My life as a potential Russian spy--I'm asking what you would think?

As I read about the 11 Russians caught by the FBI in the US, I could not help thinking about my own life. It so happens that I did not think it was possible to be a spy any longer. That it is, is actually good news.

When in 1998, I found out about TTDE, the technology that does not exist, it occurred to me that I all of a sudden had the explanation for many strange events that had happened to me since around 1970.

One of the first was during my reading of Alexander Solchenisyn's The Gulag Archipelago. Once when I stood up from my reading chair I suffered from acute hypotonia and my blood pressure fell so much that I fell to the ground and even hit my head in the floor. Normally such hypotensive bouts are much lighter and can be reversed by taking a lower position.

I performed very well in school around 15 years of age and was interested in science and medicine. Probably more in science in general since I did my first compulsive work-apprenticeship arranged by the school in a laboratory at Astra Pharmaceuticals in Mölndal where I lived and went to school. Or so I thought at least until I realized that I was placed in the animal housing department for the two week placement. One day I would have had an opportunity to visit a real laboratory for a day at least but the lab I was directed to was empty. No one came to meet me.

The next year I wanted to practice as a physician but I got a placement at a course for nurses aids instead at the hospital. One day we were introduced to hearing aids in a darkened room where I all of a sudden fainted and vomited on the floor. Never happened before or after again. Hearing aids makes me think of the hearing hallucinations many of us encounter these days.

These events have made me believe that people in Mölndal where engaged in having me "logged" via TTDE from early years and that this is something that has been going on for all my life. I have been walking around as a walking talking video camera to these people.

The list of events like the once described are plentiful all through my life. One of the more dramatic was that I found out that if I placed my motorcycle accidents on the map the sites formed the stars of the Big Dipper (Karlavagnen, Stora Björn as in Russian bear?) making me understand that someone might have aided me in these accidents in various ways.

In medical school I had problems with studying also. Interestingly, my course in pediatrics went very well and might have served as a measurement of my abilities. As I write right now I am intellectually and memory inhibited to a certain extent and I have a feeling that whoever has had me logged over the years have modulated my intellect variably over the years.

By attribution my feeling is that the people responsible for controlling me have had a character of sour socialists. Was I a Russian spy without knowing it? My father, who was a naturalized American citizen might have had the same problem in his later years according to some information that I got recently and by his charading while I lived in the US.

My years in Philadelphia in the US at the Wistar Institute was in a large lab run by a Polish born scientist that also directed the Institute. I made quite a career there and stayed almost ten years until I was shot in pieces partially by the aid of TTDE, an easy target not yet knowing about it. I have understood that my wife and collaborator at the lab had knowledge of TTDE. My children, who I tried to warn for the technology, after I found out about it, don't dare to discuss it. I would never have gotten children had I known.


Political Islam and Muslims in Sweden?

Veiled Truths Foreign Affairs: "If a culture war against Islam is not the answer, then how should Western liberals respond to genuinely popular and nonviolent Islamist movements that are committed to working within democratic institutions but that promote values at odds with progressive standards of freedom, equality, and tolerance?"

Dilsa Demirbag-Sten conludes in a recent DN.se piece that we should work on what we have in common not what separates us. She says that we should look forward and things will be easier. I like that liberal impulse: keep as little of old folly as possible. Like myself Demirbag-Sten has realized that religion must be private for a multicultural society to function without too much friction. Sweden then is different from Germany where they have more problems with immigrants. Less secular more Catholic.

So what do we have in common with people that claim they want to have their own legal society within ours? How do we compare on how we view leadership? The problem with people on the so called left is that they traditionally have vouched for authoritarian leadership ad modum Stalin etc. and we are probably seeing a gradient in Europe from east to West. How are Muslims prone to political Islam doing on Freedom, Equality and Tolerance? And what we call democracy, when they come from countries traditionally very authoritative in character.

Marc Lynch's article above discusses the difference in opinion between Tariq Ramadan and Paul Berman that differ a lot on how they relate to political Islam. Berman belongs to those that think political Islam can be compared to Nazism. This is what Binjamin Nethanyahu, the Israelian Prime Minister, has done with Iran's politics. This is what always surfaces when the politics of Geert Wilders of The Netherlands is discussed, that has been popular recently here in Europe.

Berman says that the threat is not extremists but rather the moderate Muslims that "draw well-meaning liberals into a poisonous embrace". So being a person that has tolerated Muslims, I have to ask myself if I'm fooled into this embrace or not? If Muslims of political Islam is setting up their own "systems" of people with sharia law they are in essence not different from Swedes that themselves set up voluntary systems with their own laws, or rules. I know from experience that some of these systems are overtly supremacist which I despise. As long as the number of Muslims only amount to some 5-10% of the population there should, however, not be any problem in my humble opinion.


Political leaders in the West?

Right now we have President Obama in the US and Chancellor Merkel in Europe. The leaders of the pack.

Obama have been criticized for being un-American and accused of not being legally American, growing up in Muslim Indonesia as he did. A US president have to have been born in the US. If it was to appease the Muslims, it apparently did not work. It is a funny rule because a person can be born in the US and raised in Venezuela. One of the ten casualties attacking Israelis on the Mavi Marmara recently was also born in the US but raised in Turkey.

However, Angela Merkel is born and raised, educated to a physicist, in East Germany. A country that was left of Lenin politically. Unlike in the US, they apparently don't have rules against people leading Germany being born and raised in foreign enemy land.

I am not claiming that the West's current ailments depend on its choice of leaders but it sure is a strange coincidence. Just now they are fighting about who has the right economics. Economics depend on psychology to a great extent and after the financial crisis, when US dominance is down, I guess we just have to accept that differences are going to shine through to a larger extent than before. World economics might be utopic.


Spinoza just taught me how the brain works?

I have based my religion, Religious Humanism, a Pantheism, on Spinoza's idea of God or Nature. There is only one substance. This was a development from the little earlier appearing Descartes who claimed there are two substances. One thinking and one material.

What Spinoza did already in the 1650s was to say that thoughts must emanate from one substance. They must be material. But thoughts do not come from a substance but rather from the behavior of a substance. It occurred to me that since the brain generates a frequency function, nerves fire all over the place, it would be possible to continuously generate images or words from this frequency function that would give us consciousness. Two aspects of the same phenomenon.

Such a mathematical transformation process exists and is called Fourier transformation. It is used for molecular structural determination in chemistry where a sample containing a substance is magnetically shocked, to excitate it, and the resulting relaxation generates a frequency function that can be transformed into an nuclear magnetic resonance spectrum. Frequency to image.

Now, the frequency function generated by the brain is much more complicated but it is conceivable that the brain actually generates a continuous transformation that in essence is a movie formed by images transformed. This is then what happened in evolution of consciousness. The brain started a similar process like Fourier transformation. Words must be formed in the same manner. The evolution of language being when this started to happen separate from images.

It is interesting to note that Benjamin Libet discovered that there is a delay in the appearance of consciousness of a stimulus. This would be the time necessary for the brain to perform the transformation and consciousness would be a monitoring process taking place after events. We might not then think with the images but rather by the nerve reactions. Our motivation somehow drives the brain.


Germany is accused of being mercantilistic. They gained from the fall of the Euro.

Op-ed: The G-20 and "Chermany": "It was easy to rail against mercantilism that, regardless of its intellectual pedigree, has doubtful moral connotations: mercantilism involves doing well but at someone else's expense. Fiscal consolidation, on the other hand, has the aura of moral correctness and virtue."

It is strange. The world does not care much for Midsummer in Sweden and has placed the G8 and G20 meetings this weekend. The US advocates spend now, save later, be mindful of growth. They are worried that Germany's fiscal austerity will cause a recession in Europe. Angela Merkel has defended Germany's position: it is foolish to spend money you don't have in a crisis. It causes bad vibrations among the people. Balanced budget on the other hand causes good vibrations and will cause people to spend to revive the economy. As usual lay people, have to make up their mind by non economical means when the schools clash. Most probably for political reasons?

So, the lucky Germans with their lowly valued Euro, boosting their exports, preach fiscal austerity to further boost their mecantilistic approach? As Christine Lagarde, the French Minister of Finance, said: "there is no Euro crisis"? China, apparently, decides to loose more than they have done on the lower Euro and raised the value of the renminbi. This could according to the article above depend on the fact that the discussion has moved from a bilateral "Chimerica" problem to a multipolar affair involving countries like Brazil and India as well. Some form of responsibility for balancing the world economy that would not in fact warrant the connotation "Chermany", a dual mercantilistic approach? Is China out picking easy public relation points among the world poor like during the COP15 conference?

I have heard people saying that the US is bankrupt and that they would default on their debt. I guess some US billionaires recently gave evidence to the opposite. There are apparently 403 billionaires in the US. If they lent the government 2-3bn each on average, the US would be saved. Angela Merkel probably have many good economical advisors. However, if it boiled down to who to believe, President Obama or Chancellor Merkel, it might be good to remember that Merkel was born and raised in East Germany. It is funny though that both Obama and Merkel currently flirts with Russia.

Glad midsommar!


Kissinger has a non-Karzai solution?

Henry A. Kissinger - America needs an Afghan strategy, not an alibi: "The military effort should be conducted substantially on a provincial basis rather than in pursuit of a Western-style central government. The time scale for a political effort exceeds by a wide margin that available for military operations. We need a regional diplomatic framework for the next stage of Afghan strategy, whatever the military outcome. Artificial deadlines should be abandoned."

By sacking McChrystal Obama alienated himself from the Europeans and especially from Hamid Karzai that had formed a personal relationship with McChrystal. The White House wined and dined Karazai not long ago but this would in all probability not heal the wounds inflicted earlier. Henry Kissinger suggests in an article that Afghanistan should be regionalized which would make Karzai less important. Regions with an economic governance, Eu style? The growth last year was 15% which would say that things might not be so bad after all economically. Only politically.

Kissinger is probably right. There is a need for a new strategy. The old one did not work since the death rates have reached new maxima this June, June not even ended. The question then is if COIN has a greater possibility of working in a regionalized Afghanistan?


Germany is far ahead of the EU on Russia

"Moreover, the Germans already have thousands of enterprises that have invested in Russia. Finally, in the long run, Germany’s population is declining below the level needed to maintain its economy. It does not want to increase immigration into Germany because of fears of social instability. Russia’s population is also falling, but it still has surplus population relative to its economic needs and will continue to have one for quite a while. German investment in Russia allows Germany to get the labor it needs without resorting to immigration by moving production facilities east to Russia."

George Friedman at Stratfor discusses the relationship between Russia and Germany relative France and Poland which of course also has a great importance for Sweden. The above citation provides one explanation for the driving force of common interest between Russia and Germany.

This might mean that Germany preferentially would invest rather in Russia than in the EU. Especially in the southern parts. The question is if Sweden has enough clout to tackle Russia in the same way?

Today we learned on the news on SVT that foreign trade is improved by immigration in Sweden which would point in an other direction that is more favorable. Immigrant labor in Sweden can work here and in immigrant countries of origin. The information given did not specify if immigrants came from Russia or not. Imagery provided spoke rather of the type of immigration Germany apparently fears would threaten their societal stability.

Doing business in Russia is not easy according to IKEA which will stop expansion in the country and just maintain operations. Leon Aron at the AEI writes that a climate of fear stifles innovation in Russia. This would mean that one would find only beneficial opportunities in simpler endeavors where salaries are not all that low. Seems like the German's fear for foreigners might put them at a disadvantage?

The falling populations in Germany and Russia are interesting though. Great Britain is projected to pass Germany as EU's largest country by 2050 and the US will increase its population as well. Their in house solutions sound more viable.

Foreign Minister Carl Bildt?

Fluffiga anklagelser - DN.se: "Genom vägbygget gjorde Lundin Oil ett stort område som annars inte hade gått att nå tillgängligt för milisen, enligt rapporten. Därmed är Lundin Oil medskyldiga till folkfördrivningen, menar man och insinuerar helt utan bevis att företaget byggt vägen i syfte att underlätta fördrivningen."

It is interesting to see that DN.se has to kick Bildt for being nice to him in an article by saying he showed poor judgment. Charlie Weimers says on his blog that only 1/3 of journalists sympathizes with the center-right Alliansen which carries a possible explanation.

However, I cannot help finding it interesting that building a road, normally considered as an aid project, is used by interest groups to charge a Swedish oil company for vile behavior. What is going to happen in Afghanistan when roads are going to be built? Who is going to invest when they will become accused that the Taliban used their road?

It seems to me that going in in countries like Somalia, Sudan and Afghanistan with investments will have to consider those in power locally. The alternative is to stay out and leave these countries as they are. It is also my assumption the multinationals originating in the West are more favorable to a country than those emanating from authoritarian countries.

The article brings up a citation from Adolf Lundin, the Chairman of the Board of Lundin Oil where he states: "that they work without regard for political risks (...) the only thing that is important for us is that we are on to something really big". It seems to me that such a statement is a mere explanation of why investments in Sudan are being made at all. Companies are becoming aware of the need of showing more humanitarian concern, which is good, all the more reason then that they are on to something big in order to afford this.

Gen. Stanley McChrystal?

The New York Times has already fired McChrystal. It strikes me, however, that the general found himself in a position where he has to go to save the mission. Gave the interview, and hands in his letter of resignation. I find it unlikely that he would make such a "mistake" to "act without judgment".

What if he wants to try to force a change in the administration? Secretary of State Hilary Clinton was spared in the Rolling Stone article. Apparently the chemistry between McChrystal and Obama was not right after their first meeting. McChrystal did not find that Obama was sufficiently engaged in the problem. General Petraeus has also begun to address policy questions like stating that Israel has become a liability for the US military.

McChrystal's importance on the mission might be sufficiently grand to make it possible gain such a moral victory? Hamid Karzai has turned to Pakistan and India, fired two ministers that were the most trusted by the US, is McChrystal trying to regain his trust by fouling Karzai's enemies in the administration?

McChrystal's strategy is probably top of the line in this kind of new warfare and if Obama wants to minimize loss, to use Thomas Friedman's conclusion today, or to make it possible to transform Afghanistan to a stable country based on mineral wealth to cite others. Anders Fogh Rasmussen, the NATO commander, Carl Bildt, the Foreign Minister of Sweden, and Hamid Karzai fully supports McChrystal. Obama is facing a choice where he is forced to choose between Joe Biden and Eikenberry and McChrystal. The NSA chief James Jones, who was called "clown" might stay.

On the other hand, maybe the whole affair is about changing the over-all strategy? The number of casualties has increased every year since the beginning 8.5 years ago and the summer fighting season now begins. Although I haven't seen the data, preliminary figures might already be possible to project to yet another record peak of deaths?

The initial COIN endeavor in Marjah was troublesome and the conclusion is that the time schedule is bust for initial withdrawal of troops in July next year. The Kandahar surge is delayed because of this. The New York Times thinks the US and ISAF has a draw with the Taliban and Friedman says, pointedly, that it might be a mistake to try to teach the Afghans how to fight themselves? Then falls the security first on our call strategy.

It seems to me that the only other strategy for achieving stability for extracting mineral wealth and increasing living standards for the Afghan people is to let the country shake down to its natural power state by leaving them alone and taking care of US security needs later by pointed al Qaida attacks by special forces. Somalia style. I think Joe Biden, the US Vice President, had such ideas. This would mean that Obama has come around to his and Eikenberry's way of looking at things.


Har Bodström fått fnatt?

Hörde idag på nyheterna att Tomas Bodström anklagar Carl Bildt för brott som ger livstids fängelse.

Way over the top!

A Thought Experiment?

Israel and the Surrender of the West - WSJ.com: "This is something new in the world, this almost complete segregation of Israel in the community of nations. And if Helen Thomas's remarks were pathetic and ugly, didn't they also point to the end game of this isolation effort: the nullification of Israel's legitimacy as a nation?"

Ulf Bjereld brings statistics to the fore on DN.se today in discussing the foreign policy of Sweden. I have seen comments in the Israeli press where they are not very interested in what the Swedes say about Israel. Sweden is far away and represents relatively few people. Justifying my own interest in the situation of Israel, I am interested in Judaism and in the pursuit of the state Israel, which is impressive. The above cited article on WSJ.com tries to discuss the reason for why Israel is scape goated today.

Concerning Helen Thomas' conclusion, I wonder if she did not have partly the same idea as I when I early on in the wake of Operation Cast Lead concluded that the best choice for Israel might have been an exodus if this indeed is the end game of Iran et al. I have since realized that Israel's security situation is not that precarious. Living in Sweden and reading the Swedish press I definitely get a feeling that anti-semitism is a growing problem though. Jews feel they have to leave the third largest town of Sweden, Malmö, for their security.

The notion of a "surrender of the West" as a phenomenon that morally scape goats Israel is of course an interesting thing, if true. The "third world" is gaining in clout and the West is suffering from second thoughts based on their past of racism, colonialism etc. I'm not sure I agree with this conclusion because the benefits to the world from the activity of the West is so great that it outweighs past injustice. I don't fear hatred from what was once called the third world.

The hard question is what fuels the hatred of Palestinians so that 50% harbor thoughts that suicide bombing is OK? Shelby Steele says "If the Palestinians got everything they want—a sovereign nation and even, let's say, a nuclear weapon—they would wake the next morning still hounded by a sense of inferiority. For better or for worse, modernity is now the measure of man".

Very much depends on which friends you choose. Israel exports 35% of their goods to the US, for example. It is politically correct in Sweden that one should treat Israel and a future Palestine equally but I must say that the actions over time makes me more impressed by Israel. However, the reason for the belligerency of the Palestinians is perhaps not inferiority? I have gotten a feeling that it is that wretched piece of land that everyone covets. For Hamas it represents a waqf. Furthermore they never accepted "The World's" idea to place the Jews there.

Steele's question is highly warranted though. Is world opinion changing on the legitimacy of Israel's small piece of land? Personally, I don't think the Jews are on occupied territory. They were attacked during the Six Day War and won, to the surprise of many. In such a situation it is highly justified to keep land for one's own protection. A moral punishment for the attackers.


The Day After the EU Summit

De Gaulle and Churchill have a message for Sarkozy and Cameron Timothy Garton Ash Comment is free The Guardian: "Simply put, Churchill concluded that Britain could no longer rely on France and must secure its own survival, security and, so far as possible, continued greatness, through a special relationship with the United States. De Gaulle concluded that French greatness must be restored through a fierce independence from the US, but also from Britain, and by finding partners on the European continent"

Well, Germany is apparently having their way so far which might be what Garton Ash means with a civil1940. I agree with Angela Merkel that it is better with a 27 country "economic government", whatever that will come to mean. After all Sweden would not be a part of Nicolas Sarkozy's Euroland government. I don't know what they mean with a two speed Europe though, talking about the Eurozone, because many of the countries outside the zone are in the high speed circle?

Watching the intense media hype around the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, I have begun to wonder if it could alienate the US and the UK? There was a discussion of a vanishing "special relationship" even before this debacle. With Clegg aboard the British ship Cameron might steer the British government in the direction of the EU after all. Charlemagne believes that France and Germany will iron out a joint position after the dust of the debt crisis has settled, if it does.

A lot of people are tip toeing around the concept of an "economic government". Anders Borg, the Swedish Minister of Finance, believes this government must come from within the states. There is no way some little green guys in Brussels will helm the EU ship. The question then becomes how is this self reliance enforced. Borg was very reluctant to suggest remedies. The invisible hand? That magic which keeps the EU together whether its people wants it or not?

In my analysis the current fight in EU is between the people and the elites, or Eurocrats as some people call them. Merkel is more on the people's side than Sarkozy from the enarchic France. I wrote more, because the German people gives her a hard time recently for supporting the wealthy. The elites in Europe are negotiating and Merkel and Sarkozy are involved in some kind of political theater displaying these remarkable photographs of the dear old couple.

It was interesting that Dimitry Medvedev joined the fray on an American note and suggested that the Euro is in danger and that BP Plc might collapse. Estland is joining the club but Island is apparently not so interested anymore now when they recovered somewhat from their recession.

The other fight is between the economic system of the US and that of Germany apparently where the US is afraid of recession and Germany of inflation. President Obama has issued a statement where he warns Europe for risking the world economic recovery by their austerity. From the economic discussions available it seems like Wall Street and The City of London is in the same boat but that Germany and France are each in different vessels. That would give a continued Churchillianism but a partly broken Gaullism.


Obama's first Oval Office speech concerns the oil spill

Remarks by the President to the Nation on the BP Oil Spill The White House: "We cannot consign our children to this future. The tragedy unfolding on our coast is the most painful and powerful reminder yet that the time to embrace a clean energy future is now. Now is the moment for this generation to embark on a national mission to unleash America’s innovation and seize control of our own destiny."

Obama apparently thinks the "impact" of the oil spill on the American psyche would be as for the 9/11 disaster. First I wondered if he compared al Qaida with the British but it is probably rather the economical vulnerability of the US as revealed by the financial crisis at the same time as this energy disaster that he means. I any case he sees very seriously on the debacle and makes the conclusion in the above citation. However, it is probably only the matter of a one in a lifetime event like the Three Mile Island breakdown of a nuclear reactor.

Obama today met with Carl Henric Svanberg, BP's chairman of the board, concerning a $20bn fund for victims of the oil disaster that is going to be managed by a third party via the person that managed the 9/11 relief fund. I'm not sure why Obama and Svanberg is getting such bad press. Each work for their own constituencies and seem to have a plan for stopping the leak and cleaning up as well as they can. The worst that could happen is if BP went belly up and left US taxpayers with the bill and Great Britain with a yearly loss of £70bn in tax revenue. They have lost half their share value since April but a $20bn sum is what BP makes in cash per year so they should be able to afford it. Since Svanberg came in rather recently, he can't be blamed for security lapses in the company.

Sweden voted in a referendum in 1980 about nuclear power as a result of the 1979 Three Mile Island accident. It was a funny referendum since there were three No alternatives with different time schedules for the deconstruction. Silly in a way since Sweden gets some 40% of its electricity from nuclear power and that there was no replacement source. I remember having the opinion for nuclear power because we know what we are doing to a much large extent with nuclear waste than with all the materials that enter the atmosphere from fossil fuels. The only positive outcome of the oil spill might be to make a case for nuclear power which I have understood is necessary in one more round before the alternatives have matured.


Obama's Nobel Peace Prize speech

Full text of Obama's Nobel Peace Prize speech - White House- msnbc.com: "So let us reach for the world that ought to be - that spark of the divine that still stirs within each of our souls. Somewhere today, in the here and now, a soldier sees he's outgunned but stands firm to keep the peace. Somewhere today, in this world, a young protestor awaits the brutality of her government, but has the courage to march on. Somewhere today, a mother facing punishing poverty still takes the time to teach her child, who believes that a cruel world still has a place for his dreams."

Taking a pause and contemplating what President Obama said about war and its prevalence a while ago, I wonder about the realism of warfare. The Economist has a debate on whether countries should intervene militarily in the affairs of for example Somalia. It is probably necessary now and then but moving in to make Somalia a democracy is in all probability not a viable proposition.

Afghanistan was until recently in the same shape with opium trade rather than piracy. Now they have a fighting chance to develop. Madeleine Albright says that one should intervene even if a country does not represent a strategic site like she did on the Balkans. Still there was much more realism on the Balkans than in Somalia.

Lately, there seems to be a difference as to the reason for why we are in Afghanistan depending on which country representative speak. Realists say we want to prevent terrorism and then we are out of there. Dreamers say we will coach you to statehood.


Potentially good news on Afghanistan

U.S. Identifies Vast Riches of Minerals in Afghanistan - NYTimes.com: "The United States has discovered nearly $1 trillion in untapped mineral deposits in Afghanistan, far beyond any previously known reserves and enough to fundamentally alter the Afghan economy and perhaps the Afghan war itself, according to senior American government officials."

Well, a previous copper deposit was tapped by the Chinese not so long ago. According to this article an Afghan minister was bribed with $30m. Even if the minister is no longer in service, it was of course a set-back that Afghanistan did not give this project to countries which are dying on their soil for their liberty.

The time it will take for the Afghans to develop these finds is apparently a decade or two. But it could come as from heaven sent for the Afghans to pay for their security, even if it can be read between the lines that a future for Karzai might be with his Taleban pashtuns. It has earlier been estimated that Karzai would need support for his army during many a year forward before the Afghan economy would sustain it.

As a supplement to the criminally infested opium trade a source of legal tender which would emanate from the mining operations would of course potentially straighten out the very fiber of the Afghan society. Something to build a functioning state on. It is interesting if this find have anything to do with the departure of the German president? What kind of moral would one like to make on reasons for staying on in Afghanistan if lithium from Afghanistan would fuel German and American car batteries in the future?

I don't know what kind of deal the Chinese gave Afghanistan on the large copper mine but Iraq apparently suffer from lack of foreign investments due to the fact that they want to keep most of the oil for themselves. Who takes the risk and who is going to get what profit? Pakistan seems to be friendly with the Talebans and they are very anti-American, and pro-China, from who they got the atom bomb. Afghanistan would want to do business with their "friends". What if Afghanistan wants to develop their mining with China rather than with the West?

The Russians had apparently found the deposits when they were around prior to 1989. That would have been colonization. Voices would be raised in the West, and elsewhere, if the West colonized Afghanistan. Karzai has been complaining in this direction even if the US never really colonized a country based on their own history. Therefore, this pot of gold might actually complicate things rather than simplifying matters. Let's hope Karzai does not lose confidence in the West and that he tries to develop this relation for optimal utilization and future well being of the Afghan people.

Singularity University

In the Singularity Movement, Humans Are So Yesterday - NYTimes.com: "Some of the Singularity’s adherents portray a future where humans break off into two species: the Haves, who have superior intelligence and can live for hundreds of years, and the Have-Nots, who are hampered by their antiquated, corporeal forms and beliefs."

Found this article about artificial intelligence and pushing evolution with molecular genetics and looked for information on consciousness and creativity, not just thinking by machines. Computers can, for example compose music, but to the best of my knowledge it is not the Mozart kind of music.

It should today be possible to interact with computers via one's mind already. Perhaps the most interesting thing that might evolve in the near future is a human mind aided by a computer?



I wrote a while ago about Beligum as an example of how Europe is fragmenting rather than becoming integrated. In today's election a party that is set out to divide Belgium into Flanders and Wallonia has gotten the most votes. Furthermore this divided spirit is now to lead the EU for then upcoming half year--probably with a caretaker government!? This is the chance of a lifetime for the Belgian Chairman van Rompuy.

Obama and the Middle East?

I think it was in the second of three televised presidential candidate debates where Barack Obama said he wanted to make the US independent of Middle East oil in ten years. The same kind of statement that JFK made about flying to the moon.

He would probably want that more today than then, up to his knees in Gulf of Mexico oil as he is. But what are his chances? Can he replace the oil he needs from other sources by then? Can he step out of Iraq without problems? If the oil spill is a reverse Harrisburg, building nuclear power plants takes a lot of time?

50,000 soldiers are leaving Iraq at the end of the summer and the political vacuum is, according to Stratfor via the Swedish radio program "Konflikt", supposed to be filled by Turkey. Turkey is popular right now but in an anti-Satan kind of way, although Obama is trying to be friendly with the Palestinians. This might mean that Iraq becomes more distanced from the US than today? Which is OK, perhaps, if the US is on the way out as Obama suggested.

There is, of course, a risk that Iran decides to take up that political vacuum instead. Will Israel strike their nuclear facilities then? They have gotten a green light to fly over Saudi Arabia according to timesonline.co.uk. Israel would face a retaliation from this kind of attack according to The Jerusalem Post. In other words, this could get complicated. No one that buys petroleum products from the Middle East would like that to happen, so I hope Israel stays put.

Complicated or not, it would be nice if the US could end their wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and lower their need of oil during the upcoming 8 years. As usual, much depends on the intentions of Iran if the region will stay calm. Iran is of course not a role model for the area's peaceful development. Paradoxically to some, Israel would, but Turkey may suffice.


The Russian Nightmare?

Marginal Revolution: "In Russia, the 'Ask the Audience' lifeline isn't one that the contestant would often use because the audience often gives wrong answers intentionally to trick the contestants."


Ahmadinejad's anti-Israel strategy

Propaganda war latest: Tehran 3 Israel 0 Amir Taheri - Times Online: "This message is pumped out through Iranian satellite television stations, such as the Arab language al-Alam News Network. Tehran also publishes scores of magazines and books that are freely distributed throughout the Muslim world. Muslim opinion-formers are regularly invited to Iran for seminars on the pan-Islamic campaign to accelerate “the inevitable end of Israel”, a phrase repeatedly used by Iran’s official media. Mr Ahmadinejad has visited more than two dozen Muslim countries to propagate this new anti-Israel strategy."

If George Friedman at Stratfor sets Israel in a more peaceful environment, if not for Hamas, Iran's proxy, Amir Taheri brings to the fore the propaganda war of a more and more assertive Iran that seems indifferent to the sanctions just enacted by the UN.

Friedman made room for problems in the future for Israel, the state, Ahmadinejad is apparently not out to destroy the Jews. Only the Zionist state Israel. The good news is perhaps that it does not seem like he is going to do this with an atom bomb but rather by means of propaganda wise make it impossible for Israel to function in the area. Unless he is mad enough to think that he can enrage Muslims to the degree that he gets away with a bomb?

Lexington at The Economist gave a reference to what he called a "truly alarmist" article by Joshua Teitelbaum in The Guardian. He means that Turkey is actively plotting to shift to a jihad towards Israel in line with Iran's strategy. The EUobserver.com is today saying that Robert Gates, the US defence secretary, blames EU for not letting Turkey in and thus causing them to go Muslim. EU does not agree and Turkey is saying that they want a no trouble with anyone neighbor foreign policy.

I don't know what it is but I have problems understanding why an area destined to progress into the future is not keen on taking advantage of Israel's prowess. Obama made his first trip to a Muslim country to Turkey and thus showed that he valued their friendship. His administration is now trying to restore the relationship between Turkey and Israel to make their policy work. But Obama's pro-Muslim quest has other troubles. He has cancelled Indonesia for the second time and he arranged the sanction deal against Turkey friend Iran, Turkey and Brazil voting no, and Lebanon abstaining probably because of Hizbollah's wish. What Taheri says is perhaps that Iran has global aspirations, Israel is just the first step.

Like other foreign policy hawks in the US, Teitelbaum says that Obama's new policy is giving space for other actors like Erdogan and Ahmadinejad. The row after the flotilla raid was much larger than warranted and it is therefore easy to state that it is probably used as a propaganda stunt. The organizers managed to raise the temperature higher than after operation Cast Lead and the carrying theme was the same--excessive violence by Israel. As these things go, it might be a justification for what the Iranians officially claims "the inevitable end to Israel". An Iranian flotilla is apparently in the making!?


Familiar conclusion?

RealClearWorld - Arabs, Israel and Strategic Balance: "In the end, the profound divisions in the Arab world both protect Israel and make diplomatic solutions to its challenge almost impossible — you don’t need to fight forces that are so divided, but it is very difficult to negotiate comprehensively with a group that lacks anything approaching a unified voice."

George Friedman at Stratfor writes a review of the Middle East situation after the Turkish flotillla blockade-run. He concludes that Israel is pretty safe in the short run even if the US would look elsewhere. However, Friedman does not bring up the question of the diasporas in the US and in Europe and the effects world opinion against Israel might have on their positions.

There are about as many Jews in the US as there are in Israel, about 6m. You find an additional 1.5m in Europe. There has been a discussion in Sweden about the possible moral obligation for Swedish Jews to distance themselves from the flottilla raid. I did not see that this discussion brought up the notion that the three main entities of Jews might actually begin to develop differently and that their Jewishness is becoming secondary to their citizenships. Such ideas have been voiced. The Jewish voice in the US has been very important for Israel but is has split into two not so long ago, AIPAC and J-street, where J-street is more moderate and Israel critic.

Jews living in the US in a peaceful, but active in wars, situation differ from the European variety where there is more peace now but where the memories linger in the Holocaust. Both differ a lot from the ongoing war situation in Israel even if it is considered by some that the highest Jewish bliss, aliya, is reached in Israel, I would personally think that Jews in the US has the largest potential to reach the most advanced civilized state. Tolerance for successful communities would be greatest here. Therefore, my question would be what is the real home of the Jews today? Should one count potential personal development or put a larger emphasis on the actual real estate, the Holy Land?


Does Germany change military security for financial security?

What happened in Germany now is possibly a trend for where Europe is heading. The savings package that Angela Merkel has proposed, to the dismay of the opposition who think the cuts are too anti-social, plays down the Bundeswehr for greater financial future security with less debt. Germany is going to save some €80bn the next four years. Setting an example for Europe is also given as an explanation. Leading by example. Is Merkel saying place no money in military matters. Especially not borrowed money.

Merkel hesitated against the wish of the US around the time of the financial crisis to borrow money for a stimulus. Common sense has it that if you don't have a need for it during a crisis don't put yourself in debt. Not high finance but the idea probably rubs well with the public. As does the idea of not spending more money than you earn.

I guess the Anglo-Saxon model was that you can borrow if you have ideas to make money from the borrowed money that earned more than the interest, up to a point, and that point seems to come earlier in Germany these days. I have also gathered that the mentally repugnant idea that you should increase consumption in Germany to stimulate the economy in Europe does not interest the Chancellor. Increase consumption when there are bad times!?

It has become very dangerous to have debt apparently. Britain has gotten a warning today for losing their triple A rating if they don't lower their debt burden more than earlier planned. Anne Applebaum writes about the German president that left because of some question of why Germany is in Afghanistan. If Britain all of a sudden is going to decide that it is more dangerous to increase their debt than leaving Afghanistan to its fate, things will start to happen. Germany apparently does not lower funding for their foreign military adventures but will lower costs significantly for their domestic use. President Köhler perhaps left office because he wanted to tell the truth which would then have been that foreign economical reasons are very important for the domestic security of Germany. A reason that then would be constitutional.

Excuse me for asking, but is not all this financial security going to cost growth and therefore cause debt problems for southern Europe? And what is going to happen with the other European countries if Germany has to save this much? Is Germany selfish again? A lot of people have written about this today but I don't get any answers on how unique the folding of your military is and what you are replacing it with, if at all?


Israel's safety is unsustainable?

Obama is abandoning Israel--John Bolton - NYPOST.com: "the White House is plainly leaning heavily on Israel to weaken the blockade in potentially fatal ways. Indeed, on Friday, a White House press person said the 'current arrangements' were 'unsustainable,' a very poorly disguised threat to Israel."

Israel is sensing pressure right now for removing the blockade of Gaza for items that might create destructive power against Israel. Statements like "we have to save Israel from itself" are not uncommon. Nearly all people so far, even former Israel friends, have said that the violence displayed by Israel against the Turkish flotilla have been excessive. I don't agree! The IDF must have seemingly used as little power as they could while maintaining their own lives.

When people back hundreds of millions Muslims arrayed against 6m Jews, something must be wrong. Add to that 500m Europeans. I have earlier concluded that people in Europe draw conclusions about matters in Israel as if they lived in peace and harmony down there as they do in Europe. I wonder what would happen if the US also turned downright against Israel? This is what the PR war aims at.

It apparently boils down to the question of winning wars in Muslim countries like Iraq and Afghanistan or keeping Israel as a friend. According to arguments being made it does not seem like you can have this cake and eat it? In that respect it might be wise to suggest that a bird in the hand is better than ten in the forest.

Last time I commented on the flotilla debacle I brought up Recep Tayyip Erdogan's rhetoric. A very well argumented and balanced article in The Christian Science Monitor brings up this question of language usage. The article begins with the words: "Even considering the shock and sorrow over the tragic deaths of 8 Turks and a Turkish-American aboard the Gaza-bound flotilla of Turkish vessels, the rhetorical response from Turkish officials has been over the top". Especially noting that the Turks created the debacle by breaking a military blockade in a war zone where International Law does not really apply.

There was talk about Israel having painted themself into a corner but I believe that it is rather Turkey that has made this mistake. We need to see a Turkey that returns to normal ways and not a country that is fuelling lynch mobs with fierce rhetoric. A Turkey that can be friends with Europe, without being a member of the EU, and at the same time a friend to Israel and to the Arabs and Persians.


Will computers think?

If computers were made to think, and to be creative, this would mean a great leap forward in terms of world power. The importance in world politics would be greater than the atom bomb. All of a sudden the new ruler would start to produce Nobel class discoveries and solutions to order. We would be able to create new solutions in energy and medicine.
René Descartes (1596-1650) started it all by introducing substance dualism. Thinking matter and bodily matter. His division is so strong that the main critique is that it would be difficult for the mind to actually influence the body, something we know happens frequently. Today most people believe we live in mental materialism. The mind somehow exists among the brain cells. But Descartes idea is not completely dead.

What actually happens then is that our mind starts to exist some time during embryogenesis. A time point important for determining when abortions should be performed. However, the mind of a mouse starts to exist as well, so the size and the number of neurons might not be so important for igniting this spark of life--consciousness. This is the so called hard problem. Our thoughts form from biochemical reactions among action potentials and furthermore they take over command of the body.

The formation of thoughts and consciousness is a new principle of existence on Earth. The important question is then will this phenomenon happen in a computer when it performs a certain amount of calculations per second or is the aqueous environment of the brain necessary for its formation? Craig Venter recently replaced the DNA in a mycoplasma, a type of bacterium, and this new life form actually reproduced. He did not create life de novo but he did an important advancement in the maintenance of biological life. Will it be possible to make computers conscious, ie, give them life of this sort.

Well, my guess would be that it will not be possible. Something unique, that we do not yet know what, happens when consciousness is formed. And this something takes place in our tissue, not in copper and silicon. It is interesting to contemplate when consciousness occurred in evolution. How complicated a nervous system must become before it occurs. Discussing the matter in this fashion makes it clear that something might actually form, ie, not just being an idea, and thus prove the 350 year old idea of Descartes right.

Descartes said that metaphysics is the root of a tree and physics is its stem. The branches then form other sciences. I have noticed competition among scientists for having the most basic problems to ponder. I would suggest another classification than that of Descartes. One based on the three most philosophical questions. Origin of the Universe. Origin of Biological Life. Origin of Consciousness.

If computers will not make us more creative, speeding up human evolution with molecular genetics for us to evolve to more intelligent beings might work. Also, whatever consciousness is, it might hold clues that are invaluable.


Miklagård is in vogue again?

I think Carl Bildt, the Swedish foreign minister, overdid it a little today when he tries to use an economical argument for biasing the Turkey/Israel balance of favors in his blog. I now understand why there was not, according to the Swedish government, a genocide in Armenia 1915--it is because Turkey is going to be the world's ten most affluent nation in a decade.

There seems to be preparations for another genocide unfortunately. The intifadas were not effective so when Ariel Sharon gave Gaza to the Palestinians and they responded by electing a terrorist organization as their leader, some called this a democratic election, Israel blockaded Gaza. Hamas responded with a new kind of irritant, sending rockets into Israel, as part of a new strategy--defamate Israel internationally.

Finally Israel had to retaliate in the only way they could and this led to an international outrage. Now phase two in this new type of warfare has been launched--a Turkish flotilla where lots of people have been fooled to participate in a "peaceful" demonstration by a Turkish terror linked group I.H.H. Some peace, when the Israelian commandos were brutally attacked on the Turkish lead ship Mavi Marmara. I agree with Niklas Wykman, the youth leader of the Moderate Party, when he stated that people had been fooled into a hate attack on Israel. I wonder, however, how innocent these people in actuality were.

Michael Oren, the Israelian Ambassador to the US, writes an informative article in The New York Times. He verifies that Israelian commandos suffered gun shot wounds. What is most worrying was the extreme anti-Israelian hate that became displayed in the media response. It is interesting to compare the attack with the recent attack on the Red Shirts in Bangkok which was received with a mere whisper in comparison although generating almost ten times the amount of casualties.

Michael Oren says that Israel also want a Gaza free of brutal Hamas rule and a situation where there are no threats to Israel as the international discussion has turned in the direction of removing the Gaza blockade. It is of course obvious to the Israelis, as for others, that Gaza has turned into a liability. However, it seems beyond reasonable doubts that Israel must avoid the build up of rocket capabilities like those of Hizbollah up north for the safety of Jerusalem and Tel Aviv. In the mean time no one is starving in Gaza even if life could be better. Hamas, from their part, still shoots rockets--as if they wanted to sacrifice another 1,000 Palestinians to create yet another international outrage against Israel.

The effect the international outcry has is to move the theater beyond the two state solution. Erdogan, the Turkish PM, has called Israel a "festering boil" in the Middle East. This is as close to Iran and Hamas speak you can get from this prospective EU member state. Partly this talk is a reaction to the Turks giving up on Europe, I guess, but it is not surprising. We do not, at least not yet, se Europeans stand and scream "Death to Israel" and "Death to America".


What was the motive?

Our World: Ending Israel's losing streak: "The reality is simple and stark. Israel is the target of a massive information war, unprecedented in scale and scope. This war is being waged primarily by a massive consortium of the international Left and the Arab and Islamic worlds."

If you don't have time to read Caroline Glick's article in full it might at least be useful to ponder, like Mankell would have suggested?, who had the motive for generating death for the media headlines? It was the difference between a completely meaningless flotilla attempt, that was planned during one and one half years, and crushing headlines. It seems highly likely that people are ready to die for such strategic profits.