Today’s Round Up – 11/18/2015

1. Oil Refinery Intrigue in the Virgin Islands
One of the world’s largest oil refineries, owned by HOVENSA (a joint venture between Hess Oil and PDVSA) was in the US Virgin Islands. That was, until it closed in 2012, with the loss of a lot of jobs, which are scarce in the Virgin Islands.
Since the closure, the Island’s government and the refinery’s owners were locked in negotiations in an attempt to re-open the refinery, which was converted to an oil storage depot after its closure. The attempts to re-open the refinery were, at various times, vetoed by the island’s government, which finally lost patience and filed a lawsuit. At which point the refinery’s owners filed for bankruptcy. Whether any petroleum refining activities will resume is doubtful. The background is a typical one of an extractive industry evading regulation and failing to invest in its own business.

2. No, the West cannot simply march in and subdue ISIS on the ground
Here, in this article, a military strategist with real-world experience explains the numbers involved in subduing ISIS by purely military means. Of course, none of this will impinge upon the craniums of politicians and armchair warriors everywhere.

3. So the USA is a haven for refugees? Well, not quite…
Sadly, despite the fine sentiments engraved on the Statue of Liberty, It is clear from a reading of US history that the idea that the USA has not been consistently welcoming to refugees. This article shows how Jewish refugees were initially refused in 1938, despite ample evidence of Nazi persecution efforts. There was also the rather shameful internment of Japanese-Americans in World War II.

4. The world of the conman
This article is the story of a man who has apparently disappeared, after collecting a lot of money from friends and colleagues and not paying most of it back.


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