Wednesday, June 01, 2016

Note the level of refugees to native population for Lebanon and Jordon

Iranian Air Force lost budget battle with IRGC and missile program

http://www.washingtoninstitute.org/policy-analysis/view/irans-air-force-overshadowed-by-the-irgc

"...Yet the air force was apparently left out of this budgetary windfall. The national armed forces (Artesh) will receive $2 billion this year, but only $5.3 million of that is to be spent on "refurbishing the air force fleet" -- a paltry amount when one considers that a single Su-30 costs $47-53 million. Similarly, only $3.5 million is earmarked for rebuilding air bases, and $8.3 million for overhauling army helicopters. The Iranian aviation industry received nothing from the budget this year, perhaps because it is expected to rechannel some of the money it made last year into overhaul projects.
In contrast, the IRGC has reportedly been allocated $4.9 billion, a 67 percent increase over the previous year, to which should be added the Basij Organization's budget of $357 million. Moreover, the General Staff of the Armed Forces will have a separate $684 million budget -- a 34 percent increase -- which includes $430 million to be set aside for "improving defensive capabilities." This budget can benefit the IRGC or the Artesh. Currently, Iran sources a majority of its arms and military equipment locally, so the restrictions on foreign purchases are not as crippling to other branches as they are to the IRIAF."

Downward drift in Russian economy appear to continue

Here is an interesting economic report on Russian federal budget.  I think it explains what Putin is up against and some practical limits on tertiary activities like the Syria campaign. Note Russian economy especially manufacturing continues on downward drift as budget deficit will require a mid-year spending correction downward again.  Automobile sales at 10 year low.

http://imrussia.org/en/analysis/economy/2562-sergey-aleksashenko-no-good-news-for-russia%E2%80%99s-federal-budget,-but-the-government%E2%80%99s-in-no-hurry