Socio-Economics History Blog

Socio-Economics & History Commentary

New Tension Between the US and European Union

  • RT America Published on Aug 13, 2018
    New tension between the United States and the European Union. Germany has slammed President Donald Trump’s new trade tariffs on the EU and Washington’s increased pressure on the Iran nuclear deal. The US Has upped rates on steel and aluminum for Europe, and its key NATO ally – Turkey. German leaders are warning of wide ramifications. For analysis, former UK member of parliament, George Galloway.


August 14, 2018 Posted by | Economics, GeoPolitics | , , , , , | Leave a comment

‘We Won’t Let Washington Dictate to Us with Whom We Can Do Business’ – German Economy Minister

  • RT Published on Aug 13, 2018
    Washington cannot dictate trade rules to others, Germany’s economy minister said, adding that his country should be more assertive and defy American sanctions – particularly by investing more in Iran. READ MORE:
  • US can’t force trade rules on others, Germany must invest more in Iran – economy minister
    Washington cannot dictate trade rules to others, Germany’s economy minister said, adding that his country should be more assertive and defy American sanctions – particularly by investing more in Iran.

    “We don’t let Washington dictate [their will] on trade relations with other countries,”
     German Economy Minister Peter Altmaier told Bild newspaper on Saturday. He said the US sanctions on Iran are one instance in which America’s neglect of its partners are clearly shown.

    Therefore, Germany and other European countries should feel free to pursue improved relations with Tehran. “German businesses can continue to invest as much as they want in Iran,” Altmaier said, adding, however, that “many companies depend on loans from banks, most of which refinance themselves in the US – and it creates problems.”

    Altmaier’s words come after the Trump administration imposed a second round of sanctions targeting Iran’s purchase of US dollars, despite pleas from some world powers. Earlier this year, Washington slapped Tehran with sanctions aimed at curtailing trade as well as the energy and shipbuilding industries.

    These restrictions have damaged EU ties with Iran, which flourished after the milestone 2015 nuclear deal abandoned by the US. Last week, the EU responded to the latest Iran sanctions by calling on companies to disregard threats from the US. Apart from the issue of Iran, the US and Europe are locked in a dispute over tariffs on steel, aluminum, and automobiles.

    With that in mind, the German minister said, the world now risks sliding into an all-out economic conflict, adding that “we are just a few yards from the edge,” and “a global trade war would not know winners, only losers.” Politicians have no right to jeopardize hundreds of thousands of European jobs that depend on US-EU trade, he stated.

    “We have learnt from the past that mostly customers are suffering from trade wars as goods and services are getting more expensive,”
     Altmaier said. “This trade war hampers economic growth and brings new uncertainties.”


August 14, 2018 Posted by | Economics, GeoPolitics | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Germany, EU Won’t Support US Sanctions on Iran

  • PressTV Published on Aug 12, 2018
    Germany strongly criticizes the US economic policies against other countries, saying they are destroying jobs and economic growth. Economy Minister Peter Alt-meyer has named tariffs against different countries and sanctions against Iran as two examples of the Trump administration’s wrong policies. He said neither Berlin nor the European Union will abide by Washington and they will support companies that do business with Iran. According to the German minister, the EU will not allow the US to dictate with whom it can do business. He said Berlin must encourage further business investments in Iran. Alt-meyer further added that although the trade war between Brussels and the US has slowed down following a temporary deal between them, uncertainties still persist. The German official noted that consumers worldwide would suffer the most because tariffs would drive up prices.


August 13, 2018 Posted by | Economics, GeoPolitics | , , , | Leave a comment

German Minister: US Cannot Tell Us with Whom We Can Do Business

  • The ‘LUV’ between Europe and USA is getting palpable.
  • German Minister: US Cannot Tell Us with Whom We Can Do Business
    Germany’s Economy Minister Peter Altmaier says the United States is in no position to tell Berlin with which countries it can do business, vowing support for companies doing business with Iran.

    The German minister made the remarks in an interview with Bild am Sonntag newspaper on Sunday, emphasizing that Berlin would not let the Washington dictate its trade rules on it. He added that Washington’s sanctions on Iran clearly showed America’s neglect of its partners.

    “We won’t let Washington dictate us with whom we can do business and we therefore stick to the Vienna Nuclear Agreement,” Altmaier said in reference to a landmark nuclear deal between Iran and the P5+1 group of countries in 2015, which is officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

    Under the deal, Iran undertook to put limits on its nuclear program in exchange for the removal of nuclear-related sanctions imposed against Tehran. Trump pulled the US out of the Iran nuclear agreement in May, and said that he plans to reinstate US nuclear sanctions on Iran and impose “the highest level” of economic bans on the Islamic Republic. On Monday, Trump signed an executive order re-imposing sanctions on Iran to levy “maximum economic pressure” on the Islamic Republic.

    Elsewhere in his remarks, the German minister said his country should be more assertive and defy American sanctions particularly by investing more in Iran. He emphasized that Germany and other European countries should feel free to pursue improved relations with Tehran.

    “German businesses can continue to invest as much as they want in Iran,” Altmaier was quoted as saying in a report that was also carried by the website of Russia Today, adding that the German government was looking for ways together with its European allies to ensure that financial transactions could still take place with Iran.

    read more.


August 13, 2018 Posted by | Economics, GeoPolitics | , , , , , | 1 Comment

To Prepare For The Transition The US Must Source Gold Or We Fall Into A 3rd World Nation: Jim Willie

    August 4th:  topics covered include the growing awareness by the population that something is not right with fake news network stories turned silly with widespread internet and mainstream censorship with a gathering storm in grassroots economic recession which does not match the official government stories (COGNITIVE DISSONANCE WITHIN REICH ECONOMICS), the massive unemployment during vicious recession called all strong positive growth, the bond market expansion with potential forced pension investment in Special USTreasury Bonds, the elite policy changes from the Euro Central Bank in rainy day fund and Bank For Intl Settlements in concealing debt as hidden defense mechanisms against what they might perceive as the emerging Systemic Lehman Event in a global financial crisis during the climax global breakdown underway, as nothing was resolved since 2008 while all major sovereign bonds have turned subprime and many banking systems in ruins, the gradual installation & implementation of the Gold Standard from the many substantial Eastern endeavors, where the United States must source the gold for a new gold-backed currency with the ongoing concurrent risk from the $600 billion trade deficit, which must be eliminated, or else the USA falls into the Third World from the isolation in reaction to overdone desperate sanctions, including to our own US allied nations like Germany.


August 6, 2018 Posted by | Economics, GeoPolitics | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Jim Willie: Global Reset Update

    July 30th:  topic covered include Putin hand-off of 160 terabytes of data to Trump with importance, the unsealed indictments using the OMNIBUS Bill, the trade war with backfires as all foreign policy initiatives since 2001 have failed badly, the Nord Stream 2 project with mindless unworkable USGovt sanctions (British Rolls Royce a turbine supplier), the flip of Germany to the eastern superpowers with trade, the German workaround with major corporations setting up Russian subsidiaries, the rise of Frankfurt as a German-based RMB Hub (competitor to London) to serve the Eurasian Trade Zone, the Turkish role in BRICS for potential gold provision in sovereign bond dumping via conversion, the flip of Japanese to the same Eastern Trade Zone, the energy shortage factor as motive for Japan to turn to Russia in natgas provision, and the general demise of Orwell’s Oceania (aka the Western banker cabal)


July 31, 2018 Posted by | Economics, GeoPolitics | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Germany’s Bloody Secret: Politicians & Arms Producers Cozy Up, Sell Weapons to Anyone

  • Germany’s Bloody Secret: Politicians & Arms Producers Cozy Up, Sell Weapons to Anyone
    Despite having one of the toughest gun export laws in the world, Germany enjoys a comfy place among the top weapon exporters. How is that possible? A newly released Redfish documentary has some of the answers.

    “The laws are very strict and the practice is very-very leisure and very easy. Everyone was wondering how could it be that Germany has one of the strictest laws and always, depending on the ranking, is number three, in small arms is even number two of the biggest world arms trades and weapon producers? So, where’s the gap?”
     lawyer Holger Rothbauer told the Germany-based investigative journalism team Redfish.

    Rothbauer represents a whistleblower who worked with Heckler & Koch and spilled the beans on shady arms deals the company has made. Back in 2009, he reached Jürgen Grässlin, a German publicist and peace activist who has been waging his own war on the silent arms sales for years. This May, the case based on the whistleblower’s revelations made it to court, with six former H&K employees in the dock.

    read more.


July 25, 2018 Posted by | Economics, GeoPolitics | , , , , | Leave a comment

Europe Can’t Rely On The US To Maintain World Order, Merkel Warns

  • Europe Can’t Rely On The US To Maintain World Order, Merkel Warns
    by Tyler Durden,
    Having been called a “foe” by President Trump last week, German Chancellor Angela Merkel confirmed that she was right to say a year ago that Europe could no longer rely on the United States to impose order on the world, and that it needed to take matters close to home into its own hands.

    “We can’t rely on the superpower of the United States,” 
    Merkel told a news conference in Berlin.

    As AntiWar’s Jason Ditz notesMerkel did not elaborate on exactly what this “order” meant, but it comes in the context of recent polls showing German voters resistant to her desire to increase military spending. This suggests Merkel is trying to sell increased armament as a way to intervene regionally.

    Merkel also said she intends to continue to work on improving Germany’s relationship with the United States. This appears to be an uphill battle, with the two nations at odds over a number of issues, but she insisted ties are “crucial.”

    Just last week, President Trump said he has “a big problem” with Germany, and the US was threatening to sanction German companies for investing in a Russian energy pipeline. Trump expressed particular anger at the pipeline, saying it means Germany is effective “captive” to Russia.

    Putting this accusation into context, Statista’s Sarah Feldman points out that Germany secures roughly three fifths of its energy needs from foreign sources. A fifth of its overall energy consumption comes from natural gas.

    read more.


July 25, 2018 Posted by | Economics, GeoPolitics | , , , , | Leave a comment

Germany Tells India to Ignore ‘Irritating’ US Pressure & Keep Buying Iranian Crude

  • Germany Tells India to Ignore ‘Irritating’ US Pressure & Keep Buying Iranian Crude
    India and Iran are good partners in the oil trade despite Washington’s discontent, and they should continue cooperating if they so wish, Germany’s Minister of State for Foreign affairs Niels Annen said on a visit to New Delhi.

    “I am not a salesman for Iran but I have an impression that India is willing to continue buying oil from Iran and this will be a very important statement,” Annen told Indian media, as quoted by Sputnik news agency. He said the US attempts to force its allies to join new anti-Iranian sanctions are “irritating, to put it mildly.”

    India, which is dependent on crude imports, is Iran’s top oil client after China. Despite this, India bought 15.9 percent less crude from Iran in June compared to May. After that, Iran threatened that it would suspend all privileges in bilateral trade with India, including payments in rupees.

    Last week, Reuters reported that India’s Oil Ministry has asked refiners to prepare for a “drastic reduction or zero” imports of Iranian oil from November, when US sanctions against Iran start.

    “(India) has asked refiners to be prepared for any eventuality, since the situation is still evolving. There could be drastic reduction or there could be no imports at all,”
     Reuters wrote quoting its sources.

    While India doesn’t recognize unilateral US sanctions against Iran, the country is exposed to the US financial system and could get caught in the crossfire. Washington could target Indian companies and banks that do business with Iran.


July 25, 2018 Posted by | Economics, GeoPolitics | , , , , | Leave a comment

Merkel: ‘I Was Right to Say That We Can’t Rely Exclusively on US’

  • Fox News Published on May 30, 2017
    Rich Edson explains on ‘Special Report’
  • Merkel: ‘I Was Right to Say That We Can’t Rely Exclusively on US’
    Answering journalists’ questions during an annual summer press conference, German Chancellor Angela Merkel elaborated on the ties between Berlin and Washington, as well as touched upon the recent summit between the Russian and US presidents.

    Merkel stated that she was right when she had said a year ago that Europe could no longer rely on the US in the future to be the power that defines the world order. Answering a question on why US President Donald Trump has intensified pressure on Berlin, the chancellor noted that Germany actively trades with the US and suggested that the country’s trade surplus with Washington was a point of contention.

    Commenting on the first one-on-one summit between Russian President Vladimir Putin and his US counterpart, President Donald Trump, Merkel noted that she was “happy about every meeting.” She went on to say that it was “good for all” that Trump and Putin planned to meet again in the fall, adding that she believed that contacts between the Russian and US presidents should occur more often.

    “The fact that no Russian president has visited the United States since 2005 should not be normal. … It should become normal for Russian and US presidents to meet,” Merkel told a press conference.

    Answering a question on Russia, Merkel stressed that “we have been successful in tackling hybrid war with quick responses and facts.”

    On Thursday, White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders said that Trump had asked National Security Adviser John Bolton to invite Putin to visit the United States in autumn, adding that consultations on the meeting had already started.

    On July 16, the first face-to-face meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and US President Donald Trump took place in Helsinki. They discussed the current state of bilateral relations along with pressing issues on the international agenda, including Russia’s alleged meddling in the 2016 US election and the situation in Syria.


July 21, 2018 Posted by | EndTimes, GeoPolitics | , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Is Europe about to Ignore United States on Iran Deal in Practice?

  • PressTV Published on Jul 19, 2018
    European economic powerhouses Germany, France and the UK have reportedly notified Tehran that they seek to open direct banking channels with the Islamic Republic, in what would be the first practical step to sustain the 2015 nuclear deal and sidestep the US, which has unilaterally withdrawn from the accord.


July 19, 2018 Posted by | Economics, GeoPolitics | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

German FM: We Can No Longer Completely Rely on White House

  • German FM: We Can No Longer Completely Rely on White House
    The statement comes a day after US President Donald Trump said he considered the European Union a “foe” while referring to “unfair” trade practicies.

    Speaking to the Funke newspaper, Germany’s Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said that in order to “maintain our partnership with the USA we must readjust it.” “We can no longer completely rely on the White House,” he stated, adding, “The first clear consequence can only be that we need to align ourselves even more closely in Europe.”

    According to the top official, “Europe must not let itself be divided however sharp the verbal attacks and absurd the tweets may be,” apparently alluding to a thread of posts by President Trump on the US-EU trade spat.

    Earlier in the day, the European Union’s foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini stated that the US remained a “friend” of the bloc, adding that “a change in the administration does not change the friendship between countries and peoples.”

    “If I was a journalist, I would probably ask him who does he consider his friends. We have very clear in mind who our friends are, the United States for sure and I have said many times that a change in the administration does not change the friendship between countries and peoples. And for sure, we consider the United States friends, partners – close friends and partners. We will always do that,” she said.

    Their statements came shortly after the US president blasted the 28-member bloc’s trading practices in an interview with CNS News. “I think we have a lot of foes. I think the European Union is a foe, what they do us in trade. Now you wouldn’t think of the European Union but they’re a foe,” he said.

    Trump has on multiple occasions criticized his allies and partners for imposing “unfair” tariffs on US goods, and introduced steep duties on steel (25%) and aluminum (10%) imports from a number of countries, including EU member-states. In a reciprocal move, the EU imposed tariffs on “iconic” US goods, such as jeans, motorbikes, whiskey, worth 2.8 billion dollars ($3.3 billion).

    read more.


July 17, 2018 Posted by | Economics, GeoPolitics | , , , , | Leave a comment

U.S. Refuses European Requests for Exemptions from Its New Sanctions on Iran

  • U.S. Refuses European Requests for Exemptions from Its New Sanctions on Iran
    by Dan De Luce, Abigail Williams and Andrea Mitchell,
    “We will seek to provide unprecedented financial pressure on the Iranian regime,” the U.S. said, rebuffing Britain, France, and Germany.

    WASHINGTON — The United States has rejected an appeal from Britain, France and Germany to grant broad exemptions to European firms doing business in Iran, saying it would press ahead with sanctions intended to exert “unprecedented” economic pressure on the Tehran regime, U.S. and Western officials told NBC News.

    Replying to a June 4 letter from the European powers, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin wrote that the Trump administration would not agree to wide-ranging protections for European companies operating in Iran and instead would grant only limited exceptions based on national security or humanitarian grounds, the officials said.

    The stern message comes as the White House has ratcheted up its rhetoric toward Iran, accused Tehran of plotting terrorist attacks in Europe and vowed to hammer the country’s economy.

    The letter from the Trump administration marks the latest dispute in an increasingly tense U.S. relationship with European allies, aggravated by the president’s harsh criticism of NATO partners this week during his visit to Brussels.

    Having pulled out of the Iran nuclear deal on May 8, the Trump administration plans to reimpose an array of economic sanctions on Iran, including measures designed to cut off Tehran’s financial sector from Western banks. A first wave of sanctions will enter into force by an August deadline, and then another wave will hit in November.

    The Iran nuclear deal, which had imposed restrictions on Iran’s nuclear program in return for easing economic sanctions, had “failed to guarantee the safety of the American people,” the letter said, according to U.S. and Western officials.

    read more.


July 16, 2018 Posted by | Economics, GeoPolitics | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Is a Coming NATO Crisis Inevitable?

  • Is a Coming NATO Crisis Inevitable?
    by Patrick J. Buchanan,
    Of President Donald Trump’s explosion at Angela Merkel’s Germany during the NATO summit, it needs to be said: It is long past time we raised our voices.

    America pays more for NATO, an alliance created 69 years ago to defend Europe, than do the Europeans. And as Europe free-rides off our defense effort, the EU runs trade surpluses at our expense that exceed $100 billion a year.

    To Trump, and not only to him, we are being used, gouged, by rich nations we defend, while they skimp on their own defense. At Brussels, Trump had a new beef with the Germans, though similar problems date back to the Reagan era. Now we see the Germans, Trump raged, whom we are protecting from Russia, collaborating with Russia and deepening their dependence on Russian natural gas by jointly building the Nord Stream 2 pipeline under the Baltic Sea. When completed, this pipeline will leave Germany and Europe even more deeply reliant on Russia for their energy needs.

    To Trump, this makes no sense. While we pay the lion’s share of the cost of Germany’s defense, Germany, he said in Brussels, is becoming “a captive of Russia.” Impolitic? Perhaps. But is Trump wrong? While much of what he says enrages Western elites, does not much of it need saying?

    read more.


July 14, 2018 Posted by | GeoPolitics | , , , , | Leave a comment

US Forces EU into Buying American LNG

  • PressTV Published on Jul 12, 2018
    Russia accuses the United States of bullying Europe into buying American liquid natural gas. The Kremlin spokesman said President Donald Trump’s anti-Russia comments showed an escalation in the US campaign to talk down Russian gas supplies to Europe. Dmitry Peskov said the US objections to the new pipeline deal between Russia and Germany are unfair. On Wednesday, Trump criticized Germany for being what he called a captive of Russian energy. The US president also called on NATO member states to immediately do something about the matter.


July 13, 2018 Posted by | Economics | , , , , , | Leave a comment