18 February 2015   Leave a comment

The disintegration of the cease-fire in Ukraine leaves the US and Europe in a difficult situation.  Neither wish to declare the cease-fire dead because saying so would require a response by them.  So both are silent on the matter and assessing the situation.  But the situation in Ukraine clearly indicates that the separatists rebels are clearly taking more territory.  The map below indicate how the situation has changed between last September and 14 February.  The rebels now control Debaltseve.  Europe and the US have to figure out a meaningful response to the breaking of the cease-fire or they risk losing credibility, not only with respect to Russia but to other states which have commitments from both.

Ukraine

São Paolo is one of the great cities in the world.  Its metropolitan region has about 20 million people and it is the largest city in Brazil.  Brazil is also endowed with 1/8th of the world’s fresh water. Yet the city is running out of fresh water due to drought and mismanagement.   In some parts of the city water is being rationed and is unavailable in certain parts of the day.  The situation is expected only to worsen, and the scarcity of water will undoubtedly set off political turmoil that will be difficult to contain.  It is hard to imagine how so many people will be able to take care of their daily responsibilities without reliable and available water.

The Guardian has an excellent article with the title”When Will Greece Run Out of Money?”  It is a very good (but rough) estimate about who Greece owes money to and how long it can hold out without substantial assistance from the troika.  The Guardian’s  answer to its own question is:

According to figures released on Tuesday by the Bank of Greece, the finance ministry estimates that cash reserves will run out on 24 February. Using the reserves of government entities to cover short-term needs, however, the problem could be delayed until March.

Note, however, that the current agreement lasts until 28 February.  So something has to give within the next 10 days.

 

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Posted February 18, 2015 by vferraro1971 in World Politics

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