Pentagon Falsifies Paperwork To Keep Syrian Rebels Armed With Quasi-Covert Program – by Whitney Webb

 

On July 19, the Trump administration announced that it would end the CIA’s covert program aimed at arming and training terrorist-linked “moderate rebels” in Syria, sparking hope among some Trump supporters that he was finally enacting the anti-interventionist rhetoric of his campaign.

However, a recently released report shows that the Pentagon has picked up the slack left by the end of the CIA’s program — pumping billions of dollars worth of weapons into the hands of Syrian “rebels,” while attempting to mask the paper trail and their suppliers’ ties to organized crime.

The report, published Tuesday by the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP) and the Balkan Investigative Reporting Network (BIRN), provides conclusive evidence that the Pentagon plans to provide up to $2.2 billion in weapons to Syrian “rebel” groups, particularly Kurdish militant groups like the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF). While the Pentagon has been arming “rebels” since 2015, the Department of Defense began requesting increased funding for the program once the CIA covert arms program was ostensibly slated to shut down

While the Pentagon has been arming “rebels” since 2015, the Department of Defense began requesting increased funding for the program once the CIA covert arms program was ostensibly slated to shut down.

The Pentagon has requested an additional $322.5 million for the financial year ending October 2017 and $261.9 million for the following 12 months. For fiscal years 2017 and 2018, the budget for the program has been set at $584 million while another $900 million has been earmarked to continue the program through 2022.

 

Working the Balkan arms pipeline

Weapons were shipped from Eastern-Europe via Silk Way airlines, who offered security-free diplomatic flights to clients ranging from Saudi Arabia, Israel to US Central Command.

The program utilizes the Pentagon’s so-called “Balkan arms pipeline,” a network first exposed by Bulgarian journalist Dilyana Gaytandzhieva. The arms-supply chain involves the U.S. purchasing vast amounts of Soviet-Era weaponry from Eastern Europe, from which it is then shipped to air bases in Turkey and Kuwait, via the Azerbaijan commercial airline Silk Way, and later sent into Syria. The BIRN/OCCRP report adds, notably, that several of the Pentagon’s weapons suppliers in these countries share links to organized crime organizations and other unsavory actors.

In addition, the report details how this Pentagon program to arm “rebels” has essentially sidestepped long-established checks on international weapons trafficking that are intended to curb illicit deals. Many of these safety checks are included in the UN’s Arms Trade Treaty, which the U.S. has yet to ratify but ostensibly supports.


Related | Journalist Interrogated For Linking CIA Weapons Shipments To Syrian Jihadists


Patrick Wilcken, an arms researcher at Amnesty International, told BIRN that the Pentagon’s actions are undermining the treaty in its entirety.

 

Masking the recipients

Syrian militants are seen with a Serbian made MO2 Coyote machine gun, a weapon which was shipped to Syria via Saudi Arabia and Turkey on diplomatic flights a few months earlier.

The specific “sidesteps” the Pentagon has been taking involve the alleged removal of documentation regarding who or what groups ultimately receive the purchased weapons. By removing this documentation, the Pentagon enables weapon transfers to any armed group within Syria it chooses – including Syrian rebels – without providing documentation as to who received what.

“The Pentagon is removing any evidence in their procurement records that weapons are actually going to the Syrian opposition,” Ivan Angelovski, who co-wrote the report, told Foreign Policy. Indeed, when the report authors contacted authorities in Romania, Bulgaria, and other nations involved in the program, several of the governments responded that they had granted export licenses for the weapons where the U.S., not Syria, was listed as the final destination. They claimed to have been unaware that the weapons were destined for Syria.

Thus, the Pentagon’s alteration of documentation is, in fact, illegal, given the U.S.’ membership in the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, which requires that end-user certificates include the final destination country.

 

Exhausting the Balkan weapons’ supplies

A visitor looks at assault rifles made by the Serbian company Zastava Arms, during a defense fair, in Belgrade, Serbia. (AP/Darko Vojinovic)

Furthermore, the report notes that the arms transfers are so massive that they are fundamentally altering the economies of the Eastern European nations that are supplying the weapons. The report notes that factories in Serbia and Bulgaria have been drastically increasing arms and ammunition production in order to keep up with demand. In order to meet the increasing demand to be generated by the program over the next several years, Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic promised in July to turn “meadows and forests” into arms factories and almost double Serbia’s arms exports to $750 million by 2020.

Increased production alone has proven insufficient, however, with the Pentagon being forced to lower its standards for weapons and ammunitions to meet demand, while also forcing the U.S. to procure even more arms from “non-traditional” countries like Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Vietnam.

While the U.S. has ostensibly accepted that Syria’s government will remain in power and even reclaim most, if not all, of its territory, it seems the Pentagon – along with its regional ally, Israel – are unwilling to let the billions already spent on arming the Syrian “rebels” go for naught, spending billions more in hopes that the situation will finally favor their long-standing goal of regime change.

Top photo | Free Syrian Army militants clean their weapons and check ammunition at their base on the outskirts of Aleppo, Syria. (Khalil Hamra/AP)

Russia deploys MiG-29SMT fighters to Syria – Deterring Israel? – By Alexander Mercouris

MiG-29SMT

Russia air force deployment of advanced MiG fighter to Syria may precede its transfer to Syria’s air force

The Russian Ministry of Defence has unexpectedly confirmed the deployment of MiG-29SMT fighters to Russia’s Khmeimim air base in north east Syria.

The MiG-29SMT should not be confused with the new MiG-35, which has yet to enter service with the Russian Aerospace Forces, and which is an essentially new aircraft with new electronics and engines and a new airplane structure, though one which uses the old MiG-29’s planform. By contrast the MiG-29SMT is essentially a heavily modernised MiG-29, an aircraft that entered service with the Russian air force in the 1980s.

It is nonetheless a potent aircraft which however is designed for air to air combat against enemy fighters rather than for strike roles or ground attack. In this it differs from the SU-35 and SU-30 fighters also deployed by the Russian Aerospace Forces to Syria, which though exceptionally effective air combat fighters are nonetheless true multirole fighters, which are also very effective when used for ground strikes.

What explains the deployment of the MiG-29SMT to Syria?

Ever since the start of the Russian intervention in Syria in 2015 the Russians have openly and frankly spoken of Syria as a testing ground for their military systems. It would be in keeping with this approach to use Syria to test the combat performance of the MiG-29SMT, making it incidentally the first MiG fighter deployed by the Russians to Syria on a sustained basis, though four much more advanced naval MiG-29K fighters were also briefly deployed to Syria last autumn on board Russia’s carrier Admiral Kuznetsov.

However a more likely reason for the deployment to Syria of the MiG-29SMT is that the Russians are preparing a delivery of MiG-29SMT aircraft to Syria and the deployment of some examples of this aircraft to Khmeimim air base is intended to familiarise the Syrians with it.

In 2009 the Russians confirmed that a contract had been agreed between Russia and Syria for the supply of 24 MiG-29SMT fighters to Syria. The sale was however postponed in 2012 because of the Syrian war. However with most of western Syria now pacified and under the Syrian government’s control, and with ISIS just weeks away from final defeat in eastern Syria, it is now possible to speak of the Syrian war finally winding down, making it possible for the supply of the 24 MiG-29SMTs to proceed.

When the Syrian war is finally over the Syrian air force – which has experienced heavy equipment losses because of the war, and whose aircraft are anyway largely obsolete Soviet designs delivered to Syria by the USSR in the 1970s and 1980s – will need modern new aircraft to re-equip itself, especially in light of the increasing threats to Syria from Israel.

At that point the transfer of the 24 MiG-29SMT fighters to Syria may finally take place, with the deployment of some of these aircraft to Syria being intended to prepare the ground for this.

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The Limelight Defeat of America’s “Assad Must Go” Policy – by Salman Rafi Sheikh

 

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As the events of war in Syria have emphatically shown, the self-styled Islamic State and the US-supported “moderate” jihadi groups have been defeated, and with it has died down the cornerstone of America’s direct and indirect military intervention i.e., “Assad must go” in Syria. This is evident not only from the way the Syrian army, supported by its Iranian and Russian allies, has rolled back the destroyers of Syria, but also how Assad has started to re-assert his standing as a legitimate ruler of Syria, representing Syria’s interests in major international forums and setting rules of engagement with regard to discussing Syria’s future and the role other countries can play in it. This assertion came to full limelight in a recent speech that Assad made in the second half of the month of August and outlined his vision for Syria’s post-war reconstruction. Of particualr importance were his words with regard to the role some foreign powers have been playing in Syria since the beginning of the so-called “civil war” as he said that he expects those foreign powers, the US and its Arab allies, who have pushed a regime change agenda – an agenda that has caused a lot of destruction and yet failed spectacularly –to abandon their residual links with rebel groups. Until this is done, Assad said further, “there will be neither security cooperation, nor the opening of embassies.”

Clearly, Assad is setting his terms of engagement with the powers that have sought to oust him in the last five years or so. What is equally evident here is the way Assad himself has set his own position as the ruler at the helm of Syrian affairs, intending to extend his control on the whole of Syria and deciding both its domestic and foreign policies. As such, while Assad was explicit in chiding some foreign powers for their role in Syria, he was equally explicit in setting his country’s future foreign policy orientation towards “the East.” He said, the “strategic future of Syria must be towards the East.”

Assad’s speech coincided with the defeat of one of the most powerful “rebel groups” in Syria, Ahrar-al-Sham. Not only was this group one of the West’s “moderate elements” but also played an instrumental role in a number of “rebel” victories against government troops during the years 2013-2015. Many in the West pinned high hopes on it, seeing it as a potential player in the future of Syria, especially after its troops joined in the fight against the IS and also agreed to support a political endgame to the Syrian conflict. Its defeat has, as such, turned out to be the last nail in the coffin of America’s “Assad must go” policy. With Ahrar’s fighters now fleeing and joining other group and with Syrian and Russian elements controlling Syria’s geo-political terrain, the West is left with minimum options to enliven the war through some other groups. Therefore, it is not surprising to see some influential policy makers in the US coming to terms with a Syria under Assad’s control.

“Bashar Assad’s government has won the war militarily,” said Robert Ford, a former US ambassador to Damascus, who is said to have played an instrumental role in fomenting the crisis in Syria back in 2011-12, adding further that “I can’t see any prospect of the Syrian opposition being able to compel him to make dramatic concessions in a peace negotiation.”

And while raw material i.e., human element to sustain these groups exit, sources of support for them have dried. The Syrian “rebels” have been frustrated by the way Europe, for instance, has become more interested in stanching the flow of Syrian refugees and stabilizing the country enough to send many of those already in Europe back. Continuation of war, therefore, doesn’t suit Europe.

Persian Gulf is squabbling, and due to that internal rift, flow of support to previously supported groups has shrunk dramatically, adding to the opposition group’s sense of frustration. Therefore, the directions they’re now receiving are markedly different from that of past 2 years. “The nations who supported us the most … they’re all shifting their position,” told Osama Abu Zaid, an opposition spokesman, to an American newspaper. “We’re being pressured from all sides to draw up a more realistic vision, to accept Assad staying.”

While the US has established a number of military establishments in Kurdish dominated northern parts of Syria, indicating its intentions to prolong its stay in Syria, the speed of the Syrian forces’ recovery of the lost ground and the fact that regional powers, Turkey and Iran, have joined hands to prevent the establishment of Kurdistan show that the US plan is increasingly looking like a pipe dream. The US, realistically speaking, apparently has no source on the ground to sustain itself or influence the final outcome. With direct military intervention out of the question, it is much more than even an uphill task of cobbling together a fresh “rebel force” to be able to challenge the combined forces of Syria and Iran backed militias, including Hizbollah, in the southern and eastern regions of Syria.

What is adding more problems is the fact that the US-backed groups and the US-led coalition have miserably failed to give a positive message to the masses they are supposedly protecting against a “brutal” regime. The so-called “unfortunate” incidents of civilian deaths at the hands of these forces are furthering the distance between these groups and the people who might have supported them in the past. In a latest incident of this nature, the US led coalition fighting the IS militants said on last Friday that its strike had caused at least 61 civilian deaths. Much for the erosion of “popular support” these forces and powers claimed to have in the country!

All in all, it is clear that the ground has been cleared of any possibility of Assad’s exit from Syria. The only hope left for the US to realize its erstwhile agenda is through massive mobilization of Kurdish forces. However, were this to happen, the US would end up unwittingly cementing the Turkish-Iranian and Syrian alliance further and increase the likelihood that the Iranian militias and Assad’s forces, duly supported by Turkey, would start an offensive against the Kurds. In such a scenario, the Americans won’t use troops to defend the Syrian Kurds. There is no appetite for this among the American public, and the Syrian Kurds would be making a terrible mistake thinking the US will come and save them.

Salman Rafi Sheikh, research-analyst of International Relations and Pakistan’s foreign and domestic affairs, exclusively for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook”.
https://journal-neo.org/2017/09/07/the-limelight-defeat-of-america-s-assad-must-go-policy/

 

Syria’s victory at Deir ez-Zor turns the tide on US regime-change plans – By Finian Cunningham (RT )

© Ammar Safarjalani / Global Look Press

The breaking of the siege of Deir ez-Zor by the Syrian army and its Russian ally marks the defeat of not just foreign-backed anti-government militants. It signals victory over the regime-change plot orchestrated by the US and its partners.

For three years, the eastern Syrian city of Deir ez-Zor had been besieged by militants affiliated with the Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) terror network. This week the Syrian army broke the stranglehold and liberated the city with crucial help from Russian air power.

Russian President Vladimir Putin reportedly sent a letter of congratulations to Syria’s Bashar Assad, a measure of the strategic significance of the event.

Deir ez-Zor on the Euphrates River had been the main terror hub in the country, serving as a supply corridor for IS between neighboring Iraq and Syria, according to Russia’s Colonel General Sergei Rudskoi. Now with the vanquishing of that hub, the terrorist remnants in Syria “face a crushing defeat.”

Last week, a headline in Britain’s Guardian newspaper put it succinctly, if not mendaciously. “Victory for Assad looks increasingly likely as world loses interest in Syria.”

The report went on to say: “States that were until recently committed to toppling the Syrian leader are now resigned to him staying.”

What the Guardian meant by its anodyne phrase “the world losing interest in Syria” is that the US and its NATO and regional allies have given up the ghost of overthrowing the Syrian government.

For more than six years since conflict broke out in March 2011, Syria has been the victim of an international criminal conspiracy led by the United States to topple President Assad and the Syrian state. The regime-change operation has been instrumented by the US and its allies sponsoring terrorist mercenary armies, while the Western mainstream news media served to distort the criminal enterprise by depicting it as a civil war.

It was Russia’s military intervention at the end of 2015 in support of the Syrian state that turned the tide. Military support from Iran and Lebanon’s Hezbollah also played a crucial role in turning the war in favor of the Syrian Arab Army.

The liberation of the northern city of Aleppo at the end of 2016 by Syrian and Russian forces was the beginning of the end for the US-backed covert war. Now the liberation of Deir ez-Zor spells the definitive defeat.

What The Guardian coyly calls “world losing interest in Syria” is attested to by several recent developments.

The general dropping by Western corporate news media of coverage on the war in Syria is a telltale signal that the geopolitical agenda of Western governments had shifted. Before the liberation of Aleppo in December, there were shrill, hysterical Western media reports of Syrian-Russian war crimes. The hysteria proved to be a complete fabrication as the liberated citizens of Aleppo and returning refugees began to rebuild their lives.

Over the past nine months, Western media coverage on Syria has steadily declined. To the point where this week’s momentous military victory by Syrian and Russian forces in Deir ez-Zor was bizarrely under-reported. Tellingly, instead of reporting on the liberation of the former ISIS stronghold, Western media tried to focus on a dubious report from the UN claiming that Assad’s forces had used sarin chemical weapons in the town of Khan Sheikhoun in April. Those hackneyed claims have been largely debunked by Russia and other independent sources, which said the CW attack was most likely a propaganda stunt by the Al Nusra terror group occupying the town, along with their White Helmets confederates.

Increasingly, the Western narrative on Syria has been shown to be a fraud. The reality of the US and its British and French allies, as well as Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Israel attempting to topple a sovereign state, has become too transparent to continue concealing. Same too for the reality of Syria, Russia, Iran and Hezbollah liberating a country from Western-backed terrorist mercenaries. Therefore, Western media have, by necessity, had to drop their mendacious coverage.

The decision two months ago by US President Donald Trump to end CIA militant training programs in Syria was a de facto acknowledgment by Washington that the game was up. That has been followed by British Special Forces withdrawing from training camps for militants in Syria, as well as reports that the Saudi regime has terminated its bankrolling of the terror proxies.

The Kremlin’s confirmation this week that Saudi King Salman is to visit Moscow at the end of October is another indicator that the Saudis are trying to stem their losses in Syria.

Trump has backed off earlier US demands President Assad had to step down. French President Emmanuel Macron and British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson have also reportedly resigned to accepting that the Syrian government is secure from being forcibly removed.

Reports of Jordan and Turkey lately trying to reestablish bilateral relations with Syria are further admissions that the regime-change plot against Assad has failed. Those two neighboring countries were vital conduits for US and NATO training camps, and Saudi-financed arms supplies to the militant proxies in Syria.

When Israeli Premier Benjamin Netanyahu made his surprise trip to Moscow at the end of last month, his reported appeal to President Putin over Iran’s forces in Syria was another data point for the strategic sea-change.

It’s not totally clear-cut, however. The US-backed Kurdish forces assailing the other last remaining IS-held city of Raqqa in Syria’s northeast has seen relentless American air power deployed with horrendous civilian slaughter. US forces in Syria are of course illegal without any mandate from the Syrian government or the UN. While the US-led regime-change covert war in Syria appears to be all but lost, US military intervention still poses a threat to Syrian territorial integrity.

Nevertheless, Syria and its Russian, Iranian and Lebanese allies are emerging as the victors. The historical significance cannot be overstated. For the past two decades, the US and its allies have been on a roll of criminal regime-change wars across the Middle East – with impunity.

That roll has now hit a strategic dead-end in Syria, largely because of Russia’s principled military intervention under President Putin.

Syria has been saved from a fate of failed state unlike so many other victims of America’s Orwellian “nation-building.” Or, to put it more accurately, Russia has saved Syria from US state-sponsored terrorism.

It is a seminal historical victory. But American imperialism will not give up there. We should expect the global battlefield to shift. The West’s contempt for Russia and Putin will doubtless intensify because of the strategic setback in Syria.

It is perhaps no surprise, then, that Washington has turned to stoking war with North Korea as a way to create problems for Russia. The Pentagon’s proposed stepping up of lethal weapons to the anti-Russian Kiev regime in Ukraine, as well as provocations from the seizure of Russian diplomatic properties in the US, are also acts of revenge for Putin’s successes in Syria.

Comment: Over three years under siege, Deir-ez-Zor joins Aleppo and Homs as some of the longest besieged cities in all history.

And now it’s (almost) liberated, thanks to Russian and Syrian allied forces. With it, the last remaining substantial pocket of ISIS forces is removed from Syria.

Hurrah!

Make no mistake, the latest US thuggery is a sign of weakness, not strength – The Vineyard of the Saker (The Saker)

© Stephen Lam / Reuters
The entrance to the building of the Consulate General of Russia is shown in San Francisco

For a while already the Russian diplomats have been openly saying that their American counterparts are недоговороспособны or “non-agreement capable”. This all began under Obama, when Kerry flew to meet with Lavrov and declared ‘A’, then flew back to Washington, DC and declared ‘B’. Then there were the cases in Syria when the US agreed to a deal only to break that very same deal in less than 24 hours. That’s when the Russians openly began to say that their US colleagues are rank amateurs who lack even the basic professionalism to get anything done.

Now the US has slipped even lower: the Russians speak of US “hellish buffoonery” and “stupid thuggery”.

Wow!

For the normally hyper-diplomatic Russians, this kind of language is absolutely unheard of, this has never ever happened before. You could say that the Russians are naive, but they believe that their diplomats should always be, well, diplomatic, and that public expressions of disgust is just not something a diplomat does. Even more telling is rather than call the Americans “evil” or “devious”, they openly express their total contempt for them, calling them stupid, incompetent, uneducated and their actions unlawful (read Maria Zakharova’s statement to that effect on Facebook).

So let me explain what is happening here how the Russians interpreted the latest US thuggery concerning the Russian Consulate in San Francisco and the Russian diplomatic annexes in Washington and New York.

First, the Russians fully expected the Americans to retaliate after the Russian expulsion of US diplomatic personnel in Russia. That, by itself, is not the problem. The Russians understand that Trump is a cornered and weak President, that he has to show how “tough” he is. Sure, they smile, but they think that this is ‘fair game’. The Russians also know that, as a country, the USA cannot accept the biggest reduction in US diplomatic personnel in history without reacting. Again, they don’t necessarily like it, but they think that this is ‘fair game’.

You know what really triggered the Russians off? The fact that the Americans gave them only 2 days to vacate the premises they would seize and that they organized some kind of bizarre search operation. Let me immediately explain that this is not a case of ruffled feathers by the Russians, not at all. But here is how they would think about it:

Why would they give us only 2 days? Do they really think that we cannot clear the premises from anything sensitive in 60 minutes if needed? Or are they actually trying to inconvenience our personnel? If so, do they really think that we are going to break out in hysterics? Do the Americans really think that they will find something? What? Papers proving that Trump is our agent? Maybe a hidden nuclear device? Or the computers we used to hack in every server in the USA?” To a Russian, these questions can only have one answer: of course not. So what is going on here? And then there is the only possible explanation left:

We beat them in Syria, we are beat them in the Ukraine, they lost Afghanistan, they lost Iraq, their Navy apparently does not know how to use a radar, their soldiers are terrified to fight somebody capable of resistance, they failed to impress not only China, but even the North Koreans who are openly laughing at them. Hezbollah laughs at them. Even Venezuela refuses to be scared! The Iranians openly threaten them with consequences if they back out of the deal they signed. Even Pakistan is openly expressing its disgust with the USA. Ditto for Turkey. Heck – the Americans are losing on all fronts and the very best they can do is try to feel good about illegally harassing our diplomatic personnel! Pathetic, lame, losers!

And they are 100% correct.

The latest US thuggery against Russian diplomats is as stupid as it is senseless. I think that US diplomats of the era of James Baker must be absolutely mortified to see the kind of idiocy their successors are now engaging in.

This is also the end of Rex Tillerson. The poor man now has only two options left: resign (that would be the honorable thing to do) or stay and become another castrated eunuch unable to even deal with the likes of Nikki Haley, nevermind the North Koreans!

A “spokesperson” for the White House declared that Trump personally ordered the latest thuggery. Okay, that means one of two thing: either Trump is so weak that he cannot even fire a lying spokesperson or that he has now fallen so low as to order the “thug life” behavior of the State Department. Either way, it is a disgrace.

This is also really scary. The combination of, on one hand, spineless subservience to the Neocons with intellectual mediocrity, a gross lack of professionalism and the kind of petty thuggery normally associated with street gangs and, on the other hand, nuclear weapons is very scary. In the mean time, the other nuclear armed crazies have just declared that they have a thermonuclear device which they apparently tested yesterday just to show their contempt for Trump and his general minions. I don’t think that they have a hydrogen bomb. I don’t think that they have a real ICBM. I don’t even think that they have real (usable) nuclear warheads. But what if I am wrong? What if they did get a lot of what they claim to have today – such as rocket engines – from the Ukies?

In one corner, the Outstanding Leader, Brilliant Comrade, Young Master and Great Successor, Kim Jong-un and on the other, The Donald, Grab them by the xxxxx and Make ‘Merica Great, the Grand Covfefe Donald Trump. Both armed with nukes.

Scary, scary sh*t. Really scary.

But even more scary and depressing is that the stronger man of the two is beyond any doubt Kim Jong-un.

All I see in the White House are vacancy signs.

The Saker

A Nuremberg Tribunal for ISIS and Friends – By Gordon Duff

 

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A dozen nations armed ISIS, protected them, some provided air support, others funneled jihadists from the far reaches of the Pacific to battle fields in Iraq and Syria.

Half a trillion dollars in oil, antiquities, entire factories, not to mention endless thousands of human slaves enriched those behind ISIS. Most involved aren’t Muslims. Many are Americans, the same corporations that profited from the War on Terror, backed ISIS as well.

Every NATO nation was involved as was Israel, Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States. This was a war of corporations and banks, a commercial venture building on the real lessons learned after 9/11.

War is too important for governments, politicians can be bought and sold like any other commodity and everyone has a price. Behind it all, the media and their darlings, Assange and WikiLeaks, the Murdoch organization, the BBC, all enthrall to international thuggery on a scale previously unseen. We begin.

In early 2014, I met with Iraqi Sunni leaders to discuss security concerns. Iraq’s Sunni’s are a complex interrelationship of tribal units, complex family ties further diffused by tenuous alliance with Saddam and his Baathist regime.

As the post 9/11 US occupation dragged on, Iraq’s Sunni minority, which includes most of the business community, increasingly looked south to Saudi Arabia and the Emirates for stability. Many were fearful of Iran’s influence.

Despite warnings, this led many, including military leaders, to cozying up to ISIS. The hand of Saudi intelligence services was always there as well, promises made but seldom kept. A few short months later, many I met with had their heads displayed on pikes, their “dance with the devil” unsatisfactory and unfulfilling.

Thus, overnight, ISIS found itself in control of the vast city of Mosul and billions in American military hardware, all handed over to ISIS. Behind this was not only Saudi intelligence but the Mossad as well, the Israeli intelligence service that had set up a large headquarters in Mosul as early as 2003.

There, they played Christians and Muslims against each other and began their dance with Turkey, supplying intelligence to Turkey on the Kurdish PKK, a group Israel had helped establish some years ago. This is the reality, one never reported.

As the ISIS juggernaut rolled on, fueled by jihadists magically moved through airports around the world, rumored aided by the Israeli controlled airport security firm ICTS of 9/11 fame, all the rules of conventional warfare were set aside. ISIS, reputedly a non-state player, became the stepchild of security forces of the US, Britain, France, Israel, Turkey, India, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and the UAE.

Eventually, even Serbia, Georgia, Ukraine and Romania would join in as well, channeling both NATO and Eastern Bloc weapons through Turkey, aided by non-governmental organizations such as the White Helmets and dozens of phony refugee aid and relief groups.

From the South, vehicles by the thousands flowed into Syria and Iraq for ISIS, specially modified Toyota Hilux trucks and almost the entire production of Land Cruisers. All paid for by Saudi royal funds and, according to sources, upgraded and reinforced in Israel, larger cooling systems and heavier suspension. No serial number has ever been traced, Toyota has never been held to account, no invoices checked, not for entire container ships of “technicals” moved into Israel and then to Jordan through Aqaba, and up into the warzone.

Similarly, until Russian aerospace forces pointed it out, the river of trucks, 12,000 plus strong, mostly passing openly through Kurdish controlled regions, Erbil and Duhoc, into Turkey, the invisible partnership that funded ISIS and the political families of several nations as well, unseen, unquestioned.

Where do 12,000 oil tankers come from? Easy answer, they come from America, bought up by brokers, shipped out of the Port of Houston. Most now lie burned wrecks in Syria and Iraq. Not one serial number ever checked, no one wants to know that they once plied the interstate highways of America carrying fuel for BP, Exxon and so many others.

We mentioned antiquities. Most moved openly through the auction houses of London, Paris and New York while those reputedly investigating, I was told by Syria’s former Minister of Justice, Najm Hamad al-Ahmad, may well have been acting as “spotters” for antiquity thieves themselves.

Time now to talk Turkey. When Aleppo “fell” to ISIS, it wasn’t ISIS at all. It was Turkey. Aleppo was the industrial heart of Syria and was picked clean by “gleaners” from Turkey. According to the Syrian Ministry of Justice, every major manufacturing facility in Northern Syria was stripped clean, machine tools, inventory, even copper wire and plumbing, trucked into Turkey and either sold off or reassembled and put back into production with ISIS a business partner.

The goods and materials involved has flowed for years into the European Union.

How do we explain Raytheon Corporation, one of the best supervised and controlled entities of America’s military sector, manufacturer of key weapons systems vital to America’s defense. Their production of TOW missiles, a huge sector of their corporate profitability, has been moving directly into the hands of terrorists for years. Damascus has a warehouse of captured Raytheon weapons, taken from al Qaeda and ISIS. Why is no one held to account?

The answer is obvious, a tribunal. Let us hold those who backed ISIS to account. This includes the journalists and their reports of phony gas attacks and imaginary atrocities by the Damascus government, and all those involved in keeping ISIS and al Qaeda supplied with drones, satellite phones, signals intelligence and top quality and highly restricted military electronics.

All can easily be tracked, from the EU, from Ukraine and Georgia, but most from Turkey, followed by Saudi Arabia, then Jordan and, of course, Israel.

There are 500,000 dead and up to 10 million refugees. Perhaps a few politicians, Israeli for sure, the Saudi Royals, Americans by the hundreds, an entire Turkish regime, endless thousands of traitors in Syria and Iraq, and corporations around the world need to be held accountable for these deaths.

What is owed? Reparations for sure, every jihadist from Indonesia and the Philippines had to get to Syria somehow. Every drop of oil, every antiquity, every ton of copper wire, every human slave, all need to be priced, not just money but prison time and perhaps a few hangings as well, perhaps on a massive scale.

Gordon Duff is a Marine combat veteran of the Vietnam War that has worked on veterans and POW issues for decades and consulted with governments challenged by security issues. He’s a senior editor and chairman of the board of Veterans Today, especially for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook.”
https://journal-neo.org/2017/09/03/a-nuremberg-tribunal-for-isis-and-friends/

Agents of Terror on Government Payroll – Part I: Anwar Al-Awlaki – By Sibel Edmonds (NewsBud.com)

Editor’s note: Read this article and extrapolate to many other alleged ‘Muslim terror masterminds’. Most likely, all of them were, in one way or another, assets of US intelligence agencies, tasked with creating the ‘reality’ of a terror threat to the USA in order that the US government could respond by invading and occupying nations around the world as part of the long war against Russia and China and securing the Middle East in particular for the ‘new American century’.

From quasi investigative reports to legitimate leaks, whistleblowers and numerous court documents, several key 9/11 operatives have been identified and confirmed as assets and or informants of the United States government. All details of these operatives’ positions, functions and employment records have been sealed and protected as beyond and above top secret classified. Further, despite the established facts and undeniable trail of evidentiary crumbs, the mainstream and pseudo-alternative tentacles of the establishment continue to downplay or plainly disregard these cases, and parrot the long ago debunked official narrative. According to them the sum of two plus two plus more twos equals … well, a solid ‘zero.’

Whether it is Anwar al-Awlaki, a man who was born and highly educated in the United States, who fought on our side against our competitors’ interests, who was a regular figure at the Pentagon and the brass’ dinner companion, who was on the FBI’s payroll and highly valued by the US Congress; or Ali Mohamed’s employment with the United States Army’s Green Barret and the CIA, and his connections with the FBI; or the landlord of two 9/11 hijackers in San Diego, who happened to be a highly valued long-term FBI informant, we find ourselves staring at black holes of incomplete profiles and missing crucial information. In each of these cases we are dealing with a government engaged in an extraordinary level of secrecy, protection and cover-up. And with every single case we are faced with the crucial why question.

While each case, individually, on its own, paints an extremely troubling picture with serious implications, we must delve into the cases as a whole in order to see the larger theme and an even more telling story. Putting these established cases together, documented in one place, is a sound starting point towards needed answers- the truth; on 9/11.

On October 4, 2013, lawyers for Ali Al-Timimi, a Virginia man and Muslim scholar serving a life sentence for supporting jihad against the U.S., pushed to obtain more information from the federal government on evidence pertaining to the cleric Anwar Al-Awlaki’s recruitment as a U.S. government informant over a decade ago. According to Al-Timimi’s defense lawyer Jonathan Turley, recently-released FBI files suggest that Al-Awlaki may have been acting as an “asset” for some government agency. In response to Turley’s request for this crucial evidence, government prosecutors insisted that they had no obligation to provide the detail of its dealings with Al-Awlaki:

“Mr. Turley has no right to know [whether the government] had an asset into Awlaki at that time. Mr. Turley has no right to know if Mr. Awlaki was an asset at that time!”

Leonie Brinkema, the presiding U.S. District Court Judge on the case, has not been inclined to grant motions filed by Al-Timimi seeking more details on the government’s relationship with Al-Awlaki. Further, Brinkema suggested that part of the answer to these concerns is so highly classified that she is the only person at the court who is allowed to see it, and that even a number of other personnel with “Top Secret” clearance were not allowed to see the documents pertaining to these concerns.

Talk about secrecy! You can read Al-Tamimi’s motion seeking evidence about Al-Awlaki here , and the government’s response here.

Even former FBI Director Robert Mueller did not deny the official working relationship between the Bureau and Awlaki:

Documents obtained by Judicial Watch after it filed a Freedom of Information Act request and then sued the FBI, show the FBI Director was more deeply involved in the post-9/11 handling of al-Awlaki than previously known.

One memo from Mueller to then-Attorney General John Ashcroft on Oct. 3, 2002 — seven days before the cleric re-entered the U.S. and was detained at JFK — is marked “Secret” and titled “Anwar Aulaqi: IT-UBL/AL-QAEDA.”

While the substance of the memo is redacted in full, with the FBI citing classified material, the memo is one of at least three FBI reports, whose primary subject is the cleric, in the nine days leading up to al-Awlaki’s sudden return to the U.S. in October 2002.

Another FBI memo, also marked “Secret,” on Oct. 22, 2002, 12 days after the cleric’s return, includes the subject line “Anwar Nasser Aulaqi” and “Synopsis: Asset reporting.” It is not clear whether the term “asset” refers to the cleric or another individual.

“Why would al-Awlaki get the attention of the FBI Director? Why would a warrant for his arrest be pulled when he’s trying to reenter the country?” asked Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton.

As he leaves the FBI after 12 years — two years beyond the traditional term – Director Robert Mueller did not dismiss the possibility in an interview with Fox News. “I am not personally familiar with any effort to recruit Anwar al-Awlaki as an asset — that does not mean to say there was not an effort at some level of the Bureau (FBI) or another agency to do so,” Mueller said.

Awlaki was born in the United States and raised in an affluent family, with a highly educated father who was a Fulbright scholar:

“Al-Awlaki was born in the United States. His parents were from Yemen. His father did his graduate work at U.S. universities, receiving his doctorate at the University of Nebraska, and later working at the University of Minnesota (1975 to 1977).”

He pursued higher education at prestigious U.S. universities as well:

“Al-Awlaki earned his B.S. in Civil Engineering from Colorado State University (1994). He also studied at San Diego State University, and worked on a doctorate degree in Human Resource Development at George Washington University Graduate School of Education & Human Development (2001).”

Strangely, despite his preacher, aka Imam, positions, al-Awlaki never received any formal Islamic education. In fact, this is what other Islamic preachers have said about him:

“Some Muslim scholars said they did not understand al‑Awlaki’s popularity, because while he spoke fluent English and could therefore reach a large non-Arabic-speaking audience, he lacked formal Islamic training and study.”

Awlaki’s upbringing and higher education took place here in the United States. His family was not Islamist or radicalized. He never went to Madrasas or Islamic preaching schools. So was he really radicalized? From documented facts and his history it seems as if he had later assumed the role of a radical Islamist. He was playing that role.

Now things get a bit more interesting: Awlaki spent a summer of his college years training with the Afghan Mujahideen. Why is this interesting? Because this summer training took place sometime between 1991 and 1994. We are not talking about the era when the Mujahideen fought the Soviets. No, this is not the 80s we are talking about. During this period there were no Taliban guys; Taliban had not yet been formed. The only Mujahideen in operation were the ones backed and directed by Pakistan’s ISI, with foreign participants mainly backed by Saudi Arabia:

“Pakistan’s ruling military establishment was opposed to the new developments in neighboring Afghanistan. Afghanistan expert Neamatollah Nojumi writes, “[t]hese new political and military developments in Afghanistan forced the Pakistani intelligence agency ISI to organize a military plan with forces belonging to Hekmatyar’s Hezb-i Islami … This militaristic plan aimed to capture Kabul and was in full force when … the rest of the Mujahideen leaders in Pakistan agreed to the UN peace plan. On the eve of the successful implementation of the UN peace plan in Afghanistan the ISI, through Hekmatyar and non-Afghan volunteers, led hundreds of trucks loaded with weapons and fighters to the southern part of Kabul.”

When we delve in further, we see Awlaki’s main area of interest:

“In 1994 Awlaki began service as a part-time imam of the Denver Islamic Society, where he encouraged Saudis to fight in Chechnya against the Russians.”

Let’s see. Who else would have interests in that region that would be against the Russian interests? Remember we are talking about the Post-Soviet period here. So the relationship between Awlaki and the CIA-Pentagon cannot be written off as one of those overly used ‘well, that was during the Afghan-Soviet War when we aligned ourselves with one evil against another evil,’ lines. This was the era when we began competing with Russia over the resource-rich region. Chechens have been one of our main tools to sabotage Russian interests in this region. So basically, Awlaki was encouraging terror operations against our competitor, and that would make him someone who was suavely playing a radical Islamist role for our side and special interests. In other words, we are talking Operation Gladio B.

So what happened next? Based on documented background information, by 2000-2001 Awlaki had ties to and relationships with high-ranking FBI officials:

“In 2001 Awlaki settled on the East Coast in the Washington Metropolitan Area where he served as imam at the Dar al-Hijrah mosque. This is where he led academic discussions and preaching frequented by FBI Director of Counter-Intelligence for the Middle East Gordon M. Snow.”

Awlaki was also a sought after figure by the Pentagon-he even dined with top brass, and he was a chosen man on Capitol Hill as well.

This is the same man, who from very early on during the 9/11 investigation, was tied in many ways to the supposed 9/11 terrorist attacks:

“When police investigating the 9/11 attacks raided the Hamburg, Germany, apartment of Ramzi bin al-Shibh, they found the telephone number of al-Awlaki among bin al-Shibh’s personal contacts.

One detective later told the 9/11 Commission he believed al-Awlaki “was at the center of the 9/11 story”. And an FBI agent said, “if anyone had knowledge of the plot, it would have been” him, since “someone had to be in the U.S. and keep the hijackers spiritually focused”.


One common denominator among FBI-CIA terrorist recruits is the terrorist candidates’ being easily Blackmail-able. Recall one of the alleged 9/11 hijackers, Mohamed Atta, and the fantasy marketed by officials and their tentacles in the media that the one thing all the 9/11 hijackers shared was their adherence to the extreme side of Islam- aka Fanatic Islamists. The real history and facts state otherwise:

“In Venice Florida, Mohamed Atta lived for two months with an American stripper/lingerie model named Amanda Keller.

Atta loved to party. He was out with Keller nearly every night they were together. He was a heavy drinker, snorted coke, was a stylish dresser and wore expensive jewelry.

Atta, Keller, a stripper named Linda and two Germans, Peter and Johan, partied for three days in Key West. Atta paid for everything.

Atta frequented Vegas Casinos where he gambled, drank alcohol, and frequented strip clubs. Further, less than one week before the 9.11 attack…Atta and several other hijackers made a still-unexplained visit onboard one of Jack Abramoff’s casino boats.”

Awlaki too possessed such blackmail-able qualities that made him a perfect candidate. As he was being surveilled by the FBI (and probably the CIA), the pious Muslim preacher married with three children frequented escorts and brothels, received blowjobs and kinky intercourse, and had arrest record(s) for propositioning hookers. In a Hollywoodesque exposé written by New York Post, ‘The secret sex life of one of al Qaeda’s most fearsome members‘, we get a better picture of Awlaki’s activities making him a perfect recruit:

“Such solo drives had become routine for him, though the settings varied; sometimes it was a motel in a seedier part of the city, or tonier lodging in the sprawling Virginia suburbs. This time it was the Marriott Residence Inn on P Street toward the end of the holy month of Ramadan.

In a Washington Post online chat a few weeks earlier, he had explained that Muslims abstained from sexual activity during Ramadan between sunrise and sunset. It was 2:30 p.m. when he made his way to Room 1010, where a young woman from Texas awaited.

He was a computer engineer, born in India and now living in California, Awlaki told her. He was polite and apologized for sneezing so much, explaining that he was suffering from hay fever. He handed over $220 and she performed oral sex on him. He “finished very quickly” and asked her for another round, the woman would later recount. But she was trying to raise the money to go to college in Florida and said he’d have to pay another $220. He said he’d pay again only for full sexual intercourse. She declined and he went on his way. He was a busy man, after all.

In the months after 9/11, the watchers from the SSG followed Awlaki to assignations with prostitutes at the Wyndham City Center, the Melrose, the Monarch, Avenue Suites, the Swissotel, and more. Agents would follow up with the women later the same day or the next day, asking about Awlaki’s words and actions. He liked the lights on, the agents learned. He found the escort services online and booked their services under his real name. Sometimes he asked for intercourse, sometimes oral sex, and sometimes he just watched the woman stimulate herself while he masturbated.”

Just like in any organized criminal network, the ultimate end of US government snitches, rats and assets who bear witness to government criminal operations, including terrorism, is either death by a hit-job, assassination, unexplained murder or suicide. And this consistent pattern shows up in the case of Awlaki – death by drone assassination ordered secretly by the highest echelons of a criminal government from the White House:

“A federal court on Monday released a previously secret government memo outlining the legal justification for the 2011 killing of Anwar al-Awlaki, a U.S. citizen and accused al-Qaeda operative, in a drone strike in Yemen.

The document was released under order of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit in New York and provides the most detailed explanation to date for the legal reasoning behind Awlaki’s killing. Its disclosure also represents a significant capitulation by the Obama administration, which fought for years to keep the memo – as well as many other aspects of its targeted-killing program – secret from the public.

“We do not believe that al-Aulaqi’s U.S. citizenship imposes constitutional limitations that would preclude the contemplated lethal action” by the U.S. military or CIA, the memo concluded, clearing the way for a drone strike that would trigger intense legal and political debate.

The newly released document indicates that both the U.S. military and the CIA had assured the Justice Department that “they intend to capture” Awlaki but had made clear that doing so “would be infeasible at this time.”

While acknowledging that killing a U.S. citizen carries “the risk of erroneous deprivation of a citizen’s liberty in the absence of sufficient process,” the memo argued that those considerations are overwhelmed when the target poses “a continued and imminent threat of violence or death” to other Americans.”

What really warranted a covert assassination order and execution of Al-Awlaki, a US citizen, directly by the President? As we all know dead men can’t talk. The drone assassination eliminated one more witness – a possible loose end with the potential of becoming a loudmouth. Yet the documents, albeit limited, witnesses, tireless investigative work of a few truth-seeking journalists live on – in hopes of a legitimate truth movement that never gives up seeking the truth.

About the author

Sibel Edmonds is editor and publisher of Newsbud, founder and president of the National Security Whistleblowers Coalition (NSWBC), and author of the acclaimed books Classified Woman: The Sibel Edmonds Story, and The Lone Gladio, a Political Spy Thriller. She is the recipient of the 2006 PEN/Newman’s Own First Amendment Award. Ms. Edmonds is a certified linguist, fluent in four languages, and has an MA in public policy from George Mason University and a BA in criminal justice and psychology from George Washington University.

See Also:

Monsanto: It Ain’t Glyphosate, it’s the Additives! – By Author: F. William Engdahl


 

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Famously corrupt and unscrupulous, Monsanto Corporation has now been discovered in covering up the highly toxic effects of the secret additives it combines with glyphosate in Roundup, the world’s most-used herbicide. The IARC, an agency of the World Health Organization, released a report in March, 2015 that declared the chemical glyphosate to be “probably carcinogenic to humans (Group 2A).” They were not provided tests that included the effects of glyphosate combined with specific trade secret additives. Monsanto is desperate to hide the true carcinogen in its Roundup weed-killer.

Glyphosate is the largest component of Monsanto Roundup, the world’s largest weed-killer and the toxin mandated in every Monsanto Genetically Manipulated (GMO) planting. But what Monsanto refuses to disclose is what additives it uses, otherwise termed surfactants or adjuvants, ostensibly to give the glyphosate a “turbo” weed-killer effectiveness boost.

Since late 2016 the United States District Court for the Northern District of California has been hearing a case brought by a group of plaintiffs against Monsanto, claiming the firm falsified test results and refused to test the actual commercial mix sold as Roundup, a mix which contains far more deadly chemicals than glyphosate, especially when combined with glyphosate, in order to show its best-selling Roundup to be harmless in recommended doses and non-carcinogenic.

It’s the Surfactants!

On June 30, 2017, attorneys from Baum, Hedlund, Aristei & Goldman, lawyers for the plaintiffs, released online court documents provided by Monsanto to the Court in the ongoing California case against Monsanto. Those Monsanto secret documents reveal the criminal company collusion to cover up the truth about its Roundup weed-killer.

Among the damning emails from the Monsanto internal documents is an email exchange marked Confidential, dated November 22, 2003, from Donna R. Farmer, PhD., then chief toxicologist at Monsanto responsible for glyphosate products worldwide. Farmer states bluntly, “The terms glyphosate and Roundup cannot be used interchangeably nor can you use “Roundup” for all glyphosate-based herbicides any more. For example, you cannot say that Roundup is not a carcinogen … we have not done the necessary testing on the formulation to make that statement.” (emphasis added-w.e.)

Another confidential Monsanto email dated December 14, 2010, more than seven years after Donna Farmer’s 2003 admission, states that “With regards to the carcinogenicity of our (Roundup-w.e.) formulations, we don’t have such testing on them directly, but we do have such testing on the glyphosate component.” It’s a bit like telling someone you held an African Black Mamba, the world’s fastest and one of the world’s most toxic snakes, and nothing happened to you, so the Black Mamba can be certified as safe for a household pet.

What Monsanto toxicologist Donna Farmer refers to as “the formulation” is the major ingredient, glyphosate, in combination with various surfactants or adjuvants, allegedly used to bind the weed-killer Roundup more efficiently to target weeds in the region of spraying of crops such as GMO corn or soybeans. Monsanto calls the component in Roundup called glyphosate the “active ingredient,” implying, falsely, that the added chemicals are merely passive or inert and harmless.

No tests done

To date the entire global public debate on glyphosate in the USA, the EU and in the rest of the world has been a very sly “red herring,” put out by Monsanto to take attention away from the vastly more toxic cocktail that is sold today as Roundup weed-killer, the world’s most widely used weed-killer. Roundup is far more than only glyphosate, as the email from Donna Farmer admits. Monsanto has deliberately turned the public and legal debate to focus only on glyphosate, as if the rest of their toxic cocktail was just some sugar candy. Are their trade secret additives including chemicals such as formaldehyde? We don’t know. Do they include known carcinogens such as N-ethyl-NNG? We don’t know. Monsanto refuses to tell the public.

The Monsanto secret email exchanges, now public as a result of the California court case, reveal dramatically the collusion of senior US Government officials at the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Monsanto to conceal the fact that the EPA never was in possession of the other components of Roundup aside from glyphosate.

Those surfactants are mostly classified as “trade secret” by Monsanto and have not even been made known to the US Government agency responsible for guarding the environmental health of the population, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), yet EPA officials have never made a public issue of the fact.

Among the Monsanto confidential emails released by attorneys in the California law suit on June 30, 2017 is one dated March 5, 2013. In it Monsanto admits internally, “We do not conduct sub-chronic, chronic or teratogenicity studies with our formulations. The long-term exposure has been assessed according to the regulatory requirements in chronic and carcinogenicity studies conducted with the active ingredient glyphosate.” (emphasis added-w.e.). Teratogenic testing is testing to determine if a drug or chemical contains an agent that can disturb the development of the human embryo or fetus. Teratogens can halt the pregnancy or produce a congenital malformation or birth defect.

On its website, Monsanto gives a picture of serious compliance with government safety testing standards. It states, “Like all pesticides, glyphosate is routinely reviewed by regulatory authorities to ensure it can be used safely. In the U.S., that’s the job of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and like other regulatory authorities around the world, the EPA’s process is comprehensive and based on the best available science.” (emphasis added-w.e.).

Note that they are careful to say “glyphosate,” and not Roundup. As the California EPA and Monsanto email exchanges reveal, Monsanto is being sly here, as they have not managed over 40 years to give detailed information on all the additives or adjuvants contained today or earlier in its Roundup herbicide. Curiously, they state, “Click here to learn more about the EPA’s current “registration review” underway for glyphosate.,” however as of August 28, 2017 there is no link to any EPA “registration review.” Oops, sorry…

In simple English, Monsanto admits its fraud that it only used tests of the possible carcinogenicity of its so-called “active ingredient” glyphosate. Never did they submit tests of the true Roundup cocktail actually used commercially. The entire EU and US EPA “glyphosate debate” is a hoax, a nefarious fraud.

‘Two Thousand times more toxic’ than glyphosate alone

Independent scientific tests by toxicologists have revealed that it is precisely the added ingredients, the so-called surfactants or Roundup’s “formulations,” in chemical combination with the far less toxic glyphosate base, that are highly toxic and probable carcinogen.

In a peer-reviewed scientific paper published on February 26, 2016 in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, a team of toxicologists led by Gilles-Eric Séralini of the Institute of Biology, University of Caen in Normandy, France and András Székács, Director of the Agro-Environmental Research Institute of Hungary’s National Agricultural Research and Innovation Centre, tested the most commonly used glyphosate-based herbicides including Monsanto Roundup. They tested the complete cocktail, including the co-formulants and formulations used in combination with the glyphosate.

What they found should put our hair on end. Instead, it has been swept under the rug by the US Government and the Commission of the EU as well as by a German government eager perhaps to appease the giant German Bayer AG, the prospective new owner of Monsanto.

The Seralini group study demonstrated for the first time that endocrine disruption by Glyphposate-Based Herbicides (GBH) could not only be due to the declared active ingredient, glyphosate, but also to the co-formulants or additives. But it gets much worse than that.

Seralini’s group tested the endocrine disruption of co-formulants in six glyphosate-based herbicides (GBH), the most used pesticides worldwide including Roundup.

Their study concluded, “The endocrine-disrupting effects of all these compounds were measured on aromatase activity, a key enzyme in the balance of sex hormones, below the toxicity threshold. Aromatase activity was decreased both by the co-formulants alone…and by the formulations, from concentrations 800 times lower than the agricultural dilutions…; while G (glyphosate) exerted an effect only at 1/3 of the agricultural dilution…These results could explain numerous in vivo results with GBHs not seen with G alone; moreover, they challenge the relevance of the acceptable daily intake (ADI) value for GBHs exposures, currently calculated from toxicity tests of the declared active ingredient alone.

Their tests further concluded that the compounded herbicides using glyphosate as base, but including undisclosed “formulations” or surfactants or co-formulants, were vastly more toxic than glyphosate tested alone. They write, “All co-formulants and formulations were comparably cytotoxic well below the agricultural dilution of 1%.” Depending on the product, the tests revealed that glyphosate, in combination with co-formulants, could be up to 2000 times more toxic to cells than glyphosate alone.

Yet Monsanto has never revealed its trade secret co-formulants, neither to the US Government as it is compelled to by law, nor to the public.

The Seralini study concludes that “The declared active ingredients of pesticide formulations are not applied in their isolated form in agricultural use. Other substances (co-formulants) are also added, in order to modify the physico-chemical properties or to improve penetration or stability of the declared active ingredients. The identity of the co-formulants, declared as inert, is generally kept confidential. Moreover, they are not used in medium or long term in vivo toxicity tests of pesticides on mammals for the establishment of their acceptable daily intake.”

By the criteria used in war crimes tribunals after 1945 Monsanto knew or should have known that its Roundup total formulation products were more toxic that glyphosate alone and that independent, reliable safety studies of Roundup and full disclosure of all of Roundup’s additives, the so-called “inert” ingredients was necessary.

Whatever the legal outcome of the California legal case, the plaintiffs and their attorneys at Baum, Hedlund, Aristei & Goldman have done a major service to mankind by releasing the confidential Monsanto documents.

The attorneys have sent copies of all documents so far to the EPA Office of Inspector General, presently investigating whether there was illegal collusion between EPA and Monsanto; the California’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA), which recently listed glyphosate as a substance known to the state of California to cause cancer and is soliciting comments from Baum Hedlund and others to advise about whether glyphosate should be given a safe-harbor; and to the European Parliament members, who recently sent a letter to the judge overseeing the MDL litigation, requesting documents as the EU considers whether it will renew registration of glyphosate for sale in Europe.

F. William Engdahl is strategic risk consultant and lecturer, he holds a degree in politics from Princeton University and is a best-selling author on oil and geopolitics, exclusively for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook.”
https://journal-neo.org/2017/08/30/monsanto-it-ain-t-glyphosate-it-s-the-additives/

The Axis of Resistance: Russia, Iran & Syria have reduced the Zionist entity to a ‘quivering wreck’ – By Dr Bouthaina Shaaban ( 21st Century Wire )

© RT
Benjamin Netanyahu meets with President Putin.

Never before has a prime minister of the Zionist entity appeared so confused as did Benjamin Netanyahu in his meeting with President Vladimir Putin. Netanyahu was looking through a set of papers he was holding, as if he’s hoping to find a way out. This is the first time he relied on what was written in his notes in such an important summit meeting.

The viewer did not need to hear what he was saying, because Putin’s stern expressions expressed his suspicion of the repeated Israeli usual dull hyperbolic claims about the Iranian threat, and the Russian President refused Netanyahu’s aggressive schemes. In Pravda’s report on 25 August 2017, entitled “Netanyahu’s nightmare becomes a reality,” the newspaper reveals that Putin answered Netanyahu saying: “Iran is a strategic ally of Russia in the Middle East.” And when the latter exaggerated in describing the Iranian threat, President Putin responded: “Unfortunately, I cannot help you here.”

Pravda reports that Netanyahu failed to convince Putin of the by-now-boring Israeli argument about “Iranian expansion in the Middle East.” Commenting on the Putin-Netanyahu summit, the Israeli newspaper Maariv said in its reports on 23 August 2017: “Israel has become isolated on the international scene.” It’s only friend now is the ruling Wahhabi families in the Gulf, whose media, representatives and hired mercenaries mindlessly repeat Netanyahu’s claims.

But what is behind this Israeli hysteria and the visits by its official to the US and Russia in order to promote these “threats” to Israeli’s security? And what has happened recently that provoked such a reaction from the Zionist entity’s leaders? Does Netanyahu and the ruling clique in Tel Aviv really think that world powers are as stupid and naive as the rulers of Gulf Sheikhdoms?

The main event that provoked these reactions is the change that occurred in the regional balance of power after the Syrian and Iraqi armies and the forces of resistance advanced in several areas, liberating Mosul and reaching an agreement in southern Syria, that gave neither Jordan nor Israel a role in monitoring the deescalation zone.

Both the announced and the unannounced coordination and cooperation between Iraq, Syria, and Lebanon, with the presence of Russia and Iran, in commanding this wide front from Iran to the Mediterranean have cost the Zionist entity its decade-long hegemony, which recently expanded to include the Saudi Kingdom and the Gulf States.

The Resistance has proven that breaking the backbone of this Israeli propaganda is not impossible, and that the enemy now needs to recalculate its position according to new realities on the battlefield, and on the regional and international levels. Another factor, no less important than the regional one, is the victory achieved by the forces of resistance and the Arab Army in Syria and Iraq, and in the Qalamoun region, and the rapid collapse of the terrorist groups across the board.

The capture of the strategic Qalamoun mountains, which connects Syria to Lebanon, has eliminated Israel’s terrorist mercenaries from that vital region, to the dismay of Israel’s rulers who reacted in a hysterical manner in front of the whole world. This victory has proven that Israel cannot hold an inch of our land through its terrorist mercenaries.

Also, the forces of resistance and the Arab Army in Syria and Iraq proved that they have reached unprecedented levels of military capabilities, a fact that frightens the Zionist enemy and leads it to alter its plans in any coming battle. The Zionist entity is not only concerned that its terrorist gangs are losing ground, but also it is worried about the future battle against those who seek to liberate the land from its despicable occupation.

No matter how much the Zionists train their army, it remains a theoretical training, as opposed to the field experience of the battle-hardened forces of resistance and the Arab armies in Syria and Iraq. Also, the coordination between Iran, Iraq, Syria, and Lebanon is a nightmare that the Zionist enemy fears because its power is built on dividing the Arabs, because the Zionists know that when the Arab unite their strategies, plans, and actions, the Zionist entity would collapse as rapidly as its terrorist mercenaries.

Another important factor that concerns the Zionists is that their historic and strategic ally the United States is drowning in internal disputes, and has been losing its credibility as a Great Power both on the internal and international scenes, despite its looting of Saudi and Gulf wealth. So when their main partner couldn’t deliver assurances, the Zionists turned to Russia hoping to sway its decision makers, using the usual lies about their entity being under threat.

But in Russia, the Zionists were met by a strong leader who respects his words and commitments, and does not compromise his country’s fundamental principles. The Zionists realise that the Russian leader has the final word today in all issues in the Middle East, and the word of the United States, the West, and their Wahhabi mercenaries no longer counts.

It is a fact of life today that terrorism that hit Syria, Iraq, Libya, Yemen, destroying their civilisational heritage and killing millions of their citizens is a Zionist terrorism funded by the Saudi royals. Former MI6 chief Richard Dearlove admitted in a lecture in London that Saudi Arabia helped ISIS (Daesh) in capturing Mosul and the whole of northern Iraq, and by association eastern Syria, and that the coming days will reveal Saudi Arabia to be a tool in the hands of the Zionists, and that both Saudi Arabia and Qatar paid billions of dollars to destroy Arab countries.

Today, we are in a time in which Zionist tools are collapsing in Syria and Iraq, and the leaders of the Zionist entity are trembling because the unjust war they waged alongside their Saudi mercenaries against our people has only made our armies and our resistance stronger and more competent. So what can our enemies do?

May God have mercy on the souls of our martyred young men who gave their lives for this Nation, and we pray for the wounded, for all of them have given their blood to serve this noble cause, the cause of all Arabs and Muslims, the cause of Palestine and the occupied land, and the rights of our peoples to live freely on their land.

The hysteria that befell the Zionist entity and its poorly calculated actions will only help further reveal its true role and the role of its operatives in the systematic destruction of Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Libya, and Yemen. And history will also reveal the truth behind the events we experienced in the past few years. Netanyahu’s visit to Putin and his trembling body language is only the first sign, and there will be many more to come.

Dr Bouthaina Shaaban is Political & Media Advisor to Syrian President, Bashar Al Assad

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Let’s Call “Trump’s Generals” What They Are: A Military Junta – By Whitney Webb

Trump is fond of boasting about “his” generals. But over the short course of his presidency’s first months, the possession and control have reversed themselves. Mattis, McMaster, and Kelly have banished all opposition and now pour the neo-con agenda straight into Trump’s ear.

 

U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, right, and Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman attend a joint press conference at the Defense Ministry in Tel Aviv, Israel, April 21, 2017. (Jonathan Ernst/AP)

 

WASHINGTON – The U.S., long known for its meddling in the affairs of other nations, also has a long and sordid history of supporting military juntas abroad, many of which it forced into power through bloody coups or behind-the-scenes power grabs. From Greece in the 1960s to Argentina in the 1980s to the current al-Sisi-led junta in Egypt, Washington has actively and repeatedly supported such undemocratic regimes despite casting itself as the world’s greatest promoter of “democracy.”

Finally in 2017, karma appears to have come back to roost, as the current presidential administration has now effectively morphed into what is, by definition, a military junta. Though the military-industrial complex has long directed U.S. foreign policy, in the administration of President Donald Trump a group of military officers has gathered unprecedented power and, for all intents and purposes, rules the country.

 

 

Three generals at the center of power

In a recent article in The Washington Post, titled “Military Leaders Consolidate Power In Trump Administration,” Post reporters Robert Costa and Philip Rucker noted that “At the core of Trump’s circle is a seasoned trio of generals with experience as battlefield commanders: White House Chief of Staff John F. Kelly, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and national security adviser H.R. McMaster. The three men have carefully cultivated personal relationships with the president and gained his trust.”

“This is the only time in modern presidential history when we’ve had a small number of people from the uniformed world hold this much influence over the chief executive,” John E. McLaughlin, a former acting director of the CIA who served in seven administrations, told the Post. “They are right now playing an extraordinary role.”

This role, however, appears to reach beyond “extraordinary”. Although Trump is fond of calling them “my generals,” they now, Costa and Rucker report, “manage Trump’s hour-by-hour interactions and whisper in his ear – and those whispers, as with the decision this week to expand U.S. military operations in Afghanistan, often become policy.” Another Washington Post article, published last Tuesday, led with the headline “The Generals Have Trump Surrounded.”

Also notable is the fact that this trio of generals has overseen the firing of more independent, “outsider” voices, notably Derek Harvey and Steve Bannon. Bannon, in particular, was a thorn in the side of the generals, in light primarily of his staunch opposition to the American “empire project” and new wars abroad. Bannon had opposed Trump’s strike against Syria, troop surges in Iraq, and the dropped hint of a ”military option” to deal with the crisis in Venezuela. The New York Times referred to McMaster as Bannon’s “nemesis in the West Wing,” precisely due to McMaster’s commitment to American empire building.

With Bannon’s relatively recent departure, the tone of the Trump administration – now unequivocally ruled by “the generals” – has changed significantly — as illustrated by Trump’s decision to send thousands more troops to Afghanistan, a measure both Bannon and Trump himself once opposed.

In addition, last Thursday, Politico published a report detailing the control exercised by Kelly over the president, as he personally vets “everything” that comes across Trump’s desk. Politico referenced two memos that laid out a system “designed to ensure that the president won’t see any external policy documents, internal policy memos, agency reports and even news articles that haven’t been vetted.”

The Hill further noted that Kelly is also “keeping a tight leash” on who gets to meet directly with the President in the Oval Office, which is now strictly appointment-only and also dependent upon Kelly’s approval.

 

How many generals does it take . . . ?

Kelly, however, is a recent arrival. H.R. McMaster, who took control of the National Security Council (NSC) following Flynn’s ouster in February, has been — at least since April — personally controlling the flow of national security information that makes it to the president. McMaster also took control of the Homeland Security Council and had Steve Bannon, known for his strident nationalism and anti-interventionism, removed from the NSC.

“McMaster is trying to put them [NSC staffers] under his control and either removing or downgrading people who had independent linkages to the White House so that advice will flow through him,” Mark Cancian, a national security expert and former White House official, told The Washington Post in April.

McMaster has drawn more ire than any other of “Trump’s generals” from disillusioned members of Trump’s base, many of whom have pejoratively referred to the NSC adviser as “President McMaster.” McMaster has also overridden many of the Trump’s policies, such as asking South Korea to pay for the THAAD missile system, and has actively pushed for a ground war in Syria and a massive 50,000-troop surge in Afghanistan.

The first of the trio of generals to be appointed to a high-ranking position in the Trump administration was Secretary of Defense James Mattis. Neo-cons like Bill Kristol and Elliot Abrams, along with “an anonymous group of conservative billionaires,” had called for Mattis to be drafted into running as a third party candidate in the 2016 election. Though his candidacy did not materialize as such, formal election appears to have been unnecessary.

Mattis began to take power in March. At the time, Defense One noted that Trump’s generals, including Mattis, “increasingly sound like they’re working for a different president altogether.” Trump’s failure to take the general’s advice was soon met with threats of resignation, shortly after which Trump’s tone changed and he gave Mattis “a freer hand to launch time-sensitive missions.”

The new model of command that arose involved “pre-delegating authority to Mattis; …that authority could be pushed much further down the chain of command – all the way down to the three-star general who runs JSOC.” Essentially, the White House, though still informed of military operations, relinquished commanding authority over the U.S. military to Mattis. Since the great “war power giveaway,” Mattis has overseen the expansion of every theater of war Trump inherited from his predecessor.

 

 

President Wolfowitz? The neo-cons back in the saddle and unchallenged

Former Deputy Defense Secretary, and former World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz, center, attends a farewell ceremony for outgoing Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Peter Pace. (AP/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

Not surprisingly, the path now being followed by the Trump administration, at the behest of the generals, is a familiar one. This likely owes to both Mattis’ and McMaster’s allegiance to notorious neo-cons and war hawks — such as Paul Wolfowitz, architect of the 2003 invasion of Iraq and creator of the Wolfowitz doctrine, and David Petraeus, disgraced general and former director of the CIA. Wolfowitz, in an April interview with Politico, revealed that he was in private email correspondence with both Mattis and McMaster, “in hopes they will pursue a U.S. strategy of stepped-up engagement in the Middle East” and elsewhere.

Though the generals are in control and their junta established, they are not the ones calling the shots — as Wolfowitz’s revelation suggests. The military-industrial complex and the ever-hawkish neoconservatives have taken over, refusing to let the anti-interventionism the American people voted for make itself heard. As Henry Kissinger — the man who installed military juntas throughout the world — once said of the Chilean people, while planning a coup against their democracy: “I don’t see why we need to stand by and watch a country go communist because of the irresponsibility of its own people.”

Over 60 years later, the theater of engagement has come home and the warning against foreign “communism” has been replaced by one against our own “anti-interventionism.” However, the powers-that-be have once again revealed that they will not allow the “irresponsibility” of any group, including American voters, to get in the way of their trillion dollar war racket and their expansion of the U.S. military empire.

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