Monday, April 16, 2018

Jim Rickards on Russia

Jim Rickards offers this geo political analysis on Russia. He says the threat from Russia is not any attempt at world conquest, but rather its more modern approach to increasing Russian influence using a long term campaign to undermine the US dollar as global reserve currency. Below is an excerpt.


"Russia’s Putin has never taken his eye off the ball. His ambition is not global hegemony or European conquest. Putin seeks what Russia has always sought: regional hegemony and a set of buffer states in eastern Europe and central Asia that can add to Russia’s strategic depth.

In Syria, Russia has the warm water port of Tartus — which is important when you consider that most Russian ports are ice-bound for months of the year.

It is strategic depth — the capacity to suffer massive invasions and still survive due to an ability to retreat to a core position and stretch enemy supply lines — that enabled Russia to defeat both Napoleon and Hitler. Putin also wants the modicum of respect that would normally accompany that geostrategic goal.

Understanding Putin is not much more complicated than that."    . . . . .

Added note: A blog reader (not Jim Rickards) sent me these thoughts by email in regards to events taking place in Syria and related to Russia:

"Trump tells Russia, "Get ready for missiles in Syria". Most people think this is probably about the chemical attack.  I believe it is about the real war about to get started over the petroyuan and Russia-Iran-Syria having a pipeline and port to the Mediterranean.  This could be the stresser against the dollar forcing monetary change."

Additional side notes: I sent Jim Rickards a link to this recent article appearing in the NY Post and he indicated in his reply that he agrees with the main thrust of the article. This means we should keep an eye on what happens with the Trump legal situation and its potential impact on markets as we noted here earlier. More and more analysts (both pro and anti Trump) are talking about this situation as a coming potential "constitutional crisis". Obviously, if that does happen, it may negatively impact markets and even systemic stability.

Also, after Jim wrote this article on Russia, the US launched attacks on Syria and Russia reacted with anger. Another potential global trigger point we must keep an eye on. Jim made this comment on that recently in his twitter feed.

"Syrian Civil War bears more than passing resemblance to Spanish Civil War in that Russia confronts West via proxies while Great Powers use the conflict as proving ground for new weapons as they prepare to fight each other." --- Jim Rickards

One could make the observation that so far, despite some corrections, global markets have shown remarkable resilience in the face of ramped up tensions between the US, China, Russia, North Korea, and pretty much the whole Middle East. On top of all that, we appear to have the potential for a global trade war. In this recent article, Nomi Prins makes the argument that this won't last and markets will eventually react in a way that forces new easing policies by central banks.

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