Newsbud Daily Picks

The Strange Fate Of Those Who Saw JFK Shot

In 1946, Jones purchased the Midlothian Mirror for $4,000; he eventually sold the newspaper in 1974. In 1963, Penn received the Elijah Lovejoy Award for Courage in Journalism. Jones was also known for being an early critic of the Warren Commission‘s report on the assassination of JFK. In 1967, he self-published Forgive My Grief, a four-volume work on the assassination of President Kennedy. In the 1980s, Jones co-edited The Continuing Inquiry newsletter with Gary Mack of the Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza.

Independent Trajectory For India-Israel Ties – Analysis

India-Israel ties are on course for further expansion under Narendra Modi and Benjamin Netanyahu, who have developed the personal chemistry needed to take it forward. When Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visits India this month, he has one person to be thankful to more than anyone else. And that is late former Indian PM Narasimha Rao who took the bold and momentous decision in 1992 to cross the Rubicon, establishing diplomatic relations with Israel. Narasimha Rao was responding to global shifts and his opening to Israel was part of several policy changes that included economic liberalization and the “Look East” policy.

The Banality of U.S. Evil – Editorial

U.S. officials, led by President Trump, and accompanied by their acolytes in the U.S. mainstream press, are absolutely giddy over what they perceive as the success of U.S. sanctions against Iran and North Korea. With Iran, they are celebrating the fact that horrific economic conditions have led to sporadic protests across the country against the Iranian regime. With North Korea, they are saying that U.S. sanctions are starting to “bite,” which, they say, is what has caused North Korea to reach out to South Korea in diplomatic talks regarding North Korea’s participation in the Winter Olympics.

Fed Paid $29.3 Billion To Banks ‘Not’ To Lend In 2017; Gave $80 Billion To Treasury

Yesterday, The New York Federal Reserve announced that it actually increased their $4.2 trillion balance sheet by $1 million rather than shrinking it. This comes on the heels of The Federal Reserve announcing that it provided $80.2 billion in payments to the US Treasury in 2017. This is the lowest remittance to Treasury since 2015, but still positive. The Fed’s $4.45-trillion of assets – including $2.45 trillion of US Treasury securities and $1.76 trillion of mortgage-backed securities that it acquired during years of QE – produce a boatload of interest income. How much interest income? $113.6 billion.

US-Led Coalition to Form 30,000-Strong SDF Border Army

The U.S.-led coalition confirmed reports Saturday that it will establish a 30,000-strong new border security force with the People's Protection Units (YPG)-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) in Syria, a move that has already angered Turkey. The coalition named the "new" army the Syrian Border Security Force (BSF). About 15,000 of the fighters will be SDF veterans as the fight against Daesh comes to a close. Another 15,000 will be recruited and trained in the near future. Currently, 230 individuals are training in the inaugural class, according to the coalition statement.

Australia’s 2018 Geopolitical Choice Between the USA or China

Australia is certain to stress how it can walk the line between the United States and China. With Trump’s White House win and China’s certain ascension as the world’s new, number one economy, Australia may be forced into making some tough decisions as to where its geopolitical future lies. “Australia’s Hard Choice Between China and US” via The Strategic Culture Foundation…

Keep An Eye on the Yuan as China’s Economy Slows Down

Next week’s data on Chinese GDP, industrial output and retail sales figures are expected to confirm a very modest slowdown is taking place in the world’s second largest economy. It has been largely propelled in recent years by exports and government spending which have helped cancel out the drag caused by Beijing’s drive to reduce leverage and excess capacity. That has made a cheaper yuan critical for the economy. However, the currency gained nearly 7% against the dollar in 2017. It is now close to “fair value” according to some analysts and the removal of the secretive “counter-cyclical” factor in the central bank’s daily reference rate this week pointed to Beijing perhaps looking to arrest that rise.

UK Conservatives Seek Closer Economic Ties with China – Editorial

Prime Minister Theresa May’s Conservative government is establishing a $1 billion investment fund with China to back China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). Her predecessor, David Cameron, will become vice-chairman of the fund, which is being set up by Cameron’s friend and Tory Peer, Lord Chadlington, on whose behalf Cameron lobbied Beijing. Douglas Flint, the former group chairman of HSBC bank, will become Britain’s envoy to the project. The BRI, also known as One Belt One Road (OBOR), is a massive infrastructure investment project for high-speed rail, roads, Internet links and port facilities aimed at more closely integrating the Eurasian land mass.

Harvard Study Shows Why Big Telecom Is Terrified of Community-Run Broadbandf

A new study out of Harvard once again makes it clear why incumbent ISPs like Comcast, Verizon and AT&T are so terrified by the idea of communities building their own broadband networks. According to the new study by the Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University, community-owned broadband networks provide consumers with significantly lower rates than their private-sector counterparts. The study examined data collected from 40 municipal broadband providers and private throughout 2015 and 2016. Pricing data was collected predominately by visiting carrier websites, where pricing is (quite intentionally) often hidden behind prequalification walls, since pricing varies dramatically based on regional competition.

YPG-Led Army on Syria Border Could End up Splitting Syria, Russia Says

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Monday that the formation of a zone controlled by the People's Protection Units (YPG)-dominated forces, as part of a plan led by the United States, could pose a threat to the territorial integrity of Syria. Russia started to withdraw its forces from Syria last month, but Moscow has said it would keep its Hmeymim air base in Syria's Latakia Province as well as its naval facility at Tartous "on a permanent basis."

Syrian Rebels Visit Washington to Request Resumption of CIA Assistance

A delegation of Syrian rebels is currently in Washington to ask that that United States President Donald Trump authorizes the Central Intelligence Agency to resume giving them military assistance. In 2013, the then-US President Barack Obama instructed the CIA to provide covert support to fighters in Syria. The CIA promptly began to assist fighters affiliated with the Free Syrian Army (FSA), whose goal was to topple the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Under the project, which was codenamed TIMBER SYCAMORE, CIA personnel trained FSA fighters and gave them light weaponry. But in July of last year, President Trump abruptly terminated the CIA program, which he called “dangerous and wasteful”.

Sen. Rand Paul Doubles Down on FISA Filibuster Threat

Sen. Rand Paul threatened to filibuster the FISA bill Friday if certain changes were not made.“If there were ever something worth filibustering, I think it would be filibustering for the Bill of Rights,” Mr. Paul, Kentucky Republican, said on Fox News. The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act was reauthorized by the House on Thursday and heads to the Senate for further debate. Section 702 of the FISA bill allows surveillance agencies to collect intelligence on those suspected of espionage or terrorism.

Erdogan Vows to ‘Drown’ US-Backed Syrian Border Force Before it’s Born, Labels Unit ‘Terrorist Army’

The Turkish president has called US-backed Syrian Border Force using Kurdish fighters a “terrorist army,” vowing to “drown” it before it’s complete. He also added that military preparations against Kurdish-held Afrin are ready. “Our duty is to drown this terrorist force before it is born,” the Turkish leader said on Monday, as cited by AP. The 30,000-srtrong army of “traitors” that Washington seeks to create will point their guns against US troops at the first threat, Erdogan warned.

US-Led Coalition Goes Ahead With Training New Border Force in Syria – Reports

The plans of the coalition have fueled Ankara's resentment over US arming and supporting Kurdish forces in Syria and prompted Turkey to summon a US top diplomat. The US-led coalition fighting Daesh in Syria has started to form new "Border Defense Forces" at the borders of the area held by the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) dominated by the Kurdish YPG militias, CJTF-OIR Public Affairs Officer Col. Thomas Veale told the Defense Post website on Saturday.

US Launches New Spy Satellite on Secret Mission

The NROL-47 spacecraft soared into Earth orbit today (Jan. 12), riding atop a United Launch Alliance (ULA) Delta IV Medium rocket that lifted off from California's Vandenberg Air Force Base at 5:11 p.m. EST (2211 GMT, 2:11 p.m. local California time). NROL-47 will be operated by the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO), which builds and manages the United States' spy satellites. NRO missions tend to be hush-hush, and NROL-47 is no exception; no details have been released about the satellite's planned activities. [The Secret NROL-47 Spy Satellite Launch in Photos]