of oil, like the central bank in financial world.” As long as they are not Swiss, of course. Oil has been volatile today amid these calls for stability after Saudi Aramco comments on cutting projects (supply) sent prices higher, and was then talked back by the CEO bringing prices lower. Oman – the largest non-OPEC Middle East oil producer – blasted that “we have created volatility,” noting it was having a “really difficult time,” and that’s “bad for business,” demanding OPEC slow production. But it was The IMF that sparked the greatest concerns as it warned oil producers to treat this oil price drop as permanent noting that they expect these economies to lose $300 billion. only to be contradicted by OPEC’s al-Badri who noted “oil prices will rebound back to normal soon.”
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Following the WHO’s warnings, (the ironically named) Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan has declared a “state of emergency” over the Ebola outbreak that is rapidly escalating in his nation. This comes on the heels of a US medical journal study that finds, as Reuters reports, the Ebola virus that is ravagaing West Africa was not imported from Central Africa but caused by a “new strain” of the disease – raising the specter of further regional epidemics.
Ebola is endemic to Democratic Republic of Congo, Uganda, South Sudan and Gabon, and scientists initially believed that Central Africa’s Zaire strain of the virus was responsible for the outbreak. However, as Reuters reports,
– Troops Deployed In West Africa Ebola Clinics As 2 More Nigeria Cases Revealed; Saudi Blocks Travelers (ZeroHedge, Aug 5, 2014):
Following Monday’s announcement that it will not issue pilgrimage visas to pilgrims from Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia due to concerns regarding the spread of the Ebola virus, Saudi Arabian officials have admitted they are testing samples from a man who had returned recently from a business trip to Sierra Leone for suspected Ebola infection. With the virus having killed at least 887 people, Saudi Arabia is getting serious, “we have communicated the instructions to the officials at all ports of entry.”
– Runaway Ebola-Infected Woman Dies As US Doctor Tests Positive For Virus (ZeroHedge, July 27, 2014):
It continues to go from bad to worse for Africa’s “deadliest ever” Ebola epidemic which has officially claimed well over 600 lives, and unofficially many more.
Following the death of a Liberian government worker two days ago who collapsed in the international airport of Nigeria’s 20-million megacity, Lagos which resulted in a “red alert” Nigeria clamping down into a quasi-quarantine state, sending specialists to airports and seaports fo containment, overnight we got an update on the other major Ebola story from last week, namely the female patient whose family broke her out of a hospital in Sierra Leone’s capital Freetown, and who had been on the loose of several days, leading to a nationwide hunt. She has passed away, dying in an ambulance on the way to hospital, Reuters reports.
– Following First Ebola Death Nigeria “On Red Alert”, Deploys Specialists To Airports For Containment (ZeroHedge, July 26, 2014):
Shortly after our report yesterday that the Liberian man suspected of carrying the Ebola virus has died while quarantined in Nigeria, the local health ministry confirmed that he was indeed the first confirmed Ebola death in the Nigerian city of Lagos, which with a population of roughly 20 million, is the largest city in Africa and the fourth largest in the world. The victim, who worked for the Liberian government, collapsed at Lagos international airport after arriving on a flight from Monrovia via the Togolese capital Lome on Tuesday, according to the Nigerian government. And now the “red alert” scramble begins in Nigeria, with a population fo 170 million, to isolate who else the deceased may have come in contact with. And while borders have not yet been closed, health specialists have been deployed to all sea ports and international airports to identify any passengers displaying symptoms associated with Ebola.
– Nigeria Central Bank Diversifies Reserves: Sells Dollars, Buys Chinese Yuan (ZeroHedge, Jan 28, 2014):
It seems the “dollar is a reserve currency for ever and ever” propaganda has not reached Africa, also known as Southern China as explained here two years ago, where moments ago the Central Bank of Nigeria issued the following surprise announcement:
- CENTRAL BANK OF NIGERIA TO SELL DOLLARS TO DIVERSIFY RESERVES
- NIGERIA CENTRAL BANK TO RAISE SHARE OF YUAN TO 7% FROM 2%
- NIGERIA CENTRAL BANK TO DIVERSIFY RESERVES INTO YUAN
- NIGERIA CENTRAL BANK CONSIDERING DIM SUM BOND: MOGHALU
But why would anyone buy Yuan when there are so many ever-more diluted dollars available? And now, let’s open it up for the most creative Nigerian email scam involving Chinese Yuan…
– 30 killed in school attack in northeast Nigeria (USA TODAY, July 6, 2013):
POTISKUM, Nigeria (AP) — Islamic militants attacked a boarding school in northeast Nigeria before dawn Saturday, killing 29 students and one teacher. Some of the pupils were burned alive in the latest school attack blamed on a radical terror group, survivors said.
Parents screamed in anguish as they tried to identify the charred and gunshot victims.
– Nigeria: Targeted for Destruction (2011 reprint, VT was right again!) (Veterans Today, May 15, 2013, by Gordon Duff)
– Is Nigeria, And Its Light Sweet Crude, About To Be Drawn Into The Mali “Liberation” Campaign? (ZeroHedge, Feb 19, 2013):
Precisely a month ago, when we last looked at the ongoing French campaign in Mali, whose diplomatic justification before the people of the “democratic” world was the eradication of “insurgents”, and various other “Al Qaeda rebels”, we asked readers, rhetorically, to look at a map of Mali and tell us what they see.
“Nothing. Mali is one of the most irrelevant countries in West Africa from a resource standpoint, and what happens inside of it is certainly irrelevant from a greater geopolitical standpoint. What is more important is what this map doesn’t show, specifically the name of the country located a few hundred miles to the south: Nigeria.
Now Nigeria is important: very important. Or rather, Nigerian light sweet, one of the highest quality crudes in the world, is. And thanks to the “bungled” French peacemaking attempt, the US now has a critical foothold in what is the most strategically placed stretch of desert in Western Africa, a place where US “military trainers” will now be deployed at will. Be on the lookout for curious escalations in violence around the capital Abuja, and key port city Lagos, in the coming months once the current Mali fracas is long forgotten.”
It appears that Nigeria will be drawn into the fray far sooner than even we expected following today’s news that Islamist militants from neighboring Nigeria abducted a French family of seven, including four children, in northern Cameroon on Tuesday, French President Francois Hollande said. Next up: Al Qaeda is mysteriously discovered to be aiding and abetting “evil” insurgent Malians out of Nigeria, and the French campaign, with the generous and stealthy support of the US, shifts slowly but surely southward to its ultimate destination: liberating all that Nigerian light sweet oil.
– After Creating Dollar Exclusion Zones In Asia And South America, China Set To Corner Africa Next (ZeroHedge, July 15, 2012):
By now it really, really should be obvious. While the insolvent “developed world” is furiously fighting over who gets to pay the bill for 30 years of unsustainable debt accumulation and how to pretend that the modern ‘crony capitalist for some and communist for others‘ system isn’t one flap of a butterfly’s wings away from full on collapse mode, China is slowly taking over the world’s real assets. As a reminder: here is a smattering of our headlines on the topic from the last year: ““World’s Second (China) And Third Largest (Japan) Economies To Bypass Dollar, Engage In Direct Currency Trade“, “China, Russia Drop Dollar In Bilateral Trade“, “China And Iran To Bypass Dollar, Plan Oil Barter System“, “India and Japan sign new $15bn currency swap agreement“, “Iran, Russia Replace Dollar With Rial, Ruble in Trade, Fars Says“, “India Joins Asian Dollar Exclusion Zone, Will Transact With Iran In Rupees“, ‘The USD Trap Is Closing: Dollar Exclusion Zone Crosses The Pacific As Brazil Signs China Currency Swap“, and finally, “Chile Is Latest Country To Launch Renminbi Swaps And Settlement“, we now get the inevitable: “Central bank pledges financial push in Africa.” To summarize: first Asia, next Latin America, and now Africa.
Yep: the Yuan may not be the reserve currency by default, but at this rate China will have bilateral, read USD-bypassing relations, with all countries in Asia, South America and shortly Africa (where none other than Goldman Sachs has been pushing harder than anyone). Once the entire world is trading in CNY, it will be merely a matter of flipping the switch and all those fancy three-letter economic theories that explain why the uber-welfare state works just becayse the US can print an infinity+1 in debt, will all suddenly find themselves completely and totally bidless.
From China Daily:
China is to promote the yuan’s use in settling trade and investment with Africa, and encourage the more active development of Chinese financial institutions across the continent, a senior central bank official said on Friday.
Li Dongrong, assistant governor of the People’s Bank of China, said Africa has the capability of becoming a new hub of international capital flow, and the yuan’s use there should be further improved in accordance with rising demand for the currency there.
“We will continue to encourage domestic financial institutions to increase their presence and business across the continent,” Li told delegates at the Forum on China-Africa Financial Cooperation in Beijing, adding that the cooperation potential between the two sides is huge, as Africa’s economy continues to take off.
TEHRAN, IRAN—The workers at one Iran’s largest refineries have been on strike since last Monday when the opposition movement called for a nationwide day of protest to show solidarity with people in Egypt and elsewhere in the Middle East.
Abadan’s oil refinery is the largest refinery in Iran. The striking workers announced they have not been paid by the contractor engaged to by the government to complete the expansion of the refinery’s capacity to produce gasoline for domestic consumption.
For the last six months, the wages owned to the refinery workers have not been paid by the government’s contractor.
– Egypt: Oil and gas workers strike (YouTube):
Thousands of workers from several oil and gas companies strike ~ http://fifthinternational.org/content… ~ The revolution is not over!
Protesting in front of the Ministry of Petroleum, in Nasr City, the workers had several economic and political demands that include a halt to abusive management practices in terms of sackings, the reinstatement of the sacked workers, raising salaries that roughly average on LE400, establishing an independent union, impeaching the corrupt minister Sameh Fahmy, and stopping gas exports to Israel.
Oil workers in Nigeria under the aegis of Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) yesterday began a nationwide strike over the planned decision of petroleum marketers to sack 50 per cent of its members in their employ.