The Nation’s DIME 1848

President Trump is attending the G20 Summit in Buenos Aries Argentina. Attending the summit are Britain’s Teresa May, Russia’s Vladimir Putin, Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Salman, and China’s Xi Jinping. Good news is already coming from the Summit, but there are numerous rifts laid bare in Buenos Aries

In the Diplomatic arena,

President Trump will not meet privately with President Putin over the seizure of Ukrainian Navy ships in the Crimea. Russia’s Navy captured three Ukrainian ships and blocked the Straight of Kerch with patrol boats and SU-25 Frogfoot air cover.

The White House announced President Trump will meet with China’s Xi Jinping over the trade war. The Chinese have a lot to gain or lose if the trade and tariff war continues. Many believe the Chinese have the most to lose, but China has an ace up their sleeve. Jinping continues to militarily buildup their South China Sea islands. Five trillion dollars of commerce transits through the South China Sea which China could shut down in moments. 

In the Informational area,

Britain’s Teresa May has said during their first face-to-face meeting, she wants President Trump to know he’s wrong the Brexit Deal will not harm the global economy. She feels there can be a deep trade deal with the US when Britain exits the EU. Prime Minister May also wants to chat with Crown Prince Salman about the assassination of journalist Kamal Khashoggi in Istanbul. May wants to confront him on reports he ordered the murder and the human suffering in their war on Yemen. The Yemeni Civil War is said to be the worst humanitarian disaster in history. 

In the Military realm, 

I hope President Trump discusses Iran’s proxy war in the Middle East with Crown Prince Salman and the rest of the G20. We’ve been warned about this. Iran’s Hezbollah forces are now setting their sights on US forces, which have Putin’s backing. The Israeli Air Force struck Iranian targets throughout Syria last night. The Russian S-300 Surface-to-Air Missile site near Masyaf Syria continues to grow and Iranian 747 cargo planes are landing in Beirut. The IAF received additional F-35s to deal with the growing threat of double-digit SAMs in Syria. 

In the Economic world,

President Trump signed a new NAFTA deal with Mexico and Canada while attending the G20 Summit. Here are good articles on the differences and why NAFTA was renegotiated. Now each country’s legislature must ratify the document so we’ll see what the recent US elections will impact the signing.

Next week’s articles takes a look at Iran’s influence in the Middle East. Remember one name… Major General Qasem Soleimani.

— Final note, please let me know your feedback and suggestions on Twitter, your thought on this weeks DIME, and what do you want more or less of? Let me know by sending a tweet to @MarkHasara and put #nationsdime in the header.

Have a great weekend!

Sluggo Sends!

P.S. — If you’re reading my book Tanker Pilot: Lessons from the Cockpit, I’d really love to hear your thoughts in a review on Amazon here or Barnes and Noble here. I read them all.

Nation’s DIME 1844

Closing in on the midterms, the world seems to be in chaos. Here are the things I’m reading about in the DIME.

In the Diplomatic community,

Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo called for a cease fire in Yemen’s Civil War. The US will continue supporting the war, but patients is running out on the Saudi-UAE coalition. US has supported the coalition with drone strikes in Yemen, killing several high value Al-Qaeda jihadis, Anwar al-Awlaki the most famous.

In the Informational area,

Eleven people were killed and four law enforcement officers wounded as Robert Bowers walked through the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh shouting anti-Semitic statements and shooting into the congregation. Hard to believe he has plead not guilty to 44 counts. Two things not covered in the news… A trauma doctor ran in with the SWAT Team giving medical attention to victims. The Muslim community raised over $180,000 for victims to cover their funeral costs. In the midst of this tragedy, unlikely heroes are coming to help.

In the Military arena,

The largest NATO exercise since the Cold War is underway in Norway. The Russians have reacted to TRIDENT JUNCTURE with bombers flying in the region, and a naval missile firing exercise. TRIDENT JUNCTURE is NATO’s response to a recent Russian exercise. Ambassador Azita Raji wrote a great article for War on the Rocks with a number of links here.

In the Economic realm,

US stock market lost $2 trillion in October. Tech stocks and CEOs were the biggest losers. Amazon lost $19 billion in two day. Investors worry about more tariffs on China. Think about that… two trillion is more than the gross national product of many countries. The market volatility was in response to concerns over global growth and the continuing trade war with China.

The US midterms are next week which is sure to bring a lot of talking points.

The Nation’s DIME 1842

Another Honduran migrant caravan approaches the U.S. – Mexico border. The Trump Administration response is different with this one.

In the Diplomatic realm,

The Trump Administration is responding to the moving caravan by threatening to close the US – Mexico border.  Mexico now braces for the invasion of 3000-4000 Honduran migrants. In response to President Trump’s diplomatic move, Mexico airlifted federal police to the Honduran Mexican border halting the flow of 3000-4000 migrants. Mexico warned the caravan they will deport them if they do not turn around. Mexico has also asked the UN for help.

In the Informational area,

Timing of the caravan is very suspicious, right before the midterm elections. Trump has warned the caravan to return to Honduras, but the migrants continue moving north. President Trump made his position clear, and so has his detractors

In the Military realm,

President Trump threatened the Mexican Government to deploy US troops along our southern border.  The National Guard troops have deployed before when the last caravan approached the US border, and looks like they will again. Our southern border is a very dangerous place with numerous players. Developing rules of engagement for a border security operation like this will be very interesting.

In the Economic area,

President Trump has threatened to cut off the money… finally. Financial aid to Honduras will be first. He then threatened two other nations with the same, Guatemala and El Salvador. The Honduran and Guatemalan are now moving quickly to stop the migrants. It always comes down to money.

I find the movement of this migrant caravan right before the midterms very suspicious. What group or agency is paying for their movement? Four thousand people require a lot of food, water, and logistical support. I don’t think the caravan is as spontaneous as we are led to believe.


Nation’s DIME 1841

There is a lot happening around the world this week you should know about. Here is this week Nation’s DIME…

In the Diplomatic environment,

Ambassador Nikki Haley resigned unexpectedly as our nation’s representative to the United Nations effective 1 January. Her service to the nation has been exemplary. Ambassador Haley has defended President Trump moving the US embassy to Jerusalem, told Kim Jong Un’s regime they will be utterly destroyed, and the Iranian Mullahs do have a ballistic missile program. She gave no reasons for resigning and there is a lot of speculation

In the Informational realm, the Chinese are in the news again,  

Revealed this week was a small microchip the Chinese inserted into servers destined for Amazon and Apple. The world’s largest tech companies were infiltrated by a chip no bigger than the end of a No. 2 pencil. Both deny it happened but what if it really didn’t. There is still the threat. And the culprit is none other than… the People’s Liberation Army. Some of these small microchips even made it into the Department of Defense and CIA computer servers. President Trump and President Xi will have an interesting conversation when they meet. The Center for Strategic and International Studies released this recent report on offensive operations against Russia. The Cold War intensifies…

In the Military arena, time to go offensive!

President Trump issued National Security Presidential Memorandum 13 to go offensive with our cyber weapons.  I did not know the White House released a cyber strategy to guide our efforts in this area. A question many ask is what does “defending forward” mean in the new Cyber strategy. Cyber Warfare is a highly classified code word world in the DoD. I got taste during the invasion of Iraq and it was incredible!  

 The Economic realm took a shock to the system this week.

What is going on in the Stock Market? Tech stocks to a big hit this week, Microsoft being one of the biggest. Some are saying why did it take so long to happen. The market needed a correction after record highs. Not to worry some have said. Did any of us think the Dow would go above 24,000 two years ago? A commentator on one of the radio shows today thinks the DOW will go above 28,000 now.

More next week… 

— Final note, please let me know your feedback and suggestions on Twitter, your thought on this weeks DIME, and what do you want more or less of? Let me know by sending a tweet to @MarkHasara and put #nationsdime in the header.

Have a great weekend!

Sluggo Sends!

P.S. — If you’re reading my book Tanker Pilot: Lessons from the Cockpit, I’d really love to hear your thoughts in a review on Amazon here or Barnes and Noble here. I read them all.

Nation’s DIME 1839

There is so much going on this week in the diplomatic, informational, military, and economic worlds.

In the Diplomatic arena,

The Senate Judiciary Committee hearings have gripped the nation. This all comes down to who you believe. Dr Ford and Judge Kavanaugh gave very impassioned speeches. Senator Lindsey Graham gave the most fiery speech of the hearings. The vote was along party lines to move his confirmation to the floor with one caveat from Arizona Senator Jeff Flake, a limited FBI investigation. There are a number of takeaways from these hearings.

In the Informational area,

Earlier this week I received a Facebook IM from a General I used to work for. I knew something was wrong. Another security breech! This time it looks like Facebook has been the victim. There is a way to tell if your FB account has been hacked. I found this TedTalk very informative. Pablos Holman shows how easy it is to break into networks. Cyber and network attacks are part of the military’s toolkit. 

In the Military realm,

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu brought pictures to the UN on Thursday of Iran’s nuclear and ballistic missile build up. The Israeli Air Force continues to attack Iran’s infrastructure in Syria, but are under fire after a Russian IL-20 spy plane was shot down by an S-200 missile. The Russians are giving Syria additional S-300 systems to defend against more IAF attacks. Russia also sent their newest electronic warfare vehicle to the base at Khmeimim near Latakia.  Israel has the next move.

The Economic trends are both good and bad depending on where you are…

The US strong economy and dollar continues to break new records and is very strong and will remain so.

On the other side of the world, the Turkish Lira has taken big hits, and the Russian Ruble has tumbled too. Venezuela continues to sink deeper from years of socialism. The European outlook for the rest of 2018 seems to be stable but their may be issues.

There is much more I could write about but you get the picture. Have a great weekend.

— Final note, please let me know your feedback and suggestions on Twitter, your thought on this weeks DIME, and what do you want more or less of? Let me know by sending a tweet to @MarkHasara and put #nationsdime in the header.

Have a great weekend!

Sluggo Sends!

P.S. — If you’re reading my book Tanker Pilot: Lessons from the Cockpit, I’d really love to hear your thoughts in a review on Amazon here or Barnes and Noble here. I read them all.

Nation’s DIME 1838

There is so much going on this week its hard to know where to start…

In the Diplomatic area,

Other countries must look at the spectacle of the Justice Brett Kavanaugh hearings in the Senate Judiciary Committee and laugh. Who has ever heard of someone saying to a Senate Committee hearing these are my demands before testifying. Ms Ford wanted an FBI investigation. The FBI turned down Ford’s request, that’s not what the FBI does. Demands made through her lawyer include… no external lawyers! The letter from Dr. Ford’s attorney can be found here. My hope is Senator Grassley calls for a vote on Monday. 

In the Informational realm,

Are you tired of the line Russian meddling? Meddling is what governments. Russian meddling is information warfare. Russia has used information warfare very effectively in the Crimea. The US may not be ready for this type of warfare. The US needs to develop a good informational warfare strategy which may require new intelligence disciplines to combat.

In the Military realm, talk about stranger things!

An Israeli Air Force four ship of F-16 Sufas attacked Iranian targets near Latakia. The ammo warehouse belongs to the Iranian backed Hezbollah terror group.  But during the IAF airstrike Syria shot down a Russian Il-20 COOT reconnaissance plane in the process with one of their new S-400 SAM systems which sits on the same mountain as their SA-5 GAMMON site. The entire crew was lost. In an interesting twist, a French Navy Frigate also destroyed targets. Is there a new US-Israel-British-French alliance?

The Economic news keeps getting better.

The Dow and S&P 500 closed new records. Jobless claims fell to their lowest in 49 years. Second quarter GDP was adjusted from 4.1 to 4.2 percent. And Senator Elizabeth Warren submitted a seriously misguided bill for the government to control any company earning $1 billion dollars.

The November elections are going to be really important.