Fernando Fuster-Fabra's Blog

USA TURNS BIN LADEN’S ASSASSINATION INTO HIS LAST HURRAH

May 6, 2011
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Kingdoms without justice are mere robberies and robberies are like small kingdoms; but large empires are piracy writ large.

St. Augustine

 

White House top officials viewing the assassination live !

Firstly and above all, let me say that I shall never support nor be in favour of any act of terrorism that may have caused death and sorrow.

Having said that, I affirm that under no circumstance would I openly support any regime of whatever ideology to impose their will in clear violation of the principles of universal justice all men have a right to receive.

The assassination of Osama Bin Laden in the hands of a specially trained U.S. commando in an incursion into Pakistan without authorization of Pakistani authorities is not only a violation of Bin Laden’s right to be judged according to international laws but likewise a violation of Pakistan’s sovereignty over its territory.

What may be a consolation for Americans for the death of thousands of citizens a decade ago in the cruel attack against the Twin Towers, popularly dubbed “9 11”, has turned to be an opportunity for Bin Laden’s last hurrah at the expense of the honourable proclamation of democracy through liberty and justice for all Mankind.

The issue is further aggravated by the fact that the U.S. President and Commander-in-Chief of its armed forces, Barack Obama, was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2009. No man supposedly meriting such award should ever be permitted to instruct the assassination of any human being, no matter whether this person was a condemned criminal or an innocent man. For such condemning, there are courts of justice who have the responsibility to sentence men as guilty or innocent; never can a world leader usurp such functions which are not innate in the role of executive functions such as those inherent to Obama’s post as President of the United States of America.

Much as we would like to support the call of freedom from the seat of world power at the White House, no decent man can ever support an action based on revenge and wrapped with the banner of patriotism. No one in his sane mind can admit the reasoning that Bin Laden was a threat to the USA and the world a decade after the regrettable “9 11” tragedy.

This type of actions in the 21st. century seems a remake of previous American geopolitical blunders that made the people of America earn the label of The Ugly American* in the Vietnam War.

Today, after Bin Laden’s supposed death at the hands of the U.S. commando, the USA has given wings to enshrine an international terrorist and lift him to the rank of martyr for his followers. What consequences will such action bring to the civilised world in the next decade?

Surely not peace, probably more terrorist attempts with deaths of innocent civilians the world over.     

Fernando Fuster-Fabra

Barcelona     

*The Ugly American – Eugene Burdick & William Lederer

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G-20 TORONTO SUMMIT: LAST CHANCE TO SEE THE CRISIS FROM ANOTHER ANGLE

June 23, 2010
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Spanish Version              http://wp.me/pRlnf-1a


After a futile Busan meeting of economic ministers earlier this month, hopes of progress and consensus amongst world leaders at the G-20 Summit are scarce.  One inevitable question crops up – Are these government leaders governing their nations and the world for the citizens that elected them or for the financial markets that sway their fragile decisions?

Just as Obama was about to take over at the White House and Spain was first invited into the group, the G-20 met in Washington D.C. under a retreating George Bush. Two other summits, London https://fernandofusterfabra.wordpress.com/2009/04/19/hello-world/ & Pittsburgh https://fernandofusterfabra.wordpress.com/2009/09/26/the-pittsburgh-summit-the-world’s-future/ , have been held since then with practically the same futile results. Chances are that the Toronto summit will be more along the same line.

Whilst the USA has flirted with China in what was dubbed ‘G-2 formula’, the EU has been incapable of having a solid single stance towards international economic policies in the successive summits. Furthermore, the White House is cautious about withdrawing public expenditure hastily meanwhile recovery is hardly convincing. On the contrary, German chancellor, Angela Merkel, has whipped other EU leaders with French President Sarkozy’s consent towards drastic public debt cutbacks in the 27-member club. This opposed views will make it difficult to come to a common ground in the truly indispensible actions G-20 leaders must take without further delay.

Canada’s Prime Minister and summit host, Stephen Harper, is precisely against the only common point between US and European leaders – the levy on bank operations. His posture will probably be used by other leaders from emerging economies to delay any actions that may endanger their respective growth rates. However, this very growth may well be the cause of economic overheating in Brazil, China and India that could put any recovery in serious trouble. Harper, who boasts of Canada´s economy y banking solvency seems to forget that he heads a nations that has steadily lost relevance in worlds affairs and whose banks are too conservative to be a reference as institutions for the New Millennium.

Moreover, China may have apparently made a concession to the USA with regards the Yuan but it would prove naive to consider such tactical move as a definite trend towards Chinese permanent cooperation in all economic and political international issues. On the contrary, this move may well be countered by a rather steadfast stand against any of the US–EU proposal at the Toronto summit.

In a similar manner, Brazil’s outgoing President, Lula Da Silva, in an effort to impress Brazilian electors and assure his proposed successor’s victory will probably play a hard-line strategy against US proposals.

I feel that world leaders continue being incapable to think big https://fernandofusterfabra.wordpress.com/2009/12/29/world-leaders-uncapable-to-think-big/ nor are they creative enough to view the crisis issue from another angle. It is evident that the G-20 meet must start off by recognising the main cause of this sneaky situation. No solutions will ever be effective if free-trade and globalisation isn’t governed by global financial & investment regulations agreed by world leaders and implemented under strict authorized international supervisors. The care-free ways of liberal monetary flows has been unleashed for three decades to produce the existing crisis that may well pervade another decade or so.

Is any world leader brave enough to put the warning bell leash on the market’s unscrupulous misdoings?

Fernando Fuster-Fabra

Barcelona


JERUSALEM OR JERICHO?

March 24, 2010
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“The gates of Jericho were shut tight and guarded closely because of the people of Israel. No one went out. No one came in …. Then the Lord spoke to Joshua. He said, “I have handed Jericho over to you. I have also handed its king and its fighting men over to you …..” – Joshua 6:1-2

Netanyahu’s rabid defence of Israeli rights over Jerusalem in his lightning visit to Washington D.C., remind me of Jericho and its walls.

His stubborn stance before the most powerful President of the world could be compared to Joshua’s 7-day chants around Jericho following Jehovah’s instructions.

Does he expect the walls of U.S. power to crumble down before his eyes?

Israeli’s hawk prime minister exercises his knowledge of U.S. negotiating habits in his stints as a student in said country but he may err with such tactical moves before a totally different player at the table. Barack Obama is not a standardised American political leader that may well have some surprises in store for the arrogant Jewish visitor. In the first place, no official picture was taken of this interview nor was a White House press release issued.

Netanyahu has overestimated his capability to pressure the Obama Administration, moreover after the diplomatic mess during the U.S. Vice-President’s recent visit to Israel. The provocation of the new constructions in East Jerusalem may well work against the Israelis, and the crumbling walls turn to be those of proud & arrogant Jewish Jerusalem.

No single democratic state considers Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, and all embassies & legations are based in Tel-Aviv. Netanyahu’s speech before Jewish Americans just before the White House encounter was a clear provocation that President Obama was surely not willing to ignore. The pulse is on. Even allies quarrel but no small-fry state should risk the anger of its firmest sponsor.

This rather unintelligent posture has already caused a decline of Netanyahu´s popularity not only in Israel but also strengthened the EU’s rejection of the Israeli arguments to stall the recognition of a Palestinian state. If now, the Obama Administration leaves Israel on its own in its border conflicts with other Middle East powers, Israel may find itself in a true dilemma. It may be best for Israel to agree to play with a fresh deck that avoids turning Jerusalem into a 21st. century Jericho.

Fernando Fuster-Fabra, Madrid


HEALTHCARE, A MILESTONE IN U.S. HISTORY THAT DIVIDES AMERICANS

March 23, 2010
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President Obama has won the first round of a battle where several Presidents before him succumbed. In his scarce year in office, not only has he already made History by being the first Afro-American President that also won the Nobel Peace award in record time but also the instigator of a social change in American public health.

The internal war waged by anti-healthcare factions were not only directed towards the proposed new public health measure but went so far as to directly attack the President with all types of tactics. In fact, even prior to the East Room signing ceremony today, 12 states had already announced their intention of filing law suits questioning the constitutionality of the new law before the U.S. Supreme Court.

The most powerful nation in the world is a paradigm of how prosperity & progress can blind a population into the real values of quality of living. For such an economic and military power such as the USA, it is unconceivable that almost half of its population reject social policies that enhance their healthcare program. Having lived in that country for some time, I for one experienced that imperative necessity of having an appropriate private medical insurance coverage, just in case. Such situation is unthinkable even in the less powerful nations of the European Union.

Furthermore, have closely followed the public debates and strong opposition campaigns of vested interest lobbies, one cannot but be surprised that public opinion was intentionally misled by supposed risks of U.S. bankruptcy due to the then proposed measure, now enacted into law. Important media and affected insurance companies dumped the citizenry with false facts about the long term costs of putting the law into effect from now till 2014, when in truth; the U.S. medical burden today is way off costs in other developed countries round the world.

In spite of the historic signing today, this law will have a bumpy test run before it can slowly be put into effect. Its repercussions are yet to be felt in this year’s congressional elections and the sponsors of the so-called anti-Obama tea-parties will prolong their misdoings in a last-ditch attempt to stall the desired effects of said new law.

President Obama deserves a round of applause for his strategic steering of the vessel to safe port but his Administration must realise that once more the ship must sail out and face new thunderstorms of that archaic Establishment that has had its ways and whims in Washington D.C. for too long a time.

Is this the moment towards a real change in the outdated American way of life?

The President’s remaining mandate will be the testing ground of who is to have the final say before the next presidential elections in November, 2012.

Fernando Fuster-Fabra, Madrid


WORLD TRADE & ECONOMY JIGSAW PUZZLE: THE EXPLOSIVE G-2 FORMULA

February 28, 2010
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President Obama’s visit to China last November hastily coined a new economic axis, G-2, in U.S. and international economic circles. The results of the Copenhagen Climate Change Conference (https://fernandofusterfabra.wordpress.com/2009/12/20/obama-after-copenhagen/) a few weeks later seemed to confirm closer ties between two world powers with different goals. I for one was totally convinced that the Chinese theatre show would be short lived.

World trade events involving the U.S.A. & China in the last quarter have tensed relations. However, bilateral commercial relations have not been the only point of confrontation that has lit the red-light alert in the growing risk of rupture. U.S. arms sale to Taiwan and the Dalai Lama’s private visit to the White House have served to ignite the already heated atmosphere.

There are two main points that oblige the Obama Administration to watch their step in their relations with China :-

  1. The Iran nuclear dilemma
  2. China’s hold on U.S. public bonds

Let me analyse each item and the impressions said issues cause in other scenarios such as the European Union.

The Iran Nuclear Dilemma

The international scenario on nuclear development is supposedly supervised by the United Nations through its IAEA; such situation implies that the five U.N. members (China, France, Russia, United Kingdom & U.S.A.) with veto power in the Security Council have final say on sanctions and nuclear power control. Having convinced Russia to back U.S. demands on Iran, China is the only veto bloc power that could frustrate U.N. Security Council resolutions against Iran’s uncontrolled uranium enrichment scheme.

Being aware of its strategic vote, China has the Obama Administration in a rather awkward position. No words are required whilst China picks the flower dilly dallying on the issue.

China’s hold on U.S. public bonds

China may have as much as 20% of U.S. long-term bonds. A recent move to sell part of its holdings just as commercial hassle on Chinese products imported into the U.S.A., was but a warning of what China could do to effectively harm the still shaky U.S. economy. Furthermore, China has refused to revalue its Yuan, in order to rebalance U.S.-China import-export trade flow.

In this rather inflamed setting, American economic policies seem predestined to toe a soft-line where China is concerned. Nevertheless, President Obama’s bet on a G-2 axis to trigger a global world economic recovery is destined to fail. Moreover, if the U.S. Administration has still any hopes of soothing their Chinese counterparts with light concessions, it then becomes evident that the Obama team knows very little about Chinese Machiavelli-style use of time to wear off their adversaries.

Instead of a G-2 with this unreliable undemocratic commercial partner, the Obama Administration has to bend back to envision a more solid panorama where the other partner lies across the Atlantic Ocean, a natural partner for free-trade, economic sustainable growth, democracy and peace.

Fernando Fuster-Fabra, Madrid


OBAMA SPEAKS TO THE NATION

January 28, 2010
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U.S. President Obama is one speaker worth listening to even it means staying up late. He has command of language and an impressive presence in public, that very image that made him popular and landed him in the White House.

Last night Barack Obama returned to his campaign speech ways and challenged Congress leaders to back up measures he proposes to create new jobs and resolve economic problems of the average American. He knew that he had the audience nationwide and that his words would sink in deep to make it clear that he means business.

However, the President avoided putting pressure on ticklish issues such as the healthcare bill and only mentioned it in the passing. Likewise, for the first time in his 12 months in office, he blamed the Bush Administration for the economic crisis and two wars inherited. A wink to the Republicans on budget and tax cuts didn’t harvest the expected applauses but Obama didn’t deter from his intention to speak more to the gallery than to the congressmen and senators in the hall.

Surely enough, public opinion surveys showed an improved image. What I wonder is how much easier will the Obama Administration have it to pass bills in the Senate. In a congressional partial election year, politicians from both parties will be cautious not to provoke voters in their constituencies. I feel that the first bill to be sacrificed will probably be the healthcare bill, at least as to the extent of coverage and planned expenditure.

No matter how well Barack Obama may speak to the nation, Washington lobbies end up having most of their ways at the end of the day. The President assures he isn’t quitting but neither are the lobbyists.

Fernando Fuster-Fabra, Madrid


OBAMA AFTER A YEAR IN OFFICE: THE HONEYMOON IS OVER

January 20, 2010
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Anti-Obama Campaign

On the day of President Obama’s first anniversary in Office, the Democratic Party’s defeat in the senatorial elections in Massachusetts has been the final bitter drop to a rather complicated year.

Obama has had a rather full year with a rather favourable start due to his popularity as candidate, President-elect and during the first half of 2009. Three main issues have weighed heavily on White House decisions in this twelve months sin taking oath as America’s 44th President and first Afro-American to preside the world’s most powerful nation.

A change in Bush’s Iraq policy was probably the issue that best met with citizenry approval. This included the closure of the Guantanamo installations, a promise that has yet to be fulfilled. However, the international warfront did not end with the announcement of an orderly troop from Iraq. The anti-terrorist campaign in Afghanistan was likewise inherited from the Bush Administration. If new Iraq policy seemed acceptable, new troops for Afghanistan have met both with political and citizen objections.

Obama’s decision to reinforce American troops in Afghanistan clash with its effects on the U.S. budget precisely at a time when not only Republican politicians question such expenditure but also meet criticism from some Democrats.  True to say, the Obama Administration has had to dump public funds to save the American car industry and salvage the country’s largest banks. Such financial effort has further strained U.S. reserves and added to the overburdened public expenditures.

To top it all, Obama’s promised health reform is another burden to the already overloaded public deficit. Resistance to said bill has already provoked tensions within the Democratic Party and has been the Republicans’ main issue brought up against the White House in 2009. The degraded version passed by Congress is up for the Senate vote just when the bitter defeat for the Massachusetts senatorial post has grabbed the Democrat’s majority in the Upper House.

What awaits President Obama in his second year in Office? With the honeymoon over, the White House advisors must drain their minds to come up with creative solutions to the dark clouds up ahead.

Fernando Fuster-Fabra, Madrid


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