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Satchu's Rich Wrap-Up
 
 
Tuesday 15th of February 2022
 
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Africa

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14-FEB-2022 :: The End of the World is a Concept Without a Future
World Of Finance


In the last few hours, the Geopolitical Gauge has spiked beyond an amber reading. As at Sunday 

@JakeSullivan46 said to @jaketapper on Russia: "The way they have built up their forces, the way they have maneuvered things in place makes it a distinct possibility there will be major military action very soon," including "this week."

This follows a steady ratcheting higher of comments which completely whipsawed the markets late Friday and is best evidenced in the price of Gold 

Gold Price 

The World in the c21st century exhibits viral, wildfire and exponential characteristics and feedback loops but clearly The risk of war in Ukraine is not a Yemen Level expedition.

September 1, 1939 by W. H. Auden comes to mind


Waves of anger and fear
Circulate over the bright
And darkened lands of the earth,
Obsessing our private lives;
The unmentionable odour of death

Into this neutral air
Where blind skyscrapers use
Their full height to proclaim
The strength of Collective Man,
Each language pours its vain
Competitive excuse:
But who can live for long
In an euphoric dream;
Out of the mirror they stare,
Faces along the bar
Cling to their average day:
The lights must never go out,
The music must always play,

Just as Auden was describing a World teetering on the edge of World War 11, the narrative coming from the likes of Secretary Blinken and his President appear to be signalling a similar moment. Ultimately, this is about Hard Power, 

its about a President  Putin who has waited close to three decades for precisely this moment to try expunge the humiliation of the 1990s. 

Putin is seeking to stop NATO dead in its tracks, create a sphere of influence and is seizing this moment in the context of a now extinct ''Unipolar'' World and a freshly minted Tripolar World. 

It is clear the Russian abrasiveness is in part informed by a fundamentally better understanding of realpolitik and its chagrin that The US might still be reliving its glory days of the 1990s and essentially inviting its own triangulation.

Bear and Dragon in da house. @RealPepeEscobar



@JoeBiden is in a Pincer with Xi & Vladimir holding the console & ratcheting up the pressure & they own the timing on the Ukraine Taiwan Two Step


The naivete of the US response, the grandstanding smacks of panic and an inability to navigate a new and dynamic landscape. 

Russia has rebuilt its FX reserves, its currency is backed big time by Gold, Its Army is retooled and battle hardened and like Surkov said in his book Without Sky 

This is the first nonlinear war. 

Sure we can keep muttering under our breath that Russia's GDP is the size of Italy but that completely misses the overarching point. Russia is not Iraq, Russia is not Yemen and Russia probably has the highest ROI of any country in the World. 

“There are known knowns — there are things we know we know,” Rumsfeld said in February 2002, “We also know there are known unknowns — that is to say, we know there are some things we do not know. But there are also unknown unknowns, the ones we don’t know we don’t know.”

So here we are. What we do know is Putin is not a reckless Gambler [known knowns] and therefore a full scale invasion of Ukraine is pure hyperbole. 

However, Donbas and Luhansk are entirely within the scope of an imminent incursion, A Frozen conflict at this new forward boundary is I believe the limit of the scope of this Operation.

The Question remains why the US should be getting ahead of Volodymyr Oleksandrovych Zelenskyy on a continuous basis. 

And here I refer you to Fabio Vighi and his two articles 

THE CENTRAL BANKERS’ LONG COVID: AN INCURABLE CONDITION FABIO VIGHI 


RED PILL OR BLUE PILL? VARIANTS, INFLATION, AND THE CONTROLLED DEMOLITION OF SOCIETY BY FABIO VIGHI


Sure the Narrative around COVID has now largely bust wide open at the seams. Society in so many places from Ottawa to Paris and all points in between is witnessing metastatic level protests, the ''Lockdown'' economy's shelf life has expired. Its morphing into a Tsunami. 

Some European Countries have seen the writing on the wall. Its a little counterintuitive because cases remain sky high.

2,644,640 new Global COVID cases grew 405.7M total 0.66%.  5,783,533 total deaths increased by 0.19% with 10,948 new deaths. @jmlukens and the long range fallout of long Covid unfathomable.

These developments led to a seismic shift in the markets before Fridays whipsaw

Deutsche Bank's Jim Reid notes that yesterday's surge in the 2-year US Treasury yield was, by one measure, "the biggest "shock" since October 1979 when Volcker announced his intentions on the world @ReutersJamie

The last time inflation was here, February 1982 - the Fed Funds Rate was 15%. @Convertbond

Dartmouth economist and former Fed adviser Andrew Levin says the Fed needs to get rates to a neutral setting within a year or so, and that the means getting the Fed Funds rates up to 4% or 5%

Its a Wizard of Oz moment 

24 JUN 19 :: Wizard of Oz World. 

http://bit.ly/2xcErn2
This is ‘’Voodoo Economics’’ and just because we have not reached the point when the curtain was lifted in the Wizard of Oz and the Wizard revealed to be ‘’an ordinary conman from Omaha who has been using elaborate magic tricks and props to make himself seem “great and powerful”’’ should not lull us into a false sense of security

The Curtain has been lifted and Mr. Powell has now arrived at his Volcker moment 

Friday's action and next immediate sessions might afford us the greatest macro trading opportunity to reset shorts in the US 10 and Ultra Bond. 

We can look across all G7 Bonds because this is a Super Bubble that is going to burst big. There is no way out now.

There is no training – classroom or otherwise.. that can prepare for trading the last third of a move, whether it's the end of a bull market or the end of a bear market. 

There's typically no logic to it; irrationality reigns supreme, and no class can teach what to do during that brief, volatile reign. Paul Tudor-Jones

Its the End of the Bull market obviously. 

The Music has been playing for Eternity and its about to stop

Love Fellini. So brave, with that whiff of insanity. @DiAmatoStyle Federico Fellini's 8 1/2 @tcm
https://twitter.com/tcm/status/1232079264385773570?s=20



29-NOV-2021 ::  Regime Change
https://j.mp/32AZEK5

A REGIME CHANGE IS UNDERWAY [in the markets]

There is no training – classroom or otherwise.. that can prepare for trading the last third of a move, whether it's the end of a bull market or the end of a bear market. 
There's typically no logic to it; irrationality reigns supreme, and no class can teach what to do during that brief, volatile reign. Paul Tudor-Jones



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29-NOV-2021 :: Regime Change
World Of Finance

A REGIME CHANGE IS UNDERWAY [in the markets]



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These words were written in 1899 by Sir Halford Mackinder at the start of his epic journey to conquer Mount Kenya (17,057 feet)
Africa


“I went out into the freshness of sunrise, & beyond great herds of game grazing peacefully within a few hundred yards, saw to the south on the horizon 100 miles away the snowy dome of Kilimanjaro, and 100 miles to the north the twin peaks of Mount Kenya, streaked with glaciers.”

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You have to hand it to Biden and Blinken. For past 50 years, US foreign policy has been dominated by Kissinger doctrine of playing Russia/USSR against China. It took Biden to bring them together. Take a bow, Joe. @JeffreyStClair3
Law & Politics

You have to hand it to Biden and Blinken. For the past 50 years, US foreign policy has been dominated by the Kissinger doctrine of playing Russia/USSR against China. It took Biden to bring them together. Take a bow, Joe.

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Will the US re-ignite a 'Syrian revolution' to punish Russia in Ukraine? @TheCradleMedia @abdelbariatwan
Law & Politics


With new political, military, and economic tensions escalating between the United States and its NATO allies on the one hand, and China, Russia, North Korea and Iran on the other – including the Taiwan front in East Asia, and Ukraine in central Europe – we are now witnessing accelerated plans to activate new crises in West Asia, from Syria to Iraq to the war on Yemen.
Let us leave the situation in Iraq and Yemen aside, temporarily, and focus on Syria. 

The country has experienced an atmosphere of relative calm, or rather a ‘stalemate,’ in the past few years, after the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) regained more than 70 percent of its territory.
This period of calm has also seen the decline of the so-called Syrian opposition, both politically and militarily, in the city of Idlib and its vicinity, as well as in other areas in northeastern Syria, currently under the umbrella of US forces.
There are, however, several international and regional indications that the dormant Syrian ‘opposition’ is on its way to being reactivated again.
It is likely this reactivation may appear in a more ferocious form than the militancy that was unleashed at the beginning of the Syrian crisis in March 2011. Numerous indications of this have already emerged:
First, Russian foreign intelligence on Tuesday unveiled US plans to support armed groups in Syria, and ‘Islamic’ extremists in particular, to intensify their attacks against Syrian, Russian and Iranian forces in Tawaz, while igniting and encouraging ‘peaceful’ protests deep within Syria.
Russia’s Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR) reported that US government agencies are “planning to task extremist ‘sleeper cells’ in Damascus…and Latakia province [by] staging pinpoint attacks against Syrian law enforcers, and Russian and Iranian military personnel.”
Russia’s Deputy Envoy at the UN Gennady Kuzmin told the UN Security Council on Wednesday that “The problem of terrorist threats in northeastern Syria is pressing. The US troops that are illegally deployed there cannot bring order. Or they don’t want to.”
In what appears as a reference to the mass ISIS jailbreak in Hasakah from a US-controlled area in late-January, Kuzmin added that “the atmosphere of a power void and impunity around the US forces’ deployment areas serves as a nourishing ground for terrorists of all stripes.”
The second indicator points to the statement issued by the Russian Intelligence Service, which says that the US administration is seeking to maintain its military presence in northeastern Syria, prevent the stability of Syria, rehabilitate the leadership of the Syrian opposition, and unite its ranks, Kurdish or Arab.
The US plan will be carried out through the exploitation of the current decline in economic conditions, basic services, and a significant weakening in the price of local currency, due to the suffocating US blockade.
According to the statement, the US will launch a “vast media campaign” on Arabic-speaking social media to incite Syrians to again take to the streets and squares, in the capital Damascus, and the cities of Aleppo, Homs and Latakia to push the regime to use the ‘violent’ iron fist in the face of ‘peaceful’ protests.
In other words, a re-play of the Deraa scenario in early 2011.
The third indicator was the two-day conference that took place last Saturday in Qatar’s capital city, Doha, which re-united various Syrian opposition figures on the subjects of reform and the future of Syria.
The conference – a culmination of a series of workshops held in a selection of European capitals – was launched by the renegade former Syrian prime minister, Riad Hijab, and included the representatives of Qatari, Arab, and international research centers, as well as more than 60 Syrian opposition figures.
Qatari authorities provided full support for this seminar, which Al Jazeera and its sister channels covered with remarkable intensity.
The fourth indicator relates to Algeria’s multiple efforts to hold an Arab summit in which Syrian President Bashar al-Assad will participate, and Syria’s seat in the Arab League will be restored. 

These efforts have failed, in part because Qatar has been the most fierce opponent to the rehabilitation of Syria at the Arab League.
And finally, fifth, is the out-of-the-blue assassination of the leader of the Islamic State, Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurashi, at the hands of US special forces in Turkish controlled areas in Syria.
Al-Quraishi was attacked in his home, in the north of Idlib, in an attack that has no documented audio or image evidence, similar to the previous assassinations of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and, before him, Osama bin Laden – but entirely unlike the execution of Saddam Hussein and the killing of his two sons.
This ‘assassination’ may, of course, just be a cover for the new US plan to restart covert communications with and support for radical Islamist militants, while publicly suggesting that the US continues to target them as ‘terrorist organizations.’
Quraishi’s sudden killing in Syria during the dangerous stand-off between NATO and Russia raised some questions in Washington as well. 

Former US Air Force Special Operations Joint Terminal Attack controller, Ethan Brown, pondered aloud in The Hill about “its “timing and the curious proximity to the crisis in Ukraine.”
Brown asks whether “the execution of a [US] military operation outside of a declared war zone in the Middle East…is somehow a credible deterrent to Russian actions elsewhere.” Then straight-out declares: “Make no mistake, the two unique situations are intertwined.”
On Tuesday, Lt. Gen. Erik Kurilla, tapped to be the next commander of the US Central Command (CENTCOM), told the Senate Armed Services Committee that if Russian invades Ukraine, it could create broader instability in West Asia, including Syria.
This week, the Israelis struck Syria heavily again, just two weeks after the Russians and Syrians launched their first joint jet patrols over the Syrian-Israel border. 

This time, Moscow reacted strongly, calling Tel Aviv’s actions “a crude violation of Syria’s sovereignty” that “may trigger a sharp escalation of tensions.”
The escalation in Syria, likely connected to Washington’s Ukraine strategy, has already started. The question is whether the protagonists will merely stage some events as a threat – or go all out.
The Syrian opposition launched its first ‘movement’ 11 years ago in Doha, and it seems that the attempt to revive it will also take place in the same place.
The official statement of the meeting outlined its “aims to try to find mechanisms of action to promote the performance of the opposition and discuss how to get the political transition out of the current global warming.”
“The Biden administration wants 2022 to be the year of qualifying Syrian opposition forces to be ready to replace the regime in any change that may occur,” Syrian opposition media outlet Orient Net stated in a report broadcast two months ago.
The report also revealed that US Deputy Secretary of State Eitan Goldrich had met with Syrian opposition leaders in Istanbul, Qamishli, and Gaziantep late last year to prepare for the new US scenario in Syria.
Will this new US plan work in Syria? Has the suffocating US blockade on Syria, imposed for this purpose 11 years ago, reap its harvest? 

Will this attempt fare any better than the first? Will funding come from Gulf financiers themselves? And how will the axis of Russia, China, Iran, North Korea and Syria respond?
We leave the answer for the coming weeks and months.

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#Biden Names #Qatar a Major Non-#NATO Ally @DrHeynenEcon
Law & Politics


29-NOV-2021 ::  Regime Change


Regime Change came to Saddam’s Iraq and for a while regime change was de rigeur.
Muammar Gaddafi was decapitated and the domino effect only stopped when Vladimir Putin decided he was going to put a stop to it and intervened on behalf of Bashar Al-Assad in Syria.

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The statistical trickery used to defend global capitalism is like if you were earning 25 cents a day and I defined "poverty" as "less than 50 cents a day" and then I increased your income to 50 cents a day. @NathanJRobinson
Law & Politics

The statistical trickery used to defend global capitalism is like if you were earning 25 cents a day and I defined "poverty" as "less than 50 cents a day" and then I increased your income to 50 cents a day. And then I said "your income doubled and you moved out of poverty"

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What @AmbJohnBolton is telling me is Xi played @POTUS all the way
Law & Politics

Mr. Trump, he writes, was “pleading with Xi to ensure he’d win.”
Mr. Bolton said that Mr. Trump “stressed the importance of farmers, and increased Chinese purchases of soybeans and wheat in the electoral outcome.” @nytimes

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Currency Markets at a Glance WSJ
World Currencies

Euro 1.13190
Dollar Index 96.195
Japan Yen 115.323
Swiss Franc 0.923955
Pound 1.353500
Aussie 0.71100
India Rupee 75.6641
South Korea Won 1199.425
Brazil Real 5.2156000
Egypt Pound 15.738900
South Africa Rand 15.095285

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Carlos Mera, senior analyst at Rabobank, said the decline in coffee inventories so far in 2022 was astonishing. @FT
Commodities


A further fall could significantly increase “the possibility of an uncontrolled price spike”.

Arabica prices on the ICE futures exchange recently hit a 10-year high of $2.59 a pound, up 13 per cent since the start of this year, and are more than double that of a year ago.

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Africa is currently reporting a million new infections about every 33 days @ReutersGraphics
Africa


6,833 new Infections on 13th February versus 55,101 record high reported 5th January 2022

1 country [Egypt] is still near the peak of its infection curve.

29-NOV-2021 ::  #Omicron Regime Change
https://j.mp/32AZEK5

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Weekly update of #COVID19 in South Africa @rid1tweets
Africa

• Cases -13% ⬇️
• Tests -1% ➡️
• Test positivity at 8.3% ⬇️
• Hospitalisations -22% ⬇️
• Deaths +28% ⬆️ [is a Longer Tail than previous variants]  

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20 JAN 20 :: The Intrusion of Middle Powers
Africa


The New York Times has an Article about Mohammed bin Zayed and it reads 

And [how the] U.A.E. approached Sisi and outlined the terms of their financial support before Morsi’s overthrow.
“I think there’s every reason to believe he staged a coup,” I was told by one former diplomat. 

“For a tiny country in the Persian Gulf to overthrow the ruler of Egypt and put their guy in, that’s a big achievement'' 

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One of Ethiopia’s biggest sugar plants - Finachaa -stopped working on Feb. 9, according to authorities, after an attack by the rebel Oromo Liberation Army that set tractors and sugarcane on fire. @FasikaTade @business
Africa


Ethiopian Sugar Corp. said the Horn of Africa nation’s biggest miller of the sweetener has been out of operation since Feb. 9 after an attack by the rebel Oromo Liberation Army.
Finachaa Sugar factory, which has an annual production capacity of 270,000 tons, has seen repeated attacks by the group, according to company spokesperson Reta Demeke. 

In the latest incident, militia set tractors and sugarcane on fire, forcing operations to be suspended, he added.
“Due to the instability in the area, we were not able to ship fuel to operate the machines,” he said. 

“We have reported the situation to the relevant government body and are waiting for a response.”
OLA spokesman Odaa Tarbii did not answer several calls to his mobile phone seeking comment.
The factory is located in Horo Guduru Welegga Zone of Oromia Region, 350 kilometers (217 miles) northwest of Addis Ababa, the capital. 

Since 2020, there have been reports of increased violence in the area along with western Oromia where OLA, which is designated as a terrorist group by the parliament, has been active.
Finachaa is one of the 10 state-run sugar factories undergoing privatization as part of the government’s attempts at opening up the economy to foreign capital. 

The nation of about 120 million people consumes 700,000 tons of sugar annually, and produces 325,400 tons.

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Guinea-Bissau's mystery deepens over drug-trafficking coup plot BBC
Africa



At the beginning of the month, it looked like Guinea-Bissau was about to fall victim to what has been called West Africa's coup epidemic, but some are now doubting the official version of events.
Having seen more than a dozen coups or attempted coups since independence in 1974, and being used as a conduit for drug trafficking, news from Guinea-Bissau that people were trying to unseat President Umaro Sissoco Embaló fitted a pattern of instability.
Mali, Guinea and Burkina Faso had all recently succumbed to military takeovers and on 1 February armed men shot their way into the government palace in the capital, Bissau.
The 49-year-old president and the cabinet were inside the compound having a meeting.
But after five hours of fighting, which left 11 dead, Mr Embaló said it was all over and linked what he called an attempted takeover to the illegal drugs trade.
Speaking again this week he named three men who had previously been arrested by the US for trying to ship cocaine as being behind the coup attempt.

One of them was the former head of the navy, José Américo Bubo Na Tchuto, and the president said that he had seen the other two himself as he was trying to hide from the attackers.
The three have since been arrested and have not commented on the accusations.
Talking confidently and in a relaxed tone, the president told journalists on Thursday that he survived an attempt on his life because of his faith in God.
The possibility that narcotics had something to do with the attack rests on Guinea-Bissau's reputation that it has become a transit point for drugs coming from Latin America on their way to Europe.
The UN and the US have in the past described the country of two million people as a "narco-state" where politicians were funded by criminals and networks within the government were established to protect the illegal trade.
In 2019, Mr Embaló won disputed elections and promised that there would be a "zero-tolerance" attitude to drug trafficking.
His backers say he has created conditions for the police to be able to fight against the trade but it is not clear if it has made any difference.
"Some of those previously involved in it seem to have made a comeback," says Lucia Bird of the Global Initiative Against Transnational Organized Crime.
'We are at peace'
But beyond the walls of the government buildings, questions are being raised.
In a barbershop in the centre of Bissau, one customer told me with certainty that he does not believe there was a coup attempt.

"Everything is calm. We are at peace in Bissau," he insisted. "Nothing happened. Look around you."
Nevertheless, despite a lack of a heavy military presence, things have been tense and one young woman said that it was like the country "was going backwards".
The president's main political opponent, former Prime Minister Domingos Simoes Pereira, who leads the country's largest political party, has publicly questioned his version of events.
"How can you tell me there was gunfire for five hours and no military forces came to help the cabinet? This is strange," he told the BBC.

"The citizens of Guinea-Bissau want to know what is really behind this alleged coup attempt. Who were the people who carried out this coup? How many were there? Who was in command of them? What were their real goals?"
The president has so far failed to provide full answers to these questions but has launched an official inquiry. 

On Thursday he emphasised that "the hands holding the guns are people with links to the big drug cartel".
'Orchestrated attack'
When asked about whether he still believed he had the army's backing when it appeared slow to come to his aid, he said he did, but added that the most important thing was that he believed in God.
There is another theory put forward by political analyst Rui Landim, which could explain the president's survival and why the army seemed reluctant to help.
He told the BBC that he thought Mr Embaló may have staged the coup in order to persuade the West Africa regional group Ecowas "to send troops to maintain him in power".
Differences between the president and both the prime minister and parliament have left him in a weakened position.

But the president has said that the pledge by Ecowas to send troops was an act of regional solidarity.
Amid the uncertainty about what really happened almost a fortnight ago there are some here who remain nervous.
In the immediate aftermath of the attack some fled to the countryside and they have not yet all returned.


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Turning To Africa
Africa

Democracy has been shredded.
We are getting closer and closer to the Virilian Tipping Point
“The revolutionary contingent attains its ideal form not in the place of production, but in the street''
Political leadership in most cases completely gerontocratic will use violence to cling onto Power but any Early Warning System would be warning a Tsunami is coming

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Not to mention him being livid at the adjustment of Ghana’s sovereign credit rating. @_ShamGod
Africa

“Widely regarded as a model of democracy,Ghana is one of the wealthiest and most progressive of Africa's 54 countries.”
 Is a response to Moody’s downgrading them to CAA1.

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The Ghanaian political class needs to hold onto a narrative of success no matter what the truth is for their actual citizens. @_ShamGod
Africa

Never mind the fact that the urban poor are struggling and debt situation is becoming increasingly critical. The Ghanaian political class needs to hold onto a narrative of success no matter what the truth is for their actual citizens.

DEC 19 ::   Time to Big Up the Dosage of Quaaludes


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How and why migration is weaponised in the relations between Africa and Europe @AJStudies @DrMehari
Africa


The power asymmetry (financial and diplomatic) between Europe and Africa has distorted the priorities of Africa and created pressure to implement policies that give precedence to Europe’s interests over those of African countries and migrants. 

This power asymmetry creates dynamics in the Africa-Europe migration partnership that forces countries to resort to the use of migration and migrants as an added lever to counterbalance the asymmetry.

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by Aly Khan Satchu (www.rich.co.ke)
 
 
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February 2022
 
 
 
 
 
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