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)

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!

The Conflict In Syria Was Always Israel’s War Because Israel has staked first its survival and ultimately its growth into a dominant regional power on the disunity of its neighboring nations – By Whitney Webb

ISRAELHONDURASCRIMES

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After years of fomenting the Syrian conflict from the shadows, the U.S. has recently seemed to back away from its push to militarily intervene in the embattled nation, instead choosing to focus its saber-rattling and destabilization efforts on other theaters. The consequence of this has seemingly been the winding down of the long-running conflict, now entering its seventh year.

Buoyed by Russia, Iran and Lebanon, the Syrian government led by President Bashar al-Assad has managed to retake vast swaths of territory, all while surviving and growing stronger over the course of a largely foreign-funded onslaught. As a result, many of the governments that were instrumental in funding and arming the so-called “moderate” opposition have begun to extricate themselves, unwilling to further test the resilience of Assad or the Syrian people.

With some anticipating the long-awaited conclusion of the Syrian conflict, recent threats from Israel’s government to assassinate Assad by bombing his residence seemed to appear out of the blue. According to the Jerusalem Post, a senior Israeli official accompanying Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on a recent visit to Russia warned the Kremlin that if Iran continues to “extend its reach” in Syria, Israel would bomb the presidential palace in Damascus.

 

Israel’s comments should come as no surprise, however, as the foreign-funded and manufactured conflict in Syria was always Israel’s war. The only real surprise is Israel’s growing isolation in pushing for the further escalation of the conflict.

 

WikiLeaks sheds light on the origins of the war

Though it has successfully avoided being labeled a major player in the effort to oust Assad, Israel has long been the mastermind of the plan, which stems in large part from the long-standing hostilities between the two nations as well as Israel’s own regional ambitions. State Department diplomatic cables released by WikiLeaks have shown that in 2006, five years before the conflict in Syria manifested, the government of Israel had hatched a plan to overthrow the Assad government by engineering sectarian strife in the country, creating paranoia within the highest-ranks of the Syrian government, and isolating Syria from its strongest regional ally, Iran.

Israel then passed this plan along to the United States, which would then involve Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Qatar and Egypt in fomenting the “breakdown” of the Assad regime as a way of weakening both Iran and Hezbollah — with the effect of empowering both Israel and the Gulf monarchies, two seemingly disparate forces in the region that are becoming increasingly allied.


Related | As Syria Nears Victory Against Rebels, Israel Begins To Panic


Leaked emails belonging to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton further reveal Israel’s role in covertly creating the conflict and its clear role in securing the involvement of the U.S. and other nations in executing its plan for Assad’s removal. One email, forwarded by Clinton to her advisor Jacob Sullivan, argues that Israel is convinced that Iran would lose “its only ally” in the region were Assad’s government to collapse.

It further stated that “The fall of the House of Assad could well ignite a sectarian war between the Shiites and the majority Sunnis of the region drawing in Iran, which, in the view of Israeli commanders would not be a bad thing for Israel and its Western allies.” This possible sectarian war was perceived as a potential “factor in the eventual fall of the current government of Iran.”

Another Clinton email released by WikiLeaks stated”

The best way to help Israel deal with Iran’s growing nuclear capability is to help the people of Syria overthrow the regime of Bashar Assad,”

Adding

Bringing down Assad would not only be a massive boon to Israel’s security, it would also ease Israel’s understandable fear of losing its nuclear monopoly.”

The email also notes:

A successful intervention in Syria would require substantial diplomatic and military leadership from the United States” and states that “arming the Syrian rebels and using western air power to ground Syrian helicopters and airplanes is a low-cost high payoff approach.”

Read the full Wikileaks release below:

Stated plainly, the U.S.’ decision to spend over $1 billion until 2015 to arm Syria’s terrorist-linked “rebels” — and to invoke the assistance of Wahhabi terrorism exporters like Saudi Arabia and Qatar in funneling weapons and funds to these same groups — was spurred by Israel, which not only drafted the original blueprint for the Syrian conflict but guided U.S. involvement by exerting its powerful influence over the foreign policy of that country.

 

Aiding the Rebels

Two men, not specified which group of rebels, ride a motorcycle towards an abandoned UN base at Syria's Quneitra border crossing between Syria and the Israeli-controlled Golan Heights, Monday, Nov. 28, 2016. (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit)

Israel did more, however, than covertly instigate and guide the funding of opposition “rebels” — having secretly funded and aided opposition groups, including ones with overt terrorist affiliations, over the course of the six-year-long conflict.

Israeli involvement in direct funding and aiding the Syrian “rebels” was suspected for years before being officially made public by the Wall Street Journal in June of this year. The report revealed that Israel, since the beginning of the conflict, had been “supplying Syrian rebels near its border with cash as well as food, fuel, and medical supplies for years, a secret engagement in the enemy country’s civil war aimed at carving out a buffer zone populated by friendly forces.” Israel has also frequently brought wounded “rebels” into Israel for medical treatment, a policy it often touts as a “humanitarian effort.”

These “friendly” forces were armed groups that formed part of or were allied with al-Nusra Front, al-Qaeda’s Syrian branch, known for committing atrocities against thousands of Syrian civilians and slaughtering religious and ethnic minorities. Since 2013, al-Qaeda-affiliated terrorist groups have dominated the “eight-square-kilometer separation zone on the Golan.” Israel has stated officially that these fighters are part of the U.S. coalition-supported Free Syrian Army (FSA). However, it has long been known that the vast majority of the groups comprising FSA have pledged allegiance to the al-Qaeda-affiliated al-Nusra Front, and that those who still fight under the FSA banner meet with al-Nusra on a daily basis.

Netanyahu looks at a Syrian rebel fighter being treated in an IDF field hospital. (Photo: Kobi Gideon/GPO)

Israel’s support for terrorist groups went far beyond medical treatment, food supplies and cash. The Israeli army was also found to have been in regular communication with these terrorist groups and even helped “pay salaries of fighters and buy ammunition and weapons.” In addition, when the positions of the “rebel” groups it funded, armed and paid were in danger of being overtaken by Syrian government forces, Israel stepped in to directly bomb Syrian targets. For instance, in June, Israel attacked several Syrian military positions after claiming a stray mortar had landed within the boundaries of the Golan Heights, part of Syria that has long been occupied by Israel. However, the attack tellingly coincided with Syrian army advancements against the “rebel” groups that Israel has long cultivated as part of the so-called “buffer zone.”

Furthermore, Israel has launched attacks inside Syria “dozens and dozens of times,” according to a recent admission by Netanyahu. Earlier this year, Israel also threatened to “destroy” Syrian air defenses after the Syrian army fired missiles at Israeli warplanes striking targets within Syria.

Also very telling has been Israel’s position on Daesh (ISIS). In June of last year, Israel’s military intelligence chief, Major General Herzi Halevi, openly stated that Israel does not want to see Daesh defeated in Syria — expressing concern about the offensives against Daesh territory and lamenting their “most difficult” situation. Prior to Halevi’s comments, Israeli officials had regularly noted that Daesh conquering the whole of Syria would be preferable to the survival of the Assad government. These comments have been echoed by Israeli and NATO-affiliated think tanks, one of which called Daesh “a useful tool in undermining” Iran, Hezbollah, Syria and Russia — despite Daesh’s barbaric tactics, war crimes, enslavement of women and ethnic cleansing efforts.

 

Israel’s larger geopolitical agenda

An old Israeli tank sits in a position in the Israeli-controlled Golan Heights near the border with Syria,Tuesday, Jan. 27, 2015.

Though Israel’s support of Wahhabi terrorists like Daesh (ISIS) and al-Nusra may seem counter-intuitive, Israel’s overarching purpose in expelling Assad from power is based on strategic geopolitical and economic goals that Israel is determined to meet at any cost. While Israel frequently mentions Iran as the pretext for its involvement in Syria, the strongest motivators for Israel’s participation in the destruction of its northern neighbor are oil and territorial expansion.

One of Israel’s clearest reasons for being interested in the destabilization of Syria is its ability to assert further control of the Golan Heights, an area of Syria that Israel has illegally occupied since 1967 and annexed in 1981. Despite filling the area with illegal settlements and military assets, Israel has been unable to convince the international community, and even its close allies such as the U.S., to recognize its sovereignty over the territory. However, the conflict in Syria has proven beneficial to this end, allowing Israel to send even more settlers into the Golan, an estimated 100,000 over five years.


Related | Nearly 3,500 Israeli Settlement Homes Built On Private Palestinian Land


Israel is largely interested in gaining control over the Golan for economic reasons, owing to the occupied territory’s oil reserves, which are estimated to contain “billions of barrels.” Under the cover of the Syrian conflict, the Israeli branch of an American oil company — whose investors include Dick Cheney, Jacob Rothschild and Rupert Murdoch — has been drilling exploratory wells throughout the region, as the Heights’ uncertain territorial status prevents Israel from financially exploiting the resource.

Despite the prohibitions of international law, Israel is eager to tap into those reserves, as they have the potential to “make Israel energy self-sufficient.” Israel has even offered, per the Galant plan, to “rebuild” Syria with billions in U.S. taxpayer dollars in exchange for the Golan Heights — though the plan received a tepid reception from all involved parties other than Israel itself.

As its stands, Assad’s removal and replacement with a government friendly to Israeli and Western interests is Israel’s only real means of claiming the Golan Height’s energy resources for itself.

 

Pawns blocking Israel’s endgame

An Iraqi Kurd reads a copy of the magazine Israel-Kurd on a street in Irbil, Iraq in 2009. (Azad Lashkari/Reuters)

Aside from the oil and the territory it seeks to gain in the Golan Heights, Israel is also seeking to expand well beyond that territory in order to more widely exert its influence and become the region’s “superpower.” This ambition is described in the Yinon Plan, a strategy intended to ensure Israel’s regional superiority in the Middle East that chiefly involves reconfiguring the entire Arab world into smaller and weaker sectarian states. This has manifested in Israel’s support for the partition of Iraq as well as Syria, abetted by its support for the establishment of a separatist Kurdish state within these two nations.


Related | Israel Calls For Partition Of Iraq, Creation Of New Kurdish State


This goal, in particular, largely explains Israel’s obsession with curbing Iranian influence in the Middle East, whether in Syria or elsewhere. Iran – more than any other nation in the region – is the most likely to threaten the “superpower” status that Israel seeks to gain for itself, as well as Israel’s loss of monopoly as the region’s only nuclear power.

Given Israel’s compound interests in seeing the removal of Assad and the partition of Syria, it is hardly surprising that Israeli political rhetoric has reached new heights of saber-rattling as Tel Aviv becomes increasingly concerned that the conflict it masterminded could backfire. Prior to the explosive comments regarding Israeli threats to bomb Assad’s residence, an anonymous Israeli government minister blamed the U.S. for backing out of Syria, a move he argued sacrificed Israeli interests:

The United States threw Israel under the bus for the second time in a row. The first time was the nuclear agreement with Iran, the second time is now that the United States ignores the fact that Iran is obtaining territorial continuity to the Mediterranean Sea and Israel’s northern border [through Syria].”

Not only that but Israel has recently vowed to “nullify” the ceasefire deal brokered between Russia and the U.S. with Syrian and Iranian support if it fails to comply with Israel’s needs — an ultimatum based on rather subjective terms given that “Israel’s needs” are hardly static. Israel’s response again shows the perception among officials in Tel Aviv that the Syrian conflict is of primary importance to Israeli geopolitical interests.

Furthermore, given that the response suggested so far by Israeli officials – on more than one occasion – has been to assassinate Syria’s democratically-elected President – the contemplated means of Israel “nullifying” the ceasefire deal will likely have explosive implications. Israel — apparently refusing to accept that the conflict it orchestrated is not going, and may not end, as planned — is now willing to escalate the situation militarily, with or without allies, resorting to dangerous brinkmanship with global implications.

Top photo | Israeli tourists watch smoke rising near the Syrian-Israeli border as the fighting Syrian army fights to regain control of the Quneitra border crossing from rebel groups. (Atef Safadi/EPA)

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RUN RAT RUN! SYRIAN ARMY ENTERS DAYR EL-ZOR; RATS BEING EXTERMINATED; SYRPER PREDICTS TOTAL LIBERATION IN LESS THAN 5 DAYS – By Ziad Fadel

SYRIANFORALLSYRIANS

DAYR EL-ZOR:  The Syrian Army’s crack Tiger Division has crossed the Euphrates at Al-Bu-Matar killing a reported 69+ ISIS rodents.  With the Russian Air Force flying support overhead, the U.S. is loath to interfere in the operation.  The Tiger Forces, equipped with T-90 tanks and enhanced T-72s, which are amphibious and designed to cross huge rivers like the Danube, easily made their way up the gentle shores of the mighty Euphrates.  As a note, the SAA was able to save the lives of a mother and her son whom the terrorists were trying to take hostage.  Locals alerted the government forces of the event and the mother and son were saved.  The locals killed scores of the cannibals even as Syrian Army officers tried to dissuade them from exacting revenge.

The rest of the Tiger Forces crossed the river using mobile link bridges designed to ferry infantry across rivers like this.  The parts were delivered by the Russian Army months ago in anticipation of the liberation of DZ.

http://wikimapia.org/#lang=en&lat=35.341140&lon=40.148635&z=16&m=b&search=syria

We can confirm the liberation of Base 137 as the Syrian Army has begun entering Dayr El-Zor City from the north.  They have entered West Al-Huwayqa Neighborhood where SAA operatives annihilated an ISIS main HQ and C+C killing scores of fleeing rodents:

Abu Usaamaa Al-Zubaydi (id pending)

Abu ‘Umar Al-Karbooli (Iraqi slug)

Abu Muhammad Al-Shu’ayti (id pending)

Abu Maryam Al-Tayyaana (id pendin)

Abu Mu’aawiya Idlib

Abu Dajaana Bakrass (id pending)

Abu ‘Ubayda Al-‘Aani (Iraqi)

Abu Salmaan Al-Ahwaaz (Iraqi)

Abu Ya’qoob Al-Muhaajir (id pending)

Their carcasses were unceremoniously set on fire by enraged local citizens.

Also, the RuAF has been very active over ‘Ayyaash, Al-Shumaytiyya, Al-Masrab, Al-Khareeta, Al-Tabanni, Panorama Area.

Local reports indicate massive escape of ISIS leaders, grunts and their sniveling families.

___________________________________

AL-SUWAYDAA`:   At Al-Tanf, the U.K. is pulling out all its forces, MI6 contractors and spies.  This is all in anticipation of the arrival of pro-government forces any day now.  Also, in the north, British terrorist enablers are moving to Al-Shaddaad after the SAA liberated Al-Bishri Mountain.  They are expected to be airlifted out in the next few days.   

 

 

 

Read more at https://syrianperspective.com/2017/09/run-rat-run-syrian-army-enters-dayr-el-zor-rats-being-exterminated-syrper-predicts-total-liberation-in-less-than-5-days.html#SzybDhhfyWDXLqo9.99

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

Benjamin Netanyahu: Chicken Little posing as a world leader – By Robert Fantina (Counterpunch)

Israeli Prime Murderer Benjamin Netanyahu is once again doing his Chicken Little act. It is not the sky that is falling, but big, bad Iran that is, he claims, “…turning Syria into a base of military entrenchment”, and “wants to use Syria and Lebanon as war fronts against its declared goal to eradicate Israel”.

We keep hearing this tired refrain from Netanyahu; Iran is always ‘just about’ to do something that would destroy sacred Israel (the Prime Murderer never mentions his own actions to ‘eradicate’ Palestine, something that is not a myth, but is actually happening). Since 1992, he has been accusing Iran of being oh-so-close to having nuclear weapons. That year, he said that Iran was three-to-five years away from obtaining them. Twenty years later, after making dire predictions every couple of years, he proclaimed that Iran was “a few months away”. It seems that Iran wasn’t trying very hard during those years.

This is the leader of the same country that refuses to allow international inspections of its own nuclear facilities. It’s the same country that brutally oppresses the Palestinians, in violation of countless international laws. Iran, on the other hand, hasn’t invaded another country in over 200 years; it supports its allies, as shown in its assistance to Syria, as that country fights U.S.-, Israel- and U.K.- supported terrorists. It also doesn’t have separate laws for Iranians and everyone else; Israel cannot make the same claim (that’s apartheid, in case you didn’t know).

And now the Prime Murderer believes that Iran is threatening its borders. Perhaps Israel might be better off if it adhered to international law, and accepted the pre-1967 borders, but that’s unlikely to happen anytime soon.

Let’s look at the possibility that Iran is planning a military base in Syria. The U.S, which, of course, finances all of Israel’s crimes, has military bases all over the world. These, we are told, are to defend and protect the national security of the U.S. The government of Iran, like every other government in the world, has the right and the responsibility of protecting its own national security. With the U.S., at Israel’s behest, forever making threatening gestures to Iran, using the U.S. model of foreign military bases may be an excellent deterrent and protection. Oh but wait; we forget that the U.S. bombs innocent men, women and children all for a good cause; Iran would do it out of evil designs!

Since World War II, the U.S. has killed at least 20,000,000 people, mostly innocent civilians. Israel, since September of 2000, has killed at least 10,000 Palestinians, including close to 3,000 children. Other than the Iran-Iraq war of 1980 – 1988, which resulted from the Iraqi invasion of Iran, the Islamic Republic of Iran is responsible for a fraction of that number, mainly from assisting the government of Basher al-Assad in Syria. There has also been assistance to freedom fighters resisting U.S. imperialism in other nations. But unlike Israel, Iran doesn’t make it a practice to brutally kill innocent men, women and children on a daily basis. And unlike the U.S., which has invaded and/or destabilized at least 30 countries in the last 50 years, the government of Iran is concerned with protecting its citizens, not with killing the citizens of other countries.

Why anyone takes Netanyahu seriously is beyond the comprehension of this writer. In 2002, appearing before the U.S. Congress, the Prime Murderer made this remarkable prediction: “If you take out Saddam, Saddam’s regime, I guarantee you that it will have enormous positive reverberations on the region.” Fifteen years later, with Iraq in chaos, millions dead, the infrastructure destroyed, and foreign troops still terrorizing the people, the world awaits these ‘enormous positive reverberations’ that Netanyahu promised. Of course, he was speaking to an audience he’d bought and paid for with lobby donations, so it’s hardly surprising that they gave then President Bush a blank check to invade Iraq.

When a government leader has serious problems at home, launching a war often causes the citizen-lemmings to rally behind that leader, distracting them and the world from those problems. With Netanyahu on the verge of indictment for a variety of corruption charges, no country in the Middle East is safe; Palestine is probably at the highest risk, since Israelis take great joy in setting up lawn furniture to watch the carnage as Israel bombs Gaza and slaughters men, women and children. But Iran is far from immune; inventing a threat, the Prime Murderer could easily get the U.S. Congress to authorize a bombing campaign, the results of which would make the disaster that resulted from the invasion of Iraq seem like a picnic. Iran is not Iraq; it is far more powerful, with a variety of allies, including Russia. Netanyahu perhaps, with his ego in the way, doesn’t see the unmitigated disaster that he is courting.

Add to that the domestic problems of U.S. President Donald Trump, and a formula for global catastrophe is easy to see. His huge ego, compounded by lack of experience and extreme incompetence, coupled with the rantings and ravings of Netanyahu, may cause the bombs to fall; if that happens, no one in any part of the world will be safe.

Comment: Trump is greatly hampered – on every level – by the machinations of the deep state. Given this rather large factor, it seems rather biased and judgmental to say that Trump has “extreme incompetence”.

The U.S., through its clown-like ambassador to the United Nations, Nicky Haley, has asked the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to increase its inspection of Iranian facilities, to include areas never agreed to in the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), an international agreement regulating Iran’s nuclear program. This writer will not bore the reader by asking again why Iran’s nuclear program must be regulated, but Israel’s is under no such obligation. But the agreement was made and signed, and, as with any agreement, if one party decides it no longer likes it, it cannot demand additional concessions. Iran is in compliance, much to the dismay of Trump, and there is nothing he can do to change the terms now.

So we will all listen as Netanyahu declares his own, personal version of the Chicken Little theme, and see Congress members falling all over themselves to agree with him, despite that most inconvenient JCPOA. We will continue to be astounded at the hypocrisy of the U.S., which condemns Iranian assistance to its neighbors that the U.S. is attempting to overthrow. And we will all hope that somewhere, somehow, cooler heads will prevail, to prevent a world-wide nuclear holocaust.

With the current crop of world leaders, led by Donald Trump, it is easy to fall into despair.

Russia announces Syrian terrorists plan chemical false flag on day UN slams US for killing Syrian civilians – By Adam Garrie

Maria Zakharova delivered the announce. She correctly predicted such a false flag attack in June of this year.

 

Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova has stated that a Syrian terrorist group Shabab al-Sunnah is preparing a chemical weapons attack which it plans to blame on the Syrian government.

Shabab al-Sunnah is a fledgling splinter group associated with the larger terrorist organisation FSA.

Today, Zakharova stated,

“We have received worrying information. According to Russia’s information, the Shabab al-Sunnah armed group has access to chemical weapons”.

 

She continued,

“The militia plan to use it on one of the settlements in the Daraa province and then to accuse government forces of chemical attacks against civilians”.

Zakharova previously accurately predicated a false flag chemical attack by an FSA affiliated group in June. On the 29th of June, 2017, Zakharova stated that terrorists were planning such an attack in the Damascus region.

READ MORE: ZAKHAROVA–Russia aware of possible locations for false flag attack

Sure enough, on the 2nd of July, such a false flag did occur, complete with a well crafted propaganda video that Zakharova described in the following way,

“As we warned a few days ago, a media propaganda campaign on the ‘use of chemical weapons by Damascus’ has begun. There will be more of such videos, and they will be of different quality – either low-grade, like this one or of Hollywood level. There will be many fakes, the planned campaign is a massive one”.

https://www.facebook.com/v2.3/plugins/post.php?app_id=249643311490&channel=http%3A%2F%2Fstaticxx.facebook.com%2Fconnect%2Fxd_arbiter%2Fr%2F0sTQzbapM8j.js%3Fversion%3D42%23cb%3Df76fe27c86c02e%26domain%3Dtheduran.com%26origin%3Dhttp%253A%252F%252Ftheduran.com%252Ff25a5e35d66a0a4%26relation%3Dparent.parent&container_width=0&href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Fphoto.php%3Ffbid%3D10213912155747713%26set%3Da.4365446944032.176170.1523648416%26type%3D3%26theater&locale=en_US&sdk=joey

This all comes as the United Nations high commissioner for human rights, Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein said the following of the US attacks on Syrian civilians in the following way,

“Given the extremely high number of reports of civilian casualties this month and the intensity of the air strikes on Raqqa, coupled with ISIL’s (aka ISIS) use of civilians as human shields, I am deeply concerned that civilians – who should be protected at all times – are paying an unacceptable price and that forces involved in battling ISIL are losing sight of the ultimate goal of this battle”.

A chemical weapons false flag attack could distract the attention of global observers from the continued attacks on civilians that the US has been promulgating in eastern Syria. According to some witnesses these attacks are deliberate.

READ MORE: US targets civilians in Syria (VIDEO)

There exists a danger that FSA terrorists who in the past had been heavily armed and funded by the CIA, may use a false flag chemical attack to change the course of a war that Syria is winning, all the while obfuscating from view, the reports of US war crimes against civilians which the UN has just condemned.

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

See Also:

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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