Tag Archives: international politics

Secret Trade in Services Agreement draft has been leaked

A draft of the secret Trade in Services Agreement (TISA)  Financial Services Annex has been released by WikiLeaks today in a press release.

In an anti-transparency feat, the draft is meant to remain private during the negotiations which started in April 2013, and are set to commence for a seventh round of talks from June 23-27 in Geneva, Switzerland.  An amendment is also in place within the Agreement to keep it a secret for five years after its inception if it does pass.

According to the draft, financial multi-nationals would be assisted in expansion to other nations with no interference from regulatory barriers, resulting in cross-border data flow between other government entities and third-parties.

Cross-border data flow includes financial reports and personal data from citizens and corporations alike, of which the report says the U.S. is “particularly keen on boosting.”

This would allow for the dissemination of citizen’s financial and personal data not only across their own government, but across the governments of all other members included in the Agreement.

Preventative regulations to stop such actions were set in place after the financial collapse and crisis from 2007-2008.

TISA is being set up outside of the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS), but when the draft is finished, the report says the agreement will be “crafted to be compatible” with any GATS regulations set in place.

GATS was set up, according to the World Trade Organization, to ensure “fair and equitable treatment of all participants,” and “promoting trade… through progressive liberalization.”  GATS also calls for members to publish all measures of general application and to present transparency in terms of their policies.

If TISA were to be passed, the Agreement would not be in violation of any of the measures set in place by GATS.

The Agreement would also allow nations already signed on to be able to bully and pressure other nations into signing the Agreement, forfeiting their internal data to the other nations in the process.

TISA covers over fifty countries including major world and financial leaders such as the United States and all members of the EU, while also covering many financially weaker countries such as Colombia and Pakistan.

The BRICS countries, Brazil, Russia, India, and China, are all absent from the draft and subsequent agreements.  This may be an attempt to soften the financial stability and bargaining power of such countries in future services negotiations.

Dictator Kim Jong-Un Reportedly Has Uncle Stripped Naked, Then Watches 120 Wild Dogs Eat Him Alive

Screenshot 2014-01-03 at 11.55.41 AM

During a New Years address, North Korea dictator Kim Jong-Un championed the recent execution of his uncle, 67-year-old Jang Song-Thaek. Kim did not, however, specify exactly how Jang was executed. According to Hong Kong paper Wen Wei Po, the 67-year-old was stripped naked and then thrown into a cage with 120 starved wild dogs who ate him alive.

Kim allegedly ordered the horrific death sentence as a punishment called “quan jue” for treachery. This type of execution is saved for only the most despised individuals — “normal” executions are carried out with firearms.

This particular execution was reportedly supervised by Kim himself on December 12. Five other men, all who were aides to the dictator, were also executed via “quan jue” along with Kim’s uncle.

The dictator called his uncle, who was once one of the most influential men in North Korea, “scum” and “filth” during his New Years address. Informing his uncle’s execution, Kim said, “Our party took resolute action to remove…scum elements within the party last year.”


He continued, “Our party’s timely, accurate decision to purge the anti-party, anti-revolutionary elements helped greatly cement solidarity within our party.”

Jang supposedly committed treachery by having “improper relations with several women” and because he “squandered foreign currency at casinos while he was receiving medical treatment in a foreign country under the care of the party.”

Many analysts believe the real reason Kim ordered Jang’s execution was because he felt threatened by him. Jang was considered one of the most powerful men in North Korea and had helped Kim come to power after his father, King Jong-II, died in 2011.


It seems clear that the execution was an effort to prove dominance, fearlessness, and leadership by Kim; it was almost a warning to anyone threatening to challenge the dictator.

Kim also spoke about war during his New Years address. He said, “If the war breaks out again in this land, it will bring about a massive nuclear disaster and the US will never be safe.”

The dictator’s “reign of terror” and love of power has many around the world terrified. It seems that he has no boundaries when trying to prove the power and scope of his position.

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