By Pepe Escobar, posted with permission and cross-posted with The Cradle
Vladimir Putin got straight to the point. At the opening of his one hour and fourteen minute video conversation with Xi Jinping on 15 December, he described Russia-China relations as “an example of genuine inter-state cooperation in the 21st century.”
Their myriad levels of cooperation have been known for years now – from trade, oil and gas, finance, aerospace and the fight against Covid-19, to the progressive interconnection of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and the Eurasia Economic Union (EAEU).
But now the stage was set for the announcement of a serious counter-move in their carefully coordinated ballet opposing the relentless Hybrid War/Cold War 2.0 combo deployed by Empire.
As Assistant to the President for Foreign Policy Yuri Ushakov succinctly explained, Putin and Xi agreed to create an “independent financial structure for trade operations that could not be influenced by other countries.”
Diplomatic sources, off the record, confirmed the structure may be announced by a joint summit before the end of 2022.
This is a stunning game-changer in more ways than one. It had been extensively discussed in previous bilaterals and in preparations for BRICS summits – mostly centered on increasing the share of yuan and rubles in Russia-China settlements, bypassing the US dollar, and opening new stock market options for Russian and Chinese investors.
Now we’ve come to the crunch. And the catalyzing event was none other than US hawks floating the – financially nuclear – idea of expelling Russia from SWIFT, the messaging network used by 11,000+ banks in over 200 countries, as well as financial institutions, for rapid money transfers worldwide.
Cutting off Russia from SWIFT would be part of a harsh new sanctions package developed in response to an ‘invasion’ of Ukraine that will never happen – mainly because the only ones praying for it are professional NATO warmongers.
Profiting from a strategic blunder
Once again, an American strategic blunder offers the Russia-China self-described “comprehensive strategic partnership” the chance to advance their coordination.
Ushakov put it very diplomatically: it’s time to bypass a SWIFT mechanism “influenced by third countries” to form “an independent financial structure.”
That amounts to a serious game-changer for the entire Global South – as scores of nations yearn to be released from a de facto US dollar dictatorship, complete with recurring Fed quantitative easing circus packages.
Russia and China have been experimenting with their alternative payment systems for quite a while now: the Russian SPFS (System for Transfer of Financial Messages) and the Chinese CIPS (Cross Border Interbank Payment System).
It won’t be easy, as the most powerful Chinese banks are deep into SWIFT and have expressed their reservations about SPFS. Yet, they will have to inevitably integrate prior to the launch of the new mechanism, possibly in late 2022.
Once the most important Russian and Chinese banks – from Sberbank to the Bank of China – adopt the system, the path opens for other banks across Eurasia and the Global South to join in.
In the long run, SWIFT, prone to non-stop American political interference, will be increasingly marginalized, or restricted to Atlanticist latitudes.
Bypassing the US dollar, on trade and all sorts of financial settlements, is an absolutely central plank of the ever-evolving Russia-China notion of a multipolar world.
The road will be long, of course, especially when it comes to offering a solid counterpoint to the US-controlled global financial system, a maze that includes the humongous investment houses of the BlackRock, Vanguard and State Street variety, with their interlocking shareholding of virtually every major multinational company.
Yet a SWIFT escape will rapidly gain momentum, because it is inextricably linked to a series of developments that Putin-Xi touched upon in their conversation, the most important of which are:
1. The progressive interconnection of BRI and EAEU, offering expanding roles to the BRICS-run New Development Bank (NDB) as well as the Asia Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB).
2. The increasing geopolitical and geo-economic reach of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), especially after the admission of Iran in October.
3. And crucially, the upcoming Chinese presidency of the BRICS in 2022.
China in 2022 will invest deeply in BRICS+. This expanded BRICS club will be linked to a development process that includes:
1. The consolidation of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) – a massive East Asia trade deal uniting China, the ASEAN 10 and Japan, and South Korea, as well as Australia and New Zealand.
2. The African Continental Free Trade Area (ACFTA).
3. And the memoranda of understanding signed between the EAEU and MERCOSUR and between the EAEU and ASEAN.
Anchoring West Asia
Yaroslav Lissovolik, one of the world’s leading experts on BRICS+, argues that it’s now time for BRICS+ 2.0, operating in a system that opens “the possibility for bilateral and plurilateral agreements to complement the core network of regional alliances formed by BRICS countries and their respective regional neighbors.”
So if we’re talking about a major qualitative jump in terms of economic development across the Global South, the question is inevitable. What about West Asia?
All these interconnections, plus an escape from SWIFT, will certainly profit the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), arguably the flagship BRI project, to which Beijing plans to annex Afghanistan.
CPEC will be progressively connected to the future Iran-China corridor via Afghanistan, part of the 20 year Iran-China strategic deal in which BRI projects will be prominently featured. Iran and China already trade in yuan and rials, so settlements between Iran and China in a non-SWIFT mechanism will be a given.
What happened to Iran is a classic example of SWIFT becoming hostage of imperial political manipulation. Iranian banks were expelled from SWIFT in 2012, because of pressure from the usual suspects. In 2016, access was restored as part of the JCPOA, clinched in 2015. Yet in 2018, under the Trump administration, Iran was once again cut off from SWIFT.
None of that will ever happen with Iran joining the new Russia-China mechanism.
And that leads us to the interconnection of China’s BRI expansion in Iran, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Yemen. The reconstruction of Syria may be largely financed via the non-SWIFT mechanism. Same for China buying Iraqi energy. Same for the reconstruction of a Yemen possibly hosting a Chinese-owned port, part of the “string of pearls.”
Saudi Arabia, the Emirates and Israel may remain in the US financial sphere of influence, or lack thereof. And even if there is no BRICS nation anchoring West Asia, and no regional integration economic agreement on the horizon, the role of the economic integrator is bound to be eventually played by China.
China will play a similar role to Brazil anchoring MERCOSUR, Russia anchoring the EAEU and South Africa anchoring the SADC/SACU.
Both BRI and the EAEU will get a tremendous boost by bypassing SWIFT. You simply can’t go multipolar if you trade using (devalued) imperial legal tender.
BRI, EAEU and those interlocking economic development agreements, combined with digital technology, will be integrating billions of people in the Global South.
Think of a possible, auspicious future spelling out cheap telecom delivering financial services and world market access, in a non-dollar environment, to all those who have been so far cut off from a truly globalized economy.
Let’s see whether finally something really happens.
The financial system is an essential part of Global Neofeudalism, and until now it seems there is little difference between “The West” and “BRICS”.
Looks like Oliver K won’t be opening an account with them anytime soon, but the non-swift system doesn’t depend on the Oliver types. Putin would never have mentioned it if it wasn’t more than 90% finished. They thought it was time to mention it, sort of like putting a pair of 10’s on the empires’ pair of 6’s, whilt they still have aces up the sleeve.
Adam Mac, I dislike your comment on Oliver K. It rings just like G.W.Bush would have said, or the Empire for that matter: whoever is questioning war on terrorism is de facto a terrorist, or at least a coward. Yes, here, we are talking about finances and economical system, not terrorism. Yet, polarization doesn’t increase cooperative intelligence. I appreciate greatly the movement of countries toward sovereignty, free from systemic corruption and bound to a certain degree of accountability and mutual respect. I think Amarynth phrased it something like “her life long wish coming true”. Anyhow it is not because a system is more fair that it is viable. I do have my concerns about the financial/economical motto of ever increasing the production, increasing benefits. What I see is that we are turning at increasing speed nature into stuff. We are already globally using at least 50% more ressources that the earth can replenish. That means that we need, by Nature’s Law get back at least to the level of replenishment. The longer we stay above, the more degradation of the biosphere, the lower we will have to get. No escape.
The more we use easy energy (fossil fuels) to feed our machines, and the more people have access to high consuming life style, the higher above the replenishing line we will get and the more “dramatic” the fall. I am not saying that the billions of poor people have to stay in poverty for the sake of the planet. I am saying that the progress mode has a high price to pay. We need to get back to local economies, no more free trade and tax heavens, no more private entities hoarding power. I do admire Chinese people , even though the mass production is scary. I seems that the machine will help us consume it all. I don’t think the US empire have the monopoly on that “insupportable Pride”. We desperately need “to face humbly the consequences”. So, let’s catch ourselves when we shame or blame, again and again. Let’s feel it. Empathy and boundaries define connection.
As far as your post, Adam Mac, I understand that it feels better to be on the side against the bad guys. It is also survival to have some sense of knowing what is going on and to show that we know. It seemed to me you were kind of discarding the “Oliver types” and putting forward your take on the game. It takes vulnerability to reach out and grow together. Thank you for listening to my critic. We all get triggered easily these days. Be well.
>…”We are already globally using at least 50% more resources that the earth can replenish. That means that we need, by Nature’s Law get back at least to the level of replenishment. The longer we stay above, the more degradation of the biosphere, the lower we will have to get. No escape.” …<
Quite simply, the "elephant in the room" is a world population which has already greatly exceeded the "carrying capacity" of the planet. As a "small" ranch operator here in BRICS / Brasil, I know first hand what one has to do when the size of the herd exceeds the availability of water and pasture. If the Axis of Resistance does not quickly cull the global herd of imperial freeloaders, Nature will surely step in. Only problem is that Nature alone can not be relied upon to ensure the culling of the most deserving.
Getting rid of SWIFT is certainly a laudable goal, but more direct "kinetic" measures will undoubtedly be required, and QUICKLY.
Superb comment Eric. So well stated. Thanks.
Eric old boy it is you that is triggered and sound a tad emotional.
Adam Mac thank you for your short and succinct reply. Eric, for aggressive and intolerant comments, may I recommend Sputnik News.. For all and more of the following ….Jew bashing/hate, racial slurs and references too all things anal. With zero tolerance for other folks opinions.
Then again the trolls in the comment section may all be from the State Dept or CIA. Or the Sputnik comments section maybe just a Russian, “Furry Bear Balls intel, suction pump.”
This discussion between the 4 of you illustrates the complexity of the present Geo-political moment :
1. The disintegration of the cultural and social realities in the West :
One thousand years of increasing individualism have left Western Europe, and its geographic extensions, in a state of societal atomization. This means that there is no shared worldview to glue the individuals any longer in a unified societal whole.
The Covid episode has given the world to see that the West is naked, that it does no longer exist as a unified societal whole ! Compare that to China which, did not only prove to the rest of the world that it is capable to successfully contain an outside viral attack, but that it comes out of this covid episode united in a 93% support of its governance system. (Understanding CPC Resilience).
2. The overtaking of the economic realities by Western finance :
Economic growth has been missing in the West since the 1970ths. What appeared as growth was merely the residue of indebtment. But after 40 years of increasing debt comes the inevitable moment of reckoning.
Creditors refuse to make new loans and then remains only money creation out of thin air to finance the national enterprise. This works for a short time but then comes the final reckoning… and the final reckoning will come the day that China refuses to supply goods against the valueless dollar…
3. The center of gravity of the economy-world has been shifting away from the West toward East-Asia and more particularly toward China :
This is the 8th such a shift of the center of gravity of the Modern economy-world… What is different this time is that the center of gravity is leaving the territorial area of the Western civilization !
The past 7 such shifts were occurring as the natural movement of the economic centrality within the realm of the Western European civilization. This time around the shift appears so traumatic in Western minds for the simple reason that the centrality of the economy-world is leaving the realm of the Western European civilization !
This explains the outrageous statements and actions by the Western establishment that are being extended, so vilely, in the comment sections of Western news aggregators… (mostly in the US). It also explains the utter despair among those people who suddenly discover the predicament that humanity inherits from Western Modernity (mostly in Western Europe).
But it also explains the mounting rage of the rest of the world against the US and Western Europe for having inflicted the whole of humanity with this predicament in the first place… Eric seems to be conscious of that aspect of things when he writes ” I am not saying that the billions of poor people have to stay in poverty for the sake of the planet. I am saying that the progress mode has a high price
Eric is right for sure but he should not be surprised that the rest of the world now does not want to follow the prescriptions of those who created the problem in the first place… Yes humanity’s predicament in this Late-Modernity is the outcome of Western Modernity ! So how are you now going to explain to a Chinese, an Indian, or an African farmer that their children have no right to share in the goodies of Western consumerism that they discovered, in their windows on the world, is the daily life of Westerners…
4. A global reset is being proposed to force humanity into a new form of feudalism :
This neofeudalism is presently being forced on Western citizens by the aristocracy of Western capital holders and their servants (the technical international class + the highest echelons of national bureaucracies + the national elites). This reset occurs amidst the complete take-over of the Western information sector by the US national security organizations which plunges the West in what from the outside appears like a vortex of societal madness. Could societal madness be the strategy used to sneak decisions past the eyes of Western citizens that soon will chain them in a new social compact ?
5. The predicament that we face in Late-Modernity does not relate to any one factor in isolation.
Taken in isolation Geo-politics is meaningless.
What humanity faces is a convergence of multiple crises that create uncontrollable feed-back loops :
— societal atomization has wrecked the operational unity of Western nations.
— economic financialization has indebted Western nations and foreign creditors start to want out of their financial mess.
— Western Modernity has afflicted humanity with the destruction of the habitats of living species including its own (climate change is merely a symptom of this systematic destruction).
— Western Modernity has extracted the low hanging fruits in all resource-fields that are necessary to run Modernity.
It is in this particular context that the center of gravity of the economy-world has shifted to Beijing which is consolidating its newly gained advantage by pushing its “internal circulation” model. This means
that China is consolidating its centrality in the fields of consumption, technology and production by gradually uniting the East-Asian Regional Economic Block that is shadowing the flying geese pattern of development which had been coined by Kaname Akamatsu in 1930s.
Pepe’s article relates to this emergent Chinese flying geese pattern of development. But to possibly comprehend what it really going on it is necessary to address the complexities of the context in which this pattern of development is emerging… which I tried to sketch in the 5 points here above.
wow, I could agree more on this very complex statement, it speaks out the truth, that nobody in the West wants to hear or see….they try all to hide and try ways to not face it…..might explain their woke-reality bubble they created for themselves and try to force up on all citizens….
The 21st century world is going to adopt a physical and geographic-based identity that is authentic, comfortable and no longer ‘western’ centric. In general, one is African, European, Asian, Islamic-Arabic or American (Northern or Southern) This 5 continent classification divides the big planet into a set of “5 Worlds” or “5 super Poles” – a “family of 5 continents entitled to Justice” that are easier to comprehend and manage instead of the western megalo-maniac vision of “one planet to be ruled by only us chosen ones.” In the opinion of far too many, a common denominator to ALL THE PROBLEMS at this time, be it the elite who is responsible or their lackeys-people, is the lack of a vision in the USA and in western Europe. We must admit this because it is essentially true. Based on my sources, there will be a big rupture, or a series of small ruptures, taking place between the New World (N/S America i.e. mainly USA) and the rest of the world. I will be forgiving to the USA but less so to the west Europeans who should have known better given their heritage from and connection to the Classical World. It is the Visionary nations that will win and the only Vision, game in town, today, is the New Silk road.
That was a wonderful tour d’horizon, thank you very much Pepe Escobar – it was a very extensive horizon and it took quite some touring. And thanks to the Cradle for hosting the priceless insider views that it does, and to Saker for this republishing.
Yes, I don’t think we’ve seen enough emphasis on what the Fed’s money-printing is doing to global discomfort with the US Dollar – so, thanks for including this as a motivation in the analysis. Not only is the USD weaponized, it’s also at the beginning stages of a great inflationary wave.
It will sad for those of us who live and purchase things in the US as the world shifts away from an increasingly useless currency, increasingly fit only for laundering black money (of which, admittedly, the world has an abundance), but the wide world will become a more energetic and forward-looking place to be in.
The time has indeed come for the Russia-China alternative financial settlement system. I have no doubt that it will happen, and on time. I look forward to using it (see, one is already forward-looking!).
China and Russia need to create international demand for there respective currencies. Without international currency power, a nation isn’t a strong member of the multipolar order. In the 21st Century the real power is the economic power (monetary, markets, financial). The payment systems are the pipeline of the financial system. Still 46% of the trade between China and Russia is conducted in the US$ from 90% (2018). They need to move swiftly.
It is great that “Russia has released a series of security demands to NATO, including a veto on the alliance’s expansion.”
What does Russia want?
– An end to NATO military activity in eastern Europe, including Ukraine, the Caucasus and Central Asia
– No expansion of NATO membership, particularly to Ukraine
– No intermediate or shorter-range missiles deployed close enough to hit the territory of the other side
– No military exercises of more than one military brigade in an agreed border zone
– An agreement that parties do not consider each other as adversaries and will resolve disputes peacefully
– Neither Russia nor the United States can deploy nuclear weapons outside their national territories
Let’s see what NATO/EU/Empire offers to Russia.
“Let’s see what NATO/EU/Empire offers to Russia.”
Or they appear not to, to their detriment.
The tempo of the collapse of the West is really incredibly fast. Since 2015 with the Russian intervention in Syria, we are living a period of a few years that will mark the century and probably even the centuries to come. All the peoples who are suffering under the yoke of the West must rejoice. Their geniuses will be able to express themselves.
The question I have immediately is; what about the inflation?
If countries start using currencies other than the dollar to pay each other for goods, how will the US pay for goods from those countries? Will we have to pay more when we pay with dollars because our dollars will be worth less?
I am thinking that if our dollar is becoming worth less maybe we all need to buy other currencies to have available to buy dollars. We would get more dollars to cover our inflated prices.
Whenever I pay for things these days; (I am one of those who consistently uses case as they can’t trace cash) I am aware that I am using fiat money – like I am using these pieces of paper but they could be shells or beads; this money has no standard of anything behind it.
I am paying more more more for stuff also. Organic milk was $3.49 a half gallon last week. This week, $3.99.
Well, this is a tangent but basically I am interested to know where the US money will stand if/when these countries leave SWIFT and use different currencies.
“how will the US pay for goods from those countries? “
Perhaps they won’t need to pay for goods since other countries won’t “sell” any goods to them.
Every kilometer of roads, railroads, every port built in Eurasia and denominated in ruble, renminbi, or other national currency, is a hole in the hull of the sinking American hegemony.
Correct word for what the US will face is not inflation, but collapse. Without individual means of transportation, people will gather on the outskirts of the big cities in improvised constructions: slums, favelas. Finally, this kind of thing that the USA has imposed on so many millions of people through war and plunder. And nobody will carre about you.
You answer the question : “What happens when the poor have to scramble for daily income, without the resources to build homes inside the economic jobs zone?” They huddle on the periphery, bussing into the jobs zone each day. Well thought out, thanks.
Hi common man, I agree about your vision of the U.S collapse. History shows that colonial empires , like in Europe, brought back to their countries the brutalities and atrocities “ they imposed on so many millions of people through war and plunder”. I believe though that we will ultimately grow in our caring for one another. Like homeless around a little fire. Lots of pain seems to be unavoidable… and the selfish gene will be full on kicking . And, at the same time, massive die off seems on the menu for sustainability… population level is indeed quite an elephant in the room. And yet, India is exemplar at showing how the big majority of people can be be so poor and yet get along… old civilization. That reminds me of the story of that American in Africa, witnessing the situation of drought and he assessed with others in charge that there were too many elephants for the amount of tree leaves to nibble on. So they shot 40000 elephants and realized later on it didn’t fix the problem… we definitely need to reduce down our life style, and eventually accept that there is not a “final solution” to implement.
“ Lots of pain seems to be unavoidable… and the selfish gene will be full on kicking . “
You reflect a past/present/future linear spectrum of notions resorted to throughout history by those being transcended.
The linear spectrum in increasing amplitude tends to proceed from “better the people you know”, through “we have have experience, lets work on this together” to Louis the 16th routine of “Apres nous le deluge (After us there will only be the flood (biblical reference deemed appropriate in context) – “lots of pain will be unavoidable.
In “perception management” the fear of pain is more effective than the experience of pain, since the experience of pain is sometimes a catalyst of emulation for the stupid, but often a catalyst of transcendence for the wise.
However the opponents do not agree thereby becoming complicit in their own transcendence.
UK empire collapsed a long time ago, along with the Pound as a reserve currency. Yet educated Chinese and Russians flock there. Part of this is English as a near universal second language – not going to happen with either Mandarin or Russian. BTW, most BRI financing is still in dollars or euros – that might be a good place to start.
I really hope Russia may do it before US decides to take the initiative, or may give order to Ukraine to attack Donbass… EU with all it arrogance is destined to become a very small pawn in the hand of the big powers in a multi-polar world.
“ before US decides to take the initiative, or may give order to Ukraine to attack Donbass… “
In the “strategies” of the opponents there is often an assumption of sole/primary agency – Mr. Bush’s “I am the decider” as a function of “exceptionalism”which often renders their “strategies” hopes and wishes.
They can issue “orders” to whom so ever they choose – it doesn’t mean others will carry out the “orders”, since others with experience tend to weight the probabilities of being carried out themselves.
Marvellous and positive as usual from Pepe.Thank you.
It would be nice if someone savvy in electronic banking explain why is so complicated to implement alternative to SWIFT. What are the problems? Is it questionable security of western technology based transactions? Maybe combination of bribes and arm twisting of the banks? Currently, Russian alternative is accepted by 400 banks, compared to 11000 on SWIFT. China is developing its own system. India started too but want Russian system in the meantime. Seams no-one trusts no-one. But still using SWIFT, which is the same as hiring CIA/NSA as account manager).
Meanwhile US is buying assets and politicians in all 4 corners of the world with $$$ created from thin air. Apparently, no-one is complaining.
The reason for such travesty is that since WW2 US$ was backed by Man With (biggest) Guns.
Today Russia and China as allies that surpassed NATO in military strength. This change have huge impact in economic sphere. At much larger scale than mere banking messenger app.
Paradigm shift already happened. It is just not obvious due to inertia of enormous “masses” involved.
Rollercoaster started to descend. Enjoy the ride.
I also find it hard to understand why it should take so long to get a new transaction system up & running. Russia & China have been at it now for already along enough time & it would be great if they beat the USA to the Punch – a must do !
China can build a whole City in less than 12 mths & explore the dark side of the Moon. Russia also has the talent. Surely They can get this new system out well before end of ’22.
James 1, perhaps it is just a question of waiting for the right time to implement it, avoiding the possibility of retaliation. Because I think that they may already have it, or most of it thought out.
SWIFT is just a messaging system between banks, what backs it up is the bankers access to the US$ market which is a deeply liquid market backstopped by the Fed with swap lines etc. Its the institutional infrastructure that has to be finalized, which takes a lot of legal people, central bankers, large bankers etc. The messaging system is the easy bit.
I guess many people will jump to the new bandwagon when it starts moving. Lat'[s wait and see.
May be Russia and China have already all the necessary infrastructure ready. At any moment, if the Empire creates more problems, they can activate it. It won’t take much time for their new system to dominate the world. :-))
What could be the role of crypto in this? An adoption is starting by pension funds to invest 3-5 % in Bitcoin as an hedge against inflation. El Salvador is now able to circumvent ursury fees by Western Union and IMF blackmail.
Why are Russia and China so conservative in adoption?
Governments want to own the crypto of their nation. They don’t want their wealth floating into the international BTC economy.
China wants people to use the digital Reminbi. Russia may have a different strategy due to energy being a critical export.
CBDC ‘s (Central bank issued digital currencies) are subject to even more manipulation than regular money. It can be printed, be made to expire, used like the US foodstamps (only for a limited set of products) or in a limited number of stores ) . It makes the country a company town.
Of course every government considers itself ‘good’, so all these measures are ‘for the better’.
I do consider the governments of Russia and China of higher quality than those in ”the West”. But no president can predict the future of its country and goverment, think Equador with its turncoat president Lenin Moreno, who sold out Assange for an IMF loan (including austerity requirements). Besides: even though its short term volatility, there is a logaritmic growth curve behind BTC and a limited amount of coins. It is an effective way to circumvent sanctions, although it is probably too immature yet for the type of transactions of big countries.
i love your vision and thank god you’re reporting reality (In my world the mandate of heaven has fled from uncle satan.)
It’s a field of dreams kind of thing. An alternative to SWIFT has to be seen to be done, before the ‘marginal’ states would head for it. And while that’s happening anything that could encourage the weakening of the inflated buck – losing value as it resides in bank vaults everywhere – could assist the shift. If China has a massive reserve of US dollars, now might be the time to start selling them on the market. Not a ‘friendly’ sort of move to the USA but reciprocal to the recent US attitude to China.
I think China is using that enormous pile of greenbacks to pay for the build-out of the BRI. Their thinking is use it or lose it. Why not use it to build high speed rail, roads, pipelines, bridges, and ports?
A master stroke.
Decentralized finance is going to continue the power of SWIFT and the USD.
People can now do large transactions between each other with only the blockchain as a middleman.
No one can create magic bitcoins from nowhere, if it’s not a formal part of the bitcoin blockchain it cannot be created. There was no way to do this before short of shipping gold or cash physically.
This is one of the drivers for the flux in the world right now.
I suspect the current financial meltdown going on in Turkey will play a prominent part in this, in the not too distant future.
Turkey is the center of the fault line between East and West and Erdogan has tried playing both sides, but it looks like his bubble has popped and he will have to come down on one side or the other. Logic says the East and should he do so, it will probably be with both feet, to try to stay ahead of the mob.
Time will tell.
A couple of things not mentioned directly. First is the huge debt of the US and other ‘western’ countries. What happens when it implodes? Second, who owns the gold? Theoretically the US has 8 000 tons but has not been audited since well before the days they had to spend it to pay their war debts (thus leaving the gold standard behind to go pure fiat). Russia and China have both admitted to about 2 000 tons, but unofficial estimates for China, based on accounts of gold transfers mostly via Switzerland eastward, range from 20 000 to 30 000 tons. \
Surely this must play into the hands of Russia and China….?
Hahaha! Terrific title! Great work, Pepe!
The risk of war is real, but the Russians have strong nerves. In addition, the defensive security (electronic warfare complexes + multi-layer air defense) and the offensive flexibility (range, speed of new missiles) make the USA have no good option either offensive or defensive.
To be able to withstand such tension without failing in the long run is the proof of the maturity of the Russians. I am very impressed. And on a personal level, being part of such a collective must be a source of great pride, and therefore of efficiency, that the soldiers engaged on the Western side cannot feel for a long time. I think that cautious optimism is not disconnected from reality.
Whatever the Associations of PRChina and the ex defunct USSRussia in this day and age of mutually assured destructions of the Nuclear Options , Economics and Millitary arrangements for detente peaceful mutual co-existence shouldn’t be discouraged or de facto Annihilated! Why PRChina is closer to the ex USSRussia is historically well known Chairman Mao Zedong the founding father of China was courting American USA closer partnership soon after the 1949 Revolution War Victory because KMT Taiwan had Madam Chiang Kai-Shek ( Mei Ling Soong ) alumnus of Wellesley College in Greater Boston was already sold the KMT China 🇨🇳 to the American Right Wing of the GOP here in good olde USA ! Gerald Heng Sr. Washington DC 🌈🌈Boston MA , London England 🏴
System should immune countries from Soros types. Ask Malaysia.
This is a bit off topic but I read quite a lot about evergrande and an angle that no-one covered was that Xi had decided in favour of keeping housing cheap for the ‘proles’ rather than guaranteeing profits, off their labour, to ‘investors’. So plugging a hole through which Chinese enterprise could be drained.
I believe you are wrong. Africa is already speaking Chinese and French.