“Why the world is due for MORE conflicts…
“According to Justin Crump, an intelligence, security and defence expert and CEO of global risk analysis firm Sibylline, further regional conflicts can be expected in the years ahead, especially as climate change worsens and resources grow scarce, and as the world’s superpowers fight proxy wars with Grey Zone tactics.”
“The ‘New Cold War’: Rising Tensions in the East-West Geopolitical Climate.
“The world watches as the specter of a ‘new Cold War’ looms over the global geopolitical landscape. With tensions between the East and West escalating, echoes of the historical Cold War period pervade the international discourse.”
“Israel’s Netanyahu doubles down on opposition to Palestinian statehood.
““I will not compromise on full Israeli security control over the entire area in the west of Jordan – and this is contrary to a Palestinian state,” Netanyahu posted on X late on Saturday night, doubling down his opposition to a Palestinian state a day after speaking to the US president…”
“More than 25,000 people have now been killed in Gaza during Israel’s offensive there, according to the Hamas-run health ministry.
“It said there had been 178 deaths in the last 24 hours, making it one of the deadliest days in the war so far. As fighting continued, Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu again rejected creating a Palestinian state.”
“Biden draws up plan for ‘sustained’ military action against Houthis…
“The US officials interviewed by the Post said that they do not expect the campaign to stretch on for years, as in Iraq, Syria and Afghanistan, but could not estimate when it might end… However, others in the administration fear the US will end up entangled in yet another open-ended Middle Eastern conflict without an exit strategy.”
“The Oil Market Is Making Plans for Red Sea Chaos to Last Weeks.
““More and more owners are avoiding the area,” said Alexander Saverys, Chief Executive Officer of Euronav NV, whose own fleet can transport more than 50 million barrels of oil. “What looked like something that could be solved within weeks, now could indeed have consequences for many months.””
“Amid Rising Tensions With Iran, Pakistani Police Say Member Of Iranian-Backed Militant Group Arrested In Karachi.
“The Counter-Terrorism Department in Pakistan’s southwestern Sindh Province has said it has arrested a suspect in the 2019 attempted assassination attempt on a top Pakistani cleric, accusing the arrested man of being a “trained terrorist” who belongs to the Zainebiyoun Brigade, a militant group allegedly backed by Iran.”
“Iran-backed militants strike US-led coalition base in Iraq…
“”Multiple ballistic missiles and rockets were launched by Iranian-backed militants in western Iraq targeting al-Assad Airbase,” CENTCOM said in a social media post, which placed the time of the attack at 6:30 pm Baghdad time (1530GMT) Saturday evening.”
“UN envoy for Iraq warns against dragging Iraq further into regional conflict…
“”Despite the (Iraqi) government’s efforts to prevent the escalation of tensions, continued attacks originating from within and outside of Iraq’s borders stand to undo the hard-won stability of the country and the achievements it has made in recent years,” the UN envoy said.”
“Iran accuses Israel of killing Revolutionary Guards spy chief in Damascus.
“A suspected Israeli strike killed the Iranian Revolutionary Guards’ espionage chief for Syria and three other guard members on Saturday, Iran has said, in an attack that destroyed much of a multistorey residential building in Damascus.”
“Turkish Airstrikes Threaten Essential Infrastructure in North and East Syria.
“This recent spate of strikes marks the third such aggressive campaign by Turkey targeting North-East Syria’s vital infrastructure in the span of three months. The repeated targeting has ignited fears of an impending humanitarian disaster in the region.”
“Syria’s civilians are increasingly forgotten as humanitarian aid dries up.
“The Islamic State and drug kingpins fill the void as desperate civilians look for alternatives to feed themselves… The millions of civilians in need of humanitarian aid in Syria are bracing themselves for dwindling international help this year, after the World Food Programme has ended its mandate for the country as of 2024.”
“Bank credit is shrinking for the first time since the Great Recession – and that’s a red flag for the economy [US].
“Bank credit is seeing a sustained contraction for the first time since the Great Recession, according to Fed data. That means businesses are borrowing less, as high interest rates chip away at confidence levels.”
“The buy now, pay later holiday debt hangover has arrived, as consumers wonder how they’ll pay bills…
““Sales, especially online sales, were probably juiced to some extent because of buy now, pay later usage,” said Ted Rossman, senior analyst at Bankrate. “A lot of people are drawn to this financing method as an alternative to something like a credit card where the average interest rate is a record high 20.74%.””
“Energy costs have Britons borrowing to keep the lights on…
“Our latest analysis, published tomorrow, suggests that over 5mn people live in households that are behind on their energy bills. This spring, the typical monthly energy bill is expected to drop by about £20, but they remain worryingly high.”
“UK risks being ‘burnt-out nation’ due to poor mental health, charity says…
“The head of Mental Health UK has suggested global issues such as climate change and artificial intelligence fuelling “feelings of hopelessness” could be contributing to burnout. It comes after a survey revealed more than a third of adults faced extreme pressure in the workplace in the past year.”
“A British laser gun worth £140million has blown up drones in landmark new tests for the space age anti-missile weapon.
“The formidable prototype weapon dubbed “DragonFire” was fired at a remote range in Scotland’s outer Hebrides – with each shot costing just £10… The DSTL, based in Wiltshire, said it blasts targets at the speed of light.”
“European manufacturers and retailers face ‘chaotic’ period after Red Sea attacks…
“Delayed arrivals of components have brought some car manufacturers’ production lines to a halt. If the disruption endures, retailers’ inventories will probably be depleted because of the delays, and companies shipping goods face surcharges as shipping lines try to recoup the costs of diversions…”
“Red Sea crisis seeps into German chemicals sector.
“Germany’s chemicals sector, the country’s third-biggest industry after cars and engineering with annual sales of around 260 billion euros ($282 billion), relies on Asia for around a third of its imports from outside Europe.”
“German far-right leader hails Brexit as ‘model for Germany’…
“The far-right Alternative for Germany will push for a Brexit-style referendum on membership of the EU if it comes to power, its leader Alice Weidel said, hailing the UK’s exit from the bloc as “dead right”… Weidel was speaking against the backdrop of a big surge in support for the AfD…”
“Tens of thousands of protesters across France call on Macron not to sign immigration law.
“Tens of thousands of people marched in the streets of cities across France on Sunday to call on President Emmanuel Macron not to sign into law tough new legislation on immigration that they say bears the footprint of the far right and betrays French values.”
“Albania’s constitutional court is set to rule on a controversial migration deal made with Italy’s far-right government to utilize Albanian territory for establishing reception centers for individuals attempting to enter the European Union via the sea route.
“The court will examine if the arrangement violates Albania’s constitution by potentially ceding territory for migrant processing…”
“Farmers in Romania, France and Germany continue road convoy protests.
“Agricultural workers say green policies and taxes are eating into their profits and are demanding more government subsidies. Farmers’ protests have sprung up in Romania, Germany and France, ahead of the EU elections in June.”
“Europe Moves Into a New World After a Crippling Energy Crisis…
“It’s now relying more on renewables, and will have to deal with the intermittency of that power generation. With the loss of Russian gas, on which it was overly dependent before the invasion of Ukraine, it’s also had to look elsewhere to fulfil its fuel needs. That means vying for a share of foreign liquefied natural gas cargoes with other parts of the world.”
“Owners warn of dire consequences as gas crisis paralyses factories across Bangladesh…
“Industrialists are concerned that the ongoing gas crisis, which has been affecting the supply of the industry’s main fuel, is pushing these long-operating factories to the brink of closure. The crisis has also raised fears of an increase in unemployment and disruptions in export activities.”
“Global Rice Markets in Crisis Due to India’s Export Bans.
“The global rice market, a lifeline for over half the world’s population, is grappling with a severe shortage, the most severe in twenty years. This crisis… has catapulted rice prices to a 12-year high, with increases ranging from 15% to 20%. The ripple effects of this crisis are being felt around the globe, particularly in developing nations in Africa and Southeast Asia…”
“Africa in debt spiral as restructuring efforts drag on.
“While the explosion of debt is throwing a shadow over global economic growth, experts warn that sub-Saharan Africa, where several countries are already in default, is experiencing its worst-ever crisis.”
“More than 13,000 people have been killed and 26,000 others injured in the ongoing conflict in Sudan since last year, the United Nations humanitarian office said Sunday.
“Sudan has been mired by fighting between the army, led by Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, head of the country’s ruling Sovereign Council, and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) paramilitary group since April 2023.”
“Hedge funds are making a killing betting on disaster as the ‘catastrophe bond’ market swells to a record $45 billion…
“Cat bond issuance has been turbo-charged by concern about extreme weather events fueled by climate change, and by decades-high inflation that’s added to the cost of rebuilding after natural disasters.”
“The Guardian view on medicine shortages: a global issue for which Britain needs a plan…
“The UK is not alone in facing drug supply-chain challenges. This is a global issue, which has been rising up the agenda of EU states and the US as well. Rich western countries, along with much of the rest of the world, are heavily reliant on the pharmaceuticals manufacturing capacity of India and China for sufficient quantities of generic, off-patent drugs.”
You can read the previous “Economic” thread here. I’ll be back tomorrow with a “Climate” thread.
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