RIP Rosetta – went boldly into the unknown



Rosetta, the highly successful European Space Agency comet probe has reached its final resting place, 720 million kilometres (450 million miles) on the other side of the Solar System beyond Jupiter, and shut down. Its observations have transformed understanding of the mountainous balls of ice and dust that wander among the planets; and added to knowledge of the early Solar system.

Rosetta, a project started 30 years ago, was launched on 2 March 2004 at 7.17am UT Kourou, French Guinea, with a cosmic Pisces Sun Mercury Uranus in a Water Grand Trine to a Scorpio MC trine Saturn, formed into a Kite by Sun Mercury opposition Jupiter, making Jupiter the driving planet. So a talented and innovative chart, blessed with luck. Jupiter was also in a positive-thinking, new-project trine Mars and North Node in steadfast Taurus.

Ground control lost radio communication at 11.40am in Darmstadt, Germany on September 30 2016 indicating the craft had landed on the comet surface and shut down.

Tr Saturn square tr Neptune had this year been in hard aspect to the launch Sun Mercury; with tr Pluto trine Mars as the mission drew to a close. There was sadness about the end as well as jubilation for an inspirational achievement – with tr Pluto trine the Jupiter.


The Great EU Repeal Bill – history in progress



The Great Repeal Bill is Theresa May’s response to anxious UK citizens floundering in uncertainty about what comes next after the June 23rd referendum vote for Brexit. It will revoke the European Communities Act, given assent 17 October 1972, in preparation for the UK joining the then EEC on Jan 1 1973.

The EC Act 1972 has a Libra Sun Uranus – with tr Uranus exactly opposition the Sun over the referendum, splitting apart an always uncomfortable partnership, with UK laws becoming subservient to Brussels law. That’s a Half Return for tr Uranus, so a mid-life crisis which does often throw everything in the air. Tr Pluto will square the EC Act Uranus exactly when formal notification is given to the EU next March, at the same time as tr Uranus returns to oppose the EC Act Sun – and it all starts to rock n’ roll thereafter for the two years of tr Pluto on Uranus, which is always a game-changer in diplomatic terms. Tr Pluto will then catch up to the square to the Sun in 2020/21, so two years may not be enough time to disentangle a complex web of legislation and trade ties/tariffs etc.

It won’t be easy or pleasant. But at least the astrology is spot on.

The UK joining the EEC chart, of 1 Jan 1973 12am, has had a power-struggle-for-the-upper-hand tr Pluto conjunct Jupiter through 2016 and that continues through 2017; though 2018 looks swampy and confused with tr Neptune square the singleton Saturn on that chart. By 2018 tr Saturn into Capricorn is starting a downbeat, separating conjunction to the UK EEC Sun, the UK, EU and Germany Suns as well. With the disruptive tr Pluto square the UK EEC Uranus in 2019/20.

So the game is on. And with Frankfurt disappearing down a plug-hole bank-wise; and the Hungary anti-migrant push gaining traction in other Eastern European countries, whether today’s referendum wins or not; and France’s economy staggering, ditto Italian banks, the EU looks to be sinking under an avalanche of unresolvable problems. We live in interesting times.

Amanda Knox & Raffaele Sollecito – carrying the scars of their history



The aftermath of the Meredith Kercher sexual attack and murder ten years ago is about to be replayed in Netflix’s documentary about Amanda Knox, out this week. In it she says: “There are those who believe in my innocence and those who believe in my guilt. There is no in-between. If I’m guilty, I’m the ultimate figure to fear, because I’m not the obvious one. But, on the other hand, if I’m innocent, it means that everyone is vulnerable, and that is everyone’s nightmare. Either I’m a psychopath in sheep’s clothing, or I am you.”

The director of the film said: “This dark and tragic event had morphed into this episodic piece of consumer entertainment, and presented to us in the most salacious way possible, over and over and over again.”

Amanda Knox and her (at the time) very recently acquired boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito spent four years in an Italian prison before being definitively cleared by the Italian court of Appeal.

Both have clearly been scarred by the experience and although they are no longer in a relationship, their fates will always be intertwined, certainly in the public eye. His Aries Sun is exactly conjunct her North Node; and his North Node is exactly conjunct her Ascendant. Destinies colliding. Her Saturn, Moon, Uranus in Sagittarius are conjunct his Ascendant, so his meeting with her irrevocably changed his image.

Neither have easy charts or contented personalities, and looking forward, they’ve still got difficulties to face.

She was born 9 July 1987 2.47am Seattle, Washington and has a 2nd house Cancer Sun alongside Mercury Venus all in opposition an 8th house Neptune, trine/sextile Pluto in Scorpio. So tricky to fathom with an evasive Neptune,  she’ll be controlled as well as charmingly seductive with Venus Pluto. And she will give off confusing signals. Her fiery Sagittarius Moon sits awkwardly with her Watery Cancer Sun and Venus, as well as being hemmed in by discouraging Saturn and erratic Uranus.

Tr Pluto is continuing to oppose her Sun from the 8th till late 2017 which will be a heavily pressured time and tr Pluto continues in her trapped 8th for another four years, being joined by tr Saturn from 2018. 2019 will be especially tricky and downbeat with her Solar Arc Saturn opposition her Sun.

Raffaele Sollecito, 26 March 1984 1.15am Bari, Italy, says he doesn’t think about his future anymore, taking it week by week. His Aries Sun is square Neptune Jupiter in Capricorn, so he could have been laid-back, dreamy, overly confident before. But he’s also got Mars Saturn and Pluto spread out through Scorpio, which is angst-ridden, quite dark; with Mars sextile his Capricorn Moon. He’s got a slow-slog tr Pluto sextile his Saturn till late this year; and if his birth time is right, Solar Arc Saturn conjunct his Ascendant in 2017 which will be enthusiasm-dampening; and a panicky-failure Solar Arc Mars conjunct Neptune in 2018.

Rodrigo Duterte – deploying criminal tactics to fight crime



Rodrigo Duterte, the new President of the Philippines, much given to expletive-laden tirades, has been mouthing off again about his bloody campaign against drug dealers and addicts. President Obama cancelled a meeting with Duterte recently after he appeared to call him a “son of a whore” for speaking out against extra-judicial killings. Duterte has openly said he would “kill 100,000 criminals” to reduce crime in the Philippines. Since June 3,000 people have been killed in police operations or by vigilantes.

A former lawyer, prosecutor, he was city Mayor for Davao for 22 years, which became known as the murder capital, as Duterte sanctioned civilian death squads to cut crime rates. He was born 28 March 1945 and was sworn in at noon on 30 June 2016 in Manila. At least a third of the population live below the poverty line in the Philippines.

He’s an upfront Sun Aries opposition Neptune in Libra square Saturn in Cancer, so will have a vision and executive ability though won’t be good at sharing the driving seat. His Pluto is heavily aspected being trine his Sun and on the focal point of a mini-Grand Trine of Neptune to Uranus in Gemini, as well as square Venus – in a Half Grand Sextile. His Mars in Pisces is square Uranus and trine Saturn. So talented but power and aggression drive him. He looks pleased with his achievements by 2018/19 with tr Pluto trine his Jupiter in Virgo.

His Presidency chart is also controlling with the Sun Venus opposition a 4th house Pluto which squares onto a 7th house Uranus – so a firm clamp down internally and divisive diplomatically  with neighbours. There’s also a heavy-duty and hidden Earth Grand Trine of Moon in Taurus trine Jupiter Node in Virgo trine Pluto, formed into a Kite by Pluto opposition Sun Venus. Plus a stressed, explosive, vengeful Mars in Scorpio inconjunct Uranus – so not harmonious or risk-free.

The Philippines Independence chart, 4 July 1946 9.15am Manila, is surging with confidence at the moment with Solar Arc Pluto conjunct Jupiter and tr Pluto square Jupiter in 2016/17 – but that combination always carries the risk of going a step too far, breaking rules and regulations out of arrogance. Duterte has already said he doesn’t care about human rights laws when threatened by UN sanctions. There will be some jolts in 2017 with Solar Arc Sun square Uranus and tr Uranus square the Saturn.

India v Pakistan – brewing up for a hot-headed confrontation

18 Indian soldiers died in the raid on a Kashmir base recently, the worst such attack in more than two decades. It is blamed on Pakistan who hotly deny it but it has heightened tensions between the two nuclear-armed neighbours. Indian PM Narendra Modi is under pressure from his own party and his own past rhetoric to take decisive action. So far he’s holding back mindful of the risks of war, damaging India’s fast growing economy and causing international alarm. But he is set to boycott what was to be a historic regional summit in Islamadad in November, a symbol of reconciliation, which is a humiliating diplomatic blow to Pakistan.

Previous Indo-Pak wars in 1965, 1971 were launched on Saturn Pluto aspects – 1965 on Saturn opposition Uranus Pluto; and 1971 with Saturn trine Pluto trine Node. Indeed the initial 1947 war was fought on the Saturn Pluto conjunction in Leo. There’s nothing similar until 2018/19. But there is a good deal of insecurity and high risk on both country charts and their relationship chart come early 2017 running right through the year.

Nothing will resolve quickly with a slide in confidence running through till January; then at least angry words flying, if not violent incidents from February onwards.

Narendra Modi’s PM chart looks very bullish through this December and across 2017, which may push him into going several steps too far.

UK Child Abuse Inquiry – still stuttering after 2 years plus



The beleaguered UK Child Abuse Inquiry set up by Theresa May on 7 July 2014, announced at 4.40pm London, now on its fourth chairman, is in trouble again. The lead lawyer, Ben Emmerson, is ‘considering his position’ after an alleged dispute with Professor Alexis Jay, the new head, over the remit for the Inquiry.

It was set up on a Cardinal Grand Cross of a Cancer Sun opposition Pluto square Uranus opposition Mars – so no surprises it’s progress has been beset by rolling crises. Disruptions, upheavals and aggravations are likely to be the theme ahead as these four planets shift by transit and Solar Arc to stoke up problems for years ahead.

Alexis Jay, much praised for her Rotherham Inquiry, 25 April 1949, is a charming and stubborn Sun Venus in Taurus; with her Mercury in Taurus square Pluto; and a tough-minded Mars in Aries trine Saturn in Leo.

Ben Emmerson, 10 Aug 1963, is a Sun Venus in Leo opposition Saturn in Aquarius, so both flamboyant and meticulous. They are not a great mix with her Pluto conjunct his Sun and opposition his Saturn, and her Mercury square his Saturn, so they were always likely to take different standpoints.

Their relationship chart, if Amber Rudd, the present Home Secretary, manages to patch it together, looks fraught and aggravated through the next two years with tr Pluto opposition the composite Mars.

Australia and North Ireland seem to manage to run child abuse inquiries without all this rolling brouha.

Sam Allardyce – the mighty felled



England football manager Sam Allardyce, a former player, has resigned his job by mutual agreement with the Football Association after one match and 67 days in charge, following a newspaper investigation claiming he offered advice on how to “get around” rules on player transfers. He is also alleged to have used his role to negotiate a deal worth £400,000 to represent a Far East firm.  An FA statement said, “He accepts he made a significant error of judgement and has apologised.”

Born 19 Oct 1954, he’s a working-class lad done well with a flash house on the Costa Brava and worth millions. He’s got a Sun Neptune in Libra on the point of a T square to Mars in Capricorn opposition Uranus Jupiter in Cancer – overflowing with initiative, restless, ego-centric, lucky, keen on money, not always straightforward. Plus Venus in intense Scorpio square Pluto, so charming when it suits him, though also manipulative.

What has undone him now is his Solar Arc Pluto moving to square his Mars, bringing his high hopes to a grinding halt.

Deutsche Bank’s woes – Merkel on the horns of a dilemma



Germany is in the grip of a banking crisis with no clear solution. The mammoth Deutsche Bank, based in Frankfurt with a global outreach, once seen as Europe’s strongest financial institution, is in dire trouble facing falling profits, a struggle to cut costs and restructure, legal wrangles and a whopping $14 billion dollar fine from the US for dodgy sub-prime mortgage selling ten years back. They haven’t the capital to pay the fine and Angela Merkel has said there’ll be no bail-out, since that would open the floodgates, especially in Italy where the government is desperate to breach EU rules to fund their banks sagging under bad loans with tax payers money.

Deutsche Bank was set up on 22 January 1870 and got its banking licence on 10 March 1870. Both these charts have Neptune in Aries square Uranus in Cancer picking up the tr Pluto hard aspects through 2017/18 which looks like rolling confusion, scandal, panic and disruption.

Commerzbank, 26 Feb 1870, is also said to be in trouble. Likewise it has the same Neptune Uranus, and even worse Solar Arcs than Deutsche Bank.

The Bundesbank, Germany’s central bank, 26 July 1957, will be edgy and distraught through 2017/18 with tr Uranus opposing the Solar Arc Mars, Mercury, Pluto, Venus; and tr Pluto square the Solar Arc Mars – so jangled and very trapped. Worse follows in 2018/19 with Solar Arc Venus conjunct Neptune, Solar Arc Saturn opposition Uranus; and Solar Arc Pluto conjunct Neptune – which looks like a complete meltdown.

Baling out dodgy banks isn’t a heartening prospect but a total banking collapse would be worse.

Shimon Peres – died without achieving his goal



Shimon Peres, one of Israel’s leading statesmen and Nobel Prize winner in 1994 for his efforts to negotiate peace in the Middle East, has died. There’s a dispute about his birthdate, partly because it is transcribed from the Hebrew calendar, but says his mother confirmed 16 August 1923 with a sunrise birth time from his father of 5.51 am Visnevo, Poland.

This gives him four planets in Leo – Sun, Mars, Neptune, Venus, falling in Israel’s 10th and 11th house, beside the Israel Moon Pluto Saturn Mars in Leo, so a key figure in their history. His Libra Moon was conjunct the Israel Neptune, so an almost telepathic connection. He had a healing Water Grand Trine of Jupiter in Scorpio trine Uranus trine Pluto, with Uranus opposition Mercury – so talented as a spokesman and a reformer. He always described himself as an optimist which with a strong Jupiter makes sense; though he also had a tough streak with his Pluto square Moon Saturn.

Born in Poland, his family moved to Israel when he was 10. Although never a soldier, he rose up the political ranks, becoming eventually Prime Minister twice and the 9th President of Israel.

His Harmonics are strong, with a the creative-get-it-together 5H marked; as was his determined 8H; leaving a legacy for history 17H; and the two Master numbers – the obsessive dream 11H and super-star 22H.

His relationship with Israel wasn’t always easy with a suspicious/doubtful composite Saturn Neptune in the relationship chart; but there was a persuasive Pluto Mercury Venus conjunction. And more importantly a Yod of Uranus sextile Sun inconjunct the composite Jupiter which suggests that together they could effect progress in social development. He was always keen on a two state solution.