MIDDLE EAST | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

MIDDLE EAST

Feb 16 12:43

Israeli forces shot Jerusalem boy in the eye

Israeli occupation forces have shot Palestinian boy in his eye in the neighbourhood of Al Issawiyeh in the occupied Palestinian city of Jerusalem.

Feb 16 12:40

Gen. Soleimani assassinated to sabotage Iran's talks with Saudis, UAE following Israeli briefing: NYT

Washington ordered the assassination of top Iranian General Qassem Soleimani to sabotage de-escalation talks between Iran, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates following a report by Israel's Mossad spy agency, according to the New York Times.

The paper reported on Thursday that General Soleimani had been arranging talks in Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates in order to de-escalate tensions with Tehran.

The Times wrote that the talks happened after Saudi Arabia and the UAE, which are central to the Trump administration's so-called regional alliance seeking to pressure Iran, began to question the efficiency of Washington's anti-Iran campaign.

Feb 16 11:34

Battle of Aleppo city ends in Syrian Army victory after 7+ years of fighting

BEIRUT, LEBANON (6:10 P.M.) – The Syrian Arab Army (SAA) has officially captured the last remaining areas under jihadist control in Aleppo city and its surrounding area, ending a nearly eight-year-long battle.

According to a field source in Aleppo, the Syrian Army’s victory came this afternoon following the capture of the Layramoun and Kafr Hamra sectors, which were under the control of the jihadist rebels for most of the war.

Feb 14 06:08

Thousands of Marines enter Persian Gulf with USS Bataan’s amphibious readiness group

The amphibious assault ship USS Bataan transited the Strait of Hormuz into the Persian Gulf Wednesday, becoming the first U.S. Navy “big deck” to enter these strategic waters in 2020.

“Our passage through this important strait and continued presence in the area plays a critical role in maintaining the freedom of navigation key to regional security and stability here,” said Capt. Lance Lesher, the group’s commodore in a statement.

Feb 13 22:15

What brought Iranian forces to Idlib front?

Iran’s involvement in Idlib appears to also have something to do with Iran’s grand regional plan following the killing of Soleimani, that is, attempting to expel US forces from the region. As the main concentration of the US forces in Syria is in the areas east of the Euphrates river controlled by the Syrian Democratic Forces, Tehran wants the Syrian government operation in Idlib to be concluded successfully as soon as possible so that the next step in realizing Assad’s promise to “liberate every inch of Syrian territory” could be started in the east of the Euphrates. Referring to this issue, Ali Akbar Velayati, a top adviser to Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, said in a press conference Jan. 30 that “the Syrian government and its allies from the resistance front will go from Idlib to the eastern Euphrates to expel the Americans.”

Feb 13 15:10

Russian politicians, military experts: The Syrian State has the right to use military force against terrorists on its land

MOSCOW, (ST)- Deputy Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Russian Federation Council Andrei Klimov has affirmed that Russia's position towards Syria is based on the basic principles of the international law which consider that all the military forces and armed groups operating on Syrian territories without the approval of the legitimate Syrian government , as occupation forces which have no mandate justifying their presence in Syria.

In a statement to SANA, Klimov said the Turkish regime has not implemented its commitments regarding the de-escalation zone in Idleb pursuant to the Sochi agreement, stressing that this Turkish behavior complicates the situation in this area.

Feb 13 10:32

Syria and Turkey Edge Toward All-Out War While Putin Smiles

There have been several clashes between Syrian and Turkish military forces in the last two weeks, as Syria attempts to retake Idlib province from rebel forces. Turkey has carved out a demilitarized zone in Idlib, which is supposed to be a safe zone for Syrian civilians. Their goal is to prevent a flood of refugees from crossing the Syrian border.

But Syria is ignoring the Moscow-negotiated cease-fire and driving hundreds of thousands of refugees toward Turkey, most of them in desperate straits.

The UN is warning of a humanitarian catastrophe as 700,000 Syrians are on the move with nowhere to go. But there are likely to be more refugees as Syria and Turkey have now come to blows, with President Erdogan promising to "punish" Syria for attacking Turkish positions in Idlib.

Washington Times:

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Turkey is the US NATO ally in Syria; this could get profoundly ugly, and very quickly.

Feb 13 09:51

More Lies on Iran: The White House Just Can’t Help Itself as New Facts Emerge

The public that actually follows the news might recall a little more than one month ago the United States assassinated a senior Iranian official named Qassem Soleimani. Openly killing someone in the government of a country with which one is not at war is, to say the least, unusual, particularly when the crime is carried out in yet another country with which both the perpetrator and the victim have friendly relations.

It soon emerged that the Iranian was in fact in Baghdad to discuss with the Iraqi Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi a plan that might lead to the de-escalation of the ongoing conflict between Saudi Arabia and Iran, a meeting that the White House apparently knew about may even have approved. If that is so, events as they unfolded suggest that the U.S. government might have encouraged Soleimani to make his trip so he could be set up and killed.

Feb 13 09:37

Revealed: Ilhan Omar’s Second Highest Donor, Basim Omar Sabri, Is A Convicted Felon Who Regularly Raises Funds for Hamas

Minnesota Representative Ilhan Omar’s second largest donor, Basim Omar Sabri, is a convicted felon who owns millions in property that is dilapidated and unsafe, receiving over 180 regulatory violations.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

IF these allegations are actually true, it does absolutely not paint a pretty picture of this Congressional Representative.

Feb 13 09:06

WATCH: US military convoy met with HAIL OF BULLETS in north Syria… and Russian convoy intervenes to break up the fight

Footage has emerged of US troops getting involved in a heated exchange and a shootout with angry locals in northern Syria, which reportedly saw one man killed. A Russian military convoy then moved to de-escalate the situation.

Feb 12 14:25

Regime Change wars have no basis in International Law.

A Syrian checkpoint denied entry to a US patrol near the village of Kherbet Ammo in al-Qamishli. The patrol consisted of 5 armored personnel carriers. When the US patrol threatened that they will pass by force, a group of local citizens opened machine-gun fire against the US patrol. When the US soldiers opened fire against the Syrian citizens, the SAA's checkpoint members deployed defensively and opened fire to cover the civilians in the area.

Feb 12 12:37

US troops clash with pro-government group in northeast Syria

DAMASCUS -- A Syrian was killed and another was wounded when government supporters attacked American troops and tried to block their way as their convoy drove through an army checkpoint in northeastern Syria, prompting a rare clash, state media and activists reported.

The U.S. military said its force came under fire, and that troops responded in self-defense. It said an investigation of the incident was underway.

Syrian state-run media said the man killed was a civilian and that he was among residents of a village east of the town of Qamishli who had gathered at the checkpoint and pelted the U.S. convoy with stones.

Feb 12 07:44

NEW LEAKS SHATTER OPCW’S ATTACKS ON DOUMA WHISTLEBLOWERS

SOURCE: THE GRAYZONE
Facing accusations that it issued a doctored report alleging a chemical attack in Syria, the OPCW has released an inquiry attacking two whistleblowers as rogue actors. Leaked documents obtained by The Grayzone reveal serious distortions in the OPCW inquiry as well as a campaign of intimidation against internal dissenters.

BY AARON MATÉ
For the past year, the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) has been roiled by allegations that it manipulated an investigation to falsely accuse the Syrian government of a chemical weapons attack. An OPCW report released in March 2019 lent credence to claims by Islamist militants and Western governments that the Syrian military killed around 40 civilians with toxic gas in the city of Douma in April 2018. The accusation against Damascus led to US-led military strikes on Syrian government sites that same month.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

These attacks against these whistleblowers, is nothing more, or less, than grade A level bovine excrement, squirted into the faces of those who will not follow the US-enabled agendas the OPCW is working to support, with this false narrative.

Feb 11 16:00

The Syrian Arab Army Secures the Entirety of Damascus – Aleppo Highway

The Syrian Arab Army SAA has completed its main task within the current military operation by securing the Damascus – Aleppo Highway aka M5 after weeks of heavy clashes and fast maneuvers.

Feb 11 13:09

Sacrificing the UK Labour Party for Israel

Sam Bentley traces the start of the fabricated "anti-Semitism" campaign against Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn to the exposure of collusion between the Israeli embassy, ex-Labour MP Joan Ryan and the Jewish Labour Movement, and names key drivers of the campaign. >>

Feb 11 13:08

Americans need to know about the horrors of life in Gaza

Democratic presidential candidates should stop trying to figure out how to appeal to Trump voters, moderates, conservatives, independents and anyone else who is “on the fence.” If anyone is seriously “on the fence” these days, they’re either playing you or morally bankrupt.

I am a mother, physician, small business owner and yoga teacher. I deeply care about the future of the world and our country.

I travel to Gaza as often as I am allowed in by Israel. I work in various clinics throughout Gaza offering medical education, mental health care and yoga classes for trauma survivors (everyone in Gaza is a trauma survivor).

In July 2017 I even took my 10-year-old daughter to Gaza as an International Student Ambassador in the annual United Nations Gaza Summer Fun Weeks Camp.

Feb 11 12:25

Vanessa Beeley Interview - Turkey & US Openly Protect Extremists In Idlib As Lies Begin To Crumble

Joining me today is Vanessa Beeley, an independent investigative journalist and photographer who has worked extensively in the Middle East – on the ground in Syria, Egypt, Iraq and Palestine, and has covering the conflict in Yemen since 2015. In 2018, Vanessa was named one of the 238 most respected journalists in the UK by the British National Council for the Training of Journalists. In 2019, Vanessa was among the recipients of the Serena Shim Award for uncompromising integrity in journalism. Today we are discussing Syria, Idlib and the wall of propaganda surrounding all of it.

Feb 11 10:27

Democrats Ignore Trump’s Real Violations

Last month, President Trump authorized the assassination of a top Iranian General, Qassim Soleimani, and a top Iraqi military officer inside Iraqi territory while Soleimani was on a diplomatic mission. Trump and his Administration tried to claim that the attack was essential because of an “imminent threat” of a Soleimani attack on US troops in the region.

We found out shortly afterward that they lied about the “imminent threat.” The assassination was not “urgent” – it was planned back in June. Trump then claimed it didn’t matter whether there was an imminent threat: Soleimani was a bad guy so he deserved to be assassinated.

But the attack was an act of war on Iran without Congressional declaration or authorization for war. Is that not perhaps a “high crime” or “misdemeanor”?

Feb 11 10:21

Turkish Police Recover Stolen jewish Torah Scrolls Decorated With Satanic Illuminati Symbolism

Turkish Police arrested Faylaq al-Rahman fighters who were trying to sell two rare, ancient, gold-plated jewish Torahs in the northwestern province of Bilecik. The Turkish newspaper Daily Sabah said that Police had confiscated the two ancient Torahs during the arrest. Syrian opposition sources confirmed that Faylaq al-Rahman fighters had stolen the ancient Torahs from a historical 2,000 years old synagogue in the Jobar district, east of the Syrian capital of Damascus. They contain plenty of more Satanic symbolism such as the demon Baphomet, Illuminati triangle with the all seeing eye, blood libel, serpents, kabbalah hand signs, owls and many other things.

Feb 11 10:19

In the Bubble: Trump’s Presidency Reveals 7 Undeniable Facts About The Swamp

By Doug “Uncola” Lynn via TheBurningPlatform.com

Barely into the New Year, 2020 vision has brought many revelations into better focus, making several ongoing observations perfectly clear. Although there are those who’ve been watching the dots of The Matrix assemble into the big picture for decades now, the election of Donald Trump has increasingly exposed what was hidden in plain sight for so long.

Feb 11 10:11

Implausible Denials: The Crime at Jabal al Tharda. US-led Air Raid on Behalf of ISIS-Daesh Against Syrian Forces

On 17 September 2016 a carefully planned US-led air raid on Jabal al Tharda (Mount Tharda), overlooking Deir Ezzor airport, slaughtered over 100 Syrian soldiers and delivered control of the mountain to DAESH / ISIS. After that surprise attack, the terrorist group held the mountain for almost a year, but did not manage to take the airport or the entire city. US-led forces admitted the attack but claimed it was all a ‘mistake’. However uncontested facts, eye witness accounts and critical circumstances show that was a lie. This article sets out the evidence of this crime, in context of Washington’s historical use of mercenaries for covert actions, linked to the doctrine of ‘plausible deniability’.

Feb 10 14:26

Trump’s Brink of War with Iran Spun on a Lie

Iraqi military intelligence has found that almost certainly the rocket attack on a U.S. base in December which killed an American contractor was carried out by the Islamic State terror group – not an Iranian-backed Shia militia, contrary to what Washington has been claiming.

It turns out that President Trump’s brink of war with Iran was most likely spun on a cynical lie. That misinformation also led to the U.S. assassination of top Iranian military leader, Major General Qassem Soleimani on January 3, and to the subsequent shoot-down of a civilian airliner in Iran with 176 lives lost.

Feb 10 12:37

Fierce Clashes Between Hayat Tahrir al-Sham And Syrian Army Erupt West Of Saraqib. Turkish Artillery Strikes Reported

On February 10, fierce clashes erupted between the Syrian Army and forces led by Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (formerly the Syrian branch of al-Qaeda) near Nayrab, San and Afis in the province of Idlib. These villages are located just west of the town of Saraqib recently liberated by the Syrian Army from terrorists.

Feb 10 12:34

US begins withdrawal of its troops from Iraq, media reports say

MOSCOW, February 10. /TASS/. /TASS/. The United States has started withdrawal of its troops from Iraq, Al Arabiya TV said on Monday citing Iraqi parliament member Ali al-Ghanimi.

According to al-Ghanimi, US troops are beginning to leave 15 military bases in Iraq.

Feb 10 12:01

Kissing international law goodbye to satisfy Israeli greed

Stuart Littlewood highlights the forked tongue and gross hypocrisy of Britain’s Conservative, Zionist-dominated government, which pays lip service to justice, human rights and freedom of expression while energetically stamping on all of these to protect Israel from legitimate scrutiny. >>

Feb 10 11:39

Turkey strikes Syrian Army positions after ‘5 troops killed in shelling’

Five Turkish troops were killed in the shelling of an observation post in Syria’s Idlib province, Ankara has said, blaming Damascus for the attack. Turkish forces then fired on Syrian Army positions.

Feb 10 07:12

Syrian Army captures strategic town in southern Aleppo: video

BEIRUT, LEBANON (11:30 P.M.) – The Syrian Arab Army (SAA) captured the strategic town of Al-‘Eis on Saturday following a fierce battle with the jihadist rebels in southern Aleppo.

Feb 10 07:09

Great Investigative Piece on Syrian Rebel Mercenaries in Libya Hired by Turkey

“Turkish forces are resorting to lies to keep the Syrians fighting in Libya motivated”, “These mercenaries believe whatever Turkey tells them”

Editor’s note: Great piece on how Turkey undermined the Islamist rebels in Idlib whose military defeat at the hands of the Syrian army it is now so loudly protesting.

As Syrian and Russian forces bombard Idlib and the Aleppo countryside, thousands of militants from the Turkish-backed Free Syrian Army (TFSA) who would presumably be defending these areas in Syria are instead in Libya. They’ve been flown to Tripoli by Turkey, at the request of the Government of National Accord (GNA), to fight alongside the myriad Islamist groups defending the key city from the advancing Libyan National Army (LNA), led by General Khalifa Haftar.

Feb 09 10:20

Iraq, Russia discuss strengthening military ties amid US tensions

Iraq and Russia have discussed furthering military ties amid souring relations between Baghdad and Washington in the wake of US assassination of top Iranian general Qassem Soleimani and Iraqi anti-terror commander Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis.

In a statement released on Thursday, Iraq's Defense Ministry announced a meeting between the army chief of staff, Lieutenant General Othman al-Ghanimi, and Russian Ambassador Maksim Maksimov, along with Moscow’s newly arrived defense attaché in Baghdad.

Feb 09 09:02

Iran Attack on Two US Bases, The “Evil Empire” Strikes Back. The Casualties?

This would explain the if looks could kill face on the head of the JCS during Trump's all is well. The Iranians handed the US a massive humiliating defeat and Trump lied about it!

After their excessive and macabre display of delight and satisfaction, and even celebration, over the killing of Solemani, the White House was tight-lipped about Iran’s almost immediate retaliatory missile attack on two US bases in Iraq, with Donald Trump soon claiming only a bit of physical damage, announcing on Twitter a day after the attack, “No Americans were harmed in last night’s attack by the Iranian regime. We suffered no casualties.” Trump also stated there was no significant damage to the bases.

Feb 09 08:42

Trump’s Chumps

I voted for Donald Trump in the 2016 election.

I spent months making the case for Trump on this website. I will be the first to admit that I was wrong and that those who were skeptical of Trump in our community were right in 2016. In that election, I drank the koolaid and was one of Trump’s Chumps. Unlike AmNats, I have tried to learn something from that experience.

In 2020, we have a far better sense of Donald Trump. The Trump administration has a record now. Donald Trump’s first term is mostly history. We can now look back with the benefit of hindsight and evaluate our standing after the last three years without being drunk on Trump koolaid. No one drank the Trump koolaid in our community more deeply than the AmNats. Some of them remained drunk on the Trump koolaid even after the 2018 midterms. A handful of his most faithful cheerleaders have never given up faith in their GOD EMPEROR and succumbed to reality.

What is the reality of the Trump presidency?

Feb 08 07:53

Israel uses civilian flight as shield to raid Damascus after Syrian troops liberate Saraqib

'Israel using passenger jets as shields'

The spokesman stressed that Israel was well aware of civilian flights around Damascus and that such missions demonstrated the regime's reckless disregard for human lives.

"The Israeli general staff's use of passenger jets as a cover for its military operations or as a shield from Syrian missile system fire is becoming a typical trait of Israeli air force," he said.

Russia had previously warned that Israeli airstrikes against Damascus were endangering civilian jets.

Feb 08 07:50

Turkey preparing for war against Syria and Russia

Erdogan and his forces killed 4 Russian FSB officers. Time for Putin to put out The Dog!

In the afternoon, a suicide bomber from Hayat Tahrir al-Cham blew himself up in a building housing Russian forces. We are still unaware of the outcome of this operation, which we understand should be assumed by Turkey.

We are heading in the short term towards a conflict between Turkey, a member of NATO, and Russia, a member of the CSTO.

Feb 07 09:30

Syrian Army blocks US military convoy from important highway in Hasakah

BEIRUT, LEBANON (9:30 P.M.) – A unit from the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) intercepted a military convoy of the U.S. military in the eastern part of the Euphrates River Valley after trying to enter a town in the Tel Tamr District of Al-Hasakah this week.

Feb 07 09:18

How Release of the Kushner Plan Overturned Israeli Strategy

The Festering Conflict

But dreams can only support a position so far, especially when a dream runs up against the full ugliness of formal subjugation of one nation by another nation. Palestinian nationalism will not go away. It will not be bought off with enticements in glossy brochures about economic development. Support for it will not be abandoned by other Arabs — as demonstrated by the firm position on the subject that Saudi King Salman has repeatedly expressed. Regardless of what is done in future years by whatever passes for Palestinian leadership, terrorists and other extremists will continue to exploit for their own purposes an unresolved Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Talk about the ultimate smell of irony in the morning, as this devolution of a two-state solution unfolds!!!

Feb 06 14:29

Debunking the lies spread about musician and writer Gilad Atzmon by Zionists and other Israel apologists

Israel-born British musician and writer Gilad Atzmon refutes the lies and disinformation spread against him by Zionists who, incapable of countering his arguments, have resorted to burning his books and terrorising venues that host his concerts. >>

Feb 06 13:43

A Demagogic and Dishonest SOTU

February 4, 2020|

10:35 pm
Daniel Larison

Trump’s State of the Union address tonight was a laundry list of false and misleading claims. It will take the fact-checkers the better part of the night to identify all of the misrepresentations and spurious claims that the president made as he rattled off one implausible statistic after another. The few references that Trump made to foreign policy issues predictably glossed over the many failures of administration policies. If you knew nothing about the last three years of Trump’s presidency, the picture he painted sounded pretty good. If you have paid any attention at all before now, you realized that the country was being snowed under with an avalanche of lies and half-truths.

The most disingenuous part may have been this section on Iran:

Feb 06 13:39

Beyond Ukraine: America’s Coming (Losing) Battle for Eurasia

by Maj. Danny Sjursen, USA (ret.) Posted on February 06, 2020

Academic historians reject anything smacking of inevitably. Instead they emphasize the contingency of events as manifested through the inherent agency of human beings and the countless decisions they make. On the merits, such scholars are basically correct. That said, there was something – if not inevitable – highly probable, almost (forgive me) deterministic about the two cataclysmic world wars of the 20th century. Both, in retrospect, were driven, in large part, by collective – particularly Western – nations’ adherence to a series of geopolitical philosophies.

Feb 06 09:23

Erdogan Says He Issued Ultimatum to Putin for Syria to Relinquish Gains or He’s Joining the War on AQ’s Side

I think Putin gave him an answer. His troops are now encircled.

Speaking to MPs from his party Erdogan said that in a recent telephone call with Putin he has issued a demand that the Russian President makes the Syrian army pull back to lines it held before the current Idlib offensive, as well as a preceding one carried out last August.

According to Erdogan he told Putin that if Russia will not make Syria retreat from its territory, the Turkish army and air force would. Again according to Erdogan’s word he has given the Russian president until the end of February to accomplish this.

Feb 06 09:20

‘Military Genius’ Erdogan Gets Hundreds More of His Troops Encircled in Syria

To stop the ongoing — and wildly successful — Russian-backed Syrian offensive Erdogan ordered hundreds of additional Turkish troops to pour into Syria’s al-Qaeda-held Idlib and put themselves in the way of the advancing Syrian army.

This first got 7 of his troops killed when the Syrians at night mistook the Turks for Islamist rebels, and now it has resulted in all of the new troops becoming encircled.

Feb 05 18:58

Syrian air defenses engage ‘hostile targets’ over Damascus (VIDEOS)

Syria’s air defenses have intercepted a number of enemy projectiles over the capital of Damascus, according to Syrian state media. There are so far no reports of damage or injuries, and the nature of the targets remains unclear.

Feb 05 13:56

Intimidating or coercing a civilian population is terrorism. Right?

Stuart Littlewood explains why, by Washington’s own definition, the United States and its puppet-master Israel are prime practitioners of terrorism, and why Trump’s “peace deal” is “the very model of a vile terror document”. >>

Feb 04 13:53

Podcast – Episode #19 – Alistair Crooke and the Civilizational Wars of the U.S. and Europe

Alistair Crooke and I sit down for a wide-ranging chat on the loss of institutional legitimacy all across the West and the Middle East. Starting with Brexit and what it means for the U.K. and spanning the globe to include Europe, its relationship to Russia and the ideological wars being waged by various factions against Iran and China, this is an episode I don’t think anyone should miss.

I know that I am better served for having been a part of it. And, if in our own small way we can prevent further wars of this type, it will

Feb 02 11:56

Episode #18 - Is Iran Sucking the Neocons into a Russian Cauldron??

Very interesting!

Iran's move to pull out of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty looks like an invitation to the U.S. to bomb them back to the stone age. But is it? Russian military strategy is predicated on creating cauldrons, encircling an over-confident enemy and cutting off their means of retreat.

Is this move by Iran part of their larger gambit to get what it wants in the Middle East? Are the Neocons about to fall into the biggest geopolitical quagmire of all time?

Feb 01 14:40

Watch: US Harvard law students walk out en mass as Israeli ambassador begins to justify Jewish settlements

Israel may have occupied the United States White House and other seats of power in the world but it is hardly winning hearts and minds among ordinary people in the West.

Watch the video below. It shows Harvard University law students walk out in mass as the Israeli ambassador begins to give a talk about the “legitimacy” of the Jewish settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories.

Feb 01 14:22

Palestinian Authority cuts all ties with US, Israel over 'deal of century'

"We are informing you that there will be no relations with you (Israel) and the United States," Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas told an Arab League meeting in Cairo on Saturday.

Feb 01 13:31

US, Israel ramp up nuclear weapons testing, deployment amid regional provocations

Israel says it has ramped up the deployment and testing of nuclear and nuclear-capable weapons amid heightened regional tensions after the US assassinated top Iranian General Qassem Soleimani and unveiled a biased Middle East plan.

The ministry of military affairs of the Israeli regime on Friday announced that it had conducted a launch test of a “rocket propulsion system from a base in the center of the country”.

The ministry refused to disclose any additional details regarding the nature of the missile, contrary to its usual conduct following satellite launcher and missile interceptor tests.

Feb 01 06:14

The Real John Bolton

Bolton, who used student deferments and service in the Maryland National Guard to avoid serving in Vietnam, is a classic Chicken Hawk. He supported the Vietnam War and continues to support the war in Iraq. Bolton endorsed preemptive military strikes in North Korea and Iran in recent years, and lobbied for regime change in Cuba, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Syria, Venezuela, and Yemen. When George W. Bush declared an “axis of evil” in 2002 consisting of Iran, Iraq, and North Korea, Bolton added an equally bizarre axis of Cuba, Libya, and Syria.

Feb 01 05:43

Jared Kushner Taunts Palestinians Because He Wants Them to Reject His ‘Peace Plan’

It turns out that Kushner copied parts of his proposal nearly word for word from a book “by” Benjamin Netanyahu — a man who surely has never wanted to genuinely negotiate with the Palestinians.

On the left, an excerpt from Netanyahu’s book “A Durable Peace.”

On the right, the Trump/Kushner “peace” proposal.

I don’t know an academic integrity panel at any university that would let this fly. pic.twitter.com/NvgzWOsL2r

— Dylan Williams (@dylanotes) January 29, 2020

Jan 31 15:35

FLASHBACK: Veteran Concussion Research: Examining Combat-related Brain Injury

Former Army specialist Dan Hof, a veteran of the conflict in Iraq, sustained a concussion in 2005 while deployed and has been struggling with troubling symptoms of his injury ever since. Dan is one of the 20 participants in a study of mild traumatic brain injury in veterans led by Michael Lipton, M.D., Ph.D., at Albert Einstein College of Medicine. In cooperation with the Resurrecting Lives Foundation, Dr. Lipton is using advanced MRI techniques and cognitive tests to investigate the effect of repeated combat-related blast exposures on the brains of veterans with the goal of improving diagnostics and treatment

Jan 31 14:58

The Geopolitics of a Latent International Conflict in Eastern Mediterranean

The conflict in the Eastern Mediterranean is dormant but could flare up at any moment, with serious consequences for North Africa, West Asia and Southern Europe. The militarization of the region and deep-rooted political disputes give ample reason for concern.

In the current scheme of things, the Eastern Mediterranean is sitting atop a dormant volcano. Developments in other hot spots in the Middle East, such as the carnage in Syria, the conflict and humanitarian crisis in Yemen, the Saudi-Iranian standoff in the Gulf and the civil war in Libya, have diverted the attention away from a latent yet perilous conflict. If triggered, such a conflict could have tremendous ramifications for countries in North Africa, West Asia and Southern Europe as well as for the stability of shipping transportation and energy markets worldwide.

Jan 31 14:51

Huge oil discovery on Golan Heights

Estimates are that the amount of oil found will make Israel self sufficient for very many years to come.

https://www.rt.com/business/317906-oil-golan-heights-israel/

Jan 31 14:44

FLASHBACK: The New Mediterranean Oil and Gas Bonanza

The discovery in late 2010 of the huge natural gas bonanza off Israel’s Mediterranean shores triggered other neighboring countries to look more closely at their own waters. The results revealed that the entire eastern Mediterranean is swimming in huge untapped oil and gas reserves. That discovery is having enormous political, geopolitical as well as economic consequences. It well may have potential military consequences too.

Preliminary exploration has confirmed similarly impressive reserves of gas and oil in the waters off Greece, Turkey, Cyprus and potentially, Syria.

Jan 31 11:41

Trump’s deal is bid to complete the evil “Plan Dalet”

Stuart Littlewood argues that President Trump’s “deal of the century” fulfils the thoroughly nasty “Plan Dalet” – the Zionists’ blueprint for the violent and murderous takeover of the Palestinian homeland. >>

Jan 31 10:07

The Nasty Secret Behind Aramco, ISIS and Trump in Syria

In 2017, soon after Trump took office, Aramco, the Saudi owned oil conglomerate, opened offices in Deir Ezzor province in Syria.

Under the protection of both ISIS and the United States Army, Aramco began an exploration of 12 new oil and gas deposits recognized by American SAR (Synthetic Aperture Radar) military satellites, retasked for this purpose.

These oil and gas fields represent significant finds, equaling the Kirkuk field in Iraq and the largest of Saudi Arabia’s oil finds.

Similarly, as early as 2012, massive oil and gas deposits were discovered in the Mediterranean Sea, some off Gaza, others off Cyprus, but the largest traversed inland, into Syria, across Latakia and Idlib Provinces, areas now held by ISIS and al Qaeda with US support.

Jan 31 08:39

Kushner says he hopes Israel waits on sovereignty steps in West Bank

White House senior adviser Jared Kushner said Washington wants Israel to wait until after its March 2 election before making any moves towards settlement annexation in the West Bank, following the announcement of a U.S. peace plan.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who has hailed the U.S. proposal, told reporters on Tuesday that he would ask his Cabinet next week to approve applying Israeli law to Jewish settlements in the West Bank.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is pure and utter codswallop, and Jared Kushner knows it; Netanyahu will not hesitate to make this the centerpiece of the next election, and will move just as rapidly as he thinks he can get away with doing.

Jan 31 08:34

Maneuvering Hell for Our Advantage

When the mainstream media writes about war, even critically, the image that often comes to mind for me is an infant wrapped in plastic. That infant is naked reality, a.k.a., the present moment, suffocating and screaming for its life; the plastic smothering it are the journalistic euphemisms by which murder and terrorism turn into abstract acts of national necessity.

Thus, the recent news that the United States clobbered war-torn Afghanistan with a record number of bombs and missiles in 2019 came to us via Stars and Stripes in language protecting all concerned from raw awareness and flying shrapnel:

American aircraft released 7,423 munitions in the country in 2019, according to figures published Monday by U.S. Air Forces Central Command. Coalition aircraft flew nearly 8,800 sorties during the period, over a quarter of which carried out strikes.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is why I continue to confront the war machine in this country, and elsewhere (read: Saudi Arabia) with the war that no one really sees, except for some exceptionally ballsy journalists; and that is the genocide being created, courtesy of US-enabled Saudi troops in Yemen.

For almost 4 years now, the US/Saudi troops have visited death; maiming; and disease against Yemen's most vulnerable citizens; its women; it's children; and itgs medically fragile seniors. So, again, because, dammit, someone has to do this, I submit the following; (warning; exceptionally graphic, as in lose your lunch graphic)
Images: Yemeni children blown to bits, or maimed for life, courtesy of Saudi bombing runs

Images: Yemeni children starving to death, courtesy of US/Saudi port blockade, so food cannot get in.

Images: Yemeni children, dying of cholera, possibly weaponized (as was done in World War II

I remember, as a kid going to public school, what we used to get force-fed, in terms of just how great a country this was, and that we would never, ever do harm for economic/geopolitical gain.

And then came the Vietnam war, a with all of its horrific slaughter; drugs coming from central Asia, pouring into our inner cities; and the absolute lunatic madness of US foreign policy.

Yes , the US government is involved, and has been involved, with war crimes around the world, for profit, for quite a long period of time.

As a Christian pacifist activist, who never advocates violence, I cannot be silent, and feel a very strong moral obligation to witness to when our government, and military, are involved in war crimes, as they are doing now in Yemen.

And all the while, every intelligent commentary I have read on this crisis, ends by saying that a settlement between the Houthis and the Saudis has to be reached diplomatically, but I do not see this happening. And I have to ask; why?!?!?

Jan 31 08:26

President al-Assad: The American presence in Syria will generate military resistance which will exact losses among the Americans, consequently force them to leave

He pointed out that the American presence in Syria will generate a military resistance which will exact losses among the Americans, and consequently force them to leave. “However, America cannot believe that it will live comfortably in any area it occupies. We remind them of Iraq and Afghanistan, and Syria will not be an exception.”

President al-Assad indicated that the immediate and most effective solution is to unite as Syrians and as patriots and this would cause the Americans to leave the Syrian territory.

Jan 31 07:51

Rising Numbers of US Troops in Iraq with Traumatic Brain Injuries

What Trump dismissively called “headaches and a couple of other things…not very serious…no Americans…harmed,” the Pentagon admitted otherwise in delayed after-action reports.

After initially saying nothing, then reporting 11 US military personnel evacuated from Iraq with concussion-like symptoms, the Pentagon raised the number to 34, then 50 and now 64, perhaps a larger number to be revealed ahead.

Jan 31 07:38

The United States: a Record-Holder in Political Assassinations

The crowing by Donald Trump that he “terminated” the commander of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps Quds Force, Major General Qaseem Soleimani, simply because Trump believed, mobster-style, that he had it coming, should remind the world that the United States government stands as the world’s record-holder in either directly carrying out or coordinating with other parties the assassination of political leaders, American and foreign.

§1116. Murder or manslaughter of foreign officials, official guests, or internationally protected persons
https://corpuslegalis.com/us/code/title18/murder-or-manslaughter-of-foreign-officials-official-guests-or-internationally-protected-persons(4) “Internationally protected person” means—

Jan 30 21:37

FLASHBACK: How Many Millions Have Been Killed in America’s Post-9/11 Wars?

March 23rd, 2018

By Nicolas J.S. Davies

How many people have been killed in America’s post-9/11 wars? I have been researching and writing about that question since soon after the U.S. launched these wars, which it has tried to justify as a response to terrorist crimes that killed 2,996 people in the U.S. on September 11th 2001.

But no crime, however horrific, can justify wars on countries and people who were not responsible for the crime committed, as former Nuremberg prosecutor Ben Ferencz patiently explained to NPR at the time......

Jan 30 20:18

Evangelicals Love Donald Trump for Many Reasons, But One of Them Is Especially Terrifying

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who was reportedly instrumental in pushing for the killing of Soleimani, is also a master of such messaging. In March, during an interview in Jerusalem with the Christian Broadcasting Network (founded by another apocalyptic preacher, Pat Robertson), Pompeo showed his familiarity with another Iran-centric Bible story popular with End Times evangelicals. In the story, a Persian king is urged to slaughter the Jews in his kingdom at the urging of the evil adviser Haman. But his Jewish Queen Esther convinces him not to and saves her people. Asked whether he thought Trump could be a modern-day Esther, saving the Jews from Iran, Pompeo replied, “As a Christian, I certainly believe that’s possible.” The secretary of state’s End Times beliefs made headlines again after the Soleimani killing, as meme-makers circulated a quote from a speech he made in a Kansas church in 2015.

Jan 30 13:29

Israeli rogue regime cuts medical lifeline to remote Palestinian villagers – again

Stuart Littlewood highlights yet another Israeli crime – depriving Palestinian villagers of medical assistance – and the UK’s complicity in Israel’s crimes and its double standards towards the rogue entity and the occupied Palestinians. >>

Jan 30 13:28

Trump’s “deal of the century” won’t bring peace – that was the plan

Jonathan Cook views the unrealisable preconditions of President Trump’s “deal of the century” and argues that it lays the groundwork for permanent apartheid in the Palestinian occupied territories and paves the way for greater bloodshed.>>

Jan 29 22:01

Treaty Between the United States and Tripoli

"As the government of the United States of America is not in any sense founded on the Christian Religion," the Article begins. And so, for those who advocate for the complete separation of church and state, the article is seen as an early vindication of the position, especially since the treaty was approved by a Senate that recently approved the Bill of Rights.

Jan 29 12:42

Syria: Army Liberates Maarat al-Numan - U.S. Plans New Mischief

Today the Syrian Arab Army liberated the city Maarat al-Numan in south-east Idleb. Before the war on Syria the city had some 60,000 inhabitants. This followed after several week of steady progress during which two dozens villages were taken from the Jihadis who currently rule the Idleb area.

Jan 28 23:45

The Nasty Secret Behind Aramco, ISIS and Trump in Syria

Makes sense now. Syria has more oil and natural gas than you can shake a stick at. New discoveries. New fields.

The Saudi Arabian oil company, Aramco, is now hiring oil workers throughout Deir Ezzor Province inside Syria as part of a joint effort, nominally with an unknown American entity and with full partnership with both ISIS and the United States Army.

Thousands of unemployed Syrian engineers and oil workers are being asked to apply for jobs paying $3000 per month.

No one knows who they will be working for.This is the story we will be examining, how it began and where it is going now.

In 2017, soon after Trump took office, Aramco, the Saudi owned oil conglomerate, opened offices in Deir Ezzor province in Syria.

Under the protection of both ISIS and the United States Army, Aramco began an exploration of 12 new oil and gas deposits recognized by American SAR (Synthetic Aperture Radar) military satellites, retasked for this purpose.

Jan 28 22:08

Syria Warns UN of Impending Fabricated Chemical Attack

On Monday 27 January, Syria’s Foreign and Expatriates Ministry dispatched a diplomatic letter to the UN Secretary-General Antonio Gutteres and to the head of the Security Council, reporting that another fabricated chemical attack is planned in the Idlib-Aleppo area, under the direction of Turkey.

Jan 28 12:18

Trump’s long-awaited Middle East peace plan calls for Palestinian state, settlement freeze

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. officials say President Donald Trump’s much anticipated Middle East peace plan calls for the creation of a State of Palestine with its capital in portions of east Jerusalem, ending speculation as to whether his administration, in preparing a proposal without input from Palestinian leaders, would abandon a “two-state resolution” to the conflict.

Jan 28 10:38

Lacking Evidence, Pompeo Blames Iran for Rocket Fire on Baghdad Embassy

Accuses Iran of 'wanton disregard for Iraqi sovereignty'
Jason Ditz Posted on January 27, 2020Categories NewsTags Iran, Iraq, Pompeo

Three rockets hit the US Embassy compound in Baghdad on Sunday, and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, in keeping with his foreign policy priorities, was quick to make this all about Iran, despite a conspicuous lack of evidence Iran was in any way involved.

Jan 28 10:32

US demands Iraq protects Baghdad embassy after rocket attack

The United States called on Iraq Sunday to protect American diplomatic facilities after the US embassy in Baghdad was hit by three rockets.

"We call on the Government of Iraq to fulfill its obligations to protect our diplomatic facilities," a State Department spokesperson said in a statement.

Jan 28 09:36

Sources: Murderer of Soleimanai Killed With Spy Plane Shot Down over Afghanistan(warning/unpleasant photos)

The downed plane was the mobile CIA command for Michael D’ Andrea, head of operations against Iraq, Iran and Afghanistan, America’s most advanced spy platform and mobile command center with all equipment and documents now in enemy hands

VT Damascus: (Russian intelligence sources confirm) It has been reported that (Mike de Andrea) responsible for the assassination file of the martyr Major General Qassem Soleimani was killed in the accident of the American plane that was shot down in Afghanistan. He is the most prominent figure of the CIA intelligence in the region.

Jan 28 09:34

IRGC chief: No US military commander safe if Iranian commanders threatened

The chief commander of Iran's Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) says none of American military commanders would be safe in any part of the world, if the US administration continues to threaten the Iranian commanders.

Jan 28 09:32

Taliban repel Afghan forces’ attempt to reach US spy plane crash site

The Taliban say they have repelled an attempt by Afghan government forces to reach the site of a crashed US spy plane in Ghazni province.

According to Zabiullah Mujahid, a Taliban spokesman, clashes erupted as the government forces, backed by the US military, tried for the second time to reach the wreckage site in the militants' stronghold.

"Taliban fighters on the ground counted six bodies at the site of the U.S. airplane crash," he said, adding there was uncertainty regarding the total fatality count because the fire had consumed everything.

The American spy plane, a Bombardier E-11A, came down in the central province early Monday.

Jan 28 09:29

Michael D'Andrea

Michael D'Andrea is an officer of the Central Intelligence Agency, that in 2017 was appointed to head the Agency's Iran Mission Center.[1] He was a major figure in the search for Osama bin Laden, as well as the American drone strike targeted killing campaign.[1]

According to Russian intelligence sources, Michael D'Andrea who is reportedly behind the assassination of Qassem Soleimani was killed after a U.S. air force plane was shot down by Taliban on 27 January 2020.[2]

Early life

D'Andrea was raised in Northern Virginia.[1] He met his wife while working overseas with the Central Intelligence Agency, and converted to Islam in order to marry her.[1][3] His wife, Faridah Currimjee D'Andrea is a daughter of a wealthy Muslim family from Mauritius with Gujarati origins.[4]

Jan 27 20:38

1/24/20 Stephen Zunes: Today’s US-Iran Crisis Is Rooted in the Decision to Invade Iraq

Podcast with links to several stories.

Stephen Zunes discusses the catastrophic mistake of the U.S. plan to invade Iraq, then “divide and rule” along sectarian lines. Zunes says that although the relationship between Iran and the Iraqi Shiite government is a problem for those who worry about Iranian influence in the Middle East, the irony that everyone seems to have forgotten is that it was the Bush Administration that overthrew the Sunni government there in the first place, essentially fighting against Saddam Hussein on behalf of Iran. Moreover, the only real threat from Iran is to the American soldiers who are there on foreign soil fighting a war we started. We would be far better off if we had just stayed away, a message that Zunes says nearly every Middle East scholar in America could have told you in 2001.

Jan 27 12:40

Trump’s Response to Baghdad “Anti-American” Protest: Let’s Revive the ISIS “Freedom Fighters”

You people ever going to wake up? Will it take WW3 and America being destroyed to shake you people out of your Cognitive Dissonance?

Last week according to the Arabic-language al-Ma’aloumeh news website, senior Iraqi MP Karin al-Aliwi said the following:

The Trump regime is “reactivating the remnants and sleeping cells of the ISIL in 5 Iraqi provinces to escalate crisis and chaos in Iraq to decrease power of Hashd al-Shaabi and other (PMU) security forces.”

Thousands of ISIS fighters are being redeployed from Syria to Iraq as a pretext to unjustifiably justify continued US occupation — strongly opposed by the vast majority of Iraqis.

Jan 27 11:17

1/24/20 Dan Caldwell on America’s Conservative Antiwar Veterans

by Scott | Jan 26, 2020 | Interviews

Dan Caldwell of Concerned Veterans for America talks to Scott about his organization’s latest efforts to change the conversation about support for America’s wars in the Middle East. Their new ad campaign emphasizes the fact that even most veterans simply want to end the wars. Caldwell hopes to remind Americans that a truly conservative foreign policy would be much more restrained than the current neoconservative status quo.

Jan 27 11:09

Time for Congress to end undeclared wars and bring troops home

By Idaho Lieutenant Governor Janice McGeachin
President George Washington was unambiguous: "It is our true policy to steer clear of permanent alliance with any portion of the foreign world."

President Jefferson was equally explicit: "Peace, commerce, and honest friendship with all nations, entangling alliances with none."

President Monroe formalized that policy. The Monroe Doctrine's first point stated the U.S. wouldn't interfere in the internal affairs or wars of other nations.

Section 8 of the Constitution makes clear: only "Congress shall have the power to declare war."

Jan 26 11:57

Deadly Distractions: Laying the Groundwork for the Next Civil War

And so it continues.

This impeachment fiasco is merely the latest in a never-ending series of distractions, distortions, and political theater aimed at diverting the public’s attention from the sinister advances of the American Police State.

Don’t allow yourselves to be distracted, diverted or mesmerized by the cheap theater tricks.

This impeachment spectacle is Shakespearean in its scope: full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.

Nothing is the key word here.

Despite the wall-to-wall media coverage, nothing will change.

Mark my words: the government will remain as corrupt and self-serving as ever, dominated by two political factions that pretend to be at odds with each other all the while moving in lockstep to maintain the status quo.

Jan 25 11:20

Israel prevents gas from entering Gaza and begins selling it to Egypt

The severity of Gaza’s humanitarian crisis is currently growing in magnitude, as a result of Israel tightening its 15-year long, illegal siege of the poverty-stricken Palestinian territory. Due to Israel’s restriction of gas, prevented from entering the besieged coastal enclave, the people of Gaza are facing a lack of sufficient heating, lighting, and the ability to properly deal with sewage, all this and more whilst their Arab neighbor, Egypt, is purchasing stolen Israeli gas.

Jan 25 10:56

EX-CIA Lawyer: The Soleimani Hit Was a Homicide Under U.S. Criminal Law

This is a high crime an an impeachable offence. Like I have said many times the opposition to Trump is a psyop.

In bragging that he ordered a successful hit on Iranian Maj. Gen. Qassem Soleimani, President Trump has admitted to killing a senior government official of a sovereign state, Iran, while he was traveling in another sovereign state, Iraq. On its face, his conduct and intent satisfy the elements of premeditated murder under Section 1116 of Title 18 of the United States Criminal Code, "Murder or manslaughter of foreign officials, official guests, or internationally protected persons."
18 U.S. Code §?1116. Murder or manslaughter of foreign officials, official guests, or internationally protected persons

U.S. Code
Notes

prev | next
(a) Whoever kills or attempts to kill a foreign official, official guest, or internationally protected person shall be punished as provided under sections 1111, 1112, and 1113 of this title.

Jan 25 09:35

VFW demands apology after Trump claims traumatic brain injuries are not 'very serious'

The Veterans of Foreign Wars has demanded an apology from President Trump over recent comments in which he downplayed the seriousness of traumatic brain injuries suffered by American troops in an Iranian missile attack.

"The Veterans of Foreign Wars cannot stand idle on this matter," William "Doc" Schmitz, VFW National Commander, said in a statement Friday, noting TBI is a serious injury known to cause depression, memory loss, severe headaches and other symptoms in the short and long-term.

Jan 24 18:44

Paper: 16 US Servicemen Flown to Kuwait Hospitals with Severe Injuries after Iran's Missile Strike

TEHRAN (FNA)- 16 US military men with fatal injuries sustained during Iran's retaliatory missile strikes on Ain Al-Assad base earlier this month have been taken to a hospital in camp Arifjan in Ahmed al-Jaber airbase in Kuwait, a leading Kuwaiti newspaper disclosed on Sunday.

The Arabic-language Al-Qabas paper quoted informed sources as saying on Sunday that the 16 US militaries, included some whose bodies had been severely burnt and some others who had sustained shrapnel wounds, have been transferred to a US military hospital in Kuwait under strict security measures.

It added that the wounded military men have gone under surgical operations and are still kept at the ICU section of the hospital.

According to the paper, several other US forces who had sustained mild injuries in Iran's missile strike are being treated in Iraq.

The US president and the Pentagon have both claimed that there has been no casualty in Iran's missile raid on Ain Al-Assad airbase.

Jan 24 14:12

Is this what is going on behind the scene? The Yinon plan

“Greater Israel”: The Zionist Plan for the Middle East
The Infamous "Oded Yinon Plan". Introduction by Michel Chossudovsky

Introduction

The following document pertaining to the formation of “Greater Israel” constitutes the cornerstone of powerful Zionist factions within the current Netanyahu government, the Likud party, as well as within the Israeli military and intelligence establishment.

President Donald Trump has confirmed in no uncertain terms, his support of Israel’s illegal settlements (including his opposition to UN Security Council Resolution 2334, pertaining to the illegality of the Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank). In recent developments, the Trump administration has expressed its recognition of Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights.

“Greater Israel” will be part of the forthcoming March 2020 election campaign. Netanyahu has pledged to annex large parts of the occupied West Bank.

Jan 24 14:05

US seeking to carve out Sunni state as its influence in Iraq wanes

Our military has whored itself out to Israel. A Sunni Iraqi state and a Kurdish state. Break Iraq into 3 minor states which is the Israeli plan. More war.

By Suadad al-Salhy
in Baghdad
Published date: 23 January 2020 13:54 UTC | Last update: 1 day 5 hours ago

Backed into a corner and influence waning, the United States has in recent weeks been promoting a plan to create an autonomous Sunni region in western Iraq, officials from both countries told Middle East Eye.

The US efforts, the officials say, come in response to Shia Iraqi parties’ attempts to expel American troops from their country.

Iraq represents a strategic land bridge between Iran and its allies in Syria, Lebanon and Palestine.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RUxvbD3w78g
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9RC1Mepk_Sw

Jan 24 12:24

Dozens of US troops suffered traumatic brain injuries after Iran missile strikes

The Pentagon said Friday that 34 U.S. troops sustained traumatic brain injuries from Iran's retaliatory missile strikes earlier this month on Iraqi bases that house U.S. forces.

According to chief Pentagon spokesman Jonathan Hoffman, half of the troops have returned to active duty, but the other 17 remain under medical observation, The Associated Press reports.

Initially, President Trump said that no troops had been injured during the Jan. 8 attack. When reports of the head injuries surfaced, the president downplayed the severity of the trauma, referring to them as "headaches."

– Developing

Jan 24 11:33

FLASHBACK: I am a Syrian Living in Syria: “It Was Never a Revolution nor a Civil War. The Terrorists Are Sent by Your Government”

Two years ago, “Majd” wrote these words on a Facebook posting:

” I am Syrian… living in Syria in the middle of everything. We have seen horrors. It was never a revolution nor a civil war. The terrorists are sent by your goverment. They are al Qaeda Jabhat al Nusra Wahhabi Salafists Talibans etc and the extremist jihadists sent by the West, the Saudis, Qatar and Turkey. Your Obama and whoever is behind him or above him are supporting al Qaeda and leading a proxy war on my country.

We thought you are against al Qaeda and now you support them.

The majority here loves Assad. He has never committed a crime against his own people… The chemical attack was staged by the terrorists helped by the USA and the UK, etc. Everyone knows that here.

Jan 24 10:36

Patriot missile system deployment violates Iraq sovereignty: Lawmaker

An Iraqi legislator has condemned US plans to install Patriot missile systems in the Arab country, saying such deployment violates Iraq’s sovereignty.

The lawmaker said Iraqis will march in Baghdad on Friday to deliver the message to American forces that “Iraqi people reject their presence and it is time they left their bases.”

Jan 24 07:31

A-10 Warthogs Elephant Walk In Show Of Force, Weeks After 52 Stealth Fighters Taxied Down Runway 

The U.S. Air Force (USAF) conducted its second Elephant Walk within weeks, this time with ten Fairchild Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II fighters at Selfridge Air National Guard Base, located in Harrison Township, Michigan, said Defense Blog.

Elephant walks are generally conducted right before a minimum interval takeoff (MITO), a technique used by USAF to scramble all jets to take off at twelve- and fifteen-second intervals.

The objective of the exercise is to get all fighters and bombers in the air within fifteen minutes of an alert of an incoming missile attack.

Defense Blog noted that an Elephant Walk "is a fundamental training element when preparing for global strike missions."

The 127th Wing's motto is "We Stand Ready," as the latest training exercise suggests the A-10s could be preparing for combat in the Middle East.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I have to wonder; was this exercise more for domestic, or international consumption?!?

Were I a betting woman, I would bet on the former, rather than the latter, because I am sure that Iran, working with Russian intelligence, has a pretty decent grip on the US's military resources.

Just please remember; in pushing for a war against Iran, the US is also pushing for a war against Russia.

Iran ‘Won’t Be Alone’ If U.S. Attacks, Russian Official Says

I truly believe that Iranian leadership can "take that promise to the bank.", should hostilities devolve into a shooting war.

People like Zamir Kabulov, the Foreign Ministry’s special envoy for Asian countries including Iran, who made this statement last summer, rarely FART, without Putin's express approval.

Jan 23 16:27

US administration shifting Daesh terrorists from Syria to Iraq

By Stephen Lendman

Last December, Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem said “(t)he Americans…are feeding Daesh, encourag(ing) them, protect(ing) Daesh leaders and help(ing) them move from one area to another.”

At the same time, an unnamed Iraqi official accused the Pentagon of supplying Daesh terrorists in the country with weapons and military equipment.

“The American forces send aid from their bases to the Daesh terrorists in the Makhoul mountains, and their assistance still continues,” the official stressed, adding:

“Iraqi forces seized US weapons during an operation against terrorists in al-Hazar island. US military bases in Iraq are used against the host country and Syria.”

Jan 23 14:06

Basij Commander: US Bases No More Credited after IRGC's Retaliatory Missile Strikes

TEHRAN (FNA)- Commander of Basij (volunteer) forces Brigadier General Gholamreza Soleimani underlined that the January 8 retaliatory missile attacks against the US Ein al-Assad base in Iraq left no efficiency and credit for American bases across the region.

Jan 23 13:37

"This is a warning to all Russian forces": US Air Force sets Russia an ultimatum on Syria

After clashes between the Russian and American military, the US Air Force delivered an ultimatum to Russia.

A few hours ago, speaking to reporters in the Pentagon, Major General of the U.S. Air Force announced that Russia had been given a clear warning not to take any provocative measures and not to test the patience of the United States in Syria in areas where oil and gas are produced.

Jan 23 12:09

THE ANGRY ARAB: US Violated Unspoken Rule of Engagement with Iran

Something big and unprecedented has happened in the Middle East after the assassination of one of Iran’s top commanders, Qasim Suleimani.

The Iranian response was very measured and very specific. It was purposefully intended to avoid causing U.S. casualties; it was intended more as a message of Iranian missile capabilities and their pin point accuracy. And that message was not lost on Israel.

Jan 23 12:03

What Trump Didn’t Know About Cultural Locations in Iran

President Donald Trump’s comment about bombing 52 cultural sights of Iran if the Iranians retaliated against the U.S. assassination by killer drone of a top Iranian military officer was walked back the Secretary of Defense Mark Esper. “The U.S. will comply with the Law of Armed conflict” which forbids the destruction of cultural sites, Esper said.

General Qassem Soleimani was killed while reportedly on a diplomatic mission to Iraq to discuss talks with Saudi Arabia.

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