Category Archives: World War

Pertaining to international relations, war, terrorism, subterfuge and diplomacy

US operation to remove Assad’s Russian protection ends in fabulous failure

Amongst the analysts, corporate-media or otherwise, there is still quite a lot of puzzlement about Trump’s attack on Shayrat airbase. Of course the state controlled apparatus is convinced that it was a response to a chemical weapons attack – or rather, it wants to convince its consumers that that was the purpose. This crowd, as certain as it is now will nevertheless grow confused. It is fearless of Russia on behalf of the readership that its masters want to have die in a war, and undoubtedly as the months go by, and Trump does nothing else to stand up to the “evil” Putin and depose the “dictator” Assad (which is what we should expect will happen unless certain circumstances change), then puzzlement – or perhaps frustration – will come. In the alternative media, in those parts where there is either denial for an agenda, or, less likely, denial by cognitive dissonance, the attack was a message to China, or a deliberate pulling of punches, or an attempt to destroy those chemical weapons that Assad had not yet surrendered (this last one an especially fanciful whopper from a certain competition-averse giant-of-an-organisation that punters have foolishly allowed to dominate alternative media). Naturally, there is an element that rushes to blame Israel (Trump was just pulled on a string), but there is also a sensible element of alternative media that can see that the act was disjointed, and erratic, coming out of nowhere – at least according to Trump’s genesis as a president – but also going to the same place. Just what is Trump’s strategy – does he even have one?

The answer is surely this (and people need to adjust to what it tells them about the MAGA President): the US Government – now under the stewardship of Trump, but still the same old lying and cheating crook – was hoping to lop the Syrian branch away from the protective Russian bough so that, isolated from its life-giving roots, it would wither up, dry and become tinder wood that Trump could throw on the dwindling PNAC bonfire. Unfortunately, for Trump and the US Government, it turned out that the axe wielded to perform the surgery wasn’t the sharpest tool in the box – which is not only a metaphor for a humiliating military failure, but also for the apparent stupidity of the people who planned the operation and who thought that getting the White Helmets to stage yet another catastrophe to blame on the Syrian Government, despite the uncommonly common knowledge about their particular role in the war against Assad, could fool or shame the Russians (indeed, Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov made an especial post-attack reference to them as “infamous swindlers”).

There has been a big development since the attack on Khan Shaykhun, and the subsequent retaliatory cruise missile strike, was first dealt with at FBEL (read here). Previously the author agreed with a theory that the Russians had proffered, to wit a Syrian air plane had inadvertently hit an al-qaeda chemical store which had then created a dispersal of poison to kill a large number of civilians (70). More evidence, and events of the intervening period, have altered the author’s thinking, and not just on one aspect of the episode as a whole (as this article attests to). Thanks to the work of Professor Theodore Postol of MIT, it begins to look like the chemical agents at Khan Shaykhun had been released on the ground to coincide with a Syrian air attack with the intent to make it appear as if there had been an airborne chemical weapon assault.

That the aftermath of a Syrian air raid was a fabricated event provides a very neat explanation for the Trump administration’s rush to retaliation (as it does for the possibility that Trump dismissed evidence that didn’t support the action he wanted to take – as speculated upon here). A fabricated scene of barbaric savagery implicating Assad meant that there could be no delay in which to have an investigation to prove Syrian armed forces’ innocence. Most damingly, it also suggests there was Trump administration involvement with the creation of the pretext. Indeed, if a plan to alienate Russia from Syria was executed, as the author suspects it was, then it would have specifically required a horrific and inhuman element that would put pressure of Russia to distance itself from Syria – i.e. the supposed chemicals weapons attack. This “attack”, then, would indicate initial motivation coming from the US.

Furthermore, we can detect that something was going on in the coordinated rhetoric being used by the Trump administration; this constituted phase three of the plan by the author’s reckoning. For instance, this is what Trump’s National Security Advisor, Lt General McMaster said on 9th April during an appearance on Fox News:

Russia should ask themselves, what are we doing here? Why are we supporting this murderous regime that is committing mass murder of its own population and using the most heinous weapons available … Right now, I think everyone in the world sees Russia as part of the problem.

On the 11th April, the Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, attending a meeting of foreign ministers from the Group of Seven industrialized nations, was reported as saying that Russia must “choose between aligning itself with the United States and other Western nations or Syrian President Bashar Assad, Iran and the militant group Hezbollah.” Here’s some more from Tillerson, from the same event:

We want to create a future for Syria that is stable and secure… Russia can be part of that future and play an important role or Russia can maintain its alliance with this group which we believe is not going to serve Russia’s interest longer term.

Then on April 12th, during a press conference after a meeting with Lavrov in Moscow, Tillerson said this:

The world’s two foremost nuclear powers cannot have this kind of relationship.

If the reader can detect a note of desperation in this last example, it shouldn’t be a surprise; by the time it was uttered, the Trump administration should have understood that Russia was not going to desert Syria.  Already, at the G7 meeting, the UK and US (although the prime mover on the surface was the UK) had failed to garner a united front to push for more sanctions against Russia. This was characterised as “leaving the US-UK plan to pressurise Vladimir Putin in tatters”, and it was very significant because this pressure was supposed to arm Tillerson when he met Lavrov in Moscow. Moreover, before the  G7 meeting (9th April), Boris Johnson’s withdrawal from his own Moscow appointment – apparently done in protest – had drawn scorn and mockery from Russia.

The final proof that Russia had not been hectored into submission was evidenced by a veto of a UN draft resolution introduced by the UK that assumed Syrian guilt, but was superficially about instigating an investigation so that Russia could be demonised if it did apply its veto. As he introduced this resolution, Matthew Rycroft, the former Private Secretary to Tony Blair and the sitting UK envoy (these people never stop being dangerous), applied the same tack as seen above, accusing Moscow of siding with “a murderous, barbaric criminal… rather than with their international peers.” Moscow vetoed the resolution all the same, with the Russian ambassador basically implying that Rycroft, who was addressed as if he were a child, was a trouble-making coward. Boris Johnson was suitably dismayed.

What is very clear amongst all of this is the psychology employed by the USA and the UK government(s) – one could call it a grand confidence trick – in order to try to get Russia to capitulate. The completeness of the failure of this conniving was represented by the united front shown by Russia, Iran and Syria when their respective foreign ministers met and demanded that the US carry out no more strikes on Syrian forces.

So, what had gone wrong for the US/UK – and most importantly, for Trump? The simple answer is that the Russian government now seemed to fully understand its own peril – this is shown in the way the Russians have started openly calling out the US and UK for their mendacity. It’s quite amusing, actually, that it’s at the very point that the US and UK are using the “we come in peace” promise to ferret out their enemy (a la “Mars Attacks!”) that the Russians have cottoned on to the fact that it would be more dangerous to give Syria up than not to.

Additionally, the Russians were undoubtedly encouraged by the cataclysmic failure of the second phase of the Trump administration’s grand plan – which was the cruise missile attack. While the first phase – the chemical weapons atrocity – and the third phase – the diplomatic confidence trick – was meant to shame and browbeat Russia, the second phase was meant to physically intimidate.

Before we get on to that failure, let’s look at how we can understand that the military strike and certain ramifications prove the plan that the author thinks was attempted. It all hinges on the way that Russia suspended the Memorandum of Understanding whereby it and the USA can operate militarily in Syria without any accidental or mistaken engagement.  The US must have anticipated that the Russians would react by cancelling the agreement – they would have been supremely arrogant and stupid if they had not accounted for it. This means that the loss of the accord as a consequence of the US attack didn’t matter for a US vision of Syria going into the future. And indeed the absence of a “deconfliction” accord would not have mattered if the Russians had decided to leave Syria hanging in the breeze. In addition to this, we have a good idea that, as things transpired, Rex Tillerson had to go to Lavrov and Putin with cap in hand to try to get the Memorandum reinstated. And we get a very good idea that the US have been stymied by the new circumstances via the comments of a spokesman for the US-led coalition operating in Syria:

You know, we have made adjustments to our operations to account for the, you know, the potential tensions that resulted from the strikes that were conducted because of the Syrian regime’s chemical attacks…  I’m just not going to be able to get into the day to day reporting of the status of deconfliction. We’re just not going to do that.

So, all this is would be very humiliating for the Trump administration, and it must surely be safe to say that Russian backbone was not anticipated. The people who launched the cruise missile strike on Syria, with much hubris and delusion, thought it would make the Russians keel over – and they certainly didn’t think they would be pleading with Lavrov and Putin so that they could cling on to their little foot hold.

Therefore, the Trump administration plan would have had to have been relying on a very impressive demonstration of fire power. But for some reason this did not materialise beyond the firing tubes on a couple of boats in the Mediterranean. The Russian Defence Ministry had this to say about the effectiveness of the 59 cruise missiles that were launched at Shayrat airbase:

If 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles were not launched from hundreds of miles away, but instead dropped on Shayrat in one pile from air balloons, the effectiveness of such a ‘strike’ would be equal in cost (over $100mn) and strike accuracy.

Stop for a moment and appreciate the level of mockery being offered here. The Russian Ministry of Defence is saying that the US might as well have deployed World War I technology for all that was accomplished. To rub it in, the Russians also reminded of their own previous extremely effective cruise missile attacks on terrorists – one example written about here under the headline “Russia Is Really Just Showing Off in Syria at This Point”.

After the American missiles had been launched, the Russians had been quick to tell the world that only 23 of them had reached the Syrian airfield, and the fact that it was operational again only hours after the event seems to lend credence to the claim. Moreover, it now appears, as far as the author can see, that rumours of the base being evacuated ahead of the strike first appeared in American media – perhaps as early excuse making.

The following is an extract from a report that has a timestamp of just past midnight Eastern Time on 7th April – so on the Friday morning a few hours after the attack was launched, and it is extremely dodgy.

Dozens of Tomahawk missiles struck the air base near Homs, damaging runways, towers and traffic control buildings, a local resident and human rights activist living near the air base told ABC News via an interpreter.

It would certainly make sense for the US Government to start introducing elements into the story that would rationalise an ineffective mission as “shooting at an empty field” if that mission had indeed been the unmitigated disaster that the Russians claimed it had been. But look how early this rationalisation is being rolled out. It would suggest that the US Navy knew of its ignominy quite soon. The popular explanation in alternative media for any failure of these missiles is Russian electronic jamming technology. Conventional air defences might risk an escalation, but surely unconventional weapons would go unreported by the US military because it wouldn’t like to admit a very significant inferiority in capability that had very wide reaching implications.

What a shock, then, had been received by for Team America on the 6th April? We can well guess. Phase three of the plan – the diplomatic psychology – would already be dead in the water, and yet it was still executed; we should never underestimate the hubris of the globalist cabal in London and Washington. However, it wasn’t long before the Trump administration started to make noises that indicated a reversal of its position: “we’re not going into Syria” (although Assad was still very evil).

All in all, a spectacular failure, with buckets of humiliation collected along the way – but of course, all unfailingly and masterfully covered up by the arm of US and UK Intelligence that constitutes the corporate-media. However, any respite for Syria won by Trump’s set back will surely be temporary and fleeting. Trump is a globalist – a vampire, and his administration will want to suck on Syrian blood; expect more deceptions, more scheming, more mercenaries into Syria, more terrorism in the West. The Russians and their allies still have a long fight ahead of them.

MOAB: mother of all betrayals

In Trump’s latest militaristic spasm, the nearest thing to a nuclear bomb that the US military possesses in its arsenal, a Massive Ordnance Air Blast bomb, or the MOAB, costing a casual 16 million dollars apiece, was dropped on Afghanistan. When the ground stopped shaking, and when the local folks’ were able to hear again (the Afghan government said that civilians weren’t affected – naturally), it was discovered that 36 militants had been killed. Could this, then, make ISIS-K, or ISIS in “Khorasan”, the most expensive terrorists to kill ever, with each one “worth” nearly $450,000? This disproportionate blood/treasure equation was also spotted at the Guardian and declared to be “baffling”. Trying to be fair, though, the target of the bomb had been stated as being an underground complex of tunnels used as a military operations base – (funded for the Mujahedeen by the CIA, as it turns out). But does the reader see the flaw, and did he or she see it as quickly as the author did?

If these tunnels were only sheltering 36 fighters, they actually can’t as much a significant tactical target as the US military’s public relations made out. Indeed, the Nangarhar Offensive of 2016 reportedly all but cleared ISIS out of the province in which these tunnels are located – except for one district, which the group is apparently confined to. Delving deeper into the history of ISIS-K, or ISPK (Islamic State in Khorasan Province), it appears that they were originally well armed Pashtun “refugees” from Pakistan who the Afghan government welcomed “hoping to use them against Pakistan”, and to act as a bulwark against the Taleban. It looks for all the world as if these foreigners became political masters over the resident population without the Afghan government raising an eyebrow, or a finger to a trigger – this kind of invasion where the ruler of a country lets aliens reign over a portion of his territory is all very Biblical, and very odd for someone used to Western national boundaries. It certainly shows that the Afghan government can’t hold much sway in  Nangarhar province – and bear this in mind. As it happens, there was a pro-Taleban popular uprising, followed by a decisive ISIS-K counter offensive – and then the Afghan national armed forces got involved, i.e. the operations abovementioned. It might be worth knowing when considering this history that the Taleban proved consistent in its famous dedication to eradicating poppy cultivation and drug sales while holding power in Nangarhar.

The US bomb strike is very much the stroke of a combatant who doesn’t have the manpower to repress an enemy on the ground – and thus could be said to be an indicator of weakness. That being said, the ISIS-K appeared to have already been contained. There are two options, then, to choose from in terms of understanding the meaning of this strike. Firstly, it was an effort to destroy amenities that facilitate military control of the region – but then, from whom would the US be trying to deny this, the Taleban, the traditional poppy-crop burning power, or ISIS? Secondly, the strike could be empty of military significance, and for purely psychological purposes. After all, how does a public, without any access to the target, and having no other than the US or Afghan military’s say-so to go on, know that the bomb destroyed any underground labyrinth? Indeed, not very long after the strike, in some quarters of the corporate-media - as if sensing a need to be apologetic and excuse-making – the bombing started to get called a message to North Korea. If this is the case – if the bombing was indeed a message – then the author doesn’t think it was one directed at North Korea, but instead one intended for Trump’s domestic audience; a message felt needed after last week’s cruise missile debacle on Syria that went so badly wrong and came nowhere near accomplishing what the US government had high, and delusional, hopes for it to attain (that topic is the subject matter of an article to follow this one).

To put it all very succinctly, Trump appears to be reneging on promises of domestic policy that got him into office*, and big bombs, even dropped into wide open and empty regions of the Afghan mountains and the tundra wilderness of deepest central Asia , seem to have a power over a particular kind of American who would have voted for Trump, and who think (undoubtedly helped to that understanding by alternative-media whose disgrace is double because it promoted Trump on what are turning out to be lies) that dropping a bomb is exactly the right sort of thing an American President should do, so that in the minds of these people, the betrayal is worth putting up with, and the damage dealt by Trump a sacrifice worth making. If the reader has any doubts, regard the following text from a tweet that the author somewhat casually found by searching for the term “MOAB”; it’s bound not to be an isolated incident:

36 ISIS savages were killed. And zero civilians. #MOAB #MAGA

 

 

*There’s not much coverage of Trump’s backsliding in corporate-media, but look at this tweet by David Knight – a one-time Trump supporter, and a high profile one, who condemns the dangerous cultic, no questions asked support illustrated in the tweet text at the foot of the body of this article, and who – much to his credit – is going against the grain of his Infowars employer. He identifies three areas in which Trump’s betrayal has shown itself – the modified stance on China, thus globalism, is the one less obvious. Moreover, he actually calls out Trump’s militarism as a strategy of distraction.

Art of Deal: China can continue to screw America if Trump can bomb NK to distract voters from his failed #Obamacare repeal & tax reform Yeah

 

Update 15/04/2017:

Afghan officials are now saying many more ISIS fighters were killed by the MOAB. A spokesman for the Nangarhar provincial governor said: “We pulled out 90 dead bodies of fighters who lived underground in those tunnels and caves for years, operating and planning attack across the country.” If the information presented in this FBEL article is true – to wit, ISIS-K were considered confined to one district in Nangarhar – then this governorial spokesman is lying. This increase in the number of casualties should perhaps be considered a sign of sensitivity to the criticism and analysis that the bomb strike has elicited.

Trump’s neo-con spasm wasn’t a freak aberration; the old story of oil and gas

In an interview he gave this week on The Liberty Report, Ron Paul chuckled as he talked about the possibility of Bashar al-Assad ordering a chemical weapons strike on Syrian civilians. He chuckled because the idea was and remains ludicrous. The Syrian Government, Paul pointed out (and to paraphrase), has had winning momentum since the Russians became involved to repel the invasion of its territory, and was poised to win a peace deal in which Assad’s position could only be assailed by voters. Why on earth would he do something to snatch military defeat out of those particular jaws of victory? He wouldn’t do it, said Paul: there was zero chance that he would do it. Later Peter Ford, the ex-UK ambassador to Syria, was also perceptibly incredulous in every fibre of his being as he was interviewed by the BBC. It was inconceivable that Assad would be so “self-defeating” given his prospects.

The version of events of the 4th April that seem most plausible to the author have been given collectively by the Russians and Syrians: the latter bombed a facility being used by “rebels” to store chemicals. Previously, according to the Russian Foreign Ministry, Idlib had been a centre for “produc[ing] toxic land mines intended for use in Syria and Iraq”. It’s well documented that chemical weapons are available to the forces ranged against the Syrian Government forces – in fact, for an example see the last time there was a huge potentially war-provoking furore when a chemical weapons attack was also attributed to Assad in 2013. That time (and this is famous), a UN Independent Commission of Inquiry on Syria, said that “testimony gathered from casualties and medical staff indicated that the nerve agent sarin was used by rebel fighters”.

On the other hand the Syrian chemical weapons arsenal has long since been surrendered and dismantled under supervision of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW). This inconvenience won’t be allowed to get in the way of a particular story that the world must be told; the American Vice President basically accused Russia of failing to “fulfill its obligation under a 2013 agreement to eliminate chemical weapons from Syria”. So it was Russia’s fault too, and Pence confirmed to many interested observers that the Trump Administration was all-in on a pivot to globalism even before the President ordered a cruise missile strike.

This is all the page space that we’re going to expend on pondering whether or not Assad was responsible for a gas attack – and all the space the idea deserves -  except to wrap the subject up and reinforce the only conclusion we can make using some words spoken in reaction to the US missile strike by the Russian Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov; words which reminds that American disdain for the sovereignty of other countries has sunk to a new low under a president supposedly very concerned about the sovereignty of his own:

This time, they didn’t even care to provide any facts, just referred to some photos, speculated on the photos of kids yet again, and of course speculated on the testimony of various NGOs, including the infamous swindlers from the White Helmets, who stage different situations to provoke activities against the Syrian government.

(The observant amongst our readership might have noticed that Lavrov forgot to mention the bloke in Coventry, the Syrian Observatory on Human Rights). The hurry to strike, stemming from the absolutely single and primary reliance on emotive propaganda,  without even any pretence at due process (including the need for Congressional approval) is in itself evidence – and very strong evidence – that the Syrians did not intentionally attack Khan Sheikhoun with chemical weapons. What need is there for an investigation when it is not going to reassert your narrative (and instead undermine it)? Do the deed before an excuse to do it exists no more. The hurry also suggests that there was some pressing strategic issue, and we’ll come to that shortly.

There was some other interesting reaction from Russia and Syria, and actually this is much more important than whether or not Assad bombed his own people with chemical weapons. Even if Assad did order some heinous act, would military action in retaliation by a seemingly disinterested outsider be worth the risk that the Russians are now offering? (Perversely, if Syria were committing atrocities, and if that meant they wouldn’t enjoy the protection of Russia, then it would be easy to get at them. It’s because Syria and Russia are convinced of their being in the right that the situation is so dangerous). The following extracts are all from a statement from the Russian Foreign Ministry (source). It was very interesting to read this document because it had everything in it – meaning through it the Russians made very clear their position concerning the US’ activity. It also helps an English reader appreciate the determination and clarity with which the Russians are approaching the menace of the Globalist West; one wonders if there would be so many Twitter Trigger Pullers in the UK and US if the Western corporate-media reported Russian communiqués directly, or at all. The block quotes are from the aforementioned text, and the author’s notes accompany them.

The US could not have failed to grasp the fact that the Syrian government troops did not use chemical weapons [in Khan Sheikhoun].

What this tells us is that the Russians think that the Americans know that their pretext for bombing is a crock of horse manure.

It is not the first time that the US chooses an irresponsible approach that aggravates problems the world is facing, and threatens international security.

The Russians are saying that they view the US as a persistent and aggressive threat to peace, and it doesn’t matter who the president is..

The very presence of military personnel from the US and other countries in Syria without consent from the Syrian government or a UN Security Council mandate is an egregious and obvious violation of international law that cannot be justified. While previous initiatives of this kind were presented as efforts to combat terrorism, now they are clearly an act of aggression against a sovereign Syria.

This is extremely interesting. The Russians are saying that the rationale that the US uses for breaking international law and having a military presence in Syria without the Syrian Government’s consent will no longer be tolerated. Any US presence in Syria is an act of aggression. There are other comments from the head of the Syrian armed forces (chiming with things said by Lavrov) which remind that the US isn’t just at criminal fault because of overt illegal military presence, but because of how its support of terrorists – previously known as al-qaeda – is now out in the open.

The attack makes the United States of America a “partner” of ISIS, Jabhat al-Nusra and other terrorist organizations that have sought since day one of the unfair war on Syria to attack points of the Syrian army and the Syrian military bases.

So, rather than be the peacemaker that he told voters he would be to get voted into office, Donald Trump has exacerbated a big rift in American-Russian relations, and is at risk of cementing a unified international front (Russia, Iran and China being the main players) which is convinced that the USA is a threat to their territorial integrity and their very existence.

There is no doubt that the military action by the US is an attempt to divert attention from the situation in Mosul, where the campaign carried out among others by US-led coalition has resulted in hundreds of civilian casualties and an escalating humanitarian disaster.

The author isn’t up to speed with the state of affairs in Mosul, but now is inspired to take a look. The knowledge we can extract just by comprehension of the statement is that the Russians think that the missile attack had nothing to do with the stated reason. Moreover, the Russians are letting it be known that a catastrophic mess in terms of human suffering caused by US military activities in Iraq are not going unnoticed, and US actions in Syria are the height of hypocrisy. Indeed, it’s quite possible the Russians are hinting at a charge of war crime: look closely, the accusation is clear; the US-led coalition has caused a humanitarian disaster.

It is obvious that the cruise missile attack was prepared in advance. Any expert understands that Washington’s decision on air strikes predates the Idlib events, which simply served as a pretext for a show of force.

What the Russians means here is that a cruise missile attack would require more preparation time than would have available had it been a reaction to the event of just two days previous. As such, we discover that Russia thinks that the US had been waiting for a pretext to attack Syria. A pertinent question to ask is when did this wait start?; was an opportunity to hit Syria being looked for while the Trump White House’s official position was for no regime change? This might imply that the “no-war” stance commonly attributed to the Trump administration (an election promise) had lately become purely for show – if it hadn’t always been that way.

The exact reason for the show of force seems to have already been mentioned – as a diversion. But are the Russians letting on about the true nature of this decoy? It turns out that ISIS launched a “powerful” offensive in the vicinity of the Shayrat base – only twenty miles away according to a Daily Express article. The target was a military base at Al-Furqlus; the Express cited pro-Syrian news site Al-Masdar. Some good journalism from the Express, but it would have been even better if it mentioned that Al-Furqlus is the site of a state gas company, and ISIS had been contending for it in 2015. This place has also been on the front of roaming battle lines in the fight for Palmyra. So this offensive must be the same one referred to in an RT article “to gain control of strategic oil areas near Palmyra”. The Governor of Homs had been cited by RT that the attack had been unsuccessful, but the Express article could not be so sure.

This information becomes extremely interesting when you know that of the 59 missiles launched at the Shayrat base, only 23 landed there. 36 disappeared. Russian reports claim not to have any information†. The author wonders if they had been fired to support the Al-Furqlus offensive – even the missiles fired at Shayrat would have had a part to play in this to fend off counter air cover (there is talk that the base had been evacuated). Was some urgent need to get ISIS into a place to deny the Syrian Government a supply of gas the real reason for the US “show of force”? Would the missile strike have been about getting bargaining chips as a possible peace settlement looms? Or about controlling territory for claiming ownership when the final buzzer sounds*; finding the chips lying where they fall, so to speak. Trump did always talk about how the US should have better exploited its Iraqi adventure and “taken the oil”. Maybe his off the cuff remark about getting another chance while addressing the CIA wasn’t a joke after all.

Finally, the Russian Foreign Ministry statement ends abruptly with this:

Russia suspends the Memorandum of Understanding on Prevention of Flight Safety Incidents in the course of operations in Syria signed with the US.

This is quite serious, is it not? Obviously this means that it might not be so easy, and decidedly more dangerous, to meddle in Syria on another occasion – in fact, it might already affect US operations;  the author doesn’t have any information to tell if that would be true or to what extent. Apart from that, it tells us that the Russians think the US abused a concord between them, and we can imagine it would be very difficult for them to trust the Americans again.

This subject of the Memorandum of Understanding, which was in force at the time of the missile strike, brings us to something that must be mentioned: a rather fantastical sounding story very recently conceived by a certain (stubbornly) pro-Trump (and now pro-war) “news” organisation which would like you to believe that the missile strikes were designed to impress the Chinese leadership as it visited Trump in Washington – the reader may have heard about it. This story relies upon the idea that the US selectively withheld information about the strike from China, while it did inform Russia so that the event could go ahead without casualty to any Russians, and it would be a surprise for the Chinese – who would know that the Trump regime meant tough business in their dealings with them. We know that the USA informed Russia because the US Defense Department confirmed it in a statement. However, this notification would surely have been related to requirements of the Memorandum of Understanding‡ – and nothing to do with somehow plotting with the Russians to put the willies up the Chinese. We’ll leave it right there.

 

Updates 09/04/2017

* In a tweet thanking the military involved in the strike on Syria, and in a letter to Congress promising further action, Trump has since doubled down, and apparently is not ashamed that he has engaged in flagrantly naked aggression against Syria. We should now realise that his administration was serious when it talked of regime change in Syria, and thus any military activity by the US in concert with its proxy terrorist army will be to that end. There is a feeling abroad on the internet that Trump must be impeached.

The following items are sourced from the Saker’s “Syria US missile strike Naval Brief NB 05/17 April 08, 2017″, here.

† Claims are being made that the missing missiles may have been due to the electronic jamming wonder-technology that the Russians are rumoured to possess (we may have seen a demonstration of this in the infamous case of the USS Donald Cook).

‡ “Russia was ‘informed’ by the US, prior to the missile strike by being given a ‘deconfliction’ note.” This implies that notification was per Memorandum of Understanding requirements.

 

Reports: Islamic State’s days are numbered – warmongering US/UK governments still use it as bogeyman

Various reports collectively suggesting the imminent overall defeat of Islamic State (otherwise known as ISIS) and other “Takfiri” mercenaries by Syrian, Iraqi and Kurdish forces, are appearing out of the Middle East at the same time as President Obama has announced a plan to escalate US military engagement against ISIS in any theatre of war in which they operate – potentially, therefore, to realise a long held geopolitical ambition of the US Government to deploy ground troops to Syria. The apparent contradiction should not be confusing to those understanding the genesis of ISIS out of the NATO invasion-by-proxy of Libya – a conspiracy fact that, despite the monopoly of corporate-media, is being helped into the pages of history books by the likes of US Senator Rand Paul who recently made comments linking ISIS with the Obama/Clinton regime’s “kinetic action” which culminated in the overthrow of Gaddafi. The White House’s new warmongering is completely understandable in the context of a scenario where ISIS is merely a huge, but nevertheless deadly, psychological operation with an objective to deliver a pretext for heavy US intervention in the Iraqi/Syrian war zone, but which is fast running out of lifetime to do it in. If it seems unlikely, then comparisons can be drawn with Ukraine to witness a pattern of pawn-sacrifice to create a situation on the great chess board from which the US and its coalition partners can clean up. In the Ukrainian example, the panicked dash by the German Chancellor and French President to Moscow came as the US was threatening to send heavy armaments to the Ukrainian regime’s failing forces – not only to save them from a crushing defeat, but also to employ in a wicked strategy targeted against civilians to force Vladimir Putin into doing that thing he’s only been accused of doing thus far – invading Ukraine. This would have given the US/UK and NATO a rationale for demanding further economic penalisation and, international isolation of, or even going to war with a Russia that is nevertheless building new economic networks and extending the BRICS alternative to US/UK global hegemony. As in Ukraine, so in Syria and Iraq, where ISIS, against all normal expectations, are still going out of their way to provoke the US into intervening against them – on the face of it, at least – and in reality to bring the US into play against the real enemy – President Assad’s Syria.

The news coming from Syria is that ISIS, or a good element of it, have retreated to their stronghold of Raqqa, and the Syrian Arab Army is in the process of moving up to dislodge the terrorists from their positions. There are other successes for the Syrians: at Aleppo the terrorist mercenaries, predominantly going under the name of al-Qaeda affiliated al-Nusra (now seemingly happy to be working in concert with ISIS rather than in competition as has always been claimed by corporate-media), have been encircled and cut off from resupply from Turkey. There is news from the Golan Heights that “rebels” are looking to be saved by Israeli air strikes. This is perhaps not so unbelievable as it appears. There is history of wounded combatants of the mercenary forces ranged against the Syrian Government being treated in Israeli hospitals. Israel has also made bombing forays into Syria in what Syrian officials have interpreted as “direct aggression carried out to help the Syrian government’s opponents”.

In contrast to these under-reported developments, the plight of Kobane has been well documented in corporate-media, and is now apparently free of an ISIS threat. The turn of the tide in that fight was the joining of the Turkish PKK to it, although US air power is often mentioned in the same sentence when mainstream commentary talks of the relief of Kobane – for example:

The heavy bombing, not seen since the 2003 US invasion of Iraq, helped the Kurds hold and eventually recapture the northern border town last month.

The article this quote comes from is very revealing. It seems to state that B-1B Lancers of the US Air Force 9th Bomb Squadron, in a six-month period (so including in Afghanistan, which had been the place of previous deployment), “flew 18 percent of all strike flights against IS and accounted for 43 percent of the total tonnage of munitions dropped in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan”. Furthermore, of the deployment to Iraq and Syria, the pilot of one crew speaks of having never delivered so much explosive before: the squadron apparently “dropped more than 2,000 bombs and hit more than 1,700 targets”. This same pilot told of how dropping every single bomb on board during a mission was not an uncommon event.  All this information is astonishing. The US started bombing Syria at the end of September 2014. The Turkish Kurds crossed the border into Syria a little over a month later in October. It took the Kurds 3 months after that to January 2015 to defeat ISIS at Kobane. It begs the question: why so long when the US Air Force were raining death in blanket bombing down on ISIS positions?

The effectiveness of the US bombing campaign in Syria and Iraq has been discussed before at this site – please see here – but this is an opportunity to add more perspective and definition from both at the beginning and after the bombing campaign at Kobane. Back in October 2014, the Telegraph reported statements from Turkey’s prime ministerial adviser who was pretty dismissive about American-led attacks on jihadists at Kobane:

While we are concerned about the tragedy in Kobane, we believe that fighting this terrorism there has somehow turned into a PR campaign.

Honestly we are tired of all this ‘raising of awareness’ at certain moments – dropping a couple of bombs is not enough.

Air strikes are necessary but if you don’t have a political perspective on the future of Syria, aerial bombardment is not enough and Kobane is not going to be the last town which will be attacked in this way.

Much more recently, in an interview with the British “journalist” Jeremy Bowen, President Assad was also indifferent:

Yes, [the bombing of IS] will have some benefits [to the Syrian Government], but if it was more serious and more effective and more efficient. It’s not that much.

It is certainly quite a wonder that so much potential devastation, as claimed was dropped out of the air by the US, could make so little strategic difference – and that in fact people with an insight into the conflict could predict that it wouldn’t. And so the reality once again begins to assert itself: it’s not the American or its coalition partners that are principally the reason for any demise in ISIS – and in fact the air war is merely a show of opposition, which nevertheless has been useful in the respect that it has scorched Syrian earth. Instead it has been the boots on the ground provided by the Syrians and the Iraqis supported by Iran and Hezbollah, with the Kurds waging war in the north, that have been the undoing of all the anti-governmental forces in the region – none of which are “moderate”, and all essentially fighting as a NATO foreign legion.

Indeed, the feeling one gets examining alternative media reports out of Syria is of an imminent major defeat all round for this NATO-by-proxy force. This is certainly the assessment of General Qassem Soleimani, the Iranian Quds Force commander who is called the “public face of Iran’s support for the Iraqi and Syrian governments against jihadis” in the article from whence he is here quoted (see here also):

Considering the heavy defeats suffered by ISIS and other terrorist groups in Iraq and Syria, we are certain these groups are nearing the end of their lives.

It is from within this context that we find that ISIS have seemingly invested a lot of time and energy consolidating positions in the Iraqi town of al-Baghdadi and even taking new districts (so occupying 90% of the town according to CNN) – and then launching a raid on the nearby Ain al-Asad air base, 8 miles away, which is hosting 300 US Marines on a mission to train Iraqis. Note, the BBC cites Rear Admiral John Kirby, a Pentagon spokesman, who asked for some perspective: “It was the first time in the last a couple of months that the militant group had taken new ground”.

It seems pretty clear that there is no long term strategic advantage in what ISIS have done at al-Baghdadi in the face of a war that it is losing. The same can be said of the recent supposed execution of the Jordanian pilot that caused such splenetic and hysterical reactions in the British corporate-media and Government. That episode only goes to show that ISIS is rendered more reliant on its Hollywood-style propagandists than it is on effectiveness in the field to project an aura of terror – how prophetic now the Iraqi TV sitcom of last year in which ISIS was mocked as being the “Fairytale State” (or according to another translation, “State of Superstition”, which is a nuance that points to ISIS’s true mystery school nature). So it seems that the latest assault by ISIS has been mustered against the grain of failure, and therefore comprises a very special military effort to try and cause a more immediate alarm in the West by being within a mortar shot’s distance of US military personnel and, once again, appearing to be a likely menace. But whether ISIS do it by extravagant movies or with desperate last throws of the dice is neither here nor there – the root behaviour in any of these actions must be understood to properly comprehend ISIS. The point is this: trying to provoke dismay in the civilian population of one’s enemy so that it gives its government free rein to retaliate – and while all the time one is generally losing militarily anyway – is not the behaviour of a proper army in the field. It is, however, the behaviour of a phantom menace whose mission it is to create a pretext for supposed retaliation – only, that “retaliation” would not be about dealing with the bogus force, it would be for providing an opportunity towards the fulfilment of another agenda – which in the case of US military engagement in Syria, as has been the US/UK’s overtly stated objective for many years now, is the overthrowing the Assad Government.

This last week Obama sent to Congress to seek authority for what is essentially a 3-year long blank cheque for fighting ISIS. The following is from an explanatory letter (to whom, it is not quite clear) penned by Obama (source):

The authorisation I propose would provide the flexibility to conduct ground combat operations in other, more limited circumstances, such as rescue operations involving US or coalition personnel or the use of special operations forces to take military action against Isil leadership.

It would also authorise the use of US forces in situations where ground combat operations are not expected or intended, such as intelligence collection and sharing, missions to enable kinetic strikes, or the provision of operational planning and other forms of advice and assistance to partner forces.

Perhaps not unsurprisingly, this description of desired capability reminds of the noises coming out of a British Parliamentary Defence Select Committee’s report published Thursday 5 February 2015:

The UK can and should be playing a greater role in the fight against DAESH (ISIS) in Iraq and Syria, the Defence Committee argues in its latest report. The Committee emphasised that they are not calling for combat troops to be deployed. However, the UK has the expertise, and resources to play a much larger role in analysing the DAESH threat, contributing the plan to defeat them, supporting the Iraqi forces, and encouraging a political solution.

It should be noted that it always seems to be the case that any Governmental specification of “no ground troops” ahead of involvement in a conflict zone is never referring to special forces, who are always sooner or later reported as being in the thick of things by proud corporate-media – and additionally, the Committee did overtly recommend their utilisation in these potential activities, as well as air support “to help address one of the most extreme threats that we have faced in the last twenty years.”

The last line is a quote from Committee Chairman Rory Stewart (he who in 2010 “disclosed that his father was a British spy – and conceded his own career path might ‘give the appearance’ that he worked for MI6” - source), and reminds of the crucial necessity for a perceived ISIS threat to propel and motivate interference in Iraq and Syria. Both the White House, in its request, and the British MPs in their recommendations, are sowing the sort of seed that could only grow in that sort of soil which had been generously watered by a horror of the prospect of a deadly ISIS enemy. However, the reality on the ground sees a much weakened force. Indeed, the dwindling of the ISIS threat was certainly reflected in the way that the Iraqi Foreign Minister, Ibrahim Jafari, reacted to Obama’s request to Congress by pointing out that Iraq had not made a request for US ground forces, and had no plans for them.

Nevertheless, the shadow government pulling the strings of Washington and London (the one that Rory Stewart’s Pater actually worked directly for) are hungry to devour Syria – actual and potential gas pipelines across the region that do not belong to them are an irksome thorn in the flesh and cannot be tolerated – this is perhaps why the BBC’s Jeremy Bowen was this last week despatched to Damascus to get sound bites from Assad admitting responsibility for “barrel bombs” (we have no barrels, or cooking pots – we have bombs and bullets, was the elected President’s reply). A meme that is just emerging in social and corporate-media indicates that there is a ploy afoot to redirect US, UK and indeed western attention away from ISIS and back towards an atrocity-committing Assad Government in order to inspire enough fear and loathing in the several targeted electorates so that Congress will approve that request to fight ISIS in Syria or anywhere else (and other countries’ parliaments will approve requests from their own branches of executive government) – even though we were no longer at war with ISIS. We will have always been at war with Syria. Having switched sides again, will the British public, in particular, continue to be obtuse to the impossible manoeuvrings of their Government; could they really be as hopeless as Orwell feared they would be?

Targeting Assad through the Islamic State: the great hoax of 2014

Targeting Assad through the Islamic State - the great hoax of 2014Half a year has now passed since June 2014, and the announcement by some terrorists in the Middle East of a new caliphate in Syria and Iraq. The declaration coincided with a supposed dramatic and rapid expansion of armed forces into the latter of those countries, with various towns falling into Islamic State (IS) control, and the very capital becoming threatened with a attack and occupation. Western corporate-media was splashed with pictures of gleaming Toyota pickups streaming through a desert landscape; masked men wearing camouflaged fatigues and desert boots (or shiny white trainers) paraded and posed in formation under their version of the skull and bones black flag. Celebrated as being a kind of Super-Al Qaeda, IS had the clobber as befitted an army trying to carve out a nation state where there isn’t room for one nor, according to either the Syrian or Iraqi sovereign governments, any desire for one. To the author, who has been watching what is essentially the next world war slowly revving up to speed (the British electorate need to step on the brakes next May), and who followed closely NATO’s invasion of Libya by proxy, the rise of IS was very strange – and at the same time very familiar. IS was originally a vehicle for the Iraq-based bogey-man Al Zarqawi, and it has since been revealed that any threat posed by that dreadful criminal (and “Gladio-B” “stay-behind” operative? [see here for more info]), and therefore his organisation, was overstated by the US Government in order to maintain a military occupation. Likewise, it appears very much that IS is still fulfilling the same kind of role for the same continuing western martial objectives – to trigger a US military presence in the name of confronting a great terrorist danger. There is much on the internet from very good alternative media sources that can be used to illustrate this, and to show to what extent the role involves an elaborate hoax. This article covers the same ground – not so expertly, of course – and with a certain focus, for there is one image of IS in particular that appeals to the author’s gut feeling and that clinches all for him. It is the picture of a masked IS operative (perhaps he is a westerner) caught in the act of propagandising to local people who have seemingly come under IS control – captured in pixels is the execution of a psychological operation as British military textbooks would prescribe. It is an image that screams of IS being a tiny tail wagging a huge dog, and it should be forever associated with the War on Terror in the same way that other wars have their own iconic images.

Previously known as al-Qaeda in Iraq (AQI), IS had already been but one component of a force ranged against the Syrian government even before the name change. But prior to that, AQI was apparently a force particular to Iraq. According to some, it was a reaction to the US invasion of 2004, and drew its numbers from the country’s Sunni muslims disaffected by the regime change.

If AQI had been quelled, as some say it was, recently the Iraqi government lost the support of Anbar Province tribes who obviously can suddenly make life much easier for forces antagonistic to the central Iraqi government wanting to base themselves in or traverse their territory. IS sprung into new and vigorous existence. In fact, when one compares one of the more optimistic maps of territory in Iraq said to be under the control of IS, and one of Anbar, there is plenty of overlap. The cities that IS apparently captured in their June blitzkrieg are all to the north; Mosul and Nineveh Province (except the Kurdish component) went one day, Tikrit and most of Saladin Province the next – which brought IS east and knocking on the doors of Baghdad.

In the above paragraph, the word ‘quelled’ was used in relation to a supposed diminishing of al-Qaeda in Iraq – on reflection, maybe the word should be replaced by a phrase, and that phrase should have been “sojourning in Syria”. The following extracts are from 2012 reports from Syria – a time when although the corporate-media was full of casual references to foreign fighters, it was still selling the conflict as a pure civil war:

“The commanders of the Free Syrian Army are all Iraqi,” he told me with a penetrating gaze and a slight nod of his head, to make sure I got the nuance – Iraqi Sunnis was the unspoken explanation.

Source.

Abu Salam al Faluji boasted extraordinary experience. Abu Salam, a rugged Iraqi with a black keffiyeh wrapped around his head, said he had fought the Americans in Falluja when he was a young man. Later he joined al-Qaida in Iraq and spent many years fighting in different cities before moving to Syria to evade arrest.

Source.

Unmentioned in these tracts (and understated even when it was mentioned), the main component of the foreign “Free Syrian Army” were fighters most recently employed by NATO in overthrowing Gaddafi in Libya. Indeed, the AQI bloc might not have been airlifted in wholesale through Turkey as the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group were, but it seems its ranks were full of Libyans nevertheless (recruited by the likes of Abdel Hakim Belhadj, according to Webster Tarpley [this link covers it]). The trouble in pinning these groups down is that they wear different hats for different appearances sake. For instance, when al-Baghdadi, the most recent leader of IS, met with John McCain, the US Senator and one-time Presidential candidate, he was wearing the hat of “FSA” commander. We know this because General Idris, the leader of the “FSA” was also present. We can with all reasonableness say that there is a high degree of inter-changeability between what are essentially extremist-Islamist mercenary groups receiving a lot of attention and support from the US Government. In addition, all roads for these mercenaries into Syria, wherever they come from, tend to lead from Turkey.

This applies for IS just as much. Even now it has a presence in Libya (which is proven as an origin for men and materiel coming into Turkey), and if AQI was ever based in Iraq, now its tracks do firmly lead back, through Syria, to the main nest, gathering point, supply source and staging area in Turkey.

Indeed, some maps of IS occupation are leaner than others, and show their occupation of Iraq (Anbar Province aside) in terms of dislocated points of control joined together by thin rat runs between them. From Anbar to the north-west a sliver running through Syria connects Anbar to Turkey. The undeniable proof of IS operating out of Turkey was the recent attack on Kobani from inside Turkish territory. Turkey is the launching pad for trouble in Syria and Iraq, and if the US and UK governments were serious about doing something about IS, they would do something about Turkey.

With all that history in mind, what perturbed the author so much when IS burst into the world’s consciousness is how it could be that the same people doing much the same as they always had been doing could suddenly be considered to be an organised armed forces representing a new country. For if we look at how IS operates, it is quite evident that not much has changed – and it begs the question, wherefore do the spectacular results come from? The advance through Iraq has been portrayed as a blitzkrieg, but it should be remembered that IS had been in those territories a long time using their “besieging” tactics (not to mention the possibility that Iraqi forces had been ordered to stand down “to increase pressure on Saudi Arabia and bring the threat of IS over-running its borders as well” – source [reporting this: source]).

If we are going to look at IS tactics (and bear in mind, this is based on the author’s reading of the reporting coming out of the area), the reference to “besieging” needs explanation. The mercenaries in both Syria and Iraq move into an area and for cover sit on top of, or amongst, a population – the people of which are inevitably described by western journalists as the support base from which the “rebels” have been spawned organically – whether it be a suburb of a major town, or a village in a rural area. Military operations launched from this base involve attrition by terrorism in the wider vicinity – suicide belt attacks, road-side and car bombs, and ranged mortar attacks. These are to degrade resistance, to have enemy forces occupy themselves in response (to never have an initiative) and to get them to expend resources and manpower. A full frontal assault seems to be a rarity and only when the objective is assured to be achieved – otherwise attacks consist of attrition-causing raids. For instance, just recently two bases in Idlib Province fell to the terrorists using US-supplied anti-tank weapons. This armament seemed to have been the factor by which al-Nusra, the group named in reports – although it all amounts to the same thing: al-Qaeda – felt it was able to tip the balance in an attack to displace Syrian forces. This is a big story in itself, but for our purposes here we must notice how these particular bases were under siege for two years. The NYTimes story actually uses the very words “under rebel siege for two years”. It’s a strange sort of siege that lasts for two years this side of the Medieval period – unless it is of the peculiar type being discussed here. Arguably, long before the IS rampant march through Iraq, towns like Tikrit had been suffering this besiegement and softening up treatment. In 2011 there was an infamous terrorist attack on the Saladin provincial council’s headquarters involving mercenaries disguised as Iraqi soldiers, car bombs and suicide vests.

In terms of IS ever being on the defensive, whenever one reads about the Syrian Arab Army snuffing out mercenary units, they do it by eliminating nests from which the terrorists stage their operations, or by ambushing them as they move through their rat-runs. One also gets a sense that the terrorists abandon an area when faced with an overwhelming oppositional force, and move to a new one. This means that snuffing them out involves a good deal of ping-pong from one place to another, which means that the terrorist can lengthen their useful operational life and presence on the battlefield. The best way to visualise al-Al-Qaeda activity in Syria and Iraq is as a number of submarines in a sea, rather than as massed ranks of men and war machinery. It also appears to the author that the blitzkrieg in Iraq was more of a matter of flooding the country with more, perhaps better equipped, terrorists, rather than an army pushing forward in fronts and being able to militarily govern occupied area. The inundation pushed the terrorist farther, but not in depth. Imagine a flat plain with deeper trenches surrounding higher-lying levels. Water poured onto the surface will drain into the trenches to make islands – but the plain itself will dry out.

As just briefly mentioned, the long process of prior besiegement in points on this landscape will undoubtedly have had something to do with the ability of IS to grow so rapidly on the ground at the same time it was bursting into western awareness. That expansion in summer 2014 brought about one new particular occasion to see in ‘real time’ how terrorist forces are brought to bear on their opposition in Syria: Kobani. This Kurdish town has perhaps become the most famous centre of anti-IS fighting in Syria. Since Turkey allowed Iraqi Kurdish peshmerga fighters to cross its border into Kobani at the end of October, things have been going better against IS. However, the following reports were made before that, and show that there was a problem with engaging IS – based on their tactical nature:

“Clashes were focused in the Southern and Eastern parts of the town. We thwarted several of their (ISIL terrorist) attacks,” a senior Kurdish official, Ismet Sheikh Hasan said.

“We are defending (the town) but … we have only simple weapons and they (terrorists) have heavy weapons,” he added.

“The US-led airstrikes were not effective,” Hasan said, urging the international community and the United Nations to intervene.

Source.

“Air strikes alone are really not enough to defeat Isis in Kobani,” said Idris Nassan, a senior spokesman for the Kurdish fighters desperately trying to defend the important strategic redoubt from the advancing militants. “They are besieging the city on three sides, and fighter jets simply cannot hit each and every Isis fighter on the ground.”

He said Isis had adapted its tactics to military strikes from the air. “Each time a jet approaches, they leave their open positions, they scatter and hide. What we really need is ground support. We need heavy weapons and ammunition in order to fend them off and defeat them.”

Source.

When one thinks of a conventional besieging force, one imagines it to be a sitting duck for an enemy who dominates the skies. In fact, when writing of this siege, some journalists and columnists describe Kobani being pounded by heavy artillery as if it were World War I trench warfare. What is being described is a static situation. The question that this automatically begs is why hasn’t US air strikes routed the enemy? In actuality it appears that the besiegement of Kobani is being done by a force that can melt away so that it can’t be demolished where it stands by air power. True, IS is said to have heavier weapons than the Kurds, but these can still be highly mobile, or even dispensable. Perhaps the Kurdish spokesman was talking about the same kind of US-supplied anti-tank weapons used to capture the Aleppo bases mentioned above?

The turn of the tide in Kobani has, by the shapers of conventional wisdom, been put down to American air power and better co-ordination with Kurdish forces (for that, perhaps read covert NATO forces embedded within). True, IS would have to form into more traditionally shaped units when it wanted to attack en-masse to dislodge the Kurds from their positions, hence leaving them vulnerable to air power, but why would we believe that they would try to do this? The pattern has been one of long drawn out wars of attrition, and surviving to prolong the sieges.

In fact, according to one up-to-date report, IS are trying a new guerrilla tactic after other ones have failed; noticeably it doesn’t say that IS gave up making full frontal assaults on Kurdish positions after they had failed. Although airstrikes are mentioned, the important factor in frustrating IS has obviously been the presence of troops; where there are boots on the ground, access is denied to territory from which to operate.

Kurdish fighters are reportedly in control of more than 60 percent of the Syrian border town of Kobani as the ISIL terror group has lost ground in the strategic territory.

The so-called Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said on Saturday that Kurdish forces made the gains with the help of Kurds from Iraq and the US-led coalition airstrikes.

“IS (ISIL) has even left areas that the Kurds did not enter for fear of mines,” the UK-based group added.

Mustefa Ebdi, a Kurdish activist from the town, also said the Kurdish forces had advanced eastward on the frontline during the past week, adding that the terrorists are “now using tunnels after failing in their tactics of car bombs and explosive belts.”

So summing up, Kobani gave us an opportunity to watch IS after it had become infamous – and it told us that, afterall, IS is not a mass-ranked army that can be strafed in columns as it advances – which is the impression that the world is supposed to have. On that supposed fact we have all been deceived. This brings us to the photograph introduced at the top of this. For it seems certain that if everyone else in the world is to believe that IS is a Super Army, the people on the ground and in the IS-occupied areas have to believe it first. This image, when it appeared in the Wall Street Journal in August 2014, was presented with the following caption: “An Islamic State militant uses a loudhailer to announce to residents of Tabqa city that Tabqa air base has fallen to Islamic State militants, in nearby Raqqa city, on Sunday.”

Therefore the image tells us that, apparently, IS has a branded people carrier which is used by its personnel to drive from place to place to inform them of IS successes – to deliver propaganda. What is being shown in the image is the execution of psychological operations to bolster the perception of IS military impressiveness. If the reader is not familiar with psychological operations, then be sure to follow the links here and here to find out more. The first is to a 1960s document (previously restricted) called the “Staff Officer’s Guide to Psychological Operations”. It’s a bit old, but it is relevant – see the preface in which it is explained that “psychological operations” is a term that replaces “psychological warfare” to reflect the use of this military tool in support of a civil power – basically, it is a weapon to be used on a civilian population as much as a military enemy (and incidentally, the British people suffer psyops from their government on a daily basis).

Most pertinently in this document is “Chapter Four – Loud Speaker Operations”. It is a section that points out the capabilities of using loud speaker equipment – and hand held bull horns are specified as being fit for purpose – to include:

Shock value: The shock effect of a loudspeaker broadcast can be very valuable is assisting psychological impact of the message. This is particularly so in the case of surrender appeals.

Other points of advantage are how literacy is not a factor in the delivery of the propaganda, and how the delivery method is mobile so “it can be brought to bear swiftly upon a selected target”.

The other link leads to a recent document entitled “15 (United Kingdom) Psychological Operations Group, Annual Report 2007/08”. Please notice the many pictures of British Army personnel visiting Afghan villages with bundles of glossy newspapers with the Union Flag printed on them.

This brings us to dealing with this question: if IS is in itself a psyop, whose is it? Let’s briefly re-examine the evidence – it has clear supply links back to a NATO country, it uses armaments provided to it by NATO countries, it uses non-lethal equipment for propagandising – again famously supplied by NATO countries. The answer seems to be becoming clear – but there is a problem. Why would the US and the UK bomb its own asset in Syria and Iraq? One solution is this: it isn’t – at least not as much as we are being lead to believe. Consider the following extracts from a December 12th McClatchy Washington Bureau article:

The American war against the Islamic State has become the most opaque conflict the United States has undertaken in more than two decades, a fight that’s so underreported that U.S. officials and their critics can make claims about progress, or lack thereof, with no definitive data available to refute or bolster their positions

The dearth of information by which to judge the conflict is one of the difficulties for those trying to track progress in it. The U.S. military, which started out announcing every air mission almost as soon as it ended, now publishes roundups of airstrikes three times a week. Those releases often don’t specify which strikes happened on what days or even whether a targeted site was successfully hit. McClatchy has discovered that in some cases, the location given for bombings has been inaccurate by nearly 100 miles.

One could believe that the US military isn’t trying very hard to hit IS. When there are reports of targets in the media, we also find a constant background of damage to Syrian infrastructure; consider the following for instance (emphasis added):

Eight of the 10 airstrikes by the U.S.-led campaign against ISIS in Syria were in the contested border town of Kobane near the Turkish border, the U.S. military said.

The Combined Joint Task force said two other strikes hit a crude oil collection point near Dayr az Zawr and an ISIS weapons stockpile near Raqqa, in the province where a Jordanian pilot was taken captive in northeast Syria.

The above report was recent – this is a sample from back in September:

U.S.-led coalition air raids targeted towns and villages in northern and eastern Syria controlled by the Islamic State group, including one strike that hit a grain silo and reportedly killed civilians, activists said Monday.

Washington and its Arab allies opened their air assault against the extremist group last week, going after its military facilities, training camps, heavy weapons and oil installations. The campaign expands upon the airstrikes the United States has been conducting against the militants in Iraq since early August.

Ismet Sheikh Hassan, a senior official in the Kobani region for the Kurdish militia, said the extremists fired rockets and tank shells at the city from the southeast, while some 1,000 militants amassed to the west.

Notice – an apparent ammassing of 1000 “militants” which somehow wasn’t wiped out?  One thing to be sure about is that the “bombing of IS” is definitely making a substantial strip of Syria worthless to the Syrian Government and nation. This is clearly an act of direct war – and apparently one that the Syrians didn’t think worthwhile upping the ante to try and prevent. Be that as it may,  just because it isn’t being opposed militarily, it doesn’t stop it qualifying as direct aggression. Secondly, the reader needs to appreciate that there is very good reason for the especial interest in the fate of the town of Kobani. The bombing of IS approaching Kobani will be used as a poster-child for direct US intervention in Syria to re-ignite the attempt to overthrow the Assad government. This much has been remarked upon by a member of Iran’s military top brass (“a plot to provide an excuse for the US-led coalition to start a military build-up in Syria,” said General Hassan Firouzabadi). The reader will also notice that Khorosan, the completely new terrorist organisation which was invented earlier in 2014 to provide a direct threat to the US – and so was cited as the reason for the bombing of Syria – has disappeared completely. This is exactly the same game that NATO played in Libya where responsibility to protect quickly turned into open support for the terrorists because that had always been the prior intention. The successful defence of Kobani will become the ringing endorsement for more US/UK bombing, and for intervention generally,  in a chicken and egg scenario that no one will much bother to try and unscramble to re-discover the fake impetus and the counterfeit nature of everything that followed it. The target is Assad, not IS, and this is the crux of the great deception of 2014 – the biggest that has been perpetrated since the one of 2001 when the War on Terror was born.

Cameron threatens IS in UK, British jihadist demonstrates; escalated domestic tyranny and Syrian intervention to follow

With what might be described as impeccable and all too convenient timing, within days of David Cameron publishing an article to warn of unending war against jihadists a provocation has occurred that the British authorities will certainly use to fuel public support for the realisation of a long planned, but somewhat thwarted agenda. The apparent death of James Foley, by beheading, and by a British man of eastern descent, is being whipped up by corporate-media and western politicians as the last straw beyond which inaction against the Islamic State (IS), who the supposed murderer is apparently affiliated with, is no longer morally acceptable. The framework of the discussion is, as has become the norm, in terms of humanitarian intervention in foreign fields, and creating anti-terror security for well being at home; but this is bogus. The real objectives are the securing of assets in Syria and Iraq for Cameron’s globalist masters, and a shoring of the British ruling elite against a growing appreciation of its criminality amongst the public.

That stirring of mass awareness in the British means that there is a wider understanding of the reality of the relationship between their governing class and Islamist terror groups. It is a dynamic that is routinely omitted in the narrative spoon fed to corporate-media audiences – and yet there is enough of a popular grasp of it that the British Government has not been able to have things as easy as it did when it was able to download documents from the internet, and bogusly claim that Britain was only 45 minutes away from a strike from Saddam Hussein’s Iraq. The days of such rampant naivity are long gone.

Libya – where NATO provided tactical air support to West Point-listed terror groups, and bombed civilians in the name of protecting civilians – proved to be a revelation of the method. Then, the trail of a NATO-proxy army, and their armaments, from Libya to Syria after the fall of Gaddafi was well documented in the Alternative Media (see a very small sample at the foot of the page) – mostly using corporate-media reporting that hid the truth in plain view. Observations of this trail were often made on the Luikkerland predecessor to this site, and an essay on the career of Abdel Hakim Belhadj, republished here, offers a reasonable summary of the connection between Islamist terror groups, Libya and Syria. Indeed, the evidence is such that elements of the Alternative Media have evaluated it so as to conclude that there has never been a moderate Syrian factor amongst the insurgents fighting the Assad government – they have always been mercenaries largely from outside Syria, who invaded from NATO/Saudi organised and funded training camps in neighbouring countries, and whose brutal Wahaabiist tendencies are looked for by their organising US/UK masters in order to stoke a humanitarian crisis pretext to interfere further down the line. However, any claims of a casus belli for intervention in Syria and Iraq on the grounds of protection of civilians from fanatics are, as they were in Libya, completely bogus.

Syria has proven to be a stumbling block in the domino-line of British/US/NATO aggression – the main reason may be that Assad and his generals (and his still unified people) had prior warning from events in Libya, but the vote in the UK Parliament against military intervention was certainly a great factor (it has to be said, UKIP’s anti-war stance provided the political pressure that brought this about). Quite certainly IS has been thrust into Iraq to provide a pretext to get the war on Syria back on the rails. Before its rebranding, al-Qaeda, in the guise of the Free Syrian Army, had been committing ghoulish atrocities up and down the length and breadth of Syria (an example told of here). As these were for the furtherance of British Government interests in that arena, collectively they did not motivate David Cameron to take action as this would have meant aligning with Assad; Cameron’s regime is hell bent on removing him from his elected position of power, as previous statments from Number 10 will attest.

Regime change is the objective in Syria, as it was in Libya – to remove opposition to the US/UK unipolar world order, to shatter the unity of the country, and to give global corporate business vampiric access to resources. It is not a coincidence that the supposed beheading of James Foley comes as the US bombed northern Iraq last weekend in support of Kurdish militia reportedly locked in combat with IS. In his article, Cameron wrote of sending equipment (code for arms) to the Kurdish autonomous government, and thus indicated what must become an inevitable outcome of the current strife – the empowering of that body and the inversely proportional weakening of the central Iraqi government. Indeed, al-Malaki, the out-going Prime Minister of Iraq, is openly reported to have been pressured from the job by the ‘international community’ for which one should perhaps read the Obama regime. With a new puppet in place, it is thought that previous objection to Kurdish oil sales that circumvent central Iraqi oversight (and revenue-collection) to global corporations (a list to be found here) and even neighbouring Turkey will be set aside. Therefore, cheaper and less regulated access to natural resources would be a designed consequence of the emergence of IS. Moreover, any commonality of purpose to be discovered between Iraq and Syria’s governments formed by al-Malaki’s support of Assad would be undermined (better analysis here). And so the fate intended for Syria is also one awaiting Iraq, but Iraq may well have been robbed of leadership that recognises it and can make effective international alliances to prevent it.

Then there are domestic objectives of the deployment of IS. It was only two days before the world got word of the Foley execution that Cameron had his article, entitled ‘Isil [IS] poses a direct and deadly threat to Britain’, published in the Telegraph  in which he called IS an ‘exceptionally dangerous terrorist movement’ and, threatening that the same murderers will soon have the reach to commit atrocities on the streets of the UK, he warned Britons that they would have to accept inevitable decisions by his regime as absolute necessities in the context of the geopolitical climate.

Cameron wrote of a response to Islamists in Britain that involves taking down terrorist material from the internet, and what the police would do in the face of a ‘growing threat of extremism’. This is insidious in the light of the fact that Cameron’s regime was instrumental in the genesis of IS and, for instance, that leading Tory politicians have overtly stated that support for UKIP is a form of extremism. An illustration of why this is of such great concern is that action which has already filtered out from the general vague threats of intent and resolved itself in the form of a statement by the Metropolitan Police threatening the British public regarding the downloading and viewing of the James Foley execution video: that it could be deemed an act of terrorism in itself. Under closer examination, with this development the British police have announced that that which constitutes an act of terrorism largely depends upon their own interpretation of legislation. Presumably, police would also get to decide what defined extremism. It is exactly this sort of response that those who would challenge the misrule of Britain fear will develop from government reaction to ‘terror’: a contrivance to shut down means to investigate and oppose that misrule. For it has not taken long for even the most objective patriots to call the Foley video out as being highly dubious – all the elements in a beheading that would be hard to fake are not shown in the footage.

Of course, the impression of  imminent danger stoking the absolute necessity of British government reaction is generated by the fact that the executioner in the questionable Foley-death video supposedly spoke with a British accent (although it is not an accent that the author hears spoken regularly). This will undoubtedly add fuel to the creeping narrative regarding British jihadists coming back from Syria to commit atrocities on the streets of the UK. Despite the country being surrounded by a body of water, the authorities regularly remind the public that there is little to be done to prevent this from happening. At the same time, incredibly, security services have a very good idea regarding the number of Britons fighting with IS. This implies the tracking of individuals – and yet these individuals very rarely seem to be recognised and dealt with. Furthermore, events developing from the Foley incident reveal that the authorities can identify suspects when there is a need to whip up a demonised hate figure for the child-like, arrested development members of the corporate-media audience (admittedly most of them) to fixate upon (note they will be fed an Establishment victory when Jihadi-John is caught).

A conclusion that one can make is that these individuals are at liberty to go and fight in Syria and Iraq, and then to return to the UK to be used as a terror threat, or to stay in theatre and be used as a cardboard cutout hate figure; in other words, they are working for the British intelligence agencies to provide the problem to which the assailing of British civil liberties will be a solution. Indeed, as in this story, corporate-media has reported on training in Syria run by al-Qaeda to turn Britons into eventual domestic terrorists, but what is never investigated in any meaningful way is how Britain is involved in the general feeding of recruits into the area – and in the actual training itself. The BBC recently exposed what was characterised as a unrealised plan for Britain to train thousands of mercenaries. In fact the production of the story looks like an effort to create plausible deniability for the reality of British, and US trained jihadists. It brings us full circle back to Abdel Hakim Belhadj , who represents the movement of a standing terrorist army into Syria, and who was known to MI5 as a trainer of militia.

With all this firmly in mind, the only real way that Britons can deal with any Islamist threat to their security is to target the real source – the British Establishment and its globalist corporate symbiotic master that creates war to redouble its tentacle hold on power and wealth. IS must be pulled up by the roots. It must be removed – by votes to remove the LibLabCon from Westminster, by the power of the purse to limit the capability of culpable corporations, and where possible by withdrawing consent to be subject to the British Establishment’s  jurisdiction.

CIA ‘running arms smuggling team in Benghazi when consulate was attacked’

Al-Qaeda terrorists airlifted from Libya to aid Syrian Opposition

Lebanon holds ship ‘carrying weapons for Syria rebels’

Cameron frantic for bloody results in Syria

In the last ten days David Cameron has been making staggering statements that signify a seemingly desperate desire to launch all out war against the legitimate Syrian Government. As suggested on another occasion by the author, Cameron’s belligerence may be fuelled by his feeling certain pressure and “heat” applied upon him by those he is answerable to. This is not a reference to the British electorate – very few of which think it essential for the well-being of their country to interfere in the internal politics of a foreign sovereign state. Instead, the bosses who will be demanding progress in what so far has been a disastrous operation are the Bilderberg Group types – Royals, corporation heads and banksters who administer Western government from behind the scenes; and such is their rumoured power to make or break a politician’s career, Cameron’s haste to start a direct Syrian war must be a reflection of how these “globalists” are holding his feet to the fire.

As the author forecasted, a new phase of direct US/EU/Saudi and Qatari aggression against Syria is shaping up to be launched out of zones within Syria itself along its borders. Given various names, such as “administration zones” or “safe zones”, these areas of land will be presented as being within the jurisdiction of the newly manufactured alternative government of Syria, the Syrian National Coalition. This body of men and women is widely agreed by observers to be a superficial effort at splitting the hitherto immovable Syrian unity that has been a bulwark against attempts to create sectarian and serious political division amongst Syrian people. If the organisation does involve real Syrian opposition, this is only to provide plausibility to what is a rebranding of people regarded to be US placemen and puppets; an attempt to camouflage the Islamist and barbaric tendencies of the mercenaries and terrorists who have been pumped into Syria mainly through Turkey, and who fight with no pretence as to who they really are, but are sold by corporate-media as the Free “Syrian” Army.

Cameron has been astonishingly vocal and proactive about getting these people fit to fight a war that clearly needs to be pushed up a notch in terms of intensity. After being suitably horrified by stories told by refugees in Jordanian camps (put there by Cameron’s proxy invasion), in the middle of last week Cameron signalled a renewed determination to redouble his efforts. A Downing Street official promptly revealed that the Prime Minister wanted to revisit previously rejected measures amid “frustration” at the failure to “halt” the 20-month conflict (i.e. failure to defeat al-Assad). This mostly refers to the direct arming of the terrorists and mercenaries who are acting as NATO’s proxy army in Syria, which requires finagling a way around United Nations resolutions and an EU arms embargo; Whitehall officials having been set to work on both issues.

However, Cameron also feels that there is a need for a more direct contribution. On the 11th November the Daily Star reported the following:

RAF Top Guns could soon be patrolling the skies over Syria under a new Cameron-Obama plan.

The Prime Minister is preparing to use the RAF to enforce no-fly zones across President Assad’s trouble-torn country in a bid to stop mass slaughter.

In the same story, Whitehall sources claimed that “British special forces are helping to train rebel assassination squads to target President Assad and his warlords”.

Here, then, is indication that Cameron has been organising rather hastily in order to give direct assistance to the al-Qaeda types who, given that their main method of fighting is to let off large indiscriminate bombs in well-populated areas, rounding up innocents and executing them in acts of war crime, and taking entire neighbourhoods hostage to make Syrian government forces cause damage in pursuit, Syrian people actually need protection from. Indicative of Cameron’s hurry was a message issued immediately in the wake of Obama’s re-election to inform the world that it should be the US president’s top priority to deal with al-Assad. In the light of Cameron’s RAF deployment desire, there has obviously been an anxiety on the part of British Government for the US military to give the necessary back-up so that the bullying RAF can provide the same sort of ground support for the terrorists in Syria as they did for the same in Libya – which means the razing of whole cities to the ground in the name of humanitarian assistance.

As for the training of mercenaries to assassinate al-Assad and his “warlords”, by which Whitehall must mean generals of a legitimate national army, it is another admission of Britain’s rather shabby recourse to terrorism that does not receive the deploring criticism it deserves from corporate-media. Moreover, it is surely a double-edged sword that British politicians and top brass armed forces personnel should not like to see made manifest.

Indeed, in the last 48 hours, certain high-ranking figures rather publically quashed Cameron’s “desperate” plans to deploy British troops to “safe-zones” in Syria – which would represent a fantastic level of involvement that had not been necessary in Libya, and therefore demonstrates how badly things are going in Syria for Cameron. A military source told the Sun newspaper: “When one Brigadier heard the news Cameron wanted an armed solution his response was, ‘you and whose Army?’”

The source went on to explain that Bashar al-Assad has formidable armed forces [that have accrued 20 months battle-hardness while British troops have been picked off like sitting ducks in Afghanistan] as well as Russian backing; it means that the British military are wary of the distinct possibility of getting a calamitous drubbing (and the Establishment cannot afford for the myth of British military supremacy to be dismantled by Syrians). Cameron’s anxiety, determination and hubris may not take such considerations into account. Even today, he is chairing a meeting of the National Security Council where discussion is expected to consider implementing a “no-fly zone, supplying anti-aircraft guns to the opposition, and encouraging other countries in the region to provide arms”.

Finally, from the perspective where Cameron is viewed as an increasingly frantic victim with all four walls of his career-crushing dungeon advancing upon him, the recent trip to the Middle East seems suspiciously like a visit to organise and drum up agreement for a new phase of aggression against Syria. The corporate-media , despite complaining that it wasn’t allowed access to Cameron on the trip (the BBC’s Frank Gardner – he who revealed the Queen’s desire to imprison Abu Hamza – was the only officially attached media coverage), was full of news making it perfectly clear that Cameron was on an arms-selling mission. However, this was probably merely cover.

When Cameron made a real trip to sell arms to dictators in the Middle East in February 2011, there was embarrassment, and Cameron constructed a story about being in the area to oversee the “Arab Spring”.  This time, Cameron has been blatant, and even defended his supposed weapons-mongering activity. Moreover, the secretiveness indicated by a minimal press accompaniment that reminds of Bilderberg suggests that Cameron was having discussions, principally with King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia (pictured in the corporate-media awarding a sash to a bowing and scraping Cameron) pertaining to a long-developed plan to overthrow the legitimate government of Syria.

Interpreting the recent developments in the US invasion of Syria by proxy

The shelling of northern Syria by Turkish forces in October was presented by the Turkish government, by NATO, by UK politicians, and by UK corporate-media as retaliation for Syrian aggression. However, that such shelling continued on and off for the entire duration of the month spoke instead of full participation by Turkish forces arraigned along the border in some of the most critical battles of the war.  Not many corporate observers, if any at all, extrapolated this scenario from the data – a scenario which involved Syrian forces spoiling a NATO plan for buffer-zones by dint of being close to the Turkish border and engaged in hostilities. From this perspective, events since then suggest that Turkey’s border-war against Syria has become redundant, been lost – or Turkey doesn’t have the stomach for it; the Syrian National Council, the so-called rebel leadership, is quintessentially and inextricably linked with Turkey, and that it is now being dumped by the US Government could also be construed as a reflection on how Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan and his country are possibly surplus to requirements in terms of a new strategy for Syrian destabilisation.

Some people say that the infamous mortar attack that set off Turkish “retaliation” and that struck Akcakale to kill 5 Turkish civilians on 3rd October was not of Syrian origin. Instead, they say, it was a false flag attack that provided the Turkish parliament with the justification for passing a bill to enable unilateral action by their armed forces inside Syria. On hindsight, there is definitely a whiff of ultra-convenience about the timing of the incident. Moreover, the fact that the shelling of Syria from Turkish positions may have  happened uninterruptedly all through October suggests that the Turkish used the Akcakale incident as a pretext to take part in an unreported drawn-out defence, coordinated with NATO’s jihadist mercenary forces, of areas on the Turkish border -  at least, for certain, in the province of Idleb – against Syrian attack.

There is a coincidence of two reports from the end of October that points to strategic Turkish involvement. On 29th October, Yahoo News logged a report of an attack from Turkey’s state-run news agency which said that Turkish artillery had responded to a stray shell fired from Syria. The border village of Besaslan, where the ordnance fell, is immediately adjacent to the Syrian town of “Haram”, where, as Yahoo News acknowledged, Syrian regime forces were located and doing battle with “rebels”. On 31st October, SyrianFreePress reported that Syrian forces had finally broken a siege of Harem, and in an associated piece about conditions in the town while the foreign mercenaries had been besieging it, a witness account given to an Arabic radio interviewer and transcribed into English made a tiny mention of how the Turks had been directly involved:

Harem is now completely isolated and without the minimum necessary for survival, under intense rain of artillery fire by the Turkish army.

Here Turkey is accused of a direct active role in the fighting, something that would naturally remain unreported in UK corporate-media so as not to frighten the oblivious British with the idea of a regional war (which, with Turkey bombing  the PKK in Iraq, PKK attacks in Turkey, and spillover into Lebanon, is pretty much already here). The shape and form of Turkey’s involvment makes sense if there is any truth to the story about Vladimir Putin’s blunt comment to Erdogan which a Lebanese newspaper claims to have obtained knowledge of: “A single Turkish soldier on the soil of Syria would be equal to its entrance in Moscow”[sic]. While there seems to be no way of verifying that any such words were ever spoken, it is credible that Russia would not like to see Turkish willingness to provide some kind of direct intervention on its borders manifest as troop deployment. On the other hand, Turkey may have considered that it could get away with covering artillery fire for its allied ground force, the Free “Syrian” Army (hosted and armed by the Turks, of course). The stakes would be so high that Turkey could not afford not to get involved; these on the Turkish border were the areas that were going to form buffer zones over which NATO aircraft were going to patrol. As such, they would be an important objective for the Syrian armed forces to capture, and for NATO’s proxy terrorist army to hold.

Unfortunately for NATO, the signs are that the terrorists are not in a position to stop what seems to be a country-wide and relentless Syrian mopping-up operation. The official corporate-media reportage talks of Syrian forces being squeezed, but the corporate-media stopped being reliable a long time ago. So, while the Al-Qaeda linked Jabhat al-Nusra was making headlines with suicide and car bombs this Sunday (with the likes of the Telegraph’s Robert Spencer – whose colleagues have already criminally solicited support for Islamist terror in their writing – offering nothing condemnatory about “rebel” forces consisting of terrorists “[with] determination and discipline… in some cases acquired from experience in Afghanistan and Iraq”), buried in the reportage was news that an air raid in the Harem area had killed at least 20 rebels with a rebel commander having been seriously wounded.

The ultimate clue of Turkish and NATO failure, however, is how the US Government is currently attempting to “reshape” the leadership of the so-called rebels.  In a statement last week, Hilary Clinton described the SNC as “no longer [to] be viewed as the visible leader of the opposition.” The BBC, in its reportage, asked the question, “will US succeed in reshaping opposition?”, which is an incredible choice of words that shows how knowledge of direct US control of the fighting in Syria manifests itself in the open consciousness of those who are supposed to be disguising it.

Many observers are saying that the desperate US public tinkering is due to how it is no longer possible to hide the fact that the Syrian “rebels” are radicalised and increasingly sectarian and Islamist, including large numbers of Al Qaeda-linked foreign fighters who have poured into the country (or, it should be said, been hired by Qatar, Saudi Arabia, the UK, US and France to go there) from Iraq, Libya, Saudi Arabia, Algeria, Chechnya and elsewhere. It is thought that the sidelining of the SNC is an attempt to re-launch the deadly initiative of a mercenary expeditionary force under a new, less corrosive name and identity, but there are other command and control considerations implied in the shake up.

The SNC are now linked irreversibly with Turkey; if the US Government is rejecting the SNC, then doesn’t it follow that it is also sidelining Erdogan’s government? Such a development would explain Erdogan’s recent turnaround in attitude as to what Turkey could do in Syria. As mentioned above, not so long ago, the Turkish parliament had given itself the right to act unitarily in Syria, although there was a caveat; Ankara made clear it would only mount any major operation on Syrian soil with international support.

Now Erdogan is reported to hold the following position: “if the UN hasn’t made… [a] decision [about no-fly zones], we [the Turkish Government] have no authority, no right to declare such a zone in northern Syria”. The difference between the new and old positions is quite clear; Turkey, would have led, but now they can only follow. The alteration in attitude suggests that Turkey has lost support, and some observers think that Erdogan is making an effort to reconcile himself to Iran and Russia. The Washington Post talks about Erdogan’s isolation, not only from one-time allies, but from his dissenting electorate (another important factor).

The buffer zone plan, at least as it has been envisaged, therefore, seems to have been set aside; that Erdogan’s comments came at the end of October might point to the moment when the decision to set it aside was made. This moment roughly coincides with another moment of pointed Syrian success in Harem; it is unlikely that these things are not unrelated.

If the no-fly zones have been deemed unwinnable, so-called “administrative” zones of control are objectives that are associated with the creation of a new, acceptable, revamped Syrian opposition. Conjecture suggests that it is the hope of the American Government that these zones will be acceptable to the likes of Russia and China because they will be controlled by supposedly nicer, non-jihadist opposition types, and not because they were won by force, and by nasty Islamists. Extrapolating what the reality is likely to look like from the known data if the US gets its way, what will probably be created are areas where America’s Islamist allies – and the relationship between the two should never be forgotten just because Hilary Clinton has a new scheme of spin – will operate from under the skirts of the UN and continue the same campaign of terror that has already been instigated. The objective will be to alienate the Syrian Government from the Syrian people by impressing upon the latter that the former is ineffective against terrorists. Meanwhile, there will be no terror in the “administrative” zones, which will provide a model of order and safety that the Syrian people will come to think that al-Assad will never be able to supply.

At least as far as the UK is concerned, there are indications that instructions have been delivered to key operatives regarding what narrative to establish in order to shape the perception of the watching public in anticipation of the US Government’s new strategy; David Cameron is now accepting that President al-Assad might be excused any and all of the alleged war crimes leveled at him, and the Daily Mail is writing remarkable sentances such as the following:

he was buried under rubble, another civilian victim of the bitter internal fighting between President Bashar al-Assad’s forces and the militant Islamist groups.

The power behind the US Government, no matter who wins today’s election, is determined to put a puppet government into power in Syria. It has spent a long time these last two years failing, not once, but probably twice or even thrice already, and, because no matter how bad the al-Assad government is (and it isn’t all that bad because of the political reforms that have been instituted already), it’s a great deal better than a bankster-overlorded failed state awash with terrorist factions, the very good news for Syrians is this: because the US-shaped “Syrian” “opposition” cannot agree between itself, the global elite Bilderberg-types might fail yet again.

British Government’s failing terrorists do bloody murder openly in Aleppo

al-nusraA week after David Cameron’s speech at the UN where he implied Russian and Chinese responsibility, through their refusal to sanction NATO military interference, for the deaths of Syrian children, yesterday suicide bombs, detonated by terrorists who are funded and supported – and possibly also, somewhere down the line, orchestrated – by the British Government, ripped through Aleppo. Amongst the civilian victims was a girl whose lonely death was captured in a gut wrenching photograph carried by the Daily Mail; it was an image that testified Cameron’s own and real child-killing culpability, and yet the Coalition’s flagship propaganda outlet span it as “collateral damage” in a post-normal defence of Islamist terrorism.

Last week, in a move given coverage by Iranian broadcaster, PressTV, – but which the British corporate-media failed to mention bar very rare exceptions - the British Government quietly announced that it was to give yet another £8million towards “humanitarian aid” in Syria – bringing the total to £38.5million. In the past, British tax-payers money has been aimed directly at supplying NATO’s proxy army – deceptively entitled the Free Syrian Army (FSA), which incontrovertibly consists of, and by a vast majority, foreign mercenaries and jihadists – with communications equipment for producing propaganda and, assumedly, for coordinating tactics. This latest amount is claimed to be being channelled through UN agencies, but any support, however it is supposedly spent in public, is a disgrace when it ultimately manifests itself in the mass killing methods used by Islamist terrorists.

Spelling trouble for the British Government is the way that their support for people who are, in the narrative of the War on Terror, the same sort which kill British servicemen in Afghanistan – in this most recent case, al-Qaeda-linked Jabhat al-Nusra (pictured above, and who have terrible previous) – threatens to undermine completely the integrity of an entire ruling Establishment in the awakening eyes of the British people. Corporate-media has had to become resourceful about disguising the damaging paradox in its coverage of Syria, and the Daily Mail article which carried the aforementioned image proved no exception. It likened the Aleppo bombings – targeted acts of terror – with what very possibly could be, given the nature of the ordnance, stray Syrian shells that landed over the Turkish border and killed 5 people, including, tragically, a 5 year-old child. In a despicable piece of moral cowardice, after the Mail article writer correctly identified the “lifeless body of a young girl… in the street” as “an innocent victim of a series of suicide bomb attacks” he went on to describe the “young girl’s body” as a “potent symbol of the collateral damage each side [in a civil war] is prepared to risk”.

The horrifying problem with this sort of journalism (which is yet another indicator that the corporate-media in the UK exists to propagandise for the Establishment) is that the Syrian conflict is clearly not a civil war, and there is no such thing as collateral damage in a suicide bomb because everyone, whether they be civilian or military, is an intended target. Unfortunately for British politicians who have failed to condemn the terrorism in Aleppo, and whose silence in the aftermath has been deafening, pretending that terrorist bombs form part of a legitimate military strategy for an army who are supposedly fighting for democracy can only destabilize their credibility, and provoke the electorate into questioning British Government support for evident Islamist terrorists  and their heinous crimes.

As for the shelling that landed on Turkey, this is also indicative of the success of the Syrian Arab Army that is forcing Britain’s proxy army of jihadists, who are clearly being beaten in straightforward military encounters, to show their hands as the terrorists they really are. If ordnance is landing in Turkey, it means that Syrian forces are engaging the areas along the border that the terrorists assert to be their own areas of autonomy – a claim that is willingly parroted by corporate-media in implied support of no-fly zones. Furthermore, supposedly retaliatory fire from Turkey could also be efforts to protect Ankara’s supply routes to the NATO terrorists in Syria, rather than spasmodic reaction. Indeed, the BBC reports that “the government in Ankara is expected to ask parliament shortly to authorise cross-border military operations in Syria”; such news indicates that the NATO operation is in jeopardy of becoming completely routed.

In another demonstration that the tide has fully turned against the NATO plan to overthrow the al-Assad government, last week, during an officially-sanctioned meeting in Damascus of internal opposition dedicated to peaceful political change in Syria, an FSA Lieutenant-Colonel apperently made an appearance to announce that he and his men had defected back to the government side and would “cooperate with the Ministry of National Reconciliation.” To applause from the audience, Khaled Abdel Rahman al-Zamel said “we are all Syrians, we reject a revolution that starts with the shedding of blood.”

It seems as if there is an organised and sensible effort by Syrian Government, with a promise of real reconciliation, to get Syrians to defect  from the FSA - an effort which, if it is as successful as the stories of repentant Syrians carried by the Syrian state news agency, SANA, indicate it might be,  would seriously undermine the fiction that the FSA, or its political parent, the Syrian National Council, is representative of Syrians.

Was hiding-Harry story diversion for Harrier-destroying Taliban bad news?

AV-8B_HarrierThis week’s attack by the Taliban on the International Security Assistance Force’s (ISAF’s) Camp Bastion in Helmand Province, Afghanistan, was presented in the UK in headline terms as a risk to the life of Prince Harry, who, as it was revealed after the event, and unlike the treatment regular servicemen would have had, received a security detail to guard him, and was moved to a safe location. However, in the aftermath and beyond the headline sensationalism, barely mentioned, if at all, in the body of the reportage by corporate-media, it later became known that the US had suffered the loss of a significant number of airplanes in what must have been a sophisticated assault by the Taliban. In this light, therefore, and given that there are regular attacks on ISAF supply convoys in Afghanistan and Pakistan† that are never reported by British corporate journalism, the story of how the Prince ran away looks like a decoy. Moreover, Defence Secretary Philip Hammond’s happiness to reveal operational details, albeit superficial ones, seems to signify a ready willingness to sacrifice the Prince’s reputation amongst the public, and respect for him amongst his colleagues, in order to maintain a myth about NATO dominance on the Afghan battlefield.

There is a school of thought that believes, from the available evidence, that ISAF (for which, read NATO), on behalf of Western corporate-financier uber-government, remain in Afghanistan, despite many a vow by many a President or Prime Minister to withdraw, because leverage must be held, and perhaps more purchase won, for negotiations with the Taliban regarding who gets what share of the planned TAPI (Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India) gas pipeline. In the context of this scheme, if NATO needs to win more bargaining power, its strategy to do so seems, from the layman’s perspective, to allow the Taliban to wear itself out; there have been a string of audacious attacks by the insurgents across the country in the last year or so. NATO, on the other hand, looks content to patrol the parcels of opium-producing land that it controls, although in this respect too, NATO’s operations are being severely undermined by so-called ‘green on blue’ attacks by supposed friendly Afghan security personnel.

The attack on Camp Bastion this week, however, was described by an ISAF spokesman as ‘significant’, and given both its execution and the rewards that it garnered for the Taliban, may have been a long time in the preparation and the planning. The approximately 15 insurgents that staged the attack were dressed in US Army uniforms – a tactic that is designed to allow assailants get closer to their target than usually they would be able to before fighting started, and may have even been the means by which the Taliban penetrated what is supposed to be the best-defended base in Afghanistan.

The purpose of the attack appears to have been to destroy certain materiel because the attackers have been described as ‘instantly’ setting fire to 8 parked Navy-AV-8B Harrier jets. A running gun battle ensued for the next two and a half hours. According to RT, a military official had told the Times that it was ‘a very sophisticated attack’, and what’s more seemed to be saying that there was not a precedent for losing aircraft in that way. Indeed, RT was quick to remind its audience that the loss of such a large number of planes in one day had not been suffered by the US since Vietnam. In terms of the Taliban’s capabilities, the attack was consistent with other operations that have been carried out by them – especially in April this year – and, combined, they indicate an ability to cause their own attrition of crucial NATO resources, and degrade US control – and therefore that all important leverage in negotiations.

There was also a meme in the corporate-media that the Camp Bastion attack was part and parcel of a response, by a certain section of Islam, to the film which originated in the US and is supposed to be so insulting that it set off a wave of indignant Muslim protest across the world. Independent observers generally believe that the film is a deliberate provocation in a scheme planned by a faction of the US Establishment which will pave the way to war with Iran, and perhaps accordingly, the British corporate-media projected its importance in respect to this attack – although the Taliban did seem to prompt the angle of coverage themselves. Qari Yousuf Ahmadion, a Taliban spokesman (a class of person who are now known to be wildly inaccurate at times), was cited by the BBC as blaming the Camp Bastion attack on the anti-Muhammad film; a detail that even ISAF spokesman Brigadier General Gunter Katz said made the Taliban lose credibility.

Attempting to foist an Orwellian contruction of events on a watching public, the UK Defence Secretary, Philip Hammond, in an interview with TV presenter, Jeremy Paxman, preposterously tried to conflate the concepts of Harry as a normal serviceman who would be expected to put himself in harm’s way, and Harry as a VIP who would be given ‘additional security arrangements’ as a matter of protocol. The Government’s revelation that Prince Harry was guarded during the Taliban assault on Camp Bastion is thought by some observers to have been an entirely  unnecessary admission that suggests that the news about Harry was a deliberate attempt to divert attention away from what was a considerable military disaster; even NATO-backed forces in Syria, who have for some considerable time been trying to destroy government forces aircraft on the ground, have not been able to emulate the achievement.

Peace negotiations between the Taliban and the US were in preliminary stages when the Taliban called them off after March’s slaughter of villagers in Panjwayi District, Kandahar, by what witnesses described as a unit of US soldiers.

[† a report on this subject is due soon in these pages]