Hang The Bankers http://www.hangthebankers.com Wed, 01 Apr 2015 05:14:16 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.1.1 US led ‘War on Terror’ has killed 1,300,000 people http://www.hangthebankers.com/us-war-on-terror-killed-1300000-people/ http://www.hangthebankers.com/us-war-on-terror-killed-1300000-people/#comments Wed, 01 Apr 2015 05:14:16 +0000 http://www.hangthebankers.com/?p=24308
A report by Nobel Peace Prize recipients and other organizations criticized mainstream media for grossly underreporting the death tolls in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan.

The U.S.-led “war on terror” which began Sept. 11, 2001, has left at least 1.3 million people dead – mostly civilians – in 12 years in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan, a 101-page report revealed.

The report, called “Body Count,” written by 1985 Nobel Peace Prize winners Physicians for Social Responsibility and by Physicians for Global Survival and International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War, criticizes the mainstream media and the United States and its allies for grossly and intentionally underestimating death tolls in the three countries.

“​There is probably no other war that has seen such a fierce and drawn-out controversy surrounding the number of its victims. One main reason for this is the lack of legitimacy for the U.S.-led attack on Iraq – even in the U.S. itself,” the report states. “The original pretexts for going to war quickly turned out to be spurious, and from then on only the ‘liberation of the country from a violent dictatorship’ and the ‘democratization’ and ‘stabilization’ of Iraq remained as justification for the war and occupation.”

US soldiers dust

The authors of the report accuse the mainstream media of manipulating information in order to “laboriously” paint a false image of a crisis in Iraq to justify a U.S.-led intervention in the country. They also say that the amount of people killed during the United States invasion is comparable to genocide.

“The numbers relayed by the media (previously 43,000 and now 110,000) should in themselves be terrifying enough, as they correspond to the annihilation of an entire city’s population. But apparently they are still perceived as tolerable and, moreover, even easy to explain given the picture of excessive religiously motivated violence. The figure of 655,000 deaths in the first three war years alone, however, clearly points to a crime against humanity approaching genocide,” the report states.

In Iraq alone, the U.S. intervention cost the lives of about 1 million people, while their war in Afghanistan left over 220,000 people dead and 80,000 in Pakistan, according to the report dated March 2015. The authors of the report commented that the death toll estimates are “conservative,” meaning the number of people killed could be greater. It investiagated the number of deaths in the three countries between 2001-2013.

“The figure is approximately 10 times greater than that of which the public, experts and decision makers are aware,” the study’s authors wrote. They added that “this is only a conservative estimate,” saying the real death toll could be “in excess of 2 million.”

In the case of Iraq, the report added, the amount of people killed amounts to 5 percent of their population.

The Body Count report also highlights the criminal aspect of the U.S. drone attacks in Pakistan, where most of the victims were civilians, including children.

The report suggests that U.S. citizens have been lied too, as they assume that approximately 9,900 Iraqis were killed during the U.S. occupation of Iraq. It adds that U.S. public opinion could perhaps be far more outraged if they knew the actual number of people killed in Iraq due directly or indirectly to the U.S. intervention.

War on terror infographic

Source: http://www.telesurtv.net/english/news/US-War-on-Terror-Leaves-1.3-Million-Dead-in-Three-Countries-20150330-0011.html

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5 million Venezuelans sign petition against US aggression and interference http://www.hangthebankers.com/venezuelans-sign-petition-against-us-aggression/ http://www.hangthebankers.com/venezuelans-sign-petition-against-us-aggression/#comments Wed, 01 Apr 2015 01:05:14 +0000 http://www.hangthebankers.com/?p=24320
Rejecting what they see as interference in Venezuela’s internal affairs, over five million people across the country have signed a petition demanding that the US president repeals his executive order that declared Caracas an extraordinary security threat.

“We have collected more than 5 million signatures and we want to call on the Venezuelan people to keep on going to reach 10 million,” Jorge Rodriguez, mayor of Caracas and coordinator of the initiative told Venezolana de Television.

For the past week plazas, government offices and buildings opened their doors seeking to collect some 10 million signatures against Washington’s policy towards the Latin American country.

Nicolas Maduro Venezuela President

“Our intention is to deliver the collected signatures to the President of the United States, Barack Obama, as clear evidence that the people of Venezuela reject the crude interference in our internal affairs,” Rodriguez added.

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, who has set a goal of collecting at least 10 million signatures – about a third of the country’s total population – ahead of the Summit of the Americas taking place April 10-11 in Panama, also called on people to continue their support.

“Let us continue supporting the fatherland. Signatures are being collected at public squares and door-to-door. We have reached 5 million and we will collect 10 million,”Maduro said on Twitter.

Earlier this month, Obama issued an executive order to impose further sanctions against Venezuela and declared the country an “unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security.” The sanctions target seven individuals accused by Washington of alleged human rights violations and “public corruption.”

In response, the Venezuelan lawmakers granted Maduro a right to rule by decree till the end of the year to defend the country’s integrity and sovereignty against “imperialist threats” from the US government.

Venezuela yankee go home

Maduro’s crusade against US interference in his country’s affairs has received wide support across the Latin American region. The president of Ecuador, Rafael Correa, joined the campaign launched by the Venezuelan government and signed a petition which said that “Venezuela is not a threat.”

“This is not about being for or against a government, it is to ensure respect for international law,”Correa said last week. “We are collecting million signatures to tell Obama that’s enough, Latin America has already changed.”

Source: http://rt.com/news/245413-venezuela-petition-us-aggression/

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Saudi airstrike on refugee camp kills 40 in Yemen http://www.hangthebankers.com/saudi-airstrike-refugee-camp-kills-40-yemen/ http://www.hangthebankers.com/saudi-airstrike-refugee-camp-kills-40-yemen/#comments Wed, 01 Apr 2015 00:28:34 +0000 http://www.hangthebankers.com/?p=24310
An air strike in Yemen by the Saudi-led coalition has killed at least 40 people and wounded about 200 at a camp for internal refugees, a human rights group has said.

Of the injured, 25 were severely injured in the raids, a spokesman for the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) told the Guardian.

Of the dead, three were government soldiers sent to protect the camp and two of the wounded were soldiers, said Joel Millman, IOM’s press officer.

The camp, known as al-Mazraq, houses about 5,000 people and was established in 2001 by the United Nations in Hajjah province to accommodate Yemenis displaced from the capital, Sana’a. Many of its residents suffer from malnourishment.

Yemen refugee camp

Those wounded in the raids, which took place at 3.30-4.30pm local time, were evacuated to medical facilities, the spokesman said. Humanitarian workers said the attack apparently targeted a nearby base for Houthi fighters.

One aid worker said earlier that the strike had hit a truck of Houthi militiamen at the gate to al-Mazraq camp, killing nine camp residents, two guards and an unknown number of fighters, Reuters reported.

The Yemeni foreign minister, Riyadh Yassin, blamed Houthi artillery for the explosion at the camp.

Saudi Arabia did not immediately respond to allegations of civilian casualties, but a spokesman for the coalition is expected to address the subject at the daily press briefing on the campaign in the Saudi defence ministry.

IOM’s security chief on the scene described seeing the strikes, one 500 metres from the IOM office, which shook the building and rattled nearby windows. IOM said a medical facility in the camp and the camp management building were hit in the attack.

IOM still has hundreds of staff on the ground in Yemen, including in Sa’ada, the Houthi stronghold in northern Yemen, where a coalition of Arab states led by Saudi Arabia launched a military intervention last week to stem the advance of rebels backed by Iran.

The Houthi rebels, who are members of the Zaydi Shia sect, took control of the capital Sana’a last year and placed its president, Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, under house arrest.

Hadi escaped to his southern stronghold of Aden in early March, and the rebels attempted to storm his redoubt aided by troops loyal to the former president, Ali Abdullah Saleh, who was ousted after Arab spring-style protests in a deal negotiated by the Gulf states.

Hadi fled Aden to Riyadh late last week after calling for military intervention. The Saudi-led coalition began an aerial campaign in the early hours of Thursday, and have pledged to continue the air strikes until they achieve their objective of rescuing Hadi’s government.

Saudi air strike

The coalition, which is backed by the US, has not ruled out a ground invasion of Yemen to halt the Houthi advance. The campaign reflects the growing fears of Sunni Arab states at Iran’s growing influence in Yemen, Iraq, Syria and Lebanon.

An Arab summit over the weekend backed the Saudi-led intervention and pledged to create a unified military force that would respond to emergencies in the region.

On Monday, a senior Pakistani government official said his country would be sending troops to Saudi Arabia as part of the coalition, which also includes Egypt, the UAE, Qatar, Kuwait, Sudan and Morocco.

“We have already pledged full support to Saudi Arabia in its operation against rebels and will join the coalition,” the unnamed official was quoted by Reuters as saying.
The coalition claims it has established air superiority in Yemen and destroyed Houthi-held air defences, planes, military facilities and ammunition depots.

Saudi Arabia’s King Salman chaired a cabinet meeting on Monday afternoon in which he claimed the operations would enhance “international and regional peace and security”, and said the kingdom was ready to host talks between political factions that wanted peace in Yemen.

A statement read by the information minister, Adel al-Turaifi after the meeting said the aim of the campaign, named Decisive Storm, was to “protect Yemen and its people from the aggression of the Houthi militias that are supported by regional powers whose goal is to establish hegemony over Yemen and to make it a base for its influence in the region,” in a reference to Iran.

Source: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/mar/30/air-strike-refugee-camp-houthi-controlled-northern-yemen-kills-at-least-21

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Jade Helm: Is the US preparing for martial law or WW3? http://www.hangthebankers.com/jade-helm-martial-law-ww3/ http://www.hangthebankers.com/jade-helm-martial-law-ww3/#comments Tue, 31 Mar 2015 02:30:37 +0000 http://www.hangthebankers.com/?p=24304
The upcoming Jade Helm exercise, conducted by the US military across seven states has been attacked as a preparation for martial law, but could in fact be part of a much more sinister project.

In the past several days, leaked plans for seven-state a US Special Operations Command (SOCOM) exercise in which states role-play as countries have made rounds across both news sites and conspiracy theorist circuits, with the latter ringing alarm, calling the drills a preparation for martial law.

However, considering layout of the states used in the exercise, as well as their climate and terrain, the intent could be a preparation for an invasion of Iran and a Middle East-wide war.

According to the leaked proposal for the operation, service members will practice:

- Operating outside the normal support mechanisms
– Adapting to unfamiliar terrain, social and economic conditions
– Operating in and around communities where anything out the ordinary will be spotted and reported (Locals are the first to notice something out of place)
– The opportunity to work with civilians to gain their trust and an understanding of the issues

The main focus of the exercise appears to be Texas, including inhabited areas of Texas. The operation will include Army Special Forces (Green Berets), Navy SEALS, US Marine Corps Expeditionary Unites, US Army 82nd Airborne Division, as well as USAF and USMC SOCOM and “Interagency partners,” which together sounds more like a team that would invade a country, rather than a hostage-rescue operation or a plan to build homes for hurricane-devastated children.

United States Middle East map

A possible layout of the countries that US states that are part of Jade Helm exercises are role-playing as.

Texas — Islamic Republic of Iran

Texas, colored red for “hostile,” is likely a simulation of an invasion of Iran. Although it does not have the optimal terrain to simulate Iran, the proposal for the exercise appears to have chosen Texas for its Realistic Military Training because local authorities and the population are most receptive

The simulated invasion appears to be planned with a Central Joint Special Operations Task Force (CJSOTF), the headquarters,  as well as the Home Station, where the service members involved in the exercise would likely begin, at the Elgin Air Force Base, across the Gulf of Mexico, in Florida. This could mean that the simulated invasion of Iran is executed from a very remote place, such as in the simulated United States, or across the Persian Gulf.

Meanwhile, the local Special Operations Task Force (SOTF) would be based at the nearer Camp Shelby, in Missisippi, possibly a simulated Saudi Arabia, and the island (flight deck) of the USS John C. Stennis, a Nimitz-class aircraft carrier, likely stationed near the coast of the simulated Iran.

Within the simulated Iran, there would be a Joint Operations Access Exercise (JOAX), a US Army Airborne landing, conducted together with other units, deployed inland, likely to plant a force behind enemy lines. In addition, a Contingency Response Force (CRF) would land on the coast and practice the ground invasion.

The operations in Texas will involve eight Operational Detachment Alpha (ODA) US Army Special Forces groups, four unidentified Operational Detachment Groups (ODG), a US Marines Special Operations Team (MSOT) and the Naval Special Warfare Training Unit (NSWUT), among others.

New Mexico — Iraq

New Mexico

New Mexico, viewed from Amtrak’s Southwest Chief

New Mexico is a state that has vast swathes of desert, like Iraq. Iraq has close ties with Iran, which could be a reason for why it is colored brown for “uncertain, leaning hostile,” which Iraq would likely be if Iran was to be invaded.

However, Iraq does have some US military installations, which could be simulated with the northern and southern Advanced Operational Bases (AOB).

Utah — Syria

Utah

Bonneville Salt Flats 361

Like Syria, which would be considered hostile in case of an Iran invasion, Utah is colored red. In addition, like parts of Syria, Utah has both mountains and flatlands.

Utah will be home to a Large Scale Exercise (LSE), in USMC terms means fighting the army of a simulated country. The exercise is set in an uninhabited area, suggesting an actual simulated battle against a Syrian Army opposing force. In addition, two unidentified Operational Detachment Groups (ODG) would be dispatched to the capital, which could mean a simulated covert operation in Damascus.

Colorado — Turkey

Colorado

In this April 20, 2006, file photo, Hildale, Utah, sits at the base of Red Rock Cliff mountains with its sister city, Colorado City, Ariz., in the foreground

Colorado is a largely mountainous state, like Turkey, and it is colored blue for “permissive,” which means that aircraft and troops would be able to move through the state. Turkey as a NATO member would similarly be expected to fulfill such obligations.

Nevada and Arizona — Lebanon and Jordan

Nevada and Arizona

Several C-17 Globemaster IIIs, C-130 Hercules and a B-1 Lancer park on the flightline May 31, 2013, at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev

Phoenix, Arizona will be the site of the Special Forces’ Operational Detachment Headquarters (ODH) and a Marine Corps (MC) site, likely simulating Jordan’s capital Amman, which has been the site of Marine Corps deployments in recent years. However, although Phoenix is in a largely desert environment, it is also next to a mountain range, unlike Amman.

In addition, Arizona is colored light blue, making it neutral but leaning friendly, which could be the status of Lebanon when it comes to an operation against Syria, while Nevada is blue, permissive, which could be the status of Jordan. Such an arrangement suggest that the geographic and diplomatic statuses could have been switched to preserve political realism in the situation.

California — Israel and Palestine

California

A U.S. Border Patrol vehicle, right, drives along a road running alongside the border structures that separate Tijuana, Mexico, left, from San Diego Thursday, June 13, 2013, in San Diego

California generally has a soft Mediterranean climate, like Israel, and would be permissive to US military movements, as Israel would be. There are no deployments planned to California, as the simulated invasion of Iran would likely not have much of an impact on the situation there.

The “insurgent pocket” likely represents both the inland West Bank and the coastal Gaza Strip, which would be hostile to the operation and would not allow the US military to operate in the area. However, it is also possible that California is a simulation of Lebanon, and the “insurgent pocket” is a Hezbollah-controlled area that would be opposed to a US invasion of Iran.

Source: http://sputniknews.com/us/20150329/1020185282.html

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Clinton Foundation funded by Ukrainian Oligarch http://www.hangthebankers.com/clinton-foundation-ukrainian-oligarch/ http://www.hangthebankers.com/clinton-foundation-ukrainian-oligarch/#comments Mon, 30 Mar 2015 14:50:09 +0000 http://www.hangthebankers.com/?p=24298
Between 2009 and 2013, including when Mrs. Clinton was secretary of state, the Clinton Foundation received at least $8.6 million from the Victor Pinchuk Foundation, according to that foundation, which is based in Kiev, Ukraine.

It was created by Mr. Pinchuk, whose fortune stems from a pipe-making company. He served two terms as an elected member of the Ukrainian Parliament and is a proponent of closer ties between Ukraine and the European Union.

In 2008, Mr. Pinchuk made a five-year, $29 million commitment to the Clinton Global Initiative, a wing of the foundation that coordinates charitable projects and funding for them but doesn’t handle the money. The pledge was to fund a program to train future Ukrainian leaders and professionals “to modernize Ukraine,” according to the Clinton Foundation. Several alumni are current members of the Ukrainian Parliament. Actual donations so far amount to only $1.8 million, a Pinchuk foundation spokesman said, citing the impact of the 2008 financial crisis.

The Pinchuk foundation said its donations were intended to help to make Ukraine “a successful, free, modern country based on European values.” It said that if Mr. Pinchuk was lobbying the State Department about Ukraine, “this cannot be seen as anything but a good thing.”

– From the Wall Street Journal article: Clinton Charity Tapped Foreign Friends

Hillary Clinton Foundation

When I first came across the title to this article, I didn’t think much of it. In fact, I almost didn’t even click the link thinking it was just a repeat of a prior expose I highlighted in the post: Hillary Clinton Exposed Part 2 – Clinton Foundation Took Millions From Countries That Also Fund ISIS.

Fortunately, I did decide to take a look and pretty soon my jaw absolutely hit the floor. Although the Wall Street Journal didn’t play up the connection, I was stunned to see that of all the oligarchs connected to foreign governments who donated to the Clinton Foundation while she was Secretary of State, Ukraine was at the very top. I thought this to be strange, but as I read on I just couldn’t believe how connected the main donor was to the current regime in power. Considering this is the main geopolitical hotspot on earth right now, many, many questions need to be asked.

Let’s also recall some of the more shady aspects of the new government in Ukraine by taking a look back at the post, Made in the USA – How the Ukrainian Government is Giving Away Citizenships so Foreigners Can Run the Country. Here are a few excerpts:

Claims that the new government in Ukraine is nothing more than a Western puppet Parliament have been swirling around consistently since February. Nevertheless, I think it’s very significant that the takeover is now overt, undeniable and completely out in the open. Nothing proves this fact more clearly than the recent and sudden granting of citizenship to three foreigners so that they can take top posts in the government.

At the top of the list is American, Natalie Jaresko, who runs private equity fund Horizon Capital. She will now be Ukraine’s Finance Minister, and I highly doubt she will be forced to pay the IRS Expatriation Tax (one set of laws for the rich and powerful, another set of laws for the peasants). For Economy Minister, a Lithuanian investment banker, Aivaras Abromavicius, will take the reins. Health Minister will be Alexander Kvitashvili of Georgia.

Clinton Foundation donors

Now read the following from the WSJ:

The Clinton Foundation swore off donations from foreign governments when Hillary Clinton was secretary of state. That didn’t stop the foundation from raising millions of dollars from foreigners with connections to their home governments, a review of foundation disclosures shows.

Some donors have direct ties to foreign governments. One is a member of the Saudi royal family. Another is a Ukrainian oligarch and former parliamentarian. Others are individuals with close connections to foreign governments that stem from their business activities. Their professed policy interests range from human rights to U.S.-Cuba relations.

All told, more than a dozen foreign individuals and their foundations and companies were large donors to the Clinton Foundation in the years after Mrs. Clinton became secretary of state in 2009, collectively giving between $34 million and $68 million, foundation records show. Some donors also provided funding directly to charitable projects sponsored by the foundation, valued by the organization at $60 million.

The foreign donors reached by The Wall Street Journal said they contributed to the foundation for charitable, not political reasons.

Former President Bill Clinton promised the Obama administration the foundation wouldn’t accept most foreign-government donations while his wife was secretary of state. The agreement didn’t place limits on donations from foreign individuals or corporations. 

Between 2009 and 2013, including when Mrs. Clinton was secretary of state, the Clinton Foundation received at least $8.6 million from the Victor Pinchuk Foundation, according to that foundation, which is based in Kiev, Ukraine. It was created by Mr. Pinchuk, whose fortune stems from a pipe-making company. He served two terms as an elected member of the Ukrainian Parliament and is a proponent of closer ties between Ukraine and the European Union.

In 2008, Mr. Pinchuk made a five-year, $29 million commitment to the Clinton Global Initiative, a wing of the foundation that coordinates charitable projects and funding for them but doesn’t handle the money. The pledge was to fund a program to train future Ukrainian leaders and professionals “to modernize Ukraine,” according to the Clinton Foundation. Several alumni are current members of the Ukrainian Parliament. Actual donations so far amount to only $1.8 million, a Pinchuk foundation spokesman said, citing the impact of the 2008 financial crisis.

During Mrs. Clinton’s time at the State Department, Mr. Schoen, the pollster, registered as a lobbyist for Mr. Pinchuk, federal records show. Mr. Schoen said he and Mr. Pinchuk met several times with Clinton aides including Melanne Verveer, a Ukrainian-American and then a State Department ambassador-at-large for global women’s issues. The purpose, Mr. Schoen said, was to encourage the U.S. to pressure Ukraine’s then-President Viktor Yanukovych to free his jailed predecessor, Yulia Tymoshenko.

Mr. Schoen said his lobbying was unrelated to the donations. “We were not seeking to use any leverage or any connections or anything of the sort relating to the foundation,” he said.

Please Schoen, don’t piss on my leg and tell me it’s raining.

The Pinchuk foundation said its donations were intended to help to make Ukraine “a successful, free, modern country based on European values.” It said that if Mr. Pinchuk was lobbying the State Department about Ukraine, “this cannot be seen as anything but a good thing.”

Oh certainly, all you have to do is take a brief look at Ukraine to see what a wonderful thing it has been.

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia wasn’t allowed to give to the foundation while Mrs. Clinton was at the State Department. But several prominent Saudi Arabian businessmen gave millions.

• Victor Dahdaleh, a London businessman whose foundation contributed between $1 million and $5 million, has ties to Bahrain’s state-owned aluminum company. He was the intermediary between the state-owned Aluminum Bahrain B.S.C. and Alcoa World Alumina, which is majority owned by Alcoa Inc. Last year, he was acquitted in London on charges of bribing Bahraini officials to secure contracts for the Alcoa firm. In the U.S., the Alcoa affiliate pleaded guilty last year to corruption charges, and the Justice Department said an investigation into the matter remains open. 

Rilin Enterprises, part of a privately held Chinese construction, infrastructure and port-management company, made a $2 million foundation pledge. The company was founded and is run by Wang Wenliang, a member of the National People’s Congress, China’s formal parliamentary body. Mr. Wang didn’t respond to a request to speak with him during the annual meeting earlier this month.

Mr. Wang is the former municipal official of Dandong, a city of 2.4 million in the Liaoning province on China’s border with North Korea. His company now controls that city’s port, a major trade route into North Korea.

The Clinton Foundation was unaware Mr. Wang was a delegate to the NPC, said a foundation official.

One of Mr. Wang’s firms was a contractor for the new Chinese Embassy in Washington. 

In today’s fraudulent and rigged oligarch economy, this is what we call a nice “return on cronyism.”

Source: http://libertyblitzkrieg.com/2015/03/20/clinton-foundations-deep-financial-ties-to-ukrainian-oligarch-who-pushed-for-closer-ties-to-eu-revealed/

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Australian government set to tax bank deposits http://www.hangthebankers.com/australia-tax-bank-deposits/ http://www.hangthebankers.com/australia-tax-bank-deposits/#comments Sat, 28 Mar 2015 10:02:20 +0000 http://www.hangthebankers.com/?p=24285
The Australian Federal Government looks set to introduce a tax on bank deposits in the May budget.

The idea of a bank deposit tax was raised by Labor in 2013 and was criticised by Tony Abbott at the time.

Assistant Treasurer Josh Frydenberg has indicated an announcement on the new tax could be made before the budget.

The Government is heading for a fight with the banking industry, which has warned it will have to pass the cost back onto customers.

Mr Frydenberg is a member of the Government’s Expenditure Review Committee but has refused to provide any details.

“Any announcements or decisions around this proposed policy which we discussed at the last election will be made in the lead up or on budget night,” he said.

Speaking at the Victorian Liberal State Council meeting Mr Abbott has repeated his budget message, focusing on families and small businesses.

“There will be tough decisions in this year’s budget as there must be, but there will also be good news.”

Tony Abbott Australia

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott

The banking industry has raised concerns about a deposit tax, saying it will have to pass the cost back onto customers.

Steven Munchenberg from the Australian Bankers’ Association said it would be a damaging move for the Government.

“It’s going to make it harder for banks to raise deposits which are an important way of funding banks. And therefore for us to fund the economy,” he said.

“And we also oppose it because particularly at this point in time with low interest rates a lot of people who are relying on their savings for their incomes are already seeing very low returns and this will actually mean they get even less money.”

Bank deposit tax will break election promises: Labor

The Federal Opposition has accused the Government of breaking an election promise by planning to introduce a tax on bank deposits.

The former Labor Government put forward the policy in 2013 to raise revenue for a fund to protect customers in the event of a banking collapse.

Shadow Assistant Treasurer Andrew Leigh said Treasurer Joe Hockey criticised the proposal at the time.

“When we put it on the table Joe Hockey said that it was a smash and grab on Australian households just aimed at repairing the budget,” he said.

“I don’t think we’re going to take any lessons on bipartisanship from Joe Hockey. If he’s got any serious proposal to put on the table Labor will respond to that.”

Source: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-03-28/federal-government-set-to-introduce-tax-on-bank-deposits/6355662

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China moves one step closer to replacing the dollar http://www.hangthebankers.com/china-replacing-the-dollar/ http://www.hangthebankers.com/china-replacing-the-dollar/#comments Sat, 28 Mar 2015 08:53:40 +0000 http://www.hangthebankers.com/?p=24280
From Filip Karinja, for Birch Gold Group

The rise of China on the global economic stage got another boost this week.

While discussing the potential that the Chinese renminbi (also known as the yuan) will be added to the IMF’s Special Drawing Right (SDR) basket of currencies, Christine Lagarde, the chief of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), put it bluntly“It’s not a question of if, it’s a question of when.”

The SDR functions as an international fiat reserve asset, basically a shadow world reserve currency. Currently its value is based on four currencies: the U.S. dollar, the euro, the British pound and the yen.

This mix of currencies is reviewed every five years, and later this year, it’s up for review…

For the yuan to be added to the SDR’s basket of currencies, it first needs to meet certain criteria and then be voted in by the IMF council. Should the yuan be accepted, it could be part of the SDR system as soon as January 2016.

The last time the SDR currency basket was reviewed, in 2010, the yuan was rejected by the council. Specifically, the council noted, “The Chinese renminbi does not currently meet the criteria to be a freely usable currency.”

Christine Lagarde China IMF

IMF Chief Christine Lagarde delivery her speech in Shanghai, China.

However, in the five years since, the Chinese have amassed a number of bilateral trade agreements outside the dollar, and now command a much larger share of global trade.

In 2014, the yuan became the fifth largest payment currency, bypassing the Canadian and Australian dollar. So now, this time around, it is likely to meet the IMF’s requirement of being ‘freely usable’. And don’t forget, the China International Payment System (CIPS) will likely launch in September this year, which will further increasing the tradability of the currency.

Lagarde, who this week wrapped up a five-day visit to China, announced in a speech from Shanghai:

“Over the past three decades, China has amazed the world through its economic transformations. Over the next few decades, China will astound the world through its global economic leadership.

The IMF knows China will play a dominant role in the future and needs them on board. Otherwise, it faces the risk of losing relevance to the growing number of Chinese financial institutions taking foothold on the global scene.

One of those financial institutions growing in economic stature is the Shanghai Gold Exchange, which is set to launch a yuan-denominated gold fix later this year.

Obama China wine

The rise of this new gold exchange further highlights China’s move to link the yuan to gold, something that has been suspected for some time now.

This all begs the obvious question: As China grows in global stature and purchases more gold than the world producescould we actually see gold added to the SDR basket of currencies? It’s far from a preposterous question.

If China moves to back the yuan with gold and the IMF doesn’t, we could see the IMF – and all other fiat currencies, for that matter – wane in power.

The momentum is clearly with China. Will 2016 be the year we see the Chinese yuan take the shine off the U.S. dollar? It certainly looks that way.

Fortunate for you, you have time to prepare. If you haven’t already protected some of your savings from the falling dollar, now is the time to move some into Gold. To find out how, get a free info kit from Birch Gold Group – there is zero cost and zero obligation to you. All you need to do is Request your Free Info Kit on Gold Here.

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Ted Cruz and his Goldman Sachs wife http://www.hangthebankers.com/ted-cruz-goldman-sachs-wife/ http://www.hangthebankers.com/ted-cruz-goldman-sachs-wife/#comments Fri, 27 Mar 2015 00:36:21 +0000 http://www.hangthebankers.com/?p=24264
Ted Cruz, kicking off his 2016 campaign for the U.S. presidency, extolled his wife’s entrepreneurial spirit by telling of her grade-school bakery business. He didn’t mention the 10-year career at Goldman Sachs Group she just put on hold.

Cruz, a Republican senator from Texas, became the first major-party candidate to formally enter the race on Monday. He was joined on stage by his wife, Heidi, and their two daughters, Caroline and Catherine, after he told a crowd of supporters about Heidi’s Bakery, her childhood venture in California.

Cruz aides said he plans to emphasise the role powerful women played in shaping his life as he runs for president. That may be complicated by his wife’s profession as an adviser to wealthy families at a firm that finished last among the 100 most-visible U.S. companies in Harris Poll’s most recent annual ranking of corporate reputations.

“She and her brother compete baking bread. They bake thousands of loaves of bread and go to the local apple orchard where they sell the bread to people coming to pick apples,” said Cruz, 44. “She goes on to a career in business, excelling and rising to the highest pinnacles, and then Heidi becomes my wife and my very best friend in the world.”

Ted Cruz Heidi Cruz Goldman Sachs

2016 Presidential candidate Ted Cruz with his CFR member and Goldman Sachs VP wife, Heidi Cruz.

Heidi Cruz, 42, has taken unpaid leave from her job at Goldman Sachs in Houston to help with her husband’s run, according to a person briefed on the matter, who asked not to be identified speaking about her employment. The leave will last the duration of the campaign, the person said.

Wall Street has remained a sensitive topic for politicians since the 2008 financial crisis, even as they have continued to court campaign contributions from the industry. Democrats attacked Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney’s private- equity background in 2012. Kentucky Senator Rand Paul, like Cruz a Tea Party favorite, said last year that Republicans can’t be “the party of fat cats, rich people, and Wall Street.”

Goldman Sachs became a symbol of the populist anger toward Wall Street as it was one of the first firms sued by regulators over sales of mortgage-related securities and its executives were called before Congress to explain their bets on the housing market.

Heidi Cruz, a Harvard Business School graduate who worked in President George W. Bush’s administration, joined New York- based Goldman Sachs in 2005 and was promoted to managing director, the firm’s second-highest rank, in 2012. She serves as regional head of the Houston office in the private wealth- management unit, which serves individuals and families who have on average more than $US40 million with the firm.

Heidi and Ted Cruz met in Austin, Texas, in 2000, when both were policy aides on the Bush campaign, according to a New York Times profile in 2013. Her employment at Goldman Sachs became a political topic when Senator Richard Durbin, an Illinois Democrat, tried to push Ted Cruz into admitting he was on his wife’s Goldman Sachs health insurance plan after criticising President Barack Obama’s health-care policies, the Times reported.

While Ted Cruz avoided mentioning his wife’s employer Monday, he did speak of the time she spent living in Kenya and Nigeria as the daughter of missionaries. Cruz kicked off his campaign at Liberty University, a religious school in Lynchburg, Virginia, founded by the late evangelist Jerry Falwell.

Cruz grabbed national headlines in 2013 when he spoke for 21 hours on the Senate floor in favour of defunding the Affordable Care Act and helped to trigger a partial government shutdown. That led business leaders including Goldman Sachs Chief Executive Officer Lloyd C. Blankfein to travel to Washington to warn lawmakers they were risking the economic recovery if they didn’t raise the federal debt ceiling.

SEE ALSO: Ted Cruz’s wife is a Goldman Sachs VP and CFR member

Source: http://www.afr.com/news/world/cruz-omits-goldman-sachs-from-description-of-breadbaking-wife-20150323-1m67fu

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US soldiers raped at least 54 Colombian children with immunity http://www.hangthebankers.com/us-soldiers-raped-colombian-children-with-immunity/ http://www.hangthebankers.com/us-soldiers-raped-colombian-children-with-immunity/#comments Wed, 25 Mar 2015 05:19:08 +0000 http://www.hangthebankers.com/?p=24251
US soldiers and military contractors sexually abused more than 54 children in Colombia between 2003 and 2007, according to a recently released historic document on the country’s conflict.

The suspects have allegedly not been prosecuted due to immunity clauses in bilateral agreements.

The 800-page independent historic report was commissioned by the Colombian government and rebel group FARC to establish the causes and violence aggravators of the 50-year-long conflict they are negotiating to end.

The document is to help negotiators determine who is responsible for the more than 7 million victims of the armed conflict between leftist rebels and the state while they are negotiating peace.

One of the scholars that helped redact the historians’ report, Renan Vega of the Pedagogic University in Bogota, focused part of this historic document on the American military that has actively supported the Colombian state in its fight against drug trafficking and leftist rebel groups like the FARC and ELN.

Colombian girls crying US troops sexual abuse

According to Vega, “there exists abundant information about the sexual violence, in absolute impunity thanks to the bilateral agreements and the diplomatic immunity of United States officials.”

In his report, the historian cited one 2004 case in the central Colombian town of Melgar where 53 underage girls were sexually abused by nearby stationed military contractors “who moreover filmed [the abuse] and sold the films as pornographic material.”

According to Colombia’s leading newspaper, El Tiempo, the victims of the sexual abuse practices were forced to flee the region after their families received death threats.

Other Americans stationed at the Tolemaida Air Base allegedly committed similar crimes, but possibly also never saw a day in court due to an immunity arrangement for American soldiers and military contractors agreed by Washington and Bogota.

One case that has called most attention in Colombian media was that of a 12-year-old who in 2007 was raped by a US Army sergeant and a former US military officer who was working in Melgar as a military contractor.

Colombian prosecutors established that the girl had been drugged and subsequently raped inside the military base by US sergeant Michael J. Coen and defense contractor Cesar Ruiz.

However, prosecution officials were not allowed to arrest the suspected child rapists who were subsequently flown out of the country.

“Yes, we took her and we raped her. So what?”

- Alleged words of US Sergeant Michael J. Coen to the mother of a 12-year-old rape victim.

The case has caused major indignation among Colombians for years.

Nevertheless, the rape victim, her little sister and mother were forced to flee Melgar and eventually moved to the city of Medellin as forces loyal to the suspects were threatening the family, the mother told Colombian television.

In 2009, the US embassy in Bogota told Miami newspaper El Nuevo Herald that the US government did not rule out the possibility to reopen the apparently closed case against Coen and Ruiz.

However, according to El Tiempo, no US court has since indicted both suspects for their alleged crime in the six years since.

According to left-leaning news website El Turbion, the case of the 12-year-old girl is not the only one.

“In 2006 there were 23 reported cases of sexual abuse committed by active American soldiers and another 14 in 2007,” the website said. Colombia Reports was unable to confirm this claim with other online sources.

However, if this claim is confirmed, there would be more than 90 cases of sexual violence against women and children committed by American soldiers between 2004 and 2007 alone.

According to the governmental National Victims Unit, 7,234 Colombian women have been registered as victims of sex crimes within the context of the conflict in the decades that it has lasted.

While the FARC and the administration of President Juan Manuel Santos are negotiating who is responsible for the 7.2 million registered victims of the country’s half-a-century armed conflict, US President Barack Obama sent Special Envoy Bernie Aronson to Colombia to assist in the process.

Aronson has so far met with Santos and, reportedly, with negotiation team members of the FARC and the government, and will be the intermediary between Bogota and Washington.

The special envoy will possibly have to deal with the role of the US military and its members in the alleged victimization of Colombians.

His most difficult task will be balancing the US government’s duty of “protecting American interests” — as he was reminded by Tea Party Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) — and trying to “stand by Colombians’ side in this journey,” as Aronson said himself.

Source: http://colombiareports.co/more-than-54-colombian-girls-sexually-abuses-by-us-military-report/

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France fighting the ‘War on Terror’ by banning cash http://www.hangthebankers.com/france-fighting-war-on-terror-banning-cash/ http://www.hangthebankers.com/france-fighting-war-on-terror-banning-cash/#comments Wed, 25 Mar 2015 02:11:16 +0000 http://www.hangthebankers.com/?p=24244
It was just a matter of time before Western governments used the trumped up “War on Terror” as an excuse to drastically ratchet up the very real war on the use of cash and personal privacy that they are waging against their own citizens.

Taking advantage of public anxiety in the wake of the attacks on Charlie Hebdo and a Jewish supermarket, France has taken the first step.

It seems the terrorists involved partially financed these attacks by cash, as well as by consumer loans and the sale of counterfeit goods. What a shockeroo!

The terrorists used CASH to purchase some of the stuff they needed–no doubt these murderers were also shod and clothed and used cell phones, cars, and public sidewalks during the planning and execution of their mayhem. Why not restrict their use?

A naked , barefoot terrorist without communications is surely less effective than a fully clothed and equipped one.

French Finance Minister Michel Sapin

French Finance Minister Michel Sapin

Despite the arrant absurdity of blaming cash and financial privacy for these crimes, French Finance Minister Michel Sapin brazenly stated that it was necessary to “fight against the use of cash and anonymity in the French economy.”

He then announced extreme and despotic measures to further restrict the use of cash by French residents and to spy on and pry into their financial affairs.

These measures, which will be implemented in September 2015, include prohibiting French residents from making cash payments of more than 1,000 euros, down from the current limit of 3,000 euros. Given the parlous state of the stagnating French economy the limit for foreign tourists on currency payments will remain higher, at 10,000 euros down from the current limit of 15,000 euros.

The threshold below which a French resident is free to convert euros into other currencies without having to show an identity card will be slashed from the current level of 8,000 euros to 1,000 euros.

In addition any cash deposit or withdrawal of more than 10,000 euros during a single month will be reported to the French anti-fraud and money laundering agency Tracfin.

French authorities will also have to be notified of any freight transfers within the EU exceeding 10,000 euros, including checks, pre-paid cards, or gold.

Source: http://mises.org/blog/fighting-war-terror-banning-cash

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