Earlier he had said that there was a small blast followed by a bigger one. Habib said, “First there was a small blast followed by a big blast.” (Source: Google maps)In another attack in Pakistan, two bombs killed at least 12 people and wounded dozens outside a court complex in Mardan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, a rescue official said, hours after militants from a Pakistani Taliban faction attacked a Christian neighbourhood in the same region.
The bodies of lawyers, policemen and civilians were recovered from the blast site, said Haris Habib, chief rescue officer in the city of Mardan in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. “First there was a small blast followed by a big blast,” Habib told Reuters.
More than 20 people were killed in an attack in December on a government office in Mardan, which was later claimed by Jamaat-ur-Ahrar, a breakaway faction of the Pakistani Taliban. No militant group has yet claimed responsibility for Friday’s court attack, but Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said the bombing would “not shatter our unflinching resolve in our war against terrorism”. “These receding elements are showing frustration by attacking our soft targets. They shall not get space to hide in Pakistan,” Sharif said in a statement.
Security in Pakistan has improved in recent years but Islamist groups continue to stage major attacks.
More than 70 people, mostly lawyers, were killed last month in a suicide bombing in the southwestern city of Quetta. Both Jamaat-ur-Ahrar and Islamic State claimed responsibility.
Attack on Christian neighbourhood
Earlier in the day, four gunmen wearing suicide-bomb vests attacked a Christian neighbourhood in the Khyber tribal region, killing at least one security guard and a civilian resident, military officials said. Jamaat-ur-Ahrar, which has targeted Christians in the past, claimed responsibility.
The Islamist group, which briefly declared allegiance to Middle East-based Islamic State in 2014 but recently said it was no longer affiliated with them, also staged the Easter Day attack on Christians in a park in Lahore that killed 72 people including at least 29 children.On Friday, the military’s information wing said one security guard in the Christian residential area, near the northwestern city of Peshawar, was killed at the beginning of the dawn attack.
The attackers exchanged fire with security forces and were killed, the military said, adding that the situation was under control.
“A house to house search is in progress,” it said. Two solders, a policeman and two civilian security guards were wounded in the battle, the military said.
The Christian area is near Warsak Dam, 20 km (12 miles) northwest of Peshawar. The official said the attackers might have been attempting to enter an adjacent security installation by exploiting weaker security arrangements in the residential area. Christians, who number around 2 million in a nation of 190 million people, have been the target of a series of attacks in recent years.
As more evidence surfaces daily, it will be evident that the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) was playing a huge role behind the July 15 coup attempt in Turkey
Henri J. Barkey, former CIA personnel and the current Director of the Middle East Program at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, known as the policy maker for U.S. authority, was the second top American figure who orchestrated the coup attempt in Turkey.
According to Istanbul Police’s Intelligence, Counter Terror, Cyber Crime and Criminal Units, Barkey was holding a meeting with 17 top figures, most of them foreign nationals, at a hotel on Istanbul’s Princes Island on July 15, the day of the failed coup attempt in Turkey.
Barkey was staying in the Splendid Hotel, which was used as a British Military Headquarters during the days of occupation in 1919, between July 15 and 17.
According to the hotel management, Barkey had held a meeting that lasted hours in a special room.
“Barkey and his entourage had been holding a meeting ’till the morning on July 16 in a special room. They have been following the coup attempt over TV channels,” the hotel personnel told police.
They said that Barkey welcomed the attendees of the meeting, most of them either foreign policy analysists or academicians, in groups of two or three persons at the hotel entrance.
After receiving all guests, they went into a special room and held the “secret” meeting, according to police.
Meanwhile, Barkey also told the hotel management, “I will make a live interview with CNN International at 4 p.m. and with Voice of America at 6 p.m.,” requesting them to arrange “all necessary infrastructure.”
Barkey was accused of making several telephone conversations on the coup night.
The police units, who launched a search operation in the hotel, said Barkey was carrying an ex-model cell phone void of internet connection technology, as well as a laptop and smart phone.
Police are investigating the “log” registrations of internet connections and computers of the hotel.
CCTV footage of the hotel, roads and the island’s piers are also being investigated.
The coup attempt on July 15, which has been foiled by popular resistance, was organized by a group of Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETÖ) members who infiltrated the Turkey’s military.
Fetullah Gülen, the U.S.-based leader of FETÖ who has been working with the CIA for several years to design Turkey’s political arena, was the mastermind of the coup attempt and Turkey demands his extradition from the U.S.
In early statements, the U.S. repeated denied Turkey’s allegations and rejected the extradition request. And now, the U.S. authority is trying to protect him by indicating to form an international commission rather going through direct legal process.
Following the failed coup attempt, millions of Turkish nationals, regardless of their religious identity, political views and ethnic background, are standing united against the coup plotters as well as FETÖ terror group.
All political parties voiced their solidarity with the government and urged the U.S. to extradite Gülen and support Turkey’s legal process against coup plotters.
Main squares and streets across the country are filled with people from every age and parts of the society, as they continue celebrating in the evenings the victory of Turkish democracy for the 11th day.
But Barkey tried to cast a shadow on the victory of Turkish people, government and democracy.
“This is a coup attempt where you have no winners. Everybody loses, including the government that survived it,” he told the American National Public Radio (NPR) at 3.30 a.m. local time on July 16 from Istanbul.
He also accused that Turkey would be enter in a more chaotic environment though the country entered into a more strong and more democratic environment.
“But I will submit to you that this president [Erdoğan] has been weakened much more now. Even though he will probably have extra constitutional powers, he’s weakened, because the face that he projected of an impregnable confident leader is now not there anymore. So he’s will be looking over his shoulder all the time. He’s going to be less trusting. He already was not trusting of the opposition. I suspect that relations will become much tenser in Turkey, and he will not be able to govern with consensus. Instead, he’s going to be governing more and more by dictate, and that is…” he said.
Barkey, an academic from Pennsylvania University, is widely known in Turkey with his book “Turkey’s Kurdish Question,” which he prepared with former CIA vice chairman, Graham Fuller.
Fuller is also known for his unfaltering support to Gülen and his organization, for he requested the U.S. authority not to extradite Gülen to Turkey.
Barkey has been toiling on recent developments in Turkey and the Middle East. He met PKK terror leader Abdullah Öcalan in Italy and suggested him to stay there before being arrested by Turkey’s authority.
His wife Elen Barkey has been working in a high position in the CIA for several years.
Wall Street’s language is now being applied to the human race, and it has scary implications.
Viktor Shvets, a strategist at Macquarie in Hong Kong, has a big note out on declining productivity. In it, he discussed a common Wall Street metric usually applied to capital or equity to humans.
His argument, in short, is that the “return on humans” is declining.
“Long-term structural decline in rate of “return on humans” due to deep structural changes in relationships between humans; humans & machines; humans, machines & society. The pressure has been intensifying over the last three decades with the peak of ‘crescendo’ just around the corner.”
The bigger picture here, according to Shvets, is that the global economy is stuck in stagnation. There is, according to Shvets, “no growth; no trade; no return to conventional business and capital market cycles for years to come.”
The heart of the problem, according to Shvets, is a lack of productivity. Macquarie
There are two key drivers of this lack of productivity, according to the note. The first is overleverage and overcapacity in services and merchandising economies, and the second is the decline in the “return on humans” during what it describes as the third industrial revolution.
The note said (emphasis added):
“It takes around 50-70 years to start enjoying productivity gains. However, the 3rd Industrial Revolution is even more disruptive than the first two, as it aims to replace rather than augment humans. In the middle of Industrial Revolutions, productivity rates tend to decrease; income & wealth inequalities rise; social and geopolitical tensions escalate.”
Sound familiar? The note added:
“Technology is entering the sharp end of the S curve; innovations are multiplying in geometric progression vs. slow take-off in 1980s-00; it is destroying the middle class (i.e. accountants; lawyers; traders; logistics; clerks; pilots; economists; editors; investment advisors) and fissuring labour force (contingent employment). Whilst new jobs are created, these tend to be lower productivity occupations (at least in the first several decades).”
Shvets argues that this is being exacerbated by loose monetary policy, as the flow of easy money is supporting consumption and slowing the closure of excess capacity and unproductive industries.
This is most clearly happening in China, and Shvets argues that this is now taking place around the world.
“We have described it as nationalization of capital markets and gross capital formation but in a polite company it might be called a ‘mix of proactive fiscal and monetary policies,'” the note said. “In other words, state would directly intervene in supporting consumption (such as income guarantees; vouchers); sponsoring investment and assisting with overextended pension and welfare liabilities. All directly funded by Central Banks (no borrowings).”
That has broad implications for investors. Shvet is predicting a period similar to the 1930s following the New Deal policies and the late 1960s and 1970s and suggests focusing on a handful of themes in investing:
“Replacement of humans (robotics; automation; AI).”
“Augmentation of humans (biotech).”
“Societal control (security; intelligence; warfare).”
“Entertainment & skilling.”
“Manufacturing shifts (degrading supply & value chains).”
Companies that benefit from “from government transfer fiscal & social payments; Infrastructure investment; R&D and skilling.”