Washington And Israel Threaten Humanity

Washington And Israel Threaten Humanity.

By Stephen Lendman

So does NATO. It’s America’s imperial tool. An alliance for war, not peace, enemies were invented post-Soviet Russia.

Communism then was the alleged threat. Today it’s terrorism. Strategically intervening under US control, world peace and humanity are threatened.

NATO wages America’s wars. Middle East, North Africa, and Central Asian ones involve Israel. Both countries threaten world peace.

Israel wants unchallenged regional power. Washington wants it globally. Together, they threaten humanity. Hell hath no fury like their alliance.

Obama is America’s latest warrior president. He exceeds the worst of his predecessors. He accomplished the impossible. He governs to the right of George Bush. Yet he retains enough support so far for reelection.

In November, perhaps the economy will undo him. Perhaps he’ll avoid it by heightening fear for more war. He’s more belligerent than all his predecessors.

Public apathy lets him get away with it. People worry more about pocket book issues. Manipulated fear diverts them to security. It works most every time.

Peter Bergin’s an establishment figure. He directs national security studies for the New America Foundation. He’s also a right-wing print and television contributor, as well as a member of the National Security Preparedness Group. It replaced the 9/11 Commission to perpetuate its whitewash.

On April 28, his New York Times op-ed headlined “Warrior in Chief,” saying:

After getting the Nobel Peace Peace prize months into his tenure, he “turned out to be one of the most militarily aggressive American leaders in decades.”

He’s worse than that, of course. He exceeds all his predecessors by far. No one’s been more belligerent. No one waged more wars simultaneously and threatens more. No one endangers humanity like he does.

Candidate Obama promised peace. President Obama doubled down George Bush and then some. Discussing Afghanistan on October 27, 2007, he said:

“I will promise you this, that if we have not gotten our troops out by the time I am president, it is the first thing I will do. I will get our troops home. We will bring an end to this (and the Iraq) war(s). You can take that to the bank.”

Months earlier he said:

“If we have actionable intelligence about high-value terrorist targets and (Afghan) President Musharraf won’t act, we will. I will not hesitate to use military force to take out terrorists who pose a direct threat to America.”

Perhaps no remembers either statement. Perhaps too few know America’s only enemies are ones it invents. Terrorism is a catch-all term used to incite fear and justify conflict. When it wears thin, something else will replace it.

Bergin tried having it both ways. His title implies criticism. His content combines praise and muted disapproval. He avoided rule of law principles, truth and full disclosure.

His article ignores Obama’s threat to world peace, his Nobel award hypocrisy, and how he and Bush alienated more countries than any previous US leader.

Liberals helped elect him, said Bergin “in part because of his opposition to the Iraq (and Afghan) war(s).” They “probably don’t celebrate (his) military accomplishments.”

Bergin calls them “sizable,” but couldn’t name any. He tried, of course, but failed. He “decimated Al Qaeda’s leadership,” he claimed. In fact, popular resistance across North Africa, the Middle East, and Central Asia looks stronger than ever. The more deaths at America’s hands, the more enemies it makes.

“He overthrew the Libyan dictator.” In fact, Africa’s most developed country was ravaged, not liberated. Libya’s a charnel house, a raging cauldron. No central authority exists. Battles rage for control. Libyans are terrorized, traumatized, and impoverished. Some accomplishment!

“He ramped up drone attacks in Pakistan, waged effective covert wars in Yemen and Somalia, and authorized a threefold increase in the number of American troops in Afghanistan.”

Is Bergin pleased or critical? It’s hard to say. He admitted that Obama “became the first president to authorize the assassination of a (US) citizen.” He falsely called Anwar al-Awlaki a threat. He also claimed Obama killed Osama.

He ignored the staged event. Bin Ladin wasn’t killed or targeted. Seriously ill, he died naturally in December 2001. On December 26, 2001, Fox News reported it, saying:

He “died a peaceful death due to an untreated lung complication, the Pakistan Observer reported, citing a Taliban leader who allegedly attended (his) funeral.”

Other media also reported his death. In October 2007, appearing on BBC with David Frost, former Pakistan Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto said bin Laden died years ago. In December that year, she was assassinated in Rawalpindi. Perhaps her admission played a part.

Obama didn’t kill Osama. Dead men don’t die twice.

Bergin wonders why Obama supporters ignore his “acting as judge and executioner” by ordering hundreds of drone strikes, killing thousands since 2009.

There’s been a “dramatic cognitive disconnect between (his) record and the public perception of his leadership.” Despite his belligerence, conservatives and others think he’s a “peacenik.”

Political posturing, of course, explains it. Supporter views are another matter. Clear facts are in plain sight. Many don’t accept them. Obama’s rhetoric belies his policies.

During Bush’s tenure, drone attacks struck Pakistan “every 43 days.” In Obama’s first two years alone, it was “every four days.”

Perhaps it’s now multiple times daily in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Yemen, Somalia, Libya, Iraq, other targeted countries, and more to come. Obama the peace candidate is “more Teddy Roosevelt than Jimmy Carter.”

In 1906, TR won a Nobel Peace Prize, but didn’t wage war on humanity. Carter was the 2002 recipient. Obama elevated Nobel hypocrisy to new heights. Bergin noted how fast he opts for military intervention.

Knowledgeable supporters shouldn’t be surprised. Politicians always say one thing and do another, especially on issues matter most like waging war.

In office, Bush expanded CIA funding, staff, and operations. Obama outdid him and then some for covert missions, drone wars, and other initiatives. Stopping short of calling him “trigger-happy,” Bergin said he’s “completely shaken the ‘Vietnam syndrome….”

Perhaps he forgot GHW Bush saying on March 2, 1991, after the Gulf War:

“By God, we’ve kicked the Vietnam syndrome once and for all.”

He was right. From January then to now, America’s been at war with Iraq, Yugoslavia, and elsewhere from North Africa to Central Asia. Obama’s its latest exponent. Trigger-happy fits him well.

Waging multiple wars, he can’t wait to start another. In a second term, who knows what he’ll do.

Partnered with Israel should give supporters pause. Both nations are modern day Spartas. Militarism and war is their way of life, overtly and covertly. Both are also nuclear armed and dangerous.

Under its current leadership, Israel is especially threatening. On April 28, Haaretz headlined “Israel’s former Shin Bet chief: I have no confidence in Netanyahu, Barak,” saying:

Yuval Diskin harshly criticized both leaders. They’re not worthy to lead Israel, he said, explaining:

“My major problem is that I have no faith in the current leadership, which must lead us in an event on the scale of war with Iran or a regional war.”

“I don’t believe in either the prime minister or the defense minister. I don’t believe in a leadership that makes decisions based on messianic feelings.”

Both are “messianics,” he said. One’s from “Akirov or the Assuta project.” The other’s from “Gaza Street or Caesarea.” He referred to where they live. They ought to be cordoned off and kept there.

“Believe me, I have observed them from up close…. They are not people who I, on a personal level, trust to lead Israel to an event on that scale and carry it off. These are not people who I would want to have holding the wheel in such an event.”

“They are misleading the public on the Iran issue. They tell the public that if Israel acts, Iran won’t have a nuclear bomb. This is misleading. Actually, many experts say that an Israeli attack would accelerate the Iranian nuclear race.”

In March, former Mossad head Meir Dagan said attacking Iran would be “devastating” for Israel. Doing so would ignite regional war. You know how things start, but not end. Attacking Iran will put Israel “in a very serious situation for quite a time.”

Diskin added that over the past 10 or 15 years, Israel got “more racist….toward Arabs and foreigners, and we are also….a more belligerent society.”

He also worries about extremist Jews. He fears another political assassination like Yitzhak Rabin, and wonders what could come next.

Commenting at the time, Haaretz contributor Amos Harel headlined “Shin Bet chief’s vote of no confidence is another blow to Netanyahu and Barak,” saying:

His rebuke and Diskin’s elevated “the confrontation over the Iranian question to another level….Dagan seems to be on a divine mission to stop the bombing.”

Diskin feels the same way. So do other cooler heads, but they’re outnumbered in high places.

Nonetheless, senior Israeli security officials “whisper” similar views. Shouting might work better.

Diskin’s rebuke followed IDF chief Benny Gantz calling Iran’s leadership “very rational.” He doubted Tehran would “go the extra mile” to develop nuclear weapons.

Netanyahu, Barak, and others around them go to great lengths to cite nonexistent threats, Israel’s determination to remove them, and efforts to enlist America’s support. In an election year. Perhaps 2013, not now.

Political Washington wants regime change. Whether by war isn’t known. Even America has cooler heads but not enough.

“Nothing has been determined in the Iranian story, and the spring is about to boil over into another summer of tension,” said Harel.

If Obama heads for Israel soon, it’ll show Washington’s going all out to avoid war this year. Wait ’till next year, he may say. Belligerent partners may delay another fight, but seldom decline them.

For now, Syria is top priority. Obama and Netanyahu want Assad replaced with a puppet regime subservient to Washington and Israel. Western generated violence rages for it. Intervention may follow.

Harel left that issue unaddressed or the legitimacy of waging wars against non-belligerent states. What’s more important than that.

Haaretz contributor Gideon Levy believes “Nothing has changed in Israel since 1948,” saying:

Business as usual continues. “In 1948, new immigrants were brought straight from the ships into abandoned Palestinian homes with pots of food still simmering in the kitchen, and no one asked too many questions.”

“In 2012, the Israeli government is trying to whitewash the theft of Palestinian lands, all the while scorning the law.”

Earlier crimes repeat now. Those in power “us(e) the same corrupt means” as before. War crimes then become today’s. Justifications always are fraudulent. At issue are land and power grabs.

Continuing them sends the world a message. “We will never stop this crushing, ultranationalist melody – then as now, in 1948 and in 2012.”

Levy also came down hard on Zionist ideology headlining “After 115 years, it’s time for Zionism to retire,” saying:

It should have happened long ago. Something more legitimate is needed. In its 64th year as a state, “no one even knows what” role Zionism has or “how it is defined.”

Consign it to the history books and be done with it. It’s no longer relevant. It’s done enough damage. Reinvigorating or reinventing a bad idea assures something worse as a result.

“In Israel 2012, a pursuer of justice and human rights is by definition not Zionist.” Even discussing morality and rule of law principles “is blatantly ‘not Zionist.’ “

“Anyone who blindly supports all of Israel’s misdeeds (is) Zionist. Critics are called anti-Semites, even if they are Jewish.”

“Zionism is a negative epithet and….mark of shame.” It’s time has passed. It never should have been in the first place.

Imagine the bloodshed avoided. Imagine how many lives will be spared if peace, reconciliation, and justice replace Zionist instigated conflict.

It’s about dominance, not Jewishness. Everyone for right over wrong should want it sent to history’s dustbin and rejected.

It might even slow Washington’s war machine. Stopping it takes heavier lifting. What better time to start than now.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net.

Also visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com and listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.

http://www.progressiveradionetwork.com/the-progressive-news-hour/


Western allies of MI6 ‘kept in dark’ over mosque sting plan

[Here, in a nutshell, we have an offhand explanation of the "al-Qaeda" phenomenon, as an idea that is hatched within the twisted minds of intelligence agencies and eventually matured into actual "Islamist" terrorists.  We have previously tried to explain the term "al-Qaeda" at various times, as a "database," a terrorist cell of several thousand "Afghan Arabs," or even as a non-entity, used as cover for covert spy actions.  The following admissions about previously disguised spy agency actions and interactions with known terrorists, reveal that the "Qaeda" has always been a work in progress.  If you speak about Qaeda, you must first be speaking to individuals who have a minimum idea about what Qaeda is, or they will not understand the connections between "good guys" and "bad guys."   There could be no terrorist bad guys without some good guys standing behind them, handing them the explosives and the guns.

Behind every facade you will find that Qaeda is a contract, a meeting of minds between terrorists and their state sponsors and the paying of some sort of commission to ensure the fulfillment of that contract to commit terror against the "other side."  Before the meeting of minds can take place, there must first be some sort of recruitment process, to locate extremists of the proper mindset.  That is exactly the process which is explained in the following article.  In this case, MI6 set-up a mosque to attract N. African extremists, where they connected with Libyan intelligence and N. African extremists who were recruited into "al-Q in Iraq," from which they were later recruited to carry-out part of the "Qaeda" operation against Libya (who knows whether those called Qaeda in Libya were actually radical recruits or intelligence agents).  This information comes from documents recovered from Libyan govt. files, which related the recruitment facts quoted in the London Telegraph report.  The so-called "al-Qaeda" suspects described in the report never worked for bin Laden.   The military training and equipment which they received came from state sponsors.  

The US, Britain and all allied intelligence agencies create Qaeda in order to have someone to wage war against.]  

Western allies of MI6 ‘kept in dark’ over mosque sting plan

MI6 and Col Muammar Gaddafi’s Libyan intelligence service set up a radical mosque in a Western European city in order to lure in al-Qaeda terrorists, it can be revealed.

MI6 and Col Muammar Gaddafi’s Libyan intelligence service set up a radical mosque in a Western European city in order to lure in al-Qaeda terrorists, it can be revealed.

Britain was encouraging Col Gaddafi to give up plans for weapons of mass destruction Photo: ALAMY

By , Investigations Editor

The joint operation, which was undertaken as Britain attempted to secure a deal with Col Gaddafi to reopen diplomatic relations, shows how closely Britain’s Secret Intelligence Service was prepared to work with his regime’s spies despite widespread allegations of human rights abuses.

At the time, Britain was encouraging Col Gaddafi to give up plans for weapons of mass destruction. Four months later, the dictator and Tony Blair, then prime minister, struck the 2004 “deal in the desert” which ended Libya’s pariah status.

The cooperation extended to recruiting an agent to infiltrate an al-Qaeda terrorist cell in the Western European city, which cannot be named for security reasons.

The double agent, codenamed Joseph, was closely connected to a senior al-Qaeda commander in Iraq and had been identified as a possible spy by the ESO, Libya’s external intelligence service, on a visit to Tripoli.

MI6 began recruiting the agent without telling its allies in the European country where he lived.

The agency agreed a narrative with the agent and the ESO to fool their allies about when and how the agent had been recruited and the operation launched.

Documents seen by The Sunday Telegraph, which were sent from MI6 headquarters in London to Moussa Koussa, the Libyan intelligence chief, give a detailed outline of this subterfuge, the agent’s recruitment and plans for the operation. The papers were left behind in Tripoli as Col Gaddafi’s regime crumbled.

The plan raises questions about the SIS, MI6’s close links with the Libyan regime and whether it was acting on government orders.

Last week it was disclosed that Jack Straw, the then foreign secretary, is facing legal action over claims he signed off the rendition to Tripoli in March 2004 of an alleged Libyan terrorist leader accused of links to Osama bin Laden, claims that had been previously denied in Parliament.

But now it can be disclosed that secret anti-terrorist operations in Europe involving MI6 and Libyan intelligence began four months earlier with a series of meetings in the UK.

In December 2003, “Joseph” and a Libyan intelligence officer were flown to meetings at British hotels to discuss setting up a mosque to attract North African Islamic extremists.

They hoped to gain “information on terrorist planning”. MI6 paid for one Libyan intelligence officer, who had previously worked under diplomatic cover in the UK, to stay in a five-star central London hotel and smoothed his passage through immigration at Heathrow to “avoid the problems he experienced on his previous visit”.

A secret memo sent to Libyan intelligence in Tripoli details an early meeting with the apparently reluctant new agent in a city in the north of England.

“Our meeting in the UK on this occasion was to explore further with ‘Joseph’ just what he might be prepared to do,” it said.

Headed “Greetings from MI6 London” it says: “ ’Joseph’ was nervous. He had had a paranoid walk to the hotel across [UK city] with too much eye contact from passers-by that had unduly unnerved him.

“We reassured him by going over the cover story we had discussed when we met in Tripoli. We would not be seen together in public but, in the unlikely event that anyone saw us in the hotel, I would simply be his business contact. Furthermore, there was no link between the hotel booking and MI6.

“ ’Joseph’ agreed to work with SIS but still required reassurance. A second meeting took place a few days later when MI6 and Libyan officers met ‘Joseph’ at one five-star hotel and then travelled in separate taxis to” a second hotel to ensure they were not being watched.

The memo adds: “We told ‘Joseph’ that under no circumstances was he to tell the [European intelligence service of country where he lived and was planning to operate] of his involvement with us and the Libyans. We would do this when we were ready.”

The agent had, the note says, already been approached by this Western intelligence service but he was told to “stall his meeting” with them.

A strategy was agreed to keep the other Western intelligence service in the dark about the full extent of their contact with the agent.

It added that MI6’s allies would later be told the agent had been recruited “as a result of our ongoing counter terrorism relationship with ESO, [and we] sought to capitalise on the relationship struck up with ‘Joseph’.”

The operation was run behind the backs of Western allies in the chosen city. Critics are likely to question whether it could have backfired, with a terrorist cell launching an attack using the mosque as a base.

The disclosures come in the wake of the accusation that Mr Straw gave the green light to the plan to seize Abdelhakim Belhadj, one of the military commanders who helped to overthrow Gaddafi’s regime last year, and his pregnant wife and put them on a CIA flight.

Secret documents outlining the rendition plan, published by The Sunday Telegraph last February, showed how MI6 tipped off Libya that Mr Belhadj was being held by immigration officials in Malaysia and that the secret CIA flight was scheduled to refuel at an airbase on Diego Garcia, a British sovereign territory in the Indian Ocean.

Once Mr Belhadj was in custody in Libya, Sir Mark Allen, MI6’s then counter terrorism chief, sent a letter to Mr Koussa, saying: “This was the least we could do for you and for Libya to demonstrate the remarkable relationship we have built.”

The evidence contradicted government statements denying British involvements in renditions. Last week Mr Belhadj’s lawyers said they had issued legal proceedings against Colin Roberts, the Foreign Office official responsible for Diego Garcia.

Erdogan Wants NATO To Defend Turkey Against Syrian Reprisals

[Erdogan wants to invoke Article 5 of NATO treaty as a result of stray rifle fire coming across the militarized Syrian border--absolutely zero similarity to the only previous invocation of Art. 5, after the 911 attacks.  Syria has merely to point-out the case of the Taliban sanctuary in Pakistan and NATO's claims of "self-defense" there, to expose the hypocrisy in the arguments given by Obama's hand puppet in his attempt to justify the Turkish aggression against Syria.  Since this is a lawyers' war, waged by a lawyer Commander-In-Chief and Sec. Defense, sold to the world by a lawyer Sec. of State, it is only right that this war be won or lost on the battlefield of ideas.  Elements of these battles are fought in actual court rooms, but more importantly, they are slugged-out in the "courtroom" of public opinion.  By invoking Article 5 for petty reasons, the marionette in Istanbul risks having this treaty article defined in popular media.  Doing so, would invite the attention of the sheeple, to the hypocritical distortions of laws being used by Western political acrobats, who are grasping at straws, trying to spin the coming American defeat in Afghanistan into something else.  It would be a real shame if the American people were allowed to hear a debate about the definition of "terrorism"; this would clarify for the whole world just who is the terrorist and who is the state sponsor in all of the struggles for Empire now being waged.  It just might justify a radical change of course to one leading towards world peace.    

The Turkish PM is really not the great international "Islamist" leader that he is made-out to be.  Turkey keeps going out on limbs for its Western overlords, even though they all keep getting chopped-off, usually by Russian-friendly hands.  The defeat of Western Imperialism in Syria by Russian diplomacy will stand-out as one of those unanticipated turning points of history, comparable to NATO's 2008 defeat in Georgia.]   

Turkey says Nato is option to defend Syrian border

Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan

Turkey’s Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan addresses the media in Ankara. -Reuters Photo

ISTANBUL: Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan said Nato is responsible for protecting his country’s borders, newspapers reported on Thursday, after gunfire from Syria hit a refugee camp on the Turkish side, wounding four people.  

“We have many options. A country has rights born out of international law against border violations,” Erdogan was quoted as saying by Hurriyet daily and other newspapers.

“Also, Nato has responsibilities to do with Turkey’s borders, according to Article 5,” added Erdogan, whose country is a Nato member.

Article 5 of the Nato treaty declares that an armed attack against one of its members will be considered an attack against all members and allows for the use of armed force. It has been invoked only once, following the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the United States.

Erdogan, speaking to reporters on board a plane returning from an official visit to China, also said fire had again crossed the border into Turkey from Syria on Tuesday.

Erdogan said earlier this week that Turkey would take unspecified steps against Syria after stray bullets entered a refugee camp in the Turkish border province of Kilis on Monday.

Two Syrians and two Turkish aid workers were wounded.

He also accused Syrian President Bashar al-Assad of personal responsibility for killing civilians.

Assad’s forces have killed more than 9,000 people in the past year, according to a UN estimate. Damascus says rebels have killed more than 2,600 soldiers and security personnel.

Turkey, once an ally of Assad, has been calling for an international effort to put an end to the fighting in Syria that began in an uprising in March 2011.

US Special Forces Trained Foreign Terrorists In Nevada To Fight Iran

US Special Forces Trained Foreign Terrorists In Nevada To Fight Iran

Business Insider

U.S. Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) trained members of the Iranian opposition group Mujahideen-e-Khalq (M.E.K.) at a secretive site in Nevada from 2005 to at least 2007, as reported by Seymour M. Hersh at The New Yorker.

M.E.K. has been listed as a “foreign terrorist organization” since 1997. It is a felony in U.S. law to knowingly provide material support or resources to a foreign terrorist organization.

Five Iranian nuclear scientists have been assassinated since 2007. Early last month two senior Obama officials said that the attacks were the work of M.E.K. and that the group is “financed, trained and armed by Israel’s secret service [i.e. Mossad].”

In 2002 M.E.K. publicly revealed that Iran had begun enriching uranium at a secret underground location and the information was provided by Mossad, according to then-head of the International Atomic Energy Agency Mohamed ElBaradei.

From The New Yorker:

The M.E.K.’s ties with Western intelligence deepened after the fall of the Iraqi regime in 2003, and JSOC began operating inside Iran in an effort to substantiate the Bush Administration’s fears that Iran was building the bomb at one or more secret underground locations. Funds were covertly passed to a number of dissident organizations, for intelligence collection and, ultimately, for anti-regime terrorist activities. Directly, or indirectly, the M.E.K. ended up with resources like arms and intelligence.

The training in the U.S. took place at the Department of Energy’s Nevada National Security Site, located about 65 miles northwest of Las Vegas.

A retired four-star general told Hersh that the Iranians received standard training for about six months that included communications, cryptography, small-unit tactics and weaponry.

At one point M.E.K. operatives were intercepting phone calls and text messages inside Iran, translating them and sharing them with U.S. intelligence experts, according to a former M.E.K. official (who also said he does not know whether this activity is ongoing).

Last month the senior Obama officials denied any U.S. involvement in the M.E.K. assassinations, but a former senior intelligence official told Hersh that the U.S. provides intelligence for M.E.K. operations.

Some U.S. politicians have recently advocated on behalf M.E.K. being removed from the terror list as they have received tens of thousands of dollars from the group, as The Christian Science Monitor reported in August.

Allan Gerson, a Washington attorney for the M.E.K., pointed out the hypocrisy of simultaneously listing the group as a terrorist organization and training them, saying “How can the U.S. train those on State’s foreign terrorist list, when others face criminal penalties for providing a nickel to the same organization?

We Want War, And We Want It Now

 

Members of a Free Syrian Army terrorist unit posing close to the Turkish border.

We Want War, And We Want It Now

By Pepe ESCOBAR (Brazil)

We Want War, And We Want It NowWith friends like these … It all had to do with that Friends of Syria (fools for war?) meeting in Istanbul. Picture Saudi Foreign Minister Saud al-Faisal – who seems to have a knack for sending US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton into rapture – feverishly arguing that the House of Saud, those paragons of democracy, had “a duty” to weaponize the Syrian “revolutionary” opposition.

And picture al-Faisal ordering an immediate ceasefire by the Bashar al-Assad government, guilty – according to the House of Saud – not only of cruel repression but crimes against humanity.

No; this was not a Monty Python sketch.

Prince Saud Al-Faisal, addressing the Conference of The Friends of The Syrian People in Istanbul

To make sure he was milking the right cow, al-Faisal also said that the Gulf Counter-revolution Club (GCC), also known as Gulf Cooperation Council, wanted to get further into bed with the United States. Translation, if any was needed; the US-GCC tag team, as expressed by the weaponization of the Syrian “rebels”, is meant to body slam Iran.

For both the House of Saud and Qatar (the other GCCs are just extras), what’s goin’ on in Syria is not about Syria; it’s always been about Iran.

This especially applies to the Saudi pledge to flood the global oil market with a spare oil production capacity that any self-respecting oil analyst knows they don’t have – or rather wouldn’t use; after all, the House of Saud badly needs high oil prices to bribe its restive eastern province population into not even thinking about that Arab Spring nonsense.

Clinton got the pledge from the House of Saud in person, before landing in Istanbul. Washington’s return gift was of the Pentagon kind; the GCC soon will be protected from “evil” Iran by a US-supplied missile shield. That implies that an attack on Iran may have been discarded for 2012 – but it’s certainly “on the table” for 2013.

Asian nations – especially BRICS members China and India – will keep buying oil from Iran; the problem is what the European poodles will do. Other real problems are that the Kurds in northern Iraq are taking their oil off the market until Baghdad pays them the share they had agreed upon. And then there are Syria’s 400,000 barrels a day, which have been dwindling over the past few months.

Still, the Saudis will keep playing the make-believe oil scenario as a gift to Washington – as the US pressures compliant European Union poodle economies and extremely wary Asians they have no reason to keep buying Iranian oil.

But then into this mess in Istanbul Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki – whose power is a direct consequence of Washington’s invasion and destruction of Iraq – steps in with quite a bang.

Here it is, in his own words:

We reject any arming [of Syrian rebels] and the process to overthrow the [Assad] regime, because this will leave a greater crisis in the region … The stance of these two states [Qatar and Saudi Arabia] is very strange … They are calling for sending arms instead of working on putting out the fire, and they will hear our voice, that we are against arming and against foreign interference … We are against the interference of some countries in Syria’s internal affairs, and those countries that are interfering in Syria’s internal affairs will interfere in the internal affairs of any country … It has been one year and the regime did not fall, and it will not fall, and why should it fall?”

Maliki knows very well that the ongoing and already escalating weaponizing of Sunni Syrians – many of the Salafi and jihadi kind – will inevitably spill over into Iraq itself, and threaten his Shi’ite-majority government. And that irrespective of the fact that his administration supports the close Iran-Syria relationship.

Maliki, by the way, was back in power in the autumn of 2010 because Tehran deftly intervened to make sure the Sadrists would support him. To add to Maliki’s anger, Qatar is refusing to extradite Iraqi Vice President Tareq al-Hashemi, accused of masterminding a pro-Sunni coup d’etat in Baghdad.

How green was my jihad valley

So Washington is now merrily embarking in a remix of the 1980s Afghan jihad – which, as every grain of sand from the Hindu Kush to Mesopotamia knows, led to that ghostly entity, al-Qaeda, and the subsequent, transformer “war on terror”.

The House of Saud and Qatar have institutionalized that motley crew known as the Free Syrian Army as a mercenary outfit; they are now on their payroll, to the tune of $100 million (and counting). Isn’t democracy wonderful – when US-allied Persian Gulf monarchies can buy a mercenary army for peanuts? Isn’t it great to be a revolutionary with an assured paycheck?

Not missing a beat, Washington has set up its own fund as well, for “humanitarian” assistance to Syria and “non-lethal” aid to the “rebels”; “non-lethal” as in ultra battle-ready satellite communications equipment, plus night-vision goggles. Clinton’s silky spin was that the equipment would allow the “rebels” to “evade” attacks by the Syrian government. No mention that now they have access to actionable US intelligence via a swarm of drones deployed all over Syria.Maliki can clearly see the writing on the (Sunni) wall. The House of Saud invaded Shi’ite-majority Bahrain to protect the extremely unpopular Sunni al-Khalifa dynasty in power – their “cousins”. Maliki knows that a post-Assad Syria would mean Muslim Brotherhood Sunnis in power – sprinkled with Salafi-jihadis. In his worst nightmare, Maliki sees this possible dystopian future as an al-Qaeda in Iraq remix on steroids.

So this is what the Istanbul-based “Friends of Syria” bash turned into; a shameless legitimizing – by Arabs allied with the US – of civil war in yet another Arab country. The victims will be average Syrians caught in the crossfire.

This US-GCC weaponizing entirely dissolves the United Nations Syria envoy and former secretary general Kofi Annan’s six-point peace plan. The plan calls for a ceasefire; for the Syrian government to “cease troop movements” and “begin pullback of military concentrations”; and for a negotiated political settlement.

There will be no ceasefire. The Assad government accepted the plan. The weaponized “rebels” rejected it. Imagine the Syrian government beginning the “pullback of military concentrations” while swarms of weaponized “rebels” and assorted mercenaries (from Libya, Lebanon and Iraq) keep deploying their torture tactics and launching a barrage of improvised explosive devices.

This week I landed in Beijing eager to learn more about the upcoming joint Russia-China naval exercise in the Yellow Sea, but instead I was stuck with a Henry Kissinger op-ed in the Washington Post. Here it is, in Dr K’s own words:

The Arab Spring is widely presented as a regional, youth-led revolution on behalf of liberal democratic principles. Yet Libya is not ruled by such forces; it hardly continues as a state. Neither is Egypt, whose electoral majority (possibly permanent) is overwhelmingly Islamist. Nor do democrats seem to predominate in the Syrian opposition.

The Arab League consensus on Syria is not shaped by countries previously distinguished by the practice or advocacy of democracy. Rather, it largely reflects the millennium-old conflict between Shi’ite and Sunni and an attempt to reclaim Sunni dominance from a Shi’ite minority. It is also precisely why so many minority groups, such as Druzes, Kurds and Christians, are uneasy about regime change in Syria.

Well, China scholar Dr K at least got this one right (and in total agreement with Maliki, no less). A full-fledged mercenary army paid for by autocrat Arabs to overthrow an Arab government is pure and simple regime change – US rhetoric about “democracy” and “freedom” notwithstanding. It’s all about classic, imperial divide and rule, profiting from pitting Sunnis against Shi’ites.

And then my divine roasted duck revealed to me that realpolitik stalwart Dr K is not getting much traction in Washington these days.

SourceAsia Times 

Iran panic – Part one: Iran via Syria

 

Iran panic – Part one: Iran via Syria

nCa Analysis

Ashgabat, 3 April 2012 (nCa) — A conference of some 50 countries decided 1 Apr in Istanbul to fund and arm the Syrian opposition. This is deliberate disruption of peace process being painstakingly shepherded by Kofi Annan.

Whether the conference participants are ‘Friends of Syria’ is a question best answered by the people of Syria. What is apparent from their intentions and actions is that they are ‘Enemies of Peace.’

The Gulf countries will channel about US $ 100 million to the Syrian armed opposition. The USA will provide most sophisticated communication equipment, for point-to-point communication and Internet and satellite transmission.

It appears that the aid by Gulf countries will quite certainly include arms and ammunitions. The USA, Turkey and other allies are likely to close their eyes and feign ignorance of the whole thing. The narrative through media would be a blown-up replica of earlier models used in Libya, Yemen etc.: Humanitarian concern, moral obligation, curtailment of a repressive regime, blah, blah, blah.

A report on Istanbul conference can be found here:

Syria conference: Gulf countries to fund rebels

http://news.yahoo.com/syria-conference-gulf-countries-fund-rebels-123236191.html

The alarming thing is that the Syria plan is just a step in the unending quest to cripple Iran economically, start a civil war there and bring down its government.

This has serious implications for Central Asia. As a matter of fact, if Syria falls, Iran will be next in line.

The expected timeline suggests that the USA and its Gulf allies would like to topple Assad regime by June, possibly July 2012. By that time it would be somewhat clear if Iran can withstand the unilateral American oil sanctions.

Regardless of one’s personal feelings about the Syria situation, an important aspect is that western and Gulf allies are crossing a line from where it would not be possible to return.

A precedent once created is there to stay always. Funding and arming of opposition in Libya was the seed from which has sprouted the whole tree of this blatant intervention.

But the trouble with the world today is that no one has the absolute military power and moral authority to impose a readymade solution. Interference in Syria, to the extent of openly announcing the plans to arm and equip the rebels, is a boomerang and in due course of time it will return to its authors.

Our main concern in this analytical series is Iran because the fate of Central Asia is inextricably linked with that of Iran.

Syria, as we said, is a stepping stone toward Iran. The American government, acting on behalf of some interested parties, is eager to see quick fall of Assad so that it can focus its dwindling resources and capacity to strangulate Iran.

Meanwhile, Syria is also being used as a lab to refine the schematic path for Iran.

In parallel, there are signs that the process of softening Iran ahead of direct confrontation is already in motion.

To be continued . . .

Plot hatched by West Asia terror group, claim cops

[It cannot be determined from the article below exactly which "terror group" the Iranian/Indian suspects are linked to.  I found one other report, which came from a known Zionist-friendly website, which naturally tried to claim that the men were tied to Hezbollah.  However, since this plot is a virtual copycat from previous strikes upon Iranian nationals, it is intended as a "false flag" attack, giving the impression that it is Iranian retaliation, when in fact, it is more rational to blame the anti-regime MEK (Mujahidin E-Khalq), who are known to work for Mossad inside Iran.  The shitty little immoral Fascist state occupying Palestinian land has no problem with killing its own citizens whenever their deaths will further the global Zionist conspiracy.]

Plot hatched by West Asia terror group, claim cops

Jatin Anand, Hindustan Times
New Delhi

Policemen wearing plain clothes escort Syed Mohammed Kazmi, an alleged suspect in last month’s bombing of an Israeli diplomatic vehicle, from a local court, in New Delhi, on March 7, 2012. The arrest of the Indian journalist is the first apparent breakthrough in an attack that Israel accused Iran of orchestrating. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)

The attack on an Israeli official’s wife, which set diplomatic shockwaves mid-February, was an ‘international conspiracy’ hatched and funded by ‘a group of non-state actors’ in southwest Asia, police said. The attack had been planned for over an year, sources said. assassination of an Iranian scientist by suspected Mossad agents this January, two similar bids had been made in 2010. This one was tailor-made to be an identical counter-strike by the other side,” said a senior police officer.

A month-long investigation into the sabotage of the Israeli embassy-owned Innova led additional DCP Sanjeev Yadav’s Special Team to keep a subtle watch on a small house behind Jor Bagh’s Karbala shrine in south Delhi. This house was occupied by the family of Syed Ahmed Kazmi, a freelance journalist.

Technical surveillance was mounted and the number of calls made to Syria and Iran by Kazmi and vice versa daily made investigators monitor them more keenly, sources claimed.

“Soon we gathered that Kazmi, who had reported on the military standoff between Iraq and Iran in the 1980s, was too interested in political developments in the Middle East,” said the officer.

Kazmi was picked up and, police sources claim, revealed that he had ‘assisted’ two men from Iran in ‘carrying out a meticulously planned plot’ after being approached by agents of the southwest Asian (terror) group during one of his trips to Tehran in mid-2011.

He then put this duo, which is suspected to have executed the actual sabotage, in touch with three-four men, who allegedly contributed to the conspiracy ‘in their own ways’.

“A whole group of local mercenaries, some of whom have been identified, helped these foreigners in procuring everything — from the black motorcycle to the nitrate-based explosive used in attack,” said the officer. The motorcycle used in the attack has also been recovered — but not at Kazmi’s behest, he added.

Three to four arrests are likely to be made in the case till the end of the week, sources said.

Assad’s troops close in on foreign mercenaries

Assad’s troops close in on foreign mercenaries

A feature of the Syrian crisis which must please those ostensibly seeking the regime’s ouster is that it is turning out to be a long drawn one. So long drawn, in fact, that the world is beginning to develop an amnesia about the Palestinian issue. This must a good for some. It certainly provides respite, a digression with a potential to keep attention away from embarrassing themes even as the puppeteers improvise one crisis after another.

The United States, Europe, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Qatar are openly in Al Qaeda’s company in Syria

There are now journalists, ferried into Syria by reliable smugglers, testifying to “cross-border terrorism” from Turkey, Iraq, Jordan and Lebanon into Syria. The “brutal” Syrian response makes headlines but “cross-border terrorism” does not. The expression should be in New Delhi’s recollection atleast.

Governments are sometimes secretive and muffle their responses. But cross-border terrorism does not echo even with the Indian media and those who imagine they trigger public discourse? Debate rages in the US on whether assassinating Iranian scientists serves a useful purpose. But the intelligentsia in this mother of civilizations expresses no astonishment that the ethical question – whether organizing assassination of scientists is right or wrong – is nowhere in the discourse. Is this state of affairs, an improvement on Anthony Trollope’s description of a Tasmanian settler who, when asked whom he would kill first if he saw a snake and an aborigine, replied with stunning candour: “the question should not arise!”

Already, the Syrian story has had many shocking twists. The Arab League sends a mission to Syria but its report is turned down because the “Sudanese” head of the mission is too “balanced” between state brutality and the protesters’ violence. That Al Qaeda and Taliban operatives from Libya, Afghanistan and Pakistan have found their way into Syria has been reported even in the West. But Taliban from Qatar? Is Qatar, a hub for a dialogue with the Taliban, also beginning to double up as a recruitment center for Syrian operations? If so, these operations have the blessings from the highest Al Qaeda authority, Ayman al Zawahiri.

In other words the United States, Europe, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Qatar are openly in Al Qaeda’s company in Syria. Launch a global war on terror in Afghanistan and Pakistan and set up Al Qaeda in new theatres like Libya and Syria! I suppose, the global war on terror will be redirected to these theatres once Afghanistan and Pakistan have been cleansed – a sort of second phase in a two-stroke operation.

Banakarmitana

Mitakar banana

(Build, destroy, build again)

Meanwhile, the Syrian game has been immeasurably complicated by Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s visit to Damascus along with Russian Intelligence personnel. Photographic proof has been compared of all the outside build up of violent dissent inside Syria.

Evidently, Bashar al Assad has been given a fortnight within which to “clean up” such centers of rebellion as Homs, not far from the Lebanese border.

Espionage related diplomacy is proceeding parallel to the Homs operations. For example, the rebels captured nine Iranian pilgrims taking the land route through Alleppo to Hama and onto the Zainab shrine, in Damascus. At about the same time, the Syrian Army arrested 49 Turkish soldiers. Ankara asked Teheran to arrange for their release. Turkish Foreign Minister AhmetDavutoglu rushed to Moscow for help. To facilitate a swap, the Free Syrian Army (a rebel outfit) released the Iranian pilgrims on the Turkish side of the border. The pilgrims have returned to Teheran.

An infinitely more serious situation has arisen in a part of Homs where Foreign Mercenaries and special forces are surrounded by the Syrian Army. Rather than bomb the Baba Amro area, the Syrian strategy is to capture the foreigners alive and turn the tables on the Western media war. A clue to the veracity of this story came from French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe who is seeking Russian help to create “humanitarian corridors” to allow access to “civilians caught up in the violence”. In fact an effort is on to have the “corridors” idea included in a new Security Council Resolution the west is trying to rope the Russians into.

The Syrians meanwhile are keeping their eyes on the clock and hastening slowly towards tightening the cordon on the Baba Amro locality in Homs. As further good news for them, Jordanian sources confirm the arrest by the Jordanian army of seven terrorists crossing into Syria.

Active Endeavour and Drug Trafficking

Active Endeavour and Drug Trafficking

By ORIENTAL REVIEW

We all are aware of the basic frameworks of the US response to barbaric 9/11 terrorist attacks. The Bush’s administration and NATO launched unprecedented media, diplomatic and military campaigns aimed to suppress the adversary inside its haunt in Afghanistan. But few remember that the US Operation Enduring Freedom and NATO’s International Security Assistance Force weren’t the only military frameworks for multilateral rebuff to Al-Qaeda. At the same time the United States announced an unprecedented maritime operation named Active Endeavour. The latter is known less as it was based not on the UN Resolution 1368, but notorious article 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty stipulating ‘collective self-defense’.

Immediately after all the operations started gaining momentum. But while the expediency of the Enduring Freedom and ISAF couldn’t be seriously challenged as the need to fight Taliban in Afghanistan was quite clear at that time, the mission and results of the maritime initiative are not so obvious. Since the very beginning it was announced that the main objective of the operation was to fight terrorism and other illegal activities on maritime communications. But they suddenly started monitoring… only Mediterranean trade routes.

In practical terms the monitoring routine looks like that: a NATO warship or a group of such plies the Mediterranean and the strait of Gibraltar. They check all neighboring merchant vessels through the special database which includes a black list of ‘suspect ships’. If they detect a ship from the black list they board it to inspect documentation and cargo in search of illegal migrants, elements of the weapons of mass destruction, narcotics etc – everything relevant to combating terrorism.

Everything is seemingly Ok. But let’s recall where the main heroin supply routes from the NATO-dominated Afghanistan to Europe lie.

1. Land heroin route (through Turkey,Bulgaria, Kosovo or Bosnia). To facilitate the entrance into the Schengen area and avoid excessive formalities, the heroin packs, often declared as ‘perishable Turkish oranges’, are transported by TIR-labeled juggernauts to clandestine laboratories in the south of France. Typical blue-colored containers with acetyl oxide – one of the principle precursors for heroin refinement have the same destination.

2. Maritime heroin route lies via Mediterranean trade lines to the Corsica Island. The packs are being transshipped there to ferries and follow the voyage to Marseille absolutely unchecked. By the way, according to available intelligence, there are around 20 clandestine heroin refinement plants in the outskirts of Marseille.

Now to the main question: how many tons of heroin were intercepted on merchant vessels in Mediterranean during more than ten years (!) of the operation Active Endeavour? Correct answer: None!

Not a single gram! And we should take it for granted that every day hundreds of kilos of heroin are being shipped through NATO’s ‘area of responsibility’. Curiously enough the Joint Forces Command of the operation located in Naples(Italy) does not even collect such statistics! A couple of times a relevant question concerning such statistics caused confusion and embarrassment among the top admirals leading the operation. There is only one piece of statistics: in 2003-2009 155 merchant vessels were boarded and checked by NATO inspection teams. They did not find anything.

As we already know the methods applied by democrats against international terrorism in Afghanistan, we can’t help asking another question: why NATO is wasting stupendous resources on a purposeless operation? The answer is evident: both ISAF and Active Endeavour are perfectly complying with their real mission: to ensure total control over production, transportation and distribution of illegal drugs, critically important for the ‘global triumph of democracy’.

Map 1. NATO Mediterranean maritime patrol operation zones.

NATO’s Mediterranean maritime operation zone is divided into several patrol squares, each with specific code-name (see map 1). For an unknown reason a large part of the sea surface there is not monitored at all. It concerns first of all the very southern coast of France and major part of Adriatic and Tyrrhenian Sea off Italian coasts. At the same time the most patrolled squares are BUSCH and DODGER – which are exclusive economic zones of Syria and Egypt. The Suez channel is also being strictly monitored, firstly because of its strategic importance and secondly because that is the way to Iranian ports.

Perhaps these ‘black holes’ are thoroughly monitored by the airborne patrols, taking into account that the areas are very close to the US NAF Sigonella in Sicily where P-3 Orion aircrafts are dislocated? Let’s have a look on the square map for aviation (it differs from the maritime map).

Map 2. NATO Mediterranean air patrol operation zones.

The squares where NATO aviation is not present are in black. So the maps are almost identical. US Orions patrol mostly central segment of the Mediterranean. It was caused not by intensive sea traffic, but because Automatic Identification System from the shore-based stations does not reach these places. If a sea-borne tracking station is not present nearby, the vast area would be left unmonitored. Such partial lack of control is unacceptable. This is why US aircrafts are taking off to patrol mostly central Mediterranean.

Such operations are aimed to control cargoes of geopolitical rivals rather than mythic terrorists. Those vessels really involved in the schemes of illegal drugs and weapons smuggling to Europe are obviously not present in the black lists of the NATO tactical units. When Russian and Ukrainian warships participated in Active Endeavour before 2008, they faced blatant restrictions in operations from NATO side. So-called NATO sister-ships imposed to each of them were strictly monitoring all activities and intentions of the aliens.

There is yet another dimension of this story. NATO’s ambitions in early 2000s were extended to Black Sea as well (perhaps caused by the fact that Romanian port of Constanta was another notable gate for Afghan heroin to Europe). In 2004 a twin operation named Black Sea Harmony was launched by Turkey. The standard operation procedure of the latter stipulates information exchange with the joint command of Active Endeavour. So the transparency of the Turkish straits and territorial waters to the international drug cartels is still an open issue.

Hiding Behind the Mask of the New Universal Bogeyman

[Whether it is the lunatic gunman, who suddenly finds a conversion to "al-Qaeda" (much like the atheist who finds conversion in the foxhole), or the government, which holds up the bogeyman of "al-Qaeda" to rally the mob to a new political witch-hunt, the motive remains the same--to use these murders to play on the sympathies and fears of the mob.  There were plenty of "lone wolf" fruitcakes before the American government invented the new bogeyman of "al-Qaeda."   Attempts since then to unite all such cases behind the banner of Al-Q are separate steps in a long-term brainwashing project, which has so far managed to keep the entire world in silent mesmerization.  (If this claim was made about any other "Premier" spy agency, it would be a point of pride.  You know who I mean.)  Without this banner of fear, there would have been no place to hide the connections between the CIA and ALL terrorist organizations.  In this French connection, if the man had not been part of "Al-CIA-da," then post-mortem efforts to paint him as such are being coordinated by the CIA.]   

Between Merah and the Taliban

 Alarabiya.net English

By ABDULLAH ISKANDAR

Abdullah Iskandar

Everything that has been leaked so far about Mohamed Merah, the young man responsible for the crimes committed in the Toulouse area, shows that he acted alone – even if he sought to engage in “Jihad” at the Pakistani-Afghan border. Despite the claim later made by an organization that supports Al-Qaeda of responsibility for Merah’s actions, it remains that the man of Algerian descent had a track record in France in which minor offenses mixed with heading towards “Jihad”.

These crimes have led to repercussions at the level of the French presidential campaign, and candidates have sought to make use of them in one direction or another, especially as Merah had openly declared himself to be a “Jihadist”, giving his actions a distinctive flavor and an attempt to link them to Islam, the second largest religion in France after Christianity. Furthermore, these crimes have contributed, after the killing of students at a Jewish school, to prompting the Israeli media machine to action on the issue of protecting Jews.

Perhaps Merah’s crimes would not have had such a broad impact, in France and abroad, had they not coincided with the presidential election campaign, and had he not targeted a Jewish school, after having targeted Muslim French soldiers of foreign descent.

Yet the case of Merah, whose death in turn aroused questions and criticism, remains within an inter-French framework, in effect confronting everyone in France with the sensitive issue of how one would move from a record of minor offenses to one of “Jihad”, and subsequently the issue of how “Jihad”, even for a small number of individuals, turns into a justification for committing grave crimes.

It is true that similar crimes have been committed in the past, especially those bloody bombings that have been carried out in different parts of the world, the most famous being the September 11 attacks in the United States, but these crimes fall within the framework of an overall plan and working strategy by Al-Qaeda – something within the framework of which Merah does not so far appear to have worked. In fact, his personal track record before moving to “Jihad” shows that he committed a number of minor offenses and thefts that led him to prison, and later deprived him of his dream of joining the French Army. It is only after his application in this respect was rejected that he moved to “Jihad”. And, after his return, constant surveillance by French intelligence did not reveal him to be in contact with any network or group, just as it did not show him to be unusually religious or an advocate of the “Jihad” he later claimed to be engaged in.

All of this points to the fact that “Jihad” in a case such as this merely represents a mechanism in an individual criminal track record. Opinion leaders among French Muslims have made sure to stress the necessity of distinguishing between Islam as a religion and these kinds of practices. Yet the confusion continues to stand, especially among Westerners who do not differentiate much between interpretations, fatwas and confessions. And such confusion might not be dispelled by mere passing statements made for the occasion, and then disappearing – only to resurface later in similar occasions.

Dispelling such confusion now requires us to actually confront the phenomenon, which is used to justify all sorts of crimes, not just in the West, but also in Muslim countries themselves.

Some Muslim countries have applied themselves to combating such terrorism, hunting down terrorism networks and exerting efforts at the security and political levels in order to defend against it. Yet the phenomenon persists in various forms, despite what has been said about the weakness that has afflicted Al-Qaeda after the killing of its founder, Osama Bin Laden. This confirms the need to confront it, especially in terms of the means and methods that have so far been used and have not led to effectively putting an end to it.

Merah exploited “Jihad” in Afghanistan as a means in his criminal track record and to improve his skills at killing. And we are today witnessing attempts to politically rehabilitate, with what this involves in terms of ideology, the Taliban movement – the inspiration for this kind of “Jihad”.

(The writer is a prominent columnist. The article was published in the London-based al-Hayat on MArch 25, 2012)

Battling the Saudis

[The only reason that the Saudis are leading the terror war in the Middle East today is because the actions of 15 Saudis and their Saudi enablers were covered-up by American government officials in 2001.  Maybe it takes a Jewish "Philadelphia lawyer" to expose the Saudi hand which has been hidden from us for so long.]

Battling the Saudis

Laura Goldman, Jewish Exponent Feature

Philadelphia attorney Steven Cozen is continuing his nine-year quest to hold the Saudi Arabian government accountable for its alleged involvement in the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

Cozen was slated to be in court this week to go up against the kingdom and the Saudi High Commission for Relief of Bosnia and Herzegovina, which allegedly provided financial and logistical support to Al Quada, in a federal courtroom in Manhattan. Cozen is suing on behalf of several insurance companies that suffered economic damages, the brokerage firm Cantor Fitzgerald, which lost 658 employees on the attack on the World Trade Center, and others.

Steven Cozen

Despite objections from the State Department over the piercing of a foreign government’s sovereign immunity, Cozen has attempted to hold Saudi Arabia accountable for the Sept. 11 attacks that killed 3,000 Americans. His lawsuits seek economic damages against the kingdom and the Saudi High Commission.

The kingdom’s lawyers have long argued that the 9/11 commission report fully exonerated Saudi Arabia of any wrongdoing. Cozen, co-founding partner of the mega-law firm Cozen O’Connor, rebuts this characterization

“There is one sentence in the 1000-page report that reads, ‘There is no direct evidence that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia was involved,’ ” he noted.

Cozen has recently filed affidavits from former Sens. Bob Kerrey (D-Neb.) and Robert Graham (D-Fla.), who both served on the 9/11 commission, that buttress the Philadelphia attorney’s claim of Saudi-sponsored terrorism. Graham, a former chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, said in his affidavit: “I am convinced that there is a direct line between at least some of the terrorists that carried out the Sept. 11 attacks and the government of Saudi Arabia, and that a Saudi government agent living in the United States, Omar al Bayoumi, provided direct assistance” to Sept. 11 attackers and that al Bayoumi was acting “at the direction of elements of the Saudi government.”

Kerrey, who is now running for his old Senate seat, also disputed the Saudi’s interpretation of the 9/11 commission report. He wrote in his affidavit, “To the contrary, significant questions remain unanswered concerning the possible involvement of the Saudi government institutions and actors in the financing and sponsoring of Al Qaeda, and evidence relating to the plausible involvement of possible Saudi government agents in the September 11th attacks has never been pursued.”

Both former senators want these links further examined. Graham would also like to see an investigation into the Sept. 11 role of al Bayoum, whose pay as a Saudi government contractor increased eight-fold during the period that he allegedly supported the hijackers.

“To this date, this evidence has not been fully explored and pursued, to the detriment of the American public,” Graham said under oath.

“The American public deserves a more robust inquiry into these issues, and I fully support the efforts of the 9/11 plaintiffs to use the civil justice system towards that goal.”

Cozen, who has been a supporter of local Jewish community institutions and Israel for almost 40 years, describes his efforts in this matter as a calling.

“I do not see this as a geopolitical fight but a determination of liability,” he said.

“A United States citizen hurt on U.S. soil by a foreign government should be able to seek relief in a U.S. courtroom.”

Tide Turns In Favor of Syrian Govt. Forces

Syrian army overruns Idlib, rebels flee

ChannelNewsAsia

Members of the rebel Free Syrian Army gather in a mountainous area in the restive province of Idlib in northwestern Syria. (AFP - Ricardo Garcia Vilanova)

DAMASCUS: Syrian forces have overrun the northwest city of Idlib and rebels have fled, an activist said Wednesday, giving sharp momentum to a push by the Damascus regime to crush an increasingly armed revolt.

“Since last night there has been no more fighting,” said Noureddin al-Abdo, an activist in Idlib, confirming earlier reports by a government newspaper that Idlib had fallen after a four-day assault by regime forces.

“The (rebel) Free Syrian Army (FSA) has withdrawn and regime forces have stormed the entire city and are carrying out house-to-house searches,” said Abdo, reached by telephone from Beirut.

The army launched its assault on the rebellious province of Idlib near the Turkish border on Saturday, bombarding the city of the same name and outlying regions in a bid to root out armed insurgents.

“The FSA preferred to withdraw because everyone knows it cannot resist the army,” Abdo said.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said fierce clashes between regime forces and rebel troops were ongoing in the Jabal al-Zawiya district of the province and at least four people had died on Wednesday.

“Seventeen soldiers were killed late Tuesday after armed rebels attacked checkpoints in the village of Al-Barra, in Jabal al-Zawiya,” said the Britain-based group.

The capture of Idlib comes two weeks after regime forces stormed the Baba Amr rebel stronghold in the central city of Homs following a month-long blitz that left hundreds dead.

It also comes as the regime of President Bashar al-Assad responded to UN-Arab League proposals to end a year-long revolt in Syria that has killed more than 8,500 people, mostly civilians, according to activists.

A spokesman for UN-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan, who met with Assad in Damascus over the weekend and made “concrete” proposals to halt the bloodshed, said the unspecified Syrian response was being considered.

Amnesty International on Wednesday said detainees in Syria’s crackdown on dissent faced a “nightmarish world of systematic torture” that has set the country back decades.

“The scale of torture and other ill-treatment in Syria has risen to a level not witnessed for years and is reminiscent of the dark era of the 1970s and 1980s,” the rights watchdog said in a report based on testimony from survivors who fled to Jordan.

The experience “is now very similar to that of detainees under former president Hafez al-Assad — a nightmarish world of systemic torture,” said Ann Harrison of Amnesty’s Middle East and North Africa programme, referring to Bashar’s father.

Syria’s leadership has consistently argued that the uprising shaking the country was the work of “armed terrorist groups” backed by foreign powers.

It has also rejected any negotiations with the opposition while pushing forth with reforms deemed a “farce” by the international community.

Assad on Tuesday issued a decree setting May 7 as the date for parliamentary elections under a new constitution adopted in February.

But Washington immediately dismissed the planned vote as “ridiculous”.

“Parliamentary elections for a rubber-stamp parliament in the middle of the kind of violence that we’re seeing across the country — it’s ridiculous,” US State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said.

They would be the third such polls since Assad came to power in 2000, but the first under a multi-party system as authorised under the new charter.

According to the UN refugee agency, an estimated 30,000 people have fled the fighting in Syria to neighbouring countries and another 200,000 have been displaced inside the country.

The majority of the refugees are in neighbouring Turkey, Jordan and Lebanon.

Rights watchdogs said this week that the Syrian regime had planted in recent weeks landmines near the borders with Turkey and Lebanon, along routes used by refugees fleeing the country.

Russia, accused of having shielded its ally Syria, said on Tuesday it will press Damascus to accept international monitors who could observe the implementation of a “simultaneous” ceasefire.

“We must not have a situation in which the government is required to leave the cities and villages while the armed groups are not made to do the same,” said Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said in Moscow.

Russia and China vetoed two past UN Security Council draft resolutions condemning Assad for the violence and have expressed reservations about a new US-backed version.

The Saudi Hand Throughout

[Keeping the Saudis happy, what could be more important than that?   Certainly not honoring the Constitutional bond between the American people and our Imperial Congress.  I suspect that the elitists at the top all have access to these missing 28 pages of the 911 Report.  I guess that here in the peasant class, we are all willing to accept that the FBI is always going to protect the Saudi government from the consequences of ever allowing the American people to find-out about its past involvement with the individuals who prepared the groundwork for the 15 out of 19 Saudis.  The tracks left then, from before the 911 attacks, are the first footsteps on a path which has led us to where we are today.   Today,  the Saudis lead an anti-terror coalition in the Middle East, dominating the other Persian Gulf heirs of the Hashemite kingdom, while they push for war on Syria and Israel bombing Iran.  There is a very real probability that the Saudis and their partners will be the only ones left standing in the New Middle East, when all of the dust finally settles.

Who benefited most from the 911 attacks?]

Classified documents contradict FBI on post-9/11 probe of Saudis, ex-senator says

Shaun Heasley / Getty Images file

Former New Jersey Gov. Thomas Kean, left, greets former Sen. Bob Graham in a Dec. 17, 2004 file photo. Graham, who co-chaired the joint congressional investigation of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, says the FBI did not inform his panel or a separate investigation co-chaired by Keane, about suspicious contacts between Saudi citizens living in Florida and some of the 9/11 hijackers.

By Anthony Summers and Dan Christensen
Special to msnbc.com

Former Florida Sen. Bob Graham, who co-chaired Congress’ Joint Inquiry into the 9/11 terrorist attacks, has seen two classified FBI documents that he says are at odds with the bureau’s public statements that there was no connection between the hijackers and Saudis then living in Sarasota, Fla. 

“There are significant inconsistencies between the public statements of the FBI in September and what I read in the classified documents,” Graham said.

“One document adds to the evidence that the investigation was not the robust inquiry claimed by the FBI,” Graham said. “An important investigative lead was not pursued and unsubstantiated statements were accepted as truth.”

Whether the 9/11 hijackers acted alone, or whether they had support within the U.S., remains an unanswered question — one that began to be asked as soon as it became known that 15 of the 19 hijackers were Saudi citizens. It was underlined when Congress’s bipartisan inquiry released its public report in July 2003. The final 28 pages, regarding possible foreign support for the terrorists, were censored in their entirety — on President George W. Bush’s instructions.

Graham said the two classified FBI documents that he saw, dated 2002 and 2003, were prepared by an agent who participated in the Sarasota investigation. He said the agent suggested that another federal agency be asked to join the investigation, but that the idea was “rejected.”

Graham attempted in recent weeks to contact the agent, he said, only to find the man had been instructed by FBI headquarters not to talk. 

FBI: ‘No credible evidence’
The FBI-led investigation a decade ago focused on Abdulaziz al-Hijji and his wife, Anoud, who moved out of their home in the upscale, gated community of Prestancia, near Sarasota, and left the country in the weeks before 9/11. The couple left behind three cars and numerous personal belongings, such as furnishings, clothes, medicine and food, according to law enforcement records. After the 9/11 attacks, a concerned neighbor contacted the FBI. 

Analysis of Prestancia gatehouse visitor logs and photographs of license tags showed that vehicles driven by several of the future hijackers had visited the al-Hijji home at 4224 Escondito Circle, according to a counterterrorism officer and former Prestancia administrator Larry Berberich.

Al-Hijji, who now lives and works in London, recently called 9/11 “a crime against the USA and all humankind” and said he was “saddened and oppressed by these false allegations.” He also said it was “not true” that Mohamed Atta and other 9/11 hijackers visited him at his Sarasota home.

The FBI has backed up al-Hijji. After initially declining to comment, the bureau confirmed that it did investigate but said it found nothing sinister. Agents, however, have refused to answer reporters’ specific questions about its investigation or its findings about the Prestancia gate records.

The FBI reiterated its position in a Feb. 7 letter that denied a Freedom of Information Act request seeking records from its Sarasota probe. The denial said their release “could constitute an unwarranted invasion of personal privacy.”

“At no time during the course of its investigation of the attacks, known as the PENTTBOM investigation, did the FBI develop credible evidence that connected the address at 4224 Escondito Circle, Sarasota, Florida, to any of the 9/11 hijackers,” wrote records section chief David M. Hardy.

Hillsborough County Jail

Booking photo of Wissam Hammoud.

Newly released Florida Department of Law Enforcement documents, however, state that an informant told the FBI in 2004 that al-Hijji had considered Osama bin Laden a “hero” and may have known some of the hijackers. The informant, Wissam Hammoud, also said al-Hijji once introduced him to Adnan El Shukrijumah, the ex-Broward County resident and suspected al-Qaida operative on the FBI’s Most Wanted list.

Last September, FBI spokesmen also disputed Graham’s assertion that Congress was never told about the Sarasota investigation.

That prompted Graham to ask the FBI for assistance in locating in the National Archives the Sarasota-related files that were allegedly turned over to Congress. Instead, after what Graham said were two months in which the FBI was “either unwilling or unable” to help find the records, the bureau suddenly turned over two documents to the Senate Intelligence Committee, which Graham once headed and where he still has access. It is those documents that Graham has said are inconsistent with the FBI denials.

Meeting abruptly canceled

Graham shared this development with the Obama White House, which responded by setting up a meeting between Graham and FBI Deputy Director Sean Joyce. According to the former senator, Joyce told Graham he “didn’t want to talk” about the Sarasota episode. Graham said he was assured, however, that he would shortly be shown material that supported the FBI’s denials, and a further meeting was arranged with an FBI aide.

In December, Graham said, the scheduled meeting was abruptly canceled and he was told he would be allowed no further access to FBI information about Sarasota.

Graham believes the joint congressional inquiry into the 9/11 attacks was not the only national investigative body kept in the dark about Sarasota. He said the co-chairs of the later 9/11 Commission, Republican Thomas Kean and Democrat Lee Hamilton, have told him they also were unaware of it.

Kean, a former New Jersey governor, told Graham the commission would have “worked it hard,” because the hypothesis that the hijackers completed the planning alone was “implausible,” the former senator said.

Kean did not return several phone messages seeking comment. But Hamilton, a former Indiana congressman, confirmed this month that he learned nothing about the Sarasota matter while serving as vice-chair of the 9/11 commission.

Graham sees the information now emerging about Sarasota as ominously similar to discoveries his inquiry made in California. Leads there indicated that the first two hijackers to reach the U.S., Saudis Khalid al-Mihdhar and Nawaf al-Hazmi, received help first from a diplomat at the Saudi consulate in Los Angeles and then from two other Saudis, one of whom helped al-Mihdhar and al-Hazmi find a place to live. Multiple sources told investigators they believed both the latter Saudis had been Saudi government agents.

Later, when 9/11 Commission staff gained limited access to these individuals in Saudi Arabia, the aides’ reaction was caustic. One memo described the testimony of one of them as “deceptive … inconsistent … implausible.” The testimony of another displayed an “utter lack of credibility,” it said.

Graham is troubled by what he sees as FBI headquarters’ apparent effort to conceal information, including the fact that al-Mihdhar and al-Hazmi lived for months in California in the home of a paid FBI informant. Even when that emerged, the FBI denied his inquiry access to the informant. Graham wonders if that was merely because of the bureau’s embarrassment, or because the informant knew something that “would be even more damaging were it revealed.”

The newly surfaced FDLE documents containing informant Hammoud’s troubling 2004 information about al-Hijji have reinforced Graham’s concerns because they conflict with the FBI’s public statements.

Hammoud’s statement that al-Hijji introduced him to Saudi terror suspect Shukrijumah is consistent with the report that Prestancia gate logs showed Shukrijumah had visited the al-Hijji house – and buttresses longstanding official suspicion that he was linked to the hijackers. When Mohamed Atta visited a federal immigration office in Miami to discuss a visa problem in May 2001, a 9/11 Commission footnote reports, a man who closely resembled Shukrijumah accompanied him.

Related story: Saudi who left Fla. before 9/11 considered bin Laden a ‘hero,’ informant told FBI in ’04

Graham sees what he believes to be the suppression of evidence pointing to Saudi support for the 9/11 hijackers as arising from the perceived advantages to the West, at the time and now, of keeping Saudi Arabia happy.

In late December, the U.S. announced a new $30 billion defense deal with the Saudis.

“This agreement serves to reinforce the strong enduring relationship between the United States and Saudi Arabia,” said U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Political-Military Affairs Andrew Shapiro. “It demonstrates the U.S. commitment to a strong Saudi defense capability as a key component to regional security.”

Graham said he was taken aback by that announcement.

“I think that in the period immediately after 9/11 the FBI was under instructions from the Bush White House not to discuss anything that could be embarrassing to the Saudis,” he said. “It is more inexplicable why the Obama administration has been reticent to pursue the question of Saudi involvement. For both administrations, there was and continues to be an obligation to inform the American people through truthful information.”

Anthony Summers is co-author, with Robbyn Swan, of “The Eleventh Day: The Full Story of 9/11 & Osama bin Laden.” Dan Christensen edits the Miami-area investigative Website Broward Bulldog, in which this article first appeared.

Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Jordan are the Middle East Axis of Evil

Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Jordan are the Middle East Axis of Evil

Abdul Nishapuri

Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Jordan are the Axis of Evil in the Middle East.

U.S. President George W. Bush coined the term “Axis of Evil” when refering to North Korea, Iran, and Iraq in his 2002 State of the Union Address. There are reasons to believe that like several of his strategic blunders (e.g., reliance on Pakistan army to neutralize the Al Qaeda threat, invasion of Iraq etc), Bush was much off the mark in his assessment of the Axis of Evil, an error which was also enabled by a powerful Saudi-Ikhwan (Saudi-Muslim Brotherhood) lobby in Washington, D.C.

If today, we have unrest in Afghanistan and Iraq and uncertain situations in Egypt, Libya, Palestine, Syria and Yemen, the discreet role of three counties is hard to ignore: Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Jordan. Together these three countries constitute the real axis of evil, the Middle East Axis of Evil.

We cannot hope to have democracy, peace and stability in the Middle East and the entire world unless we address the lack of democracy and active support for Jihadi Salafi-Ikhwan terrorism by these three countries.

Let me explain the above hypotheses with a few examples:

1. The September 11, 2001 terrorists were mostly of Saudi Arabian origin, inspired by the Jihadi-Salafi ideology of a Saudi citizen (Osama in Laden) and an Egyptian Ikhwani Jihadist (Ayman Al Zawahiri, current head of AQ).

2. Jordan and Saudi Arabia are two major sources of Al Qaeda infiltrators into Iraq, providing the largest number of Salafi-Ikhwan suicide bombers who have killed thousands of Shias, Sunnis (Hanafis), Christians and Kurds in Iraq in the last several years.

3. Qatar’s Al Jazeera is known for spreading Salafi-Ikhwan propaganda in the Middle East in a subtle and refined manner. While its English news channel is known for selective morality and dishonest twists (e.g., silence on Bahrain and Saudi Arabia, noise on Syria), the Arabic channel is much more blatant in its Salafi-Ikhwan psy-war and tactics. For all practical purposes, Al Jazeera is the major propaganda wing for the Middle East Axis of Evil.

4. Qatar and Saudi Arabia played a major role in providing financial and logistic support (including ammunition) to Libyan rebels. However, instead of supporting moderate Sunni rebels, Qatar and Saudi Arabia supported Salafi-Ikhwan militants (in other words: Al Qaeda) which now are a major source of threat to democracy and human rights in independent Libya.

5. A similar role was played by Saudi Arabia and Qatar to support the Salafists and Ikhwanites in Egypt, an investment that paid off. Today, Ikhwan and Salafis constitute majority of seats in Egypt’s newly elected parliament.

6. It’s the same axis of evil (Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Jordan) which is currently pumping millions of dollars and smuggling latest weapons to Jihadi-Salafi and Ikhwan militants in Syria, who have hijacked and tarnshied Syrian people’s legitimate struggle against an authoritarian dictator (Bashar Al Assad). Recently, Al Qaeda’s head Ayman Al Zawahiri and his affiliates in Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood, Palestine’s Hamas and Pakistan’s Sipah-e-Sahaba/Taliban have expressed explicit support for the Salafi-Ikhwan militants in Syria. The Salafi-Ikhwan militants have killed thousands of Shia Muslims (including Alevites and Isna Asharis), Sunni Muslims (Hanafis and Shafeis) and Christians in the last few months.

7. It’s the same Axis of Evil which has unsuccessfully attempted to brutally suppress the pro-democracy movement in Bahrain. On 9 March 2012, almost one third of Bahrain’s population (about 200,000 people) marched in Bahrain to protest against Saudi-Qatar backed King Hamad regime. More than 75 Bahrainis have been killed so far by the Saudi-Qatar forces deployed to protect the current dictator of Bahrain. US, UK and other Western countries are suffering major public relations setback due to their silence on Saudi-Qatar brutalities in Bahrain.

8. Saudi Arabia is currently busy in suppressing not only women and pro-democracy Sunnis but also millions of Shias in its Eastern province. Dozens of Shias have been killed and hundreds arrested. Al Jazeera has maintained silence on the pro-democracy protests and brutal suppression in Saudi Arabia. Once again, thanks to Salafi-Ikhwan lobby in Washington, D.C., the West is silent at the cost of its own credibility.

9. It’s the same anti-Sunni (Salafis represent only one per cent of Sunni Muslims), anti-Shia axis of evil which is creating an artificial divide between Sunnias and Shias in order to augment recruitment for the Salafi-Ikhwan Al Qaeda movement. The same trio is unnecessarily threatening Iran (after invasion of Iran through Saddam Hussain in 1980s), which is creating more instability in the region.

10. Plan to re-install the Taliban regime in Kabul: Saudi Arabia and Qatar are actively lobbying in Washington, D.C. and other Western capitals to re-install brutal Taliban regime in Afghanistan after the withdrawal of the US and NATO forces in the near future. Their aim is to use (abuse) Afghanistan as a main station from where a violent Salafi-Ikhwan ideology will be propagated in neighbouring countries and also internationally. In this effort, Saudi Arabia and Qatar are actively supported by Pakistan’s military establishment which remains dependent on Saudi-Jihadist ideology for their own Jihadist projects and also receives generous financial support from the Saudi Kingdom. A Taliban diplomatic office (informal embassy) has been set up in Qatar in order to formalize the handing over of Kabul to the Taliban and Al Qaeda.

11. Saudi Arabian government through its amply funded and well connected Islamist Ikhwan (Muslim Brotherhood) Lobby in Washington, D.C. is forcing the US government to release Al Qaeda-Taliban terrorist. Apparently, USA has agreed to free five most dangerous terrorists who are soon to be transferred from the Guantanamo Bay military prison to the tiny Persian Gulf state of Qatar. Five top terrorists include: Khair Ulla Said Wali Khairkhwa, Mullah Mohammad Fazl, Mullah Norullah Nori, Abdul Haq Wasiq, Mohammad Nabi Omari. These five people are the killers of thousands of Shiite Muslims, Tajiks and Hazaras of Afghanistan, and are currently held by the U.S. in the Guantanamo Bay military prison.In Qatar, these terrorist will also be reunited with their families. At least one has been accused in the massacre of thousands of Shiite Muslims in Afghanistan. His name is Mullah Norullah Nori, described in U.S. military documents as one of the most significant former Taliban officials held at Guantanamo. He was a senior Taliban commander in Mazar-e-Sharif when the Taliban fought U.S. forces in late 2001. He previously was a Taliban governor in two provinces Northern Afghanistan, where he has been accused of ordering the massacre of thousands of Shiite Muslims including those of Hazara Shia and non-Hazara Shia backgrounds.

Did Israel Extort Tankers and Bunker-Busters for Promise To Wait Until After Obama’s Reelection Bid?

JERUSALEM

(Reuters) – Israel has asked the United States for advanced “bunker-buster” bombs and refueling planes that could improve its ability to attack Iran’s underground nuclear sites, an Israeli official said on Thursday.

“Such a request was made” around the time of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s visit to Washington this week, the official said, confirming media reports.

But the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity given the sensitivity of the issue, played down as “unrealistic” reports that the United States would condition supplying the hardware on Israel promising not to attackIran this year.

Netanyahu told Obama at a White House meeting on Monday that Israel had not yet decided on military action against Iran, sources close to the talks said.

Netanyahu has hinted that Israel could resort to force should Tehran – which denies suspicions that it is covertly trying to develop atomic bombs – continue to defy big powers’ diplomatic pressure to curb its nuclear program.

The risk of an Israeli-Iranian war troubles President Barack Obama, who is up for re-election in November and has cautioned against kindling more Middle East upheaval. A Gulf conflict could send oil prices rocketing upwards.

A front-page article in the Israeli newspaper Ma’ariv on Thursday said Obama had told Netanyahu that Washington would supply Israel with upgraded military equipment in return for assurances that there would be no attack on Iran in 2012.

Israel is widely assumed to have the Middle East’s only nuclear arsenal but its conventional firepower may not be enough to deliver lasting damage to Iran’s distant, dispersed and well-fortified facilities, many experts say.

Israel has limited stocks of older, smaller bunker-busters and a small fleet of refueling planes, all supplied by Washington.

Western powers suspect Iran’s uranium enrichment program is aimed at stockpiling fissile material for nuclear weapons. Iran says it is strictly for civilian energy uses.

(Writing by Maayan Lubell; Editing by Mark Heinrich)

Indo-Israeli secret alliance

Sajjad Shaukat
In the first week of February, this year, Israeli secret agency, Mossad’s Chief Tamir Pardo visited India with a three member delegation. Pardo’s detailed talks with the Chief of Indian spy agency, RAW, Sanjeev Tripathi was part of Indo-Israeli secret alliance. The major aim of this meeting was to accelerate joint initiatives through their secret agencies so as to manipulate the strategic developments in South and Central Asia including Middle East. The purposes behind latest liaison of the top spymasters were also to intensify covert activities particularly to destabilise Pakistan and Iran, and to disrupt their cordial relationship besides exploiting US hardlining approach against China.

Another major aim of Mossad’s head with his counterpart was to prepare a clandestine plan to obtain the secret designs of India and Israel in Afghanistan after the withdrawal of foreign troops from that country. Both are also disappointed by the new peace initiative by Pakistan and Afghanistan which does not favour their collective interests. So they intend to create misunderstanding between Kabul and Islamabad by sabotaging their new cooperation including their peace deals with the Afghan militants. Although Indo-Israeli secret alliance has full tactical support of the US regarding China, Iran and Pakistan, yet it is also working against America where similarities of interests are more important in case of New Delhi and Tel Aviv. In these terms, the two countries also seek to thwart the peace talks, being held in Qatar between the US and Taliban militants. Some reliable sources suggest that with the help of their affiliated militant groups, Mossad and RAW which have established their tentacles in Afghanistan have decided to intensify subversive acts on the US-led NATO installations in order to create obstacles in the withdrawal schedule of foreign forces, and to implicate both Afghan militants and Pakistan in this respect.

In fact, since 9/11 tragedy, India and Israel have left no stone unturned by manipulating the world phenomena of terrorism to achieve their common goals by convincing the US-led European states clandestinely that Pakistan is sponsoring cross-border terrorism in Afghanistan and Kashmir. And Iran and Syria are doing the same act in Iraq, Lebanon and Israel. In this context, equation of the ‘war of liberation’ in Kashmir and Palestine with terrorism and use of delaying tactics in the solution of these controlled territories have become the main purpose of New Delhi and Tel Aviv which also intend to divert the attention of the west from their own atrocities, being perpetrated on the innocent Kashmiris and Palestinians. Besides, Pakistan, having close ties with Beijing, is immediate target of the Indo-Israeli secret nexus. So, with the support of US, India and Israel are in collusion to weaken Pakistan for their common strategic interests.

It is mentionable that India and Israel are collectively exploiting the double standards of the west in relation to terrorism and human rights vis-à-vis Pakistan, China and Iran. If New Delhi considers both Islamabad and Beijing as its arch enemies, Tel Aviv takes Tehran in the same sense especially due to its nuclear programme which is also opposed by the US-led EU. Israel is also against Pakistan as it is the only nuclear Islamic country. However, these similarities of interest have brought the two countries to conclude a secret alliance.

It is noteworthy that with the assistance of American CIA, both RAW and Mossad have been sending heavy weapons and well-trained militants from Afghanistan into Pakistan, who not only attack the checkposts of security forces, but also commit target-killings, suicide attacks, abductions etc. in the country. These secret agencies are especially supervising saboteurs to conduct subversive acts in Karachi, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan where they also support separatist elements, especially Balochistan Liberation Army (BLA). Besides, kidnapping and killing a number of Chinese nationals through their related-insurgents, these external secret agencies are also assisting Jundullah (God’s soldiers), a Sunni militant group which has so far killed several Shias in Pakistan, while committing acts of sabotage in Iran’s Sistan-Baluchistan. Iranian leaders directly blamed Israel and CIA for those terror-attacks. While taking cognisance of the Indo-Israeli secret alliance against Islamabad and Tehran, Pakistan’s former Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi had said that the suicide attacks in Iran’s Sistan were a conspiracy against brotherly relations between Pakistan and Iran. He further added, “It is obvious that the same forces that are working in Pakistani Balochistan are also working in Iranian Sistan.” In the recent past, Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei indicated, “The bloody actions being committed in Iraq, Pakistan and Iran are aimed at creating a division between the Shias and Sunnis… those who carry out these terrorist actions are directly or indirectly foreign agents.”

It is worth-mentioning that both Tel Aviv and New Delhi have successfully manipulating the presumed threat of China in Asia in order to involve America. In that backdrop, US which signed a nuclear deal with India in 2008, intends to make India a great power of Asia to counterbalance China. In this context, during his visit to India, on November 6, 2011, President Barrack Obama who announced $10 billion in trade deals, supported Indian demand for membership of four key global nuclear nonproliferation regimes.

It is of particular attention that Jewish-Hindu lobbies are collectively working in America and are well-penetrated in the US Administration. These lobbies are exploiting the war against terrorism and presumed threats of Iran, China and Pakistan so as to protect the Indo-Israeli covert designs. With the help of some American law-makers and media, these entities have introduced dangerous socio-religious dimension in the world by equating the “war on terror” with “war on Islam” and acts of Al Qaeda with all the Muslims. It is due to these lobbies that President Obama who had earlier shown enthusiasm to resolve the dispute of Kashmir and Israeli-Palestinian conflict, while strongly opposing the new Jewish settlements have become helpless. Moreover, it is because of Indo-Israeli lobbies that Dana Rohrabacher introduced a House Concurrent Resolution in the US House of Representatives on February 17, 2012, calling upon Pakistan to “recognise the right of self-determination for Balochistan.”

Besides, a number of recent developments such as US war-mongering diplomacy against Iran, Israel’s threat to attack Iran, Obama’s new defencestrategy, which calls for greater US military presence in Asia—maintenance of six permanent bases in Afghanistan after the withdrawal of foreign troops, unprovoked firing on two Pakistan Army border posts, killing 24 troops in wake of US-backed intermittent infiltration of militants from Afghanistan and new wave of drone attacks clearly prove that President Obama has become powerless before the Indo-Israeli secret alliance which is also working against American interests in order to obtain their collective goals. New Delhi and Tel Avis has also ignored US cost of war against terrorism which is more than seven trillion dollars including debt-crisis and other related problems which Americans have been facing.

As regards, Indo-Israeli alliance, it has solid proof which could be assessed from the interview of Israel’s ambassador to India, Mark Sofer published in the Indian weekly Outlook on February 18, 2008. Regarding India’s defence arrangements with Israel, Sofer had surprisingly disclosed “We do have a defence relationship with India, which is no secret. On the other hand, what is secret is the defence relationship”. And “with all due respect, the secret part will remain a secret.”Indo-Israeli nexus remained under wraps till 2003, when Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon visited India to officially reveal it. In this regard, Indian ‘The Tribune’ wrote on September 10, 2003, “India and Israel took giant leaps forward in bolstering the existing strategic ties and forging new ones” and Tel Aviv has “agreed to share its expertise with India in various fields as anti-fidayeen operations, surveillance satellites, intelligence sharing and space exploration.” Nevertheless, from anti-missile systems to hi-tech radars, from sky drones to night-vision equipment, Indo-Israeli defense cooperation has known no bounds in recent times. The matter is not confined to purchasing of military equipments only, Indo-Israeli overt and covert links are part of a dangerous strategic game in Asia. In this connection, the then Israeli premier, Benjamin Netanyahu had already made it clear in July 1997 saying, “Our ties with India don’t have any limitations—as long as India and Israel are friendly, it is a strategic gain.”

In this respect, we should remember that the major cause of the World War 1 was the secret alliance among Austria-Hungary and Germany—then Italy joined the Austro-German alliance, initiated by German leader Bismark. On the other side, France and Britain concluded counter alliance—ultimately all that resulted into militarisation of Europe and the World War 1. So, if not checked in time by the international community, Indo-Israeli secret alliance could culminate into third world war in case of particularly Israeli prospective attack on Iran or use of America for this purpose.

Mossad, CIA and Blackwater operate in Syria – report

Mossad, CIA and Blackwater operate in Syria – report

RT News

Members of the Free Syrian Army patrol an area in Qusayr, 15 kms (nine miles) from Homs. (AFP Photo / STR)  Ahmed Jadallah)

Members of the Free Syrian Army patrol an area in Qusayr, 15 kms (nine miles) from Homs. (AFP Photo / STR) Ahmed Jadallah)

A security operation in Homs reveals Mossad, CIA and Blackwater are involved in the military violence in this part of Syria, as over 700 Arab and Western gunmen and Israeli, American and European-made weapons were detained in Baba Amr district.

Syrian security forces got yet further proof of Western powers’ military involvement in Syria’s internal conflict, reports Al-Manar, a news agency, affiliated with Hezbollah, the Lebanon-based militant group and political party.

Around 700 gunmen were recently arrested in the former rebel stronghold of Babar Amr.

“The captured gunmen held Arab nationalities, including Gulf, Iraqi, and Lebanese. Among them were also Qatari intelligence agents and non-Arab fighters from Afghanistan, Turkey, and some European countries like France,” the agency quotes Syrian expert in strategic affairs Salim Harba as saying.

Harba also confirmed to the agency that “a coordination office was established in Qatar under American-Gulf sponsorship. The office includes American, French, and Gulf – specifically from Qatar and Saudi Arabia – intelligence agents, as well as CIA, Mossad, and Blackwater agents and members of the Syrian Transitional Council.”

The Syrian expert also added the security forces have also seized Israeli-, European- and American-made weapons.

“The Syrian army also uncovered tunnels and equipments there,” he told to the agency, “advanced Israeli, European, and American arms that have not yet been tested in the countries of manufacture, in addition to Israeli grenades, night binoculars, and communication systems were confiscated by the security forces.” 

Salim Harba however said the Syrian authorities are not planning to reveal all the obtained information now, but assured all the evidence is of high value.

“The Syrian security forces have documents and confessions that could harm everyone who conspired against Syria, and could make a security and political change, not just on the internal Syrian level, but also on the regional level,” he said.

The recent Stratfor leak and hacked email of the company’s director of analysis also suggest undercover NATO troops are already on the ground in Syria.

There have been previous allegations of a Western presence on the side of the rebels as 13 French officers were reportedly captured by the loyalist forces earlier in March.

President Bashar al-Assad has repeatedly claimed his regime is fighting not with peaceful protesters as claimed by the West, but with the military gangs supported by the West.

Western powers however have categorically denied any military involvement in Syrian internal conflict.

Yemen Army Is Under Assault from America’s “Islamists”

[It is important to remember now, just who or what "al-Qaeda" really is.  It is the name given to a core group of highly trained "Islamist" commandos, who have been trained and brought together in Afghanistan and Pakistan by a nexus of intelligence agencies, specifically, the spy agencies of US, Saudi Arabia, Britain, Pakistan and Israel.  This means that the Yemen army is battling a force created by Yemen's only known benefactors.  The question now is, does the Frankenstein monster still respond when its mastor/creator calls?  Does the fact that these mercenary "Islamist" armies originally came together on the payroll of Western powers mean that they still share an employee/employer bond?  Would the Americans, Brits and Saudis have allowed such an invaluable force of potential geopolitical mayhem to slip from their grasp, would the CIA and friends simply have let them go?  There is no longer any time to tiptoe around the subject.  The endgame of the grand plot against all humanity is rapidly playing-out.  Al Qaeda is composed of half "Islamists" and half "private contractors."  They are the army of the Western elite, there to serve the cause of their ideas of the "greater good," that is, total American domination of the world. 

Al-Qaeda is "Made In America."]   

Yemen army toll from Qaeda assault rises to 78

File picture of Yemeni soldiers at a checkpoint in Abyan province. (AFP PHOTO)

File picture of Yemeni soldiers at a checkpoint in Abyan province. (AFP PHOTO)

ADEN: A surprise attack by Al-Qaeda extremists on troops in Yemen’s restive south has killed at least 78 soldiers and 25 militants, medics and military officials said on Monday.

“The toll from the battles between the army and Qaeda militants … has risen to at least 78″ soldiers, a military official said on condition of anonymity.

He added that “dozens more were wounded … in the surprise attack” on Sunday on army posts on the outskirts of Zinjibar, Abyan’s provincial capital.

“It was a massacre,” he said.

A medic at a military hospital in the neighbouring port city of Aden confirmed the death toll and said staff were overwhelmed by the number of casualties.

“We were forced to use administrative offices and waiting rooms to treat the wounded,” the medic told AFP, also speaking on condition of anonymity.

Military officials had reported fierce clashes Sunday when militants linked to Al-Qaeda tried to overrun an army post in Kud, just south of Zinjibar. The violence then spread to other military positions on the outskirts of the city.

The militants, known as the Partisans of Sharia (Islamic law), took control of Zinjibar and several other towns in Yemen’s mostly lawless south last May as former President Ali Abdullah Saleh was facing mass protests demanding his ouster.

- AFP/fa

Exposed: The handbook of American State Terrorism

Exposed: The handbook of American State Terrorism

Timothy Bancroft-HincheyPravda.Ru
Exposed: The handbook of American State TerrorismSpecial Forces Unconventional Warfareis the name of the document. November 2010, 97 pages long, it is a manual which exposes the modus operandi of the United States of America’s foreign policy; in it we can read the recent Libyan history and understand what is planned for Syria and Iran. “Destroy by any method what will prevent disclosure”. Hmm…

Special Forces Unconventional Warfare. Wow, what an interesting publication that I have discovered. I found a copy of it lying on the floor at the…er… airport (cough). I wonder whether it is a novel…let us see. Certainly, this is the end of the American colour revolutions.

Well, it has a destruction notice right on page one: DESTRUCTION NOTICE:Destroy by any method that will prevent disclosure of contents or reconstruction of the document.” Shall we see why? Let’s see what the United States of America gets up to…

Here is the preface: “Training Circular (TC) 18-01, Special Forces Unconventional Warfare, defines the current United States (U.S.) Army Special Forces (SF) concept of planning and conducting unconventional warfare (UW) operations. For the foreseeable future, U.S. forces will predominantly engage in irregular warfare (IW) operations.”

Well that sort of sets the tone of the rest of the document ladies and gentlemen, doesn’t it? It also gives us a pretty good insight into what happened in Libya, where a socially progressive government was unseated by terrorists armed by the author-country of this document and supported by the FUKUS-Axis (France, UK, US and Israel).

Chapter One, Overview. A quote: “There is another type of warfare-new in its intensity, ancient in its origin-war by guerrillas, subversives, insurgents, assassins; war by ambush instead of by combat, by infiltration instead of aggression, seeking victory by eroding and exhausting the enemy instead of engaging him. It preys on unrest.

President John F. Kennedy, 1962″

Guerrillas, subversives, insurgents, assassins. Unrest. Basically, a policy based upon illegal intrusion and murder. How legal is that?

Chapter One 1.2: 1-2. Enabling a resistance movement or insurgency entails the development of an underground and guerrilla forces…”

Page 7: Definition of Insurgency: “An organized movement aimed at the overthrow of a constituted government through use of subversion and armed conflict. Code: JP 3-05″

Section 1-22: 1-22. A genuine willingness to collaborate and cooperate with the United States must exist within the leadership of the indigenous force.”

Section 1-28, on feasibility: “1-28. The normal areas of concern that make up a feasibility assessment are as follows:

  • Are there groups that could develop into a viable force with assistance?
  • Is the United States in contact with or can it make contact with individuals representing the resistance potential in an area?
  • Are there any capable leaders, whose goals are compatible with U.S. goals who are willing to cooperate with the United States?
  • Can the United States influence the leaders to remain compliant with U.S. goals?
  • Are the groups’ tactics and battlefield conduct acceptable by the standards established in Field Manual (FM) 27-10, The Law of Land Warfare, and to the U.S. population?
  • Will the environment geographically and demographically support resistance operations?
  • Is the enemy effectively in control of the population?
  • Is the potential gain worth the potential risk? Is this group’s participation politically acceptable to other regional partners?”

Interesting, bullet point 5. So acceptable to the US population would be illegal detention of prisoners without right to due legal process, without the right to see a lawyer, without an accusation even.  Acceptable to the US population is sodomy of prisoners, urinating in food, forcing Moslems to eat pork, sleep deprival and water-boarding? Which medieval torture chamber or Nazi concentration camp did THESE monsters crawl out of?

There is more, much, much more. The immediate response ladies and gentlemen will be a hacking attack, after which there will be attempts to intimidate me through threats on my life, after which there will be attempts, real. I have been there before.

I would prefer to die fighting against evil than be silenced through cowardice. The document here exposed is the blueprint of US foreign policy and what is stated here is the tip of the iceberg. Perhaps the allies of the USA will consider their relationship through NATO, but then again, perhaps they won’t. After all, a coward is a coward.



The Zionist Pathocracy Will Decide the Fate of the World for Itself–(article disappeared)

[Obama should find his balls and declare that the United States will retaliate against any first strike in this stand-off with all the forces at his disposal, against either side.  Once he steps between the two antagonists real peace in the Middle East becomes possible, including the creation of a nuclear-free Middle East.]

Israel will decide on Iran for itself: Lieberman

JERUSALEM: Israel will decide on what to do about Iran’s nuclear activities as an “independent state,” Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said on Sunday, on the eve of a US-Israel summit in Washington.

“Clearly, the United States is the biggest world power and the biggest and most important country that is a friend of Israel, but we are an independent state,” Lieberman told Israeli public radio.

“Ultimately, the state of Israel will make the decisions that are most appropriate based on its evaluation of the situation,” he said.

Lieberman’s comments came shortly before Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is due to hold talks in Washington with US President Barack Obama on Monday, a meeting expected to focus heavily on Iran’s nuclear activities.

Israel, Washington and much of the international community believes that Iran’s nuclear programme masks a weapons drive, a charge Tehran denies.

US intelligence is said to believe that Iran does not currently intend to produce nuclear weapons, though it may be seeking the capacity to do so, and Washington has emphasised the importance of deterrent sanctions and diplomacy.

But Israel is reportedly eager to move more quickly and decisively against Iran’s nuclear activities, using a military strike to prevent it from obtaining even the capacity to take a decision to produce nuclear weapons.

“The Iranian file is well-known,” Lieberman said. “The direction taken by Iran is clear.”

But he added that any decisions should be made “calmly, weighing the pros and cons. All this chatter doesn’t help anyone.”

Lieberman also warned that the international community’s failure to deal with the bloodshed in Syria, where a crackdown on anti-regime protesters has killed thousands, showed Israel could rely only on itself for protection.

“If the international community is incapable of stopping the massacres in Syria, what is the value of its promises to protect the security of Israel?”

- AFP/ck

Russian official: Arming Syria rebels could violate international law

Russian official: Arming Syria rebels could violate international law

Vladimirputin

REPORTING FROM MOSCOW — A Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman warned Friday against attempts to supply weapons to Syrian opposition forces, arguing that because Al Qaeda was a “confirmed presence amid the illegal armed groups,” arming the opposition could clash with international law.

Some members of the “Friends of Syria” group that met last week in Tunisia argued for arming the Syrian rebels. Saudi Arabia said it was an “excellent idea.”

With Al Qaeda in the mix, “how do such statements correspond with … international law?” Alexander Lukashevich said, adding that Russia will take the matter to United Nations counter-terrorism bodies.

The government of Syrian President Bashar Assad blames “terrorists” for much of the violence in the country, a charge rejected by the opposition, as well as many experts and foreign governments. But Al Qaeda has publicly sided with the Syrian opposition, and U.S. intelligence officials believe that some of its members have infiltrated Syrian opposition groups, which may not be aware that they’re there.

Russian officials have repeatedly defended their stand against a U.N. Security Council resolution backing an Arab League plan that called on Assad to step down. Their veto was condemned by human rights groups and Western nations that said it allowed bloodshed to continue.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov defended the step again Friday, accusing the West of “being hostage to the artificial scheme based on the wrong approaches of what is going on in Syria.”

In an interview with the daily Rossiyskaya Gazeta, Lavrov also praised the recent Syrian vote on a new constitution, saying it showed “a majority of the Syrian population supported the reforms carried out by the authorities.”

His words echoed those of Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, the front-runner in the coming presidential election, who said that as far as he knew, Assad was prepared to negotiate with the opposition. Putin argued that the Security Council resolution that Russia vetoed was problematic.

Assad would have had to take his troops out of the cities, Putin said in a Thursday meeting with foreign newspaper editors. “What is that but a demand for Assad to crawl into a wooden mackintosh and not hear the music playing in his home because he is being buried? He will never agree to that.”

CENTCOM Wants You To Start Believing In “Turkmen” Terrorists

CentralAsiaOnline.com is a website sponsored by USCENTCOM

Turkmen terrorists are at war with the Pakistani security forces

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After the death of at least 14 Turkmen militants in North Waziristan on February 16 the presence of the Central Asian militants in Pakistani border regions became obvious.

In North Waziristan killed twenty-one gunman, 14 of them, according to the government, the Turkmens.

In previous operations, the authorities have established individual four foreign militants killed Jan. 23 in an air strike on the village of Degan, Miranshah (North Waziristan) – they, too, were Turkmen, reported centralasiaonline.com.

 

Israel, India and the Persian Puzzle

Israel, India and the Persian Puzzle

iranindia

This is perhaps what the expression ‘setting the cat among the pigeons’ means.  Just when Israel was putting up that little show, going around theworld crying about the way Iran was targeting its peaceful diplomats around the world, the ayatollahs come up with their own little performance taking everyone’s breath away.

 

Not that Ahmadinejad didn’t warn us.  As always, everyone was sufficiently intimated of the glad tidings on the nuclear front were on their way.  Yet it was a master stroke. Give the Iranians their due.  If the Israelis are known for their cunning and craft of obfuscation and manipulation, it’s not easy beating the Persians at mind games either.  After all, they invented the game of chess.

 

Defying years of Western sanctions and the endless talk of war by Israel, the Iranians seem to have gotten another decisive step closer to their goal.And they have all the players and pawns where they want them to be. And for all their bluff and bluster, Israel and its guardian angels can’t do much about it.

 

As a former Indian envoy to Iran put it, this is like the classic Persian puzzle.  Iran takes one step forward and waits and watches for the reaction of adversaries before taking the next cautious step. Call it the Persian incrementalism or whatever but it seems to have worked so far.

 

The calibrated ‘diplomatic incidents’ in New Delhi, Georgia and Bangkok were of course a stroke of brilliance.  They were apparently meant to hit two birds with one stone:  First, pin the blame on Iran, as Netanyahu did within minutes of the Delhi blast calling Tehran ‘the biggest exporter of international terror,’ and create a credible pretext to hit the Islamic republic.

 

Second, derail the growing Iran-India relationship.  The Israelis and Americans haven’t been too pleased with India’s refusal to stop buying the Iranian oil after recent sanctions.  By the way India isn’t the only one to do so.  China, Japan and South Korea too have refused to toe the Western line.

 

But Israel has been there and done it all so many times before that these shenanigans do not fool the world anymore.  These attacks purportedly targeting Israeli diplomats are rather too convenient and perfect to be genuine.  Notwithstanding Ahmadinejad’s punch-drunk love of Israel andpreoccupation with its past and future, the Iranians are not stupid.

 

At a time when they are isolated internationally and the West is looking for an excuse to punish it, why would they stick out their neck and resort to something as suicidal as this? As Dr Trita Parsi, the Iran hand at Johns Hopkins University and author of Treacherous Alliance: The Secret Dealings of Iran, Israel and the United States agues, why would they do something so foolish as this and that too in New Delhi? It’s an insult to the Iranians’ intelligence.

 

India is, after China, Iran’s biggest trading partner and importer of Iranian oil.  Besides, the two have shared a quiet partnership since Russians left Afghanistan.  It has even survived the Indian vote against Iran in the IAEA.  Incidentally, Thailand is another major trading partner of the Islamic republic.  So why would the Iranians choose the distant tourist paradise to settle scores with the Israelis, hurting their own interests?

 

Secondly, in both India and Thailand, it’s the Israelis who have been quick to declare that the sticky bombs used in Delhi, Bangkok and Tbilisi are similar to the ones used in killing four Iranian nuclear scientists over the past two years.  Be that as it may, how does that link them to Tehran? Indeed, having repeatedly used the device to deadly effect against the Iranians, why couldn’t the Israelis have used it again in Indian, Georgian and Thai capitals?

 

The detention of an Iranian, who blew up his legs while handling the explosives, proves nothing.  It’s hardly a secret the Israelis and Americans have been using the Mujahideen-e-Khalq terrorists against Iran.

 

The Israeli embassy on Aurangzeb Road in New Delhi exists in the sniffing distance of the Prime Minister’s residence. It’s a high security zone with theelite ‘Z’ security force monitoring every inch of the area every minute.  So how come that red bike got so close to the embassy car and got away after sticking that bomb? No wonder Israeli watchers suspect all this is part of a campaign to corner Iran and fortify the case for the war that the world has been waiting with bated breath for some time.

 

I hate a triumphal I-told-you-so but this is what many of us have feared and warned about all along.  That Israel and its enablers in the US establishment are hell-bent on sparking another Western war to destroy another oil-rich Muslim country.  This is what happened in the case of Iraq.  Remember the comical claims linking Iraq to 9/11 and Niger uranium, not to mention Tony Blair’s 45-minute strike talk?

 

As the West turns up the heat on Iran by way of economic sanctions, trade blockade, and crippling of its banks, coupled with the rising chatter of coming war, the region has been on the razor’s edge for months now.  All that is needed is a tiny spark to blow it all up.  A minor skirmish here, a misunderstanding there or a perfect false flag in distant lands could prove excuse enough for a full blown conflagration with catastrophic consequences.

 

That moment seems to have arrived with the explosions in India, Georgia and Thailand.  Israel is desperately looking for a pretext–or a provocation–to punish Iran.  With the arrival of US poll season and Europe being preoccupied with its economic mess, perhaps there cannot be a better time to do so. But it’s easier said than done. Israel cannot do so on its own without the US help. If it was doable, Israel would have done it by now.  Iran is not Iraq.

 

Unlike Iraq’s Osirak plant which Israel bombed in 1981, Iranian nuclear installations are heavily fortified, many of them underground and spread all across the country, not to mention the forbidding distance. Besides, an Israeli strike might put back the nuclear clock but wouldn’t stop it, especially now when Tehran appears to be a screw-turn away from going full nuclear if it wants.  Iran’s leaders of course insist it is for ‘peaceful’ purposes and that they aren’t interested in the ‘satanic arms.’

 

Even though a demonstration of the capacity doesn’t mean willingness, would you be terribly surprised if Tehran indeed goes for the nukes? GivenIsrael’s terrorizing of the region over the past six decades and West’s hegemonic wars, it’s actually tempting and makes sense to go for the comforting reassurance that a couple of nukes seem to inspire.

 

More to the point, what right does Israel–and other world powers–have to lord over their nuclear arsenal while the rest of the world has to submit itself to the IAEA scrutiny? If the international community is indeed serious about a nuke-free world, it has to first address this NPT duplicity. Nuclear weapons are a clear and present danger to the Middle East and the world, no matter who owns them.

Parachinar Blast Blows Away Bullshit About Army Peacekeeping in Kurram–the Army IS the Problem

[SEE:  Is Kurram Offensive Just Another Soap Opera?]

Parachinar blast

SECTARIAN terrorism returned to the volatile Kurram Agency on Friday when over 30 people were killed in a suspected suicide attack in a Parachinar market. Among the dead were protesters the security forces reportedly fired upon following the explosion. The incident has severely jolted the fragile government-backed peace accord that has held between the area’s Shia and Sunni populations. Normality was slowly returning to the neglected region and displaced families from both communities had begun to return to their native areas. The arterial Thall-Parachinar road, which was reopened in October last year after several years of closure due to militant attacks, has been closed indefinitely. Though the road was still largely unsafe for civilians, traffic had been running as people had no choice, considering it is the only viable route connecting the region with the rest of Pakistan.

There are quite a few unanswered questions about this incident. Firstly, how could a bomber sneak past the considerable security presence in the area?

It is also unacceptable that security forces fired on protesters when effective non-lethal methods of crowd control exist. And while militant Fazal Saeed, who leads his own faction of the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan, has claimed responsibility for the attack because “the Shia community of Parachinar were involved in activities against us”, many are circumspect about this claim.
Though Saeed is a notorious militant, other factors need to be considered and the bombing needs to be investigated, as the mainstream TTP’s involvement — which is at odds with the Saeed faction — cannot be ruled out. The bombing may have been the result of intra-militant feuds and the Fazal Saeed claim may be a false flag. Whoever is responsible must be brought to justice and militants of all stripes in Kurram need to be eliminated. As we have said before, it is the state’s responsibility — specifically that of the security forces — to keep the Thall-Parachinar road open and safe for travel and to neutralise the militants.

Unfortunately, the security establishment has failed miserably on all these counts, to the detriment of the people of Kurram. It needs to act now to prevent the resumption of sectarian violence in the agency.

Special Forces Needs Race Cars–Enter NASCAR

[Admiral McRaven is intent on turning the Special Forces into a bunch of superheroes, equipped with the latest Mission Impossible gadgetry, to supplement their UAV networks and A-Team plans to create a bunch of roving bands of warrior-priests or knights-paladin, a force of do-gooders sent forth to right the wrongs of the world.  This deal with NASCAR will equip them with souped-up hot rods and fire retardant clothing for their superhero outfits, as well as the mechanical training sometimes needed to service their fleet of comic book supercars.  Eventually, this "new Army" mentality is supposed to infect the entire Army, so that they will all consider themselves to be hyper-patriotic American avengers.]

NASCAR, U.S. Army Special Ops announce strategic partnership

By Kenny Bruce

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – NASCAR and the military have always enjoyed a close relationship, but it will be closer than ever with a collaborative effort that was announced Saturday at Daytona International Speedway.

N.C. Gov. Bev Perdue, Lt. Gen. John F. Mulholland and NASCAR President Mike Helton made the announcement of a strategic alliance between the U.S. Army Special Operations Command and NASCAR.

The alliance, while broad-based, will target specific needs of the military such as engine performance, fuel and power supplies, vehicle blast modeling, simulation, seat design, aerodynamics and suspension for its vehicles, as well as flame resistant clothing and driver training.

“What we have learned in our community, and I see it in this industry is, is you put a bunch of smart guys together in the same room, they’re gong to come up with solutions and techniques to achieve those solutions that we never would have thought of,” Lt. Gen Mulholland said.

“Literally, this is our first step. What we realized is we need to make this collaboration happen. The next step is to figure out what the processes are. … We’ve already had some of that.”

Gov. Perdue called the Memorandum of Agreement – made possible by the N.C. Department of Commerce, the N.C. Military Foundation, the N.C. Motorsports Advisory Council and USASOC Mobility – a “historic partnership” that “will have worldwide implications.

“It improves safety and performance of military vehicles for our troops and creates jobs and investment opportunities in North Carolina,” she said.

Lance DeSpain, executive director of the N.C. Military Foundation, said today’s soldiers face specific challenges in the field that require “new and innovative solutions.”

Working with the motorsports community, he said, would not only provide new ideas, but would likely cut down the amount of time those ideas can become a reality.

“Our motorsports community are the best in the world at solving similar challenges and they do it every day,” he said. “And they do it quickly. Today, when our special operators ask for vehicle modifications, the new product or technology response time can take as long as six years. In the racing world, we’ve come to learn six days is often the amount of time you get to get to the finish line.”

Pakistan’s Menace Within

[Extremist violence committed in the name of religion IS TERRORISM.  As long as Pakistanis think that there is some subtle difference between the two there will be no escape from the terror within.]

The menace within

The word ‘calm’ is a relative one. More so in Pakistan. A lull in acts of terrorism reinforces the feeling of calm. But even this is relative. If Karachi, Lahore and the twin cities of Islamabad / Rawalpindi are calm, Pakistan is considered calm. That is how the policymakers and opinion-makers perceive it.

They are wrong.

Just because the likes of TTP haven’t targeted a major location (and I use the term ‘major’ loosely), doesn’t necessarily mean they are out of business. Neither does it mean the State of Pakistan is prevailing in the fight against them. In fact, when we equate the most violent type of violence with terrorism, we tend to box in an un-boxable problem. Terrorism is one aspect of extremism, which in turn is one off-shoot of intolerance.

Confused? A new report helps us understand. Titled “Extremism Watch: Mapping Conflict Trends in Pakistan 2010-11″, it has been produced by Jinnah Institute.  [Click here to download the report.]   The report has put together a wealth of data about the scale of organised violence that wracked Pakistan in this one-year period. It is divided into six segments detailing different themes ably penned by Salman Zaidi, Raza Rumi, Sabina Ansari, Sehar Tariq, Fatima Mujtaba, Madeeha Ansari and Mishal Khan, and supervised by Executive Director of the institute Ejaz Haider. The report was launched yesterday in Islamabad.

This report comes at a time when public discourse on terrorism and extremism in Pakistan is at a critically sensitive juncture. The American deadline for evacuating Afghanistan is nearing, and senior US officials have hinted at an even earlier timeframe than 2014 given by President Obama. Linked to this is the attempt at negotiating with the Afghan Taliban to try and draw them into some form of a post-American governance structure. The opening of the Taliban offices in Qatar seems to have institutionalised, if you may, this nascent effort to engage the adversary.

As these developments gather momentum, Pakistan finds itself at an “I-told-you-so” moment. “See we told you its best to engage the Taliban because they cannot be wished away,” Pakistani officials seem to be saying to their frustrated American counterparts. It may be fine to bask in the moment for a while, but sadly the blowback of such a mindset-driven policy is yet to reach its peak intensity. One such effect is the gradual change in perceptions within Pakistan itself. The obvious question is: If the Americans – of all the people – can negotiate with the Afghan Taliban, why should not we negotiate with the Pakistani Taliban, aka TTP?

The linear logic may be sound, but sadly it’s not that simple. The Afghan Taliban are connected to the Pakistani Taliban, who in turn are connected to Al-Qaeda, both of whom are connected to the likes of Sipah Sahaba, Lashkar-e-Jhangvi etc. And these organisations – supposedly banned – are continuing to unleash sectarian and inter-faith violence across Pakistan.

Sometimes even logic has its limits.

These are some of the grim lessons that emerge from the Jinnah Institute report. The primary lesson is that while terrorism may be battled with heavy firepower and military operations, extremism is a deeper and more malignant problem which pervades the Pakistani population in greater strength than we would like to admit.

In the report’s own words, it: “looks at recent incidents of violence rooted in religious extremism to determine trends in an increasingly militarised public space. The report seeks to isolate incidents of extremism from terrorism – notwithstanding the academic debates on definition for both terms – to identify the broad overlap in the cause, nature and agents of both phenomena and to show that in addition to acts of terrorism this mindset has also become a social norm.”

So we see increasing frequency of bloody incidents like the gunning down of Hazaras in Balochistan, we see the depressing trend of schools being dynamited, we see the shocking acts of shrines and mosques being bombed and the deep scars of such violence being burnished on innocent men, women and children.

The bitter reality then is that if Pakistan’s policy is ambivalent on tackling extremism, so is Pakistani public opinion. This ambivalence and confusion also pollutes public discourse thereby further reinforcing a confused public mindset. When the media shows images of Salman Taseer’s assassin being garlanded, what message does it send out to the viewers and readers? When major political leaders refuse to condemn the assassin, or the violent and intolerant ideology he espouses, what message does this send out to the voters?

The State of Pakistan has done precious little to even begin to battle this creeping menace. Short term political calculations have always trumped long term concerns. If intolerance raised its head in the 1950s (as Raza Rumi details in his excellent essay in the report) then more than half a century later it continues to dig its claws deeper into Pakistani society.

They say a mind is a terrible thing to waste. We seem to be doing just that.

The writer hosts a primetime talk show on ARY News. He has worked as Director News of Express News and Dunya News and Editor The News,Islamabad. He can be reached at fahd.husain1@gmail.com or on Twitter @fahdhusain

Hypocritical Scumbag Israeli official Says “Iran embellishing nuclear gains”–Except for That Nuclear Weapons Thing

Israeli official: Iran embellishing nuclear gains

US used Kashmir quake to send killer-spies into Pakistan

US used Kashmir quake to send killer-spies into Pakistan

Uttara Choudhury

US used Kashmir quake to send killer-spies into PakistanUS Navy SEAL Team 18 members rehearse a demonstration of combat skills at the National Navy UDT-SEAL Museum in Fort Pierce, Florida in November 2011. Reuters

 

New York: The Pentagon used the Kashmir earthquake of 2005 to send operatives from the Joint Special Operations Command, or JSOC  into Pakistan, reveals a new book.

The JSOC has proven to be the most lethal weapon in the President’s arsenal, write D.B Grady and Marc Ambinder in their just-published eBook The Command: Deep Inside the President’s Secret Army. President Obama and the Pentagon leadership have increasingly made Navy Seals from the JSOC their military tool of choice.

According to The New York Times, the JSOC has about 54,000 active-duty personnel from four branches of the armed services. The Navy Seals are one of the most celebrated units under its umbrella. This book comes at a time when Admiral William H McRaven, who leads the JSOC, is pushing for a larger role for his elite units who have traditionally operated in the dark corners of American foreign policy.

The book credits the secretive JSOC, which functions in a grey area, with having done more to degrade the capacity of terrorists to attack the United States than any other single entity. Counter-terrorism is only one of its many missions.

Did the US use the 2005 Kashmir earthquake to send JSOC operatives into Pakistan? That’s the bold-faced charge the authors make in The Command. They say that the US intelligence community “took advantage of the chaos to spread resources of its own” into Pakistan.” Using valid US passports and posing as construction and aid workers, dozens of Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) operatives and contractors flooded in without the requisite background checks from Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) spy agency.

“Al-Qaeda had reconstituted itself in the country’s tribal areas, largely because of the ISI’s benign neglect. In Afghanistan, the ISI was actively undermining the US-backed government of Hamid Karzai, training and recruiting for the Taliban, which it viewed as the more reliable partner. The political system was in chaos. The Pakistani army was focused on the threat from India and had redeployed away from the Afghanistan border region, the Durand line, making it porous once again… A JSOC intelligence team slipped in alongside the CIA,” says the book.

The book cover.

The authors have detailed the JSOC team’s goals in Pakistan. One was prosaic: team members were to develop rings of informants to gather targeting information about al-Qaeda terrorists. Other goals were extremely sensitive: JSOC needed better intelligence about how Pakistan transported its nuclear weapons and it wanted to penetrate the ISI and target Pakistani officers who were hand-in-glove with the terrorists.

“Under a secret program code-named Screen Hunter, JSOC, augmented by the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) and contract personnel, was authorized to shadow and identify members of the ISI suspected of being sympathetic to al-Qaeda. It is not clear whether JSOC units used lethal force against these ISI officers; one official said that the goal of the program was to track terrorists through the ISI by using disinformation and psychological warfare,” reveals the book.

The Obama administration finally curtailed the Screen Hunter programme after Pakistan slammed the covert US presence inside the country. Still, Pakistani outrage didn’t stop the JSOC from rotating teams of Navy Seals from DEVGRU Black squadron, aided by Rangers and other special operations forces, and establishing a parallel terrorist-hunting capability called ‘Vigilant Harvest’.

“They operated in the border areas of Pakistan deemed off limits to Americans, and they targeted courier networks, trainers, and facilitators. (Legally, these units would operate under the authority of the CIA any time they crossed the border.),” said the book.

“A senior Obama administration official said that by the middle of 2011, after tensions between the United States and the Pakistani government had reached an unhealthy degree of danger, all JSOC personnel except for its declared military trainers were ferreted out of the country. (They were easy to find using that same secret cell phone pinging technology.) Those who remained were called Omegas, a term denoting their temporary designation as members of the reserve force. They then joined any one of a dozen small contracting companies set up by the CIA, which turned these JSOC soldiers into civilians, for the purposes of deniability,” added the book.

According to media reports, unassuming office buildings around the Washington area and beyond have become “unlabeled spy centers that process untold volumes of information” extracted from JSOC’s hunting missions, with such a rapid analytic turnaround time that the “shooters” of the unit can quickly begin planning their next kills. In fact, Ambinder reports inThe Command that the “integration of tactical spying within JSOC is so thorough” that it’s hard to distinguish “shooters” from analysts.

The JSOC has grown since September 11 as the US military focusses on combating terrorism. As defence secretary, Donald H Rumsfeld wanted the JSOC to work unilaterally so that it could be more aggressive in hunting down terrorists. There are concerns, however, that the JSOC operates with practically no accountability. In Iraq, they reportedly ran a torture chamber at a place called Camp Nama. In 2004, Rumsfeld gave the US military the go-ahead to carry out secret offensive strikes in more than a dozen countries, and JSOC operatives carried them out in Syria, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Somalia.

Saudi, Syria, and Obama’s Double Standards On Human Rights

[SEE:  Obama's double standards ]

Saudi, Syria, And Human Rights

Tim Marshall

You may have noticed recently the new found Saudi pre-occupation with human rights.

The Saudi government is shocked, shocked I tell you! at the crackdown by the Syrian regime against sections of its repressed population. They are far more shocked at that , than at their own repression of their own people, and indeed the overt Syrian violence is of a greater scale. They are so shocked they have joined the Qataris to lead the charge to overthrow President Assad’s regime.

The Saudis don’t have pubs, but if they did, they might have signs up as once shown in some of the British pubs of yesteryear to try and prevent bar room arguments and indeed brawls – ‘No politics, no football, no religion’. So it might be rude at this juncture to point out the following:

Saudi Arabia and Qatar are Sunni led regimes. Both are fearful of their giant Shia neighbour – Iran. Iran is the closest ally of Syria. Syria is led by Allawites who are an offshoot from Shia Islam. You may have noticed that most of Syrian civilians who have taken up arms against the regime are Sunni Muslims. If Saudi and Qatar help push over the Syrian regime, Iran is weakened.

If you took the above view, you might conclude that when Saudi and Qatar did their utmost to collapse the Arab League monitoring mission to Syria, they were prepared to fight to the last Syrian civilian to achieve their stated aim of protecting Syrian civilians.

The monitors were understaffed and under equipped, nevertheless, as long as they were around Assad’s big guns were kept in reserve. When the mission was suspended, and the UN resolution defeated, out came the big guns, and people died in in greater numbers. That this would happen was obvious.

Of course you could take a different view. That the Saudi regime is genuinely horrified at all acts of repression against citizens, or in the Kingdom’s case, subjects.

If you took that view you would agree that when Saudi troops opened fire on a crowd of demonstrators yesterday at a protest in the Shia populated east, killing one ‘masked gunman’ it was entirely justified because they are combatting ‘terrorist gangs. We’ve heard that phrase before, from Bashar Assad. A local activist said that the Saudi army deployed 8 armoured vehicles to disperse the protesters. Sound familiar?

On the human rights front, the Saudi authorities have just shown their concern for the individual, above the ‘greater good’, by arresting a young man on the charges of apostasy and blasphemy.

23 year old Saudi journalist Hamza Kashgari was arrested last night as he was returned to Riyadh by Malaysia.

Mr Kashgari had tested his right to an opinion by tweeting about the Prophet Muhammad on the Prophet’s birthday saying “I will say that I have loved aspects of you, hated others’ .

This caused a twitter storm in the Kingdom with 30,000 follow ups, a face book page being set up calling for his death, and the religious authorities demanding he be arrested and beheaded. One cleric was so upset he ended up weepingduring his sermon.

Mr Kashgari apologised, withdrew the remark from Twitter, and himself from Saudi Arabia , fleeing to Malaysia enroute to New Zealand.

He was transiting through Kuala Lumpur airport when the Malaysian police arrested him and put him on a plane home.

There is a strong possibility the young man will be now be killed by the state. What might save him is his apology added to publicity about his case.

At a time when the Saudis are so publicly championing human rights in Syria, they may not wish to embarrass themselves on the world stage. The two events are very different, one a nationwide uprising by significant sections of the people, the other, an individual who has broken a law for which the penalty is death. Where they meet, is in the individuals right to a voice without fear of death.