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MENA Mashup: Egypt, Iran, Israel, and Turkey

Upon the third anniversary of the Tahrir Square revolution…

What a President Sisi must clarify

…The troubling thing for Egyptians is not that they are about to elect a new soldier-president, but that they are about to elect a new soldier-president about whose policies, capabilities, democratic values, governance style and national plans they know virtually nothing.

Sisi should be aware of the fact that he is preparing to assume the presidency on the strength of the two greatest but most fickle passions that any political leader can count on to shape his or her incumbency – blind love and fierce fear – because the mass adoration he enjoys on the basis of these frenzies can disappear as quickly as it appeared. The combination of intense love for Sisi as the national savior and deep fear of the hapless Muslim Brotherhood due to its miserable and greedy yearlong performance in office means that Sisi’s strong mandate can last as long as any fleeting emotion lasts with a human being – perhaps months at best.

By summer, the three big problems that plague modern Egypt and the entire Arab region – chronic military governance, domestic secular-religious schisms and socioeconomic distress – will remain unresolved and likely could worsen. They will resurface and could damage and threaten Sisi, as they have all other Arab leaders since the 1970s, depending on how he uses the power at his disposal. {…}

This soldier-president will be unlike any other in Egypt, because of the manner in which he assumes office and the continuing desire by Egyptians for a credible democratic transition from the old ways of security-state governing. Sisi will need to reveal in the coming weeks and months if he has the character, wisdom, courage and honesty to address Egypt’s enormous political problems and socioeconomic stresses. And he has to wind down the two important stressors that he himself has been contributed to – military rule of governance and the violent antagonism toward Islamist politics in society.

Now, which Master shall Sisi serve, the Egyptians, or, the MOTU’s…?

Well, I suppose, this speaks volumes…Wall Street figure to advise Al Sisi

To be sure, the bloody Poodle even parachuted into Cairo, recently…Tony Blair Backs Egypt’s Military Government Despite Human Rights Crackdown

Interestingly… Senior Muslim scholar calls on Saudi to stop supporting coup in Egypt

Another worthy read… The hidden history of the Egyptian revolution

Moving along…

Talk about your ‘Cognitive Dissonance’…

Netanyahu: Israel not obliged to agree to U.S. peace plan framework

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Tuesday night that Israel would not be obliged to agree to all the terms of the framework document that was being proposed by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, Haaretz reported.

Netanyahu’s statements were made in a conference of the Institute for National Security Studies in Tel Aviv. He told the conference that Washington is putting pressure on Israel to withdraw from the Jordan Valley in order to reach a peace agreement with the Palestinians, a thing the Israelis refuse because it threatens the Israel’s security.

He added that there are two main issues that are considered as the key to reaching a peace agreement: the Palestinian recognition of Israel as the Jewish state and robust security arrangements.

Regarding Iran, Netanyahu said that Iran won’t be allowed to develop nuclear weapons, nor would Israel allow Iran to create another state alongside Israel, as it has done with Lebanon and Gaza.

God forbid that saner minds should prevail…! Israel finance minister: Peace talk failure costly

And, Palestinians: Yes to Jews, no to settlers in our state

Looking at the bigger picture… Israel Welcomes Sunni-Shia Conflict

So, what’s the definition of Insanity, again…? From the Grey Lady…

‘Framework’ for Talks on Mideast in Progress

Seeking to jump-start peace talks between Israelis and Palestinians, the Obama administration hopes to complete a ‘framework’ accord within a few weeks, which would set the terms for a final negotiation, a senior State Department official said in a conference call with Jewish leaders on Thursday….


Seriously, stick another fork in the rotting, Peace Farce carcass…!

*heh* Israel Needs to Learn Some Manners…


So, with 60% of Americans on board, for a Deal to curb Iran’s nuclear program –even if it might not work…!

This certainly is a positive sign… Iran Sanctions Bill ‘On Ice’ As Momentum Fades In Senate

Now, let’s be realistic, since our FP rhetoric truly falls on deaf ears…

Iran’s Economy Showing Signs of Improvement

…It’s also worth noting that according to some estimates, even without any further relief, Iran will save $4.5-$5 billion in oil revenues over the next six months as a result of the suspension of mandated reductions in oil purchases under the JPA. On top of that, key sectors of the Iranian economy such as auto and petrochemicals are already showing signs of increased economic activity, from a very low base, which will only accelerate as the JPA sanctions relief for these sectors if implemented fully.

In fact, although the Iranian economy remains close to recession, in the absence of a new shock, the Iranian economy should continue to stabilize, improving sentiment and attracting investment. An oil price shock from new sanctions that leads to another bout of rial depreciation could reignite such boom and bust pressures, hitting domestic demand and household income. More fiscal restraint or monetary tightening would dampen inflation and could lead to some months of deflationary pressure (negative price growth).

But overall, Iran’s economy is showing signs of recovery after years of sanctions, due in no small part to the recent sanctions relief offered in Geneva, changing market psychology, and a perception that the Obama administration may no longer be committed to ratcheting up the economic pressure on Iran.

Now, one would suppose that this little tidbit might rattle a few cages, near and far…

Beware Saudi Arabia! Iran, Iraq plan to join forces and crash the world’s oil market

Iraq is poised to triple its crude oil output from three million barrels per day to nine million by 2020. And Iraqi ministers are helping their Iranian counterparts to attract investment in oil ahead of the possible lifting of international sanctions imposed on the country.

Hussain al-Shahristani, Deputy Prime Minister for Energy in Iraq, told a conference in London: ‘We feel the world needs to be assured of fuel for economic growth.

‘Iran has been in touch with us. They want to share our contracts model and experience.’

The ambitious plan could see Iraq clash with Saudi Arabia — which pumps 9.8m barrels per day and uses its influence in OPEC to keep oil prices above $100 a barrel.

And if Iraq and Iran decide to sell more crude on the open market rather than stick to OPEC’s quotas, the price of oil could plummet – potentially leading to lower petrol prices.

The combined oil reserves of Iraq and Iran are greater than that of Saudi Arabia — the world’s second largest producer of crude after Russia.

Oil companies are understood to be lining up to win Iranian oil deals if sanctions imposed by the U.S. and EU are eased.

Experts warn that, if the plan is to be successful, both Iran and Iraq would need massive investment in pipelines and ports to export its crude oil.

Could it be the coup de grâce for our Imperialistic Petrobuck and Big Oil…? Just imagine what the potential ramifications would be for Big Oil, if the price falls below $100/bbl…! Shale and Tarsands oil needs to be priced above $75/bbl, just to break even…!

In wrapping up…

Delving further into Turkish affairs… Escalating Conflict Between Turkey’s PM Erdogan & Imam Gülen

Even Bloomberg feigns some concern… Turkey’s Economy and Erdogan’s Shame

Hologram of Turkish PM greets voters at campaign rally… Some nerve of Erdogan, eh…?

We most certainly live in interesting times…! *gah*

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