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Syria civil war: attempt of the USA to create Sunny Theocracy instead of secular Assad goverment

The testing ground for false flag poisonings: White Helmets as a tool for false flag poisonings

News War is racket Recommended Links False flag poisonings Khan Sheikhoun gas attack Douma gas attack
White Helmets as a tool for false flag poisonings Hillary role in Syria bloodbath Neocon foreign policy is a disaster for the USA American Imperialism American Exceptionalism Wolfowitz Doctrine
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Robert Kagan Anatol Leiven on American Messianism Demonization of Putin Predator state National Socialism and Military Keysianism Roots of Reaganolatry 
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“Control over the production and distribution of oil is the decisive factor in defining who rules whom in the Middle East.”
Christopher Hitchens, The Quotable Hitchens from Alcohol to Zionism: The Very Best of Christopher Hitchens

“Anthing that can be asserted without evidence can be dismissed without evidence”
Windsor Mann, The Quotable Hitchens: From Alcohol to Zionism--The Very Best of Christopher Hitchens

The key idea heind unleashing civil war in cyria using Weapons from Libya and jihadist voluteers from several Arab countries is to reverse the geopolitical gift to Iran which Bush Iraq war created.

Installation of fundamentalist government in Syria also is in the best interests of Israel as this is by definitely a weak sectarian government that terrorizes its own population.  That's why they openly supported head choppers during Syrian civil war.  Politics make strange bedfellows: Izreal and Saudi Arabia.

Political Islam emerges are a reaction to colonialism but now it serve as a puppet of neoliberals to weaksen and destroy secular governments in Arab countries and to weaken territorial integrity of Russia.  So Russia in an indirect way is interested in preservation of secur goverment in Syria as cration of another large traning camp for jihadism is not in their best interest.

The problem is that the US elite lost people who participated in WWII who understood the consequnces of WWIII. now the US is represented by chichenhasks such as Trump, Bolton and the whole gallery of female chichenharks (which were floring in Obana administraion) such as Haley.

This generation of the US elite is idoctrinbated is the "sole super[ower" status and has difficulties to adapting to new realities when economically china will be larger then the USA in 2020 and militiary Russia is on par in some major catagories, returing the situation of mutual assured destruction (MAD) that the USA tried to destrowy (and for some suceeded in 1991-2000 due to collapse of the USSR and Yeltsin marionette government ) since Reagan.

Chemical attacks false flag as a standard method of pursuing civil war by West-connected islamists

Poisoning false flag are the  favorite tackits of British intelligence  services and it was important to Syria by MI6 supported organizations such as White Helmets.  They proved to be  perfectly suibale for Islamists barbarians (aka "head choppers")  who do not care much about human cost and can kill children and woman in cold blood to achive their goals.

One of the most interesting features of Syria civil war is the extent of the chemical attacks false flags by islamists to inflict the damage on Assad forces.  They usually resort to it when they are against the wall and need some time to recouperate of scape or surrender on more favoarabel conditions.

In this sense political Islam is a national liberation movement that "took the wrong turn on the road"  and which was co-opted by the neoliberals to serve as their geopolitical ram.  Instead of fighting Western neoliberal neo-imperialism they are helping them.

There were at least three provable false flag operation of this type


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Old News ;-)

[Aug 19, 2018] Economics

Notable quotes:
"... each click brings us closer to the bang ..."
"... Every ten years or so, the United States needs to pick up some small crappy little country and throw it against the wall, just to show the world we mean business ..."
"... there will be no war and no negotiations ..."
"... carries out the decrees, and answers to the Supreme Leader of Iran, who functions as the country's head of state ..."
"... Trump's ALL IN CAPS meme ..."
"... This is where Ali Khamenei's stance is more puzzling, at least to me: when he says that there will be no war, does he mean that the US threats are not credible or does he mean that Iran has the means to deter a US attack? His words make it sound like he is quite certain that there will be no war. How can he be so sure? I am especially amazed by the apparent Iranian confidence that the AngloZionists will not attack them when I compare it with the obvious Russian policy of actively preparing for war since at least 2014 (also see here , here , here , here , here and here ). Of course, Iran has been preparing for war with the US for almost 40 years now whereas the Russians only woke up to reality comparatively recently. I see several potential explanations for Ali Khamenei's statement (there might be more, of course) ..."
"... Personally, every time I think of a possible US attack on Iran I think of the Israeli attack on Lebanon in 2006 which happened in spite of the fact that it was plainly visible to everybody that the Israelis were waltzing straight into a conflict which they could not win and which, in fact, resulted into one of the most abjects defeats in military history. Conversely, while Hezbollah did win a truly historical victory, it also remains a fact that Hezbollah leaders did not expect the Israelis to launch a full-scale ground offensive. Finally, history is full of examples of wars which were started in spite of all objective factors indicating that they would end up in disaster. ..."
"... If it weren't for its nuclear arsenal, the US could be dismissed as a particularly obnoxious country led by ignorant leaders with bloated and mostly ineffective armed forces. Alas, the US nuclear arsenal is very real (and still very capable) and we know that top-level US Neocons have already considered using tactical nuclear weapons against a non-nuclear state's conventional force in the past . In a twisted way, this makes sense: if you are a megalomaniac infused with a sense of messianic superiority then international or even civilizational norms of behavior are of no interest (or even relevance) to you. Listening to US Presidents, pretty much all of them (but especially Obama and Trump) it is pretty clear that these folks consider themselves to be the Kulturträger ..."
"... Shaytân-e Bozorg ..."
"... It would be a big mistake to dismiss the US because of its incapable military or moral bankruptcy. The truth is that in terms of aggregate national power, the US still remains the most powerful country on the planet (even if we don't include nuclear weapons). Anyone doubting that needs to look how how the currencies of the countries the US is singles out for attack suddenly began slipping: the Russian ruble (which has since bounced back), the Iranian rial, the Venezuelan bolivar, the Turkish lira , etc.) or how little time it took Trump to bring the (admittedly spineless) Europeans to heel . ..."
"... As for Russia, for all her military might, she remains only a semi-sovereign country in which the pro-US/pro-Israeli "Atlantic Integrationists" continue to try to sabotage (often successfully) everything Putin and his supporters are doing . I would not place big hopes in China either, especially considering the lack of meaningful Chinese action in Syria where Russia and Iran did all the heavy lifting. ..."
"... So count with yet another imperial war of aggression, a barrel of crude at over 100$ and oil shortages, rocketing inflation, job losses, a stagnant real estate market and stock exchange, and a national debt and government deficit which would make even Reagan proud. And plenty of dead Americans (nevermind the Iranians, right?). But don't worry: there will still be a huge supply of Chinese-made US flags to wave! ..."
Aug 19, 2018 | www.unz.com


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We can all thank God for the fact that the AngloZionists did not launch a war on the DPRK, that no Ukronazi attack on the Donbass took place during the World Cup in Russia and that the leaders of the Empire have apparently have given up on their plans to launch a reconquista of Syria. However, each of these retreats from their hysterical rhetoric has only made the Neocons more frustrated and determined to show the planet that they are still The Hegemon who cannot be disobeyed with impunity. As I wrote after the failed US cruise missile strike on Syria this spring, " each click brings us closer to the bang ". In the immortal words of Michael Ledeen , " Every ten years or so, the United States needs to pick up some small crappy little country and throw it against the wall, just to show the world we mean business ". The obvious problem is that there are no "small crappy little countries" left out there, and that those who are currently the object of the Empire's ire are neither small nor crappy.

Having now shown several times that for all its hysterical barking the Empire has to back down when the opponent does not cower away in fear, the Empire is now in desperate need to prove its "uniqueness" and (racial?) superiority. The obvious target of the AngloZionist wrath is Iran. In fact, Iran has been in the cross-hairs of the Empire ever since the people of Iran dared to show the AngloZionists to the door and, even worse, succeed in creating their own, national and Islamic democracy. To punish Iran, the US, the USSR, France and all the other "democratic" countries unleashed their puppet (Saddam Hussein) and gave him full military support, and yet the Iranians still prevailed, albeit at a terrible cost. That Iranian ability to prevail in the most terrible circumstances is also the most likely explanation for why there has not been an overt attack on Iran for the past four decades (there have, of course, there has been plenty of covert attacks during all these years).

I won't list all the recent AngloZionist threats against Iran – we all know about them. The bottom line is this: the US, Israel and the KSA are, yet again, working hand in hand to set the stage for a major war under what we could call the " Skripal-case rules of evidence " aka " highly likely ". And yet, in spite of all this saber-rattling, Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei has summed up Iran's stance in the following words " there will be no war and no negotiations ".

First, let's first look at Iranian rationale for "no negotiations"

The obvious: "no negotiations"

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has been very clear in his explanations for why negotiating with the US makes no sense. On his Twitter account he wrote:

The Iranian Supreme Leader even posted a special graphic summary to summarize and explain the Iranian position:

Finally, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei reiterated his fundamental approach towards the AngloZionist Empire:

The contrast between the kindergarten-level low-IQ bumbling hot air and threats coming out of the White House and the words of Ali Khamenei could not be greater, especially if we compare the words the two leaders decided to post all in caps;

Trump : To Iranian President Rouhani: NEVER, EVER THREATEN THE UNITED STATES AGAIN OR YOU WILL SUFFER CONSEQUENCES THE LIKES OF WHICH FEW THROUGHOUT HISTORY HAVE EVER SUFFERED BEFORE. WE ARE NO LONGER A COUNTRY THAT WILL STAND FOR YOUR DEMENTED WORDS OF VIOLENCE & DEATH. BE CAUTIOUS!

Khamenei : THERE WILL BE NO WAR, NOR WILL WE NEGOTIATE WITH THE U.S..

Notice first that in his typical ignorance, Trump fails to realize that Hassan Rouhani is only the President of Iran and that threatening him makes absolutely no sense since he does not make national security decisions, which is the function of the Supreme Leader. Had Trump taken the time to at the very least check with Wikipedia he would have understood that the Iranian President " carries out the decrees, and answers to the Supreme Leader of Iran, who functions as the country's head of state ". It is no wonder that Trump's infantile threats instantly turned into an Internet meme !

In contrast, Khamenei did not even bother to address Trump by name but, instead, announced his strategy to the whole world.

Trump's ALL IN CAPS meme

Of course, issuing ALL IN CAPS threats just to be treated with utter contempt by the people you are trying to hard to bully and having your words become a cause of laughter on the Internet will only further enrage Trump and his supporters. When you are desperately trying to show the world how tough and scary you are, there is nothing more humiliating as being treated like some stupid kid. Therein also lies the biggest danger: such derision could force Trump and the Neocons who run him to do something desperate to prove to the word that their "red button" is still bigger than everybody else's.

ORDER IT NOW

It is important to note here that making negotiations impossible is something the Trump administration seems to have adopted as a policy. This is best illustrated by the conditions attached to the latest sanctions against Russia which, essentially, demand that Russia admit poisoning the Skripals. In fact, all the western demands towards Russia (admitting that Russia is guilty for the Skripal case, that Russia shot down MH-17, that Russia hand over Crimea to the Ukronazis, etc.) are carefully crafted to make absolutely sure that Russia will not negotiate. The sames, of course, goes for the ridiculous Pompeo demands towards the DPRK (including handing over to the US 60 to 70 percent of its nukes within six to eight months; no wonder the North Koreans denounced a "gangster-like" attitude) or the latest US grandstanding towards Turkey. Sadly, but the Neocon run media has successfully imposed the notion that negotiations are either a sign of weakness, or treason, or both. Thus to be "patriotic" and "strong" no US official can afford to be caught red-handed negotiating with the enemy of the day.

Under these conditions, why would anybody want to negotiate with the US?

Frankly, the "no negotiations" approach makes perfectly good sense, and while the Iranians are the only ones who have openly said so, the Russians have hinted to the same on many occasions (see their words about the US being "non-agreement capable" or about US diplomats confusing Austria and Australia). To any objective observer it should by now be completely obvious by now that a) the US cannot negotiate (due to intellectual, cultural and political limitations) and b) the US has no desire to negotiate. This is, of course, a highly undesirable and dangerous situation, but it would only make things worse to pretend that civilized negotiations with the US are possible.

So, if both sides agree on "no negotiations", what about war?

The not so obvious: No war?

This is where Ali Khamenei's stance is more puzzling, at least to me: when he says that there will be no war, does he mean that the US threats are not credible or does he mean that Iran has the means to deter a US attack? His words make it sound like he is quite certain that there will be no war. How can he be so sure? I am especially amazed by the apparent Iranian confidence that the AngloZionists will not attack them when I compare it with the obvious Russian policy of actively preparing for war since at least 2014 (also see here , here , here , here , here and here ). Of course, Iran has been preparing for war with the US for almost 40 years now whereas the Russians only woke up to reality comparatively recently. I see several potential explanations for Ali Khamenei's statement (there might be more, of course):

Personally, every time I think of a possible US attack on Iran I think of the Israeli attack on Lebanon in 2006 which happened in spite of the fact that it was plainly visible to everybody that the Israelis were waltzing straight into a conflict which they could not win and which, in fact, resulted into one of the most abjects defeats in military history. Conversely, while Hezbollah did win a truly historical victory, it also remains a fact that Hezbollah leaders did not expect the Israelis to launch a full-scale ground offensive. Finally, history is full of examples of wars which were started in spite of all objective factors indicating that they would end up in disaster.

It seems to me that in purely military terms (not in political ones!) Israel could be seen as a stand-in for the US and Hezbollah as a stand-in for Iran and that the outcome of any future US-Iranian war will be very similar to the outcome of the war in 2006, albeit on a much larger (and bloodier) scale. I am confident that the folks in the Pentagon realize that, but what about their Neocon bosses – do they even care about Iranian or, for that matter, US casualties? I highly doubt it: all they care about is their power and messianic ideology.

If it weren't for its nuclear arsenal, the US could be dismissed as a particularly obnoxious country led by ignorant leaders with bloated and mostly ineffective armed forces. Alas, the US nuclear arsenal is very real (and still very capable) and we know that top-level US Neocons have already considered using tactical nuclear weapons against a non-nuclear state's conventional force in the past . In a twisted way, this makes sense: if you are a megalomaniac infused with a sense of messianic superiority then international or even civilizational norms of behavior are of no interest (or even relevance) to you. Listening to US Presidents, pretty much all of them (but especially Obama and Trump) it is pretty clear that these folks consider themselves to be the Kulturträger and the Herrenvolk of the 21st century and their messianism is in no way less delusional than the one of their Nazi predecessors (or, for that matter, the one of the Popes of the past 1000 years). And why would the people who nuked two Japanese cities under the (entirely fallacious) pretext of "shortening the war" (almost a humanitarian operation!) not do the same thing in Iran?

Of sure, they probably realize that using nukes will result in a massive political backlash, but they are confident that no matter what happens in the end, they will always be able to say "screw you!" to the rest of the planet. After all, this is something which Israel and the US have been doing with almost total inpunity for decades already – why would they stop now? As for the fact that the Persian people have been dealing with all kinds of invaders since no less than 2500 years will not stop the AngloZionists from trying to crush them. After all, having laid waste to a country which many see as the cradle of civilization, Iraq, why not do the same thing to Iran? Iraq, Iran – what's the difference, they are all just "sand niggers" and our red button is bigger than theirs, right?

Standing up to Shaytân-e Bozorg (almost alone?)

It would be a big mistake to dismiss the US because of its incapable military or moral bankruptcy. The truth is that in terms of aggregate national power, the US still remains the most powerful country on the planet (even if we don't include nuclear weapons). Anyone doubting that needs to look how how the currencies of the countries the US is singles out for attack suddenly began slipping: the Russian ruble (which has since bounced back), the Iranian rial, the Venezuelan bolivar, the Turkish lira , etc.) or how little time it took Trump to bring the (admittedly spineless) Europeans to heel .

As for Russia, for all her military might, she remains only a semi-sovereign country in which the pro-US/pro-Israeli "Atlantic Integrationists" continue to try to sabotage (often successfully) everything Putin and his supporters are doing . I would not place big hopes in China either, especially considering the lack of meaningful Chinese action in Syria where Russia and Iran did all the heavy lifting.

Sadly, but the only ally Iran can truly count on is Hezbollah. And while Hezbollah is considered a "non-state actor", it has a formidable capability to strike at the US's colonial masters, especially in terms of missiles .

This will not protect Iran, but it could serve as a very real deterrent to the Israelis, especially since Hezbollah Secretary General Hassan Nasrallah he has made it clear that Hezbollah more than capable of taking on Israel .

For the time being, the Israelis are already preparing for a re-match against Hezbollah and they are massing forces in the north to prepare for a war against Hezbollah .

Does that look to you like there will be no war against Iran?

I hope so. But to me it very much looks like an attack is pretty much inevitable. I have been predicting such an attack since 2007 and, so far, I have been completely wrong (and thank God for that!). The very first article I ever wrote for my blog was entitled " Where the Empire meets to plan the next war " ended with the following words:

So count with yet another imperial war of aggression, a barrel of crude at over 100$ and oil shortages, rocketing inflation, job losses, a stagnant real estate market and stock exchange, and a national debt and government deficit which would make even Reagan proud. And plenty of dead Americans (nevermind the Iranians, right?). But don't worry: there will still be a huge supply of Chinese-made US flags to wave!

And yet, 11 years later, the AngloZionist attack which looked so imminent in 2007 has not happened yet. Could it be that this time again an attack on Iran can be avoided? Ayatollah Ali Khamenei appears to be very confident that it will not happen. I am not so sure, but I fervently hope that he is right.

[Aug 17, 2018] Lavrov Gives Tillerson a Brilliant History Lesson on US Interventionism

The same day one year ago...
Aug 17, 2017 | www.youtube.com

Ali Haider , 1 year ago (edited)

Russians are really brilliant...salute you Russia 

Phil Newmann , 1 year ago

Tillerson. What a high HYPOCRISY. The US has murdered more than 10 million people in the last 13 years and you say Assad is a war criminal for defending his own country?

Morbius1963 , 1 year ago

Tillerson makes no mention of the democratic wishes of the Syrian people.

Sangam Sangam , 9 months ago

Assad killed terrorist in Syria sent and trained by US.

tom parankewich , 1 year ago

He forgot to say they want pipelines to go through Syria pure and simple .

Ds Vic , 1 year ago

Lavrov is a beauty! Making illmericans look dumb as usual.

[Aug 14, 2018] Why Did 51 American State Department Officials 'Dissent' Against Obama and Call for Bombing Syria?

Aug 14, 2018 | www.unz.com

renfro , August 14, 2018 at 7:25 pm GMT

@Colin Wright

Yea it was suppose to be Hillary. Under her 51 US State Dept. officials demanded Obama bomb Syria.

Why Did 51 American State Department Officials 'Dissent' Against Obama and Call for Bombing Syria?

https://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2016/06/why-did-51-american-state-department-officials-dissent-against-obama-and-call-for-bombing-syria.html

51 U.S. diplomats who still haven't grasped the negative outcomes of the disastrous wars launched since 2002, the solution is to bomb the world into America's image. In an internal dissent cable addressed to Barack Obama, seasoned diplomats have urged airstrikes on the government of Bashar al-Assad in Syria.
Chas Freeman, former U.S. ambassador to Saudi Arabia during the first Gulf War, told me he found the cable "unusual" in two respects. First, it garnered a large number of signatures. Most of those who signed the cable, a State Department official told me, were "rank and file" diplomats, such as a deputy to U.S. Ambassador to Syria Robert Ford and a secretary in the Near East Bureau. They had a good understanding of the current situation in the region. The second reason this cable is unusual, said Ambassador Freeman, is that the signatories "are arguing for rather than against the use of force." Over the past 40 years, diplomats have used the "dissent channel" to caution against a rush to war. Now these diplomats are asking for an intensification of war.

A former ambassador told me that many of the diplomats have great fealty to Hillary Clinton. Could they have leaked this cable to boost Clinton's narrative that she wanted a more robust attack on Damascus as early as 2012? Is this a campaign advertisement for Clinton, and a preparation for her likely Middle East policy when she takes power in 2017? Clinton certainly advocated tougher military action in Syria. She joined CIA chief David Petraeus to push for a U.S.-backed rebel army in 2012, and she argued for air strikes when there was no appetite for this in the White House.

[Aug 08, 2018] Ten Bombshell Revelations From Seymour Hersh's New Autobiography

Highly recommended!
Aug 08, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

Here are ten bombshell revelations and fascinating new details to lately come out of both Sy Hersh's new book, Reporter , as well as interviews he's given since publication...

1) On a leaked Bush-era intelligence memo outlining the neocon plan to remake the Middle East

(Note: though previously alluded to only anecdotally by General Wesley Clark in his memoir and in a 2007 speech , the below passage from Seymour Hersh is to our knowledge the first time this highly classified memo has been quoted . Hersh's account appears to corroborate now retired Gen. Clark's assertion that days after 9/11 a classified memo outlining plans to foster regime change in "7 countries in 5 years" was being circulated among intelligence officials.)

From Reporter: A Memoir pg. 306 -- A few months after the invasion of Iraq, during an interview overseas with a general who was director of a foreign intelligence service, I was provided with a copy of a Republican neocon plan for American dominance in the Middle East. The general was an American ally, but one who was very rattled by the Bush/Cheney aggression. I was told that the document leaked to me initially had been obtained by someone in the local CIA station. There was reason to be rattled: The document declared that the war to reshape the Middle East had to begin "with the assault on Iraq. The fundamental reason for this... is that the war will start making the U.S. the hegemon of the Middle East. The correlative reason is to make the region feel in its bones, as it were, the seriousness of American intent and determination." Victory in Iraq would lead to an ultimatum to Damascus, the "defanging" of Iran, Hezbollah, Hamas, and Arafat's Palestine Liberation Organization, and other anti-Israeli groups. America's enemies must understand that "they are fighting for their life: Pax Americana is on its way, which implies their annihilation." I and the foreign general agreed that America's neocons were a menace to civilization.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/nUCwCgthp_E

* * *

2) On early regime change plans in Syria

From Reporter: A Memoir pages 306-307 -- Donald Rumsfeld was also infected with neocon fantasy. Turkey had refused to permit America's Fourth Division to join the attack of Iraq from its territory, and the division, with its twenty-five thousand men and women, did not arrive in force inside Iraq until mid-April, when the initial fighting was essentially over. I learned then that Rumsfeld had asked the American military command in Stuttgart, Germany, which had responsibility for monitoring Europe, including Syria and Lebanon, to begin drawing up an operational plan for an invasion of Syria. A young general assigned to the task refused to do so, thereby winning applause from my friends on the inside and risking his career. The plan was seen by those I knew as especially bizarre because Bashar Assad, the ruler of secular Syria, had responded to 9/11 by sharing with the CIA hundreds of his country's most sensitive intelligence files on the Muslim Brotherhood in Hamburg, where much of the planning for 9/11 was carried out... Rumsfeld eventually came to his senses and back down, I was told...

3) On the Neocon deep state which seized power after 9/11

From Reporter: A Memoir pages 305-306 -- I began to comprehend that eight or nine neoconservatives who were political outsiders in the Clinton years had essentially overthrown the government of the United States -- with ease . It was stunning to realize how fragile our Constitution was. The intellectual leaders of that group -- Dick Cheney, Paul Wolfowitz, and Richard Perle -- had not hidden their ideology and their belief in the power of the executive but depicted themselves in public with a great calmness and a self-assurance that masked their radicalism . I had spent many hours after 9/11 in conversations with Perle that, luckily for me, helped me understand what was coming. (Perle and I had been chatting about policy since the early 1980s, but he broke off relations in 1993 over an article I did for The New Yorker linking him, a fervent supporter of Israel, to a series of meetings with Saudi businessmen in an attempt to land a multibillion-dollar contract from Saudi Arabia . Perle responded by publicly threatening to sue me and characterizing me as a newspaper terrorist. He did not sue.

Meanwhile, Cheney had emerged as a leader of the neocon pack. From 9/11 on he did all he could to undermine congressional oversight. I learned a great deal from the inside about his primacy in the White House , but once again I was limited in what I would write for fear of betraying my sources...

I came to understand that Cheney's goal was to run his most important military and intelligence operations with as little congressional knowledge, and interference, as possible. I was fascinating and important to learn what I did about Cheney's constant accumulation of power and authority as vice president , but it was impossible to even begin to verify the information without running the risk that Cheney would learn of my questioning and have a good idea from whom I was getting the information.

4) On Russian meddling in the US election

From the recent Independent interview based on his autobiography -- Hersh has vociferously strong opinions on the subject and smells a rat. He states that there is "a great deal of animosity towards Russia. All of that stuff about Russia hacking the election appears to be preposterous." He has been researching the subject but is not ready to go public yet.

Hersh quips that the last time he heard the US defense establishment have high confidence, it was regarding weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. He points out that the NSA only has moderate confidence in Russian hacking. It is a point that has been made before; there has been no national intelligence estimate in which all 17 US intelligence agencies would have to sign off. "When the intel community wants to say something they say it High confidence effectively means that they don't know."

5) On the Novichok poisoning

From the recent Independent interview -- Hersh is also on the record as stating that the official version of the Skripal poisoning does not stand up to scrutiny. He tells me: "The story of novichok poisoning has not held up very well. He [Skripal] was most likely talking to British intelligence services about Russian organised crime." The unfortunate turn of events with the contamination of other victims is suggestive, according to Hersh, of organised crime elements rather than state-sponsored actions –though this files in the face of the UK government's position.

Hersh modestly points out that these are just his opinions. Opinions or not, he is scathing on Obama – "a trimmer articulate [but] far from a radical a middleman". During his Goldsmiths talk, he remarks that liberal critics underestimate Trump at their peril.

He ends the Goldsmiths talk with an anecdote about having lunch with his sources in the wake of 9/11 . He vents his anger at the agencies for not sharing information. One of his CIA sources fires back: "Sy you still don't get it after all these years – the FBI catches bank robbers, the CIA robs banks." It is a delicious, if cryptic aphorism.

* * *

6) On the Bush-era 'Redirection' policy of arming Sunni radicals to counter Shia Iran, which in a 2007 New Yorker article Hersh accurately predicted would set off war in Syria

From the Independent interview : [Hersh] tells me it is "amazing how many times that story has been reprinted" . I ask about his argument that US policy was designed to neutralize the Shia sphere extending from Iran to Syria to Hezbollah in Lebanon and hence redraw the Sykes-Picot boundaries for the 21st century.

He goes on to say that Bush and Cheney "had it in for Iran", although he denies the idea that Iran was heavily involved in Iraq: "They were providing intel, collecting intel The US did many cross-border hunts to kill ops [with] much more aggression than Iran"...

He believes that the Trump administration has no memory of this approach. I'm sure though that the military-industrial complex has a longer memory...

I press him on the RAND and Stratfor reports including one authored by Cheney and Paul Wolfowitz in which they envisage deliberate ethno-sectarian partitioning of Iraq . Hersh ruefully states that: "The day after 9/11 we should have gone to Russia. We did the one thing that George Kennan warned us never to do – to expand NATO too far."

* * *

7) On the official 9/11 narrative

From the Independent interview : We end up ruminating about 9/11, perhaps because it is another narrative ripe for deconstruction by sceptics. Polling shows that a significant proportion of the American public believes there is more to the truth. These doubts have been reinforced by the declassification of the suppressed 28 pages of the 9/11 commission report last year undermining the version that a group of terrorists acting independently managed to pull off the attacks. The implication is that they may well have been state-sponsored with the Saudis potentially involved.

Hersh tells me: "I don't necessarily buy the story that Bin Laden was responsible for 9/11. We really don't have an ending to the story. I've known people in the [intelligence] community. We don't know anything empirical about who did what" . He continues: "The guy was living in a cave. He really didn't know much English. He was pretty bright and he had a lot of hatred for the US. We respond by attacking the Taliban. Eighteen years later How's it going guys?"

8) On the media and the morality of the powerful

From a recent The Intercept interview and book review -- If Hersh were a superhero, this would be his origin story. Two hundred and seventy-four pages after the Chicago anecdote, he describes his coverage of a massive slaughter of Iraqi troops and civilians by the U.S. in 1991 after a ceasefire had ended the Persian Gulf War. America's indifference to this massacre was, Hersh writes, "a reminder of the Vietnam War's MGR, for Mere Gook Rule: If it's a murdered or raped gook, there is no crime." It was also, he adds, a reminder of something else: "I had learned a domestic version of that rule decades earlier" in Chicago. "Reporter" demonstrates that Hersh has derived three simple lessons from that rule:

  1. The powerful prey mercilessly upon the powerless, up to and including mass murder.
  2. The powerful lie constantly about their predations.
  3. The natural instinct of the media is to let the powerful get away with it.

* * *

... ... ...

[Aug 08, 2018] Has US misread the Iranian street

Aug 08, 2018 | www.csmonitor.com

"The hatred, the distrust, the dissatisfaction toward the establishment is growing here, no question about it," says the analyst. "People are protesting here and there. But what Trump is doing" makes the prospect of a popular uprising even more distant.

Citing "current America and these policies," which had shown the US to be "totally unreliable," Tehran dismissed an offer by Mr. Trump Monday to meet Iranian leaders with "no preconditions." The White House later clarified that it has no plans to change its policy of ratcheting up pressure and sanctions on Iran.

Ordinary Iranians have taken to Twitter using the hashtags #ShutUpTrump and #StopMeddlingInIran to condemn US actions.

"Trump's craziness has no end. But our unity is endless, too. So the more he shows his teeth, the more we will show our fists," says Saeed, a clean-shaven student of mechanical engineering at Azad University in Tehran who says he supports reformist politicians.

"We have passed all those hurdles in the past and this one, although it is more serious than ever, I'm sure we will successfully leave behind," says Saeed, who only gave his first name. "It is Trump who will be thrown away or, in the words of the Supreme Leader [Ayatollah Ali Khamenei], will be 'thrown into the dust bin of history.' We will stand behind the establishment forever."

Mutual hostility between the US and Iran has defined the geopolitical strife between these arch foes since Iran's 1979 Islamic Revolution.

... ... ...

Yet today Iranians also are reeling from being included – alongside Somalis and Yemenis – in a blanket seven-nation White House travel ban, even though an estimated one million Iranian-Americans live in the US.

They are baffled by Trump's unilateral US withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal. And they are feeling the bite of new US sanctions designed to put "unprecedented" economic pressure on Iran by cutting it off from the outside world, forcing all third-country business to withdraw, and blocking the sale of any Iranian oil.

[Aug 08, 2018] Trump Warns Allies Risk Severe Consequences If They Violate Iran Sanctions

Notable quotes:
"... "The Trump Administration intends to fully enforce the sanctions reimposed against Iran, and those who fail to wind down activities with Iran risk severe consequences. " ..."
"... The first set of sanctions will hit at the Iranian financial system, including Iranian government purchases of US dollars and its gold trade and government bond sales. The US' dominant role in the world's financial system means it has been able to pressure countries and companies into compliance, though China remains a key holdout. ..."
"... The US denies it is seeking regime change, but rather aims to "modify the regime's behavior," according to an administration official. ..."
"... A US administration official said the Iranian government was using financial resources freed up by the nuclear deal "to spread human misery." The US was seeking now to address the "totality of the Iranian threat" in the Middle East ..."
Aug 08, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

With the hours ticking by ahead of Washington's re-imposition of a slew of economic sanctions on Iran, President Trump has just released a statement confirming the narrative he would prefer Americans believe.

Just hours after the European Union issued a statement Monday ahead of when renewed US sanctions are set to snap back against Iran after midnight US Eastern time, saying it "deeply regrets" the sanctions and will take immediate action to protect European companies still doing business with Iran.

Trump makes it clear that any violation (among America's allies) will not be tolerated...

"The Trump Administration intends to fully enforce the sanctions reimposed against Iran, and those who fail to wind down activities with Iran risk severe consequences. "

The first set of sanctions will hit at the Iranian financial system, including Iranian government purchases of US dollars and its gold trade and government bond sales. The US' dominant role in the world's financial system means it has been able to pressure countries and companies into compliance, though China remains a key holdout.

"The JCPOA, a horrible, one-sided deal, failed to achieve the fundamental objective of blocking all paths to an Iranian nuclear bomb," Trump said Monday, defining that its policy as applying "maximum economic pressure on the Iranian regime."

The US denies it is seeking regime change, but rather aims to "modify the regime's behavior," according to an administration official.

A US administration official said the Iranian government was using financial resources freed up by the nuclear deal "to spread human misery." The US was seeking now to address the "totality of the Iranian threat" in the Middle East.

"None of this needs to happen," an official said on sanctions. Trump is willing to meet the Iranian leadership "any time" for talks," the official noted. * * *

Full Statement below:

REIMPOSING TOUGH SANCTIONS: President Donald J. Trump, Administration is taking action to reimpose sanctions lifted under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

In connection with the withdrawal from the JCPOA, the Administration laid out two wind-down periods of 90 days and 180 days for business activities in or involving Iran.

The purchase or acquisition of United States bank notes by the Government of Iran.

Iran, trade in gold and other precious metals.

Graphite, aluminum, steel, coal, and software used in industrial processes.

Transactions related to the Iranian rial.

Activities relating to Iran's issuance of sovereign debt

Iran, automotive sector.

Iran, port operators and energy, shipping, and shipbuilding sectors.

Iran, petroleum-related transactions.

Transactions by foreign financial institutions with the Central Bank of Iran.

ENSURING FULL ENFORCEMENT: President Trump will continue to stand up to the Iranian regime's aggression, and the United States will fully enforce the reimposed sanctions.

The regime has used this funding to support terrorism, promote ruthless regimes, destabilize the region, and abuse the human rights of its own people.

PROTECTING OUR NATIONAL SECURITY: The JCPOA was defective at its core and failed to guarantee the safety of the American people.

The regime continues to threaten the United States and our allies, exploit the international financial system, and support terrorism and foreign proxies.

* * *

The initial reaction in markets was modest aside from in the oil complex where prices spiked...

[Aug 07, 2018] More Lies About the White Helmets by Philip Giraldi

Notable quotes:
"... Is resettling a terrorist front group in the West a good idea? ..."
"... The White Helmets ..."
"... The Washington Post ..."
"... Syria conflict: White Helmets evacuated by Israel. ..."
"... The BBC story could have been written by the White Helmets themselves or by their press department. Or alternatively by the Israeli Foreign Ministry. First of all, the Israelis do not do humanitarian gestures. They helped bail out the White Helmets at the request of the U.S. because capture by the Syrians would have produced embarrassing revelations about how the group was funded and what its affiliation with terrorists was all about. And Israel's denial of involvement in Syria is nonsense, unless one considers demonstrated collaboration with the terrorist groups punctuated by nearly weekly bombing and missile attacks to be non-involvement. ..."
"... The British too are into the deception up to their eyeballs. The comment by Hunt and Mordaunt is complete fabrication regarding what the White Helmets represent. The same goes for the BBC account of how the group developed, which comes directly from the White Helmet's own propaganda division as amplified by Hollywood and the U.S. and U.K. governments. ..."
"... The White Helmets travel to bombing sites with their film crews trailing behind them. Once at the sites, with no independent observers, they are able to arrange or even stage what is filmed to conform to their selected narrative which consistently promotes tales of government atrocities against civilians to encourage outside military intervention in Syria and bring about regime change in Damascus. The White Helmets were, for example, the propagators of the totally false but propagandistically effective claims regarding the government use of so-called "barrel bombs" against civilians. ..."
"... Peter Ford, British Ambassador in Damascus from 2003-2006, recently described the group in an audio interview saying, "The White Helmets are jihadi auxiliaries. They are not, as claimed by themselves and by their supporters simple rescuers. They are not volunteers. They are paid professionals of disinformation." ..."
"... All their activities are directed at mobilizing Western opinion behind the jihadis with whom they associate. They co-locate their centers with the Al-Qaeda organization known as Al-Nusra and with other militant groups such as Jaish al-Islam. They have in the past been shown associating with and waving the flags of ISIS." ..."
"... The group is currently largely funded by a number of non-government organizations (NGOs) as well as governments, including the United States, Britain and some European Union member states. The U.S. has directly provided $23 million through the USAID (US Agency for International Development) as of 2016 and almost certainly considerably more indirectly. ..."
"... Perhaps the most serious charge against the White Helmets consists of the evidence that they actively participated in the atrocities , to include torture and murder, carried out by their al-Nusra hosts. There have been numerous photos of the White Helmets operating directly with armed terrorists and also celebrating over the bodies of execution victims and murdered Iraqi soldiers. The group's jihadi associates regard the White Helmets as fellow "mujahideen" and "soldiers of the revolution." ..."
"... The White Helmets were and are part and parcel of the attempt to overthrow a legitimate government and install a regime friendly to western, American and Israeli interests. For Israel in particular the ongoing chaos in Syria was and is part of its plan for dividing all of its neighbors into warring ethnicities and sects, making them less viable as threats to the Jewish state. ..."
Aug 07, 2018 | www.unz.com

Is resettling a terrorist front group in the West a good idea?

When is a terrorist group not a terrorist group? Apparently the answer is that it ceases to be terrorist when it terrorizes someone who is an enemy of the United States. The most prominent recent example is the Mujaheddin e Khalq (MEK), a murderous Iranian Marxist cult which assassinated five Americans in the 1970s as part of its campaign against the Shah's government. It was removed from the State Department terrorist list in 2012 by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton after it had promised not to kill any more Americans but really because it had bought the support of prominent politicians to include Elaine Chao, Rudy Giuliani, Newt Gingrich, and John Bolton. It also had the behind the scenes endorsement of both the Israeli Mossad and CIA, both of whom have been using it in their operations to kill Iranians and damage the country's infrastructure. Someone high up in the federal government, perhaps Hillary or even President Obama himself, must have decided that terrorists who kill only Iranians deserve a get out of jail free card from the State Department.

There are other examples of cynical doublespeak from the Syrian conflict, including labeling rebels against the Damascus government "freedom fighters" when in reality they were as often as not allied with the al-Qaeda affiliated group Al-Nusra or even with ISIS. Frequently they received training and weapons from Washington only to turn around and either join Al-Nusra and ISIS as volunteers or surrender their weapons to them.

But perhaps there is no bigger fraud making the rounds than the so-called White Helmets. The recent media coverage derives from the documentary The White Helmets , which was produced by the group itself and tells a very convincing tale promoted as "the story of real-life heroes and impossible hope." It is a very impressive piece of propaganda, so much so that it has won numerous awards including the Oscar for Best Documentary Short last year and the White Helmets themselves were nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. More to the point, however, is the undeniable fact that the documentary has helped shape the public understanding of what is going on in Syria, describing the government in Damascus in purely negative terms.

The fawning Hollywood and Congressional depictions of the group go something like this: "the White Helmets are an 'heroic' impartial non-government humanitarian volunteer group that engages in 'first response' emergency rescue and medical treatment for all those who have been impacted by the fighting in Syria. The Syrian government hates the group because it assists victims of the fighting who are either rebels or living in rebel held areas. Recently, with the Syrian Army closing in on the last White Helmet affiliates still operating in the country, the Israeli government, assisted by the United States, staged an emergency humanitarian evacuation of the group's members and their families to Israel and then on to Jordan."

Virtually all the mainstream media coverage of the White Helmets is bogus, but by far the most ridiculous account of the Exodus from Syria came from the BBC. For those who are not familiar with it, the BBC, which once upon a time had a reputation for journalistic integrity, has become one of the worst pro-government propaganda shills of all time. Reading its articles is even worse that having a similar go at The Washington Post , which is the prime newspaper exemplar of fake news and phony journalism pretending to be a respectable news source in the United States. Let's face it, Donald Trump has a point. Nearly all of the mainstream media lies persistently these days but some sources are worse than others. People complain about Fox, and rightly so, but CNN is the absolute pits when it comes to slanting its coverage, as is MSNBC.

BBC's article is entitled Syria conflict: White Helmets evacuated by Israel. It makes the following statements, many coming directly from Israeli official sources, regarding the White Helmets, its activities and the group's relationship to some governments, to include Britain:

"The IDF said they had 'completed a humanitarian effort to rescue members of a Syrian civil organization and their families', saying there was an 'immediate threat to their lives.' The transfer of the displaced Syrians through Israel was an exceptional humanitarian gesture." "Although Israel is not directly involved in the Syria conflict, the two countries have been in a state of war for decades. Despite the intervention, the IDF said that 'Israel continues to maintain a non-intervention policy regarding the Syrian conflict.'" "A statement from Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt and International Development Secretary Penny Mordaunt said: 'White Helmets have been the target of attacks and, due to their high profile, we judged that, in these particular circumstances, the volunteers required immediate protection. We pay tribute to the brave and selfless work that White Helmet volunteers have done to save Syrians on all sides of the conflict.'" "Their official name is the Syrian Civil Defense and it began in early 2013 as an organization of volunteers from all walks of life, including electricians and builders. Its main task soon became to rescue civilians in war zones in the immediate aftermath of air strikes, and it says its volunteers have saved the lives of more than 100,000 people during the civil war."

The BBC story could have been written by the White Helmets themselves or by their press department. Or alternatively by the Israeli Foreign Ministry. First of all, the Israelis do not do humanitarian gestures. They helped bail out the White Helmets at the request of the U.S. because capture by the Syrians would have produced embarrassing revelations about how the group was funded and what its affiliation with terrorists was all about. And Israel's denial of involvement in Syria is nonsense, unless one considers demonstrated collaboration with the terrorist groups punctuated by nearly weekly bombing and missile attacks to be non-involvement.

The British too are into the deception up to their eyeballs. The comment by Hunt and Mordaunt is complete fabrication regarding what the White Helmets represent. The same goes for the BBC account of how the group developed, which comes directly from the White Helmet's own propaganda division as amplified by Hollywood and the U.S. and U.K. governments.

Just as important as what is said about the White Helmets' activities is the exclusion of a great deal of credible negative reporting on the group. The carefully edited scenes of heroism under fire that have been filmed and released worldwide conceal the White Helmets' relationship with the al-Qaeda affiliated group Jabhat al-Nusra and its participation in the torture and execution of "rebel" opponents. Indeed, the White Helmets only operate in rebel held territory, which enables them to shape the narrative both regarding who they are and what is occurring on the ground.

Exploiting their access to the western media, the White Helmets thereby de facto became a major source of "eyewitness" news regarding what was going on in those many parts of Syria where European and American journalists were quite rightly afraid to go. It was all part of a broader largely successful "rebel" effort to manufacture fake news that depicts the Damascus government as engaging in war crimes directed against civilians, an effort that led to several attacks on government forces and facilities by the U.S. military.

The White Helmets travel to bombing sites with their film crews trailing behind them. Once at the sites, with no independent observers, they are able to arrange or even stage what is filmed to conform to their selected narrative which consistently promotes tales of government atrocities against civilians to encourage outside military intervention in Syria and bring about regime change in Damascus. The White Helmets were, for example, the propagators of the totally false but propagandistically effective claims regarding the government use of so-called "barrel bombs" against civilians.

Peter Ford, British Ambassador in Damascus from 2003-2006, recently described the group in an audio interview saying, "The White Helmets are jihadi auxiliaries. They are not, as claimed by themselves and by their supporters simple rescuers. They are not volunteers. They are paid professionals of disinformation." He noted particularly the large size of the organization's "press department", saying, "This gives us an idea what the priority is for this very dubious organization. All their activities are directed at mobilizing Western opinion behind the jihadis with whom they associate. They co-locate their centers with the Al-Qaeda organization known as Al-Nusra and with other militant groups such as Jaish al-Islam. They have in the past been shown associating with and waving the flags of ISIS."

The group is currently largely funded by a number of non-government organizations (NGOs) as well as governments, including the United States, Britain and some European Union member states. The U.S. has directly provided $23 million through the USAID (US Agency for International Development) as of 2016 and almost certainly considerably more indirectly. Max Blumenthal has explored in some detail the various funding resources and relationships that the organization draws on, mostly in Europe and the United States.

Perhaps the most serious charge against the White Helmets consists of the evidence that they actively participated in the atrocities , to include torture and murder, carried out by their al-Nusra hosts. There have been numerous photos of the White Helmets operating directly with armed terrorists and also celebrating over the bodies of execution victims and murdered Iraqi soldiers. The group's jihadi associates regard the White Helmets as fellow "mujahideen" and "soldiers of the revolution."

So Israel's celebrated rescue of the White Helmets was little more than a theatrical performance intended to perpetuate the myth that the al-Assad government was thwarted in an attempt to capture and possibly kill an honorable non-partisan group engaged in humanitarian relief for those caught up in a bloody conflict seeking to oust a ruthless dictator. The reality is quite different. The White Helmets were and are part and parcel of the attempt to overthrow a legitimate government and install a regime friendly to western, American and Israeli interests. For Israel in particular the ongoing chaos in Syria was and is part of its plan for dividing all of its neighbors into warring ethnicities and sects, making them less viable as threats to the Jewish state.

The 800 White Helmets rescued reportedly will be resettled in the U.S., Britain and Germany. One hopes those coming to America can end up in Los Angeles, where they would presumably mingle with Hollywood big shots and the usual snowflakes while working on their next documentary. As some of them are most certainly radical Jihadists, it will be interesting to observe exactly how that will play out.

Philip M. Giraldi, Ph.D., is Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest, a 501(c)3 tax deductible educational foundation that seeks a more interests-based U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East. Website is www.councilforthenationalinterest.org, address is P.O. Box 2157, Purcellville VA 20134 and its email is inform@cnionline.org.

[Aug 07, 2018] A "Tour d'horizon" of the ME - Lang's opinion

Aug 07, 2018 | turcopolier.typepad.com

4. China is teasing us all with the idea that it may send troops to participate in the Idlib offensive. Their twin objectives would probably be to insure a foot in the door with the SAG for contracts in reconstruction as well as a desire to kill as many Uighur Muslims as possible in Idlib before they escape and return to western China.

[Aug 07, 2018] On Iran, the Neocons Are No Ronald Reagan by Barbara Slavin

The USA now is viewed as imperial power hell-bent of crushing other countries. US foreign policy in the region is viewed as pandering to Israeli interests. That increases resistance to color revolutions.
The author analogies with the USSR are very problematic. The collapse of the USSR was due to mass betrayal of the elite which adopted neoliberalism. In Iran even if its theocratic system experience the same crisis of confidence as Bolheviks system in the USSR, this mass defection of elite is less probable due to history of relations with the USA and, especially the USA support of Iraq in brutal war between the countries. People view the USA as a "great Satan."
The current US foreign policy is totally controlled by neocons and as such is less flexible then in the past.
Notable quotes:
"... While neoconservatives have portrayed the Islamic Republic of Iran as a global bogeyman on the order of the USSR and argued that it should be President Trump's "pre-eminent challenge ," it remains a mid-level power in a region that most Americans, including Trump, would like to quit. ..."
"... In his speech, Pompeo asserted that the U.S. would somehow bolster Iranians who have taken to the streets -- in a very un-Soviet set of popular protests -- since late last year. "In light of these protests and 40 years of regime tyranny, I have a message for the people of Iran," Pompeo said. "The United States hears you; the United States supports you; the United States is with you." ..."
Aug 07, 2018 | www.theamericanconservative.com

In their pursuit of a policy of maximum pressure on Iran, America's neoconservatives have pushed a nostalgic narrative: the Trump administration can bring down Iran's theocracy the way that the Reagan administration helped defeat and dissolve the Soviet Union.

This comparison has been advanced by the Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD), which promotes draconian sanctions against the Islamic Republic. Its arguments figured prominently in Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's recent speech at the Reagan library in which he asserted that Iran is still a revolutionary regime "committed to spreading the revolution to other countries, by force if necessary."

The strategy to confront and collapse the Soviet Union included military and economic pressure coupled with a focus on human rights abuses and corruption, as well as U.S. support for indigenous dissidents. The comparison to Iran is flawed on a number of levels, and even in those areas where some overlap exists, such a plan is unlikely to be successfully implemented by the Trump administration.

While neoconservatives have portrayed the Islamic Republic of Iran as a global bogeyman on the order of the USSR and argued that it should be President Trump's "pre-eminent challenge ," it remains a mid-level power in a region that most Americans, including Trump, would like to quit.

Iran has never successfully exported its unique theocratic-led system, even to neighboring Iraq, with its Shiite majority, or Lebanon, where Shiites are a plurality and Iran has a potent ally in Hezbollah. The Soviet Union, by contrast, dominated Eastern Europe for four decades and supported communist parties throughout the world, including in Iran when it was under the Shah. It invaded other countries at will, crushing the Prague spring of 1968 and entering Afghanistan in 1979 to shore up a friendly regime.

The Soviet Union was also a nuclear peer competitor of the United States, possessing a massive atomic arsenal. Iran has never developed nuclear weapons and could be constrained for more than a decade from building them if the United States returned to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) or if a rump JCPOA somehow survives the U.S. unilateral withdrawal.

The comparison to the Soviet Union does work in the sense that Iran's economy is now under severe strain, although the reasons are not the same. The Reagan administration outspent the Soviet Union in a massive arms race that left Moscow unable to satisfy the growing demands of its long-suffering consumers and maintain its military edge and alliances, including the debilitating war in Afghanistan. The Trump administration is collapsing the Iranian economy through sanctions that have frightened away major multinational companies and destroyed confidence in the Iranian currency.

Both the old USSR and Iran have autocratic systems that repress political expression and jail dissidents. It is entirely appropriate for the U.S. and other countries to publicize these abuses and seek to penalize those most directly responsible. However, the Trump administration's credibility in denouncing what Pompeo called a "mafia" government run by "hypocritical holy men" is undercut by egregious double standards. This is, after all, an administration led by a president who has called North Korea's brutal leader Kim Jong-un "honorable," sword-danced with Saudi autocrats, and fawned over reprehensible leaders from the Philippines to Egypt.

In his speech, Pompeo asserted that the U.S. would somehow bolster Iranians who have taken to the streets -- in a very un-Soviet set of popular protests -- since late last year. "In light of these protests and 40 years of regime tyranny, I have a message for the people of Iran," Pompeo said. "The United States hears you; the United States supports you; the United States is with you."

That support, however, does not extend to allowing actual Iranians to come to America -- unlike Reagan's embrace of Soviet exiles and others fleeing persecution. Thanks to the travel ban, which was recently upheld by the Supreme Court, most Iranian citizens are barred from even visiting the U.S. And while academic exchanges are technically still allowed, the "extreme vetting" required for Iranians -- and their fear that they may not be able to return to the U.S. if they have to leave for any reason -- has severely undercut this key feature of old-style public diplomacy.

Iran and the United States, of course, lack diplomatic ties, which were so instrumental in promoting people-to-people contact with the Soviet Union. This author was an exchange student in what was then called Leningrad in the 1970s, an experience that humanized the Soviet Union in the eyes of the visiting Americans and performed a similar function for our Soviet counterparts.

Unfortunately, few Americans know the reality of today's Iran and are thus easily manipulated by propagandists who cast the country in relentlessly negative terms.

If despite all these differences, the Trump administration really embraced a Reaganesque approach to Iran, it would not only rescind the travel ban but would sincerely pursue new negotiations that build on the JCPOA.

Instead, the administration is punishing Iran for non-compliance and demanding that it capitulate and reverse all its other foreign and domestic policies. This approach almost certainly guarantees that Iran will not produce an "Ayatollah Gorbachev" willing and able to resolve the long U.S.-Iran divide and further liberalize Iranian society. The main victims will be the Iranian people but American interests will also suffer.

Barbara Slavin directs the Future of Iran Initiative at the Atlantic Council. The views expressed here are her own.

[Aug 07, 2018] Iran sactions will be another instance of Trump learning that intimidating countries is a different game than making hotel project deals

Notable quotes:
"... Trump's faithful execution of Israeli policy will result in re-imposition of US sanctions on Iran tomorrow. ..."
"... Trump, Mattis and Co. want to form a Sunni Arab version of NATO united against Iran. This would include the GCC plus Egypt and Jordan. ..."
Aug 07, 2018 | turcopolier.typepad.com

5. Trump's faithful execution of Israeli policy will result in re-imposition of US sanctions on Iran tomorrow. The UK, France and Germany have announced that they will not be governed by these sanctions and IMO Trump will not have the stones to sanction these actual American allies. This will be another instance of Trump learning that intimidating countries is a different game than making hotel project deals. In the case of tariffs the EU caved in what can be seen as bi-lateral negotiations but in this case accepting American orders to reimpose sanctions will be seen as acceptance of a servile position. The US position with regard to desired Iranian concessions includes acceptance of a statehood bereft of foreign policy or foreign interventions of any kind. This is a maximum Israeli position that has been sold to Trump ,the real estate guy, by his donors and family. Pompeo and Bolton, the neocons, are fully on board as well. DoD is supportive. Mattis is always seeking a childish revenge against the Iranians for their actions in Iraq.

... ... ...

7. Trump, Mattis and Co. want to form a Sunni Arab version of NATO united against Iran. This would include the GCC plus Egypt and Jordan. Words fail me at the blind ignorance of this idea. All these countries will gladly accept Saudi money. That does not mean they will accept Saudi leadership in anything. This has been proven over and over again.

im cotton , 6 hours ago

Point no. 7, Iran--

Just read an interesting piece by Trita Parsi concluding that Iran should accept negotiations with the US; that it would be in its interests for Trump and Rouhani to have a nice two hour chat in strict privacy with no one else present but interpreters--if nothing else to watch Saudi and Israeli heads explode.

"Though any deal with Trump may have little value due to his unreliability, Tehran can also use that unreliability to its own advantage. The mere image of Trump and Rouhani shaking hands and speaking in private will spread panic in Riyadh and Tel Aviv – precisely because these allies of Trump know that they too cannot rely on him.

Their deep-seated fear of being betrayed by America in any US-Iran dialogue will reach a breaking point and likely cause a significant weakening of the concerted US-Israel-Gulf effort to break Iran. Ultimately, that would make Iran look good, not Trump."

https://tinyurl.com/y7k4kxdb

[Aug 07, 2018] Would War With Iran Doom Trump by Pat Buchanan

Like Greenspan said about Iraq war. It's about oil.
Aug 07, 2018 | www.unz.com

A war with Iran would define, consume and potentially destroy the Trump presidency, but exhilarate the neocon never-Trumpers who most despise the man.

Why, then, is President Donald Trump toying with such an idea?

Looking back at Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria and Yemen, wars we began or plunged into, what was gained to justify the cost in American blood and treasure, and the death and destruction we visited upon that region? How has our great rival China suffered by not getting involved?

Oil is the vital strategic Western interest in the Persian Gulf. Yet a war with Iran would imperil, not secure, that interest.

Mass migration from the Islamic world, seeded with terrorist cells, is the greatest threat to Europe from the Middle East. But would not a U.S. war with Iran increase rather than diminish that threat?

Would the millions of Iranians who oppose the mullahs' rule welcome U.S. air and naval attacks on their country? Or would they rally behind the regime and the armed forces dying to defend their country?

"Mr Trump, don't play with the lion's tail," warned President Hassan Rouhani in July: "War with Iran is the mother of all wars."

But he added, "Peace with Iran is the mother of all peace."

[Aug 06, 2018] Trump Warns Allies Risk Severe Consequences If They Violate Iran Sanctions Zero Hedge

Aug 06, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

With the hours ticking by ahead of Washington's re-imposition of a slew of economic sanctions on Iran, President Trump has just released a statement confirming the narrative he would prefer Americans believe.

Just hours after the European Union issued a statement Monday ahead of when renewed US sanctions are set to snap back against Iran after midnight US Eastern time, saying it "deeply regrets" the sanctions and will take immediate action to protect European companies still doing business with Iran.

Trump makes it clear that any violation (among America's allies) will not be tolerated...

"The Trump Administration intends to fully enforce the sanctions reimposed against Iran , and those who fail to wind down activities with Iran risk severe consequences. "

The first set of sanctions will hit at the Iranian financial system, including Iranian government purchases of US dollars and its gold trade and government bond sales. The US' dominant role in the world's financial system means it has been able to pressure countries and companies into compliance, though China remains a key holdout.

"The JCPOA, a horrible, one-sided deal, failed to achieve the fundamental objective of blocking all paths to an Iranian nuclear bomb," Trump said Monday, defining that its policy as applying "maximum economic pressure on the Iranian regime."

The US denies it is seeking regime change, but rather aims to "modify the regime's behavior," according to an administration official.

A US administration official said the Iranian government was using financial resources freed up by the nuclear deal "to spread human misery." The US was seeking now to address the "totality of the Iranian threat" in the Middle East.

"None of this needs to happen," an official said on sanctions. Trump is willing to meet the Iranian leadership "any time" for talks," the official noted. * * *

Full Statement below:

REIMPOSING TOUGH SANCTIONS: President Donald J. Trump, Administration is taking action to reimpose sanctions lifted under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

In connection with the withdrawal from the JCPOA, the Administration laid out two wind-down periods of 90 days and 180 days for business activities in or involving Iran.

The purchase or acquisition of United States bank notes by the Government of Iran.

Iran, trade in gold and other precious metals.

Graphite, aluminum, steel, coal, and software used in industrial processes.

Transactions related to the Iranian rial.

Activities relating to Iran's issuance of sovereign debt

Iran, automotive sector.

Iran, port operators and energy, shipping, and shipbuilding sectors.

Iran, petroleum-related transactions.

Transactions by foreign financial institutions with the Central Bank of Iran.

ENSURING FULL ENFORCEMENT: President Trump will continue to stand up to the Iranian regime's aggression, and the United States will fully enforce the reimposed sanctions.

The regime has used this funding to support terrorism, promote ruthless regimes, destabilize the region, and abuse the human rights of its own people.

PROTECTING OUR NATIONAL SECURITY: The JCPOA was defective at its core and failed to guarantee the safety of the American people.

The regime continues to threaten the United States and our allies, exploit the international financial system, and support terrorism and foreign proxies.

* * *

The initial reaction in markets was modest aside from in the oil complex where prices spiked...

[Aug 05, 2018] Has US misread the Iranian street

Aug 05, 2018 | www.csmonitor.com

"The hatred, the distrust, the dissatisfaction toward the establishment is growing here, no question about it," says the analyst. "People are protesting here and there. But what Trump is doing" makes the prospect of a popular uprising even more distant.

Citing "current America and these policies," which had shown the US to be "totally unreliable," Tehran dismissed an offer by Mr. Trump Monday to meet Iranian leaders with "no preconditions." The White House later clarified that it has no plans to change its policy of ratcheting up pressure and sanctions on Iran.

Ordinary Iranians have taken to Twitter using the hashtags #ShutUpTrump and #StopMeddlingInIran to condemn US actions.

"Trump's craziness has no end. But our unity is endless, too. So the more he shows his teeth, the more we will show our fists," says Saeed, a clean-shaven student of mechanical engineering at Azad University in Tehran who says he supports reformist politicians.

"We have passed all those hurdles in the past and this one, although it is more serious than ever, I'm sure we will successfully leave behind," says Saeed, who only gave his first name. "It is Trump who will be thrown away or, in the words of the Supreme Leader [Ayatollah Ali Khamenei], will be 'thrown into the dust bin of history.' We will stand behind the establishment forever."

Mutual hostility between the US and Iran has defined the geopolitical strife between these arch foes since Iran's 1979 Islamic Revolution.

... ... ...

Yet today Iranians also are reeling from being included – alongside Somalis and Yemenis – in a blanket seven-nation White House travel ban, even though an estimated one million Iranian-Americans live in the US.

They are baffled by Trump's unilateral US withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal. And they are feeling the bite of new US sanctions designed to put "unprecedented" economic pressure on Iran by cutting it off from the outside world, forcing all third-country business to withdraw, and blocking the sale of any Iranian oil.

[Aug 03, 2018] Syria war US-led strikes on Raqqa may be war crimes, Amnesty International says

Jun 05, 2018 | www.cnn.com

Airstrikes by the US-led coalition in Raqqa, Syria, probably breached international humanitarian law and potentially amount to war crimes, according to a report by Amnesty International that is being hotly contested by the Pentagon.

The rights group accuses the coalition of killing and injuring thousands of civilians in attacks that were at times "disproportionate or indiscriminate," during its offensive to flush ISIS militants from their de facto capital. "The coalition's claims that its precision air campaign allowed it to bomb (ISIS) out of Raqqa while causing very few civilian casualties do not stand up to scrutiny," said Amnesty's senior crisis response adviser, Donatella Rovera. "On the ground in Raqqa we witnessed a level of destruction comparable to anything we've seen in decades of covering the impact of wars."

... ... ...

The report, "War of Annihilation," details the loss of civilian life in Raqqa, based on interviews with 112 civilians at the sites of 42 coalition airstrikes. It illustrates the cases of four civilian families who, between them, lost 90 relatives and neighbors, including 39 from one family alone. Almost all were killed by coalition airstrikes, the report alleges.

... ... ...

The coalition's offensive in Raqqa began a year ago, with US, British and French forces taking part. Tens of thousands of airstrikes were carried out in the city, Amnesty said, adding that US forces "admitted to firing 30,000 artillery rounds during the offensive." It said US forces were responsible for 90% of coalition strikes.

[Aug 03, 2018] Would War With Iran Doom Trump by Pat Buchanan

Aug 03, 2018 | www.unz.com

A war with Iran would define, consume and potentially destroy the Trump presidency, but exhilarate the neocon never-Trumpers who most despise the man.

Why, then, is President Donald Trump toying with such an idea?

Looking back at Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria and Yemen, wars we began or plunged into, what was gained to justify the cost in American blood and treasure, and the death and destruction we visited upon that region? How has our great rival China suffered by not getting involved?

Oil is the vital strategic Western interest in the Persian Gulf. Yet a war with Iran would imperil, not secure, that interest.

Mass migration from the Islamic world, seeded with terrorist cells, is the greatest threat to Europe from the Middle East. But would not a U.S. war with Iran increase rather than diminish that threat?

Would the millions of Iranians who oppose the mullahs' rule welcome U.S. air and naval attacks on their country? Or would they rally behind the regime and the armed forces dying to defend their country?

"Mr Trump, don't play with the lion's tail," warned President Hassan Rouhani in July: "War with Iran is the mother of all wars."

But he added, "Peace with Iran is the mother of all peace."

Rouhani left wide open the possibility of peaceful settlement.

Trump's all-caps retort virtually invoked Hiroshima: "Never, ever threaten the United States again or you will suffer consequences the like of which few throughout history have suffered before."

When Trump shifted and blurted out that he was open to talks -- "No preconditions. They want to meet? I'll meet." -- Secretary of State Mike Pompeo contradicted him: Before any meeting, Iran must change the way they treat their people and "reduce their malign behavior."

We thus appear to be steering into a head-on collision.

For now that Trump has trashed the nuclear deal and is reimposing sanctions, Iran's economy has taken a marked turn for the worse.

Its currency has lost half its value. Inflation is surging toward Venezuelan levels. New U.S. sanctions will be imposed this week and again in November. Major foreign investments are being canceled. U.S. allies are looking at secondary sanctions if they do not join the strangulation of Iran.

Tehran's oil exports are plummeting along with national revenue.

Demonstrations and riots are increasingly common.

Rouhani and his allies who bet their futures on a deal to forego nuclear weapons in return for an opening to the West look like fools to their people. And the Revolutionary Guard Corps that warned against trusting the Americans appears vindicated.

Iran's leaders have now threatened that when their oil is no longer flowing freely and abundantly, Arab oil may be blocked from passing through the Strait of Hormuz out to Asia and the West.

Any such action would ignite an explosion in oil prices worldwide and force a U.S. naval response to reopen the strait. A war would be on.

Yet the correlation of political forces is heavily weighted in favor of driving Tehran to the wall. In the U.S., Iran has countless adversaries and almost no advocates. In the Middle East, Israelis, Saudis and the UAE would relish having us smash Iran.

Among the four who will decide on war, Trump, Pompeo and John Bolton have spoken of regime change, while Defense Secretary James Mattis has lately renounced any such strategic goal.

With Israel launching attacks against Iranian-backed militia in Syria, U.S. ships and Iranian speedboats constantly at close quarters in the Gulf, and Houthi rebels in Yemen firing at Saudi tankers in the Bab el-Mandeb entrance to the Red Sea, a military clash seems inevitable.

While America no longer has the ground forces to invade and occupy an Iran four times the size of Iraq, in any such war, the U.S., with its vastly superior air, naval and missile forces, would swiftly prevail.

But if Iran called into play Hezbollah, the Shiite militias in Syria and Iraq, and sectarian allies inside the Arab states, U.S. casualties would mount and the Middle East could descend into the kind of civil-sectarian war we have seen in Syria these last six years.

Any shooting war in the Persian Gulf could see insurance rates for tankers soar, a constriction of oil exports, and surging prices, plunging us into a worldwide recession for which one man would be held responsible: Donald Trump.

How good would that be for the GOP or President Trump in 2020?

And when the shooting stopped, would there be installed in Iran a liberal democracy, or would it be as it was in Hosni Mubarak's Egypt, with first the religious zealots taking power, and then the men with guns.

If we start a war with Iran, on top of the five in which we are engaged still, then the party that offers to extricate us will be listened to, as Trump was listened to, when he promised to extricate us from the forever wars of the Middle East.

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of a new book, "Nixon's White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever."

Copyright 2018 Creators.com.

[Jul 29, 2018] Russia can mediate a grand bargain on Syria

Jul 25, 2018 | blogs.rediff.com

The prevailing impression is that Russia plays a hugely influential role in the Syrian conflict. But it is equally the case that there are serious limits to what Russia can do and/or is willing to do to influence the future trajectory of the conflict.

Russia and the US have managed through joint efforts to bring the conflict in southwestern Syria to an end. This has been possible because the Syrian government forces undertook the operations against extremist groups in Daraa province without involving the Iranian military advisors or Hezbollah (overtly, at least.) In turn, this provided Israel with a a face-saving pretext to swallow the bitter pill – namely, accept the fait accompli of the decimation of its proxy groups in the border region with Syria.

However, Israel still swears that it will ensure the rollback of Iranian presence in all of Syria. PM Netanyahu is meeting Russian President Vladimir Putin on July 11 to discuss the subject ahead of the Helsinki summit on July 16 between President Trump and Putin.

What are the prospects of Russia playing ball with Israel and Trump to "evict" the Iranians from Syrian soil? Frankly, "zero". When asked for comment on the subject at a media interaction in Moscow on July 4, this is how Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov responded:

Evidently, what Lavrov meant was that the Iranian presence in Syria is "legitimate" under international law. He then added:

So, what we get here is the Russian position, as follows: 'It is not for Moscow (or for Washington) to dictate to Tehran that it should not indulge in any presence outside its territorial borders in foreign countries. The Iranian presence in Syria cannot be viewed in isolation without taking into consideration the highly complicated Middle East security situation where regional states are pursuing policies in their self-interests which are often working at cross purposes. Therefore, the solution – in Syria or elsewhere in the region – lies in the regional states resolving their differences at the negotiating table.'

Lavrov was frank in underscoring that it is "absolutely unrealistic" to demand that "Iran should leave, stay within its borders, and everything will be wonderful."

However, this doesn't mean that there is nothing for Trump and Putin to discuss at Helsinki regarding Iran. Interestingly, NSA John Bolton held out some meaningful signals during his CBS News interview last Sunday when asked about Helsinki summit. He said:

Significantly, this has been the second time in the past 3 weeks that the Trump administration taken note of certain moderation in Iran's regional policies lately. (Trump himself had flagged this earlier – twice – during his press conference in Singapore following the summit with Kim Jong Un on June 12.)

Clearly, what Lavrov said on Wednesday need not necessarily be the last word. Lavrov met Iranian FM Zarif on the sidelines of the foreign minister level meeting of the remaining guarantors of the Iran deal (EU, UK, France, Germany, Russia and China) in Vienna today. Trust Russian diplomacy to work on an approach that somehow connects the various dots in the jigsaw puzzle – Iran nuclear deal, sanctions against Iran, Syrian conflict, Israel-Iran tensions, US-Iran standoff, energy security and so on. The point is, Russia is uniquely placed – on talking terms with both the US and Israel on one side and Iran and Syria on the other side.

[Jul 27, 2018] Natylie's Place Analysis Book Reviews on U.S. Foreign Policy and Russia

Jul 27, 2018 | natyliesbaldwin.com

Alexander Mercouris cuts through the hyperbole and provides a detailed analysis of what actually went on at the Helsinki Summit between Putin and Trump. Some pertinent excerpts include the following regarding rumors of a "grand bargain" to sell out Iran in Syria to appease Israel, the Gulf states and Washington, which was always a fairy tale:

On the subject of Syria, in the weeks leading up to the summit there were some media reports suggesting that Donald Trump was coming under pressure from Israel, the Saudis and the United Arab Emirates to agree a deal at the summit with Putin whereby Russia would be granted sanctions relief and possibly even recognition of Crimea, US troops in Syria would be withdrawn, and in return the Russians would agree that Iranian forces would be expelled from Syria.

The Russians were clearly worried by these reports. Not only did they go out of their way to deny them, but Putin and Lavrov held talks in Moscow on 12th July 2018 with Ali Akbar Velayati, Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei's Special Adviser on International Relations, in order to reassure the Iranians that they were not true.

.Contrary to what some people are saying, I think it is most unlikely that Putin would have given Netanyahu any assurances that Russia would act to rein in Iranian activities in Syria.If Netanyahu asked Putin for such assurances (which I also think unlikely) Putin would almost certainly have told him what the Russians always say when faced with requests for such assurances: Iran and Syria are sovereign states and Russia cannot interfere in arrangements two sovereign states make with each other.

I suspect that the source of some of the stories about a 'grand bargain' between Putin and Trump involving the role of the Iranians in Syria is the regular discussions the Russians have with the Israelis, the Iranians and the Syrians whereby the Russians routinely pass on to the Iranians and the Syrians Israeli concerns about the presence of Iranian forces in Syria in particular locations as well as Israeli concerns about specific actions which the Iranians take.

.The Russians are not engaged here in discussions over some sort of 'grand bargain' to remove all Iranian troops from Syria, which as I have said they would see as counterproductive and impossible. Rather they are engaged in the classic diplomatic exercise of conflict prevention: keeping the Israelis, the Iranians and the Syrians informed about each other's moves and red lines in order to prevent an uncontrolled escalation of the conflict between them, which might risk an all-out war, which nobody wants, and which the Russians are doing their best to prevent.

Recent reports of an understanding between the Israelis, the Iranians and the Syrians supposedly brokered by the Russians whereby Iranian forces agreed not to participate in the Syrian army's ongoing military operations in south west Syria close to the Israeli occupied Golan Heights are a case in point.

The Iranians and the Syrians agreed to this, not because the Russians forced them to but because it is in their interest to. The Syrian army does not need Iranian help to defeat the Jihadis in southwest Syria so keeping the Iranians away from the area allows the Syrians to clear the area of the Jihadis without risking a military confrontation with Israel.

[Jul 23, 2018] A link to an article on how Western NGOs and terrorist groups hire Syrian refugees as actors in their videos through social media sites

Jul 23, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Jen , Jul 22, 2018 6:29:55 PM | 21

Basil @ 11:

Thanks for posting those links. I just had a look at Vanessa Beeley's blog and found a link to an article on how Western NGOs and terrorist groups hire Syrian refugees as actors in their videos through social media sites (in particular social media sites that advertise jobs).

https://en.insidesyriamc.com/2018/07/12/breaking-syrian-opposition-and-western-ngos-hire-actors-for-chemical-weapons-provocation/

Unfortunately (and understandably perhaps, given the risk that might be involved) the people at Inside Syria Media Center did not go far enough in their investigation to find out where the money to pay the actors in these "documentaries" comes from.

[Jul 23, 2018] Christianity was formed after Jesus was executed to protect the money lenders as a protest against debt slavery

Notable quotes:
"... You don't need to "evacuate" aid workers & paramedics, because they have nothing to offer, nothing to fear and want to stay and help people. You DO evacuate special forces & trained proxies. Because you spent money putting them there and the last thing you want is them getting caught or killed. ..."
"... So this is basically a brilliant way of getting hundreds of key ISIS figures our of Syria and resettled into Western countries. Just tidy them up and give them a white helmet. Do these sound like White Helmets to you? ..."
"... Who cares what actually happens to the real White Helmets, the West certainly don't. Especially as the real White Helmets and their families were mainly up in the north, Idlib, hundreds of miles from the Israeli border with no way of getting there. This is a sham. The key ISIS operatives are getting out via Israel while the ones that don't matter are on buses to Idlib, currently blocked as they try to pass through Iranian controlled territory. ..."
Jul 23, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

White Helmets are connected to Mo$$ad and MI6

adam gadahn , Jul 22, 2018 3:16:00 PM | 4
White Helmets "Rescued" By Israel Via Golan Heights In Overnight Operation

why?

You don't need to "evacuate" aid workers & paramedics, because they have nothing to offer, nothing to fear and want to stay and help people. You DO evacuate special forces & trained proxies. Because you spent money putting them there and the last thing you want is them getting caught or killed.

So this is basically a brilliant way of getting hundreds of key ISIS figures our of Syria and resettled into Western countries. Just tidy them up and give them a white helmet. Do these sound like White Helmets to you?

Maadeh Nassar "The Commander of the 'Golan Knights Brigade", Ahmad Al-Nuhas Commander of the "Brigade of the Sword of the Levant", Alaa Halaki "Commander of the Ababel army" and Abu Ratib Nassar, leader of the 'Golan Knights Brigade" escape to Israelearly this morning.

No, me neither.

Who cares what actually happens to the real White Helmets, the West certainly don't. Especially as the real White Helmets and their families were mainly up in the north, Idlib, hundreds of miles from the Israeli border with no way of getting there. This is a sham. The key ISIS operatives are getting out via Israel while the ones that don't matter are on buses to Idlib, currently blocked as they try to pass through Iranian controlled territory.

as for the cia,mi6 mossad sas white helmets they put out a statement thanking george clooney and asking for the return of the oscar lost somewhere in the syriana

adam gadahn , Jul 22, 2018 3:24:56 PM | 5

White Helmets are Mo$$ad and MI6. A branch of AlQaeda terrorists. The one we were told did 9/11(LOL!). 800 members and their families rescued and will go to germany,Canada, France and Britain. Possible US too.

the rescue mission This shows you clearly who was behind the war in Syria. through idf heliborne operations of ISIS leaders, especially the foreign ones. Netanyahu said that TRUMP and Trudeau asked him to evacuate them.


lol lol
into talmud infinity
my life already

[Jul 22, 2018] Israel helping move 800 White Helmets out of Syria via Jordan report -- RT World News

Notable quotes:
"... "members of a Syrian civil organization and their families" ..."
"... "additional European countries." ..."
"... "due to an immediate threat to their lives," ..."
"... "an exceptional humanitarian gesture." ..."
"... "humanitarian aid to civilians, women and children" ..."
"... "will not accept any Syrian refugee to our territory." ..."
"... "political solution." ..."
"... If you like this story, share it with a friend! ..."
Jul 22, 2018 | www.rt.com

Some 800 members of the controversial Western-backed White Helmets will be brought to Jordan through Israel to be reportedly resettled later in the UK, Canada, and Germany. The UN is overseeing the exodus. Hundreds of the self-described aid workers, who operate exclusively in rebel-held areas, have crossed into Israel from southwestern Syria overnight on Sunday, German tabloid Bild reported, citing its own correspondents in the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights.

Evacuation of white helmets plus families still ongoing here at syrian israeli border. Plan is to drive asap to jordan. @BILD pic.twitter.com/KcBOdduM2t

-- Paul Ronzheimer (@ronzheimer) July 22, 2018

The White Helmets' passage has been facilitated by Israel, according to Bild, which reports they have been transferred through an Israeli military base. The evacuation kicked off at 9:30 pm local time on Saturday and was expected to continue into the night. Several roads were put on lockdown by the army and police as part of preparations for the exodus.

On Sunday morning, the IDF's Twitter account confirmed that Israeli forces had evacuated "members of a Syrian civil organization and their families" at the request of the US and "additional European countries." In a number of subsequent tweets, the military said that some "civilians" were rescued from southern Syria "due to an immediate threat to their lives," and because Israel wanted to make "an exceptional humanitarian gesture."

Following an Israeli Government directive and at the request of the United States and additional European countries, the IDF recently completed a humanitarian effort to rescue members of a Syrian civil organization and their families

-- IDF (@IDFSpokesperson) July 22, 2018

The civilians were subsequently transferred to a neighboring country. Israel continues to maintain a non-intervention policy regarding the Syrian conflict and continues to hold the Syrian regime accountable for all activities in Syrian territory

-- IDF (@IDFSpokesperson) July 22, 2018

It did not clarify to which organization, if any, the evacuees belonged.

Israel previously admitted that it has been providing humanitarian assistance to Syrian militants, treating over 1,000 wounded rebel fighters in its hospitals. According to Israel's ex-Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon, the assistance was granted under the condition that the militants would not let Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) and Al-Qaeda affiliated fighters slip into Israel and would not do any harm to the population of Druze villages.

Read more FILE PHOTO © Hosam Katan White Helmets are helping Syrian militants prepare 'false flag' chemical attack – Idlib residents

However, Israel has been adamant about not taking in Syrian refugees, with hawkish Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman stating last month that while the Jewish state keeps providing "humanitarian aid to civilians, women and children" camped on the Syrian side of the border, it "will not accept any Syrian refugee to our territory."

It is supposed that the White Helmets will not stay in the Jewish state for longer than is needed to transport them to the Jordanian border. The transfer has been confirmed by Jordanian Foreign Ministry spokesman Ambassador Mohammad al-Kayed, as cited by Ammon News.

Al-Kayed said that Jordan had granted the request on purely humanitarian grounds after Britain, Canada and Germany each reportedly pledged to take in a share of the White Helmets fleeing what they describe as potential persecution by Damascus. Last month, Jordan, which already hosts some 1.3 million displaced Syrians, said it won't take any more in, stressing the need for a "political solution."

Once in the Jordanian territory, the Syrians will be confined to a specially designated restricted area where they will stay for a maximum of three months until handed over to one of the Western countries, Al-Kayed noted , adding that the scheme should not place any additional burden on Jordan, as the organization of their passage has been arranged by the UN.

Read more White Helmets member walks on the rubble of destroyed buildings in Eastern Ghouta © Abdulmonam Eassa / AFP 'Propaganda organization': White Helmets 'engage in anti-Assad activities' – author Sy Hersh to RT

It's yet unclear how the members of the White Helmets, who have on multiple occasions been reported as dealing with Al-Qaeda-linked militants, will be distributed among the potential recipients, with Bild reporting that it is yet unknown how many of them will come Germany's way.

A looming evacuation of the White Helmets from Syria was first reported by CBS News on July 14. The broadcaster reported that the issue was raised by US allies in conversations with US President Donald Trump on the sidelines of the two-day NATO summit on July 11- July 12.

Reportedly, UK Prime Minister Theresa May personally interceded on the White Helmets' behalf during Trump's visit to the UK, a day after the summit.

On Friday, CBS News reported that the operation was to be launched "very quickly" and proceed in accordance with a joint plan, thrashed out by the US, the UK and Canada.

If you like this story, share it with a friend!

[Jul 22, 2018] MSM has made patently false claims about Douma false flag: the coverage can be viewed as classic fake news case

Jul 22, 2018 | caucus99percent.com

Millions of YouTube viewers have been captivated by the 'Syrian hero boy' who manages to rescue a little girl while under gunfire. Now a group of Norwegian filmmakers have told BBC Trending they are behind it. They say it was filmed on location in Malta this summer with the intention of being presented as real. Lars Klevberg, a 34-year-old film director based in Oslo, wrote a script after watching news coverage of the conflict in Syria. He says he deliberately presented the film as reality in order to generate a discussion about children in conflict zones. Were they comfortable making a film that potentially deceived millions of people? "I was not uncomfortable," Klevberg said. "By publishing a clip that could appear to be authentic we hoped to take advantage of a tool that's often used in war; make a video that claims to be real. We wanted to see if the film would get attention and spur debate, first and foremost about children and war. We also wanted to see how the media would respond to such a video."

A tool that's often used in war; make a video that claims to be real. Well, that sounds like warmongering propaganda to me, but hey, if Norwegian filmmakers want to wrap it up in a candy coating of concern for children, well, that, too is a tool that's often used in war. When all else fails, the proponents of war always pull out "save the little children." It used to be "keep that brute from molesting your women," but now that women are emancipated, sort of, it's usually "save the little children."

gjohnsit on Wed, 07/18/2018 - 5:35pm

On April 20, CNN finished a report on fake news with this statement :
If the channels are monetized -- which InfoWars has previously claimed they are -- the major newspapers could have unknowingly supported disinformation and conspiracy.
Ads also appeared on The Jimmy Dore Show channel, a far-left YouTube channel that peddles conspiracy theories, such as the idea that Syrian chemical weapons attacks are hoaxes.

Jimmy Dore questioned whether the attack even happened, and if it did happen, who did it.
That made him a kook, even with liberals.

I apologize and stand corrected. Someone needs to do something about the Jimmy imposter who looks like him, has the same show name, and posts videos with titles saying Syrian chemical attacks are a false flag operation. I don't get why someone would do him dirty like that.

-- Ana Kasparian (@AnaKasparian) 24 April 2018

Yea. False Flag Attack. That would be nuts, amirite?
So the OPCW released their first report on the Douma chemical attack.

The OPCW released the results of their fact-finding mission regarding allegations of chemical weapons use in Douma on April 7, 2018. The mission included on-site visits to collect environmental samples, interviews with witnesses, and data collection. The OPCW writes that lab analysis of the samples "show that no organophosphorous nerve agents or their degradation products were detected in the environmental samples or in the plasma samples taken from alleged casualties." The report does state that "explosive residues" and "various chlorinated organic chemicals" were found in samples from two sites. The fact finding mission team is still working on drafting final conclusions.

No organophosphorous nerve agents or their degradation products were detected in the environmental samples or in the plasma samples taken from alleged casualties."

These findings contradict the White House assessment which was released on April 13th, just days after the alleged attack. "A significant body of information points to the regime using chlorine in its bombardment of Duma, while some additional information points to the regime also using the nerve agent sarin," the White House stated.

Without waiting for a proper investigation President Trump ordered the United States military to drop more than 100 Tomahawk missiles on Damascus. The U.S. relied on alleged blood and urine data to justify this attack, but the OPCW makes no mention of any blood or urine samples.

Despite the fact that the interim OPCW report only mentions chlorine two times, the corporate media ran several headlines which state that chlorine was found in the samples. "Interim OPCW report finds proof of chlorine used in Syria's Douma," Al Jazeera wrote. Reuters ran a story titled "Chemical weapons agency finds 'chlorinated' chemicals in Syria's Douma," and later issued a correction to clarify that it what the OPCW found was "'various chlorinated organic chemicals' instead of chlorine." The BBC also changed its headline from "chlorine gas" to "possible chlorine."

So the OPCW found evidence of a chlorine attack then? No, that isn't what they reported. Check out what the MilitaryTimes said about the report.

The team said in its initial report on Douma that two industrial gas cylinders were discovered at different locations in the town: one on a top-floor patio and the other on a bed in a top-floor apartment. It said it is working to establish how they got there and whether they are linked to the alleged attack.

The team said it "needs to continue its work to draw final conclusions regarding the alleged incident and, to this end, the investigation is ongoing."

Louis Charbonneau, the U.N. director for Human Rights Watch, said the OPCW should "move quickly to finish its investigation and determine whether a chemical weapon attack occurred."

So this is essentially what we know and don't know:

1) no nerve agent attack happened
2) the OPCW still hasn't determined if a chemical attack occurred, despite the mainstream media saying otherwise (i.e. fake news).
3) the only chlorine found was in cylinders on the top floors of apartments.

As for those cylinders, is it likely the Syrian army would sneak them into rebel-held areas, and carry them to top floors before releasing the chlorine?
Or would they more likely simply drop the chlorine from helicopters?

4) Jimmy Dore has not been proven wrong, and some of what Dore has claimed has been proven right. Only the MSM has made patently false claims.

So the people doing the most screaming about fake news are the ones most wrong.

[Jul 19, 2018] A Tale of Two Poisonings by Philip Giraldi

Notable quotes:
"... Repeated requests by Russia to obtain a sample of the alleged nerve agent for testing were rejected by the British government in spite of the fact that a military grade nerve agent would have surely killed both the Skripals as well as anyone else within 100 yards. As the latest British account of the location of the alleged poison places it on the door handle of the Scripals' residence, the timetable element was also unconvincing. That meant that the two would have spent three hours, including a stop at a pub and lunch, before succumbing on a park bench. Military grade nerve agents kill instantly. ..."
"... Nevertheless, the politically weak May government, desperately seeking a formidable foreign enemy to rally around against, insisted that Russia, almost certainly acting under orders from Vladimir Putin himself, carried out the killing of a former British double agent who had been released from a Kremlin prison in a spy swap and who was no longer capable of doing any damage to Russia. Putin apparently did all that in spite of the fact that he had an election coming up and would be the host of the World Cup in the summer, an event that would be an absolute top priority to have go smoothly. ..."
Jul 17, 2018 | www.unz.com

Poisoning enemies has a long history with Augustus Caesar's wife Livia allegedly a master of the art, as were the Borgias in Renaissance Italy. Lately there has been a resurgence in allegations regarding the use of poisons of various types by several governments. The claims are particularly damaging both morally and legally as international conventions regard the use of poisonous chemical compounds as particularly heinous, condemning their use because they, when employed in quantity, become "weapons of mass destruction," killing indiscriminately and horribly, making no distinction between combatants and civilians. Their use is considered to be a "war crime" and the government officials who ordered their deployment are "war criminals," subject to prosecution by the International Criminal Court in The Hague.

There are two important poisoning stories that have made the news recently. Both are follow-ups to reporting that has appeared in the news over the past few months and both are particularly interesting because they tend to repudiate earlier coverage that had been largely accepted by several governments as well as the media and the chattering class of paid experts that appears on television.

The first story relates to the poisoning of former Russian intelligence agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in March. There was quite a bit that was odd about the Skripal case, which relied from the start " on circumstantial evidence and secret intelligence." And there was inevitably a rush to judgment. British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson blamed Russia less than forty-eight hours after the Skripals were found unconscious on a bench in Salisbury England, too soon for any chemical analysis of the alleged poisoning to have taken place.

British Prime Minister Theresa May threw gasoline on the fire when she addressed Parliament shortly thereafter to blame the Kremlin and demand a Russian official response to the event in 36 hours, declaring that the apparent poisoning was "very likely" caused by a made-in-Russia nerve agent referred to by its generic name novichok. The British media was soon on board with a vengeance, spreading the government line that such a highly sensitive operation would require the approval of President Vladimir Putin himself. The expulsion of Russian diplomats soon followed with the United States and other countries following suit.

Repeated requests by Russia to obtain a sample of the alleged nerve agent for testing were rejected by the British government in spite of the fact that a military grade nerve agent would have surely killed both the Skripals as well as anyone else within 100 yards. As the latest British account of the location of the alleged poison places it on the door handle of the Scripals' residence, the timetable element was also unconvincing. That meant that the two would have spent three hours, including a stop at a pub and lunch, before succumbing on a park bench. Military grade nerve agents kill instantly.

The head of Britain's own chemical weapons facility Porton Down even contradicted claims made by May, Foreign Minister Boris Johnson, and British Ambassador in Moscow Laurie Bristow. The lab's Chief Executive Gary Aitkenhead testified that he did not know if the nerve agent was actually produced in Russia, a not surprising observation as the chemical formula was revealed to the public in a scientific paper in 1992 and there are an estimated twenty countries capable of producing it. There are also presumed stocks of novichok remaining in independent countries that once were part of the Soviet Union, to include Russia's enemy du jour Ukraine, while a false flag operation by the British themselves, the CIA or Mossad, is not unthinkable.

Nevertheless, the politically weak May government, desperately seeking a formidable foreign enemy to rally around against, insisted that Russia, almost certainly acting under orders from Vladimir Putin himself, carried out the killing of a former British double agent who had been released from a Kremlin prison in a spy swap and who was no longer capable of doing any damage to Russia. Putin apparently did all that in spite of the fact that he had an election coming up and would be the host of the World Cup in the summer, an event that would be an absolute top priority to have go smoothly.

Now there has been an actual death in Amesbury near Salisbury that has been attributed to novichok. On June 30 th , Charlie Rowley and Dawn Sturgess were admitted to hospital after being found unconscious. Sturgess died eight days later. The May government has not yet blamed it on Putin or even on a clumsy Russian operative that might have inadvertently left behind a vial of poison or a used syringe, though Home Secretary Sajid Javid came close to that when he suggested that Russia was using Britain as a "dumping ground for poisons." Police suggestions that the poisoned couple appear to have handled novichok infused material of some kind before succumbing appears to be contradicted by inability to find the actual source of the alleged exposure.

British government dancing around the issue notwithstanding, there have been suggestions that the closest source of more novichok might well be the U.K. government labs at nearby Porton Down, only seven miles from Salisbury and Amesbury, which increases suspicion about the original story promulgated by Downing Street. Would the British government actually poison an expendable ex-Russian spy and his daughter to divert attention from a domestic political problem at home? It's worth considering as the "blame it all on Putin narrative" becomes even less credible.

The second story comes from Syria, where there is also a Russian hand as Moscow is aiding the government of Bashar al-Assad. The by now notorious April 7, 2018 alleged chemical attack on the rebel-held Syrian city of Douma was widely blamed by Western countries and the mainstream media on Assad's forces. This resulted in a decision by U.S. President Donald Trump to order massive U.S.-led retaliatory airstrikes against targets reportedly involved in chemical production in and around Damascus.

Trump blamed "animal Assad" for "using nerve agents" and both the media and most European governments followed that line, concluding that Damascus had ordered the chemical attacks a mere moments after videos purporting to show scores of chemical attack victims first surfaced from rebel sources, long before U.S. intelligence could have made its own assessment. A 5-page White House assessment released on April 13th, just days after the alleged attack asserted that sarin was used at Douma , claiming that "A significant body of information points to the regime using chlorine in its bombardment of Duma, while some additional information points to the regime also using the nerve agent sarin."

Independent sources warned at the time that not a single neutral observer was on the ground to confirm that chemical agents launched by the Syrian government had, in fact, been used, but were ignored. All of the sources reporting the attack were either affiliated with the rebels who occupied the area or were not physically present in Douma.

Now, finally, three months later, there has been a credible independent report on what was determined about the attack through chemical analysis of traces recovered in Douma. A preliminary report published last Friday by the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) found no traces of any nerve agent like sarin at the site. The OPCW report states this clearly : "No organophosphorous nerve agents or their degradation products were detected in the environmental samples or in the plasma samples taken from alleged casualties."

This means that the Trump Administration claimed to have details relating to an event in a foreign country that it did not know and could not actually confirm to be true. And it used that as a justification for ordering an airstrike that killed people and destroyed targets in Syria. Will the White House respond to the OPCW report and apologize, possibly to include reparations for an unjustified attack on another sovereign nation? Don't hold your breath.

The Salisbury and Douma attacks are illustrative of just what happens when a government is prepared to dissimulate or even lie to go the extra mile to make a case to justify preemptive action that otherwise might be challenged. Theresa May is, unfortunately, still in power and so is Donald Trump. In a better world an outraged public would demand that they be thrown out of office and even possibly subjected to the tender ministrations of the International Criminal Court in The Hague. With power comes accountability, or at least that should be the rule, but it is a dictum that has for some time been ignored. Even given that, one might hope that the blunders will not be repeated, but there is not even any assurance that either May or Trump is much given to "lessons learned" or that a Mike Pence or Boris Johnson would be any better. That is our tragedy.

Philip M. Giraldi, Ph.D., is Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest, a 501(c)3 tax deductible educational foundation that seeks a more interests-based U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East. Website is www.councilforthenationalinterest.org, address is P.O. Box 2157, Purcellville VA 20134 and its email is inform@cnionline.org.


FKA Max , Website July 17, 2018 at 4:29 am GMT

Putin apparently did all that in spite of the fact that he had an election coming up and would be the host of the World Cup in the summer, an event that would be an absolute top priority to have go smoothly.
[...]
Would the British government actually poison an expendable ex-Russian spy and his daughter to divert attention from a domestic political problem at home? It's worth considering as the "blame it all on Putin narrative" becomes even less credible.

Mr. Giraldi,

these were my thoughts at first too, but I looked into the case quite extensively over the last several weeks and came to the conclusion that Putin actually had more of a motive than the British government, et al.

This is my evolution on the Skripals' case:

On Skripal I'm not entirely certain, since I haven't really looked into the case. Also the timing of the incident seems to be not what Putin would have chosen, in my opinion, since it was too close to the soccer World Cup events/celebrations in Russia, and Putin usually tries to be conciliatory with the West before big sporting events like that in Russia, e.g. when he released Khodorkovsky early before the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, for example.

https://www.unz.com/article/revisiting-litvinenko-what-really-happened/#comment-2401031

As I said before, I was agnostic about the Skripal case and tried to keep an open mind about it and not reflexively blame it on (the) Russians (government), but you providing me with this additional information makes me actually more of a believer in the official Western narrative now.

https://www.unz.com/article/revisiting-litvinenko-what-really-happened/#comment-2401541

I'm reaching here, and this is pure speculation on my part, but could it be that the Skripals were poisoned ( March 4, 2018 ) by Putin, et al. to distract from the 200+ Russian mercenaries allegedly killed by U.S. airstrikes in Syria ( February 7, 2018 ) http://www.unz.com/tsaker/book-review-losing-military-supremacy-the-myopia-of-american-strategic-planning-by-andrei-martyanov/#comment-2406731 before the Russian election ( March 18, 2018 )?

https://www.unz.com/article/revisiting-litvinenko-what-really-happened/#comment-2407120

Repeated requests by Russia to obtain a sample of the alleged nerve agent for testing were rejected by the British government in spite of the fact that a military grade nerve agent would have surely killed both the Skripals as well as anyone else within 100 yards.

They mention that only 3 known cases of Novichok agent poisoning had been treated before the cases of the Skripals, so there was very little guidance and experience to go on in how to treat Yulia and her father. https://www.unz.com/article/revisiting-litvinenko-what-really-happened/#comment-2401824

Skripals doctor: 'We expected them not to survive' – BBC News

tac , July 17, 2018 at 5:25 am GMT
@FKA Max

You should watch a recent interview with Walter Litvinenko (father of the deceased Alexander Litvinenko) to hear his startling admissions:

jilles dykstra , July 17, 2018 at 7:17 am GMT
It was hilarious to watch yesterday evening, as the presidential plane had been underway for two and a half hours, the consternation on CNN.
As I expected, the vague accusations about Russian meddling in the elections continued this morning, on CNN.
I remember an interview on CNN before the elections, someoen said 'if Trump wins', the two of CNN burst into laughter.
I do hope Trump survives, politically and fysically.
Luckily is it not very ease to murder a president these days.
On top of that, Sept 11 made many all over the world quite suspicious.
I for one never believed that Russia would be so stupid as to try to murder two former spies in such a stupid way, and without any motive.
MH17 is a similar case.
Assad also is not stupid, he had no interest whatsoever to use poison gas in Syria.
How Arafat died we still do not know, that was done professionally, or maybe not, if I had to kill him I would try to make his death look natural, a clear cause.
Who had a motive is quite clear.
Greg Bacon , Website July 17, 2018 at 9:18 am GMT
Until the unhinged May lets Yulia go free–if she's still alive–and go back to Russia and tell her side of the story, nothing will change.

The so-called Deep State and its willing toady, the corrupt, lying MSM are accomplices in this False Flag and they are the ones that should be in the dock at the ICC. But since the ICC is part of the Deep State, don't expect this to happen.

This Russian bashing has gotten completely out of hand. And now that Putin has stated that the sleazy Russian thief oligarch Browder helped launder 400 million to the DNC-Clinton Mob, it's going to get very interesting, if not dangerous for humanity.

They need a BIG distraction to get the sheeple's thought off the truth that there is NOTHING to the Putin-Trump election meddling, anything might happen, even a repeat of the Israeli masterminded 9/11 False Flag.

Does 'Lucky Larry' own anymore asbestos-laden skyscrapers?

EliteCommInc. , July 17, 2018 at 10:02 am GMT
i would love to make a formal complaint about conspiracies because there are people who will and do make trouble for others. it has taken me a long time to come to that place – but it is no joke as dr. geraldi no doubt knows.

however, one needs the evidence and what has been lacking in all these accusations whether its russia and us elections, chemical weapons in syria, or supposed poisoning of three people formerly associated with russia, there is suspicion, and there is narrative, but little in the way of facts. and if any of these accusations were concerning single individual battling mere gossip and innuendo or other nefarious behaviors, i have learned to discount nothing. look if you can't bring a coupon into a store, wait for coffee without people launching into fits of fear of life . . . then who knows what triggers people's self defense. it apparently dos not take much for the supposed superior people to make their inferiors look off kilt. i just take it granted that when i leave my house, on occasion, i have visitors – as "nutty" as that sounds.

but these cases have multiple researchers and resources to bar on the matter and yet, the evidence is either mere narrative, contradicted or has a variety of explanations just as reasonable or more reasonable. but what we have is an entire population engaged in manufacturing not one but several cases in which the president of the us actually engaged in treason based on sketchy financial dealings with russian banks and financial elites.

and i think this article makes the case that people with power who engage in wielding accusations should be held to the standard of providing evidence. and while i am a little uncomfortable with our president engaging in open debate with our intel community from overseas, his objection is well put. the process of evidence collection and by independent objective observers is unreasonable. yet he found it quite convenient to buy the argument by the same intel agencies for said use in syria. the election is over, but the war about the election, the level of dislike of the elected , i think it is fair to say has never been so widespread and deep such that members of the government or government agencies would sign up to press the matter.

and quip reflctions about the damage being done and "it's all in one's head" just are insufficient to address the issues.

frankly, i think the country's not outraged because they are "drama fatigued" last week in attempting to capture a stray kitten who disappearance has me overly stretched – i never used to like cats – bells rang and doors closed indicating that she had in fact been enclosed on the patio – around two am or so – only to discover a cute little skunk was the detainee. whose release required navigating around the house twice because the door locked actually worked. sometimes the evidence doesn't doesn't reveal what was expected.

as for the kitten, evidence suggests she managed to punch her way through a steel mesh garage vent. now i suspect that someone recently punched a hole in those mesh barriers, but that is speculation on my part, even likely speculation. however, minus the proof that is all it is. a mysterious frustrating event.

who knows maybe the cat and the skunk are pals.

All we like sheep , Website July 17, 2018 at 10:47 am GMT
With the sad demise of the woman of the couple, the continuing make-up story in MSM makes the twist that the nerve agent was found in a perfume bottle. While of these two non-Russian people (who allegedly were former drug-addicts) one may suspect that they pick up any strange bottle from the ground and have a sniff at it, this is completely surrealistic in the case of the Skripals. The difference couldn't be bigger between these two couples. Anyhow, the clue that brings them four together is the vicinity of Porton Down, where chemical weapons are stored & tested.
dearieme , July 17, 2018 at 10:55 am GMT
If I had to guess at what's been going on in Salisbury I'd wonder if a lunatic/evil employee at Porton Down has smuggled out something nasty and is amusing himself with it.
Moi , July 17, 2018 at 11:15 am GMT
Mr. Giraldi, you're telling me the American and Brit governments lie. Who'd have thunk

ps: do we still have people locked up in Gitmo without being charged of a crime? Just wondering

prusmc , Website July 17, 2018 at 11:52 am GMT
@All we like sheep

The author laments that May and Trump are still in office.
She will last longer than he will. Trump will be out in three months either by impeachment and conviction or by other means. None of this clandestine stuff like poisoning but by a military coup. I remember the era of 7 Days in May but that was not serious just a storey teller weaving a good yarn. Today, we have members of Congress and large numbers of the media(probably over 50 percent) calling for a Armed Forces take over.
The probable stumbling block is how to skip Pense and go directly to Speaker Paul Ryan. Or how to dispense with the chain of succession entirely and enshrine Hilary or recall Obama until the emergency is over.
Is Mad Dog the man or will McMaster lead the coup? Remember, anyone wearing more than one star made the elite grade during the Obama regime and some of the one stars had formative years as O-6 and O-5 while Obama ruled supreme.

The Alarmist , July 17, 2018 at 11:52 am GMT

"Military grade nerve agents kill instantly."

Quickly, not instantly. If you had an atropine pen handy, you might survive, though it would leave you immobilised and dazed. If the Skripals were dosed, it would likely have been at or near the bench where they were found. Residue on their clothing might be weak enough to not kill the constable.

Michael Kenny , July 17, 2018 at 12:34 pm GMT
Clearly, Putin's American supporters see the summit as a flop from their champion's point of view.
Tyrion 2 , Website July 17, 2018 at 12:58 pm GMT
@The Alarmist

The only thing the Salisbury incidents provide evidence for is that our culture is prone to hysterical outrage over anything relating to Russia or Putin.

And that's true even if it were rogue elements in the Russian security services.

ploni almoni , July 17, 2018 at 1:44 pm GMT
@FKA Max

Similarly, I was initially skeptical about the Moon landings but with time I have to the conclusion that they are plausible.

rbc , July 17, 2018 at 1:47 pm GMT
What I really loved about the coverage of the Skripal "poisoning" were the pictures of the cops wearing hazmat suits to clean up the park bench. In the same shot birds were hopping around apparently unaffected by the deadly nerve gas. So we're to believe that this stuff could kill a big cop but not a 2 pound pigeon .
Jake , July 17, 2018 at 3:16 pm GMT
British secret service and its 3 main children – CIA, Mossad, Saudi General Intelligence Agency – are morally capable of committing any horror imaginable against civilians, even their own.

The Anglo-Zionist Empire is desperate to find the One Ring That Rules Them All.

Jake , July 17, 2018 at 3:18 pm GMT
@rbc

That's no more absurd than thousands of things promoted as truth by the WASP empires over the past 400 years.

Felix-Culpa , July 17, 2018 at 4:15 pm GMT
@Jake

Yes, like that the Protestant Revolt which still gets called a "Reformation" was anything other than a looting operation.

AnonFromTN , July 17, 2018 at 4:22 pm GMT
@Biff

That's so naïve. When you commit a crime and have witnesses in your custody, you make sure they never talk. "Elementary, Watson", as Holmes used to say.

jacques sheete , July 17, 2018 at 4:24 pm GMT

Shaping a story to fit the agenda

That's why we have "journalists" and "historians," mass media and skoolink (yooniversities included), and I find it amazing that the stories change as fast as the agendas.

edNels , July 17, 2018 at 5:32 pm GMT
@NoseytheDuke

Oh "These Kids today" that old refrain again, and it's getting old too, all the emphasis on kids anyway, from concerns about posterity, to the unending posturing about faux parent related concerns sublimated in one way or another to the other mantra: " oh the Children" thing that phony liberal types do.

But to the point:

What a pity Western "Intelligence" seems to have never heard the story of The Boy Who Cried 'Wolf'.

When do these little monsters ever get a chance to hear childhood stories nowadays glued to their carry style devices, wearable devices, soon inserted devices , to hear any of the old wisdom? It now isn't all that likely. It is more the kids teaching the kids in a modern high tech reality version of Lord of the Flies scenario.

When they are inevitably inducted into the professions as they will, replacing remnants of earlier generations that maybe still had been somewhat exposed to folk tales and stories, or better TV of earlier times, well, don't be surprised that the rank and file of the intelligence industry, like elsewhere is unable personally to easily navigate anything, much less possessing inborn sensibility gained from age old culture and all that. Could it be in the whole Fake News genre too, it seems to indicate some dialectic flaw in thinking, (a priori as it were.) I feel like it's coming from youngsters lacking any frame of reference/experience blundering, not being held to account!
The Brat Pack was given free reign and away they go arrogant to a fault

What was folk knowledge is a cumbersome, anachronistic, vestigial relic of another era, sought to be replaced soon, by robots.

Who needs the f'n brats ?

Bill jones , July 17, 2018 at 5:47 pm GMT
The political filth really have no shame, do they?
chris , July 17, 2018 at 6:12 pm GMT
@jilles dykstra

I think we know that Arafat was poisoned.

exudd1 , July 17, 2018 at 6:39 pm GMT
@Fran Macadam

Well said. Agree completely. Thanks.

Z-man , July 17, 2018 at 6:41 pm GMT
@prusmc

None of this clandestine stuff like poisoning but by a military coup. I remember the era of 7 Days in May but that was not serious just a storey teller weaving a good yarn. Today, we have members of Congress and large numbers of the media(probably over 50 percent) calling for a Armed Forces take over.

Watching too many old movies now , haven't we? LOL!!

The probable stumbling block is how to skip Pense and go directly to Speaker Paul Ryan. Or how to dispense with the chain of succession entirely and enshrine Hilary or recall Obama until the emergency is over.

Ok, now you need to be put down or at least committed. LOL

FKA Max , Website July 17, 2018 at 7:00 pm GMT
@tac

I'm glad Litvinenko Sr. is taken care of in his old age by the Russian state:

BAD CHEMISTRY? Ft. Walter Litvinenko, Father of Alexander Litvinenko

Although he chose to leave Russian of his own will, the authorities were unlikely to welcome him back and his dramatic u-turn looks like a calculated attempt to smooth the way for his return to the country of his birth.

Clearly relishing Mr Litvinenko senior's propaganda gift in the run-up to a presidential election expected to be won by Vladimir Putin next month, Russian state TV said the unhappy exile had run out of money and that electricity and gas had been cut off to his tiny Italian flat for non-payment of bills.
[...]
Alexander Goldfarb, the co-author of a book about the murder and a friend of the late Litvinenko, accused Russian TV of acting in an irresponsible and inhumane manner, saying the Kremlin's propaganda chiefs had exploited his grief and troubled psychological condition.

"They used the troubled psychological state of an elderly man for propaganda purposes in order to whitewash Alexander's killers," he said.

"Walter is going through a really tough time in connection with his wife's death a few months ago and feels lonely. It happens with old people."

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/russia/9057560/Alexander-Litvinenkos-father-calls-his-son-a-traitor.html

Salisbury poisoning: Skripals 'were under Russian surveillance' – http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-44717835

http://www.unz.com/article/revisiting-litvinenko-what-really-happened/#comment-2403171

Skripals 'were under Russian surveillance' – BBC Newsnight

Newsnight's Diplomatic and Defence Editor, Mark Urban, reveals that the Skripals 'were under Russian surveillance' and that he personally had several meetings with Sergei Skripal last year.

AnonFromTN , July 17, 2018 at 7:01 pm GMT
@Bill jones

Did they ever have shame? The world would be much better place if they did.

Bill Jones , July 17, 2018 at 7:40 pm GMT
@FKA Max

"Newsnight's Diplomatic and Defence Editor, Mark Urban, reveals"

Newsnight's Diplomatic and Defence Editor, Mark Urban, claims

there, fixed that for you.

Sean , July 17, 2018 at 8:52 pm GMT
Did you hear the one about the couple who found a bottle of perfume?

https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/6794418/police-have-grainy-cctv-of-russian-spooks-who-carried-out-novichok-attack-on-ex-spy-sergei-skripal-and-his-daughter/

As Mad Frank said, two men together always looks suspicious. https://www.theguardian.com/world/video/2018/mar/06/russian-spy-mystery-cctv-emerges-of-two-people-police-are-looking-for-video

I am very embarrassed for the GRU , they are even more incompetent than the French Secret Service combat swimmers who blew up the that Greenpeace ship. Russia should have sent a Spetsnaz veteran with his trusty entrenching tool to deal with Skripal. Or maybe one of their Kamikazi exploding dogs.

ThreeCranes , July 17, 2018 at 9:18 pm GMT
@tac

Maybe Putin did have them killed or poisoned because Russian intelligence had uncovered their plot to explode a dirty bomb in London which had been set up so as to implicate the Russians. The plotters were foiled and hoist by their own petard.

AnonFromTN , July 17, 2018 at 10:10 pm GMT
@Sean

I tell you a secret. GRU agents, on direct orders from Putin, killed JFK, burnt Giordano Bruno, crucified Christ, and poisoned Socrates. What's more, they are also responsible for the extinction of the dinosaurs. Didn't you suspect that?

Sean , July 17, 2018 at 10:16 pm GMT
@Tyrion 2

Rogue elements once, but not twice. Why is anyone's guess, the eliciting of hysterical outrage ?

Sean , July 17, 2018 at 10:29 pm GMT
@ThreeCranes

Russia seems to be burning its bridges with the West, which may be a deliberate long term strategy by Putin.

Sean , July 17, 2018 at 10:45 pm GMT
@AnonFromTN

I did not even know those you named had ever been in the GRU, let alone they were British moles.

If you wake up and there is snow all over the ground, that is circumstantial evidence that it snowed in the night. When a Russian poisons Russians there is not all this Technical Tom sophistry, and motive is important especially when it supports the circumstantial evidence.

https://www.msn.com/en-gb/news/indepth/brilliant-russian-engineer-poisoned-dozens-of-his-colleagues-at-top-secret-defence-plant-and-left-them-bald-in-botched-revenge-plot-aimed-at-his-boss/ar-AAvHyBm

Prison is full of people who say they are innocent.

unseated , July 18, 2018 at 12:20 am GMT
@prusmc

Trump will be out in three months either by impeachment and conviction or by other means.

I have a friend who said that to me a year ago and another who said it six months ago.

Colin Wright , Website July 18, 2018 at 2:13 am GMT
' Theresa May is, unfortunately, still in power and so is Donald Trump. In a better world an outraged public would demand that they be thrown out of office '

At least in the case of Trump, the problem with rejecting him is, as it always has been, the alternative.

It's literally oppressive that to date, no superior alternative to Trump has emerged. However, like it or not, one hasn't.

bjondo , July 18, 2018 at 2:45 am GMT
@FKA Max

Alexander Goldfarb the promoter of Pussy Riot?

He's certainly legit.

AnonFromTN , July 18, 2018 at 2:55 am GMT
@Colin Wright

Is there a superior alternative to May? If there is, why didn't Brits get rid of that embarrassment? Next to her even John Major looks like an outstanding statesman.

Wally , July 18, 2018 at 2:58 am GMT
@Colin Wright

said:
"It's literally oppressive that to date, no superior alternative to Trump has emerged. However, like it or not, one hasn't."

You mean that little rich 'Marxist' Latina is not a viable alternative?

'Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the 'girl from the Bronx,' raised in one of wealthiest US counties'

https://www.theblaze.com/news/2018/06/30/report-alexandria-ocasio-cortez-the-girl-from-the-bronx-raised-in-one-of-wealthiest-us-counties

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez says: 'Occupy All ICE Offices, Borders, U.S. Airports', 'Occupy All of It'

https://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2018/07/17/alexandria-ocasio-cortez-occupy-all-ice-offices-borders-u-s-airports-occupy-all-of-it/

Intelligent Dasein , Website July 18, 2018 at 3:03 am GMT
Every time I think about it, I do find it truly astonishing that we (the USA) launched a missile salvo into Syria based on an obvious and now proven false flag, and very few people seem to care. This is one of those glaring, "hidden in plain sight" contradictions to the narrative which tells me that, while the Deep State is finally losing some ground, its liquidation is far, far from over and all kinds of things are going to fall apart as this thrashing monster slowly sinks beneath the waves.
Wally , July 18, 2018 at 3:07 am GMT
@prusmc

said:
"Trump will be out in three months either by impeachment and conviction or by other means. "

Yawn. Heard that on election night

'The Left needs to face reality: Trump is winning' : https://nypost.com/2018/06/30/the-left-needs-to-face-reality-trump-is-winning/

Wizard of Oz , July 18, 2018 at 3:24 am GMT
@dearieme

Yes, interesting that PG has only now brought to a UR article that rather obvious possible connection between Porton Down and the nearby poisonings.

I don't think it is one of his major areas of attention. Why else would he include with Trump the unfortunate May as someone he would like to see people rise up against and throw out of office for offences unstated?

Wizard of Oz , July 18, 2018 at 3:27 am GMT
@AnonFromTN

Her performance on Skripal right or wrong is hardly worth mentioning when deciding whether and when she has to go. Compared to Brexit give it a 2 per cent weighting.

Colin Wright , Website July 18, 2018 at 3:29 am GMT
@Wally

My guess is that we haven't heard the last of Ms. Hyphen-Cortez.

"Ocasio-Cortez hedges criticisms of Israel– 'I may not use the right words'
US Politics Philip Weiss on July 15, 2018

Rising Democratic star Alexandria Ocasio-Cortex, soon to go to Congress from NY, all but apologized for using words "massacre" and "occupation" about Israel, saying she spoke as an "activist," and she is no expert on the Middle East and is willing to "learn and evolve." '

She's trainable.

NoseytheDuke , July 18, 2018 at 4:26 am GMT
@Wizard of Oz

Her performance has included telling bald-faced lies, lies that are easily exposed as lies too. This is rarely if ever going to add weight to any personal brand, let alone that of a political leader. She's toast!

byrresheim , July 18, 2018 at 11:45 am GMT
@Felix-Culpa

Indeed, sir.
Indeed.

L Garou , July 18, 2018 at 12:55 pm GMT
The sun never sets on the crimes of the British Empire..

[Jul 19, 2018] Lies About Putin and Syria by Ilana Mercer

Jul 12, 2018 | www.unz.com

On just about every issue, in 2016, candidate Trump ran in opposition to Sen. Lindsey Graham. Donald Trump won the presidency; Lindsey Graham quit the race with a near-zero popularity, as reflected in the polls.

The People certainly loathe the senator from South Carolina. A poll conducted subsequently found that Graham was among the least popular senators.

No wonder. Graham is reliably wrong about most things.

But being both misguided and despised have done nothing to diminish Sen. Graham's popularity with Big Media, left and right. Thus were his pronouncements accorded the customary reverence, during a July 10 segment, on Fox News' "The Story."

Which is when he told anchor Martha MacCallum that, "Putin is not doing anything good in Syria."

Then again, Lindsey is being consistent. The revival of "one of the world's oldest Christian communities," in Syria , is not something the senator we've come to know and loathe would celebrate.

It's true. "A new Syria is emerging from the rubble of war," reports The Economist, a magazine which is every bit as liberal and Russophobic as Graham and his political soul mate, John McCain, but whose correspondents on the ground -- in Aleppo, Damascus and Homs -- have a far greater fidelity to the truth than the terrible two.

"In Homs, the Christian quarter is reviving. Churches have been lavishly restored; a large crucifix hangs over the main street." 'Groom of Heaven,' proclaims a billboard featuring a photo of a Christian soldier killed in the seven-year conflict. And, in their sermons, Orthodox patriarchs praise Mr. Assad for saving the Christian communities."

Don't tell the ailing McCain. It'll only make him miserable, but thanks to Putin, Assad "now controls Syria's spine, from Aleppo in the north to Damascus in the south -- what French colonists once called la Syrie utile (useful Syria). The rebels are confined to pockets along the southern and northern borders."

"Homs, like all of the cities recaptured by the government, now belongs mostly to Syria's victorious minorities: Christians, Shias and Alawites (an esoteric offshoot of Shia Islam from which Mr. Assad hails). These groups banded together against the rebels, who are nearly all Sunni, and chased them out of the cities." (" How a victorious Bashar al-Assad is changing Syria ," The Economist, June 28, 2018.)

A Christian teacher in Homs rejoices, for she no longer must live alongside neighbors "who overnight called you a kafir (infidel)."

The teacher's venom is directed at John McCain's beloved "rebels." Internet selfies abound of McCain mixing it up with leading Sunni "rebels," against whom Putin and Bashar al-Assad were doing battle. Who knows? McCain may even have taken a pic with the infamous "rebel" who decapitated Syrian Franciscan monk Father Francois Murad .

Ignoramuses McCain and Graham had both urged the US to send weapons to the "rebels" -- even as it transpired that the lovelies with whom McCain was cavorting on his sojourns in Syria liked to feast on the lungs of their pro-Assad enemies. A devotee of multiculturalism, Lindsey could probably explain the idiosyncratic cultural symbolism of such savagery.

Infested as it is by globalist ideologues, the permanent establishment of American foreign policy refuses to consider regional, religious, local, even tribal, dynamics in the Middle East. In particular, that the "good" guys in Syria -- a relative term -- are not the Islamist "rebels," with whom the senior Republican senator from Arizona was forever frolicking; but the secular Alawites.

You likely didn't know that Alawites like al-Assad also "flinch at Shia evangelizing. 'We don't pray, don't fast [during Ramadan] and drink alcohol,' says one."

Under Putin's protection, the more civilized Alawite minority (read higher IQ), which has governed Syria since 1966, is in charge again. Duly, reports the anti-Assad Economist, "Government departments are functioning. electricity and water supplies are more reliable than in much of the Middle East. Officials predict that next year's natural-gas production will surpass pre-war levels. The railway from Damascus to Aleppo might resume operations this summer. The National Museum in Damascus, which locked up its prized antiquities for protection, is preparing to reopen to the public."

Good thinking. The "rebels" would have blown Syria's prized antiquities to smithereens.

Given that Islamists are not in charge, the specter of men leaving their women and fleeing Syria has had an upside. Syrian women dominate the workforce. Why, they're even working as "plumbers, taxi-drivers and bartenders." Had Sen. Graham, his friends the "rebels," and their Sunni state sponsors won -- Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar -- would this be possible? Turkey is currently sheltering "Hayat Tahrir al-Sham, a group linked to al-Qaeda, and other Sunni rebels."

Aligned against the Christian-Shia-Alawite alliance are Israel and America, too. They've formed a protective perimeter around rebel holdouts.

Before the breakthrough, when Sunni rebels were gaining ground, Syria's "women donned headscarves," and "non-Muslim businessmen bowed to demands from Sunni employees for prayer rooms. But as the war swung their way, minorities regained their confidence." "Christian women in Aleppo [now] show their cleavage, the internet is unrestricted and social-media apps allow for unfettered communication. Students in cafés openly criticize the regime."

Contra the robotic sloganeering from Lindsey, Nikki Haley and the political establishment, Russia has been pushing Bashar al-Assad to open up Syria's political process and allow for the revival of "multiparty politics."

Alas, the once bitten Assad is twice shy. His attempts, a decade ago, to liberalize Syrian politics resulted in the ascendancy of Sunni fundamentalism, aka Lindsey Grahamnesty's rebels. (The nickname is for the Republican senator's laissez-faire immigration policies, stateside.)

As has Russia called "for foreign forces to leave Syria," Iran's included. Iran commands 80,000 Shia militiamen in Syria. "Skirmishes between the [Iranian] militias and Syrian troops have resulted in scores of deaths. Having defeated Sunni Islamists, army officers say they have no wish to succumb to Shia ones."

It all boils down to national sovereignty. So as to survive the onslaught of the Sunni fundamentalist majority, the endangered Alawite minority formed an alliance with the Iranian Shia, also a minority among the Ummah. Now, civilized and secular Syrians want their country back. In fact, many Syrian "Sunnis prefer Mr. Assad's secular rule to that of Islamist rebels."

Ilana Mercer has been writing a weekly, paleolibertarian column since 1999. She is the author of " Into the Cannibal's Pot: Lessons for America From Post-Apartheid South Africa " (2011) & " The Trump Revolution: The Donald's Creative Destruction Deconstructed " (June, 2016). She's on Twitter , Facebook , Gab & YouTube

[Jul 18, 2018] Syria and geopolitics of oil

Jul 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Peter AU 1 , Jul 17, 2018 6:46:40 PM | 141

Daniel,

It is noticeable that Trump's US attack any Syrian forces coming too close to US occupied zones of al Tanf and Dier Ezzor. Also Trumps takeover of the Deir Ezzor oilfields where US forces simply set up bases or forward posts in the ISIS occupied area.

Under Trump, US has set up a number of new bases in Syria. On the other hand, no concern about Afrin and Manbij. The Deir Ezzor area is Arab tribes and this and al Hasakah (Kurd/Arab?) is the top end of the Persian Gulf/Mesopotamia oil field.

US now controls al Hasakah and half of Deir Ezzor province. The have been ongoing efforts by the US under Trump to take Al Bukamal. US has a base just south of Al Bukamal in Iraq. US bases are now thick throughout Mesopotamia, with more being built.

Also a new base being installed in Kuwait.

The US controls the Arab shore of the Persian gulf, it now has many bases in Iraq and Syria. The only thing missing is the oil rich strip of Iran running alongside the Persian gulf and Mesopotamia.

[Jul 16, 2018] Big Oil s has a long history of compromising national security for profit

Notable quotes:
"... How different is it really from the past 70+ years (since that 45' meeting between FDR and the then ruler of KSA), and especially since the "oil shocks" of the 1970's ? The Trumpians are little more direct and crude in their wording, but that is really the only difference I see. ..."
"... Putin's announcement after Turkey's shooting down of a Russian jet that Turkey has been systematically facilitating ISIS oil sales illustrates how the terror-entity has become a figleaf to justify military action. ..."
"... As INSURGEintelligence has previously reported, there is significant evidence that high-level elements of Turkish government and intelligence agencies have covertly sponsored Islamist terrorist groups in Syria, including ISIS, and that this has involved permitting black market oil sales. ..."
"... Why, however, did Vladimir Putin wait until the murder of a Russian pilot before announcing Russia's possession of intelligence on Turkish state-sponsorship of ISIS? ..."
"... There can be little doubt that Putin had previously been more interested in protecting Russian relations with Turkey as an emerging gas transshipment hub to Europe, under which he and Erdogan planned to build the multibillion Russia-Turkey gas pipeline, Turkish Stream  --  now suspended after the recent diplomatic furore. ..."
"... It has become increasingly clear that the US-led coalition strategy is aimed primarily at containment of the group's territorial ambitions within Syria. ..."
"... In this context, as Russia and Iran consolidate their hold on Syria through the Assad regime  --  staking the claim to Syria's untapped resources in the Mediterranean  --  the acceleration of Western military action offers both a carrot and a stick: the carrot aims to threaten the Assad regime into a political accommodation that capitulates to Western regional energy designs; the stick aims to replace him with a more compliant entity comprised of rebel forces backed by Western allies, the Gulf states and Turkey, whilst containing the most virulent faction, ISIS. ..."
Jul 03, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Peter AU 1 | Jul 2, 2018 1:17:16 AM | 28

The Saudi's. Interesting watching them agree to whatever Trump wants. The most recent one was Trump telling them to raise oil output. The Saudi's now are very pro zionist and will back them against the Sunni Palestinians no matter what. If Trumps tells them to pay for a US war or occupation they pay. If they are told to by lots of useless junk from the US MIC, they buy it and manage to pull a twisted smile when Trump turns the screws about billions being peanuts.

Seems very much like KSA is now an expendable asset for the US, and their only chance of survival is a lot of 'yes sir, how high sir'.

Philippe , Jul 2, 2018 2:01:24 AM | 30

@ Peter AU 1 | Jul 2, 2018 1:17:16 AM | 28

How different is it really from the past 70+ years (since that 45' meeting between FDR and the then ruler of KSA), and especially since the "oil shocks" of the 1970's ? The Trumpians are little more direct and crude in their wording, but that is really the only difference I see.

Posted by: Peter L. | Jul 1, 2018 11:21:17 PM | 23

Look no further than the first sentence of the text you quote. It has been documented a few times, including in the Intercept, that there were some very serious money flows towards a certain foundation run by the family of the named person. Money flows that originated in the Gulf. Money flows that were related to what happened in Libia.

Daniel , Jul 2, 2018 2:30:17 AM | 32
Peter AU1, KSA has been a client state of the US ever since FDR muscled in on Great Britain's deal in 1845.
somebody , Jul 2, 2018 10:52:45 AM | 43
That would have something to do with Big Oil's long history of compromising national security for profit

Russia effectively dried up oil deliveries by ISIS from Syria and Iraq via Turkey .

This here is Nafez Ahmeed on what went on when splitting up Syria was considered feasible.

Putin's announcement after Turkey's shooting down of a Russian jet that Turkey has been systematically facilitating ISIS oil sales illustrates how the terror-entity has become a figleaf to justify military action.

As INSURGEintelligence has previously reported, there is significant evidence that high-level elements of Turkish government and intelligence agencies have covertly sponsored Islamist terrorist groups in Syria, including ISIS, and that this has involved permitting black market oil sales.

Why, however, did Vladimir Putin wait until the murder of a Russian pilot before announcing Russia's possession of intelligence on Turkish state-sponsorship of ISIS?

There can be little doubt that Putin had previously been more interested in protecting Russian relations with Turkey as an emerging gas transshipment hub to Europe, under which he and Erdogan planned to build the multibillion Russia-Turkey gas pipeline, Turkish Stream  --  now suspended after the recent diplomatic furore.

US, British and French military operations have been similarly inconsistent, inexplicably failing to shut down ISIS supply lines through Turkey, failing to bomb critical ISIS oil infrastructure including vast convoys of trucks transporting black market oil, and refusing to arm the most effective and secular Kurdish ground forces combating ISIS.

It has become increasingly clear that the US-led coalition strategy is aimed primarily at containment of the group's territorial ambitions within Syria.

....

As Russia expands its military presence in the region in the name of fighting ISIS, the US, Britain and France are now scrambling to ensure they retain a military foothold in Syria  --  an effort to position themselves to make the most of a post-conflict environment. As the US Geological Survey Minerals Yearbook put it:

"Most of the international investors who pulled out of Syria following the deterioration of the safety and security situation throughout the country are expected to remain so until the military and political conflicts are resolved."

In this context, as Russia and Iran consolidate their hold on Syria through the Assad regime  --  staking the claim to Syria's untapped resources in the Mediterranean  --  the acceleration of Western military action offers both a carrot and a stick: the carrot aims to threaten the Assad regime into a political accommodation that capitulates to Western regional energy designs; the stick aims to replace him with a more compliant entity comprised of rebel forces backed by Western allies, the Gulf states and Turkey, whilst containing the most virulent faction, ISIS.

[Jul 14, 2018] Is Washington Playing Iran's Useful Idiot in Syria The American Conservative

Notable quotes:
"... Damascus and Moscow welcomed Iran's critical contribution to defeating the opposition and giving Washington and its allies a diplomatic bloody nose in the bargain. Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov acknowledges that Iran's presence in Syria -- at the invitation of the regime -- is legitimate and that it would be "unrealistic" to demand its ouster. ..."
"... But instead of viewing the end of the war as an opportunity to lessen Iran's value to the regime and to reduce its footprint in the country, Washington is continuing heedlessly with failed policies created for an environment that no longer exists. As long as the fighting continues and the regime's efforts to reassert sovereignty over the entire country are frustrated by U.S. deployments in the northeast and southeast, Iran's military presence in the country is secure. Likewise, Washington shows no sign of reconsidering international sanctions against the regime, which also forces Syria into the arms of Tehran. ..."
"... A colorblind appraisal of the effects of U.S. policy in Iraq and now Syria would suggest that Washington is either brilliantly in cahoots with Iran to the latter's benefit or is being outplayed by weaker but more clear-eyed players. My vote goes squarely to the latter. ..."
"... Confronted with the disintegration of its diplomatic and military strategy, the Trump administration is reduced to playing spoiler, obstructing the inevitable restoration of the regime's sovereignty over the country and continuing the punishing sanctions that have removed the battered but resilient Syrian private sector from international capital and commercial markets. This policy fails on two fronts -- it creates more gratuitous misery for the Syrian people and it undermines the stated U.S. objective of reducing and removing Iranian and Hezbollah influence in the country. Indeed, continuing to pursue the current policies will leave the U.S. isolated among friends (Jordan and Israel) as well as frenemy Russia, and will postpone rather than speed the day that Iran leaves Syria. ..."
Jul 13, 2018 | www.theamericanconservative.com

Washington has been on the offensive against the Islamic Republic of Iran for close to half a century. Largely as a result, Iran, a rounding error in the superpower sweepstakes, has gone from strength to strength, challenging American power throughout the region, most notably in Iraq and Syria.

U.S.-led regime change in Iraq created Tehran's historic opportunity to return to Baghdad for the first time since the creation of the Ottoman caliphate in the 15th century. This unscripted but entirely predictable outcome was no mean feat, all the more so for being the opposite of what Washington intended.

The Bush administration knew that it no longer wanted Saddam in the chair, but could not think beyond this one, giant, uncharted leap into the future. Iran has a far greater and more lasting interest in the affairs of its neighbor and often bitter enemy. As a consequence, the mullahs are playing a far longer, and more successful, game.

The legacy of unintended consequences continues to define Washington's policy towards Iraq a generation after the first Gulf War ended. And so too with Syria. In both countries, U.S. shortcomings have created a historic opportunity for Iran to enhance its influence in Arab arenas that when not actively hostile to it (Iraq) are at best lukewarm (Syria).

Are al-Qaeda Affiliates Fighting Alongside U.S. Rebels in Syria's South? How U.S. Iran Policy Hurts Iran and America

When asked about Syria's relationship with Iran, Farouk Shara'a, longtime foreign minister and vice president, once explained to a mutual friend, "You don't have to love the woman you are sleeping with."

Syria has been in bed with Iran for decades. Saddam's war against Iran in the '80s, the rise of Hezbollah in Lebanon, and most recently the war against the Assad regime in Syria, have conspired to throw these two unlikely allies into a cold embrace.

Washington has been oblivious to this essentially ambivalent Syrian attitude towards Iran, and remains equally so to the opportunities it creates to reduce Iran's footprint in postwar Syria. Now that the war is winding down, the value of Iran's military contribution to Syria is declining. In parallel, Syria's interest in reducing the power of its erstwhile Iranian and Russian friends over its destiny increases.

Damascus and Moscow welcomed Iran's critical contribution to defeating the opposition and giving Washington and its allies a diplomatic bloody nose in the bargain. Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov acknowledges that Iran's presence in Syria -- at the invitation of the regime -- is legitimate and that it would be "unrealistic" to demand its ouster.

But while Iran's wartime contribution proved critical to victory, neither Assad nor Putin was displeased to distance Iranian-backed elements from the recent battle front in the south. Neither has an interest in enabling Tehran to pursue a postwar Syrian agenda towards Lebanon and Israel. Nor is either enamored with Iran's continuing efforts to reshape the Syrian military in its image. On these important issues, Iran stands all but alone against an invisible, de facto coalition that includes Washington and the EU alongside Israel, Moscow, and the Assad regime itself.

But instead of viewing the end of the war as an opportunity to lessen Iran's value to the regime and to reduce its footprint in the country, Washington is continuing heedlessly with failed policies created for an environment that no longer exists. As long as the fighting continues and the regime's efforts to reassert sovereignty over the entire country are frustrated by U.S. deployments in the northeast and southeast, Iran's military presence in the country is secure. Likewise, Washington shows no sign of reconsidering international sanctions against the regime, which also forces Syria into the arms of Tehran.

A colorblind appraisal of the effects of U.S. policy in Iraq and now Syria would suggest that Washington is either brilliantly in cahoots with Iran to the latter's benefit or is being outplayed by weaker but more clear-eyed players. My vote goes squarely to the latter.

Apart from the lingering campaign against ISIS, in every other respect the U.S. effort in Syria is imploding. Washington under Obama and now Trump has been forced to uneasily acknowledge the regime's staying power. It has now been reduced to bickering over the details of Syrian constitutional reform in the postwar era, a waste of time if ever there was one. Lately, the U.S. secretary of state, from his respected perch, has personally threatened Iran's key military strategist and architect of its advances in Iraq and Syria, Qassem Sulemani, a sure sign that the policymaking process at State is frozen.

In the field, Washington has ignominiously abandoned allies in the southern front. And in the northeast, the Kurds have embarked on the road back to Damascus, imperiling Washington's deployment there.

Confronted with the disintegration of its diplomatic and military strategy, the Trump administration is reduced to playing spoiler, obstructing the inevitable restoration of the regime's sovereignty over the country and continuing the punishing sanctions that have removed the battered but resilient Syrian private sector from international capital and commercial markets. This policy fails on two fronts -- it creates more gratuitous misery for the Syrian people and it undermines the stated U.S. objective of reducing and removing Iranian and Hezbollah influence in the country. Indeed, continuing to pursue the current policies will leave the U.S. isolated among friends (Jordan and Israel) as well as frenemy Russia, and will postpone rather than speed the day that Iran leaves Syria.

Geoffrey Aronson is chairman and co-founder of The Mortons Group and a non-resident scholar at the Middle East Institute.



Janwaar Bibi July 12, 2018 at 11:24 pm

A colorblind appraisal of the effects of U.S. policy in Iraq and now Syria would suggest that Washington is either brilliantly in cahoots with Iran to the latter's benefit or is being outplayed by weaker but more clear-eyed players. My vote goes squarely to the latter.

US foreign policy is controlled by the Israeli lobby and to a lesser extent, by the Saudi lobby. The illegal and unprovoked attacks by the US on Iraq, Libya and Syria were done at the behest of these lobbies. The only country that has benefited from all this bloodshed is Israel, which now dominates the Middle East.

Since this obvious truth cannot be said out aloud, we need to pretend we don't know who is behind all the mayhem in the Middle East, like this pointless article does.

Procivic , , July 13, 2018 at 12:55 am
The writer can't see the forest for the trees. Successive U.S. administrations have behaved irresponsibly to enhance Israel's position in the guise of bring "democracy" to the region. Washington's failures have created ongoing misery in Iraq, a failed state in Libya and the destruction of the ancient land of Syria.

The U.S. continues to
pretend it had no role in the creation of the huge refugee problem that followed its interventions in Libya and Syria.

No lessons learned, the folly is being played out daily in Yemen where the Pentagon is leading the a campaign of death and destruction alongside its "democratic" allies, the Salman clan of Arabia and the sheikhs of the Persian Gulf minnow petrostates.

Genesee Hike , , July 13, 2018 at 8:11 am
"the stated U.S. objective of reducing and removing Iranian and Hezbollah influence "

I've yet to see a compelling reason for this "stated objective". If you want to argue that it's an American interest because the Israel Lobby wants it, well, OK, there are politicians who can be bribed to do Israel's will, but no real American would agree.

One of these days an American president will make an "opening to Iran" as Nixon once made one to China. Surely we can bury the hatchet with Iran for the sake of a grand bargain that accomplishes America's one real interest in the Middle East, which is to free ourselves of the various parasites who entangle us in their messes, and get the hell out of there. Some of us hoped that Trump might be that president, but it wasn't meant to be.

Krzysztof Hołubicki , , July 13, 2018 at 8:59 am
As far as Procivic and Genesee Hike comments are concerned -- they are perfectly right and down to the point.
the piper will be paid , , July 13, 2018 at 11:36 am
"The U.S. continues to
pretend it had no role in the creation of the huge refugee problem that followed its interventions in Libya and Syria."

Which is ridiculous. When you bomb, invade, and arm insurgencies in people's countries, a lot of people run away. Everybody knows that.

In the case of our bombing, invading, and/or arming insurgencies in Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, and Syria, a lot of people ran away.

Millions ran into Turkey. Millions more ran through Turkey into Greece and then up through the Balkans into other NATO countries. And still more came up from Africa and sailed away from the shores of ruined Libya to our NATO allies Italy, Spain, and France.

We did this. Everybody knows we did it. It's absurd to deny it. What's worse is that many of the allies destabilized by the refugees warned or even begged us not to start those wars. With no American interest at stake, no real risk assessment, and no exit strategy formulated, we did it anyway.

Sid Finster , , July 13, 2018 at 12:07 pm
Much simpler explanation: For decades, the United States has been the loyal servant of Israel, and to a lesser extent, Saudi Arabia, faithfully carrying out its masters' every dictate.

As an unintended consequence of Israeli/Saudi policy, Iran has grown much stronger.

The only reason that the US foreign policy establishment is rushing headlong into a war with Iran is because Israel and Saudi Arabia are terrified of the Iran that they have created.

[Jul 14, 2018] https://www.nickiswift.com/54196/whats-really-going-ivanka-trumps-marriage/s/theyre-unconventional-but-perfect-for-each-other/

Jul 14, 2018 | www.nickiswift.com

For all of the speculation and media scrutiny surrounding the Trump family, Jared and Ivanka's marriage actually shows no signs of strain. Granted, they play everything extremely close to the chest, but most normal marriages would falter under the stress of just the 24 hour media coverage, let alone the privacy intrusion of a presidential election. But Jared and Ivanka's marriage is anything but normal, and the introduction of the stressful world of politics has only seemed to strengthen their bond.

Telling Vogue that she believes "your choice of spouse is really everything," Ivanka said that Jared is her ideal partner because his drive and ambitions match her own. "His own dreams are bold, and I love that in someone," she also said. Another source close to the couple, speaking to Esquire, put it more cynically, "Power, power, power, power. Jared's got plenty of money, but the only way he can separate himself from his family is power. They're a great match because that's also what Ivanka is after."

Read More: https://www.nickiswift.com/54196/whats-really-going-ivanka-trumps-marriage/s/theyre-unconventional-but-perfect-for-each-other/?utm_campaign=clip

[Jul 09, 2018] Syria in Perspective Fabricating Incidents to Incriminate The Syrian Government. Peter Ford Global Research - Centre for Res

Notable quotes:
"... Statement by Peter Ford , British Ambassador to Syria, 2003-6, Representative of the Commissioner General of UNRWA, 2006-14 ..."
"... Peter Ford will also be speaking at Imperialism on trial, a series of speaking events being held in four cities in the United Kingdom ( July 2018). For details see below at foot of article. ..."
"... 'we visited 44 sites and interviewed 112 civilian residents' ..."
"... '[they] launched air strikes on buildings full of civilians using wide area effect munitions ' ..."
"... 'we found no information indicating that fighters were present' ..."
"... 'they used unguided mortars and unguided artillery' ..."
"... 'there is strong evidence that the attacks violated international law' ..."
"... 'they fired projectiles above houses photos showed burning elements coming into contact with civilian buildings'. ..."
"... 'people hiding in basements were terrified' 'hundreds were killed and thousands injured' ..."
Jul 09, 2018 | www.globalresearch.ca

Syria in Perspective: Fabricating Incidents to Incriminate The Syrian Government. Peter Ford 38th UN Human Rights Council : Side event organised by the International Association of Democratic Lawyers, Geneva 27 June 2018 By Peter Ford Global Research, July 04, 2018 Patreon 3 July 2018 Region: Middle East & North Africa Theme: Media Disinformation , US NATO War Agenda In-depth Report: SYRIA

Statement by Peter Ford , British Ambassador to Syria, 2003-6, Representative of the Commissioner General of UNRWA, 2006-14

Peter Ford will also be speaking at Imperialism on trial, a series of speaking events being held in four cities in the United Kingdom ( July 2018). For details see below at foot of article.

***

The objective of this meeting is to show Syria in perspective. That is, Syria as she really is after eight years of war, not as she is almost universally portrayed in the West.

A brave stand by the Commission of Inquiry on Syria over alleged use of chemical weapons in Douma

I shall look at the broad picture, but I want to zero in by dealing with the report presented yesterday by the Commission on Syria.

I am not going to endorse that report but I want to begin by congratulating the Commission for standing firm and refusing to make premature pronouncements about the alleged use of prohibited weapons in Douma.

In doing so the Commission obviously angered those in the US administration and elsewhere who are impatient to see the West bombing its way to regime change in Syria. Hence the petulant leaks to the New York Times of a rejected earlier draft of the Commission report, and hysterical accusations against the Commission.

The body which actually has prime responsibility for determining what occurred or did not occur in Douma is the OPCW. Its investigations are not yet complete. Perhaps worried that the outcome might not be what Washington wants, the US administration had clearly been pinning high hopes on the Commission for producing a report which would suit the administration's purpose of retrospectively justifying the illegal US/UK/French bombing of Syria in April – and more importantly, of conditioning opinion for the next, bigger aggression.

Conditioning Western opinion for the next aggression

Make no mistake, conditioning opinion for the next Western air strikes is crucial for the coming phase of the Syria conflict.

Imagine that today you are a leader of one of the armed groups, in Deraa, say. You have seen how gullible Western governments and media are.

You have seen how easy it is to fabricate incidents to incriminate the Syrian government . You don't even need to stage a false flag operation, that is one where you yourself use chemical weapons in order to pin the blame on Assad. You did that in 2013 only the former Commissioner, Carla Del Ponte, to veer off message by stating that there was strong and concrete evidence that the rebels had stocks of sarin and had used it.

The UN hierarchy intervened quickly to row back on what Carla Del Ponte had blurted out. So you, the jihadi leader, felt confident in staging more false flag incidents, as with the Khan Sheykhoun incident in April 2017. You knew that the OPCW inspectors would not actually visit the site, because your jihadi forces made sure it was unsafe. You knew that that – incredible as it may seem – would not stand in the way of the inspectors, in violation of their own protocols, accepting as genuine ground samples, photographs and other evidence provided by your auxiliaries, the White Helmets. You knew the inspectors would not demand biological samples.

You were worried when some of your coached witnesses in an excess of zeal presented themselves to hospitals too early and were logged as being treated even before Asad's planes had left Sheyrat air base. The inspectors, however, relegated this killer fact to an appendix to their report. It was of course ignored.

Douma was a bigger challenge because you, the jihadi leader, left it so late that the inspectors were actually able to visit the site. But you were confident that your Western paymasters would bomb Asad without waiting for the investigation. And then when the investigation, delayed by the bombing, was finally about to get under way it was a simple matter to engineer more delay and deterioration of evidence by having your sleeper cells left behind fire a few shots. You knew the West would blame Russia and Asad. You knew also that even though the Russians found the people seen in the key video of the incident and had them recount here in Europe the true story of what happened, the Western media would prefer to believe you, the accomplice of Al Qaida.

Pentagon acting as Al Qaida air wing

You really cannot believe your luck. You have lost the war but here is the Pentagon willing to act as Al Qaida's air wing as long as you just provide them with a credible staged incident.

To get the US, UK and France to go to war, a lower standard of evidence is needed than it takes to get a conviction for a parking ticket.

After Douma Western leaders swore that next time the gloves would be off, and reports emerged that Plan A for Douma had been to target Asad himself and his command centres, though the Russians nixed that. So what do you, the jihadi commander, do now? Well obviously you start planning the next fake attack. You would be a fool not to.

Thus , my friends, a repeat of Douma is fated to occur. Unless, that is, sufficient doubt emerges about the Douma charade, the Douma hoax, to give Western governments pause in assuming that their public opinions will swallow a repeat dose and allow them to risk a much more serious confrontation with Russia and Iran.

Against the background of that likely scenario, we see what a crucial service the Commission has performed by refusing to join in the conditioning of opinion by pronouncing on Douma.

Siege warfare is not the unique vice of the Syrian government

Enough praise for the Commission. Now for some caveats

I quote:

'we visited 44 sites and interviewed 112 civilian residents'

'[they] launched air strikes on buildings full of civilians using wide area effect munitions '

'we found no information indicating that fighters were present'

'they used unguided mortars and unguided artillery'

'there is strong evidence that the attacks violated international law'

'they fired projectiles above houses photos showed burning elements coming into contact with civilian buildings'.

'people hiding in basements were terrified' 'hundreds were killed and thousands injured'

Horrendous, yes? Shocking, yes?

These are quotes not from the Commission report but from the Amnesty International report on the siege of Raqqa by the Coalition. They put into its right context the Commission's report on the siege of Douma.

But while the Commission apparently want to indict Syrian leaders for war crimes, those who conducted the siege of Raqqa, reported on by the Commission in an earlier report, are just gently admonished for not taking enough precautions.

It is remarkable that the Commission have ignored the Amnesty International report in their latest offering, even though Amnesty International called for international investigation and action.

Crimes of aggression

Other issues are also ignored.

The Commission is mandated to investigate not only human rights law but also 'abuses and violations of international law (HRC 21/26)'. The crime of aggression is such a violation, indictable under the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.

The Commission cannot trespass on the territory of the OPCW, as it has done, damagingly, in earlier reports, producing the endlessly cited factoid that there have been 34 chemical weapons attacks since 2013, while on the other hand timidly ignoring issues arising under the purview of the Rome Statute.

The unprovoked attacks by the US, UK and France on Syria following the liberation of Douma are barely given a mention in the latest report.

Other acts of illegality are ignored.

Is it not a violation of international law to give immense military, financial and propaganda support to armed groups operating in the territory of a member state of the UN?

Is it not a violation to establish without permission military bases on the territory of a member state? The US has several thousand troops in Syria, and does not even attempt to justify their presence in terms of international law. British forces are present too, and the British government ludicrously tries to justify their presence on the far fetched grounds that they are protecting Iraq against ISIS.

Is it not a violation to use military force to prevent the forces or allied forces of a member state from taking control of state oil assets, and to kill scores if not hundreds in the process, as occurred in the vicinity of Deir Ez Zor?

Is it not a violation of international law to occupy a pocket of a state's territory, 55 kilometres deep, as at Al Tanf on Syria's border with Iraq, and shamelessly proclaim a readiness to use military force to prevent that state's forces' from entering in order to root out jihadis being rebadged, equipped and trained behind American shields?

Is it not a violation of international law to invade Syrian territory as Turkey has done, and to establish a de facto occupation authority?

Is it not a violation of international law to dispose of part of a state's territory as Turkey and the US have purported to do over the district of Manbij, and to connive at keeping out the forces of the lawful government?

Is it not a violation to bomb alleged sites of chemical weapons which had been recently inspected by OPCW inspectors and found to give no grounds for concern?

Is it not a violation to direct unilateral coercive measures against a state without any international mandate to do so?

And finally, is it not a breach of international law for Israel to launch more than a hundred unprovoked bombing raids on Syria, some hundreds of kilometres away from Israel?

The Commission pass over in embarrassed silence all these very serious violations.

Forced displacement

The Commission's report makes much of alleged forced displacement. This is a classic example of misleading framing.

What the Syrian government has done in terms of negotiating terms for local surrenders could equally be framed as humane treatment of a vanquished foe, offering them a choice between staying in the locality and accepting government jurisdiction, or leaving with their families for another destination controlled by their fellow insurgents. So excellent was this choice that the Coalition used the same procedure at the end of the siege of Raqqa, allowing thousands of ISIS fighters to escape.

I am afraid that on this count the Commission have been dupes of opposition propaganda.

Two possible futures for Syria

I shall conclude by taking a forward look at where Syria is heading.

There are basically two possible futures for Syria.

Spoiler strategy of the West

First there is the future as the Western powers are trying to shape it.

At the moment the US and its satellites realise that Asad has the military upper hand and will be hard to dislodge just by military means. They have therefore a multi-pronged spoiler strategy:

Prevent Asad regaining control of the North East, with its important oil and gas assets.

Try to hamper trade and communications across the border with Iraq, by actions which include refraining from crushing ISIS in its remaining redoubts, from where it can remain a thorn in the Syrian government's side

Use sanctions to keep the Syrian economy weak

Prevent international aid for reconstruction from reaching Syria

Keep Syria depopulated by discouraging return of refugees to Syria

Use the Geneva negotiations and the fiction of 'transition' to claw back in the negotiating chamber what has been lost on the battlefield

Weaken Syria militarily by securing with Israeli assistance withdrawal of Iran and its allies

Stand by ready to cripple government forces using the pretext of a chemical weapon attack

This future has no vision for what might occur if the strategy succeeds. No conception of what would fill the void if Asad was toppled. As with Iraq, the West wreaks destruction and hopes for the best.

A military solution

The second future is this:

The gradual recovery of the entirety of Syrian territory under the present government. A major step forward is being made currently in the South. That will leave just the North and North East. Talks are already under way with the Kurds. The status quo in these areas is unsustainable and the Kurds know it. The Kurds need Syrian government protection against Turkey. Some changes in the constitution will bring the Kurds on board.

The Idlib campaign to bring that area under the government control may be brutal but can only have one outcome.

Essentially what we shall see is a military solution. With the recovery of the South the Syrian government will control areas where 80% of Syrians live. All the pious talk about there only possibly being a political solution is just that, pious talk . Essentially what we shall see is a return to the status quo ante, with some modification for the Kurds.

This is the perspective I think is the most likely to prevail for Syria, and the one desired by most, war weary Syrians. The war will have been waged on Syria, primarily from outside, for nothing.

Western powers, get used to it.

Stop trying to delay the inevitable and prolonging the agony.


Featuring Peter Ford (former UK Ambassador to Syria and Bahrain), Eva Bartlett (investigative journalist), Professor Peter Kuznick (Co-Author with Oliver Stone , Untold History of the United States), Adam Garrie , (Director, Eurasia Future), Ken Livingstone (Former Mayor of London), Rev Andrew Ashdown (Doctoral Research Student in 'Christian-Muslim relations in Syria'), Catherine Shakdown (goepolitical analyst and writer) and more!

This series of events being held in four cities in the United Kingdom offers an alternative narrative on global politics and war, to that presented by the mainstream media.

Imperialism on Trial – July 2018 Anti-Syrian Blame Game Escalates: Who is Behind Killings of Civilians? UK Tour Dates: London – Tuesday July 10 Bloomsbury Baptist Church 235 Shaftesbury Ave. 7:00 PM – 10:00 PM BST [Doors open at 6:15] Eva Barlett, Peter Kuznick, Peter Ford, Adam Garrie, Rev Andrew Ashdown https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/imperialism-on-trial-tickets-47772122705?aff=es2 London – Wednesday July 11 Bloomsbury Baptist Church 235 Shaftesbury Ave. 7:00 PM – 10:00 PM BST [Doors open at 6:15] Eva Bartlett, Peter Kuznick, Peter Ford, Neil Clark, Adam Garrie https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/imperialism-on-trial-tickets-47281318697 Birmingham – Thursday July 12 Quaker Meeting House 40 Bull Street 6:45 – 9:15 BST [Doors open at 6:15] Eva Bartlett, Peter Kuznick, Ken Livingstone, Peter Ford, Catherine Shakdam https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/imperialism-on-trial-tickets-47282457102 Liverpool – Sunday July 15 Liverpool Irish Centre 6 Boundary Lane 7:00-10:30PM BST [Doors open at 6:30] Eva Bartlett, Peter Ford, Peter Kuznick, Dan Glazebrook, Gerry Maclochlainn. https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/imperialism-ontrial-tickets-47282789095 Manchester – Monday July 16 Manchester Irish Centre 1 Irish Town Way 7:00 – 10:30PM BST [Doors open at 6:30] Eva Bartlett, Dan Glazebrook, Gerry Maclochlainn, Michael Pike, Rev Andrew Ashdown https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/imperialism-on-trial-tickets-47283231418 The original source of this article is Patreon Copyright © Peter Ford , Patreon , 2018

[Jul 09, 2018] Israel supported Al Qaeda in Syria: Former Mossad Chief

Notable quotes:
"... that Israel provided "tactical" assistance to Jabhat al-Nusra, the Syrian affiliate of Al Qaeda, throughout the Syrian civil war. ..."
"... The fact that Halevy chose the Qatari government-funded Al Jazeera to make his revelation is even more noteworthy considering the fact that Qatar is also a major financial supporter of Jabhat al-Nusra in Syria. ..."
Jul 09, 2018 | www.unz.com

redmudhooch , July 5, 2018 at 9:14 pm GMT

Israel: Our # 1 ally! Don't forget that! No matter how many American goyim they murder! No matter how many billions they leech out of us while we can't even afford health care or decent education for goyim chilluns! Number 1!

Israel supported Al Qaeda in Syria: Former Mossad Chief

https://www.timesheadline.com/world/israel-supported-al-qaeda-syria-former-mossad-chief-7229.html

Special Report. In an interview with the Qatar-based news network Al Jazeera, Efraim Halevy, the former head of Mossad confirmed what many in the Middle East and around the world already surmised: that Israel provided "tactical" assistance to Jabhat al-Nusra, the Syrian affiliate of Al Qaeda, throughout the Syrian civil war.

The fact that Halevy chose the Qatari government-funded Al Jazeera to make his revelation is even more noteworthy considering the fact that Qatar is also a major financial supporter of Jabhat al-Nusra in Syria.

Reports from UN observers in the Golan Heights confirmed regular contact between Israel Defense Force officers and armed Jabhat al-Nusra and Islamic State terrorists at the Syrian-Israeli border.

... ... ...

Halevy said it was "humane" for Israel to provide medical assistance to wounded Syrian terrorists but that such "humaneness" would never be extended to Shi'a Hezbollah fighters from Lebanon who have been fighting against the Sunni jihadist terrorists in Syria. Israel's "humaneness" was also shown for all the world to see in Gaza, where it murdered hundreds of children, old men, and women in incessant bombing attacks on highly populated areas.

annamaria , July 6, 2018 at 3:21 pm GMT
@Momus

"Jewish IDF medics are treating and saving the lives of Syrian civilians "
Are you serious? There are documented instances of Israeli saving the lives of ISIS -- the anti-civilian power unleashed by the US/Israel machinations in the Middle East. This has been accepted even by the US brass. http://www.inspiretochangeworld.com/2016/12/heres-us-israel-al-qaeda-isis-work-together-syria/
Meanwhile, in Ukraine, on a border with Russia, the Kagans/Banderites putsch in Kiev have produced the results that should be of interest for the 52 main Jewish organizations in the US as well as for sanctimonious Israel that continues extracting reparations for the WWII-related "special" Jewish sufferings: https://www.fort-russ.com/2018/07/ukraine-abducts-journalists-to-exchange-for-terrorists/
"On July 5th, Kiev announced that it is willing to expand the list of prisoners that Ukraine is ready to exchange for Ukrainians being held in Russia. Among those intended for exchange is the coordinator of the Volunteers of Victory movement, Elena Yurevich (Odnovol), arrested for organizing a Victory Day celebration outlawed by Ukrainian authorities. "

[Jul 09, 2018] 'Propaganda organization' White Helmets 'engage in anti-Assad activities' author Sy Hersh

Another version: skripals were him by members of Russian mafia
Jul 09, 2018 | www.youtube.com

Although some members of the Western-supported White Helmets may be in the business of saving lives, the group is also a 'propaganda organization,' author Sy Hersh has told RT's 'Going Underground.'

The Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist also spoke about reporting in the United States and how it changed under the Obama administration, as well as the poisoning of Sergei Skripal and his daughter in Salisbury, UK.

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RT (Russia Today) is a global news network broadcasting from Moscow and Washington studios. RT is the first news channel to break the 1 billion YouTube views benchmark.

[Jul 09, 2018] Heated Debate: Kevork Almassian vs. FSA opposition representatives

Jul 09, 2018 | www.unz.com

@SolontoCroesus

"TTG", one of SST's trusted writers, posted this report that you didn't read in NYTimes or hear on C Span:
Carrots and Sticks in Syria - TTG 03 Jul 2018
http://turcopolier.typepad.com/sic_semper_tyrannis/2018/07/carrots-and-sticks-in-syria-ttg.html

. . . possible diplomatic breakthrough in southwest Syria. The core of this breakthrough was and remains an intense effort to speed peace negotiations between Damascus and various opposing forces in Syria. It was key to the SAA's recent successes in reducing the eastern Ghouta, Homs and even the Yarmouk refugee camp pockets. The same methodology has enabled the rapid recent success in Daraa. This effort is spearheaded by the Russian Reconciliation Center based at Khmeimim Air Base in Latakia. In addition to pushing peace deals, it coordinates relief aid to newly reconciled areas.

This carrot of reconciliation would not be effective without the stout stick which the SAA has become. We are all familiar with the formidable Tiger Force and the growing list of their combat successes. That success is being reinforced and replicated throughout the SAA by the Russians. Units are being reorganized and re-equipped along the Russian Army model without destroying what the Syrians themselves built over years of painful combat experience. Units raised independently of the SAA, including those trained and advised by the IRGC and Iranian Green Berets, will be folded into the SAA. This is also happening with some former rebels who have reconciled with Damascus. We could learn something from this experience given how we screwed the pooch with the Iraqi and Afghani armies. . . .

there's more at SST
http://turcopolier.typepad.com/sic_semper_tyrannis/2018/07/carrots-and-sticks-in-syria-ttg.html

Three days ago, Pat Lang passed along reports from Haaretz and Almasdar that "Israel accepts Syrian control up to the UNDOF Line"

http://turcopolier.typepad.com/sic_semper_tyrannis/2018/07/httpswwwalmasdarnewscomarticleisrael-wants-only-syrian-pro-govt-forces-near-border-haaretz.html

but you probably heard that from Jake Tapper. Or Sean Hannity.

RobinG , July 5, 2018 at 12:21 am GMT

Speaking of Syria:

Osama Abo Zayd , Former Spokesman of the Free Syrian Army former Syrian opposition chief negotiator at the Astana talks.
Kevork Almassian , founder of SyrianaAnalysis and Syrian Analyst.
Danny Makki , a freelance journalist and commentator on the Syria conflict, specialising in Syria's relations with Russia and Iran.
Yahya al-Aridi , Spokesman for the Syrian Negotiation Commission.

Heated Debate: Kevork Almassian vs. FSA & opposition representatives

[Jul 09, 2018] Only a small fraction of reporters are reliable truthtellers and not misinformers/ disinformers/ propagandists/ self-censorer-for-job-security.

Jul 09, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Corruption of OPCW by Western militarists


Al-Pol , Jul 8, 2018 2:42:04 AM | 33

James @23 . The OPCW FFM did visit a warehouse and suspected chemical weapon facility ...but dismissed them both rather quickly.
"2.7 Based on the equipment and chemicals observed during the two on-site visits to the warehouse and the facility suspected by the authorities of the Syrian Arab Republic of producing chemical weapons, there was no indication of either facility being involved in the production of chemical warfare agents. "
Al-Pol , Jul 8, 2018 2:58:18 AM | 34
So when did the OPCW start putting out "interim" reports ? It appears to be both a confession and a plea (to their main sponsors). A confession that they haven't got anything at all to back up the original "Sarin attack" stories and a plea to any possible "experts" out there who may be able to bend the flimsy evidence they have into evidence of a chlorine attack. The media is just jumping the gun, probably in the knowledge that those "experts" will be found before the final report comes out.
uncle tungsten , Jul 8, 2018 4:06:48 AM | 35
These are issues upon which circumstances of war or peace can turn. The OPCW is a disgrace and discredits itself by being equivocal with language. The authors of its reports know damn well what the consequences of imprecise language can be and how a glib turn of phrase can inspire a holocaust response to a civilian population confined to a city where a belligerent warmonger state can leap on their reports and rain devastation.

NOT GOOD ENOUGH! Shame on the OPCW for publishing a document that has been immediately twisted. Shame on every senior scientist and every senior administrator for allowing this to happen.

It would have taken no time at all to use text that was tight enough to leave no room for gaming by belligerent media and state actors. This is a disgusting performance by a critical party on which the whole world relies for competency.

Tuyzentfloot , Jul 8, 2018 5:52:01 AM | 36
Maybe some of the journalists are being dishonest but I see mainly confirmation bias.
The mainstream 'knows' that Assad uses chemical weapons. The mainstream also makes a distincion between formal and informal thinking. Example about the Yemen war. in general the war is seen as a proxy war with Iran, but even now I encounter articles which mention this as claims or suspicions. This is not because there are doubts, but because they are trying to get things right formally. On this type of formal statements the press is often willing to be corrected, but it will not change any minds because it's just about the distinction between 'strictly speaking' and 'extremely plausible'.
So in this case the OPCW mentions something about chlorine, but it leads nowhere. Well, OPCW are being formal, so they can't state hard conclusions. Informally the hint is enough to conclude(confirm) that even though there is no hard proof chlorine weapons were used. Strong confirmation bias at work. Maybe you can just call this bad journalism. I prefer to see it as a proof that the commonsense of the mainstream is way off.
@SomeGuy

I think you'll find that the reputation of the reporter, journalist and/or analyst is more important than the site you visit to get your news. Some sites -- those I consider to be corrupted (e.g., TruthDig)-- will publish articles from many different authors, only a small fraction of which are reliable truthtellers and not misinformers/ disinformers/ propagandists/ self-censorer-for-job-security. I understand that this is a little pedantic, but I just want to be clear: you should specifically be asking who to go to rather than where to go for news and information.

Individual preferences will vary based on where you're from, what langauge(s) you speak and what your interests are. As a layman and US expat residing in Germany, I've whittled my primary sources of English geopolitical news down to b at Moon of Alabama, Craig Murray, and Opinion contributors at RT English. For the awful state of US affairs, I read RT, look out for stories by Ray McGovern and Philip Giraldi, Glen Ford and Margaret Kimberley, Chris Hedges, The Saker and Ron Unz. Unz Review links to several of the above sources in its "Alternative Media" list near the bottom of its homepage. A quick internet search can lead you to the others.

In general, Western truthseekers must follow the money: stay away from authors funded by Western governments, media, NGOs, and billionaire philanthropies/foundations/organizations. Most Western truthtellers are freelancers that establish and maintain their own websites and rely only on reader contributions or supplement their income with book sales and speaking engagements.

@SomeGuy

I think you'll find that the reputation of the reporter, journalist and/or analyst is more important than the site you visit to get your news. Some sites -- those I consider to be corrupted (e.g., TruthDig)-- will publish articles from many different authors, only a small fraction of which are reliable truthtellers and not misinformers/ disinformers/ propagandists/ self-censorer-for-job-security. I understand that this is a little pedantic, but I just want to be clear: you should specifically be asking who to go to rather than where to go for news and information.

Individual preferences will vary based on where you're from, what langauge(s) you speak and what your interests are. As a layman and US expat residing in Germany, I've whittled my primary sources of English geopolitical news down to b at Moon of Alabama, Craig Murray, and Opinion contributors at RT English. For the awful state of US affairs, I read RT, look out for stories by Ray McGovern and Philip Giraldi, Glen Ford and Margaret Kimberley, Chris Hedges, The Saker and Ron Unz. Unz Review links to several of the above sources in its "Alternative Media" list near the bottom of its homepage. A quick internet search can lead you to the others.

In general, Western truthseekers must follow the money: stay away from authors funded by Western governments, media, NGOs, and billionaire philanthropies/foundations/organizations. Most Western truthtellers are freelancers that establish and maintain their own websites and rely only on reader contributions or supplement their income with book sales and speaking engagements.

[Jul 09, 2018] Sic Semper Tyrannis No nerve or other chemical agent at Douma - OPCW

Jul 09, 2018 | turcopolier.typepad.com

[Jul 09, 2018] White helmets and Douma false flag are typical intelligence guided propaganda operation

Jul 09, 2018 | www.youtube.com

digital tyranny , 6 days ago

Americans need to strapped to chairs with their eyes clamped open, Clockwork Orange style. and shown endless loops of the horrors and war crimes being done in their names.

Susan Raby-Dunne , 6 days ago

I would just take issue with one thing in this interview, chlorine was used in WWI and it WAS lethal the way it was used in 1915. People and animals died in April and May of 1915. There were also a few "chlorine bombs" lobbed that had some effect early in the war. So for him to say chlorine is not lethal is false. It's not very effective but can work in certain circumstances.

Richard Llewellyn , 5 days ago

Hersh has lost his balls he is trying to play safe how sad. Grow a pair Hersh, you wrote about the first Syrian Sarin attack that Hillary Authorized that killed over 800 men women and children. How the Sarin came from Lybia transported through Turkey and given to ISIS.

Deborah Anne Weber , 6 days ago

Chlorine WAS used as part of agent Orange, the defoliant - in Vietnam. The Chlorine by product created was TCDD, specifically 2, 3, 7, 8-Tetrachlorodibenzo-P-dioxin - a byproduct of Chlorine. TCDD is cancer-causing and causes other nasty health effects...

Liberum Oratio , 5 days ago

White helmets have been caught out staging things, even had 1 of their members pretend to be hurt or dead for photos. Typical Islamics full of taqiyya and hatred for everything else blaming anything and everything for their own disasterous ideology.

mike brabant , 6 days ago

I watched programs on the White Helmets in Syria and the stories told by witnesses that said their loved ones were trapped in bombed out buildings and they asked them for help retrieving their children and the White Helmets told them get them out yourself?? Also people said that their clothes were always spotless in a war zone??? The White Helmets headquarters was vacated and there was ISS flags still on the walls where they were for months at a time?? These are no do gooders that's for sure!!!!

acidpunx , 3 days ago

Its very hard to find any evidence the white helmets have saved 1 life but i have loads of them working with ISIS and making fake videos or playing with half dead/dead children with syringes,ask civilians in Syria and so far never heard of them

[Jul 09, 2018] Alt-media websites that you probably can mostly trust

Jul 09, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Here's the New York Times telling similar lies in fancy video form from June 24th

Yaj , Jul 8, 2018 5:41:43 PM | 59
Here's the New York Times telling similar lies in fancy video form from June 24th:

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2018/06/24/world/middleeast/douma-syria-chemical-attack-augmented-reality-ar-ul.html


Based on this leaked version of the report, which doesn't prove anything more than the final version:


https://www.nytimes.com/2018/06/20/world/middleeast/un-syria-eastern-ghouta.html


PDF:

https://int.nyt.com/data/documenthelper/50-united-nations-commission-doc/865546bdd15e4bb35f11/optimized/full.pdf#page=1


Surprised MofA didn't comment on these inventions.

Harry , Jul 8, 2018 9:54:23 PM | 60
The OPCW report included a helpful table showing its "biomedical" test results. Apparently they took plasma samples. All negative for all chems.

[Jul 08, 2018] Syria - OPCW Issues First Report Of Chemical Weapon Attack in Douma

From comment of chet380, Jul 7, 2018 7:03:08 PM (19): "Notwithstanding the counter-evidence and the strong counter-arguments, the decision by the OPCW to include references to 'chlorinated chemical compounds' guaranteed that the 'attack' scenario would continue to be advanced.Is it possible that the UK, US and/or France put pressure on the OPCW to make the inclusion so they would not have to admit they were wrong and that they were fooled? The fraud of the White Helmets should have been exposed by the OPCW inspection, but this interim report will give them continued life."
Notable quotes:
"... Interestingly the MI6 outlet in Coventry, the Syrian Observatory For Human Rights (SOHR), does not confirm a 'gas' incident. ..."
"... The "Sarin" organophosphate use the 'rebels' claimed is thereby debunked. No degradation products of such chemicals were found. The "various chlorinated organic chemicals" are unsurprising. Chlorine is widely used for water purification and cleaning and "chlorinated organic chemicals" will be found in any household. ..."
"... The preliminary OPCW report says nothing about the concentrations in which these substances were found. Without knowing the concentrations, which may may be extremely low, one can not come to further conclusion. The report includes none of the witness statements the fact finding mission took. In various TV reports the medical personal of the one hospital involved in the stunt said that none of their patients were affected by chlorine or chemical weapons. ..."
"... After the 'rebels' claimed the 'chemical attack' and published their staged videos of stacked bodies U.S. President Trump tweeted that he would retaliate for the strike. Politically he could not pull back from that even when Secretary of Defense Mattis voiced his doubts about the 'rebel' claims. Trump attacked Syria with a series of cruise missiles most of which were shot down by the Syrian air defense. A civil chemical laboratory was destroyed during the attack but no one was hurt. ..."
"... They cannot admit everything was staged. And the report is not at all clear, so anyone can give it the desired spin. ..."
"... They didn't find anything relevant. See Appendix 3 of the report. There's no mention of traces of chlorine which I would find hard to believe anyway, they refer to chloride Cl- as in NaCl (table salt) or organic chlorides, of which they do name at least one. ..."
"... The Guardian employs Olivia Solon, a digital journalist (whose specialty is in writing about and recommending particular IT consumer hardware or software products) based in California, with no knowledge or access to knowledge about Syria, its politics or history, to write an article defending the White Helmets and defame the investigative journalists Eva Bartlett and Vanessa Beeley. That practice seems to be par for the course for The Guardian and other print and online newspapers. ..."
"... And yes, the corporate MSM is definitely profit-driven. When "news" was separate from "entertainment," there was some free press possible, but once they were combined, any imaginary wall between sponsors and newscasters was removed. ..."
"... Here in the US, CBS was founded by William Paley, who had been in charge of radio propaganda for the US Army Office of Psychological Warfare. CBS was owned by Westinghouse, which became the world's largest military contractor during WW II. ..."
"... Neither CBS and NBC ever generated even 5% of their parent companies revenues. The real profits were in consumer products and war. And so, not just their news, but all of their programming promoted world views that encouraged consumption and war. ..."
"... Almost all reporters covering international news are working for the various government and private intelligence agencies/think tanks and many domestic reporters as well. ..."
"... This has been the case for over 50 years if not a century. Many of the critical reports are likely written by the agencies/think tanks. Many CIA interns work at MSM for example and reporters are recruited as early as college if not high school through thr corporate government education system. ..."
"... Regarding comments of journalists, the problem may not always be with them. There have been countless discussions on the influence of intelligence agencies. Most people would choose to do the right thing when given the choice. However, if the choices are following orders or "suicide by nailgun", most people would choose to live another day. ..."
"... The British-created Anglo-American funded black propaganda organisation, the so-called White Helmets were the primary source for the claims of Sarin use by the SAG in Douma. In as just world, the White Helmets as proven liars would now become international pariahs. That they will still be hailed as heroes in the West and western MSM so just how sick the West and western MSM really are. Perhaps now that the OPCW is free to cast blame for "chemical weapons incidents", they should name and shame the United Kingdom for its black propaganda. ..."
"... Well, we all knew a false flag op was pending. So here it is. Also Trump is a POS. ..."
"... When the White Helmets and the rebels staged the 'Douma' chemical attack they were probably expecting that Douma would not be liberated and that no serious inspection would take place to debunk the 'fake' attack. That was bad luck for them. Contrary to the other chemical "attacks" locations, an inspection on location has taken place early enough and the masks may be falling. ..."
"... There are critically important information here from Vanessa Beelley False Flag Fail: How Syrian Civilians Derailed White Helmet 'Chemical' Stunt in Eastern Ghouta that Bernhardt has not mentioned. ..."
"... The White Helmets specifically stated that the protesters had ruined their chemical attack and ruined their communications with the UN, and that the Americans would not come to their assistance because of it. This incident explains important aspects of the false flag: ..."
"... 1) So close to impending defeat, the terrorists were really desperate to induce the Americans to save them, and really believed they would do so; ..."
"... the conflicting signals given out by the MI6 proxies SOHR I would read as a damage limitation act specifically in response to the civilian protest; ..."
"... It would appear that MI6 feared news of this protest would be spread, so that they needed to protect their proxies. ..."
"... Unfortunately, despite this information being published by Vanessa Beeley, I haven't seen any other mention of it. The protesters endangered their lives by this protest, at least one of them [or another hostage? - this is not clear] was shot dead for it, and all of them were sentenced to death. They deserve due publicity for it and it is really important to an understanding of the incident as a whole. ..."
"... Bernhardt, I am afraid I don't share your apparent confidence in this OPCW report. It is far too little and lopsided after months of investigation, and appears to be designed to test the waters for a decision confirming that chlorine was used as a weapon, and to coordinate with the MSM to prepare the ground for such a decision. In that case, the MSM reaction to the report is highly consistent with such an objective. ..."
"... Why did the the report make no caveats about the chlorine compounds, why did they include no data about concentrations, why did they emphasise the chain of custody of the (probably trivial) chrorine compound samples (and only those samples), why no information on witness testimony, why no mention of the witness testimony in the Hague, why mention (totally irrelevant) testimony of alleged witnesses in Turkey and biological samples taken in Turkey for which no plausible chain of custody exists? ..."
"... This report is a scandal, an outrage. This report itself is a false flag, it is designed to appease those observers who know the incident was a false flag by using carefully ambiguous wording, while preparing the ground for a full-blown 99% dishonest and 100% misleading report condemning the Syrian government. ..."
"... For Trump self inflicted ego wound somebody will pay. ..."
"... If the OPCW can no longer be trusted; then what? The U.S. has done an admirable job of destroying trust between countries. ..."
"... Nice article, however I tend to disagree partially on the last part, the US administration and the alleged rebels are two faces of the same coins, rebels are funded by the administration from various sources and they acr in response to commands from it, see the southern command operations where this approach of command was openly divulged by various reports and accounts. The reason for the Administration to get into Syria was to further weaken the middle eastern countries for a specific and obvious reason, and each strike and wall destroyed goes into this direction..the bigger picture explains it all.. ..."
"... So, as expected, this latest OPCW report will have no effect on the establishment narrative. The good guys vs bad guys scenario is the only approved version, and with no alternative versions being offered in the MSM, it is the one that the most people will believe. ..."
"... I suspect some of the stupidest staged events are just experiments to monitor how many people will simply buy anything. ..."
Jul 08, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Syria - OPCW Issues First Report Of 'Chemical Weapon Attack' in Douma

On April 7 2018 Syrian 'rebels' claimed that the Syrian government used chlorine gas and Sarin in an attack on the besieged Douma suburb near the Syrian capital Damascus. They published a series of videos which showed the dead bodies of mainly women and children.

During the night the incident allegedly happened Douma was hit with artillery and air strikes in retaliation for earlier deadly attacks by some 'rebels' splinter groups on Damascus city. Jaish al-Islam, the main 'rebel' group in Douma, had already agreed to leave towards Idleb governorate.

The claim of the 'chemical attack' was made shortly after U.S. President Trump had announced that he wanted U.S. troops to leave Syria. It was designed to "pull him back in" which it indeed did.

Moon of Alabama published several pieces on the issue:

It seemed obvious from the very first claims of the 'gas attack' that it did not happen at all. The Syrian government had no motive to use any chemical weapon or an irritant like chlorine in Douma. It had already won. The incident was obviously staged, like others before it, to drag the U.S. into a new attack on Syria.

Even a prominent opposition outlet said that no 'chemical attack' had taken place. As noted on April 9:

Interestingly the MI6 outlet in Coventry, the Syrian Observatory For Human Rights (SOHR), does not confirm a 'gas' incident. In its version of events some 40 people died after their shelter collapsed:

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights issued a higher death toll, saying at least 80 people were killed in Douma, including around 40 who died from suffocation. But it said the suffocations were the result of shelters collapsing on people inside them.

Main stream media, which have quoted SOHR for years, now ignore it and report of a 'chemical attack' as if it were a proven reality.

The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) send a Fact Finding Mission (FFM) to Douma and investigated the incident. Today it published an interim report and some technical results:

OPCW designated labs conducted analysis of prioritised samples. The results show that no organophosphorous nerve agents or their degradation products were detected in the environmental samples or in the plasma samples taken from alleged casualties. Along with explosive residues, various chlorinated organic chemicals were found in samples from two sites, for which there is full chain of custody. Work by the team to establish the significance of these results is on-going. The FFM team will continue its work to draw final conclusions.

The "Sarin" organophosphate use the 'rebels' claimed is thereby debunked. No degradation products of such chemicals were found. The "various chlorinated organic chemicals" are unsurprising. Chlorine is widely used for water purification and cleaning and "chlorinated organic chemicals" will be found in any household.

In the technical notes of the OPCW report note that one of its laboratory found "dichloroacetic acid", "trichloroacetic acid", "chloral hydrate", "trichlorophenol" and "chlorphenol" in some of the samples its fact finding mission took at the claimed incident sites. These are all substances that are no surprise in any upbuild environment and especially within any home. Dichloroacetic acid" is for example "a trace product of the chlorination of drinking water". Chloral hydrate is likewise "a minor side-product of the chlorination of water when organic residues such as humic acids are present". The other substances are also not uncommon and of various household uses.

The other OPCW laboratory found only "No CWC-scheduled chemicals" and "2,4,6-trinitrotoluene" residues in the samples. Trinitrotoluene, also known as TNT, is an explosive widely used in military ammunition. The second laboratory does not report the chlorinated organic chemicals the other laboratory found.

The preliminary OPCW report says nothing about the concentrations in which these substances were found. Without knowing the concentrations, which may may be extremely low, one can not come to further conclusion. The report includes none of the witness statements the fact finding mission took. In various TV reports the medical personal of the one hospital involved in the stunt said that none of their patients were affected by chlorine or chemical weapons.

After the 'rebels' claimed the 'chemical attack' and published their staged videos of stacked bodies U.S. President Trump tweeted that he would retaliate for the strike. Politically he could not pull back from that even when Secretary of Defense Mattis voiced his doubts about the 'rebel' claims. Trump attacked Syria with a series of cruise missiles most of which were shot down by the Syrian air defense. A civil chemical laboratory was destroyed during the attack but no one was hurt.

The now published preliminary OPCW report reinforces the doubts about the 'rebel' claims. There was no 'chemical attack' in Douma. The incident was staged.

One hopes that Trump has learned from this episode and will in future refrain from violent threats over incidents for which no plausible and vetted evidence is provided.

Posted by b on July 6, 2018 at 03:23 PM | Permalink

Comments


Zanon , Jul 6, 2018 3:57:54 PM | 1

Remember the propaganda in the western media and among politicians, they lied and lied, and people like us here were right in our doubts.

Western media again act as warcriminal psyop agent, not to mention a useful idiot for the terrorists!

Ort , Jul 6, 2018 4:03:05 PM | 2
Thanks for this report, even though in my case you're "preaching to the choir".

I wish I could share your closing optimism: "One hopes that Trump has learned from this episode and will in future refrain from violent threats over incidents for which no plausible and vetted evidence is provided."

Hope springs eternal. But even though I'm not rabidly anti-Trump, I think he will remain unwilling to refrain, or is incapable of refraining, from impulsively responding with bluster, bombast, and chauvinistic bumptiousness when his buttons are pushed, regardless of the validity of the stimulus.

Trump, whose narcissism is second to no one's, is devoid of the introspective humility contemplated by the axiom "Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me"; his ego will not process the possibility that he can ever be fooled.

Alas! Trump is definitely a "Threaten first and ask questions later" kind of guy.

psychohistorian , Jul 6, 2018 4:13:31 PM | 3
Thanks for the report b. I was surfing the net as I prepared a meal and saw that the BBC is pushing this hard.

The BBC is even writing about the April chemical weapon scam as being added proof.....sad

The elite keep trying to start a war with anyone to keep the focus off their failure as the "leaders of the free world" BS. When are the elite going to realize their temper tantrums aren't working?

I hope they don't get their shooting war and I hope their economic war provides their final undoing.....think of the waste of human and other resources over the past 70 years.....let alone the centuries that the private finance/property scam has been going on.

Yag , Jul 6, 2018 4:24:04 PM | 4
And liquid chlorine (household bleach) combined with another common household chemical used around the world will release chlorine gas.
Pnyx , Jul 6, 2018 4:38:34 PM | 5
Still, Ard-Tagesschau says the following (originally in German): "In the battles for the Syrian rebel stronghold Duma, chlorine gas was apparently used in April. The OPCW found traces of this in gas cylinder residues."

Sure enough I agree with you B, but for the MSM the OPCW report reads different.

They cannot admit everything was staged. And the report is not at all clear, so anyone can give it the desired spin.

b , Jul 6, 2018 5:04:07 PM | 6
"The OPCW found traces of this in gas cylinder residues." Claiming that the OPCW found "traces of chlorine" is like claiming one found "traces of oxygen" or "traces of hydrogen" when one found water (H2O).

The occurrence of a basic element in a compound is not a "trace" of the basic element. That's chemistry 001. Journalists nowadays seem to lack most basics of higher education.

Hmpf , Jul 6, 2018 5:14:09 PM | 7
@5 Pynx

They didn't find anything relevant. See Appendix 3 of the report. There's no mention of traces of chlorine which I would find hard to believe anyway, they refer to chloride Cl- as in NaCl (table salt) or organic chlorides, of which they do name at least one.

What to expect from the 'Tagesschau' - same old, same old. They're making stuff up again, almost certainly out of willful ignorance and bias.

@6 b
I figure it's even worse than that. They're not even asking the most basic question: Am I a competent person?
My guess is a great many of these folks avoid asking that question on purpose.

Jen , Jul 6, 2018 6:06:36 PM | 8
Pnyx @ 5, B @ 6, Hmpf @ 7:

It would seem that a common (and deliberate) ploy used by the MSM these days is to use journalists with no particular knowledge, experience or insight in an area to write articles that need that knowledge or experience.

The Guardian employs Olivia Solon, a digital journalist (whose specialty is in writing about and recommending particular IT consumer hardware or software products) based in California, with no knowledge or access to knowledge about Syria, its politics or history, to write an article defending the White Helmets and defame the investigative journalists Eva Bartlett and Vanessa Beeley. That practice seems to be par for the course for The Guardian and other print and online newspapers.

Plus The Guardian and others rely on dubious sources like Bellingcat and the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, whose credentials are laughable at best, as "experts" in their chosen areas of reporting.

All the Western MSM are now entirely driven by the pursuit of sales revenue and profit and are now no different from outlets peddling entertainment. No surprise really when news media outlets are now owned by the same individuals or corporations that own film studios, TV stations, online media and TV channels, book and comics publishers, and games publishers.

Daniel , Jul 6, 2018 6:35:53 PM | 9
Jen @8. Great point on the strategy of using "journalists" with no background in the topic they're tasked to 'report."

And yes, the corporate MSM is definitely profit-driven. When "news" was separate from "entertainment," there was some free press possible, but once they were combined, any imaginary wall between sponsors and newscasters was removed.

Still, considering who owns the MSM, I'd say their main purpose is not to sell commercials, but to sell the most profitable "products" of their owners.

Here in the US, CBS was founded by William Paley, who had been in charge of radio propaganda for the US Army Office of Psychological Warfare. CBS was owned by Westinghouse, which became the world's largest military contractor during WW II.

NBC was owned by GE, which was also one of the largest military contractors in the world.

Neither CBS and NBC ever generated even 5% of their parent companies revenues. The real profits were in consumer products and war. And so, not just their news, but all of their programming promoted world views that encouraged consumption and war.

Pft , Jul 6, 2018 6:56:32 PM | 10

Almost all reporters covering international news are working for the various government and private intelligence agencies/think tanks and many domestic reporters as well.

This has been the case for over 50 years if not a century. Many of the critical reports are likely written by the agencies/think tanks. Many CIA interns work at MSM for example and reporters are recruited as early as college if not high school through thr corporate government education system.

Everyone likes to supplement their income and many are convinced its their patriotic duty to disseminate propaganda. For some its a chance to join the elite class, even at a low level. Obviously getting the 6-8 corporate entities that own 80% of the media to go along is not difficult especially as those who go rogue will be punished by members of the business roundtable responsible for most advertising , which would of course dry up as punishment

Now monitoring the internet and social media with big data analytics allows almost Total Information Awareness. They can see in real time whats working and to what extent and what is not. They can then fill holes or modify the story as needed. They know they dont need to get 100% believability. This is why they have not shut down dissenting comments. They are useful, for now.

I suspect some of the stupidest staged events are just experiments to monitor how many people will simply buy anything. At some point they will feel confident enough to simulate an alien invasion of beings capable of taking human form. This will necessitate martial law which thw fearful will gladly accept, and a global governement led by the countries with the largest space force. Funny how the US still needs Russian Rockets to launch satellites so its Space Force has a way to go yet. I guess I wont be around for the fun since time is not a friend of old men

Ian , Jul 6, 2018 7:01:03 PM | 11

Regarding comments of journalists, the problem may not always be with them. There have been countless discussions on the influence of intelligence agencies. Most people would choose to do the right thing when given the choice. However, if the choices are following orders or "suicide by nailgun", most people would choose to live another day.

Timothy Hagios , Jul 6, 2018 7:05:17 PM | 12
Pft @ 10

Speaking of experiments to monitor how many people will believe anything, some good claims from the MSM come to mind: 40% of North Koreans are on crystal meth, the Russians killed the last clown in Aleppo, and the Breatharians (people who purportedly survive on only air and sunlight).

james , Jul 6, 2018 7:06:44 PM | 13
thanks b... unfortunately, i tend to see it much like what @8 jen says... these folks are unsure about their next pay check and are happy to write with a chatham house /scl / cambridge analytica slant knowing what is expected of them.. they ask no questions and are unwilling to articulate the false flags that have shaped all this discussion of opcw and chemical attacks in syria.. in this respect i also agree with @5 pnyx... they are unwilling or unable to raise these questions for fear of dismissal.. more and more people recognize what a poor state the msm is in today.. that is my hope anyway..
ben , Jul 6, 2018 7:47:04 PM | 14
b said:"One hopes that Trump has learned from this episode and will in future refrain from violent threats over incidents for which no plausible and vetted evidence is provided."

Unfortunately, probably no one here in the land of theater, will ever hear about this report. As to DJT, he'll do whatever it takes to enhance his appearance with the morons. His learning curve only bends toward his own enhancement. To him and his minions, truth doesn't matter...

Mark2 , Jul 6, 2018 8:19:28 PM | 15
There's unlikely to be any real investigative journalism regarding opcw reports, considering the papers in uk are owned by mega millionaires who profit from war and the Middle East land grab.oil ect. Plus the owners featured largely in the off shore tax haven leaks- relavent here not so much regarding tax, but what that hidden money is invested in, Gun running, slave labour, buying rebels? It's a small world, media moguls own it.
bevin , Jul 6, 2018 8:33:50 PM | 16
Try these Mark2

https://skwawkbox.org/2018/07/07/bbcs-outright-fake-news-tonight-on-douma-chlorine-attack/
https://skwawkbox.org/2018/07/07/video-bbc-news-joins-fake-news-scandal-over-opcws-douma-chlorine-report/

Ghost Ship , Jul 6, 2018 8:43:25 PM | 17
The British-created Anglo-American funded black propaganda organisation, the so-called White Helmets were the primary source for the claims of Sarin use by the SAG in Douma. In as just world, the White Helmets as proven liars would now become international pariahs. That they will still be hailed as heroes in the West and western MSM so just how sick the West and western MSM really are. Perhaps now that the OPCW is free to cast blame for "chemical weapons incidents", they should name and shame the United Kingdom for its black propaganda.
Mark2 , Jul 6, 2018 8:55:31 PM | 18
Thanks Bevin @ 16
I do follow that site, but had'nt looked recently. Really Good, no doubt your aware of 'the canary ' good article on this subject! Both sites I recommend to one and all.
fast freddy , Jul 6, 2018 9:01:43 PM | 19
Well, we all knew a false flag op was pending. So here it is. Also Trump is a POS.
Daniel , Jul 6, 2018 9:24:19 PM | 20
Thanks, bevin for the links to yet another site I'll be trying to find the time to visit. :-)

Both of those articles lay out the BBC BS succinctly and clearly.

Virgile , Jul 6, 2018 10:12:59 PM | 21

When the White Helmets and the rebels staged the 'Douma' chemical attack they were probably expecting that Douma would not be liberated and that no serious inspection would take place to debunk the 'fake' attack. That was bad luck for them. Contrary to the other chemical "attacks" locations, an inspection on location has taken place early enough and the masks may be falling.

james , Jul 6, 2018 10:40:08 PM | 22
@21 virgile... exactly.... all the money the usa/uk have sunk into the white helmets and etc - and very little to nothing to show for it..
chet380 , Jul 6, 2018 10:59:46 PM | 23
@3 Psychohistorian --

Your early call that the MSM would go with the chlorine findings to support the attack is proving true across the board -- there is not a chance that an admission of having been mistaken is going to happen.

adamski , Jul 7, 2018 12:19:58 AM | 24
Chloral Hydrate...?! This was an old school sedative medication. Seems appropriate somehow.
V , Jul 7, 2018 12:36:26 AM | 25
Finally, straight shooting from the OPCW. About time...
Red Ryder , Jul 7, 2018 1:20:06 AM | 26
It is Highly Likely that all the gas attacks were staged as false flags. Exceedingly Likely.
fairleft , Jul 7, 2018 1:37:18 AM | 27
james @13 I think it's clearly true, not just a hope, that fewer and fewer people take the media seriously. Those who still watch mainstream and cable 'news' programs are a pretty small minority, and the MSNBC/FOX side of that is probably acknowledged even by most of its consumers, as 'my side' comfort food rather than 'news' as we used to understand it.

The media's lock-step Western-Empire perspective _is_ frightening, but we also need to remember recent election results that have gone against the empire's wishes. Just a couple days ago in Mexico, for example. Real alternative and real (whether socialist, left, right, or libertarian) populist media is having an impact, I think, and we may be able to turn things around in the West before the next world wars start.

BM , Jul 7, 2018 2:00:06 AM | 28

There are critically important information here from Vanessa Beelley False Flag Fail: How Syrian Civilians Derailed White Helmet 'Chemical' Stunt in Eastern Ghouta that Bernhardt has not mentioned.

Vanessa Beeley interviewed at least two witnesses who - seeing that the government forces were about to liberate Hamouriya village in Douma from the terrorists under whose control they had suffered for 6 years and thereby feeling empowered - on 6th March at 3pm decided to publicly protest against the terrorists by marching through Hamouriya carrying Syrian national flags. They were met by members of the White Helmets and the terrorists, who blamed them explicitly for ruining their chemical weapons false flag.

Critically importantly, the White Helmets had already released news for the claimed false flag that morning and the night before, and they had already collected 30 dead bodies from all over Douma and brought them to the hospital, and had already started filming.

The protest critically negated the propaganda message of the false flag chemical attack - if the Syrian Army had really been dropping chemical weapons on Hamouriya the night before with intent to kill civilian women and children, why would the civilians immediately afterwards start marching through the city carrying Syrian national flags, and having raised the flag at key points in the city? It makes the whole flase flag [even more] implausible. The White Helmets then wrapped one hostage in a Syrian flag and shot him dead as a warning. Fortunately the two witnesses interviewed (and hopefully most of the protesters) were able to escape soon afterwards with the help of the nearby Syrian Army.

The White Helmets specifically stated that the protesters had ruined their chemical attack and ruined their communications with the UN, and that the Americans would not come to their assistance because of it. This incident explains important aspects of the false flag:

1) So close to impending defeat, the terrorists were really desperate to induce the Americans to save them, and really believed they would do so;

2) Having already announced the false flag the previous night and having collected so many dead bodies in preparation, the existence of the protest creates a credibility problem for the terrorists and White Helmets, to which they seem to have responded with various conflicting signals;

3) In particular, the conflicting signals given out by the MI6 proxies SOHR I would read as a damage limitation act specifically in response to the civilian protest;

4) It would appear that MI6 feared news of this protest would be spread, so that they needed to protect their proxies.

Unfortunately, despite this information being published by Vanessa Beeley, I haven't seen any other mention of it. The protesters endangered their lives by this protest, at least one of them [or another hostage? - this is not clear] was shot dead for it, and all of them were sentenced to death. They deserve due publicity for it and it is really important to an understanding of the incident as a whole.

Bernhardt, I hope you will update the article above to include some of Vanessa Beeley's reporting on this incident.

BM , Jul 7, 2018 2:20:22 AM | 29
Bernhardt, I am afraid I don't share your apparent confidence in this OPCW report. It is far too little and lopsided after months of investigation, and appears to be designed to test the waters for a decision confirming that chlorine was used as a weapon, and to coordinate with the MSM to prepare the ground for such a decision. In that case, the MSM reaction to the report is highly consistent with such an objective.

Why did the the report make no caveats about the chlorine compounds, why did they include no data about concentrations, why did they emphasise the chain of custody of the (probably trivial) chrorine compound samples (and only those samples), why no information on witness testimony, why no mention of the witness testimony in the Hague, why mention (totally irrelevant) testimony of alleged witnesses in Turkey and biological samples taken in Turkey for which no plausible chain of custody exists?

Posted by: V | Jul 7, 2018 12:36:26 AM | 25
Finally, straight shooting from the OPCW.
About time...

This report is a scandal, an outrage. This report itself is a false flag, it is designed to appease those observers who know the incident was a false flag by using carefully ambiguous wording, while preparing the ground for a full-blown 99% dishonest and 100% misleading report condemning the Syrian government.

The correct response to this report is very loud and active and persistent protest against it.

The Russians should make very strongly worded complaints and criticisms about it both at the OPCW and at the UN (maybe they have, I wouldn't know).

V , Jul 7, 2018 2:31:49 AM | 30
BM | Jul 7, 2018 2:20:22 AM | 29

You may be correct; we'll see...

Kalen , Jul 7, 2018 3:09:25 AM | 31
For Trump self inflicted ego wound somebody will pay.
V , Jul 7, 2018 7:09:29 AM | 35
Mark2 | Jul 7, 2018 6:29:06 AM | 34

So, following your logic (which I mostly agree); what value/good are elections?
None, near as I can tell.
Time for something new?
But then I digress; what to do about false flag chemo attacks?

If the OPCW can no longer be trusted; then what? The U.S. has done an admirable job of destroying trust between countries.

dfnslblty , Jul 7, 2018 9:25:39 AM | 39
¿Has anyone here read Peter Ford's piece on OPCW? I believe it fits somewhere in the discussion. Unfortunate this choir is so small. Keep writing and Protest Loudly!
Mike , Jul 7, 2018 9:29:28 AM | 40
Hi
Nice article, however I tend to disagree partially on the last part, the US administration and the alleged rebels are two faces of the same coins, rebels are funded by the administration from various sources and they acr in response to commands from it, see the southern command operations where this approach of command was openly divulged by various reports and accounts. The reason for the Administration to get into Syria was to further weaken the middle eastern countries for a specific and obvious reason, and each strike and wall destroyed goes into this direction..the bigger picture explains it all..
Mike , Jul 7, 2018 9:35:41 AM | 41
... to clarify , every "regime" that threatens Israel openly is to be brought down ... Libya, Iraq,, Sudan, Yemen, Syria, Iran , Egypt's Nasser and the list goes on..
bevin , Jul 7, 2018 10:22:39 AM | 42
More on the BBC and this story:
https://skwawkbox.org/2018/07/07/bbc-forced-to-correct-douma-gas-story-after-skwawkbox-exposes-fake-news/

And Craig Murray too:

"Yesterday the OPCW reported that, contrary to US and UK assertions in the UN security council, there was no nerve agent attack on jihadist-held Douma by the Syrian government, precisely as Robert Fisk was execrated by the entire media establishment for pointing out. The OPCW did find some traces of chlorine compounds, but chlorine is a very commonly used element and you have traces of it all over your house.

The US wants your chicken chlorinated. The OPCW said it was "Not clear" if the chlorine was weaponised, and it is plain to me from a career in diplomacy that the almost incidental mention is a diplomatic sop to the UK, US and France, which are important members of the OPCW.

"Trump's reaction to yet more lying claims by the UK government funded White Helmets and Syrian Observatory, a reaction of missile strikes on alleged Syrian facilities producing the non-existent nerve agent, was foolish. May's leap for British participation was unwise, and the usual queue of Blairites who stood up as always in Parliament to support any bombing action, stand yet again exposed as evil tools of the military industrial complex.

"Hillary Clinton, true to form, wanted more aggressive military action than was undertaken by Trump. Hillary has been itching to destroy Syria as she destroyed Libya. Libya was very much Hillary's war and – almost unreported by the mainstream media – NATO bombers carried out almost 14,000 bombing sorties on Libya and devastated entire cities...."

If you put Murray, MoA, The Skwawkbox, Strategic Culture, Dissident Voice and a few of the better aggregators together you've got a better Daily Newspaper than The Guardian or Le Monde ever was, far better.

By the way, unless I'm mistaken (it wouldn't be a first!) Ghandi was asked what he thought about Western Civilisation when he replied that "It would be a good idea". It still is an idea worth looking into. It would look just like socialism.

james , Jul 7, 2018 10:50:35 AM | 43
@27 fairleft.. i hope you are correct on that..

@28 BM... i think it was daniel who left that link here at moa a few days ago.. i read it..

@29 BM.. i tend to agree with you, but see @6 b for more clarity...

@32 pft... it is my observation that the msm in the usa is so usa centric, they know shit about canada, or the rest of the world.. i could be wrong, but that is my general view on what ''americans'' consume for news in the usa.. the indoctrination is heavy.. i would like to think people like @33 V are the norm, but i mostly think people are tuned out of the news - excluding the older generation - above 60 or 70 especially - who still consume the shit via the tv..

@41 mike.. in other words, the usa foreign policy is built around looking after israel.. most here at moa would agree with that.. will the usa ever get it's head out of israels ass? one can hope, lol..

craig murrays post from today that bevin quotes @42.. good comments bevin!

et Al , Jul 7, 2018 10:53:24 AM | 44
Motherboard.com: Japan Just Executed the Leaders of an LSD-Fueled Doomsday Science Cult
https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/gy3xex/what-is-aum-shinrikyo-sarin-attack

####

This one was real, but even the Aum Shinrikyo sect showed all those years ago how how difficult it is to pull off an effective chemical weapons attack, requiring an enclosed space like the metro system. But that's never the point. Instilling mass fear and panic, not to mention being 'news friendly' is what makes such attacks, sponsored proxy false-flag or not, so enduringly popular . To borrow a well known ad phrase ' Once you pop, you can't stop '

Noirette , Jul 7, 2018 11:00:54 AM | 45
Journalists nowadays seem to lack most basics of higher education. b.

Yes + they have zero comprehension of basic numbers. Amazing. (Nobody wants to read my exs..) Nowadays, they are not supposed to have any knowledge whatsoever; they have become scribal hacks, merely write, film, show, expose, what they are told or do haphazard copy-pasta.

They are bought servants, nah compradors, and their presence is completely useless (A.I. and some guidance, input from above by 7 -say- very smart ppl would do the job faster and cheaper, for the whole W world) they are actors whose function is to pretend that a 'fourth estate' is necessary to uncover facts, inform the populace, air dissenting points of view, have debates, and so on Lies.

(comes to mind, book https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Udo_Ulfkotte)

Aware they are past their sell-date, one can smell the desperation. The reaction is to become more subservient, toe the line, preserve what can be, become more in-groupy and shaft colleagues who might stray away from the prescribed hyper-rigid guide-lines. Collectively, they have fantastic potential power and means of control (network savvy, present at the switches, etc.) but they are so dumbed down and terrified of status and monetary loss they are like deer caught in the headlights, to stay on track they secretly pray at dawn, conjure the fates, or whatever. The mansion with pool, the ginormous mortgage, Junior, etc. in the US. In France, the monetary aspect is less vital; being excluded from the movers and shakers, the in-ppl, the heady, sexy, wonderful Parisian life.. no.. no.. help

Part of how a 'post-truth' environment comes about. The other driver is the underlying aim, i.e. the imposition of one narrative over another, the Rovian creation of realities which can only be managed by wielding power violent enough to make the 'other - the people - the adversary' accept and bow down to the proffered narrative, and never object, call out the lies. Using this template requires careful calculations which, it appears, have gone off kilter in the US.

Maybe one should consider that there were never any Chem-WMD attacks in Syria at all (pace Seymour Hersh, heh, but that is a personal beef of mine..) - there are always limited hangout ppl who try to cobble up one narrative with another and make a living out o that.

Curtis , Jul 7, 2018 11:10:52 AM | 46
So far, I'm seeing BBC (as above), al Jazeera, ABC, Reuters, Qatar Tribune twisting the report to say it was a Chlorine attack. PressTV, RT, and Sputnik News say the report clears SAA.
Rob , Jul 7, 2018 1:36:25 PM | 50
And then there's this: https://www.nytimes.com/reuters/2018/07/06/world/europe/06reuters-syria-crisis-chemicalweapons.html
and this: https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2018/06/25/world/middleeast/syria-chemical-attack-douma.html
both from the New York Times.

The latter is an absurd "virtual crime scene" in which crack reporters claim to prove that the Syrian government used chemical weapons on their own people.

So, as expected, this latest OPCW report will have no effect on the establishment narrative. The good guys vs bad guys scenario is the only approved version, and with no alternative versions being offered in the MSM, it is the one that the most people will believe.

Mark2 , Jul 7, 2018 2:24:33 PM | 55
Den Kelley Abe @ 53

O k see if I can help, kind of kill or cure! The shock to us all may be to much ! There is no squirrel ! They made it up, yes I know it's kind of tuff !we all looked for a squirrel they distracted us. There was no people poisoned by Russians in Salisbury, Amesbury the chlorine attack in Syria yes made up.What the tv and papers said was a lie, to program us all like a laptop !!!

Whilst we were out squirrel huntin, they got through half of world 3 we never noticed. They formed a dictatorship. Sold all your urban buildings services and council houses to one an other. And devalued us all by about 60% But i'l go easy for now. Couse from there on things went down hill !!! Warm regards

Patrick Armstrong , Jul 7, 2018 7:14:13 PM | 61
By the way, I read somewhere recently that Chlorine rapidly degrades Sarin and therefore no one would use them together. But I can't find the reference now. Can anybody help?
fast freddy , Jul 7, 2018 8:12:38 PM | 62
47. hrc = Bloodthirsty killer; sociopath coming out the gate. Likewise. POS. Trump was not a mass murderer until a couple months in. Didn't take him long to join the club.
Guerrero , Jul 7, 2018 8:43:14 PM | 63
Posted by: Jen | 8Pnyx @ 5, B @ 6, Hmpf @ 7:
It would seem that a common (a