Smoke signals

Lines on the digging up of Yasser Arafat. Arafat’s widow has finally persuaded the French government to undertake an official exhumation of the Palestinian hero’s remains in order to establish whether or not he might have been poisoned. The word is that they are looking for traces of polonium-210, a radioactive substance found in larger than expected amounts on his clothes.

Which government now stands to be impaled with the blame for such a monstrous act…the US? Israel? I hear that the fickle finger of fate is pointing at Russia. But behind Russia, urging the Kremlin to rid them of a troublesome priest, was one or more Arab countries and organisations. Syria, Libya and Hamas appear to be the favourites. Some in the French diplomatic service, however, are asking why France is suddenly so keen to spearhead the distinterrment…or indeed, why Mrs Arafat flatly refused an autopsy at the time, but now seems dead keen on one.

The Beijing Injection. No, not the title of a new conspiracy novel, but the question as yet going largely unremarked by the running-dog capitalist lackey paper tiger media in the West. The People’s Bank of China whacked yet another record amount of cash into the Chinese financial system today – roughly $55 billion worth. The purpose of this (Beijing claimed) was “to ease a cash crunch caused by banks’ demand for funds to meet end-of-month capital requirements”. Which is fine, except that it still leaves those of us capable of spotting bollocks wondering why such banks have menstrual pains in the first place.

Over the last year, three international credit rating agencies – Moody’s, Fitch and Standard & Poor’s – have issued stern warnings about China’s banking system. The Slog has, after many abortive attempts, at last secured the Mole services of a reliable Shanghai source. His view is that more loans will turn bad in the near future…but that the focus has shifted away from local Party nutters wildly overspending to under-the-counter ‘shadow banking’ nutters wildly over-lending.

But the question is, who to? Perhaps Baron Green of Chinese-Whispers could enlighten us re this one.

The Democratic Party bogus votes thing.  Quite a few US pollsters and other right-wing members of the American commentariat are tonight suggesting a ‘surprise win’ for Mitt Romney. This is based on the perfectly reasonable (and previously tested) idea of voting commitment as a measure of the likely final relationship between stated intention and actual putting the cross on the ballot paper. It was the Georgian Josef Djugashvilli (aka Stalin) who first noted that “History is made by those who turn up”, and Old Joe was rarely more correct.

Thus might my prediction of yesterday be proved comprehensively wrong. But I have my doubts – and some of them are based on what American friends (plus my own studies) recognise as the intrinsic Boss corruption within the Democratic Party. Lest there be any doubters left, I would point out that JFK won in 1960 thanks to the largely dead nature of voters in a number of Chicago districts….raised from the dead by none other than Mayor Daley.

These are some of the figures doing the rounds: 100,000 bogus votes in Ohio, 50,000 in Wisconsin, 50,000 in Colorado, and 25,000 in New Hampshire. We shall see.