ThereAreNoSunglasses

American Resistance To Empire

Destroying the Syrian Nation For the Sake of Gas

Don’t let anyone fool you: Sectarian strife in Syria has been engineered to provide cover for a war for access to oil and gas, and the power and money that come along with it.

Refugees and migrants wait to cross the border from the northern Greek village of Idomeni to southern Macedonia, Monday, Sept. 7, 2015. Greece has borne the brunt of a massive refugee and migration flow of people heading into the European Union. (AP Photo/Giannis Papanikos)

Refugees and migrants wait to cross the border from the northern Greek village of Idomeni to southern Macedonia, Monday, Sept. 7, 2015. Greece has borne the brunt of a massive refugee and migration flow of people heading into the European Union. (AP Photo/Giannis Papanikos)


 

Editor’s note: This article has been updated to reflect recent Wikileaks revelations of US State Department leaks that show plans to destabilize Syria and overthrow the Syrian government as early as 2006.  The leaks reveal that these plans were given to the US directly from the Israeli government and would be formalized through instigating civil strife and sectarianism through partnership with nations like Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Qatar and even Egypt to break down the power structue in Syria to essentially to weaken Iran and Hezbolla. The leaks also reveal Israeli plans to use this crisis to expand it’s occupation of the Golan Heights for additional oil exploration and military expansion. 


 

MINNEAPOLIS — Images of Aylan Kurdi, the three-year-old Syrian boy who washed up dead on Mediterranean shores in his family’s attempt to flee war-torn Syria, have grabbed the attention of people around the world, sparking outrage about the true costs of war.

The heart-wrenching refugee crisis unfolding across the Middle East and at European borders has ignited a much needed conversation on the ongoing strife and instability that’s driving people from their homes in countries like Syria, Libya and Iraq. It’s brought international attention to the inhumane treatment these refugees are receiving if — and it is a major “if” — they arrive at Europe’s door.

In Syria, for example, foreign powers have sunk the nation into a nightmare combination of civil war, foreign invasion and terrorism. Syrians are in the impossible position of having to choose between living in a warzone, being targeted by groups like ISIS and the Syrian government’s brutal crackdown, or faring dangerous waters with minimal safety equipment only to be denied food, water and safety by European governments if they reach shore.

Other Syrians fleeing the chaos at home have turned to neighboring Arab Muslim countries. Jordan alone has absorbed over half a million Syrian refugees; Lebanon has accepted nearly 1.5 million; and Iraq and Egypt have taken in several hundred thousand.

Although it’s not an Arab nation or even part of the Middle East, Iran sent 150 tons of humanitarian goods, including 3,000 tents and 10,000 blankets, to the Red Crescents of Jordan, Iraq and Lebanon via land routes to be distributed among the Syrian refugees residing in the three countries last year.

Turkey has taken in nearly 2 million refugees to date. Turkey’s Prime Minister Recep Erdogan made international headlines for opening his nation’s arms to migrants, positioning himself as a kind of savior in the process.

A paramilitary police officer carries the lifeless body of three-year-old Aylan Kurdi after he drowned when the boat he and his family members were in capsized near the Turkish resort of Bodrum early Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2015. (Photo: Nilüfer Demir/DHA)

Meanwhile, Gulf Arab nations like Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates have provided refuge to zero Syrian refugees.

While there’s certainly a conversation taking place about refugees — who they are, where they’re going, who’s helping them, and who isn’t — what’s absent is a discussion on how to prevent these wars from starting in the first place. Media outlets and political talking heads have found many opportunities to point fingers in the blame game, but not one media organization has accurately broken down what’s driving the chaos: control over gas, oil and resources.

Indeed, it’s worth asking: How did demonstrations held by “hundreds” of protesters demanding economic change in Syria four years ago devolve into a deadly sectarian civil war, fanning the flames of extremism haunting the world today and creating the world’s second largest refugee crisis?

While the media points its finger to Syrian President Bashar Assad’s barrel bombs and political analysts call for more airstrikes against ISIS and harsher sanctions against Syria, we’re four years into the crisis and most people have no idea how this war even got started.

This “civil war” is not about religion

Citing a lack of access on the ground, the United Nations stopped regularly updating its numbers of casualties in the Syrian civil war in January 2014. Estimates put the death toll between 140,200 and 330,380, with as many as 6 million Syrians displaced, according to the U.N.

While there is no question that the Syrian government is responsible for many of the casualties resulting from its brutal crackdown, this is not just a Syrian problem.

Foreign meddling in Syria began several years before the Syrian revolt erupted.  Wikieaks released leaked US State Department cables from 2006 revealing US plans to overthrow the Syrian government through instigating civil strife, and receiving these very orders straight from Tel Aviv.  The leaks reveal the United State’s partnership with nations like Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Qatar and even Egypt to use sectarianism to divide Syria through the Sunni and Shiite divide to destabilize the nation to weaken Iran and Hezbolla.  Israel is also revealed to attempt to use this crisis to expand it’s occupation of the Golan Heights for additional oil exploration.

According to major media outlets like the BBC and the Associated Press, the demonstrations that supposedly swept Syria were comprised of only hundreds of people, but additional Wikileaks cables reveal CIA involvement on the ground in Syria to instigate these very demonstrations as early as March 2011.

FILE - In this Monday, Dec. 19, 2011 file photo, Syrians hold a large poster depicting Syria's President Bashar Assad during a rally in Damascus, Syria. Some activists expressed regret that one year later their "revolution" against President Bashar Assad's rule had become mired in violence. (AP Photo/Muzaffar Salman, File)

 

Just a few months into the demonstrations which now consisted of hundreds of armed protesters with CIA ties, demonstrations grew larger, armed non-Syrian rebel groups swarmed into Syria, and a severe government crackdown swept through the country to deter this foreign meddling. It became evident that the United States, United Kingdom, France, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Turkey would be jumping on the opportunity to organize, arm and finance rebels to form the Free Syrian Army as outlined in the State Department plans to destabilize Syria. (Just a few months ago, WikiLeaks confirmed this when it released Saudi intelligence that revealed Turkey, Qatar and Saudi Arabia had been working hand in hand to arm and finance rebels to overthrow the Syrian government since 2012.)

These foreign nations created a pact in 2012 called “The Group of Friends of the Syrian People,” a name that couldn’t be further from the truth. Their agenda was to divide and conquer in order to wreak havoc across Syria in view of overthrowing Syrian President Bashar Assad.

A Free Syrian Army soldier carries his weapon at the northern town of Sarmada, in Idlib province, Syria, Wednesday, Aug. 1, 2012. (AP Photo)

The true agenda to hijack Syria’s revolt quickly became evident, with talking heads inserting Syria’s alliance with Iran as a threat to the security and interests of the United States and its allies in the region. It’s no secret that Syria’s government is a major arms, oil and gas, and weapons ally of Iran and Lebanon’s resistance political group Hezbollah.

But it’s important to note the timing: This coalition and meddling in Syria came about immediately on the heels of discussions of an Iran-Iraq-Syria gas pipeline that was to be built between 2014 and 2016 from Iran’s giant South Pars field through Iraq and Syria. With a possible extension to Lebanon, it would eventually reach Europe, the target export market.

Perhaps the most accurate description of the current crisis over gas, oil and pipelines that is raging in Syria has been described by Dmitry Minin, writing for the Strategic Cultural Foundation in May 2013:

“A battle is raging over whether pipelines will go toward Europe from east to west, from Iran and Iraq to the Mediterranean coast of Syria, or take a more northbound route from Qatar and Saudi Arabia via Syria and Turkey. Having realized that the stalled Nabucco pipeline, and indeed the entire Southern Corridor, are backed up only by Azerbaijan’s reserves and can never equal Russian supplies to Europe or thwart the construction of the South Stream, the West is in a hurry to replace them with resources from the Persian Gulf. Syria ends up being a key link in this chain, and it leans in favor of Iran and Russia; thus it was decided in the Western capitals that its regime needs to change.

It’s the oil, gas and pipelines, stupid!

Indeed, tensions were building between Russia, the U.S. and the European Union amid concerns that the European gas market would be held hostage to Russian gas giant Gazprom. The proposed Iran-Iraq-Syria gas pipeline would be essential to diversifying Europe’s energy supplies away from Russia.

Turkey is Gazprom’s second-largest customer. The entire Turkish energy security structure relies on gas from Russia and Iran. Plus, Turkey was harboring Ottoman-like ambitions of becoming a strategic crossroads for the export of Russian, Caspian-Central Asian, Iraqi and Iranian oil and even gas to Europe.

The Guardian reported in August 2013:

“Assad refused to sign a proposed agreement with Qatar and Turkey that would run a pipeline from the latter’s North field, contiguous with Iran’s South Pars field, through Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Syria and on to Turkey, with a view to supply European markets – albeit crucially bypassing Russia. Assad’s rationale was ‘to protect the interests of [his] Russian ally, which is Europe’s top supplier of natural gas.’”

Note the purple line which traces the proposed Qatar-Turkey natural gas pipeline and note that all of the countries highlighted in red are part of a new coalition hastily put together after Turkey finally (in exchange for NATO’s acquiescence on Erdogan’s politically-motivated war with the PKK) agreed to allow the US to fly combat missions against ISIS targets from Incirlik. Now note which country along the purple line is not highlighted in red. That’s because Bashar al-Assad didn’t support the pipeline and now we’re seeing what happens when you’re a Mid-East strongman and you decide not to support something the US and Saudi Arabia want to get done.

Knowing Syria was a critical piece in its energy strategy, Turkey attempted to persuade Syrian President Bashar Assad to reform this Iranian pipeline and to work with the proposed Qatar-Turkey pipeline, which would ultimately satisfy Turkey and the Gulf Arab nations’ quest for dominance over gas supplies. But after Assad refused Turkey’s proposal, Turkey and its allies became the major architects of Syria’s “civil war.”

https://www.youtube-nocookie.com/embed/G1p_tFnKqMA?rel=0&showinfo=0

Much of the strategy currently at play was described back in a 2008 U.S. Army-funded RAND report, “Unfolding the Future of the Long War”:

“The geographic area of proven oil reserves coincides with the power base of much of the Salafi-jihadist network. This creates a linkage between oil supplies and the long war that is not easily broken or simply characterized. … For the foreseeable future, world oil production growth and total output will be dominated by Persian Gulf resources. … The region will therefore remain a strategic priority, and this priority will interact strongly with that of prosecuting the long war.”

In this context, the report identifies the divide and conquer strategy while exploiting the Sunni-Shiite divide to protect Gulf oil and gas supplies while maintaining a Gulf Arab state dominance over oil markets.

“Divide and Rule focuses on exploiting fault lines between the various Salafi-jihadist groups to turn them against each other and dissipate their energy on internal conflicts. This strategy relies heavily on covert action, information operations (IO), unconventional warfare, and support to indigenous security forces. … the United States and its local allies could use the nationalist jihadists to launch proxy IO campaigns to discredit the transnational jihadists in the eyes of the local populace. … U.S. leaders could also choose to capitalize on the ‘Sustained Shia-Sunni Conflict’ trajectory by taking the side of the conservative Sunni regimes against Shiite empowerment movements in the Muslim world…. possibly supporting authoritative Sunni governments against a continuingly hostile Iran.”

The report notes that another option would be “to take sides in the conflict, possibly supporting authoritative Sunni governments against a continuingly hostile Iran.”

This framework crafted an interesting axis: Turkey, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, U.S., Britain and France vs. Syria, Iran and Russia.

Divide and conquer: A path to regime change

With the U.S., France, Britain, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Turkey — aka, the new “Friends of Syria” coalition — publicly calling for the overthrow of Syrian President Bashar Assad between  2011 and 2012 after Assad’s refusal to sign onto the gas pipeline, the funds and arms flowing into Syria to feed the so-called “moderate” rebels were pushing Syria into a humanitarian crisis. Rebel groups were being organized left and right, many of which featured foreign fighters and many of which had allied with al-Qaida.

Saudi Arabia's permanent representative to the League of Arab States Ahmad al-Qattan, center, attends the Arab League summit in Baghdad, Iraq, Thursday, March, 29, 2012. The annual Arab summit meeting opened in the Iraqi capital Baghdad on Thursday with only 10 of the leaders of the 22-member Arab League in attendance and amid a growing rift between Arab countries over how far they should go to end the one-year conflict in Syria. (AP Photo/Karim Kadim)

The Syrian government responded with a heavy hand, targeting rebel held areas and killing civilians in the process.

Since Syria is religiously diverse, the so-called “Friends of Syria” pushed sectarianism as their official “divide and conquer” strategy to oust Assad. Claiming that Alawites ruled over a majority Sunni nation, the call by the “moderate” U.S.-backed rebels became one about Sunni liberation.

Although the war is being sold to the public as a Sunni-Shiite conflict, so-called Sunni groups like ISIS,  the Syrian al-Qaida affiliate Jabhat al-Nusra (the Nusra Front) and even the “moderate” Free Syrian Army have indiscriminately targeted Syria’s Sunnis, Shiites, Christians and Jews. At the same time, these same foreign nations supported and even armed the Bahraini government, which claims to be Sunni, in its violent crackdown on the majority Shiite pro-democracy demonstrations that swept the nation.

The Syrian government army itself is over 80 percent Sunni, which indicates that the true agenda has been politically — not religiously — motivated.

In addition to this, the Assad family is Alawite, an Islamic sect that the media has clumped in with Shiites, though most Shiites would agree that the two are unrelated. Further, the Assad family is described as secular and running a secular nation. Counting Alawites as Shiites was simply another way to push a sectarian framework for the conflict: It allowed for the premise that the Syria-Iran alliance was based on religion, when, in fact, it was an economic relationship.

This framework carefully crafted the Syrian conflict as a Sunni revolution to liberate itself from Shiite influence that Iran was supposedly spreading to Iraq, Syria and Lebanon.

But the truth is, Syria’s Sunni community is divided, and many defected to join groups like the Free Syrian Army, ISIS and al-Qaida. And as mentioned earlier, over 80 percent of Assad’s military is Sunni.

As early as 2012, additional rebels armed and financed by Arab Gulf nations and Turkey like al-Qaida and the Muslim Brotherhood, declared all-out war against Shiites. They even threatened to attack Lebanon’s Hezbollah and Iraq’s government after they had overthrown the Assad government.

Soon after, the majority of the Muslim Brotherhood rebels became part of al-Qaida-affiliated groups. Together, they announced that they would destroy all shrines — not just those ones which hold particular importance to Shiites.

Hezbollah entered the scene in 2012 and allied itself with the Syrian government to fight al-Nusra and ISIS, which were officially being armed and financed by Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Turkey. And all the arms were actively being sold to these nations by the United States. Thus, US arms were falling into the hands of the same terror group the US claims to be fighting in its broader War on Terror.

Hezbollah fighters carry the coffin of Hezbollah member Mohammad Issa who was killed in an airstrike that killed six members of the Lebanese militant group and an Iranian general in Syria, during his funeral procession, in the southern village of Arab Salim, Lebanon, Tuesday, Jan. 20, 2015. Hezbollah has accused Israel of carrying out Sunday's airstrike, which occurred on the Syrian side of the Golan Heights. Issa was the highest-ranking among the group, and was among the senior cadres who headed the group's operations in Syria against the Sunni-led rebellion. (AP Photo/Mohammed Zaatari)

According to reports, Hezbollah was and has been been active in preventing rebel penetration from Syria to Lebanon, being one of the most active forces in the Syrian civil war spillover in Lebanon. Despite this, the U.S. sanctioned both the Syrian government and Hezbollah in 2012.

Also that year, Russia and Iran sent military advisers to assist the Syrian government in quelling the terror groups, but Iranian troops were not on the ground fighting during this time.

What was once a secular, diverse and peaceful nation, was looking more like it was on its way to becoming the next Afghanistan; its people living under Taliban-style rule as jihadists took over more land and conquered more cities.

Effects of foreign meddling outweigh self-determination

If you think that was hard to follow, you’re certainly not alone.

Most sectarian civil wars are purposely crafted to pit sides against one another to allow for a “divide and conquer” approach that breaks larger concentrations of power into smaller factions that have more difficulty linking up. It’s a colonial doctrine that the British Empire famously used, and what we see taking place in Syria is no different.

So, let’s get one thing straight: This is not about religion. It might be convenient to say that Arabs or Muslims kill each other, and it’s easy to frame these conflicts as sectarian to paint the region and its people as barbaric. But this Orientalist, overly simplistic view of conflict in the Middle East dehumanizes the victims of these wars to justify direct and indirect military action.

If the truth was presented to the public from the perspective that these wars are about economic interests, most people would not support any covert funding and arming of rebels or direct intervention. In fact, the majority of the public would protest against war. But when something is presented to the public as a matter of good versus evil, we are naturally inclined to side with the “good” and justify war to fight off the supposed “evil.”

The political rhetoric has been carefully crafted to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable. Ultimately, no matter the agendas, the alliances or instability brought on by foreign meddling, the calls for freedom, democracy and equality that erupted in 2011 were real then and they’re real today. And let’s not forget that the lack of freedom, democracy and equality have been brought on more by foreign meddling to prop up brutal dictators and arm terror groups than by self-determination.

Migrant men help a fellow migrant man holding a boy as they are stuck between Macedonian riot police officers and migrants during a clash near the border train station of Idomeni, northern Greece, as they wait to be allowed by the Macedonian police to cross the border from Greece to Macedonia, Friday, Aug. 21, 2015. Macedonian special police forces have fired stun grenades to disperse thousands of migrants stuck on a no-man's land with Greece, a day after Macedonia declared a state of emergency on its borders to deal with a massive influx of migrants heading north to Europe. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)

The people in the Middle East once stood united and strong together against foreign meddling, exploitation and colonialism no matter their religious or cultural background. But today, the Middle East is being torn to shreds by manipulative plans to gain oil and gas access by pitting people against one another based on religion. The ensuing chaos provides ample cover to install a new regime that’s more amenable to opening up oil pipelines and ensuring favorable routes for the highest bidders.

And in this push for energy, it’s the people who suffer most. In Syria, they are fleeing en masse. They’re waking up, putting sneakers on their little boys and girls, and hopping on boats without life jackets, hoping just to make it to another shore. They’re risking their lives, knowing full well that they may never reach that other shore, because the hope of somewhere else is better than the reality at home.

Barbaric Saudi Bastards Set To Behead and Crucify Shia Boy

IN many respects, Saudi Arabia is one of the most advanced nations in the world.

It’s the world’s largest oil producer and its cities are glitz and glamour — thriving metropolis’ in the middle of the desert.

In other ways, the desert kingdom is far from advanced, a place where barbaric rituals still occur and where the country’s citizens are subjected to horrific punishments.

saudibeheading

It’s hard to imagine that in Saudi Arabia this week preparations are being made to not only execute a young man but to crucify him. Literally.

The world is pleading with the Saudi government to reconsider. Advocates say what’s about to take place makes them feel physically ill.

The boy at the centre of it all — Ali Mohammed al-Nimr — says he’s done nothing wrong.

Ali Mohammed al-Nimr has been sentenced to death by crucifixion.

Ali Mohammed al-Nimr has been sentenced to death by crucifixion.Source:Facebook

‘BARBARIC, INHUMANE, MERCILESS’

Al-Nimr was 17 when he went to an anti-government protest in the Saudi Arabian province of Qatif.

He was accused by the government of carrying a firearm, attacking security forces and even armed robbery. None of those charges could be proven but he confessed nonetheless. He didn’t have a lawyer and some say the confession was drawn from the teenager via torture.

He was demonstrating at the wrong time in the wrong place — in the middle of a violent government crackdown against detractors.

That was February, 2012. Fast forward three years and the charges have stuck, despite a recent appeal.

His sentence is due to be carried out by beheading and crucifixion, a method that involves removing the head of the prisoner and tying their headless body to a cross.

Often, the crucifixion is carried out in a public place. It sends a strong message to others: We will not stand for criticism, no matter who the person and no matter what their age.

‘HOW CAN THIS HAPPEN IN 2015?’

A Scottish politician raised al-Nimr’s case in parliament this week. She spoke eloquently and she spoke in strong opposition to a practice that has no place in our modern world.

“How in 2015 can a supposedly civilised country impose such an inhumane and merciless penalty on any of its citizens, let alone one so young?” MP Margaret Ferrier said.

“It’s an absolute outrage and I intend to write to the minister and ask for urgent action to be taken.

“Ali’s sentence is due to be barbarically carried out by crucifixion. I feel for this young man and his family. Reading Ali’s story this morning filled me with grief for his life about to be savagely and abruptly ended.”

Savagery is nothing new in Saudi Arabia, a country which between 1985 and 2013 executed more than 2000 people. In 2013, 79 people were put to death. Most of them had their heads cut off with large, sharp swords.

In January this year, a woman protested her innocence until the final moment when a sword fell across her neck. She was writhing on the hard ground in a very public place trying to escape her executioner. Not once but twice did the sword fall upon her neck, the first blow clearly not getting the job done.

Elsewhere, blogger Raif Badawi was jailed for 10 years recently after starting a website for social and political debate in Saudi Arabia. Raif will receive 50 lashings a week for a year for setting up the Saudi Arabian Liberals website.

The prosecution first called for him to be tried for apostasy (when a person abandons their religion), which carries a death sentence in Saudi Arabia. Then, in May this year, he was sentenced to 10 years in prison, a fine of over $300,000 AUD and 1000 lashes. When he is finally released, Raif faces a 10-year travel ban which would keep him from his wife and three young children in Canada, according to Amnesty International.

A spokesman for Amnesty International told news.com.au the last time men were strapped to crosses and killed was in 2013.

“Five Yemeni men were beheaded and crucified, with pictures emerging on social media showing five decapitated bodies hanging from a horizontal pole with their heads wrapped in bags.

“The beheading and ‘crucifixion’ took place in front of the University of Jizan where students were taking exams.”

The Saudi city of Riyadh.

The Saudi city of Riyadh.Source:AP

DOES SAUDI ARABIA HAVE AN AXE TO GRIND?

Ali Mohammed al-Nimr is not the only family member under the careful watch of the Saudi government.

Ali’s uncle Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr was arrested in July, 2012. A self-described campaigner for human rights for minorities, the 53-year-old has a strong following online where a website and Facebook page have been set up to rally support for his defence.

His crimes, including speaking out against the government, carry the death penalty.

Maya Foa, director of the death penalty team at legal charity Reprieve, told the International Business Times nobody should have to go through what Ali is going through.

“Ali was a vulnerable child when he was arrested and this ordeal began. His execution — based apparently on the authorities’ dislike for his uncle, and his involvement in anti-government protests — would violate international law and the most basic standards of decency. It must be stopped.”

Refugees Flee American Aggression

It must be stated unequivocally that these are regime change refugees.”

Freedom Rider: Refugees Flee American Aggression

black agenda report

by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

Americans are made uncomfortable by pictures of drowned refugee children, but most cannot accept that their own government’s “unrelenting effort at regime change in Syria is the cause of this crisis.” U.S. corporate media parrot Washington’s lies, keeping tally of the displaced and doomed, but blaming Syria’s government for defending itself against western-backed jihadists. Rather than demand the West leash its dogs, “they call for more war.”

The ongoing migrant crisis in Europe is a direct result of American and NATO interventions and aggressions in the Middle East. Had those partners in crime not exacted regime change in Libya, that country would not be a magnet for human trafficking and an embarkation point for desperate people. The plan to produce the same result in Syria has failed thus far but there is still chaos and suffering on a mass scale. These refugees exist because of imperialism which has laid waste to nation after nation.

Millions of people around the world are asking how they can help the refugees now streaming into Europe. Personal generosity may seem commendable but in this case it ought to be discouraged. The individuals who want to help should instead spend time demanding that their governments cease intervening in the affairs of other nations. They should also demand that the truth of imperialist guilt be exposed.

Americans were largely unaware of the growing crisis until images of dead children appeared in the media. In particular the photograph of two year-old Aylan Kurdi, who drowned on a beach off the coast of Turkey, will go down in history as an image which brought this crisis to international attention. The Kurdi family were trying to flee a region of Syria overrun by ISIS when the mother and two children drowned. An estimated 2,500 others have also died in attempts to reach Europe.

The corporate media cover the journeys of the would-be migrants and act as though the cause of the catastrophe is somehow mysterious. They never state what is true and obvious, that the western nations created this misery. They and their allies among the Persian Gulf monarchies are entirely to blame.

These refugees exist because of imperialism.”

The United States and other NATO governments have not been shy in exposing their support for so-called rebels in Syria and continue to utter the loathsome phrase, “Assad must go.” In the topsy-turvy immoral universe of the United States it is acceptable to destroy Syria without one word of condemnation coming from the nation’s editorial pages. Instead politicians and the press repeat their lies and when they speak of war at all they lay blame at the feet of the Syrian government which has a right to defend its territory and sovereignty.

The sight of the dead child seemed to galvanize what other horror stories could not. More than 200 people drowned near the Libyan city of Zuwarah at the same time that the Kurdis attempted their escape. Some 70 bodies of refugees were discovered suffocated in a truck in Austria. The reactions of horror are understandable but they must be met with simple but powerful actions. First, it must be stated unequivocally that these are regime change refugees. They would be living peacefully in their native lands if NATO and their henchmen hadn’t destroyed their countries.

Secondly, call out the liars. The politicians, so-called journalists and “humanitarian” organizations have political agendas which never blame the true culprits. While the corporate media print and broadcast false tales about Russian troops in Syria the lies must be labeled as such. Racism must be exposed as well. Hungarian Prime Minister Victor Orban openly said, “Please don’t come” and added for good measure that he didn’t want too many Muslims to enter his country. Orban said out loud what other European leaders say behind closed doors. He has merely expressed in public what others say in private. Non-white people need not apply.

In the topsy-turvy immoral universe of the United States it is acceptable to destroy Syria without one word of condemnation coming from the nation’s editorial pages.”

While officials In Washington, London and Paris dissemble because their hands are dirty, the corporate media ratchet up the call to “do something.” If they did their job they would tell readers and viewers why families with small children risk their lives in unseaworthy boats. Instead they all call for more war. They repeat official propaganda and make up some of their own. The unrelenting effort at regime change in Syria is the cause of this crisis and more destruction will only increase the awful toll on human beings.

Sending money to aid organizations is an easy out. Democratic nations are supposed to respond to popular demand. The people of Europe and the United States should therefore start demanding that their nations cease the entire imperial project, and not just in Syria. Aylan Kurdi is not the only child killed by intervention and invasion. Children are dead in Somalia and Gaza and Libya and Iraq and Afghanistan and Pakistan and in Syria too. Sadly, there will be more unless those who claim to be horrified actively oppose their own leaders who are all accessories to many crimes.

Margaret Kimberley’s Freedom Rider column appears weekly in BAR, and is widely reprinted elsewhere. She maintains a frequently updated blog as well as at http://freedomrider.blogspot.com. Ms. Kimberley lives in New York City, and can be reached via e-Mail at Margaret.Kimberley(at)BlackAgendaReport.com.

Lying Saudis Boast of Taking-In “MILLIONS” of the Syrians They Have Made Into Refugees

cnn refugees

[SEE:  EXPOSED: How Oil-rich Gulf states have failed to resettle a SINGLE Syrian refugee]

Saudi Arabia Says Accepted ‘Millions’ of Syrians, Facts Disagree

telesur

A Syrian refugee prays on a rail track at the Greek-Macedonian border, near the village of Idomeni, August 22, 2015A Syrian refugee prays on a rail track at the Greek-Macedonian border, near the village of Idomeni, August 22, 2015 | Photo: Reuters Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia dismissed criticism over having zero Syrian refugees, saying it has welcomed millions. However, all of them are temporary workers.

Saudi Arabia defended itself Friday against mounting criticism the government is facing for not accepting Syrian refugees since the conflict began four years ago. The criticism come after photos of the dead body of Syrian three-year-old boy Aylan Kurdi went viral and prompted international outcry against Europe and other rich countries around the world for refusing to admit Syrian refugees. The Saudi Press Agency (SPA) cited an unnamed official source in the foreign ministry as saying that the kingdom found it “important to clarify these efforts with facts and numbers in response to media reports, which included false and misleading accusations about the Kingdom.” RELATED: Negative Freedom, US Liberals and Saudi Arabia People around the Arab world took to social media and Twitter using the hashtag “Arab conscience,” in English and Arabic languages, to express their outrage over the fact that Saudi Arabia and the other five Arab Gulf states from the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) – United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Bahrain, Kuwait and Oman – were hosting no Syrian refugees. The Saudi official said that the Kingdom “has received around 2.5 million Syrians since the beginning of the conflict. In order to ensure their dignity and safety, the Kingdom adopted a policy that does not treat them as refugees or place them in refugee camps.” However, the country and its five allies are not signatories of the United Nation’s convention on refugees, which has governed international law on asylum since World War II. Thus, those countries do not have a legal category for refugees. In fact, the GCC countries, including Saudi Arabia, accepted those Syrians as well as those of other nationalities only on temporary work visas, which they must have before they arrive to the country, or on temporary residence visas for minors as dependents on their close relatives who have already been residing there. Jane Kinninmont, the assistant head of the Middle East and North Africa program at Chatham House, the Royal Institute of International Affairs, said in a recent article that those Syrians allowed in GCC countries were on temporary visas, which are hard to obtain in most cases. “The lack of recognition for refugees has far less to do with attitudes to the Syrian crisis than with the potential claims that could arise from larger migrant populations—many of whom come from unstable or repressive countries—and the general reluctance of Gulf governments to give permanent residency to anyone beyond a small pool of citizens, with few exceptions,” said Kinninmont. RELATED: Saudi Arabia – Facing A Serf Revolt In the GCC, those who are not citizens are treated as expatriates even after working in those countries for decades. They are also forced to leave the country whenever they lose their jobs or reach a retirement age. Minors, who are dependents on their parents, are required to leave the country by the age of 18 even if they were born in the country, as they also have temporary residence visas since the day they are born. Migrants make up the majority of the workforce in all the Arab Gulf countries, and in the UAE and Qatar, more than 80 percent of the population are migrants who lack civil rights despite having lived in the country for years. In addition to not taking refugees, Saudi Arabia, the UAE and regional Arab nations have been bombing Yemen for the past six months, producing millions of refugees and internally displaced people. This content was originally published by teleSUR at the following address:
“http://www.telesurtv.net/english/news/Saudi-Arabia-Says-Acepted-Millions-of-Syrians-Facts-Disagree-20150911-0049.html”. If you intend to use it, please cite the source and provide a link to the original article. http://www.teleSURtv.net/english

Saudi Scum Bans Adoption of Syrian Or Iraqi Orphans Who Manage To Survive Wahhabi Terror Onslaught

syrian orphansBan on adopting Syrian, Iraqi orphans

SaudiGazette

 

DAMMAM — The Ministry of Social Affairs has prohibited Saudi families from adopting children of foreign or Arab nationalities and said the ministry is only concerned with taking care of Saudi orphans. According to Al-Hayat newspaper on Thursday, the ministry said the children who lose their parents in areas of conflicts such as Iraq and Syria are the concern of the international humanitarian organizations. Latifa Al-Tamimi, director of the women social supervision office in the Eastern Province, said the ministry is also looking after children of Saudi fathers with foreign wives abandoned abroad.

The USA and NATO have destroyed Iraq and Libya with their military intervention, bombs and missiles

Leader of Austria’s Far-right Blames Migrant Crisis on U.S., NATO

haaretz logo

Heinz-Christian Strache says intervention in Iraq and Syria created infrastructure for ISIS.

Michael Shields and Shadia Nasralla

Austrian Freedom party leader Heinz-Christian Strache
Austrian Freedom party leader Heinz-Christian Strache delivers a speech during a protest against an Islamic mosque in Vienna May 14, 2009.Reuters

REUTERS – The leader of Austria’s far-right Freedom Party (FPO) has blamed the United States and the NATO Western military alliance for triggering the refugee crisis that has overwhelmed Europe.

“The USA and NATO have destroyed Iraq and Libya with their military intervention, bombs and missiles; provided financial, logistical and military support to the opposition against President Assad in Syria, and thus made possible the destruction, chaos, suffering and radical Islamism (IS) in the region,” Heinz-Christian Strache said on his Facebook page.

Strache’s opposition FPO party, which leads opinion polls ahead of the centrist Social Democrats and People’s Party coalition partners, typically espouses anti-Muslim and isolationist approaches to dealing with foreign policy.
Refugees at Westbahnhof station in Vienna, Austria. September 5, 2015.
Strache, who is running for mayor in Vienna elections next month, scoffed at what he called U.S. President Barack Obama’s suggestions that Europe is primarily responsible for handling the wave of migrants flooding the continent from crisis spots in the Middle East, Africa and Asia.

“The USA for decades has started fires in the Middle East and then has then the chutzpah to claim that responsibility for the flood of refugees unleashed lies with Europe. That’s geostrategic destabilization at its finest,” he wrote.

In a separate interview with Austrian broadcaster ORF, he called for erecting an army-patrolled fence along neutral Austria’s eastern border with Hungary and for letting in Christian and Jewish refugees rather than Muslims.

“We don’t want an Islamisation of Europe. We don’t want our Christian-Western culture to perish,” he said.

Saudi War In Middle East Aims To Forcefully Convert Or Kill All Shia Muslims and Christians

[Anyone who can’t see by now that the real “Sunni Caliphate” will be “Greater Saudi Arabia” has not been paying attention to Saudi aggression in the region.  This has been Obama’s goal from the beginning, to hand control over the problematic Middle East to his Saudi patrons. 

(This seems to confirm the normally scoffed-at conspiracy theory, that it has been the Saudis, NOT THE JEWS, who have controlled this so-called “war on terror” from the beginning.)

  War-mongering king Salman has been arrogantly open about his intentions to cleanse the Middle East of Shiites and other religious apostates (this would include Christians, obviously), even whike he pretends to be fighting against the Caliphate of ISIS.  The Saudi royals and their Gulf subordinates have been creating their own Sunni Caliphate, right before our eyes.  The fact that the world’s only hope for humanitarianism, the United Nations, would allow a tribal Arab king to murder thousands of Shia Houthis while conducting its religious ethnic-cleansing operation on the rest of them is proof that human compassion is just another commodity that can be bought and sold like anything else.]

 We will destroy the Houthis if they do not come to reason [i.e., convert to Sunni Islam–ed.].”–Saudi ambassador to the United States, Adel Al-Jubeir

[Such is the human condition, when laid bare before us. 
Where is God in this equation?]

[SEE:UN Capitulation To Saudi Demands Equals Partnership In Ethnic-Cleansing of Middle East]

Religious eugenics

Russia-Today

How Saudi Arabia is sponsoring a frightening new movement in the ME

Catherine Shakdam

© Khaled Abdullah
Blanketed by its wealth and protected by political alliances, Saudi Arabia has covertly run and promoted a new movement in the Middle East: religious eugenics, under the false pretense of opposing the rise of Iran. From Syria to Bahrain and Yemen the evidence is overwhelming.

Earlier this August, the Red Cross added its voice to those of other humanitarian and rights groups in its condemnation of Saudi Arabia’s war in Yemen, lifting the lid on Riyadh’s little house of horrors in southern Arabia.

In no uncertain terms Peter Maurer, the head of the international Red Cross told reporters he had seldom witnessed such degree of devastation. He said: “Yemen after five months looks like Syria after five years … The images I have from Sanaa and Aden remind of what I have seen in Syria.”

He stressed “the firepower with which this war is fought on the ground and in the air is causing more suffering than in other societies, which are stronger and where infrastructures are better off and people are wealthier and have reserves and can escape.”

A country in ruins, Yemen is also a nation in permanent mourning, as every day its people are relentlessly slain – casualties of a violent and murderous colonial war – the latest victims of Riyadh’s expansionist military campaign in the Middle East.

According to official UNICEF tallies, “close to 2,800 people have been killed and almost 13,000 people injured (including 279 children killed and 402 injured, respectively). An estimated 1 million people have been internally displaced (an increase of 122 percent since the crisis began), and some 400,000 people have sought protection in neighboring countries.”

While such figures are horrifying, they fall short of the truth. Agencies on the ground have already said that well over 500 children have been killed in Saudi-led air raids, most specifically in northern Yemen, where the war has been most devastating and aggressive. On average, children account for a quarter of all deaths and casualties.

For those who have managed to find shelter, living conditions are catastrophic. With no water, no electricity, little food and no access to health facilities ten million children are at risk of disease and starvation – again, North Yemen has suffered the brunt of this crisis.

Never in its history has Yemen experienced such a degree of pain and utter despair. But while wars are generally ugly affairs since they require their fill of blood before the canons finally fall silent, Saudi Arabia’s campaign in Yemen is far from ordinary.

But not only that, Saudi Arabia’s foreign policy in the Middle East is betraying a disturbing and rather ominous covert agenda, one which resonates with ethnic engineering and religious eugenics.

And if so far few have connected the dots, their hands tied by Riyadh’s overbearing and overarching control on media outlets and the grand political narrative, it is high time we learn to recognize Al Saud’s campaign for what it really is: a concerted effort to cleanse the region of all religious minorities, beginning with Shia Islam, its self-appointed nemesis.

To put it in simple terms – under Saudi Arabia’ suffocating grip, religious minorities are dying a slow and painful death.

From Syria to Bahrain, the kingdom’s eugenics campaign threatens the region’s religious and ethnic patrimonies, in a fashion reminiscent of Nazi Germany, when Jews and Gypsies were labeled undesirables.

Saudi Arabia is now building 600 mile wall to keep dangerous people out. What a concept! #tcot#pjnet#FoxNewspic.twitter.com/u056SB7HxW

In an interview this April, the Saudi ambassador to the United States, Adel Al-Jubeir lifted the veil on Riyadh’s determination to carry through its agenda, no matter the price, no matter the impact. He asserted: “This campaign is having a huge impact in Yemen and it is not over yet. For us failure is not an option. We will destroy the Houthis if they do not come to reason.”

If subtitles were running they would read – the Houthis will be destroyed because they represent a religious challenge to Wahhabism’s hegemony in the region. The Houthis, and the majority of all northerners in Yemen are Zaidis, a branch of Shia Islam.

Is it then a surprise that while South Yemen has benefited from humanitarian aid, North Yemen has witnessed a spike in violence, its seaports targeted to prevent food and medicine to be ferried in? Riyadh is quite simply profiling aid to carry out its religious cleansing, punishing millions for their rejection of Riyadh’s religion.

Saudi Arabia is an absolute theocracy, and as such its very raison d’ être is rooted within its violent and reactionary interpretation of Islam: Wahhabism, the ideology which inspired the likes of Al Qaeda and Islamic State. One of the main tenets of Wahhabism actually calls for the destruction of all religious sects, Islamic or otherwise. For Wahhabis there can be no greater glory than to massacre “apostates.”

And while Riyadh’s neo-eugenics movement has taken on different forms, operating under various denominations depending on the countries it has targeted, the underlying current has been the destruction of religious pluralism.

Let me ask you this: Is there a real difference between Manama’s campaign to strip Shia Bahrainis from their nationality because the House of Al Khalifa seeks to eliminate all political and religious competition, and Islamic State’s murderous rampage against religious minorities in Iraq and Syria? And though Bahrain’s campaign might appear more “elegant” in that it is more covert and pernicious, the intent remains the same.

From the language used to the policies it has carried out in the Middle East, Riyadh has pushed the sectarian card, christening the resistance movement against its eugenics movement, the so-called Shia crescent threat.

The real threat here lies with Riyadh’s twisted crusade and sickening sectarian agenda.

Catherine Shakdam
Catherine Shakdam is a political analyst, writer and commentator for the Middle East with a special focus on radical movements and Yemen. Her writings have been published in world-renowned publications such as Foreign Policy Journal, Mintpress News, the Guardian, Your Middle East, Middle East Monitor, Middle East Eye, Open Democracy, Eurasia Review and many more. A regular pundit on RT, she has also contributed her analyses to Etejah TV, IRIB radio, Press TV and NewsMax TV. Director of Programs at the Shafaqna Institute for Middle Eastern Studies and consultant for Anderson Consulting, her research and work on Yemen were used by the UN Security Council in relation to Yemen looted funds in 2015.

State Terrorism Is State Terrorism, Even When It Is Made By America

[This is a blast from the past, one of the first articles posted on No Sunglasses, 8-19-2008.  The message remains the same,

war criminals
even though Barack Obama has since replaced the Bush dictatorship and multiplied US state terrorism exponentially. 

When read in tandem with the following piece, the message seems highly relevant today (SEE: Escaping The Age Of Mass Delusion—Humanity’s Only Hope).]

If We Could Speak to the People, What Would We Say?

Peter Chamberlin

If we could reach beyond the news filter that keeps real news from the
American people, what would we say? If we figured-out how to get one message
out to the people, what could we say that would actually motivate them to
take a stand for themselves, for their families, for their country and their
world?

The same studies that power the social planners claim that barely 10% of any
group of people follow reason, meaning they cannot be reasoned with. The
same studies also predict that a clear majority of any targeted population
will respond to fear in a shock scenario. We might try reasoning with the
sleeping sheeple, but we would have better odds if we tried to scare them
awake. If we can convey a true image of the evil being done with our
consent, then we might shock the people into the harsh light of reality.

Our leaders are about to allow the economic collapse of the United States,
without telling you beforehand, or helping American citizens to make
emergency preparations.

Their solution to the problem is to seize control of the post-collapse world
militarily, eliminating everyone who gets in the way. This military solution
accepts a very large loss of human lives as necessary “collateral damage” to
the brave plan to take control of the world. When the American people are
overwhelmed by the economic catastrophe, they will hardly notice large
planned population reductions.

All of this is an acceptable solution to our government. For those who try
to protest after the “hammer goes down,” there are hundreds of detention
camps, capable of holding thousands of dissidents, waiting to accept your
silent screams.

But until we get to that point of no return, steps are being taken to reduce
and eventually eliminate all protests to governmental violence.
The Constitution is being reduced piecemeal to a powerless piece of paper.
The courts are bowing down to executive decrees.

Mankind is being kept in check by his own fear. In the face of fear we react
like herd animals, bunching together in search of elusive safety, making us
easily manipulated by those who have mastered the psychology of fear.

Terror is a key element of American politics. Votes are obtained by
frightening the people into your corner, or away from your “unsafe”
opponent. Candidacies are won and lost by negative campaigns of lies and
half-truths that paint your opponent as an unreasonable madmen and yourself
as a heroic messianic figure. US leaders depend upon political terrorism to
get their way in the world, from the local level of “Homeland Insecurity,”
to the international arena, where acts of bloody terrorism are routinely
committed to frighten the locals into political compliance.

“Terrorism–n. The unlawful use or threatened use of force or violence by a
person or an organized group against people or property with the intention
of intimidating or coercing societies or governments, often for ideological
or political reasons.”

State terrorism has been an integral part of American government for many
decades. Beginning with the terror campaign of carpet-bombing and
fire-bombing of civilian centers in Germany at the end of World War II (and
the a-bombs), American and British scientists have studied the psychology of
mass fear. This wholesale terror campaign was a new type of warfare,
targeting civilians, instead of concentrating on government centers. The aim
was political terrorism, to turn the citizens of Germany into political
tools to be used to force the German government into submission. By studying
the socio-economic repercussions of the fire-bombing, the American and
British psychologists and sociologists learned how to herd entire
populations through the tactics of fear.

Acts of violent terrorism for political and economic gains have continued
since “the Great War,” against both friend and foe.
Historically, American terror operations like “Operation Gladio” have been
aimed at our allies in Europe even more than against our enemies.
In “Gladio,” (as in all American terror campaigns committed under the banner
of “democracy”), public figures and officials are assassinated, attacks are
carried-out upon police and military forces of sympathetic governments,
trains are bombed with great loss of life, and “madmen”
go on public shooting sprees, all for the sake of scaring European national
opinion into America’s corner.

As always, American terror is hidden by the use of proxies and mercenary
forces, who are blamed for attacks committed covertly by our military and
intelligence agencies. The “war on terror” itself is probably the world’s
longest-running terrorist operation, intended to create the impression that
American-sponsored terror attacks are really the work of a new non-existent,
highly-organized global terrorist adversary. In simpler terms, the United
States government
is the center of world terrorism. Our own government, our
“defender”
against terrorism, is responsible for most terrorist attacks upon innocent
people in the world, that thousands of American troops are defending
against. American-trained forces are killing American soldiers who then
retaliate further against innocent civilian populations where the terrorists
choose to hide.

“Our government” is not really ours at all, having long ago surrendered our
national sovereignty to a consortium of global financiers through the
Federal Reserve System that controls the US.

“Give me control of a nation’s money and I care not who makes her laws.”
Mayer Amschel Rothschild

In the process of bringing the US under the control of the international
financiers, represented by the Rothschild interests centered in Europe,
American industry has been destroyed (except for the military-industrial
complex
, needed to pound the recalcitrant world into submission), while the
sham called “democracy” was constructed to create the impression amongst the
unruly people that they actually have power. When the self-appointed
American aristocracy allowed the common man the “right” to vote, it was done
to stave-off more violent opposition and to deceive with the impression of
shared power. Today, decent folk, believing in the illusion of “fair
elections,” remain a real obstacle to saving American freedom from the
hidden dictatorship, which owns all the candidates produced in the
“two-party” system. As long as the majority believes in the system and
continues to empower its candidates, the dictatorship can remain hidden. In
order to expose the hidden machinations of the secret dictators we have to
burst the bubble of illusory democratic power.

At the same time, the fact that the dictatorship wishes to remain hidden,
playing the game of democracy, pretending to seek the counsel of the people,
then they are vulnerable. If they choose to continue the charade of
democratic government, then they have to limit their actions to those which
appear to be “freely” granted by the people through their “representatives.”
As long as those representatives hold the seats of power given them by the
overlords, they will answer only to them. But if enough people call the
representatives to task for failing American democracy they can at least be
forced to publicly answer the charges of failure. If the masses put the fear
of democracy and righteous retribution into the minds of the Congressional
slaves of the money-powers, then they too will begin to retreat from their
open support for measures calling for more war and less freedom. If the
people fully use the First Amendment powers to make democracy work then we
can turn the tide against the center.

They cannot openly carry-out the violent measures required for creating a
world dictatorship and a permanent state of war, taking the brazen violent
steps that have been planned, such as launching nuclear first strikes, or
using biologic attacks to “cull the herd.” As long as the real terrorists
are pretending to be democrats they must act accordingly. Until the world
rises-up against the American imperialist forces in sufficient numbers to
frighten the American people into becoming willing participants in the
genocide of half the earth, other lesser, though equally as threatening,
provocations will continue to be found to frighten us into authorizing the
slaughter.

By placing the will of the people into their formula, they have created a
time lag between cause and effect, where the planned actions must be
preceded by a provocation that motivates the people into consenting to their
own destruction. By incorporating a basically moral people into a completely
immoral plan for world domination, the master controllers have constructed a
flawed plan that depends upon a scientific effort to change good people into
bad. In a country as religious-natured as this one, the great leaders may
have falsely calculated that they can make a nation fear so much for its
life that it would sell its soul for a little peace of mind.

American state terrorism has also been directed against the citizens of the
United States themselves, through more subtle “silent weapons.”
For the entire duration of American terrorist operations against the world,
our government has waged war upon the minds of its loyal citizens through an
arsenal of psychological, economic, and legislative weaponry. The purpose of
these attacks has always been to destroy the American economy and the minds
of the people, while using the economic destruction to justify the full use
of the American military power against the rest of the world.

American leaders consistently work against American interests, while
enriching themselves and their wealthy sponsors who reap opportunity from
our Nation’s demise. In order for these anti-American power-brokers to force
the world into a global dictatorship with them at the helm, they have to
play the “democracy” card, while simultaneously undermining it. Our leaders
have to persuade us into allowing them to destroy democracy in the name of
preserving it. We the People have to be persuaded to peacefully allow the
planned destruction to take place before it can take place. We have to
accept our bleak fates, before it can become our fates.

But the scary truth about the American state terrorist acts that have been
committed so far is that they have provided the needed practice for the
despicable acts that are yet to come. The American war upon the human race
will utilize every weapon in our arsenal, once the way for their use has
been cleared. Weapons of mass destruction come in many forms. In a war for
control of the earth’s resources it would seem more logical to use the
weapons that kill, such as biological weapons, as opposed to those which
merely destroy everything. Instant Death is about to enter the world through
American hands.

The tragedy of our time, perhaps the ultimate tragedy of all time, is
roaring down the highway of life right at us, or is the greater tragedy the
weakness of the mind of man which is allowing this to happen? If we have the
power of change within us and we do nothing, inaction is an act of suicide.

We have to overcome this innate human weakness to prepare our fellow man for
the things that are about to befall this battered planet. So many things are
avoidable in this existence through the use of foresight; if only it was a
common human trait. Any sane person who sees oncoming danger will
automatically step out of its way. As a rule, we humans rarely choose to
step out of the way. Mankind has never been called “sane,” by anyone’s
definition. We must secretly harbor a deep desire to become “road kill” on
the cruel highway of life.

peter.chamberlin@hotmail.com

The Anatomy of A Psywar

The Anatomy of A Psywar

Intra-Taliban Warfare Hits the Streets of Kabul

afghan bomb [SEE: Huge Truck Bomb Blast Strikes Kabul ]

The latest series of bomb blasts in and near Kabul has exposed large holes in the official reporting on the war, including the mission itself.  Nothing is as it seems in Afghanistan.  If anything, the bombings have exposed the two official lies in the previous statement—that the bombings are by the actual “Taliban”— and that Mullah Mansour is the successor to Mullah Omar.  The bombings are evidence of the authors of the Kabul bombs and proof that Akhtar Mansour is NOT the legitimate, elected successor to Mullah Omar.

Mansour made his public debut in 2010, posing as “Mullah Omar’s second in command,” allegedly conducting “reconciliation” negotiations with the US.  He entered peace talks with American negotiators, under his real name, Mullah Akhtar Muhammad Mansour.  The charade continued until the counterfeit Mullah had served his purpose, at which time, another person was brought in to claim that Mansour was an imposter.  At which time, Mullah Omar released the following statement:
“The cunning enemy which has occupied our country, is trying, on the one hand, to expand its military operations on the basis of its double-standard policy and, on the other hand, wants to throw dust into the eyes of the people by spreading the rumors of negotiation.”
Mullah Omar announced, once again, that there would be no peace negotiations with any occupying power…period.  Any talk of peace with the Taliban, while remaining in Afghanistan, have been one-sided productions, offering various former Taliban as “negotiators,” to advance some new shift in the strategy, in order to reinforce the false image of a “peace-seeking” American, while making it possible for the war to drag on.  Prolonging the current war, until it can be transmuted into a completely new war.
Within 24 hrs, Friday, three major suicide-attacks strike in or near Kabul.  Western media sources are already crediting their man Mansour
Mansoor
with these massive, deadly blasts, but there has as yet been no evidence offered to substantiate these claims.  But the evidence that is offered, which is incontrovertible, is that all of these bomb blasts were directed at American or Afghan targets.  This means that America’s Mullah Mansour, is definitely NOT behind them.
The first massive truck-bomb (retro-fitted water tanker) hit a Special Forces base in Pul-i-Alam, Logar Province, on Friday night.

outside a police compound in Puli Alam, capital of Logar province. The Taliban said its targets were military and paramilitary units in Puli Alam

The next bombing that night was a massive Taliban suicide assault by at least one terrorist wearing a suicide-belt against the Logar police compound of the Afghan quick reaction force.
“Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid claimed responsibility for the attack on the Police Academy but made no mention of the other two attacks on Friday…killed more than 100 security personnel”
“Taliban spokesman” Zabihullah Mujahid has apparently worked for Afghans/CIA since they arrested him in 2011.  He has served as the conduit for the dead Taliban leader and for his CIA replacement, Mullah Mansour.
Last attack, occurring within 24 hrs, CIA/NDS Afghan Intelligence base, SPECIAL FORCES Camp Integrity,  KABUL.   All of the targets were Western, either intelligence or special forces, or both.  That rules-out every CIA puppet, like Mansour.  These attacks were intended to physically hurt the occupation forces and to embarrass Mansour’s pretend Taliban leadership, by demonstrating their inability to control their organization or their turf.  Someone brought these huge bombs into Kabul from somewhere, but as far as we know, the source of the bombs is already solved in the latest version of “evil personified,” Akhtar Mansour.
These are the known facts in the Kabul bombing investigations…,yet none of this will appear on any nightly news.  The news is too busy weaving the new story line, that the bombings were inter-Taliban warfare over peace negotiations.  Nobody will dwell upon the source of the bombs, which had to be state-supported, since all possible suspect governments are also parties to the pretend peace negotiations.  “Negotiating peace” with the Taliban does nothing for peace, while buying time for the Americans to push their terror war across new borders.

A successful psy-op would leave its targets confused and uncertain about the real war.  For those living under such a weaponized media, it would be impossible to know whether news reportage was factual, or even if there was a war at all.  We know that people die in Afghanistan everyday…beyond than we don’t really know anything.  All of our reported conflicts are thousands of miles away, buried deep inside undeveloped countries, too secluded and too treacherous for any but the most foolhardy reporters.  This means that all news comes through military censors, who relay information to the outside world, or through biased Imperial sources dispatched by Britain or America.  If the war being reported is being waged against the local government (AfPak), either directly or through proxies, then the military middle-men, who relay war news to the international community are hostile sources, who will twist the news to suit their current psywar strategy.  This makes ALL NEWS about Afghanistan or Pakistan, or news coming from the region, completely unreliable, even dangerous to the person reading it, in that it is corrosive to the truth.

This is the news environment prevailing over ALL Imperial wars.  We cannot believe ANY reporting we receive in its entirety, making it necessary for us to dissect all news into its component parts, so that we might identify obvious truths which have been buried under half-true or false information.
We have entered a new phase in the war against the Taliban, characterized primarily by major escalations in the propaganda war.  The American intelligence war has abandoned the real Afghan battlefield, in favor of the battlefield of the mind.   Thus begins a new, more intense form of psychological war, waged by CIA psy-warriors, using their inhuman, weaponized psychology, to twist the minds of the Taliban, the Afghans, the Pakistani and American peoples.  Deceptions, greed and betrayal have been combined, to form a new type of offensive weapon, calculated to overcome all resistance to America’s real plans for Afghanistan…the ones involving pipelines, vast fields of hydrocarbons and transport corridors stretching deep into Central Asia, from the Arabian Sea.
The Afghan war has been basically running on cruise-control, since the Iraq invasion, until now.  The sudden revelation on the death of Mullah Omar and the potential death of Jalaluddin Haqqani have exposed the man behind the curtains, Mullah Akhtar Mansour, who has been issuing orders under the dead leader’s name since 2013.  Mullah Mansour has been leading the anti Omar Taliban for a long time, working secretly for The Empire, taking credit for terrorist attacks (SEE: Karzai reportedly suspects US hand in recent Afghanistan attacksJan 28, 2014), promoting fake Taliban initiatives and fake “peace talks,” with “former Taliban” agents who were really representing no one.
By issuing orders under the name of the dead leader Omar, Mansour has managed to maneuver himself into the Taliban driver’s seat, were it not for the opposition of Omar’s family and the Taliban faithful.  Mullah Omar’s son is now leading the anti-Mansour opposition.  According to one group of the most faithful Taliban, who calls itself, Afghanistan Islamic Movement Fidai Mahaz, Mansour and his minions murdered the Emir of the Taliban, by getting counterfeit medicine for him from Dubai.
The Fidai Mahaz are the remnants of the original followers of Mullah Dadullah, before he moved to Pakistan to jump-start the Tehreek i-Taliban (SEE:  The Dadullah Front And The Assassination of Arsala Rahmani May 14, 2012 ).  According to them, news about Omar’s death in 2013 was released by the Mansour gang, because the emir of the Fidai Mahaz revealed the results of their research into his death, which led directly to Mansour’s inner circle.  Mansour’s CIA masters hoped to hide the matter of the poisoning beneath the false counter-claim that Omar, like bin Laden, had died under the watchful eyes of the Pak. military.

Fake Taliban negotiations began with a Western initiative, despite Mullah Omar’s clear rejection of negotiations as long as Afghanistan was an occupied country.  Afghan Taliban sabotaged the US initiative by killing the High Peace Council representatives.  Later on, Pakistan helped sabotage the talks when Mullah Baradar and friends were arrested for making side deals with the CIA.  Baradar’s arrest cut-off the American liasons.  After that, the US and collaborators established the fake Taliban office in Doha, in order to carry-on the charade elsewhere.  The real Mullah Omar spoke-up and condemned the fake negotiations.  Shortly after that, he was dead.

 It was then, that Pakistan and China got into the peacemaking mood, by starting their own fake Afghanistan/Taliban negotiations in Pakistan.
The Fidai Mahaz are leading the opposition to Pakistan and the new fake peace talks.
therearenosunglasses@hotmail.com

UN Capitulation To Saudi Demands Equals Partnership In Ethnic-Cleansing of Middle East

“the U.N. de facto institutionalized aid segregation by allowing humanitarian relief to be conditional to certain criteria: political affiliation and religious orientation.

With Yemen set as a precedent, who’s to say that a similar setup will not be replicated in other countries in the region — mainly, Syria, Iraq, Bahrain and Libya?”

source

[This is the standard by which Middle Eastern human beings will be granted the right to eat by the Royal Saudi Caliphate.  Anyone who can’t see the real “Sunni Caliphate” by now has not been paying attention to Saudi aggression in the region.  War-mongering king Salman has been arrogantly open about his intentions to cleanse the Middle East of Shiites and other religious apostates (this would include Christians, obviously). even whike he pretends to be fighting against the Caliphate of ISIS.  The Saudi royals and their Gulf subordinates have been creating a Saudi Caliphate, right before our eyes.  The fact that the world’s only hope for humanitarianism, the United Nations, would allow a tribal Arab king to enforce Draconian standards on simple aid intended to keep civilians alive (amidst a hot, desert war), is proof that human compassion is just another commodity that can be bought and sold like anything else. 

Such is the human condition, when laid bare before us. 
Where is God in this equation?]

Saudi Arabia opened its checkbook in response to a U.N. appeal for funds to cover the most urgent humanitarian aid to Yemen. But that aid would come at a steep price and with more than a few strings attached.

A Yemeni man looks at a World Food Program ship at the port of Aden, Yemen, Tuesday, July 21, 2015. The WFP ship carrying badly needed aid arrived in Yemen's war-torn southern city of Aden on Tuesday, the first vessel chartered by the U.N. agency to berth there since Saudi-led airstrikes on Shiite rebels in the country began in March. (AP Photo/Ahmed Sameer)

SANAA, Yemen — Five months have passed since Saudi Arabia declared war on Yemen, and for all its might, political resolve and military arsenal, the kingdom has yet to bring the poorest nation on the Arabian Peninsula to heel.

Its institutions in tatters, its military apparatus reduced to rubbles, and with no economy to speak of, Yemen’s imminent collapse has been foretold time and time again by experts and state officials. Yet these predictions have not quite come to fruition.

In its match against Goliath, David is resisting. In rallies, demonstrations and even an open letter signed by 18 Yemen scholars and experts living in the United States and Britain, tens of thousands of Yemenis and others around the world have decried Riyadh’s actions, calling for an end to all violence.

Yet this dedication to opposing Riyadh’s actions doesn’t mean Yemenis aren’t suffering. The World Health Organization issued a statement in June, warning that a “major health crisis is unfolding in Yemen, where hospitals have been destroyed, health workers killed and critical shortages of food, medical supplies and fuel are causing large-scale suffering.”

In early July, the United Nations declared the situation in Yemen to be the highest level of humanitarian emergency. According to a U.N. report published July 7, over 1,500 civilians have been killed, 3,600 have been injured, and over a million have been displaced in the ongoing conflict.

A “major health crisis is unfolding in Yemen, where hospitals have been destroyed, health workers killed and critical shortages of food, medical supplies and fuel are causing large-scale suffering.”

-World Health Organization

By U.N. estimates, about 80 percent of all Yemenis — more than 20 million people — are in need of humanitarian aid.

In late March, Amnesty International confirmed the deaths of at least six children under the age of 10 during a Saudi-led air raid that killed 25 people. The report read: “The organization spoke to medical personnel at four different hospitals where the dead were taken after being pulled from the rubble of 14 houses that were hit in a residential neighbourhood near the city’s international airport.”

Already the poorest and most vulnerable population in the Peninsula and arguably the Greater Middle East, Yemenis have seen their livelihoods and freedom of movement disintegrate under Saudi Arabia’s war momentum. In late April, Saudi Arabia bombed Sanaa International Airport, effectively trapping civilians within Yemen’s borders.

Despite mounting evidence of abuses and war crimes, it would take the international rights community several months to stand up to the oil giant. On July 27, Human Rights Watch unequivocally slammed Saudi Arabia for a litany of human rights violations. The report reads:

Saudi-led coalition airstrikes that killed at least 65 civilians, including 10 children, and wounded dozens in the Yemeni port city of Mokha on July 24, 2015, are an apparent war crime. Starting between 9:30 and 10 p.m., coalition airplanes repeatedly struck two residential compounds of the Mokha Steam Power Plant, which housed plant workers and their family members.”

With fierce battles raging across Yemen, and as warplanes continue to rain lead onto heavily populated areas, Saudi Arabia has been looking for innovative ways to exert pressure onto the resistance movement. It is now withholding humanitarian aid to Yemen’s civilians to tame the growing insurrection movement against its rule and thus secure victory in the face of international law — all under the guise of the United Nations.

The kingdom is holding hostage not just Yemen but to some extent the international community, using the United Nations’ humanitarian institutions to wage war. It’s using institutions meant to offer relief as a means of weaponizing aid.

Hassan Jayache, a senior leader of the Houthi movement, which took control of Yemen earlier this year, told MintPress News that local NGOs have found themselves caught in a political web, forced to surrender their neutrality to secure not just funding but access to areas where aid is needed.

“The Saudis have exerted political pressures onto local NGOs and international aid organizations, demanding that aid be restricted to pre-approved segments of the population, based on political affiliations and according to religious criteria,” Jayache said.

“In other words, Al Saud has decided to starve the Shias of Yemen, hoping to break the Houthis’ momentum.”

Turning aid agencies into weapons of war

Mohammed Al-Emad, a Yemen-based journalist and political commentator, says Saudi Arabia called on several media organizations in the Middle East, the United States and Europe, demanding that “coverage on Yemen be sanitized and in keeping with Riyadh’s chosen political narrative.”

Wikileaks Comic While Al-Emad’s claims could be considered bias, WikiLeaks published a series of confidential cables pointing to systematic media/PR manipulation on the part of the Saudis.

But if the international community had been standing silent before Saudi Arabia’s war crimes, exploiting what Al-Emad describes as a convenient media blackout to avoid addressing some sticky legal points, Riyadh’s move against the U.N. might prove one indiscretion too many for anyone to ignore.

The work of King Salman and his allies to sabotage U.N.-organized aid to Yemen started on April 17 in the wake of a U.N. emergency flash appeal for $274 million to respond to the most pressing humanitarian needs over the following three months.

Speaking on Yemenis’ hardship, Humanitarian Coordinator Johannes Van Der Klaauw stressed:

“The devastating conflict in Yemen takes place against the backdrop of an existing humanitarian crisis that was already one of the largest and most complex in the world … Thousands of families have now fled their homes as a result of the fighting and airstrikes. Ordinary families are struggling to access health care, water, food and fuel – basic requirements for their survival.”

Saudi Arabia immediately volunteered the exact amount requested. But the aid would come with strings attached.

Vice News reported in June that Saudi officials leaned on U.N. officials to sabotage aid deliveries, threatening to close the kingdom’s checkbook should U.N. agencies deny Riyadh’s requests.

Based on a U.N. memo obtained by Vice, the media outlet reported that the Saudi government imposed unprecedented conditions on aid agencies, demanding that assistance be limited to Saudi-approved areas and confined to strictly Sunni civilian populations.

A Yemeni volunteer carries bags of rice to displaced people

“If such despicable logic can somehow be expected from a power which has wielded sectarianism to sow discord and from chaos rise a tyrant, what of the UN, an institution which claims itself impartial and fair?” Hasan Sufyani, a leading political analyst at the Sana’a Institute for Arabic Studies, asked MintPress.

He added:

If humanitarian organizations are to be subjected to the rules of realpolitik then truly the world has reached a dark chapter in its history and reverted back to organized barbarism.

Still, no well-thinking Western powers has thought to challenge Saudi Arabia’s war crimes in Yemen. In a world system where capitalism reigns king, the rich and haughty stand above the pettiness of the rule of law.”

As a rule of thumb, and to avoid political entanglements, humanitarian organizations tend to shy away from donations which come with strings attached, especially when they fall under the umbrella of the OCHA.

Meant as a supranational institution, OCHA was never intended to be manipulated as an instrument of pressure, legal absolution or, in the case of Yemen, a weapon of war.

$244M, split nine ways

Playing aid as both a military tactic and a PR exercise to redeem its atrocious human rights record and whitewash its war crimes in Yemen, Saudi Arabia has held the U.N. hostage to its policies.

Such shadowing and lobbying on the part of Saudi Arabia had Yemeni officials waving the political red flag.

Ali al-Bukhaiti, a prominent member of the Houthis’ political arm, told MintPress his office has vehemently denounced Riyadh’s attempts to “buy the U.N. out to better corner Sana’a government and foil the resistance movement.”

Yet it appears the train was already far too out of the station for anyone to hit the brakes.

By late June, amid reports of a worsening humanitarian catastrophe in Yemen, the Saudi government finally announced that out of its initial pledge of $274 million, $244 million would be divided among nine U.N. agencies.

On the heels of this announcement Stephen O’Brien, the U.N. undersecretary for humanitarian affairs and emergency relief coordinator, sent a letter to the Interagency Standing Committee, a global humanitarian coordinating body, which includes both U.N. humanitarian agencies and outside NGOs.

Vice News confirmed the letter was attached to a Saudi press release announcing the nine-way cut, explaining how the funds would go through the recently created King Salman Center for Relief Humanitarian Works (KSC).

“Having agreed to the overall envelopes, however, the KSC would like to negotiate individual Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) with each recipient agency,” O’Brien told Vice, openly admitting to Riyadh’s lobby.

Boys carry relief supplies to their families who fled fighting in the southern city of Aden, during a food distribution effort by Yemeni volunteers, in Taiz, Yemen.

“Interestingly few media outlets picked up on this Orwellian development! After unilaterally and, let’s be frank, after illegally declaring war on Yemen, the Saudi government wants also to dictate how humanitarian relief is distributed in the very country it is attacking,” Sheikh al-Matari, the head of Yemen’s Rasoul Akram Foundation, an aid organization, told MintPress.

Vice News quoted a U.N. aid official in Yemen as saying: “The UN has punted and handed off the problems to these agencies. I’ve never seen that before.”

The official continued:

“The charitable way of saying it is this is a compromise — the less charitable way of saying it is that they folded. It’s really unusual for a single donor to have any substantive role once they contribute funds, let alone negotiate individual MoU’s with agencies.”

When asked about this very public U.N. capitulation before Al Saud’s millions, O’Brien attempted to rationalize the situation by arguing a massive deficit funding gap.

O’Brien wrote: “With regard to NGOs, I am aware that there are sensitivities in receiving funding directly from the KSC and we therefore must work actively to mobilize additional funds to be allocated directly, or via the Pooled Fund, to our front-line partners.”

Yet, as al-Matari noted:

“That’s only half of the story. What O’Brien is not telling is that by accepting Saudi Arabia’s conditions on aid distribution and aid funding in relation to Yemen, the U.N. de facto institutionalized aid segregation by allowing humanitarian relief to be conditional to certain criteria: political affiliation and religious orientation.

With Yemen set as a precedent, who’s to say that a similar setup will not be replicated in other countries in the region — mainly, Syria, Iraq, Bahrain and Libya?”

‘Institutionalizing war crimes’

United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon, left, meets with King Salman bin Abdul-Aziz Al Saud, right

“From the onset of this conflict King Salman has walked outside international law. There is nothing remotely legal about attacking a sovereign nation. The argument Saudi Arabia aimed to preemptively strike Yemen in order to stop the so-called ‘Shia crescent’ from further strengthening its hold on the region is both legally erroneous and redundant. What is troubling is the speed at which the kingdom is institutionalizing war crimes,” Al-Emad, the journalist and political commentator based in Yemen, told MintPress.

Al-Emad added: “It is one thing to declare war against a country and another to select a segment of population for annihilation. How long before Saudi Arabia’s ill intentions against all Zaidis and Shias in Yemen are understood for what they are? Genocidal.”

Although no legal action has been taken against Saudi Arabia, the kingdom’s humanitarian and human rights violations in Yemen have come to define the very nature of its war on the tiny, impoverished nation.

Even the sectarian aspect of Riyadh‘s wrath has transpired in official reports, giving weight to Yemenis’ mounting accusations of ethnic cleansing. The Office of the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights raised concerns in this area, as well, as a U.N. report issued in July notes: “The UN rights office is also acutely worried about increasing attacks against places of worship, pointing to the targeting of five Zaydi mosques with car bombs over the past few weeks as an alarming trend to create sectarian divisions.”

Additionally, Cécile Pouilly, spokesperson for the OHCHR, confirmed mounting abuses against civilians when she explained: “Since 17 June, there has been further destruction of civilian infrastructure, with at least 36 buildings, including hospitals, schools, court houses, power generation facilities and communications institutions partially or totally damaged in the governorates of Sana’a, Aden, Taiz, Al-Jawf, Al-Mahwit, and Hajjah.”

The Saudis have not been alone in violating international law, though. The Houthis have also committed their share of war crimes. In May, for example, Human Rights Watch accused pro-Houthi forces of killing civilians and holding aid workers hostage in the southern seaport of Aden. But it is the sectarian intent and systematicity behind Riyadh’s military campaign which has rights activists ringing the alarm.

Speaking to MintPress, Hussain Abu Salem, a human rights activist based in Saada, a northern province of Yemen, located south of Saudi Arabia, who personally documented Saudi air raids against identified Zaidi-targets in northern Yemen, compared Riyadh’s actions against Yemen’s Zaidi community to Israel’s attacks against Palestinians:

“Saudi Arabia knowingly and willingly targets Zaidi villages and Zaidi monuments. It seeks the destruction of Yemen Zaidi heritage. It wants to surgically remove all Zaidi Yemenis from political, religious, economic and social life. The kingdom is following in the footsteps of Israel in all impunity. It is exactly the same logic, the same methods and of course the same justifications.”

“This is the thing about right violations,” he added, “when the world does nothing to impose the law, when the powerful can oppress the weak, then injustice becomes the rule of law.”

Paris Court Finds Turkish Intelligence Agent Guilty In Murder of 3 PKK Leaders

water cannonSultangazi police attacked the crowd gathered to walk Gunay Özaslan’s funeral was killed in an operation held yesterday in the Gazi district in Bağcılar. Tear gas and water cannons to disperse the crowd streets after the intervention was made ​​with water. (DHA)

SEE:  Marxist radical killed in Istanbul police raids: reports]

Günay ÖzarslanA female member(Günay Özaslan’) of a radical Turkish Marxist group was killed Friday in clashes with police during an operation to arrest suspected militants, the official Anatolia news agency reported.  The woman was a member of the far-left Revolutionary People’s Liberation Party Front (DHKP-C)

Assassination of Kurdish activists in Paris: justice emphasizes the involvement of Turkish secret services

Le cercueil de l'une des trois militantes kurdes assassinées, à Villiers-le-Bel (Val-d'Oise), le 15 janvier 2013.
The coffin of one of three Kurdish activists murdered in Villiers-le-Bel (Val-d’Oise), 15 January 2013.

On 9 January 2013, at lunch time, three Kurdish activists are murdered in central Paris, in the Rue La Fayette apartment hosting a community association. Sakine Cansız, 54, a founding member of the PKK (Kurdistan Workers’ Party), Fidan Dogan, 29, nicknamed “the diplomat” and Saylemez Leyla, 25, known as “the warrior”, were coldly shot several bullets in the head.

After two and a half years of investigation, the Paris prosecutor rendered on 9 July, the final indictment, that Le Monde was able to consult. He asks, as revealed by Le Canard chained in its edition of July 22, referral to an Assize Court of the main suspect, Omer Guney, for murder in relation to a terrorist undertaking. This document of over 70 pages is unique: for the first time, the French justice evokes the possible involvement of a foreign intelligence service, namely MIT (Turkish equivalent of the Directorate General of Internal Security) in a political crime committed in France.

Having failed to positively identify the sponsors of this crime, the prosecution remains cautious about the degree of involvement of MIT. This service is in fact run by a relative of the Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, engaged since 2012 in a peace process with the PKK that deeply divides the Turkish state apparatus. After the instruction, the trail of a conspiracy by factions opposed to negotiations is still on the table.

“Many elements of the procedure allow MIT to suspect involvement in instigating and preparing the killing, the prosecutor wrote. Indeed, it is established that Omer Guney had proven espionage, he had numerous secret contacts with or individuals located in Turkey (…). However, it should be noted that the investigation did not establish whether the MIT agents attended these facts officially, with the approval of their superiors, or if they did it to the Unbeknownst to their service, to discredit or undermine the peace process.

“Grey Wolf”

If an “uncertainty” remains on the identity of the originator, the performer, he was promptly arrested and imprisoned for ten days only after the fact: Omer Guney, a 32 year old Turk arrived in France to Age 9 years. Its presence in the streets of La Fayette apartment the alleged time of the crime is proven, traces of gunpowder were found on her purse and partial DNA of one victim on his parka. He has continued to deny the facts.

When arrested, the young man nevertheless commits an illuminating slip requesting that the Turkish Embassy in Paris is alerted. Surprising reflex on the part of an individual who continues to run the police as a “heart of Kurd” PKK sympathizer. His family, themselves, qualify it as “ultranationalist” fierce opponent of the Kurdish cause, and claim that it defined itself as a “gray wolf”, the name of the youth branch of the MHP, the Turkish nationalist party .

This feigned sympathy for the PKK had allowed him to infiltrate a year earlier the Kurdish community of Ile-de-France. French perfectly, he regularly acted as interpreter and driver in the movement of senior living in Paris. Thus he made the acquaintance of Sakine Cansız emblematic figure of the PKK, a political refugee in France after spending eleven years in Turkish jails. He was also responsible to escort the car to the street Lafayette apartment the day she fell under the bullets with his two comrades.

A “mysterious correspondent”

The investigation has established that Omer Guney made three trips to Turkey in the six months before the murders. He used the occasion of his travels a phone line “secret”, reserved for specific contacts. One particular interest to investigative services. A “mystery caller” who has never been identified, the Turkish authorities refused “strangely” to respond to the letters rogatory sent to this effect, makes it clear the floor. Which illustrates an understatement as the frustration of French justice that the disorder role of Ankara in this case.

In this context opaque, it is ultimately the Turkish press that will give a dramatic boost to education. Sign of violent conflict reveal that these murders within the state apparatus, innumerable information will in turn feed the thesis of state crime and internal conspiracy. Three weeks after the murder, a former Turkish intelligence agent said in a newspaper Güney Omer is an agent of MIT and that “the massacre of Paris is the business of the tough faction in the MIT.” Heard by the judge, it will return on all its declarations.

On 12 January 2014, a voice recording of three men is posted on YouTube from Germany. In voice-over, the author of the video says that this recording was made by Omer Güney himself, during a meeting in Turkey with two members of the MIT to “plan” its mission. We hear the three individuals mentioned targets among European Kurdish activists.


“Sabotage” peace process

Two months later, on 14 March, a Turkish website opens a new track: he says that the two unidentified voice on the record is that of a certain Omer Kozanli, billed as “the police imam Gülen movement “, a moderate Islamist current. The movement of Fethullah Gülen, exiled in the United States, supported the rise to power of Erdogan before taking his distance, while remaining very influential within the state apparatus.

peace, “Who did this? An individual of Pennsylvania, the servants of the individual, his supporters. Of course, these people have also infiltrated the judiciary. Unfortunately, they are also in the police and other state institutions … “

The efforts of Erdogan to distance themselves from the triple murder are partly ruined with the publication on 14 January 2014 another Turkish site of an internal note of MIT, presented as a project to assassinate PKK executives in Europe. The same day, MIT published a denial. Several sources confirm later the German newspaper Der Spiegel the document’s authenticity.

Who ordered the murder of three Kurdish activists in Paris on 9 January 2013? The Turkish government, to upset a peace process that he himself had committed? A hard MIT factions infiltrated by the Gülen movement? Or the MHP, the Nationalist Action Party, close to the army, which was said Omer Güney near?

Faced with this investigation without fulfillment, Antoine Comte, civil party lawyer, praised the quality of the work of French justice. “This is the first time that the judicial authority shall also clear position on the possible involvement of a foreign State in a political assassination. Political power, he has always been careful not to comment on the case.


The PKK and the “process of Imrali”

The Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), a Kurdish nationalist organization, was founded in 1978 by Abdullah Ocalan to promote the creation of an independent Kurdish state on the borders of Turkey, Iraq and Syria. A series of attacks earned him to be considered a terrorist organization by several European countries, including France in 1993. Captured in 1999, Ocalan is serving a life prison on Imrali Island. The PKK then engages in a peace process with Turkey and renounces the claim of a Kurdish state in favor of federalism recognizing Kurdish identity.

End of 2012, Ocalan from his cell launches the “process of Imrali,” a round of negotiations with the AKP, the ruling party in Turkey. This process is strongly criticized Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan in the Turkish state apparatus, infiltrated by more radical currents. It is in this complex context that three Kurdish activists were murdered in Paris on 9 January 2013.

picture: http://s2.lemde.fr/image/2014/04/26/24×24/1100512122_4_cc4f_13985325317617-photo-5-bis-copie_41b05cf75dfd64085ec59f9ca778eae7.jpg
Soren Seelow
Reporter

Obama Capitalizes Upon Suruç Bombing Reactions To Seal Erdogan’s Free Syrian Army Enclave/NO FLY ZONE

“In cutting the deal, Barack Obama chose his moment well.”

[After Turkey drew its Mare-Jarablus line, and brainwashed ISIS-affiliated Turkish-Kurdish boys were used to bomb Kurds in Suruç, and Turkish forces began to bomb ISIS positions in Syria, Obama knew that Erdogan had begun to soften.  This is the moment O has been waiting for, implicating the CIA in the Suruç attack.]

Turkey was already preparing to carve-out a piece of Northern Syria, before the Suruç bombing.  The alleged ISIS attack facilitated that move.

[The following shot from Google Maps shows the new Mare-Jarablus line, a.k.a., the southern boundary of Erdogan’s shrunken Free Syrian Army enclave (SEE:  Partial no-fly zone included in US-Turkey consensus: Turkish sources).]


Mare-Jarablus line

[One question remains…what will Assad do, whenever the Syrian Air Force is targeted?]

Turkey says west of Euphrates ‘red line’ in northern Syria

TRT WORLD

Turkey to consider any incursion west of Euphrates River in northern Syria by PKK affiliate Democratic Union Party as violation of ‘red line’ set by governmentTurkey will consider any incursion west of the Euphrates River in northern Syria along the Turkish border by the Democratic Union Party (PYD), as well as any attack north of Idlib by Syrian regime forces, as violation of a “red line.” The government made the decision  at a National Security Council (MGK) meeting on June 29, media reports say.The MGK released a statement saying that “developments in Syria were comprehensively discussed, possible threats were evaluated, and possible additional security measures were stressed,” following the meeting.The Turkish government aims to convey a strong message to both the self-proclaimed Islamic State of Iraq and Sham (ISIS) and the PYD. Any move by these groups west of the Euphrates River, where the city of Jarablus is located, was declared a red line by Turkey because the river has become a natural border between ISIS and its nemesis PYD in northern Syria after Tal Abyad was captured by the Kurdish militia from ISIS on June 15.

The PYD is considered by Turkey to be the Syrian affiliate of the Kurdistan Worker’s Party (PKK). Both ISIS and the PKK are recognised as terrorist groups by Turkey.

Presidential spokesman Ibrahim Kalin stated that, “It is not healthy to interpret the necessary measures which aim to ensure our border security as ‘Turkey is entering a war’,” speaking on Tuesday  at a press conference in Ankara.

Kalin also emphasised that Turkey has never used the terminology of a “buffer zone,” but spoke about a need to establish a no-fly zone and a safe zone in the area for civilians. Turkey’s stance on this issue remains unchanged and these possible moves are continuing to be discussed with its allies, he added.

The Turkish government has been alarmed by both ISIS’ moves near the Syrian towns of Azaz and Mare and the enlargement of northern Kurdish enclaves under the control of the PYD along its long border line with Syria.

ISIS reportedly recently attacked an area between Azaz and Mare, which are situated in northwestern Syria, which controlled by the Free Syrian Army (FSA). This move by ISIS came after it lost Tal Abyad to the People’s Protection Units (YPG), the militant wing of the PYD, which was able to join the Kobane and Jazira “cantons,” along the Turkish border by capturing the district.

ISIS already controls a zone between Jarablus and Mare, also along the Turkish border.

In the worst case scenario for Turkey, as it becomes further threatened by ISIS between Azaz and Mare, the Free Syrian Army (FSA) could ask for assistance from the YPG in order to protect the areas of northwestern Syria they hold. This might then allow the Kurdish group to extend its reach to Afrin, another isolated Kurdish “canton” declared by the PYD in the far west of Syria.

The PYD needs to overrun Jarablus and pass west of the Euphrates to reach the Azaz-Mare region if this scenario is to be realised. Then, the PYD might take full control of the Turkish-Syrian border, leading to fears in Turkey that it might end up neighbouring a hostile Kurdish state which could use its control of the border to undermine Turkey’s internal security.

These are reasons, Turkey has laid down a red line regarding advances by either ISIS or the PYD west of the Euphrates. According to the Turkish daily Milliyet, if the PYD undertakes  any operation past this point the Turkish Armed Forces will carry out a cross border operation without providing notice.

If ISIS captures the area it will able to take control of the Oncupinar border crossing with Turkey, and could get closer to reaching another border crossing at Cilvegozu. Therefore, Turkey would virtually lose control of its border to two hostile militant groups.

In addition, the fighting involved in capturing the crossings as well as any ethnic cleansing or massacres by the two groups could lead to a new wave of refugees from Syria to Turkey, another concern which is also behind Turkey’s decision to issue the second red line regarding any attack by the Assad regime attack north of Idlib, the Milliyet report said.

It is feared that if the Syrian regime launches an attack north of Idlib there will be another huge flow of refugees into Turkey, which already hosts more than 1.7 million Syrian refugees who fled the violence in their country after the escalation of the civil war there.

Turkey and the US-led anti-ISIS coalition forces appear to have differences in terms of priorities in northern Syria, despite mostly sharing the same interests. Turkey is concerned by the PYD’s activities in northern Syria along the Turkish border as much as it is concerned with the actions of ISIS and the Assad regime.

However, the US-led coalition is highly supportive of the PYD’s activities against ISIS, which has been heavily bombarded by the coalition in coordination with attacks by the PYD.

US State Department Spokesman John Kirby at  Washington’s daily press briefing on June 30 reacted to Turkish demands by saying that, “The Defense Department has made it clear that they don’t believe there’s a need for that at this time, and that the use of coalition military assets in trying to effect a zone like that would entail an awful lot in terms of logistics, time, resources, and effort.”

When asked about the difference between a buffer zone and a safe haven Kirby stated that, “In military terms, I’m not sure that there’s technical definitions for either one. I think it depends on the context in which you’re using it. I don’t know that there’s much – it depends on how you define it and how you want that area defended and protected.”

However, he also said, “They would have to decide how they would both make the decision, defend the decision, and implement it. That’s a national decision that they would have to speak to.”

 

Source: TRT World and agencies

Is Civil War Being Exported To Turkey, or Just More War Upon the Kurds?

[Reuters claimed that the guy was a disgruntled Kurd, but the Turkish press calls him “Sheikh” Seyh (Sheikh) Abdurrahman Alagoz.

Abdurrahman and brother Yunus Emre, according to this latest report from Turkey, both went to Syria for military training.  The two brothers had helped Orhan Gönder‘ with the previous bombing of HDPE rally in Diyarbakir.  They were all neighbors in ADIYAMAN.]

die-bombenleger-waren-nachbarn-5870378
Abdurrahman Alagoz (left), Orhan Gönder (right)

diyarbakir-bombaci-orta
Re-reviewed images pulled from Diyarbakır investigation.

[PKK says that ISIL was working for the State.  Police reportedly switched-off electronic sensing in border town Ceylanpinar, to facilitate movement of bomb from Syria to Suruc (SEE: PKK Claims Killing of ‘ISIL-linked’ Turkish Police).]

[The question becomes, “False Flag, or genuine Terrorist Attack?”  Considering Turkey’s previous frequent usage of the false flag, to implicate the PKK, makes it easy for outside powers to use the same M.O. in their attacks upon Turkey.  Is Turkey, once again, bombing the Kurds, or is someone pushing civil war upon Turkey (SEE:  The New Silk Road union and the terror game in Turkey )?  Are Turkish bombing runs and police crackdown upon IS militants for real?]

Turkey bombs Islamic State targets in Syria

Turkey arrests hundreds of suspected Kurdish, IS militants

PKK claims Turkish police killing in revenge for Syria border attack

France 24

© Ozan Koze, AFP | Turkish police are accused by many Kurds of collaborating with Islamist militants along the border with Syria

Text by FRANCE 24 

The military wing of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) has claimed responsibility for the assassination on Wednesday of two Turkish police officers, describing it as retaliation for a suicide bombing blamed on jihadists that killed 32.

The People’s Defence Forces (HPG) said in a statement on one of its websites that the two police officers were killed at around 6am in the southeastern town of Ceylanpinar for “collaboration with the Daesh gangs” – the Arabic acronym for the Islamic State (IS) group.

Security sources earlier told Reuters the officers were found dead with bullet wounds to the head in the house they shared in Ceylanpinar, on the border with Syria some 160 km (100 miles) east of Suruc, the site of Monday’s suicide bombing.

The bombing, which targeted pro-Kurdish campaigners in Suruc, has been blamed on the IS group, which is locked in heaving fighting with Kurdish forces in northern Syria.

Many of Turkey‘s Kurds and opposition supporters suspect President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and the ruling AKP party of covertly backing IS militants against Kurdish fighters in Syria, something the government has repeatedly denied.

Anti-government protests after Monday’s bombing in Suruc erupted in several cities for a second night on Tuesday, with some of the demonstrators chanting “Murderer Islamic State, collaborator Erdogan and AKP”.

“Although Islamic State has been held responsible for this attack, Turkey’s AKP government, by resisting the taking of effective measures to prevent Islamic State and other reactionary forces, bears the real responsibility,” the opposition Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), whose support base is mostly Kurdish, said in a statement.

Turkey’s NATO allies have expressed concern about control of its border with Syria which in parts runs directly parallel with territory controlled by Islamic State. The prospect of conflict spilling onto Turkish soil, embroiling Kurds, Islamist militants and security forces will raise alarm inside and outside Turkey.

On Tuesday, Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu rejected accusations that Turkey had tacitly supported the IS group and had unwittingly opened the door to the bombing; but he said initial evidence suggested the Islamist radical group was responsible.

Bombing suspect travelled to Syria

A senior Turkish official told Reuters there was “strong evidence” to suggest the bomber was a 20-year-old man born in the southeastern province of Adiyaman and of Kurdish origin, who had travelled to Syria last year with the help of a group linked to the IS militants.

“He was active in a Syria-linked group supporting the Islamic State. We know that he went to Syria illegally. It was not possible to track him during his time there,” the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the investigation.

He had links with another alleged bomber who attacked an HDP rally in the mostly Kurdish southeastern city of Diyarbakir days ahead of a June 7 parliamentary election, killing four people and wounding at least 200, the official said.

The Radikal newspaper quoted what it said was the man’s mother saying he was a former student at Adiyaman university who had worked as a painter with his 25-year-old brother before going abroad.

“I don’t know what they were doing abroad, they never said. They were just telling me they were fine,” Semure Alagoz told the newspaper. “I don’t know where he is now. I don’t know if they joined ISIL, if they went for jihad. They are both good kids, they wouldn’t harm anyone.”

‘One body yet to be identified’ – FRANCE 24’s Jasper Mortimer reports

According to FRANCE 24’s correspondent in Turkey, Jasper Mortimer, investigators are trying to identify the remains of a possible second bomber, whose body was blown to pieces.

“This might be the corpse of a second female bomber (…), we’ll have to wait until the identification is made,” he said.

Two lawmakers from the HDP submitted separate parliamentary motions on Wednesday naming a 20-year old woman as a suspect, and asking why police had released her from custody last month.

The turmoil comes at a difficult time for Turkey, with a caretaker government in charge while the AKP seeks a junior coalition partner after losing its majority in the June election for the first time in more than a decade.

Since Monday’s bombing, at least 51 people have been arrested in protests in Istanbul alone and police seized more than 200 petrol bombs and a rifle, the governor’s office said.

Anti-government groups have vowed further demonstrations and the HDP has called for supporters to converge on Turkey’s largest city for a mass rally this weekend.

(FRANCE 24 with REUTERS)

American Police State Needs More Easy-Bake-Terrorists

FBI Tracked Chattanooga Shooter’s Family for Years

land destroyer

July 17, 2015 (Tony Cartalucci – LD) – Once again, another convenient shooting has helped supercharge anger, hatred, fear, and division across the Western World after an alleged “Islamist extremist” opened fire on and killed 4 US Marines at a recruiting station in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

Without any knowledge of how the US has in fact created Al Qaeda and its many global affiliates, including vicious terrorist groups plaguing Southeast Asia, and the most notorious to date, the so-called “Islamic State” (ISIS), the American public will predictably react in a manner that will simply further justify America’s meddling across the globe amid its self-created and perpetuated “War on Terror.” It will also help in efforts to further tighten control over the American public itself, with increased justifications for expanding police state measures and future pushes to disarm the American people.

Yahoo News would report in their article, “Shootings at Chattanooga military facilities leave 4 Marines, gunman dead; act called ‘domestic terrorism‘,” that:

A U.S. official told the Associated Press that Abdulazeez had not been on the radar of federal law enforcement before Thursday’s shooting. 

But also added:

His father had been investigated several years ago for “possible ties to a foreign terrorist organization” and added to the U.S. terrorist watch list, according to a report in the New York Times, but that probe did not surface information about Abdulazeez, the paper said.

This means that yet another case of “domestic terror” has involved someone either investigated by the FBI, entrapped by an active FBI operation where FBI investigators posed as terrorist leaders and walked a patsy through every step of a terrorist attack before arresting them and thus “foiling” the attack, or linked directly to someone the FBI was investigating.

Ironically, the immense omnipresent police state the West has erected to combat the so-called “terrorist” threat, including the total surveillance of all communications online and across all telecommunication networks, at home and abroad under the National Security Agency (NSA) will only expand, despite it once again apparently failing, and despite attempts by special interests on Wall Street and in Washington to claim this latest attack “again” somehow circumvented these already sweeping measures.

Meanwhile, The US Continues Supporting Extremists Abroad

And while this latest attack is passed off as a “domestic terrorist attack” and the result of “Islamic extremists,” rather than a false flag event, the US continues to openly support the very “terrorists” it claims threatens its homeland and has inspired these sort of attacks.

Just recently, the Washington Post literally allowed a spokesman of Al Qaeda to defend his faction’s role in the fighting in Syria, and his condemnation of the United States for not rendering more aid for the cause of overrunning and destroying the Syrian nation – a goal the US itself is likewise pursuing.

Labib Al Nahhas, “head of foreign political relations” for terrorist organization Ahrar al-Sham, wrote in his Washington Post op-ed titled, “The deadly consequences of mislabeling Syria’s revolutionaries,” that:

Stuck inside their own bubble, White House policymakers have allocated millions of U.S. taxpayer dollars to support failed CIA efforts to support so-called “moderate” forces in Syria. But these “moderate” groups have proved to be a disappointment on nearly every count, not least of all in confronting the Islamic State.

He also states:

That question should prompt Washington to admit that the Islamic State’s extremist ideology can be defeated only through a homegrown Sunni alternative — with the term “moderate” defined not by CIA handlers but by Syrians themselves.

Essentially, the Washington Post afforded a terrorist organization space to make an appeal to the American public for military support. Ahrar al-Sham regularly coordinates with and fights within operations led by Al Qaeda’s Al Nusra Front, a US State Department designated terrorist organization from which ISIS itself sprung.

Al Nusra and Ahrar al-Sham are described as the “closest” of allies by Western think-tanks and media reports. It is also revealed that Ahrar al-Sham worked along side ISIS itself.

A Stanford University report under “Mapping Militant Organizations” explained (emphasis added):

Ahrar al-Sham quickly became one of the largest military organizations operating in Syria, and it has been active in efforts to unite the Islamist opposition under a single banner. It rejects the idea of Western intervention but sometimes works alongside Free Syrian Army brigades. It routinely cooperates with al-Nusra and, until relations soured in 2013, also worked with ISIS. In February 2014, the U.S. Director of National Intelligence called Ahrar al-Sham one of the three most effective rebel groups in Syria.

The Washington Post isn’t the only voice in the Western media promoting Al Qaeda. Foreign Policy in 2012 abhorrently proclaimed, “Two Cheers for Syrian Islamists: So the rebels aren’t secular Jeffersonians. As far as America is concerned, it doesn’t much matter.” As much as an admission that the US is backing what is essentially terrorism in Syria, the Foreign Policy article attempted even then to promote the alleged “pragmatism” of supporting Al Qaeda to eliminate America’s foreign enemies.

Image: 100’s of trucks a day pass over Turkey’s border with Syria, destined for ISIS territory. NATO literally is supplying ISIS with an endless torrent of supplies, weapons, and fighters meaning that no matter how many token airstrikes the US carries out, many times more fighters and materiel will fill the void. 

And while Foreign Policy and terrorists writing in the pages of the Washington Post demand more weapons and support from the West, it is already a documented fact that immense and constantly flowing supply convoys are streaming out of both NATO-member Turkey and US-ally Jordan’s territory, into Syria and Iraq, for the purpose of resupplying ISIS. This explains ISIS’ otherwise inexplicable ability to not only maintain its impressive fighting capacity as it simultaneously wages war against both the Syrian and Iraqi armies, but to expand its fighting to all fronts opposed to US regional hegemony.

This includes Yemen, Libya, and even Egypt where ISIS most recently managed to hit an Egyptian naval vessel with a missile. Foreign Policy would again weigh in. Their article, “Islamic State Sinai Affiliate Claims to Have Hit Egyptian Ship With Missile,” states:

The use of a guided missile to strike an Egyptian ship represents a higher level of technological sophistication than what has been previously observed in Sinai attacks. It is unclear, however, exactly what kind of missile was used in the attack, beyond the militant group’s claim that it was a guided munition.

Militant groups in the region have in the past used guided missiles to attack government ships in the Mediterranean. During the 2006 war between Israel and Hezbollah, an Iranian anti-ship missile fired by the militant group struck the Israeli warship Hanit, badly damaging the vessel and killing four crew members.

Of course, Foreign Policy and others across the Western media will be quick to point out that Hezbollah is a state-sponsored militant organization which receives its weapons from Syria and Iran. The question then becomes how ISIS replicated this level of “technological sophistication,” and which state-sponsors put the missiles into their hands.

The US supporting Al Qaeda is not really news. Al Qaeda was initially a joint US-Saudi venture to create a mercenary army to fight the Soviets in Afghanistan during the 1980’s. This mercenary army would again fight Russian interests in Serbia and Chechnya before eventually being used as the pretext for US invasions and occupations of both Afghanistan and Iraq from 2001 onward. In 2007, it was revealed that the US, Saudi Arabia, and Israel sought to use the terrorist organization to raise a proxy military front to overthrow Syria and Iran. The resulting bloodbath in Syria beginning in 2011 is the operational execution of this documented conspiracy.

Al Qaeda and its various affiliates serve both as a proxy mercenary front to strike where Western forces cannot, and a pretext to invade abroad. It also serves as a constant justification for increased tyranny at home. With the most recent shooting carried out by yet another target of the FBI’s “investigations,” and the predictable divisive backlash that will follow, it is assured that the American public will be further blinded to the fact that this so-called “Islamic extremism” was born in Washington and on Wall Street, in Riyadh and Tel Aviv, not in a mosque or springing forth from the pages of the Qu’ran.

In fact, the vast majority of the world’s Islamic people are locked in mortal combat with the West’s mercenary terrorist forces, with tens of thousands of them having shed their blood fighting Al Qaeda everywhere from Libya to Egypt, to Iraq and Syria. While the US attempts to pose as the leading power in the fight against extremism, its token airstrikes deep within Syrian territory are quickly undone by the torrent of supplies it itself oversees flooding into Syrian territory. For every fighter killed by a US airstrike, 10 more are being trafficked in through US and NATO-run networks stretching as far afield as Xinjiang, China.

The US presence in Iraq and Syria serves simply as one of several planned stepping stones to eventually and directly intervene militarily in toppling either or both governments, before moving on to Tehran.

The “War on Terror” is a fraud, and each “terrorist attack” a carefully orchestrated means of further perpetuating that fraud.

“Cyber-Berkut” Hackers Capture Staged ISIS Beheading Video From John McCain Staffer In Ukraine

[SEE:  Al Jazeera’s fake Green Square; Syria: Qatar about to release “resounding fall” fake video]

Footage obtained from McCain staffer shows ISIL executions shot in studio

PressTV

A screen grab from leaked footage showing the filming of ISIL execution videos being taken in a studioA screen grab from leaked footage showing the filming of ISIL execution videos being taken in a studio

Leaked footage obtained from a staffer of US Senator John McCain shows the making of an ISIL “execution” video similar to the videos portraying the beheading of James Foley and other victims.

In the three-and-a-half minute video, ISIL executioner Jihadi John (aka Mohammed Emwazi) can be seen standing in front of a green screen, beside a kneeling hostage wearing an orange jumpsuit and a green screen hood in a fully equipped studio in the presence of a production crew, the Leaksource website recently reported.

The desert style set and wind machine effects, share similarities to the beheading videos ISIL released of Steven Sotloff, David Haines, and Alan Henning.

The following is an example showing the similarities between the leaked footage and Foley’s alleged beheading.

 

According to the report, the video was obtained in Ukraine from the cellphone of a member of McCain’s staff by the Hactivist group, CyberBerkut.

“Dear Senator McCain! We recommend you next time in foreign travel, and especially on the territory of Ukraine, not to take confidential documents.

On one of the devices of your colleagues, we found a lot of interesting things. Something we decided to put: this video should become the property of the international community!” the group is quoted as saying in the report.

MacCain’s ironic response to the claims can be seen below.

 

According to British forensic experts, Foley’s execution was probably staged with the use of “camera trickery and slick post-production techniques.”

A terrorism expert stated that the videos of Japanese hostages Kenji Goto and Haruna Yukawa was probably taken in an indoor studio.

The ISIL video purporting to show the execution of 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians on a beach in Libya is also fake, said Hollywood horror film director Mary Lambert.

“In the opening shot all the figures might be animated. They never had more than six men on the beach… The close-ups of jihadists on the beach are most likely green screen… The sea turning red is obviously FX,” she said.

Saudis Turning Yemen Into the Next Al Qaeda “Caliphate,” and NOBODY CARES

https://i0.wp.com/www.adentribune.com/wp-content/uploads/yemen-popular-committees.jpg[SEE: Guantanamo and The Saudi Rehabilitation Program Behind AQAP–(Intentional, or Major Fowl-UP?) ; Embassy Bombing Trial Confirms “al Qaida” in Yemen Is Mossad]

Al Qaeda’s Hadramawt emirate

brookings

The war in Yemen has one local winner, Al Qaeda. The Saudis seem oddly unconcerned.

Since early April, Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) has controlled Yemen’s fifth largest city, Mukkalla, and much of the surrounding governorate of Hadramawt. The Hadramawt is Yemen’s largest governorate and home of about one-third of Yemen’s oil production before the war. Mukkalla is the country’s second largest port on the Indian Ocean after Aden. Hundreds of AQAP supporters have gone to Mukkalla after jail breaks in other parts of Yemen since the start of the war.

AQAP rules Mukkalla in association with other local Salafist groups. Initially, it avoided imposing strict Islamic law to keep public support. It officially banned qat chewing, the drug enjoyed by most Yemenis, but enforcement was apparently nominal at first. Now, AQAP is becoming more rigorous — religious police enforce strict rules on behavior, Sufi religious sites have been destroyed, and the ban on qat is becoming more strict.

AQAP faces opposition in Hadramawt from the Islamic State, which has carried out small attacks there. Northern Hadramawt is controlled by Yemeni army forces loyal to former president Ali Abdallah Saleh, but they generally avoid conflict with AQAP.

American drones have struck Al Qaeda targets in and around Mukkalla with significant success since April, including killing AQAP leader Nasir Al Wuhayshi in June. Wuhayshi reportedly was not targeted specifically; a so-called signature strike killed him. He was immediately replaced as emir of the group by Qasim al Raymi, the military commander of AQAP. He was involved in the 2009 attempt to blow up an airliner en route to Detroit from Amsterdam on Christmas Day.

From its base in Hadramawt, AQAP carries out deadly terrorist attacks on Houthi targets in Sanaa and other cities. Using the base in Mukkalla, the jihadists target Shia mosques, Houthi leaders and patrols, and other targets.

Since the start of the Yemen war, the Royal Saudi Air Force and its coalition partners have not targeted AQAP’s Hadramawt emirate. It has not been subjected at all to the bombing other Yemeni cities are enduring. As a consequence, Yemeni internally displaced persons have sought shelter and protection in Mukkalla. The port has also remained open for some traffic unlike ports controlled by the Zaydi Shia Houthi rebels.

Riyadh’s apparent willingness to tolerate an Al Qaeda stronghold on its southern border has raised conspiracy theories in Yemen that the Saudis implicitly at least welcome AQAP as an ally against the Zaydis. There are also longstanding suspicions that the Kingdom would like to annex Hadramawt to give it access to the Indian Ocean and a route for an oil pipeline to Mukkalla that would allow oil to reach the sea without transiting the Straits of Hormuz.

AQAP now sometimes calls itself “the Sons of Hadramawt” — perhaps to secure local support. It has not abandoned its global jihadist agenda, however, nor its animus toward Saudi Arabia. It is a safe assumption that AQAP’s master bomb maker Ibrahim Al Asiri has his lab somewhere in the Hadramawt preparing more attacks on America and the Kingdom.

Crazed Chechen Islamist Battalions Under Command of Nazis, Slaughtering Ukraine’s Enemies

Ukraine Merges Nazis and Islamists

Exclusive: Ukraine’s post-coup regime is now melding neo-Nazi storm troopers with Islamic militants – called “brothers” of the hyper-violent Islamic State – stirring up a hellish “death squad” brew to kill ethnic Russians in eastern Ukraine, on Russia’s border, reports Robert Parry.

By Robert Parry

In a curiously upbeat account, The New York Times reports that Islamic militants have joined with Ukraine’s far-right and neo-Nazi battalions to fight ethnic Russian rebels in eastern Ukraine. It appears that no combination of violent extremists is too wretched to celebrate as long as they’re killing Russ-kies.

The article by Andrew E. Kramer reports that there are now three Islamic battalions “deployed to the hottest zones,” such as around the port city of Mariupol. One of the battalions is headed by a former Chechen warlord who goes by the name “Muslim,” Kramer wrote, adding:

The insignia of the Azov battalion, using the neo-Nazi symbol of the Wolfsangel.

“The Chechen commands the Sheikh Mansur group, named for an 18th-century Chechen resistance figure. It is subordinate to the nationalist Right Sector, a Ukrainian militia. … Right Sector … formed during last year’s street protests in Kiev from a half-dozen fringe Ukrainian nationalist groups like White Hammer and the Trident of Stepan Bandera.

“Another, the Azov group, is openly neo-Nazi, using the ‘Wolf’s Hook’ symbol associated with the [Nazi] SS. Without addressing the issue of the Nazi symbol, the Chechen said he got along well with the nationalists because, like him, they loved their homeland and hated the Russians.”

As casually as Kramer acknowledges the key front-line role of neo-Nazis and white supremacists fighting for the U.S.-backed Kiev regime, his article does mark an aberration for the Times and the rest of the mainstream U.S. news media, which usually dismiss any mention of this Nazi taint as “Russian propaganda.”

During the February 2014 coup that ousted elected President Viktor Yanukovych, the late fascist Stepan Bandera was one of the Ukrainian icons celebrated by the Maidan protesters. During World War II, Bandera headed the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists-B, a radical paramilitary movement that sought to transform Ukraine into a racially pure state. At times coordinating with Adolf Hitler’s SS, OUN-B took part in the expulsion and extermination of tens of thousands of Jews and Poles.

Though most of the Maidan protesters in 2013-14 appeared motivated by anger over political corruption and by a desire to join the European Union, neo-Nazis made up a significant number and spearheaded much of the violence against the police. Storm troopers from the Right Sektor and Svoboda party seized government buildings and decked them out with Nazi insignias and a Confederate battle flag, the universal symbol of white supremacy.

Then, as the protests turned bloodier from Feb. 20-22, the neo-Nazis surged to the forefront. Their well-trained militias, organized in 100-man brigades called “sotins” or “the hundreds,” led the final assaults against police and forced Yanukovych and many of his officials to flee for their lives.

In the days after the coup, as the neo-Nazi militias effectively controlled the government, European and U.S. diplomats scrambled to help the shaken parliament put together the semblance of a respectable regime, although four ministries, including national security, were awarded to the right-wing extremists in recognition of their crucial role in ousting Yanukovych.

At that point, virtually the entire U.S. news media put on blinders about the neo-Nazi role, all the better to sell the coup to the American public as an inspirational story of reform-minded “freedom fighters” standing up to “Russian aggression.” The U.S. media delicately stepped around the neo-Nazi reality by keeping out relevant context, such as the background of national security chief Andriy Parubiy, who founded the Social-National Party of Ukraine in 1991, blending radical Ukrainian nationalism with neo-Nazi symbols. Parubiy was commandant of the Maidan’s “self-defense forces.”

Barbarians at the Gate

At times, the mainstream media’s black-out of the brown shirts was almost comical. Last February, almost a year after the coup, a New York Times article about the government’s defenders of Mariupol hailed the crucial  role played by the Azov battalion but managed to avoid noting its well-documented Nazi connections.

That article by Rick Lyman presented the situation in Mariupol as if the advance by ethnic Russian rebels amounted to the barbarians at the gate while the inhabitants were being bravely defended by the forces of civilization, the Azov battalion. In such an inspirational context, it presumably wasn’t considered appropriate to mention the Swastikas and SS markings.

Nazi symbols on helmets worn by members of Ukraine's Azov battalion. (As filmed by a Norwegian film crew and shown on German TV)

Now, the Kiev regime has added to those “forces of civilization” — resisting the Russ-kie barbarians — Islamic militants with ties to terrorism. Last September, Marcin Mamon, a reporter for the Intercept, reached a vanguard group of these Islamic fighters in Ukraine through the help of his “contact in Turkey with the Islamic State [who] had told me his ‘brothers’ were in Ukraine, and I could trust them.”

The new Times article avoids delving into the terrorist connections of these Islamist fighters. But Kramer does bluntly acknowledge the Nazi truth about the Azov fighters. He also notes that American military advisers in Ukraine “are specifically prohibited from giving instruction to members of the Azov group.”

While the U.S. advisers are under orders to keep their distance from the neo-Nazis, the Kiev regime is quite open about its approval of the central military role played by these extremists – whether neo-Nazis, white supremacists or Islamic militants. These extremists are considered very aggressive and effective in killing ethnic Russians.

The regime has shown little concern about widespread reports of “death squad” operations targeting suspected pro-Russian sympathizers in government-controlled towns. But such human rights violations should come as no surprise given the Nazi heritage of these units and the connection of the Islamic militants to hyper-violent terrorist movements in the Middle East.

But the Times treats this lethal mixture of neo-Nazis and Islamic extremists as a good thing. After all, they are targeting opponents of the “white-hatted” Kiev regime, while the ethnic Russian rebels and the Russian government wear the “black hats.”

As an example of that tone, Kramer wrote: “Even for Ukrainians hardened by more than a year of war here against Russian-backed separatists, the appearance of Islamic combatants, mostly Chechens, in towns near the front lines comes as something of a surprise — and for many of the Ukrainians, a welcome one. … Anticipating an attack in the coming months, the Ukrainians are happy for all the help they can get.”

So, the underlying message seems to be that it’s time for the American people and the European public to step up their financial and military support for a Ukrainian regime that has unleashed on ethnic Russians a combined force of Nazis, white supremacists and Islamic militants (considered “brothers” of the Islamic State).

[For more on the Azov battalion, see Consortiumnews.com’s “US House Admits Nazi Role in Ukraine.”]

ISIS, AQAP, Saudi Arabia, US, UK and France–Anti-Shia Coalition In Yemen

ISIS, AQAP and Saudi Arabia in anti Shia Tripartite Attack against Yemen: US, UK and France Supports?

modern tokyo times MODERN TOKYO TIMES

ISIS, AQAP and Saudi Arabia in anti Shia Tripartite Attack against Yemen: US, UK and France Supports?

Murad Makhmudov, Noriko Watanabe and Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

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The tripartite sectarian nature of ISIS (Islamic State), Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) and the Saudi Arabia led coalition is in full swing and aimed at crushing the Shia Houthis. At the same time, Sunni loyalists who oppose being pawns of Saudi Arabia are in the firing line. After all, given the nature of ISIS, AQAP and Saudi Arabia, then radical clerics will be on the frontline in deeming all and sundry with being apostates. However, the real targets for AQAP, ISIS and Saudi Arabia applies to the Shia Houthis because of the sectarian nature of all forces that are destabilizing Yemen.

Since it became clear that Saudi Arabia would intervene in Yemen with the backing of many mainly Sunni Muslim dominated nations, then ISIS also began to emerge in what appears to be a twin assault by stealth. At the same time, AQAP is gaining from the Saudi Arabia led coalition and increasing terrorist attacks by ISIS. Therefore, AQAP was able to attack Mukalla in the province of Hadramawt in the southeast and then consolidate because of the tripartite attack against the people of Yemen.

Once more, the nations of America, France and the United Kingdom are siding with Saudi Arabia. In other words, AQAP, ISIS, the Saudi Arabia led coalition and the usual Western powers are all on the same side – irrespective if from a distance or based on different motives. This brutal reality highlights the severe plight that the Shia Houthis face and likewise for the people of Yemen irrespective of faith.

Last month the BBC reported: “Yemen has been in turmoil since Houthi rebels overran Sanaa last September, forcing the government of President Mansour Abdrabbuh Hadi to flee… In late March, a coalition led by Saudi Arabia began targeting the rebels with air strikes. Since then, more than 2,000 people have been killed in the conflict, including at least 1,400 civilians, according to the UN.”

Since this report by the BBC the death total keeps on rising and the growing menace of ISIS is also abundantly clear. AQAP also knows full well that the Shia Houthis are being overstretched and while they fear the growing rise of ISIS, given internal Takfiri butchering in Syria, at the moment AQAP can consolidate based on the intrigues of the Saudi Arabia led coalition.

This reality renders the policies of America, France and the United Kingdom to be morally bankrupt when it comes to Yemen. After all, are internal security agencies in these nations worried about al-Qaeda affiliates and ISIS – or do they fear the Shia Houthis? Obviously, the internal and external threat internationally applies to al-Qaeda affiliates, ISIS and Gulf petrodollars that are spreading indoctrination and hatred.

In the latest ISIS terrorist attack AFP reports: “An attack on Houthi rebel leaders in Yemen’s capital claimed by the Islamic State group killed at least 28 people, medics said Tuesday, the latest anti-Shiite assault by the Sunni extremists.”

At the same time, fresh airstrikes by the Saudi Arabia led coalition is killing civilians. Indeed, even the United Nations is alarmed by the mass instability and indiscriminate nature of the bombing campaign that is being led by Saudi Arabia. On top of this, AQAP is consolidating its power base because clearly the tripartite assault is focused on the Shia and destabilizing the nation.

Sadly, the political elites in America, France and the United Kingdom are once more dragging their respective democracies through the mud by assisting brutal sectarian forces on the whims of Saudi Arabia.

The True Cost of War On Terror Can Be Measured By the Number of Refugees

amnesty intl boat people

World leaders’ neglect of refugees condemns millions to death and despair

AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL

Worst refugee crisis since World War II.

· One million refugees desperately in need of resettlement.
· Four million Syrian refugees struggling to survive in Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Iraq and Egypt.
· More than three million refugees in sub-Saharan Africa, and only a small fraction offered resettlement since 2013.
· 3,500 people drowned while trying to cross the Mediterranean Sea in 2014 — 1,865 so far in 2015.
· 300 people died in the Andaman Sea in the first three months of 2015 due to starvation, dehydration and abuse by boat crews.

World leaders are condemning millions of refugees to an unbearable existence and thousands to death by failing to provide essential humanitarian protection, said Amnesty International as it published a new briefing in Beirut today, ahead of World Refugee Day on 20 June.

The Global Refugee Crisis: A conspiracy of neglect explores the startling suffering of millions of refugees, from Lebanon to Kenya, the Andaman Sea to the Mediterranean Sea, and calls for a radical change in the way the world deals with refugees.

“We are witnessing the worst refugee crisis of our era, with millions of women, men and children struggling to survive amidst brutal wars, networks of people traffickers and governments who pursue selfish political interests instead of showing basic human compassion,” said Salil Shetty, Amnesty International’s Secretary General.

We are witnessing the worst refugee crisis of our era, with millions of women, men and children struggling to survive amidst brutal wars, networks of people traffickers and governments who pursue selfish political interests instead of showing basic human compassion.
Salil Shetty, Amnesty International’s Secretary General.

“The refugee crisis is one of the defining challenges of the 21st century, but the response of the international community has been a shameful failure. We need a radical overhaul of policy and practice to create a coherent and comprehensive global strategy.”

Amnesty International is setting out a proposal to reinvigorate the system for refugee protection and urging states to make firm commitments to live up to their individual legal obligations and renew their commitment to international responsibility-sharing. Amongst the actions Amnesty International is urging governments to take are:

· A commitment to collectively resettle the one million refugees who currently need resettlement over the next four years.

· To establish a global refugee fund that will fulfil all UN humanitarian appeals for refugee crises and provide financial support to countries hosting large numbers of refugees.
· The global ratification of the UN Refugee Convention.

· To develop fair domestic systems to assess refugee claims and guarantee that refugees have access to basic services such as education and healthcare.

“The world can no longer sit and watch while countries like Lebanon and Turkey take on such huge burdens. No country should be left to deal with a massive humanitarian emergency with so little help from others, just because it happens to share a border with a country in conflict,” said Salil Shetty.

The world can no longer sit and watch while countries like Lebanon and Turkey take on such huge burdens. No country should be left to deal with a massive humanitarian emergency with so little help from others, just because it happens to share a border with a country in conflict.
Salil Shetty.

“Governments across the world have the duty to ensure people do not die while trying to reach safety. It is essential that they offer a safe haven for desperate refugees, establish a global refugee fund and take effective action to prosecute trafficking gangs. Now is the time to step up protection for refugees, anything less will make world leaders accomplices in this preventable tragedy.”

Syria: World’s largest refugee crisis
More than four million refugees have fled Syria, 95% of them are in just five main host countries: Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Iraq and Egypt.

These countries are now struggling to cope. The international community has failed to provide them, or the humanitarian agencies supporting refugees with sufficient resources. Despite calls from the UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, far too few resettlement places have been offered to Syrian refugees.

The situation is so desperate that some of Syria’s neighbours have resorted to deeply troubling measures, including denying desperate people entry to their territory and pushing people back into the conflict.

Since the beginning of 2015, Lebanon has severely restricted entry to people fleeing Syria. The Lebanese authorities issued new guidelines whereby Syrian nationals are required to fulfil specific criteria in order to enter. Since these criteria were imposed, there has been a significant drop in registration of Syrian refugees – in the first three months of 2015 UNHCR registered 80% fewer Syrian refugees than in the same period in 2014.

Mediterranean: The most dangerous sea route
The Mediterranean is the most dangerous sea route for refugees and migrants. In 2014, 219,000 people made the crossing under extremely dangerous conditions and 3,500 died attempting it.

In 2014, the Italian authorities rescued over 170,000 people. However in October 2014, Italy, under pressure from other EU member states, cancelled the rescue operation, Mare Nostrum, which was replaced by the much more limited Operation Triton (by the EU border agency, Frontex).

Operation Triton did not have a sufficiently broad search and rescue mandate, had fewer vessels and a significantly smaller area of operation. This contributed to a dramatic increase in the number of lives lost in the Mediterranean. As of 31 May 2015, 1,865 people had died attempting the Mediterranean crossing, compared to 425 during the same period in 2014 (according to the IOM).

Follow several horrific cases of loss of life in the Mediterranean, at the end of April, European leaders finally increased resources for search and rescue. Triton’s resources and area of operation were increased to match Mare Nostrum’s. In addition European states such as Germany, Ireland and the UK have deployed ships and aircrafts, additional to Operation Triton resources to further boost capacity for assisting people at sea. These measures, which had long been advocated for by Amnesty International, are a welcome step towards increasing safety at sea for refugees and migrants.

The European Commission also proposed that EU states offer 20,000 additional resettlement places to refugees from outside the EU. While this proposal is a step forward, 20,000 is too small a number to adequately contribute to international responsibility-sharing.

For example, Syrian refugees faced with reduced humanitarian assistance in the main host countries and with no prospect of returning home in the near future, are likely to continue to attempt to cross the Mediterranean to reach Europe. Without sufficient safe and legal alternative routes for refugees – but also for migrants – people will continue to risk their lives.

Africa: Forgotten crises
There are more than three million refugees in sub-Saharan Africa. Outbreaks of fighting in countries including South Sudan and the Central African Republic (CAR), have led to an increasing number of people on the move – fleeing conflict and persecution. Of the top 10 countries globally from which people are fleeing as refugees, five are in are in sub-Saharan Africa. Four of the top ten refugee-hosting countries are in sub-Saharan Africa

The conflicts and crises in the region have led to an influx of refugees to neighbouring countries, many of which already host tens of thousands of long-standing refugee populations from countries such as Somalia, Sudan, Eritrea and Ethiopia, among others.

In some of these situations, as in the case of South Sudan and Sudan, refugees are hosted by countries that are themselves beset by conflict.

The refugee crises in Africa receive little or no attention in regional or global political forums. In 2013 fewer than 15,000 refugees from African countries were resettled and UN humanitarian appeals have been severely underfunded. For example, as a result of the conflict which broke out in South Sudan in December 2013, more than 550,000 people became refugees, the majority of whom are now in Ethiopia, Sudan, Kenya and Uganda. Only 11% of the UN’s South Sudan regional refugee response plan was funded as of 3 June 2015.

South East Asia: Turning away the desperate

In the first quarter of 2015, UNHCR reported that some 25,000 people attempted to cross the Bay of Bengal. This is approximately double the figure for the same period in 2014. This Bay of Bengal sea route is predominantly used by Muslim Rohingya from Myanmar and Bangladeshi nationals.

On 11 May, the International Organization for Migration estimated that there were 8,000 people stranded on boats close to Thailand. Many of those aboard were believed to be Rohingya fleeing state-sponsored persecution in Myanmar.

During May, Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand turned back boats carrying hundreds of refugees and migrants desperate for help, despite the dangers they faced. UNHCR estimates that 300 people died at sea in the first three months of 2015 due to “starvation, dehydration and abuse by boat crews”.

On 20 May Indonesia and Malaysia changed course, announcing that they would provide “temporary shelter” for up to 7,000 people still at sea. However, this temporary protection would only last for up to a year, and on condition that the international community would help with repatriation or resettlement of the people. Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand have not ratified the UN Refugee Convention.

Elsewhere, a terrible precedent has been set in the region by the Australian government whose hard-line approach to asylum-seekers attempting to arrive by boat has, under the guise of saving lives, violated its responsibilities under refugee and human rights law.

“From the Andaman to the Mediterranean people are losing their lives as they desperately seek safe haven. The current refugee crisis will not be solved unless the international community recognizes that it is a global problem that requires states to significantly step up international cooperation. Later this week UNHCR will release their annual statistics on refugees and we will likely find that the crisis is getting worse. It is time for action,” said Salil Shetty.

Read more: 

Global Refugee Crisis in Numbers (Feature, 15 June 2015)

The Global Refugee Crisis: A conspiracy of neglect (Report, 15 June 2015)

Pushed to the edge: Syrian refugees face increased restrictions in Lebanon (Briefing, 15 June 2015)

Aljazeera Arabic Teaches “Jihadi 101”, Including Bomb-Making and Social Agitation

[SEE:  Aljazeera and ‘The Arab Spring’]

  • Al-Jazeera — in Arabic — encourages terrorist attacks in Egypt and the Sinai Peninsula by the Muslim Brotherhood, and preaches the destruction of Israel, non-stop.
  • Recently Al-Jazeera has been broadcasting a “documentary” series glorifying Hamas and the Izz al-Din al-Qassam Brigades, its military-terrorist wing. The entire series is devoted to idealizing Islamist terrorism and encouraging mass-casualty terrorist attacks against Jews, in the name of radical Islamist ideology.
  • One of the stars is the Palestinian arch-terrorist, Abd al-Karim al-Hanini, who was released from prison in Israel and found safe haven in Qatar.
  • No one has even tried to prevent Qatar’s participation in a global anti-terrorism forum.

The EU and the U.S. have recently been holding meetings in Brussels and Ankara with Turkey and Qatar, two of the major funders of terror groups, to form an “anti-terrorism task force” — while the very Islamists they support have been spiritedly spreading out. Turkey and Qatar have even agreed to help fight ISIS, apparently on the condition that the Turkish-trained forces also try to unseat Syria’s President, Bashar al-Assad.

Turkey, under the leadership of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated AKP Party, has been a supporter of terrorists, such as Hamas and ISIS.

Turkish President (then Prime Minister) Recep Tayyip Erdogan, right, meeting with Hamas leaders Khaled Mashaal (center) and Ismail Haniyeh on June 18, 2013, in Ankara, Turkey. (Image source: Turkey Prime Minister’s Press Office)

Meanwhile, Qatar’s TV channel, Al-Jazeera, regularly incites terrorism against Egyptian President el-Sisi’s pro-Western regime. El-Sisi’s heroic pro-Western stance is apparently unreciprocated: the U.S. State Department just hosted an official meeting for his arch-enemy, the Muslim Brotherhood, father of Hamas, while Al Jazeera — in Arabic — encourages terrorist attacks in Egypt and Sinai Peninsula by the Muslim Brotherhood, and preaches the destruction of Israel, non-stop.

It was Al-Jazeera that created the “Arab Spring” by twisting a story about a Tunisian fruit-seller, who set himself on fire because he could not get a work permit, into a story of Tunisian oppression. The station ran the story again and again, whipping up Tunisians to overthrow their secular leaders and bring in Islamist leaders. To the Tunisians’ credit, like the Egyptians, after a few years of Islamist rule, they also threw the Islamist leaders out.

Recently, Al-Jazeera has been broadcasting a “documentary” series glorifying Hamas and the Izz al-Din al-Qassam Brigades, its military-terrorist wing. The entire series is devoted to idealizing Islamist terrorism and encouraging mass-casualty terrorist attacks against Jews, in the name of radical Islamist ideology.

One of the stars of the series is the Palestinian arch-terrorist, Abd al-Karim al-Hanini, who was released from prison in Israel and found a safe haven in Qatar. He explains how to construct explosives from agricultural substances, such as chemical fertilizer and sulfur; how to fill an empty gas balloon with the explosives, and how to detonate the bomb mechanically, electronically or with a suicide-bomber (shaheed), in order to kill as many Israelis as possible.

Al-Hanini boasts about his terrorist activities killing Israeli civilians and soldiers, and details tactics that mujahideen will use in their jihadi “inner struggles,” and presumably also their outer ones. These tactics can be used as blueprints by future terrorists. The series can easily be viewed by all intelligence agencies in the world, but so far no one has tried to prevent it from being broadcast — or has even criticized Qatar for broadcasting it.

No one has even tried to prevent Qatar’s participation in a global anti-terrorism forum.

Bassam Tawil is a scholar based in the Middle East.

THE WHOLE WORLD HAS ITS HEAD BURIED IN THE SAND–Truth About Isis

[THE WHOLE WORLD HAS ITS HEAD BURIED IN THE SAND, when it comes to ISIS.  No authority has protested in the past, nor do they protest today, the fact that ISIS is wholly a US/SAUDI-owned entity.  They nurtured it together in the prison camps of Iraq and Saudi, until it was ready to stand on its own two legs in Syria.  There is no surprise here, except for the great astonishment everyone experiences when learning the truth about this state-sponsored terrorism, and the fact that no government (‘cept Russia) dares to mention this dire truth.]

[THE FOLLOWING EXCERPT IS FROM PGS. 287-293, DEFENSE INTELLIGENCE AGENCY REPORT]

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isis documents2

isis documents3

isis head collection

‘No one can bury heads in sand:’ Hezbollah leader calls for help fighting ISIS in Syria

Russia-Today
Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah
Lebanon’s Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah.(Reuters / Sharif Karim)

 

Calling it a global existential threat, Lebanon’s Hezbollah leader, Hassan Nasrallah, has urged supporters to join the fight against the Islamic State, confirming that his Shiite militant group has been fighting the Sunni extremists all across Syria.

READ MORE: ‘No will’ to fight ISIS? US Defense Sec blasts Iraqi troops

“Today we are facing a kind of danger that is unprecedented in history, which targets humanity itself,” Nasrallah said Sunday during a televised broadcast referring to Islamic State (IS, previously ISIS/ISIL).

“This is not just a threat to the resistance in Lebanon or to the regime in Syria or the government in Iraq or a group in Yemen,” the Shiite movement’s head continued. “This is a danger to everyone. No one should bury their heads in the sand.”

He called on volunteers to stand up against IS extremist fighters: “We invite everyone in Lebanon and the region to take responsibility and confront this danger and end their silence and hesitation and neutrality.”

Read more
First confession: Pentagon admits 2 Syrian children killed in US airstrikes

Nasrallah’s comments were made ahead of Monday’s anniversary of the retreat of Israeli troops from Lebanon in 2000.

The leader has confirmed for the very first time that Hezbollah members are fighting Islamic State together with Syrian President Bashar Assad’s forces in various parts of Syria and not just around the border regions.

“We are fighting alongside our Syrian brothers, alongside the army and the people and the popular resistance in Damascus and Aleppo and Deir Ezzor and Qusayr and Hasakeh and Idlib,” he said. “We are present today in many places and we will be present in all the places in Syria that this battle requires.”

READ MORE: Mortar attack on Russian embassy in Damascus an ‘act of terror’ – Moscow

Nasrallah also expressed disappointment with the US-led coalition against Islamic State, saying it was not effective and had not stopped jihadists from moving around freely.

Read more
​ISIS taking advantage of Syrian conflict, opposition & govt should cease fire – UN envoy tells RT

At the same time, he addressed the opposition, stressing that any support for the anti-Assad movement within Syria would only lead to more power in the hands of jihadists.

Sunni forces in Lebanon have been critical of Hezbollah’s role in Syria, as the group has not supported uprisings against Assad.

Lebanon is heavily affected by the Syrian conflict, as the majority of the refugees seeking shelter there are from the bordering war-torn state, with their number currently estimated at over 1.2 million.

The civil war in Syria started four years ago, when the Western-backed opposition began an armed rebellion against Assad’s government. By 2013, large portions of eastern Syria and western Iraq had fallen under control of militants from the Islamic State, which emerged amid the turmoil of the conflict, along with other extremist groups fighting against both Assad and the opposition. The conflict in Syria has claimed over 200,000 lives so far.

Fighting Terrorists By Creating Terrorists

[We have armed every nation in the Middle East “to the teeth,” yet now we fight to keep them from murdering each other with those very same weapons.  We have intentionally ramped-up local antagonisms, in order to create the desire for more weapons.  Every Middle Eastern nation spends most of its money and everything that it can borrow to purchase every weapon that they can get, because that is what American leaders want.  American militarists and Empire Builders have pushed through every political barrier, in order to entangle American interests in this morass, so that later we could play at “world policeman.”  Why would American leaders have acted so maliciously towards future victims of their policies? 

Why do they purposely create the circumstances which will compel future military interventions?  If the goal is simply the introduction of American forces, then why not just move those forces in, instead of trying to arm every side and then send in American forces to keep the killing below an “acceptable” threshold as justification for impending aggression?  Answering certain questions exposes the aggression in American humanitarianism.  Human lives mean nothing to an unrestrained military aggressor, except when they prove to be an embarassment or reveal America’s true nature.]

America’s Virulent, Extremist Counterterrorism Ideology

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America’s Virulent, Extremist Counterterrorism Ideology

Throughout the 13-plus years of the war on terrorism, one line of effort that everyone in Washington agrees on is the necessity to counter the ideology put forth by terrorist groups. Unfortunately, everyone also agrees that U.S. government agencies have done a terrible job at achieving this. Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) recently derided the State Department’s counter-ideology efforts as “laughable” compared with the propaganda of the Islamic State. Whether termed “strategic communications,” “counter-messaging,” or “countering violent extremism,” there is a rare Washington consensus that this essential task is also the one that the United States has been the worst at accomplishing. But it’s not just about building a less-pathetic State Department Twitter feed. By extension, “success” mandates changing how terrorist groups think and communicate, and influencing individuals deemed susceptible to terrorists’ messaging.

Focusing on terrorists’ ideology is attractive because it requires altering the brains of enemies and neutral third parties, while, more importantly, requiring no change in America’s own thinking. Yet in the past six months there has been a little noticed, but significant, shift in America’s own counterterrorism ideology.

The language senior officials and policymakers are increasingly using to characterize terrorist threats — and to describe the projected length of the war on terrorism — has diversified and metastasized. The enemy, once identified as simply al Qaeda and affiliated groups, now includes amorphous concepts like “Islamic extremism” or “violent extremists.” Meanwhile, any shared understanding of when the war might end has basically vanished from public discourse. Where there was once an aspiration in Washington to wind down the era of “perpetual war,” there is now an agreement that America faces a “multigenerational” threat.

With little awareness of the consequences of this shift in discourse, U.S. counterterrorism ideology has become far more nebulous, less concrete, and gradually more open-ended. The war on terrorism is going poorly: The number, estimated strength, lethality (within countries they operate in, not against Americans), and social media influence of jihadi terrorist groups is growing. Yet, the same tough-sounding clichés and wholly implausible objectives are repeated over and over, with no indication of any strategic learning or policy adjustments. If this virulent and extremist — virulent in that it’s poisonous and harmful and that repeatedly espousing it ensures continued strategic failure, and extremist in that it proclaims the most extreme objectives that will never be achieved — U.S. counterterrorism ideology goes unchecked, it will further delude government officials and U.S. citizens into the false belief that the current courses of action are normal and acceptable and require no modification.

This latest ideological change is most conspicuous in descriptions of who the United States is at war with. The enemy has always been overly classified and somewhat hidden, but at least there was once a recognized list of discrete groups. Now, the adversary is an undefined and contested category of groups or people allegedly connected with the act of terrorism. If the U.S. government were as imprecise with its bombs as with its descriptions of its terrorist enemies, it would be a war crime. This matters: If you cannot name your opponents, you certainly cannot know them, much less measure progress in defeating them.

Consider the nebulous jumble of abstract enemies that officials have pronounced. In February, President Barack Obama said, “We are at war with people who have perverted Islam” and said that the international community must “eradicate this scourge of violent extremism.” Similarly, when attempting to describe the enemy, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Martin Dempsey, claimed that the United States is in a fight “against the group that has perverted Islam.” In February, National Security Advisor Susan Rice contextualized the U.S. mission as “to cut off violent extremism at the knees.” Earlier that month, she attempted to describe the undefined enemy: “As al Qaeda core has been decimated, we have seen the diffusion of the threat to al Qaeda affiliates, ISIL, local militia[s], and homegrown violent extremists.” Eric Holder, then the attorney general, claimed, also in February, that the United States is simply “combating the threat of violent extremism.” Gen. Lloyd Austin, commander of U.S. Central Command, said the enemy is “ISIL and other violent extremist groups.”

Some policymakers have been even vaguer. When asked to define the enemy, Secretary of State John Kerry said, “I call them the enemy of Islam.” Let’s set aside the fact that Kerry is now presuming to interpret what is legitimate faith for 1 billion Muslims. Just who is this enemy precisely?

Meanwhile, the Republican presidential candidates are outdoing one another in blurring the enemy and exponentially expanding the number of individuals whom the United States must defeat. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fl.) coined the Taken doctrine: “On our strategy on global jihadists and terrorists, I refer them to the movie Taken … Liam Neeson. He had a line, and this is what our strategy should be: ‘We will look for you, we will find you, and we will kill you.’” Less theatrically, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) merely pledged, “We will stand up and defeat radical Islamic terrorism.” Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry said, “We are in the early years of a struggle with violent Islamic extremists that will last many decades.” Meanwhile, Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), while touting his alleged willingness to name the enemy, called them “radical Islam” and “haters of mankind.” Again, it’s fine, though meaningless, to talk tough, but whom are these threats being made against?

The other threatening recent shift in U.S. counterterrorism ideology relates to the end state in the war on terrorism and when this might come about. Although Obama once claimed that this war, “like all wars, must end,” officials and policymakers no longer pretend that the war on terrorism will ever end; nor do they offer any narrative for how this war would end. Rather, they are attempting to normalize the war on terrorism as something all Americans should accept and get used to. As Defense Secretary Ashton Carter admitted, “We need to be thinking about terrorism more generally as a more enduring part of our national security mission.”

This shift was crystallized in a remarkable recent observation by CIA Director John Brennan. Three years ago, Brennan, then Obama’s closest counterterrorism advisor, pledged, “We’re not going to rest until al Qaeda the organization is destroyed and is eliminated from areas in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, Africa, and other areas. We’re determined to do that.” Yet, last month, when asked at Harvard University when the war on terrorism will end, he responded philosophically: “It’s a long war, unfortunately. But it’s been a war that has been in existence for millennia.… So this is going to be something, I think, that we’re always going to have to be vigilant about.” In other words, defeating terrorism is eschatological and eternal.

Similarly, Obama and his senior aides have come to repeatedly reframe the war in decades. The new National Security Strategy describes it as “a generational struggle in the aftermath of the 2003 Iraq war and 2011 Arab uprisings, which will redefine the region as well as relationships among communities and between citizens and their governments.” Meanwhile, Dempsey, the most senior uniformed military official, warned of Islamic terrorism: “I think this threat is probably a 30-year issue.”

Likewise, on Capitol Hill, this view has become standardized. Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-Texas) said it is a “multigenerational struggle” with “no cheap way to win this fight.” Similarly, Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) called it “a generational fight for civilization against brutal enemies.” Rep. Trent Franks (R-Ariz.) went even further than Brennan, noting, “We’ve been fighting this radical Islamist ideology for 1,400 years.” In other words, long before the United States was even established. Forget who the enemy is; who is this “we”?

What is most disheartening about this radicalized counterterrorism discourse is that these same officials and policymakers still pretend that these diffuse terrorist threats will be “destroyed,” “defeated,” or “eliminated.” This quite simply will not happen because the United States and its partners keep applying the same strategies and policies while foolishly hoping for a different result. Officials claim that terrorists’ ideology is their “center of gravity,” a term the Pentagon defines as: “The source of power that provides moral or physical strength, freedom of action, or will to act.” Yet, again, because nothing has succeeded at countering that ideology, we are supposed to become accustomed to an endless war against a nondescript concept.

The only ideology that the United States can influence or control is its own. Instead, Washington has busied itself conflating local militancy with threats to the homeland, refusing to identify the enemy, proclaiming tough-sounding and implausible strategic objectives, and demonstrating no meaningful learning or adjustments over 13 years. The lack of precision employed when defining America’s adversaries in the war on terrorism and the absence of any end state (combined with those unachievable objectives) comprise a dangerous and extremist set of beliefs for U.S. officials and policymakers to hold. If the war on terrorism is really all about ideology and ideas, then the United States should spend as much time analyzing its own ideology as it does its enemies’. The emerging counterterrorism ideology that Washington is expressing is hazardous, illusory, and sadly unchallenged.

Photo credit: Alex Wong/Getty Images

US Repeatedly Provokes Albanian Extremism with Ideas of ‘Greater Albania’

[The unimaginative CIA goons keep repeating the same pattern throughout the world, wherever there are unrealized dreams of some “greater glory,” there are fiendish, fevered spooks twisting things into a volatile scenario.  It is the same story from “Greater Balochistan,” to “Greater Kurdistan,” to “Greater Albania,” to the greatest concentration of unrestrained evil and idiocy, the nightmarish vision of “Greater Israel.”  All of these false visions are played upon by the CIA master deceivers, to keep the world in flames.

Playing with terrorists and manufacturing even more of the deranged mother-f—— is the CIA’s plan for creating an American world order.  Use state-manipulated terrorism to burn the world down, so that American corporations can rule over the ashes.]

Global Energy Game: ‘Greater Albania’ Used by West to Destabilize Balkans

in serbia

The recent spike in violence and tension between Macedonian security forces and groups of ethnic Albanians is an ongoing product of western intervention and NATO bombing of the region in the 1990s, according to Balkan political analysts.

Photo from: militaryphotos.net

The issue of ethnic tension within Macedonia has gained global headlines after eight police officers and 14 others were killed during a two-day shootout between police and what the Macedonian government described as an armed paramilitary group of ethnic Albanians in the northern city of Kumanovo.

The incident is the latest and bloodiest in a string of clashes between Macedonians and ethnic Albanians, who make up approximately 30 percent of the country’s population.

These deaths have once again raised fears of rising ethnic tensions and concerns that the country may be heading for another civil war, similar to one fought between Macedonian forces and Albanian paramilitary groups in 2001.

Fear of ‘Greater Albania’

Photo: Tanjug

Many analysts suggest that central to the conflict is the idea within Macedonia and other Balkan states that ethnic Albanian groups are aiming to create a ‘Greater Albania’ as part of expansionist ambitions.

Although Albanian officials have dismissed the concept, there has been a heightened concern of potential Albanian expansion, particularly after Prime Minister Edi Rama recently said the unification of his country and the former Serbian province of Kosovo — which has a majority Albanian population — was “inevitable.”

Political analyst Andrew Korybko told Sputnik that the mistrust and division between Albania and other states in the Balkans was exacerbated by the late 1990s US and UK-led intervention in the region.

He said that the West’s decision to take sides in the conflict and back Albanian groups has further destabilized the region and spurred on ethnic tensions.

“The important thing to understand here is that it [NATO intervention] showed outside support for Albanian separatism, and afterwards, all Albanians,” Korybko said.

Macedonia was purposely kept from the brink of disintegration

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Korybko also says the decision to protect the Macedonian state during the conflict, and further negotiate a generous agreement for Albanian groups, following the 2001 Macedonian war, was a strategic move by the West, aimed at trying to increase their influence in the area.

“Macedonia was purposely kept from the brink of disintegration so that the ethnic explosion [of violence] could be externally activated at a future time if need be.”

Just why western powers would want to leave the option of ‘Greater Albania’ open and further destabilize countries in the Balkans is down to greater geopolitical games, analysts say.

The Global Energy Game

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Dusan Prorokovic, an expert in Balkan affairs told Sputnik that the recent trouble in Macedonia has been stirred up to try and prevent the creation of the proposed ‘Turkish stream’ project, which plans to transport Russian gas to Europe via Turkey and the Balkans.

“The concept of Greater Albania is once again relevant but it won’t see any progress without the help of the North Atlantic bloc. I think why all of that happened is more linked to the ‘Turkish stream’ and the defeat of the US in Ukraine, than to local Albanian interests.”

Andrew Korybko agrees, saying: “Greater Albania is a geopolitical tool to be deployed in stopping not only Russia’s Balkan Stream pipeline [northern extension of the Turkish stream] but also China’s Balkan Silk Road.”

Violence in Macedonia could spill over into Kosovo

Photo from: Novosti.rs

The violence in Macedonia could spill over into Kosovo-Metohija, especially as individuals from Kosovo-Metohija are involved in the clashes there, Serbian and ethnic Albanian analysts in Kosovo-Metohija have warned.

Analyst Zivojin Rakocevic told Tanjug Monday that Kosovo-Metohija has essentially been destabilised, with chaos just spilling over into the surrounding systems which, basically, only formally exist for ethnic Albanians.

“Most ethnic Albanians in Macedonia do not recognise Macedonia, most ethnic Albanians in the south of central Serbia do not recognise Serbia, and most ethnic Albanians in Montenegro do not see the Montenegrin system as a part of their system,” he said.

It is no surprise that ethnic Albanians from Kosovo are involved in the clashes in Macedonia because practically no borders exist for them, Rakocevic said.

Analyst Nedzmedin Spahiu told Tanjug that, after Macedonia, Kosovo could be the next to be destabilised, which is not in the interest of the citizens.

“Things that are going on at your neighbour’s are something you can also expect to see in your own house, especially because some of the protagonists of the events there are from Kosovo,” Spahiu warned, noting that the situation in Kosovo-Metohija is very fragile.

Dangers of violence overflowing

Kosovo Deputy Prime Minister Branimir Stojanovic warned on Tuesday against the danger of violence overflowing in the Balkans, noting that everything should be done to stabilise the situation in Macedonia.

In an interview for Tanjug, Stojanovic said that there is always a danger of violence overflowing in the Balkans and that the past has shown that borders do not mean anything in such events.

It is important for the situation in Macedonia to calm down as soon as possible and for all bodies in charge of security to be hired, Stojanovic said.

He underscored that it is especially important for the international bodies to be alert and pay attention to everything that should jeopardise the safety of Serbs in Kosovo-Metohija.

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1 COMMENT

  1. Valerie Hopkins ‏@VALERIEin140 May 10
    .@PeterKGeoghegan I understand why they can’t write everything, hard to prove conspiracy theories. But looks like there are 50 ppl hostage..
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    novinar napise ovo i niko ne zna o cemu je rec niti kaze o cemu se radi

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What Was The True Mission In Iraq, To Create Chaos Or To Contain It?

Accusations Emerge That the U.S. Is Aiding ISIS – The Latest “Conspiracy Theory” Circulating in Iraq

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My belief is, we will, in fact be greeted as liberators.

– Dick Cheney on NBC’s Meet the Press, March 16, 2003

But that enmity for the United States circulates beyond the militias that once fought U.S. soldiers, surfacing also in parliamentary debates and Iraqi media reports and even at the highest ranks of the national armed forces that the United States is aiding.

“Everybody knows that the Americans are dropping supplies to Daesh,” said Brig. Gen. Abed al-Maliki, a senior Iraqi army commander based in the city of Samarra, about 80 miles north of Baghdad, using another term for the Islamic State.

What’s more, he said, during some of the fiercest fighting around Samarra last year, U.S. Special Operations forces dropped behind enemy lines to assist Islamic State militants.

“They came in with parachutes, and they were helping to bomb the city,” he said.

U.S. airstrikes against the Islamic State, he contended, are probably just a cover for efforts to support the group.

“It’s just a show,” he said, sitting in the city’s army command headquarters. “If the Americans want to finish something, they will finish it. If they wanted to liberate Iraq, they could.”

– From the Washington Post article, In Fight for Tikrit, U.S. Finds Enemies on Both Sides of the Battle Lines, March 27, 2015

How do you know your foreign policy is a complete and total destructive nightmare? When the country you supposedly “liberated” not only turns into a horrific war zone, but all sides fighting accuse you of helping the enemy. This seems to be precisely what is happening in Iraq at the moment.

Just last week, I was shocked to read in the Wall Street Journal that the U.S. military was preparing to coordinate action against ISIS in Tikrit, alongside Iranian backed militias. I highlighted this in the post, Can’t Make This Up – U.S. Providing Aid in Fight Against ISIS in Iraq Alongside Iranian Troops. Here’s the key excerpt:

The U.S. has started providing Iraq with aerial intelligence in the stalled battle to oust Islamic State from Tikrit, drawing the American military into closer coordination with Iranian-backed militias spearheading the offensive. 

Military officials said they aren’t working directly with Iran. But the intelligence will be used to help some 20,000 Iranian-backed Shiite militia fighters who make up the bulk of the force that has been struggling for weeks to retake the strategic city.

Incredibly, only a few days later, we learn from the Washington Post that one of the most popular “conspiracy theories” circulating in Iraq at the moment is that the U.S. is directly supplying and aiding ISIS in Iraq. Significantly, these accusations aren’t just emerging from random corners of the internet, but from senior military figures within the Iraqi army. Can’t make this up indeed.

From the Washington Post:

 As American forces open another front of battle in Iraq, they find themselves on the same side as an array of armed groups that not only consider the United States an enemy but also accuse it of actively supporting Islamic State militants.

Since the U.S.-led coalition planes launched their first airstrikes in the Islamic State-held city of Tikrit on Wednesday night, threats and accusations from ­Shiite militias who were leading the battle there have grown. Several of the Iranian-backed groups accused coalition aircraft of bombing a headquarters for pro-government fighters in the city on Friday, promising retribution.

The claim was the latest in a long string of accusations leveled at the United States since its first airstrikes against the Islamic State in August. Rumors of coalition planes dropping weapons supplies to Islamic State militants and attacking pro-government fighters are now widely held beliefs in a country where conspiracy theories are rife.

But that enmity for the United States circulates beyond the militias that once fought U.S. soldiers, surfacing also in parliamentary debates and Iraqi media reports and even at the highest ranks of the national armed forces that the United States is aiding.

“Everybody knows that the Americans are dropping supplies to Daesh,” said Brig. Gen. Abed al-Maliki, a senior Iraqi army commander based in the city of Samarra, about 80 miles north of Baghdad, using another term for the Islamic State. 

What’s more, he said, during some of the fiercest fighting around Samarra last year, U.S. Special Operations forces dropped behind enemy lines to assist Islamic State militants.

“They came in with parachutes, and they were helping to bomb the city,” he said.

U.S. airstrikes against the Islamic State, he contended, are probably just a cover for efforts to support the group.

“It’s just a show,” he said, sitting in the city’s army command headquarters. “If the Americans want to finish something, they will finish it. If they wanted to liberate Iraq, they could.”

When such accusations appear in the Iraqi media, they are normally accompanied by an image from an Islamic State video from Kobane in Syria last year, showing the militants displaying a load of weapons accidently dropped from a U.S. plane — an incident the United States acknowledged.

Whoops, sorry, our mistake! At this point, who doesn’t have access to hundreds of millions of U.S. weaponry?

Visiting U.S. officials are left to fend off questions about whether they support the group. The topic was the first to be broached in questions when Gen. John Allen, special envoy for the coalition to counter the Islamic State, met with Iraqi journalists in January.

The theories are stoked by U.S. involvement in the wider region, where Sunni states such as Saudi Arabia are battling for influence against Shiite Iran. While the United States has backed the same side as Saudi Arabia in conflicts in Syria and Yemen, in Iraq it finds itself on the other side of the battle.

A wildly popular trailer for an Iraqi TV program launched last year that mocked the Islamic State played off that speculation. It showed Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi hatching out of an egg after a marriage between characters representing Israel and America.

If this is how Iraqis greet their liberators, I don’t want to be invited to the party they throw for enemies.

Seriously though, it doesn’t even matter if these accusations are true or not. What matter is that Iraq is a total disaster zone, and everyone suffering from the chaos knows full well the U.S. government is responsible. Over the past decade, the clowns running American foreign policy have gone from promising the world that the Iraqis would greet U.S. soldiers as liberators, to all sides accusing the USA of aiding the enemy; whether that enemy be the Iraqi army, Iranian backed militias, or ISIS.

This is not a recipe for success. Unless of course, success is determined by the ability to create as much chaos and death overseas as possible via a divide and conquer strategy in which all combatants attempt to slay each other using weapons purchased from American defense companies. In that case, the Iraq war can be defined as a resounding success.

US Policy Is Driving Force Behind the Call To Jihad

[A very strong case is made that it is US foreign policy which fuels Islamist anger and drives the call to “jihad.”  American policy has been humiliating to every Muslim since 2001, in particular, the policies of torture, secret renditions and drone assassinations, all of which have been designed to destroy the collective psyche of all Muslim males.  

Murder by drone and rendition have demonstrated to every Muslim family that none of them are safe in their beds, or in their homes anymore.  What more reason would a sensible young man need than this, to drive him to take-up arms against the American aggressors?   Yemen hosted a US drone/counter-insurgency base, allegedly used to “hunt al-Qaeda,” which was probably the driving force in Yemen’s destabilization.  The more the US and the Saudis bombed Yemen, the greater grew the unrest of all sectarian derivations. 

The ease of recruitment for ISIS (and the Middle Eastern radicals in general) is a pretty direct measure of the effectiveness of US psychological warfare.  The more we humiliate Muslims, the more jihadis answer the call to battle. 

But, I would argue that that has been the objective of the entire war on terror since its inception…find those who would be jihadis and kill them all.  It doesn’t matter to the Pentagon/CIA that they are feeding the cycle that they have been fighting to stop?  Instead of trying to kill the Muslim world to get all the survivors to “LIKE” us, we should try to disengage long enough for the Arabs to fight among themselves and settle their tribal/religious feuds which we had no right to interfere with, at all.]

Smith College religion professor, historian says US should stay out of Middle East battles

MASS live

sum.JPG

By Diane Lederman | dlederman@repub.com

 

Smith College religion professor Suleiman A. Mourad believes the United States should not be involved in the Middle East. (Diane Lederman/The Republican)

 

NORTHAMPTON – This week, Saudi Arabia took on rebels in Yemen, the latest action in the escalating conflict in the Middle East. It’s a confusing muddle of alliances.

As the New York Times reports the United States is supporting the Saudi campaign to dislodge Iranian-backed Houthi rebels but in Iraq and Syria, the United States is on the same side as Iran in the fight against the Islamic State.

And while some Congress debate whether to send in ground troops, Smith College religion professor Suleiman A. Mourad believes the United States should not be involved.

In fact anger against the United States is fueling the antagonism and serves as a recruiting tool for Isis and other extremists.

Mourad, who also studies jihad, explained some of the roots of the conflict and the reasons he believes that it needs to play out there without United States intervention.

He doesn’t think the warring parties are ready or able to talk to each other nor does he see any diplomat in the United States able to bring the parties to the table.

In fact, he said the United States is hated abroad. A native of Lebanon he returned recently and said the level of animosity between Sunnis and Shia towards the United States was extreme.

Middle Eastern leaders don’t trust or respect the United States.

The wars between Sunnis and the Shia – different sects within the Muslim community with different customs – have both modern and historical roots.
According to the BBC, most of the Muslims are Sunnis – estimates suggest the figure is somewhere between 85 to 90 percent.

Historically, Sunnis consider themselves as the orthodox or traditional form of Islam where the Shia the political faction, according to the BBC.

“There are historical grievances historical reasons that speak to the current grievances,” Mourad said, much in the way slavery here is linked to issue of race in America.

He said at the same time, some Shia are aligned with some Sunnis and vice versa. Also he said Shias in Yemen are different than the Shias of Iran. “They don’t have a common history. There’s much animosity.”

Each political leader has his own agenda and uses the rebel groups to support that just as long they don’t topple their own regime. “Every dictator has interests.”

While the Middle East was under the control of such leaders as Saddam Hussein, the militant factions were squelched but as those leaders were toppled the militant groups were able to emerge.
And what makes the modern conflict unprecedented is how widespread the uprisings are. The battle “across the Muslim world is unprecedented.”

He said the modern day Sunni militant movements began in the 1960s-1970s with the ideas of Sayyid Qutb of Egypt and Sayyid Abul Ala Maududi of Pakistan being put into practice.

They believed that Muslims rulers “were in the pockets of the West.:” And he said those militant ideologues were in “pursuit of a great Islam” and urged Muslims to jihad and unity.

Later there was a split where one group wanted a less militant approach and instead advocated for activism. The idea was “to just do activism to take control of the Sunnis. Teach ideas to ultimately unify Islam.”

But with such things as the overthrow of the Shah in Iran and Ayatollah Khomeini becoming the supreme leader and the defeat of the Soviet Union in Afghanistan, these militants groups realized they had power and could demonstrate that militarism could achieve their goals.

Isis too feels like it has power with the attention it garners with the beheadings of Americans or its connection to attacks in France at Charlie Hebdo, the satirical magazine in January.

“(In their minds) It puts them on equal footing with the west,” Mourad said. And if “we are equal to the West, we can defeat the West.”

Each regime, meanwhile, in the Middle East has its own agenda but leaders are not able or willing right now to talk about what that is and how to meet their needs. Some take advantage of groups like Isis to push for their respective interests and agendas.

So the wars have to play out until they are willing to talk. Meanwhile he said, “We have no business being (there.)”

He said the Iranians during the overthrow of the Shah said, “America is Satan” and wanted to destroy the country. That hatred has only worsened as the United States has gotten more involved in the battles of the countries in the Middle East.

Doing To The Entire Islamic World What We Have Done To Iraq

Instability in the Islamic world

The Hindu

G PARTHASARATHY

Three major developments require careful attention. These are the emergence of the ISIS, the growing Persian-Arab and sectarian Shia-Sunni tensions, and the possibility of a negotiated end to the Iranian nuclear impasse. All this is occurring amidst the fall in global oil and gas prices, which is imposing a strain on the economies of countries in the Persian Gulf.

American subversion

The entire polity of what is known as the ‘Greater Middle East’ (extending from Pakistan to Turkey) has been destabilised by American-led subversion and invasions in Iraq, Syria and Libya, to oust secular but authoritarian governments, without having viable alternatives in sight. In Syria, American-supported destabilisation efforts have led to millions fleeing their homes and the emergence of diverse groups embroiled in a seemingly neverending civil war. The invasion of Iraq has led to Shia-Sunni bloodletting that has spread across the entire region. Libya has been fragmented by similar intervention and has emerged as another centre of Shia-Sunni conflict. More importantly, the intervention in Syria has led to the emergence of the Islamic State of Levant (ISIS). It now controls large parts of Syria and northern Iraq and has made inroads in Libya while establishing links with religious extremists in Nigeria, Somalia and elsewhere.

The world has seldom, if ever, seen a group as fanatical, revivalist and ruthless as the ISIS, which has drawn thousands of armed cadres, not just from Arab and Islamic countries but from across Europe and America. Its practices include arbitrary killing of non-Muslims and Shias. It forcibly takes non-Muslim women as slaves, extorts payment of jiziya tax by non-Muslims, and practises beheading and crucifixion. The only other recent case of similar behaviour was by the Afghan Taliban which persecuted Shias and required Hindus to display their identity by sporting yellow scarves/armbands.

Another barbaric trait the two share is the destruction of ancient shrines, artefacts, statues and art. If the Taliban vandalised and dynamited the historic Bamiyan Buddha statues, the ISIS destroyed or sold the priceless ancient treasures of Nimrud, Tikrit and Mosul.

The Sunni Arab alliance

The escalating tensions in the Greater Middle East have resulted in a Sunni Arab Alliance led by Saudi Arabia and Egypt, facing off a Shia, Iranian-led grouping, including Iraq and Syria. We also have the strange situation of Iran and the US making common cause, to assist Iraqi security forces to drive out the ISIS from the Sunni majority Tikrit, Mosul and across the Anbar province. The US provides the air power, while the Iranian Revolutionary Guards train, arm, equip and fight alongside the Iraqi Shia militia.

Yet another strange meeting of minds is that of Israel and the Sunni Arab leadership from countries such as Saudi Arabia and Egypt. While the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visited the US congress in Washington to voice his opposition to an agreement being negotiated between the US, Russia, China, the UK, France and Germany, on the one hand, and Iran on the other, to end sanctions against Iran, the Sunni Arab countries launched a diplomatic offensive to get the US to scuttle the proposed deal.

Quite obviously chary of an Iranian ‘Shia bomb’, Saudi Arabia and its Arab Gulf partners held discussions with the US Secretary of State John Kerry on March 4 and voiced their reservations about a prospective US-led Iranian nuclear deal. The Saudis simultaneously fear not only an American-Iranian rapprochement, but also the prospects of the growing ISIS presence along their borders and in the Arab world. They know that the US is no longer dependent on them for oil supplies. The Americans, in fact, now have oil and gas reserves to meet current levels of demand for 85 years. Saudi Arabian oil is no longer vital for meeting the US’ energy needs.

It is in these circumstances that Pakistan’s Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was received at Riyadh airport on March 3 by King Salman bin Abdul Aziz, Crown Prince Mukri and the entire Saudi cabinet. This was a rare honour for a head of government, especially from a bankrupt country that has survived on Saudi and American doles for decades. Interestingly, barely a month earlier, the chairman of Pakistan’s joint chiefs of staff committee Gen Rashad Mahmoud, the seniormost military officer in Pakistan’s Nuclear Command Authority which has operational command and control of Pakistan’s nuclear weapons, visited Saudi Arabia.

Old ties

Pak-Saudi nuclear links go back to the 1990s when AQ Khan paid visits to Saudi Arabia, following a visit to the Kahuta nuclear and missile facilities by the Saudi defence minister, Prince Salman. Interestingly, Pakistan tested, for the first time, a nuclear capable missile, Shaheen 3, with a range of 2,750 km, capable of striking targets beyond India, just after Sharif’s visit to Riyadh. This missile could be an asset to target Iran from Saudi Arabia. The already complicated situation in the Greater Middle East could become more tense if Pakistan agrees to send troops to guard Saudi Arabia’s frontiers, or provides the desert kingdom a ‘Sunni nuclear shield’ to counter Iran. Given the tensions on its borders with India, Afghanistan and Iran, it remains to be seen how Pakistan responds to Saudi requests for military assistance, conventional and nuclear.

New Delhi has just gone through a significant effort in building viable security architecture with neighbouring Indian Ocean island-states. There is now need for careful consideration of the impact of recent developments across the Islamic world on India’s security, and the welfare of its nationals in the Arab Gulf states.

The author is a former High Commissioner to Pakistan

(UPDATED)Brits Now On the Ground Preparing Ukrainians To Kill Russians, Pentagon Troops To Follow

[A funny thing happened on the way to this article’s posting yesterday…NOT REALLY…I was cyber-attacked while on the Russia Today site obtaining this post.  My new computer (courtesy of my computer guru) seized-up and became inoperable.  After the second try at a “hard boot,” I managed to get things working well enough to post the post.  The rest of the day, was marked by several more seizures, before retiring.  Today, the computer will not boot-up, period.  My daughter guru managed to get it functioning somewhat after a complete restart and wipe of the computer.  It is trying to recompile itself now, standing at 15%, after an hour at it.  Whoever planted the virus or trojan, wanted to disable my computer completely and they did that…but this is not the first time that this has happened, nor is it the same computer…computer #3 for this scenario.  Two older XPs could not be recovered.  This latest one is Vista 8.1.

Considering the article subject, UK TROOPS, then I can only assume that this latest breech of my right to occupy Internet space was by the British Government, or by their CIA masters.

FUCK THE BRITISH GOVERNMENT.]

UK troops start training Ukraine’s army, US confirms own mission

Russia-Today
British Prime Minister David Cameron poses with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko (R).(Reuters / Eric Vidal)

British Prime Minister David Cameron poses with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko (R).(Reuters / Eric Vidal)

UK military personnel have arrived in Ukraine and are beginning their training mission there, Britain’s Ministry of Defence has announced. Meanwhile the US will send nearly 300 paratroopers to start training the country’s national guard next month.

The deployment of foreign troops has started amid a barely holding cease-fire in the country’s east.

With the aim of helping Kiev’s army to fight anti-government forces, according to the UK MoD, its training mission is now operating in Ukraine, with the numbers of involved personnel “depending on the schedule.”

“The first elements of the training package began in March…we have got troops out there training,” a ministry spokeswoman told AP. According to the BBC, 35 personnel are now in the country’s south, deployed as part of a two-month mission.

Last month, British ministers announced that up to 75 troops at a time would be involved in a six-month-long mission, training Kiev’s military “to strengthen the defensive capability of the Ukrainian armed forces and build the resilience that they need.”

The UK also announced plans to send a “gift” of non-lethal equipment to support president Poroshenko’s forces, but has ruled out any lethal aid supplies to the country.

Russia has expressed its concerns over the military training missions, saying such actions do not support the conflict settlement in eastern Ukraine.

“[The move] certainly does not contribute neither to strengthening of trust, nor to de-escalation of tensions in the conflict,” Dmitry Peskov, the spokesman for the Russian president, said, as quoted by RIA Novosti.

US training mission to begin ‘late April’

The US also plans to launch military training mission in Ukraine soon. American vice-president Joe Biden has spoken to Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko over the phone and informed him about the start of such a mission in the near future, the Ukrainian presidential press service announced. According to the statement, Biden informed Poroshenko of President Obama’s decision to train 780 Ukrainian military by US specialists.

Pentagon spokeswoman Eileen Lainez confirmed on Thursday that US soldiers from the 173rd Airborne Brigade, based in Vincenza, Italy, will travel to western Ukraine sometime in late April.

“This assistance is part of our ongoing efforts to help sustain Ukraine’s defense and internal security operations,” Lainez said as quoted by the Hill. An exact date for the US training mission initially announced last year has not yet been finalized.

After a final review of the mission, it now includes 290 American military trainers, according to Lainez. The training will take place in the western town of Yavoriv, near the Polish border.

The training will include six Ukrainian national guard units, “with a focus on internal security and territorial defense,” Lainez added, according to AFP.

Last week Washington announced an additional $75 million worth of non-lethal military aid which includes armored and unarmored Humvees, Raven drones, anti-mortar radars and night vision goggles.

Bemoaning the Human Tragedy of Syria, Without Blaming Obama For It

[The US military has created so many new wars throughout the region that it should have fully absorbed the lessons of those wars by now, in particular, the grieveous human cost of ill-advised, or outright foolish military adventurism. Unleashing tnunamis of war refugees is a bi-product of all war, contingencies should have been prepared years ago (before starting new wars) to humanely deal with the refugees in surrounding countries. Blaming any of this upon ISIS should be unacceptable since it was the US/Saudi sponsorship of Islamists within Syria that created the monster in the first place. The ISIS/refugee problems which arose offer proof that the Pentagon either suffers from a total lack of foresight or the slightest degree human compassion. It is no wonder that so many returning war vets suffer from PTSD. Any legislation passed to deal with the refugee crisis now, should have already been enacted after the first regime-change disaster in Iraq, or before the consecutive disasters in Libya, Syria, Yeman, and Ukraine (?).]

npr
Syrian girls, carrying school bags provided by UNICEF, walk past the rubble of destroyed buildings on their way home from school on March 7 in the rebel-held al-Shaar neighborhood of Aleppo, Syria. So many people have fled the city and so much of its infrastructure has been destroyed that nighttime satellite images show 97 percent less light compared to four years ago.

Syrian girls, carrying school bags provided by UNICEF, walk past the rubble of destroyed buildings on their way home from school on March 7 in the rebel-held al-Shaar neighborhood of Aleppo, Syria. So many people have fled the city and so much of its infrastructure has been destroyed that nighttime satellite images show 97 percent less light compared to four years ago.  Zein al-Rifai/AFP/Getty Images

 

The conflict in Syria is entering its fifth year, and two new reports suggest it just keeps getting worse for civilians there.

One United Nations agency says life expectancy has plummeted by 20 years in the once-developed nation, while another new study based on nighttime satellite imagery finds that, in the past four years, 83 percent of the country’s lights have gone off.

And that’s just the average, says Michael Klosson, vice president for policy at aid group Save the Children. In areas like Aleppo, where much of the populace has fled and infrastructure has been pulverized, researchers found that light has been reduced as much as 97 percent.

Klosson says he thinks the satellite images illustrate that the hopes for Syria’s children — his aid group’s focus — are darkening.

“You’ve got 5.5 million kids who need humanitarian assistance — that’s equivalent to the population of the entire state of Maryland,” he says. “That’s a lot of kids in need.”

Meanwhile the U.N. report says life expectancy has fallen from nearly 76 years to under 56 in Syria, that the nation’s education system has collapsed and that the country is descending into poverty.All that despite a UN Security Council resolution passed last year to open up aid routes. Activists say it’s had little impact.

“The U.N. and the world have failed, and things have gotten worse for civilians,” says Gawain Kripke, director of policy and research at Oxfam America. “Our ability to provide assistance has been limited, and there are more people in places that are hard to reach now, than there were before the U.N. took action.”

Aid groups can’t get to about 4.8 million people in Syria, Kripke says, 2.5 percent higher than in 2013. The rise of the self-proclaimed Islamic State certainly plays a role, but Kripke says Washington has been too focused on that.

“We’re spending a lot of time, money and resources focusing on parts of the problem — like ISIS — but it’s not a comprehensive solution to the conflict,” he says. “And it’s ignoring the suffering that’s going on.”

The problem is so enormous — former U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright on Wednesday said, “What is happening on the ground in Syria is a humanitarian and human rights catastrophe of the first order” — that some worry people may decide it’s a lost cause.

“It has the danger of people switching off, because it’s hard to imagine what can be done,” says Nigel Pont, who is stationed in Beirut for Mercy Corps. “While we are not able to put an end to this war, and while we can’t alleviate everyone’s suffering, we are able to help millions of people a year.”

Save the Children’s Klosson also worries that the world’s attention is shifting away, and is urging the U.S. and other world powers to step up humanitarian assistance and work harder to find a solution the conflict.

“That’s how you get the lights back on,” he says.

Dumb-Ass Republican Leadership Frothing At the Mouth For MORE WAR!

[SEE:  Half of the US Senate Publicly Undermines and Embarasses the President of the United States (Cotton and 46 Fellow Senators to Send Open Letter to the Leaders of the Islamic Republic of Iran)]

GOP’s New Foreign Policy Hero Is a Surveillance-Loving Interventionist Nightmare

reason

In soviet America, Cotton picks you! |||
Freshman Sen. Tom Cotton wants to invade Iran and Syria, jail journalists and whistleblowers, eavesdrop on Americans, and keep the ‘savages’ locked up in Gitmo.

Matt Welch

He’s “the star of the 2014 Senate class,” proclaims The Washington Post. A “conservative superstar,” deems The Atlantic. The “leading GOP national security hawk,” says The Washington Post again. Even a “dark horse” 2016 candidate for president, says The New Republic. So just who exactly is the new letter-writing chairman of the Senate Armed Services Airland Subcommittee, and what does his prominence say about the contemporary GOP?

Beyond being a Harvard-educated Army veteran who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, and Weekly Standard editor Bill Kristol’s biggest new political protégé, and also a target of sustained affection from National Review, Cotton is a politician who has already taken plenty of policy positions. Among them:

* That the U.S. should pre-emptively invade Iran, topple the mullahs, and ensure “replacement with [a] pro-western regime.”

* That “we should be proud for the way we treated these savages at Guantanamo Bay,” and that “the only problem with Guantanamo Bay is that there are too many empty beds.”

* That we should keep at least 10,000 U.S. troops in Afghanistan for the forseeable future to finally get the job done there.

* That the U.S. should deploy ground troops against ISIS.

* That President Barack Obama should have taken “decisive, effective military action” against Syria after the regime crossed the administration’s “red line” in 2013.

* That the National Security Agency needs to be able to collect bulk metadata on unsuspecting Americans, because “Folks, we are at war. You may not like that truth … Do not take this tool away from our warriors on the front lines.”

* That Edward Snowden is a “traitor.”

* That defense spending needs to be jacked up: “We need to restore money not only cut by the sequester but the $1 trillion [reduced before that].”

* That, “Far from restraining the use of drones […] through unwise and unconstitutional mechanisms, we should continue and probably expand their use in our war against radical Islam.”

* That Iraq was a “just and noble war.”

* That, concerning pre-emptive military intervention, “George Bush largely did have it right, that we can’t wait for dangers to gather on the horizon, that we can’t let the world’s most dangerous people get the world’s most dangerous weapons, and that we have to be willing to defend our interests and the safety of our citizens abroad even if we don’t get the approval of the United Nations.”

* That ending President Barack Obama’s negotiations with Iran “is very much an intended consequence” of Cotton’s efforts in the Senate; “a feature, not a bug.”

* That, concerning the Obama administration’s November 2013 agreement with Iran in Geneva, “I fear that future generations may view what happened in Geneva as we have viewed Munich for 75 years. What makes this moment worse is that the West appeased Hitler at Munich out of fear and weakness. President Obama capitulated at Geneva even though we were in a position of strength given the sanctions regime. One can only imagine the thinking behind this grievous, historic mistake.”

Cotton first came to prominence as an Army lieutenant in Iraq in 2006, when he wrote a soon-to-be-viral open letter to then-New York Times executive editor Bill Keller and reporters James Risen and Eric Lichtblau criticizing the paper’s investigative piece about administration efforts to disrupt terrorist financing. The letter closes with a desire to see the journalists deprived of their freedom:

And, by the way, having graduated from Harvard Law and practiced with a federal appellate judge and two Washington law firms before becoming an infantry officer, I am well-versed in the espionage laws relevant to this story and others — laws you have plainly violated. I hope that my colleagues at the Department of Justice match the courage of my soldiers here and prosecute you and your newspaper to the fullest extent of the law. By the time we return home, maybe you will be in your rightful place: not at the Pulitzer announcements, but behind bars.

It is no wonder that neoconservatives such as Washington Free Beacon founder Michael Goldfarb wish “there were 20 Tom Cottons.” The open question, as it pertains to the new GOP majority, is whether Goldfarb is correct in his assessment that “At the end of the day, the Republican base is for bombing bad people.”

 

Kerry Denies Obvious US Destabilization/Civil War Agenda

Kerry Re-writes History of U.S. Support for Color Revolutions

strategic culture foundation

Wayne MADSEN | 06.03.2015 | 00:00

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry either has a blind spot when it comes to the last 15 years of U.S. foreign policy or he told a big whopping lie in Geneva. Kerry, in defining U.S. action in Ukraine, said that «We [the United States] are not involved in multiple color revolutions». Someone in Kerry’s position should know better. After all, he is not only the chief foreign policy officer of the United States but he served as chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee from 2009 to 2013 and was a member of the committee from the very outset of America’s «themed» or «color» revolutions, beginning with the October 5th Revolution, which overthrew Serbian president Slobodan Milosevic in 2000.

The chief of the Russian Security Council, Nikolai Patrushev, correctly said that the United States is funding Russian opposition groups and using sanctions over Ukraine to promote civil society discontent leading to a color revolution in Russia. The alarming record of U.S. support for color revolutions around the world speaks for itself.

What is even more galling about Kerry’s denial of U.S. operations aimed at overthrowing various governments is that it was he who chaired a series of hearings of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee from 1987 to 1989 on the covert Central Intelligence Agency war to overthrow the Sandinista government of Nicaragua. In 25 years, Kerry has gone from a firebrand opponent of CIA coup d’état and destabilization operations to a consummate cover-up artist for these activities.

After the overthrow of Milosevic in 2000 in a street protest-turned-revolution that followed the Gene Sharp/CIA manual to the tee and which was backed by the granddaddy of all NGO protest groups, OTPOR!, there were some 20 themed revolutions in rapid succession. These were followed by the «Arab Spring» themed revolutions in Tunisia, Egypt, Libya, Syria, and Yemen. Soros and his NGOs’ fingerprints were found on smaller attempted revolutions from Honduras to Maldives. OTPOR personnel were even dispatched to some of these countries, courtesy of the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), to assist in the fomenting of rebellion.

 

Mr. Kerry says Washington was not involved in «multiple color revolutions». Why did he use the term «multiple color revolutions?» Because there has been repeated U.S. support for multiple color revolutions as the following list attests:

The United States supported the Rose Revolution in Georgia, the Orange Revolution in Ukraine, the Cedar Revolution in Lebanon, the Olive Tree Revolution in Palestine (that saw Hamas come to power and effectively split the Palestinian independence movement), the Tulip Revolution in Kyrgyzstan, the Purple Revolution in Iraq (that saw a Shi’a-dominated government friendly to Iran come to power, spelling the end of the unified Iraqi state), Blue Revolution in Kuwait, Saffron Revolution in Burma (one that was crushed by the military) and the Crimson Revolution in Tibet (put down by the Chinese security forces), and the abortive Green Revolution in Iran. There were also attempted themed revolutions in Moldova (the Grape Revolution), Mongolia (the Yellow Revolution, which was partially successful), Uzbekistan (the Cotton Revolution), the autonomous Russian Republic of Bashkortostan (Orange Revolution), Ecuador (the Police Revolution), Bolivia (the Gas Revolution in the four secessionist natural gas-producing provinces), and Belarus (the Denim Revolution).

Not to be omitted is the Orange Democratic Movement’s uprising in Kenya, one that saw thousands murdered before the Orange movement’s leader Raila Odinga became Prime Minister in a power-sharing government. These color revolutions were followed by the U.S. – and Soros – supported Jasmine Revolution in Tunisia, the Lotus Revolution in Egypt, the Twitter Revolution in Syria, and the uprising in Yemen. From the Middle East, the revolution engineers set out to attempt themed coups in Maldives (Yellow Revolution), Indonesia (the ill-fated «Sandal Revolution»), and the «Pots and Pans Revolution in Venezuela. Soros’s “Yellow Revolution” government in Maldives was ousted in a counter-coup by the vice president and police.

After the CIA-engineered coup against the democratically-elected president of Honduras Manuel Zelaya in 2009, the military-backed junta received the support of the wealthy elites who marched in the streets in support of the junta and adopted the color white in support of the military-installed president Roberto Micheletti. What did then-Senator Kerry say about that themed coup, the first carried out by the Obama administration? Kerry supported Zelaya’s goal of returning to power because Zelaya was the democratically-elected president of Honduras. Today, Kerry does not support the return of Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych to power in Kiev even though he too was democratically-elected and forced out unconstitutionally. When the Law Library of the U.S. Congress concluded that Zelaya’s removal was unconstitutional, it was Senator Kerry who demanded that the finding be reversed. Surely, Mr. Kerry learned the meaning of the word «hypocrite» while attending Yale and Boston College.

The history of U.S. support for themed revolutions continued well after the Arab Spring. After the second Ukrainian themed revolution against the Yanukovych presidency, the so-called «Euromaidan Revolution,» there were also attempted themed uprisings in Russia (the «Blue Bucket Revolution») and Macedonia.

There is no way on earth that Kerry can deny the themed color nature of U.S.-funded uprisings. As first seen with the Orange Revolution in Kiev in 2004, which was most definitely a Soros- and CIA-funded revolution that denied presidential winner Yanukovych the presidency and installed pro-U.S. Viktor Yushchenko and the corrupt Yulia Tymoshenko into power, flags and orange banners were ubiquitous on Kiev’s Central Square. In the most recent Ukrainian «Euromaidan» revolution, revealed by America’s bread-distributing maven of European affairs, Victoria Nuland, to have cost the U.S. taxpayers $5 billion, factory fresh red and black Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA) flags appeared on Kiev’s Central Square, renamed Maidan Square, and throughout Kiev.

In the NED- and USAID-financed themed revolutions in Libya and Syria, factory-fresh flags of the former regimes, the King Idris regime of Libya and post-colonial and pro-French «Syrian Republic,» respectively, appeared practically overnight on the streets of Benghazi and Tripoli, as well as Aleppo, Homs, and Damascus. The old Kingdom of Libya standard is now the national flag of the dysfunctional “Republic of Libya,” which is split between rival governments in Tripoli and Tobruk. In the case of Syria, the pre-Assad flag is now used by the Salafist-allied Free Syrian Army and is recognized as the flag of Syria by the United States, NATO, and the European Union.

China has not been immune to the American color revolutions. China’s defenses against such operations were tested first in Tibet and most recently in Hong Kong. Soros’s daughter, Andrea Soros Colombel, is the founder and president of the Trace Foundation and the co-founder, along with her husband, of the Tsadra Foundation. Both organizations directly support the Tibetan government-in-exile and their fingerprints were on the 2008 bloody rebellion in Tibet. Soros’s OSI Burma Project/Southeast Asia also had its fingerprints on the 2007 Buddhist monks’ rebellion in Burma, the so-called Saffron Revolution, the same theme applied to the Tibetan uprising in 2008. In 2011, a call went out for a Jasmine Revolution from the U.S.-based Chinese-language website Boxun.com.

The color revolution concept was on display in Calgary, Alberta where Conservative Naheed Nenshi, a Shi’a Ismaili, rode into the mayor’s office in a so-called «Purple Revolution». While not a coup, the elevation of Nenshi was heralded as a great «multicultural» success for an otherwise xenophobic and racist political party. Nenshi made no secret of his support for the Keystone XL pipeline and his disdain for the First Nation treaties that govern Ottawa’s relations with native tribal territories. Nenshi and his Conservatives are now trying to abrogate treaties with the First Nations and seize their hydrocarbon resources, something that is akin to a coup d’état against tribal sovereignty.

Kerry’s entire State Department top echelon has supported color revolutions under the Obama administration’s R2P (Responsibility to Protect) rubric since 2009. Many of the interventionists, including Nuland, her human rights point man Thomas Melia, and Jeffrey Feltman (now the Political Undersecretary General under UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon after having served as the chief point man for the Arab Spring at the State Department) are either holdovers from the discredited George W. Bush administration or well-known neo-conservative political hacks. They are joined by the «neo-liberal» R2P architects, most notably national security adviser Susan Rice and UN ambassador Samantha Power.

John Kerry claims there has been no U.S. support for multiple color revolutions. Mr. Kerry should be sent Crayola’s 64 crayon pack as a reminder that there has been at least that number of color revolutions either hatched or planned by the United States since the October 5th Revolution in Belgrade.

Playing Nuclear Chicken in Kiev

Playing Nuclear Chicken in Kiev

pacificfreepress

by Robert Parry – Consortium News

Ready for Nuclear War over Ukraine?

Nazi symbols on helmets worn by members of 

Ukraine’s Azov battalion. (As filmed by a 
Norwegian film crew and shown on German TV.)
A senior Ukrainian official is urging the West to risk a nuclear conflagration in support of a “full-scale war” with Russia that he says authorities in Kiev are now seeking, another sign of the extremism that pervades the year-old, U.S.-backed regime in Kiev.
During a recent visit to Canada, Ukraine’s Deputy Foreign Minister Vadym Prystaiko told CBC Radio that “Everybody is afraid of fighting with a nuclear state. We are not anymore, in Ukraine — we’ve lost so many people of ours, we’ve lost so much of our territory.”
Prystaiko added, “However dangerous it sounds, we have to stop [Russian President Vladimir Putin] somehow. For the sake of the Russian nation as well, not just for the Ukrainians and Europe.” The deputy foreign minister announced that Kiev is preparing for “full-scale war” against Russia and wants the West to supply lethal weapons and training so the fight can be taken to Russia.
“What we expect from the world is that the world will stiffen up in the spine a little,” Prystaiko said.
Yet, what is perhaps most remarkable about Prystaiko’s “Dr. Strangelove” moment is that it produced almost no reaction in the West. You have a senior Ukrainian official saying that the world should risk nuclear war over a civil conflict in Ukraine between its west, which favors closer ties to Europe, and its east, which wants to maintain its historic relationship with Russia.
Why should such a pedestrian dispute justify the possibility of vaporizing millions of human beings and conceivably ending life on the planet? Yet, instead of working out a plan for a federalized structure in Ukraine or even allowing people in the east to vote on whether they want to remain under the control of the Kiev regime, the world is supposed to risk nuclear annihilation.
But therein lies one of the under-reported stories of the Ukraine crisis: There is a madness to the Kiev regime that the West doesn’t want to recognize because to do so would upend the dominant narrative of “our” good guys vs. Russia’s bad guys. If we begin to notice that the right-wing regime in Kiev is crazy and brutal, we might also start questioning the “Russian aggression” mantra.
According to the Western “group think,” the post-coup Ukrainian government “shares our values” by favoring democracy and modernity, while the rebellious ethnic Russians in eastern Ukraine are “Moscow’s minions” representing dark forces of backwardness and violence, personified by Russia’s “irrational” President Putin. In this view, the conflict is a clash between the forces of good and evil where there is no space for compromise.
Yet, there is a craziness to this “group think” that is highlighted by Prystaiko’s comments. Not only does the Kiev regime display a cavalier attitude about dragging the world into a nuclear catastrophe but it also has deployed armed neo-Nazis and other right-wing extremists to wage a dirty war in the east that has involved torture and death-squad activities.

Not Since Adolf Hitler

No European government, since Adolf Hitler’s Germany, has seen fit to dispatch Nazi storm troopers to wage war on a domestic population, but the Kiev regime has and has done so knowingly. Yet, across the West’s media/political spectrum, there has been a studious effort to cover up this reality, even to the point of ignoring facts that have been well established.

The New York Times and the Washington Post have spearheaded this journalistic malfeasance by putting on blinders so as not to see Ukraine’s neo-Nazis, such as when describing the key role played by the Azov battalion in the war against ethnic Russians in the east.
On Feb. 20, in a report from Mariupol, the Post cited the Azov battalion’s importance in defending the port city against a possible rebel offensive. Correspondent Karoun Demirjian wrote:
“Petro Guk, the commander of the Azov battalion’s reinforcement operations in Mariupol, said in an interview that the battalion is ‘getting ready for’ street-to-street combat in the city. The Azov battalion, now a regiment in the Ukrainian army, is known as one of the fiercest fighting forces­ in the pro-Kiev operation.
“But … it has pulled away from the front lines on a scheduled rest-and-retraining rotation, Guk said, leaving the Ukrainian army — a less capable force, in his opinion — in its place. His advice to residents of Mariupol is to get ready for the worst.
“‘If it is your home, you should be ready to fight for it, and accept that if the fight is for your home, you must defend it,’ he said, when asked whether residents should prepare to leave. Some are ready to heed that call, as a matter of patriotic duty.”
The Post’s stirring words fit with the Western media’s insistent narrative and its refusal to include meaningful background about the Azov battalion, which is known for marching under Nazi banners, displaying the Swastika and painting SS symbols on its helmets.
The New York Times filed a similarly disingenuous article from Mariupol on Feb. 11, depicting the ethnic Russian rebels as barbarians at the gate with the Azov battalion defending civilization. Though providing much color and detail – and quoting an Azov leader prominently – the Times left out the salient and well-known fact that the Azov battalion is composed of neo-Nazis.
But this inconvenient truth – that neo-Nazis have been central to Kiev’s “self-defense forces” from last February’s coup to the present – would disrupt the desired propaganda message to American readers. So the New York Times just ignores the Nazism and refers to Azov as a “volunteer unit.”
Yet, this glaring omission is prima facie proof of journalistic bias. There’s no way that the editors of the Post and Times don’t know that the presence of neo-Nazis is newsworthy. Indeed, there’s a powerful irony in this portrayal of Nazis as the bulwark of Western civilization against the Russian hordes from the East. It was, after all, the Russians who broke the back of Nazism in World War II as Hitler sought to subjugate Europe and destroy Western civilization as we know it.
That the Nazis are now being depicted as defenders of Western ideals has to be the ultimate man-bites-dog story. But it goes essentially unreported in the New York Times and Washington Post as does the inconvenient presence of other Nazis holding prominent positions in the post-coup regime, including Andriy Parubiy, who was the military commander of the Maidan protests and served as the first national security chief of the Kiev regime. [See Consortiumnews.com’s “Ukraine, Through the US Looking Glass.”]

The Nazi Reality

Regarding the Azov battalion, the Post and Times have sought to bury the Nazi reality, but both have also acknowledged it in passing. For instance, on Aug. 10, 2014, a Times’ article mentioned the neo-Nazi nature of the Azov battalion in the last three paragraphs of a lengthy story on another topic.

“The fighting for Donetsk has taken on a lethal pattern: The regular army bombards separatist positions from afar, followed by chaotic, violent assaults by some of the half-dozen or so paramilitary groups surrounding Donetsk who are willing to plunge into urban combat,” the Times reported.

“Officials in Kiev say the militias and the army coordinate their actions, but the militias, which count about 7,000 fighters, are angry and, at times, uncontrollable. One known as Azov, which took over the village of Marinka, flies a neo-Nazi symbol resembling a Swastika as its flag.” [See Consortiumnews.com’s “NYT Whites Out Ukraine’s Brownshirts.”]Similarly, the Post published a lead story last Sept. 12 describing the Azov battalion in flattering terms, saving for the last three paragraphs the problematic reality that the fighters are fond of displaying the Swastika:

“In one room, a recruit had emblazoned a swastika above his bed. But Kirt [a platoon leader] … dismissed questions of ideology, saying that the volunteers — many of them still teenagers — embrace symbols and espouse extremist notions as part of some kind of ‘romantic’ idea.”
Other news organizations have been more forthright about this Nazi reality. For instance, the conservative London Telegraph published an article by correspondent Tom Parfitt, who wrote: “Kiev’s use of volunteer paramilitaries to stamp out the Russian-backed Donetsk and Luhansk ‘people’s republics’… should send a shiver down Europe’s spine.
“Recently formed battalions such as Donbas, Dnipro and Azov, with several thousand men under their command, are officially under the control of the interior ministry but their financing is murky, their training inadequate and their ideology often alarming. The Azov men use the neo-Nazi Wolfsangel (Wolf’s Hook) symbol on their banner and members of the battalion are openly white supremacists, or anti-Semites.”
Based on interviews with militia members, the Telegraph reported that some of the fighters doubted the Holocaust, expressed admiration for Hitler and acknowledged that they are indeed Nazis.
Andriy Biletsky, the Azov commander, “is also head of an extremist Ukrainian group called the Social National Assembly,” according to the Telegraph article which quoted a commentary by Biletsky as declaring: “The historic mission of our nation in this critical moment is to lead the White Races of the world in a final crusade for their survival. A crusade against the Semite-led Untermenschen.”
The Telegraph questioned Ukrainian authorities in Kiev who acknowledged that they were aware of the extremist ideologies of some militias but insisted that the higher priority was having troops who were strongly motivated to fight.
Azov fighters even emblazon the Swastika and the SS insignia on their helmets. NBC News reported: “Germans were confronted with images of their country’s dark past … when German public broadcaster ZDF showed video of Ukrainian soldiers with Nazi symbols on their helmets in its evening newscast.”
But it’s now clear that far-right extremism is not limited to the militias sent to kill ethnic Russians in the east or to the presence of a few neo-Nazi officials who were rewarded for their roles in last February’s coup. The fanaticism is present at the center of the Kiev regime, including its deputy foreign minister who speaks casually about a “full-scale war” with nuclear-armed Russia.

An Orwellian World

In a “normal world,” U.S. and European journalists would explain to their readers how insane all this is; how a dispute over the pace for implementing a European association agreement while also maintaining some economic ties with Russia could have been worked out within the Ukrainian political system, that it was not grounds for a U.S.-backed “regime change” last February, let alone a civil war, and surely not nuclear war.

But these are clearly not normal times. To a degree that I have not seen in my 37 years covering Washington, there is a totalitarian quality to the West’s current “group think” about Ukraine with virtually no one who “matters” deviating from the black-and-white depiction of good guys in Kiev vs. bad guys in Donetsk and Moscow.
And, if you want to see how the “objective” New York Times dealt with demonstrations in Moscow and other Russian cities protesting last year’s coup against Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych, read Sunday’s dispatch by the Times’ neocon national security correspondent Michael R. Gordon, best known as the lead writer with Judith Miller on the infamous “aluminum tube” story in 2002, helping to set the stage for the invasion of Iraq in 2003.
Here’s how Gordon explained the weekend’s anti-coup protests: “The official narrative as reported by state-run television in Russia, and thus accepted by most Russians, is that the uprising in Ukraine last year was an American-engineered coup, aided by Ukrainian Nazis, and fomented to overthrow Mr. Yanukovych, a pro-Russian president.”
In other words, the Russians are being brainwashed while the readers of the New York Times are getting their information from an independent news source that would never be caught uncritically distributing government propaganda, another example of the upside-down Orwellian world that Americans now live in. [See, for example, “NYT Retracts Russian Photo Scoop.”]
In our land of the free, there is no “official narrative” and the U.S. government would never stoop to propaganda. Everyone just happily marches in lockstep behind the conventional wisdom of a faultless Kiev regime that “shares our values” and can do no wrong — while ignoring the brutality and madness of coup leaders who deploy Nazis and invite a nuclear holocaust for the world.

Investigative reporter Robert Parry broke many of the Iran-Contra stories for The Associated Press and Newsweek in the 1980s. You can buy his latest book, America’s Stolen Narrative, either in print here or as an e-book (from Amazon and barnesandnoble.com). You also can order Robert Parry’s trilogy on the Bush Family and its connections to various right-wing operatives for only $34. The trilogy includes America’s Stolen Narrative. For details on this offer, click here.

Islamist Terrorists Are All Misled Religious Fanatics

[Even the King of Al-Qaeda understands what Obama is denying to be true, even though he can never acknowledge the Wahhabi roots of all Sunni terror (SEE:  Saudi King: terrorists besmirching all Muslims).]

Fanaticism, not poverty, drives Islamist terrorism

chicago sun times

Pakistani Islamists burn a French flag during a protest against the printing of satirical sketches of the Prophet Mohammad by French magazine Charlie Hebdo in Quetta on January 22, 2015. BANARAS KHAN/AFP/Getty Images

“A global summit on countering violent extremism” is the description of a three-day meeting of more than 60 nations in Washington ending Thursday. No one expects much out of this gathering. It’s worth noting that it was being watched mainly to see if anyone from the Obama administration uttered the phrase “Islamist terrorism” or “Islamic terrorism.” You don’t know whether to laugh or weep.

In his speech to the meeting, President Barack Obama continued to reject the religious foundation of Islamist terrorism by raising the false alternative of the West being portrayed as being at war against Islam. Al-Qaida and the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria do not represent the majority of Muslims, but they do stand for a powerful, dangerous, religious-based movement that is driving history in the Islamic world and, to our misery, beyond. To his credit, Obama did acknowledge the anti-Western sentiment that often exists in mainstream Muslim societies and its role in aiding the fanatics in recruiting the discontented to their ranks.

But notice that the goal of the summit was “countering,” not defeating, violent extremism, a k a terrorism. As a State Department spokeswoman put it the other day, “We cannot kill our way out of this war.” We can’t talk our way out of the terrorist threat with summits either.

In an op-ed in the Los Angeles Times, Obama wrote, “We know that military force alone cannot solve this problem. Nor can we simply take out terrorists who kill innocent civilians.” Maybe not, but it must be a top priority. Our armed forces must keep killing as many of the enemy as possible. That’s a prime goal of war.

The talking point of the day was that “violent extremism” is about poverty and the lack of jobs. What’s the answer? For Congress to pass a humongous stimulus bill to fund shovel-ready projects someplace in the Muslim world? Where? In oil-rich Saudi Arabia where 15 of the 9/11 hijackers hailed from (and mostly from middle-class or well-to-do families)?

Poor people populate many parts of the world and in huge numbers, yet most of them — like most Muslims — do not commit terrorist atrocities. Religious fanaticism and the justification provided by religious text and clerics, not the absence of economic opportunity, inspire the discontented to behead Christians, burn alive Kurds and a Jordanian pilot, murder Jews wherever they can find them, enslave women and children, and slaughter fellow Muslims deemed not sufficiently Islamic.

The administration clearly is irritated by concerns over its denial of the Islamist roots of terrorism. In a speech the other day, Attorney General Eric Holder tried to defend the administration’s obscurantism and practically became a parody of it. He referred to the “very serious problems that our allies face and that we face, particularly in a particular part of the world.” What problems? And what particular part of the world would that be? Patagonia?

Islamist terrorism is reduced to violent extremism. The heartland of Islamist fanaticism, the Middle East, becomes “a particular part of the world.”

The administration is not alone in these rhetorical gymnastics. A headline in the New York Times described the second-generation immigrant responsible for killing a film director and Jew in last week’s terrorist attack in Denmark as a “native son.” Turns out the killer wasn’t named Hans Christian Anderson Jr., but Omar Abdel Hamid el-Hussein.

To defeat an enemy, you have to know it. In an Atlantic magazine article, contributing editor Graeme Wood demonstrates considerable research and writes, “Muslims can reject the Islamic State; nearly all do. But pretending that it isn’t actually a religious, millennarian group, with theology that must be understood to be combatted, has already led the United States to underestimate it and back foolish schemes to counter it. We’ll need to get acquainted with the Islamic State’s intellectual genealogy if we are to react in a way that will not strengthen it, but instead help it self-immolate in its own excessive zeal.”

Jobs, economic opportunity, improved governance in Muslim countries, and better social media and other efforts against recruitment may be part of the answer. But I suspect few Islamic State fighters will be lured away from their fanatical, ideological, religious jihad  by the prospect of a good job. Unless, that is, the Islamic State is soundly defeated on the battlefield.

Email: shuntley.cst@gmail.com

Egypt Taking On Qatari International Immunity From War Crimes In Libya

[Egypt is bravely stepping into the international fray, between Qatar (fronting for the CIA) and the rest of the world, challenging the over-endowed Pissant State’s self-appointed right to support of the Islamist terrorists of N. Africa (SEE:  Qatar’s Puppets Outgun Saudi Egyptian Puppet In Libya ; The spread of Islamic State.)  Qatar has been fronting for Obama, whenever it has lent obvious support to both streams of Muslim Brotherhood-supported Islamists, either political or terrorist, all over Africa and the Middle East.

General_Haftar
Egypt is daring to use its military in Libya against Islamists fighting against the Arab League-supported alliance of retired general Khalifa Haftar.

The curious part here is that Haftar is widely understood to be the CIA’s new “Man” in Libya.  It is amazing that al-Sisi would trust such a man, but then, he must play a two-sided game to survive in such a spy-dominated scenario.

 What a mess this Assclown has made.]

Beyond Al-Jazeera

al-ahram

The Cairo-Doha dispute goes much deeper than the anti-Egyptian media blitz being orchestrated by Qatar, writes Salah Nasrawi.

al jazeeraThe day a Cairo court ordered two Al-Jazeera journalists accused of supporting the Muslim Brotherhood to be released on bail, the Qatar-owned network aired secretly taped recordings of conversations between Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah Al-Sisi and his aides in which he purportedly expressed contempt for Saudi Arabia and the Gulf rulers.

The message could not have been missed: Doha does not seem to be interested in patching up differences with Cairo, and Al-Jazeera will continue its hostile coverage of Egypt, one of the main issues behind soured relations between the two countries.

Furthermore, the leaks, first aired by pro-Muslim Brotherhood television, seemed designed to drive a wedge between Egypt and the Gulf countries which are the main aid providers to Egypt.

Relations between Cairo and Doha deteriorated after the 2013 ouster of former Islamist president Mohamed Morsi whose Muslim Brotherhood group was backed by Qatar.

Al-Jazeera has since been broadcasting anti-Al-Sisi propaganda, labelling his takeover a “military coup.”

But what has appeared to be a row over negative television coverage may in fact hide a deeper conflict over a host of domestic and regional issues, in particular Qatar’s support for Islamists whom Egypt considers to be a threat to its security.

Efforts to reconcile Cairo and Doha have stalled as Qatar’s sponsorship of what has been termed the “Political Islam project” has been too much for Egypt to ignore and leave the ball in Qatar’s court.

In November, Al-Sisi tactically gave the nod to an overture by the late Saudi King Abdullah to reach out to Qatar after the Gulf Cooperation Council’s (GCC) rapprochement with its troublesome member state.

Egypt has shown pragmatism by not staying aloof from its allies in the Gulf – Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates – which are also its main financial backers.

But Egypt, familiar with the region’s chessboard, has seemed to be holding back and playing a waiting game. It has shown no sign of starting to mend fences with Qatar until the Gulf emirate changes what Cairo interprets as its hostile policies.

Egypt’s dispute with Qatar goes beyond Doha’s support for the Muslim Brotherhood and the platform for anti-Al-Sisi propaganda which Al-Jazeera and other Qatar-owned media outlets have been giving to the group.

Cairo’s grievances against Doha include its role in building a broader Egyptian opposition movement to Al-Sisi and targeting its ailing economy by withdrawing loans and deposits provided to the ousted Muslim Brotherhood-led government.

The two countries have also been locked in a political standoff over a series of regional disputes in Gaza, Libya, Syria and Sudan, conflicts that Egypt considers as having a direct impact on its stability.

Egypt believes that the Palestinian Hamas movement, backed and funded by Qatar, shares a large part of the blame for militant attacks in Sinai. Cairo says that militants from Hamas-run Gaza have been helping jihadist groups in Sinai, such as Ansar Bait Al-Maqdis, which is linked to the Islamic State (IS) in Iraq and Syria.

The terror group is responsible for attacks against Egyptian security forces in the Peninsula and it may be seeking targets in Egypt’s mainland.

Another major point of contention with Qatar is Libya. Egypt feels there is a danger to its security from its western neighbour where Islamist extremists and Muslim Brotherhood-backed militias supported by Qatar are fighting a government that is recognised by Egypt and the international community.

On Sunday, a Libyan terror group affiliated to IS said it had beheaded 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians who were working in Libya. Many Egyptians were angered by Al-Jazeera for hosting Al-Sisi’s opponents who have exploited the tragedy to blame the government for the massacre and not its perpetrators.

There is also Sudan, Egypt’s southern backyard, which is ruled by Islamists who have close ties with Qatar. Though Cairo and Khartoum continue to maintain working relations, Egypt remains wary of Sudan’s close ties with the Gulf state.

In November the Khartoum government signed a military cooperation pact with Doha that Egypt fears will be used to advance the Qatari agenda.

Egypt also has stakes in Syria where Qatar has influence over some of the Islamist extremist groups which are fighting to topple the regime of President Bashar Al-Assad. Egypt fears both the rise of Islamists in Iraq and Syria and the influx of jihadists to join the insurgency in Sinai.

Another case in point is Turkey whose ties with Egypt have been strained since the ouster of Morsi. Cairo accuses Ankara of forming an alliance with Doha in a bid to destabilise Egypt through support for the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas.

All this indicates that a breakthrough in ties with Qatar will have to come on Egyptian terms. In the words of Egypt’s Foreign Minister Sameh Shukri, “what is required is for Qatar’s policies to be supportive of Egypt and its national security and to avoid anything that leads to destabilising Egypt.”

The problem is that no one can be certain that Qatar is prepared to make the required changes in its foreign policy that Egypt takes to be a source of instability.

Touted as backing the Islamists, Qatar’s current strategy poses a serious threat to Al-Sisi’s drive to stifle the Muslim Brotherhood.

In broader terms, in its high-stakes regional game Qatar is challenging Egypt, the Arab world’s most populous nation and one of the region’s powerhouses.

There is an increasing understanding in Egypt that Qatar is trying to use its huge hydrocarbon-generated wealth and international connections to undermine Egypt’s efforts to restore its role as a major regional player, weakened by the turmoil after the 25 January Revolution that toppled former president Hosni Mubarak.

But even if the mood in Cairo looks to be calm and diplomatic relations with Doha remain normal, Egypt seems to have options on the table.

Last month, Egypt returned a US$2 billion Qatari deposit to Doha after negotiations to convert the money into bonds failed. It plans to return a further $500 million, the rest of the billions extended to Egypt after Mubarak’s fall, as a sign of refusing to be intimidated by Qatari money.

Al-Sisi had refused to use his authority to pardon the Al-Jazeera journalists and gave the law due process to decide their fate, something which denied Qatar the opportunity to claim that it had exercised pressure on Egypt to secure their release.

An Egyptian court, meanwhile, is continuing the trial of the deposed former president and another 10 men on charges of espionage and leaking secret documents, including military and security files, to Qatar while in office.

Though no details about the documents have been made public by prosecutors, questions have been raised as to whether they included the recordings used by Al-Jazeera.

Haphazard US Yemen “Kill List” Targeting To Lose Its Half-Assed Intelligence Guidance

[SEE: Killed, Then Rekilled, Then Killed Again–the truth about OBAMA’S MURDER BY DRONE IN YEMEN]

Exclusive: U.S. armed drone program in Yemen facing intelligence gaps

Reuters

WASHINGTON Followers of the Houthi movement demonstrate to show support to the movement in Sanaa January 23, 2015.  REUTERS/Khaled AbdullahFollowers of the Houthi movement demonstrate to show support to the movement in Sanaa January 23, 2015.  Credit: Reuters/Khaled Abdullah

 

(Reuters) – The United States is facing increasing difficulty acquiring intelligence needed to run its stealth drone program in Yemen, undermining a campaign against the most lethal branch of al Qaeda after Houthi rebels seized control of parts of the country’s security apparatus, U.S. officials say.

Gaps in on-the-ground intelligence could slow America’s fight against a resurgent al Qaeda in Yemen and heighten the risk of errant strikes that kill the wrong people and stoke anti-U.S. sentiment, potentially making the militants even stronger in areas where al Qaeda is already growing.

Iran-backed Houthi rebels have taken up positions in and around several defense and intelligence installations whose teams had previously cooperated with Washington, cutting off key sources of information for drone-missile attacks, the officials told Reuters.

Turmoil in the wake of last week’s collapse of a U.S.-backed Yemeni government after days of clashes in the capital Sanaa, has already forced the U.S. State Department to reduce staff and operations at the U.S. Embassy.

U.S. officials told Reuters last week that Washington has also halted some counter-terrorism operations, but described the measures as temporary.

The turmoil has also cast doubt over the future of a key partnership for Washington in the fight against al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, or AQAP. Only last September President Barack Obama touted cooperation with Yemen as a model in counter-terrorism.

AQAP claimed responsibility for shootings this month in Paris that killed 17 people and has been accused of plotting attacks against American interests.

The crisis in the Arab world’s poorest country threatens to create a power vacuum that could allow AQAP to expand, while pushing Yemen toward a broader conflict between majority Sunni Muslims and minority Shi’ite Houthis, who are hostile to both the United States and al Qaeda.

U.S. officials said training of Yemeni special forces had ground to a halt in the capital, though some joint activities were continuing in the Sunni-controlled south.

Many U.S. personnel remain in place with Yemeni government forces at the southern al-Anaad air base, an intelligence post for monitoring the Al Qaeda group.

Stephen Seche, who served as U.S. ambassador to Yemen from 2007 to 2010 and now works in Washington at a law firm, said, however, he expected collaboration between U.S. and Yemeni intelligence services to suffer.

“If there’s no leadership, there’s no clear direction, there’s no real motivation to do that,” he said.

“COLLATERAL DAMAGE”

The White House and the Pentagon have said counter-terrorism efforts in Yemen will be undeterred by turmoil in the country.

“We do continue to have an ongoing security relationship with the national security infrastructure in Yemen. Some of which, much of which, is still functioning,” White House Josh Earnest told reporters.

Some U.S. officials, however, privately say the reduced intelligence sharing could undermine the armed-drone program.

Information has dried up from Yemeni security offices in Sanaa and there has been less cooperation from local security services outside the capital, the officials told Reuters, speaking on condition of anonymity.

Houthis have erected checkpoints at entrances at security institutions and have stationed operatives inside, Yemeni officials say. Rebels also surround the homes of the defense minister and the head of the National Security Bureau.

U.S. authorities treat some Yemeni intelligence leads with skepticism, concerned local officials might be trying to settle scores, and typically seek corroboration from multiple sources, the officials said.

But they will now be forced to rely more on surveillance drones, spy satellites and electronic eavesdropping, as well as their own “human intelligence” sources on the ground, said one official with direct knowledge of the operations.

With little or no prospects of working with the Houthis, Washington will also face trouble mounting raids on al Qaeda hideouts similar to those carried out in the past by U.S.-trained Yemeni special forces working close with U.S. officials.

The United States will maintain some security cooperation in southern Yemen, an al Qaeda stronghold and where former president Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi retains some support, even while the rebels control the capital and much of the north, the officials said.

The U.S. officials added that they can continue drone strikes such as Monday’s attack on a car in eastern Yemen that killed three men believed to be al Qaeda militants, including one identified as a youth by a Yemeni rights group.

The Central Intelligence Agency, which conducts the bulk of drone operations in Yemen, has no drone bases on Yemeni soil but operates from Saudi Arabia and Djibouti, U.S. officials say.

They also insist that while “collateral damage” is always a risk in counter terrorism operations, they do the utmost to avoid civilian casualties.

“There must be near-certainty that no civilians will be killed or injured – the highest standard we can set,” said Alistair Baskey, a spokesman for the White House National Security Council.

Nineteen U.S. drone strikes killed 124 militants and four civilians in Yemen in 2014, according to the New America Foundation, which maintains a database of drone operations.

(Additional reporting by Yara Bayoumy in Dubai and Warren Strobel in Washington; Writing by Matt Spetalnick; Editing by Jason Szep and Tomasz Janowski)

 

US Army Trains World Army To Fight the War for “Pax America”

[THE CULMINATION OF DECADES OF PLANNING AND IMPLEMENTATION

–the Pentagon Trains the World Armies To Fight the Phantom Threats
–Which we create
LONG-RANGE PLANNING TO INVOLVE ALL OF THE NATIONS IN A WORLDWIDE PSEUDO-WAR…ISN’T THAT PROOF OF PSYCHOPATHIC INTENT?]

ukraine trainingUS Trainers To Deploy To Ukraine

Also Will Begin Shipment of US-funded Armored Vehicles

 

U.S. Army Africa sponsors African Deployment Partnership Training in Benin/></a></td><br />
                          <td width=U.S. Army Africa sponsors African Deployment Partnership Training in Benin

 

(Jan. 15, 2015) Marine Maj. Christopher Ross, an infantry officer with the Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force, looks on as Iraqi army soldiers practice maneuver techniques at Al Asad Air Base, Iraq. Ross is working with Iraq Army officers and noncommisioned officers to develop advanced training for Iraqi army recruits. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. William White)U.S. Troops headed to Syria to aid fight against ISIS

 

97814 fullUS military returns to Iraq 3 years after withdrawing

 

brits training peshmergaBritish Army Training The Peshmerga In Northern Iraq

 

Sweden is home to some 100,000 Kurdish immigrants

Sweden to send military trainers to Kurdistan

THE REAL DEAL–Rafiq Hariri Assassination

Political Assassination

crime scene 1

Crime of the Century

crime scene 2

The Candor Operation


Six Weeks prior to the Murder of  President Rafik Al Hariri

 

Most of the operations of political assassination and big crimes are planned in a manner that meant to be never revealed or discovered, such as: John Kennedy, Akino, September 11, Yasser Araffat, Rafik Al-Hariri, etc.

Who killed Rafik Al-Hariri?

Ugine Goldman, the Director of the Planning Unit of the C.I.A Supreme Council; Daniel Iceberg, the specialist in uncovering Pentagon secret information & Michael Shober, the anti-terrorist officer in the C.I.A, reveal to us the truth of what happened

American & Israeli Motivations for Political Assassinations in the Middle East:l

 

  1. After the occupation of Iraq, and following the issuance of UN on Sept 2, 2004, Decree (resolution) 1559, the idea of political assassination was revived in the Middle East through the Israeli Intelligence Agency

    It prepared playing cards with the personalities to be assassinated which included: Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah, President Emil Lahoud, President Rafik Al-Hariri, President Yasser Arafat, Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, among others. The top card, ace heart, carried the photo of Rafik AlHariri. Next to his photo they wrote the most wanted. Followed by in these play cards; came the politician Ely Habekah whose photo was crossed out, for he was already assassinated in 2002. In this plan; on the electronic site, the American extreme rightist writer, Richard Pearl, and the political commentator, Daniel Pipes participated in collaboration with the Israeli Military Establishment.

  2. This idea was adopted by the Israeli Mossad, then Sharon miniature council of ministers and then C.I.A followed suit.

     

  3. The idea of political assassination was next blessed and approved by Bush Administration Security Council, since it lent support to the American New Middle East Project which is based upon introducing changes in the demography and geography of the Middle East through chaos, turmoil, uprisings and civil and sectarian fights between Sunnis and Shiites at first then between the other sects and minorities in the Middle East as well, and also through the formation of several weak and puppet political entities in the Middle East, beginning with Iraq, Lebanon and Palestine then extending to other Middle Eastern countries as well, in order to achieve two aims : first, to establish full and direct geographic and political control over the Middle Eastern oil; and second, to spread Israeli hegemony over the miniature divided countries in the Middle East. 

  4. From American perspective, the Syrian Army, situated in Lebanon, was a big obstacle in the face of launching chaos, turmoil and civil fight in this country.

  5. The Syrian government started to withdraw its forces from Lebanon in a radical way following the withdrawal of the Israeli forces from southern Lebanon. It carried out several withdrawals (six) and repositioned its forces on: June 14, 2001; April 3, 2002; February 19-25.2004; September 27, 2004; and finally on December 18, 2004. In the last withdrawal, and for the first time since 1976, Syria withdrew its intelligence forces out of Lebanon. Security road blocks in and near Beirut International Airport, in Beirut southern suburbs and in the northern coast of Betron city were removed. The withdrawal of the Syrian intelligence forces created a big security gap in Lebanon which led to the penetration of several intelligence Arabic and foreign agencies into Lebanon (American, Israeli, European, Jordan and Saudi). This in addition to the penetration of Al-Qaida Organization and its affiliates into Beirut then into southern and northern Lebanon. This security gap caused the decline and the endanger of security in Beirut and other Lebanese regions two months before Al-Hariri’s assassination. The consecutive withdrawals of the Syrian Army from the various Lebanese zones were in accordance with the recommendations of Al-Taif Conference on Lebanon.

  6. The Syrian opposition to the American occupation of Iraq and the non approval of the Syrian President of the American conditions advanced by the American Secretary of State, Colin Pawell, were two key factors for the American Administration to apply pressure on Syria with the aim of forcing it to withdraw its army from Lebanon; then isolate the Syrian administration; then establishing and supporting a Lebanese opposition to Syrian existence in Lebanon; then establishing and supporting a strong Sunni current to oppose the Shiite current represented by Hezbollah Party which poses a threat to the security of Israel through its missile force.

The Manipulation of the UN as a Tool in the New Middle East Project:

  1. In that context, it wasn’t foreseen to attack Syria militarily according to a decision the American Administration took in 2004, so they turned to the United Nations and its decrees and to the political and economic penalties as a means to isolate Syria, weaken it and destroy its regional influence represented: first, in Lebanon through Hezbollah and Amal. Second, Movement; in the occupied Palestinian territories through Hamas and the other Palestinian opposition parties; and third, in Iraq through its tribal and political weight

The United Nations, together with its Security Council, have been used as tools to exert pressure on Syria and Iran. This has been adopted after signing the agreement between Britain and the USA in alliance with France and Germany in the presence of Israel during 2003, after the Anglo-American occupation of Iraq which has been climaxed with the issuance of Decree 1559 on September 2, 2004,  and the decrees that followed.

2.The American Secretary of State, together with the American Embassy in Beirut, coordinated with some Lebanese personalities including Qorna Shahwan, who was received in Los Angeles; Michael Oun, who was received in Chicago; Patriarch Safeer, who was received in Washington; in addition to the Sunni current led by Rafik Al- Hariri, along with the Social Progressive Party led by Walid Jumblatt, all whom the Americans coordinated with during meetings in the American Embassy in Beirut. These events were followed by imposing the American penalties onSyria, and the adoption of Shalom Plan on which basis Decree 1559 was issued.

3.The “Pristol” opposition coalition was formed with the support and blessings of Rafik Al-Hariri to confront the Syrian support to extend President Emil Lahoud’s term, on Sept 3, 2004, for three additional years.

Picking the Political Assassination Victim in the New Middle East Project:

  1. President Rafik Al-Hariri disappointed first the American Administration, then the French one, by participating himself, his ministers and his Parliament members in the efforts to extend President Emil Lahoud’s term. 
  2. The non attendance of President Rafik Al-Hariri of the meetings of the Pristol opposition block; the certainty of his leaving the opposition; and his frequent and repeated encounters in December and January with Sheikh Hassan Nasr Allah, increased the outrage and fear of the American Administration. Therefore, the assassination process was accelerated, especially since Al-Hariri withdrew his support of the Pristol block, as he himself declared to the Lebanese Newspaper “Al Safir”. 
  3. Also the opposition of President Rafik Al-Hariri for the (Bechtel & Jacob) Project to build an American base in south Tripoli “Patron”, and his opposition to the construction of the largest American Embassy in the Middle East in Lebanon, again increased the outrage and fears of the American Administration. Accordingly, the C.I.A. excluded for the moment the idea of assassinating the Shiite Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah; given the difficulty of that task, and adopted instead the idea of eliminating the Sunni President Rafik Al-Hariri; for he was an easy target, and because that venture was more profitable from the point of view of its results and outcomes that help the realization of the New Middle East Project. 
  4. On Aug 29, 2004, the electronic site of “the American comity for freedom of Lebanon “, nicknamed Rafik Al-Hariri “the foremost  Lebanese  agent that  works for Syria.”
  5. The assassination of Al-Hariri was a decision taken by the American Administration and Sharon government. National Security Advisor Aide, Eliot Abrams, played a key role linking the White House and Sharon Intelligence offic

The C.I.A. (UN Branch) Plans for the Assassination of Rafik Al-Hariri:

  1. While the parliamentary committees were convening in Beirut, the C.I.A. (UN Branch) , made a terrestrial map and a satellite map for the district of San George, Venezia Intercontinental Hotel and the surrounding buildings in collaboration with the Israeli Mossad (Unit 504). Next, they determined the daily appointments, timings and meetings of Rafik AlHariri. The new UN Building (Alaskwa) comprising 8 floors with glass facades was used for monitoring Hariri’s movements from and to the Lebanese Parliament, including all roads and cross roads.

  2. The C.I.A doesn’t have the capabilities for carrying out such an operation without local Lebanese help. The Israeli Mossad offered such help through their agents in the disbanded Southern Lebanese Army (Israeli Assassination Unit 504) whom have been trained in Israel. 
  3. Despite the presence of those Lebanese elements who are loyal to the Mossad; such an operation must be carried in a suicidal manner that can’t be entrusted to those elements of the Mossad. Therefore, it was agreed to have the participation of some Lebanese and Palestinian elements of the “Nasra and Jihad” Group that makes part of “Gond AlSham” militia, centered around Saida, south Lebanon, in the district of Tammeer, Ein Al-Helwa, in order to carry out such suicidal operation. 
  4. President Rafik Al-Hariri, in the Sunni Religious Circles, is considered to represent Saudi Arabia in Lebanon. He was chosen with the approval of Syria. It is well known that Saudi Arabia opposes the Islamic extremists and it is at war with Al-Qaida Organization. In that context, the C.I.A. in the American Embassy in Riyadh, in collaboration with the Australian Intelligence Agency and the Saudi Security Forces, contacted Al-Oteebi (Saud Al-Oteebi, the head of Al-Qaida branch in Saudi Arabia) & Al-Ghamdi Cells in Mecca. This contact was made through two C.I.A elements of Lebanese origin and with a terrorist façade. The reason was to secure a meeting to be attended by Lebanese extremists carrying Australian passports who will visit Mecca for worship.  Planning and financing were made under the nomination of Al-Qaida. Next Al-Oteebi Cell was liquidated by the Saudi Security Forces and the F.B.I. The hardest venture for the American C.I.A. was to enlist Lebanese extremists in the assassination plan without being discovered later on. Accordingly, orders and executive steps remained piecemeal, vague and unclear without fixing time, place or target. Al-Oteebi, Gond AlSham and the Australian Lebanese extremists groups were all unaware of the common link between them and the American Central Intelligence Agency (C.I.A). The Australian Lebanese extremists, who were seven persons, were accommodated in a flat in Beirut, four weeks before the operation, with the help of two elements (a Lebanese and a Palestinian) of Gond Al-Sham group in coordination also with Sheikh Al Gozo. 
  5. A Mitsubishi stolen truck was stolen and transported from Japan via UAE to Lebanon on October, 12, 2004. It was assembled by elements of the C.I.A in the American Embassy in Beirut, where it was equipped with several electronic devices that included: C-GUARD EXP device which is a special and counter jamming device; a thermometer; an electronic shocker; a specially developed mini navigator; a transceiver linked with the satellites via GPS-11; and a transceiver linked with unit 8200 AWACS Planes. The truck was next handed over to the Israeli Mossad. The connecting elements were always Lebanese working for the Mossad, under cover of the Federal Bureau Investigation (F.B.I) situated in the American Embassy in Beirut. 
  6. Three charges of T.N.T. mixed with phosphorus, having a destructive power of one ton, were transported at consecutive times, through a narrow passage in the Israeli mine fields, by Lebanese agents working for the Mossad whose chief directly supervised the operation together with Chief of the Intelligence of the Israeli Army, Mayer Daghan. The explosives were assembled, transported and handed over by the Mossad agents and elements of Gond Al-Sham group and the seven Australian Lebanese, in the district of Al Tameer, Saida, in a place beyond the control of the Lebanese army and Hezbollah security. 
  7. Two months after Syrian security withdrawals, and on day 17, Friday Jan 28, 2005, before his assassination, Rafik Al-Hariri was informed with the necessity of visiting Washington for consultation and coordination with the American Foreign Ministry and President Bush. The American Ambassador in Beirut asked President Rafik Al-Hariri to come over to the Embassy to arrange for the forthcoming meeting in Washington. On the day 13, on Tuesday Feb 1, 2005, before the assassination, President Rafik Al-Hariri visited the American Embassy in Beirut to meet the Ambassador Feldman and to have the diplomatic visa stamped on his passport for the entry of the USA. In an ordinary routine act, his cellular phone was taken from him upon his entry in the Embassy. During the meeting that lasted for one hour, AlHariri cell phone was bugged with a closed-circuit electronic chip and a navigator, thus AlHariri’s movements were monitored by the satellites and the Awacs. Also, the memory of Hariri’s cellular phone chip was copied in order to spy on the calls he  receives in order to know his movements in advance. Thus, Hariri’s movements became under control and monitoring, and completely clear unsecured. 
  8. The crime theater was monitored from the ground, from sea and from air by the satellites and the Awacs. 
  9. On Day 4 prior to Hariri’s  assassination (Thursday February 10, 2005), Terry Rod Larson (UN supreme emissary) warned Al Hariri of the bad situation and advised his to be cautious. The UN had appointed Larson to supervise the implementation of  the Security Council Resolution No. 1559. 
  10.  The assassination operation which was planned for on Friday February 11, 2005, was postponed for three days due to a misunderstanding between the Lebanese elements working for the Mossad and the Australian Lebanese elements, whom one of them would carry out the suicidal operation, and the operations center in the UN headquarters and the American Embassy in Beirut. This because of the heavy traffic after President Rafik Al-Hariri had left Mohammed Al Amin  Mosque following Friday Prayer. 
  11. Monday February 14, 2005, was the first of three days for the Parliament to debate the new electoral law. 
  12. At 11:55 on the morning of February 14, 2005, Yehia Al Arab (Abu Tarek), the chief body guard of Al Hariri,  informed Al Hariri that Mr. Naguib Fregi, the UN Speaker in Beirut, and some newsmen are awaiting him in the Actuel Café located at the other side of the Nejma Square. AlHariri told Abu Tarek that he will soon join them. He was then sitting in the main room of the Parliament together with Marawan Hamada,  Ghazi AlAreedi and other colleagues discussing the electoral law. 
  13.  At 12:15 on the same day, Naguib Fregi, an elegant Tunisian that smokes cigars and manages the Information Center (Of the UN branch of the C.I.A), was meeting some outstanding Lebanese newsmen to inform them about the results of a meeting that was held the previous Thursday between Terry Rod Larson and President Bashar AlAssad. Four outstanding journalists were sitting around the table in the Café with Fregi, among them Ali Hamada, from Al Nahar Lebanese Newspaper, and Walid Shuker, from Al-Hayat Newspaper. While they were talking, Abu Tarek, Al-Hariri’s bodyguard, entered the Actuel Café and informed Fregi that Al-Hariri will come within few minutes. It was customary that Fregi and Hariri take the opportunity from time to time to exchange views and information. 
  14.  At 12:35 on the same day, Hariri crossed Nejma Square towards the Actuel Café , entered it and discussed with the journalists, the Parliament affairs. However, Naguib Fregi, asked Hariri to talk with him separately about Hezbollah and its disarmament. Hariri advised Fregi that the UN must deal directly with it, and told him to make sure to tell the Americans about it before he goes lest they would worry. 
  15.  At 12:42 p.m., Hariri’s motorcade was waiting on one side of the road near the Parliament. Abu Tarek informed the motorcade police officer and his assistant with the road that they should follow to return to Quraitem. That was the last encounter for Hariri with the First Watchman (the C.I.A. agent in the UN Branch), Naguib Fregi, who in his turn informed the Second Watchman in the UN headquarter, on the eighth floor, who  checked  what he watches directly and indirectly via an electronic monitoring screen connected with satellites.  He watched the exit of  Hariri’s motorcade from Nejma Square through the road leading to San George. In his turn he passed on the information to the Third Watchman situated on the motorcade way. On the screen, there were two illuminated dots: a red one representing the Mitsubishi truck movement, and a green representing Hariri’s movements. In the monitoring and control center, watching the screen connected with satellites, there was the security officer of the C.I.A. , UN Branch, Ugine Goldman. On the same terminal, in the American Embassy in Beirut, another monitoring screen was being watched by Robert Miller, from the Federal Bureau Investigation (F.B.I). 
  16.  At 12:53 p.m., we follow up what happened during the last minutes that preceded Hariri’s assassination before the movement of Hariri’s motorcade. The conversation ended in the Actuel Café and Hariri left accompanied by Basel Flihan. They walked towards the awaiting motorcade. Flihan entered the armored Mercedes car and accommodated himself in the front passenger seat, whereas, Hariri was smilingly waving to Fregi and the newsmen from the driver seat of the car. At the motorcade end there was an ambulance, a modified Chevrolet, which carried Rashid Hamoud, an emergency specialist in the American University Hospital. Its driver was Mahmoud Aweini. The second medical assistant was Mazen AlZahabi. A Toyota Land Cruiser, was leading the procession carrying four of the internal security police officers. It was followed by a Mercedes S-500, driven by Amer Shehada, accompanied by two private guards: Mohammed Reda, in the front seat, and Hassan Agiuz in the rear seat. Hariri’s armored Mercedes S-600 was the third in the procession, followed by other two Mercedes cars, each carries three private guards. Abu Tarek was sitting  in the front seat of the fourth car. The private guards sitting in the front seats were carrying machine pistols of the type “ Hilker & Couch”, which are small and light weight weapons, whereas those on the rear seats were carrying a “ Berta Glouk”  9 mm automatic pistol, that is hanged in a pouch near the shoulder.
  17. As the procession went around the Clock Tower in the middle of the square, and then up the street, passing by the Italian Embassy towards the northern direction, the Second Watchman, observed  from the building of the UN (the C.I.A. branch), that the procession is directing northward. Accordingly he made a communication from a cellular phone. It was the first of four calls he made in the next few minutes. That who were receiving the calls were the group of the Third Watchman, in the neighborhood, covering all possible ways that Hariri’s procession might take in the direction of Quretem. In the next few minutes, the Lebanese Mossad (Unit 504), closed down the other two roads leading to Quretem by placing barricades belonging to Beirut Municipality. The cellular phones of the Watchmen, whose calls were prepaid, were eight phones, and were acquired more than a month before. The calls that were made between these phones were between those Watchmen in order to check and control the movement of Hariri’s procession. The hierarchy of command, management, surveillance and monitoring of Hariri’s procession was as follows: 
    1. The First Watchman : Naguib Fregi from the C.I.A, UN Branch.
    2. The Second Watchman : Ugine Goldman, the C.I.A.; and Robert Miller, the Federal Bureau Investigation F.B.I.
    3. The Third Watchman : Mayer Daghan, Unit 504, the Lebanese Mossad.
    4. The Fourth Watchman : Gond AlSham group and the suicidal (Ahmed Abu Alades and Khaled Taha).

One of the four persons (the Fourth Watchman)  has received a call from ( the Second Watchman)situated in the Nejma Square (the UN building). The driver of a Mitsubishi Canter white vane remained beside San George Hotel awaiting the call. The van moved very slowly on the public road. The cars and the trucks were moving quickly, whereas the van was moving at the speed of 8 km/h in accordance with the Second Watchman instructions. He over passed the small roofed entrance leading to the Beach Club of the San George Hotel. He stopped after few meters according to the instructions.

18.  At 12:55 p. m. : the driver of the white Mitsubishi truck, through the left mirror of his car, that was standing beside San George Hotel for less than a minute, was able to see the gray Toyota Land Cruiser, boarded by the  policemen, increasing in size as it was racing towards the road parallel to the yacht port of the San George Hotel, followed by the Mercedes driven by Amer Shehada, within a time interval less than a fraction of a second. The next car that passed beside the Mitsubishi was the third in the procession – Hariri’s Mercedes S-600 armored car. When it passed parallel to it, the Second Watchman pressed the automatic control key, this before the encounter of the red point with the green point on his monitoring screen, which in turn is connected with the American spy satellite. With an accuracy of milliseconds, the electronic monitoring and ignition circuit situated in the explosive truck was reacting in this second with the electronic and monitoring circuit situated in the Hariri’s motorcade at the moment of the encounter of both victims within the field of black imaginary points.

19.  On day Zero, Monday February 14, 2005 (Valentine Day), the operation was postponed for 20 minutes, for more coordination and control, during Hariri’s stopping Actuel Café after his meetings in the Parliament. With the movement of the monitoring ground group controlling the Mitsubishi truck laden with the explosives, the contacts resumed again and the movements of both Al-Hariris motorcade and the Mitsubishi truck towards the location X were ascertained. At the proper instant and timing, at 12:56:26 Beirut local time on February 14.2005,the detonation of the truck occurred through a complicated electronic network linking the detonator, navigator Al- Hariris cell phone, American satellites and AWACS planes, control room, the truck laden with the explosives and the electronic devices mentioned previously; in addition of the security-TV camera of the HSBC British bank which was already aiming at the cross roads where Al-Hariris motorcade would encounter the Mitsubishi truck laden with explosives, connected with the monitoring ground group. This cipher was there only for confusing and for reception by the receivers using the frequencies used by Al-Hariri’s motorcade and the Mitsubishi truck. The order for explosion was given at the moment the two victims encountered each other, regardless of the instructions that were given to the Mitsubishi truck driver. This order to explode the Mitsubishi truck was given at the moment the truck approached Al-Hariri’s motorcade.

20. Operation Candor was successful; which was the name given for Al-Hariri’s assassination.

21. Six of the Australian Lebanese extremists left Lebanon, leaving behind their colleague who drove the Mitsubishi suicidal truck bomb. They flew out of Beirut International Airport, three hours after Al-Hariri’s assassination, in a hurry without even taking their luggage with them. Their part in the plot was camouflaged by the C.I.A and the Australian Intelligence Agency. In the meanwhile, judge Mozahr and General Rify were messing with the crime theater. As for the suspects, the Palestinian suicidal Ahmed Abu Hades and Khaled Taha were considered lost by the International Investigation Committee. The Witness, Nawar Habib Douna was liquidated in a traffic  accident. He was a cellular phones cards seller in Tripoli, which the assassination group members of the Lebanese Mossad used.

Consequences of Al-Hariri’s Assassination for the New Middle East Project:

  1. The assassination operation succeeded, and, as planned, attention turned to Syria as the primary actor of the assassination. The American Embassy in Lebanon started to turn the Lebanese political forces against Syria, Hezbollah and against the Lebanese President Emil Lahud. The important things for them were to isolate Syria and to force her to withdraw her armed forces from Lebanon; to enforce UN Decree 1559; to hit Hezbollah and to ignite a sectarian turmoil between Sunnis and Shiites. And if it weren’t possible to assassinate Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah, the Shiite; then it was possible to assassinate President Rafik AlHariri, the Sunni, and achieve the same goal!
  2. The operation of AlHariri’s assassination and its consequences were reviewed in their entirety by the C.I.A Supreme Council, when Ambassador Feldman was summoned to Washington for three weeks. The American extraordinary ambassador, Satterfield, was sent to Lebanon to supervise the consecutive explosions in the Christian zones in Beirut.
  3. Robert Miller, was the supreme coordinator and the general manager of the Candor Operation in coordination with the Mossad Chief, General Mayer Daghan.
  4. The American C.I.A. embroiled the United Nations, using the C.I.A. branch there, in the operation of the assassination of Rafik AlHariri.
  5. Gihad ben Ahmed Gebril, from the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, Ali Hassan Saleh; one of the leaders of Hezbollah Party, the Parliament member Ely Hebeqa, commander George Hawi, and Parliament member Gibran Twini were also assassinated with planning from the C.I.A, the UN branch,  and execution by the F.B.I and the Mossad, which murdered also Ezz AlDin Sobhi Sheikh Khalil, one of the leaders of Hamas in Damascus.
  6. Technically, the deep rift theory was adopted in the selection of the assassination location in a manner that causes deep and horizontal destruction. Also, the illusory four black points theory was adopted to ensure that the explosion covers all Al-Hariri’s motorcade. These four black points distributed along the entire road from San George Hotel and the neighboring building. These four points represented the main control for the explosion and arranged the timing for launching the loaded and mobile explosives on the Mitsubishi truck.

The electronic explosion control functions only in case the explosive cars are provided with electronic control devices such as electronic jamming, alarming and monitoring devices, which were available in Al-Hariri’s motorcade. USA and Israel are the only two countries in the region that possess satellites and AWACS planes in addition to control systems with a high degree of technological sophistication. Satellites with AWACS can send signals to detonators with the size of a watch battery. Such technology is monopolized by the USA, Israel and Russia.

The passage of Al-Hariri’s motorcade, which equipped with the highly advanced electronic alarm devices and jamming devices (4 Mega Hz) through the illusory black points, allows the functioning of the explosives. The process of linking the black points with explosives is very complicated and needs very high advanced technology such as systems that can jam the devices protecting Al-Hariri’s motorcade and which depend upon the same source for the protection systems including satellites.

Whether for jamming or exploding, the illusory black points theory to hit the target during explosion, is considered the most recent theory that the Israeli discovered with the help of one of their scientists, Dioth Fasilon, a Russian Jewish scientist in 1999, and it is the same system that the USA developed and supplied the assassination groups with.


• Is it now clear who assassinated Rafik Al-Hariri ?!



• Member of the Administrative Committee of the Association of the
American Arab Physicians.

ISIS is NOT ‘Blowback’ from Western Foreign Policy; It is Western foreign policy

wahhabi

“THE ORIGIN OF ISIS”

ISIS is not ‘Blowback’ from Western Foreign Policy;

They ARE Western Foreign Policy

empire strikes black
By the Editor.

Notice that ISIS are sworn enemies of Syria, Hizbu’llah, and Iran. This in itself gives a most obvious clue as to the identity of the group’s benefactors.

A prevalent liberal cliché is the “blowback” theory – the theory that ISIS terror attacks, and indeed the group’s very existence, are somehow in retaliation to US/Western/”Israeli” foreign policy actions.

This is a disingenuous theory that is disseminated in order to keep the empire’s citizens on side. Crucially, it distracts from a key truth.

Western and “Israeli” intelligence has historically effected deep infiltration of ‘jihadist’ terror cells throughout the Arab world and the West; these groups are used literally as foot-soldiers (see Afghanistan throughout the 1980s) to achieve Western and “Israeli” military and strategic objectives. The “blowback” theory distracts from this key fact.

ISIS aren’t retaliating against Western foreign policy; they are Western foreign policy. These very people were mobilized against Muammar Gaddafi in Libya’s bogus ‘revolution’ of 2011, as with Syria in the same year.

In moving across the Syrian-Iraqi border, ISIS – Zionism’s foot-soldiers – underwent a magical media transformation into the ‘bad guys’. The ‘war against ISIS’ is a con, a total scam. It is a pretext for a war against the resistance axis: chiefly Syria, Hizbu’llah, Iran, and the Palestinian resistance. It is a pretext to kick the ‘Yinon plan’ – the plan to balkanise the Arab world to ensure “Israeli” hegemony – into high gear

The WMD lies of 2003 never went away; they simply got re-packaged for the liberal crowd in the post-Bush era.

The Yinon Plan, “Greater Israel”, Syria, Iraq, and ISIS: the Connection

TIMES OF POL

The Zionist Plan for the Middle East, also known as the Yinon Plan, is an Israeli strategic plan to ensure Israeli regional superiority. It insists and stipulates that Israel must reconfigure its geo-political environment through the balkanization of the surrounding Arab states into smaller and weaker states.

Reach of a "Greater Israel"

 “Greater Israel” consists in an area extending from the Nile Valley to the Euphrates.

When viewed in the current context, the war on Iraq, the 2006 war on Lebanon, the 2011 war on Libya, the ongoing war on Syria, not to mention the process of regime change in Egypt, must be understood in relation to the Zionist Plan for the Middle East. The latter consists in weakening and eventually fracturing neighboring Arab states as part of an Israeli expansionist project. (READ HERE)

 

Suspicion Grows That Paris Commando Attack Involved Intelligence Agencies

Americans-facing-threat-of-state-terrorism-Analyst

[SEE:  CIA behind Paris attack?]

As AQAP claims Paris attack, suspicious role of others possible

yemen-post

Yemen Post Staff

Al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) on Wednesday claimed responsibility for the last week’s attack on the French Newspaper Charlie Hebdo.
In a videotape on a pro-Al-Qaida website, an AQAP leader said the group had carried out the attack under an order from Ayman Al-Zawahiri, leader of the global terrorist network.
Though AQAP has been seen as the most dangerous branch of Al-Qaida, observers argued that the videotape was not sufficient evidence it had already carried out the attack. Contradictory statements on the attack including those by senior US and Yemeni officials and the statuses of Al-Qaida in the region boost such assumption, they said.
Nabil Albukiri, a researcher focused on militant groups and head of the Arab center for political studies and development, said the videotape could be part of the media competition between Al-Qaida branches in the region.
“These branches have been facing a global war weakening them to the extent it is possible they claim successful attacks on their enemies even though they are not behind attacks in reality. Such a move aims to keep high spirits of their exhausted militants and then convince others that Al-Qaida is still strong and can fight back,” he said.
Beyond Qaida ability
The Middle East has recently become an obvious arena for struggle of regional and foreign countries, a matter which made observers don’t exclude that countries are using terrorism as a key card in their struggle.
Yemeni observers said the post-Arab Spring violence has further exposed the struggle of big powers and rising regional powers over oil and other interests in the region.
“Now, these countries are seeking  to transfer part of their struggle from Iraq and Syria into Yemen, mainly for oil,” Albukiri said.
Abdul Salam Muhammad, head of the ABAAD studies and research center, said the attack on Charlie Hebdo was beyond the abilities of Al-Qaeda.
The attack points to involvement of international intelligence agencies and countries. No one can deny terrorism of Islamist militants; the point, however, is that neither AQAP nor ISIS has the abilities to carry out such a deadly attack in downtown the capital of one of the countries playing a key role in the fight against terror,” Muhammad said.
“The Kouatchi brothers were able to raid, camouflage and fight back with necessary guns which means they were well-trained at hands of combat professionals, not from Yemen,” he said.
Alsalahi, a political sociology professor at Sanaa University, said the West’s involvement can’t be ruled out when it comes to international terrorism.
“The West especially the US has been seeking to create a giant enemy after the fall of the Soviet Union in order to interfere militarily in areas of conflicts, guarantee suitable sales of their weapons and in the end to convince people to pay taxes without asking about the military spending,” Alsalahi said.
AQAP has been seen as the most dangerous and active branch of Al-Qaida in the world. It has been responsible for several plots for attacks including a few bombing plots against US targets.
In response, the US has been providing direct support including drone strikes to the Yemeni army to fight AQAP. In this context, observers said the US is a direct enemy of AQAP which means the possibility of AQAP attack on Paris is low.
Local violence
Locally, AQAP has been very active since it was founded in 2009.
The group has lately increased its deadly attacks  mostly against the Houthi Militant Group.
In case AQAP was really responsible for the Paris attack, it is logical to link that to the plot backed by some Western countries which included handing power in Yemen to the Houthi Group, observers said.
Houthis were engaged in the war on Al-Qaida after they seized capital.
Muhammad said the power seizure by Houthi militias has resulted in increasing solidarity with Al-Qaida.
“As Houthi militias continue to tighten grip on power, power vacuum deepens, Al-Qaida finds more hotbeds and then its success in carrying out attacks increases,” he said.
Meanwhile, observers ruled out that the Coalition against ISIS will expand its operations into Yemen in response to terrorist threats to Europe including the Paris attack.
“In Yemen, the international community is directly backing the transition process and what is needed is that they help the country to build a real state not ruled by militants,” Muhammad said.


YEMEN POST STAFF

 

Guantanamo and The Saudi Rehabilitation Program Behind AQAP–(Intentional, or Major Fowl-UP?)

The Eleven Saudi Guantanamo Veterans Returning to the Fight

THE ELEVEN

“Arguably, the most dangerous of the eleven Saudi Gitmo veterans currently on the run—Saeed al-Shehri and Mohammed al-Harbi—were cooperative, non-confrontational, and even charming during their interactions with ARB panel members in Guantanamo Bay. One cannot but appreciate the irony
of Mohammed al-Harbi—now thought to be in the midst of planning imminent terrorist attacks against U.S. interests in Saudi Arabia and in Yemen—making a “heartfelt” offer “to work for American authorities once he was back in Saudi Arabia.”356

356 “Unclassified Summary of Evidence for Administrative Review Board in the Case of al Harbi, Mohamed Atiq Awayd.” Administrative Review Board (ARB) Round 2. U.S. Department of Defense; Office for the Administrative Review of the Detention of Enemy

 

THE ELEVEN al shehri

al jebairy al shehrial jebairy al shehri1

al faifyTHE ELEVEN al faify

al jutayli

al harbi 1al harbi 2

al hadrami

al shedoky1al shedoky2

al sayegh1al sayegh

ar rabeish

al assiri1al assiri

al ghamdi1al ghamdi

 

One of Libya’s Govts Wants New Weapons For Those Given To Syrian Terrorists

A Libyan Rebel hold a Kingdom of Libya flag as His Rifle Fires Another in Ras Ajdir border the air at location are on the border With Tunisia

The Prime Minister, Abdullah al-Thani, who heads the only Libyan Government (among both established) is recognized abroad called on the international community to provide more assistance to Libya. This inter warning that Libya may, forward, serve as’ base key militants – jihadist – Islamic on the doorstep of Europe.

Al-Thani is seeking to remove the existing arms embargo to be able to combat the militias in Libya who are defying his authority.

Therefore he wants the international community to cooperate with Libya to stop terrorism and the actions of extremist elements. This is where the Army of Libya reached a situation where you need help specific to confront the militias and the bodies of potential terrorists.

More details in the release tomorrow of ‘The Nation

Leb. Int. Min. Names ISIS In Tripoli Bombing NOT “Al-Qaeda” Nusrah

BEIRUT: Preliminary information suggests that ISIS was behind Saturday’s twin suicide bombing that left nine people dead in Tripoli, Interior Minister Nouhad Machnouk said Sunday.

“Preliminary information indicates that ISIS is behind the explosion,” Machnouk said during a press conference held after a security meeting in Tripoli Sunday, despite Nusra claiming responsibility for the attack which also wounded 30.

“These operations are neither separate nor discontinuous and the suicide bombers are members of [ISIS],” he added.

The Lebanese Army identified the two attackers as Taha Samir al-Khayal, 22, and Bilal Mohammad al-Mariyan, 29. Both were Lebanese.

The Al-Qaeda-linked Nusra Front claimed responsibility for the attack that targeted the Omran cafe in the majority Alawite neighborhood of Jabal Mohsen Saturday in online posting.

“A suicide operation targeted a cafe [belonging to] the Alawite Arab Democratic Party,” the Nusra Front said on its social media pages, in reference to Jabal Mohsen’s dominant group the ADP.

Recurring violence in Tripoli took on an increasingly sectarian nature with the beginning of the war in Syria nearly four years ago. The ADP is an ally of President Bashar Assad, while Bab al-Tabbaneh’s residents largely support the rebels fighting to oust him.

According to Machnouk, the suicide bombers “might” have been tied to Monzer al-Hasan – a militants suspected to have been tied to other suicide bombings in the country. Hasan was killed when security forces raided his apartment in the posh City Complex building in Tripoli last July.

Security forces had intelligence that Hasan provided explosive belts and material to a terrorist cell that was planning to carry out major attacks in Lebanon. Hasan is also suspected of being the main supplier of a Saudi suicide bomber who blew himself up in Beirut’s Duroy Hotel in June.

Machnouk also noted that he was contacted by former Prime Minister Saad Hariri who pledged to pay for the rehabilitation of the area damaged in Saturday’s explosions.

“This generous and patriotic move from Hariri serves to turn the page of the past and to move forward towards national consensus and support for the state,” Machnouk, who belongs to Hariri’s Future Movement, said.

Head of the Higher Relief Commission Maj. Gen. Mohammad Khair visited the site of the attack Sunday, saying he hoped the incident would be the last of its kind for Lebanon.

He also pledged support for the families of those killed and wounded.

Saturday’s suicide bombings came hours after Lebanon’s judiciary issued a new arrest warrant against the the leader of the ADP after he did not show up for a hearing Saturday.

The judiciary had withdrawn the previous arrest warrant, issued in February 2014 against former MP Ali Eid, last week, after he had fled to Syria and remained on the run with his son Rifaat since last June.

Eid has been charged with aiding a suspect in a twin bombing that targeted the Al-Taqwa and Al-Salam mosques in Tripoli, killing 47 people and wounded dozens of others.

Eid and his son fled to Syria when the Lebanese Army imposed a security plan in Tripoli.

– See more at: http://www.dailystar.com.lb/News/Lebanon-News/2015/Jan-11/283698-reports-suggest-isis-behind-north-lebanon-suicide-attack-interior-minister.ashx#sthash.uBr7I42z.dpuf

the CIA-Mossad-LTTE link, in the Rajiv Gandhi killing

Finally All Fingers Point To A  Foreign Hand

outlook. india

The Jain Commission’s final report focuses on a larger international conspiracy, and the CIA-Mossad-LTTE link, in the Rajiv killing

 

FOR seven rambling years, the Jain Commission of Inquiry—set up to unravel the larger conspiracy behind Rajiv Gandhi’s May 21, 1991, assassination—has stumbled from one controversy to another. The Commission’s interim report, tabled in Parliament last year, led to the fall of the United Front government—it had pointed fingers at its coalition partner, the DMK, for harbouring the LTTE, thus creating conditions which facilitated the assassination.

“The possibility of a foreign hand behind the LTTE in the Rajiv assasination is trengthened.”

It had also come down heavily on the V.P. Singh government for ignoring the security threat to Rajiv.The final report charts a markedly different course. Volume II, covering chapters I to VI, widens the ambit beyond the immediate circumstances to emphasise a larger, international plot. Foreign intelligence agencies like the CIA and Mossad, and leaders of some Sikh extremist organisations step in as the new dramatis personae. The report says they actively collaborated with the LTTE and key Indian individuals in the period immediately preceding the assassination. The eight-volume set, 14 chapters in all—accessed by Outlook—was submitted to the home ministry on March 7 this year.

Curiously, even as he lambasts the work of the CBI’s Special Investigation Team—devoting an entire volume to its investigational lapses—Jain appears to have considerably toned down his earlier stand on the complicity of the DMK and has instead concentrated on the ‘foreign’ angle. But there are specific recommendations for the prosecution of certain members of the DMK, PMK, and DK, who were earlier chargesheeted in the assassination of EPRLF chief K. Padmanabha in Chennai in 1990.

The report is not without its Indian angle. Startling depositions and intelligence intercepts included in the report indicate that Dr Subramanian Swamy and former prime minister Chandra Shekhar, in different ways, may have had prior knowledge of a threat to Rajiv but did not react in a “timely manner”.

“CIA seems to have a track record of destabilising governments while indulging in assassination plots.”

At the same time, Jain appears to have pulled his punches in recommending any further probe into the charges against these two politicians.What emerges finally is a picture of a well-networked international plot and certain key Indians, cast in varying degrees of complicity, who had ‘knowledge’ of the plan. Whether Home Ministry officials, who are studying the report, will be able to take any action on these findings for presenting the Action Taken Report in Parliament during this session remains in the realm of speculation. For now, the report, with its explosive annexures and wild-card theories, has the potential of stirring up yet another political maelstrom.

THE FOREIGN HAND: What is the foreign hand referred to in the final report? The depositions and intelligence inputs from RAW and IB have led Justice Jain to infer that the Tamil Tigers couldn’t have operated in isolation. In fact, he barely stops short of concluding that it was just the hired executor—a point Jain had touched upon in his interim report. Notes Jain: “The LTTE may be having its own financial resources but to acquire such high-tech weaponry, financial help and help in the form of shipment of arms, which are referred to in IB reports, cannot be ruled out. The possibility of a foreign hand behind the LTTE in the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi can’t be ruled out, rather it is strengthened.” The wireless intercepts (see box) clinches the fact that LTTE operatives like K.

“…there were moves to remove Rajiv and the hand of Chandraswami has been established.”

Padmanabha had links with the CIA and that the US intelligence agency assisted the Tigers in arms procurement and other operations. The LTTE was networked with international agencies and these could have helped them in the plot to kill Rajiv.To establish the foreign link, the report quotes telegram No. 24 (CCB)/20537 of September 11, 1991—sent to the Ministry of External Affairs by the Indian Ambassador in Tunis, containing a key tipoff he got from PLO president Yasser Arafat. It was conveyed that “Yasser Arafat had information that Rajiv’s enemies would use the election period to get rid of him. He got this information from inside Israel and his European sources. These sources mentioned that the LTTE and Sikh extremists would try to harm Rajiv Gandhi. Besides the above three, hostile forces from outside India may also make an attempt.”

A recorded note on the talk between the then foreign secretary Muchkund Dubey and the Palestinian ambassador in India, dated June 6, 1991, included in the final report reads: “The Palestinian ambassador told me that they had seen the movement of Mos-sad agents in India, including towards Madras. He said that if one was looking for a link, it was the CIA/Mossad/LTTE link. He further stated that the culprit could have been one of the women related or associated with the five LTTE leaders who had killed themselves after taking cyanide soon after the commencement of the IPKF operation.”

Justice Jain gives considerable import to the Arafat input.

“Swamy spoke of the possibility of Prabhakaran having been financed for the job…”

“I find the information furnished by Yasser Arafat genuine and there is no reason to disbelieve it…. From the note of Shri Muchkund Dubey and the CCB telegram, it is amply borne out that there was an international plot to assassinate Rajiv Gandhi and that it was a Mossad/LTTE/CIA link.”Statements from Dubey’s successor J.N. Dixit, Sonia Gandhi as well as details gleaned from RAW and IB have been woven into the report to shore up the information the PLO chief had passed on to Indian authorities. Dixit’s deposition finds prominence in the report: “Arafat is right in stating that he had sources within Israel and well-established sources in Europe. This information conveyed in the telegram must have been cross-checked by the field units of RAW under directives of their headquarters.”

“There must have been operatives of the CIA and Mossad in India during 1990-91…. The likelihood of Rajiv coming back to power might have been viewed with some reservations, not so much by the US government itself but by segments of the US defence and Intelligence establishment in the context of Rajiv Gandhi’s opposition regarding refuelling facilities provided by India for US Air Force planes during the Gulf War,” adds the ex-foreign secretary.

Similarly, in her statement to the Commission, Sonia Gandhi confirms that “it is a fact that Arafat sent my husband messages through the Palestinian mission in India saying that they had learnt of the threats to his life. This was reconfirmed to me and my children personally by Arafat when he met us soon after my husband’s funeral. There were several other occasions when he received similar information.”

RAW too provided the Commission with inputs, which it had shared with IB, on the activities of Mossad and CIA in India in the year immediately preceding the assassination. The final report mentions Amos Radia and Giorce Betchar as agents operating for the Israelis in India. As regards CIA activities in India, RAW had informed the IB that two suspected US intelligence officers were in India in the months preceding the killing.

A study of the post-Gulf war scenario in West Asia conducted by RAW, which was communicated to the PMO, then cabinet secretary Naresh Chandra, then foreign secretary Muchkund Dubey, IB, the Naval Headquarters and then Air Force chief S.K. Mehra, clearly stated: “International terrorism will get a fillip and we can expect terrorist strikes against soft targets in India. Considerable vigil will have to be exercised.”

While Jain has gone to great lengths to establish the foreign hand, he has also indicted intelligence agencies like RAW for not taking a serious view of information that came its way. The report says: “RAW’s conclusion on Arafat’s information requires deeper examination. Nothing has been said about the possible involvement of the CIA which may operate through Mossad in the light of Rajiv Gandhi’s utterances during the Gulf War opposing refuelling facilities to the US.”

Further, Jain writes, “the CIA seems to have a track-record of covert operations for desta-bilising governments while indulging in assassination plots or otherwise as reported in the print media…. It is in this background of the CIA’s alleged track-record that Arafat’s utterances have to be evaluated.”

THE report notes that, “Kumaran Padmanabha’s (KP) account in BCCI, Bombay branch, prima facie establishes links of the LTTE with the bank. Unless material from the Senate subcommittee is gathered, it will not be proper to conclude that the BCCI funds were not made available in connection with the Rajiv Gandhi assassination…. The material which has come before the Commission raises a very strong possibility of such help from some individuals and agencies since it is well established that KP was the LTTE’s international arms procurer.”

Despite all the information pieced together, the report is short on specifics and does little to flesh out the precise manner in which the foreign hand purportedly worked. The veil of mystery that shrouds the Rajiv killing remains. Jain indicates how the LTTE conspired with foreign agents/agencies to carry out the assassination, but provides only a vague delineation of possible motives. As things stand, it is doubtful whether the MEA (which has been given charge of investigating the international link) will be able to come up with anything.

THE INDIAN CONNECTION: Justice Jain has devoted separate chapters to three key Indian players who are suspected, one way or the other, to have had prior knowledge of the assassination. Nothing definitive or conclusive here, but Jain has woven in intriguing loops of circumstantial evidence—quoted and contained in the annexures—around godman Chandraswami, Janata Party leader Dr Subramanian Swamy and former PM Chandra Shekhar. The three are bracketed, prima facie, as either having a link with those who allegedly conspired with the assassins or at least having been privy to the fact of a plot.

The link between Chandra Shekhar and Subramanian Swamy has been taken seriously by Jain in the light of Chandra-swami’s deposition: “I know Chandra Shekhar and Subramanian Swamy have been very thick for the last 7-8 years. Dr Swamy told me that I (Chandraswami) may persuade Rajiv Gandhi to make Chandra Shekhar the PM.” Working within this framework, the Commission has read much into the independent testimonies of a host of witnesses—wherever they overlap—and arrived at certain conclusions.

For instance, Justice Jain concludes that Akali leader Mahant Sewa Dass’s deposition stands corroborated by evidence provided by RAW. Dass was sent as Chandra Shekhar’s emissary to meet Khalistan proponent Dr Jagjit Singh Chohan in London. He had deposed that at the meeting a plot to eliminate Rajiv was being hatched jointly by Babbar Khalsa militants and a representative of the LTTE (R.M. Pradi)—and that the project was to be financed by Chandraswami. Jain says: “It is fully established that Mahant Sewa Dass went to London, met Dr Chohan in the presence of some persons, conveyed the message of Chandra Shekhar and brought back a letter from Dr Chohan addressed to Shri Chandra Shekhar.”

The letter also finds a place in government records and reads:

“Dear Mr Chandra Shekharji,
Namaskar!
Mahantji discussed quite a few but very important things with me. I very much appreciate your initiative in Punjab. I am sure it will help to pacify the violence in Punjab. Mahantji will give you the details of our discussion on various aspects. Talks are the only way to resolve the problems.
More on hearing from you. Yours sincerely, Dr Jagjit Singh Chohan”
According to the report, “RAW confirms the meeting and that almost all the active pro-Khalistan groups were represented in the meeting. It also says that the main purpose of Mahant Sewa Dass’s sojourn was to find out the pro-Khalistani elements on a possible peace package acceptable to them which could then be projected as an achievement of the Government of India as a successful attempt to bring back the Sikhs abroad into the national mainstream…. However, a contemporary inquiry should have been made and the report should have been sent to the PM.”

The Commission also has on record a communication UO.No 3/5/88-VS, dated July 21, 1988, in which RAW mentioned reports indicating that Dr Chohan was trying to establish contact with the LTTE in the UK. Also, “government records show that Mahant Sewa Dass was sent by the government as an emissary of Chandra Shekhar to meet Dr Chohan. His arrangements for travel were made by the government.”

According to Jain, “From the perusal of various statements, it is evident that the relations of Chandraswami did exist, not only with Rao but also with Chandra Shekhar, Subrama-nian Swamy and O.P. Chautala. However, no inference of complicity can be drawn, although the surveillance at 10, Janpath and the statement of Saifullah may give rise to some doubts.”

As for Chandraswami, the circle of suspicion is wider. His links with the LTTE as well as international arms dealer Adnan Khashoggi (see box) have been established. Notes Jain: “The evidence and material does point an accusing finger at Chandraswami and circumstances which have come before the Commission raise a doubt regarding his involvement in the assassination. Taking the entire evidence, material and circumstantial, brought on record, a serious doubt arises regarding Chandraswami’s complicity and involvement. So the matter requires a further probe…. There is a plethora of evidence on record in the form of testimony of Buta Singh, S.S. Mahapatra, B.G. Deshmukh and others which proves that there were moves to remove Rajiv Gandhi and the hand of Chandraswami in these moves has been clearly established.”

Many witnesses have attested to the godman’s dubious links with international agencies. Ramesh Dalal, BJP activist, deposed that he knew “Shri Chandraswami has relations with the CIA, Mossad and the LTTE. He took the help of these agencies in assassinating Rajiv Gandhi…. In the core group of Chandraswami, Rajendra Jain, Babloo Srivastava, K.N. Aggarwal, Subramanian Swamy, Chandra Shekhar, O.P. Chautala and Pinaki Misra were there. The people of this core group used to meet Chandraswami in his bedroom. Chandraswami told me he had been financing the LTTE…”

The report says: “It is noteworthy that when he (Ramesh Dalal) had expressed his doubts regarding the involvement of Chandraswami as early as August 1991, investigations should have been conducted. Outrightly rejecting his testimony would not be a proper course and a thorough investigation is required to be made about the truth or otherwise of his testimony. Some support is available…from the deposition of Mahant Sewa Dass Singh.”

As for Swamy, the Commission interweaves various independent depositions and pieces of evidence to flesh out his links with the god-man and international agencies as well as his role as an intermediary. The report notes that Swamy had made a trip to London in 1995 with Chandraswami—they both stayed at Halkin Hotel and the bill was picked up by the godman.

Going back to the period before the killing, Jain cites the then cabinet secretary Zafar Saifullah’s statement that “there were some intercepts emanating from Israel for information to Chandraswami and Swamy for Jaffna. These intercepts have not come before the Commission. If Saifullah’s statement is correct, then the intercepts would have thrown much more light on the question of complicity.”

THE report adds: “A serious doubt has also been cast by E. Velusami who has filed an affidavit before the Commission…” Velusami, then general secretary of the Janata Party in Tamil Nadu, had deposed that his party president had arrived “in the morning at Madras airport by a flight from Delhi on Sunday, May 19, 1991.” Elections in the state were set for May 26. “Swamy’s whereabouts became unknown on May 21 morning. He subsequently learnt he had spent May 21 morning in a hotel called Trident near the airport and that he had met some persons there….

It is not clear why he made this secret stay in Madras on May 21, 1991, that too, after suddenly cancelling his pre-settled programme of going to Delhi from Madras and without any information to his colleagues…” Swamy’s itinerary was confirmed by the personal secretary to the ex-minister, writes Jain. He gives credence to the testimony of Aziz Haniffa, Washington bureau chief of India Abroad, in which he states that “during an interview with Swamy, the latter claimed it was he who was instrumental in introducing the LTTE to the Israelis, which led to their training by Mossad.”

Similarly, former Rajya Sabha MP Rajani Ranjan Sahu deposed that in 1994 Dr Swamy told him and two others at the Tamil Nadu governor’s house that the LTTE was hired for the job. He claimed Prabhakaran ordered the assassination after entering into a Rs 100-crore deal. He also revealed that “one W. Anderson, first secretary in the American Embassy, was anti-Rajiv” and that intelligence officials had got wind of the plot. Jain, at the same time, seems to suspend judgement on the episode: “From the statements of Sahu, Jitendra Prasada and Rajiv Shukla, it is borne out that they happened to meet Dr Swamy in the drawing room of the Governor’s house and that… Dr Swamy spoke of the possibility of V. Prabhakaran having been financed for the job which might have motivated him for the assassination.

… If that’s what transpired on May 29, 1994, and if it has any bearing while taking conspectus of the view in relation to any conspiracy, this event can be taken into account but if examined independently, nothing would turn on it.”

However, Jain reserves some sharp comments for the Janata Party chief. “Dr Swamy cannot be believed when he changes his versions and when he is indefinite and when he does not support his version by any corroboratory evidence. The divergence in the statements of Chandraswami and Dr Swamy on the purpose of their joint visit to London in 1995 does raise suspicions.”

On the explanation of D.R. Karthikeyan, special director, CBI, regarding the international ramifications, Jain writes that it “does not completely rule out the possibility of involvement beyond the LTTE. If the SIT had investigated Chandraswami, Mahant Sewa Dass and interrogated Chandra Shekhar, Swamy, T.N. Seshan and Narasimha Rao, it would have helped the Commission….”

In the final analysis, Jain has shifted the focus from Indian players. But it remains a fuzzy piece of detective work. His conclusions are tentative, provisional—the report does not contain the last word on the killing, nor any actionable leads for investigating agencies to pick up. What impact will it have, beyond being a source of embarrassment for some individuals? That, like the core question—who ordered the Rajiv killing?—the final report leaves exactly where the interim report left off: an open-ended question.

(This article is issued in public interest.)

Al-Qaida in Arabian Peninsula=Guantanamo/Mossad, ISIS=Camp Bucca, Iraq

Embassy Bombing Trial Confirms “al Qaida” in Yemen Is Mossad

Batch 10

[SEE:  What Is the Truth About ISIS ]

How a group freed from Guantanamo returned to terror

By Peter Taylor
BBC News

The failed Detroit airliner bomb attack on Christmas Day awakened the world to the threat from al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), a group that until then was hardly a household name.

Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, a young Nigerian who allegedly came within an ace of killing almost 300 passengers and crew with a bomb hidden in his underwear, said he had been trained and sent by its leaders.

US President Barack Obama’s embarrassment and anger at the potentially catastrophic failure of intelligence which allowed Mr Abdulmutallab to board the plane has been compounded by the revelation that two of AQAP’s founders, Said al-Shihri and Mohammed al-Awfi, were both former Guantanamo detainees.

Several AQAP foot soldiers are also former Guantanamo prisoners.

This only confirms the fears of critics vehemently opposed to Mr Obama’s promise to close the prison camp by the end of this month.

‘Deviant ideology’

In total, 120 Saudi detainees have been repatriated from Guantanamo.

Mr Obama’s dilemma is dramatically illustrated by a BBC investigation into what happened to the 14 detainees of Batch 10, who were flown home to Saudi Arabia just over two years ago.

FIND OUT MORE…
Peter Taylor’s film for Newsnight will be broadcast on Wednesday 13 January 2010 at 10.30pm on BBC Two
Or watch again on the BBC iPlayer
Peter Taylor’s new three part series Generation Jihad is coming soon to BBC Two

The Saudi government’s aim was to put them through its controversial de-radicalisation or Care programme, with a view to rehabilitating its “beneficiaries” in society.

Of the 120 Saudi returnees, 111 of them have gone through the Care programme – the other nine returned to the Kingdom before the scheme was set up.

The government claims a 90% success rate and says that only 10 of the former Guantanamo detainees absconded, crossing the border into Yemen.

But Batch 10 certainly does not fit this picture.

When the Saudi 747 jet carrying them landed in Riyadh, its passengers were greeted by the authorities not as heroes but as “victims” who had been brainwashed and misled by a deviant ideology.

All went through the Care programme, but five later escaped to Yemen.

Increasing threat

There two of them, al-Shihri and al-Awfi, helped set up AQAP and then took part in the organisation’s launch video.

The video was released on 22 January 2009, the day after Mr Obama announced that Guantanamo was to be closed down by 22 January 2010 – a deadline which will not be met.

In the video al-Awfi savagely attacked the Saudi rehabilitation programme, perhaps an indication of the increasing threat it poses to al-Qaeda.

It is no coincidence that last October an al-Qaeda suicide bomber, with explosives concealed in his rectum, tried to assassinate the eponymous founder of the centre, Prince Mohammed Bin Nayef, the Saudi deputy interior minister.

He survived. The bomber did not.

The attack was a sign of the technical sophistication of al-Qaeda’s Yemeni franchise, mirrored by the explosives hidden in Abdulmutallab’s underpants on Christmas Day.

Capitulation

Mohammed al-Awfi’s is an extraordinary story. He went through the rehabilitation programme like the others from Batch 10, but then fled to Yemen where he starred in the al-Qaeda launch video.

Astonishingly al-Awfi later re-crossed the border into Saudi Arabia and gave himself up.

Peter Taylor in Riyadh

Peter Taylor pictured in Riyadh, where he met Mohammed al-Awfi

I have never understood why he did so.

The Saudis told me it was because he had received a phone call from his wife telling him to return to look after her and the children.

The explanation caused me to raise a quizzical eyebrow. I was told it is not unknown for the Saudis to use families as bait.

Al-Awfi is now living in luxury accommodation in Riyadh’s top security prison where he is being drained of every scrap of intelligence.

He has all the comforts of home, a well furnished flat and regular visits by a grateful and relieved family.

After long negotiations with the Ministry of the Interior, I was finally allowed to meet him for an interview.

Surprisingly for a former jihadi who had breathed such fire in the al-Qaeda video, he was gentle and unthreatening, with pristine white robes, and a red and white checked Saudi keffiyeh.

His story and the reasons for his change of heart are well rehearsed.

Eighteen months earlier the interior ministry had video-taped the return of Batch 10.

In it one of the first returnees to be seen boarding the plane is al-Awfi.

He is dishevelled and appears to be in pain, the result, he told me, of being tortured by the Americans at Bagram airbase in Afghanistan six years earlier.

Al-Awfi claimed his US interrogators had done terrible things to him. He alleges they sat him on a chair, made a hole in the seat, and then “pulled out the testicles from underneath which they then hit with a metal rod”.

“They’d then tie up your penis and make you drink salty water in order to make you urinate without being able to do so, until they make you scream,” he added.

Painful memories

I spoke to other former detainees who allege they had been subjected to electric shock treatment at Bagram and Kandahar.

When I asked al-Awfi why the rehabilitation programme had not worked for him, he said it was because the memories of what he had suffered at the hands of Americans were far more powerful than any corrective inducements he had received in the Care programme.

I asked him about his participation in the video.

Now securely in Saudi hands and surrounded by Saudi minders, he told me he had been forced into it.

“The al-Qaeda leadership there put pressure on me to appear,” he said.

“I came and found a photocopied paper with a full text of what they wanted me to say. I even disagreed, but they said I had to recite all these things for political reasons.”

He says the recording took six hours and lasted until 0200 in the morning.

I then asked al-Awfi why he had decided to return after making the video.

“I saw the truth,” he said. “I saw that the path was a deviant path away from the sayings of the Prophet. Thanks to God Almighty’s generosity, I realised that and I made a final decision to return to Saudi Arabia.”

I personally suspect there was much more to it than that though.

But al-Awfi is alive, unlike another former detainee from Batch 10, Youssef Al-Shihri, who also joined al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula.

Last October he crossed the border from Yemen into Saudi Arabia disguised in a burqa, with six others from Yemen to carry out a bomb attack.

The cell was intercepted by the Saudi security forces. Al-Shihri and another member of the cell were shot dead in the ensuing gun battle. Three loaded explosive belts were found in their car.

Bigger threats

Two others returnees from Batch 10 – Murtadha Ali Saeed Magram and Turki Meshawi Zayid al-Assiri – are still at large in Yemen and on the Saudi wanted list.

And what of Said al-Shihri who was on the same flight as al-Awfi and who later appeared with him in the al-Qaeda video?

Al-Shihri now represents the biggest threat of all as he is believed to be second in command – the deputy leader – of al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula.

In the video he declared “our imprisonment has only increased our persistence”.

What happened in the skies above Detroit on Christmas Day is an indication of that.

Gen. Betrayus Facing FBI Charges Over Tawdry Affair, Nothing For Screwing-Up Iraq

FBI and Justice Department recommend felony charges against Petraeus

Russia-Today


Former CIA director David Petraeus (AFP Photo/Frederic J. Brown) Paula Broadwell, the woman whose affair with CIA director David Petraeus (Reuters/Davis Turner)

Former CIA director David Petraeus (AFP Photo/Frederic J. Brown) Paula Broadwell, the woman whose affair with CIA director David Petraeus (Reuters/Davis Turner)

The FBI and Justice Department are recommending felony charges be brought against retired Gen. David Petraeus for providing classified information to his former mistress when he was director of the CIA, according to officials.

The announcement was first reported by The New York Times and follows an investigation into an affair Petraeus had with Paula Broadwell, an Army Reserve officer who was writing his biography. The investigation, opened in 2012, centered on whether he gave her access to his CIA email account and other highly classified information, much of which was found stored on Broadwell’s personal computer.

READ MORE: FBI continues Petraeus investigation, interviews ex-CIA director

Attorney General Eric Holder has to decide now whether to seek an indictment that could lead to a prison sentence for the retired four star-general.

A lawyer for Petraeus, Robert Barnett, told the Times he had no comment.

The FBI was investigating an unrelated email cyber stalking complaint when the Petraeus affair came to light and the documents were discovered, though Broadwell was ultimately cleared of cyber stalking charges.

At the time of the investigation in 2012, both Petraeus and Broadwell denied to investigators that he was the source of any classified information, officials said. The investigation and the exposure of the affair led to Petraeus’ resignation from the CIA in 2012, with him saying he had shown “extremely poor judgment” in conducting the affair.

Petraeus has indicated to the Justice Department that he has no interest in a plea deal that would spare him an embarrassing trial.

READ MORE: FBI continues to investigate former CIA director General Petraeus

Since the scandal broke, the former general began working with private equity firm KKR, and has academic posts at Harvard and the University of Southern California. White House sources told Bloomberg that the Obama administration has sought his advice on the fight against the Islamic State and that he still has his security clearance.

READ MORE: Socialite entwined in Petraeus scandal sues Pentagon

Before the end of last year, Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah), now chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, said the investigation needed to end if there are no charges coming.

“If he has done something wrong, charge him, if he has not, let him go,” he said. “At this point I don’t know what their motivation is. But I worry they will let this linger until the President leaves office.”

(Rafik Hariri’s LAST Interview) “Assassinating me is improbable–it is a big decision, one that is dangerous and costly.”

Rafik Hariri: “Assassinating me is improbable; it is a big decision, one that is dangerous and costly.

They want to keep the country sick. No one has an interest in killing a sick person . . . and they reject curing him.”


Ghassan Charbel Al-Hayat – 13-17/2/06

Does a journalist have the right to publish interviews with
someone who had stipulated that they not be published before receiving approval, “because timing in politics is important”? I asked myself this question a few hours after I heard that Prime Minister Rafik Hariri had been assassinated. The shock was a big one and the climate was emotional; I was afraid of enflaming people’s feelings, since some content might not have been desired by the subject of the interview. I dropped the project. A few days before the first year commemoration of the earthquake of 14 February 2005, I found myself facing the same question. However, I decided this time to publish most of what took place in those interviews in the hope that it will be a salute to the late prime minister and help readers who are searching for details about the path of an exceptional person.

Readers have the right to know the story of these discussion sessions, which were the result of meetings held in Sardinia, Paris, and Beirut over many years. In 1994, I telephoned Prime Minister Hariri, asking him to participate in a series of “X remembers,” which was being published by al-Wasat magazine. He hesitated for a while, then agreed. I went to Monte Carlo on 26 December and spent two days with him. This produced three installments, which were published in al-Wasat beginning on 27 February 1995. That day, he told me that “I consider the interview just a beginning, since my political position and responsibilities prevent me from going into many details.” He added, “I promise that we’ll have another session of discussion later.”
In the summer of 1999, I resumed contact. Hariri was out of government. He agreed and I went to Sardinia with a small tape recorder for several sessions on his yacht, where he resided. At the end of the second day, he spoke frankly to me: “It’s still too early to talk about what’s more important. What do you think about not publishing this now, and we’ll spend two days in Faqra later. I’ll stop my calls and free myself to gather memories and you’ll discover that I was present in one way or another in every phase after 1982.”
“While awaiting this appointment, you can ask me what you want, whenever we meet in Lebanon or elsewhere, and you can record my answers, even if we’re talking by phone. My only condition is that you not publish anything before I approve. I don’t want to hurt the media with politics; can you promise me?”
I promised and began to steal a part of the interview every time we met. Unfortunately, the meetings were few and far between. Hariri returned to office in 2000. The strange thing was that Hariri would remind me of his promise of a private session at his mountain residence in Faqra, but when I saw him for the last time in Qoraytem, two weeks before his assassination, the atmosphere didn’t permit taking advantage of such an opportunity. I felt a good deal of tension in his voice as if weighing the likely repercussions of a victory by the opposition in the coming elections.
It’s not strange that the personality of Rafik Hariri would intrigue any journalist following Lebanon’s present and asking about its future. When, in the “X remembers” series, I tried to gather stories of the war and attempts to exit it, especially in the 1980s, the name Hariri kept coming up, even though in those days he sought to keep his role away from the spotlight and hide his true political clout, to avoid provoking hostility. Rafik Hariri left his fingerprints on every phase, from the abolition of the 17 May Lebanese-Israeli agreement to the “Tripartite Agreements” among the big militias, and up to the Geneva and Lausanne conferences, and the period of the two (warring) governments, followed by the Taif Accord.
The question that occupied me in the 1990s was how Rafik Hariri succeeded in becoming a “top figure” in a period that one assumes didn’t allow for such people in Lebanon. I asked Hariri this once, and he asked me for the answer.
“Your financial ‘strike force’ equals the strength of a militia, one which is bigger than the militias that exist,” I said.
“God forbid such a comparison,” he answered. “I don’t deny that money, if used well, can give you an opportunity, but let me tell you – with your money you can buy a big palace you can’t use money to buy the affection of a worker in the palace’s garden. There’s trust, and follow-up, the ability to give people hope.”
He added: “They don’t waste any means in destroying my image, they’ve tried them all. They told the Shiites that I’d come to reduce their political weight. I didn’t answer. You know Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah and Speaker Nabih Berri, why don’t you ask them? They told the Christians that I’d come to Islamize the country. Why don’t you ask the Maronite Patriarch (Nasrallah Butros Sfeir) for his opinion? Can you believe that I feel sad when I read about the rise in emigration levels, especially among Christians? More than this – the absence of Maronites in Lebanon robs it of its distinguishing features, and perhaps of the justifications for its existence. I mean what I’m saying. This doesn’t do away with my feelings toward some Maronite politicians who don’t know the importance of the role of their sect and its importance in Lebanon’s role in the region and the world. I have no problem with keeping the presidency for a Maronite, if that reassures them. I have no problem with delaying the abolition of political sectarianism for decades, because I’ve realized through experience that none of the sects is ready to discuss without sectarian considerations.”
Hariri dreamed that after rebuilding Beirut, he would rebuild the Lebanese formula, based on the Taif Accord. Most likely he was waiting for another president in Baabda, to continue the process of rebuilding. He didn’t expect that he would be on an assassination list, because “this is a big decision, one that is dangerous and costly.”

Al-Hayat: How are you, Prime Minister?
PM Hariri: Excellent.

Al-Hayat: Can you explain?
PM Hariri: (Laughing) Why are you surprised that I’m excellent? Can’t a person be comfortable?

Al-Hayat: No, but I believe that being out of office not enjoyable for a politician with the weight of Rafik Hariri.
PM Hariri: Not enjoyable for Rafik Hariri or the country?

Al-Hayat: I have questions, not answers.
PM Hariri: If you look at me, don’t you feel that I’m comfortable?

Al-Hayat: I think that you’re confident.
PM Hariri: The problem of my rivals is that they’re afraid of the people and resorting to them. I accept what the ballot boxes say.

Al-Hayat: What will they say?
PM Hariri: I think people will vote in the country’s interest.

Al-Hayat: You seem sure about the results of the Beirut election battle.

PM Hariri: Why are you limiting it to Beirut? There are elections throughout the country, and I’m involved in all regions.

Al-Hayat: Do you mean you will (contest races) in all parts of Lebanon?
PM Hariri: Not in this way. Certain regions have special characteristics, which I respect. However, we have friends, or allies. There are people with which we have things in common.

Al-Hayat: Can I say that you will be the leader of the opposition in the elections?
PM Hariri: (Laughs) You know that the “opposition” is made up of several different “oppositions.” They won’t accept me among the loyalists.

Al-Hayat: Who’s they?
PM Hariri: You know them.

Al-Hayat: Will you try to repeat the experience of 2000, i.e. imposing yourself once again as prime minister?
PM Hariri: As long as this is not being published, except at the suitable moment, I’ll speak frankly. I won’t be prime minister during the mandate of (President Emile) Lahoud.

Al-Hayat: Is this certain, and regardless of the election results?
PM Hariri: This is final, and there’s no going back. I’ll say it more clearly: not in Lahoud’s mandate or anyone whose presidency resembles his.

Al-Hayat: Like who, for example?
PM Hariri: Anyone who arrives (in office) in the same way, with the same goal, and the same considerations.

Al-Hayat: This means that you won’t be prime minister.
PM Hariri: I don’t know if your conclusion is accurate, and for how long a period of time.

Al-Hayat: Should I understand that shortening Lahoud’s mandate is possible if the opposition takes a majority of seats in Parliament?
PM Hariri: I don’t know. President Lahoud’s domestic problem is just part of his problem.

Al-Hayat: Are you referring to UN Security Council Resolution 1559?
PM Hariri: That resolution and other things. If you stay the same in a changing world, you’re making a mistake.

The Resolution and the Fingerprints

Al-Hayat: They talk about your fingerprints being on Resolution 1559.
PM Hariri: There are people who want me to make me responsible for the results of mistakes that they’ve made. I ask you, can a politician in the world, from a small country, get the Security Council and great powers involved in his country, especially regarding a resolution of this kind? Even the great powers cannot pass a resolution like this if without a series of conditions, facts, mistakes, and meetings of interests.

Al-Hayat: It’s said that President Jacques Chirac played a big role.
PM Hariri: President Chirac and I have an old, deep friendship, and I’ve always benefited from this in order to bring political or material support for Lebanon; I’ve also used this friendship to assist Syria, and Syrian officials know this. I benefited from the relationship with President Chirac to support the Taif Accrod, and the idea of reconstruction, and the right of the resistance in south Lebanon. I’ve done more than this. I’ve sought to see a French position that understands Lebanon’s special conditions, including the presence of Syrian forces on its territory. I took part in improving the relationship between Paris and Damascus. However, everything I’ve done in this regard has been lost, due to mistakes. The story of how France and the US have come to meet, or agree, about the situation in Lebanon, after their dispute over Iraq, is a long one, and involves several issues.

Al-Hayat: What did you request in return for agreeing to (Lahoud’s) extension in office?
PM Hariri: Nothing, just to (step down as prime minister).

Al-Hayat: And why did you bid farewell to Lebanese with that tragic-sounding statement the day you left office?
PM Hariri: For the reason that I disclosed to you, meaning my decision that I would not be prime minister during the presidency of Lahoud or anyone like him. My decision worried me, because they can force me out of office but they can’t move the country one step forward; they can’t even stop the deterioration.

Al-Hayat: This means that you’ve tied the country to yourself.
PM Hariri: No, this means that they don’t have a program. Their only program is domination, and their only policy is hindering everything that Hariri does.

Al-Hayat: Who do you mean by “they”?
PM Hariri: President Lahoud and those who support him.

Al-Hayat: And what if you lose the elections?
PM Hariri: If I lose in free elections, I’ll bow to the will of the people. Let’s put modesty aside for a moment. I can win in the most difficult district in Beirut. I can win in other districts. Maybe your residing abroad prevents you from meeting with people outside Beirut. Do you think that I’m weak in Tripoli, and the north, or the Western Bekaa, or Iqlim al-Kharroub, or elsewhere?

Al-Hayat: Why won’t you return as prime minister?
PM Hariri: I have sacrificed a lot, and compromised a lot. I did this for the sake of the country, not Rafik Hariri. In many circumstances, my interest as a politician would mean leaving office. Being in office, facing this level of obstruction, eats away at a politician’s popularity. Nonetheless, I would continue because I felt that destroying everything that we had built would not be a source of anxiety for them. I acted like a responsible politician, facing his conscience, the voters and the people, and as a believer, responsible before the Lord. This time, it’s a matter of dignity. If the price is my not being prime minister (…) and if the price is a smaller parliamentary bloc (…) from now on, there won’t be any solutions at the expense of my dignity.

Al-Hayat: Let’s go back to Resolution 1559.
PM Hariri: The resolution is related to big developments, which began with the attacks of 11 September, through the war in Iraq, the position on this war, confronting the Americans there, up to the Palestinian issue, and then what is taking place in Lebanon and how influence in Lebanon could be used in other issues. This resolution could have been avoided or delayed at the last minute. Did the decision to extend Lahoud’s mandate deserve such a price?

The Role of “Reports”

Al-Hayat: Did you support the presidency of someone else, from among Damascus’ friends?
PM Hariri: All of the names that were being discussed fell into this category. It would have been impossible to see a president hostile to Syria, or one who was a political enemy or rival of Syria. A president of this kind cannot rule. He can’t even be elected in the first place.

Al-Hayat: So, why did the extension take place?
PM Hariri: I don’t understand it. Reports played a decisive role.

Al-Hayat: Where did these reports come from?
PM Hariri: They were Lebanese, and Syrian reports. Imagine that one of them, as someone told me, claimed that I was preparing for a coup against Syria via the elections, and that I gave President Jacques Chirac the name of MP Nassib Lahoud at the summit at the Black Sea with President (Vladimir) Putin and Chancellor (Gerhard) Schroeder. (Laughs) Nassib Lahoud is a respected individual, there’s no doubt about that. I believe that if he became president he would think about another person as prime minister. It’s a simple issue. Ask Nassib Lahoud himself.

Al-Hayat: Do you believe that the great western powers have take a decision to change the regime in Syria?
PM Hariri: I don’t think that there’s a decision of this kind. Arriving at such a decision depends on the behavior of the Syrian authorities in the coming phase, and the way that they deal with this resolution. As Lebanese, we have no interest in disturbing the stability of Syria, or bringing down the regime there. We have an interest in a stable and prosperous Syria, a Syria that sees a Lebanon that is stable and prosperous as being in the interest of both countries.

Lahoud and the Shadows

Al-Hayat: Why can’t you reach an understanding with President Lahoud?
PM Hariri: Because Lahoud’s program, from the beginning, was directed at the program based on which I became prime minister. The core of this project involved security; it was based on complete conformity, and left no room for Lebanese partnership, even if modest, with Syria in administering Lebanon.

Al-Hayat: Was it because of your fear of these feelings that you worked to extend the presidency of Elias Hrawi in 1995?
PM Hariri: Yes.

Al-Hayat: You supported the extension of a president who suited you and opposed the extension of one who didn’t?
PM Hariri: I opposed extension because it didn’t suit the country. Despite my convictions, I didn’t want a clash with Syria, and I didn’t want to be a reason for igniting a crisis whose limits are unknown.

Al-Hayat: Was it impossible to arrive at a permanent understanding with Lahoud during the marathon meetings that used to take place between you two?
PM Hariri: Actually, these meetings were never just him and me. There was always a shadow, or shadows, present in our sessions.

Al-Hayat: Shadows of whom?
PM Hariri: Jamil Sayyed, Rustom Ghazaleh, or others.

Al-Hayat: It’s said that your last meeting with President Lahoud was extremely pleasant.
PM Hariri: That’s true. He told me that I was a patriot and that each of us was serving the country in his own fashion. He was frank with me. I told him that my leaving the prime minister’s office did not mean I would obstruct things. I said that my relationship with the authorities would be ruled by my relationship with him, and I hoped that there would be no return to the practices that targeted me at the beginning of his term. He became agitated and said that he would personally oppose any targeting or harassment. I also informed him that I would be running in the elections and that I had no problem in Beirut, whatever the shape of the districts.

Al-Hayat: Has the door between you and Damascus been closed permanently?
PM Hariri: I haven’t closed the door. I have no demands. I’m not in an official position, one that would require coordination.

Al-Hayat: Are you headed for testing Syria’s strength via the elections?
PM Hariri: I don’t want such a test, and I’m not searching for it; it would not help the country. I agreed to the extension so that I wouldn’t give such an impression.

Al-Hayat: There are those who have compared your situation at the time to that of Ayatollah Khomeini, when he discussed the drinking from the poison cup after agreeing to a cease-fire with Iraq.
PM Hariri: Have I tasted the poison, or has the country?

Al-Hayat: Why don’t you make it easy for someone else to arrive (in office)?
PM Hariri: I was open to any other name. It was no secret that the decision to extend (Lahoud’s mandate) was not a popular one in Lebanon, but it was taken. I didn’t want to be a reason for a big crisis in the country. I restrained myself, and overcame my personal feelings. I knew that Syria had the last word in this matter, for many reasons, but I expected that the feelings of Lebanese would be respected. I didn’t ask for Hariri to be a partner. I hoped that Lebanon’s right to be a partner in something Lebanese would be respected.

Al-Hayat: What is painful to you about this experience?
PM Hariri: It pains me to see the existence of a team, gathering civilian, security, political and party officials, who live only to obstruct the program to promote the country. They aren’t concerned by a plan to build the state, or reconstruction, or prosperity, or people’s daily bread. Their actual interest lies in seeing the country remain sick, and in the hands of the (security) agencies. What they’ve done in the judiciary and elsewhere is no simple matter.

Al-Hayat: Do you wish that you were born in another country?
PM Hariri: Why?

Al-Hayat: Because the make-up of Lebanon puts limits on political leaders. The Syrian military presence sets down addition limits. In other countries, the leader rules and he carries out his will.
PM Hariri: You want the truth? It pains me that many Lebanese don’t know the importance of Lebanon. Our country is important, provided that we deal with national and political affairs in a spirit of responsibility.
How many people can you ask about what they’ve done for the country, and who can list their accomplishments? The future won’t be built by statements and showing off, and repeating the boring stuff about being keen on seeing (state) institutions.

The Relationship with Damascus

Al-Hayat: What is the core of the problem with Syria?
PM Hariri: In the 1970s, a situation in Lebanon arose in which a regional and international belief formed, stating that the war in Lebanon could not be ended without Syrian military intervention. Which was correct. The factors were interconnected; Lebanese, Palestinian, Israeli and international elements were intertwined. After the Syrians entered, the region saw huge events – the Israeli-Egyptian peace, the Israeli invasion of Lebanon, and we can’t forget the Iranian Revolution and the Iraq-Iran War. Without going into details, there arose in Damascus a conviction that Syria’s regional role had become linked to its presence in Lebanon, and this presence was a first line of defense of this role, and the regime.
The Taif Accord involved a double objective: conducting a settlement among Lebanese that would allow for the rise of the Lebanese State, and concluding a strategic partnership with Syria that would reassure it and lead it to drop its management of Lebanon. Big regional developments then took place, such as the (Iraqi) invasion of Kuwait, and the Syrian leadership considered that its former tasking (to run Lebanon) had been renewed, and in an open-ended way.
Sometimes, countries are afflicted by the same things that afflict individuals: becoming addicted. Syria became addicted to running Lebanon. We should make an observation here, namely that Syria under Hafez al-Assad continued to retain Lebanon, but it usually observed the balances that needed to be preserved among sects, or within the sects. In the 1990s, there was a trend toward destroying these balances, and this was translated on the ground in Emile Lahoud’s becoming president in 1998, and the trend became deeper.
Based on my acknowledgement, and appreciation of the role that Syria played in ending the war, I hoped that it would take the opportunity of the Taif Accord to get out of the details of Lebanese daily matters, and content itself with the strategic relations that reassured it in the fields of security, and the position on the Arab-Israeli conflict. Unfortunately, the program that was prepared for Lahoud and was implemented after he became president supported exiting Taif, and didn’t take into consideration internal balance, or sensitivities, and it didn’t take note of changes that had taken place in the world.

Al-Hayat: Was your relationship with Abdel-Halim Khaddam, the former Syrian Vice president, one of the reasons why your relationship with the rulers in Damascus declined?
PM Hariri: This relationship began with a request from President Hafez al-Assad and part of it turned into a personal relationship. After President Bashar al-Assad took over, we talked about this topic, and he didn’t oppose my seeing Abu Jamal (Khaddam) during my visits to Damascus. Of course, I knew that the Lebanese “file” had gone to others, and my relationship with him was a personal one. I knew who was making decision. I didn’t make a mistake in reading these things.

Al-Hayat: Did he oppose Lahoud’s extension?
PM Hariri: He was aware of the dangers.

Al-Hayat: Was he among those who advised you, at the beginning of Lahoud’s term, to leave the prime minister’s position and let the president lose momentum, then return after the elections.
PM Hariri: These topics require a detailed, precise discussion, which I will leave for the future.

Al-Hayat: Is it true that ministers in your various governments would write reports and relay the secrets of Cabinet sessions, and even your personal meetings with them?
PM Hariri: Yes, written reports and oral ones. (Laughs) There were those whose handwriting improved, they wrote so much. Ministers, MPs, and security people.
In fact, there were always different points of view. The first said “keep Hariri out of power, but fear the repercussions.” The second said that “keep Hariri as a partner in government, but wear him down by setting traps in the Cabinet, Parliament, parties, and unions.” Should I tell you that had they known from the beginning that rebuilding Beirut would return Lebanon to the regional and international arena, they wouldn’t have agreed to it? The indicators of success prompted them to prepare a counter-project, which was Lahoud’s project.

Al-Hayat: Who engineered this project?
PM Hariri: The biggest role went to Brigadier General Jamil Sayyed. Of course, Sayyed was part of the group. Imagine, Lahoud himself couldn’t get rid of the Director of Sûreté Général.

Al-Hayat: But in the 2000 elections, you succeeded in hitting at Lahoud’s presidency and you returned to power on a white horse. There are those who say that Brigadier General Ghazi Kenaan (the former head of Syrian intelligence in Lebanon) and Jamil Sayyed helped you. Was there a connection to internal Syrian considerations?
PM Hariri: I was never once part of an internal Syrian calculation. I always rejected even talking about such a topic. The relations I established with Syrian officials in the 1980s and 1990s were done with the knowledge of President Hafez al-Assad. These relations weren’t mysterious or secret. This holds true regarding my relations with Abdel-Halim Khaddam, Hikmat Shehabi, and Ghazi Kenaan, and others.

Al-Hayat: But these relations weren’t stable in recent years.
PM Hariri: I did everything that I could. Perhaps it’s connected to the considerations of others, and perhaps chemistry played a role.

Al-Hayat: What will be your official capacity after the parliamentary elections.
PM Hariri: Head of a parliamentary bloc. Why don’t you believe it?

Al-Hayat: Because I feel that you renovated the Government Serail in order to reside there.
PM Hariri: I repeat, I will not be prime minister with Emile Lahoud, or anyone like him.

Al-Hayat: Was the assassination attempt against Marwan Hamade (in October 2004) a message?
PM Hariri: It was an ugly crime, before being a message.

Al-Hayat: Are you afraid for your life?
PM Hariri: First of all, I’m a believer. Second, I don’t have a spot of blood on my hands. Third, my conscience is clear. Fourth, I believe that I have good security measures. Fifth, I have the conviction that any decision to assassinate me is improbable; this is a big decision, one that is dangerous and costly, and no sane person would take it. Therefore, I don’t think there will be an attempt to assassinate me physically. As for attempts to assassinate me politically, they haven’t stopped, and won’t stop. They are aimed at keeping the country sick, forever. No one has an interest in killing a sick person, and they reject curing him.

Al-Hayat: Can’t you reach a minimum level of understanding with President Lahoud?
PM Hariri: He is unable to reach an understanding with me. Put simply, let me tell you that I’ve served the resistance in south Lebanon many times over what Lahoud has done for it. And served Syria many times over compared to Lahoud. However, I serve Syria from my position as a Lebanese, and Arab, and what I believe serves the interest of Lebanon and Syria over the long run.

The Hijacked Plane

Al-Hayat: There are those who say that you’ve made many compromises.
PM Hariri: That’s true. I’ve made many compromises here in Lebanon, because I believe that relations among the sects and political forces in Lebanon should be “natural” ones, even if this means making compromises, whether both sides make them or only one. This style isn’t comforting for some people. They don’t want me to have a natural, or strong relationship with the Christians. The same with the Shiites.
I’ve also made compromises regarding relations with Syria. I used to dream that a time would come in which Lebanese and Syrian stability, and Lebanese and Syrian prosperity, would be strengthened and see the rise of natural relations between the two countries, linked by many ties. A relationship in which a Lebanese-made decision would not be seen as a project to threaten ties with Syria, or a source of anxiety for Syria.

Al-Hayat: Going back to Resolution 1559 – did you have a role in “maturing” the conditions for its passing?
PM Hariri: No. It could have been avoided.

Al-Hayat: Did you have prior knowledge about it?
PM Hariri: No, but it was no secret that Lebanon was the topic of discussion between Paris and Washington. I believe that Syrian diplomacy made a mistake when it considered that Lebanon was not important, that it would be enough to show flexibility in Iraq, so that the situation in Lebanon could remain the same. The option of extending (Lahoud’s mandate) was considered a confrontational stance.

Al-Hayat: What do you expect in the coming period?
PM Hariri: It will be a period that requires patience and wisdom by all. A difficult phase. Let me sum up the issue of compromises in a comparison, although I don’t know how accurate this is. If you’re facing a hijacked civilian plane and you can’t free the hostages by force, what do you do? My answer is the first priority is the safety and rescue of the passengers. Merely saving Beirut and Lebanon will be a punishment for the kidnappers.
On the eve of General Emile Lahoud’s election as President of the Republic on 15 October 1998, I went to meet Prime Minister Rafik Hariri at the Grand Serail. One of the television stations was replaying the election session and PM Hariri was following the scenes as if searching the pictures for MPs who had been forced to support “the new president” like he had. He appeared to me as if trying to read, via the pictures, the meaning of Lahoud’s arrival, in terms of Lebanon and Syria. Hariri knew that Syria was the number one and most important voter when it came to the Lebanese presidency; however, he had dreamed of being its Lebanese partner in the eventual selection of the president. He was unable to do this, and the presidency went to the person who he had hoped to keep distant.
PM Hariri was a statesman and would demand that his mind work to tame his feelings. I tried to provoke him, saying, “Your Excellency, how long do they need to dispense with your services?” He smiled and raised two fingers. I asked if they needed two years, and he answered, “They need two presidential terms, if they are concerned with the interest of the country. My interest is in leaving, and the country’s interest is in my staying. I’ve decided to put the country’s interest first.
Hariri excused himself from forming the first government in the Lahoud era, after a dispute about the delegation of MPs’ votes, which left Lahoud with the freedom to name the prime minister-designate. In fact, some of his friends advised him to leave office, and one of them was then-Syrian Vice President Abdel-Halim Khaddam. Khaddam told him that Lahoud was beginning his mandate in a Buick that was fresh from the dealer, while “you’re driving an Opel that has been ground down by exercising power.” Khaddam suggested that Hariri let Lahoud use up some of the power of his car, and then they would see. This is what happened when Hariri returned to power in 2000 after a clear election victory, a victory that did not anger some Syrian parties that had not been enthusiastic about Lahoud in the first place.
In the summer of 1999, I went to see Hariri in Sardinia. He appeared busy with Beirut, instead of the magic of the place where he had anchored his yacht. During the discussion, which lasted almost all day, Hariri would take advantage of the breaks to make telephone calls, via his advisors and friends, to journalists, asking about conditions in the country and any new developments.

PART II

Late Lebanese PM visiting contruction sites (90’s).

Al-Hayat: When did your wealth reach $1 billion?
PM Hariri: That’s a pretty big question.

Al-Hayat: When did your wealth reach $100 million?
PM Hariri: When I was 33. That was the boom time, and work was falling down like rain.

Al-Hayat: In 1982 you had become a millionaire?
I PM Hariri: n 1982 or 1983.

Al-Hayat: Forbes estimated your wealth at $4 billion; is this close to the truth?
PM Hariri: The truth is that I don’t know precisely. Estimating wealth has to do with prices of shares, and land, and companies, and this differs. Praise be to God, I say.

Al-Hayat: Is that figure close?
PM Hariri: Not far away. Our work is ongoing.

Al-Hayat: Four years ago, you told me that you had 25,000 employees.
PM Hariri: Yes, that’s still the case.

Al-Hayat: Has your work declined?
PM Hariri: No, It’s increased. In 1998, the turnover in Saudi Arabia was at the highest level it’s ever been, even when I was there – $2.2 billion.

Al-Hayat: Are you involved in maintenance?
PM Hariri: Maintenance of all the projects that we execute. We perform maintenance on airports and other facilities.

Al-Hayat: You business in Saudi Arabia is being run by your son, Saad?
PM Hariri: Yes, and there’s a board of directors.

Al-Hayat: What else can you say about your wealth?
PM Hariri: Once again, I can confirm that I’m not obsessed with entering the kind of clubs they talk about in the media, like the richest 500 people in the world, or richest 100 in the world. I don’t care about that.

Al-Hayat: What things do you still want? You’re a billionaire and you’ve become a prime minister. What do you want?
PM Hariri: Nothing, I don’t want anything. This is why no one can blackmail me with al-Assad.

Al-Hayat: You have a strong relationship with King Fahd bin Abdel-Aziz (of Saudi Arabia). With whom do you also have a strong relationship in the Arab world?
PM Hariri: With President Hafez al-Assad.

Al-Hayat: When did you meet him for the first time?
PM Hariri: At the end of 1982, or beginning of 1983, as I remember. I was with Prince Bandar bin Sultan and the objective was a cease-fire in Lebanon. The relationship continued. I don’t think that anyone outside Syria had this many meetings with President al-Assad and spent this much time with him. The relationship has continued for 17 years and I’ve met him about 50 times.

Al-Hayat: What distinguishes President al-Assad?
His strategic mind; at the same time, he’s concerned with the details. Politicians usually have one of these two traits, but President al-Assad.
PM Hariri: combines the two. He’s strategic, and he’s concerned with the smallest details. This is in addition to characteristics such as loyalty, and taking the long-term view of things. President al-Asad has given Syria status in the world. Observe now that all eyes are turning to Syria regarding peace; there can be no hope of peace without (Syria).

Al-Hayat: When did Damascus discuss the prime minister’s post with you?
PM Hariri: In 1992.

Al-Hayat: Really?
PM Hariri: As I told you before, it wasn’t discussed with me before that. Perhaps with others.

Al-Hayat: They say that President Elias Hrawi proposed your name right after he was elected.
PM Hariri: That’s correct.

Al-Hayat: And he was told, “It’s too early.”
PM Hariri: Yes, too early.

Al-Hayat: Why did it become suitable in 1992 after being “too early” just shortly before that?
PM Hariri: I think that conditions changed, after the parliamentary elections in Lebanon. A new phase, a new policy course. A new speaker of Parliament.

Al-Hayat: Before being named, you met with President al-Assad. What did you reach an understanding about?
PM Hariri: About the alliance between Lebanon and Syria. I think that from our side, we implemented what was agreed, and they did too. President al-Assad supported the relationship between Syria and Lebanon and I did everything while prime minister to strengthen this relationship. I believe the relationship moved from one situation to another. No doubt President Elias Hrawi played a fundamental role, and Speaker (Nabih) Berry as well. In Lebanon, there isn’t a single “top leader.” Each person does what he can, from his position (in government).

Al-Hayat: During this session, did you try to receive a “wider” authorization to form a Cabinet?
PM Hariri: President al-Assad is a person who has a special attractiveness. I didn’t discuss names of ministers with President al-Assad.

Al-Hayat: Did Saudi Arabia play a direct role in your becoming prime minister?
PM Hariri: No.

Al-Hayat: It’s said that you asked King Fahd bin Abdel-Aziz and he hesitated in supporting you.
PM Hariri: I asked King Fahd, and he told me, “May God assist you; we are concerned with the interest of Lebanon.” King Fahd feared for me, regarding security incidents.

Al-Hayat: Have you ever faced an assassination attempt?
PM Hariri: No.

Al-Hayat: Have you received information about plans to assassinate you?
PM Hariri: There have always been reports.

Al-Hayat: Who’s responsible for your security?
PM Hariri: The Internal Security Forces (Lebanon’s police).

Al-Hayat: Have mafias targeted you, for example?
PM Hariri: There’s been a lot of talk about that. I don’t allow myself to be affected by these reports. At first, I was more careful, and so were those who were responsible for my security. I’m a believer, and I am not obsessed about assassination.

Al-Hayat: Did your parents approve your getting involved in politics?
PM Hariri: No, they were always against it.

Al-Hayat: Why?
PM Hariri: First of all, because I’m not from a “political family,” meaning no tradition of this type. My father always used to say, “Politics has no religion.” He would tell me, “God has blessed you and you want to help the world, help it. If you want to get involved in politics to help your country, there’s another way, besides politics.”

Al-Hayat: Is fear about your fortune one of the reasons?
PM Hariri: No, I they didn’t have this problem.

Al-Hayat:And your mother?
PM Hariri: She had the same position, that one could help without getting involved in politics. No one in our house wanted me to get into politics. My wife didn’t support it. I got my sister involved in politics.

Al-Hayat: Do you want me to believe that your wife was happy when you left office?
PM Hariri: They threw me a party, it was like a big holiday.

Al-Hayat: Usually a woman would want her husband in politics; perhaps your wife thinks that you will remain in the spotlight.
PM Hariri: If you want to make sure, ask her. She’s now afraid that I’ll return to office.

Al-Hayat: When did your relationship with President Elias Hrawi begin?
PM Hariri: In 1982.

Al-Hayat: You met each other at an initiative by Johnny Abdo. You met at Hrawi’s house, and the bed broke under you.
PM Hariri: That’s correct.

Al-Hayat: You played a role in Hrawi’s becoming president?
PM Hariri: Yes.

I Al-Hayat: It’s said that you didn’t support the presidency of Rene Mouawad.
PM Hariri: That’s not true.

Al-Hayat: What do you remember regarding the presidency, post-Taif?
PM Hariri: Even before Taif, there was an understanding between Syria and Saudi Arabia over Rene Mouawad.

Al-Hayat: Who helped set up this understanding?
PM Hariri: Many people helped, and his personality was also a helping factor. He was known by all sides.

Al-Hayat: When did Syria support Mouawad?
PM Hariri: Before Taif. It wasn’t final, but the talk was there. After Taif, the idea was translated into reality.

Al-Hayat: What’s the story of your secret trip to Syria after Taif and your meeting with President al-Assad?
PM Hariri: MPs from Lebanon came to Paris. One day, it was said that Mouawad was absent. That day, he was in Syria. He went with my plane and met President al-Assad, then the election took place.

Al-Hayat: Your first candidate was Elias Hrawi?
PM Hariri: I knew him more, and knew that he was an aggressive person, in a good way, taking the initiative. I thought the time needed such characteristics, and later on I was proven right.

Al-Hayat: Did Mouawad discuss with you giving a certain post?
PM Hariri: No.

Al-Hayat: What happened after Mouawad’s assassination?
PM Hariri: I visited his family in the house in Paris, and was asked what should be done. I said, elections. We telephoned MPs who were in Paris.

Al-Hayat: When Hrawi’s name was proposed, what other names were proposed?
PM Hariri: There was George Saade, God rest his soul.

Al-Hayat: Was Jean Obeid mentioned? Did he meet with al-Assad?
PM Hariri: There was a meeting between him and Abdel-Halim Khaddam and Hikmat Shehabi. This happened after Mouawad’s martyrdom.

Al-Hayat: They say that the presidency was offered to Pierre Helou.
PM Hariri: There was talk of this, but I’m not certain about it. It’s said that Speaker Hussein Husseini relayed the offer, but that Helou answered that the issue of Michel Aoun would only be solved by force, and that he (Helou) wasn’t ready for this.

Al-Hayat: And Jean Obeid?
PM Hariri: He said that President Franjieh’s name was on the table, and that he couldn’t come before Franjieh; this was a position of loyalty to Franjieh.

Al-Hayat: So you tipped the balance toward Hrawi with Syria?
PM Hariri: I was among those who worked with Syria, and Saudi Arabia as well.

Al-Hayat: What did the Americans want?
PM Hariri: The election of a president.

Al-Hayat: Did Hrawi meet al-Assad prior to the election, like Mouawad did?
PM Hariri: I think something like that happened.

From the First Day

Al-Hayat: After his election, did Hrawi tell you that he would propose you as prime minister?
PM Hariri: Yes, he had this in mind from the first day.

Al-Hayat: You had differences with him after you became prime minister.
PM Hariri: We differed a lot, and we agreed a lot. Let me tell you something. Each of us had a personal weakness regarding the other. Even when we were in disagreement, and he was skilled in maneuvering, I couldn’t hate him, and he couldn’t hate me. The truth is that I have a weak point. I like funny people, and President Hrawi, in addition to his other traits, is funny. I don’t like stuffy people, and I’m not a hateful person. For example, I like Nabih Berry, despite all of the differences. I would sometimes get angry at his maneuverings, and stop talking to him, then discover that I had become madder than he was. In my like, I’ve been unable to build a strong relationship with someone who’s too serious, or obnoxious, no matter what my financial or political interest might be. That’s my nature. Perhaps we can meet, but I feel like I’m being forced to. Sometimes I would get hurt by a person who is funny, and even so, I wouldn’t be able to stop myself from liking this person.

Al-Hayat: Let’s talk about some funny things regarding President Hrawi.
PM Hariri: Oh my. He’s a “professor” when it comes to making jokes and setting people up. And when you catch him setting up a gag on someone, he laughs.

Al-Hayat: Did funny things happen during Cabinet meetings?
PM Hariri: All the time. The story of the civil marriage issue, isn’t that a funny one? He passed out the text to ministers, saying it was “for information,” then carried it out behind my back, and put it to a vote.

Al-Hayat: And there were periods of anger?
PM Hariri: Always. At high, medium, and low levels, although we always continued to like each other.

Al-Hayat: Did you retain the personal relationship with President Hrawi after he left Baabda Palace?
PM Hariri: Yes.

Al-Hayat: Do women play a role in poisoning relationships?
PM Hariri: Yes, they play a role in poisoning them, and repairing them.

Al-Hayat: Is your wife like this?
PM Hariri: Nazek doesn’t get involved.

Al-Hayat: Doesn’t she have sensitivities about certain politicians?
PM Hariri: No.

Al-Hayat: And Mona Hrawi, the wife of President Hrawi?
PM Hariri: I admire her, but she has a different kind of personality.

Al-Hayat: What did President Hrawi say about your trips outside the country?
PM Hariri: Nothing. He’d take it with a joke. After a trip abroad, he would tell me, “Of course, you’re going to tell me that they said hello to me, and that they miss me.”

Al-Hayat: Why didn’t he go?
PM Hariri: He didn’t like to.

Al-Hayat: Did you suggest it to him?
PM Hariri: I would suggest that he go with his entourage. He didn’t like this. There are many criticisms of his presidency, but he was a democrat, and stood up for the regime. He was angry about some of the provisions of the Constitution, but he did not violate them. He tried to amend them through democratic means. This is a point in his favor. I didn’t like some of the provisions, but I didn’t violate them.

Al-Hayat: In the disputes between you, you would resort to Syria for “arbitration.” Couldn’t the two of you sit in Baabda Palace (and resolve things)?
PM Hariri: We did sit in Baabda, and we didn’t resort to Syria for everything. We were all subject to concentrated campaigns (of criticism). There were many people who were against me.

Al-Hayat: Is it true that before the formation of your first Cabinet, you thought about forming one like the one formed at the beginning of Lahoud’s presidency?
PM Hariri: Yes. I wanted the government to be like this: I wanted a Cabinet with 30 ministers, and I still support this. Experience proved this point. Politics in Lebanon is a big deal, and you have to give some posts to politicians, while bringing in technocrats to work. A government of veteran politicians or one of passive technocrats won’t help, and won’t work.

Al-Hayat: In the first Cabinet, what did you propose?
PM Hariri: I wanted all governments that I formed to retain a general, nationalist line; however, this should be represented by people with a good reputation, with no black mark against them. We didn’t succeed at this, for several reasons. This is something that I’m blamed for. What happened in Ireland? Attempts to let the fighters participate in power, then the logic of the State would prevail. Ending the war in Lebanon, or ending the militias, saw two attempts. There’s the method that Michel Aoun used. He proposed ending the Lebanese Forces by force. He used artillery, and what was the result? The eastern areas were destroyed, so was the army, and the militia remained. Elias Hrawi proposed something different. He told the militias that the State was open for all. Turn over your weapons to the State, and participate. This began in 1990, and I don’t want to take credit; it began before I became prime minister. Let me ask you, where are the militias today? They melted away. The experience of Michel Aoun was destructive, regardless of the objectives. Hrawi ended the civil war in another way. Now, the State is stronger.

Al-Hayat: Why did you support an extension of Hrawi’s mandate (in 1995)?
PM Hariri: The regional situation required keeping things the way they were. There was consultation with all parties, inside and outside the country, and we arrived at an agreement. Hrawi’s mandate was extended. This met with fierce opposition by various forces, and it continued until the end of his term.

Al-Hayat: After Hrawi’s term was extended, was he a weak president?
PM Hariri: I think that all of us could have done better than we did during the extended mandate. Perhaps it would have been better for President Hrawi to leave after completing his 6 years. But this is what happened, and we can’t go back in time.

Al-Hayat: Is it true you proposed an extension to prevent General Lahoud from becoming president?
PM Hariri: No, if extension hadn’t happened, another person would have become president.

Al-Hayat: Did you propose names at the time?
PM Hariri: There were always names on the table, including Jean Obeid.

Al-Hayat: Why Jean Obeid?
PM Hariri: Because he’s trusted.

Al-Hayat: When did you meet Jacques Chirac?
PM Hariri: Twenty years ago. He was the mayor of Paris and I was there. A friendship arose, based on trust, and became a family relationship.

Al-Hayat: It seems like you like acquire beautiful homes. Where do you own houses?
PM Hariri: Yes. I have homes in Marbella, and Palma, Cannes, Monte Carlo, San Maxim, in and around Paris, and New York, Washington, Switzerland, Riyadh, Jeddah, Amman, Damascus, and in Lebanon, in Beirut, Sidon and Cannes.

Al-Hayat: Which one do you like the most?
PM Hariri: All of them. The Riyadh home has a special meaning for me. I lived there for a long time, and my children were born there.

Al-Hayat: Who’s responsible for maintaining these houses?
PM Hariri: The maintenance department of our company.

Al-Hayat: How much do you spend a month? Five million dollars?
PM Hariri: As personal expenditures, no. Most of my expenditure is on social assistance.

Al-Hayat: How much do you spend annually?
PM Hariri: More than $150 million, between personal expenditure and assistance.

Al-Hayat: The personal part is around $30 million a year?
PM Hariri: Perhaps.

Al-Hayat: You own two yachts. What are their names?
PM Hariri: Nara, and Narana.

Al-Hayat: And how many planes?
PM Hariri: Four planes. Two are Boeing 727s, one is a G3, and the fourth hasn’t arrived yet.

Al-Hayat: When did you buy your first plane?
PM Hariri: I think in 1978 or 1979, it was a Sapper Liner.

Al-Hayat: That year, you gave a plane as a gift to Prime Minister Salim Hoss.
PM Hariri: Yes, it is at the disposal of the Lebanese State.

Al-Hayat: When did you buy your yacht Nara?
PM Hariri: In 1982. The second one is new.

Al-Hayat: You had meetings with Samir Geagea, the former leader of the banned Lebanese Forces, inside and outside Lebanon, didn’t you?
PM Hariri: During the war and at its end, I met with everyone.

Al-Hayat: When did the relationship with Walid Jumblatt begin?
PM Hariri: At the end of 1982. Most of these relationships began after the (1982) Israeli invasion of Lebanon. In fact, the political ties with most groups began after 1982. Before that, I wasn’t involved in the details of politics.

Al-Hayat: Your relationship with Walid Jumblatt is either hot or cold, isn’t it?
PM Hariri: I’ve known Walid since 1982, and my relationship with him became firm after that date. It never became a cold relationship. The hot part might fade, but it never got to the point of cold.

Has the current opposition (movement) united you?
PM Hariri: No, it was before that. Before the presidential election he visited me in Faqra, to have dinner. We spoke, didn’t agree, and he left without having dinner. He was strongly opposed to General Lahoud’s becoming president. He stated his opinion frankly.

With Lahoud

I Al-Hayat: s Syrian intervention what made you support General Lahoud’s becoming president?
PM Hariri: That’s one element, in addition to the general climate. A smart marketing campaign was organized to guarantee General Lahoud’s election, and it was clear that if he didn’t become president, there would be frustration in the country. There was a wide-scale attack against the political class in Lebanon, which made it easy to attack this class, because of the wars between its various sides. So, Lahoud’s presidency became a demand (by the public), which is what the campaign was aimed at.

Al-Hayat: With General Lahoud, what did you agree about before his election?
PM Hariri: Everything.

Al-Hayat: The formation of the first Cabinet?
PM Hariri: There was nothing we didn’t discuss, and the understanding between us was a complete one.

Entering, and Leaving Government

Al-Hayat: Let’s talk about two important days. The first was when you were tasked to form your first government, and the second was when you left the Presidential Palace, during another president’s term, excusing yourself from forming a Cabinet. What do you remember about the first occasion?
PM Hariri: On the first occasion, there was a lot of caution, over every word. All of my remarks were written. In my address, I said that the reconstruction process will have begun by spring. The politicians picked up on this, and called it “springtime promises.” I meant that we would need 10 years. They changed this, and made it as if I had said everything would be completed by spring. Our politicians are clever. Of course, people learn, and gain experience in life.

Al-Hayat: What did your wife tell you the day you headed your first Cabinet?
PM Hariri: She wasn’t happy.

Al-Hayat: She had concerns about your security?
PM Hariri: A number of things. Our life had changed. There was no longer enough time for the children. If Nazek was with me in Beirut, she would be worried about the kids, in Paris. If she lived with the kids, then she’d be worried about her husband. It was a difficult period for our family, perhaps the toughest in my life.

Al-Hayat: Were you afraid that the formation of your first Cabinet would be hindered?
PM Hariri: No.

Al-Hayat: And the day you declined to form a Cabinet. Is it true that you were carrying two papers. One for your acceptance and one for turning down the job?
PM Hariri: No, I went up there (to Baabda Palace) with a paper for my acceptance. But I was surprised by the issue of seeing MPs’ votes delegated to the president (placed at his disposal). I had told the president that I would be obliged to decline, if this happened. He told me that it wouldn’t happen. I asked him why it did happen, and he said the MPs ahd forced him to. So I declined.

Al-Hayat: What was his reaction?
PM Hariri: He asked me “How?” and I said, “I decline, like I said.”

Al-Hayat: Is it true that you waited for a telephone call from Syria, but it didn’t come?
PM Hariri: That’s not true. And I didn’t call.

Al-Hayat: When did you meet Abdel-Halim Khaddam?
PM Hariri: In 1982.

Al-Hayat: And your relationship became stronger after that time?
PM Hariri: Yes, I always coordinated with Syria, and he was the vice president, and responsible for Lebanon, with Hikmat Shehabi and Ghazi Kenaan.

Al-Hayat: Don’t politicians in Lebanon complain about Khaddam’s style?
PM Hariri: Abu Jamal (Khaddam) represented an important phase in Syria’s history, and particularly in Lebanon.

Al-Hayat: Are you afraid of peace in the region?
PM Hariri: I’m not afraid, but we should be realistic. I think that peace for the region is necessary, and important, if it is comprehensive. However, I think that it won’t solve all the region’s problems. It will solve a type of problem, and create huge challenges. Giving the impression that peace will solve al of our problems isn’t right. I don’t feel that there are those in Lebanon trying to understand these challenges or study their repercussions on the country. There is talk by top officials in the country, saying that all of the problems will be solved by signing a peace deal. I think that this is a big mistake. There are many problems: the camps, Hizbullah, normalization, economic problems, and national and cultural challenges. Peace is no picnic, and simplifying the problems leads to avoiding a search for solutions.

Al-Hayat: Do you fear that peace will create terror?
PM Hariri: On both sides, there are those who oppose peace, among the Israelis, and the Arabs. And these groups will express themselves using various means. I hope that violence isn’t one of them.

Al-Hayat: Are you now under surveillance?
PM Hariri: Yes.

Al-Hayat: Would you like to have been in power during this period?
PM Hariri: (Laughs) No.

Rafik Hariri: My radar quickly picks up those who try to get close to me because they want money.
Ghassan Charbel Al-Hayat – 17/02/06//

Two years ago, I was in Paris and learned by chance that Prime Minister Hariri had just arrived. I telephoned him and went to see him. He appeared worried about the Iraqi and Palestinian situations. He said that Lebanon needed a new political climate and that the policy of obstruction followed by the team of President Emile Lahoud had prevented any accomplishments from being recorded. He also discussed the negativity of the Christian street, criticizing the way that it was being deal with.
He said, “The Christians who are participating in government are the least representative. Michel Aoun, in exile, has more popularity than they do, and Samir Geagea, who’s in prison, is also more popular.”
I asked him if there were channels of communication between him and Aoun, and he answered: “This issue is not with me. Frankly speaking, I’m not permitted to get involved in it. If a dialogue were opened with Aoun, they would consider it plotting a coup against both Lahoud and Syria.
I asked him about Aoun’s pending judicial cases, and the accusations against him. Hariri responded, smiling, “Whether or not you agree with Aoun, you certainly have to admit that the case is political. Unfortunately, they have succeeded in ‘programming’ the judiciary, which is a dangerous thing.”
I asked if it wasn’t for that reason that Geagea’s friends doubted the story of the bomb attack in the Zouq Mosbeh church, which caused him to be detained, and then imprisoned. I was surprised to hear Hariri answer, “I also have question marks about that incident. It’s a difficult topic, and I don’t want to discuss it.”
Below are the interviews from that occasion, when Hariri was busy reading the regional and international situations, as well as the earlier published interview at his home in Sardinia, in the final installment of this three-part series.

Al-Hayat: I’d like to ask about where you were born and grew up.
PM Hariri: It’s a simple story. My mother, God rest her soul, had five children, of whom two died. The first was born in the ninth month and died, and the second lived 10 months and died after contracting an intestinal disease. Medicine wasn’t so advanced back then, like today. So the three of us grew up together – me, my brother Walid, whom we call Shafik, and my sister Bahiya, who’s an MP in Parliament today. I was born in a family of modest means, but we were very tight. My father and mother were believers, in Almighty God, and they loved people. They were the kind of simple religious and human values based on loving your kin, and your neighbor. And respecting others. When I was young, I never heard bad talk about others, or bad language. My father and mother’s families were linked by strong relationships, based on visiting each other, helping each other, and taking part in all kinds of occasions.
I can say that I grew up in a natural environment. The mother gave her family all the compassion and care that she could, and the father gave them as much effort, interest, and affection that he could. The financial difficulties that the family experienced did not lead to a tense atmosphere, or feelings of hatred and jealousy. Perhaps these difficulties increased my father’s determination to provide an atmosphere of love, compassion and empathy. In the traditional family, there was no such thing as selfishness. The parents gave to their children, without keeping track. The brother gave his brother what he needed, for nothing in return. I was born in a house outside Old Sidon, near Nijmeh Square at the beginning of the road to Jezzine.

Al-Hayat: And your family situation?
PM Hariri: My grandfather, God rest his soul, had some property. His situation was acceptable, or reasonable, based on what my father told me, but I never met him. My father inherited some small pieces of land, and worked in commerce; he was keen on his reputation, his name. I remember, although I was very young at the time, that there was a snowstorm in Lebanon and it did away with the crops. My father incurred big losses, because he had a stake in the crop, covering a group of orchards. My father had to sell everything he had to repay his debts, so that he wouldn’t have to declare bankruptcy. This incident dominated our thinking in two ways. First, there was the importance of loyalty to commitments, whatever the price. Second, there was no State to compensate for the losses, or some of them, meaning no social solidarity or assistance-type program by the State. The person directly handled the entire burden, and society didn’t help. Without meaning to, my father taught me a valuable lesson, namely that it’s better to lose your money instead of your reputation. It’s better for your financial situation to take a hit, but not see other people’s confidence in you take a hit. In fact, money comes and goes, while a reputation can’t handle being lost. It’s easier to rebuild your capital in the bank than rebuild your capital with people, regardless of the size and strength of either.
Later, I learned that the amount my father received from selling everything wasn’t enough; my mother, who’s from the Hijazi family of Sidon, resorted to selling her jewelry so that the commitments could be met. Thus, my father became an employee after being an employer. When the snow disaster took place, I was less than 7 years old. It really affected our lives; my father had to work harder than before, so that we could live and study. I was small, but what took place remains etched in my memory. I remember that my mother was very affected by what happened, and that my father kept his head, and told her, “This is God’s work, and we must go on.”

Al-Hayat: And afterward?
PM Hariri: I felt also that I had to handle my responsibilities regarding the new situation, and during days off from school I would accompany my father and work with him in the orchards of the south. I know the orchards of the south because I worked in them while going to school.

Al-Hayat: Where were you a student?
PM Hariri: My parents sent me to Faisal School, which had low tuition costs. The school exempted me from the tuition because my grades were good. Then I went to al-Makassed, and then to Beirut Arab University. In fact, they were difficult years. I worked during the weekends and the summers. Of course, the situation was painful for my father. There’s a difference between being an employer and working for others. Beginning then, I would repay this man if God blessed me and my situation were to improve some day.

Al-Hayat: Was your father strict?
PM Hariri: He was instinctively smart and goodhearted, and close to people. He had a good relationship with people. He would laugh and joke and people would respond in the same way. My father wasn’t strict, and the same goes for my mother. Of course they were totally committed to religious and moral values.

Al-Hayat: But as an adolescent, didn’t you clash with your father?
PM Hariri: I didn’t have an adolescence to class with anyone because of it. I was in school, or at work, or paying attention to the affairs of the day.

Arab Nationalism

Al-Hayat: What about your political affiliation when you were younger?
PM Hariri: I was one of the young people interested by the idea of Arab nationalism and I met a number of leaders of this group before I reached the age of 20.

Al-Hayat: They say that you joined the Organization for Communist Action.
PM Hariri: No.

Al-Hayat: You didn’t join any party?
PM Hariri: No, I had inclinations and friendships. I was part of the Arab Nationalist Movement trend and worked for some time at the magazine al-Hurriyeh, where Mohsen Ibrahim, Mohammed Kishli, Sami Mshaqo and Ghassan Kanafani, God rest his soul, were at the time.

Al-Hayat: Is it true you handed out pamphlets denouncing the split (end of unity) between Egypt and Syria?
PM Hariri: Yes, while walking in demonstrations. I remember that I was carrying Sami Shaar, who was fatter than today, on my shoulders at demonstrations. At Beirut Arab University, I was elected to the Student Union.

Al-Hayat: Did this period establish your friendship with Mohsen Ibrahim?
PM Hariri: There was a friendship, but the years put a distance between us, because of my travels and his involvement in the Palestinian issue. When I was in office, we were on different sides. But Abu Khaled (Ibrahim) is a funny guy. You can differ with him in politics but agree with him about humor.

A Different Perspective

Al-Hayat: You grew up in Sidon. Who was your role model, Gamal Abdel-Nasser?
PM Hariri: I’m part of the generation that woke up to the idea of Arab nationalism, distant from sectarianism. There was the Palestine issue. At the time, the young generation warmed to the slogans that Abdel-Nasser was using. When the defeat of 1967 took place, many questions were asked, and we had to ask about what had been right and what had been a mistake. There was a fierce wave of support for Abdel-Nasser, without examining what was correct and what was a mistake. A group of young people began to look at things differently. By that time, I had ended up in Saudi Arabia. There I began to see things from a different perspective. In the past, we liked what he heard from Abdel-Nasser and the left about the oil states, and we didn’t know the reality there. When I went to Saudi Arabia I saw the situation differently. I lived Saudi Arabia’s experience from 1965 until the present. I realized that these states had been able, in the end, to build infrastructure and develop themselves, building their societies, and become an influential force in the region and the world. All of this took place calmly, and with no big slogans, exaggerations, or commotion. These states achieved continuing progress, and it wasn’t slow. They didn’t jump ahead of themselves, but actually overcame the period of backwardness that had existed for hundreds of years. They used their wealth to see a transformation by people, in these states, especially in Saudi Arabia, from one situation to another. These states created an important middle class. The progress was great in terms of people, before the progress manifested itself in facilities and roads. There were opportunities to learn and the social insurance system was one of the world’s most advanced. There was health insurance. All of this took place calmly.

Al-Hayat: You worked at Sayyad Publishing?
PM Hariri: Yes, I worked in the accounting department of Sayyad and at night I was a proofreader at al-Anwar newspaper. I was studying at Beirut Arab University in the Accounting and Business Department.

The First Salary . . and the Harvest

Al-Hayat: What was the first salary you received?
PM Hariri: When I was little, and working in the orchards, I would get LL 5 a day, or about $2.5. I would take part in the harvest and carry boxes. In the summer, I worked in harvesting apples and canning apples. I worked in towns in Mount Lebanon, the Bekaa and the North. I know them from my work, not from summer trips. I saved some of what I earned in the summer to continue my studies in the winter. Yes, I worked in apples, in Besharre, Ehden and Kesrouan. I don’t remember my exact salary, but it was around LL 200.

Al-Hayat: What were your hobbies?
PM Hariri: No hobbies. There was no time, and the situation didn’t permit it. Perhaps for this reason I know the meaning of a student being deprived of attending a good school, or having hobbies, and I know how families suffer regarding a situation of this sort.

In Saudi Arabia

Al-Hayat: When did you decide to go to Saudi Arabia?
PM Hariri: It was just a coincidence. In a local newspaper, I read an ad talking about the need for a teacher, and I applied. I believe that I was the only Lebanese who went that year (1965). I went and began to teach in a school in Jeddah. I was 21, and I was married. My salary was about 600 Riyals, or the minimum. There were no taxes taken out, except for the “road stamps,” or 2%, which was 12 Riyals. This means that I was getting 588 Riyals a month. So, I began to work in the afternoon in an accounting office. Between these two jobs, I gave private lessons to students. This made my salary range from 1,200 to 1,300 Riyals a month. I began with an agreement for 600 Riyals, but after only 20 days, I tried to get a raise.
My decision to go to Saudi Arabia was prompted by my feelings that this country had work opportunities that weren’t there in Lebanon, and my opinion was correct. I taught for 7 or 8 months and then worked in the accounting office for more than a year, then moved to a contracting company.

The World of Contracting

Al-Hayat: How did your “take-off” happen after that?
PM Hariri: As I said, I worked in a contracting company for about 5 years, when I learned the business. My situation began to improve and I went through periods of rising and falling. When the 1973 war took place, oil prices went up after we had taken on jobs for low prices. Oil prices rose and so did those of primary materials. The cost of our commitments was very high and we incurred big losses. In 1973, I had begun to work on my own, after learning the basics of contracting. We did subcontracting, like works on roads, small bridges, and areas on the sides of roads. In 1973, the prices of contracts that we had signed remained the same, while material and labor prices and rose, so we lost. We had to be patient. Later, we were lucky to get more work and the market started to stabilize. We made money on the new project and paid off our debts. That was the first step in building trust with financial institutions and the market.

Al-Hayat: And the building project in Taif?
PM Hariri: During that period. I didn’t take the project, it was subcontracting. The profit was low but we had some interest, and used it to pay off debts. I was working with others for a while, then we agreed to split up, since each one of us had his own work style. The split was amicable, with no disputes.

The First Million . . . and Vanity

Al-Hayat: What about your first million? When did your account say that you had $1 million?
PM Hariri: I was 31 when I got my first my million.

Al-Hayat: Where did it come from?
PM Hariri: From work. I was only involved in contracting. I received no money, not from commissions or other things. Contracting was my only field.

Al-Hayat: Did you get it from the Conference Palace project in Taif?
PM Hariri: From a number of projects, including Taif, and al-Huda, and a hospital. After we established Saudi Oger. When it was founded, I think in 1976, my share in it was very small. After that, I bought the others’ shares.

Al-Hayat: What does a person feel like when he has his first million dollars?
PM Hariri: Let me answer you with complete honesty. When a young person gets such an amount, he becomes afflicted by a type of vanity, or feelings of success, perhaps superiority. This is an unhealthy situation. I admit that I was afflicted by some of this. Thank God it didn’t last long with me. Perhaps it lasted 7 months.

Al-Hayat: You felt at the time that Rafik Hariri was strong?
PM Hariri: (Laughs) I felt that Rafik Hariri was strong, a tough guy, smart, and funny. The joke that he tells makes people laugh. The idea that he puts forward is excellent, and interests people. It’s the exaggeration of youth. Thank God that period didn’t last too long, and this is due, in my opinion, to two things: the first is education in the home, and the second is the general climate in Saudi Arabia. The general environment there is ruled by modesty, and this kind of behavior isn’t accepted. The atmosphere doesn’t permit being vulgar or showing off; it stresses retaining simplicity and values, and respect for others. Not respecting such things makes you a stranger, and ostracizes you. Perhaps there was some justification for a young man like me, who came from Lebanon, from a devastated financial condition, who underwent tough circumstances, to become a bit vain when his conditions improved. It wasn’t just my situation; most of those who worked in contracting at the time experienced the same thing. I was lucky to close the page of this intoxication quickly, while there are those who have retained it until today.

Al-Hayat: Does one experience a similar 7 months when one becomes prime minister?
PM Hariri: Money, positions, political power, are all types of power or authority. If you have the readiness to become vain and haughty, and if your feet aren’t on the ground, as they say, perhaps one can become vain for many years. God Almight blessed me in many things, but the most important of these is that the period of vanity ended quickly?

Al-Hayat: Does the army of flatterers play a role?
PM Hariri: One should be honest with one’s self and have the courage to know one’s limits. A person occupying a political position can be exposed to what you’ve mentioned, or some of it? You say something ordinary, and then a person comes and tells you that what you said was wonderful and brilliant. You weigh 130 kilos, and you come across someone who thinks that you have a svelte figure. Some of it said with good intentions, and some of it is a part of someone’s style. The important thing is being courageous enough to look at yourself. I’m not saying that a person shouldn’t be happy with his success, or what he achieves. People like success and its their right to be happy with the fruits of their efforts. However, someone with money or power doesn’t have the right to be struck blind, and only see the colors he wants to see, or only hear the voices he wants to hear.

Al-Hayat: And is someone afflicted by a different kind of 7 months when leaving office?
PM Hariri: (Laughs) There are some who become bitter, not vain. This isn’t the case for me. My role didn’t begin with becoming prime minister and it didn’t end with my leaving office.

Al-Hayat: There are people who say that you love power and being out of power bothers you.
PM Hariri: If I love power, as you say, then I would have stayed put. Staying in power involves a goal, and success regarding this goal has conditions. It’s better for a politician to be outside power when the conditions for success aren’t there.

Al-Hayat: They say that the title “former prime minister” can hurt?
PM Hariri: Perhaps hurtful for the person whose role is linked to his presence in office. In a democracy, there are no permanent titles, and no permanent posts.

I Didn’t Dare Dream
Al-Hayat: When you went to Saudi Arabia, did you have in mind the example of someone who had been a successful Lebanese? Emile Boustany, for example, or someone else, perhaps?
PM Hariri: Here, I should confess something. I didn’t dare dream of attaining what I did. I achieved things that I didn’t dream of achieving.

Al-Hayat: What do you feel when you stand in front of the mirror?
PM Hariri: Sometimes, I can’t believe that Rafik Hariri started with nothing and was able to arrive at something beyond his dreams. Of course, I’m not now like I was a few years ago. Experience is a school, for whoever can read. However, I’ll say that one of the things that I’m proudest of is that things inside me haven’t changed.

Al-Hayat: Such as?
PM Hariri: I still look at myself and take into consideration the fact that I’m a young person who started out poor, worked in orchards, has family and relatives who are simple people, linked by affection. On social occasions, we invite our relatives and I feel that these people’s affection toward us, it’s very beautiful, pure and intimate thing. Money doesn’t produce such feelings. There are people who aren’t benefiting from you and aren’t asking for anything, aren’t receiving anything. You see these people approaching you with their affection, without any objectives in mind.

Al-Hayat: Don’t you feel that those who approach you want money?
PM Hariri: There are such people. I know this and I am sensitive about this subject. My radar quickly picks up those kinds of people, whether I show this or not. However, it’s unjust to think that everyone who shows you affection wants something. I say this in light of my experience. For example, I still have my old friendships.

Al-Hayat: They say that you are very attached to your daughter.
PM Hariri: Yes, I’m attached to my family. Hind is my little girl, and is very funny.

Al-Hayat: How do you try to protect your children from the fact that you’re rich, famous, and in the spotlight?
PM Hariri: I think that we’ve been successful so far.

Al-Hayat: Can they live a normal life?
PM Hariri: We try to give them this.

Al-Hayat: Did it succeed with the boys?
PM Hariri: Yes. They live a normal life. They behave with modesty, and responsibly. They’ve all graduated from college, except for the youngest.

Al-Hayat: Are you irritable and do you see your morale go down when you lose – do you get irritated and does this affect the atmosphere at home?
PM Hariri: God forbid, and then again, I haven’t lost in politics. Others are losing. So that you understand, you should know a basic fact. I don’t value money. Money doesn’t mean anything to me.

Al-Hayat: How many millionaires have exited your institutions, or have become millionaires because of friendship with you? Does your power to change people’s futures make you happy?
PM Hariri: I have helped many people in my life. However, you can’t help people all the time. You give an opportunity to a person, and if the person is qualified, he will continue the path.

Al-Hayat: Have you caused the birth of 200 millionaires, for example?
PM Hariri: Perhaps. I have helped many who have succeeded. Perhaps among them are those who I gave scholarships to, and they became millionaires. I have changed the future of 30,000 people by helping them attend school.

Al-Hayat: What do you feel from being able to change people’s futures?
PM Hariri: Once, I was sitting with my wife at City Café. A pretty girl came up and greeted me, saying, “I’m from the Hariri Foundation. I’m a graduate. I would like to invite you to my wedding, it’s next week.” These things have happened with me more than once. I don’t know most of those I’ve helped.

Al-Hayat: In politics, they say that you pay attention to people whose role is necessary for you, and when this role ends, you have the power to forget them.
PM Hariri: That’s not true. I’m the opposite. My weakness is that I retain my friendships.

Al-Hayat: Didn’t the rise of your star in the last decade affect your relationship with your wife?
PM Hariri: There’s been no problem. I love my wife. I love her seriously and appreciate her.

Al-Hayat: Why?
PM Hariri: Because she’s a lady, in every sense of the word.

Al-Hayat: Doesn’t she obstruct your aspirations?
PM Hariri: On the contrary, she’s a helping factor. She makes you look good in society and loves people and they love her; she’s elegant and smart.

Al-Hayat: Will you be in office in 2000?
PM Hariri: I’m now in the opposition.

Al-Hayat: Was the first day not being prime minister a difficult one for you?
PM Hariri: Yes, tough, but not a surprise. Believe me, I’m not (obsessed with hanging on to) power.

Al-Hayat: What colors do you like?
PM Hariri: In clothing, I prefer dark blue and colors like cream. I like blue shirts.

Al-Hayat: What place in the world attracts you?
PM Hariri: Here, Sardinia, because it’s calm.

Al-Hayat: Do you have time to read?
PM Hariri: Before my work in politics, I was a very good reader. History and religions. I read the entire Old Testament. I was a voracious reader. Arab and Islamic history. All of the books of Naguib Mahfouz, Tawfiq Hakim, Mustafa Lufti Manfalouti, and translations of the world’s classics: A Farewell to Arms, The Old Man and the Sea, War and Peace, Gorky, and Alberto Moravia.

Al-Hayat: Which singers do you like?
PM Hariri: Fairouz, Farid al-Atrash, and Abdel-Wahab.

Al-Hayat: Are you obsessed about history, and how you’ll be portrayed?
PM Hariri: It concerns me but I’m not obsessed about it. I think it becomes an obsession in a certain phase of one’s life, and political work.

Al-Hayat: What do you expect will be written about you in history?
PM Hariri: I expect that it will be written that I rebuilt the country.

Al-Hayat: Do you mean to link your name with the name of a city?
PM Hariri: Perhaps it’s now linked, or at least the reconstruction of Beirut and the work underway, despite all of the attacks and distortions.

Al-Hayat: Aren’t you afraid that history will be unfair?
PM Hariri: It would be difficult for it to be unjust if it’s written with fairness.

With King Fahd

Al-Hayat: How were your ties in Saudi Arabia strengthened?
PM Hariri: Nasser Rashid is a dear friend and brother. He studied in the US and received a doctorate in engineering. He took his own path, like I did. He didn’t think about commissions. He chose to be an adviser, and I chose to be a contractor. He’s worked in that until today. He would take work from the government and I would carry out work for the government. We weren’t concerned with the role of middleman, in the sense of foreign companies and getting commissions. Our way of work was different. He’s a very respected person and we’ve had a strong and continuing relationship, up to the present.

Al-Hayat: They say that he played a role in seeing a relationship established between you and King Fahd bin Abdel-Aziz.
PM Hariri: In fact, things happened naturally. Dr. Nasser Rashed was an advisor to King Khaled and Prince Fahd, who was the crown prince. We were in the company that did the work. That’s how the relationship arose. King Fahd was personally concerned with things that he considered important for the State. The relationship with King Fahd was built step by step, and it was based on a simple matter of trust. I think that in human relations, you can’t do anything without trust. Trust is the basis. A strong and permanent relationship cannot arise unless it’s based on trust. I was, and still am, honest with the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, and he granted me his trust and this was passed to my son (Saad) who has taken over the business. I rarely intervene these days. In fact, the relationship of trust is with King Fahd, Prince Abdullah, Prince Sultan, Prince Nayef, Prince Salman, and with the family as a whole. It’s a relationship built on mutual respect and trust.

Al-Hayat: What year did your relationship with King Fahd begin?
PM Hariri: In 1977-1978.

Al-Hayat: This relationship with King Fahd seems special; what were the various phases it passed through?
PM Hariri: The most valuable thing a person can obtain is the trust of others, and to behave with honesty, trustworthiness, and devotion. I’ve always thought that lying is short-lived.
King Fahd is a special, unique person. He loves work, doing good things, achieving things. Achievement is a fundamental mater with him and he has left his clear stamp on the Kingdom. His role in the rise of a middle class was decisive. One of the most important things in Saudi Arabia is the existence of a wide middle class, people who see their interest as lying in the stability of the regime. King Fahd’s role has been distinguished in building, education, and wise policies.
Relations with Prince Abdullah are based on the same principle. If you want to sum up Prince Abdullah’s personality in a word, you can say that he’s a knight. He has the attributes of courage, valor, and loyalty. I think that he will lead the Kingdom, after King Fahd, with wisdom, and toward the better.

Al-Hayat: Is it the element of trust that has seen your institutions continue to operate in Saudi Arabia, even during difficult financial conditions?
PM Hariri: All states experience difficulties. I think that the foreign press has exaggerated these difficulties, as part of a campaign against the Kingdom, due to its pan-Arab positions. There have been difficulties, but Saudi Arabia has the power to overcome them.

Al-Hayat: What do you remember from your personal experience with King Fahd?
PM Hariri: Once, during the Iraq-Iran war, Iranian planes penetrated Saudi airspace and they were confronted by Saudi planes and ground artillery. Two Iranian planes were shot down and another damaged. I was with King Fahd when he was informed of the incident. He waited a bit, then ordered that the announcement be made, that one plane had been shot down. We asked him why, and he answered, “If we announce that three planes have been hit, it is as if we are insulting the Iranian Army. We don’t want a confrontation, or a problem with Iran. If we openly insult the Iranian Army, it will feel a duty to respond. The Iranian Army will know what happened and there’s no need to bring the entire incident into the open.”
This indicates the wisdom of King Fahd, which appeared at other times as well during this war, which was very sensitive for the region. He dealt with the problem of the Hajj and the pilgrims in the same spirit. King Fahd always found ways to defuse tension that existed. With this policy, he succeeded in avoiding serious confrontations, which has now permitted the establishment of friendly relations between the two countries. Between these two countries, certain incidents have taken place, and the Iranians know that the Kingdom doesn’t want a clash to take place. However, it has acted decisively in some incidents. As King Fahd used to tell me, Iran is a State that has existed for thousands of years, and we are a nation that has existed for thousands of years. We cannot get rid of Iran, and neither they us. Some time is needed for people to calm down and sit at the same table to solve their problems, calmly. We should show openness, and patience. In fact, Syria played a role in calming the atmosphere between Iran and Saudi Arabia. I know about this topic; I had a role in it. I went on behalf of King Fadh dozens of times regarding this matter.
Something else that took place was when Iraqi forces invaded Kuwait and the Palestinians, whose position was known, tried to open a channel of communication between Saudi Arabia and Iraq. They called a group in the Kingdom and I was one of the people who was involved in preparation. They said that they had an urgent letter from President Saddam Hussein to King Fahd.
The letter reached King Fahd. It said that Saddam was ready to withdraw from Kuwait if King Fahd agreed to meet with him in a tent on the Iraqi-Saudi border. King Fahd, with his usual skill, sent an answer asking, “Why meet on the borders? I’m ready to go to Baghdad but we want a letter from the Iraqi President saying that he is ready to withdraw from Kuwait if we meet. We still have the letter and it’s still too early to disclose things that we have. King Fahd was serious and ready to go to Baghdad, based on what he told us, and announce that there was a withdrawal of Iraqi forces from Kuwait. Perhaps for that reason, the Saudi media delayed in mentioning the invasion. King Fahd explained this to us. He said that he thought Saddam might have been affected by the international reaction to the military act that he had carried out against Kuwait, so we should offer him a way to withdraw via Saudi Arabia. However, he didn’t exploit this opportunity.

Al-Hayat: They say that King Fahd was very pained by the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait.
PM Hariri: Yes, he was. The entire Saudi royal family was. The Kingdom had supported Iraq throughout the Iraq-Iran war. King Fahd is a smart and brave ruler and he has a clear idea about regional and international politics. A skilled conversationalist and what he says is pleasant. His presence is attractive and he captivates the people he talks with. Loyalty is a trait of the Saudi royal family. Did you notice the centennial celebration of entering Riyadh? They honored all of those who were with King Abdel-Aziz, from the fighters to the cooks.

Why Hasn’t ISIS/Al-Qaeda Ever Attacked Israel?

Terrorist Bedfellows: Saudi Arabia and Israel

21st century wire

Oye-Vey
A tale of two religious states, both hell-bent of purifying their arid lands of anyone who is not like them.One very important fact which is often lost on Americans of all levels and persuasions, is that the regime in Saudi Arabia is absolutely pro-Israel. Thus, anything Israel wants, Saudi does. Both export their own brands of terror. They are partners in business, as well as partners in crime...


BIRDS OF A FEATHER: Both Saudi and Israel need to remain close in order to maintain their artificial desert fiefdoms.

More importantly, both Israel and Saudi Arabia (both states are tethered to the US and Great Britain) fear and loath the concept Arab nationalism, and any secular Arab governments in the Middle East, and thus will do anything to put it down. Destabilization is good, so long as the two can divide the spoils and maintain a monopoly of force and power in the region.

While Israel remains busy terrorizing the native Palestinian population, or exporting false flag terror through the Israeli Mossad, the royal pestilence, who themselves enjoy regular and frequent beheadings (see image below) inside their backward medieval wahabi Bardo, has been quietly backing their sand pirates currently running amok in Syria and Iraq, namely al Qaeda, Jabat al Nusra Front, and ISIS/ISIL/IS, as “freedom fighters” in Syria, have now joined their Zionist cousins in Tel Aviv to rid the region of the real freedom fighters of the Lebanese resistance against the Israeli occupation, Hezbollah.

1-Saudi-Beheading
BIRDS OF A FEATHER: ISIS and Saudi share a penchant for chopping off people’s heads.

Why are the Saudis so upset with Hezbollah? Three reasons…

Firstly Hezbollah are Shi’ite (Shia) muslims, which according to extremist Wahabi royal hegemony doctrine – are the wrong sect of Islam, or not the ‘master sect’ (sound familiar?). Secondly, Hezbollah are doing a fine job of smiting Saudis proxy militants and IS death squads in Syria and Lebanon. Lastly, like Israel, Saudi are also afraid of all things Iranian (mostly they fear any economic competition) and since Hezzbollah are allied with Tehran, and like Israel, Saudi doesn’t like any resistance to their private ambitions.

Isn’t it rich of Riyadh to be crying to the UN about terrorist groups when their Empire of Sand (and oil) is one of the world’s worst sponsors of militant Salafist terrorism?

Meanwhile, the US plays man-in-the-middle, brokering lucrative arms deals for both Saudi Arabia and Israel.

Both are client states, the only difference is that Saudi Arabia still pays for its arms, while Israel is on the US dole, still getting free hand-outs from the US taxpayer (that’s right, Americans unknowingly pay for Israeli fancy weaponry)…

Saudi Envoy Wants Hezbollah Back on UN Terror List

Yalibnan

BEIRUT – Saudi Arabia asked On Wednesday the U.N. Security Council to add Hezbollah to its list of “terrorist organizations”.“We call on the council to place Hezbollah on the list of terrorist organizations,” Saudi envoy to the Security Council Abdallah Al-Mouallimi said.

Mouallimi stressed that his country is committed to “international cooperation aimed at eradicating terrorism,” noting that “Saudi Arabia was one of the first countries that confronted terror.”

“The threat of foreign fighters in Syria is not limited to the country in which they are carrying out their acts, as it rather transcends the borders to reach the entire world,” Mouallimi added.

Hezbollah was founded by the Iranian regime’s Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) soon after the 1979 revolution in Iran. The group is fighting in Syria to save the Bashar al-Assad regime.

On November 12, The Iranian regime’s Revolutionary Guard (IRGC) boasted of how it has supplied Lebanese Hezbollah with missile systems.

Brigadier General Hajizadeh, commander of IRGC’s aerospace section told the regime’s Fars news agency: “The factories that manufacture missiles in Syria are built by Iran and the missiles designed by Iran are being manufactured there.

He said the Lebanese Hezbollah “has been taught how to build missiles by Iran” and they “have become quite expert in this field”.

Hajizadeh said all these projects were implemented with the “prodding and encouragement” of the Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei himself and that it was the “wisdom of His Excellency that we build missiles with pinpoint accuracy”.

The Iranian regime’s export of missiles and related technology to other countries is in clear violation of UN Security Council resolutions banning the activity.

Other Shiite groups

Mouallemi also called on the Security Council to blacklist Shiite Iraqi militia, the League of the Righteous, and the Shiite Syrian militant group, the al-Abbas Brigades.

The U.N. Security Council on Wednesday added Libya’s Ansar al-Sharia to its terror list over the Islamist group’s ties to Al-Qaeda, AFP said Wednesday.

Source: NCR-Iran Agencies

Zionist Scum Shoot 5-Year Old In the Face With “Rubber” (Coated Metal) Bullet

Israeli serviceman shoots 5yo Palestinian in the face (GRAPHIC IMAGES)

Russia-Today
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Israeli police have fired a rubber bullet at a five-year-old Palestinian boy’s face as he was getting out of a school bus on his way home, the child’s family told Palestinian media. He sustained a skull fracture under his eye.

The incident happened when Muhammad Jamal Ubeid and his 14-year-old sister stepped out of the school bus and started walking home in al-Issawiya, an Arab village and neighborhood in East Jerusalem, on Wednesday.

“An Israeli soldier fired a black rubber-coated bullet at the child from a close distance, injuring him under the eye,” Muhammad’s uncle told the Palestinian Ma’an News Agency.

READ MORE: IDF strikes Gaza in retaliation to rocket fire

Muhammad was taken to the nearby Hadassah Medical Center on Mount Scopus, where the doctors said the boy had a fracture in the bone below his eye. The hospital confirmed that his wound was typical of ones inflicted by rubber bullets.

Muhammad Jamal Ubeid (image from facebook.com)

Muhammad Jamal Ubeid (image from facebook.com)

The hospital officials told Haaretz that the boy’s condition was satisfactory and he was headed for surgery.

The child was later transported to the Hadassah Medical Center in the Ein Karem neighborhood, West Jerusalem.

RT Paula Slier visited Muhammad a few hours after surgery in Hadassah Medical Center in the Ein Karem and talked to his parents.

“He’s an innocent boy, he didn’t do anything! Why did this happen to him? I’m really worried about my son – they [Israelis] are the racists, not us!” Muhammad’s mother told RT.

“He’s 5-years-old, he’s an innocent child, he didn’t have a rifle, he didn’t have a phone,” added his father. “This is racism, they want to kill us because they hate us. We are Palestinians and they hate us.”

READ MORE: Palestinian minister dies after run-in with IDF soldiers in West Bank protest

The village residents who witnessed the incident, told Haaretz that Muhammad was standing outside his home while Israeli police fired rubber bullets at children and teenagers. The latter were throwing stones at vehicles on nearby Ma’aleh Adumim Road.

However, according to the Muhammad’s uncle, there were no clashes in the area between Palestinians and Israelis at the time of the shooting.

On Thursday, Jerusalem police released a statement indicating that police officials used riot-control means. However, they didn’t confirm that the child was injured during the incident.

“A new and in depth examination was conducted following the reports of an injured child being hospitalized and it was found that a number of masked [protesters] threw rocks, Molotov cocktails and shot fireworks at a border police force operating [on Wednesday] on the slopes of Isawiya, to prevent harm to citizens traveling on the road towards Ma’ale Adumim,” the police said in its statement.

They added that Israeli police forces “dispersed the rioters.”

“It is not known if a child was injured during this incident. All the information was transferred to the [Justice Ministry] department for investigating the police,” added the statement.

Muhammad Jamal Ubeid (image from facebook.com)

Muhammad Jamal Ubeid (image from facebook.com)

Little chance of justice?

Ziyad Hamuri from the Jerusalem Centre for Social and Human Rights told RT there were surveillance cameras in the area, which would show that there were no clashes near the school bus where the boy was shot at.

But according to Hamuri, there is little chance of justice for the injured boy, as Arabs “do not succeed” in Israeli courts, as opposed to Jewish settlers.

“We fear that there is a discrimination in the Israeli law. When it comes to a settler, they have their rights, but in our side, we [Palestinians] don’t have our rights,” the activist said.

Hamuri stressed that this is not the first time firearms have been used against Palestinian children, saying that their use against protesters is not justified. He wondered why the IDF prefers using bullets as opposed to riot control means such as tear gas, pointing out that the so-called rubber bullets are actually rubber-coated metal projectiles that can cause serious injury or death.

“It seems that there [are] orders for them. We have seen two months before that the interior minister declared that they [police] can use such weapons against the people,”
Hamuri said.

According to al-Issawiya accounts, Muhammad is the second child in the area to be hit by foam-tipped bullets in the upper body, which is forbidden by police rule.

In November, an eleven-year-old was shot at a close range in the face by a sponge bullet in al-Issawiya. Saleh Samer Attiyeh Mahmoud lost his left eye and the vision of his right eye was also severely damaged.

Earlier Haaretz reported that Israeli police officers were using foam-tipped bullets, which are generally used for riot control. They are harder than other kinds of bullets and are particularly dangerous for children and teenagers.

Al-Issawiya, along with other East Jerusalem neighborhoods, has heavy Israeli police presence amid ongoing protests over the Israeli occupation.

READ MORE: Israel approves over 350 new settlements in occupied Jerusalem

Israel claimed East Jerusalem during the 1967 Six-Day War, with its annexation never being recognized internationally. Since then, Israel has built numerous settlements, which are now under military regulation, with different laws applied arbitrarily to certain areas.

One Good Reason For Moscow To Put the Screws To Georgia

Mamuka Mamulashvili“Through fighting in Ukraine Georgians are protecting their homeland from Russian aggression.”Mamuka Mamulashvili , commander “Georgian Legion” to Ukraine

The body of Georgian fighter killed in Ukraine returns to Georgia

agenda.ge

The body of Georgian Aleksandre Grigolashvili, who has been killed in Ukraine while fighting against pro-Russian rebels, is already at his home in Kutaisi.

The plane which carried Grigolashvili landed in Tbilisi International Airport at 08:30 in the morning. Georgian volunteer fighter was brought to his homeland by his two Ukrainian allies.

The arrival ceremony at the airport was attended by Georgian Deputy Foreign Minister Vladimer Gurgenidze and Council of Ukraine, as well as family members and friends of deceased Grigolashvili. After the ceremony, Grigolashvili’s body was taken to his home in Kutaisi.

“The whole Government, people are in solidarity with this family and our presence at the airport is the expression of it. We want to show support to Grigolashvili’s family,” Vladimer Gurgenidze said at the Airport.

Ukrainian Consul to Georgia also commented at the airport and thanked Georgian people for standing with Ukraine.

“I want to console the family of Aleksandre and thank Georgian society on behalf of Ukrainian people. Thank you for standing with us in the most difficult moment for our country,” he said.

The plane carrying the body of Grigolashvili should have arrived in Tbilisi yesterday by midnight, however due to heavy fog in Georgia it landed in Yerevan.

Aleksandre Grrigolashvili died on December 18. He was 32 years old. According to his family members, he went to Ukraine two months ago. In 2007-2008 years Grigolashvili served in the Georgian army and fought in Georgia’s occupied Tskhinvali region and in Afghanistan.

A farewell ceremony to honor fallen Georgian fighter took place at Maidan, Kiev yesterday. Georgia’s Consul to Ukraine Konstantine Sabiashvili has stated that the ceremony was attended by Georgia’s Ambassador to Ukraine Mikheil Ukleba and Georgian Diaspora representatives.

Proposal to expel Russia from the UN Security Council?

The proposals to expel Russia from the UN Security Council and a draft law renouncing the non-bloc status of Ukraine play into the hands of party of war supporters, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said.

“Appeals for expelling Russia from permanent members of the UN Security Council, the same as the draft law loudly declaring the rejection of the off-bloc status and Petro Poroshenko’s decree on the economic siege on the southeast are nothing but homage paid to the rhetoric desired by the party of war in Kyiv,” Lavrov said at a press conference at the end of negotiations with his Serbian counterpart Ivica Dacic.

“It is a pity because this party really exists and members of this party of war appeal for a repeat of the Serbian Krajina operation (SEE BELOW) in southeastern Ukraine,” Lavrov said.

The armed operation in Serbian Krajina which did not recognize the jurisdiction of the Croatian government was held by Croatian military servicemen in the 1990s.

“It was said back then that the territorial integrity was restored by force and our Western partners not only accepted but also welcomed that,” Lavrov said.

He said he proceeded from the premise of Poroshenko’s unwavering support for an exclusively peaceful settlement in southeastern Ukraine.

The Invasion of Serbian Krajina

by Greg Elich
[Mr. Elich is a freelance scholar who has written extensively about Yugoslavia.]

In early August 1995, the Croatian invasion of Serbian Krajina precipitated the worst refugee crisis of the Yugoslav civil war. Within days, more than two hundred thousand Serbs, virtually the entire population of Krajina, fled their homes, and 14,000 Serbian civilians lost them lives. According to a UN official “Almost the only people remaining were the dead and the dying.” The Clinton administration’s support for the invasion was an important factor in creating this nightmare.

The previous month, Secretary of State Warren Christopher and German Foreign Minister Klaus Kinkel met with Croatian diplomat Miomir Zuzul in London. During this meeting, Christopher gave his approval for Croatian military action against Serbs in Bosnia and Krajina. Two days later, the U.S. ambassador to Croatia, Peter Galbraith, also approved Croatia’s invasion plan. Stipe Mesic, a prominent Croatian politician, stated that Croatian President Franjo Tudjman “received the go-ahead from the United States. Tudjman can do only what the Americans allow him to do. Krajina is the reward for having accepted, under Washington’s pressure, the federation between Croats and Muslims in Bosnia.” Croatian assembly deputy Mate Mestrovic also claimed that the “United States gave us the green light to do whatever had to be done.” (1)

As Croatian troops launched their assault on August 4, U.S. NATO aircraft destroyed Serbian radar and anti-aircraft defenses. American EA-6B electronic warfare aircraft patrolled the air in support of the invasion. Krajina foreign affairs advisor Slobodan Jarcevic stated that NATO “completely led and coordinated the entire Croat offensive by first destroying radar and anti-aircraft batteries. What NATO did most for the Croatian Army was to jam communications between [Serb] military commands….” (2)

Following the elimination of Serbian anti-aircraft defenses, Croatian planes carried out extensive attacks on Serbian towns and positions. The roads were clogged with refugees, and Croatian aircraft bombed and strafed refugee columns. Serbian refugees passing through the town of Sisak were met by a mob of Croatian extremists, who hurled rocks and concrete at them. A UN spokesman said, “The windows of almost every vehicle were smashed and almost every person was bleeding from being hit by some object.” Serbian refugees were pulled from their vehicles and beaten. As fleeing Serbian civilians poured into Bosnia, a Red Cross representative in Banja Luka said, “I’ve never seen anything like it. People are arriving at a terrifying rate.” Bosnian Muslim troops crossed the border and cut off Serbian escape routes. Trapped refugees were massacred as they were pounded by Croatian and Muslim artillery. Nearly 1,700 refugees simply vanished. While Croatian and Muslim troops burned Serbian villages, President Clinton expressed his understanding for the invasion, and Christopher said events “could work to our advantage.” (3)

The Croatian rampage through the region left a trail of devastation. Croatian special police units, operating under the Ministry of Internal Affairs, systematically looted abandoned Serbian villages. Everything of value – cars, stereos, televisions, furniture, farm animals – was plundered, and homes set afire. (4) A confidential European Union report stated that 73 percent of Serbian homes were destroyed. (5) Troops of the Croatian army also took part, and pro-Nazi graffiti could be seen on the walls of several burnt-out Serb buildings.(6)

Massacres continued for several weeks after the fall of Krajina, and UN patrols discovered numerous fresh unmarked graves and bodies of murdered civilians. (7) The European Union report states, “Evidence of atrocities, an average of six corpses per day, continues to emerge. The corpses, some fresh, some decomposed, are mainly of old men. Many have been shot in the back of the head or had throats slit, others have been mutilated… Serb lands continue to be torched and looted.” (8)

Following a visit in the region a member of the Zagreb Helsinki Committee reported, “Virtually all Serb villages had been destroyed…. In a village near Knin, eleven bodies were found, some of them were massacred in such a way that it was not easy to see whether the body was male or female.” (9)

UN spokesman Chris Gunness noted that UN personnel continued to discover bodies, many of whom had been decapitated. (10) British journalist Robert Fisk reported the murder of elderly Serbs, many of whom were burned alive in their homes. He adds, “At Golubic, UN officers have found the decomposing remains of five people… the head of one of the victims was found 150 feet from his body. Another UN team, meanwhile is investigating the killing of a man and a woman in the same area after villagers described how the man’s ears and nose had been mutilated.” (11)

After the fall of Krajina, Croatian chief of staff General Zvonimir Cervenko characterized Serbs as “medieval shepherds, troglodytes, destroyers of anything the culture of man has created.” During a triumphalist train journey through Croatia and Krajina, Tudjman spoke at each railway station. To great applause, he announced, “There can be no return to the past, to the times when [Serbs] were spreading cancer in the heart of Croatia, a cancer that was destroying the Croatian national being.” He then went on to speak of the “ignominious disappearance” of the Serbs from Krajina “so it is as if they have never lived here… They didn’t even have time to take with them their filthy money or their filthy underwear!” American ambassador Peter Galbraith dismissed claims that Croatia had engaged in “ethnic cleansing,” since he defined this term as something Serbs do. (12)

U.S. representatives blocked Russian attempts to pass a UN Security Council resolution condemning the invasion. According to Croatian Foreign Minister Mate Granic, American officials gave advice on the conduct of the operation, and European and military experts and humanitarian aid workers reported shipments of U.S weapons to Croatia over the two months preceding the invasion. A French mercenary also witnessed the arrival of American and German weapons at a Croatian port, adding, “The best of the Croats’ armaments were German- and American-made.” The U.S. “directly or indirectly,” says French intelligence analyst Pierre Hassner, “rearmed the Croats.” Analysts at Jane’s Information Group say that Croatian troops were seen wearing American uniforms and carrying U S. communications equipment. (13)

The invasion of Krajina was preceded by a thorough CIA and DIA analysis of the region. (14) According to Balkan specialist Ivo Banac, this “tactical and intelligence support” was furnished to the Croatian Army at the beginning of its offensive. (15)

In November 1994, the United States and Croatia signed a military agreement. Immediately afterward, U.S. intelligence agents set up an operations center on the Adriatic island of Brac, from which reconnaissance aircraft were launched. Two months earlier, the Pentagon contracted Military Professional Resources, Inc (MPRI) to train the Croatian military.(16) According to a Croatian officer, MPRI advisors “lecture us on tactics and big war operations on the level of brigades, which is why we needed them for Operation Storm when we took the Krajina.” Croatian sources claim that U.S. satellite intelligence was furnished to the Croatian military. (17) Following the invasion of Krajina, the U.S. rewarded Croatia with an agreement “broadening existing cooperation” between MPRI and the Croatian military. (18) U.S. advisors assisted in the reorganization of the Croatian Army. Referring to this reorganization in an interview with the newspaper Vecernji List, Croatian General Tihomir Blaskic said, “We are building the foundations of our organization on the traditions of the Croatian home guard” – pro-Nazi troops in World War II. (19)

It is worth examining the nature of what one UN official terms “America’s newest ally.” During World War II, Croatia was a Nazi puppet state in which the Croatian fascist Ustashe murdered as many as one million Serbs, Jews, and Roman (Gypsies). Disturbing signs emerged with the election of Franjo Tudjman to the Croatian presidency in 1990 Tudjman said, “I am glad my wife is neither Serb nor Jew,” and wrote that accounts of the Holocaust were “exaggerated” and “one-sided.” (20)

Much of Tudjman’s financial backing was provided by Ustashe émigrés and several Ustashe war criminals were invited to attend the first convention of Tudjman’s political party, the Croatian Democratic Union. (21)

Tudjman presented a medal to a former Ustashe commander living in Argentina, Ivo Rojnica. After Rojnica was quoted as saying, “Everything I did in 1941 I would do again,” international pressure prevented Tudjman from appointing him to the post of ambassador to Argentina. When former Ustashe official Vinko Nikolic returned to Croatia, Tudjman appointed him to a seat in parliament. Upon former Ustashe officer Mate Sarlija’s return to Croatia, he was personally welcomed at the airport by Defense Minister Gojko Susak, and subsequently given the post of general in the Croatian Army. (22) On November 4, 1996, thirteen former Ustashe officers were presented with medals and ranks in the Croatian Army. (23)

Croatia adopted a new currency in 1994, the kuna, the same name as that used by the Ustashe state, and the new Croatian flag is a near-duplicate of the Ustashe flag. Streets and buildings have been renamed for Ustashe official Mile Budak, who signed the regime’s anti-Semitic laws, and more than three thousand anti-fascist monuments have been demolished. In an open letter, the Croatian Jewish community protested the rehabilitation of the Ustashe state. In April 1994, the Croatian government demanded the removal of all “non-white” UN troops from its territory, claiming that “only first-world troops” understood Croatia’s “problems.” (24)

On Croatian television in April 1996, Tudjman called for the return of the remains of Ante Pavelic, the leader of the Croatian pro-Nazi puppet state “After all, both reconciliation and recognition should be granted to those who deserve it,” Tudjman said, adding, “We should recognize that Pavelic’s ideas about the Croatian state were positive,” but that Pavelic’s only mistake was the murder of a few of his colleagues and nationalist allies. (25) Three months later, Tudjman said of the Serbs driven from Croatia “The fact that 90 percent of them left is their own problem… Naturally we are not going to allow them all to return.” During the same speech, Tudjman referred to the pro-Nazi state as “a positive thing.” (26)

During its violent secession from Yugoslavia in 1991, Croatia expelled more than three hundred thousand Serbs, and Serbs were eliminated from ten towns and 183 villages. (27) In 1993, Helsinki Watch reported: “Since 1991 the Croatian authorities have blown up or razed ten thousand houses mostly of Serbs, but also houses of Croats. In some cases, they dynamited homes with the families inside.” Thousands of Serbs have been evicted from their homes. Croatian human-rights activist Ivan Zvonimir Cicak says beatings, plundering, and arrests were the usual eviction methods. (28)

Tomislav Mercep, until recently the advisor to the Interior minister and a member of Parliament, is a death-squad leader. Mercep’s death squad murdered 2,500 Serbs in western Slavonia in 1991 and 1992, actions Mercep defends as “heroic deeds.” (29) Death squad officer Miro Bajramovic’s spectacular confession revealed details: “Nights were worst for [our prisoners]… burning prisoners with a flame, pouring vinegar over their wounds mostly on genitalia and on the eyes. Then there is that little induction field phone, you plug a Serb onto that… The most painful is to stick little pins under the nails and to connect to the three phase current; nothing remains of a man but ashes… After all, we knew they would all be killed, so it did not matter if we hurt him more today or tomorrow.”

“Mercep knew everything,” Bajramovic claimed. “He told us several times: ‘Tonight you have to clean all these shits.’ By this he meant all the prisoners should be executed.” (30)

Sadly, the Clinton administration’s embrace of Croatia follows a history of support for fascists when it suits American geopolitical interests: Chile’s Augusto Pinochet, Indonesia’s Suharto, Paraguay’s Aifredo Stroessner, and a host of others. The consequences of this policy for the people affected have been devastating.

***

 

Footnotes

1) “Weekly: U.S. Gave Zagreb ‘Green Light,’ ” Tanjug (Belgrade), 26 July 1995. “In Croatia, U.S. Took Calculated Risk,” Stephen Engelberg, New York Times News Service, 12 August 1995. “Cleansing the West’s Dirty War,” Joan Phillips, Living Marxism (London), September 1995. “Who Has Given the Go-Ahead?,” interview with Stipe Mesic, Panorama (Milan), 8 August 1995. “The United States Gave Us the Green Light,” interview with Mate Mestrovic, by Chantal de Rudder, Le Nouvel Observateur (Paris), 10 August 1995.

(2) “International Inaction in Croatia Will Complicate Bosnian War,” George Jahn, Associated Press, 7 August 1995. “NATO Destroyed Krajina Missile Systems,” Bosnian Serb News Agency (SRNA) (Belgrade), 6 August 1995. “Abandoned People Must Flee,” interview with Slobodan Jarcevic by Cvijeta Arsenic, Oslobodjenje (Sarajevo—Bosnian Serb), 23 August 1995.”Cleansing the West’s Dirty War,” Joan Phillips, op. cit.

(3) “Huge Refugee Exodus Runs Into Shelling, Shooting, Air Attacks,” George Jahn, Associated Press, 8 August 1995. “Croat Planes Shell Refugees,” Tanjug, 8 August 1995. “SRNA Review of Daily News,” SRNA, 8 August 1995. “Cleansing the West’s Dirty War,” Joan Phillips, op. cit. “Refugees Trapped by Croat Shelling,” Robert Fox and Tim Judah, Electronic Telegraph (London) (Online), 8 August 1995. “Croat Mob Attacks Nuns in Fleeing Convoy,” Patrick Bishop, Electronic Telegraph, 11 August 1995. “Over 1,000 Serbs Missing in Krajina,” Tanjug, 28 January 1997. “Croat Grip Is Tightened as 100,000 Flee,” Tim Butcher, Electronic Telegraph, 7 August 1995.

(4) “UN Says Croatians Loot, Use Peacekeepers as Shields,” Associated Press, 6 August 1995. “Helsinki Committee Reports on Krajina Operations,” Hartmut Fiedler, Oesterreich Eins Radio Network, 21 August 1995. “EU Observers Accuse Croatia of Breaches of Law,” Tanjug, 27 October 1995. “UN: Croatians Systematically Burned Serb Homes,” Tanjug, 14 August 1995. “Croats Slaughter Elderly by the Dozen,” Robert Fisk, The Independent (London), 10 September 1995. “Croats Plunder Their Way through Krajina,” Mon Vanderostyne, De Standard (Groot Bijgaarden, The Netherlands), 9 August 1995. “UN Says Croats Loot Serb Villages in Krajina,” Agence France-Presse, 17 August 1995. “EU Report Accuses Croatia of Atrocities Against Rebel Serbs,” Julian Borger, The Guardian (Manchester), 30 September 1995. “Krajina ‘Torched State,’ ” SRNA, 21 August 1995. “What Was Once Home to 300 Families Is Now a Graveyard,” Sarah Helm, The Independent, 24 August 1995. “Helsinki Committee Chronicles Human Rights Abuses,” Tanjug, 28 August 1995. “Memorandum on the Ethnic Cleansing of and Genocide Against the Serb People of Croatia and Krajina,” Yugoslav Survey, third quarter, 1995.

(5) “Krajina Bears Signs of Croat Ethnic Cleansing,” Randolph Ryan, Boston Globe, 8 October 1995. “UN Official Confirms Croatian Crimes in Krajina,” Tanjug, 13 October 1995.

(6)”Krajina Bears Signs of Croat Ethnic Cleansing,” Randolph Ryan, op.cit

(7) “Croats Burn and Kill with a Vengeance,” Robert Fisk, The
Independent, 4 September 1995. “Croats Leave Bloody Trail of Serbian Dead,” Tracy Wilkinson, Los Angeles Times, 9n October 1995. “Reports Say Croatia Uses Killing, Arson,” John Pomfret,
Washington Post, 30 September 1995. “UN Asks for Inquiry into Krajina Killings,” Reuters, 18 August 1995. “EU Observers Accuse Croatia of Breaches of Law,” op. cit. “UN Finds Evidence of Mass Killings in Croatia,” Reuters, 2 October 1995. “Croats Slaughter Elderly by the Dozen,” Robert Fisk, op. cit. “EU Report Accuses Croatia of Atrocities Against Rebel Serbs,” Julian Borger, op.cit. “UN: Executions, Possible Mass Graves in Krajina,” Agence
France-Presse, 18 August 1995. “Helsinki Committee Chronicles Human Rights Abuses,” op cit. “Evidence Emerging of Crimes Against Krajina Serbs,” Tanjug, 30 August 1995. “Croats Accused of Atrocities,” Associated Press, 29 September 1995.

(8) “Croats Burn and Kill With a Vengeance,” Robert Fisk, op.cit.”EU Report Accuses Croatia of Atrocities Against Rebel Serbs, ” Julian Borger, op. cit. report broadcast, RTBF-1 Television Network (Brussels), 20 August 1995. “Memorandum on the Ethnic Cleansing of and Genocide Against the Serb People of Croatia and Krajina,” Yugoslav Survey, third quarter, 1995.

(9) “Krajina Operation: Helsinki Committee Member Describes Atrocities in Krajina,” BBC Summary of World Broadcasts, 25 August 1995.

10) “UN Asks for Inquiry into Krajina Killings,” op.cit. “UN Finds Evidence of Mass Killings in Croatia,” op. cit. “UN: Executions, Possible Mass Graves in Krajina,” op. cit.

(11) “Croats Slaughter Elderly by the Dozen,” Robert Fisk, op. cit.(12) “Croats Ready for a Fresh Offense Against Serbs,” Patrick Bishop, Electronic Telegraph, 16 August 1995. addresses by Franjo Tudjman, Radio Croatia Network, 26 August 1995. “U.S. Says Croatia is Not Guilty of Ethnic Cleansing,” Patrick Moore, Open Media Research Institute, 10 August 1995.

(13) “Croatian Minister Says U.S. Gave Advice on Offensive,” Jasmina Kuzmanovic, Associated Press, 5 August 1995. “Croatia Takes Effective Control of What’s Left of Bosnia,” San Francisco Chronicle, 11 August 1995.

(14) “NATO in Dubrovnik,” Vladimir Jovanovic, Monitor (Podgorica, Yugoslavia), 23 June 1995.

(15) “AP Report on U.S. Peace Strategy,” Associated Press, 13 November 1995.

(16) “AP Report on U.S. Peace Strategy,” Associated Press, op cit.” U.S. Troops Operate in Croatia,” Associated Press, 3 February
1995.

(17) “Invisible U.S. Army Defeats Serbs,” Charlotte Eagar, The
Observer (London), 5November 1995.

(18) “Military Cooperation Agreement Signed with U.S.” HTV Television (Zagreb) 13 October 1995.

(19) “We Can Prevent Any Serbian Maneuver,” interview with Tihomir Blaskic, by Jozo Pavkovic, Vecernji List (Zagreb), 11 March 1995.

20) “Croatian Leader’s Invitation to Holocaust Museum Sparks Anger and Shock,” Diana Jean Schemo, New York Times News Service, 21 April 1993.

(21) “Croatia, at a Key Strategic Crossroad, Builds Militarily and Geographically,” Defense and Foreign Affairs Strategic Policy (London), 31 January 1993. “Who is Franjo Tudjman?” Narodna Armija (Belgrade), 1 March 1990.

(22) “Criticism of Tudjman Award to Ustashe,” Foreign Broadcast Information Service Media Note (Media Summary), 27 January 1995. “Nationalism Turns Sour in Croatia,” New York Times News Service, 13 November 1993. “Plan to Honour Ustashe Killers Outrages Minorities in Croatia,” Ian Traynor, The Guardian, 18 October 1993. “Trpimir for an Executioner and a Victim,” Mirko Mirkovic, Feral Tribune (Split, Croatia), 20 February 1995. “Croatian General Former Ustashe,” Tanjug, 26 February 1995.

(23) “Croatia Grants Awards to Nazi-Era War Veterans,” Reuters, 7 November 1996.

(24) “New Croatian Money Anathema to Serbs,” John Pomfret, Washington Post, 31 May 1994. “Plan to Honour Ustashe Killers Outrages Minorities in Croatia,” Ian Traynor, op.cit. “Pro-Nazi Legacy Lingers for Croatia,” Stephen Kinzer, New York Times News Service, 30 October 1993. “Monument to Anti-Fascism Desecrated in Croatia,” Tanjug, February 1995. “Another Anti-Fascist Monument Blown Up in Croatia,” Tanjug, 11 April 1995. “Croatia, Symbols of Crimes,” Miodrag Dundjerovic, Tanjug, 1 June 1994. “Croatia Adopts New Currency Recalling Fascist Era,” Reuters, 9 May 1994. “Hiding Genocide,” Gregory Copley, Defense and Foreign Affairs Strategic Policy, 31 December 1992. “Croatia is Rehabilitating Ustashism and the Independent State of Croatia,” Politika (Belgrade), 12 February 1993. “Tudjman Calls for All-White Peace Force in Croatia,” Eve Ann Prentice, The Times (London), 11 April 1995. “Croatia to Seek Expulsion of Non-White U.N. Troops,” Tanjug, 10 April 1995.

(25) Interview with Franjo Tudjman, HTV Television (Zagreb), 22 April 1996.

(26) Address by Franjo Tudjman to the Croatian World Congress in Brioni, Radio Croatia Network (Zagreb), 6 July 1996.

(27) “Croatian Towns, Villages Cleansed of Serbs,” Tanjug, 26 January 1993. “Savovic: Croatia Expelled 300,000 Serb,” Tanjug, 5 November1993 “Serb Party Official: 350,000 Serbs Driven Out.” Tanjug, 26 August 1994.

(28) “Croatian Police Tactics Cited,” Associated Press, 3 October 1994. “Helsinki Committee Chair: Collective Vendetta Against Croatia’s Serbs,” Tanjug, 7 may 1994. “Protests Prevent Latest Wave of Croatian Apartment Evictions,” Radio Free Europe, 12 July 1994. “Croatian Human Rights Activist: Zagreb Backs Human Rights Violations,” Tanjug, 28 September 1994. “Rights Groups Report Abuses by Croatia,” David Binder, New York Times News Service, 7 December 1993.

29) “Interior Minister Aide Accused of War Crimes,” ZDF Television Network (Mainz), 17 May 1994. “Slovene Daily Says Croatian Leaders Keep Quiet About Massacre of Serbs,” Tanjug, 14 January 1994. “Croatian Paper Calls Mass Killings of Serbs a National Disgrace,” Tanjug, 12 July 1994. “Zagreb Knows About Mass Killings of Serbs,” Tanjug, 23 July 1994. “Dossier: Pakracka Poljana,” Feral Tribune (Split, Croatia), 1 September 1997. “Death Camps and Mass Graves in Western Slavonia: Marino Selo and Pakracka Poljana,” dossier prepared by Serbian Council, Belgrade, 1993.

(30) “Miro Bajramovic’s Confession,” Feral Tribune (Split, Croatia), 1 September 1997. “Croatian’s Confession Describes Torture and Killing on Vast Scale,” Chris Hedges, New York Times, 5 September 1997.

http://www.tenc.net
[Emperor’s Clothes]

Jamat-ul Ahrar, New Name for Pakistani Taliban Barbarians

[SEE:   Pakistani Taliban Slaughter 100+ Schoolchildren In Peshawar ]

Ideological purification: Understanding the TTP split

dawn

Muhammad Amir Rana

Khorasani  Jamatul Ahrar
Omar Khalid Khorasani is seen in the centre during an interview in Mohmand tribal region on June 2, 2011. —Reuters photo

There is nothing new or surprising in the news of a split among ranks of the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), as it had been in the process since November last year, when TTP’s head Hakimullah Mehsud was killed in a drone attack.

While many see this split as a major blow to the terrorists’ umbrella organisation, it is worrisome that some relatively more brutal factions of the group are reorganising themselves.

The chance that this split will affect the existing militant landscape in the region is small.

The news indicates, in fact, that certain terrorist groups are in a process of transformation and are absorbing influences of newly emerging terrorist organisations like the Islamic State (previously ISIS, now IS).

The new influences and inspirations are causing ideological purification within terrorist organisations.

The newly established group Jamatul Ahrar, and its goals and objectives suggest that it is inspired by the achievements of the IS.

According to media reports, the group is the brainchild of Omar Khalid Khorasani — an ambitious Taliban commander and a member of TTP Shura who was not happy with peace talks between Taliban and the government.

Transformations and ideological purifications among terrorist groups usually entail a process of abrasion, which sometime goes deep, but should not be regarded as destruction.

Transformations do not make terrorist groups weaker.

Rather, they provide new ideological strengths, which help terrorists restructure their groups and revamp their operational strategies. When Ahrar claimed that the TTP now belonged to them, they meant to say that they had substituted the older organisational and operational formations with new ones.

Terrorist movements have passed through many transformations during the last one decade.

Much has been written about how Kashmir-based militant groups and sectarian groups in Pakistan came under al Qaeda’s ideological influence, which transformed major segments of these groups.

There were almost similar reasons behind the confrontation between the Taliban commanders Abdullah Mehsud and Baitullah Mehsud in 2004.

Abdullah wanted to speed up terrorist operations in Afghanistan, but Baitullah had come up with new ideological motives. While he did not object to Pakistani Taliban extending over help to their Afghan counterparts in Afghanistan, he stressed upon establishing the rule of Shariah in whatever tribal areas inside Pakistan were under Taliban control.

Under the influence of the Arabs and Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU), Baitullah also developed differences with Waziri militant commanders.

In the subsequent years, differences between Hakimullah Mehsud and Waliur Rehman Mehsud were primary of operational nature, but Waliur Rehman was not happy with the increasing sectarian tendencies in TTP.

When ideological transformations occurred across Pakistani militant groups within the broader concept of an Islamic state, it gradually ‘purified’ their objectives and evolved different trends among them.

Now, Pakistan has militant groups with interests ranging widely from tribal and nationalist ambitions to sectarian, regional and even global ones. There is a lot of diversity in these groups.

Operation Zarb-e-Azb in North Waziristan appears to be one of the major reasons behind new developments within the TTP.

As the military operation uprooted militants from their safe heavens and dispersed them, many militant commanders and groups looked confused as to how to respond to this situation, particularly in absence of an agreed-upon leadership.

TTP already had cracks, and it appeared that two Mehsud factions were fighting with each other over the issue of leadership and resource distributions.

One of these groups was the Khorasani group.

Omar Khorasani was not happy with the infighting among militants. He contested Fazlullah’s leadership, had reservations on his ideological vision and believed that the latter was focused too narrowly on his native region (Swat), which damaged the operational effectiveness of the TTP across the country.

Khorasani aspires to make his group part of a broader Khorasan movement, which he believes will bring global change and help establish the Caliphate system in the world.

The emergence of the IS also influenced some TTP and other militant commanders to revamp their movement and to revisit their strategies, capacities and operational targets.

The Khorasani group has been under the influence of al Qaeda, which unlike IS, does not hold any territory. Al Qaeda is an underground organisation that operates through its affiliates, which can intensify conflicts in certain regions; but it is not capable of leading the movements on the ground. Even on an operational front, al Qaeda depends on terrorist attacks and cannot develop and lead a force like IS.

The IS is inspiring more groups other than just Pakistani militants. Boko Haram and other terrorists groups that emerged after 9/11 have also pledged allegiance to this new movement.

Though the chances that groups like Jamatul Ahrar will announce allegiance to IS are few, it is safe to say that they are getting inspired by this new entity.

With al Qaeda getting weaker in the region, these groups may imitate the operational tactics of IS in the near future.

Pakistani Taliban Slaughter 100+ Schoolchildren In Peshawar

At least 104 dead in Taliban school attack in Peshawar

PESHAWAR: Taliban militants attacked a school in Peshawar on Tuesday, leaving at least 104 people dead including 84 students.

LIVE UPDATES:

03:23 p.m: Two twin explosives alongwith gunshots are just heard at the ground zero.

03:17 p.m: Two close relatives of ARY News correspondent in Peshawar were amongst the deceased.

03:14 p.m: ISPR has stated that three blocks of the school have been cleared from terrorists.

03:11 p.m: Nawaz Sharif has arrived in Peshawar to review the hostile situation.

03:05 p.m: Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) has condemned the attack on Army Public School and appealed the citizens to donate blood for the victims of the attack.

02:42 p.m: Army Chief General Raheel Sharif has also left for Peshawar.

02:40 p.m: PTI Chairman Imran Khan has left for Peshawar.

02: 27 p.m: Opposition leader Syed Khursheed Ahmed Shah has held both federal government and PTI Chairman Imran Khan responsible for the attack.

02:18 p.m: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has left for Peshawar where he will monitor the operation and relief work himself. He has called the incident a national tragedy. maryam02:12 p.m: CM KP Pervez Khattak has said that 104 people have been killed in which 84 are children. He has announced three-day mourning. He said that the terrorists were dressed in Frontier Corps (FC) uniform and were speaking Arabic. 02:05 p.m: 23 children have been killed so far. A soldier escorts schoolchildren after they were rescued from the Army Public School that is under attack by Taliban gunmen in Peshawar02:00 p.m: Two terrorists have been killed in the operation so far. A Pakistani soldier takes up a position above a road near a military run school that is under attack by Taliban gunmen in Peshawar01:47 p.m: At least 23 people have been killed so far which includes large number of children. A female teacher and a soldier is amongst the deceased as well. Schoolchildren cross a road as they move away from a military run school that is under attack by Taliban gunmen in Peshawar01:46 p.m: Chief Minister of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) Pervez Khattak has condemned the attack on Army Public School.

01: 19 p.m: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif contacted Federal Interior Minister and instructed him to complete the rescue operation as soon as possible.

A soldier escorts schoolchildren after they were rescued from from the Army Public School that is under attack by Taliban gunmen in Peshawar

01:15 p.m: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan has condemned the attack on Army Public School.

01: 09 p.m: The death toll has increased to 18.

A rescue worker waves to make way for an ambulance as it speeded away form a school that was attacked by Taliban gunmen in Peshawar

01:05 p.m: Hospitals are appealing the citizens to donate blood for the wounded.

12:55 p.m: A terrorist has just blew himself outside the auditorium.

12:54 p.m: According to ARY News correspondent, at least 12 children have been killed in the Taliban attack so far.

12:51 p.m: The children said that the terrorists attacked the auditorium where they were giving their examinations.

12:48 p.m: Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) has said that the children and staff have been evacuated from the building.

Pakistani security forces drive on a road leading to the Army Public School that is under attack by Taliban gunmen in Peshawar

12:43 p.m: Another child has been killed in the terrorist attack.

Pakistani security forces takes up a positions on a road leading to the Army Public School that is under attack by Taliban gunmen in Peshawar

12:39 p.m: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has condemned the violent incident and ordered the safe rescue of the children trapped inside the school.

12:39 p.m: A rescue operation is underway to rescue the schoolchildren. Security sources have said that majority of the children have been rescued.

12: 37 p.m: A school teacher had said that around 1400 to 1500 students study in the school.

Details:

Taliban militants stormed the Army Public School in Peshawar in broad daylight in a latest major offensive after military operation currently underway.

Five or six militants wearing military uniforms have entered the Army Public School in the city of Peshawar, a source at the school told AFP.The Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) claimed responsibility for the attack, saying the gunmen had been ordered to shoot older students but not children.

TTP spokesman Muhammad Khorasani told AFP there were six attackers.

“They include target killers and suicide attackers. They have been ordered to shoot the older students but not the children,” he said.

“There has been an incident of firing at Army Public School in Peshawar. Troops have cordoned off the area and (are) searching for the militants,” a senior military official told AFP. (AFP)

Jeffrey Feltman Is Coming To Ukraine–the Man Who Starts and Manages the Bush/Obama Civil Wars

feltman

United Nations, Dec 13, 2014:
Jeffrey Feltman, the UN under-secretary-general for political affairs, is scheduled to visit Ukraine early next week in a bid to support UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s efforts to seek a peaceful settlement of the Ukrainian crisis, a UN spokesman said here Friday.”Feltman, in an effort to support the secretary-general’s good offices to assist in finding a peaceful resolution of the crisis in Ukraine, will travel to Kiev Dec 16 and 17 for consultations with senior officials,” Stephane Dujarric said at a daily news briefing.

The visit of the UN political chief comes just a few days after the trip of the UN assistant secretary-general for human rights, Ivan Simonovic, who is currently in Ukraine to assess the human rights situation in the country.

During his visit, Simonovic is scheduled to meet a number of Ukrainian government officials as well as civil society actors, the official said, adding that he is also scheduled to visit the eastern region of the country.

The visits by the two senior UN officials take place one week after Ukrainian forces suspended hostilities against independence-seeking insurgents in the country’s eastern region.

The armed conflict in eastern Ukraine, which began in mid-April, has claimed at least 4,350 lives and wounded more than 10,000 others, according to the latest UN estimates.

– IANS

Pleading With the Conscience Of A Nation With No Soul

Washington Post Op-ed: CIA report shows need for national conscience

Our belief in the national image is astonishingly resilient. Over more than two centuries, our conviction that we are a benign people, with only the best of intentions, has absorbed the blows of darker truths, and returned unassailable. We have assimilated the facts of slavery and ethnic cleansing of Native Americans, and we are still a good people; we became an empire, but an entirely benevolent one; we bombed Southeast Asia on a scale without precedent, but it had to be done, because we are a good people.

Even the atrocities of Abu Ghraib have been neutralized in our conscience by the overwhelming conviction that the national image transcends the particulars of a few exceptional cases. And now the Senate torture report has made the unimaginable entirely too imaginable, documenting murder, torture, physical and sexual abuse, and lies, none of them isolated crimes, but systematic policy, endorsed at the highest levels, and still defended by many who approved and committed them.

Again, it has become a conversation about the national image, this phoenix of self-deception that magically transforms conversations about what we have done into debates about what we look like. The report, claimed headlines, “painted a picture of an agency out of control,” and “portrays a broken CIA devoted to a failed approach.” The blow to the U.S. reputation abroad was seen as equally newsworthy as the details themselves, and the appalling possibility that there will never be any accountability for having broken our own laws, international law and the fundamental laws of human decency.

The national image is essentially a metaphor, and that metaphor operates differently in the United States than outside. Today, when we speak of how we are perceived in the wider world, we don’t seem to mean a coherent set of ideals about what America represents, or even an image at all, but rather something like a stock ticker that registers upticks and downdrafts in the value of our international brand. What people envision when they think about America isn’t really knowable, and in any case, it’s far easier to simply poll for the favorable and unfavorables. In April, a Gallup poll gave us the latest news from the market: up in Asia, recovering (after the spying scandals) in Europe, flat in South America, falling off peak in Africa. Expect a bear market in coming months.

The idea of a national image as essentially like a marketplace is an appealing one, especially in a country so in love with the market, so convinced they always rise, always recover, always recalibrate. America is always right, and markets are always right, so any deviation from a high-value assessment of the American brand is necessarily temporary. This conviction helps us keep at bay the thought that in many parts of the world, the national image includes scenes of waterboarding, of Americans smashing heads, forcing men to stand on broken limbs, killing by hypothermia and “rectal feeding,” which is rape.

At home, our sense of ourself is more psychologically constructed, like an amalgam of individual pictures. We bring to it the deep love of the lives we lead, so it becomes a composite, made of innumerable images of family and friends, of grandfathers who fought in the war, Thanksgiving dinners and the nice people from church who tend to the soup kitchen. It is a mostly stable image that comprises sepia-toned data points and the sentimental soft colors of Polaroid snapshots of picnics, beaches and candles on the birthday cake. This is who we are.

But that is not at all who we are. As long as the crimes done in our name remain unpunished, they remain our crimes. The lives we love — as many apologists for torture now openly claim — are purchased at the cost of extreme violence and brutality perpetrated on other people, many of them innocent, none of them deserving of torture.

We have come to a critical moment in the debate about torture. It’s no longer possible, as it was when the images of Abu Ghraib emerged in 2004, to pretend that these events were rare, exceptional or the work of a few rogue agents. Nor will it be easy to assimilate them into that beloved average image of our national goodness. We are confronted with our own barbarity, as we have been confronted with the barbarity of the Islamic State. We torture, they behead. We beat men senseless, slam their heads into walls, strip them naked and leave them to die, while they march men into a field and put bullets in their heads. We might still cling to the idea that our crimes are not quite so bad as theirs. But to quibble over the degree of cruelty we tolerate is to acknowledge that cruelty is now standard practice. Unless we punish the guilty, we can have no more illusions that there is anything fundamental about who we are, how we are governed or what religion we practice, that distinguishes us from the worst in the world.

How does the national image survive this? The usual forces will struggle to resist the new information. Some will wear blinders; others will see things selectively. But what do the rest of us do, everyone one of us who woke up, yesterday, to a powerful feeling of helplessness and shame? If the report leads to no further investigation, no indictments or prosecution, does it then just lay there, on the side of history, as something that can’t be assimilated, while the national image slowly comes back to its usual, gauzy, soft focus on our own unquestionable goodness?

If no one in public life is capable of punishing the guilty, if nothing comes of this but more denials and obfuscations, if the CIA is indeed more powerful than the president, the Congress and the Constitution, what is left of our beloved and benign national image?

Moral revolution begins at home, with a revolution in one’s own values. If you are horrified by what has happened, then you must remake your own mental picture of America, in yourself, in your own mind, ruthlessly and mercilessly, until it conforms to the truth of who we are. The first duty is not to look away.

But the crimes are so horrible, the injustice so vast, that it must go further than that. We should take our cues from a species of painting made throughout the Renaissance, vanitas images, which were a type of still life laden with reminders of death: skulls and hourglasses, guttering candles and fruit going bad. Vanitas elements, which also occurred in other kinds of paintings, reminded the living of the inexorable fact of death and Christians of the inevitable day of judgment. They compelled the faithful to see the skull always under the skin.

We are all, to some degree, narcissists, in love with our lives. But we must re-envision those lives with the hard truth of vanitas paintings. We must have the discipline to see the extent of our national depravity. We must bring it home to the very texture of the lives we lead. When you look at your children, remember dead children, torn to shreds by our smart bombs. When you sit by a warm fire, remember the windowless dungeons we made to break our enemies — and not infrequently innocent men accidentally caught up in our wars. When you fall asleep in your bed, remember the sleep deprivation “for up to 180 hours, usually standing or in stress positions, at times with their hands shackled above their heads.”

If you can, if only for a day, or an hour, let every comforting thought be infected with the truth of what we have done.

And will that right the national image? Will it correct its contours, average in a little ugliness? Perhaps not. But we must atone. And we must learn that the national image is a hollow conceit. What we desperately need is a national conscience.

AMERICAN HOLOCAUST–We Inspired Hitler and S. Africa

The powerful and hard-hitting documentary, American Holocaust, is quite possibly the only film that reveals the link between the Nazi holocaust, which claimed at least 6 million Jews, and the American Holocaust which claimed, according to conservative estimates, 19 million Indigenous People.

It is seldom noted anywhere in fact, be it in textbooks or on the internet, that Hitler studied America’s “Indian policy”, and used it as a model for what he termed “the final solution.”

He wasn’t the only one either. It’s not explicitly mentioned in the film, but it’s well known that members of the National Party government in South Africa studied “the American approach” before they introduced the system of racial apartheid, which lasted from 1948 to 1994. Other fascist regimes, for instance, in South and Central America, studied the same policy.

Noted even less frequently, Canada’s “Aboriginal policy” was also closely examined for its psychological properties. America always took the more ‘wide-open’ approach, for example, by decimating the Buffalo to get rid of a primary food source, by introducing pox blankets, and by giving $1 rewards to settlers in return for scalps of Indigenous Men, women, and children, among many, many other horrendous acts. Canada, on the other hand, was more bureaucratic about it. They used what I like to call “the gentleman’s touch”, because instead of extinguishment, Canada sought to “remove the Indian from the Man” and the Women and the Child, through a long-term, and very specific program of internal breakdown and replacement – call it “assimilation“. America had it’s own assimilation program, but Canada was far more technical about it.

Perhaps these points would have been more closely examined in American Holocaust if the film had been completed. The film’s director, Joanelle Romero, says she’s been turned down from all sources of funding since she began putting it together in 1995.

Perhaps it’s just not “good business” to invest in something that tells so much truth? In any event, Romero produced a shortened, 29-minute version of the film in 2001, with the hope of encouraging new funders so she could complete American Holocaust. Eight years on, Romero is still looking for funds.

American Holocaust may never become the 90-minute documentary Romero hoped to create, to help expose the most substantial act of genocide that the world has ever seen… one that continues even as you read these words.