Category: Global Economy

Is China Hoarding Food, Gold And Other Commodities In Anticipation Of A Global Collapse?

August 8, 2019 by Michael Snyder

Does China believe that we are on the verge of a major global crisis?  The communist Chinese government has always been very big into planning, and it appears that they have decided that now is the time to hoard food, gold and other commodities.  Of course in recent days the fact that China is completely cutting off U.S. agricultural imports has made headlines all over the globe, but at the same time China is dramatically increasing the amount of food that it is importing from the rest of the world.  The end result is actually a substantial surge in Chinese imports, and this is starting to show up in the official numbers.  For example, we just learned that Chinese soybean imports in July were actually up 8 percent compared to last year…  

China’s soybean imports in July rose 8% from a year earlier, to their highest level in almost a year, customs data showed on Thursday, as importers increased their purchases of Brazilian beans on higher crush margins.

As I discussed the other day, China had already been drastically reducing soybean imports from the United States even before this recent announcement that U.S. agricultural imports were being cut off completely.  So American farmers were definitely not benefiting from this Chinese import boom, and now that China has decided not to buy any of our crops it is going to be a  “devastating blow” for our farmers…

With China officially pulling out of buying U.S. agricultural products, American farmers are losing one of their biggest customers. It could be a devastating blow in an already tough year for crops and commodity prices. It may also dent U.S. gross domestic product and hurt companies like Deere, whose business is directly tied to farming in the Heartland.

“Sales have already been lower this crop year because of the existing tariffs. If we went all the way to no China exports whatsoever, that would of course result in even larger market and price impacts,” said Pat Westhoff, director of the Food and Agricultural Policy Research Institute at the University of Missouri. “Cutting China completely out of the market would be a very big deal.”

Needless to say, China has had to turn to other sources to supply their needs, and last month we learned that China had decided to substantially increase wheat and soybean imports from Russia

China has approved wheat imports from the Russian region of Kurgan, the Chinese customs office said on Friday, bringing Russia a step closer to its goal of dramatically increasing grain exports.

It also approved soybean imports from all parts of Russia, the General Administration of Customs said in a separate statement on its website, having all but halted U.S. soy imports as the trade dispute between Beijing and Washington deepened.

This is yet another sign that Russia and China are drawing closer, and this is something that we have been anticipating.

Meanwhile, China is also hoarding gold.  In fact, July was the eighth month in a row in which the Chinese increased their reserves

China bought nearly 10 tons of gold in July, marking the eighth consecutive month the country increased its reserves, Bloomberg reported Wednesday morning.

The purchase is another signal from China that it’s gearing up for a prolonged trade conflict with the US. Gold serves as a historic safe-haven investment, and its price typically rises when markets and other currencies see increased volatility or prolonged weakness.

In addition, Bloomberg is reporting that Chinese commodity purchases of all types were very, very strong in July…

Commodity purchases by China rebounded strongly in July. Imports of soy to coal and crude oil gained, signaling demand in the world’s biggest buyer remains solid even as a trade spat with the U.S. escalates.

So why are the Chinese suddenly stocking up on everything?

Well, the truth is that the answer to that question is quite obvious.  The trade war between the United States and China is rapidly escalating, war in the Middle East could erupt at any time, the global economy has been steadily slowing down, crops are failing all over the planet, and everywhere we look we seem to see rising political instability.

In fact, we even see it in China’s own backyard.  After weeks of unprecedented political protests in Hong Kong, it looks like we could be right on the verge of a brutal crackdown.  The following comes from the New York Post

After eight weeks of huge Hong Kong street protests against Beijing’s rule, the People’s Republic is massing police and soldiers just across the border. Message: If the protesters don’t quit, a bloodbath is coming.

Beijing has also started denouncing the protests as the work of American provocateurs. That’s so the regime can paint its Tiananmen Square-style crackdown as a battle against “foreign influence,” not a smashing of Chinese people who decided all on their own that they’d rather be free.

The relative stability that we have been enjoying for the past several years is ending, and it appears that the months ahead could potentially be quite chaotic.

Normally I would never suggest that anyone should emulate the Chinese government, but in this case they appear to be doing the wise thing.  Now is the time to get prepared for what is coming, because the road ahead promises to be quite tumultuous.

Most people don’t realize it, but U.S. relations with China have already passed the point of no return.  Things are going to become increasingly tense between our two nations, and that is going to have very serious implications for all of us.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9994

Years That End In “9” Tend To Be Times Of Great Upheaval

August 8, 2019 by Michael Snyder

Will 2019 continue the trend?  The other day I was talking with a close friend, and he pointed out to me that all throughout history years that end in 9 have tended to be times of great change and upheaval.  I was intrigued by what he shared with me, and so I went out and did some research, and I discovered that he was right on target.  In particular, over the last 100 years we have seen an unusual number of key historical events take place during years that end in 9, and that seems quite strange.  Could it be possible that the ending of one decade and the imminent start of a new one somehow triggers something inside of us psychologically?  I don’t know, but there does seem to be a pattern.  In this article I will summarize some of the things that I have discovered, and I will let you come to your own conclusions.

Let’s start with 1929.  As I repeatedly remind my readers, most large stock market crashes tend to happen during the fall, and on October 29th, 1929 there was a devastating stock market crash unlike anything that the United States had ever seen before.  That date is generally considered to be the start of the Great Depression, which to this day is the worst economic downturn the western world has ever experienced.  The Great Depression lasted for ten years, and that brings us to the next “9” on our list…

1939 was the year when World War II started.  It was the most catastrophic war that the world has ever seen, and it didn’t end until 1945.  It is estimated that somewhere between 70 million and 85 million people were killed, and the war shocked the planet so much that we haven’t seen a war like it since.

1949 was a year of great change, and it was really when the battle lines of the Cold War between the east and the west definitely solidified.  During this year, the Communist Party of China was able to take full control of mainland China, and the People’s Republic of China was formally established.  In addition, in 1949 the Soviet Union tested their first atomic bomb, it was the year of the Berlin blockade, and NATO was formed on April 4th, 1949.

1959 was the year when Fidel Castro came to power.  Thanks to the success of the Cuban revolution, Cuba became the first communist power in the western hemisphere, and this ultimately led to the Cuban missile crisis of 1963.

1969 was so tumultuous that a number of documentaries have been made about that single year, and author Rob Kirkpatrick wrote an entire book about it entitled “The Year Everything Changed”.  It was the year of the Moon landing, Woodstock and the Manson murders.  During this year Richard Nixon was sworn in as the president of the United States, 250,000 Americans marched on Washington to protest the Vietnam War, and the Palestine Liberation Organization was founded.

1979 was the year of the Iranian Revolution.  Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini came to power in February, and the Iranian hostage crisis began in November.  If there had been no Iranian hostage crisis, it is possible that Ronald Reagan may have been defeated by Jimmy Carter in 1980.  1979 was also the year when Margaret Thatcher first became prime minister of the UK, and she served all the way until 1990.

1989 was another year of revolution.  In June of that year the pro-democracy protests in Tiananmen Square in Beijing were brutally crushed by the Chinese government.   On the other side of the world, 1989 was the beginning of the Velvet Revolution in Czechoslovakia which ultimately resulted in a peaceful division of that nation into the Czech Republic and Slovakia.  George H.W. Bush was sworn in as the president of the United States during this year, and huge protests on both sides of the Berlin Wall ultimately resulted in the collapse of the East German government.

1999 was the year when Bill Clinton came very close to being removed from office.  On February 12th, the United States Senate narrowly acquitted Clinton of perjury and obstruction of justice.  1999 was also the year when the euro become the official currency of the European Union, and at the end of the year the Y2K scare was making headlines all over the globe.

2009 was definitely a year of “change”.  On January 20th, Barack Obama became the first African-American to become the president of the United States.  Meanwhile, the nation was greatly suffering from the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression of the 1930s.  It is estimated that 8.8 million jobs were lost during the “Great Recession”, and millions of Americans also lost their homes as a result of the subprime mortgage meltdown.  As 2009 was ending, the Economic Collapse Blog was launched.

So now here we are in another year that ends in 9.  So far in 2019, we have seen mass shootings, crop failures, dramatic escalations in our trade war with China, and a potential war with Iran is looming on the horizon.  Americans are angrier, more frustrated and more divided today than ever before in modern American history, and the mainstream media continues to stir the pot on a daily basis.

The stage is definitely set for things to explode during the second half of this year, and a lot of people that I have been talking to feel like things could really start breaking loose at any moment.

To a large degree, 2019 has already been a year of tremendous upheaval, but many believe that the worst is still yet to come.  So buckle up and hold on, because I think that things are about to get very bumpy.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9992

Why Is Saudi Arabia Giving Up A Tract Of Land The Size Of Massachusetts For “The World’s First Independent International Zone”?

August 7, 2019 by Michael Snyder

Under the leadership of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, a $500 billion “mega-city” is being constructed in the northwestern corner of Saudi Arabia.  This city has been named “Neom”, and when it is fully completed it will be approximately “the size of Massachusetts”.  The Wall Street Journal was able to recently examine 2,300 pages of classified documents related to this project, and what they discovered is absolutely stunning.  This “city of the future” will feature an artificial moon, flying taxis and robot maids, but there will also be gene-editing in order to make humans stronger and smarter, and everyone living there will be subjected to 24 hour surveillance.  In addition, we are being told that this will be “the world’s first independent international zone”, and many are concerned about what exactly that is going to mean.

“Neom” certainly has a futuristic ring to it, and according to Digital Trends it was derived by combining a Greek word and an Arabic word…

Called Neom (a mix of the Greek word for “new” and Arabic word for “future”), the project aims to construct a $500 billion city, covering 10,000 squares miles of coastline and desert in northwest Saudi Arabia. With its mixture of high-tech amenities and luxury services like restaurants and shops, the goal is to build what the Wall Street Journal describes as a superior to “Silicon Valley in technology, Hollywood in entertainment and the French Riviera as a place to vacation.”

It has been reported that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman originally came up with the idea for the city when he “pulled up a map of his country on Google Earth and saw its northwest quadrant was a blank slate.”  He ultimately decided that it would be an ideal location for “the city of the future”, and he enlisted an army of U.S. consultants to help him fulfill his dream.

But will his dream ultimately become a nightmare?  There are some extremely alarming things that I want to tell you about, but first let’s talk about some of the cool stuff that is planned for the city

The in-development Saudi Arabian city-state will have robot maids, flying taxis, and glow-in-the-dark sand, according to confidential planning documents reviewed by The Wall Street Journal. An artificial moon will light up the sky every night, and a Jurassic Park-style island will let visitors mingle with robot dinosaurs.

Sounds like a fun place to live, right?

And even though the climate of the region is extremely, extremely dry, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman plans to use “cloud seeding” to produce rain whenever it is needed.

In other words, the fact that they will be using geoengineering to control the weather in this city is not even being hidden.

There will also be gene-editing facilities that will be used to make humans stronger and smarter than ever before, and according to the Wall Street Journal, Neom’s board plans to make it a fully automated city “where we can watch everything”

“This should be an automated city where we can watch everything,” Neom’s founding board is quoted as saying in the documents, according to the WSJ. “[A city] where a computer can notify crimes without having to report them or where all citizens can be tracked.”

That means while you’re chilling on the glowing beach, daydreaming about your next prix fixe meal, a drone equipped with facial-recognition technology will likely be transmitting your location to Neom’s “1984”-esque law enforcement officials.

Hmmm – that actually doesn’t sound like such a fun place to live after all.

In fact, it basically sounds like the sort of dystopian nightmare that I have always been warning about.

But even more alarming is the fact that this city is being billed as “the world’s first independent international zone”

The city itself will be “the world’s first independent international zone,” presents its marketing literature. How independent it will actually be remains to be seen. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia set up a “special authority,” chaired by the Crown Prince himself, to supervise the development of the project. Once its built, the zone will be managed via a “regulatory framework that will adopt world-class investment laws to support residents and targeted economic sectors,” declares its presentation, which also purports the city-state will have an “autonomous judicial system.” Its laws, enforced by city-wide automation and tracking of its citizens, would be independent of Saudi Arabia’s, created by a slate of both local and foreign investors “in accordance with international best practice.”

So this city will not technically be part of Saudi Arabia.

It will actually be a “city-state” with its own laws, rules, regulations and judicial system.

Could it be possible that this giant “independent international zone” will one day be the home base for an “international leader”?

I don’t know.  I am just throwing that out there.

Obviously there is an agenda here.  Why else would Saudi Arabia be willing to give up a giant tract of land the size of Massachusetts for a futuristic mega-city that won’t even be under their jurisdiction?

As is the case with so many other things, this isn’t being hidden from us at all.  It is being done right out in the open, and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman is being quite clear that his intention is to make Neom the most important city on the entire planet.

But to me it sounds like a prison, and the truth is that this is the direction the entire globe is heading.

Already, virtually everything that we do is being watched, monitored or tracked somehow.  With each passing year, the global Big Brother surveillance grid becomes even more extensive, and we have very little privacy left.

So perhaps we should stop talking so much about the dystopian nightmare that is coming, because to a very large degree it is already here.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9985

War Drums: Europe Readies A Naval Task Force As Iran Threatens To “Secure” The Strait Of Hormuz

July 23, 2019 by Michael Snyder

It is funny – for decades we have never had any problems with commercial ships passing through the Persian Gulf, but all of a sudden it has become a major flashpoint.  As you will see below, the Iranians are now warning that they plan to “secure” the Strait of Hormuz, and meanwhile a plan for a European-led naval task force to confront the Iranians is rapidly coming together.  The seizure of a British tanker a few days ago really rattled British officials, and they are determined to make sure that it doesn’t happen again.  Of course the more the Persian Gulf region becomes saturated with military assets, the more likely it is that a “mistake” will happen, and it sure won’t take much of a spark to start World War 3 at this point.

Today, close to 20 percent of all the oil produced in the entire world passes through the Strait of Hormuz, and that makes it an exceedingly important waterway.  U.S. and European officials continue to stress the importance of freedom of navigation through the area, and they appear to be losing patience with the Iranians.

But Iran does not intend to back down one bit.  On Tuesday, Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araqchi said that his country “will use its best efforts” to secure the Strait of Hormuz.  The following comes from the Jerusalem Post

“Iran will use its best efforts to secure the region, particularly the Strait of Hormuz, and will not allow any disturbance in shipping in this sensitive area,” Araqchi told French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian, IRNA reported.

So what does that mean exactly?

Do the Iranians plan to keep grabbing oil tankers whenever it suits them?

The seizure of the Stena Impero pushed us dangerously close to war, and the British government is still hoping that negotiations will result in the release of that tanker.

However, the British also plan to flex their military muscles in order to keep such an incident from happening again, and they are calling for other European nations to join them

France, Italy and Denmark gave initial support for a British plan for a European-led naval mission to ensure safe shipping through the Strait of Hormuz, proposed after Iran’s seizure of a British-flagged tanker, three senior EU diplomats said on Tuesday.

The cautious backing at a meeting of EU envoys in Brussels contrasts sharply with the lukewarm response shown by European allies to a similar American call first voiced at NATO in late June, when countries feared they could make U.S.-Iranian tensions worse.

Could this be the very beginning of a “coalition of the willing”?

According to Reuters, this task force would likely include “aircraft too”, and that is definitely raising some eyebrows…

British foreign ministry and defense officials have also discussed a possible mission, which would likely involve not just ships but aircraft too, directly with their Italian, Spanish, French and German counterparts.

A senior German diplomat in Berlin said Foreign Minister Heiko Maas was in close contact with his British and French counterparts, Hunt and Jean-Yves Le Drian, to “contribute to the security” of the Gulf including on maritime security.

Meanwhile, the U.S. military is making headlines as well.  In an interview with CBS News, CENTCOM Commander General Kenneth McKenzie claimed that U.S. forces may have actually shot down at least two Iranian drones last week…

The U.S. believes it may have brought down two Iranian drones last week, rather than just the one that has been reported, CENTCOM Commander Gen. Kenneth McKenzie told CBS News’ David Martin in an interview Tuesday aboard the USS Boxer, the ship that took action against the drones. Asked by Martin whether it was “only one drone,” McKenzie revealed that he believed the Boxer had engaged two drones “successfully” and perhaps even more.

“As always it was a complex tactical picture, we believe two drones. We believe two drones were successfully — there may have been more that we are not aware of — those are the two that we engaged successfully,” said McKenzie.

We should be very thankful that there is no more shooting for the moment, but that could change at any time.

And even if things stabilize in the short-term, the truth is that it is going to be exceedingly difficult to stop the countdown to war at this point.  The U.S. and Israel have both made it exceedingly clear that they will never allow the Iranians to develop their nuclear program past a certain level, and the Iranians have been racing to move their program forward ever since the U.S. left Obama’s nuclear agreement.

Unless there is some sort of crazy miracle and another nuclear agreement happens, it appears that war is on the horizon.

Also, I wanted to mention that we just witnessed a very alarming “incident” off the coast of South Korea on Tuesday…

South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff issued a statement claiming they had fired more than 300 warning shots at a Russian A-50 command and control military aircraft early Tuesday morning after it had twice violated the country’s airspace, the first such incident between the countries.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9957

Look At This Map – It Shows Devastating Crop Losses Are Literally Happening All Over The Globe

June 30, 2019 by Michael Snyder

Let me warn you right up front – the information in this article might freak you out.  If what some experts are telling us is true, a global food crisis appears to be inevitable.  Even during good years we have a really difficult time feeding everyone on the planet, and now a major climate shift appears to be happening.  Our sun has become exceedingly quiet, and many experts believe that this is a sign that a solar minimum is now upon us.  Of course we have seen solar minimums happen quite regularly in the past, and if this is just a normal solar minimum then conditions should begin to return to normal after a couple of years.  Unfortunately, evidence continues to mount that we have entered what is known as a “grand solar minimum”.  In fact, Professor Valentina Zharkova says that what we are facing is a “super grand solar minimum”, and if that is true we are going to be facing climate chaos like we have never seen before.  During previous “grand solar minimums” the globe was gripped by devastating famines and vast numbers of people died.  Could a similar scenario potentially be in our future?

Ice Age Farmer has compiled a “Grand Solar Minimum Crop Loss Map” which you can view right here, and I appreciate our friends at ANP for pointing it out to us.  Ice Age Farmer’s map shows that there are literally dozens of locations all over the globe right now that are reporting significant crop losses, and this is really unlike anything we have ever seen before.  Some parts of our planet are dealing with horrific drought, but in the middle of the United States it just won’t stop raining.  In some areas of the world it is too cold, while others are experiencing record heat.  Everywhere we look we see extremes, and the behavior of our sun is the primary reason this is happening.

Last November I warned that we could be facing one of the coldest winters in modern times, and that is precisely what happened.  Back then top scientists were warning us that a solar minimum had arrived, and since that time the behavior of the sun has continued to confirm that hypothesis

The surface of the sun is normally a roiling, super-heated hellscape.

But Nasa images have revealed that the face of our star is looking ominously calm right now, prompting claims it’s reached a stage of its cycle called the solar minimum.

During the minimum, there are significantly fewer sunspots and its magnetic field weakens, allowing cosmic rays from outside our solar system to rain down on Earth.

This solar minimum came early, and that is exactly what we would expect if we were entering a “grand solar minimum”.  Perhaps the best known “grand solar minimum” in our history was the Maunder Minimum which stretched from 1645 to 1715

The last time a deep solar minimum was in effect was the Maunder minimum, which saw seven decades of freezing weather, began in 1645 and lasted through to 1715, and happened when sunspots were exceedingly rare.

During this period, temperatures dropped globally by 1.3 degrees celsius leading to shorter seasons and ultimately food shortages.

The food shortages during the Maunder Minimum were quite severe, and the global death toll was enormous.

Could we be facing a similar scenario this time around?

Actually, economist Martin Armstrong seems to believe that it could be even worse

The Maunder Minimum created such a deep cold in Europe and extreme weather events elsewhere that what unfolds is a series of droughts, floods, and harvest failures. Historically, this leads to massive migrations, wars and revolutions. The fatal synergy between human and natural disasters eradicated perhaps one-third of the human population during the last event and this time we are crashing more rapidly than before. Therefore, we may exceed more than a reduction in population of one-third and reach the levels of the 14th century of 50%, which was also combined with the Black Plague.

Without a doubt, our planet is behaving very strangely right now, and reports of crop failures are regularly coming in from all over the planet.

Just check out these examples

That layer of stress on the agricultural industry is only intensified when you zoom out to the international level, where farmers around the world are facing various dire situations. As one North Dakota farmer and Twitter user Jordan Gackle pointed out in a recent thread: Drought is continuing to disrupt wheat crops in Australia forcing the country to import some of its wheat from Canada. Some farmers in Canada are now reporting long stretches without rain under the hashtag #drought19. Head over to China and you’ll find that a legion of fall armyworms are spreading rapidly and devouring key grain crops.

It is becoming quite clear that food prices are going to rise substantially and that the world is going to produce a lot less food than it normally does this year.

And as I noted earlier, we have a tough time feeding everyone on the planet even during ideal conditions.  Sadly, this even includes the United States

In fact, it’s not just older Americans who are already suffering from hunger and malnourishment, with this 2017 story over at Feeding America reporting that more than 41 million Americans were suffering from hunger daily, including more than 13 million children, with this National Geographic story reporting that 1 out of every 6 Americans aren’t getting enough to eat.

So what will things look like if global food production drops 10 percent, 20 percent or even more?

We have never had to deal with anything like this in modern times, and meanwhile the population of the planet has grown from 1.6 billion in 1900 to 7.5 billion today.

We have entered the time of “the perfect storm”, and we are going to start to witness things happen that many people would consider to be unimaginable.

I truly hope that things will not be as bad as some of the experts are suggesting.  But as far as crop failures are concerned, we don’t have to speculate.  They are happening right now all over the planet, and that means that global food supplies are going to get tighter and tighter in the months ahead.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9912

Turkey Wants To Continue To Expand Into Africa In The Midst Of Sudan’s Volatile Situation

By Ted on June 3, 2019 in Featured, General, Highlight

By Walid & Theodore Shoebat

After the military overthrew the regime of Omar al-Bashir, now the people want a transition of government power given to the people. Now there are protests and today the military opened fire, killing 13.

According to a report from RT:

Sudan’s military has used live ammunition to disperse protesters in the capital, Khartoum, according to reports. A medical association close to the protesters said that at least 13 people have been killed and dozens injured.

Sudan has been ruled by the Transitional Military Council since the ousting of authoritarian president Omar al-Bashir in April. The crackdown comes as participants in a long-running sit-in outside the army’s HQ have been demanding democratic reforms and for generals to hand over power.

On Monday, security forces started an operation to clear protesters from the camp. There have been reports of gunfire and explosions heard in the centre of Khartoum and neighbouring city Omdurman. Videos by Arab media and on social media show people fleeing the site of the sit-in. The central committee of Sudanese doctors, which confirmed the deaths of protesters, accused the military council of firing live bullets at people. The council has dismissed the accusation, saying the security forces had targeted criminals.

There is a mercenary organization heavily connected with the Sudanese government called the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) which is led by one Mohamed Hamdan Dagolo or as he is better known as, “Hemeti.” In a recent banqueting meeting hall in Khartoum, in which numerous officials gathered together for a iftar dinner, Hemeti was praised with traditional Islamic ululations. There was even a prayer declared requesting Allah to bless Sudan and Hemeti, demonstrating just how much political leverage this paramilitary leader has. Now there are massive protests in Khartoum demanding a government represented by the people and not the military. Hemeti appears to be capitalizing on the situation. Its possible that he is positioning himself to be the next leader of Sudan, which is currently being ruled by a military government established after the army forced Omar al-Bashir to step down from power.

It wasn’t just Bashir who was arrested. Numerous other government officials,  including the prime minister and the head of the ruling National Congress Party, were also arrested.

Hemeti is now the second in command of the military council that is ruling Sudan.

Hemeti is “trying to depict himself as a man of the people, as a populist,” said Khalid Medani, associate professor of political science and Islamic studies at Montreal’s McGill University. While Bashir is gone, Hemeti is there to make sure that the ways of the prior regime are maintained. As Medani informs us:

“It wasn’t unlikely that there would emerge a figure from the previous regime who would basically try to upgrade authoritarianism by offering some semblance of civilian rule but at the same time making sure the remnants and the most important institutions of the old regime would remain”

Hemeti has been very politically active, showing on his social media accounts him meeting with  Khartoum-based ambassadors. At an iftar dinner for Darfuri sultans, Hemeti welcomed Saudi and American envoys, and he made sure that the Khartoum hotels informed international media of his appearances.

Just recently, while General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan visited Egypt and the United Arab Emirates, Hemati visited Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman. The two together succeeded in meeting with the three countries that are the most supportive of the military council, as well as the three most despised by the protestors who accuse Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt of interfering in their revolution.

Since these protests began in December of 2018, Hemeti has been doing two things: acting as a friend of the protestors while at the same time keeping them under control. In the first week of the protests (December 25th), Hemeti live-streamed himself via Faceook on the back of a pickup truck giving a speech to his troops expressing his support for the protestors.  He later told the Egyptian newspaper al-Ahram, that negotiations were going well and that the military council intended to hand over power to the people as soon as possible. It doesn’t look like the military council intends to give power to the people. After Bashir was thrown out, Sudan’s defense minister, Lt. Gen. Awad Mohamed Ahmed Ibn Auf said the military had toppled the regime and, in his own words: “A military council has taken power and will rule Sudan for two years”.

However, on May 13, 2019, soldiers dressed as Hemeti’s RSF opened fire on protestors, killing six. Since Bashir’s removal, the presence of the trucks of the RSF, with their conspicuous grenade launchers, has become more and more ubiquitous. The history of the RSF is quite dark. Originally, the paramilitary group was known as the Janjaweed, and it was involved in a horrific massacre of at least a quarter of a million people (according to the United Nations). According to one report from Middle East Eye:

The militias, primarily composed of Darfuri Arab fighters, were deployed by Khartoum to fight against rebels in the area. But the Janjaweed were accused of instead targeting civilian non-Arab tribes with executions, torture and rape. Hemeti was made leader of one of the largest Janjaweed militias in 2003, and then took command of the RSF when those militias were formalised in 2013, rising through the ranks as a reward for his loyalty to Khartoum while other Janjaweed leaders rebelled.

His forces have since been deployed against other rebellions in Sudan, including in South Kordofan and Blue Nile state, and have taken on anti-migration operations funded by the European Union, though they have themselves also been accused of facilitating smuggling. 

Whatever the volatile situation, we can be certain that Turkey will be pursuing the expansion of its hegemony in Sudan. Turkey has a military presence in the Sudanese island of Suakin which it established back in 2017. Shoebat.com wrote an article on Turkey’s military presence in and intentions for Sudan.

Suakin is crucial for it now becomes a military base close to the ports of Qunfudah, the port of Jeddah, the port of Laith, the port of Yanbu in Saudi Arabia, and the ports of Quseir and Safaga in Egypt. This gets Turkey closer to Egypt’s Adam’s apple and tightens the noose around Saudi Arabia especially after the Gulf crisis. Sudan’s relations with Egypt and Saudi Arabia is tense. The four countries (the Emirates, Bahrain, Egypt and Saudi Arabia) tried to pressure Sudan to compel them to stand with them against Qatar. Erdogan made his stand against Saudi Arabia standing with Qatar where Turkish military bases are also established there.

Egypt and Saudi Arabia are supposedly happy that Bashir has been toppled since he was a puppet for the Turks (according to Ahval, Turkey used Sudan to pressure Egypt after President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi overthrew the Muslim Brotherhood in 2013). What we could be looking at is a potential proxy struggle between Saudi Arabia and Turkey, and as David Hearst recently pointed out:

There are obvious dangers to turning the Sudanese revolution into a proxy struggle between the Saudis and Emiratis supporting the generals and secular forces, with Turkey and Qatar backing the Islamists.

But it does not appear that a dramatic change in the relationship between Ankara and Khartoum is going to be happening anytime soon. Turkey has been making major investments into the Sudanese economy and this is something that the Sudanese obviously don’t want to lose. Back in 2017 Erdogan said that Turkey invested around $650 million in Sudan, including $300 million worth of direct investments. No matter the situation of Sudan’s government, Turkey is going to want to continue expanding its influence in Africa. Erdogan is tremendously influential in Sudan:

Why the interest in Africa? You cannot have a world war without Africa, with all of its oil, diamonds and other rich resources. Erdogan wants not only the treasures of Egypt, but Africa. Hence why Turkey is expanding its military presence in Africa. The biggest military base in Somalia belongs to Turkey, spanning over four square kilometres and taking two years to construct.  As we read in a report from October of 2017:

Turkey has set up its biggest overseas military base in the Somali capital, Mogadishu, increasing Ankara’s presence in the Horn of Africa country.

Officially opened on Saturday, the base, which reportedly cost $50m, will train 10,000 Somali troops and has the capacity to train at least 1,500 soldiers at a time, according to Turkish and Somali officials.

Hulusi Akar, Turkey’s chief of General Staff, said at the opening ceremony for the military base:

“This is the largest training base of its kind outside of Turkey … The government of Turkey and its army will provide all the needed support to our brothers in Somalia”

Sudan has been a place where a number of outside governments have entered to expand their own influences and military industrial hegemonies.

Sudan has been called the “arm’s dump” of Africa. It was a country that had a huge absorption and circulation of arms way before South Sudan succeeded in 2011. When South Sudan did split, there was an estimated 3.2 million small arms being used in that country. In 2010 and 2011, numerous rebel and militia groups began popping up in the Jonglei and Upper Nile states, and the ownership and possession of guns has been precipitously increasing partially due to this.  

 Former West Germany started a weapons flow into Muslim dominated North Sudan. Germany even built an ammunition factory in Khartoum, which is the capital of North Sudan today. In the 1980s, East Germany (under the Soviet Union) responded to the West German’s distribution of arms into the north, by sending weapons into the more Christian dominated South Sudan. As we read in one report:

“Meanwhile, research has shown the international role in weapon supply, with former West Germany introducing automatic small arms in vast numbers to Sudan, which, until then, mainly had old British carbines. West Germany also set up the ammunition factory in Sheggera, Khartoum, in effect, providing the bullets to keep the guns firing. In the 1980s, East Germany responded by supplying the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) with AK47s via Ethiopia. In this way, Cold War animosities were played out in the Greater Horn of Africa.”

In 2009, a major German mercenary group, Asgaard, which is ran by Thomas Kaltegartner, agreed to send one hundred mercenaries to Somalia to back a Somalian warlord named Abdinur Ahmed Darman, and even train his men. According to the German publication, Der Speigel:

“Thomas Kaltegärtner, CEO of Asgaard German Security Group, confirmed a report by the German public broadcaster ARD that his company plans to send former German soldiers to Somalia.

In a December 2009 press release, Asgaard announced it had signed an “exclusive agreement on security services” with Abdinur Ahmed Darman. Darman, a Somali warlord who styles himself as the country’s president, does not recognize the legitimacy of the United Nations-backed transitional government of Somali President Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed. The agreement, the company said, would cover “all necessary measures to reintroduce security and peace to Somalia.” The country has not had a functioning central government since 1991.

According to Kaltegärtner, himself a former Bundeswehr soldier, Asgaard employees would provide security for Darman and train police and military forces. He stressed, however, that combat operations were not planned. He said that over 100 mercenaries could be involved in operations.”

In every world war, Africa is at the center of focus, getting invaded and controlled by foreign militaries. Ultimately, this is about reviving the Ottoman Empire, and the Sudanese, the Somalis, the Chadians and the Tunisians — that is, the people of Cush — are receiving Turkey in Submission.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9867

As Slow Motion Disaster Unfolds In The Midwest, FEMA Prepares For ‘Shaken Fury’ And A 7.7 Magnitude Earthquake Ripping America Apart At The New Madrid Fault Zone

Is The ‘Ultimate Clandestine Weapon Of Mass Destruction’ Being Used Upon America?  

By Stefan Stanford – All News Pipeline – Live Free Or Die

According to this May 31st story over at USA Today, what they’re calling a “stuck” weather pattern has resulted in over a month of stormy weather mayhem all across the center of the country, one that’s fueled hundreds of tornadoes and boatloads of rain and flooding, and all of thisfollowing months and months of Winter weather carnage across much of the same region.

As we read in this new story over at USA Today and see and hear in the 1st video at the bottom of this story, what’s being called a ‘slow motion disaster‘ is now taking place all along the Arkansas River with every large community surrounding it expected to see major flooding within the next 7 to 10 days. And with all of the rain and flooding posing major challenges to Arkansas’ aging levee systems, weather forecasters are warning that more heavy rain is on the way. 

As we had reported on ANP back on May 24th, following devastating winter weather and snow that continued into May, record flooding throughout the Midwest had left over a million acres of farmland unplanted and underwater in America’s ‘breadbasket‘, leading to what many believe will be food shortages and food price hikes ahead. And as we’ll explore within this ANP story, while it may very well be just a ‘coincidence‘, the record flooding that we’re witnessing now taking place as seen in the map at the top of this story is largely where America was ‘divided‘ into two parts in the so-called ‘future map of America‘ that you can see below with the flooding of the Mississippi River quite literally dividing America in half. 

The map below was taken from this June 2017 story at Forbes titled “The Shocking Doomsday Maps Of The World And The Billionaire Escape Plans. While Forbes reports the map is supposed to show what America might look like following a future ‘pole shift‘ according to its designer Gordon-Michael Scallion, their story also mentions ‘bizarre weather patterns‘ striking the Earth, along with volcanic activity, as being some of the reasons why so many billionaires are preparing for an apocalyptic event. And as we also learn within that 1st video, all of this is also happening at a time when FEMA is holding their “Shaken Fury” earthquake drills simulating a 7.7 magnitude earthquake ripping apart America at the New Madrid Seismic Zone, of which the flooding Mississippi River runs directly through. Those exercises are being held now through June 6th. 

(If you appreciate stories like this, please consider donating to ANP to help keep us in this battle for the future of America.)


As we had also reported within our May 24th story on ANP, according to a number of different people who pay attention to the kinds of weather events we’re witnessing now, the ‘stuck‘ weather pattern that has been delivering ‘weather mayhem‘ to the middle of the country could very well be ‘weather warfare upon America. So we’ll explore one theory below that this weather warfare upon America is intentionally being carried out to divide our nation quite literally in half while also destroying our nation’s primary means of producing food. As Henry Kissinger once said, “Who controls the food supply controls the people“.

While the mainstream media would tell us to put on our tinfoil hats just for talking about such a subject, as we had proven in our May 24th story, ‘weather modification‘ or ‘geoengineering‘ is very real whether or not so-called ‘authorities‘ want to admit to it. Some of the examples that we used within that story to prove weather modification is real we’ve republished directly below.

Newsweek had reported back in May of 2018 in this story titled “CHINA MAKES IT RAIN WITH A WEATHER CONTROL NETWORK TWICE THE SIZE OF TEXAS that China’s weather modification system works by seeding clouds with silver iodide particles that trigger them to release moisture.

The process involves positioning burner devices at the base of mountain ranges to send immense gusts of hot fumes and iodide upward into the sky. This prompts the clouds to produce ice crystals that descend onto Earth as rain and snow. The additional water is expected to greatly increase harvest productivity and food production in the area.

We also brought up remarks made by former deep state talking head John Brennan while he was the leader of the CIA and actually said the following to a gathering of the Council on Foreign Relations back in June of 2016.

“Another example is the array of technologies—often referred to collectively as geoengineering—that potentially could help reverse the warming effects of global climate change. One that has gained my personal attention is stratospheric aerosol injection, or SAI, a method of seeding the stratosphere with particles that can help reflect the sun’s heat, in much the same way that volcanic eruptions do. 

An SAI program could limit global temperature increases, reducing some risks associated with higher temperatures and providing the world economy additional time to transition from fossil fuels. The process is also relatively inexpensive—the National Research Council estimates that a fully deployed SAI program would cost about $10 billion yearly.

As promising as it may be, moving forward on SAI would raise a number of challenges for our government and for the international community. On the technical side, greenhouse gas emission reductions would still have to accompany SAI to address other climate change effects, such as ocean acidification, because SAI alone would not remove greenhouse gases from the atmosphere.

On the geopolitical side, the technology’s potential to alter weather patterns and benefit certain regions at the expense of others could trigger sharp opposition by some nations. Others might seize on SAI’s benefits and back away from their commitment to carbon dioxide reductions. And, as with other breakthrough technologies, global norms and standards are lacking to guide the deployment and implementation of SAI.”


And in that May 24th story we didn’t even touch upon weather modification programs in US states as this story over at TSLN from June 7th of 2018 titled “North Dakota Cloud Seeding Planes Get The Green Light confirms. From their story. 

As the summer weather rolls in, a very moody mother-nature sets the stage for natural weather modification in most states, be it drought, flooding, hail, etc., but in North Dakota, a program designed to increase rainfall and decrease hail damage has some residents questioning the science behind man-made weather modification.

Some Hettinger County residents have been trying to put an end to North Dakota Cloud Modification Project for several years. The program has pilots seeding clouds with silver iodide and dry ice to increase precipitation.

“Our goal is to end weather modification in North Dakota all together,” reported Jamie Kouba, a farmer in the county. “It’s a waste of taxpayer dollars and it’s causing harm to the citizens.”

While Hettinger County does not seed clouds anymore, six counties in the state still do — Bowman, Burke, McKenzie, Mountrail, Ward and Williams. The Ward County Commission voted last year to halt cloud seeding, but the state’s attorney Roza Larson said the Ward County Weather Modification Board has the authority to decide whether to go over the voters’ heads, so to speak.

Soooo, if previously a weather modification skeptic, do you still think that there is ‘no such thing as weather modification‘ after reading that? Seriously? What is very disturbing to us is the very last line of that last paragraph. “The Ward County Weather Modification Board has the authority to decide whether to go over the voters’ heads“. Who put the weather mod demons in charge? If it’s like that in North Dakota, one could easily venture a bet that it’s like that all across the country, too, hence the total secrecy surrounding weather modification projects and geoengineering from the msm and politicians. “It’s over our heads“. Literally. 

We also had pointed out within that May 24th story all of the different weather modification patents that are fully documented online for anyone to read. The best source out there for all of those patents in one place is right here at the website of Dane Wigington, an extensive list of weather modification patents going all the way back to 1920. Just a few of them are shown below.

1338343 – April 27, 1920 – Process And Apparatus For The Production of Intense Artificial Clouds, Fogs, or Mists

1619183 – March 1, 1927 – Process of Producing Smoke Clouds From Moving Aircraft


2480967 – September 6, 1949 – Aerial Discharge Device

2550324 – April 24, 1951 – Process For Controlling Weather

2582678 – June 15, 1952 – Material Disseminating Apparatus For Airplanes


2963975 – December 13, 1960 – Cloud Seeding Carbon Dioxide Bullet

3126155 – March 24, 1964 – Silver Iodide Cloud Seeding Generator – Referenced in 3990987

3127107 – March 31, 1964 – Generation of Ice-Nucleating Crystals


3429507 – February 25, 1969 – Rainmaker

3432208 – November 7, 1967 – Fluidized Particle Dispenser

3441214 – April 29, 1969 – Method And Apparatus For Seeding Clouds

5984239 – November 16, 1999 – Weather modification by artificial satellite


6315213 – November 13, 2001 – Method of modifying weather

6382526 – May 7, 2002 – Process and apparatus for the production of nanofibers

As Steve Quayle had written many years in his must-read book “Weather Wars & Un-Natural Disasters“, “technology will make available, to the leaders of the major nations, techniques for conducting secret warfare, of which only a bare minimum of security forces need be appraised… Techniques of weather modification could be employed to produce prolonged periods of drought or storm.” Could such technologies also be used to help split America in two?

With all of the record flooding going on in the middle of America and weather forecasters warning of much more rain to come, we had to wonder, can these heavy rains and record flooding trigger earthquakes? We didn’t have to look too far to find out. As this story over at the New Scientist reports, huge downpours of rain can trigger earthquakes in landscapes riddled with caves and channels by increasing pressure within underlying rock, suggests a new study.

It was already known that rainfall could cause tremors, but the amount of water needed is much more than previously thought, says Steve Miller, a geologist at the University of Bonn, Germany.

In recent years, geologists have documented small earthquakes that occurred after heavy rainfall in Germany, Switzerland and France. All were low in magnitude – meaning they could be detected by seismographs, but not felt by humans.

Some experts have suggested that although the rainfall was heavy, the fact that rain could trigger an earthquake at all suggests that it takes extremely little to produce a tremor. They concluded that the Earth’s crust in a delicate balance, teetering on the edge of a slight shake-up at any moment.

With the New Madrid seismic zone already overdue for a killer quake that the mere thought of left two US Generals quaking, this June of 2016 story over at The Atlantic had reported that “not far from Memphis and St. Louis, 600 million years ago, the continent tried to rip in half. It failed.” And while that ‘attempt‘ lacked the assistance of human beings, might our enemies use new clandestine weather warfare technologies against us to launch America into famine and in an attempt to split our continent in half?

As Steve Quayle warned his readers in an SQnote while linking to this story at Weather.com, “floods equal famine and weather warfare is destroying America’s ability to feed it’s people and is the ultimate clandestine weapon of war.” Steve also had warned in a note while linking to this story over at Strange Sounds last week, “what you are seeing is the total manipulation of weather warfare and geo-engineered storms“.

And while we’re unable to prove that weather warfare is being waged against America (and if ‘weather warfare‘ was REALLY being carried out upon us right now in preparation of dividing and invading our nation, does anyone think that they’d tell us?), great damage has already been done to the lands where America has gotten much of our food going back 100’s of years, causing farmers to leave the profession and hinting of spiking food prices and famine ahead. 

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9863

Secretary Of State Mike Pompeo And Jared Kushner Head To Bilderberg 2019 To Discuss The Coming ‘New Strategic Order’ With The Global Elites

The White House is making itself felt at this year’s Bilderberg conference, by sending along not only Mike Pompeo, but Trump’s deal making diplomat son-in-law, Jared Kushner, and two members of his National Security Council. Not to be outdone, the Pentagon has sent two senior officials: their top military strategist and the technical director for AI. As the war machine gets smarter, and every last bit of weaponry becomes AI-enhanced, the lines between Silicon Valley and the Pentagon start to get awfully blurry. Sniff this year’s Bilderberg and you can smell this new kind of war: “cyber threats” and “the weaponization of social media” are on the agenda.

by Geoffrey Grider June 1, 2019

The Americans have come to Bilderberg in force this year. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo arrived on Saturday afternoon in a motorcade so long it stretched halfway back to Geneva. He’ll be sharing his thoughts on “A New Strategic Order” with the head of NATO, two prime ministers, the German foreign minister, the King of Holland, and any number of finance bosses and billionaires, many of them from the world of tech.

When I saw the headline for this article on Drudge today, I  laughed out loud, I truly did. Why the very idea of Mike Pompeo, who just a few weeks ago was in a church in Texas talking about the Rapture, attending the annual super-secret Bilderberg meeting was ludicrous. Bilderberg is where the Illuminati plots out their plans for global domination. So what was Mike Pompeo there to talk about? Nothing less than the coming New World Order, that’s what. And who was coming along to keep Pompeo company? Why, look, it’s Jared Kushner, Central Casting’s go-to guy when people are looking to audition for the role of Antichrist in the next installment of ‘Left Behind‘. Except this is no novel, and it’s actually happening.

“Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.” 2 Thessalonians 2:3,4 (KJV)

Watching all this end times activity assemble itself is like watching someone who is overfilling a water balloon. It gets bigger, and bigger and bigger, and you are unable to look away because you don’t want to miss the spectacular moment when the whole thing explodes. That is, from a prophecy perspective, what we are seeing right now. We are making the transition from the pages of end times novels to the pages of scripture where the end times are unfolding in front of us. Whatever you do don’t look away, this is one explosion you do not want to miss.

Pompeo and Kushner head to Bilderberg Meeting, a mysterious gathering of the global elite

FROM NEWSWEEK: A slew of Silicon Valley luminaries are attending this year’s elite transatlantic conference at a heavily-guarded five-star hotel on the shores of Lake Geneva. They include Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, who is making his first appearance at the secretive summit, and his fellow Microsoft board member, Reid Hoffman, who’s a regular face at the Bilderberg buffet.

The White House is making itself felt at this year’s conference, by sending along not only Pompeo, but Trump’s deal making diplomat son-in-law, Jared Kushner, and two members of his National Security Council. Not to be outdone, the Pentagon has sent two senior officials: their top military strategist and the technical director for AI.

As the war machine gets smarter, and every last bit of weaponry becomes AI-enhanced, the lines between Silicon Valley and the Pentagon start to get awfully blurry. Sniff this year’s Bilderberg and you can smell this new kind of war: “cyber threats” and “the weaponization of social media” are on the agenda. And around the table are the head of GCHQ and the director of NATO’s new StratCom Centre of Excellence, which spearheads “digital engagement” and psychological warfare.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is on a weeklong trip to Europe where he is raising sensitive issues with national leaders — from Iranian missiles to Chinese technology to the economic collapse of Venezuela — but the most colorful conversations could take place this weekend out of public earshot in a secretive conclave at a Swiss lakeside resort. In Montreux, on the eastern shore of Lake Geneva, political and business leaders from Western nations are gathering for the 67th Bilderberg Meeting, an annual forum in which participants agree not to reveal exactly what was said or who said it. It is a shadow version of Davos, the elite annual winter conference in the Swiss Alps that President Trump has attended once but has also criticized. source

This blurring of tech and war takes physical form in some of the participants at Bilderberg. Longtime conference insider and former Google CEO Eric Schmidt chairs the Pentagon’s Defense Innovation Board and also heads up the new National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence. Two other members of the Defense Innovation Board are here in Montreux: Reid Hoffman, and the psychologist Adam M. Grant.

The Meetings are held under the Chatham House Rule, which states that participants are free to use the information received, but neither the identity nor the affiliation of the speaker(s) nor of any other participant may be revealed.

According to the group, this is this year’s agenda:

1. A Stable Strategic Order

2. What Next for Europe?

3. Climate Change and Sustainability

4. China

5. Russia

6. The Future of Capitalism

7. Brexit

8. The Ethics of Artificial Intelligence

9. The Weaponization of Social Media

10. The Importance of Space

11. Cyber Threats

As can be seen, the members will be discussing (plotting?) with regard to issues of the day that seem to be moving in a direction away from freedom.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9856

Floods And Drought Devastate Crops All Over The Planet – Could A Global Food Crisis Be Coming?

May 21, 2019 by Michael Snyder

It looks like global food production could be well below expectations in 2019, and that could spell big trouble in the months ahead.  In recent weeks, I have written extensively about the problems that we have been experiencing here in the United States.  As many as a million calves were lost to the flooding that hit the state of Nebraska in March, farmers have planted less than half of the corn that is normally in the ground by this time of the year, and a lot of the crops that have been planted in the middle of the country are really struggling due to extremely wet soil.  But it isn’t just the United States that is facing a very troubling year.  Earlier today, one of my readers sent me an article entitled “Global food crisis ahead as extreme weather events devastate crops and fields around the world” which I would encourage everyone to read.  In that article, we are told that after the worst drought in 116 years Australia has actually been forced to import wheat.  And according to the Guardian, this is the first time in 12 years that this has happened…

Australia is planning to import wheat for the first time in 12 years after drought across the eastern states saw grain production fall 20% last year.

The Department of Agriculture and Water Resources confirmed this week it had issued a bulk import permit to allow wheat to be brought in from Canada to be processed for the domestic market.

Normally, Australia exports a tremendous amount of wheat.

In fact, they were the fifth largest exporter of wheat in the entire world last year.

But now they are having to bring wheat in from Canada, and that is a very ominous sign.

The article on Strange Sounds also detailed crop failures in Italy, France, Mexico and Argentina.  I will not reproduce all of that information here.

But one major crop failure that was missed in that article is the massive rice crop failure in the Philippines

More than P350 million worth of damage on rice crops due to drought was recorded by the Office of the Provincial Agriculturist (OPA)-Capiz.

Per damage assessment report as of May 10, OPA information officer Florie May Castro said the damage on rice crops already reached P358,452,650 in the entire province of Capiz due to the dry spell.

All over the world, crops are being devastated by floods, drought and colder than expected temperatures, and many are desperately hoping for a return to normalcy for global weather patterns.

Things are particularly bad in North Korea.  At this point, hardly any rain at all has fallen so far in 2019…

The rainfall is the lowest amount since 1982. Thus far in May, North Korea has seen 0.02 inches of rain. However, Pyongyang City, Nampho City, Kangwon Province and North and South Hwanghae provinces have seen no rainfall.

According to KCNA, if precipitation for the rest of May does not exceed 50% of the average annual precipitation, North Korea’s January to May rainfall totals will be about 3 inches, the lowest amount ever recorded for that time period.

With so little rain, farmers have had an exceedingly difficult time growing anything at all, and at this point the nation is facing an enormous food deficit

Adding to the struggles is a widespread food shortage. The United Nations reported earlier this month that North Korea has a food deficit of 1.36 million metric tons. The 2018-2019 food crop production is an estimated 4.9 million metric tons, the lowest since the 2008-2009 season.

On top of everything else, let us not forget that African Swine Fever is absolutely devastating the global pig population.

According to the Hill, it is being projected that 200 million hogs could die from the disease in China alone…

Pork prices are expected rise as African swine fever decimates Chinese pigs, The Wall Street Journal reported Monday.

McDonald’s, Burger King, Jimmy Dean and Dunkin’ all reportedly expect sausage and bacon prices to rise this year as China has to import pigs to make up for the 200 million hogs that are expected to die from the disease.

To put that in perspective, that is more pigs than the entire U.S. pork industry produces in an entire year.  For much more on this ongoing crisis, please see my previous article entitled ‘“An Estimated 150-200 Million Pigs” Have Been Hit By A Global Plague Of Biblical Proportions’.

Here in the United States, endless rain and unprecedented flooding have been the biggest problems.  The previous 12 months have been the wettest in all of U.S. history, and the middle of the country just got hammered by yet another series of severe storms

Heavy rain, high winds and hail has swept across the central states, bringing devastation to the region during a brutally wet spring period, leaving 22 million people braced for more flash flooding.

Four million residents were under a flash flood ’emergency warning’ on Tuesday morning, including in Oklahoma, where as much as five feet of water entered homes in Hominy, to the northeast of the state.

Some 22 tornadoes have been reported so far across Oklahoma, Texas, Kansas and Missouri, while rescue crews in boats pulled at least 50 people from flood waters as heavy downpours inundated roads and homes, said Oklahoma Emergency Management Agency.

Our planet is changing, and global weather patterns are going to keep shifting.  The “new normal” is going to look a whole lot different from the “old normal”, and we all need to get prepared for a very uncertain future.

Even during the good years, the world has really struggled to feed everyone.

Now that we are facing catastrophic crop failures all over the planet, what will we do?

Many believe that a global food crisis is looming, and without a doubt U.S. consumers will soon be paying much higher prices when they visit the grocery store.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9837

Turkish Lira Tumbles After Trump Terminates Preferential Trade Agreement In Retaliation For S-400 Order

by Tyler Durden

Thu, 05/16/2019 – 21:13

For months, the Trump administration had been warning, at first, then outright threatening Turkey against following through with an agreement struck last year to purchase the advanced Russian S-400 missile defense system, and despite several “fake news” reports that Erdogan had canceled the deal with Moscow, Turkey ultimately said it would go ahead and receive the Russian missiles, demonstrative flipping off its NATO allies.

But if Erdogan was hoping that Trump would be all bark and no bite when it comes to retaliating against this painfully obvious snub of its “western” allies, well he had another thing coming.

Late on Thursday, the Turkish lira suddenly tumbled when Washington made it clear that this aggression will not stand, and the White House said it had terminated a preferential trade agreement with Turkey, finding the country no longer needed help as a developing country. However, the US did halve tariffs on Turkish steel from 50% to 25%.

Stating that Turkey received the preferential treatment in 1975 under the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP), which allows products to enter the US duty-free, US President Donald Trump said in the proclamation, “I have determined that, based on its level of economic development, it is appropriate to terminate Turkey’s designation as a beneficiary developing country effective May 17, 2019.”

“Consistent with my determination that it is appropriate to terminate the designation of Turkey as a beneficiary developing country under the GSP, effective May 17, 2019, I have determined to remove it from the list of developing country WTO Members exempt from application of the safeguard measures on CSPV products and large residential washers,” the proclamation said.

Mitigating the move, the White House also said that it will “remove the higher tariff on steel imports from Turkey” and instead impose a 25 percent ad valorem tariff on the imports from Turkey, “commensurate with the tariff imposed on such articles imported from most countries.”

White House explained that the change is due to imports of steel articles from Turkey falling by 48% in 2018, “with the result that the domestic industry’s capacity utilization has improved at this point to approximately the target level recommended” in Commerce Sec.’s report.

In March, US Trade Rep Robert Lighthizer noted the administration’s intention to remove Turkey from the list of nations benefiting from the GSP.

The announcement comes at a very painful time for Turkey, which has been gripped in a stagflationary recession since March 2019, which has sent the Lira plunging, while the country’s inflation has soared. Predictably, with traders already on edge, and looking at how the US could retaliate for Erdogan’s unwillingness to budge on the Russian S-400 order,  the Turkish lira tumbled as much as 1%, as the USDTRY spiked from 6.058 to 6.10 before recouping some losses.

Earlier today, Moody’s warned that if the Turkish government didn’t put forward “a credible broad-based plan to address the structural issues” and avoid a downgrade, “and in the near-term dampen the market volatility pressure on the lira,” it would result in a downgrading of the country’s sovereign credit rating.

According to Moody’s, the Turkish government’s interest payments rose over 30% in nominal terms in 2018 and almost 50% in the first three months of 2019. The credit rating agency said it expects interest payments to reach 8.2% of government revenue this year, up from a mere 5.9% in 2017, “eroding” the government’s fiscal strength.

But the bigger risk facing Turkey is that the amount of foreign denominated debt repayments for the balance of 2019 exceed the nation’s entire stock of FX reserves, excluding gold.

Which means that within a few months, Erdogan may be forced to make the same choice as Venezuela: liquidate the nation’s gold ,or hyperinflate. The third option, admit defeat and beg for an IMF bailout will never happen as long as “executive president” Erdogan is in charge.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9825