MIDDLE EAST | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


MIDDLE EAST

Jun 22 08:48

Australia says to resume air strikes in Syria after Russia threat

Russia said on Monday it would treat U.S.-led coalition aircraft flying west of the River Euphrates in Syria as potential targets and track them with missile systems and military aircraft, but stopped short of saying it would shoot them down.

As a result of the threat, Australia said on Tuesday it would suspend its military campaign.

On Thursday, a decision was made to resume the air strikes in Syria after an assessment of the Russian statement, although it did not say when they would begin again.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

WOW, that was a quick turnaround on Governmental Policy in Canberra!

Jun 22 08:38

As ISIS Loses Ground, US Is on a Collision Course With Syria and Iran

As ISIS loses ground in Syria, the US continues to deploy additional forces in the area. There is no expectation of the war so much ending as the US transitioning to a war against Syria and Iran for control over Syria, something some members of the National Security Council are openly advocating.

America’s long-stated goal of regime change in Syria makes this transition something of an easy sell as part of the narrative, and hawks have been salivating at a shot at fighting Iran so long they’ll likely embrace anything Iran is involved in, much as they have wars like the Saudi War in Yemen, where Iran’s connection is largely a myth.

Jun 22 08:31

Saudis, Allies Have ‘List of Demands’ for Qatar

Though the details are not yet a matter of public record, US officials are confirming that Saudi Arabia and its allies have prepared a “list of demands” for Qatar related to ending the blockade of the tiny Persian Gulf nation. It is not clear if the Qataris have been given the demands yet, with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson saying he hopes they will be presented with them “soon.”

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and the Foreign Minister of Qatar
While we don’t know the content of this list of demands, we do still have the huge list of demands given to Qatar by Saudi Arabia two weeks ago, which may well form the basis for this latest list. This included severing all diplomatic ties with Iran, the permanent shut down of al-Jazeera, and a pledge never publicly contradict any GCC member nations, among other things.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

We will see how this plays out; but if Saudi Arabia ultimately invades Qatar, because Qatar refuses to yield to Saudi Arabia's demands, and with Turkish troops on the ground here, and Iran pledging support, what will the orders be to US military commanders in the country if this happens?!?

Jun 22 08:19

Trump’s Preferred Candidate Wins Again, This Time in Saudi Arabia

President Trump wasted no time on Wednesday calling the newly named crown prince of Saudi Arabia, Mohammed bin Salman. Less than 24 hours after King Salman elevated Prince Mohammed, his 31-year-old son, Mr. Trump offered congratulations and celebrated the monarchy’s cooperation in rooting out terrorist financing and other issues.

Even more than Karen Handel, the Republican who won a hotly contested House seat in a special election in Georgia this week, Prince Mohammed was Mr. Trump’s anointed candidate — in this case, for the byzantine struggle to control the House of Saud.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The "itch", for Prince Mohammed, includes the continued genocide in Yemen, where Yemeni children are being massacred and maimed for life by Saudi bombings on a daily basis; with US military help, Saudi Arabia has closed the ports, so food cannot get in, and children are dying from malnutrition; and now, cholera has taken firm hold in Yemen, and there is no treatment for it.

Oh, and did I mention the use of depleted uranium weapons in Yemen, which is causing massive birth defects, and still births, in Yemeni children?!?

The "itch" also includes finding any which way to conjure up, and "sell" a war with Iran, Saudi Arabia's alleged "existential threat" in the region, which will most probably include war with Russia.

With "friends" like Prince Mohammed....the US government is looking at one hell of a lot more wars in the Middle East, much blood and money spent, and most likely, the reinstitution of the draft, both for our young men, and young women.

Jun 21 17:54

American Air Force FOR ISIS And Al-Nusra

One of the dirtiest secrets of US involvement in Syria is pretending to combat terrorism while actively supporting it ­ including ISIS, al-Nusra and other anti-government forces.

No so-called “moderate rebels” exist. All fighters engaged in combat, except for government and allied forces, are US-supported terrorists.

American and Russian objectives in Syria are world’s apart. Anything US officials agree to isn’t worth the paper it’s written on ­ deals of convenience made to be breached.

Jun 21 11:29

Syria troops position themselves at heart of war on IS

Syrian government troops and their allies have steadily positioned themselves in key areas on the flanks of the U.S.-led coalition battle for the Islamic State’s self-declared capital of Raqqa.

They are attempting to become an indispensable player in uprooting the extremists from Syria entirely.

That presents a major challenge for the coalition, which so far has shunned any cooperation with President Bashar Assad and has partnered instead with local Kurdish-led forces.

As the U.S. has intensified its fight against IS in Syria, Assad and his trusted allies of Russia and Iran are increasingly asserting themselves. A Syrian military offensive has unfolded on several fronts, coupled with Russian airstrikes and a show of force by Iran, which fired ballistic missiles on an IS stronghold this week and pushed militias that it sponsors deeper into the battlefield.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Getting into a situation like this, with no real, appreciable strategy whatsoever, to speak of, is a sure and certain course toward a disaster which can lead to outright regional, and ultimately, a world war.

Jun 21 11:00

State Dept Suddenly Takes Hard Line Against Saudis’ Boycott of Qatar

The US stance on Saudi Arabia and its allies’ hostility toward Qatar, including an outright blockade, has not been particularly consistent in the last couple of weeks. State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert took a more direct position against the blockade today, but that is just raising more questions.

Nauert very directly faulted the Saudis for their move against Qatar, noting neither they nor other nations involved have offered any details to back up their allegations, and suggesting that the blockade was not about Qatar’s alleged support for terrorism, but long-standing grievances among GCC countries.

This is largely in keeping with what you’d figure would be the US position on Qatar, a long-time ally, but runs contrary to President Trump, who personally took credit for the Saudi-led move and has repeatedly parroted Saudi allegations against the Qatari government since then.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

These "mood swings" in President Trump's foreign policy are giving me intellectual whiplash!!

Jun 21 10:49

White House Wants to Widen Syria War, Despite Pentagon Objections

Over the past several weeks, US military actions within Syria have been less and less ISIS-centric, with a handful of operations targeting Shi’ite militias in southern Syria, and even shooting down a Syrian government aircraft over the weekend.

This isn’t just the US idly getting into one-off fights in the course of a war they’re already fighting in Syria, but rather is reflective of a push by White House officials, with multiple National Security Council members looking at the Syrian War less as a fight against ISIS and more as a chance to pick a fight with Iran.

The Pentagon has made clear they object, with Defense Secretary James Mattis personally rejecting multiple proposals related to this. Still, attacks on Shi’ite militias whenever they got sort of close to a US-backed rebel base, and a public narrative presenting the militias as necessarily in league with Iran, have found the US heading down that path anyhow.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The problem is, such a war cannot not be confined to Syria, in spite of whatever delusionally wishful thinking may be taking place in the bowels of power in DC.

We are looking at World War III, with Russia, China, and Iran on one side, and the US, NATO, Australia, and Saudi Arabia on the other.

Jun 21 08:30

CNN Caught Faking News Again: Qatar Says News Agency Hacking Linked To Middle East, Not Russia

As it turns out, it's somewhat ironic that CNN accused Russia of spreading "fake news stories" that "have turned up amid elections in France, Germany and other countries" because, as Reuters reports today, their entire Qatari hacking narrative was all fake news.

According to reports from Qatar's attorney general, it was an Arab neighbor state that severed ties with Doha (i.e. Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain and/or the United Arab Emirates) that was responsible for the hacking of Qatar's state news agency and not the Russians.

Jun 21 08:06

'Ongoing and Loathful': Bolivia Condemns Israeli Settlements

Bolivia warned the international community not to turn its back on Palestine.

Bolivia delivered a scathing condemnation of Israel's continued occupation of Palestine,

Jun 20 22:41

Thank You for Your Service (Actually means, thank you for your killing)

The horrible irony is that it has been the U.S. government, not the Taliban or ISIS, that has destroyed the freedom of the American people through the adoption of powers that ordinarily characterize totalitarian regimes: secret mass surveillance and the powers to incarcerate, torture, and assassinate American citizens as part of their process of keeping us “safe” from the enemies that U.S. interventionism produces. -- Of course, there is also the out-of-control spending and debt necessary to sustain this ongoing, perpetual killing program, both of which constitute a grave threat to America’s economic well-being.

Jun 20 21:32

US and Russia Teetering on the Brink of War: What You are Not Being Told

On June 18, 2017, prominent U.K. newspaper the Guardian asked an important question: Has Trump opened the door to conflict with Iran?

According to Foreign Policy, a pair of top White House officials are pushing to broaden the war in Syria against Iranian-backed troops who are currently posing a major threat to the American military's goals in the region.
FP explains:

Ezra Cohen-Watnick, the senior director for intelligence on the National Security Council, and Derek Harvey, the NSC's top Middle East advisor, want the United States to start going on the offensive in southern Syria, where, in recent weeks, the U.S. military has taken a handful of defensive actions against Iranian-backed forces fighting in support of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Jun 20 13:14

Syria Summary - The End Of The War Is Now In Sight

The Syrians and Russians are going to bridge the Euphrates at multiple points and take Eastern Syria away from the US military. Which might also explain why the Chinese Navy and Iran are doing exercises. All hell is about to break loose.

Russian military bridging equipment recently started to arrive in Syria. It will be needed to cross the Euphrates and to recover the areas north of it.

Jun 20 11:52

The Middle East Is Blowing Up

The Saudis and Iranians are leaders of Islam’s two main factions, the Shiites and Sunnis. This makes them natural rivals, but until now they’ve mostly sparred through proxies rather than directly. Here again, the conflict is going from cold to hot.

And that’s in just the past few days.

The old stuff that caused most Americans to tune out hasn’t gone away:

The Syrian war continues to rage,

the Saudis and their allies continue to bomb Yemen even further back into the Middle Ages,

Israel continues to build new settlements in Palestine and threaten to take out Iran’s nuclear facilities,

ISIS is still burning and beheading its victims on YouTube,

and Turkey keeps slipping further into dictatorship.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Mike and I are watching these developments, and for me, it's like the archetypal dream of watching two locomotives coming at each other on the same track, but unable to stop the impending collision.

The lunatics in the American Deep State have appeared to have taken over the asylum, and have charted a path for war and chaos, which will affect every American in this country.

Look for the return of the draft, and a confiscation of anything which could be construed as "real money", i.e., gold and silver, just as Roosevelt did.

And please, folks - and I know I sound like a chipped CD on this issue - if you haven't already started to prep, there is a word in the English language, and that word is TODAY!! Go to whatever big box stores you frequent, and get storable food, water filtration, and extra meds for yourselves, and your pets. Make sure you have a plan, if you need to regroup, and the family is not together. Create community with neighbors your trust.

My gut is telling me that something wicked this way comes, and I just hope all of our listeners and readers are as prepared as they can be, when that happens.

Jun 20 11:48

Why has Cyprus become an Israeli province?

The Cypriot press reported last week on a large joint Israeli-Cypriot military drill...

ow did this come about? How did the Cypriots, who have traditionally supported the Palestinian cause, become a province of the Israeli empire? ...>>

Jun 20 10:56

Getting rid of Assad will just flood Europe will millions more refugees and may even cause WW3.

There was a reason Hillary and Merkel applauded Trump's decision to bomb Syria right after that false flag chemical attack...

Jun 20 10:38

America will regret helping Saudi Arabia bomb Yemen

“USA Kills Yemeni People”, screams graffiti plastered on walls in Yemen’s capital Sana’a. The Yemeni people who have been on the receiving end of US bombs dropped by Saudi pilots know all too well that the United States is complicit in their suffering.

The intense anti-US sentiment in Yemen should be a wake-up call for Americans: if you don’t care about the millions of suffering Yemenis, you might think about the future blowback.

Two US Senators, the Republican Rand Paul and the Democrat Chris Murphy, understand full well the implications and have been trying to halt the weapons sales. “The United States has no business supporting a war that has only served to embolden our terrorist enemies, exacerbate a humanitarian crisis, and incite fear and anger among the Yemeni people toward the United States. This will come back to haunt us,” warned Murphy.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The US-militarily enabled Saudi war in Yemen is breaking my heart. And I must warn you that the images you will see below are very, very graphic, but speak the truth in a very powerful, and darkly real, manner.

Children are getting killed and maimed for life by Saudi bombing.

Images: Yemeni children killed and maimed for life, through Saudi bombings

Because of the US-military-enabled blockade of Yemeni ports, no food can get in and children are starving to death from malnutrition.

Images: Yemeni children dying from malnutrition

Because of the malnutrition, cholera has a firm foothold on the population of Yemen:

Images:
children dying from cholera

Oh, and did I mention that Saudi Arabia is using depleted uranium weapons in Yemen?!?

Images: Saudi troops using depleted uranium weapons in Yemen

These depleted uranium weapons are having precisely the same effect on children in the womb as they did in Fallujah, Iraq; Yemenis are seeing a massive spike in horrific birth defects, and still births.

To poison a child in the womb, from exposure to this, and other, chemical weapons, is one of the worst, and most cruel forms of child abuse I can think of.

And yet, the House of Saud, the Saudi Military, American civilian leadership, and the American military seem to be perfectly morally comfortable with all of these very predictable outcomes.

I am not, thank you very much, morally comfortable with any of these very predictable outcomes, and find myself very frustrated to be a citizen of a country whose leadership is just perfectly comfortable in colluding with
the Saudis in committing war crimes against Yemen.

But as a Christian pacifist activist, I understand that I must use my frustration constructively, and become a witness, to the best of my ability, to the truth of what is going on here in Yemen.

We need to have a national dialogue on why the US government is enabling Saudi Arabia's genocide, in this horrific war against one of the poorest people on the earth.

Jun 20 10:03

Qatar’s conflict with neighbours can easily set Horn of Africa alight

It began as a squabble between Arab allies, but the standoff between Qatar and its neighbours is threatening to engulf the Horn of Africa. When Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt, Bahrain, Yemen and the Maldives declared at the beginning of June that they were severing diplomatic relations with Qatar it appeared to be of interest mainly to the Arabian Peninsula – and the Gulf in particular.

The Saudis and their allies accused Qatar of backing international terrorism. The US, which has the Al Udeid air base in Qatar, looked askance, but did little more than use its good offices to try to ensure that the war of words did not flare into an open conflict.

But the countries just across the Red Sea have found themselves dragged into the dispute. After prevaricating for some time, Eritrea, which had hitherto good relations with Qatar, fell into line with the Saudis and broke ties with Qatar.

Jun 20 10:00

Qatar Says It Will Not Negotiate Unless Its Neighbors Lift ‘Blockade’

Qatar will not negotiate with its neighbors to resolve the Gulf dispute unless they first lift the trade and travel boycott they imposed two weeks ago, its foreign minister said, but added Doha still believed a solution was possible.

The United Arab Emirates, which along with Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Bahrain imposed the measures to isolate Qatar, said the sanctions could last for years unless Doha accepted demands that the Arab powers plan to reveal in coming days.

Qatar has denied accusations by its neighbors that it funds terrorism, foments regional instability or has cosied up to their enemy Iran. The dispute has opened a rift among some of the main U.S. allies in the Middle East, with President Donald Trump backing tough measures against Qatar even as his State Department and Defense Department have sought to remain neutral.

Jun 20 09:34

QATAR ACCUSES UAE OF SUPPORTING 9/11 TERROR ATTACKS AS DIPLOMATIC CRISIS DEEPENS

The United Arab Emirates and Qatar are locked in a war of words as the diplomatic crisis between Qatar and its Sunni Arab neighbors enters its third week.
“Emiratis, not Qataris, were among the hijackers who flew planes into the Twin Towers,’’ Sheikh Meshal bin Hamad Al Thani, Qatar’s ambassador to the U.S., declared in an opinion piece in the Wall Street Journal Sunday. “The UAE was singled out in the 9/11 Commission’s report for its role in laundering money to terrorists.”

The UAE shot back warning Qatar on Monday that sanctions imposed by several of its neighbours could last for years unless Doha accepts demands which Arab powers plan to reveal in coming days.

This statement comes a day after Qatar announced it will not cut off gas to the UAE despite the diplomatic dispute and a "force majeure" clause in its contract, the chief executive of Qatar Petroleum told Al Jazeera network, three weeks after some Gulf Arab states severed ties with Doha.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

IF Saudi Arabia was even contemplating invading Qatar for the natural gas fields it shares with Iran, and regime changing its government, I would hope that the strong support it has been shown by both Turkey and Iran would cause its government to put that idea on indefinite hold for right now.

Jun 20 09:12

Australia suspends air missions over Syria amid US-Russia tensions

Australia has suspended air combat missions over Syria after Russia threatened that it would treat any plane from the US-led coalition flying west of the Euphrates river as a potential target.

Russia said it was responding to US planes shooting down a Syrian air force jet on Sunday. The US said its planes had acted to defend US-backed forces seeking to capture Raqqa, the Islamic State (Isis) stronghold in north-east Syria.

“As a precautionary measure, Australian defence force strike operations into Syria have temporarily ceased,” the Australian Department of Defence said on Tuesday.

Australia has six fighter jets based in the United Arab Emirates that strike targets in Syria and Iraq.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The government of Australia is demonstrating far more "horse sense" than is the Unhinged, Surveilled State of America at this point in time.

Jun 20 08:40

US JETS SHOOT DOWN ‘IRANIAN DRONE’ IN SYRIA - COALITION

An Iranian-made drone was shot down by a US F-15 fighter jet in southern Syria, near At Tanf, the US-led coalition said. It is the fifth time in the past month the US has struck at forces allied with the Syrian government in the area.
An armed Shaheed-129 UAV “displayed hostile intent and advanced on Coalition forces” at 12:30 am local time on Tuesday, the coalition said in a statement. The drone was observed in the same area where another UAV was shot down on June 8.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

President Trump, a word, please: this slouching toward a war with Iran and Russia over Syria is a really, really, bad idea.

Your foreign policy (if, in fact, you have truly crafted it, and it is not some Frankenstinian creation of the Deep State in this country) is writing checks our American military cannot cash.

And I say that with absolute respect for our military; but right at this point in its history, it doesn't have the money; the weaponry; the manufacturing; or the troop strength to insure a positive outcome against Russia and Iran in conventional warfare.

Jun 20 08:21

The Middle East Is Blowing Up

Every day brings another scary headline from the Middle East — which makes it easy to treat them as background noise rather than a clear and present danger.

Jun 20 07:39

Five takeaways from Iran's missile strike in Syria

At its most obvious level, Iran's missile attack on the Islamic State command centre in the Syrian city of Dier Ezzor on Sunday may be regarded as the demonstration of an extraordinarily innovative military capability.

Iran says it fired six ground-to-ground missiles from Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) bases in Kermanshah and Kurdistan provinces, both in Western Iran, and that they hit the targets in Deir Ezzur with high precision after flying through the Iraqi airspace.
As Tehran sees it, the Trump team, which lacks experience in international diplomacy, might harbour notions that Iran's moderation in recent years is a sign of weakness or lack of political resolve on the part of the moderate-reformist leadership of President Hassan Rouhani.

Jun 19 16:34

Syrian pilot found alive after US downed plane over Raqqah

The pilot of Syrian fighter plane recently shot down by the US-led coalition has been found in the countryside of Raqqah.

According to Sputnik, Captain Ali fahd was found alive and well by Syrian troops in the village of Shuwaihat in southern Raqqah on Monday.

Jun 19 15:50

Violence Abroad Leads to Violence at Home

As long as the U.S. government’s killing spree in the Middle East and Afghanistan continues, Americans will continue to live in a society characterized by violence. Get used to it. Living the life of the lie will not change that. The only thing that will help restore a healthy, functional society to our land is to bring the troops home without permitting them to kill, injure, maim, or destroy even one more person.

Jun 19 15:20

URGENT: Syrian Soldiers Expel ISIL from Strategic Town in Raqqa; Resafa Freed

This is the key cross roads on the way to Raqqa! Now it will get interesting.

TEHRAN (FNA)- The Syrian army captured the key town of Resafa after fierce clashes with the terrorists in Western Raqqa, forcing a large number of the terrorists to retreat from their positions towards other areas in the province.

Syrian soldiers managed to liberate the important town and the crossroads of Resafa in Southwestern Raqqa.

A military source, meantime, announced that Damascus troops are currently defusing the mines and bombs planted by the ISIL terrorists in the town.

Now that they have captured Resafa, Army troops are able to secure the path to Deir Ezzur as Resafa is the junction of the roads from Raqqa city and Deir Ezzur province.

Jun 19 11:54

Petrodollar doomed as Qatar breaks ranks and sells its oil in Yuan

The crisis in Qatar marks a major turning point in the battle against the Khazarian mafia. Ostensibly Saudi Arabia and other oil exporting states decided to try to blockade Qatar “because it was supporting terrorism.” In reaction to this move, US President Donald Trump showed the world he was not in charge of the US by first supporting the blockade and then being forced by the Pentagon to change his stance 180 degrees the next day. What is really going on here is that Qatar reached a deal with Iran to export gas from its massive gas fields not West in exchange for worthless Euros or US dollars but rather East to places like India and China in exchange for their currencies.

The US House of Whores, oops! I mean House of Representatives. reacted to this development by passing new sanctions against Russia that basically amounted to telling Europe to buy expensive American gas instead of cheap Russian gas. The Germans and Austrian reacted by telling the Americans to buzz off.

Jun 19 10:32

Blockade or No Blockade? Saudi Arabia’s ‘Mission-Qatar’ Tumbles Down

Apart from Turkey, whose president Erdogan went to the extent of relating the Qatar-blockade to a “death sentence”, a number of other countries both from Asia and Africa have refused to follow the House of Saud in its footsteps, marking yet another defeat for the king-to-be prince Muhammad bin Salman, who is not only known to have masterminded the Yemen war but also known particularly for injecting a new ideological framework to Saudi Arabia’s regional ambitions, a framework premised upon surgical weakening of countries that have the potential to challenge Saudi hegemony. This is becoming evident from the way people in Turkey have started to point fingers to UAE for spending US$3 billion for funding coup attempt in Turkey, a possible scenario which certainly points to the increasing Saudi dissatisfaction with the way regional politics has tilted to its disadvantage.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Looks as though Prince Muhammad bin Salman's bid to "isolate Qatar" is falling apart at the seams!!

Jun 19 09:54

Erdogan Slams US for Building Air Bases in Syrian Kurdistan: Slams US Soldiers Being 'Arm in Arm' With Terrorists

With the Kurdish YPG advancing into the ISIS capital of Raqqa, and US officials already designating Mayadin the “next ISIS capital,” there’s clearly a lot more US-backed invasions for the Kurds to take part in, and the US is looking to make the backing of those invasions more convenient, setting up airbases in Kurdish territory.

That’s not sitting well with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who expressed particular outrage at the US having an air base in the Kurdish town of Kobani, along the Turkish border and reiterating his long-standing opposition to the US having ties with the YPG at all.

“I find the US approach to the YPG in no way chic,” Erdogan insisted, saying that US soldiers and military officers are “hand in hand, arm in arm” with a group that Turkey considers a terrorist group. He conceded that he understands the US doesn’t consider the Kurds terrorists.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

So let me get this straight: the Unhinged, Surveilled State of America is building illegal bases in Syria, totally without the permission of that country, in order for Kurds to be able to found a homeland, at the expense of sovereign Syrian territory?!?!?

And the following two very disturbing articles are featured, one from Saturday, and one from today at globalresearch.ca, indicating that the building of illegal US forward bases continues in Syria, and what the Kurds are doing to ethnic Arabs near Raqqa:

US Backed YPG Kurds Are Ethnically Cleansing Arabs From Raqqa, and the World Is Silent

Are More US Attacks on Syrian Forces Planned? Establishing Pentagon Bases in Syria?

Jun 19 09:13

REPORT: LEAST PEACEFUL NATIONS ON EARTH WERE ALL GIVEN ‘DEMOCRACY’ BY THE US

The United States has a pattern of pushing for regime change in sovereign nations, while ignoring the consequences. One major result from the list of countries the U.S. has invaded this century is that they make up the top of the “least peaceful” nations in the 2017 Global Peace Index.

The 2017 Global Peace Index is another reminder that the United States’ seemingly endless pattern of pushing for regime change in sovereign nations that have done nothing to the U.S. has indeed resulted in a significant amount of blowback—most of which will be misrepresented, if not ignored by the mainstream media.

Jun 19 08:44

Theresa May condemns 'sickening' attack on Finsbury Park Muslims

A man died and 10 people were injured after a van was rammed into a crowd of worshippers near a mosque in north London, in the latest terror attack to hit the UK this year.

Eyewitnesses reported chaotic scenes as the incident unfolded just after midnight, when evening Ramadan prayers had finished.
A 48-year-old white man was wrestled to the ground by members of the public and then arrested at the scene on suspicion of attempted murder, authorities said.
British Prime Minister Theresa May said the attack was directed at Muslims and condemned it as "every bit as sickening" as deadly Islamist attacks that hit the country in recent months.
Latest developments:

-- Police say they believe there was only one man in the van.
-- An imam stopped the crowd from hitting and kicking the attacker.
-- Witnesses saw a man underneath the van.
-- Eight people were hospitalized, all Muslim.
-- Van appears to be a hire vehicle from a company in Wales.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is as sick and senseless as are the wars for resource domination which drive them.

My first cousin is an exceptionally bright person, a professor emeritus of Constitutional Law at a prestigious university.

We frequently talk about countries like the US and UK investing in their universities to create usable, workable alternative energy, then patenting it, as a a revenue stream.

I cannot fathom that the "deep state" in both countries does not recognise how critical this is to preventing further wars for resources, and will not move forward with this, with all the blood and money spent on battlefields - and beyond - as in this case of terror - which, ultimately, would not have to happen.

Jun 19 07:56

Shot Down in Syria: The U.S. Attacking Assad’s Forces in the Skies and “Fighting” ISIS on the Ground

The situation in Syria will only continue to deteriorate if the United States continues its irresponsible attacks on forces that are fighting the Islamic State (ISIS).

Jun 18 19:39

Report: Israel giving secret aid to Syrian rebels

Israel has been regularly supplying Syrian rebels near its border with cash as well as food, fuel and medical supplies, The Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday.

According to the report, the IDF is in regular communication with rebel groups and its assistance includes undisclosed payments to commanders that help pay salaries of fighters and buy ammunition and weapons, according to interviews with about half a dozen Syrian fighters.

An unnamed source told the newspaper that Israel has established a military unit that oversees the support in Syria, and set aside a specific budget for the aid.

Israel has not confirmed the report.

Jun 18 19:32

The West Can't Smell What Eurasia is Cooking

A tectonic geopolitical shift happened in Astana, Kazakhstan, only a few days ago, and yet barely a ripple registered in Atlanticist circles.

At the annual summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), founded in 2001, both India and Pakistan were admitted as full members, alongside Russia, China and four Central Asian stans (Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan).

So now the SCO not only qualifies as the largest political organization by area and population “ in the world; it also unites four nuclear powers.

Jun 18 18:56

UPDATED: Iran Launches Missile Strikes at ISIL to Avenge Tehran Terrorist Attacks

TEHRAN (FNA)- Iran's Islamic Revolution Guards Corps launched multiple missile strikes at ISIL centers in Syria's Deir Ezzur in retaliation for the June 7 twin terrorist attacks in Tehran, the IRGC said in a statement issued on Sunday, adding that the mid-range missiles were fire from bases in Western Iran.

"The Takfiri terrorists' command center, concentration points and logistical centers used for assembling cars for suicide attacks in Deir Ezzur region in Eastern Syria came under attack by the IRGC moments ago in a move to punish the terrorists for the twin attacks on the Iranian parliament and the holy shrine of the late founder of the Islamic Republic, Imam Khomeini, on June 7," the statement issued by the IRGC Public Relations Office said late this evening.

Jun 18 18:48

Iran fires missiles against 'terrorist bases' in E. Syria in retaliation for Tehran attacks (VIDEO)

Iran's Revolutionary Guards have launched a mid-range ballistic missile attack on terrorist positions in the Syrian province of Deir-ez Zor in retaliation for terrorist attacks in Tehran, Tasnim news agency reports.

The Iranian Revolutionary Guards have reportedly launched ground-to-ground mid-range ballistic missiles from the western Iranian provinces of Kermanshah and Kurdistan into the eastern Syrian province of Deir-ez Zor.

“The spilling of any innocent blood will not go unanswered,” Press TV cited a statement by the Revolutionary Guards as saying.

#IRGC targets terrorists positions in #Syria's Deir ez-Zor with mid-range ballistic missiles in retaliation 4 #Tehranattacks#Breakingnews
— Tasnim News Agency (@Tasnimnews_EN) June 18, 2017

Jun 18 18:42

IRGC launches missiles at Daesh headquarters in Syria from western Iran

Iran's Islamic Revolution Guards Corps has launched missiles at Daesh Takfiris' headquarters in Syria's Dayr al-Zawr.

The IRGC announced on Sunday that the medium-range ground-to-ground missiles were launched from Iran's western provinces of Kermanshah and Kordestan in response to the recent Daesh-claimed terror attacks in Tehran, which killed 18 people and injured 50 more.

Jun 18 18:37

Breaking: Intense clashes break-out between Syrian Army and US-backed forces in west Raqqa

BEIRUT, LEBANON (12:50 A.M.) – Intense clashes have broken out between the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) in the western countryside of Al-Raqqa, tonight, a military source informed Al-Masdar.

According to the source, units from the Syrian Arab Army attempted to cross SDF front-lines in order to rescue their fallen pilot; however, they were turned away by the latter.

This resulted in a fierce confrontation that is currently ongoing between the two entities near the key town of Resafa in western Al-Raqqa.

Jun 18 09:41

THE BLOCKADE OF QATAR MAY HAVE MORE TO DO WITH PALESTINE THAN WE THINK

The bill, which sets out to authorise sanctions on any foreign entity or government that provides support to Hamas, goes on to say that, “It shall be the policy of the United States to prevent Hamas, the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), or any affiliate or successor thereof from accessing its international support networks.”

Jun 17 15:21

Tim Farron quits as Liberal Democrat leader to remain "faithful to Christ"

Stuart Littlewood examines the demise of ultra-lightweight and born-again Christian Tim Farron, leader of the UK’s Liberal Democrats, who “talked as though he’d been suckered into the ranks of Zionism, which is where many deluded Christians gravitate.">>

Jun 17 15:16

Visas for al-Qaeda: CIA Handouts That Rocked the World

Thousands of American soldiers and civil servants have lost their lives in the War on Terror. Innocent citizens of many nations, including Americans killed on 9/11, have also paid the ultimate price. While the US government claims to stand against terror, this same government refuses to acknowledge its role in creating what has become a deadly international quagmire. Visas for al-Qaeda: CIA Handouts That Rocked the World sets the record straight by laying the blame on high-ranking US government officials.

Jun 17 10:42

The War on Yemen and the Senate Vote on the Saudi Arms Sale

The good news from Tuesday’s vote is that there is now much broader opposition to selling weapons to the Saudis when there is every reason to expect that those weapons will be used in Yemen. Sens. Murphy, Paul, and Franken have done great work in persuading many more of their colleagues to oppose such sales, and if they can continue to bring more senators over to their side the Senate may well block one of these sales before long. A close vote on this issue makes it much more likely that there can be a real debate over U.S. support for the atrocious and unnecessary Saudi-led war.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

There is no good news for the people of Yemen, and the Unhinged Surveilled States of America's "deep state"is still supporting Saudi Arabia's attempt to push back against the Houthi rebels, and forcefully reinstall the US government's puppet, Mansour Al-Hadi, by whatever means necessary.

This has translated into the following for the Yemeni people.

1. Yemeni children are getting killed and maimed for life.

Images: Yemeni children getting killed and maimed for life by Saudi air strikes

2. Because Saudis, with US military assistance, are blocking Yemeni ports, so no food can get in, Yemeni children are starving to death from malnutrition.

Horrifying images of starving children reveal the ongoing toll of Yemen's forgotten war.

3. Because of this malnutrition, Yemeni children are dying of cholera, and other preventable diseases.

Images: Yemeni children dying of cholera

Oh, and did I mention that Saudi Arabia is using depleted uranium weapons in Yemen?!?

Images: Saudi Arabia using chemical weapons in Yemen

These depleted uranium weapons are having the same effect that the use of these weapons did on pregnant women, and their children (and on US service members and their families) did in Falluja, Iraq, which meant massive stillbirths, cancers, and horrific physical mutations:

Image: massively deformed baby whose mother was poisoned through exposure to depleted uranium weapons.

When the intended consequences of a military campaign is the deliberate slaughter of children, through direct shelling; creating malnutrition and disease; and chemically poisoning them in the womb, as is happening through the joint US/Saudi war crimes in Yemen, you destroy the future of that country; ask the Palestinians, they are pretty familiar with that.

2016 'deadliest year' for West Bank children in decade

I am frankly appalled at just how morally comfortable the Royal House of Saud, the US Government, and the Saudi Government, collectively, appear to be with this genocide.

I, however, am very morally uncomfortable, being a citizen of a country which is actively, and aggressively, colluding in war crimes,and particularly war crimes of this magnitude.

Jun 17 09:26

QATAR-SAUDI CATFIGHT UNVEILS WESTERN TERRORIST PROPAGANDA

The Saudi paper Al-Arabiya identifies Kareem as Qatar supported Al-Qaeda member. Smearing Qatar is now the favorite Saudi past time. That Kareem is al-Qaeda member is not news to anyone who reads beyond CNN and other main stream outlets. Just watch his interview (vid) with the al-Qaeda in Syria chief ideologue Muhaysini and you know what he is about.

Richard Barrett and especially Charles Lister were his discussion partners. Both are long known to be (well paid) propagandists for the Jihadis. Brooking Institute with its Qatar paid Doha outlet wrote the U.S. strategy for overthrowing (with the help of Jihadis) the Syrian and Iranian governments: WHICH PATH TO PERSIA? Options for a New American - Strategy toward Iran (pdf).

CNN produced the propaganda piece for the "Syrian rebels" aka al-Qaeda with the help of al-Qaeda's Bilal Abdul Kareem and with Clarissa Ward staring in an al-Qaeda bridal.

Those are several cakes flying into many deserving faces.

Jun 17 08:32

THE BLOCKADE OF QATAR MAY HAVE MORE TO DO WITH PALESTINE THAN WE THINK

Israeli officials must have been tripping over each other in their rush to endorse the Saudi-led blockade on Qatar. “The Sunni Arab countries, apart from Qatar, are largely in the same boat with us since we all see a nuclear Iran as the number one threat against all of us,” said Israel’s former defence minister Moshe Ya’alon. The blockade represented a “new line drawn in the Middle Eastern sand,” tweeted US-born former Israeli ambassador Michael Oren, while revelling in the regional turmoil. “No longer [is it] Israel against Arabs but Israel and Arabs against Qatar-financed terror,” he added.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

"Never let a good crisis go to waste" - Rahm Emmanuel

Jun 16 13:02

Yemen cholera toll nears 1,000 as 'humanity loses out to politics'

The death toll from a cholera outbreak is approaching 1,000 in Yemen, a war-devastated and impoverished country where "humanity is losing out to politics", a senior UN official said Thursday.

"Time is running out to save people who are being killed or being starved and now you have cholera as well adding to that complication," said Jamie McGoldrick, UN humanitarian coordinator in Yemen.

"We are struggling because of the lack of resources. We need some action immediately," he said at a press briefing in the Jordanian capital.

McGoldrick gave updated figures of more than 130,000 suspected cases of cholera and over 970 deaths, with women and children accounting for half of the numbers.

"What is heartbreaking in Yemen is that humanity is losing out to the politics," said McGoldrick.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

These Saudi bombings have killed and maimed Yemeni kids for life:

Images: Yemeni kids killed and maimed for life,
courtesy of Saudi bombings

Because of US assistance for Saudi Arabia in their blockading Yemeni ports, meaning food cannot get through, Yemeni children are dying from malnutrition.

Images: Yemeni children dying from starvation due to malnutrition

Oh, and did I mention that Saudi Arabia is using depleted uranium weapons in Yemen?!?

Saudi Arabia using depleted uranium in Yemen

The use of these weapons is causing a predictable massive uptick in horrific physical and mental deformities in Yemen's newborns:

Massive birth defects expected in Yemeni children, courtesy of the Saudi use of depleted uranium weapons.

There is a brutal ugliness in this criminal Saudi war of attrition in Yemen, one which barely gets whispered about.

But as a Christian witness to this immoral and illegal war, which is deliberately murdering and maiming Yemeni children; which is deliberately starving Yemeni children to the point of malnutrition, disease and death; and deliberately poisoning Yemeni children in the womb with depleted uranium weapons, I feel compelled to speak the truth about what has been going on here.

And President Trump is so completely, absolutely, and horrifically on the wrong side of history here, I cannot begin to articulate it. His "bromance" with Saudi royals, on his first foreign trip, as a way to push more American weapons on them, just sickened me.

That he, and the US and Saudi governments are so morally comfortable with this genocide of Yemeni children reminds me very strongly of the statement made by the Papal Legate at the Catholic Church's siege of the Cathars at Montsegur. When information reached him that women and children were also in attendance where the men were being besieged, he responded: "Kill them all: God will find his own."

Jun 16 09:19

3 REASONS AMERICA SOLD MILITARY JETS TO QATAR

Unlike Iran which has the mightiest military in the wider Middle East, arguably even more disciplined than that of Turkey, the military might of Qatar and Saudi Arabia, for all the money they lavish on arms, is broadly incompetent and incapable. The average citizens of the small State of Qatar let alone the larger Saudi Kingdom are simply not equipped for serious, let alone long term military combat.

The United States just completed a sale of military hardware, including fighter jets to the pseudo-isolated Qatari state in a deal worth $12 billion.

This comes shortly after Donald Trump called Qatar a terrorist sponsoring state. Of course both Qatar and Saudi Arabia sponsor terrorism and for that matter they sponsor many of the same terrorist groups including ISIS.

Why then did America go through with its lucrative transaction that will see top-notch military hardware placed into the hands of a country that the US President called a terrorist supporting regime?

Jun 16 09:15

Who will succeed Al-Baghdadi after his reported death?

Who will succeed Al-Baghdadi after his reported death?

The Russian Ministry of Defense has claimed that according to information, which is being checked through various channels, the Islamic State’s leader Abu-Bakr al-Baghdadi had reportedly been killed as a result of airstrikes conducted by the Russian aircraft near Raqqa on May 28. The strikes targeted a meeting of high-ranking Islamic State leaders where al- Baghdadi had reportedly been present. The meeting had been gathered to plan routes for the exit of militants from Raqqa through the so-called “southern corridor.”

Jun 16 08:42

Yemen War Threatens Crucial Oil Chokepoint

The Bab al-Mandan strait, which facilitates the transfer of 4 million barrels of oil to Middle Eastern markets everyday, has become increasingly contentious over the past few weeks as an international navel coalition grows its presence in the area.

"Recent attacks against merchant shipping in the Gulf of Aden and Bab Al Mandeb have highlighted that there are still risks associated with transits through these waters,” the leadership of the Combined Maritime Forces, which boasts vessels from 31 nations, said on Monday. The U.S.-led group is based in Bahrain and guards the Gulf of Aden.

Jun 16 07:41

Justice or revenge: Relatives demand punishment after US troops shoot dead Afghan father & 2 sons

The US Military,poorly trained,poorly disciplined. When they get into a fight with a modern military they will have their heads and butts handed to them. Allowing themselves to be enveloped and flanked in Syria shows how unprofessional they are. As does this incident.

The relatives of an Afghan father and two of his sons, who they say were killed and disfigured by heavy US fire in the country's Nangarhar province, told RT they demand the American troops be punished. The US military says it's unaware of civilian casualties.

Zir Gul and his sons were basically torn apart by the US gunfire, with his uncle Ghulam Ahmad saying: It was horrible what the Americans did to them. Even I couldn't recognize their bodies.The tragedy left 12 of Zir Gul's children, six sons and as many daughters, without their provider.

The kids who are now facing a struggle for survival, are both shocked by their father's death and full of anger.

Jun 15 14:22

UN last hurdle before Israel can rid itself of the Palestinians

Jonathan Cook says a real conspiracy is underway between US and Israeli officials to pre-empt Donald Trump’s supposed “ultimate deal” to end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict by demoting the Palestinian issue to a footnote in international diplomacy.>>

Jun 15 11:47

Syria: From ‘no boots on the ground’ to (not so secret) forward operating bases

It’s a familiar pattern by now. From “we’re staying out” to “just some logistical aid to rebels” to “okay, some mere light arms to fight the evil dictator” to “well, a few anti-tank missiles wouldn’t hurt” to “we gotta bomb the new super-bad terror group that emerged!” to “ah but no boots on the ground!” to “alright kinetic strikes as a deterrent” to “but special forces aren’t really boots on the ground per se, right?” And on and on it goes.

As of this week the public is getting a rare glimpse of more US boots on the ground in southern Syria. Not just boots, but a US Special Forces Forward Operating Base, along with evidence of US operational control of a sovereign country’s border crossing.

Caleb Weiss reports the following for Long War Journal:

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The collective insanity of this ongoing war, on the part of the government of the Unhinged, Surveilled State of America against Syria, is right out there, on display in this move.

This is a monstrously illegal act, by a foreign government against the sovereign state of Syria, and I have to wonder just when US fighting forces in Syria are going to find themselves fighting Russian troops, on the ground.

Because it looks as though that is the state of affairs to which the US military appears to be headed at the moment.

Jun 15 11:40

Bahrain Begins Jailing People for Not Endorsing Anti-Qatar Policy

Following moves to further criminalize public dissent, the island nation of Bahrain has arrested at least two people today on charges of being “Qatar sympathizers,” based on public comments in which the two men were seen as opposed to the Saudi-led blockade on nearly Qatar.

One of the two men was identified as Issa Faraj Arhama al-Burshad, a human rights lawyer who filed a lawsuit attempting to challenge the blockade, accusing it of breaking up families in Bahrain by expelling Qatari citizens. The lawsuit will not happen, and Burshad has been thrown in jail for even trying to do so.

The other man was not publicly identified, but was only said to have been a social media user who was accused of making postings that “opposed the decision of the kingdom” to move against Qatar. Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates have both threatened to jail anyone expressing “sympathy” for Qatar.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Absoflippinglutely unbelievable.

This is all about the money, and those natural gas reserves Qatar shares with Iran.

Jun 15 10:01

The Qatar blockade, petro-yuan & coming war on Iran

Qatar hasn’t been playing ball with the US-approved, Saudi-led ‘isolate Iran’ program. Partly because Doha has made independence from Riyadh a hallmark of its foreign policy, but mostly because Qatar and Iran share the world's largest natural gas field.
US President Donald Trump’s speech to the assembled Gulf leaders in Saudi Arabia on May 21 is worth reading in full. It is deeply disturbing.

Having praised himself for his $110 billion arms deal with the Saudis, he goes on to talk about the threat posed by terrorism, and what a wonderful job the US and the Gulfies – that is, the leading state sponsor of the region's supremacist death squads and its assembled proxies – are doing in combating it. He then goes on to claim that at the root of the region's terrorism lurks… guess who? The power leading the regional pushback against Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS) and Al-Qaeda: Iran.

Jun 15 09:46

US sells $12bn worth of fighter jets to ‘terrorist funder’ Qatar

News of the deal comes less than a week after US President Donald Trump lashed out at the Gulf kingdom, saying it has “historically been a funder of terrorism at a very high level.”

Jun 15 09:07

Iran sends 500 tons of food supplies to Qatar

Iran has so far sent about 500 tons of food supplies including fruits and vegetables to Qatar whose diplomatic ties with Saudi Arabia is currently severed.

According to IRIB, head of Iran’s food producers’ union Mehdi Karimi Tafreshi noted Qatar’s 3-billion-dollar worth of annual exports, adding “almost all of Qatar’s food supplies are imports, and Iran exported about $118 million worth of various kinds of foodstuff to the Persian Gulf emirate last year.”

Jun 14 15:00

Pentagon Agrees To Sell $12 Billion In F-15s To Qatar

Remember when Trump called on Qatar to stop funding terrorism, claiming credit for and endorsing the decision of Gulf nations to isolate their small neighbor (where the most important US airbase in the middle east is located),even as US Cabinet officials said their blockade is hurting the campaign against ISIS. You should: it took place just 5 days ago.

"We had a decision to make," Trump said, describing conversations with Saudi Arabia and other Gulf countries. "Do we take the easy road or do we finally take a hard but necessary action? We have to stop the funding of terrorism." Also last week, Trump triumphantly announced on twitter that “during my recent trip to the Middle East I stated that there can no longer be funding of Radical Ideology. Leaders pointed to Qatar - look!”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

So, in the coming war between Saudi Arabia and Qatar, the US sells weapons to BOTH sides!

Jun 14 13:43

American father fights for his kidnapped children’s lives in Israel as his son wastes away “in care”

Last January we wrote about two American children, Jericho and Yamit Dudovich, who had been snatched from their school by the Israeli police and social workers under a false pretext.

Since then matters have taken a sharp turn for the worse...>>

Jun 14 12:49

UAE Ambassador: US Should Move Key Base Out of Qatar

Addressing the ongoing tensions with Qatar, United Arab Emirates Ambassador Yousef al-Otaiba today suggested that the United States needs to seriously consider relocating its largest military base in the Middle East, which is located in Qatar, as a way to “further pressure Qatar.”

Jun 14 12:47

Mattis Ready to Blame Russia for Qatar Diplomatic Split

Speaking today at the Senate Armed Services Committee, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D – MA) asked Defense Secretary James Mattis to reveal no classified information, but to assume that last week’s report in CNN that Russia had used “fake news” to start the controversy was true, and to elaborate on their motives for that.

Mattis appeared only too eager to make that assumption, as requested, insisting that the he believed this reflected Russia’s “shortsighted way” of thinking, and that they want to disrupt all alliances across the planet, not just alliances involving the US, or even just alliances related directly to Europe.

Jun 14 09:06

US ambassador to Qatar QUITS as crisis engulfs Middle East

THE US Ambassador to Qatar has announced she is leaving her post as diplomatic tensions flare among the Gulf nations.

Dana Shell Smith said her time at the State Department is ending later this month, giving no other reasons for her departure.

Jun 14 08:09

Five Democrat Votes Allow Trump's Saudi Weapons Deal To Clear Senate

A bipartisan bid to block President Trump's recently negotiated $110 billion arms deal with Saudi Arabia failed in the Senate. The effort to stop the weapons sales, authored by Senators Rand Paul and Chris Murphy, fell short on a 47-53 vote, with four Republicans joining most Democrats in voting against it and five Democrats voting to preserve deals that will arm the Saudi Kingdom with some of the most sophisticated equipment available.

The five democrats who made the passage of the weapons deal possible were Sens. Bill Nelson, Claire McCaskill, Joe Manchin, Joe Donnelly and Mark Warner.

Jun 14 07:24

Gulf of Aden States Seeking to Obstruct Iran’s Naval Presence: Commander

The Gulf of Aden littoral states are making deliberate attempts to disrupt the presence of Iranian naval flotillas in high seas, Iran’s Navy commander said, noting, however, that Iranian forces continue to sail wherever international law allows regardless of antagonistic moves.

Jun 13 12:50

UK Prime Minister Theresa May's pact with the devil

As Theresa May prepares to sign a deal with the bigots of Northern Ireland’s Democratic Unionist Party to prop up her government in Parliament, Stuart Littlewood examines her track record of incompetence and lack of principle.>>

Jun 13 12:27

Putin Warns America "Has A False Sense That It Can Do Anything Without Consequences"

In the first episode of Stone’s hugely anticipated Showtime series, which aired Monday night, Russian President Vladimir Putin pulled no punches claiming US is to blame for the rise of Al-Qaeda and its late mastermind Osama bin Laden, which it empowered to fight Soviet troops in Afghanistan, adding that there is proof the CIA supported terrorists in Russia’s Chechnya.

Jun 13 11:57

Israeli DM: Al-Jazeera Is ‘Nazi-, Soviet-Style Propaganda’

Israeli officials have been eagerly backing regional hostility toward Qatar, and Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman has doubled down on that, accusing the Qatar-funded al-Jazeera network, the most popular news media outlet in the Middle East, of being “Nazi-, Soviet-style propaganda.”

Lieberman’s evidence for this was that al-Jazeera has often run stories critical of Israel, saying that such behavior doesn’t rise to the level of journalism. Ironically, al-Jazeera is historically the only Arab media outlet that has allowed Israeli officials on to tell their side of the story at all, with most outlets banning Israelis as a matter of course.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Israeli DM Lieberman, a word, please.

Your rant appears to be borne from desperation on the cusp of madness.

I have always found Al-Jazeera (English version) to be a reasonable, and responsible, voice for the Arab world, and the quality of its journalism is generally quite elevated.

Israel has, most generally, treated Palestinians in the occupied territories quite horrifically, and that reality cannot be disproven, even by such vicious, and logic-challenged, rants such as this.

Jun 13 10:51

QATARI CURRENCY HITS 19-YEAR LOW AS DIPLOMATIC CRISIS DEEPENS

With increasing diplomatic and economic pressure from its Arab neighbors, Qatar’s national currency, the riyal, has reached its lowest exchange rate against the US dollar since 1998.
The Qatar Central Bank is currently trying to keep the riyal fixed at around 3.64 per dollar, but the Saudi-led boycott raises concerns that the regulator will have to weaken the currency.

“I don’t think there is any reason that people need to be concerned about what’s happening or any speculation on the Qatari riyal,” the Emirate’s finance minister, Ali Shareef Al Emadi, said in an interview with CNBC earlier this week.

“We have the assets and the security that we need. Our foreign assets and our foreign investment is more than 250 percent of our GDP. So we are very much comfortable. We know we can defend the currency or we can defend the economy,” he added.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Financial sanctions are frequently a prelude to war.

Jun 13 08:13

UAE paid $3bn to finance coup attempt in Turkey: Report

The United Arab Emirates financed a high-profile coup attempt last year in Turkey and paid about three billion dollars to the putschists, a columnist in a Turkish daily has claimed.

Jun 13 08:08

Gulf Crisis: On Fast Track to War

In less than one week, what began as a simple disagreement in politics turned into a siege that could easily develop into a war. On June 5th of last week, Saudi Arabia and four of its regional allies decided to sever diplomatic, economic, and transportation ties with Qatar and its ruler Emir Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani. However, it was May 24th which saw the initial fracture occur in this latest watermark in the long history of the inter-Gulf conflict.

Jun 13 08:03

The Qatari Conundrum: A Saudi Message to Turkey and Iran

The Middle East has been ablaze for many years now, but the Islamic Republic of Iran has so far largely escaped any direct harm. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, on the other hand, has also become the victim of numerous terror attacks over the past years… but now, the whole dynamic seems to have undergone a radical shift, a shift endangering Iran, Qatar, Syria, and Yemen… with potential ripple effects also touching upon Turkey and Russia.

Jun 12 15:29

Saudi Arabia Showing Signs Of Support For Kurdish Fighters, Shows Possible Rift With Turkey Over Qatar

By Brandon Turbeville

Only days after the falling out between Saudi Arabia and Qatar that resulted in a virtual blockade of Qatar by Gulf countries and Egypt, overtures are apparently being made between Saudi Arabia and Kurdish political and military units. While many may not understand the connection between the two events, rest assured there is a direct cause and effect between the Qatari row and the newfound interest in Kurds by Saudi Arabia...

Jun 12 12:31

Settlement, Soft Coup, Realignment or Regional War: 4 Scenarios for Qatar Crisis

The Russian International Affairs Council, a powerful Moscow-based think tank, estimates that there are four scenarios for resolving the ongoing diplomatic conflict between Qatar and other Arab and Muslim states. Written by renowned Middle East observer Vitaly Naumkin, the report outlines what Russia and its regional allies should be prepared for.

Under the first scenario, the parties resolve their differences as a result of mediation by regional and world powers. Doha will be forced to make some concessions, but will not be asked to sacrifice its key foreign policy initiatives, including friendly relations with Iran, and links to the Muslim Brotherhood.
The second scenario sees mediation efforts fail, and pressure on Qatar escalate. Amid threats of even more severe struggle, the emirate's leadership is forced to resign, and is replaced in a soft change of power scenario.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

One thing Naumkin does not take into consideration here, is the absolute blood lust shared by Israel; Saudi Arabia; and the US government for regime change in Tehran, and soon.

And the US government and military are very excellent at maintaining wars which should have been over months and years ago, save for US military involvement; Naumkin should ask Syria's Bashar Al-Assad about that.

Regime changing Qatar's government, and making it more antagonistic toward Iran, and using the 11,000 US troops serving there, together with Saudi troops, plus the US Navy's 5th Fleet, stationed in Bahrain, could mount up to a formidable fighting force against Iran.

But the big question which people in Riyadh; DC, and Tel Aviv need to be asking themselves is, if the US goes up against Iran militarily, what will Russia do?!?

In this case, I am not of the opinion that the Duma is just going to sit around and sing "Kumbyah", but will authorise immediate military action on Iran's side, should the US and Saudi Arabia attempt to invade Iran, supported by Israeli intelligence.

Jun 12 11:38

Israel, Saudis, UAE Lobby Congress for Anti-Qatar Legislation

While Israel has been unable to directly join the Saudi-led move to “blockade” Qatar, having very limited contact with them in the first place, that hasn’t stopped them from throwing their substantial lobbying support behind a move already backed by Saudi and Emirati lobbyists to see the US Congress pass anti-Qatar legislation.

The HR 2712 bill, the Palestinian International Terrorism Support Prevention Act of 2017, faults Qatar for its support for the Hamas Movement, The bill’s sponsors in the House include a number of lawmakers who have received substantial donations from pro-Israel lobbyists, and donations from pro-Saudi lobbyists as well.

This is part of an ongoing allegation that Qatar’s charitable contributions are going to terrorist movements. Qatar denies that this is the case, saying that the government has been very successful in ensuring that the charities they support actually do charitable work, and don’t simply end up laundering the money to terrorist movements.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The threat of an imminent invasion into Qatar may have been stayed for now, thanks to the rapid action of both Turkey and Iran, pledging troops for Qatar.

However, that being said, look for Israel and the US government to conjure up some horrific false flag to blame on Iran (the real target, here), in the not too distant future, as a "justification" for invading it.

And Iran's "real crimes" here?!? Oh, let me count them for you:

1. Not having a private central bank, which loans money at interest, instead of for a fixed fee, which creates no compound interest.

2. Having a Constitutional Islamic Republic (Israel has no constitution whatsoever)

3. Doing a great job of educating their kids to become competitive on the world stage. In Iran, around 70% of science and engineering students are women

Jun 12 11:04

SAUDI ARABIA’S ATTACK ON QATAR UNRAVELS

A week into the crisis Saudi Arabia instigated when it broke diplomatic relations with Qatar and imposed a land and air blockade of the tiny Gulf state, it is becoming clear that it is failing to bring Qatar to heel.

Instead Qatar has successfully secured pledges of support from Turkey and Iran – the two military giants in this region – appears to have the tacit support of Kuwait, and is gaining diplomatic traction with Russia.

As for the US, though US President Trump has seemed to tilt to Saudi Arabia’s side in this quarrel, US Secretary of State Tillerson – who as a former oil executive must know this region well – seems intent on taking a more conciliatory line towards Qatar, calling for the blockade on Qatar to be lifted. I have no doubt it will be his counsels which in the US will eventually prevail.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Good!!

Jun 12 09:37

SAUDI ARABIA BECOMES PRO-KURDISH AFTER TURKEY SIDES WITH QATAR

This could be the beginning of a new alignment that will elevate the Russian position in the region while diminishing the influence of the United States.

The new and seemingly prolonged row between Saudi Arabia and Qatar is having some curious and almost shocking knock-on effects.

The most interesting is that Syrian media has been reporting that attacks and even mobilisations from many Gulfi funded terrorists in Syria have declined.

Likewise, state-run Qatari broadcaster Al Jazeera has suddenly discovered the extent of Saudi war crimes in Yemen after ignoring the story until last week when Qatar’s exit from the Saudi coalition was formalised.

But by far the most strange development thus far is the newfound Saudi love for the cause of Kurdish nationalism.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

These re-alignments remind me of the phrase, very common in the Middle East, that "The enemy of my enemy is my friend!"

Jun 12 08:52

Israel, Saudi, UAE team up in anti-Qatar lobbying move

US legislation threatening to sanction Qatar for its support of "Palestinian terror" was sponsored by 10 legislators who received more than $1m over the last 18 months from lobbyists and groups linked to Israel, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates.

The bill was introduced to the US House of Representatives on May 25, but the text wasn't available until Friday morning, hours after Saudi Arabia, UAE, and Egypt put 59 people and 12 institutions linked to Qatar on a "terror list".

The nations abruptly ended diplomatic relations with Qatar on Monday, accusing Doha of supporting "extremism" and siding with their regional rival Iran.

Jun 12 08:50

Kuwait says Qatar ready for talks as Bahrain moves to freeze assets

The Kuwaiti Foreign Ministry says Qatar is prepared to enter negotiations aimed at solving the diplomatic row with Arab countries as Bahrain’s central bank has issued orders freezing assets and bank accounts of Qatar-linked entities.

Jun 12 08:48

Iran Dispatches Warships to Oman Amid ‘Controlled Insecurity’ in the Gulf

"An Iranian naval flotilla will depart to Oman on Sunday and then will go to the north of the Indian Ocean and Gulf of Aden," the public relations of the naval forces of the army said in a statement published on the Iranian Tasnim news agency.

The 47th flotilla, comprised of one destroyer and one logistics warship, began its mission Sunday, after a ceremony attended by naval commander Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayyari.

Jun 12 08:25

Iran Claims Proof Of ‘Direct US Support” For ISIS Days After Congressman Dana Rohrabacher Floats The Idea

Content originally generated at iBankCoin.com Last Thursday, Congressman Dana Rohrabacher praised ISIS for coordinated terrorist attacks in Tehran which left 17 civilians dead - then suggested that the United States should support the terrorist organization in their endeavors to bring regime change to Iran, comparing the situation to working with Stalin's Russia to get Hitler. Rohrabacher: Isn't it a good thing for us to have Untied States finally backing up Sunnis who will attack Hezbollah and the Shiite threat to us? Isn't that a good thing? And if so, maybe this is a Trump strategy of actually supporting one group against another considering that you have terrorist organizations. Maybe it's a good idea to have radical Muslim terrorists fighting each other?

Jun 12 07:42

Saudi Arabia’s attack on Qatar unravels

A week into the crisis Saudi Arabia instigated when it broke diplomatic relations with Qatar and imposed a land and air blockade of the tiny Gulf state, it is becoming clear that it is failing to bring Qatar to heel.

Instead Qatar has successfully secured pledges of support from Turkey and Iran – the two military giants in this region – appears to have the tacit support of Kuwait, and is gaining diplomatic traction with Russia.

Jun 12 07:34

Qatar hosted Taliban on US request: Official

Mutlaq al-Qahtani, a senior counterterrorism adviser to Qatar’s foreign minister, told Al Jazeera on Sunday that Qatar hosted the Taliban “by request by the US government” and as part of Qatar’s “open-door policy, to facilitate talks, to mediate and to bring peace.”

The Taliban opened a “political office” in Qatar in 2013, but the Qatari government later shut it down. Taliban leaders are still said to be in Doha, however.

Jun 12 07:33

31 December 2016 16:3630 Saudi Mercenaries Killed and Injured by Yemeni Army in Shabwah

According to Al-Alam reporter quoted from Yemeni Sources 30 Saudi mercenaries killed and injured in an assault repelled by Yemeni army in Hijar region of Asilan in Shabwah Governorate.

Jun 11 15:13

Iran Sends 2 Warships To Oman, Flies Food To Qatar

If there was any confusion on which side of the Qatar crisis Iran found itself, it was swept away today after Iran's Tasnim news, cited by Turkey's Anadolu Agency, reported that Iran plans to send two warships to Oman on Sunday. The two ships will depart using Iran's southern waters off the port city of Bandar Abbas for an overseas mission to the Arab Peninsula state and then on to international waters.

On Sunday, the 47th flotilla, comprised of an Alborz destroyer and Bushehr logistic warship, set sail from the southern port city of Bandar Abbas, Tasnim reported. From Oman, the ships will then head to the Gulf of Aden and international waters north of the Indian Ocean. At the same time, Iran's 46th flotilla consisting of a Sabalan destroyer and Lavan logistic warship, is due to return to Iran on Sunday after completing a two-month mission to secure naval routes and protect merchant vessels and oil tankers in the Gulf of Aden.

Jun 11 11:53

Al-Nusra’s Name has been Removed from Terror List after Rebranding:

The US State Department is hesitant to label Tahrir al-Sham a terror group, despite the group’s link to al-Qaeda, as the US government has directly funded and armed the Zenki Brigade, one of the constituents of Tahrir al-Sham, with sophisticated weaponry including the US-made antitank TOW missiles.

Jun 11 09:29

Qatar's Al Jazeera TV says it has come under cyber attack

DOHA: Pan-Arab satellite network Al Jazeera is combating a large-scale cyber attack on its media platform, but all its entities remain operational, a company source said on Thursday.

"There were attempts made on the cyber security of Al Jazeera but we are combating them and currently all our entities are operational," said a senior employee who declined to be named.

Al Jazeera is the flagship broadcaster for Qatar, which is in a stand-off with fellow Arab states which accuse it of ties to terrorism, in a row that is endangering stability in the region.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

"In a time of universal deceit — telling the truth is a revolutionary act." - George Orwell, "1984".

I, for one, appreciate the English language edition of Al Jazeera, and respect the general integrity of its reporting.

So hang in there, IT people at Al Jazeera; as was said during World War II, if you're catching flack, you know you're over the target.

Jun 11 09:23

Qatar Will Pay John Ashcroft $2.5 Million To Defend Against Terrorism Accusations

As a reminder, Ashcroft was U.S. attorney general under President George W. Bush from February 2001 to February 2005, years in which US policies and laws were reshaped by the so-called war on terrorism that followed the 2001 al Qaeda attacks. Under Ashcroft the US spawned the "Patriot Act", trampling over civil rights everywhere, and made pervasive spying on virtually everyone the norm, courtesy of the NSA.

Perhaps relying on the assumption that Qatar can simply bribe its way again into America's good graces - recall Qatar give Bill Clinton a $1 million "present" for his Birthday, and was one of the biggest foreign "donors" of the Clinton Foundation even when Hillary was still at the State Department...

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I frankly do not believe, for a moment, that Saudi Arabia and the US will give Qatar the "grace period" for which it has asked; if, in fact, both countries are looking at war against Iran, things have to move swiftly, and without delay.

So look for some very terrible false flag to happen very soon to be blamed on the Qatari government, and then we are...off and running into a war against Iran, which will most probably mean a war with Russia.

Jun 11 08:40

Cool Qatar: Riyadh plan backfires after Trump flip-flop & Turkey ruse

Saudi Arabia’s standoff against Qatar was fraught with miscalculations and comically ill-conceived notions from the start. But now the crisis is becoming a threat to Riyadh’s own prominence and security in the Middle East.

Jun 11 07:56

Qatar Will Pay John Ashcroft $2.5 Million To Defend Against Terrorism Accusations

Who better to defend Qatar it is a hotbed of terrorism-funding (as per a recent list released by Saudi Arabia et al according to which 59 individuals and 12 entities in Qatar are terrorist) than the US Attorney General who served during the September 11 attacks, John Ashcroft. At least that's what the government of Qatar is thinking, which hired the former US AG to defend the world's wealthiest (on a GDP/capita basis) nation from accusations by Donald Trump and Arab neighbors that it supports terrorism.

Jun 11 07:15

Escalation in Gulf Deals Blow to Qatari Banks

Qatari banks, already stretched by financing demands of the $200 billion 2022 World Cup, took a head-on blow from its neighbors’ abrupt decision to cut economic and diplomatic ties.

At risk are the foreign deposits—especially from the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council—that have helped sustain institutions like Qatar National Bank QPSC, the region’s largest by assets, and Doha Bank QSC. Lenders in Qatar and across the GCC have already struggled with declining cash reserves and higher interest rates after governments used bank deposits to maintain spending in recent years amid declining oil prices.

Jun 11 07:15

Qatar-Gulf crisis: All the latest updates

The latest news after Arab Gulf countries cut diplomatic ties with Qatar and suspended Doha-bound flights.

Jun 10 16:31

Robert Fisk: This is the real story behind the economic crisis unfolding in Qatar

After promising to fight to the death against Shia Iranian “terror,” Saudi Arabia and its closest chums have now ganged up on one of the wealthiest of their neighbours, Qatar, for being a fountainhead of “terror”. Only Shakespeare’s plays could come close to describing such treachery. Shakespeare’s comedies, of course.

Jun 10 13:34

UK and terrorism: Jeremy Corbyn tries the truth

Lawrence Davidson examines the relationship between Britain’s misguided neoconservative foreign policy, the recent terrorist attacks in the country and the outcome of the parliamentary election, which resulted in the ruling Conservatives losing many of their parliamentary seats.>>

Jun 10 09:19

Turkish President: Ankara to Continue to Support Doha

“We will not abandon our Qatari brothers,” Erdogan said at the Turkish parliament on Friday, Anadolu news agency reported.

Erdogan also dismissed a blacklist drawn up by the Arab countries opposed to Qatar and targeting certain Qatari-backed organizations as sponsors of terrorism.

“There is no such thing. I know those foundations,” Turkish President said, adding that Ankara “will continue to give all kinds of support to Qatar."

Jun 10 09:09

WHY HAS THE GCC AND EGYPT TURNED ON QATAR?

It is important to note which countries in the anti-Syria coalition are not part of the anti-Qatar coalition, specifically Turkey. The one thing Turkey and Qatar have in common besides funding and facilitating terrorists for the purpose of overthrowing the Syrian government, is support for the Muslim Brotherhood. After all, Turkey’s Erdogan has long supported the MB and has maintained close ties with them for years. Turkey is also currently debating the possibility of deploying Turkish troops to a base in Qatar.

So what we are seeing is, in part, an anti-Muslim Brotherhood coalition with the focus being placed on Qatar, the country which is seen as being perhaps the biggest patron of the organization.

The Iranian Element

Webmaster's Commentary: 

All of these elements, taken together, appear to be leading toward an ultimate Saudi proxy war against Iran, supported by the US and Israel, which will, almost inevitably, lead to a war against Russia, whose military and political class have, very publicly, stated that any attack on Iran will have Russia come to defend it, militarily.

And I very frankly think that we are looking at a question of "when", rather than "if".

The current regimes in DC, Tel Aviv, and Riyadh want to see the current regime in Tehran crushed, and by any means necessary, in order to install a western-centric puppet, as the US military and intelligence agencies did in 1953, and renew the curse of private central banking in this country.

President Rouhani, the Iranian Parliament, and the Iranian military, have every reason to be concerned about this demonisation of Qatar, and where it might be leading, geopolitically and militarily.

Jun 10 08:06

UAE in dire need of Qatar gas to keep Dubai lit up: Report

The United Arab Emirates depends on imported gas to generate half of its electricity, and the recent diplomatic row with neighboring Qatar risks glittering skyscrapers in the sheikhdom’s largest and most populous city of Dubai to go dark for lack of power.

Jun 10 08:06

Is Qatar paying the price for its pro-Palestine stance?

Qatar's support for Palestinians seems to be one of the key causes of the Saudi-led blockade on Doha, amid increasing convergence between Riyadh and Abu Dhabi, and the administration of US President Donald Trump - the president most supportive of Israel in recent decades.

Jun 10 08:05

Iran offers Qatar use of key southern ports, sends cargo plane with food supplies

Iran has offered to allow Qatar use its southern ports to carry on its vital import activities after the emirate's Arab neighbors united to isolate it. The announcement was made by Qatar's Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani. He was quoted by the Financial Times in a report as saying that Iran had offered Doha to use three of its ports in the Persian Gulf. He said this would enable Qatar to import all the goods it needed.

Jun 09 16:19

President Trump Demands Qatar Stop Funding Terrorists

"Stop funding, stop teaching hate, and stop the killing," US President Donald Trump said Friday during a news conference with the Romanian president after alleging that Doha has propped up Islamist extremists.

"No more funding," Trump emphasized. His comments come following the diplomatic row that erupted last week between Qatar and major Middle East powers like Saudi Arabia and Egypt.

Mattis Aware of Steps Planned to Isolate Qatar - Pentagon
The "high level" of support — whether it be financial, logistical or moral — for terror groups originating in Doha must stop, the president said.

"I want to call on all of the nations to stop immediately supporting terrorism," Trump reiterated.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

It is painfully obvious that Tillerson's remarks earlier today were simply for American public consumption, as though the US government had absolutely nothing to do with greenlighting this coming war.

We are in a place now, where there can be no speculation about "if" a war against Qatar, and ultimately Iran, is going to happen; we are in a place of "when" such a war will happen.

My gut is telling me, sooner rather than later.

I have to wonder what the orders are for those 11,000 US service members in Qatar are going to be, once the fertilizer hits the ventilation shaft.

Jun 09 15:49

Barcelona football fans could face 15yrs in prison, $135K fine in UAE over Qatar sponsorship

In 2011, Barcelona FC signed a historic deal with Qatar Sports Investment to put a sponsor's logo on their shirts for the first time in 111 years. Now, however, the club’s Emirati fans could face jail time and large fines for wearing Barca jerseys.

While the football club’s sponsorship deal with Qatar Airways ends June 30 – with Japanese e-commerce company Rakuten occupying the coveted spot during the 2017-18 season – the increasing tensions in the Gulf region have inflicted substantial collateral damage.

So for those of you in the UAE wearing a Barcelona shirt with "Qatar Airways" you're gonna face a fine ???????? #petty

— Haya Abdulrahman ? (@l_Haya_l) June 7, 2017

Earlier this week, UAE authorities announced that social media posts sympathetic to Qatar are punishable by three to 15 years in jail, or a fine of at least 500,000 AED (US$135,000).

Jun 09 13:55

Tillerson Tells Arab States To Lift Qatar Blockade: "It's Hindering The Campaign Against ISIS"

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson called on the Saudi Arabia-led coalition, which includes UAE, Bahrain and Egypt and others, to lift its blockade of Qatar, saying that the cutoff is hindering the fight against the (Qatar-funded) Islamic State. Tillerson also said the blockade had led to food shortages and forced families to uproot themselves and pull their children from school.

“We believe there are unintended consequences, especially during this holy month of Ramadan but they can be addressed immediately,” Tillerson said.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I applaud President Trump's Tillerson's approach to attempting to resolve this issue; and yes, it is horrifically awkward, because the US government has alliances on both sides of the issue, and Qatar hosts about 11,000 US service members.

But that being said, I am concerned that Tillerson doesn't know with whom he is dealing, between the Royal House of Saud, the Saudi government, and Saudi military. The concept of "face" is critically important in the Middle East, and unless he and President Trump can figure out a way to get the Saudis to back down without appearing to have "lost face" on this issue.

And after his visit to Saudi Arabia, Trump may have just given the Saudis the indication that they had a "green light" to go ahead with this blockade; if so, that has got to be undone, and quickly.

Jun 09 13:33

Pakistan to send soldiers to Qatar

Following Turkey’s decision to deploy troops in Qatar, Pakistan took a similar step, by deciding to send twenty thousand soldiers to the region

Jun 09 12:16

RUSSIA’S FOOD SHIPMENTS TO QATAR ARE A SOFT POWER MASTERSTROKE

The Qatari-Saudi Cold War is a geopolitical scheme cooked up by the US and the UAE, as I explained in my 21st Century Wire article about “The Machiavellian Plot to Provoke Saudi Arabia and Qatar into a “Blood Border” War”, but it’s not exactly a surprise that it happened. My September 2016 forward-looking analysis about “The GCC: The Tripartite’s Big Barter In The ‘Eurasian Balkans’” presciently forecast that a second round of Gulf tensions was bound to occur, and that the Great Power Tripartite of Russia, Iran, and Turkey could cooperate with Qatar in helping to break Riyadh’s stranglehold on the GCC. Moreover, my Geopolitica.Ru analysis from earlier this week about “Russia’s Energy Diplomacy In The Mideast: Boom Or Bust?” accurately predicted that Russia will play a role in mediating tensions between the two feuding GCC countries, which has now officially come to pass with the Qatari Foreign Minister’s visit to Moscow this weekend.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

As always, Putin is a million chess moves ahead of everyone else in this geopolitical "realignment" in the Middle East.

Jun 09 11:30

Saudi Arabia issues 10,000 Riyal fine for watching al-Jazeera

Saudi Arabia issued an outright ban against watching the al-Jazeera TV channel on Thursday, in the latest bizarre twist in its on-going diplomatic spat with Qatar.

The Saudi commission for tourism and national heritage issued a warning of a 10,000 riyal ($2700) fine if any tourist outlet failed to censor the Qatari news channel.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Al Jazeera's website has also been hit with a major DDOS attack.

Jun 09 10:35

Trump faces growing Senate resistance on Saudi arms deal

As President Donald Trump aligns with Saudi Arabia amid a fresh dispute among Gulf nations, senators in both parties as soon as Thursday will try to block him from selling more than $500 million in offensive weapons to Riyadh.

The Senate bid to stop the Saudi arms sales — a small portion of what the White House claims will be a $110 billion package — is likely to fail. But the push to tie Trump's hands will probably find more support than a similar brushback pitch directed at President Barack Obama last year, as Democrats are far more united behind the proposal. Not only do Democrats have little reason to give Trump a win on any front, they're also stepping up their outcry over Saudi involvement in Yemen’s worsening civil war.

Jun 09 09:02

Cholera Outbreak in Yemen Takes Major Turn for the Worse

The World Health Organization (WHO) announced Thursday that Yemen’s cholera outbreak has intensified. The Yemeni government, unable to keep pace with the spread of the disease, has declared a state of emergency in Sanaa.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Biological warfare????

Jun 09 09:01

With Trump on Board, the Saudis Move Against Iran

Saudi Arabia accusing Qatar of sponsoring terrorism is like the McDonald's fast food chain accusing its Burger King rival of sponsoring obesity. However the schism that has opened up between the Gulf States carries with it a dangerous portent of a regional conflict with ramifications for the entire world.

Jun 09 08:39

WEEKS’ END TOON ~~ WHO’S BEHIND THE ISIS ATTACK ON IRAN

The revelation comes a day after Reuters reported that the US risks being branded a war criminal for its support of the Saudi war in Yemen, which has led to thousands of innocent civilian casualties.

Jun 09 08:37

FLASHBACK - Qatar Petroleum to merge LNG giants Qatargas, RasGas

Qatar Petroleum (QP) plans to integrate Qatargas and RasGas Co. Ltd., forming a combined company will retain the name Qatargas and operate all of Qatar’s LNG ventures.

Qatargas operates seven LNG trains with production capacity of 42 million tonnes/year, expansion of which came through projects in partnership with ExxonMobil Corp., Total SA, ConocoPhillips, Royal Dutch Shell PLC, and Mitsui & Co. Ltd.

RasGas operates seven LNG trains with production capacity of 37 million tpy with a fleet of 27 LNG carriers under long-term charter agreements with ship owners. It also has developed offshore and onshore facilities for the extraction, processing, liquefaction, and storage of gas from Qatar’s North field, a primary gas source for both firms.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I wonder if this threatened formation of a rival oil corporation had anything to do with Qatar going from US friend to US enemy...

Jun 09 08:30

The UAEs foreign minister hints at support for 'regime-change' coup in Qatar

The UAE's foreign minister appeared on CNN on Tuesday, in which he discussed the ongoing spat with Qatar.

"The best solution is for cooler heads to take charge in Doha," Anwar Gargash said, when asked about scenarios in which Doha could end its alleged support for Iran.

Gargash's proposed solution strongly implied Abu Dhabi is not content with the current Qatari ruler and would want to see, or maybe even implement, change in the country's leadership.

Jun 09 08:27

Jordan moves to repeal law allowing rapists to escape punishment by marrying victim

“Actual rape cases are rare in our society. Sometimes, girls under 18 lose their virginity to force their families to accept marriage to their boyfriends,” she told al Arabiya. “Accepting marriage under Article 308 is better than leaving girls to be killed by their parents or relatives. … It protects the girls by forcing attackers to marry them.”

Jun 08 15:59

In "Clear Escalation", Arab Countries Release List Of Terrorists Supported By Qatar

In what commentators have dubbed a "clear escalation", moments ago Arab states including Saudi Arabia, UAE, Egypt and Bahrain, have released a list that designates 59 individuals and 12 entities in Qatar as terrorist. The complete list of those named includes Qataris, Jordanians, Egyptians, Kuwaitis, Libyans.

The four countries released the names in “light of their commitment to fighting terrorism, drying up their sources of funding, combating extremist ideology and its dissemination and working together to eradicate it and immunize communities,” according to a statement made available to Al Arabiya.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Folks, I am very concerned that, seeing how these countries are lining up to demonize Qatar (this includes the UAE; Saudi Arabia; Egypt, and Bahrain), will probably be working in concert (along with the US military) to attack it.

Right now, it doesn't feel that we are in an "if" moment, that it can, with negotiations, be remedied; it feels like we are in a "when" moment, and that moment could happen at any time.

On the Qatari side, we see Turkey and Iran siding with Qatar.

And while some of the people enumerated on this list may well be terrorists, Qatar is really getting punished for its dominance in natural gas, where it shares underground reservoirs with Iran in the North Field; the Saudis want this for themselves, as their oil reserves are beginning to tap out, which means that their economy may ultimately tank, unless they can control Qatar's natural gas.

So ultimately, this is about regime change in Doha, which will most probably mean at least an attempted regime change in Tehran.

Backing up to really see the "big picture" here, I am very much reminded of the Moriarty speech at the end of the 2nd Sherlock Homes movie, "A Game of Shadows". He makes the observation that a war is coming, and he wants a lock on both the bullets and the bandages.

We are seeing an escalating situation in Syria; a war approaching against Qatar,and potentially, against Iran (which most probably means, war with Russia).

Jun 08 13:21

Iran enters the Qatar-Saudi conflict as war draws near

Iran has taken the position that 'the enemy of my enemy is my friend'. On top of this, Iranian-Qatari cooperation over gas looms large.

Jun 08 12:59

Trucks of Fruits, Vegetables and Livestock on the Road to Qatar Return to Jordan

Thirty-three refrigerated trucks of fruits and vegetables destined for Qatar on Wednesday returned to Jordan, as Saudi Arabia closed its land borders with the Gulf state, according to officials.

Jun 08 12:11

Turkey scrambles for regional footing as Qatar debacle expands

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan broke his silence over the crisis engulfing his country’s closest Arab ally Qatar today, condemning the actions of the group of Gulf countries that cut off ties with the emirate over its alleged support for extremist groups and Iran. In a related move, Erdogan’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) has decided to fast-track bills to deploy Turkish forces in Qatar and train Qatari troops in its legislative agenda. Turkey is building a base in Qatar that will eventually host up to 10,000 troops under an accord in which Turkey pledged to defend the Gulf state.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

So, let me get my head around this; in one corner, we have Turkey; Iran (and with it, most probably, Russia); and Qatar; in the other corner, the UAE, Saudi Arabia, and the United States.

In looking at the facts and developments on the ground, what I am seeing is a prelude to pitting Iran against Saudi Arabia in a war, then attempting to regime-change Tehran, as the US government did in 1953, and insure that the country becomes balkanised, just as is happening in Iraq, to prevent it from having its current power and weight in the Middle East any longer.

This will, of course, make Israel very happy, because it doesn't like competing economically with Iran, and has declared it an "existential threat" to Israel's existence (which is is not: Iran hasn't started a war in over 200 years).

However, there are a couple of caveats to be considered in any such action.

First, the Iran of 2017 is not the Iran of 1953; Iranians are a very geopolitically sophisticated, tech-embracing people, who remember their history, and are determined to not allow it to be repeated.

Secondly, the large, militarily-capable gorilla, snoozing on Bosendorfer Grand in the living room...is Russia. Russian political and military leaders have a very excellent relationship with Iran, and have been very vocal about coming to its aid, militarily, should it get attacked.

Russia and Iran's growing cooperation hints at a new Middle East, March, 2017

So, a war against Iran is most probably going to mean war against Russia.

I cannot think of a more ham-fisted, pig-headed move the US/Saudi consortium could make at this time, than a war against Russia over Iran.

However, unfortunately, just because a military attack against Russia is the most ham-fisted, pig-headed move the US/Saudi consortium could make, is utterly no guarantee that they won't do it.

Jun 08 11:44

America is no longer a force for stability in the Gulf

The blacklisting of Qatar is a sign of President Trump’s new world disorder

Jun 08 11:40

PURPORTED ‘US AID WORKER’ KIDNAPPED IN YEMEN WAS COORDINATING WEAPONS SHIPMENTS

In 2015, US logistics coordinator Scott Darden was captured by Houthi forces in the Yemeni capital city of Sanaa, and held for six months before his release. During that time, he was presented purely as participating in helping the delivery of humanitarian aid into the country.

He did that, as part of his employment for New Orleans-based Transoceanic Development was overseeing the transportation of humanitarian aid to the nation, which in the midst of a Saudi invasion is struggling with a nascent famine. Today, however, the New York Times is reporting that his job also had him delivering shipments of war materiel to US special forces operating in Yemen.

Some officials were willing to confirm the broad details of this, but they and Darden himself were unwilling to provide specifics, citing its “highly classified” nature. This is fueling new calls within the House Armed Services Committee to exercise at least some oversight over what was being done.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Why am I not completely surprised at the US Military's "business as usual" in Yemen, hiding behind the facade of "humanitarian aid" to distribute weapons to Al-Hadi loyalists?!?

Jun 08 11:02

QATAR'S CREDIT RATING CUT OVER GULF BLOCKADE CRISIS

International rating agency Standard & Poor’s (S&P) has downgraded Qatar’s credit rating as outflows from portfolio investments have dragged the emirate’s national currency to 11-year lows.

The Arab Gulf state's long-term rating was cut one notch to AA- from AA. The agency put the rating on CreditWatch with negative implications, expecting further lowering.

Earlier this week, some Muslim countries led by neighboring Saudi Arabia cut diplomatic, trade and transport ties with Qatar due to alleged support of terrorism, a charge that Doha denies.

S&P said the blockade could exacerbate Qatar's external vulnerabilities and put pressure on economic growth and fiscal stability.

“We expect that economic growth will slow, not just through reduced regional trade, but as corporate profitability is damaged because regional demand is cut off, investment is hampered, and investment confidence wanes,” said the US-based agency.

Jun 08 10:58

DECLASSIFIED DOCS PROVE US GOV’T KNOWINGLY ARMED ISIS, CLAIMED WEAPONS WERE ‘LOST’

After an audit from the Department of Defense revealed that the Pentagon couldn’t account for over $1 billion in weapons and equipment that was meant for fighters in Iraq, the question remains: Did ISIS gain $1 BILLION in weapons and equipment as a result?

The September 2016 audit was declassified after the human rights organization Amnesty International filed a Freedom of Information Act request. It revealed that the Pentagon “did not have accurate, up-to-date records on the quantity and location” of the majority of the equipment that was meant for the Iraqi Train & Equip Program.

The missing equipment came from the $1.6 billion budget Congress allocated for the program in 2015. The budget was approved in the name of fighting the Islamic State of Iraq & Syria—a group of militants that didn’t exist until nearly a decade after the United States invaded Iraq in 2003.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I am having a Jean-luc Picard, double-face-palm moment, at warp speed, upon reading this.

Jean-Luc Picard double face-palm moment

Since when, please, did American military in Iraq become simply "collateral damage" to the DOD?!?

As much as I hate the economic reasons for this war, and all the other wars in which the US military has become enmeshed, those in government who signed off on this should be charged with, and tried, for treason.

Jun 08 10:20

FLASHBACK: New revelations in attack on American spy ship

By John Crewdson
Tribune senior correspondent

OCTOBER 2, 2007

Bryce Lockwood, Marine staff sergeant, Russian-language expert, recipient of the Silver Star for heroism, ordained Baptist minister, is shouting into the phone.

"I'm angry! I'm seething with anger! Forty years, and I'm seething with anger!"

Jun 08 09:50

Qatar Puts Military On Highest State Of Alert Over Fears Of Imminent Incursion

Yesterday's news that Saudi Arabia has issued an ultimatum to Qatar, listing ten demands among which that Qatar end all ties with the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas, has prompted a dramatic response by the small Gulf nation, and according to a just released report by Arabic CNN (and confirmed locally) US officials have said they have observed increased Qatari military activity as the country placed its forces "on the highest state of alert" over fears of an imminent military incursion.

Jun 08 09:49

Pence's Anti-Russian Rhetoric Was 'Aimed at Distracting Attention From Qatar'

Vice President Mike Pence's statement regarding Russia and Iran's threat appears to be a continuation of the outdated policy of Barack Obama, Russian political analyst Kirill Koktysh told Radio Sputnik, suggesting that there are certain divisions within the Trump administration.

Jun 08 09:43

Turkey parliament approves troop deployment to Qatar

Turkey's parliament approves a measure to deploy troops to a Turkish military base in Qatar amid a widening rift between the Arab country and neighbors in the Persian Gulf region.

Jun 08 09:43

Saudi-Qatar Spat Spilling Over to Terrorist-Held Regions in Northwestern Syria

Intensified tensions between Qatar and Saudi Aribia are leading to serious infighting between their proxy forces in Syria's Idlib province, local sources said Wednesday.

Jun 08 09:23

Syria's Cauldron: One Step Away from Major Showdown

Syrian rebels from Eastern Lions and Ahmad al-Abdo Army formations – the elements of the Free Syrian Army (FSA) - state that they are «intensely» attacking Iranian-backed pro-government militias in the eastern Syrian desert in an operation dubbed «The Land is Ours». The forces’ strength is around four thousand. The main enemies are the Islamic State (IS), Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and Syrian government-allied forces. The operation is conducted near Syria’s borders with Iraq and Jordan. This time, the mission is to squeeze the SAA and its allies out from the desert areas.

Evidently, one of the goals pursued by the escalation of hostilities is to demonstrate that the armed opposition is a force to reckon with at a time the crisis management talks are held in Astana and Geneva. Obviously, this is an attempt to subvert the ongoing international peace efforts.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The unanswered question here is, just how long will it be, before US and Russian forces engage in direct combat in Syria?!?

I don't know what the Vegas odds on such an event taking place, but were I a betting woman, I would bet that the odds, unfortunately, are quite good, that this will happen, and my hunch would be, sooner rather than later.

Jun 08 09:17

USS Liberty White House-sanctioned attack on June 8, 1967 - TERRORSTORM Documentary Excerpt

"Rear Admiral (Lawrence) Geis, then commanding the carriers in the Sixth Fleet, called Washington personally to confirm the recall order. Secretary of Defence (Robert) McNamara came on the line, and then President Johnson himself told Geis, 'I want that goddamn ship going to the bottom. No help -- recall the wings.'"

Jun 08 09:08

The Pivot? Qatar Foreign Minister To Visit Moscow On Saturday

With Gulf tensions still rising, and culminating with last night's report on Arabia CNN that Qatar has put its armed forces on the highest military preparedness level, the small nation may be preparing to unveil its "Eastern pivot": moments ago Russia's RIA news agency reported that the Qatari foreign minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman bin Jassim Al-Thani will Visit Moscow on Saturday where he will hold talks with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.

"Negotiations will be held on Saturday," a Russian foreign ministry official said. However, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that Vladimir Putin does not yet plan to meet with al-Thani.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Lavrov is a realist, par excellence. I am very convinced that if asked, Russia will come to Qatar's aid in a very reasonable, and responsible way.

That having been said, I would like to urge Qatari foreign minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman bin Jassim Al-Thani, and the Qatari government, to take every practical precaution to insure that your plane does get to Moscow; this port blockade could well escalate into an air/sea blockade in a heartbeat.

You may well need to "get out of Dodge" (leave before this happens) sooner than your Saturday meeting, by a route that neither Saudi Arabia and its US government partner in war crimes, can detect.

Jun 08 08:43

Qatar Says "We Will Never Surrender", Welcomes Turkish Troops As Iran Offers Food, Ports

Even as the world's attention turns to the Comey testimony for the next few hours, the Qatar diplomatic crisis (where CNN's "report" of Russian hacking now appears long forgotten) continues, and moments ago a barrage of headlines from Qatar suggests that the small nation, which may or may not be preparing for military action, is happy to welcome the Turkish troops that will be arriving soon as reported yesterday, with its foreign minister stating that "we are not ready to surrender and will never compromise the independence of our foreign policy." Also, and perhaps even more critically, Qatar - whose foreign minister is set to fly to Moscow on Saturday - also announced that Iran is ready to help with food and that three of Iran's ports will be designated for use for Qatar.

From the wires:

QATAR FM SAYS IRAN SAID THEY ARE READY TO HELP QATAR WITH FOOD & 3 OF THEIR PORTS WILL BE DESIGNATED FOR QATAR: RTRS.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This wouldn't have happened at all, if Saudi Arabia didn't believe it did not have the full backing of the US, to pull this stunt.

Trump's offer to assist in a "resolution" of the conflict is pure, Trumpian theatre; full of sound and fury, but signifying .... absolutely nothing. This geopolitical kerfuffle is largely of his own making.

Folks, keep your eyes on the ball here; the real target, in all of this, is Iran, and conjuring some kind of "justification" for a war against it; please do not let that reality out of your sight for a moment, because it ultimately will be your kids, getting drafted, and on the front lines of such a war.

Jun 08 08:37

The Plan Is In Action To Dismantle The Middle East, The Big Rotation Has Begun

Comey statement to the Senate reveals absolutely nothing, Comey skirt around the issue and reveals that Trump never told him to stop investigating. Trump is looking for options to pull out of Afghanistan while the deep state is forcing him to bring in more troops.

Jun 08 08:31

Germany brands Qatar and Arab states row 'Trumpification' in huge swipe against President

Mr Gabriel urged all sides to avoid further escalating the crisis gripping the Gulf, warning that disagreements among Gulf states could weaken the US-led coalition's fight against the Islamic State.

Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Egypt and Bahrain on Monday said they would sever all ties with Qatar, accusing Doha of supporting terrorism.

The German vice chancellor criticised the policies set out by American President Donald Trump as ushering in an era of protectionism and warned that "Qatar could become completely isolated and be existentially affected".

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