What the hell are we still doing in Syria? – By Michael Brendan Dougherty National Review (SOTT)

NettingSoldier

© Corporal Zachery C. Laning
US Marines conduct a fire mission in Northern Syria, March 2017.

With our ongoing war efforts there, the Trump administration is courting disaster.

Congress refused to authorize American intervention in Syria in 2013. Still, we sent in Special Forces. Congress later authorized a smaller intervention against ISIS. The caliphate was smashed, after President Trump changed the rules of engagement, and the president claimed credit. Bashar al-Assad, backed by Russia, had crushed most of the rebel forces. All done, U.S. troops can come home, having not been authorized to carry out any other missions by the people through their representatives. Right?

Wrong. Last week, in a speech at the Hoover Institute, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson relayed America’s latest policy in the Syrian civil war. We’re staying. And we’re going to accomplish everything we failed to do over the last half decade. We’re going to finish off both ISIS and al-Qaeda. Then resolve the conflict between Assad and his opponents, diminish Iranian influence, make the country safe for returning refugees, and ensure that there are no weapons of mass destruction in the country. And we’re going to do it without committing major resources. Yessiree, we’re going to lick this Syria problem even though our putative allies in the region are now more divided than ever.

The Congress and the U.K. Parliament both declined to go along with the elite consensus for regime change in Syria years ago. Later, Russian intervention on Assad’s behalf surely had some persuasive power of its own. So too the realization that the “moderate rebels” were little more than a PR front group for al-Qaeda. But Tillerson tells us it is still American policy to plan “for a post-Assad Syria.”

Tillerson said that “previous American efforts to halt the conflict have been ineffective.” Perhaps that is because they’ve also been unauthorized, which means they were illegal – and conducted without popular support. Sure, officials have occasionally trotted out the 2001 Authorization of Military Force against al-Qaeda, and they’ve preposterously twisted it into an authorization to destroy al-Qaeda’s chief enemy in Syria. But public opinion ran overwhelmingly against intervention, so the United States just conducted a smaller and more clandestine war than the one it would have preferred.

The prospect of a massive American intervention almost certainly extended and exacerbated the Syrian war and also created a moral hazard by allowing rebels to overestimate their chance of success. That is America’s contribution to “a humanitarian catastrophe,” where “half a million Syrians have died,” Tillerson noted. “Over 5.4 million Syrians are refugees, and 6.1 million are internally displaced persons, or IDPs. And as a result of conflict between regime and opposition forces, whole cities have been destroyed.” Not to mention a string of terror attacks in Europe connected to refugee flows, the destabilization of Europe’s Shengen Agreement (by which Europe’s internal borders have been largely abolished), and the loss of credibility for the European center-left and center-right. Brexit, the weakness of France’s two major political parties, and the hobbling of Merkel’s political career can all be partially blamed on the West’s botched foreign-policy decisions in Libya and Syria.

Yet none of the enormities since 2013 have dimmed the hopes of American policymakers. And now the war may get more complicated.

A few days after Tillerson’s speech, Turkey’s armed forces burst through the Syrian border, attacking the Kurdish militias who have been the most reliable allies of the United States in the fight against ISIS. Kurdish militias already have reason to distrust Americans, who welcomed their help in dismantling ISIS in Iraq, only to be driven out of Kirkuk by the Iraqi army. Now these same fighters face the wrath of long-term NATO ally Turkey, which is undergoing its own Islamicizing counterrevolution.

Consider the problems occasioned merely by one American ally.

Can the U.S. ever gain the trust of new allies in this region if we allow the Turks to annihilate our Kurdish friends?

Is our Article 5 NATO guarantee to Turkey likely to make Erdogan more or less responsible while conducting military operations in the same theater as Russia?

Is Erdogan really a great friend of the United States, when he is threatening our European allies with a new migration crisis if Turkey is not put on a faster track to full membership in the EU?

Oh, and by the way, Europe is in a lose-lose arrangement when it comes to Turkey as well. Turkey’s full membership would, by its very nature, cause a politically perilous migration crisis for Europe. How would European powers react to even more election rallies for Erdogan in their capital cities?

And that is just Turkey. The United States still has to accommodate the demands of its other friends, Saudi Arabia and Israel.

Who authorized this ongoing presence in Syria?

How are all these goals possibly achieved with such a paltry troop commitment and no popular support?

How long can the United States pretend to manage everyone’s ambitions and demands in Syria without risking a more direct and deadly conflict with Russian forces there?

What the hell are we doing?

Comment: So far, the US says one thing and does another. What the hell are we doing? It certainly seems hard to tell! But then again, by lowering standards and switching plans you lower expectations and confuse everyone. An advantage, no?

What the Future Has in Store for World: Putin’s Valdai Club Speech Highlights – Sputnik/ Grigoriy Sisoev

© Sputnik/ Grigoriy Sisoev
Russia

Get short URL
52033401

While delivering his speech at the 14th annual meeting of the Valdai Discussion Club Vladimir Putin raised a wide range of issues including the technological revolution, global security, nuclear and chemical disarmament, and the reform of the UN. The president underscored the necessity to team up to solve the burning international issues.

“There is less security in the world. Instead of progress and democracy, we see radical elements, extremist groups that deny civilization itself, seek to plunge it into archaism and into chaos, into barbarism,” Putin told the 14th annual meeting of the Valdai Discussion Club on Thursday.

“One may take a look at what happened in the Middle East, which some players have tried to reformat, imposing a borrowed model of development through an externally orchestrated coups d’état or even by the direct use of military force,” he noted, adding that instead of teaming up with the international community some forces are trying maintain permanent chaos, apparently believing that they are capable of managing it.

Still, according to the Russian president there is an alternative to this opinionated and destructive policy, namely, the one demonstrated by Russia in Syria. He emphasized that Russia is working with all participants of the Syrian reconciliation process and is taking their interests into account.

“Russia is fighting against terrorists along with the legitimate Syrian government and other regional states, acting based on international law… And I would like to say that these actions and positive moves are not easy for us. There are many contradictions in the region. But we are patient and with this patience we are working with all participants of this [reconciliation] process very carefully, respecting their interests,” Putin said.

In this Friday, Sept. 15, 2017 file photo, a Russian soldier guards as a military helicopter flies over Palmyra, Syria
© AP Photo/
In this Friday, Sept. 15, 2017 file photo, a Russian soldier guards as a military helicopter flies over Palmyra, Syria

North Korea Should Not Be Driven ‘Into Corner’

Putin reiterated Russia’s condemnation of nuclear tests carried out by the Democratic People’s Republic of North Korea and called attention to the fact that Moscow continues to implement all the decisions adopted by the UN Security Council related to the North Korean problem.

At the same time he warned the international community against driving Pyongyang into a corner, emphasizing that whether one likes the country’s government or not, North Korea remains a sovereign state.

“Any contradictions must be resolved in a civilized manner. Russia has always been in favor of this approach. We are firmly convinced that even the most complex ‘knots,’ whether the crises in Syria or Libya, on the Korean peninsula or, say, in Ukraine, must be untangled, not cut,” Putin said.

When European Disintegration Process Actually Started

The fragility of peace and stability was vividly demonstrated by the political crisis in Catalonia following the October 1 referendum on independence, President Putin remarked.

“Russia’s position here is known: everything that is happening is a domestic affair of Spain, and should be settled within the framework of Spanish law in accordance with democratic traditions,” he said.

Putin noted that actually the genie of European internal division was let out of the bottle much earlier, in the end of the 20th century, adding that Europe “had to think in advance” when disintegration processes only started to take shape on the continent. “They knew, did they not? However, at one time they basically welcomed the disintegration of a number of states in Europe, without hiding their joy on this matter,” the Russian leader noted referring to the dismemberment of the Warsaw Pact countries after the collapse of the Soviet Union.

“Why should the secession of Kosovo have been so thoughtlessly and unconditionally supported, based on the current political situation and the desire to please the elder brother from Washington,  provoking similar processes in other regions of Europe and in the world?” the president asked, denouncing the double standards adopted by the US and EU toward Crimea, which unified with Russia in 2014 as a result of the democratically organized referendum.

Barcelona residents wait for the Parliament to announce the results of the referendum on the independence of Catalonia
© Sputnik/ Javier Luengo
Barcelona residents wait for the Parliament to announce the results of the referendum on the independence of Catalonia

Anti-Russian Sanctions Violate Global Market Principles

The Russian president recalled that the proponents of globalization had repeatedly claimed that international economic ties would bring world players together, helping resolve the most burning political issues.

In reality politics is increasingly often interfering in economic affairs, with some actors openly promoting their commercial interests via political means, Putin said.

“Not so long ago it was said that it is impossible, counterproductive and should not be allowed. Now, those who said it are doing exactly that. Some are not even hiding that they are using political pretexts and reasons to promote their own, purely commercial, interests.”

To illustrate his point Putin referred to the latest package of sanctions recently adopted by the US Congress and signed by US President Donald Trump into law, which are “obviously aiming to expel Russia from European energy markets.”

He underscored that the attempts to disrupt the building of new energy routes from Russia to Europe are dealing a blow to European economic interests and its security.

“In the modern world, strategic gains cannot be made at the expense of others,” he stressed.

‘Brave New World’: What are the Prospects of Technological Revolution?

Vladimir Putin emphasized the importance of the scientific and technological development, technological revolution and the role of robotization and artificial intelligence (AI).

“Previously, assessing the role and influence of a state one referred to the importance of the geopolitical factors, the size of the territory, the military power, and natural resources… However, today scientific and technological progress emerges as one of the most important and its significance will only increase,” Putin said.

He emphasized that the harmonious future will be impossible without social responsibility, freedom, and justice, without the respect toward traditional ethical values, human’s dignity.

“Otherwise instead of prosperity and opportunity for everyone, the ‘brave new world’ may lead to totalitarianism, a caste society, conflicts and growing contradictions,” he warned.

October Revolution of 1917 Had ‘Complex’ Results

“Today, I want to draw attention to the lessons of the events that happened a hundred years ago, to the Russian revolution of 1917. We see that its results were complex. We see how tightly knitted the negative (results) are with, one has to admit, the positive consequences of these events,” the Russian president noted.He emphasized that “revolution is always a consequence of a deficit in responsibility.”

“Was it not possible to develop not through revolution, but via the road of evolution, without paying the price of destroying statehood and the ruthless breaking of millions of human lives but via the road of gradual, consistent moving forward?” Putin asked rhetorically.

What Happened to US Weapons-Grade Plutonium?

Speaking on the issue of Russo-American cooperation in the field of nuclear disarmament, the Russian president drew attention to the fact that had Washington demonstrated strange hesitancy and apparent negligence while fulfilling its obligations under nuclear and chemical weapons treaties.

He noted that despite Russia’s calls for cooperation and its openness in the sphere of nuclear disarmament following the collapse of the USSR, the United States had demonstrated a “selfishness” that had seen Russia’s national interests ignored.

The president expressed deep concerns over Washington’s approach to the implementation of the agreement on weapons-grade plutonium under the Russo-American Plutonium Management and Disposition Agreement (PMDA) signed in 2000.

He noted that Washington’s decision to dispose of plutonium by dilution and geological burial does not guarantee the impossibility of getting back weapons-grade material,” Putin emphasized, stressing that the Russian Federation has fulfilled its obligations under the US-Russian deal.

At the same time, the US still has to fulfill its vow to destroy its chemical weapons: “The country remains the sole and most powerful possessor of that type [of weapons] of mass destruction. Moreover, the US moved the deadline for the destruction of its chemical weapons from 2007 to 2023.”

For a state proclaiming itself to be a champion in nonproliferation and arms control, it is inappropriate,” he said, adding that Western media paid almost no attention to the fact that Russia has completely destroyed its chemical weapons a month earlier.

‘No Alternative to the UN’

In the final part of his speech, the Russian president underlined the role of the United Nations, as an organization tasked to create and maintain international stability and order.

According to Putin, there is no alternative to the institution with its universal legitimacy. He stressed that the organization must remain in the center of the international system.

Meanwhile, the Trump administration has been taking steps aimed at reforming the international organization. In September a US-sponsored meeting to discuss the reform of the institution was held at the United Nations.

Putin said that the organization needs reform, but stressed that they must be gradual.

“Reform is needed, perfecting the system of the United Nations is needed. But reform can only be gradual, evolutionary, and of course must me supported by the overwhelming majority of the actors of the international process, by a wide consensus,” Putin explained.

Terrorists leave Homs as the Syrian Army regains control – By SPUTNIK

© Sputnik/ Michael Alaeddin

On Monday, the Russian Defense Ministry reported on the organized withdrawal of more than 400 terrorists and members of their families from the northwestern suburb of Syrian Homs. The al-Wyer district remains, in fact, the last stronghold of the armed opposition in this administrative center of the country’s largest province.

Withdrawal was preceded by almost a month of tense negotiations because the terrorists put forward their conditions while the Reconciliation Center and Syrian side put forward others,” said Lieutenant General Aleksey Kim, head of the Russian Center for the Reconciliation of Warring Parties in Syria.

He added that it was necessary to come to a common denominator so that both sides were satisfied with the fulfillment of these requirements. The negotiation process was very difficult.

According to the center, the terrorists who have not yet left al-Wayer are also preparing to lay down their arms. Many of them will go to militia or replenish the ranks of the Syrian police in the framework of amnesty announced by the Syrian president.

The military experts have said that total control by Damascus over this city is a major strategic success for Bashar al-Assad and diplomatic for the Russian negotiators.

Importance of Homs

Only a glance on the map is enough to understand the geographical importance of Homs, the third largest city in Syria with a pre-war population of 900,000 people.

It occupies a strategically important intersection at the crossing of major highways. These traffic routes connect Damascus (in the south), the Hama province, Idlib and Aleppo (in the north), the Tartus and Latakia provinces (in the west), and Palmyra and Deir ez-Zor (in the east).

“Full control over Homs will significantly protect the movement of humanitarian and military convoys all along the Damascus-Aleppo road which is more than 350 kilometers from north to south,” Anatoly Tsyganok, the head of Center for Military Forecasting told Sputnik.

The militants present in al-Wayer had an opportunity to conduct sabotage activities against government troops both in the city and on the highway. The Syrian military forces going north repeatedly moved through this site and were killed in an ambush because of such improvised explosive devices.

Homs has great value not only as an important transportation hub. This city is a large industrial center. It houses an oil refinery and several oil storage facilities. From Homs to Damascus and from Aleppo to Latakia there are pipelines.

In addition, before the war the city was one of the largest agricultural centers of Syria. Corn, cotton, wheat, vegetables and fruits were grown here. Right now most of the infrastructure is destroyed but its restoration is the key to economic, food and fuel-energy security of the whole country.

City of revolution

Homs also has strong political significance. It was one of the first cities where in July 2011 clashes with government forces broke out and therefore the city received a nickname: “capital of the revolution.”

The terrorists had planned to use Homs as a main platform for attacking Damascus from the north. Full-scale fighting in this city did not cease for years and became one of the most violent during the Syrian civil war.

The city lies in ruins as the majority of its residents escaped the war zone. In particular, Christian communities left the city with more than 138,000 people. Government forces managed to take Homs under control only in May 2014 but in a number of areas (including al-Wayer) the terrorists continued to be active in the years to come.

Anatoly Tsyganok said that fighting in Homs with varying degrees of intensity has been going on for six years now and the fact that the remaining members of the armed opposition in the city voluntarily left is a great success for the negotiating group which consists of Russian officers.

“This is an achievement for our diplomats as well and it became known right after the third round of talks on the Syrian settlement in Astana in mid-March regarding the withdrawal of 400 militants from Homs. Although there was no opposition it is obvious that they reached a number of agreements with them,” Tsyganok said.

According to the head, the general situation in Syria gives cautious optimism. As the expert stressed, in recent years support of the so-called “moderate opposition” from European states has noticeably weakened.

In turn, interaction on the Syrian issue between Russia, Turkey and Iran is strengthening. The government troops that took Aleppo and regained control over Palmyra received a break and were able to free up considerable forces and resources for possible actions in other directions.

See Also:

TO READ MORE ARTICLES FROM SIGNS OF THE TIMES
CLICK ON   =   https://www.sott.net/

Exposing the Real Deep State – By Tony Cartalucci

 

563234234Many both within and beyond America’s borders labor under the delusion that US policy is determined by the nation’s elected representatives amid a careful balancing act between the judicial, legislative, and executive branches of government. In reality, the inner workings of US policy resemble nothing of the sort.

In reality, an unelected deep state controls the United States, its resources, government, and people. However, the term “deep state” has been overused and intentionally abused, particularly since the election of US President Donald Trump in an effort to continue concealing the real deep state and divert public attention away from what is becoming an increasingly obvious continuity of agenda from one presidency to the next.

Uncovering and understanding the nature of the real deep state is in fact elementary, but essential in understanding the genesis and perpetuation of US policy. It is also essential in formulating solutions aimed at reining in the unwarranted power and influence wielded by this seemingly nebulous entity.

Identifying the Real Deep State is Easy

Despite the myth of “democracy,” real power is held by those who control the essentials of any given state, province, district, or community. Essentials include control over monetary instruments, essential infrastructure such as water, power, communication, and transportation, control over manufacturing, healthcare, and basic public services, as well as more obvious forms of power such as control over police and military forces.

In rare instances, such vital essentials are controlled by decentralized, grassroots organizations – and in these instances deep states are either weak or virtually nonexistent. However, more often than not, this is not the case – at least not yet.

Ordinarily, regardless of apparent, ongoing political processes, those who actually, truly control these essentials often exist well beyond but not out of reach of politics. They include large corporations and financial institutions. Organizations, lobbyists, media platforms, think tanks, and political parties are set up and controlled by these special interests to then project their power and influence into or entirely driving any given political process.

The concept of a “deep state” is not unique to only the US. Virtually every nation and throughout all of human history, regardless of a nation’s alleged political proclivities, has been ruled by wealthy and influential special interests either directly or by proxy.

Ignoring political rhetoric and charades, and focusing on where money, power, and influence truly resides, reveals the real deep state.

Unraveling the “Trump Vs Deep State” Narrative 

A cursory examination of President Trump’s administration reveals that he is but one of many extensions of the real deep state. Allegedly “alternative” Breitbart News mogul Stephen Bannon who functions as President Trump’s chief strategist is in fact a former Goldman Sachs banker. US Secretary of the Treasury, Steven Mnuchin, is also a former Goldman Sachs banker. Additionally, he managed funds for alleged “Trump archenemy,” George Soros, and had invested in the presidential campaigns of both Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama.

US Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, is a long-time ExxonMobil executive, and the list goes on.

If one were to map the flow of US power and influence globally, tracing it back to its source, they would find themselves on Wall Street and in the boardrooms of financial institutions and corporations like Goldman Sachs and ExxonMobil. They would also find, leading out from these boardrooms, proxy news platforms like Breitbart News aimed at manipulating, distracting, and preying on the emotions of the American public.

In other words, in reality, the Trump administration, like those of previous presidencies, is the embodiment of the deep state.

However, a narrative has emerged alleging that President Trump is actually at war with a shadowy “deep state” consisting of everything from the US intelligence community to career bureaucrats “resisting” the Trump administration and “its” policies from within the system.

To explain this contrived narrative to the American public, another one of the real deep state’s propaganda functionaries, TIME Magazine, punished an article titled, “President Trump’s Allies Keep Talking About the ‘Deep State.’ What’s That?

In it, it claims:

To allies of Trump in the conservative media and on Capitol Hill, it is an organized resistance within the government, working to subvert his presidency. They blame career bureaucrats, many of whom they see as loyal to former President Barack Obama, for leaking damaging information to the news media.

TIME also cites Freedom House, a US government-funded organization dedicated to regime change worldwide and chaired by the very same special interested centered upon Wall Street – again, the actual, real deep state – in an effort to downplay and dismiss the notion that the United States is actually run by just such an entity.

It claims:

“[The White House] is taking a sexy term that means something very real in an environment in which there has been a lot of violence associated with this term and we’re applying it to stuff that’s pretty normal in terms of a large bureaucracy,” said Schenkaan, the Freedom House project director. “These are state employees and they have been implementing their jobs faithfully for a long time.”

Back in reality, the American public is beginning to suspect in much larger numbers than ever before, that the US government is simply carrying out a singular agenda – regardless of election results and political affiliations – of  a permanent, deeply rooted conglomeration of special interests that transcend political parties, ideologies, presidential terms, as well as both domestic and international law.

The creation of an attractive, provocative, almost irresistible strategy of tension between various functionaries within the real deep state is intentionally designed to draw in and trap political discourse long before it reaches and reveals the true nature of both the real deep state and the solutions required to dismantle it.

America’s Deep State is the World’s Problem 

It is beyond obvious that America’s real deep state represents not only the usurpation of American sovereignty, but also a threat to global peace and stability. The wielding of America’s unwarranted power and influence manifests itself as regional wars, subsequent waves of refugees, socioeconomic exploitation and catastrophe within targeted states and across entire regions, as well as a general global malaise  resulting from a minute handful of special interests abusing and egregiously wasting the planet’s human and natural resources for its own petty, self-serving pursuits.

It is not, then, an American problem, because the consequences of America’s unchecked deep state stretch out across the entire globe.

Confronting this deep state, and all others like it regardless of size and reach, requires a careful transition pursued by lesser states – and more importantly – by modern, decentralized institutions and alternatives driven by individuals.

Confronting the real deep state at the very source of its power – its corporate and financial activities and the profits reaped from billions of people across the planet paying into them – is fundamental.

The effectiveness of doing so is already evident in such realms as information space where decentralized networks of genuine alternative news platforms have countered and overcome the real deep state’s information war capabilities. Adding leverage to this process are competing centers of global power in Eurasia who have created competing media platforms that have further diluted the US deep state’s grip on information.

A similar process – enabled by technology – is unfolding across all aspects of manufacturing and infrastructure. The emergence of aerospace industries across the developing world is beginning to challenge the US-European monopoly over both air and space. Chinese corporations building trains and aircraft – on the largest end of the spectrum – are diluting monopolies enjoyed for decades by corporations like Boeing and Airbus.

On the smaller end of the spectrum, localized manufacturing of simpler goods carried out by individuals or small businesses, both within formal and informal economies and markets, are chipping away at centralized manufacturing and retail monopolies.

Alternative energy such as solar power lends itself well to decentralized power production both for individuals and members of networks known as microgrids. As these microgrids proliferate, energy monopolies will inevitably whither.

And the organic food movement – a mesh network that continues to expand by leaps and bound in both size and capabilities – has challenged and in some instances, entirely replaced centralized agricultural and processing monopolies who also constitute the membership of the US deep state.

Solving the Deep State Problem 

Despite this, the deep state still poses a formidable and dangerous threat to both global and individual peace and prosperity.

The natural human inclination to create alternatives to compete with such a threat – but which simply resemble a mirrored version of the threat – means that a “Chinese” or “Russian” dominated deep state leading any given unipolar global order will simply replace America’s immense deep state and continue carrying on the abuses and destructive role Wall Street and Washington currently fulfill.

Talk of a multipolar world order in which nations balance themselves against one another rather than fall under a single, unipolar order dominated by a single deep state and the handful of interests that constitute it, forms a bridge between today’s current global order and a decentralized, balanced future.

A multipolar world order in which nations are balanced globally, then leads to an internal process of decentralization and balance, all of which is driven by technology and the opportunities in business and sociopolitical pursuits opened up by it which allow each individual to take a more proportional share of a nation’s or community’s resources.

While it may seem counterintiutive for nations like Russia, India, or China, or even smaller players like Iran, Thailand, or Brazil to invest in decentralization, national and local self-sufficiency, and even informal economies, currencies, and markets, by doing so, they help chip away at the current, dominate global deep state which through its media and consumerism still reaches into, threatens, and influences virtually every society on Earth.

Ultimately, sidestepping the crass, unsophisticated but highly provocative and alluring strategy of tension created around the Trump administration and the alleged “deep state” it is supposedly fighting, is essential in identifying and confronting the real deep state that is orchestrating both sides of this charade.

Placing stock in political functionaries of the deep state to solve the deep state problem is beyond futile – it is a rouse intentionally engineered to preserve and perpetuate the deep state. By identifying the true source of the real deep state’s power and influence – the wealth it derives from its corporate-financier monopolies, its control over national and international infrastructure, and its media – we can begin devising practical alternatives to dilute these monopolies and thus the power and influence they grant those who control them.

It requires a period of transition involving both state and individual efforts pursued by all who stand threatened by the deep state – and all those who are threatened by the deep state consist of anyone who resides outside the boardrooms from within which its agenda is devised and implemented.

Tony Cartalucci, Bangkok-based geopolitical researcher and writer, especially for the online magazine New Eastern Outlook.”   
http://journal-neo.org/2017/03/13/exposing-the-real-deep-state/

TO READ MORE ARTICLES FROM NEW EASTERN OUTLOOK

CLICK ON THIS LINK   =     http://journal-neo.org/

Putin prepares bitter and hysterical missile surprise to ‘American partners’ -By Segodnia.ru Pravda.Ru

16.01.2015
 
Putin prepares bitter and hysterical missile surprise to 'American partners'. Russian new super missiles ready

Russia’s new sea-based cruise missiles reduce the military power of the United States on a vast geopolitical region from Warsaw to Kabul and from Rome to Baghdad.

US President Barack Obama, speaking at the 69th session of the UN General Assembly, stated that Russia’s actions posed the largest threat to the world. According to Obama, Russia is more dangerous to the world than international terrorism and Islamic fundamentalism. Obama’s attacks on the Russian Federation were hysterical and frankly inadequate. What made the president of the strongest country in the world say such an absurd thing?

Information about new Russian sea-launched cruise missiles could be a reason. Putin announced the deployment of such missiles and said that the missiles would bring the US military power to nothing and minimize Washington’s superiority on a vast geopolitical region from Warsaw to Kabul and from Rome to Baghdad.

Here is how the story was developing. 

On September 10, 2014, Russian news agencies reported that President Putin personally chaired the Military-Industrial Commission, which, until then, had been under the jurisdiction of the government, and ordered to prepare a new version of the Military Doctrine of Russia by December 2014.

President Putin proposed to discuss in detail what arms systems should be developed thoroughly to successfully respond to new threats. Putin particularly pointed out the need to develop precision-guided weapons. He stressed out that in the coming years, it would be necessary to ensure breakthrough development of all components of such weapons.

In addition, Putin said that Russia would need to create “unified models of weapons and technology, as well as general-purpose arms.” He emphasized that the Navy of Russia was in need to develop new ship projects that would be “universal in terms of armament, control and communication systems.”

Russia, Putin said, is forced to respond to new threats to her own safety. “The creation of the missile defense system has been in full swing. There is no success in negotiations at this point. Moreover, appropriate systems are being built in Europe and Alaska, which is very close to our borders,” he said. Putin also said that the West was developing the so-called theory of global preemptive strike.

“There are other things that really concern us,” said Putin and mysteriously hinted on unpleasant “surprises” for “our Western partners.” “The main thing is to avoid hysterics afterwards,” he concluded bitterly. 

Few people paid due attention to the strange remarks about hysterics. The majority of assorted political analysts, commentators and writers, who can usually explain anything in the world, took Putin’s remarks as a mere figure of speech that was used to demonstrate Putin’s determination in defending Russia’s national interests. Only a few experts interpreted his words about the “surprise” and “hysterics” seriously. While those “few” were wondering what surprises Vladimir was preparing for Uncle Sam, the situation began to clarify itself.

 

On September 23, Putin arrived in Novorossiysk for the meeting on the development of ports. During the meeting, Admiral Vitko informed Putin about the construction of the Black Sea Fleet base in Novorossiysk. In particular, the admiral said: “The submarines that will be based here, have long-range cruise missiles. The subs will be stealthier when leaving base points in Novorossiysk in comparison with Sevastopol.” When the president asked the admiral about the range of the missiles, the commander of the Black Sea Fleet said: “More than 1,500 kilometers. The submarine pier zone accommodates eight submarines, but for the time being, it is planned to have seven. At the end of 2016, everything will be finished.” 

That dialogue was shown by all national TV channels.

To understand the scale of this “surprise,” one should first say a few words about the submarines that will soon be deployed on the Novorossiysk naval base. According to media reports, it goes about Project 636.3 submarines of profound modernization. The subs are known are “Varshavyanka.”

The Varshavyanka was the third generation of large diesel-battery powered submarines in the Soviet Navy. The first generation of these submarine – Project 641 – were commonly referred to as “zhelezki” (hardware); the second – 641B – “rezinki” (rubber), as it was the first domestic diesel-powered light body submarine with rubber-coated hull. In 1983, third-generation submarines appeared, Project 877, nicknamed Varshavyanka. The submarines were named after the Warsaw Pact, as they were supposed to arm not only the Soviet Navy, but also the fleets of our allies in the Warsaw Pact (Warsaw translates into Russian as ‘Varshava’). The current modernized version of the submarine operates under the code Project 636.

Also read: Russia prepares nuclear surprise for NATO

Originally, Varshavyanka’s armament did not stipulate the use of missiles on board at all. The development of cruise missiles for Varshavyanka submarines started in 1983, when Project 877 subs were already serving for the Soviet Navy. The first demonstration of those cruise missiles took place a decade later, in 1993. At first, Project 877 Varshavyanka submarines were supposed to be armed with cruise missile “Biryuza” (“Turquoise”), then – “Caliber.” The maximum range of the latter, according to open sources, did not exceed 300 kilometers.

Project 877 Varshavyanka submarine became the world’s largest and most powerful non-nuclear submarines. Subsequently, it became the world’s only non-nuclear missile-equipped submarine. The missiles of this submarine became the first model of cruise missiles of the Russian Navy shot from 533-mm torpedo tubes. Prior to that, such torpedo tubes were used only for ballistic missiles 81R, 83R, 84R and their modifications. Their range did not exceed 50 kilometers. 

And now, the commander of the Black Sea Fleet of the Russian Federation informed the president that in the future the submarines would be armed with cruise missiles that would be able to strike targets at distances of more than 1,500 kilometers!!!

If it is true – the admiral would not be lying President Putin in the face – it actually means the destruction of the US military strategy and a qualitative change in the balance of power in Russia’s favor. From now on, any vessel of the Russian Navy – not only submarines, but also surface ships – become carriers of strategic weapons. Why strategic? Because equipping such miracle missile with a nuclear warhead is only a question of time and political will of the Kremlin.

As for surface ships, there must be a separate explanation given to it. If these new long-range missiles are not larger than the “Caliber” missile system, then they, of course, can be mounted on any vessel equipped with this complex. However, the fact is that the “Caliber” complex, if desired, is easy to install on all ships of the Russian Navy – from missile boats to cruisers! The question is only about the number of missiles that depends on the tonnage of a ship.

Here, we have another surprise. 

On September 29, 2014, the world media reported about the Caspian Summit, in which the heads of five Caspian littoral states participated: Russia, Iran, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan and Azerbaijan. The participants of the summit coordinated a political statement, in which, for the first time, they put down the unanimous agreement on the future status of the Caspian Sea.

Vladimir Putin commented as follows: “The main thing is that we have agreed upon the political statement, which, for the first time, established basic principles of the five-sided cooperation in the Caspian Sea. The agreements reached meet long-term interests of all parties.” He also said that the interaction of the five Caspian states would strengthen security in the region, for the five countries agreed that the presence of foreign armed forces in the region would be excluded. 

It was reported that the Russian Caspian Flotilla would include nine small missile ships of Project 21631, Buyan-M. These nimble jet-propelled ships with a displacement of only 950 tons, if necessary, can be based even on the Volga River: they were specifically designed as “river-sea” vessels. Most importantly, despite their small size, they are also equipped with “Caliber” missile systems complete with eight missiles in a vertical launcher.

Three of such ships are already in service; the rest are to be passed into service before 2018. If we assume that they will be armed with “conventional” missiles with a range of 300 km, it remains unclear against whom Russia is going to use these weapons in the Caspian Sea. One such missile can wreck a destroyer, but none of the Caspian countries has ships of this class! “Conventional” missiles can destroy ground targets only on the territories of Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan and Iran, which is absolutely unnecessary today.

However, if we assume that the Buyans will be equipped with new long-range missiles, similar to those of Varshavyanka submarines, all falls into place at once.

The INF Treaty signed by Moscow and Washington in 1987, still prohibits Russia from deploying land-based missiles with a range of over 500 km. However, the treaty does not expand to sea-based missiles. This means that nine Buyans, if armed with new superweapons, will be able to destroy up to 72 targets at a distance of over 1,500 km with one salvo. 

Given the size of the Caspian area, which now becomes the “launch pad” for the Buyans, it is easy to understand that they will keep a huge region of Eurasia at gunpoint. With missiles of Varshavyanka submarines added, it just so happens that Russian weapons will embrace colossal space. Warsaw and Rome, Baghdad and Kabul, base points of the US Sixth Mediterranean Fleet and its naval strike group, Israel and the lion’s share of the southern coast of the Mediterranean Sea will be in sights of the new Russian missiles.

To crown it all, the US can not deploy any forces either on the Black Sea or on the Caspian Sea  to counter the new and unexpected “Russian threat.” As for the Black Sea, there is the Montreux Convention from 1936 that stops the United States. In the Caspian region, the leaders of the Caspian littoral states announced that they would not tolerate foreign military presence in the Caspian region.

Well, it looks like Putin has prepared a very good surprise for our “American partners”! The State Department and the Pentagon definitely have something to think over. 

Segodnia.ru

Pravda.Ru

– See more at: http://www.pravdareport.com/russia/politics/16-01-2015/129540-putin_missile_surprise-0/#at_pco=smlre-1.0&at_si=58c5def219a1a28d&at_ab=per-2&at_pos=5&at_tot=4

Russia: Moderate Islam’s strong ally against a faltering and malevolent West – By Shihan Sazid (The Duran)

Russia has a new role both as the ally of moderate Islam against Western aggression, and as a factor for reconciliation between Islam and the West

How will a future historian will define this present era of human civilization?

Even though it is unusual to begin an article with a question, the present state of international affairs obliges it.

The occupation of Palestine and Kashmir, the endless war in the Middle East, the refugee crisis, the crisis of the fraudulent world monetary system, the unequal distribution of wealth, widespread poverty and malnutrition, the monster carbon footprint of the world’s developed economies, right wing extremism and the extremism of the far left, and last but not the least terrorism – will these be the topics that give titles to the chapters of the history of our present era ?

Comment: Yes to all but the carbon footprint.

The West’s Democracy God

The post colonial world gave rise to republican states. In the name of securing sovereignty and national security artificial borders were imposed, originally drawn up by the ex-colonial powers.

Developing and under developed nations are continuously pressured to meet the criteria of standard Western development. In the political arena the West assesses and defines the world according to its ideas of human rights, feminism, globalisation and most importantly democracy.

On the one hand the West dictates to the world the parables of Western values – which it insists the world must adopt – whilst on the other hand they use war and economic sanctions to punish any deviation from any of these ‘values’.

Among all the values which the West is imposing, democracy has come to serve the purpose of God.

This God is a jealous God, who takes no partner. This new God only appears in suit and tie and dictates his revelations in English. The theology of this God has “enriched” rituals of capitalism and of the free market economy.

Comment: The theology more closely resembles monopoly capitalism and fascism.

Which of course leads inexorably to the next step: in the name of this sacralised capitalism and free market economy big Western corporations exploit the national recourses of under developed and developing nations.

Nations who oppose this Western democracy commit blasphemy and must therefore sponsor terror.

The punishment for blasphemy against this new God is severe: bombing, sanctions, ‘nation building’ and ‘democracy promotion’.

So the result in the end of this Western superiority complex is the West’s constant threatening of the East and the invention of the idea of the ‘Clash of Civilisations’, leading to East and West being eternally divided from each other.

In other words the end result of any US and Western dominated unipolar world is the division of humanity amidst ‘Clash of Civilisations’ rhetoric.

In reality any true democracy should make space for both true conservatives and true leftists. That way genuine extremism can be avoided and replaced by valid and purposeful argument.

That of course is not the sort of democracy the West ‘promotes’ any more.

The result is that in the West today, instead of the historic division between true conservatives and true leftists, there is dominance of neo-conservatism and radical neo-liberals.

The clash between what are in reality simply two extreme forms of the same political ideology has closed the space for moderate voices. The result is the destruction of basic ideals of morality within the Western political establishment.

The role of the West in the Syrian war is a good example of what comes from this moral quagmire. In the name of arming the so called “moderates” the West has actually been arming and funding the throat and head cutting fanatics of ISIS/Daesh.

Today however the global dominance of the United States is being challenged by the re-emergence of Russia.

The New Russia

This is not the first time that Russia has set out an alternative vision for the world.

After the conquest of Constantinople by the Turks in 1453 Russia became the centre of Orthodox Christianity, which helped Russia to develop its own identity as a separate civilisation different from the West.

Whilst the Vatican sponsored relentless wars in a crusade against the Muslim world to seize tiny pieces of land on the east Mediterranean coast, Russia preached the value of a completely different pacific non-crusading Christianity. From east to west, the vast territory of the Russian empire welcomed people from all walks of life and all types of belief.

Russia’s identify was lost following the Bolshevik revolution in 1917. In the name of establishing the rule of the proletariat Russians were forced to reject the core of their own civilization: Orthodox Christianity. That gave rise to the Soviet Union, which however fought two world wars, saving Europe from its own hubris of colonial and self destructive racial pride, and facilitated the struggle of the colonially oppressed peoples for freedom and nationhood.

The current re-emergence of Russia as a superpower has finally come to the notice of the world community as a result of the Syrian War. Russia’s bold stand in defence of the legitimate government of Syria challenged the entire system of chaos which the West’s unipolar world order has created.

But what is this Russian superpower which is now re-emerging? This is obviously a vital question of huge importance in determining the shape of the modern world.

The answer to this question in my opinion highlights the sources of Russian strength, showing why the new re-emerging Russian superpower has been able to face down the US hyperpower, and why it will also succeed in sustaining itself.

The key to Russian strength is its return to moderate values. As the Russians regain their faith a true conservatism now balances the former one sided extreme leftism of the Soviet Union.

As a result whilst the West has adopted a flawed neo-conservative/neo-liberalism model of fake democracy as its religion, Russia has become the beacon of true religion and true democracy for moderate faithful religious people everywhere.

The result is that the Western sponsored war in Syria has created a new window of opportunity for unity between two different world systems: Islam and Russia.

The State of the Muslim World

Let us now turn to look at the Muslim world.

Divisions between Muslims are uncountable today. The endless war in the Middle East gives grounds for feelings of hopelessness. Muslims are betrayed by their own leaders in these most difficult times. The plutocratic states of the Gulf and the House of Saud are in the pocket of the Western ruling elite. The extreme ideology of Wahhabism and Salafism wants to destroy every other sect of Islam.

These conditions create opportunities for the West to create more chaos, which ultimately results in even more wars.

The Syrian War

On the other hand, following the fall of the Soviet Union and Russia’s re-embrace of its Orthodox Christian roots, the political establishment in Russia has successfully reconciled moderate conservatism with the country’s leftist tradition. We can see the positive impact of this reconciliation and adaption of the Russian nation’s two values in the rational and balanced method of contemporary Russian governance and policy making.

In the Syrian war we have observed for the first time in the history of Islam a Sunni majority population stand in support of a Shi’a led government to defeat a Western intervention.

Here it is important to stress the wisdom of the Syrian Arab Army, which grasped what the results would be if the Assad government were to fall as a result of the attack orchestrated upon it by the Western powers. Perhaps the Syrian Arab Army learnt the lesson from the mistake the Iraqi Army when it abandoned Saddam Hussein during the US led invasion of Iraq in 2003.

There are some independent Western think tanks, which remain “relatively” free from the influence of the mainstream ‘warhawks’, but which still demand the removal of President Assad for various debatable reasons in order to achieve a political settlement in Syria. However there are two fundamental problems with this approach.

Firstly, in light of the war going on in Syria, any effort to change the government of Syria at a time of existential crisis for the country would create a power vacuum, just as previously happened in Iraq and as is now the case in Libya. Given the conditions on the ground in Syria, that would be bound to turn Syria into a safe haven for terrorist groups like ISIS/Daesh and Jabhat al-Nusra.

Secondly, no matter what happens in Syria, it should be a fundamental principle that only the Syrian people have the right choose their government. In the chaotic and violent environment which now exists, there is no chance of the Syrian people being able to express their view through nationwide election.

Russia’s intervention in Syria

Russia’s involvement in the Syrian war is strategically unique, and has been very effective in terms of achieving quickly a positive outcome.

President Putin extended Russia’s hand by providing Syria with military help in response to an official request from the Syrian government. Politically and diplomatically the fact that Russia was responding to a formal request for help from the legitimate government of Syria helped Russia counter Western propaganda that might have sought to portray Russian intervention in Syria as an invasion of Syria.

Russia also took the completely correct decision of not putting ‘boots on the ground’ in Syria.

If Russia had sent infantry brigades to Syria, then it would have created opportunities for the West to intensify the war into a broad regional conflict so as to trap the Russians into a never ending war; just as the US is trapped in precisely such a war in Afghanistan today.

So Russia maintained a controlled approach to help the Syrian Arab Army that kept the door open for Russia to withdraw.

Of course both the Russian military and the Syrian Arab Army must be given credit for the successful use they made of this controlled approach. Accurate intelligence sharing between the Syrian Arab Army and the Russian Air force played the key role in achieving success, ensuring that the aerial bombing by the Russian Air force was effective, thereby creating the opportunities for the Syrian Arab Army to go onto the offensive and regain territory from ISIS/Daesh and Jabhat al-Nusra.

The Role of Iran

This controlled approach also created space for regional players like Iran to involve themselves in the conflict on the side of the Syrian government and share in the successful outcome of the war.

The Syrian Arab Army’s victory also makes the position of Iran stronger diplomatically and politically. The result is that the West, especially US, can no longer ignore or overlook the role of Iran if they genuinely seek an end to the conflict.

The US along with its Western allies has already been forced to compromise with Iran in the recent Nuclear Deal. Now the West is being forced to compromise with Iran in Iraq and Syria because of Iran’s growing local influence as the regional superpower.

Syria’s – Not Russia’s – ‘Mission to Accomplish’

Lastly Russia’s timing in scaling down its massive but successful bombing campaign was also strategically unique.

The most important thing the Russians have never done in Syria is declare “Mission Accomplished”. Accomplishment of the mission has to come from the Syrian government and the Syrian Arab Army, not from Russia, because it is the Syrian people who are the ones who are principally fighting this war, for their own and for Syria’s survival against Western backed terrorists.

The real accomplishment of the mission will anyway not be achieved after the end of the fighting because though it obviously has to include a military victory such a victory can only be firmly consolidated by a political and diplomatic settlement.

The battlefield victories of the Syrian Arab Army have created the opportunity to bring the other side to the table at the talks underway in the Kazakh capital of Astana. Right now in Astana the opposition has no option but to talk with the Syrian government directly, something it has always resisted doing until now.

The Role of Turkey

The positive role Turkey is playing in favor of a peaceful settlement is also a major development. Turkey is a major military power in this region and is Syria’s largest and most powerful neighbor. The Turkish government can therefore be expected to play a decisive role in influencing the outcome of the negotiations which will bring an eventual end to the war.

The most important point to emphasise here is that the negotiations in Astana is the result of a joint Turkish-Russian diplomatic initiative. Russia had to make a major political and diplomatic effort to achieve this.

When Turkey shot down the Russian SU24 bomber near the Turkish border in November 2015 Russia could have retaliated against Turkey in kind. However that would have merely escalated the situation, bringing relations between Russia and Turkey to the point of crisis.

Instead President Putin showed great forbearance and patience, refusing to provide the West with a chance to trap Russia into a direct confrontation with Turkey which might have involved NATO and which might have threatened to turn the Syrian war into a global war for which Russia is unprepared and in which it would have been at a severe disadvantage.

President Putin also showed clarity and strength in decision making during the military coup in Turkey, giving support to the Erdogan government whilst the attempted coup was still underway.

For his part, after securing his government’s survival by defeating the coup, Turkish President Erdogan wasted no time visiting Moscow, where he gave the signal for a revision of Turkish foreign policy towards Russia.

This has had important consequences. Despite being a member of NATO Turkey is refusing to participate in the recent military buildup by NATO around Russia’s eastern border. Moreover the new Turkish-Russian relationship is becoming even stronger through the establishment of joint economic projects like the Turk Stream pipeline, growing Russian investments in Turkey, and Russia’s phased withdrawal of the economic sanctions it had previously imposed on Turkey.

Conclusion: The Emerging Alliance of Russia and Islam

Now let us review all these developments from a civilisational perspective.

In these dark times of internal division in the world of Islam, the Syrian people – Shi’a, and Sunni, together with all the other sects of Islam living in Syria – united together to defend their country against foreign aggression. They found their ally in moderate Russia.

The Muslim world is in fact edging closer to an alliance with Russia precisely because of its betrayal by its own self-appointed rich Gulf “leaders”, who have been trying to dominate the Muslim community through their version of pseudo Islam, which is destroying the image of Islam as a religion of peace, and which is destroying the voice of the moderate Islamic establishment.

The good news is that this alliance between Muslims and Russians is getting bigger and stronger. The new role Turkey has adopted can only have a positive impact on the development of this new alliance.

Moreover the only nuclear powered Muslim nation, Pakistan, is also getting closer to this alliance.

In November 2016 Russia and Pakistan conducted their first ever joint military exercise despite huge objections from India. Further building up Pakistan’s confidence is the fact that Russia and China at the recent BRICS summit jointly rejected India’s effort to have Pakistan declared a terrorist state.

A Possible Rebirth for the West?

What impact will this new emerging alliance have on the West?

After fighting two world wars the West is still in crisis, having failed to develop a political philosophy that can embrace new emerging nations from the east as equal partners. As a result the chances of new global conflicts are increasing in a way which could be suicidal for the whole of humanity.

Russia’s role in its new emerging alliance with the Muslim world will be not to fight this global conflict. It will be to prevent it and by doing so to help the West in its quest to find a political soul that reflects humanity first, and which decisively rejects war, because in war there are no winners, war being first and foremost about the destruction of the human spirit.

Comment: The US Deep State (even with Trump in office and working to subdue it) is so entrenched, and so malevolent in its intent – that saving its “political soul that reflects humanity” – may be close to impossible at this point. But seeing this dynamic in just such a framework may go a long way towards helping individuals of the US and elsewhere to help strengthen their own humanity, and their own souls; our own souls.

TO READ MORE ARTICLES FROM SIGNS OF THE TIMES
CLICK ON THIS LINK    =    https://www.sott.net/
OPINION BY WINSTON CLOSE
USA IS NOW USA OF SATAN .
THEIR SATANIC CRIMES AGAINST HUMANITY WILL HASTEN THEIR DEMISE.
THEY’RE A MORALLY BANKRUPT NATION
A CAULDRON OF EVIL
THEIR EMPIRE OF TERROR WILL COLLAPSE UNDER THE WEIGHT OF THEIR CORRUPTED SOULS.
USA GOVERNMENT ,CIA,SAUDI ARABIANS AND. ISRAEL WERE BEHIND 911TRAGEDY. ?
OBAMA THE HIGH PRIEST OF SATAN WILL GO DOWN IN HISTORY AS THE CATALYST THAT BROUGHT DOWN THE USA TO OBLIVION.
USA IS A TREACHEROUS AND DECEITFUL NATION.
USA IS WILLINGLY SUBSERVIENT TO THE SATANIC ILLUMINATI AND THEIR END IS RIGHT ON COURSE TO TOTAL ANNIHILATION.

IT’S TIME TO BRING THIS EVIL USA TO ITS KNEES.

SYRIAN ARMY LIBERATED AL-JIRAAH AB; DESTROYS ISIS TUNNELS IN DAMASCUS – By Ziad Fadel

 

DAMASCUS:

 

DAMASCUS: 

Harastaa:   The Syrian Army discovered and destroyed a network of tunnels which eluded the SAA for months.  The tunnels were dug over each other with the lowest one 34 meters deep and 300 meters long.  They were used to transport weapons and provisions to the terrorists who lived inside with electricity and ventilation.  This time, however, the terrorists of Nusra, supported by new allies in the Liwaa`Irbeen, plotted to detonate a huge amount of explosives underneath SAA outposts.  The tunnels were extremely sophisticated indicating assistance from groups such as Hamas who inherited the technology of the Viet Cong when the Palestinians used to visit Hanoi regularly during the 60s and 70s.

The explosives were a mixture of mines and 10 IEDs all wired to detonate simultaneously.  But, as my readers know, the Syrian Military Research complex, has developed some kind of tunnel detection instrument using ultrasound.  This time, the rats were caught setting their trap and were quickly buried alive inside when engineers rigged a rolling explosive device which simply drowned the rodents in an avalanche of dirt.

This operation by the Nusra rodents was inspired by events taking place after a losing battle in Qaaboon and Barza in which the SAA annihilated them.The failed plan was, no doubt, managed by the Zionist nincompoops.          

 

______________________________________________

DAMASCUS: 

Harastaa:   The Syrian Army discovered and destroyed a network of tunnels which eluded the SAA for months.  The tunnels were dug over each other with the lowest one 34 meters deep and 300 meters long.  They were used to transport weapons and provisions to the terrorists who lived inside with electricity and ventilation.  This time, however, the terrorists of Nusra, supported by new allies in the Liwaa`Irbeen, plotted to detonate a huge amount of explosives underneath SAA outposts.  The tunnels were extremely sophisticated indicating assistance from groups such as Hamas who inherited the technology of the Viet Cong when the Palestinians used to visit Hanoi regularly during the 60s and 70s.

The explosives were a mixture of mines and 10 IEDs all wired to detonate simultaneously.  But, as my readers know, the Syrian Military Research complex, has developed some kind of tunnel detection instrument using ultrasound.  This time, the rats were caught setting their trap and were quickly buried alive inside when engineers rigged a rolling explosive device which simply drowned the rodents in an avalanche of dirt.

This operation by the Nusra rodents was inspired by events taking place after a losing battle in Qaaboon and Barza in which the SAA annihilated them.The failed plan was, no doubt, managed by the Zionist nincompoops.          

 

______________________________________________

ALEPPO:

 

 

 

It’s official, the Syrian Army has liberated the Al-Jiraah Airbase 100 kms east of the city killing scores of ISIS rodents in the process.  The airbase is also called Kasheesh AB.  The rodents took such a hit that those left scurried back to Maskana which is next on the SAA’s menu.  The base will lead to the liberation of Dayr Haafir and Maskana signaling the beginning of the offensive to rid the north of the stench of Turks.

 

The SAA has also liberated 18 new towns and villages from ISIS.  I will give you the names tomorrow.

Syrian Soldiers, Allied Fighters Recapture 18 Villages in Aleppo

(Photo courtesy of Alalam)

 

________________________________________________

DAYR EL-ZOR:

According to Western sources, the American-led coalition attacked a car on a road between Subaykhaan and Al-Kamsha killing a very important ISIS leader who used to command tanks in the Iraqi Army of Saddaam Hussein.  He was “Abu Ibraaheem Al-‘Iraaqi.  His carcass was reportedly taken to a field hospital in Al-Bukamaal with 2 other comrades who died miserable and humiliating deaths thanks to the Yanks.  It looks like Trump is keeping his word.

________________________________________________

NEWS AND COMMENT:

Patrick Henningsen sends this outstanding interview with Fox News praising the Assad government:

http://21stcenturywire.com/2017/03/07/us-hostage-survives-terrorist-ordeal-in-syria-delivers-stunning-message-to-us-uk-regime-change-crowd/

Brandon pens an elaborate analysis of the NATO-created murdering cabal called the White Helmets and debunks all their pseudo-docs:

http://www.activistpost.com/2017/03/medical-doctors-question-white-helmets-footage-al-qaeda-oscar.html

__________________________________________________

JOKE OF THE DAY FROM MURF THE SURF:

A CNN reporter walks into a neighborhood tavern and is about to order a drink when he sees

a guy at the end of the bar wearing a “Make America Great Again” hat.

It didn’t take an Einstein to know the guy was a Donald Trump supporter.

The CNN guy shouts over to the bartender, loudly enough that everyone in the bar could hear,

“Drinks for everyone in here, bartender, except for that Trump supporter.”
After the drinks were handed out the Trump guy gives the CNN guy a big smile, waves at him and says,

in an equally loud voice, “Thank you!”
This infuriates the CNN reporter.  So he once again loudly orders drinks for everyone except the guy wearing the Trump hat.  As before, this doesn’t seem to bother the Trump guy.

He just continues to smile and again yells, “Thank you!”
So the CNN guy again loudly orders drinks for everyone except the Trump guy.

And again the Trump guy just smiles and yells back, “Thank you!”

At that point the aggravated CNN reporter asks the bartender, “What the hell is the matter with that Trump supporter?  I’ve ordered three rounds of drinks for everyone in the bar but him and all the silly ass does is

smile and thank me.  Is he nuts?”

“Nope,” replies the bartender.  “He owns the place.”

 

 

 

 

 

It’s official, the Syrian Army has liberated the Al-Jiraah Airbase 100 kms east of the city killing scores of ISIS rodents in the process.  The airbase is also called Kasheesh AB.  The rodents took such a hit that those left scurried back to Maskana which is next on the SAA’s menu.  The base will lead to the liberation of Dayr Haafir and Maskana signaling the beginning of the offensive to rid the north of the stench of Turks.

 

The SAA has also liberated 18 new towns and villages from ISIS.  I will give you the names tomorrow.

Syrian Soldiers, Allied Fighters Recapture 18 Villages in Aleppo

(Photo courtesy of Alalam)

 

________________________________________________

DAYR EL-ZOR:

According to Western sources, the American-led coalition attacked a car on a road between Subaykhaan and Al-Kamsha killing a very important ISIS leader who used to command tanks in the Iraqi Army of Saddaam Hussein.  He was “Abu Ibraaheem Al-‘Iraaqi.  His carcass was reportedly taken to a field hospital in Al-Bukamaal with 2 other comrades who died miserable and humiliating deaths thanks to the Yanks.  It looks like Trump is keeping his word.

________________________________________________

NEWS AND COMMENT:

Patrick Henningsen sends this outstanding interview with Fox News praising the Assad government:

http://21stcenturywire.com/2017/03/07/us-hostage-survives-terrorist-ordeal-in-syria-delivers-stunning-message-to-us-uk-regime-change-crowd/

Brandon pens an elaborate analysis of the NATO-created murdering cabal called the White Helmets and debunks all their pseudo-docs:

http://www.activistpost.com/2017/03/medical-doctors-question-white-helmets-footage-al-qaeda-oscar.html

__________________________________________________

JOKE OF THE DAY FROM MURF THE SURF:

A CNN reporter walks into a neighborhood tavern and is about to order a drink when he sees

a guy at the end of the bar wearing a “Make America Great Again” hat.

It didn’t take an Einstein to know the guy was a Donald Trump supporter.

The CNN guy shouts over to the bartender, loudly enough that everyone in the bar could hear,

“Drinks for everyone in here, bartender, except for that Trump supporter.”
After the drinks were handed out the Trump guy gives the CNN guy a big smile, waves at him and says,

in an equally loud voice, “Thank you!”
This infuriates the CNN reporter.  So he once again loudly orders drinks for everyone except the guy wearing the Trump hat.  As before, this doesn’t seem to bother the Trump guy.

He just continues to smile and again yells, “Thank you!”
So the CNN guy again loudly orders drinks for everyone except the Trump guy.

And again the Trump guy just smiles and yells back, “Thank you!”

At that point the aggravated CNN reporter asks the bartender, “What the hell is the matter with that Trump supporter?  I’ve ordered three rounds of drinks for everyone in the bar but him and all the silly ass does is

smile and thank me.  Is he nuts?”

“Nope,” replies the bartender.  “He owns the place.”

 

 

 

Harastaa: The Syrian Army discovered and destroyed a network of tunnels which eluded the SAA for months. The tunnels were dug over each other with the lowest one 34 meters deep and 300 meters long. They were used to transport weapons and provisions to the terrorists who lived inside with electricity and ventilation. This time, however, the terrorists of Nusra, supported by new allies in the Liwaa`Irbeen, plotted to detonate a huge amount of explosives underneath SAA outposts. The tunnels were extremely sophisticated indicating assistance from groups such as Hamas who inherited the technology of the Viet Cong when the Palestinians used to visit Hanoi regularly during the 60s and 70s.

The explosives were a mixture of mines and 10 IEDs all wired to detonate simultaneously. But, as my readers know, the Syrian Military Research complex, has developed some kind of tunnel detection instrument using ultrasound. This time, the rats were caught setting their trap and were quickly buried alive inside when engineers rigged a rolling explosive device which simply drowned the rodents in an avalanche of dirt.

This operation by the Nusra rodents was inspired by events taking place after a losing battle in Qaaboon and Barza in which the SAA annihilated them.The failed plan was, no doubt, managed by the Zionist nincompoops.

______________________________________________

ALEPPO:

It’s official, the Syrian Army has liberated the Al-Jiraah Airbase 100 kms east of the city killing scores of ISIS rodents in the process. The airbase is also called Kasheesh AB. The rodents took such a hit that those left scurried back to Maskana which is next on the SAA’s menu. The base will lead to the liberation of Dayr Haafir and Maskana signaling the beginning of the offensive to rid the north of the stench of Turks.

The SAA has also liberated 18 new towns and villages from ISIS. I will give you the names tomorrow.

(Photo courtesy of Alalam)

________________________________________________

DAYR EL-ZOR:

According to Western sources, the American-led coalition attacked a car on a road between Subaykhaan and Al-Kamsha killing a very important ISIS leader who used to command tanks in the Iraqi Army of Saddaam Hussein. He was “Abu Ibraaheem Al-‘Iraaqi. His carcass was reportedly taken to a field hospital in Al-Bukamaal with 2 other comrades who died miserable and humiliating deaths thanks to the Yanks. It looks like Trump is keeping his word.

________________________________________________

NEWS AND COMMENT:

Patrick Henningsen sends this outstanding interview with Fox News praising the Assad government:

http://21stcenturywire.com/2017/03/07/us-hostage-survives-terrorist-ordeal-in-syria-delivers-stunning-message-to-us-uk-regime-change-crowd/

Brandon pens an elaborate analysis of the NATO-created murdering cabal called the White Helmets and debunks all their pseudo-docs:

http://www.activistpost.com/2017/03/medical-doctors-question-white-helmets-footage-al-qaeda-oscar.html

__________________________________________________

JOKE OF THE DAY FROM MURF THE SURF:

A CNN reporter walks into a neighborhood tavern and is about to order a drink when he sees

a guy at the end of the bar wearing a “Make America Great Again” hat.

It didn’t take an Einstein to know the guy was a Donald Trump supporter.

The CNN guy shouts over to the bartender, loudly enough that everyone in the bar could hear,

“Drinks for everyone in here, bartender, except for that Trump supporter.”
After the drinks were handed out the Trump guy gives the CNN guy a big smile, waves at him and says,

in an equally loud voice, “Thank you!”
This infuriates the CNN reporter. So he once again loudly orders drinks for everyone except the guy wearing the Trump hat. As before, this doesn’t seem to bother the Trump guy.

He just continues to smile and again yells, “Thank you!”
So the CNN guy again loudly orders drinks for everyone except the Trump guy.

And again the Trump guy just smiles and yells back, “Thank you!”

At that point the aggravated CNN reporter asks the bartender, “What the hell is the matter with that Trump supporter? I’ve ordered three rounds of drinks for everyone in the bar but him and all the silly ass does is

smile and thank me. Is he nuts?”

“Nope,” replies the bartender. “He owns the place.”

 

SYRIAN ARMY LIBERATED AL-JIRAAH AB; DESTROYS ISIS TUNNELS IN DAMASCUS by Ziad Fadel

The Anti-Empire Report: United States vs. ‘Russian devils’ 1917-2017 – By William Blum

The United States and the Russian devil: 1917-2017

Conservatives have had a very hard time getting over President Trump’s much-repeated response to Fox News anchor Bill O’Reilly’s calling Russian president Vladimir Putin “a killer”. Replied Trump: “There are a lot of killers. We have a lot of killers. You think our country is so innocent?”

One could almost feel a bit sorry for O’Reilly as he struggled to regain his composure in the face of such blasphemy. Had any American establishment media star ever heard such a thought coming from the mouth of an American president? From someone on the radical left, yes, but from the president?

Senator John McCain on the floor of Congress, referring to Putin, tore into attempts to draw “moral equivalency between that butcher and thug and KGB colonel and the United States of America.”1

Ah yes, the infamous KGB. Can anything good be said about a person associated with such an organization? We wouldn’t like it if a US president had a background with anything like that. Oh, wait, a president of the United States was not merely a CIA “colonel”, but was the Director of the CIA! I of course speak of George Herbert Walker Bush. And as far as butchery and thuggery … How many Americans remember the December 1989 bombing and invasion of the people of Panama carried out by the same Mr. Bush? Many thousands killed or wounded; thousands more left homeless.

Try and match that, Vladimir!

And in case you’re wondering for what good reason all this was perpetrated? Officially, to arrest dictator Manuel Noriega on drug charges. How is that for a rationalization for widespread devastation and slaughter? It should surprise no one that only shortly before the invasion Noriega had been on the CIA payroll. 2

It’s the “moral equivalency” that’s so tough to swallow for proud Americans like O’Reilly and McCain. Republican Senate Majority leader Mitch McConnell also chipped in with: “And no, I don’t think there’s any equivalency between the way the Russians conduct themselves and the way the United States does.”3 Other Senators echoed the same theme, all inspired by good ol’ “American exceptionalism”, drilled into the mind of every decent American from childhood on … Who would dare to compare the morals of (ugh!) Russia with those of God’s chosen land, even in Moscow’s current non-communist form?

The communist form began of course with the October 1917 Russian Revolution. By the summer of 1918 some 13,000 American troops could be found in the newly-born state, the future Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. Two years and thousands of casualties later, the American troops left, having failed in their mission to “strangle at its birth” the Bolshevik state, as Winston Churchill so charmingly put it. 4

US foreign policy has not been much more noble-minded since then. I think, dear students, it’s time for me to once again present my concise historical summary:

Since the end of World War 2, the United States has:

  • Attempted to overthrow more than 50 foreign governments, most of which were democratically-elected.
  • Dropped bombs on the people of more than 30 countries.
  • Attempted to assassinate more than 50 foreign leaders.
  • Attempted to suppress a populist or nationalist movement in 20 countries.
  • Grossly interfered in democratic elections in at least 30 countries. 5
  • Though not as easy to quantify, has also led the world in torture; not only the torture performed directly by Americans upon foreigners, but providing torture equipment, torture manuals, lists of people to be tortured, and in-person guidance by American instructors. 6

Where does the United States get the nerve to moralize about Russia? Same place they get the nerve to label Putin a “killer” … a “butcher” … a “thug”. It would be difficult to name a world-renowned killer, butcher, or thug – not to mention dictator, mass murderer, or torturer – of the past 75 years who was not a close ally of Washington.

So why then does the American power elite hate Putin so? It can be dated back to the period of Boris Yeltsin.

During the Western financial looting of the dying Soviet Union the US could be found meddling in favor of Yeltsin in the election held in 1996. Under Yeltsin’s reign, poverty exploded and life expectancy for men actually decreased by five years, all in the name of “shock therapy.” The US/Western-backed destabilization of the Soviet Union allowed global capitalism to spread its misery unfettered by any inconvenient socialism. Russia came under the control of oligarchs concerned only for their own enrichment and that of their billionaire partners in the West. The transition of power to Vladimir Putin in the 21st century led to a number of reforms that curbed the disastrous looting of the nation by the oligarchic bandits. Putin and his allies vowed to build an independent, capitalist Russia that was capable of determining its own affairs free from US and Western domination. Such an orientation placed Putin in direct confrontation with US imperialism’s plans for unipolar global hegemony.

Washington’s disdain for Putin increased when he derided US war propaganda leading up to the invasion of Iraq in 2003. Then, the Russian leader played a crucial role in getting Iran to curtail its nuclear program and arranging for Syria to surrender its stockpiles of chemical weapons.

Washington’s powerful neo-conservatives had been lusting for direct US military strikes against those two countries, leading to regime change, not diplomatic agreements that left the governments in place.

Lastly, after the United States overthrew the Ukrainian government in 2014, Putin was obliged to intervene on behalf of threatened ethnic Russians in Crimea and eastern Ukraine. That, in turn, was transformed by the Western media into a “Russian invasion”. 7

The same Western media has routinely charged Putin with murdering journalists but doesn’t remind its audience of the American record in this regard. The American military, in the course of its wars in recent decades, has been responsible for the deliberate deaths of many journalists. In

© Russian government photo
Russian President Vladimir Putin addresses a crowd on May 9, 2014, celebrating the 69th anniversary of victory over Nazi Germany and the 70th anniversary of the liberation of the Crimean port city of Sevastopol from the Nazis

Iraq, for example, there’s the Wikileaks 2007 video, exposed by Chelsea Manning, of the cold-blooded murder of two Reuters journalists; the 2003 US air-to-surface missile attack on the offices of Al Jazeera in Baghdad that left three journalists dead and four wounded; and the American firing on Baghdad’s Hotel Palestine, a known journalist residence, the same year that killed two foreign news cameramen.

The Trump honeymoon is over for me. It was never actually love; hardly more than an intriguing curiosity; mainly that he wasn’t Hillary Clinton; that he was unlikely to start a war with Russia or close down the Russia Today (RT) TV station in the US, which I and many others depend on daily; and that he was not politically correct when it came to fighting the Islamic State. Trump’s “moral equivalency” remark above gave me some hope. But this all vanished with his appointment to high office of one war-loving, bemedalled general after another, intermingled with one billionaire Goldman-Sachs official after another; his apparent confirmation of his Mexican Wall; and, worst of all, his increasing the military budget by $54 billion (sic, sick) … this will certainly be at the expense of human life and health and the environment. What manner of man is this who walks amongst us?

The word is “narcissism”. New York Times columnist Frank Bruni (February 28, 2017) captures this well: “Why do I get the sense that fighter jets are Donald Trump’s biceps, warships are his pectorals and what he’s doing with his proposed $54 billion increase for the Pentagon is flexing?”

Will there ever be an end to the never-ending American wars?

How should we react to terrorism?

I hadn’t planned on returning to this subject so soon, if ever, because of the distasteful experience of last summer when at least 50 of my subscribers canceled because I said that terrorism carried out by Islamics was to some extent motivated by their religion, an hypothesis rejected by what I see as the “politically correct” who took it to be an unjust attack upon an ancient and noble religion. The fact that I, a leftist, a comrade, would say such a thing was especially hard for them to take.

Since then I have regularly received emails pointing out that neither I nor the media have the right to categorically condemn brutal terrorist actions because the terrorists are reacting to decades of Western, particularly American, violence against the Muslims of the Middle East and elsewhere; and that if only the West would stop their bombing they would stop creating new terrorists. Liberal columnists often echo these sentiments, but at the same time cannot accept the role played by radical Islamic beliefs in instigating the Islamic terror.

Comment: The primary source of these beliefs has been Saudi Arabia, a major Western ally. So while radical Islamic beliefs may provide the inspiration, they wouldn’t be anything like they are today without massive Western economic and military support.

See: Eric Zuesse: The Saudi Wahhabi origins of jihadism

Not every American soldier in World War II was a knowledgeable and convinced anti-fascist; nor were all of those fighting in Vietnam knowledgeable and convinced anti-communists; but they deeply believed in American exceptionalism. I proceed from the assumption that Islamic terrorists deeply believe in the leading tenets of Islam though many of them may have been drawn to ISIS for a variety of reasons and may have only a passing knowledge of the Koran and may only rarely enter a mosque.

Why is it that terrorists routinely shout “Allah Akhbar” (“God is great”) while carrying out a bloody attack?

Why is it that so much of Islam teaches that non-Muslims are the enemy, that “disbelievers” are to be executed?

Why do they speak of their duty to perform “jihad”, which is usually defined as a struggle against the enemies of Islam or against the “infidels”?

Why do they speak of “martyrs”, which is often used as an honorific for Muslims who have died fulfilling a religious commandment, especially those who die waging jihad, or historically in the military expansion of Islam?

Why do they speak of martyrs going to paradise after dying and receiving heavenly rewards? Even being resurrected on earth, to once again die as a martyr, going again to paradise.

Yes, yes, I know about the terrible crimes of the IRA Catholics and the Israeli Jews, but on the scale of human moral evolution they don’t compare to the routine cutting off of heads; the whippings; demolishing 2000-year-old monuments; sternly banning alcohol, music, gays and sex; covering up women’s faces; forcibly imposing religious law; and on and on, including the worst of all: the never-ending horrific suicide bombings. ISIS has done the impossible: It has made American foreign policy look almost halfway decent.

Occasionally I reply to critics with something to this effect: Even if I completely accepted your premises, I’d still feel that it was too late. We can’t undo the harm that US foreign policy and the West have caused. The barn door is wide open and all the horses have escaped. There is an entire generation, or two generations, in the Muslim world totally committed to gaining bloody revenge against the West. It appears to be that it’s either us or them.

Explaining the cause of terrorism is not the same as excusing it.

It might be different if the terrorists focused on killing only those in the West responsible for the horror carried out against their people, but their acts of violence are largely indiscriminate; they attack Westerners at random, often with Muslim victims included; often with only Muslim victims.

As I’ve pointed out in the past, we should consider this: From the 1950s to the 1980s the United States carried out all kinds of very harmful policies against Latin America, including numerous bombings, without the natives ever resorting to the uncivilized, barbaric kind of retaliation as employed by ISIS. Latin American leftists generally took their revenge out upon concrete representatives of the American empire: diplomatic, military and corporate targets – not markets, theatres, nightclubs, hospitals, schools, restaurants or churches.

France, the site of numerous terrorist attacks, has experimented with deradicalization centers in an attempt to combat homegrown extremism. The centers subjected those they housed to intense courses in French history and philosophy. But after five months the experiment has been abandoned as a complete failure.8 My guess is that one reason for the failure is that French officials, like their American counterparts, were too politically correct when it came to questions of religion. If I were a teacher at one of these centers I would ask the students how they know – I mean really know – that “martyrs” go to paradise. They are, after all, considering sacrificing their lives for this belief. Seriously confronting this question for perhaps the first time ever, the students’ minds may well become somewhat confused, leaving them open for other challenging questions and thoughts.

For the record: I don’t support the US fighting ISIS in Syria. I don’t trust the Pentagon’s motivation, or their choice of bombing targets. They’re probably still into regime change. I’d leave the job to Russia and its allies.

Notes

  1. Washington Post, February 9, 2017
  2. See William Blum, Killing Hope, chapter 50 for the details of the Panama intervention.
  3. Associated Press, February 6, 2017
  4. Winston Churchill, The Second World War, Vol. IV(1951), page 428.
  5. William Blum, Rogue State: A Guide to the World’s Only Superpower, chapter 18
  6. Ibid, chapter 5 (ends in 2005; much more is now known)
  7. See Bob Parry, “The Politics Behind ‘Russia-gate”, Consortiumnews.com, March 4, 2017
  8. Washington Post, February 25, 2017
See Also:

TO READ MORE ARTICLES FROM SIGNS OF THE TIMES

PLEASE CLICK ON   =     https://www.sott.net/

Pepe Escobar: Trumpquake – How Baudrillard anticipated Trump- By Pepe Escobar

© AFP 2017/Jim Lo Scalzo/EPA Pool
US President Donald J. Trump delivers his first address to a joint session of Congress from the floor of the House of Representatives in Washington, DC, USA, 28 February 2017.

It was, indeed, a Trumpquake. And the sequel was a given; the whole world, transfixed, in real time, 24/7, hanging on every word, tirade, feeding frenzy oozing from the swamp and its various flesh-eating monsters and manmade pathogens, deep state-related or otherwise.

The Trump presidency is the ultimate larger-than-life – for many the only – show on earth. It’s open to debate whether the vicious civil war currently in effect between Team Trump and powerful deep state factions enmeshed with the neocon/neoliberalcon galaxy is just shadowplay; or whether this is the real deal underlining the eventual crash and burn of the American Empire.

That’s all too predictable, when a reality TV star becomes president. When “post-truth” pseudo and/or non-events on screen 24/7 make a mockery of “reality.” When the screen determines the perception of truth; if an “event” is not on show, it never happened.

The “post-truth” battle happens – where else – on a vortex of digital screens. And that’s why US corporate media is freaking out. Because now there are no limits to how much it can suppress/repress/digress; what ideas are “appropriate” to be discussed; and what taboos cannot be broken, as debating the pernicious effects of neoliberalism, globalism or the industrial-military-intelligence-security complex.

And what a pity that the neo-Gibbon who could track this Decline and Fall to perfection – in fact did it, decades in advance, died 10 years ago, on March 6, 2007.

What to do after the orgy?

Since 1970, when he published The Consumer Society, the West’s Deconstructor-in-Chief Jean Baudrillard had been nothing but consistent. After he identified marketing as the supreme ideology and shopping as the new moral standard/modern concept of happiness, we have come to understand ourselves primarily as reified prisoners in The System of Objects (another one of his classics), duly alienated by a non-stop demented deluge of merchandise.

In 1990, in The Transparency of Evil, Baudrillard went one up, stressing how after the 1970s, everything had been liberated: “It was a total orgy of the real, the rational, the sexual, the critical.” So, he asked with a pure dadaist/surrealist sense of humor, what is to be done “after the orgy”?

He was like a drunken Nietzsche figuring out the death of God – all over again. Our only way forward was to “simulate” non-stop, to repeat every instance of “liberation” over and over again, a pallid, vacuous redundancy empty of meaning. T. S. Eliot’s Hollow Men marching to a Kraftwerk beat.

Then, when vacuous neo-Hegelians announced the “end of history” after the wrap-up of the USSR, heralding the Forever Rule of Western liberal democracy, he smashed the dream as a mere “illusion of the end.”

Across the go-go 1980s, everyone, from the incipient anti-globalization Left to slightly anarchist alter-globalizers, from soft John Stuart Mill progressives to dejected neo-Marxists had to resort to their portable Baudrillard to understand the tentacles of the ego-driven, ego-corroded consumer medusa, spreading a toxic virus that kills any possibility of empathy and communitarian spirit.

By the time he published America, in 1986, Baudrillard was already deep into conceptualizing the ultimate game of post-modernity; Total Sign, Total Image, Total Media, Total Culture Industry all enmeshed in a “hyper-real” web of “real simulacra.” He coined the concept of reality TV even before reality TV existed. In the process, alongside Foucault, Deleuze, Derrida and Lyotard, he became a Guns n Roses-level intellectual superstar across elite US universities.

From David Cronenberg’s Videodrome to the Matrix trilogy, and all the way to Westworld, here’s to our Baudrillardian world under complete control, simultaneously transparent (everything is so glitteringly visible) and totally opaque (everything that matters is veiled), where what’s on show is never what it seems (or, to quote Twin Peaks, a totally Baudrillard series, “the owls are not what they seem”).

All aboard the total simulacrum

Dead before the Obama era, Baudrillard could not have possibly deconstructed Obama’s “invisible” kill list or the pathological demonization of Russia and Iran. But he did have imperial sideways encounters with both Daddy Bush and Dubya.

On the 1991 Gulf War, he wrote it never happened: no battles; no dead bodies; “asexual, chirurgical”; a “no-war”; just videogame-style abstract scenes (it would have been another story had he had access to “highway of death” footage, the US Army engaged in target practice on thousands of fleeing, unarmed Iraqi soldiers).

On 9/11, he wrote a landmark essay, The Spirit of Terrorism (which I read, startled, in Peshawar) not justifying it, but demonstrating how maximum power had to eventually elicit maximum destructive, although asymmetrical, counter-power. 9/11 was the ultimate Total Screen event.

Baudrillard would have been mightily intrigued by reality TV master Trump – as well as the current post-truth civil war.

He would have analyzed how Trump went over virtually the whole Beltway establishment, corporate media included, to get elected, using his trademark version of Total Screen. He would have seen that Trump is far from an American Macbeth sowing Hobbesian chaos. And he would have reveled in a vicious sociopolitical American war played in real time on the Total Screen.

What to do after the orgy? Revel in the Baudrillard index, put together by the International Journal of Baudrillard Studies (IJBS), and welcome to the Total Simulacrum Trump era.

See Also:

TO READ MORE ARTICLES FROM SIGNS OF THE TIMES

CLICK ON THIS LINK    =    https://www.sott.net/

OPINION BY WINSTON CLOSE

USA IS NOW USA OF SATAN .
THEIR SATANIC CRIMES AGAINST HUMANITY WILL HASTEN THEIR DEMISE.
THEY’RE A MORALLY BANKRUPT NATION
A CAULDRON OF EVIL
THEIR EMPIRE OF TERROR WILL COLLAPSE UNDER THE WEIGHT OF THEIR CORRUPTED SOULS.
USA GOVERNMENT ,CIA,SAUDI ARABIANS AND. ISRAEL WERE BEHIND 911TRAGEDY. ?
OBAMA THE HIGH PRIEST OF SATAN WILL GO DOWN IN HISTORY AS THE CATALYST THAT BROUGHT DOWN THE USA TO OBLIVION.
USA IS A TREACHEROUS AND DECEITFUL NATION.
USA IS WILLINGLY SUBSERVIENT TO THE SATANIC ILLUMINATI AND THEIR END IS RIGHT ON COURSE TO TOTAL ANNIHILATION.

IT’S TIME TO BRING THIS EVIL USA TO ITS KNEES.

Newly Declassified CIA Report Exposes Over 25 Years Of U.S. Plans To Destabilize Syria – By Whitney Webb

A CIA report, drafted in 1986, details the agency’s “purposely provocative” analysis of the regime’s vulnerabilities and the potential to destabilize and oust then-President Hafez al-Assad.

Anti-Assad protesters burn a picture of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad with 'Corruption' written across his face. (AP/Kostas Tsironis)

SYRIA — While the nearly seven-year-long sectarian “civil war” in Syria is widely believed to have started in 2011, revelations in recent years have shown that the sectarian war that has sunk Syria into chaos actually precedes the “official” start of the conflict.

In 2010, Wikileaks published hundreds of thousands of classified State Department cables, including a 2006 cable showing that destabilizing the Syrian government was a primary goal of U.S. policy in the Middle East. The ultimate intention was to topple Iran, one of Syria’s closest allies. The cable revealed that the U.S.’ goal at the time was to undermine the Syrian government by any means available.

In addition, retired United States Army General Wesley Clark’s bombshell interview with Democracy Now exposed the existence of plans for regime change in Syria that date as far back as 2001. Now, a newly declassified document from the Central Intelligence Agency has shown that these regime change efforts date back even further to the late 1980s – and potentially even earlier.


Advertisment

The declassified document was written in July, 1986 by the Foreign Subversion and Instability Center, a part of the CIA’s Mission Center for Global Issues, and is titled “Syria: Scenarios of Dramatic Political Change.” As the document itself states, its purpose is to analyze – in a “purposely provocative” manner – “a number of possible scenarios that could lead to the ouster of President Assad [Bashar al-Assad’s father, Hafez] or other dramatic change in Syria.”

The report’s meager distribution list suggest it was considered by top officials in the Reagan administration, specifically because it was distributed to national security chiefs, not entire agencies. It was also distributed to a handful of key players in U.S.-Syria relations, such as former Ambassador to Syria William Eagleton.

Though the document itself officially predates the current Syrian conflict by nearly 25 years, much of its analysis brings to mind recent events in Syria, particularly those that led to the outbreak of war in 2011. Chief among these is the rise of factionalism between Sunni Muslim elements against the ruling Alawi minority (a Shi’ite sect), as well as the potential to counter Russian influence in Syria and elsewhere in the Middle East. These similarities suggest that U.S. regime change efforts in Syria date back to well over 30 years ago – proof of the persistent imperialist elements that consistently guide U.S. foreign policy.

 

The Rise of Factionalism and Sectarian Conflict in Syria

A Free Syrian Army fighter from the Al-Faruk brigade, center, steps on a portrait of Syrian President Bashar Assad, Sept. 22, 2012 (AP/Hussein Malla)

Of all the named “individuals and groups that might impel or impede takeover attempts” that are recognized by the CIA, Syria’s Sunni population ranks highest among them. The CIA notes that “factionalism plagues the political and military elite” as the ruling Alawi minority “is deeply resented by the Sunni majority it dislodged from power two decades ago.” The document also states that “a renewal of communal violence between Alawis and Sunnis could inspire Sunnis in the military to turn against the regime.”

At the time, the document continues, Sunnis “made up 60 percent of the Syrian officer corps but [were] concentrated in junior officer ranks,” with the majority of enlisted men being primarily Sunni conscripts. Furthermore, the document notes that if the Syrian government were to overreact to “minor outbreaks of Sunni dissidence,” large-scale unrest could be triggered – “setting the stage for civil war.”

The CIA also makes its strong preference for a Sunni-led government in Syria quite clear, stating that “U.S. interests in Syria probably would be best served by a Sunni regime,” particularly one led by Sunni “business-moderates” who would “see a strong need for Western aid and investment.”

This assessment, as the Libertarian Institute has pointed out, is “remarkably consistent” with more recent events, particularly those that have defined Syria’s current conflict, which is often misleadingly described by many media outlets as a “civil war.” For instance, opposition forces who have been fighting to overthrow the Assad regime for the better part of seven years are almost entirely composed of Sunnis.

According to the Combating Terrorism Center at West Point, “the Syrian opposition, especially its armed current, is a Sunni enterprise.” Sunni factionalism, the CTC further notes, is “driving large segments of the opposition to the [Assad] regime.” In 2014, the Guardian noted that the opposition forces were “almost exclusively Sunni.”

Pro-Syrian government demonstrators hold Baath party flags and a picture of President Bashar Assad at a rally at Sabe Bahrat Square to commemorate the 65th anniversary of the foundation of the Ruling Baath Arab Socialist Party in Damascus, Syria, Saturday, April 7, 2012. (AP Photo Bassem Tellawi)

In addition, Bashar al-Assad’s crackdown on protests in 2011, particularly initial protests in the city of Daara, are often credited with inspiring opposition supporters to take up arms to “oust loyalist [pro-government] forces from their areas.” According to the BBC, Assad’s crackdown on protests between March and May of 2011 left over 1,000 dead, though “unnamed human rights activists” were often the sources for such figures, suggesting that such statistics may be inaccurate.

The document also notes that factionalism among the Alawis could also be a destabilizing force in the country. It says the Alawi-dominated Syrian military could play a role in Assad’s ouster, stating that the Syrian “military’s strong tradition of coup plotting – dormant since Assad took control in 1970 – could re-assert itself.” Military discontent, the CIA asserts, could arise if Assad were to suffer a major defeat at the hands of Israel, particularly if Assad attempted to reclaim the Syrian Golan Heights.

Syria and Israel have been in a continuous state of conflict since 1967, when Israel first occupied the Golan Heights during the Six-Day War. In addition, the CIA notes the potential for in-fighting among the Alawi elite, particularly over Hafez al-Assad’s brother Rifaat – a controversial figure in Syrian politics.

These conflicts within the Alawite ruling class were mentioned extensively in a 2006 State Department cable, where “some long-standing vulnerabilities and looming issues that may provide opportunities to up the pressure on Bashar and his inner circle” were discussed at length.

Some intra-elite conflicts among the Alawis mentioned in the 1986 document are also explicitly mentioned in the 2006 cable, such as the numerous controversies surrounding Bashar al-Assad’s uncle, Rifaat al-Assad. However, despite likely attempts to exploit these vulnerabilities in the current conflict, the rise of Sunni opposition forces has kept the Alawi faction largely united out of necessity – particularly as the Alawis have been forced to face down an old foe, the Muslim Brotherhood.

 

The Muslim Brotherhood and U.S.-Backed Regime Change

Highly ranking Muslim Brotherhood official Abdul-Majeed Zneibat, left, listens as Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal, right, talks to reporters in Damascus, Tuesday Jan, 31, 2006 . (AP/Bassm Tellawi).

While the document devotes significant space to discussing the potential for induced sectarian violence, the faction identified as most likely to successfully destabilize the Assad-led Alawi regime is the Muslim Brotherhood. First founded in Egypt in 1928, the Muslim Brotherhood has spread throughout the Middle East, gaining influence in multiple countries.

Several countries, such as Saudi Arabia, Russia, Syria, and the U.A.E., now classify the Brotherhood as a terrorist group. Despite its widespread recognition as such, the CIA’s relationship with the Brotherhood, which dates back to the 1950s, continues into the present.

In the CIA’s 1986 report, the Muslim Brotherhood is explicitly identified as having the strongest capacity for leading any Sunni opposition against the Alawis and its associated Ba’ath political party. The report notes that “the Brotherhood’s role was to exploit and orchestrate opposition activity by other organized groups […] These groups still exist, and under proper leadership they could coalesce into a large movement.” Later on, it notes that “remnants of the Muslim Brotherhood – some returning from exile in Iraq – could provide a core of leadership” for a potential Sunni dissident movement.

Also interesting is the fact that the 1986 document mentions the Brotherhood as being part of a long-term future scenario, as the crushing of a Brotherhood-led revolt in the early 1980s led most of its Syrian members to be exiled or forced underground. Nearly three decades later, it should come as no surprise that the Brotherhood has held a leading role in the creation and militarization of the Syrian opposition throughout the current conflict.

When the Syrian opposition began to militarize in 2011 after receiving arms from the CIA and other NATO-allied intelligence agencies, the Syrian National Council emerged as the face of what was essentially Western-backed “rebel” forces working to overthrow Assad. The Carnegie Middle East Center, in its article on the Brotherhood, stated that it was “the most influential Islamist component within the council.” From 2011 to 2015, the CIA funneled over $1 billion per year training and arming opposition “rebels” in Syria. The program still continues, though it was reduced by 20% in 2015.

In 2012, when the Supreme Military Command of the opposition was established in Syria, Reuters noted that the Muslim Brotherhood dominated its leadership: “The unified command includes many with ties to the Muslim Brotherhood and to Salafists … it excludes the most senior officers who have defected from Assad’s military.” The decision to give the Brotherhood a major role in the command was realized at talks attended by security officials from the U.S., UK, France, the Gulf Monarchies and Jordan.

Also in 2012, Brotherhood spokesperson Mahmoud Ghozlan called on “Arab, Islamic and international governments” to intervene in Syria “to bring down the [Assad] regime. “The Carnegie Middle East Center said “since the beginning of the revolution, the Brotherhood has maintained that foreign intervention is the only possible solution to the crisis in Syria,” suggesting that the Brotherhood is actively seeking foreign military intervention to oust Assad, a goal it shares in common with the CIA.

Incidentally, 2012 also saw direct cooperation between the Brotherhood and the CIA. The New York Times reported:

 “CIA officers are operating secretly in Southern Turkey helping allies decide which Syrian opposition fighters across the border will receive arms…by way of a shadowy network of intermediaries including Syria’s Muslim Brotherhood.”

This, of course, allowed the Brotherhood to choose which of Syria’s many rebel groups to arm, likely favoring Islamist counterparts who were ideologically similar to the Brotherhood.

But despite the fact that the Syrian opposition is chiefly composed of fundamentalist Sunnis and has elements of the Muslim Brotherhood in key leadership roles, the expected consequences of fomenting Sunni dissent against the Assads have not gone exactly as the 1986 report anticipated.

For instance, key segments of Syria’s Sunni majority have remained supportive of Assad, particularly middle and upper-class Sunnis, as well as the Sunni business and merchant classes. In addition, many Sunnis – from the U.S. military’s perspective – likely feel more threatened by the armed opposition than the Assad regime, despite any misgivings they may have with the current ruling party. Sunnis have also been well-represented in pro-government militias, such as the National Defense Force.

 

Countering Russia through Syria

Syrian President Bashar Al Assad (left) and his Russian counterpart Vlamidir Putin (right)

Though Syria is the focus of this newly declassified report, the role of the Soviet Union – i.e. Russia – figures prominently in its discussion of Syria’s political landscape and potential vulnerabilities. The report notes that “Syria is the centerpiece of Moscow’s influence in the Middle East.”

The report also explicitly mentions several key points regarding Russia and Syria’s strategic relationship, saying the “continuation of Alawi dominance would be most beneficial to Soviet interests,” adding that “if the Sunnis gained power, Moscow’s position would be weaker.”

Also mentioned was the fact that almost all of Syria’s arms come from Moscow and Eastern Europe and that “the Soviets deliver more weapons to Syria than to any third world client.” This “vested interest in major policy shifts or changes in Syrian leadership” would prompt Russia to intervene in Syria, the report added.

Of course, Russia – once Assad’s regime was under threat from opposition forces – did intervene to protect its interests in Syria. Starting an aerial bombing campaign against “moderate” and terrorist-linked rebels in 2015, Russia soon became a central part of the conflict and Assad’s greatest ally in his fight to retain power. Incidentally, Russia’s role in Syria has become the launching pad for U.S. obsession with Russian “interference” and “aggression” in recent years, which has led the U.S. and Russia to have their worst diplomatic relations since the height of the Cold War.

The CIA has been very eager to foment domestic anti-Russian hysteria. The mention of Moscow in the 1986 report on Syria suggests that the current U.S.-led effort to destabilize Bashar al-Assad’s regime is at least partially motivated by its long-standing goal of isolating Russia and mitigating its influence internationally.

 

Looking Beyond Syria

Syrian rebels attend a training session in Maaret Ikhwan near Idlib, Syria.

One of the most overlooked aspects of the report is its mention of nations other than Syria, particularly Russia. In addition, the document’s cover letter, penned by the Director of the Global Issues Mission Center, tells the individuals named in its distribution list that they will “receive similar papers on other countries as they are completed.”

The fact that the CIA has a center dedicated to “foreign subversion and instability” – as well as the CIA’s documented penchant for regime change – confirms that the decades-long effort to destabilize Syria parallels the agency’s efforts to destabilize other regimes throughout the world in order to replace them with governments they believe to be more sympathetic to U.S. interests.

These destabilization efforts are often carried out with little, if any, regard to their impact on civilians who are often caught in the crossfire. As the 1986 report and the 2006 cable both note, the Assads brought periods of “unprecedented stability” to Syria.

The CIA and U.S. government have nevertheless chosen to pursue an agenda of destabilization. Nearly seven years later, the death toll in the West’s efforts to oust Assad is set to top half a million and has helped to create the largest refugee crisis since World War II.

 

Read the full declassified CIA report Syria: scenarios of dramatic political change below:

 

 

 Print This Story

 TO READ MORE ARTICLES FROM MINT PRESS
%d bloggers like this: