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Satchu's Rich Wrap-Up
 
 
Tuesday 21st of December 2021
 
Morning
Africa

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Mirrors on the ceiling, The Pink champagne on ice
World Of Finance

Last thing I remember, I was Running for the door

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― Margaret Atwood, The Blind Assassin @MargaretAtwood
Misc.


“When you're young, you think everything you do is disposable. You move from now to now, crumpling time up in your hands, tossing it away. You're your own speeding car. You think you can get rid of things, and people too—leave them behind. You don't yet know about the habit they have, of coming back'

''Time in dreams is frozen. You can never get away from where you've been.” 

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Why Allende had to die By Gabriel García Márquez @NewStatesman
Law & Politics


Forty years have passed since the Chilean president Salvador Allende died in La Moneda Palace in Santiago, attempting to defend himself with an AK-47 he had been given by Fidel Castro.
Here, in a piece from the New Statesman published in March 1974, the Nobel Prize-winning novelist Gabriel García Márquez explores Allende’s record in Chile, his rivals’ dealings with the United States and the rise of his successor – the army general Augusto Pinochet.

Over dessert, one of the Pentagon generals asked what the Chilean army would do if the candidate of the left, someone like Salvador Allende, were elected.
General Toro Mazote replied: “We’ll take Moneda Palace in half an hour, even if we have to burn it down.”

Chile is a narrow country, some 2,660 miles long and an average of 119 wide, and with ten million exuberant inhabitants, almost three million of whom live in the metropolitan area of Santiago, the capital.
The country’s greatness is derived not from the number of virtues it possesses but, rather, from its many singularities.
The only thing it produces with any absolute seriousness is copper ore but that ore is the best in the world and its volume of production is surpassed only by that of the United States and the Soviet Union.
It also produces wine as good as the European varieties but not much of it is exported. 

The least apocalyptic of geologists think of Chile not as a country of the mainland but as a cornice of the Andes in a misty sea and believe that the whole of its national territory is condemned to disappear in some future cataclysm.

President Allende understood then – and he said so – that the people held the government but they did not hold the power. 

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They really do believe we're thick and have the memories of goldfish. @SheenaGlass12
Law & Politics


Have people forgotten Priti Patel encouraging the great unwashed to shop their neighbours for breaking covid restrictions?

They really do believe we're thick and have the memories of goldfish.

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We respect the opinion of other parties, but our idea is bilateral talks with U.S. only @Liveuamap
Law & Politics

Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Ryabkov on Borrell's statement that EU would like to take part in dialogue on security guarantees: We respect the opinion of other parties, but our idea is bilateral talks with U.S. only 

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We exist in a Tripolar World [US China and Russia] with rapidly emerging Middle Powers.
Law & Politics

I am not discounting Fortress Europe but one senses the Fortress is keener on a more defensive posture unlike the US [notwithstanding its withdrawal from Afghanistan], China and Russia. 

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Turkey could tip the balance in the Ukraine-Russia standoff @AtlanticCouncil
Law & Politics


As the United States and its European allies scramble to deter Russia from invading Ukraine again, the use of direct military force seems to be off the table. 

Yet there’s one NATO member state that successfully persuaded the Kremlin to sue for peace twice in recent years using that very tactic: Turkey.
Now, Ankara is raising the stakes by doubling down on its defense cooperation with Kyiv and recommitting itself to the continued sale of dozens of Bayraktar TB2 unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV), much to Russia’s ire.
This may come as a surprise to anyone who has watched Turkey seemingly drift toward Russia—and away from NATO—in recent years. 

In 2017, Ankara signed a deal to purchase the highly sophisticated Russian S-400 surface-to-air missile defense system, to which the United States responded by banishing Turkey from the F-35 fighter jet program and eventually sanctioning the country under the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA). 

Years earlier, Turkey had joined Russia and Iran as a co-chair of the so-called Astana Process, an alternative to the United Nations-led effort to mediate the Syrian civil war.
But in reality, Turkish-Russian relations are complex and characterized by both competition and cooperation across multiple theaters and dimensions. 

Looming in the background are centuries of diplomatic antagonism and military conflict often centered on the Black Sea region—a balancing act that’s playing out again now. 

Despite Turkey’s shared economic interests with Russia in energy, tourism, construction, and agricultural exports, Ankara joined its NATO allies in rejecting Moscow’s annexation of Crimea and reaffirming Ukraine’s territorial integrity. 

That stance, which has hardened over time, was partially explained by its historical anger over ethnically Turkic Crimean Tatars falling under Russian rule again.
Even more compelling is Turkey’s growing concern over an expansionist (and revanchist) Russia near its borders in the Black Sea and South Caucasus regions. 

Ankara has responded to Moscow’s aggression by becoming one of the strongest proponents of enlarging NATO membership to include both Ukraine and Georgia—even while offering to mediate the conflict in Ukraine. 

Ankara has simultaneously pursued a strategic partnership with Kyiv based largely on defense industry cooperation, which apart from drones also includes the sales of naval ships with stealth capabilities and the joint development of a jet engine for military aircraft.
But Turkey’s drone sale, which came five years after Israel balked at selling its own models to Ukraine for fear of antagonizing Russia, is particularly significant.
Having witnessed the devastating impact of Turkey’s innovative drone-based tactics— combining the UAV’s battlefield intelligence and precision rocket strikes with closely coordinated standoff artillery assaults aimed at neutralizing defenses and capitalizing on air superiority—Russia has plenty of reason to worry. 

Such attacks fought Russian and Syrian government forces to a standstill in Syria’s Idlib province in March 2020 and prompted Russia to recommit to its previous agreement with Turkey to protect Idlib as a “safe zone.” 

Just months later, Turkey reversed an offensive by Russian mercenaries and Libyan fighters that had already reached the outskirts of Tripoli.
And during last year’s Second Nagorno-Karabakh War, the Azerbaijani military—another early purchaser of Turkish drones—employed the same tactical approach to neutralize Armenia’s advanced Russian weaponry, including air defense systems and armor, with startling precision and speed.
That’s why Russia has signaled its concern about Turkish UAVs on numerous occasions, most recently when Russian President Vladimir Putin warned his Turkish counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, during a December 3 phone call that the drones helped enable “destructive” behavior by Ukraine. 

Ankara responded the next day by affirming that drone deliveries to Ukraine would continue—then, days later, sought to restore the diplomatic balance by offering its mediation efforts. Though Moscow did not take up this offer, it has been careful to avoid incendiary rhetoric toward Ankara.
Turkey’s combination of military firmness and diplomatic sobriety offers important capabilities for NATO as it struggles to deter further Russian aggression against Ukraine

As scholar Francis Fukuyama recently observed, Ukraine’s use of Turkish UAVs could be a “complete game-changer,” while analysts at the Royal United Services Institute think tank believe Turkey’s massed drone and artillery strikes could even render the battle tank obsolete.
Moscow, for its part, has also been careful not to alienate Ankara—perhaps because of mutual economic interests, or because it simply wants to deepen the wedge between Ankara and its NATO allies. 

Whatever the Kremlin’s motivation, the United States and NATO would be wise to make use of the assets which the Alliance’s second-largest military brings to the table—especially the diplomatic wisdom gained from managing centuries of conflict and cooperation with Russia.

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642,881 avg cases/day up 3.4% past 2wks and following month long deceleration trend. @jmlukens
Misc.

Global 6,793 avg COVID deaths/day down 15% past 2wks continuing 2wk long deceleration trend.

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North America 273k cases yesterday above 151k/day avg up 19% past 2wks. Europe 383k avg cases/day again accelerating. @jmlukens
Misc.

Global region COVID 2wk avg case/day increase
Africa: 139%
Oceania: 131%
North America: 19%
Europe: 3%
South America: -2%
Asia: -3%
Middle East: -14%

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U.S. COVID update: Surge accelerating @BNODesk
Misc.

- New cases: 268,307*
- Average: 142,973 (+10,163)
- States reporting: 48/50
- In hospital: 67,191 (+326)
- In ICU: 16,253 (+37)
- New deaths: 1,756
- Average: 1,342 (+27)

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29-NOV-2021 :: Regime Change
Misc.

The Invisible Microbe has metastasized into Omicron and what we know is that COVID-19 far from becoming less virulent has become more virulent.
The transmissibility of #Omicron is not in question, it clearly has a spectacular advantage.
The Open Question is whether it is more virulent. If it is less virulent then #Omicron is breaking the Trend of increasing virulence.

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Effective reproduction number of Omicron on avg 4.1x [3.9-4.4x] higher than that of Delta @TWenseleers
Misc.

Updated graph of the share of Omicron among confirmed cases in South Africa, England, Scotland, Denmark & Belgium. Effective reproduction number of Omicron on avg 4.1x [3.9-4.4x] higher than that of Delta & very consistent across countries (using a generation time of 4.7 days).

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China reports 81 new COVID-19 cases on Dec. 20 vs 102 a day earlier @Reuters
Misc.


Conclusions

I am not sure this is credible 

29-NOV-2021 ::  Regime Change
https://j.mp/32AZEK5

The Invisible Microbe has metastasized into Omicron

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He tells us all will be well if we get boosted with a shot designed before this variant even emerged. I don't believe a word of it. @Nigel_Farage
Misc.

From the PM who is a compulsive liar and can't comb his hair properly, a declaration of Omicron disaster.

He tells us all will be well if we get boosted with a shot designed before this variant even emerged. 

I don't believe a word of it.

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Chexperts who spent all of 2021 saying that the vaccinated don't transmit, have pivoted to "the vaccines were only designed to prevent death" without a hint of self-reflection. @NickytaLeb
Misc.

Chexperts who spent all of 2021 saying that the vaccinated don't transmit, that they don't need to mask, was all "dead virus in the nose," "you can't trust Singapore/Israel/etc." have pivoted to "the vaccines were only designed to prevent death" without a hint of self-reflection.

23-AUG-2021 ::  We have now crossed peak Vaccine Euphoria
https://j.mp/384Arar

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Currency Markets at a Glance WSJ
World Currencies

Euro 1.1279
Dollar Index 96.509
Japan Yen 113.75
Swiss Franc 0.92206
Pound 1.3214
Aussie 0.7122
India Rupee 75.63750
South Korea Won 1192.255
Brazil Real 5.7423
Egypt Pound 15.707637
South Africa Rand 15.767780

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Risk-reversals and the sovereign CDS is still not at all-time highs. Otherwise, things in Turkey look pretty unprecedented at this point. @emeyersson
Emerging Markets

Risk-reversals and the sovereign CDS is still not at all-time highs. Otherwise, things in Turkey look pretty unprecedented at this point. The fact that the 2y breakeven inflation rate is but a sliver below 30 percent is pretty striking.

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Ankara should return to 'rules of economic science’ following the failure of the goals under the current economic programme, the Turkish Industry and Business Association (TÜSİAD) H/T @WashingtonPoint
Emerging Markets


In 1998, Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher told the @HouseofCommons  “There is no way in which one can buck the market.” from Monday, August 13, 2018 


He said, “Don’t get high on your ambitions. You won’t be able make money on the back of this nation. You won’t be able to make this nation kneel.” [They have already made a ton of money and you are kneeling, Mr. President]
And then ‘’Even if they got dollars, we got ‘our people, our God’’’ [In the markets that is called a ‘’Hail Mary’’ pass]


4.09.2018 no-one except die-hard Erdogan-supporting Turkish nationalists is prepared to throw good money after money gone bad on the basis of Erdogan's hocus pocus monetary policy



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Here is the second and fourth waves in Gauteng, plotted on the same dates. Cases still continued to rise during the festive season, even taking account the movement people from Gauteng to other provinces. @Rajeev_The_King
Africa


We are working to see whether results in SA can indicate what can happen elsewhere. For this, we are testing whether the SA specific Beta infection wave gives any added protection. @sigallab


Relative to a similar place in the Delta wave, there are 4-fold less ventilated patients.

We are working to see whether results in SA can indicate what can happen elsewhere. For this, we are testing whether the SA specific Beta infection wave gives any added protection.

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What is the South Africa Omicron COVID interpretation? @jmlukens
Africa

South Africa 30 avg deaths/day up 25% past 2wks and up 130% past month versus 20,082 avg cases/day up 100% past 2wks and up 47,881% past month.

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The people of #Sudan are at the doorsteps of Burhan’s Palace and the doorsteps of freedom. They will not be ruled by warlords or corrupt generals. There is no going back now and we shall prevail. @elgaili_a
Africa

The people of #Sudan are at the doorsteps of Burhan’s Palace and the doorsteps of freedom.  They will not be ruled by warlords or corrupt generals. There is no going back now and we shall prevail. The world should be on the right side of history and support us. 

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@HkZuk
Africa

10-JUN-2019 :: The "zeitgeist" of the Revolution in Khartoum was intoxicating
http://bit.ly/2R05o6l

As I watched events unfold it felt like Sudan was a portal into a whole new normal.
And now we have two visions of the Future. One vision played out on our screens, the protestors could have been our wives, children.
The other vision is red in tooth and claw. 

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A very significant and perhaps game changing development ahead of today's UNSC session on #Ethiopia. Very savvy invocation of R2P and contention that the international community has not lived up to its responsibility to protect civilians. @_hudsonc
Africa


A very significant and perhaps game changing development ahead of today's UNSC session on #Ethiopia.  Very savvy invocation of R2P and contention that the international community has not lived up to its responsibility to protect civilians.  Calls now for arms embargo and peace.


February 1st 2021 ‘The genie out of the bottle’ @AfricanBizMag


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The Many Repercussions of the Rif Rebellion @nybooks Frederic Wehrey
Africa

 


One evening this past October, I boarded a bus in the Moroccan capital of Rabat for an overnight trip north to the Mediterranean coast. 

After several hours, we were climbing into the Rif Mountains, the vehicle groaning and swaying on hairpin turns. 

A relatively recent mountain range—geologically younger than the better-known peaks of the Atlas and less grand—the Rif rises steeply from the sea in the north but falls away in gentle escarpments to the south.
The landscape appeared foreboding enough in the moonlit gloom: towering massifs carpeted with maquis, copses of cedar and fir, and deep ravines walled by limestone crags. 

It wasn’t hard to see how, one hundred years ago, this terrain struck fear into the hearts of young conscripts from Spain, which ruled northern Morocco as a protectorate, as they faced a fierce insurgency by the indigenous Amazigh people, also known as Berbers.
“The worst war, at the worst moment in time, in the worst place in the world,” a Spanish journalist wrote of the five-year conflict known as the Rif War.

The fighting started in early June 1921 when Riffian tribes ambushed a small contingent of Spanish forces at a rocky outcrop on the northern fringe of the Rif known as Mount Ubarran.

 With hindsight, the engagement was merely the opening skirmish of a much more consequential and, from the Spanish point of view, catastrophic battle a month later in and around the nearby village of Annual (emphasis accented on the last syllable). 

The Disaster of Annual, as it is known in Spain today, resulted in the deaths of at least 13,000 Spanish soldiers at the hands of just 3,000 Riffians. 

Over the course of eighteen days, the fighters besieged poorly trained Spanish soldiers and native troops in sandbagged outposts depriving them of supplies and water—some soldiers resorted to drinking their urine—and cutting them down with gunfire or daggers as they retreated pell-mell to the Spanish enclave of Melilla. 


The Spanish field commander, a famously incautious general named Manuel Fernández Silvestre, perished in the melee, possibly by suicide. 

His remains were never recovered.


 

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Emirates has suspended outbound traffic to Dubai from Nairobi for 48 hours effective immediately. @IanECox/
Africa

This is due to the past few flights showing 25% covid positive upon testing on arrival at DXB.

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The Treasury has budgeted Sh95.5 billion to partly ease cash crunch in key parastatals in three years from July 2022, citing their strategic roles in economic development. @BD_Africa
Kenyan Economy

A fiscal risk analysis conducted early this financial year estimated 18 key parastatals face a cash shortfall of Sh382 billion in five years in the wake of Covid-19 hurting their revenue streams.
The financial boost to debt-laden State-owned enterprises comprises Sh36.1 billion for the year starting July 2022, Sh36.6 billion for the one following and Sh22.8 billion the final tranche.
No bailout cash was allocated to the parastatals in the initial budget for the current financial year, which was approved by lawmakers in June, allowing the Treasury to provide the billions through a supplementary budget.
Cash-strapped State-run firms— including Kenya Airways, Kenya Power, Kenya Wildlife Service and several universities — got a cumulative Sh36 billion bailout in the year ended June 2021 after their revenue streams were eroded by pandemic trade shutdowns and travel restrictions.

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by Aly Khan Satchu (www.rich.co.ke)
 
 
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December 2021
 
 
 
 
 
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