MIDDLE EAST | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


MIDDLE EAST

Jul 11 08:43

Tillerson Flies To Gulf To Resolve Qatar Crisis As Ties Emerge Between Kushner And Qatar's Richest Man

In the latest US attempt to mediate and resolve the Qatar crisis, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson flew to the Gulf on Monday for talks aimed at ending the standoff between a coalition of Arab states led by Saudi Arabia and the wealthy nat gas exporter, which has led to more than a month of economic, financial and naval blockade. The State Department said Tillerson, who forged extensive ties in the Gulf as CEO of ExxonMobil, would hold talks with leaders in Kuwait, Qatar and Saudi Arabia. He was flying from Istanbul where he attended an international petroleum conference. R.C. Hammond, a senior adviser to Tillerson, added that the former Exxon CEO would explore ways to end a stalemate following Qatar’s rejection of 13 demands issued as condition for ending sanctions.

Following Qatar's refusal to comply with the ultimatum, which included the closure of Al Jazeera and a Turkish militarybase in Qatar, Saudi Arabia and its backers have threatened further sanctions against the emirate.

Jul 10 15:30

Israel Opposes Russian Role in US-Russian Brokered Cease Fire for Southern Syria

Encouraged by Jordan's desire to pull out of the Syrian war, Russia and the US announced a cease fire plan for south-western Syria, that had been in the works for several months but was finalized during the Trump-Putin meeting in Hamburg.

But while Jordan welcomes the deal, Syria's other southern neighbor—Israel, which has been pounding the Syrian army over and over again over shells allegedly straying into Syria's Israeli-occupied Golan Heights—is apparently threatened by the deal.

The US and Russia announced the deal in Hamburg and the cease fire went in effect Sunday at noon. They have yet to work out, however, just how the cease fire is to be monitored.

The reason is that Israel opposes Russia's role in monitoring the cease fire. Russia has offered its military police as cease fire monitors but Israel's Haaretz is reporting that Israel told US officials they don't want that:

Jul 10 09:35

South Syria Ceasefire Takes Effect, Is Holding

US and Russian officials both heralded the official start of the new ceasefire in southern Syria, which they agreed upon Friday, with National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster saying the deal is an important “anti-terrorism” move, and Russian President Vladimir Putin saying it signals a more pragmatic US position on Syria.

From the US position, the goal is to prevent further defeats of rebels in southern Syria, and to prevent the Syrian government from connecting a land route to neighboring Iraq, a policy seen as particularly important to both Israel and Jordan.

With Syria having a narrow de facto link to Iraq already, however, the Russian government sees the move primarily as aimed at preventing the US from carrying out any more attacks against Syrian government forces and their allies, something the US has almost exclusively done in the new ceasefire zone.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Color me slightly hopeful on this.

Jul 10 09:16

European Muslim Imams Begin Peace Tour to Terrorism-Hit Cities

Muslim imams are marching and praying against terrorism in Europe, condemning extremism committed in the name of religion.

Bringing a message of peace, some 60 Muslim imams based in several countries in Europe have embarked on a bus tour throughout the continent, visiting cities that have been affected by terrorist attacks.

Counter demonstrators opposing a group who gathered nearby to protest against Islamic-law yell out Saturday, June 10, 2017, in New York.
© AP PHOTO/ CRAIG RUTTLE
Anti-Islam Marches in US Fail to Draw Participants (PHOTOS)
In condemning extremist violence and armed religious fundamentalism, the imams seek to share their message of a peaceful Islam, according to Deutsche Welle.

The bus tour, called the "March of Muslims against Terrorism" commenced in Paris on Saturday with prayers at a site on the Champs-Elysees where a policeman was killed earlier this year by an Islamist militant.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Good on these guys!!

Jul 10 08:51

Yemen cholera cases pass 300,000 as outbreak spirals - ICRC

A cholera outbreak in war-torn Yemen is thought to have infected 300,000 people in the past 10 weeks, the International Committee of the Red Cross says.

The situation has continued to "spiral out of control", with about 7,000 new cases every day, the ICRC warned.

More than 1,700 associated deaths have been reported, according to the UN.

Jul 10 06:55

BEIJING: CHINA SET TO HELP REBUILD SYRIA

With many in Damascus increasingly confident that Syria will win the war against the terrorists who have invaded their country, focus is starting to gradually shift to re-building Syria’s damaged infrastructure. China is set to be the key player in this respect and preparations to increase China’s business ties to Syria are already in the works. On Sunday the China-Arab Exchange Association in cooperation with the Syrian Embassy in Beijing held the Syria Day Expo where Representative from over 1,000 Chinese business specialising in redevelopment, infrastructure and investment met with Syrian officials.

Jul 08 04:13

One Step Closer to WW3: US And Turkey's 60+ Year Alliance Coming To An End

Relations between the United States and Turkey have reached a critical crossroad for the first time since World War Two. These two nations cutting ties comes at a time when many nations are rapidly militarizing and ready to make significant moves on the world stage. If the US – Turkey alliance is officially severed, it would make another country in a long list of countries that are now acting against US authority.

Jul 07 16:01

The Bizarre Case of Bashar: The Syrian regime’s questionable use of nerve gas in Khan Sheikhoun

Uri Avnery highlights the lack of evidence that the Syrian government carried out the Sarin gas attack on its own citizens on 4 April 2017, and laments the media’s complicity in perpetuating an apparent falsehood.>>

Jul 07 14:38

7 things you need to know about the results of the Trump-Putin meeting

1. Syria: The United States, Russia and Jordan will implement and guarantee a ceasefire in south-western Syria, covering Daraa, Quneitra and Sweida.

2. Ukraine–Donbass War and Crimean Peninsula: The discussions will work towards implementing the Minsk agreements for a ceasefire in the Donbass war.

3. Russiagate and Cyber-security: Sergey Lavrov stated that Donald Trump accepted President Putin’s assurances that Russia played no part in any hacking or meddling in the recent US Presidential election.

4. North Korea: Sergey Lavrov and Rex Tillerson will be in close communication over the issue of de-escalation on the Korean peninsula.

5. Russian Ambassadors/property in the US and Russian nationals in US prisons: Donald Trump has promised to work with Russia to expedite the process of bringing new Russian ambassadors and embassy staff to the United States after Barack Obama kicked them out late in Obama’s final period in power.

Jul 07 10:27

Four Arab States to Take 'Political, Economic and Legal' Measures Against Qatar

The Saudi-led bloc of Arab states which also includes Bahrain, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates, has announced that negotiations with Qatar have broken down because of Doha's failure to meet their demands. As a result, the four states have withdrawn their list of demands and have announced their intention to punish Qatar.

Jul 07 10:16

Saudi, allies threaten more measures against Qatar

Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain say they are ready to adopt more punitive measures against Qatar, following Doha’s rejection of their demands to end an ongoing feud.

Jul 06 06:23

SAS SOLDIERS 'SUSPECTED' OF EXECUTING UNARMED AFGHANS AND COVERING UP POTENTIAL WAR CRIMES

Special forces soldiers allegedly murdered civilians and planted guns on their bodies

Jul 05 09:33

Trump: Toward War in the Middle East

Now comes President Donald Trump. His policies for the Middle East are similar to those of the previous two administrations but on steroids. Trump has already escalated the wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, and Yemen. When Trump sends his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, to solve the seventy-year-old Palestinian-Israeli conflict, Israeli President Benjamin Netanyahu cannot hide his happiness with the appointment. The Democrats and the media are too busy with election results, hacking, and the Russian probe to pay much attention to Middle East policy, with one exception – Israel.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

However, this time, unlike the situation in Iraq, there is a 6,000 lb gorilla, snoozing on the Bosendorfer, regarding further American military misadventures in the Middle East; it goes by the name of Russia, and will, should Iran be attacked, to Iran's aid militarily.

IF, in fact, the US goes to war against Iran, to appease its Israeli handlers, look for the reinstitution of a draft, for both men and women; an horrific decline in the US economy; and the possibility that the US military may well not be able to emerge victorious from the conflict.

Jul 05 08:34

Qatar's Ace is Saudi Nemesis

The draconian deadline by the Saudi axis on Qatar failed to force surrender. Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries have now extended the deadline till later this week. In a battle of nerves, the Saudi rulers blinked first.

Jul 04 19:00

What does Qatar own around the world?

Jul 04 18:50

What the Media Won't Tell You About Qatar

Highly recommended viewing.

Jul 04 12:49

Qatar Delivers Response to Saudi Demands

Qatari Foreign Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani has formally delivered the hand-written letter of response to Saudi Arabia’s list of 13 demands. The response was sent by way of Kuwait, which is trying to mediate the dispute, to Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, and Egypt.

Qatari Foreign Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani
Though the exact text of the response has not been made public, it’s safe to say it’s a broad rejection of both the allegations contained within the demands, and the specific demands themselves, with Qatari officials saying they believe it was intended to be rejected all alone.

The response to the response is the big question now, as the four blockading countries are expected to get together to make some sort of new formal statement related to the ongoing defiance of the Qatari emirate. If history is any judge, this will be more accusations and even more demands.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

IF the Qatari response is not to Saudi Arabia's liking, one has to wonder if things will get out of control, and if Saudi Arabia is actually planning a military strike against Qatar.

And if that happens, what are the standing orders for US commanders at Al Udeid Air Base in Qatar, which is home to over 10,000 US service members?!?

Jul 04 11:11

Trump Hopes To Quietly Steal Putin's Natgas Business In Europe

One month ago, after the shocking collapse of the Gulf nation status quo with the announcement of the diplomatic, naval and financial blockade of Qatar by the Saudi alliance, we said that while it is unclear how this latest political fiasco plays out, one thing was certain: with Saudi Arabia and Qatar suddenly adversaries, any likelihood of a Qatari natural gas pipeline crossing Syria - the fundamental cause behind the Syria proxy war in the first place - was gone.

But one key question remained: why would Europe vacate all hopes of an alternative provider of cheap, copious LNG and concede the role of quasi-monopolist supplier of this critical for Europe resource to Gazprom, and thus Russia whose leverage over the continent would only grow as a result.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The question has to be here; how do you get the US's LNG to Europe, and still keep it affordable?!? That's the one bit the Trump administration has to figure out, to make this work.

Jul 04 10:14

The Saudi-Qatar Rift Has Elements Of World War Potential

The First and the Second World War were the culmination of rivalries that go as far back as over a thousand years, when Charlemagne subjugated the Saxon tribes inhabiting modern Germany, and creating the Carolingian Empire. The political successors of Franks, France, and Saxons, the latter morphing into the Holy Roman Empire, then Prussia, then Germany, would continue to fight border wars until the bloodiest of them all, World War 2, inflicted enough destruction to both to force them to give up military means for the reciprocal arrangements.

Jul 03 10:46

WHO: Cholera Death Toll Rises to 1,500 in War-Torn Yemen

The death toll from a major cholera outbreak in Yemen has risen to 1,500, Nevio Zagaria, the World Health Organisation’s representative in Yemen, said on Saturday, and appealed for more help to put an end to the epidemic.

Jul 03 09:34

The Economic Motive for America’s Current Wars

Around half of Russia’s gas and oil into the EU is transported there via pipelines that traverse Ukraine, and this is a major reason why the Obama Administration (which was in service to the owners of the U.S.-based international corporations and even to the Koch brothers who heavily fund the Republican Party against Obama’s Democratic Party) started, by no later than 2011, its preparations for a coup in Ukraine, which occurred in February 2014, to overthrow the democratically elected President of Ukraine, Viktor Yanukovych, who, as had been planned and expected by the U.S. government, turned down the EU’s offer of membership because the highly uneconomic arrangement that the EU was offering would have cost Ukraine an estimated $160 billion.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

When Karl Marx made the observation that "All wars are economic in nature", the guy wasn't kidding!!

Jul 03 09:32

Qatar responds to Saudi bloc demands as Donald Trump works phones

Qatar delivered its official response to the 13 demands made by the Saudi-led coalition that cut diplomatic and transport links with the country, Al Arabiya news channel reported, as President Donald Trump and Kuwait’s ruler stepped up efforts to resolve the monthlong crisis.

Al Arabiya gave no details of the reply. The coalition, which also includes the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt, had given Qatar a 10-day deadline to comply that ended on Monday, before agreeing to a 48-hour extension at the request of the Kuwaiti ruler.

The four countries accuse Qatar of supporting extremist groups, a charge the nation denies. The list of demands includes cutting back ties with Iran and shutting its Al Jazeera broadcaster. Qatari officials have said the requirements were unreasonable and vowed to withstand the isolation.

Jul 03 09:31

Jubeir: Our patience with Qatar has run out

audi Gazette report Jeddah — Boycott of Qatar sends a message to Doha that our patience has eventually run out, Saudi Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir stated in a new tweet via the official account of the Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He said in the tweet that the demands sent to Qatar are nonnegotiable and that Saudi Arabia rejects Qatar’s support for terrorism and extremism which jeopardizes the security of the Kingdom and the region. He said that Qatar did not abide by its commitments and did not fulfill its promises to stop supporting and funding terrorism as well as interfering in the internal affairs of neighboring states. Jubeir said in a statement from the Embassy of Saudi Arabia in Washington three days ago that any country in the world cannot accept the principle of funding extremist organizations and groups.

Jul 03 09:23

Saudi Arabia Has Handed the Emir of Qatar an Opportunity to Redirect History

In the event you have noticed the hullabaloo about Qatar and wonder what it is about, it is about Al Jazeera, a news organization, established by the Emir who rules the oil and gas sheikdom on the Persian Gulf. Al Jezeera is far more professional than any news organization in the West. Al Jazeera’s problem is that it covers the actual news and tells the truth. This is unacceptable to the Saudis, the United Arab Emirates, and to Washington.

At the time of the US invasion of Iraq the Crown Prince of the UAE requested that Washington bomb Al Jazeera so that the Arab world would not be inflamed by truthful reporting of the US attack on Iraq. In April 2003 Al Jazeera’s Baghdad office in Iraq was struck by a US missile, killing one journalist and wounding another. Of course, Washington claimed it was just a mistake.

Jul 03 08:37

The Qatar Crisis, Shockwaves Throughout The Middle East

In the wake of the Arab uprisings, we are now seeing an assertion of both of these tendencies. Specifically, the current blockade is a play by Saudi Arabia and the UAE to fully assert their hegemony over the region and to put Qatar back in its place.

But this is not just about Saudi Arabia and the UAE; it fundamentally expresses a general counterrevolutionary process that has been present since the beginning of the uprisings – restoring the status quo of authoritarian neoliberal states that has served the interests of the GCC as a whole (including Qatar) for several decades. All of this must also be seen through the lens of the Gulf’s continued and ever-strengthening alliance with the U.S. and other Western powers.

Jul 03 08:35

Trump: Right About Fake News Media, Wrong About Most Everything Else

Support the Constitution and The Bill of Rights!

At a Saturday rally, Trump was right, saying the “dishonest media(’s) agenda is not your(s)” – omitting self-criticism, failing to explain his agenda serves wealth, power and privilege exclusively.

Long forgotten are inaugural day promises. He’s a warrior president servant of power like his predecessors.

Saying he’d “fight for you with every breath in (his) body, and never, ever let you down” proved hollow rhetoric.

So was promising noninterventionism. He escalated Obama’s wars, perhaps intends new ones on Iran and/or North Korea.

Jul 03 07:20

Saudi Arabia’s Ruthless Crown Prince Threatens Neighbors, Unsettles Middle East

Webmaster's Commentary: 

What is horrific here, is how completely "taken in" President Trump appeared to be by the Saudi royal presence, after his trip to Riyadh earlier this year.

This could well translate as a Saudi US-supported war against Iran, which would probably spiral into a war against Russia, which would be a terrible mistake.

Jul 03 06:48

Qatar given 48 more hours to accept demands

Saudi Arabia and three allies boycotting Qatar have agreed to a request by Kuwait to extend by 48 hours Sunday's deadline for Doha to comply with a set of demands, according to a joint statement on Saudi state news agency SPA.

Kuwait had received a response by Qatar to a list of 13 demands presented to it by a Saudi-led bloc of Arab countries, Kuwait's state news agency KUNA said on Monday.

Without stating whether Qatar had rejected the ultimatum as was widely expected, KUNA said Kuwait's Emir Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Jaber Al Sabah asked Saudi Arabia and three other countries that have boycotted Qatar to grant it a 48-hour extension. Kuwait is mediating in the crisis.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Ironically, the extended deadline puts Saudi's "drop dead date" of their ultimatum to Qatar right on the American 4th of July celebration.

But the big question has to be, if Qatar doesn't accede to their demands, what then?!? A full - on invasion and regime change in Doha?!?

And what are the standing orders to commanders of those 10,000 plus American troops in Qatar right now, should such an invasion happen?!?

And what about the acceleration of the presence of Turkish troops in the country?!?
More Turkish troops arrive in Qatar, as Gulf tensions continue to escalate

Jul 02 09:18

More Turkish Troops Arrive in Qatar as Gulf Tensions Continue to Escalate

When Turkish troops were deployed to a military base in Qatar, it was huge news across the region, primarily because it was a show of support by the Erdogan government for the emirate at a time when many of Qatar’s neighbors are blocking them.

Jul 02 09:01

US Falsely Accuses Iran of Violating Nuclear Deal

It’s very difficult to accuse Iran of being in violation of the P5+1 nuclear deal, because they are plainly not. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), which is responsible for policing the deal, confirms on a monthly basis that this remains the case, and that Iran has not been in violation of the pact.

That’s an inconvenience for the Trump Administration, which has repeatedly condemned the deal and insisted Iran would violate it. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley appears to have decided that the path of least resistance is overt lying, today claiming at the UN Security Council that Iran had “repeated violations” of the deal.

The claim was made literally during a meeting at which all the other permanent members of the Security Council were talking up how great it is that the deal is in place, and that Iran is showing such a deep commitment to its continued participation.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

With her blatant, and unrelentingly slavish support for Israel, which means she feels obligated to lie about Iran's compliance with the P5+1 Accord, Haley is fast approaching the VISS (Village Idiot Syndrome Status) with her brother and sister diplomats, who are doing everything to ignore her unrestrained rantings and ravings the best they can.

But please understand; there are elements with the Deep American State who will not rest until, to placate Israel, there is a US war against Iran in order to accomplish regime change in Tehran, no matter if this also means a war against Russia, which such a war against Iran, will probably create.

Jul 02 08:48

HACKED EMAIL SHOWS UAE AMBASSADOR LOBBYING THE OBAMA WHITE HOUSE ON YEMEN WAR

PART OF KEEPING close relationships with serial human rights violators, as the U.S. does, is the constant pressure from those governments to ignore their reported abuses. That dynamic was on full display in a hacked email exchange between the United Arab Emirates’ influential ambassador to the U.S. and a top Obama national security official. The sometimes testy back-and-forth between allies, which was obtained by The Intercept, shows how friendly foreign governments lobby the White House on human rights, and how the White House sometimes pushes back.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

That the US government frequently colludes with human rights violators, and massive perpetrators of war crimes, does NOT make me happy to be an American citizen right now.

And two of the worst offenders in these areas are Israel and Saudi Arabia.

Jul 02 08:42

More Turkish Troops Arrive in Qatar in Show of Support

When Turkish troops were deployed to a military base in Qatar, it was huge news across the region, primarily because it was a show of support by the Erdogan government for the emirate at a time when many of Qatar’s neighbors are blocking them.

The number of troops sent last week was not publicly reported, and that’s because it was not a lot, with the latest Turkish media report suggesting that 23 soldiers were sent back then, and the new deployments announced today brought the number to “at least 88.”

Turkish media suggested this number could rapidly grow, reaching 1,000 as Turkey looks to back its regional ally, and as Saudi Arabia and others demand Qatar expel the Turks outright. The deadline for that demand, and many others, is Sunday night, and Turkey’s deployment likely underscores that they don’t intend to leave.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

At this point, the Turkish troop numbers appear to be highly symbolic, but that could change in a heartbeat, if Saudi Arabia actually does invade Qatar, with the objective of regime change in mind.

Jul 01 08:42

How Israeli/Saudi ‘Alliance’ Plays Trump

As novices to the world of Mideast intrigue, President Trump and son-in-law Jared Kushner are being led by Israel and Saudi Arabia into a dangerous confrontation with Iran, explains former British diplomat Alastair Crooke.

Jun 30 10:03

Is the US Really Ready for 'Unprecedented Actions' in Syria?

Commenting on the above report, Alexander Gusev, a political analyst and director of the Institute for Strategic Planning noted to Sputnik Radio that the US broadcaster has previously discredited itself more than once, however this time the information might be truthful.

He pointed out that CNN reported on the aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush, along with two destroyers and two cruisers being deployed in the eastern Mediterranean Sea for routine patrol positions.

"The destroyers and cruisers could fire Tomahawk missiles without putting pilots in manned aircraft at risk. In addition, dozens of aircraft already in the Middle East for operations against ISIS (Daesh) in Syria and Iraq could be used in a potential strike," the broadcaster said.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Everything I am seeing points to only one conclusion: war with Russia over Syria and Iran.

Jun 30 09:17

The "Diplomatic Quagmire" In Qatar Deepens 3 Days Before The Saudi Ultimatum Expires

While the Qatar crisis may have slipped from the front pages, the diplomatic standoff continues to deteriorate with the latest escalation emerging yesterday, when the UAE’s ambassador to Moscow gave an interview to the UK’s Guardian newspaper, revealing the steely resolve of the Gulf States, led by Saudi Arabia, who initially brought their charges and subsequent sanctions to bear on the tiny country.

Omar Ghobash, the UAE’s ambassador, said that the states are considering “further economic pressure” and that they would be “willing to make themselves subject to the same western monitoring regime as Qatar to ensure key figures are not privately funding extremist groups”.

As a reminder, Qatar only has until July 3 to comply with a list of 13 demands imposed by the Saudi-led bloc, and on Tuesday, Saudi described the demands as non-negotiable: Doha must “amend its behaviour” or “remain isolated”, says Riyadh's foreign minister Adel al-Jubeir.

Jun 30 09:06

After US-Backed Bombing Sparks Famine in Yemen, US Media Insists ‘US Not the Problem’

Washington Post deputy editorial page editor Jackson Diehl took a massive, human rights-violating catastrophe—the US-assisted Saudi bombing of Yemen for the past two-and-a-half years, and the massive famine it’s caused—and somehow turned it into a write-up on how good and noble the United States is. The Washington Post whitewashed the US’s role in the crisis and turned Saudi Arabia’s primary defender in the Senate, Lindsey Graham, into an unsung hero—a true masterwork in public relations reality inversion.

Diehl framed the topic as something both public and media have ignored, insisting, “No One Is Paying Attention to the Worst Humanitarian Crisis Since World War II” (6/25/17). This is a bold rhetorical gambit, not least because Diehl himself hasn’t made Yemen a topic of an article since the bombing first began in February 2015. “No one’s noticing this thing I just noticed” is a great way to frame oneself as a moral visionary, without the arduous work of ideological coherence.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

"The United States is not the problem here"?!?

Jackson Diehl, whatever your handlers are paying you to regurgitate their codswallop about the US's "high moral ground" in Yemen, it cannot possibly be enough to continue wading into the filthy depth of hypocrisy and deceit as deeply as you have gone, to create such an article.

Fact: The US-enabled Saudi war on Yemen is causing the deaths and maimings for life of Yemen's children.

Images: Yemeni children killed and maimed for life from Saudi bombing raids

Fact: Because the Saudis have blockaded Yemeni ports, so no food can get in, Yemeni children are dying from complications of malnutrition.

Images: Yemeni children dying from malnutrition

Fact: the malnutrition in Yemen has brought cholera in its wake, and one of the most severe epidemics the world has seen in the 21st century.

The images Saudi Arabia doesn't want you to see: Death of Yemeni children through cholera

Fact: The Saudis are using depleted uranium weapons in Yemen.

Images: Saudi Arabia using depleted uranium in Yemen

Fact: the usage of depleted uranium weapons in Yemen is having the precisely same effect on children here as it did in Falujah, Iraq, with birth deformities, stillbirths, and cancers soaring.

Images: Yemeni child suffering horrific birth defects from exposure to DU weapons

So in summation, Mr. Diehl, what you have done with this piece, is very much akin to a doctor's touching up a patient's ex ray, to assure them that their cancer isn't really all that bad.

And that cancer, sir, is participating in an immoral, illegal war, where the US government and its Saudi counterparts are committing war crimes, in the name of bringing back a US-sponsored puppet the Yemeni people do not want to rule them.

Jun 30 09:00

UN slams Saudi demand to shut down TV station al-Jazeera

A DEMAND by Saudi Arabia and three other Arab nations for Qatar to close down its al-Jazeera TV channel is an "unacceptable attack" on the right to freedoms of expression and opinion, the United Nations human rights chief said on Friday.

Jun 30 08:18

What are Washington’s stakes in the Syrian conflict?

Washington’s interest in the Syrian civil war is partly about ensuring Israel’s regional security and partly it is about doing the bidding of America’s regional Sunni allies: Turkey, Jordan and the Gulf Arab States. Saudi Arabia which has been vying for power as the leader of the Sunni bloc against the Shi’a-dominated Iran in the regional geopolitics was staunchly against the invasion of Iraq by the Bush Administration in 2003.

Jun 30 07:25

General: US Troops ‘Just Getting Started Good’ in Raqqa

US commander Lt. Gen. Stephen Townsend today told CBS News that he believes only about 25-30% of the military campaign for the ISIS capital city of Raqqa has happened, talking up the massive US military buildup in the area, and insisting that US troops are “just getting started good” in the city’s invasion.

This is all happening without the permission of the Syrian government, of course, but Townsend downplayed the risk of clashes with Syria or Russia over that fact, saying that he believes they’re comfortable with focusing on the rest of the country while the US invades Raqqa, and that he doesn’t anticipate any conflicts.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Apparently, General Townsend speaks English as a second language, which comes rather as a surprise to me; to characterise the activities of US troops as “just getting started good” is a little unnerving.

If his thought processes are as sloppy as is his English, we are in deep trouble in this immoral and illegal invasion of Syria.

Unfortunately, it is only a question of time before there is a military clash between the US/Syrian/Russian forces.

Russia has warned us that any attack on any Syrian/Russian aircraft by the US military will bring a "proportional response". The potential for a full-scale war between the US and Russia over Syria remains as serious as a heart attack right now.

Jun 30 07:16

Qatar Working With US, Kuwait on Response to Saudi Demands

US and Kuwaiti officials are working with the government of Qatar on a formal response to the 13 demands issued last week by Saudi Arabia and its allies against the tiny Gulf nation. The deadline for a response is believed to be Sunday.

And while all the signs are that the response is going to be some variation on “no,” Qatari Foreign Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani appeared to want something a bit more nuanced than that, saying that his country is open to pursuing negotiations in earnest.

It’s not at all clear that’s an option, however, as the Saudi government has insisted that the demands are all “non-negotiable” and both Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates have insisted they’ll accept nothing less than an absolute acceptance by Qatar.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

There are a couple of serious questions to be explored here. The first is, what, precisely, is Saudi Prince Bin Salman prepared to actually do of the Qatari government tells him to "pound sand"; is he actually going ahead with a physical invasion of Qatar?!?

And secondly, if such an invasion takes place, what orders have been given to the 10,000 US military troops working in Qatar?!? To join the Saudis in the invasion against Qatar, or stand down, until the dust is settled?!?

Qatar has been a staunch ally of the US to date; so what would a US-enabled Saudi invasion of that country look like, to both the government of Qatar, and to the larger Middle East?!? I have one word on that: betrayal.

Jun 29 22:42

Washington Has Been At War For 16 Years: Why?

Paul Craig Roberts

For sixteen years the US has been at war in the Middle East and North Africa, running up trillions of dollars in expenses, committing untold war crimes, and sending millions of war refugees to burden Europe, while simultaneously claiming that Washington cannot afford its Social Security and Medicare obligations or to fund a national health service like every civilized country has.

Considering the enormous social needs that cannot be met because of the massive cost of these orchestrated wars, one would think that the American people would be asking questions about the purpose of these wars. What is being achieved at such enormous costs? Domestic needs are neglected so that the military/security complex can grow fat on war profits.

The lack of curiousity on the part of the American people, the media, and Congress about the purpose of these wars, which have been proven to be based entirely on lies, is extraordinary.

Jun 29 13:19

US-Backed Syrian Fighters Warn of Open Warfare with Turkish Forces

An official with the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), the coalition of US-backed militants with the stated goal of creating a secular, democratic, federalized Syria, said that the SDF sees a "big possibility of open, fierce confrontation" with Turkish forces in northwestern Syria. This comes after the two sides exchanged fire on Wednesday.

The senior official, Naser Haj Mansour, told Reuters that the SDF would confront the Turks "if they try to go beyond the known lines." Turkish forces are there to support anti-government, primarily Islamist Syrian rebels.

Mansour went on to say that a Turkish attack against SDF-controlled areas would do "great harm" to the SDF's efforts against Daesh. The two factions are currently embroiled in a struggle over the city of Raqqa, Daesh's primary stronghold in Syria.

the city, trapping Daesh within. "There is a plan to impose a complete siege, but if this will take a day or two days, I can't say," he said.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Unintended consequences yet again!!

Jun 29 12:31

Trump’s Chaos is Covering for Stealth Escalation Overseas

The escalation directly contradicts Trump’s stances during the election campaign. Back then, he indicated his skepticism of regime change, claiming — falsely — that he had opposed the Iraq invasion and denouncing the intervention in Libya. He indicated that he saw no reason to take sides in the Syrian civil war, suggesting that perhaps the United States could join with Syria and its ally Russia to take out the Islamic State. He promised he would “bomb the s--- out of ISIS” but would not get bogged down in the Middle East. This stance appealed strongly to voters weary of war and looking for a leader who would focus on our challenges here at home. That promise has now clearly been trashed.

Jun 29 11:06

Saudi Arabia and the UAE: Boycotting Qatar and embracing Israel

For no convincing reason, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates are now willing to instate against Doha the same kind of boycott used in the past by Arab states against Israel, while seeking to fully normalise ties with Tel Aviv despite its ongoing occupation of an Arab nation and the brutal repression of the Palestinian people.

Jun 29 10:08

Ron Paul: Trump is Just Like CNN, Putting Out His Own False News to Start War in Syria

In a peculiar move, the White House announced Monday evening a chemical weapons attack in Syria will be carried out soon by the regime of Bashar al-Assad against civilians — the second government-launched attack on his own people in the past few months — and that the U.S. would pulverize Syrian forces as retribution.

If, that is, gargantuan holes in logic suit your fancy — because nearly every facet of the above ‘facts’ touted by the corporate press and White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer depart so far from the truth as to be farcically unrecognizable.

Spicer tweeted.......,

Jun 29 09:30

Saudi Arabia’s March Towards Civil War

Has Saudi Arabia’s brinkmanship and heavy-handed policies of intervention in the Middle East come back to haunt the desert kingdom?

Jun 29 08:16

Trump’s Chaos is Covering for Stealth Escalation Overseas by

Been trying to tell you folks. Opposition to Trump and the resulting chaos and confusion is being used to set the stage for WW3!

While Washington is fixated on President Trump’s tweets, antics, lies and Russiagate, the administration is ramping up a stealth escalation of our military involvement across the Middle East. As Naomi Klein warns, Trump’s “rolling shock of the chaos and spectacle” distracts from radical actions both at home and abroad. Across the Middle East, the administration drives the United States ever further into wars without end, increasing the dangers of direct military confrontation with Russia and Iran, with little awareness and no mandate from the American people. This is a recipe for calamity.

Jun 29 06:52

Intel Behind Trump’s Syria Attack Questioned

Legendary investigative reporter Seymour Hersh is challenging the Trump administration's version of events surrounding the April 4 "chemical weapons attack" on the northern Syrian town of Khan Sheikhoun - though Hersh had to find a publisher in Germany to get his information out. In the Sunday edition of Die Welt, Hersh reports that his national security sources offered a distinctly different account, revealing President Trump rashly deciding to launch 59 Tomahawk missiles against a Syrian airbase on April 6 despite the absence of intelligence supporting his conclusion that the Syrian military was guilty.

Jun 29 06:05

TRUMP PREPARES PREEMPTIVE ATTACK IN SYRIA? SOLUTION - WE NEED TO FACE FACTS - WE'RE THE EVIL EMPIRE!

Until we face the truth of who we really are, we will continue to destroy other countries, commit mass murder of innocent civilians, including children, and destroy ourselves in the process.

Jun 28 10:58

Future Shock: Imagining India

What might a future India look like? If current policies continue, it could mean dozens of mega-cities with up to 40 million inhabitants and just two to three hundred million (perhaps 15-20% of the population) left in an emptied-out countryside. It could also mean hundreds of millions of former rural dwellers without any work and thus anywhere decent to live in these cities.

Jun 28 10:44

UAE CROWN PRINCE ASKED US TO BOMB AL JAZEERA, SAYS 2003 CABLE

Abu Dhabi’s crown prince asked the US to bomb Al Jazeera as America was planning its invasion of Iraq, according to a diplomatic cable detailing his conversation with a top US state department mandarin. According to the cable, Mohammed bin Zayed (MBZ) “laughingly recalled” to Richard Hass a conversation between his father, Sheikh Zayed, and the emir of Qatar, Hamad Al-Thani, in which Hamad had complained MBZ had asked for the US “to bomb Al Jazeera”.

Jun 28 09:50

Moscow warns Washington against ‘incendiary, provocative action’ in Syria

Moscow has warned the US against taking unilateral action in Syria, as there is no threat from the Syrian military, Russia’s Foreign Ministry said. The statement comes after the US accused Syria of preparing for a chemical attack, without giving any evidence.

Asked if Russia had warned the US administration against any unilateral action in Syria, Russia’s deputy foreign minister, Gennady Gatilov, replied that Russian officials have “always spoken about that, including in relation to their [US] latest strikes on Syrian armed forces.”

“We believe that it’s unacceptable and breaches Syria’s sovereignty, isn’t caused by any military need, and there is no threat to the US specialists from the Syrian Army. So it’s incendiary, provocative action,” Gatilov said, as cited by RIA Novosti.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I would strongly suspect that those in the bowels of the American Deep State caught enough flak from literally telegraphing that they were going to create a false flag in Syria, to be blamed on Syria, Iran, and Russia, that it reluctantly backed down from doing so.

But don't think they won't try something else, and in the very near future, because the loyal Al-Assad military is winning the war against ISIS on the ground.

Jun 28 09:35

Middle East At Point Of No Return As Saudi-Qatar Rift Deepens

At present, the Young Prince of Riyadh, Mohammed Bin Salman, has been given the key to power. This has happened at a very difficult time for not only the Kingdom, but also for the whole Gulf region and its neighbors. The choice made by King Salman to promote his son is a remarkable one but could, from a Saudi perspective, be the only viable choice. The need for a 180 degree change in the economic and social policy which keeps Saudi Arabia a strategic regional player is essential. Without radical changes, such as those presented in Vision 2030 or the Aramco IPO project, the Kingdom’s future could be bleak, as the era for “Rentier States” is over.

Jun 28 09:11

Trump Plays Nuclear ‘Chicken’ with Putin Over Syria

U.S. President Donald Trump is playing a game of nuclear “chicken” with Russian President Vladimir Putin, regarding Putin’s threat on June 19th to go to war against the United States if the U.S. again shoots down, inside Syria — in the sovereign territory of the internationally-recognized-as-legal sovereign Syrian government — Syrian aircraft, or the aircraft of any of the foreign governments that have allied with Syria: Russia, Iran, and China.
After the U.S. had shot down a Syrian government plane on June 19th, which was bombing jihadists whom the U.S. government backs in order to overthrow the Syrian government, Russia announced:

“In areas where Russian aviation is conducting combat missions in the Syrian skies, any flying objects, including jets and unmanned aerial vehicles of the international coalition discovered west of the Euphrates River, will be followed by Russian air and ground defenses as air targets” — meaning ordered out, or else immediately shot down.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

President Trump, a word please: I would suggest that you take this statement by Russia's President Putin as seriously as you would a heart attack.

The guy is not known for bluff or bluster, and if he says something, he will, inevitably, follow through.

I strongly encourage you to meet him in Hamburg for the G-20, and spend some time to get to know him; whatever chance of salvaging peace on this planet may well depend on it, Mr. President.

Jun 28 08:55

How Trump Risks a Saudi-Qatar War

The split inside the Trump administration over how to deal with the Qatar crisis has opened a dangerous situation that could soon lead to armed conflict.

The State and Defense Departments have largely sided with Qatar, but the White House has undermined the leverage the U.S. has over Saudi Arabia to rein in Riyadh’s aggressive behavior towards its neighbor. President Donald Trump, for instance, last week called Qatar “a major sponsor” of terrorism, ignoring that Saudi Arabia is a big supporter, too.

Tension between Qatar — with its independent foreign policy — and Saudi Arabia — with its allies United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt — has been building for years. Earlier in June, the four nations imposed an economic blockade on Qatar and cut diplomatic ties. They closed their airspace to Qatar Airways. Food imports, on which Qatar depends, were blocked at the country’s only land border, which is with Saudi Arabia.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

So, please give me a moment to get my head wrapped around this; should a Saudi attack against Qatar, one of our oldest, and most staunch allies in the region, get greenlit by Washington, it will be US troops in Qatar, fighting alongside the Saudis, to create regime change in Doha?!?

How in the name of heaven can the US government ever be trusted again by any of its allies, if such a pig-headedly, ham-fistedly stupid move is brought to fruition in Qatar?!?

Tillerson and Mattis need to be working the phones urgently right now, to prevent a Saudi military move against Qatar; because if they do not prevent this, we may be seeing a wider regional war, evolving toward a world war, and any sense of American geopolitical integrity toward its (alleged) allies, will be be well and truly flushed.

Jun 28 08:49

US dangerously increasing regional tensions: Zarif

Iran has accused the US of ratcheting up tensions in the Middle East after Washington claims the Syrian government may be preparing for a chemical attack.

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif made the remarks on his official twitter account on Tuesday. "Another dangerous US escalation in Syria on fake pretext will only serve ISIS (Daesh), precisely when it's being wiped out by Iraqi and Syrian people," he said.

Jun 28 08:46

Saudi FM calls Qatar demands non-negotiable, Qatar calls them unrealistic

Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir has said that Arab states' demands from Qatar are non-negotiable.

“We made our point, we took our steps and it's up to the Qataris to amend their behavior, and once they do, things will be worked out but if they don't, they will remain isolated," Jubeir said on Tuesday, during a visit to Washington.

He added that if the Qataris wish to return to the Persian Gulf Cooperation Council, "they know what they have to do."

Jun 28 08:39

Tillerson and Mattis Cleaning Up Kushner’s Middle East Mess

But the single most important reason for the Qatar tilt is obvious to anyone who knows how to read a map. The U.S. leases the al-Udeid Air Base, southwest of Doha, which is home to the Air Force’s 379th Air Expeditionary Wing. The U.S. (and the Qataris), not only mount fighter-bombers from al-Udeid against ISIS units in Iraq and Syria, the base serves as the first line of defense against Iranian encroachments in the region. Even more crucially, al-Udeid not only protects America’s Persian Gulf allies, it protects Israel – and would be a launching point for U.S. aircraft against Iran were Israel to be attacked by the Islamic Republic.

Jun 28 08:33

Saudi Arabia Insists Qatar Demands Are ‘Non-Negotiable’

Suggestions from US officials that they’d like to see Qatar and Saudi Arabia negotiate over the list of demands the later has issued don’t appear to be going anywhere, with Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubair insisting that the terms of the demands are non-negotiable.

“We made our point,” Jubeir insisted adding that the Qataris “know what they have to do” to placate the kingdom. Saudi Arabia have Qatar 13 demands and 10 days to accept them. The demands include shutting all Qatari media, closing diplomatic facilities in Iran, expelling Turkey from its Qatari base, and agreeing to pay unspecified “reparations” for past disagreements.

Qatari FM Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani suggested that didn’t matter at any rate, because Qatar considers the demands “baseless and unacceptable,” saying that any demands that would be taken seriously would need to be “realistic and enforceable.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

President Trump, a word, please: apparently emboldened by your visit there, the Saudis feel as though they can get away with this, and no international repercussions (particularly from the United States) will happen if they move, militarily, against Qatar.

Once the deadline for the Saudi's "or else" is over (and I believe that will happen this Sunday, 2 July), all hell could break loose here, with Saudi Arabia moving against Qatar, which now has about 3,000 Turkish troops on their soil to defend it.

And sir, I have to ask; just what, please, are the standing orders to the commanders for the over 10,000 US troops stationed inside Qatar should such a scenario take place over this weekend, or next week?!?

Jun 28 08:14

Mattis: US Will Keep Arming Syrian Kurds After Raqqa Falls

In comments that are doubtless going to further anger Turkey about US policy in Syria, Defense Secretary James Mattis insisted the current program of arming the Kurdish YPG faction would not end after the capture of the ISIS capital city of Raqqa, and that they might just change the sort of weapons they’re giving the Kurds after that.

This comes less than a week after the US had assured the Turkish government that not only would the US stop arming the Kurds after the defeat of ISIS, but that they’d then take all the weapons back from the Kurds at that point. Mattis appeared to downplay the chances of this, however, saying only that “we’ll do what we can” to recover the arms.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Erdogan has to know that Mattis is powerless to prevent the Kurds from hanging on to those weapons.

Jun 28 08:07

Pentagon, State Dept ‘Clueless’ on Trump’s Assad Allegation

Last night, the White House issued a surprise statement accusing the Syrian government of preparing a chemical weapons attack and threatening to make them pay “a heavy price” for doing so. This immediately suggested another US attack on Syria was imminent. No one saw this coming, including the Pentagon and the State Department.

Pentagon officials say they were totally unaware if this putative evidence of a chemical attack until the moment the White House issued the statement, something they completely didn’t see coming. The State Department, which would normally be involved in coordinating such an important press release, also wasn’t consulted.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I am very concerned about the next week or so, from the 4th of July celebration next Tuesday, through the G-20 summit in Hamburg, Germany on the 7th and 8th of next month.

I think we could very well see a false flag happen in this timeframe, to be blamed on Syria, as the "justification" for a full-on US invasion of the country, to achieve regime change in Damascus.

Of course, the White House's and Nikki Haley's charges bear two areas of intense scrutiny.

First, why would Al-Assad do something this stupid, i.e., a chemical attack against his own people, when his troops are actually winning on the ground?

And secondly, weren't Syria's chemical weapons destroyed several years back through a Russian-brokered, UN supervised program several years ago?!?

If, in fact, these accusations were a just "test run" to see how the American people would react to such an action, I would be willing to bet bet that the overnight polls were overwhelmingly negative.

Jun 27 14:38

Israel’s efforts to hide Palestinians from view no longer fools young American Jews

Jonathan Cook says US Jewry are becoming polarised, between an older generation whose ignorance allows them to advocate unthinkingly for Israel and a young generation whose knowledge has brought with it a sense of responsibility.>>

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