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Experts suggest ways to develop Arab housing sector

Author: ARAB NEWSMon, 2016-12-26ID: 1482707218623534300RIYADH: The fourth Arab Housing Conference has recommended building urban communities, not housing complexes and establishing the infrastructure needed to achieve a public-private partner…


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Man sentenced to death for his role in terror plots

Author: 
Mohammed Al-Sulami
Mon, 2016-12-26
ID: 
1482707218633534600

JEDDAH: The Special Criminal Court in Riyadh sentenced a Saudi to death after finding him guilty of participating in an Al-Qaeda terrorist plot in the Kingdom to kill an individual.
The defendant received a computer card that had that person’s name, access to his car and personal information. He was found being aware of that person’s killing and didn’t report it.
The court also proved the defendant’s guilt of being involved in an April 2004 plan to bomb the Interior Ministry and emergency forces’ building.
He did some monitoring for the group and drew a sketch for them, prepared the information on two computer cards and handed them over to a group member who took part in the bombing. He also handed him computerized information on forgery and bomb making.
The man was found guilty in the explosion at the Baqiq refinery in 2006 by collecting information, taking pictures of the refinery, and using his car in scanning the road for the participants in the refinery explosion.
He had proposed that the participants wear similar clothing to the refinery workers to ensure the success of their operation.
He was also convicted of setting up a plan for the withdrawal from the targeted areas; having prior knowledge of the operation’s implementation date; and accompanying the group that carried out the terrorist attack. He came back before the explosion and never reported any information on the group to the authorities as per the group’s request.
He also supported the group with weapons after he bought three Kalashnikovs and pistols, and handed them over to one of the group members who was killed in the attack. Upon his arrest, he was found in possession of 14 pistols.
He also provided the group with media support by collecting combat videos that had been published by the terrorist cell and contacted some of the group’s fugitives, and supported assassinations.
The defendant has 30 days to appeal the sentence.

Main category: 

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Is the <b>oil</b> party over?

Thanks to constantly declining international prices of crude over the past two years, net oil importing countries have benefitted immensely. It is notable …The post Is the <b>oil</b> party over? appeared first on crude-oil.top.


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Islamists Attack Christmas, But Europeans Abolish It

Submitted by Giulio Meotti via The Gatestone Institute,

  • A statue of the Virgin Mary was ordered taken away by a court in the French municipality of Publier. Senator Nathalie Goulet slammed the judges as “ayatollahs of secularism”.
  • A German school in Turkey just banned Christmas celebrations: the school, Istanbul Lisesi, funded by the German government, decided that Christmas traditions and carol-singing would no longer be allowed. A Woolworth’s store in Germany scrapped Christmas decorations telling customers that the shop “is now Muslim”.
  • Europe is already mutilating her own traditions “to avoid offending Muslims”. We have become our own biggest enemy.
  • Muslims are also reclaiming “the mosque of Cordoba”. Authorities in the southern Spanish city recently dealt a blow to the Catholic Church’s claim of ownership of the cathedral. Now Islamists want it back.
  • The final result of Europe’s self-destructive secularism could seriously be a Caliphate.

“Everything is Christian”, Jean-Paul Sartre wrote after the war. Two thousand years of Christianity have left a deep mark on the French language, landscape and culture. But not according to France’s Minister of Education, Najat Vallaud-Belkacem. She just announced that instead of saying “Merry Christmas”, state officials should use “Happy Holidays” — clearly a deliberate intent to erase from discourse and the public space any reference to the Christian culture in which France is rooted.

Jean-François Chemain called it the “eradication of any Christian sign in the public landscape”. A year ago, the controversy was ignited in the French town of Ploermel, where a court decided that the statue of Pope John Paul II, erected in a square, had to be removed for violating “secularism”.

Then, a statue of the Virgin Mary was ordered taken away by a court in the municipality of Publier. Senator Nathalie Goulet slammed the judges as “ayatollahs of secularism“.

The newspapers of the French “left”, outraged by the “right’s” ban on burkinis on the French Riviera, have been endorsing this anti-Christian policy.

France’s Council of State has just ruled that “the temporary installation of cribs [nativity scenes] in a public place is legal if it has a cultural, artistic or festive value, but not if it expresses the recognition of a cult or a religious preference”. What precautions to justify a millenary tradition!

In the town of Scaer, a nursing home has been the subject of a similar secularist complaint, for the presence of a fresco of the Virgin Mary. Then, it was the turn of the manger in the train station of Villefranche-de-Rouergue, in Aveyron. In the town of Boissettes, the church bells have been muted by court decision.

Fortunately, some ideas from the Observatory of Secularism — the organ established by President François Hollande to coordinate his neo-secularist policies — have not been implemented. One proposed even to eliminate some Christian national holidays to make room for the Islamic, Jewish and secular holidays.

President Hollande, on the occasion of Easter, “forgot” to express holiday wishes to the Christians of France. But a few months before, Hollande had extended his best wishes to the Muslims during the feast of Eid, which closes Ramadan. “Hollande’s greeting to Muslims is opportunistic and political. For the Socialist Party, it is a crucial electoral clientele”, said the French philosopher Gerard Leclerc in the newspaper, Le Figaro.

This Christianophobia is the Trojan Horse of Islam. As Charles Consigny writes in the weekly Le Point, “Through this tabula rasa of the past, France will make a clean sweep of its future”. Unfortunately, France is not an isolated case. Everywhere in Europe, a weary, secularist absence of purpose and confused values damns Christianity in favor of Islam.

A jihadist terrorist, targeting a symbol of Christian tradition, last week slaughtered 12 people at a Christmas market in Berlin. But Europe is already mutilating her own traditions “to avoid offending Muslims”. We have become our own biggest enemy.

The annual candlelit Saint Lucia (“Sankta Lucia“) procession, a Swedish Christian tradition celebrated for hundreds of years, is “dying” out. Uddevalla, Södertälje, Koping, Umeå, and Ystad are among the growing numbers of cities no longer holding this lovely cultural event. According to Jonas Engman, an ethnologist at the Nordic Museum, the declining interest in the St. Lucia procession accompanies a more general alienation from the culture of Christian Sweden. A study conducted by Gallup International reveals that in observing the Christian religion, Sweden is “the least religious in the West“. In the meantime, with a young, strong, driven sense of purpose and a set of sharia values, Islam is growing.

A German school in Turkey just banned Christmas celebrations. The school, Istanbul Lisesi, funded by the German government, decided that Christmas traditions and carol-singing would no longer be permitted. The Washington Post summarized the decision: “No teaching of Christmas customs, no celebrations and no Christmas caroling”. It is not an isolated incident. A Woolworth’s store in Germany also scrapped Christmas decorations, telling customers that the shop “is now Muslim”.

In Britain, David Isaac, the new head of the Equalities and Human Rights Commission (EHRC), told employers that they should not suppress Christian tradition out of fear of offending anyone. Previously, Dame Louise Casey, the British government’s integration “tsar”, warned that “traditions such as Christmas celebrations will die out unless people stand up for British values”.

In many Spanish towns, such as Cenicientos, the municipality of this Autonomous Community of Madrid removed the Christian Stations of the Cross. Then, Madrid’s mayor, Manuela Carmena, decided to remove the city’s traditional Nativity display at the Puerta de Alcalá.

Muslims are also reclaiming “the mosque of Cordoba“. Authorities in the southern Spanish city recently dealt a blow to the claim of ownership of the cathedral by the Catholic Church. Built on the site of Saint Vincent’s church, it then served as a mosque for over 400 years when Islamic Spain was part of a caliphate, before the Christian kingdom of Castile conquered the city and converted it again into a church. Now Islamists want it back.

Muslims are also reclaiming “the mosque of Cordoba”. Authorities in the southern Spanish city recently dealt a blow to the claim of ownership of the cathedral by the Catholic Church. Built on the site of Saint Vincent’s church, it then served as a mosque for over 400 years when Islamic Spain was part of a caliphate, before the Christian kingdom of Castile conquered the city and converted it again into a church. (Image source: James (Jim) Gordon/Wikimedia Commons)

Belgium, the most Islamized democracy in Europe, is also purging its Christian heritage. The Nativity, the traditional manger scene, has not been put up in the Belgian town of Holsbeek, just outside Brussels. Claims were scenes it was scrapped to “avoid offending Muslims”.

As reported by the newspaper La Libre, school calendars within Belgium’s French speaking community are also using a new secularized terminology: All Saints Day (Congés de Toussaint) is now be referred to as Autumn Leave (Congé d’automne); Christmas Vacation (Vacances de Noël) is now Winter Vacation (Vacances d’hiver); Lenten Vacation (Congés de Carnaval) is now Rest and Relaxation Leave (Congé de détente); and Easter (Vacances de Pâques) is now Spring Vacation (Vacances de Printemps). Then Belgium installed an abstract, de-Christianized Christmas tree in the capital, Brussels.

In the Netherlands, the Christian tradition of Black Pete is under attack and it will soon be abolished. In Italy, Catholic priests this year canceled Christmas to “avoid offending Muslims”.

The final result of Europe’s self-destructive secularism could seriously be a Caliphate, in which the fate of its ancient and beautiful churches recapitulates those in Constantinople, where the Hagia Sophia, for thousand years Christianity’s greatest cathedral, was recently turned into a mosque. The muezzin’s call now reverberates inside this Christian landmark for the first time in 85 years.

Islamic terrorists targeted Christmas in Berlin, but it is the Christian secularists who are abolishing it all over Europe.

The post Islamists Attack Christmas, But Europeans Abolish It appeared first on crude-oil.top.



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Sea of opportunities awaits fishermen, industries

But any oil spill due to port activity will be minimal as modern container vessels do not encourage heavy oil or crude oil; they opt for light oil instead.The post Sea of opportunities awaits fishermen, industries appeared first on crude-oil.top.


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The Scariest Forecast For Treasury Bulls

With Trump’s border tax adjustment looking increasingly likely, the stock market – as JPM has warned in recent days – is starting to fade the relentless Trumponomic, hope-driven rally since election day instead focusing on the details inside the president-elect’s proposed plans. And, as explained earlier in the week, if the border tax proposal is implemented, economists at Deutsche Bank estimate the tax could send inflation far above the Federal Reserve’s 2% target and drive a 15% surge in the dollar.

While this would be bad for stocks, as a 5% increase in the dollar translates into about a 3% negative earnings revision for the S&P 500 all else equal, a surge in inflation would also wreak havoc on bond prices, and send interest rates surging, at least initially, before they subsquently plunge as a result of a rapidly tightening, deep “behind the curve” Fed unleashes a curve inversion and recessionary stagflation becomes the bogeyman du jour.

There’s more.

In a separate report by Deutsche, the bank looks at future prospects for rates and concludes that “tightening monetary policy, higher breakevens, and declining central bank purchases relative to net supply should all contribute to significant bearish steepening during 2017.”

In its analysis of future bond rates, Deutsche Bank says that the biggest risk is that when looking at the menu of “threats” presented by the Trump stimulus, “there is a significant risk that if the Fed decides to aggressively lean against higher inflation expectations, the entire “regime shift” might stall. That is, higher wages and inflation expectations are a prerequisite to the substitution of capital for labor, which is in itself necessary for more rapid productivity growth and hence higher potential growth and sustainably higher levels of r*.”

And then the focus shifts so that whatever degree of accommodation is warranted, there will be the push to rebalance away from rising short rates to shrinking the Fed’s balance sheet, in other words, the Fed begins real normalization.

In DB’s model, the net effect of ending reinvestment of SOMA portfolio run-off, some asset sales, and an ECB taper is almost 200 bps. This would allows 10s to move well over 4 percent in 2018. That although roll offs are significant – maybe $50 billion/month – in order to get the balance sheet down from more than $4 trillion to say $1 trillion before the 4-year presidential term is over would still require asset sales of  approximately $50 billion.

Assuming Deutsche Bank is correct, the result would be the scariest forecast bond bulls have seen in years: a 10-Year TSY whose yield fades all gains attained during the past decade, in the span of just two short years, hitting 4.5% in early 2019. The adverse implications from such a fast, steep move on all asset classes, not just bonds, would be devastating.

Will this forecast come true? Readers can make their own determinations upon reading DB’s assumptions:

Formally, DB’s model of 10s has three explanatory variables. The main driver is the ratio global QE purchases to net supply in nominal terms with a nine-month lead, i.e., the market is forward looking. Global QE and supply figures are from the US, Europe and Japan. The other two variables in the model are Fed funds and the 2s/funds spread. The model is estimated between October 2006 and September 2016.

These assumptions are summarized in the following three scenarios:

  1. Base case: Trump’s fiscal stimulus, amounting to about $530 billion per year for ten years.
  2. Base case + ECB taper + Fed portfolio rolloff. In this case, 10s are about +70bp higher in yields than in the base case.
  3. Base case + ECB taper + Fed portfolio rolloff + Fed asset sales. 10s are about +100bp higher in yields than in base case.

The assumptions in the scenarios are:

  • President-elect Trump’s stimulus package, scored by the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget adds $5.3 trillion to the deficit over the next decade. This averages to $530 billion per year, starting in July 2017, around the time the plan is expected to be passed by Congress.
  • The ECB tapers QE purchases by ½ in 2018, and stops all purchases in 2019.
  • Fed balance sheet reductions: The Fed stops reinvestments of maturing Treasuries and MBS pre-payments starting Q4 2017. Asset sales at $250 billion in 2018 and $500 billion in 2019.
  • The Fed funds target range rises to 2.50%-2.75% by year end 2019, with the 2s/funds spread at 60bp.

Visually:

Needless to say, DB is convinced that there is a lot of pain coming for the bond market. To wit:

“Our strongest market view, therefore, is that investors should be short duration. Rates are going higher. The curve should end up steeper but this Fed’s initial reaction as per this week can confuse curve dynamics. Real rates should not rise more than breakevens. In the short run dollar strength should persist.”

We are far less confident, especially if indeed the border tax is implemented, sending the dollar soaring, US exports, and GDP crashing, and corporate profits plunge. In short: if Trump unleashes a recession by implementing a policy which is meant to eliminate the US trade deficit.

In such a case, forget steepeners: buy every flattener you can get your hands on, and then use leverage, because before you know it the 2s30s will be back in the double digits, then single, and then, not too long from now, negative.

Whether that is the catalyst that will kick off QE4 or whatever the current number is, we don’t know, but by that point China will be spitting up blood as a result of a historic collapse in the Yuan, hundreds of billions in monthly outflows and a paralyzed, and crushed financial system. Ironically, in light of the devastation that may soon befall China should Trump’s policies pan out, the US – recession or not – may still be the “cleanest dirty shirt” in a world where things are about to get very messy.

The post The Scariest Forecast For Treasury Bulls appeared first on crude-oil.top.


No Image

The Scariest Forecast For Treasury Bulls

With Trump’s border tax adjustment looking increasingly likely, the stock market – as JPM has warned in recent days – is starting to fade the relentless Trumponomic, hope-driven rally since election day instead focusing on the details inside the president-elect’s proposed plans. And, as explained earlier in the week, if the border tax proposal is implemented, economists at Deutsche Bank estimate the tax could send inflation far above the Federal Reserve’s 2% target and drive a 15% surge in the dollar.

While this would be bad for stocks, as a 5% increase in the dollar translates into about a 3% negative earnings revision for the S&P 500 all else equal, a surge in inflation would also wreak havoc on bond prices, and send interest rates surging, at least initially, before they subsquently plunge as a result of a rapidly tightening, deep “behind the curve” Fed unleashes a curve inversion and recessionary stagflation becomes the bogeyman du jour.

There’s more.

In a separate report by Deutsche, the bank looks at future prospects for rates and concludes that “tightening monetary policy, higher breakevens, and declining central bank purchases relative to net supply should all contribute to significant bearish steepening during 2017.”

In its analysis of future bond rates, Deutsche Bank says that the biggest risk is that when looking at the menu of “threats” presented by the Trump stimulus, “there is a significant risk that if the Fed decides to aggressively lean against higher inflation expectations, the entire “regime shift” might stall. That is, higher wages and inflation expectations are a prerequisite to the substitution of capital for labor, which is in itself necessary for more rapid productivity growth and hence higher potential growth and sustainably higher levels of r*.”

And then the focus shifts so that whatever degree of accommodation is warranted, there will be the push to rebalance away from rising short rates to shrinking the Fed’s balance sheet, in other words, the Fed begins real normalization.

In DB’s model, the net effect of ending reinvestment of SOMA portfolio run-off, some asset sales, and an ECB taper is almost 200 bps. This would allows 10s to move well over 4 percent in 2018. That although roll offs are significant – maybe $50 billion/month – in order to get the balance sheet down from more than $4 trillion to say $1 trillion before the 4-year presidential term is over would still require asset sales of  approximately $50 billion.

Assuming Deutsche Bank is correct, the result would be the scariest forecast bond bulls have seen in years: a 10-Year TSY whose yield fades all gains attained during the past decade, in the span of just two short years, hitting 4.5% in early 2019. The adverse implications from such a fast, steep move on all asset classes, not just bonds, would be devastating.

Will this forecast come true? Readers can make their own determinations upon reading DB’s assumptions:

Formally, DB’s model of 10s has three explanatory variables. The main driver is the ratio global QE purchases to net supply in nominal terms with a nine-month lead, i.e., the market is forward looking. Global QE and supply figures are from the US, Europe and Japan. The other two variables in the model are Fed funds and the 2s/funds spread. The model is estimated between October 2006 and September 2016.

These assumptions are summarized in the following three scenarios:

  1. Base case: Trump’s fiscal stimulus, amounting to about $530 billion per year for ten years.
  2. Base case + ECB taper + Fed portfolio rolloff. In this case, 10s are about +70bp higher in yields than in the base case.
  3. Base case + ECB taper + Fed portfolio rolloff + Fed asset sales. 10s are about +100bp higher in yields than in base case.

The assumptions in the scenarios are:

  • President-elect Trump’s stimulus package, scored by the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget adds $5.3 trillion to the deficit over the next decade. This averages to $530 billion per year, starting in July 2017, around the time the plan is expected to be passed by Congress.
  • The ECB tapers QE purchases by ½ in 2018, and stops all purchases in 2019.
  • Fed balance sheet reductions: The Fed stops reinvestments of maturing Treasuries and MBS pre-payments starting Q4 2017. Asset sales at $250 billion in 2018 and $500 billion in 2019.
  • The Fed funds target range rises to 2.50%-2.75% by year end 2019, with the 2s/funds spread at 60bp.

Visually:

Needless to say, DB is convinced that there is a lot of pain coming for the bond market. To wit:

“Our strongest market view, therefore, is that investors should be short duration. Rates are going higher. The curve should end up steeper but this Fed’s initial reaction as per this week can confuse curve dynamics. Real rates should not rise more than breakevens. In the short run dollar strength should persist.”

We are far less confident, especially if indeed the border tax is implemented, sending the dollar soaring, US exports, and GDP crashing, and corporate profits plunge. In short: if Trump unleashes a recession by implementing a policy which is meant to eliminate the US trade deficit.

In such a case, forget steepeners: buy every flattener you can get your hands on, and then use leverage, because before you know it the 2s30s will be back in the double digits, then single, and then, not too long from now, negative.

Whether that is the catalyst that will kick off QE4 or whatever the current number is, we don’t know, but by that point China will be spitting up blood as a result of a historic collapse in the Yuan, hundreds of billions in monthly outflows and a paralyzed, and crushed financial system. Ironically, in light of the devastation that may soon befall China should Trump’s policies pan out, the US – recession or not – may still be the “cleanest dirty shirt” in a world where things are about to get very messy.

The post The Scariest Forecast For Treasury Bulls appeared first on crude-oil.top.


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2 Libyans charged with hijacking flight

Author: AP, AFPMon, 2016-12-26ID: 1482702790623419500VALLETTA, Malta: Two Libyan men have been arraigned in a Maltese court on charges of hijacking a domestic Libyan flight to the Mediterranean island of Malta.Defendants Moussa Saha and Ahmed…


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The Christmas Truce And The Future Of War

Submitted by John Denosn via The Mises Institute,

Jeff Deist: Our guest this weekend is in the studio with me. He’s Judge John Denson, a great war historian and a lawyer who helped Lew Rockwell found the Mises Institute right here in Auburn in the early 1980s.

You know, John, there are varying accounts of what happened. Depends on who you read and you can’t really ask anyone because none of the participants are alive today or very few. How widespread do you think it really was and do we make more of the Christmas Truce than we ought to because it’s so hopeful, in other words, it’s something we want to believe in.

John Denson: Well, I do recognize that there are various accounts of it and one reason I like the book Silent Night by Stanley Weintraub is I think he goes to original sources. It’s all from a British viewpoint because he went back to letters, from the front to home, to their mothers and fathers by soldiers who were actually there and diaries of eyewitnesses.

There’s a French movie called Joyeux Noel, from a French viewpoint but I doubt his sources are as good because in Weintraub, who is a very well-respected historian and is an Emeritus Professor of Arts and Humanities at Penn State. He’s written a lot of military history and he goes to original sources and he says that the French and the Belgians were not as prone toward the troops as the English were. They were fighting this war on the French soil and Belgian soil and the British just came across the channel, so I think there was a different viewpoint. So, you get different perspectives depending on who’s telling this story, but I think Silent Night by Stanley Weintraub came out in 2001, is a very accurate source, from what I can tell.

Deist: Well, you mentioned that the German and British soldiers saw the war a little differently. It was not being fought in their homeland, they weren’t French. But something that’s so significant to me is you mentioned in your article from which we excerpted in our Mises Daily yesterday, you say the British and French soldiers, however, saw little meaning in the war. To them, after all, the British king and the German Kaiser were both grandsons of Queen Victoria. So, this is such an astonishing fact, that the threat that would be posed to the establishment, to the generals, and the politicians by having rank and file soldiers, sort of awakened to the idea of the preposterousness of the war.

Denson: And Weintraub also states — which I include in my review that you’re going to publish — that about 80,000 Germans went to England before World War I to get jobs. They were cab drivers working in restaurants as cooks and waiters and so forth and they well understood the English language, so there was no language barrier between a lot of them because they spoke very good English. So, when they had the truce and began to play football on Christmas day and sing, they were singing the songs in English and reciting the 23rd Psalm in English, so there was easy communication.

Deist: And with all this commonality, why are we fighting, might be our question. Right?

Denson: Exactly. 

Deist: Well, let me ask you this. Obviously, at the time, we could understand why the brass would want to tamp this down and to stop this from spreading, but do you sense that even today, all these many years later, that there is an effort to sort of suppress the importance of the Christmas Truce and what it meant? Do you think even today, like these sort of war hungry neo-conservative types, don’t want the Christmas Truce to be widely discussed?

Denson: I think that’s true and I think that was exactly what they tried to do at the time of the truce. There was an actual order issued on Christmas Eve by Brigadier General Forrester Walker and he said, to forbid any fraternization, for it discourages initiative in commandos and destroys offensive spirit in all ranks. Free intercourse with the enemy, unofficial armistice and exchange of tobacco and other comforts, however tempting and occasionally amusing they may be, are absolutely prohibited under the threat of court martial. Anybody that fraternized and they just did it anyway and the officers couldn’t stop it. And then the officers participated, so you don’t want to develop good feelings in the Christian spirit during war time.

Deist: One thing that’s so remarkable about the Christmas Truce is this whole question of what might have happened if the truce had spread and this had caused the war to end earlier or be somehow limited. Weintraub addresses this in his book. We may not have had the rise of communism, the Russian Revolution and Stalin and Lenin, we certainly would not have had Versailles. As a result, we might not have had Hitler or Nazism or maybe even FDR. I mean, it’s remarkable to think about, isn’t it?

Denson: That’s right and that’s counterfactual history at its best. Weintraub, in his last chapter, entitled “What If,” points out that he thinks … and of course this is speculation, counterfactual history … that if we had had no Russian Revolution, we wouldn’t have gotten to that point where communism took over, no Lenin, no Stalin, there would be no Treaty of Versailles, mistreated Germany, therefore Hitler would not have had his cause to rise and no Hitler and Nazism and World War II, as I have argued in the past, World War II was simply a continuation of World War I with a truce, and World War I was to see if you could remake the world to benefit the English, the British, and the Russian Czar. World War II was to see if you could keep it that way, what they’d done in World War I. So, it would have changed the whole history, in my opinion, of the twentieth century.  And, we are still in the Middle East, suffering the results of the treaties that ended World War I. I mean, the treaties that created Iraq, tried to give Syria to the French, and Israel was created in the middle of an Arab world and it’s still a problem that was created by the World War I treaties. So, all of that, the whole twentieth century, I think, would have been completely different, if it could have ended, say when the troops stopped at Christmas of 1914. It’s amazing to think about that.

Deist: Well, you mentioned counterfactual history. Let me ask you, how did you, as a practicing lawyer, later a judge here in Alabama, become interested in historical revisionism and begin to study the history of war?

Denson: Well, I started out with really, no particular interest in war. I do remember being in high school and thinking about being in the Korean War in the 50s and I was surprised to hear Senator Robert Taft when he was running for the Republican nomination say it was an unconstitutional war. And I thought to myself, you know, I may have to fight in this war and it violates the constitution. But, it all died out and I went to law school at NYU and I heard John Kenneth Galbraith give a speech to the student body there. It was during the Kennedy-Nixon campaign and debates and so forth. And I got really interested in all that in 1960. And he made a statement that, you know, there are still Neanderthals that believe that you should have a balanced budget and everybody laughed. And I thought, whoa, wait a minute, I must be a Neanderthal.

Deist: So, your time at NYU did not turn you into a Galbraithian.

Denson: No. And an odd thing occurred. I had a lot of relatives there from Alabama practicing law and a brother that lived there and I was introduced to a new cousin named John Denson, who was editor of the New York Herald Tribune. I had lunch with him and I told him about this speech by Galbraith and I said, I took economics, but it taught me that free market failure caused the Great Depression and that’s why we needed government regulation. He said, I’ve got a close personal friend who wrote the best book that’s ever been written. His name is Henry Hazlett. John had been editor of Newsweek and he had hired Hazlett and Walter Lippmann to give different viewpoints. So, Economics in One Lesson started me off. And then I got to the Ayn Rand group and they were recommending Henry Hazlitt and Mises and that’s how I got to Mises and then through Mises I got to the Foundation on Economic Education, FEE.

And the thing that really got me into the military issue was an organization called Ramparts College and it sounded like Galt’s Gulch in Colorado. And they had university programs much like Mises Institute. You’d go there for a week or two weeks and they’d bring in speakers. They brought in Murray Rothbard, they brought in Mises himself, he taught there and they had these tapes and a whole book on history. And if I recall correctly, the first military history I read on revisionism was by Percy Greaves. And he had been hired after the end of World War II, to do the research for the Republicans on Pearl Harbor.

It had been a fixed thing to blame the command, how the commanders messed up, prohibited any investigation of what was going on in Washington. So, he gave this speech that the whole thing was provoked by Roosevelt’s actions and it just blew my mind. I thought, my gosh, why have I never heard this before? And so then I went back and got some of the other history courses at Ramparts and that introduced me to what I would say the Golden Age of Revisionism after World War I. Harry Elmer Barnes and Charles Tansill and Charles Beard, just wrote devastating attacks on why America should not have been in World War I and why World War I was a horrible thing. And it just blew my mind. I said, why have I never been taught this in college? I took history that taught me that the Civil War was for the purpose of abolishing slavery and World War I was for the purpose of setting up the League of Nations and ending all war and Americans destroyed that by not adopting it and World War II was to wipe out the world threat of Hitler and I just began to say, you know, this is a whole new world. And so military revisionism is a very, very important subject and the theme of my book, A Century of War, and I think it is the key to future peace. If people begin to learn the truth about why we go to war and learn what the true effects of it are, and how horrible it is, that things are hidden from them, most American people don’t know about the horror of war because they didn’t drop atomic bombs on us, they didn’t bomb all the cities like they did in Germany and Japan. So, I think revision, especially as to war, is a key element for the future of peace.

Deist: John, one of the things you say in the preface to your book, A Century of War, is that we tend to think of history as this static set of facts, but in truth, history is constantly being revealed to us because we don’t always have accurate information from the time and sometimes what develops is that what we thought is the truth is not necessarily the truth.

Denson: That’s exactly right. I’ve told people, given this example that much of history is like a murder trial. You’ve got a murder, got one event, a murder. And you’ve got the prosecution that’s telling you that here is my interpretation, the man’s guilty. You’ve got the defense saying, no, he’s innocent and it goes to a jury verdict and the jury decides one way or the other, but it’s the winning side that gets to tell the story. And it may not be the truth. All jury verdicts are not exactly accurate and you don’t hear the other side. So, that’s the way history gets written is the winners tell the results and that’s why I think you’ve got so much falsehood about American Civil War, World War I, and World War II from an American perspective, since we won it we got to justify.

Deist: But, when you say the winners, you tend to mean the winning political class, the states involved.

Denson: Yes.

Deist: And so perhaps a lot of what we know as history is actually false state propaganda of a sort.

Denson: Yes. You know, there’s an interesting quote in here. The British history officially came out in 1926 and indicated the Christmas Truce was just a minor incident, an event, but it was during the House of Commons debate in March 31, 1920 and H. Kingsley Wood, a cabinet minister, got up and made a speech and he said, he had been in the trenches, he said in the front trenches in Christmas 1914 and he said, I took part in what was well known at the time as a truce. We went over in front of the trenches and shook hands with many of our German enemies and a great number of people and I think we did something that was degrading or wrong and refused to stop, he said, the fact is, we did it. And I then came to the conclusion that I have held very firmly ever since, that if we had been left to ourselves, there never would have been another shot fired. For a fortnight, the troops went on and we were on the most friendly terms and it was only the fact that we were being controlled by others that made it necessary for us to start trying to shoot one another again.

And he blamed the resumption of war on “the grip of the political system which was bad, and I and others who were there at the time, determined there and then, never to rest until we had seen whether we could change it.” And then it concludes. There are people that thrive on war, the military industrial complex and one of the results of the World War I revisionism showed that the people that do the armaments and make money off that, help cause war. There are people, bankers, that have an interest. JP Morgan had a big interest in America getting into World War I and he financed the British Army and that led to the passage of the Neutrality Acts, which tried to keep America out of future wars and Roosevelt kept trying to knock that down. And to me, the most revealing book about Pearl Harbor — in addition to Percy Greaves’s book — is the book Day of Deceit by Robert Stinnett because it shows that the hearings that were held right after Pearl Harbor contained much perjury. Witnesses were told not testify under oath. We actually knew where the Japanese were and when they were going to attack, in Washington and they were told to lie about that and they did under oath. And he found out all about that through the Freedom of Information Act. So, that people that are in control and certain elites that make money out of war have great influence on getting us into war and keeping us there.

Deist: It’s interesting how, so often it seems by the time the truth comes out, the perpetrators are long gone and we don’t know whether they get their just desserts or not.

Denson: Look at the Iraq War. I mean, everybody knows that it was a fabrication of the intelligence. It said that there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq and we now know that was a complete lie and yet, George W. Bush has not been held accountable. His advisors, the people that furnished false intelligence, nobody is held accountable for the errors that were made that killed thousands and thousands, even millions of people.

Deist: In fact, many of those same people are still appearing every night on CNN and Fox, etc. John, one last question for you. You wrote your book, A Century of War, obviously looking back, about the twentieth century and the tremendous horrors of World War I and World War II. Are you hopeful about the twenty-first century or do you think it will likewise be a century of total war?

Denson: Well, I did a podcast with Lew Rockwell where I quoted this wounded soldier of World War II saying that we’ve got to think about war in a different way. He said, look, we always had slavery for thousands of years, it was accepted by everybody, we’ve always had war, but then the nineteenth century comes along and slavery gets abolished and it was partly because of looking back at the Declaration of Independence that everybody had equal rights to life and liberty and the Industrial Revolution came along. So, there was a big change in circumstance and people and the only war that was fought even in the name of slavery was America, so there was a big change. He says now, let’s look at war in a different way and the big change that has occurred is nuclear weapons. We’ve got to see what nuclear weapons can do. We’ve got the ability to destroy western civilization and even all life. We’ve got enough weapons now, so it’s time to start thinking about war, the way people saw that you needed a change about slavery.

And so, I think we’ve got a chance because if people realize the ultimate threat of nuclear war, then they’ve got to realize we can’t just commit suicide, you’ve got to take another look. So, you know, I think it’s a possibility and the internet allows people to get past the barriers that have prevented knowledge in the past. The Council on Foreign Relations, one of its purposes was to keep from having revisionism after Roosevelt and World War II. So, I think that the truth can be there and there is a change in circumstance.

The way we view war is different now. When the Civil War started, people went out in their carriages to get on a hill so they could see the battle and it didn’t involve the civilians, or so they thought. I read recently, however, that there were 50,000 civilians in the South murdered and killed in the Civil War and now you can look at the bombing of Germany and Japan and see it’s a different kind of war now.

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