<![CDATA[Hedgehogs.net: '' related content]]> http://www.hedgehogs.net/tag/foreign+minister?view=rss http://www.hedgehogs.net/pg/newsfeeds/hhwebadmin/item/11364385/ukraine-overnight-interest-rates-soars-to-175-external-debt-cannot-be-paid-back-ukraine-demands-rebels-surrender Mon, 25 Aug 2014 17:12:16 +0100 http://www.hedgehogs.net/pg/newsfeeds/hhwebadmin/item/11364385/ukraine-overnight-interest-rates-soars-to-175-external-debt-cannot-be-paid-back-ukraine-demands-rebels-surrender <![CDATA[Ukraine Overnight Interest Rates Soars to 17.5%; External Debt Cannot Be Paid Back; Ukraine Demands Rebels Surrender]]>
Thus death and destruction will continue, possibly long after Ukraine takes over Luhansk and Donetsk (or rather what's left of Luhansk and Donetsk).

Please consider Ukraine Says It Makes Gains Against Rebels in Luhansk.
The Ukrainian government said its forces took control of one of four districts in the pro-Russian separatist stronghold of Luhansk and are fighting in the city center as diplomatic efforts to end the conflict intensified.

European leaders are pushing to halt the conflict that’s killed more than 2,000 people and fractured Ukraine since Russia annexed Crimea in March.

“Ukraine’s armed forces have been beating the separatists for weeks now and are moving deeper into the east,” Karl-Heinz Kamp, academic director at the German government’s Federal Academy for Security Policy in Berlin, said by phone. “Something must have happened that’s boosting their fighting skills. My gut feeling -- and I don’t have any concrete evidence -- is that the Ukrainian forces are getting support from the outside.”

Ukraine’s government says it will declare a truce only if the pro-Russian rebels lay down their arms and Russia stops supplying them with weapons. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, meeting with his Ukrainian, French and German counterparts in Berlin, repeated calls yesterday for an unconditional cease-fire. Russia denies it’s aiding the rebels.

Ukraine Rates

The conflict has cost Ukraine $8 billion, Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk was quoted as saying today by the Unian newswire. Ukraine’s central bank raised its overnight refinancing rate to 17.5 percent today from 15 percent as it seeks to support the hryvnia. The Ukrainian currency fell as much as 1.6 percent before trading little changed at to 13.03 per dollar, taking its decline for the month to 5.8 percent.
Hryvnia vs. US Dollar

From mid-2007 the hryvnia crashed from 4.50 to the US dollar to 13.03 to the US dollar. That is a decline of 65%.

Given that Ukraine's external debt is not priced in hryvnia, but rather euros or US dollars, this currency decline really hurts.

Ukraine External Debt

Rule: When you have massive (relative to the size of your economy), external debts denominated in foreign currencies, very bad things happen.   

Ukraine's external debt as valued in US dollars has risen from under $40 billion in 2005 to nearly $140 billion today. Yet, I hear no mainstream media reporting on how Ukraine is supposed to pay this back.

Here's a hint. It can't.

And that is why interest rates are totally out of control, and why Ukraine will be beholden to the IMF and other creditors for decades unless it defaults.

As we all know ... This is a "small price" to pay for "peace".
And in case you missed it, please consider the Rule of Small Prices.

Mike "Mish" Shedlock
http://www.hedgehogs.net/pg/newsfeeds/hhwebadmin/item/11364266/france-warns-on-islamic-states-financing Mon, 25 Aug 2014 15:54:55 +0100 http://www.hedgehogs.net/pg/newsfeeds/hhwebadmin/item/11364266/france-warns-on-islamic-states-financing <![CDATA[France Warns on Islamic State's Financing]]> 11364266 http://www.hedgehogs.net/pg/newsfeeds/hhwebadmin/item/11364260/turkish-minister-set-to-be-premier Mon, 25 Aug 2014 15:54:50 +0100 http://www.hedgehogs.net/pg/newsfeeds/hhwebadmin/item/11364260/turkish-minister-set-to-be-premier <![CDATA[Turkish Minister Set to Be Premier]]> 11364260 http://www.hedgehogs.net/pg/newsfeeds/hhwebadmin/item/11364236/steinmeier-convenes-fourway-talks-on-ukraine Mon, 25 Aug 2014 15:54:24 +0100 http://www.hedgehogs.net/pg/newsfeeds/hhwebadmin/item/11364236/steinmeier-convenes-fourway-talks-on-ukraine <![CDATA[Steinmeier Convenes Four-Way Talks on Ukraine]]> 11364236 http://www.hedgehogs.net/pg/newsfeeds/hhwebadmin/item/11364226/russian-ukraine-incursion-unfortunately-normal Mon, 25 Aug 2014 15:54:16 +0100 http://www.hedgehogs.net/pg/newsfeeds/hhwebadmin/item/11364226/russian-ukraine-incursion-unfortunately-normal <![CDATA[Russian Ukraine Incursion 'Unfortunately Normal']]> 11364226 http://www.hedgehogs.net/pg/newsfeeds/hhwebadmin/item/11359876/russia-and-the-west-flexing-its-mussels Sat, 23 Aug 2014 05:29:59 +0100 http://www.hedgehogs.net/pg/newsfeeds/hhwebadmin/item/11359876/russia-and-the-west-flexing-its-mussels <![CDATA[Russia and the West: Flexing its mussels]]>
A NEW dish may soon appear in Moscow restaurants: “Belarusian” mussels. So goes a rather Soviet-style joke making the rounds since August 5th, when Russia blocked food imports from countries that have imposed sanctions on it. Seafood from America and Europe is now banned, but can still get into landlocked Belarus, which enjoys a customs-free zone with Russia. Many expect a return to the black-market smuggling of decades past.In March, when America and the European Union first introduced limited sanctions over Russia’s intervention in Ukraine, Russia’s official response was dismissive. Sergei Lavrov, the foreign minister, said Russia would not answer “hysterically” with retaliatory measures. But the far-reaching Western sanctions imposed last month—targeting state-controlled banks, among others—have forced Russia to respond.It is telling that whereas the West has largely stopped exports to Russia, such as technology for offshore oil exploration, Russia has blocked Western imports. Few Russian products are important to Western economies apart from oil and gas, and cutting those exports would mean fiscal ruin for Russian businesses and government. But Russia is a significant market...

http://www.hedgehogs.net/pg/newsfeeds/hhwebadmin/item/11359326/the-politics-behind-the-chinese-exhibition-in-prague-photos Sat, 23 Aug 2014 02:01:06 +0100 http://www.hedgehogs.net/pg/newsfeeds/hhwebadmin/item/11359326/the-politics-behind-the-chinese-exhibition-in-prague-photos <![CDATA[The Politics Behind the Chinese Exhibition in Prague (PHOTOS)]]>


http://www.hedgehogs.net/pg/newsfeeds/hhwebadmin/item/11359324/weekend-roundup-subversive-pope-takes-aim-at-global-consumer-society Sat, 23 Aug 2014 02:00:57 +0100 http://www.hedgehogs.net/pg/newsfeeds/hhwebadmin/item/11359324/weekend-roundup-subversive-pope-takes-aim-at-global-consumer-society <![CDATA[Weekend Roundup: Subversive Pope Takes Aim at Global Consumer Society]]> "idolatrous economies" of contemporary global capitalism "that sacrifice man at the feet of the idol of money."

This week in South Korea, he took aim at the temple of consumerism. Riding around town in a more-than-modest Kia Soul, he chastised his famously shopaholic flock in the land of Samsung for the "tendency to toy with the latest fads, gadgets and distractions rather than attending to the things that really matter." He also criticized, "the spirit of unbridled competition which generates selfishness and strife."

To track the Pope's impact over what he says are his "two or three [more] years before death," The WorldPost this week inaugurated a new blog, "Following Francis", by Sébastien Maillard, Vatican Correspondent for La Croix.

In an interview, "Superintelligence" author Nick Bostrom tells the WorldPost's Kathleen Miles that "artificial intelligence could cause the end of the human race within a century."

As the United Nations gears up for a big push on climate change in September, The WorldPost presents the first in series of short videos, "Green World Rising," narrated by actor Leonardo DiCaprio.

With the brutal beheading of American journalist James Foley by the Islamic State, this week also marks a turning point in the Middle East. WorldPost Middle East Correspondent Sophia Jones reaffirms the spirit of Foley as a fellow journalist bearing witness in that troubled region. Sophia also reports from Diyarbakır, Turkey on the young Kurds flocking from that country to Iraq and Syria to fight. Patrick Cockburn questions why the U.S. supports Baghdad in its battle against ISIS, but not Bashar Al-Assad in Damascus.

Looking at another dark episode in the Middle East, human rights activists and lawyer Amal Alamuddin examines the unfair show trial of Al Jazeera journalists in Egypt.

As the political standoff and deadly skirmishes with Russian-backed rebels continue in Ukraine, former U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Strobe Talbott argues in an interview with The WorldPost that all pretensions should be dropped and we should recognize that "Russia has already invaded Ukraine."

Writing from Beijing, Yanmei Xie sees second thoughts in Beijing as China's leaders seem to be taking a step back from confrontation with "a still strong Japan." Writing from Singapore, former foreign minister George Yeo warns the West that "for the rest of Asia, America might be a friend, but China cannot be an enemy." Also writing from Singapore, Kishore Mahbubani, dean of the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, criticizes the big powers for purposely weakening multilateral institutions to preserve their own interests, including the tracking of international flights such as MH370.

In an uplifting story of China-U.S. relations, WorldPost Beijing Correspondent Matt Sheehan reports from the Bay Area, where Chinese millionaires could help salvage San Francisco's poorest neighborhood.

And in its regular column on "user-generated, censor-chosen keywords" on Chinese Weibo, China Digital Times examines the dissonant chatter over a new 48-episode TV biopic of Deng Xiaoping that leaves out key events, such as the crackdown in Tiananmen Square in 1989.

After briefly quieting down, tempers flared again in Ferguson, Mo. over the killing of an unarmed black teenager by police. The chaos in America once again sparked discussion around the world, with Egypt even weighing in on the protests. Bob Herbert argues that the idea of a "post-racist" America after Barack Obama's election was a delusion and the country has moved "backwards." UCLA professor Adam Winkler observes that American police are "trained to live in fear" because so many people have guns in the United States.

Finally, a sad note closer to our digital home. Jehangir Pocha, The WorldPost contributing editor from India, died suddenly of a heart attack at age 45. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted: "His frank and insightful views on issues will be missed."

We will also miss him here.


EDITORS: Nathan Gardels, Senior Advisor to the Berggruen Institute on Governance and the long-time editor of NPQ and the Global Viewpoint Network of the Los Angeles Times Syndicate/Tribune Media, is the Editor-in-Chief of The WorldPost. Farah Mohamed is the Managing Editor of The WorldPost. Kathleen Miles is the Senior Editor of the WorldPost. Alex Gardels is the Associate Editor of The WorldPost. Nicholas Sabloff is the Executive International Editor at the Huffington Post, overseeing The WorldPost and HuffPost's 10 international editions. Eline Gordts is HuffPost's World Editor.

CORRESPONDENTS: Sophia Jones in Istanbul; Matt Sheehan in Beijing.

EDITORIAL BOARD: Nicolas Berggruen, Nathan Gardels, Arianna Huffington, Eric Schmidt (Google Inc.), Pierre Omidyar (First Look Media) Juan Luis Cebrian (El Pais/PRISA), Walter Isaacson (Aspen Institute/TIME-CNN), John Elkann (Corriere della Sera, La Stampa), Wadah Khanfar (Al Jazeera), Dileep Padgaonkar (Times of India) and Yoichi Funabashi (Asahi Shimbun). Sergio Munoz Bata is Contributing Editor-At-Large.

CONTRIBUTING EDITORS: Moises Naim (former editor of Foreign Policy) and Nayan Chanda (Yale/Global; Far Eastern Economic Review) and Katherine Keating (One-On-One).

The Asia Society and its ChinaFile, edited by Orville Schell, is our primary partner on Asia coverage. Eric X. Li and the Chunqiu Institute/Fudan University in Shanghai and Guancha.cn also provide first person voices from China. We also draw on the content of China Digital Times. Seung-yoon Lee is The WorldPost link in South Korea.

Jared Cohen of Google Ideas provides regular commentary from young thinkers, leaders and activists around the globe. Bruce Mau provides regular columns from MassiveChangeNetwork.com on the "whole mind" way of thinking. Patrick Soon-Shiong is Contributing Editor for Health and Medicine.

ADVISORY COUNCIL: Members of the Berggruen Institute's 21st Century Council and Council for the Future of Europe serve as the Advisory Council -- as well as regular contributors -- to the site. These include, Jacques Attali, Shaukat Aziz, Gordon Brown, Fernando Henrique Cardoso, Juan Luis Cebrian, Jack Dorsey, Mohamed El-Erian, Francis Fukuyama, Felipe Gonzalez, John Gray, Reid Hoffman, Fred Hu, Mo Ibrahim, Alexei Kudrin, Pascal Lamy, Kishore Mahbubani, Alain Minc, Dambisa Moyo, Laura Tyson, Elon Musk, Pierre Omidyar, Raghuram Rajan, Nouriel Roubini, Nicolas Sarkozy, Eric Schmidt, Gerhard Schroeder, Peter Schwartz, Amartya Sen, Jeff Skoll, Michael Spence, Joe Stiglitz, Larry Summers, Wu Jianmin, George Yeo, Fareed Zakaria, Ernesto Zedillo, Ahmed Zewail, and Zheng Bijian.

From the Europe group, these include: Marek Belka, Tony Blair, Jacques Delors, Niall Ferguson, Anthony Giddens, Otmar Issing, Mario Monti, Robert Mundell, Peter Sutherland and Guy Verhofstadt.


The WorldPost is a global media bridge that seeks to connect the world and connect the dots. Gathering together top editors and first person contributors from all corners of the planet, we aspire to be the one publication where the whole world meets.

We not only deliver breaking news from the best sources with original reportage on the ground and user-generated content; we bring the best minds and most authoritative as well as fresh and new voices together to make sense of events from a global perspective looking around, not a national perspective looking out.
http://www.hedgehogs.net/pg/newsfeeds/hhwebadmin/item/11357797/france-pushes-eu-meeting-on-arming-iraqs-kurds Wed, 13 Aug 2014 02:22:41 +0100 http://www.hedgehogs.net/pg/newsfeeds/hhwebadmin/item/11357797/france-pushes-eu-meeting-on-arming-iraqs-kurds <![CDATA[France Pushes EU Meeting on Arming Iraq's Kurds]]> 11357797 http://www.hedgehogs.net/pg/newsfeeds/hhwebadmin/item/11357780/france-ready-to-join-effort-to-save-yazidis Wed, 13 Aug 2014 02:22:23 +0100 http://www.hedgehogs.net/pg/newsfeeds/hhwebadmin/item/11357780/france-ready-to-join-effort-to-save-yazidis <![CDATA[France Ready to Join Effort to Save Yazidis]]> 11357780