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Sunday, March 29, 2015

Saudi's Yemen Campaign Extended 6 Months, Houthis Have 300 Scuds. Oops !!

  • Houthi fighters continue gains despite Saudi air strikes
  • intervention planned to last a month but could extend for five or six 
  • Yemen had 300 Scuds, bulk of them in hands of Houthis 
  • Iranian experts brought in parts for the long-range missiles 
  • air strikes had targeted these missiles
  • Houthis repositioned Scud missiles aimed at Saudi 
  • Iran providing parts for missiles
  • 86 foreign diplomats and Saudi nationals shipped out of Aden to Jeddah
  • UN said most of its 100 international staff evacuated
  • Pakistan yet to decide on military support to Saudis
  • convoy of 600 Pakistanis moving towards port of Hodeida 
  • more than 68 people had been killed and 452 wounded since Wednesday. 
  • Explosions at ammunition depot on Saturday killed 15 
  • Houthi fighters continued gains since Saudi launched air strikes
  • On Friday Houthis seized Shaqra, 100 km east of Aden 
  • Houthi convoy heading to Aden attacked
  • convoy stopped, Houthis sending reinforcements before resuming advance 
  • Heavy clashes erupted in Zinjibar, capital of Abyan province 
  • Clashes reported in al-Houta, Lahj provincial capital, north of Aden 
  • Saudi King Salman said operation would continue until Yemen achieved peace
  • Kuwait's emir al-Sabah, said Houthi advances "threat to our security
  • Saudi Arabia too small to threaten Iran 
  • initially month-long campaign, but it could last up to six months 

Malaysia Should Play An Active Part In The AIIB

Russia 'to join China-led development bank'
Russian President Vladimir Putin has taken the decision that Russia will participate in the capital of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB).

The Beijing-backed AIIB, unveiled in October, is a multinational lender that the United States perceives as a threat to the Washington-led World Bank.
Britain, Germany, France, Italy and this week South Korea all intend to join the US$50 billion bank.

Russia has sought to align itself more closely with China in recent years

"We are glad to have the opportunity to build up cooperation in the format of China and the Eurasian Economic Union," 
"We in Russia are sure that joint work in developing Eurasian partnership and the Silk Route economic belt will create further opportunities for the development of the countries of the Eurasian Union and China,"

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said this month that "practical cooperation between China and Russia is based on mutual need" and has "enormous internal impetus and room for expansion." 

My comments : 

When he launched the Multi Media Super Corridor, Dr Mahathir said the Islamic countries had lost out on the Industrial Revolution. He did not want Malaysia to lose out on the IT Revolution.

There are big things happening around us folks. The biggest thing is China. For those of you who are not Chinese, send your kids to learn Mandarin.  

This Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) is going to be real. 

What I find not surprising at all is that Britain, Germany, France, Italy and South Korea all intend to join the US$50 billion bank.  They are always ahead of the curve. Let us not be left out. 

The future is in our part of the world. Lets gear up and prepare ourselves. 

We are wasting so much time doing useless things.   

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Saudi F15 Goes Down Off Yemen

I was expecting this to happen but not so soon. Here is some news :

Washington (AFP) - The US military has rescued two Saudi pilots who ejected from their jet off Yemen's coast, as the kingdom launched air strikes on rebel camps in its violence-wracked neighbor, officials said.
The Saudi F-15 fighter jet appeared to be participating in the operations in Yemen, though a US defense official declined to confirm why the men ejected from the plane or why it went down in international waters late Thursday.

The official said Saudi authorities had enlisted Washington's help in the rescue efforts.

The two men, who were rescued by an HH-60 helicopter from Djibouti, were in fit enough a condition to walk, the official added, citing initial reports.

The USS Sterett missile destroyer led the rescue efforts, coordinating assets from the USS New York.

My comments : This event has great significance if the F15s were downed by anti aircraft missiles.  If so, it will have a great impact on the Saudi air campaign in Yemen. Their planes will either stop flying or fly at much higher altitudes. That will make their bombing less effective (unless they use advanced smart bombs which is unlikely).  

It will also make other 'coalition partners' like Egypt think twice before sending their warplanes to assist Saudi Arabia bomb Yemen.   Obviously the Saudis do not have extended SAR capability (search and rescue).

The Houthis have seized large quantities of weapons from the Yemen government but anti aircraft missiles sophisticated enough and with enough reach to bring down F15s are not likely in their arsenal.

Iran does have advanced anti aircraft missiles that can shoot down jet fighters.  It is a question of time before Iranian anti aircraft missiles find their way to Yemen - despite the naval blockade that is being put up around Yemen. 

If more planes are "brought" down, the air campaign will stop. Then the whole adventure will become even more futile. Or the Saudi F15 may have developed engine failure - but the F15 is a twin engine fighter.

Its an interesting development.

McDonnel Douglas F15 Strike Eagle Air Superiority Fighter

For ‘sensible Malays’, only DAP or PasMa can avert Talibanism, says Zaid

In his blog post, former minister Datuk Zaid Ibrahim hit out at the state lawmakers who had voted to pass hudud in Kelantan last week.

KUALA LUMPUR, March 23 — Only the DAP or a new political party formed from Persatuan Ummah Sejahtera Malaysia (PasMa) can save Malaysia from falling headlong down the path of extremist religious “misrule”, former minister Datuk Zaid Ibrahim said today.

A strident critic of hudud, the Kelantan-born politician urged “sensible Malays” who make up the majority of the country’s population to back the predominantly Chinese DAP or the critical pressure group within the Islamist PAS as the political alternative to reclaim their homeland.

“With the passing of the amendments to the Shariah Criminal Code (II) Enactment 1993 in Kelantan—which was unanimously supported by all state politicians whether from PAS, Umno or PKR — we the more sensible Malays must make plans to support a political party that will save us from the rise of a Taliban-style fascism in our politics.

“This resistance can either take the form of a new party comprising Persatuan Ummah Sejahtera Malaysia (PasMa)—if they are truly moderate—or support for DAP, which is the only political party that has displayed some integrity on this matter,” he said in his latest blog post.

Malays in the country are automatically classed as Muslims, under the Federal Constitution, and would be subjected to hudud in Kelantan if the Islamic penal law is passed in Parliament as some PAS legislators hope to do this term.

The one-time Kota Baru representative who has been with both Umno and PKR also warned Malays they faced an uphill battle against these lawmakers whom he branded as “neo-Taliban”.

In his blog post, the man who had once helped the Pakatan Rakyat (PR) opposite pact draw up its common framework, hit out at the state lawmakers who had voted to pass hudud in Kelantan last week.

“These political leaders have not seen fit to consult anyone at all. They behave as if Malaysia is their exclusive property and no one else matters. They have betrayed the spirit of our nationhood and the letter of our Constitution.

“Loyal Malaysians should not stand for this usurpation of power,” he said.

Zaid noted that the current state of affairs in the country was due to politicians who were no longer fearful of the people, and called on voters to demand their representatives “behave like normal human beings” to return Malaysia to reason and humanity.

On March 19, PAS-ruled Kelantan passed key amendments to its Shariah Criminal Code II 1993 in a move to enable the eventual implementation of hudud in the Malay-majority east coast state.

The success means PAS is just one step closer to achieving its hudud ambition after it first introduced the Bill in 1993.

The second move will be to seek approval to amend the Federal Constitution to allow hudud to be incorporated into Kelantan’s Shariah laws.

Tonight, DAP’s national central executive committee will hold a meeting to discuss its position in PR following PAS’s hudud manoeuvre in Kelantan.