KASHGAR, CHINA - JULY 27: Uyghurs wait at a bus stop on July 27, 2014 in old Kashgar, Xinjiang Province, China. Nearly 100 people have been killed in unrest in the restive Xinjiang Province in the last week in what authorities say is terrorism but advocacy groups claim is a result of a government crackdown to silence opposition to its policies. China's Muslim Uyghur ethnic group faces cultural and religious restrictions by the Chinese government. Beijing says it is investing heavily in the Xinjiang region but Uyghurs are increasingly dissatisfied with the influx of Han Chinese and uneven economic development.  (Photo by Kevin Frayer/Getty Images)

Erich Follath – Beijing’s New Silk Road to Europe

China is building new roads, railroads and pipelines from Central Asia to Europe in an effort to build new connections to the rest of the world. The results may be good for the Chinese — but less so for the other countries involved. In Kashgar, on the western edge of the Peoples’ Republic of China, the view is reminiscent of the …

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Pepe Escobar – Empire of Chaos preparing for more fireworks in 2016

In his seminal ‘Fall of Rome: And the End of Civilization,’ Bryan Ward-Perkins writes, “Romans before the fall were as certain as we are today that their world would continue forever… They were wrong. We would be wise not to repeat their complacency.” The Empire of Chaos, today, is not about complacency. It’s about hubris – and fear. Ever since …

G7

The European Union (EU): The New Byzantium or Declining Rome By Prof. Anis H. Bajrektarević

A freshly released IMF’s World Economic Outlook brings (yet again, for the seventh year in a row, and for the second time this year only) no comforting picture to anyone within the G-7, especially in the US and EU. Will the passionately US-pushed cross-Atlantic Free Trade Area save the day? Or, would that Pact-push drag the things over the edge …

China Establishes World’s Largest Physical Gold Fund – Tyler Durden

While many eagerly await the day when China will finally reveal its latest official gold holdings, a number which when made public will be orders of magnitude higher than its last 2009 disclosure of just over 1,000 tons, or less even than Russia, China continues to plough ahead with agreements and arrangements to obtain even more gold in the coming years. Exhibit A: …

Westward ho on China’s Eurasia BRIC road

“…it is imperative that no Eurasian challenger (to the U.S.) emerges capable of dominating Eurasia and thus also of challenging America” Zbigniew Brzezinski, The Grand Chessboard, 1997 What’s in a name, rather an ideogram? Everything. A single Chinese character – jie (for “between”) – graphically illustrates the key foreign policy initiative of the new Chinese dream. In the upper part …

Rats

Disease-carrying fleas abound on New York City’s rats

In the first study of its kind since the 1920s, rats in New York City were found to carry a flea species capable of transmitting plague pathogens. In research appearing March 2 in the Journal of Medical Entomology, lead author Matthew Frye, an urban entomologist with Cornell University’s New York State Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Program, reported collecting more than 6,500 …