The recent ‘terrorist’ bombings in European cities may need to be looked at from a wider perspective. Is this increasing wave of violence on urban communities a signal of a deeper malaise?
The ‘terrorists’ who have perpetrated these attacks over the past few years ( ie not just “ISIS’ inspired killings); have inevitably be enacted by dispossessed angry young men who predominantly have no clear ideology of much longstanding. While they have often attributed the rationale for their attacks to some formal ideology like ISIS, I suspect that any ideological excuse would have sufficed for them. The recent killings by those who stated their motivations were in the name of Allah and ISIS, were almost all by young men who had lacked any consistent commitment to Muslim practice; ie not regularly attending a mosque, and indulged in drinking, drugs , gambling etc.
This indicates that the rationale for the killing did not come from idealogical sources, but rather from their own anger and hurt about their own life experiences. Undoubtedly however, the last few years of ISIS, Al Qaeda and other similar extremist groups espousing the glories of the killing of innocents, have provided a focus and a ‘rationale’ for that anger and blood-lust.
This process might be likened to the Christian crusades to the “Holy Lands” in mediaeval times, when Europeans from all walks of life joined armies to supposedly ‘free” the Holy Lands from Saracen tyranny, but in fact used that license to indulge in vast amounts of rape, pillage and terror of local populations, both on their journeys to Palestine through Europe and the Middle East , but also within Palestine itself.
What is different this time around however, is that this is an internal self-immolation of societies and almost a global one: predominantly by young men who were born within European societies, but at the same time alienated from them.
What we see then, is a political response to these multiple deaths which labels them as “terrorists’ attacks rather than an epidemic of murder/-suicides by young angry and hurting men.
Instead of addressing the root causes of that anger; alienation from society, loneliness, poverty, drugs and perceived inequalities and injustices; Western governments have increasingly focussed on more and more draconian responses to these murders; an action which further legitimizes the imaginary ideological fervour of more and more young men.
As in the United States, the political response is to further militarise police forces and restrict human rights and freedoms, and thereby increase the likelihood of inappropriate and unjust responses by the ‘authorities’ to legitimate community conflict situations. It is plain that such actions lead only to community disintegration.
One might therefore argue that the actions by both parties are symptomatic of a global community in decline; in a state of self-immolation, as it unconsciously acknowledges the multiple absurd paradoxes of our global consumer society whilst we inexorably head towards an unliveable over-heated and species depleted planet.
The blog heading is one of Mark Twain’s quotes. But here is a much better one from Mr Clemens.
Man is the only Patriot. He sets himself apart in his own country, under his own flag, and sneers at the other nations, and keeps multitudinous uniformed assassins on hand at heavy expense to grab slices of other people’s countries, and keep them from grabbing slices of his. And in the intervals between campaigns he washes the blood of his hands and works for “the universal brotherhood of man”- with his mouth.
– “The Lowest Animal”- Mark Twain
Today, in my little part of the world; it is once again Anzac Day, originally commemorated to mark the bloody failure of the British Empire’s coordinated attack on Turkish positions in the Dardanelles at Gallipoli in World War One, but now, ( supposedly) it ‘acknowledges the sacrifice of all those who have died in warfare, and the contribution and suffering of all those who have served.” Strangely however this commemoration of all who have died in wars is marked by artillery salutes, marching uniformed men and much fanfare about this country’s patriotism. We are encouraged to believe that Anzac Day now promotes a sense of unity, perhaps more effectively than any other day on the national calendar. People whose politics, beliefs and aspirations are widely different can nevertheless share a genuine sorrow at the loss of so many lives in war, and a real respect for those who have endured warfare on behalf of the country we live in. (New Zealand Government).
I for one, am appalled that the majority consensus in New Zealand appears to be that ‘plucky little New Zealand’ became a real country with its own identity, and not just a member of the British Empire, by maiming and killing its way through a series of foreign “adventures”. The one possible exception to this catastrophic jingoistic litany of murder and mayhem, is New Zealand’s very real contribution to the war against Nazi Germany and Japan during the Second World War, when a New Zealand invasion by the Japanese Imperial Army was a high probability at one point.
Every other war we have fought, we have fought at the behest of others- from the genocide inflicted on the Boers during the Boer Wars as part of the British Imperial Army’s need to maintain control of South African assets, the First World War’s bizarre clash of European monarchies , the staggering level of genocide inflicted on Koreans by the “Allies’ (including New Zealand naval bombardment of civilian areas) during the Korean War, our implicit involvement in American genocide in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia, our explicit connection to rendering of Afghan suspects to U.S. torture centres in Afghanistan, and our ongoing complicity in the Five Eyes intelligence project, which currently serves American and U.K. interests in promoting terrorism around the world and destroying human rights.
All in all, it is not a record I for one am proud of. Our ongoing subservience to the paranoid and psychopathic American war machine and its business interests, serves no-one’s interests on this planet, other than a few crazed right wing American idealogues and the military/industrial complex.
I was proud of my country when our prime minister of the time, Norman Kirk, sent frigates to Muroroa Atoll in the south Pacific, to protest the French destroying that island with nuclear bombs and contaminating the environment for thousands of miles. I was proud when our prime minister of the day, David Lange, announced we would henceforth be a nuclear-free nation, and even a little proud when prime minister Helen Clark refused to send significant ground troops to Iraq to support the American invasion there. But we have sunk to new lows since those times, in obsequiously following our U.S. masters into Iraq once more, to fight a stupendously foolish war in Afghanistan, and to mouth support for America’s duplicitous ‘war on terror’ while unconditionally supporting the key centres of terror in the world; Saudi Arabia and Turkey, along with support for the 60 year old brutal Israeli occupation of Palestine .
Despite successive New Zealand governments’ posturings that we are now a sovereign nation because of Anzac Day, when are we truly going to be a proud and independent nation who stands in truth for peace and international justice?
The Brussels nail bombing attacks occurred on the morning of March 22nd 2016; two in the departure area of Brussels international airport near the town of Zaventem seven miles from Brussels and one in the Maelbeek metro station in the centre of the city. 28 victims and three suicide bombers were killed, and 330 people were injured. Another bomb was found during a search of the airport. Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) claimed responsibility for the attacks.
We now know that Turkey ‘deported’ the presumed key instigator of the Brussel’s attack to Amsterdam in the Netherlands, rather than to Belgium. Which meant, that rather than being detained as a terrorist in Belgium upon leaving the plane, he was instead permitted to drive back to Belgium from Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport because he was not on any Netherlands wanted list. Poor bad luck? or was it-as has been suggested, a cosy arrangement between Turkey and the Israeli owned security firm ICTS International (owned by ‘former’ Shin Bet intelligence agency personnel) managing the security at the airport. You will perhaps recall that ICTS International is the same security agency that escorted Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab on Christmas Day 2009 , without a passport or ticket, to a First Class seat on Northwest flight 253 at Schiphol Airport, and who then attempted to detonate plastic explosives hidden inside his trousers.
But the key issue that Western media consistently ignore, is their and their political masters’ support for anti-Assad rebel groups; who are in fact, terrorists. Their ‘moderate’ terrorists have been trained by Western intelligence and sited in Jordan and Turkey to inflict terror on Syrian populations. Hillary Clinton’s psychopathic need to kill and destroy is reflected in her weird emails using agents like Google and the Qatari terrorist supporting Al Jazeera media outlet. Now that , with a little help from Russian bombers, Assad ‘s military is inflicting serious losses on these terrorists groups in Syria- many are rushing ‘home’ to safety. But with all that training and nowhere to go-whats a good terrorist to do but blow up something close to home?
This all suits the US vacuous political and military establishment very well. Heightening fear and loathing about these ‘Islamic’ groups in European communities, and encouraging right wing imbecilic xenophobia, is incredibly useful to ensure that the Eurozone limits its citizens freedoms, expands its military and supports NATO weirdness.
To ensure we all believe that America is in fact attempting to destroy terrorists ( ie the long long looong war!) the US military prioritises killing heads of terrorist organizations- the key advantage of such vaunted actions is that they can never be corroborated – (unless of course ISIS agrees that their man has been killed)!, as opposed to destroying terrorist supply lines, banking activities, training camps, weapons supply routes etc, which can all be independently verified. The evidence is mounting that these fundamentalist Islamic terrorists are in fact nothing but mercenaries who can conveniently use the fear of Islamism to increase their impact on gullible Western populations.
As Pepe Escobar notes, NATO headquarters is less than 2 kilometers from the site of the Brussels terror; why choose a metro station to create an impact , rather than the central supposedly core of Western values sited at NATO headquarters? Soft targets are of course easy targets, but they clearly have less impact on Western political actions than hard targets….
If we are to believe the quoted media response from ISIS, that; ‘let France and all nations following its path know that they will continue to be at the top of the target list for the Islamic State and that the scent of death will not leave their nostrils as long as they partake part in the crusader campaign … [with] their strikes against Muslims in the lands of the Caliphate with their jets.’, then this soft target response to the ‘11,111 air strikes launched by Western and Gulf states against targets in Syria and Iraq’, then this supposed ISIS response is certainly a circuitous route to conquering the crusaders.
Sibel Edmonds, ex-FBI operative, argues however that the proximity of the attacks to NATO headquarters is no coincidence, and simply forms part of a long sequence of CIA/NATO sponsored Gladio attacks in Europe- or in Belgium, the ‘stay-behind’ Gladio units were known as S.D.R.A. VIII , with strong connections to far-right organisations.
Despite his genetically ingrained Russophobic tendencies, Craig Murray makes the very good point that terrorists can in fact attack any soft target at will. Current anti-terrorist measures , such as at airports are a complete farce, largely useless, and result in long, vulnerable to attack, queues.
We live in a bizarre world of lies, disinformation, half-truths and extraordinary events where individuals with limited intelligence have accumulated great power, and are quite prepared to kill any number of innocents for their own foolish ends.
The recent decision by Turkey and Saudi Arabia to agree on joint military operations within Syria with the aim of toppling President Assad, has considerably upped the ante of the possibility of a major war between forces with significant military assets, including nuclear ones.
One might argue that things were going swimmingly for President Erdogan and the Saudi’s support for ISIS and other wahhabist terrorist groups in Syria, until Russia (with the approval of the Assad regime/government) began an unexpectedly successful (to Assad’s opponents) air campaign against ISIS, Al Nusra and the rest of the ‘moderate’ Al Qaeda affiliated opposition in Syria six months ago. Erdogan’s dream of a new Turkic empire extending far into what is now Syria (but which was once part of the huge Ottoman Turkic Empire), while also enriching his family with income received from Syrian oil transported across the Turkish border by ISIS, looked an incipient possibility – dreams now shattered.
For the Saudi dictatorship, their ongoing goal has always been to break the power (and if possible, exterminate) the Shi-ite ‘heretics’ of Syria and Iran and Iraq, in line with the primitive vision of the Wahhabi clerics that has underpinned the Saudi claim to Mecca for the past 200 years.
And in tandem with these dreams of power and riches and glory, add into the mix, the duplicitous influence of U.K, (think Lawrence of Arabia) and U.S. intelligence agencies, determined to create a power vacuum in the Middle East that only ‘their man’ (Israel) can fill; on the somewhat dubious assumption that the crazies in the Israeli Knesset and Army -let alone the settlers – are in fact controllable), whilst at the same time, maintaining their oil lines and profits for posterity. Now with the added bonus of taking a swipe at any Russian attempt to re-establish itself as an international player of any significance, and simultaneously keeping Iran in ‘check’.
While the Assad regime at the beginning of the so-called Arab Spring”, apparently did respond in a brutal fashion to some of the peaceful demonstrations calling for its overthrow, there is mounting evidence of considerable “investment’ by foreign powers and ‘human rights’ agencies in that not so peaceful uprising. Syrian government forces continue to hold much of the populated areas of Syria, while most of the country-side and desert (with a section of industrial Aleppo and parts of Damascus) has, until now, been held by the rebels. And in fact, where there is Syrian support for the rebels, it largely comes from the Sunni rural areas who have long held sectarian views about their Kurdish, Christian, Alawite or Shi-ite neighbours.
The cosmopolitan citizens of Damascus and Aleppo in the main, have little sympathy and much fear of those religious extremists. So, despite the Assad regime’s many failings and its historical brutality, Assad would undoubtedly be elected overwhelmingly as president in a free and fair election. (not something that the US , UK France and Turkey and the Gulf States would want to see!) Additionally, as rebel supply lines are cut and their troop gathering and command centres targeted, the option of ‘guerrilla tactics” and melting into the local population will be denied to them. Much of the Syrian population will have little sympathy for their cause and their ignorance and brutality.
Things have seriously gone awry for the Syrian destabilisation project. Along with Russian bombing of rebel /terrorist command centres and communication lines, has gone the bombing of the oil supply route into Turkey and now, working in tandem with Syrian ground and air forces, the destruction of rebel military positions. Both Kurds and Syrian ground forces are steadily closing the Turkish /Syrian border to rebel supply and support; something that Turkey is desperate to prevent.
The House of Saud is desperate also to re-establish some credibility as a significant Middle East player. Their genocidal war in Yemen (with the full support of the United States and innumerable mercenary groups including Blackwater) is going disastrously wrong against Houthi and ex-Yemen government troops; despite their overwhelming superiority in equipment and resources. Playing the ‘Iran card’ in the Yemen is increasingly visibly obvious to the international sector as one more act of dishonesty by the House of Saud, and the incompetence of their military leadership is plain to see. U.K. involvement in Saudi Arabia , Qatar and Bahrein, and UK not-so-tacit support of Saudi Wahhabi extremism as a “useful tool” to promote arm sales and extend UK military and oil supply influence in the Gulf, goes right back in an unbroken line of command to the British Foreign Office’s decision in 1917 to destabilise the Turkish Ottoman Empire in the Arabian Peninsula, by supporting Saudi tribesmen through the liaisons of T.E. Lawrence.
Shi-ite Iran too, has much to lose if the tide turns again in the Wahhabist groups’ favour. Wahhabi extremism is anathema to Iran’s religious and political movement. A Wahhabi victory could potentially lead to genocide against Shi-ites throughout the Middle East. (note that Shi-ite ‘sects” do not share a similar prejudice against Sunni ‘sects’) Iran has therefore invested heavily in supporting the Assad regime ( popularly known in the West, but inaccurately, as a Shi-ite Alawite regime, but in fact largely secular) with a large number of military advisors and now Hezbollah troops from Lebanon.
As “The Saker” notes, the Russians are currently spread thin on the ground in Syria. The Turkish military is well equipped with NATO and locally produced hardware and has been actively fighting their Kurdish “terrorists” (read; a community which wants its own autonomy) for many years now – not however with a great deal of success. A full-scale invasion across the Turkish border would not be able to be contained by the Syrians or the Russians and Iran/Hezbollah. The problem would however be maintaining Turkish supply lines once the invasion is complete and the possibility of Russia either upscaling its support for the Kurds inside Turkey, or delivering an invasion across the Black Sea border with Russia into Turkey. Such an invasion would likely lead to military involvement from Turkey’s NATO allies- something that Erdogan is counting on in his brinkmanship style. It is unlikely that Russia would risk such a n invasion, although Russia has been strongly signalling Turkey that its airborne divisions are ready to go in such an event.
And where does China sit with all of this? Syrian pro-government analysts have long been signalling China’s intent to become involved in the conflict, but current Chinese official media responses suggest otherwise. The Chinese government tends to hold a very pragmatic trade-based view of international conflicts. However, should Turkey’s invasion into Syria increase the boldness of the Turkish supported Uighur nationalist movement in Xinyang province in China- then all bets are off.
Then there is the complete unpredictability and schizophrenic approach of the United States to the whole war. On the one hand its intelligence forces have been supplying training and funding terrorists in Syria or in their training stations in Turkey and Jordan, for at least five years, and actively supporting the overthrow of the Assad regime; while knowing full well, that the only Assad opponents with the capacity to take the place of the Assad military and government institutions, are the jihadists – al Nusra and ISIS- a recipe for hell on earth in Syria; while on the other hand, talking about democracy and freedom and a secular state. One can only assume that the United States policy and intelligence arms are not completely stupid or crazy, and have assessed that this state of absolute chaos and terror is the scenario they have been aiming for in their years of support for Assad’s overthrow. One can assume this from the responses of U.S. politicians like Senator “Mad Dog” John McCain and psychopathic U.S. politicians like ‘we came, we saw, we brutally murdered Ghaddafi’, Hilary Clinton- but is this really mainstream U.S. policy?
Let us hope some sanity prevails
The answer , as noted in Moon of Alabama’s commentary on the Syrian ‘peace’ talks, is clearly no; sanity is not going to prevail. The United States and U.K. official policies are to support Al Qaeda affiliates like Al Nusra in the Syrian war. Clearly there are significant strategic gains for the U.K. and the U.S. in supporting terrorists over the Assad government. Perhaps, as with their unique efforts in Afghanistan , Iraq and Libya, it is simply the creation of complete murderous chaos in the whole of the Middle East.
The attacks by Islamist extremists in Paris on 13th and 14th November are one of a long series of terrorist attacks in France. The characteristics of those supposedly involved are interesting: young males in their late 20s, association with drug-dealings, one whose recent employment was destroyed by a Police decision to shut down his part-owned café because of suspected drug-peddling, poverty and refugees- yet not a strong connection to an Islamic tradition of the extremist Wahhabist sect that espouses asceticism and the hatred of other non Sunni sects.
As with many other civilian targeted terrorists attacks around the world , they occurred the same day as a major Paris medical response drill to a terrorist attack; coincidence? -probably…
We need to acknowledge that Western intelligence services, particularly those governments heavily involved in destabilising Syria -eg France, have turned a blind eye to young men going to Syria to fight in the extremist Takfiri groups against the Assad government regime there. Small wonder then that France’s intelligence agencies were fully aware of the main perpetrators of the Paris attacks , and did nothing.
Despite some attempts, particularly by American mainstream media, to portray those joining ISIS and the other Al Qaeda offshoots in Syria as dedicated to Islamic values and a return to a ‘golden age’ of a caliphate; the reality appears very different. These are predominantly angry young men, dispossessed, poor with few prospects to make money or a career in the West, lured by promises of glory, violence and a new world where they are the rulers of destiny. Western Intelligence and Gulf State governments’ cynical manipulation of these dispossessed, has resulted in the catastrophe that is the Middle East. Over the past few years, the United States’ half-hearted attempts to destroy ISIS with limited bombing runs and a focus on destroying extremist leaders’ rather than extremist infrastructure, has led ISIS and the other Al Qaeda affiliates in Syria and Iraq, to believe they are impervious to Western threats of force.
The recent extremely intensive aerial bombardment by Russian air-force and missiles of terrorist infrastructure in Syria, has changed the strategic balance. No more is it likely, as the Americans would have it, are we in for a ‘long war’ against ISIS. The militant groups are fast approaching the point where keeping large concentrations of militants on the ground and thereby ‘holding ground’, will be impossible. A resort to guerrilla tactics is therefore likely, but with vastly less impact on the Syrian population and landscape.
Small wonder the that France and the other colonialist governments in the West are concerned about the impacts of Russian attacks in Syria. Where else do the militants go; but home? We are likely therefore to see many more attacks in the West by disenfranchised Muslim youth, skilled in the use of explosives and weapons, in the months to come.
The shooting down of a Russian SU24 bomber close to the Syrian/Turkish border by a Turkish Airforce F16 on November 24th, has been downplayed in most media as something that is kind of unfortunate and will ‘blow over’.
The reality is somewhat different. This is the first time that a state agency (the Ankara Erdogan government) has explicitly supported its ISIS and Al Qaeda allies, along with the Turkmen mujaheddin allied with Al Qaeda: a state agency that has apparently ‘pretended’ to support the war against ISIS and now shows its colours- hence the ‘stab in the back ‘ statement by President Putin
The shooting down in what appears to be Syrian airspace is a serious violation , along with the not unexpected violation of the Geneva Conventions by the Turkmen ‘insurgents’ killing the parachuting ejected pilots in the air. NATO, while urging caution in the Russian response, clearly does not wish to see itself allied with such reckless actions by President Erdogan of Turkey, and has indicated its belief that the shootdown occurred in Syrian air-space.
The ramifications of this act are enormous, and will likely lead to significant internal rumblings by the Turkish military against this further slide of the Erdogan government towards Islamic extremism within and without Turkey. There are also clear lines of accountability to senior Turkish politicians benefiting from the sale of ISIS oil .
While the Russian government has requested the immediate discontinuation of Russian tourists visiting Turkey, the trade sanctions responses to Turkey are likely to be severe in an already vulnerable Turkish economy. The ongoing deployment of S300 and S400 anti-air batteries by the Syrians and Russians, along with the deployment of fighter air cover for Russian bombers is likely to result in a shootdown of Turkish fighters if Erdogan is not restrained. How will NATO respond? Whatever happens, the long term outcomes of this reckless action spell disaster for Turkey.
See the interesting and informative article by Gareth Porter on his interpretation of Turkey’s recent actions in Syria here
The recent announcement by the Obama administration that it will send 50 U.S. military advisers into Syria apparently adds another layer of complexity to an already viciously complex and violent war in Syria, however in this analysis I will argue that this U.S. announcement simply attempts to legitimise what already exists on the ground.
Some media have portrayed this “civil war’ as a sectarian one. However the sectarianism is a one-side affair in this instance. Those who play the sectarian card are invariably those of an extremist Sunni Wahhabi and takfiri persuasion – ie they wish to ensure that Syria becomes a completely Sunni wahhabi dominated society where other Syrian religions and Muslim sects are either eliminated or marginally tolerated. Those who fund and support these extremist doctrines are primarily those in the Gulf dictatorships- the Saudi and Qatar governments, and the increasingly sectarian government of Turkish president Erdogan (particularly after his most suspiciously positive and unexpected electorate win a few days ago).
In part this takfiri response can be explained as a fear of Shi-ite Iran, and to a smaller degree, Shi-ite Iraq, reasserting their influence and non Western-government alignment in the Middle East. In part it also symbolises the hold that the bigots of the Wahhabi sect have over the Gulf regimes. In tandem with this approach we have the United States ( and the U.K. France and Italy) actively supporting these extremist regimes in the vain hope that destabilisation and balkanisation of the Middle East will serve their economic interests ( more weapons sales) and preserve the increasingly fragile Israeli occupying power in Palestine. The United States has been actively supporting destabilisation of the Syrian Assad government since at least 2004, with supposedly non-lethal military hardware and ‘advisors’ to what are described by the U.S. as “moderate’ anti-Assad groups, on the ground in Syria.
The resultant avalanche of Syrian refugees into Eastern Europe and beyond, is perhaps an unanticipated impact on already vulnerable European economies. However, in all of this, the U.S. remains largely immune to the horrendous human impacts and geopolitical disaster its support for extremism has incurred across the Middle East and now, to a vastly smaller degree, to Europe.
On the other “side” we have the SAA, the Syrian government army; which despite the hype from the opposition, is largely composed of non-Allawite and non-Shi-ite troops, but is increasingly supported by Shi-ite Hezbollah fighters from Lebanon and Iranian “advisers” from their irregular army, the IRGC, the Army of the Guardians of the Islamic Revolution. The decision of Russia to escalate its support for the Assad regime; (it has had a naval base at Tartus on the Syrian coast for many years, and provided some military resources and advisors to the SAA since the start of the war) and begin bombing all of the groups opposing the SAA, has shifted the military balance on the ground significantly in favour of the Assad government. The fiction that the Russians are in fact only bombing the ‘nice guys’ opposing the Assad regime, belies the fact that all of the opposition groups’ key aim is to topple the secular Assad government and establish a Sunni Wahhabi state or caliphate . While the opposition groups fight amongst each other for dominance, and disagree on the level of intolerance and extremism required to achieve this goal, they also increasingly collaborate on the ground in the face of threats of potential extinction by the resurgent Assad government forces and their allies.
As Wikipedia notes here, the number of factions fighting in Syria is already in the forties and the “civil war” environment is growing increasingly complex day by day. What the proportion of foreign fighters (whether mercenaries or jihadists) in the anti-Assad camp is impossible to verify at this point; but the reports of deaths caused by the recent SAA resurgence, indicate a substantial proportion are non-Syrian.
As the U.S. knows well, a victory for the anti-Assad (anti-Syrian government) forces, will result in the total breakdown of Syrian infrastructure, the destruction of Damascus, the creation of a multitude of states within states in Syria and Iraq, a bloodbath for those remaining non-Sunni sects in Syria and a greater avalanche of refugees into Europe. One can only assume that this is what the United States and its Western allies want.
Yet, when we look at mainstream Western media, the Russian intervention is portrayed as being caused by Putin’s megalomania, Russian attempts to reinstate themselves as a global power or an attempt to re-live the old glories of the Soviet empire , rather than a fearful response to Western destabilisation. Russia Iran and Hizbollah are only too familiar with the ongoing destabilisation of their countries by Western intelligence agencies and their proxies, to not see the export of Wahhabi extremism to Syria as a serious threat to their own long-term viability.
The announcement by Obama of 50 U.S. “Special Forces” troops to be deployed to Syria, is therefore simply smoke and mirrors. In all likelihood, those same 50 special forces have been on the ground (along with other Western intelligence officers and advisors from the Gulf states, for at least the past 5 years in Syria; advising, training and channelling weapons to their “moderate” jihadists. The announcement is an attempt to somehow legitimise the status quo, when in fact those men are operating illegally inside a sovereign state with the sole purpose of destabilising that state.
The other often mentioned U.S. response of a ‘no-fly zone’ in Syria, is another rather transparent attempt to ensure that the Syrian air-force and helicopters cannot engage the jihadists; with the inevitable outcome being a full collapse of the Damascus government and infrastructure and a massive increase in human suffering and refugees..
The recent flurry of diplomatic manoeuvering in Vienna between some, but not all of the key players, reflects in part the concerns in Washington about the impacts of the recent active bombing of ISIS and other Al Qaeda affiliates in Syria by the Russian airforce, and the consequent apparently significant military successes on the ground by the SAA and its allies.
The recent decision by Russia to intensity its military support to the Syrian government in Damascus, highlights some interesting issues for Eastern governments.
It comes at a time when the Syrian refugee influx via Turkey is reaching a peak in Eastern European states and Germany/Austria with strident calls from mainstream Western media arguing the case for more arming of the anti-Assad terrorist groups in Syria and naturally , a no-fly that can only benefit…. guess who?.
Interestingly, Turkish President Erdogan, has now done an abrupt about-face in declaring that President Assad of Syria should now be part of the transition process in Syria; something that Erdgan had opposed for more than 4 years previously. Is this, as Moon of Alabama proposes, because of the potential threat of Russian forces taking out his Turkish supplied terrorists in Syria and re-caslibrating the ? I have my doubts. Erdogan is a wily political player,and used to navigating the whirlpool of political players in the Middle East. Is the Russian move , as Mike Whitney suggests, an attempt to pre-empt the installation of a Turkey based no-fly zone by the United States, in Syria , which would once and for all eliminate any Syrian government threats to the jihadist groups fighting Assad?
However it would appear that some Western governments and intelligence agencies are perceiving a real threat to the destabilisation agenda they have pursued since at least 2011 in Syria, as a result of a shift in western public opinion.
How to rationalize support for anti-Assad military groups who are clearly Wahhabist terrorists whilst maintaining a philosophical stance that Assad must go and is the root of the refugee problem and pretending that you are fighting terrorism globally? The information on the the vast majority of groups opposing the Ba’ath secular government and military in Damascus is clear; their need and wish is, like all good salafists, to exterminate those sects of Islam which doe not fit with their mediaeval view of what Islam should be- ie Sunni and Sharia.
Let me be clear, Western governments are actively supporting this genocidal and mythical view of the Middle East. In reality the Ba’ath military is largely Sunni in composition, with elements of Christian and other Muslim sects, as well as of course many secular Syrians. And useful to note perhaps, that the Iraqi equivalent Ba’ath party of Saddam Hussein was supposedly Sunni in character. That is not to say that Assad’s Ba’athist government is not a brutal one; but in comparison with the Saudis, with the salafists and other extremists in the Middle East, it is benign; and supported by the vast majority of Syrians as the only alternative to the vicious brutal alternative of chaos that Western governments are hoping for in Syria. But, one would never imagine that in your wildest dreams, that is the true state of affairs by reading Western mainstream media.
The weight of alternative press reports which articulate the threat from Western governments of further direct intervention in Syria to complete their mission of balkanising the region and installing tribal and extremist religious groups in Syria and elsewhere in the middle east is becoming hard for western public opinion to ignore.
The apparently unexpected move by the Russians to bolster their military support and risk boots on the ground and potentially another debacle like the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. This move is in many respects, a mirror of that Soviet-Afghan war, with the Gulf States and the Americans, as before , supporting Al Qaeda and its affiliates, and Russia supporting a secular dictatorship in the form of President Assad and the Ba-ath Party. Has the Russian military learnt its lessons from the Afghan war and the wars of Chechnya?- time will tell.
We have yet to see how Israel will respond to this new front opening up across the occupied Golan Heights. Its dreams of a slow annexation of Syrian territory beyond the Golan Heights, and the splitting of that rump state into splintered largely powerless enclaves, with the active assistance of the United States , have now been significantly compromised.
The difference this time around, may be the guerrilla fighting skills of Hizbollah and Iran’s Revolutionary Brigades.
The flurry of both mainstream western media and Obama’s superlatively hypocritical and; speaking bluntly, speech of unadulterated lies; at the U.N. , expressing concern that Russia was adding “fuel to the fire” by its Syrian air-strikes, and that (bizzarely) chaos might ensue in Syria as a result of Russia actually wanting to get rid of the terrorists in Syria. Their messages are stretching the cloth of credulity to breaking point, even for those of the Western public who accept everything their politicians tell them. We are, I believe, seeing the end-game in Western public’s placid acceptance of the reality and rationality of the “War on Terror”.
Mainstream media are now contorting themselves into indecent positions to “prove” that Russia is not targeting ISIS, but is instead only targeting those “moderate” anti-Assad groups. Despite the acknowledgement by Western intelligence agencies that secular moderate groups fighting the Assad government are practically non-existent in Syria, we are led to believe that Russia is deliberately leaving the ‘evil ones’, ISIS, alone and targeting the “good guys”, Al Nusra and other similar Al Qaeda affiliate groups, funded and trained by the US and the Gulf States. Given that all those groups are fighting to bring down the Assad government and the Assad military is by far the greatest opponent of all of those groups; including ISIS ; one might almost be forgiven for thinking that the US wants ISIS to succeed and roll into Damascus to bring its rein of terror to all suitably non Sunni members of that population.
One is also intrigued with Brown Moses ( or should that be ‘Brown Nose’?) under his new pseudonym, Bellingcat , “proving” that the video and pics of Russian attacks were deliberately being edited by the Russians to ensure their “true” target areas were not identified-again the meme that the real terrorists were in fact not being targeted, but instead targeting some of the mythical moderates on the ground.
And again further hype from ” unidentified State Dept officials that four of the 26 Russian cruise missiles fired from the Caspian Sea at Syrian rebels had in fact crashed in Iran with loss of life. The Pentagon appears considerably concerned about these new previously unknown Russian cruise missiles, because they have much longer trajectory than supposed and can be fired from far smaller ships than the American ones can, and are hence more mobile.
The decision by the Obama administration to supposedly pull out of direct involvement with the jihadist groups in Syria is more likely to reflect a concern that Russian,Syrian, Iranian and Hizbollah groups may very shortly, if not already, be killing Western intelligence operatives on the ground in Syria, rather than any back-down of intent to overthrow Assad.
Also expect an intensification of ‘independent’ human right s organizations demanding that Assad (and now the Russians) be tried for war crimes . This war is a tragedy and an avoidable one, and the civilian death toll has been immense and calamitous.However expecting the Assad government to have precision guided ammunitions (only available to the U.S. and its western allies and Russia and China) rather than ‘dumb’ bombs and barrel bombs, does not a war crime make.
More incredibly, the Pentagon is clearly wishing desperately for Russian losses in fighting the rebels in Syria and that they will “begin to lose in Syria”. Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Konashenkov also “lashed out” at a fresh statement from Pentagon head Ashton Carter, who predicted Russian losses in its Syrian operation.
Moscow’s air operation in Syria “will have consequences primarily for Russia itself,” Carter said at a press conference at NATO headquarters in Brussels. Such provocative, foolish and dangerous statements amount to a direct threat to use the United State’s proxy terrorists in Chechnya and other Russian muslim populated districts, in retaliation for the Russian attacks on the United State’s ‘friendly terrorists’ in Syria. Carter added, “I expect that in the next few days the Russians will begin to lose in Syria.”. Should such attacks come in the next few weeks on Russian soil, Russia will be in doubt of their source; with the added bonus of more certainly enlisting the help of China in this war against the West’s terrorists; also vulnerable to American involvement in Uighur attacks inside China.
We are seeing a desperate attempt on multiple fronts to discredit the Russian war efforts in Syria by Western powers . One has to wonder why do they wish ISIS and their favourite ‘moderate’ jihadist to be marching into Damascus? – how important is it to curry favour with Wahhabists in power in the Arabian peninsula?. As Gareth Porter notes, or just maybe its simply a matter of propping up the US and UK “defence” Industries for a little longer…?
Reports are now coming thick and fast from both the Middle East and from the United Stated sources of the role the United States and its key allies have played in first establishing and then maintaining ISIS, Al Qaeda and numerous other salafist affiliates, under the flimsy guise of them being “moderate” jihadists.
As one more instance of this support, the recent debacle of a defeat for Iraqi troops against ISIS in Ramadi points to the clear decision by United States forces not to conduct airstrikes against ISIS positions, when there was every opportunity to do so., and the US recommendation to the Iraqi government not to deploy Shi-ite militias in Ramadi The United States is now aggrieved that Iranian military players are now directly involved in the re-taking of Ramadi for the Iraqi government .
The consistent intent for United States policy since the Iranian revolution in1979, has been to contain and eliminate any potential threat from Shi-ite groups that might negatively impact on the US supported Persian Gulf (Sunni) dictatorships. The Gulf State dictatorships have consistently demonstrated their unconditional support and loyalty for US and Israeli imperial policies in the region; unlike the Shi-ite states of Iran, Syria and now Iraq, who foolishly prefer a path of self-determination for their peoples.
The usual pack of neocon psychopaths , with John Bolton snarling in the lead, has been to attempt to ramp up the non-existent Iranian nuclear weapon threat, to provide unconditional support for Israeli genocide in Palestine and to support anything , regardless of international law or the rights of humanity, that will extend the United State’s power internationally. If that means using delusional Saudi and Qatari “princes” to find and resource even more psychotic ISIS military leaders,who believe that all Shi-ites must be exterminated; then so be it.
There is clear evidence of an ongoing policy by the neocons to destroy secular Middle East governments ( ie not specifically Sunni oriented governments) like Saddam’s Iraq, Libya, Syria, which can lead on to the ultimate goal for the US, Israel and the Saudis; the destruction of Shi-ite Iran. The Saudi bombardment of Yemen’s Houthi movement and all Yemeni civilians , is just a minor diversion in the larger game plan.
The recent public announcement by the US that it wil be funding training and arming “moderate” Syrian opposition forces to fight the Syrian Assad regime , is one more step in this bizarre and farcical journey of creating monsters to kill them. As has been clearly demonstrated; there is in fact no “moderate” opposition fighters. It is possible that at the beginning of the fight against Assad in the “spontaneous” Arab Spring uprising against him , that there were a few secular and moderate voices, but they have long gone. As this Department of Defence report for 2012 clearly indicates, the US knew well (even 3 years ago) that the Syrian opposition fighters that it supported and continues to support, were almost entirely composed of extremist jihadists and salafist ( anti-Shiite and anti any other non-Sunni sect)
Additional little snippets of the tight connection between Western governments and Middle East terrorist groups can be found in Seamus Milne’s account here. Or the recent post in the Levant Report documenting how the ISIS Leader Omar al-Shishani Fought Under U.S. Umbrella as Late as 2013
But even in these accounts, Western reporters are extremely cautious in ascribing a direct linkage between terror and the West ; one which now undoubtedly exists. Note how key Western governments are now happy to pay ISIS good prices for their stolen Syrian and Iraqi oil.
Or note ex-President of Afghanistan, Hamid Karzai’s view that the U.S is actively taking a two sided approach to creation and destruction of jihadist groups to serve its power interests.
Time and time again we are seeing reports in the mainstream U.S. and U.K. media that ISIS is here to stay for the long term; how hard it will be to eliminate them; and really, things are such a lot better for those people in Iraq, Libya and Syria now that ISIS and its Western subsidised offshoots are there. After all we have “law and order”-never mind that this “law” is an obscene psychopathic one As a “delightful ” example of this obscene Western view on that”Isis isn’t really that bad” -read this article in the U.K. Independent by Richard Barrett (who) was head of counter-terrorism at MI6 before spending nine years as the co-ordinator of the UN’s Al-Qaeda and Taliban Monitoring Team.
What you sow, so shall you reap……
A great article on where all that wonderful hardware comes from that ISIS uses at Antiwar.com http://original.antiwar.com/Dan_Sanchez/2015/06/15/where-does-isis-get-those-wonderful-toys/, which rather begs the question; who is training those little psychopaths in all this new hi-tech equipment?
And some additional information from Andrew P Napolitano at antiwar. com brings to the sunlight at least one war equipment ratline managed by Secretary of State Clinton to terrorists in Libya and Syria .
And from Sibel Edmonds, ex-American intelligence operative; a podcast on the role of the U.S. Black-ops community in establishing and maintaining various international terrorist groups
We learned recently from Paris that the Western world is deeply and passionately committed to free expression and ready to march and fight against attempts to suppress it. That’s a really good thing, since there are all sorts of severe suppression efforts underway in the West — perpetrated not by The Terrorists but by the western politicians claiming to fight them.
Read more here
What more do I need to say?