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Global predictions for 2006

By Alan Caruba
web posted January 2, 2006

Everyone thinks they can predict the future. No one really can except in the most general way, but that will not deter me from making mine!

History and some knowledge of the world give us a cloudy glimpse of the future. Here are some predictions with which to conjure.

Both Israel and the United States will be compelled to launch a preemptive strike against the network of Iranian nuclear weapons and missile manufacturing facilities either in 2006 or 2007 at the latest.

The Palestinians will fail to elect any kind of widely accepted new government and civil war will break out among Hamas, El Fatah, and whatever other terrorist gang has weapons. That's assuming, of course, they even manage to hold elections.

Lebanon will continue its struggle to break free of Syria's grip and will be aided in this effort by the U.N., the U.S. and the European Union. This may lead to the destabilization of the Assad regime.

Turkey will transition from the only successful secular state in the Middle East to one in the control of Islamic fundamentalists. Where previously, its military corps insured against this occurring, it may have too many Islamists in its ranks to prevent it. Admission to the EU will be put on permanent hold and Turkey's economy will plummet. Foreign investment will disappear.

Despite naysayers, Iraq will continue to make progress toward establishing a functioning government and making adjustments to its constitution to avoid splitting apart.

Depending on the level of dissatisfaction among Venezuelans, the assassination or overthrow of President Hugo Chavez may occur. South American nations will continue to elect socialists, i.e., communists, to rule. Expect widespread social discord and unrest. The only winners will be the drug cartels.

The Bush administration will engineer some sort of "guest worker" program that will enable Mexicans to enter the United States legally and push it through Congress. The alternative would be the potential economic collapse of Mexico.

China, while bellicose and building its military, will continue to seek accommodation with the U.S. and world trade partners. Internal problems with growing peasant and worker rebellions will continue to occupy the attention of its political cadres. Japan will begin to rearm in a big way.

Saddam Hussein will be found guilty of crimes against his nation and executed.

Worldwide, al Qaeda will continue to be steadily degraded in its ability to launch major terrorist attacks. Some kind of catastrophic attack, however, should be anticipated against the U.S.

The Republican Party will retain control of Congress, but just barely.

2006 will see another, totally predictable succession of powerful hurricanes. There is no connection between the number or intensity of hurricanes and the so-called "global warming" theory.

A major earthquake causing extensive damage and loss of life is overdue in California.

Alan Caruba writes a weekly column, "Warning Signs", posted on the Internet site of The National Anxiety Center. © Alan Caruba, January 2006

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