American Resistance To Empire

Bandar’s 2008 Plan To Overthrow Bashar al-Assad—Mar. 30, 2011

Why did website linked to Syria regime publish U.S.-Saudi plan to oust Assad?

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Mar. 30, 2011

A regime-linked Syrian website reports on a U.S.-Saudi plan to foment unrest and oust Bashar Assad through killings, mass demonstrations and arson, not unlike what is happening now.

Mourners Daraa - Reuters

Mourners carrying coffins of protesters killed in Daraa Friday. Photo by Reuters



The heavy blackout imposed by Syria on coverage of the deadly demonstrations there, including the number of casualties and the extent of the serious damage caused to Ba’ath Party offices in a number of cities, is not hindering another kind of reporting.

The media there are seeking out details of involvement of “foreign elements” they say are trying to foment a revolution in Syria. These reports impart information about kinds of vehicles these “elements” have used, the weapons in their possession and the means by which they have recruited demonstrators.

The Syrian media have never been as open as they are now in describing the subversives. The sunshine reached new levels with a recent expose by the Champress Internet site, which has close ties to the regime, on a secret Saudi-American plan to topple the government of President Bashar Assad, presented in full.

According to the report, the plan, which was first broadcast on the Iranian Arabic-language television station Al-Alam, was formulated in 2008 by the Saudi national security advisor, Prince Bandar bin Sultan and Jeffrey Feltman, a veteran U.S. diplomat in the Middle East who was formerly ambassador to Lebanon and is currently the assistant secretary of state for Near Eastern Affairs.

The plan as reported divides Syria into large cities, towns and villages. It proposes establishing five recruitment networks: The “fuel” made up of educated and unemployed youths; the “thugs” comprised of criminals, “preferably non-Syrians”; the “ethnic-sectarian” network of young people from ethnic groups who are no older than 22; the “media” network, which will be joined by journalists or activists in civil organizations funded by European countries but not by the United States; and a “capital” network of businesspeople from the large cities.

Each network would be provided with slogans suited to the type of its activity and will go through training aimed at preparing them for street actions and violence.

Thus, for example, the thugs would be trained in sniper fire, arson and “murdering in cold blood.” The members of the ethnic network would act to advance interests of their communities, show proof of ethnic discrimination and incite against the regime.

The journalists would operate the network by means of satellite telephones that can’t be monitored, would be depicted as human rights activists who are demanding not the regime’s fall, but civil society in Syria and they will receive additional training in operating social networks as a means for recruitment.

As for the businesspeople, the plan reportedly proposes “Holding luxurious parties to be attended by businessmen and during which exclusively Arab Gulf deals and investments are to be made and threatening them with certain sexual relations that are filmed for later blackmailing them.”

After the recruitment and training phases, which would be funded by Saudi Arabia for about $2 billion, they would be given suitable communications equipment and when about 5,000 activists had been recruited in the large cities, 1,500 in the towns and 500 in the villages, they would begin to act in public.

The plan also offers answers to revolt-refusers. For example, “If someone says there is a change, the response must be: ‘There is no change at all. This is all a lie.’ If he says change is coming, then the response must be: ‘We have heard this for more than 40 years.'”

Activists would have to come to central places to create a suitable backdrop for TV and cell phone cameras.

The “shouters” would have to prepare for two situations. If the security forces start dispersing the assembled demonstrators, their helpers who have hidden in the surroundings must gather quickly and tell the security forces to leave them alone, and if the security forces do not show up then the helpers must create a provocations as though it is they who are dispersing the demonstrators.

If the security forces start beating up the shouters or any of their supporters, it would have to be filmed for full exploitation.

It is necessary to prevent any attempt by the regime to reach a compromise by burning the Ba’ath Party offices and damaging symbols of the regime like smashing statues and destroying pictures of Hafez and Bashar Assad.

The plan also suggests igniting ethnic tensions between groups around the country to stir unrest.

The formulators of the plan assume President Assad will immediately have to deal with calming the inter-ethnic confrontations and will send senior representatives to the cities and towns, thereby emptying Damascus itself of leadership. Then it will become the capital’s turn to boil over and foment ethnic demonstrations while the “businesspeople” network will have to convince the military leadership to disassociate itself from Assad and establish a new regime.

The hoped-for outcome is the establishment of a supreme national council that will run the country and terminate Syria’s relations with Iran and Hezbolah.

Al-Alam names the Dot and Com company headquartered in Jordan as the element behind the recruitment of the demonstrators against the regime and claims this is a company managed by Saudi intelligence, which is subordinate to Bandar bin Sultan. It is perfectly clear why the Iranians took the initiative to publish this detailed plan, as there is nothing like the situation in Syria to provoke a rift between Syria and Saudi Arabia and/or expose American-Saudi collaboration against the backdrop of Saudi military involvement in Bahrain.

However, why did a semi-official Syrian media outlet decide to publish the plan? Does Damascus fear Saudi involvement in Syria or has someone dropped the ball?





Orient Tendencies
Monday July 22, 2013, no141
Weekly information and analysis bulletin specialized in Arab Middle Eastern affairs prepared by
Editor in chief Wassim Raad
New Orient Center for Strategic policies



The inevitable defeat of America


By Ghaleb Kandil


The debate that took place in the U.S. Congress at the hearing of the Chief of Joint Staff, General Martin Dempsey, about the situation in Syria, provides living proof of the confusion and weakness of the American empire in the Arab Mashreq after the failure of its aggression against Syria. This picture, coupled with the bitterness experienced by U.S. policy vis-à-vis the June 30 revolution in Egypt, shows that we are facing a complete defeat of the policies initiated in the region by the former director of the CIA, David Petraeus, in partnership with Turkey, Qatar and Saudi Arabia.


The illusions of the United States and the West on the ability to change the balance on the ground after the battle of Qoussair have vanished in recent weeks. Western experts ensure that such rebalancing is not feasible without a ground invasion of Syria, as again reaffirmed the outgoing head of the British Army Staff, General David Richars (See below). The New York Times has recognized that the dynamic has changed on the ground in favor of the forces of President Bashar al-Assad (see below).


But experts point out that any Nato invasion of Syria will be a suicide for Americans and the West and may threaten the very existence of Israel, because the defense system of the Syrian army is intact and ready to defend the country, and was even improved with the creation of a popular resistance organized as part of the Army National Defense. In addition, the presence on the ground in Syria of Hezbollah makes it more risky for a possible ground invasion.


Faced with these realities, Britain and France, the leading European countries calling for the arming of Syrian terrorists, have renounced to adopt such a measure. London has not only changed its mind, but do not exclude the possibility that President Bashar al-Assad to remain in power for several years, according to informed sources quoted by the British news agency Reuters.


The same sources added that the international peace conference planned to find a solution to the conflict could not be held until next year, if the project is not abandoned altogether, added the sources. “It is clear that Britain will not arm the rebels in any way,” said one of the sources interviewed. The British Parliament had demanded to be consulted in advance on this issue.


Reuters reports that the evolution of the British position is mainly due to the hostility of public opinion to any engagement with Syrian rebels and the fear of the weapons sent to the insurgents fall into the hands of Islamist groups fiercely anti-Western.


For its part, the French Foreign Minister, Laurent Fabius, said that Paris “has not changed its position” not to deliver lethal weapons to the Syrian opposition.


In addition to his disappointments in Syria, the U.S. sick man now faces his greatest strategic challenge after the collapse of all regional bets after the fall of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt. A final fall, which will have a huge impact on the states of the region, without exception, from Tunisia to Yemen, through Libya and Turkey.


The change in Syria provide opportunities for meeting with Syrian victories, placing the region on a new path, marked by the end of the American era and the return of the independent Arab states, backed by a comfortable popular majority.

Gen. Dempsey Names the Three Bad Options That Obama and McCain Have Prepared for Syria

Dempsey outlines Syria options, including deployment of ‘thousands’ of ground forces


The nation’s top military officer has laid out five options the Obama administration is considering on Syria, including “limited” strikes against the Assad regime and an all-out campaign to secure chemical weapons that includes “thousands” of U.S. forces.

Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, revealed the options in a letter to Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin, D-Mich. The letter was sent Monday as, on the other side of the Hill, the House Intelligence Committee signed off on the administration’s call to arm the Syria opposition — though the committee, which held that up for weeks, continued to voice reservations.

Dempsey’s letter went far beyond arming the opposition in outlining potential options. He sent the letter after taking heat at last week’s confirmation hearing from Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., who pressed Dempsey for his advice on Syria while suggesting the administration had not done enough — McCain threatened to place a hold on Dempsey’s nomination until he got answers.

In the letter, Dempsey gave five options on Syria beyond providing humanitarian assistance, which the U.S. already is doing.

At the least invasive end, he said, is the option of training, advising and assisting the rebels. The next level up would be conducting limited strikes on “high-value regime” military targets.

The three other options are increasingly costly and risky.

They include:

  • A no-fly zone, which according to Dempsey could cost up to a billion dollars per month and would include shooting down regime aircraft and conducting strikes on their airfields.
  • The establishment of “buffer zones,” which would be “specific geographic areas” where the opposition would safely organize and train. This would require thousands of U.S. ground forces, Dempsey said, “even if positioned outside Syria,” to protect these zones.
  • A campaign to secure chemical weapons. This would entail destroying portions of Syria’s stockpile, interdicting shipments and seizing other components. At minimum, Dempsey said, this would include a no-fly zone and thousands of special operations and other forces to secure critical sites.–[a.k.a., Total War–editor]

Dempsey stressed that these are just options that have been prepared, and that some options “may not be feasible in time or cost.”

On another front, the House Intelligence Committee gave tentative approval toward arming the opposition.

Committee Chairman Mike Rogers, R-Mich., said that despite “very strong concerns about the strength of the administration’s plans in Syria and its chances for success” there was “consensus that we could move forward with what the administration’s plans and intentions are in Syria consistent with committee reservations.”

The Intelligence Committee had delayed the administration for weeks from fully implementing its Syria policy, including arming the rebels, Fox News has learned.

Fox also confirmed that a majority — but not all — of the Committee members signed off on moving forward with the plan.

It was not immediately clear how the new policy would be funded although money could be “reprogrammed” from other accounts, including possibly the defense spending bill.

Fox News’ Chad Pergram contributed to this report.

Pakistan’s Leaked Secret Document On NATO and US Predator Aggression—2006-2009

Get the Data: The Pakistan government’s secret document

bureau of investigative journalism



Copyright Karim Khan/AFP/Getty

Locals inspect the wreckage of a drone strike in Bannu province, November 19 2008
(Photo: Karim Khan/AFP/Getty)


The Bureau is publishing in full a leaked internal document – titled Details of Attacks by NATO Forces Predators in FATA which contains the Pakistan government’s own estimates of how many people have died in specific CIA drone strikes.


The summary report – obtained from three independent sources – covers the period January 13 2006 to October 24 2009.


Drawn from field reports by local officials in Pakistan’s Federally Administered Tribal Areas, the document lists over 70 drone strikes between 2006 and late 2009, alongside a small number of other incidents such as alleged Nato attacks and strikes by unspecified forces.


Of 746 people listed as killed in the drone strikes, at least 147 of the dead are clearly stated by the leaked report to be civilian victims. Some 94 of these are said to be children.


Some CIA strikes are missing from the document. None of the five reported strikes for 2007 are listed, for example. Also missing are any biographical details of those killed, although the genders of many victims are reported and – where known – whether any children died.


The document also fails to mention details of a number of senior militant commanders known to have died in the attacks.

The Bureau believes there is a strong public interest value in publishing the report in full. A number of small distinguishing marks have been removed – otherwise the document is presented as-is.

Related story – Exclusive: Leaked Pakistani report reveals high civilian death toll in CIA drone strikes