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American Resistance To Empire

Turkish Press Helps Qatar Refute Latest Saudi “Fake News” Provocation

Qatar accuses Saudis of hampering Qatari

hajj pilgrims

 

 

DOHA – Agence France-Presse

The Qatari authorities have accused Saudi Arabia of jeopardizing the annual hajj pilgrimage to Mecca of Qatari pilgrims by refusing to guarantee their safety.

 

Saudi Arabia and its allies have been boycotting Qatar since June 5, accusing it of backing extremist groups and of ties to Shiite Iran, in the region’s worst diplomatic crisis in years.

On July 20, Riyadh said that Qataris wanting to perform this year’s hajj would be allowed to enter the kingdom for the pilgrimage, but imposed certain restrictions.

The Saudi hajj ministry said Qatari pilgrims arriving by plane must use airlines in agreement with Riyadh.

They would also need to get visas on arrival in Jeddah or Medina, their sole points of entry in the kingdom.

The Qatari Islamic affairs ministry, in a statement published by the official QNA news agency on Sunday, said the Saudi side had “refused to communicate regarding securing the pilgrims safety and facilitating their Hajj.”

The ministry accused Riyadh of “intertwining politics with one of the pillars of Islam, which may result in depriving many Muslims from performing this holy obligation”.

According to the statement, 20,000 Qatari citizens have registered to take part this year. The ministry said it denied Saudi claims that Doha had suspended those registrations.

“The distortion of facts is meant to set obstacles for the pilgrims from Qatar to Mecca, following the crisis created by the siege countries,” the Qatari ministry added, referring to Saudi Arabia and its allies.

Some Gulf media claimed the Qatari statement was a call for the “internationalization” of the management of the hajj season, which is run by the Saudi authorities.

“Any call to internationalize [the management of] hajj is an aggressive act and a declaration of war,” Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir told Arabiya news channel on July 30.

But Qatari Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani described the claims as “media fabrications.”

“There has not been a single statement by a Qatari official concerning the internationalization of hajj,” he told Al-Jazeera news channel.

Qatar’s National Human Rights Committee on July 31 said it will complain about the Saudi restrictions to the United Nations, the Arab League and the Organization of the Islamic Cooperation.

“Anti-Qatar rhetoric… threatens the security of Qatari pilgrims,” the committee said in a statement.
The hajj, a pillar of Islam that capable Muslims must perform at least once in a lifetime, is to take place this year at the beginning of September.

Saudi Arabia and its allies Bahrain, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates cut diplomatic ties and imposed sanctions on Doha in June, including the closure of their airspace to Qatari airlines.

The four Arab states accuse Qatar of supporting extremists and of growing too close to Shiite-dominated Iran, the regional arch-rival of Sunni-ruled Saudi Arabia.

Qatar denies the allegations and accuses the Saudi-led bloc of imposing a “siege” on the tiny emirate.

July/31/2017

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Taliban Blow-Up Major Dam South of Kandahar

 

Taliban blow up a water dam with

explosives in Kandahar

 

 

By Khaama Press

The Taliban insurgents have blown up a water dam in southern Kandahar province of Afghanistan as the group has unleashed an unprecedented violence in key southern provinces during the recent days.

According to the local security officials, the incident took place earlier today in the remote part of Shorabak district.

Provincial police spokesman Zia Durani confirmed that a water dam was detonated by the Taliban insurgents using explosives materials.

Durani further added that the dam was constructed in a remote part of Shorabak district which was playing a key role in irrigating the agricultural lands.

He said thousands of acres of land and gardens were irrigated by the dam and its destruction has sparked panic among the residents who are saying that their land will be harmed if it is not reconstructed immediately.

The Taliban insurgents group has not commented regarding the report so far.

Kandahar has been among the relatively calm provinces in southern Afghanistan during the recent years but the security situation of the province, particularly, the remote districts have started to deteriorate during the recent months and after the Taliban militants increased their focus on key southern provinces after they launched their spring offensive in April this year.

Iraqi Embassy In Kabul, Afghanistan Hit By Car-Bomb Attack…Still Underway

 

A car bombing targeted the Iraqi Embassy in central Kabul on Monday, followed by gunfire, Afghan police officials said. There were no immediate reports of casualties.

The attack was still underway as witnesses reported hearing gunshots and several subsequent explosions in the area of the embassy. Details were sketchy as police cordoned off the area of the firefight.

Two police officials told The Associated Press that the car bomb exploded outside the embassy, followed by an attempt by gunmen to enter the building, which is located in the center of the Afghan capital. The two officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the media.

Interior Minister spokesman Najib Danish told the AP that the Iraqi diplomats were safe and had been rescued. He said it’s believed three gunmen were involved in the attack.

A police officer in the area, who identified himself only as Abdullah, said the gunfire was initially intense but was now sporadic. The area was surrounded by armored vehicles and a large contingent of police and Afghan soldiers.

More than an hour later, witnesses reported hearing another powerful explosion and saw black smoke billowing skyward. It wasn’t immediately clear what had caused the last explosion.

At least one eyewitness, a store owner who goes by the name of Hafizullah — many Afghans use only one name — said he saw the bodies of two policemen on the ground before armored personnel carriers and police arrived to cordon off the area.

“The explosion was so strong. I was so afraid,” said Maryam, a woman crying near the site of the attack said. She said she works at the nearby office of Afghanistan’s National Airline Ariana.

The Iraq Embassy is located in a part of the city known as Shahr-e-Now, which lies outside the so-called “green zone” where most foreign embassies and diplomatic missions are located and which is heavily fortified with a phalanx of guards and giant cement blast walls.

By comparison, the Iraqi Embassy is located on a small street in a neighborhood dominated by markets and businesses.

No one immediately claimed responsibility for the attack, though both the Taliban and an Islamic State affiliate have previously carried out such attacks in Kabul.

After Iraqi forces, backed by a U.S.-led coalition, recaptured the city of Mosul from the Islamic State group earlier in July, the Iraq Embassy had called reporters to its offices in Kabul to express concerns that the local IS affiliate might stage large-scale attacks elsewhere to draw away attention from the militant group’s losses in Iraq.

US Cuts Cord To Syrian Terrorist Groups Who Attack Assad’s Forces

US cuts ties, ends support for Syrian rebel

group ‘not focused on fighting IS’

 

kurdistan 24

 

 

US cuts ties, ends support for Syrian rebel group 'not focused on fighting IS'

The al-Tanf crossing in Syria, known as al-Waleed in Iraq. (Photo: Reuters)

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan 24) – The US-led coalition on Thursday announced it would no longer support the operations of the Syrian armed opposition group known as Shuhada al-Qaryatayn, or “Shuq,” since the group engaged in activities other than fighting the Islamic State (IS).

“The coalition only supports the forces committed to fighting IS,” said Army Col. Ryan Dillon, spokesman for the Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve, as he gave an update to reporters on the fight against the extremist group in Iraq and Syria.

The colonel stated the Shuhada al-Qaryatayn group would no longer receive the backing of the US for having objectives “not consistent with defeating IS.”

“One of our partner forces unilaterally, without the US or coalition permission or coordination, conducted patrols outside of the agreed de-escalation zone and engaged in the activities not focused on fighting IS” in southern Syria, Dillon noted.

This is the first time the US has cut ties with a Syrian opposition group with which they were coordinating.

Dillon acknowledged Shuq’s role as a partner to the Coalition on the ground and confirmed the US is in talks with the fighters to recover equipment provided in the war against IS.

While Dillon could not confirm, Shuq militants are believed to have attacked forces loyal to the Syrian government north of the al-Tanf area.

Dillon did suggest fighting the regime could be one their objectives, which is “not in line with the Coalition’s focus on defeating IS.”

The Shuq group, an armed force comprised of local Arab fighters and affiliated with the Free Syrian Army (FSA), remains in al-Tanf, one of three official border crossings between Iraq and Syria.

The move is likely related to the Trump administration’s decision to suspend the CIA program set up in 2013 under former President Barack Obama to equip and train certain vetted rebels against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s regime.

Dillon stated the US would continue to support “vetted forces that are committed to fighting IS,” without providing further details.

The spokesman highlighted the success of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), which has retaken 45 per cent of Raqqa, IS’ de facto capital in Syria.

The operation has been ongoing for over 50 days, and SDF troops gained 23 square kilometers of terrain over the past week despite “stiff and sporadic resistance.”

“The distance between the western and eastern axis is less than a kilometer,” Dillon said, noting they would gain full control of southern Raqqa once they link up.

He also mentioned there are less than 2,000 IS militants left in Raqqa.

As for Iraq, Dillon highlighted there had been no airstrikes in Mosul for nearly two weeks, and last Tuesday marked the first day without Iraqi security forces casualties in the city.

The Coalition spokesman revealed they estimate less than 1,000 extremists remain in the strongholds of Hawija near Kirkuk, as well as Tal Afar, north of Mosul.

He also claimed a thousand of them are in al-Qaim at the border with Syria.

 

Editing by Karzan Sulaivany

Hekmatyar’s Militants Ready To Wage War Against Taliban/Irreconcilable Terrorists

A local Hizb-e-Islami commander says he has at least 1,000 armed men and is ready to cooperate with the Afghan forces in the fight against the Taliban.

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A local commander of Hizb-e-Islami in Baghlan has said that he is ready to support the Afghan National Security and Defense Forces (ANDSF) against the Taliban in the central province.

Mirwais Jihadyar, who has at least 1,000 fighters, said from now on, he will fight against those groups which threaten the national interests of Afghans.

He claimed that he controls the areas that are out of government’s control in Baghlan, especially in Baghlan-e-Markazai district.

The Hizb-e-Islami commander said they have local courts where they address peoples’ judicial problems.

According to him, he has control over 150 villages in the province.

“We fight and stop those who by foreigners’ order fight against people and harm them,” said Jihadyar.

TOLOnews reporters Sharif Amiri and Hamid Shirzai say the Hizb-e-Islami fighters are using a small room as a court where they address legal and judicial problems of people living in the nearby areas.

On Saturday, two men visited the court – bringing murder and land dispute cases.

“My son is in prison. Government has put him behind bars for 20 years. I have come here and want Mirwais Khan to address my problem,” said Ismail, a resident of Baghlan-e-Markazi district.

“Our region is in the hand of Hizb-e-Islami and we know their good and bad points and we have come here to find a solution for our problems,” said Haji Ahmad Wali, another resident of the district.

The Hizb-e-Islami commander in Baghlan-e-Markazi said they investigate up to four cases every day.

Hezbollah/Syria Defeats Al-Nusra At the Lebanon Border…Evacuation of Area Underway


A Hezbollah fighter stands at a watch tower at Juroud Arsal, the Syria-Lebanon border, July 29, 2017.
Ali Hashisho

BEIRUT (Reuters) – About 8,000 people have registered to leave the Lebanese border region near Arsal for a rebel-held area of Syria as part of a local ceasefire between Hezbollah and the Nusra Front, a security source in Lebanon said on Sunday.

The ceasefire came into effect on Thursday and will involve the departure of all Nusra militants from the area around Arsal along with any of the civilians living in the area’s refugee camps who wish to leave with them.

Reporting By Angus McDowall, editing by Larry King

Our National Embarrassment

Alex Jones and Other Conservatives Call

for Civil War Against Liberals

 

Would you go to war against your fellow Americans to show your support for President Donald Trump? For the last several months, that’s exactly what broadcaster Alex Jones—a favorite of the president—has been calling for.

In his radio show, on YouTube and on his Infowars website, Jones—who never met a conspiracy theory he didn’t like and who has pushed the notion that Sandy Hook was faked—has been announcing that the United States is on the verge of a bloody second civil war. Like the radio DJs in Rwanda, Jones has been egging on his conservative listeners and viewers—an estimated 2.7 million people monthly—to kill more liberal fellow citizens over their political differences.

Jones is hardly alone in promoting this scary, emerging narrative on the right. The theme gained momentum after the shooting at the congressional baseball game last month. The day before the attack, on June 13, right wing broadcaster Michael Savage, host of syndicated show The Savage Nation, warned that “there’s going to be a civil war” because of “what this left-wing is becoming in this country.” After the baseball field shooting the next day, he said that he “know[s] what’s coming, and it’s going to get worse.” Savage also said of the shooting that “this blood is on [Democrats’] hands.”

After the shooting, Newt Gingrich opined on Fox that “we are in a clear-cut cultural civil war.” Former GOP speechwriter Pat Buchanan wrote that the appointment of a special prosecutor and political street clashes presage a “deep state media coup” and that the nation is “approaching something of a civil war,” and it’s time for Trump to “burn down the Bastille.”

But few commentators can match the relentless hysteria and reach of Jones. His recent YouTube video titles telegraph the tone: “Get Ready For CIVIL WAR!”  and “First Shots Fired in Second US Civil War! What Will You Do?” and “Will Trump Stop Democrats’ Plan for Violent Civil War?”

Jones’s followers have already turned broadcaster words into violent action. Last year, Edgar Maddison Welch drove from North Carolina to Washington, D.C., to fire on a pizza restaurant Jones had been saying was a front for Democratic pedophiles and Satanists. Court records indicate he had been talking to his friends about Jones’s theories before he went on his mission. In 2014, a right-wing couple, self-described Infowars fans Jerad and Amanda Miller from Indiana, killed two police officers after posting screeds on Infowars. Jones later theorized that the shooting was a false flag intended to discredit the right.

Media Matters for America (MMA), a progressive research organization, has staff assigned to track Jones Infowars shows daily. According to spokesman Nate Evans, right-wing media has been advocating violence more since Trump was elected, but Jones “has been particularly crazy about it.”

Among the statements MMA has culled from his broadcasts in recent months are the following:

On June 23, he accused “the left” of starting civil war and offered to personally execute convicted traitors because, he said, “I’m not going to sit here and just call for stuff without actually being part of it.” In the same broadcast he said, “I don’t need some coming-of-age deal to kill a bunch of liberals,” but “we have to start getting ready for insurrection and civil war because they’re really pushing it.”

On June 15, he warned “you kick off Civil War 2, baby, you’ll think Lexington and Concord was a cakewalk.” The day before, he implicated himself and his listeners: “You’re trying to start a civil war with people. You’re taking our kindness for weakness. Do you understand the American people will kill all of you? You understand? We are killing machines, you fools.… But I can shoot bull’s-eye at 400 yards, dumbass. I mean, they have no idea who they’re messing with.”

In a May 13 broadcast, he warned that “leftists want a war,” so “cry havoc and let loose the dogs of war.”

Jones has also called for extrajudicially arresting former FBI DIrector James Comey and Hillary Clinton and has encouraged Trump to use the military against dissenters. “I’d support the president right now moving against these people physically,” he said in a June 13 broadcast. “I mean, let’s be honest. We’re in a war. I would support the president making a military move on them right now.”

This is not the first time Jones has attracted attention by advocating violence against federal officials. In April, he let loose with a rant on California Democrat Adam Schiff, the ranking minority member of the House Intelligence Committee looking into Trump’s Russian connections. The profanity laced transcript was also homophobic and included an explicit threat of bodily harm.

“I’m not against gay people. OK. I love them, they’re great folks. But Schiff looks like the archetypal cocksucker with those little deer-in-the-headlight eyes and all his stuff,” Jones said. “And there’s something about this fairy, hopping around, bossing everybody around, trying to intimidate people like me and you, I want to tell Congressman Schiff and all the rest of them, ‘Hey, listen, asshole, quit saying Roger and I’—and I’ve never used cussing in 22 years, but the gloves are off—‘listen, you son of a bitch, what the fuck’s your problem? You want to sit here and say that I’m a goddamn, fucking Russian. You get in my face with that, I’ll beat your goddamn ass, you son of a bitch. You piece of shit. You fucking goddamn fucker. Listen, fuckhead, you have fucking crossed a line. Get that through your goddamn fucking head. Stop pushing your shit. You’re the people that have fucked this country over and gangraped the shit out of it and lost an election. So stop shooting your mouth off claiming I’m the enemy. You got that you goddamn son of a bitch? Fill your hand.’ I’m sorry, but I’m done. You start calling me a foreign agent, those are fucking fighting words. Excuse me.”

Tim Johnson, a Media Matters for America Research Fellow, who tracks Jones says that the civil war theme is a new one, and probably related to the fact that Barack Obama is no longer president, offering a clear, single enemy. “He needs something new, and so it’s that criticism of Trump equals civil war,” Johnson said.

An attorney with expertise in federal law told Newsweek at the time that Jones’s threats at Schiff appeared to break a federal law, U.S. Code Title 18, Section 115, which makes it illegal to threaten to assault a U.S. official and provides a penalty of up to six years in prison.

After Newsweek published that legal analysis, Jones publicly pulled back, and posted a video attempting to clarify his remarks as “clearly tongue-in-cheek and basically art performance.”

Federal officials are not known to have contacted him or looked into the matter.

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