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  1. the Question is "What will Trump get out of his visit to India?" He will of course look at the visits of others, and perhaps moderate his behavior based on theirs but I bet he will not follow the dress code established by Justin. What Donald Trump gets out of his trip to India Indian Americans are a growing political force in the US. Could this be part of the reason for the trip? India is gearing up to impress the visiting US President Donald Trump on his first official trip to the world's most populous democracy. Tens of thousands are expected to line the streets to greet him in Ahmedabad city, in Prime Minister Narendra Modi's home state Gujarat. Mr Trump will inaugurate the world's largest cricket stadium there in the presence of over 100,000 people, a spectacle expected to cost more than $13m (£10m). The visit comes as India's economy is under strain and unemployment is high. Mr Modi is facing criticism at home and abroad over Kashmir and a controversial law that fast-tracks citizenship to non-Muslim religious minorities from three neighbouring countries. "It will be a political boost and a good news story for him," says Tanvi Madan, director of the India Project at the Brookings Institution think-tank in Washington. "He will be seen in visuals standing with the most powerful leader of the world, so to speak." But the Indian subcontinent has not figured much in Mr Trump's "America First" agenda. So what's in it for President Trump, who is known to hate long trips, and what does he hope to accomplish in India, when there is no dearth of domestic and international issues at home? 1. Effort to attract Indian-American voters? The visit is being seen by many as a pleasant trip to a country where Mr Trump is not expected to face tough questions, but win some easy political points for his domestic politics. Part of the aim is to give American voters a good image to point to when thinking of Mr Trump as he seeks re-election. "The visuals will be used by the Trump campaign to make the case the President is welcomed around the world," says Ms Madan. "That he has made America great and respected, especially when some polls have said the respect for the US has gone down on the international stage." The good, the bad and the ugly: US presidents' India trips Indian American voters might pay particular attention. About 4.5 million people of Indian origin live in the US today, but despite their relatively small numbers, Indian Americans are a growing political force in the country. Those who can vote typically vote Democrat. In 2016, only 16% Indian Americans voted for Mr Trump, according to the National Asian American Survey. "Indian Americans do not believe in cutting taxes and making government smaller. They favour social welfare spending," says Karthick Ramakrishnan, a professor of public policy at the University of California, Riverside, who ran the survey. Mr Trump has sought to court the Indian-American vote in the run-up to the 2020 election. In September, he appeared next to Mr Modi at a massive event in Houston, Texas named "Howdy Modi", and declared: "You have never had a better friend as president than President Donald Trump". According to Mr Ramakrishnan, Mr Trump's efforts in reaching out to India could help boost his numbers at the margins. "I think there would be some short-term dividends but probably not to the extent that many Republicans might hope," he says. 2. Trade Deal A trade agreement with India following months of negotiations was expected to be the centrepiece of the visit - a big political win for Mr Trump if he could seal the deal. The US-India bilateral trade stands at $160bn. But hopes of an agreement have been fading for weeks as the US expressed concerns over issues like rising tariffs, price controls and India's positions in e-commerce. Immigration of skilled workers and the visa regime are other areas of concern. India wants restoration of trade concessions under a tariff system called the Generalised System of Preferences (GSP), which provides additional benefits for products from least developed countries. Mr Trump terminated the GSP benefits for India in 2019. "Even a limited deal would be an important signal to industry in both countries that US and India are serious about growing trade, and they can resolve issues," says US India Business President Nisha Biswal. However, she adds: "I am not optimistic because of what I have been hearing from both governments." 3. The China Factor President Trump has made being tough on China a central piece of his political brand, and many US concerns on China like the Belt and Road Initiative, access to South China Sea, and the untrustworthiness of its vendors are shared by India. "I don't think this visit would be happening without the strategic convergence between India and the US on China, particularly their concern about the Chinese actions and intentions in that region," says Ms Madan. Media captionUS President Donald Trump is being treated to a brand new wall during his Indian trip A China-US crisis would adversely impact the Indian economy, but too much closeness between the two giants could leave India out of the equation. The American side, in turn, questions whether the Indian quest for strategic autonomy would be a hindrance to a truly strategic partnership with the US. Questions also swirl around whether India can rise as a counterweight to China in Asia or would it be sucked deeper into domestic and sub-regional politics. With hostilities rising between the US and China, Mr Trump may well find a friend in Mr Modi's India, which has been seen as willing to criticise the Chinese. 4. Defence Media reports suggest key multi-billion dollar defence deals are in the offing on Mr Trump's India visit. This may include the sale of helicopters for the navy. Before the trip, the US State department approved a possible sale of an integrated Air Defence Weapon System for $1.8bn. As India tries to diversify its list of buyers, India recognises it has not made large defence purchases from the US recently, while it has done so from the Russians and French, said an analyst "India and the US have become very close for strategic reasons. Even during the Trump years, you have seen defence and diplomatic dialogues," said Ms Madan. For Mr Trump, any chance to sell US hardware is a chance to tout to his supporters that he is boosting jobs and 'Made in America' manufacturing. 5. Building on the Trump-Modi chemistry Mr Trump is seen by many as 'transactional" leader who places a premium on personal relationships over geopolitics, and he believes that his ability to get on with foreign leaders earns him the ability to get things done. This would be President Trump and Prime Minister Modi's fifth meeting in eight months. They call each other a 'friend'. There are pictures of them hugging each other. "We are not treated very well by India but I happen to like Prime Minister Modi a lot," Mr Trump told reporters days before his trip. For Mr Trump - and Mr Modi - exhibiting a level of bonhomie can help smooth over differences when tough talks come up. In the end, it is not a trip made with a very clear set of objectives, says Joshua White of the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies. For Mr White, it is more likely that the impulsive Mr Trump will take his trip, shake hands and pose for pictures, "and the bureaucracy figures out what can be gained on the policy front".
  2. An update:
  3. That I know but perhaps AC is looking at one proven aircraft manufacturer. Good to walk away from the MAX
  4. Wet’suwet’en solidarity protesters set up new Vancouver rail blockade, violating injunction BY SEAN BOYNTON GLOBAL NEWS Posted February 23, 2020 1:24 pm Protesters stage on a rail line in East Vancouver on Feb. 23, 2020. Justin Okines/Global News Two days after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said rail blockades across Canada need to come down, a group of protesters have set up camp on a major train crossing in East Vancouver. The demonstrators gathered at the CN Rail tracks near Clark Drive and Venables Street just before noon Sunday, violating an injunction the rail company was granted by B.C. Supreme Court the last time its tracks were blocked earlier this month. READ MORE: Eyes now on Canadian police after Trudeau demands transport blockades torn down The blockade is the latest act of solidarity with Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs opposing the Coastal GasLink pipeline project through their traditional lands in northern B.C. In a statement, the group organized by Natalie Knight said it was not only protesting the actions of Coastal GasLink and RCMP, but also the various injunctions granted against solidarity protests themselves. 2:17Protesters in support of Wet’suwe’ten hereditary chiefs vow to maintain blockades ‘as long as it takes’ Protesters in support of Wet’suwe’ten hereditary chiefs vow to maintain blockades ‘as long as it takes’ “You cannot injunct justice,” Knight said. “The use of overbroad injunctions to criminalize Indigenous land defenders and our supporters reveals the colonial foundation of Canadian law. “We will continue holding solidarity actions in the streets of Vancouver until the demands of the Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs have been met.” More to come…
  5. Not getting stuffed, just getting agreements with those most closely involved Teck project environmental deal reached between First Nation and Alberta government BY ALLISON BENCH GLOBAL NEWS Posted February 23, 2020 1:20 pm Updated February 23, 2020 1:29 pm On Sunday, Feb. 22, the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation said it had reached an agreement with the Government of Alberta regarding the Teck Resources Frontier oilsands mine project. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson A deal has been reached between the Alberta government and a First Nation that had raised environmental concerns around the Teck Resources Frontier project. In an announcement Sunday, the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation announced the agreement and expressed “support for approval of the project.” Athabasca Chipewyan Chief Allan Adam had previously called out the UCP over its failure to consult and take meaningful action on environmental concerns around the Teck Frontier mine project. “After many productive discussions, the Alberta government has responded to our concerns with a comprehensive and meaningful package of action items,” Adam said in the news release. READ MORE: First Nation chief and Alberta’s Kenney government in war of words as Teck oil mine decision nears In public letters sent on Feb. 7 to the federal government and to other chiefs, Adam highlighted environmental concerns — ranging from caribou habitat to water issues — saying the government and company had failed to consult the First Nation. In letter to Trudeau, Kenney says rejection of Teck Frontier project could be ‘boiling point’ for western alienation Teck Frontier mine not a ‘political gift’ from Ottawa: Alberta minister But now, the First Nation hails Teck Frontier as a “model” for how companies planning major projects should move forward in the future. “Given the recent discussions with the Government of Alberta and their fresh and positive approach, we reconfirm our support of the Project and encourage the Canadian government to approve the Project without further delay,” Allan said. Alberta Minister of Environment and Parks Jason Nixon said Sunday that the government had also secured agreements with the Mikisew Cree First Nation. “Together these First Nations and Alberta have been able to do what Alberta has always said we can: become true partners in prosperity by developing our resources while protecting the land and culture of our Indigenous people,” Nixon said in a news release. “To reinforce our commitment to create this wealth responsibly, we have been able to address and sustain bison and caribou habitats, protections for Wood Buffalo National Park, and we have set out a path for cooperative management of the Kitaskino Nuwenëné Wildland and the Ronald Lake Bison Herd,” Nixon said. READ MORE: Rejection of Frontier oilsands mine could result in $1.13B charge, Teck Resources warns Athabasca Chipewyan and the Mikisew Cree are two of 14 First Nations and Metis communities that have signed participation agreements on the Teck mine. 1:57Teck’s proposed oilsands mine generating political debate Teck’s proposed oilsands mine generating political debate The mine, planned for north of Fort McMurray, Alta., would produce 260,000 barrels of oil a day and about four million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions every year, for more than 40 years. The company said it would employ 7,000 people during construction and 2,500 during operation. Nixon said Sunday that he was “once again” calling on the federal government to approve the project. “The opportunity that this project presents for our Indigenous communities, our province and the thousands of jobs it would create cannot be killed for political reasons. This project has played by the rules. It has followed the process. It’s time to get it done.” 2:32Kenney has message for Ottawa on Teck Frontier Mine Kenney has message for Ottawa on Teck Frontier Mine The federal government must make a decision on the project by the end of February under the Environmental Assessment Act.
  6. You have to wonder how much damage was done to the engines of the flights that did land and takeoff. Canary Island sandstorm: Flights cancelled due to Saharan sand Strong winds carrying sand from the Sahara have affected airports in the Canary Islands. Poor visibility led to AENA, Spain's airport operator, cancelling, suspending or diverting flights. The country's national weather service has warned that winds of up to 120km/h (75mph) could hit the Canaries until Monday. The winds have also affected ferry services, and hampered efforts to fight a wildfire in Tasarte, Gran Canaria.
  7. HMMMM DOES THE SAME APPLY IN CANADA? Op-Ed: Bernie Sanders is the front-runner because of how we raised our kids PUBLISHED SUN, FEB 23 20209:38 AM EST Jake Novak@JAKEJAKENY KEY POINTS How did an avowed socialist get to the top of the Democratic Party? He is supported by millions of younger voters who have been raised to support Bernie Sanders, even if their parents don’t realize it, writes Jake Novak. People cheer as Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) arrives onstage during a campaign event at the Whittemore Center Arena on February 10, 2020 in Durham, New Hampshire. Joe Raedle | Getty Images With his convincing victory in Saturday’s Nevada caucuses, Sen. Bernie Sanders is solidifying his status as the front-runner for the Democratic presidential nomination more than ever before. So how did a life-long avowed socialist and someone who’s never actually won an election as a Democrat get to the top of the party’s mountain? The simple answer is that he’s being supported by millions of younger Democratic voters, and those voters have been raised to be Sanders voters, even if their parents don’t realize it. Here’s how it happened: We convinced everyone college was 100% necessary, and then we made college unaffordable. Since the end of World War II, the chorus of educators, politicians, and journalists making it sound like college was essential for career success only became louder and drowned out any counterargument. At the same time, college tuition costs have exploded thanks greatly to government programs that produced unintended, but predictable consequences. It mostly started in 1978 when more loans and subsidies became available to a greatly expanded number of students. The cost of college tuition has risen by six times more than the rate of inflation since the 1970s. Now, millions of American young people are straddled with college loans that look impossible to repay. The total student loan debt in the U.S. now stands at more than $1.6 trillion. Is it any wonder so many of them are attracted to a candidate who not only promises to forgive their student debts, but presents their predicament as the result of corporate greed and misplaced government priorities? Luckily for Sanders, young voters supporting him for his college tuition forgiveness promises don’t seem to be too interested in his own family history. His wife Jane Sanders was president of the now defunct Burlington College and she and other administrators were reportedly the subjects of a long-running FBI probe that they misled bank loan officers about the real number of donations pledged to the college. The FBI probe of the matter ended in 2018, and Jane Sanders was not charged. But the policies she oversaw, which included pushing for major campus expansions, were indicative of some of the root causes of increased college costs in America. The establishment in both parties ignored young voters. As sacred as our politicians make college education sound, it’s nothing compared to the way leaders from both parties talk about programs for older Americans like Social Security and Medicare. None of that is a mystery, as older Americans have always been more likely to vote. Even though voters aged 18-29 have been showing increased turnout numbers in recent elections, senior citizens still stand atop the heap. In 2016, 71% of Americans 65 and older voted compared to just 46% of 18-29-year-olds. In the 2018 midterms, that gap narrowed to 66% to 36%, but it’s still a wide gap. All of this focus on older voters and their retirement funds is a nice sentiment but it’s misplaced. Older Americans aren’t just doing okay. A 2017 study of age-based wealth in the U.S. shows that a typical household headed by an adult 65 and older has 47 times the net worth of a household headed by younger Americans. Yep, Papa and Granny are loaded. Now, helping older people who happen to be poor or on the margins of poverty is something different. But the cultural assumption many of us have about elderly folks needing more financial help in America is pretty much the opposite of the truth. Throw in the Affordable Care Act, which literally and foolishly leaned on younger and healthier Americans to foot the bill for covering older and sicker people, and you see a pattern here. Sanders talks plenty about Social Security, and he’s obviously a senior citizen himself. But he usually expands his campaign promises to include younger people, as he did when he took the lead on the Medicare for All promise in 2017. We told them America’s house was on fire. For all the policy differences and political minutiae Democrats delve into when criticizing President Trump, the most enduring attacks on Trump from the Democratic establishment remain accusations that Trump is supporting white supremacy and is controlled by Russian President Vladimir Putin. These are over-the-top accusations, and it’s hard to accept that even most elected Democrats actually believe them. But pushing that message on America for the last three-plus years comes at a price for both sides. For the Democrats, the price is becoming clear: it’s made moderate presidential candidates look less viable than ever. Think about it: if you really believe the president is a traitor and supporting violent plots against non-white Americans, is this really the time to support mainstream Democrat or Republican candidates? Sanders may be a career politician, but he’s never been a mainstream politician. His persona and political brand fits much better into the current Democratic narrative that we’re living in desperate times. Establishment Democrats are reaping what they sowed. As a result, it’s looking more and more like Sanders has unstoppable momentum going into the Super Tuesday primaries and beyond. The big question now is whether that Democratic establishment will try to derail Sanders before or during the Democratic National Convention. But either way, the party would be playing with fire and risking alienating those younger voters forever. Jake Novak is a political and economic analy
  8. Wet’suwet’en protests: Blockades remain as hereditary chiefs return to B.C. BY STAFF THE CANADIAN PRESS Posted February 23, 2020 10:58 am Updated February 23, 2020 11:00 am Hereditary chiefs from Wet’suwet’en First Nation were expected to return to British Columbia Sunday after visiting Mohawk communities in eastern Canada, with no signs that blockades crippling the country’s rail network will come down. The actions are in solidarity with hereditary chiefs contesting a British Columbia natural gas pipeline and after two weeks, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said on Friday that while his government is ready to talk, the blockades must come down. READ MORE: Railroad blockades ‘setting back reconciliation 20 years,’ warns B.C. MLA Ellis Ross The traditional chiefs visited supporters in Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory and Kahnawake, south of Montreal, this week, saying their conditions for talks remain the same. Hereditary Chief Woos said they are ready to engage in nation-to-nation talks with the B.C. and federal government once the RCMP and Coastal GasLink leave their traditional territory and cease work on the natural gas pipeline project. Trudeau: Wet’suwet’en support blockades ‘must come down’ “We want to stay consistent on our answers,” Woos told reporters. “We’re waiting for the RCMP to vacate the premises.” Woos, of Grizzly House, told reporters in Kahnawake on Saturday that attempts to reach out to Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller have not been returned since Trudeau’s call. “It seems to me like ever since Mr. Trudeau has made his announcement, the communication has ceased,” Woos told reporters on Saturday. READ MORE: RCMP ‘temporarily’ close office on Wet’suwet’en land, chief says more talks next week The blockades, particularly one on a critical east-west rail line near Belleville, Ont., are in support of those hereditary chiefs who oppose the project, despite support from elected band councils along the pipeline route in B.C. Meanwhile, Via Rail service has said it is set to resume certain routes, including its Quebec City-Montreal-Ottawa route on Monday. © 2020 The Canadian Press
  9. Only way it will fall over this issue is if Quebec runs out of Chlorine and Propane and that causes the BLOC to vote with the Conservatives along with 3 others. or a revolt within the Liberal party that boots out Justin and replaces him with the Deputy PM who in my opinion is far superior to Justin.
  10. Economic damage ‘mounting’ from disruption of railways Ottawa is noncommittal on whether businesses will be compensated Toronto Star 23 Feb 2020 BRUCE CAMPION-SMITH LARS HAGBERG THE CANADIAN PRESS Manufacturers and exporters are asking Ottawa to provide emergency funding to businesses affected by the rail blockades. Freight t rains stopped, shipments stalled and the financial losses are mounting for farmers, businesses and laid-off workers. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Friday called the situation “unacceptable and untenable.” But will Ottawa help shoulder any of the cost of the blockades that have interrupted train service since Feb. 6? Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters is asking Ottawa to create a dedicated relief program to address the financial fallout of the blockades, which has prompted CN to halt service on large parts of its network. “Emergency funding is needed to help the Canadian economy during this crisis,” the organization said in a statement to the Star on Friday. It is seeking immediate assistance on two fronts: help for laid-off workers and “cost-saving” measures for businesses to offset added expenses incurred because of the rail stoppage. They also want to create an “emergency business caucus” — made up of the country’s largest trade associations — to advise government. Other business associations say they have not asked the government for financial compensation but warn of “mounting” economic damage from the rail disruptions. Perrin Beatty, president and CEO of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce, said his organization heard that message firsthand during a conference call with other chambers of commerce across the country on Friday. “We are now seeing layoffs, depleted inventories and a rapidly increasing risk that essential supplies like grain for livestock, oxygen for hospitals and propane for residential heating will not be sufficient,” Beatty said in a statement. The Canadian Chamber of Commerce has not broached the topic of compensation with the government, although the economic toll is being felt,” spokesperson Phil Taylor said. “It is clear the impacts are really starting to bite businesses of all kinds.” Likewise, Goldy Hyder, president and chief executive officer of the Business Council of Canada, said none of the businesses represented by his organization have raised the issue of compensation. But he noted the economic impact extends beyond companies. “The interruption in rail traffic is not just an issue for corporate Canada. Many workers and their families — not to mention small business owners and entrepreneurs right across the country — have lost money as a result of the blockades,” Hyder said in a statement to the Star. Federal Finance Minister Bill Morneau acknowledged the financial hardships experienced by farmers, businesses and the more than 1,000 CN and Via Rail workers who have been laid off. But he said the focus right now is on resolving the situation and suggested any talk of compensation would have to wait. “That is what we’re working towards and we’ll be able to think about all those things once we get to a conclusion,” Morneau said Thursday. Asked Friday whether compensation was being considered, Morneau’s office was noncommittal. “While it’s too early to estimate the full economic impact of the blockades, we are aware of their very real impacts on the Canadian economy,” spokesperson Maéva Proteau said, adding the finance department was “closely monitoring the situation.” The federal government has in the past provided assistance to companies and sectors of the economy hit by unexpected disruptions. For example, the federal government came up with an aid package to help Canadian steel and aluminum producers hit by levies imposed by the Trump administration in 2018. Ottawa also promised $1.75 billion to Canadian dairy farmers to compensate for lost market share because of new free trade agreements. But providing compensation for the financial fallout of this rail blockade could be difficult, and costly, given its broad impact on the economy. The federal government could also be on the hook for lost revenue suffered by Via Rail, which by Friday had cancelled 691 trains and refunded tickets for more than 123,000 passengers hit by the service shutdown. Via Rail president and CEO Cynthia Garneau has called the situation “unprecedented” in the company’s 42-year history. The Crown corporation gets 80 per cent of its revenue from passengers travelling the Quebec City to Windsor corridor, where service has been interrupted or stopped entirely since Feb. 6. Yet the financial toll on the Crown corporation — which got $272.6 million in federal funding for its operations in 2018 — is unclear. That’s because many of its routes are heavily subsidized by taxpayers. For example, in 2018, Via trains carried 2.5 million passengers on its MontrealOttawa-Toronto route, earning $192 million in revenue. Yet the cost of providing that service cost $285 million.
  11. Justin told the protesters that he had reached his limits and they were to take down their barricades or (he forgot that part), so needless to say only one came down and others went up. Go figure. I guess we will have to wait for "Daddy" to come home and take charge. ‘WE WILL NOT GO SILENTLY’ In downtown Toronto, demonstrators send a strong message a day after Trudeau demands that blockades be taken down Toronto Star 23 Feb 2020 ALYSHAH HASHAM STAFF REPORTER With files from Tonda MacCharles, Alex Ballingall and Raneem Alozzi Demonstrators gather at Queen’s Park before moving on to city hall. Another blockade sprang up in Saskatchewan on Saturday, and Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs met with Mohawks in Quebec. Thousands gathered at Queen’s Park Saturday in solidarity with Wet’suwet’en leaders with a simple message for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau: It’s not over. On Friday, Trudeau called for an end to the rail blockades across the country brought on by nationwide demonstrations in support of Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs opposing the Coastal GasLink pipeline that would cross their traditional territory in northern British Columbia. The chiefs have rejected that plea, continuing to demand the removal of an RCMP office and an end to patrols on their territory, as well as ceasing the construction of the pipeline during talks. “We are once again in a fight for our lives,” said Eve Saint, daughter of a Wet’suwet’en hereditary chief, who was arrested by RCMP earlier this month after she and three others refused to leave a camp on Wet’suwet’en territory. “We have to fight with everything we have to make change. We will not go silently. We will not lay down and dig our own graves and move out of the way. We are not going anywhere,” she told the crowd to cheers. “Justin Trudeau, we are not going anywhere … Racist Canada, we are not going anywhere. RCMP, we are not going anywhere.” After Saint’s speech, the protesters marched down University Avenue from Queen’s Park to city hall, singing and drumming. In Nathan Phillips Square, they joined hands in a round dance of five concentric circles. Audrey Huntley, an activist and paralegal with Aboriginal Legal Services, said there would have been even more people at the rally if there weren’t protests also happening in Niagara Falls at the Ontario Progressive Conservative Convention. But, she said, she was heartened by the turnout, especially from non-Indigenous allies. “It took a long time to get to this place,” she said. “Reconciliation on the official level has never been a real thing, in my view … but I do believe there are good people who are out here today who do want reconciliation and are willing to make those sacrifices that may inconvenience them a little bit.” The president of the American Indian Movement, Ginew Kwe, Golden Eagle Woman, also known as Suzanne Smoke, said the blockades would stop once the RCMP leaves Wet’suwet’en territory. Trudeau needs to understand he is dealing with a nation, she said. “This is our territory and we are going to protect it with everything we have,” she said. “I kind of laugh that in 12 days, all these Canadians are crying about what they don’t have,” Smoke said. “We have suffered for 500 years.” She condemned those who have made statements that could incite violence against the blockades. “We are not the savages here. We are here in peace and prayer,” she said. “We are doing everything we can to get the government to hear us, to get Canadians to hear us.”
  12. Helping the effort (not) is the media that is reporting that the hereditary chiefs are meeting with the Mohawks, the reality is 5 out of the 13 are, hardly a majority but the average reader in the east will be swayed to think the 5 represent the majority of the citizens but even within the 5, there are 2 who ran for elected chief and were rejected by their tribes..... a little like our present government. In any event, it appears the 5 have given Justin the rigid middle finger so I guess we will need to wait and see. Of course the Mohawks (at least the radical ones) are embolden by what happened or did not happen in the past when they chose the path of illegal protests.
  13. Insider? There was also one last year in Seattle and that one was an insider.
  14. Airbus A380: World's largest passenger plane lands in Ireland at Knock The A380, capable of carrying over 800 passengers, will now be dissembled by Eirtrade Aviation Limited The Airbus A380 landing at Ireland West Knock on February 20, 2020. Pól Ó Conghaile February 21 2020 04:59 PM An Airbus A380 touched down at Ireland West Airport yesterday - the world's largest passenger aircraft, and the largest ever to land at Knock. The double-decker plane was delivered to Eirtrade Aviation Limited, a global technical assets services and trading company, which has a facility at the airport. The world's largest passenger airliner, Airbus A380, landed at Ireland West Airport in Knock this week. With a capacity for 868 passengers, the Airbus A380 has become an iconic 21st century aircraft. This one, a former Air France plane, took off from Germany and will be parked and stored at Ireland West Airport. There, it will be disassembled. Last year, Airbus has announced that it would end production of its flagship superjumbo, just 12 years after it entered commercial service. The firm said it had made the “painful” decision after struggling to sell the world’s largest passenger jet and after Emirates chose to slash its A380 orderbook by around a quarter. Deliveries of the iconic double-decker will cease in 2021 - however, it is likely to remain in service and draw plane-spotters to airports for years to come. Eirtrade has completed similar disassembly projects on Boeing 737 and 757 series aircraft, as well as Airbus A320 aircraft at Ireland West. Its business is expected to lead to similar projects in the near term for the facility at Ireland West - which recently completed the rehabilitation and overlay of its main, 2,400m runway and has received zoning approval for a Strategic Development Zone, the airport said in a statement. The Airport Board is continuing discussions with Government and stakeholders with regards to the construction of a large hangar facility that would support the further development of aircraft disassembly, repair and maintenance at Knock, it says. Online Editors
  15. Francis on why Liberals have failed on blockades These blockades are about lawlessness, not protests or rights, Calgary Herald 22 Feb 2020 Diane Francis writes. BLAIR GABLE/REUTERS Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is missing in action as usual — this time regarding the blockades crisis, argues Diane Francis. She says the blockades in the East are not about a pipeline, but involve Indigenous radicals, mostly Mohawks, and a few environmental extremists. The ongoing Indigenous blockades bruises Canada’s image and is now causing serious damage in the form of layoffs, shortages and investor nervousness. But even as Prime Minister Justin Trudeau called for an end to the blockades, he still appears to have no grasp of what’s happened. These road and railway blockades are not about protests or rights, but about lawlessness. This crisis is about leaderless drift, not just federally, but also among those who lead Canada’s 632 First Nations. People simply protesting, and not causing property damage or disruption, are no problem and should be left alone. But those who are breaking the law by blocking roads or railways must be arrested or isolated until they desist and withdraw. It’s also important to distinguish between the crisis in the Western Canada and the one in the East. In British Columbia, the blockade over a proposed pipeline is not a national issue, but a local squabble between 20 Indigenous bands that have approved the Coastal Gaslink pipeline project, and five hereditary chiefs of the Wet’suwet’en nation who claim jurisdiction over all 20 bands and their lands, which constitutes an area the size of Israel. There is absolutely no legal or constitutional basis for their audacious jurisdictional assertion. And there is absolutely no social or local political basis for them obstructing the 20 bands that approved the pipeline. Instead of standing down, the RCMP should secure the pipeline’s 670-kilometre route, so it can be completed, as authorized by courts. This should be done in collaboration with personnel drawn from the 20 First Nations that want the project completed, in order to give it more legitimacy. The leaders who broke the law in the first place should face arrests, prosecutions and fines. But going forward, the 20 First Nations and the Wet’suwet’en should submit to arbitration to resolve their internal jurisdictional dispute, so this squabbling doesn’t recur. The disruption in the East, on the other hand, involves blockages of railway lines near Belleville, Ont., and Montreal, which has caused widespread economic damage in the form of supply stoppages and hundreds of layoffs. That the federal government has not laid down the law already concerning the sabotage of a system that crosses provincial boundaries constitutes a total dereliction of duty. Quebec Premier François Legault spoke with Ontario Premier Doug Ford this week and said in an interview that, “It’s up to Justin Trudeau to solve the problem. This is creating many inconveniences in Quebec and in Ontario. It does not concern Quebec, it does not concern Ontario, it concerns the federal government. It’s up to them to find the solution. It’s not our responsibility, Doug or myself, but we are suffering a lot.” He’s right. The prime minister has largely been missing in action — as usual. The blockades in the East are not about a pipeline, but involve Indigenous radicals, mostly Mohawks, and a few environmental extremists. Both blockades are billed as actions taken in solidarity with the Wet’suwet’en, but this is bunk. Both are simply the intersection of criminal behaviour and opportunism. Interestingly, the Tyendinaga Mohawks blocking the CN mainline in Belleville are not on their traditional territory (it’s Huron territory). They immigrated there in 1793 after they were expelled from the United States due to their support for the British during the American Revolution. They were given a land grant, but some lands have been clawed back over the years and this has yet to be resolved. But their grievance is unrelated to the issue in B.C. and those involved are holding Canada hostage without legal justification. And they will do so again and again. The same applies to the Kahnawake Mohawks, who are also obstructing rail traffic and are also in a legal battle over land. It’s all complicated, but it’s also simple at the same time. Illegal is illegal and justice must be swift. As for band squabbles, they should be confined to the bands themselves, along with courts or arbitrators. Until then, Canadians have neither peace, order nor good government.
  16. I bet he will not be taking a tickle trunk to the party Trump in India: A brief history of US presidents' trips By Rajini VaidyanathanSouth Asia Correspondent, Delhi 3 hours ago Share this with Facebook Share this with Messenger Share this with Twitter Share this with Email Share Image copyrightGETTY IMAGES Image captionMr Trump is making his first official visit to India US President Donald Trump is expecting a raucous welcome on his first official state visit to India on Monday and Tuesday. He follows a long line of leaders who have made the journey. Some of his predecessors were greeted enthusiastically; others stumbled through diplomatic gaffes; one even had a village named after him. Can history be a guide to how this diplomatic tryst might go? Here's a brief look at past visits, ranked in order of how they went. The good... Let's begin at the beginning. Dwight D Eisenhower, the first US president to visit India, was greeted with a 21-gun salute when he landed in the national capital, Delhi, in December 1959. Huge crowds lined the streets to catch a glimpse of the World War Two hero in his open-top car - Mr Trump is expecting a similar reception in Ahmedabad city, where he will be doing a road show. Image copyrightUS EMABSSY ARCHIVES Image captionDwight D Eisenhower, pictured with Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, was the first US president to make the trip The warmth between him and Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru helped during what was a rocky phase in US-India ties. This was early in the Cold war, when the US and Pakistan had become become close allies, and India insisted on staying neutral or "non-aligned". Like today, relations with China were at the core of the India-US equation, with Washington pressuring Delhi to take an aggressive stance with Beijing on the issue of Tibet. But, on the whole, Eisenhower's four-day trip was billed a success. And nearly every US president on a state visit to India has emulated his itinerary: he laid flowers at Mahatma Gandhi's memorial, took in the splendour of the Taj Mahal, addressed parliament and spoke at Delhi's iconic Ramlila grounds, which, according to one news report, attracted one million people. When he left, Nehru said he had taken with him "a piece of our heart". Image copyrightUS EMBASSY ARCHIVES Image captionPresident Eisenhower was greeted by large crowds If there was a game-changing visit, it would be Bill Clinton's in March 2000 with Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee. Mr Clinton's arrival came after a two-decade lull - neither Ronald Reagan nor George Bush Snr made the journey East. It came at a tricky time as Washington had imposed sanctions on Delhi following its 1999 test of a nuclear bomb. But, according to Navtej Sarna, a former Indian Ambassador to the US, the five-day trip was "a joyous visit". It included stops in Hyderabad, a southern city that was emerging as a tech hub, and Mumbai, India's financial capital. "He came and saw the economic and cyber potential of India, and democracy in action," says Mr Sarna. Image copyrightGETTY IMAGES Image captionBill Clinton's visit was described as "joyous" Mr Clinton also danced with villagers, took a tiger safari and sampled Delhi's famously creamy black dal (lentils) at a luxury hotel that has since been associated with the president. The country's reaction is perhaps best expressed in this New York Times headline: "Clinton fever - a delighted India has all the symptoms." George W Bush, as Forbes magazine once put it, was the "best US president India's ever had". His three-day visit in March 2006 was a highlight in the two countries' strategic relationship - especially in matters of trade and nuclear technology, subjects they have long wrangled over. His strong personal dynamic with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was hard to miss - after he left office, Mr Bush, a keen artist, even painted a portrait of Mr Singh. The two leaders are credited for a historic but controversial nuclear deal, which was signed during Mr Bush's visit. It brought India, which had for decades refused to sign the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), out of isolation. Energy-hungry India got access to US civil nuclear technology in exchange for opening its nuclear facilities to inspection. Image copyrightUS EMBASSY ARCHIVES Image captionGeorge W Bush and Manmohan Singh had a very good relationship However, while the visit was substantive, it was not as spectacular as others - there was no trip to the Taj, nor an address to parliament. But the timing was important. Anti-US sentiment over the invasion of Iraq was running high - left-wing MPs had staged a protest against Mr Bush's visit, and there were demonstrations in other parts of India. Barack Obama was the only president to make two official visits. First, in 2010 with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, and then in 2015 with Prime Minister Narendra Modi. On his first visit - in a break from the past - he landed in Mumbai, instead of Delhi, with a large trade delegation. This was not just about economic ties but a show of solidarity following the Mumbai terror attacks of 2008, which killed 166 people. Mr and Mrs Obama even stayed at the Taj Mahal hotel, one of the main targets. It was significant that the US president declared support for India to join a reformed and expanded UN Security Council, says Alyssa Ayres, a former US deputy assistant secretary of state for South Asia. "That all these years later nothing has changed in the UN system is another matter, but that was a major policy shift for the United States." Image copyrightUS EMBASSY ARCHIVES Image captionBarack Obama visited India twice Mr Obama returned in 2015 as chief guest at India's Republic Day celebrations, at PM Modi's invitation. Trade, defence and climate change were at the heart of the talks. The trip also emphasised an Indo-Pacific strategy, where both leaders expressed unease over Beijing's provocations in the South China Sea. The not-so-good... Although Jimmy Carter's two-day visit in 1978 was a thaw in India-US relations, it was not free of hiccups. With some 500 reporters in tow, Carter followed a packed itinerary: he met Prime Minister Morarji Desai, addressed a joint session of parliament, went to the Taj Mahal, and dropped by a village just outside Delhi. The village, Chuma Kheragaon, had a personal connection: Carter's mother, Lillian, had visited here when she was in India as a member of the Peace Corps in the late 1960s. So when Carter and his wife, Rosalynn, made the trip, they gave the village money and its first television set. It was even renamed "Carterpuri", a moniker it still holds. Image copyrightUS EMBASSY ARCHIVES Image captionJimmy Carter being greeted by villagers of 'Carterpuri' But beyond the photo-ops, India and the US were sparring. India was building its nuclear programme, and had conducted its first test in 1974. The US wanted India to sign the NPF, which sought to stop the spread of nuclear weapons. But India refused, saying the agreement discriminated against developing countries. In a leaked conversation that made headlines and threatened to derail the visit, Mr Carter promised his Secretary of State, Cyrus Vance, a "very cold and very blunt" letter to Desai. The two leaders signed a declaration, promising greater global co-operation, but Carter left India without the assurances he had hoped for. The ugly... Richard Nixon was no stranger to India when he arrived in August 1969 for a day-long state visit. He had been here as vice-president in 1953, and before that on personal trips. But, by all accounts, he wasn't a fan. "Nixon disliked Indians in general and despised [Prime Minister] Indira Gandhi," according to Gary Bass, author of Blood Telegram: Nixon, Kissinger and a Forgotten Genocide. And, he adds, the feeling was said to be mutual. This was also at the height of the Cold War, and India's non-alignment policy "appalled" American presidents. Mr Bass says that under Gandhi, India's neutrality had turned into a "noticeably pro-Soviet foreign policy". Image copyrightGETTY IMAGES Image captionRichard Nixon waves to the crowds alongside Mohammad Hidyatullah, India's acting president The relationship only turned frostier after the trip as India backed Bangladesh (then East Pakistan) in its fight for independence from Pakistan, a close American ally. The differences were laid bare when Gandhi visited the White House in 1971. Declassified state department cables later revealed that Nixon referred to her as an "old witch". ... And the future The US and India have certainly had their ups and downs, but during the last official visit in 2015, Mr Obama and Mr Modi signed a declaration of friendship: "Chalein saath saath (Let's move forward together)..." it began. Image copyrightUS EMBASSY ARCHIVES Image captionObama and Modi signed a declaration of friendship in 2015 President Trump's visit will take the relationship forward, but it's unclear how. His arrival in Ahmedabad, the main city in PM Modi's home state of Gujarat, followed by a big arena event, is expected to draw a massive crowd. It will echo President Eisenhower's rally in Delhi years ago, perhaps cementing the personal ties between the two leaders. But while Mr Trump's trip will be packed with pageantry, it could be light on policy. Unlike other presidential visits, this one is not expected to yield concrete agreements, with the trade deal Mr Trump so badly wants looking unlikely. Follow Rajini on Twitter @BBCRajiniV
  17. and here we go..... Protesters refuse to leave tracks south of Montreal, threat of police intervention looms NOW PLAYING Quebec Premier Francois Legault says the Quebec economy is losing $100 million a day, and he hopes it will be resoved peacefully. Protesters sit together as they block the train tracks in Saint-Lambert, despite being served an injunction. MONTREAL -- A line of tactical officers is standing opposite a camp where protesters are blocking train tracks in St-Lambert, south of Montreal, raising the spectre of police intervention to forcibly remove them from the tracks. Small groups of police early Friday evening have been meeting with the protesters, trying to negotiate a peaceful end to the blockade, the officers said. Officers on Thursday night served the protesters with an injunction demanding they dismantle their barricades and leave. About two dozen protesters and observers expect officers to intervene, though it is unclear when such an intervention would take place. 'Barricades must now come down,' PM Trudeau says of rail blockades Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Friday that the barricades must come down, insisting that “the law must be upheld.” But Trudeau did not go as far as to instruct police to take action. The St-Lambert blockade has snarled commuter train service to Mont-Saint-Hilaire, south of Montreal, for two straight days. Police cruisers are regularly passing in front of the barricade, where activists have set up tents and makeshift shelters. "We are not interested in talking to the media about a possible police intervention," one of the protesters told The Canadian Press Friday morning. "This is an insignificant detail in the fight, it interests journalists only." About 100 protesters initially built snowbanks on the CN track where it crosses Saint-Georges Street, near the intersection of Highways 116, 112 and 134. Many of them have refused to identify themselves, saying "the cause goes far beyond the individuals; our identity is anecdotal, we are here to listen to the Wet'suwet'en." See Elizabeth Zogalis's other Tweets The injunction granted to CN Rail by Superior Court Justice France Dulude authorized "any police services or peace officers" to assist the company in executing the order. The group is demonstrating in support of the Wet'suwet'en hereditary chiefs of northern British Columbia, who oppose the construction of the Coastal GasLink pipeline through their territory. However, elected chiefs along the pipeline’s route support the project. "I am a settler," said Hannah Morrow, one of the demonstrators. "If I get arrested doing something like this, that's nothing compared with what other Indigenous people go through in this country all the time." LEGAULT EXPECTS POLICE TO MOVE IN Quebec Premier Francois Legault said Friday he will leave it to police to enforce the injunction, but he hopes the blockade will be removed "rapidly." Legault has previously criticized Trudeau's after he stayed mum on whether he would set a deadline for protesters to leave or be removed from the tracks. The premier has even urged the federal government to coordinate forces in "every province at the same time." He noted he is already in discussions with the management team of the Sûreté du Québec (SQ) on the matter. Railway blockades across the country have caused widespread passenger and cargo train delays and cancellations. Via Rail, which relies on CN’s tracks, has cancelled most of its service nationwide, and business leaders have expressed grave concerns about the economic toll of the shutdown. -- with files from The Canadian Press.
  18. Tough talk from our PM full of sound and fury but not containing any deadlines for the blockades to end, nor any penalties if they do not come down. He also made it clear that it is the sole responsibility of the Police and the protesters re. the blockades and washed his hands of any responsibility in that regard.
  19. He wants a seat on the Security Council but refuses to deal with a current threat to Canadian Security. Canada at 'tipping point' over Wet'suwet'en land dispute Tensions mount as solidarity protests and blockades grow in support of Wet'suwe'ten land defenders. by Brandi Morin an hour ago MORE ON INDIGENOUS RIGHTS 'My culture on my face': New Zealand's Maori assert identity4 days ago 'RCMP off Wet'suwet'en land': Solidarity grows for land defenders6 days ago A victory over Sweden's colonialismlast week Australian High Court rules Indigenous people cannot be deportedlast week Alberta, Canada - Protests, blockades and other actions by Indigenous people and their allies in Canada have brought the country to a "tipping point". That is according to Chief Wilton Littlechild, the former head of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) of Canada. "This is a tipping point for Canada and it illustrates a real need for reconciliation to begin where it hasn't and to continue where it has," Littlechild told Al Jazeera via phone. More: Canada police begin clearing Wet'suwet'en land defender camps Interactive: Nations Divided: Mapping Canada's pipeline battle A year after RCMP's violent raid, Wet'suwet'en people fear repeat For weeks, protesters have taken to the streets, railways and ports, paralysing parts of the country's transportation sector, to stand in solidarity with Wet'suwet'en land defenders, who are fighting to stop the construction of a pipeline on their traditional territories in northern British Columbia (BC). Wet'suwet'en hereditary chiefs, who hold authority over their land, say they were not properly consulted on the 670km (416-mile) Coastal GasLink pipeline. The company says it reached agreements with 20 elected First Nations band councils. In December, the BC Supreme Court granted Coastal GasLink an injunction to continue work on the pipeline. Following the arrests of Wet'suwet'en land defenders about two weeks ago, tensions have mounted as solidarity actions have grown across the country, with many calling on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to solve the crisis. On the other side, provincial government leaders have condemned Trudeau for failing to endorse forceful action on the protesters, pointing to the blockade's economic effects. "These illegal blockades are trying to shut down Canada, and there's people losing their jobs, blue-collar people, vulnerable people, propane storage [is] running short in hospitals in Quebec," said Alberta Premier Jason Kenney. "Enough is enough," he added at a news conference on Wednesday in Edmonton. Supporters of the Indigenous Wet'suwet'en Nation's hereditary chiefs maintain a railway blockade as part of protests against British Columbia's Coastal GasLink pipeline, in St Lambert, Quebec [Christinne Muschi/Reuters] Canada's opposition leader Andrew Scheer demanded Trudeau remove the "radical activists" who are holding the country "economic hostage". Canadian National Railway (CN) and Via Rail Canada announced temporary layoffs of close to 1,500 people this week as a result of the demonstrations. According to Dennis Darby, CEO of Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters, the blockades are holding up approximately $321m ($425 million Canadian) worth of goods every day. Meanwhile, Quebec Premier Francois Legault warned Trudeau to issue an ultimatum to protesters to remove their blockades and allow for medical supplies, propane and other necessities delivered by rail back to the region. If not, Legault said he's prepared to take the matter into his own hands by enlisting the help of provincial police. "We are losing control," Legault told a group of news reporters at the Quebec legislative building earlier this week. "I don't want to be back in the middle of a propane crisis with the farmers. I don't want to find myself to not have planes taking off because we no longer have fuel. These barricades must be dismantled in the coming days. Nothing can be excluded right now ... yes, we have to respect Indigenous people, listen to them, but we also need to listen to Canadians, to Quebecers." A supporter of the Indigenous Wet'suwet'en Nation's hereditary chiefs camps at a railway blockade as part of protests against British Columbia's Coastal GasLink pipeline, in Edmonton, Alberta [Codie McLachlan/Reuters] Trudeau says invoking police action will not help. "We need to resolve it not just for today and tomorrow, but for the weeks and months to come. The approach the leader of the opposition [Scheer] is proposing would not ensure jobs and stability for Canadians in the future. We're focused on resolving it peacefully," Trudeau said from Parliament Hill Wednesday. He added, however, that the blockades are unacceptable. "This government is working extremely hard to resolve this situation," he told reporters. "We know people are facing shortages, they're facing disruptions, they're facing layoffs - that's unacceptable." Reconciliation Since taking office in 2015, Trudeau has said his government's number one priority is reconciliation with First Nations. But the latest tensions underscore that the road to reconciliation has been rocky. Things can go one of many ways, Littlechild told Al Jazeera. "If it continues in a negative way it will hurt all the good efforts of reconciliation," Littlechild said. "This is a new era and we can look to the United Nations, the Treaties, the TRC Calls to Action. There's solutions proposed in those documents that are helpful." Signs are posted on a fence as supporters of the Indigenous Wet'suwet'en Nation's hereditary chiefs maintain a railway blockade as part of protests against British Columbia's Coastal GasLink pipeline, in St Lambert, Quebec [Christinne Muschi/Reuters] Sylvia McAdam, a Cree lawyer and professor at the University of Windsor, agreed. "This is not a new resistance," said McAdam, one of the founders of Idle No More, a movement born in 2012 in response to parliamentary bills that threatened Indigenous sovereignty and environmental protections. "I think today we're reaching a boiling point where Indigenous people are so tired of the racism, they're tired of colonisation, they're tired of protecting and defending (rights and land)," she told Al Jazeera. McAdam said Canada needs to reckon with its past and pay the debts it owes First Nations. "I hope that the colonial state called Canada will make fundamental changes in how they work with Indigenous Peoples," she said. "That means we get our lands back, honour the treaties, none of the lands are ceded or surrendered. If that doesn't happen you're [Canada] going to condemn the next generation [my grandchildren] to poverty and you're going to leave behind a very angry generation of young people." First Nations members of the Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory maintain a camp next to a railway crossing, in support of Wet'suwet'en Nation members who are trying to stop construction of British Columbia's Coastal GasLink pipeline [Chris Helgren/Reuters] For now, however, it is unclear if the situation will de-escalate. Federal police from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) sent a letter to hereditary chiefs this week, saying they would withdraw from Wet'suwet'en territory along the pipeline's route as long as a service road was kept clear. Hereditary chiefs, however, rejected the offer, saying the RCMP are still patrolling the territory. Some hereditary chiefs will travel to Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory on Friday and are expected to hold a news conference. According to Littlechild, the situation will take "political will" on all sides to come to an agreement. "This could be an opportunity to resolve these challenges together and learn to live peacefully together going forward." SOURCE: AL JAZEERA NEWS
  20. Coronavirus flight cancellations top 200,000, sending jet fuel prices to more than 2-year lows PUBLISHED FRI, FEB 21 20201:36 PM EST Leslie Josephs@LESLIEJOSEPHS KEY POINTS Jet fuel prices have dropped sharply due to the coronavirus. Airlines have canceled more than 200,000 flights, mostly within China as the government steps up measures to curb the spread of the virus. The coronavirus has sicked more than 76,000 people and killed more than 2,200. A health worker sprays disinfectant inside a Vietnam Airlines airplane to protect from the recent coronavirus outbreak, at Noi Bai airport in Hanoi, Vietnam February 21, 2020. Kham | Reuters Airlines have canceled more than 200,000 flights as the coronavirus continues to spread, prompting travel restrictions and a sharp drop in demand for trips to and within China. More than 76,700 people have been sickened by the virus, which has killed at least 2,249 people, health officials said. Close to 98% of the reported cases are in China but some officials are worried about a crop of new infections elsewhere, including Iran and South Korea. Airlines around the world, including the three U.S. carriers that serve China — Delta, United and American — have halted service to the mainland and Hong Kong because of the virus. In February alone, the number of flights that were scheduled to fly to, from and within China are down 80% from a year ago, according to aviation consulting firm Cirium. From Jan. 23 to Feb. 18, 99,254 scheduled flights didn’t fly, close to 90% of them domestic China trips, the firm added. That’s sending jet fuel prices, generally airlines’ second-biggest expense after labor, down sharply. While benchmark jet fuel prices in the U.S. and Singapore have recovered some ground from hitting the lowest levels since mid-2017, they’re each down 17% so far this year, according to data from S&P Global Platts. Air travel demand globally is set to fall for the first time since 2009 and cost airlines some $29 billion — mostly in the Asia-Pacific region — in revenue, the International Air Transport Association said. Normally, lower costs would be welcome news for airlines, but weaker demand is expected to hit revenue and profits this year. The Asia-Pacific air travel market has become more important since the SARS outbreak that began in 2002. The region accounted for 35% of global demand last year, up from 27% in 2002, the trade group said. China is expected to overtake the U.S. as the world’s largest air travel market by the middle of this decade. Airlines are starting to assess the financial damage. Australia’s Qantas warned investors on Thursday that the coronavirus would likely shave off up to $150 million Australian dollars ($99.5 million) from its earnings in the second half of the year and that it would cut 16% of its Asia flights until the end of May. The airline had already suspended its China flights. “The coronavirus outbreak has dampened the modest recovery in [domestic} demand seen in the second quarter with intakes falling over the last few weeks,” Qantas CEO Alan Joyce said on an earnings call. “The leisure market is also soft in the near term, but there is the potential for a shift to domestic leisure if uncertainty grows and Australians decide to holiday at home.” Air France-KLM, which also suspended China flights, said it expects coronavirus-related demand reductions to drive down results through April by up to 200 million euros ($217 million).
  21. So a mystery unlocked for all the masses who have not visited the campus.
  22. Coronavirus to cost airlines more than $29 billion in revenue this year PUBLISHED THU, FEB 20 20204:38 PM EST Leslie Josephs@LESLIEJOSEPHS KEY POINTS Air travel demand is set to decline for the first time since 2009, IATA warned. The trade group said the coronavirus outbreak will cost airlines more than $29 billion in revenue this year. Passengers wear protective masks as they wait at Hong Kong International Airport, following the coronavirus outbreak in Hong Kong, China, February 7, 2020. Hannah McKay | Reuters Global air travel demand is set to decline for the first time since 2009 because of the coronavirus outbreak, the International Air Transport Association said Thursday. Pauses in corporate travel and overall slumping demand due to warnings about the rapidly spreading illness have prompted carriers to suspend service or drastically reduce China service. The virus’s impact on demand will cost airlines globally more than $29 billion — mostly in the Asia-Pacific region, IATA estimated. Chinese airlines are set to lose $12.8 billion in revenue because of the outbreak. The trade group, which represents most of the world’s airlines, had forecast demand growth in 2020 of 4.1%, which it’s now revised to a contraction of 0.6%. The forecast assumes the virus remains largely concentrated in China, but IATA warned the impact could be greater if it spreads to other markets in the region. The group based its estimates on the coronavirus having a “V-shaped impact on demand” as occurred during the 2003 SARS outbreak, which was marked by a six-month decline and ″an equally quick recovery.” “These are challenging times for the global air transport industry. Stopping the spread of the virus is the top priority. Airlines are following the guidance of the World Health Organization and other public health authorities to keep passengers safe, the world connected, and the virus contained,” said IATA’s CEO, Alexandre de Juniac, in a release. “Airlines are making difficult decisions to cut capacity and in some cases routes,” he said. “Lower fuel costs will help offset some of the lost revenue. This will be a very tough year for airlines.”