MIDDLE EAST | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


MIDDLE EAST

Jul 26 11:15

Thousands of Jordanians protest killing of teenager in embassy, chant 'Death to Israel'

Thousands of Jordanians joined the funeral procession of a teenager shot dead by an Israeli security guard during a standoff at the Israeli embassy. The mourners have demanded authorities close the embassy and tear up Jordan’s peace treaty with Tel Aviv.

The people who joined the procession chanted, “No to an Israeli embassy or ambassador on Jordanian land” and “Death to Israel” as they accompanied the coffin of the killed teenager from his home city of the city of Wihdat, east of the Jordanian capital of Amman, where a large Palestinian refugee camp is situated.

The mourners were carrying pictures of the dead teenager, identified as Mohammed Jawawdeh, 17, as well as Palestinian and Jordanian flags. They also called for a “jihad” against Israel, Reuters reports.

"We will go to Jerusalem as martyrs by the millions,” people chanted, according to AFP. Jawawdeh’s uncle also appealed to Jordan’s King Abdullah II, asking him to avenge the teenager’s death.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

"By accident", my astrolabe!!

But the big question now, is how how King Abdullah of Jordan and Israel's Prime Minister Netanyahu, are going move forward to take steps to insure that such an incident never happens again, and compensate the family of this kid for their loss (as though money could ever compensate for the loss of a loved one).

Jul 26 10:47

Red Cross: Yemen Cholera Deaths Expected to Double by Year’s End

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) declared that the number of suspected cholera cases in Yemen is expected to at least double by year’s-end to over 600,000.

Jul 26 10:01

The World's Largest Humanitarian Crisis Is Basically Being Blacked Out by Western Media

The Arab world’s richest country, Saudi Arabia, went to war against the Arab world’s poorest country in 2015. In this period, Yemen – with a population of 25 million – has been substantially destroyed. The United Nations has been tracking the scale of the atrocity. The numbers are bewildering. Close to 20,000 people have died in this war, at least half of them civilians. The numbers of those injured could not be tabulated as half of Yemen’s hospitals and medical centers do not work. This means there is no accurate measure of those who come in to be treated.

Jul 24 16:55

Anonymous Bulgaria Leaks Massive 10GB Of Data: “Silk Way Airlines Helps Terrorists”

By Aaron Kesel

Anonymous Bulgaria has leaked 10 GBs of data that suggests Azerbaijani Silk Way Airlines is involved in a billion dollar illegal weapons smuggling operation throughout the Middle East for at least the past three years according to the leaked documents reported by Truthleaks.org.

Middle Eastern reporter Dilyana Gaytandzhieva was the first known journalist to break the story for Trud.bg.

“350 diplomatic flights carry weapons for terrorist,” her headline read.

It all started on June 27th, 2017 Anonymous Bulgaria Anon_bg tweeted out that the Azerbaijani Embassy in Bulgaria had been hacked. A few hours later that day the group released the password “SilkWay Help Terrorists.”...

Jul 24 13:18

US moves against Iran raise spectre of wider regional conflict

James Dorsey argues that President Trump’s manoeuvres to withhold certification that Iran has complied with its nuclear agreement could encourage Saudi Arabia to step up its long-standing battle with Iran and set the Middle East and Gulf ablaze.>>

Jul 24 12:10

Israeli soldier who killed two Jordanians has ‘diplomatic immunity’

Israel has refused to allow Jordanian authorities to question an Israeli security guard who shot dead two Jordanians yesterday claiming he has diplomatic immunity. Authorities in Amman have refused to allow the guard to leave, insisting that they want to question the security officer, but Israel claims he is protected from arrest and investigation.

Jul 24 11:44

Israel 'to close embassy and consulate' in Turkey after Jordan incident

Israel has reportedly closed its embassy and consulate in Turkey amid rising tensions over the al-Aqsa compound in Jerusalem.

The Israeli Foreign Ministry ordered the closure of its embassy in Anakara and consulate in Istanbul as as a "precautionary" measure, Israeli news website NRG reported, citing a political source.

Jul 24 09:09

Yemen crisis 'an absolute shame on humanity'

Head of rights group CARE raises famine alarm, while Red Cross warns that 600,000 could contract cholera in 2017.

Jul 24 07:38

– IN RETALIATION FOR THE SAUDI’S ONGOING AGGRESSION AGAINST YEMEN, YEMENI FORCES HAVE TARGETED AN ARAMCO SAUDI OIL REFINERY IN YANBU PROVINCE WITH A LONG-RANGE BALLISTIC MISSILE.

The Saudi-led coalition tend to order anywhere from 20 to 70 airstrikes against various Yemeni provinces on any given day. Any province under control of Yemen’s Popular Forces is fair game. Hot spots currently include Taiz, Marib, the vital Hodeidah port town, and the densely populated capital city of Sana’a. So in retaliation, Yemeni forces have struck a Saudi oil refinery.

Just yesterday, Saudi airstrikes attacked a fishing boat killing 8 workers on board and wounding at least one more. Other targets frequently include civilian homes, crowded markets, funerals, schools, and all other civilian infrastructure. Despite this terrorism, arms from the west– especially the United States and United Kingdom– continue flowing.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

That the US government chooses to partner with Saudi Arabia in its war crimes against Yemen is very troubling to me. I wish Mike and I were a lot younger and a lot less broke; then, maybe, we could apply for citizenship in a country which, on moral grounds, would never commit such crimes.

Here's the reality of what is going on in Yemen: the Saudis have been killing and maiming innocent civilians; with US military assistance, they have blocked Yemeni ports so no food can get in, leading to massive deaths by malnutrition; and then, of course, is the horrific outbreak of cholera in Yemen (possibly weaponised), which has seen a toll of over 300,000 people sickened by it.

It appears that our US government has morphed into something far more sinister than the Unhinged Surveilled States of America; it has morphed into the Unhinged, Surveilled States of War Crimes, where profits for the American merchants of death, is all that matters to this government.

Ultimately, there will be costs, financially, physically, and morally, to this country, and its leadership, and those costs may well be devastating.

Please understand that everyone who does not, peacefully, logically, and morally speak out against these practices, on the part of this country, are also complicit in these crimes.

Now is hardly the time to be complacent, or think, for a moment, that they will ultimately not affect you, because, down the road, they will.

Jul 23 08:52

Arab League chief warns Israel not to trespass "red line"

The Arab League (AL) Secretary General Ahmed Aboul-Ghiet warned Israel on Sunday that Jerusalem is "a red line" that cannot be bypassed.

"Israel is playing with fire and is igniting a big crisis with the Arab and Muslim world because of its measures in Jerusalem," Aboul-Ghiet's spokesman said in a press statement.

He added that Israel is attempting to impose a new reality in East Jerusalem and the Al-Aqsa Mosque, the Muslims' third holiest site.

Jul 23 08:47

Egypt, Jordan discuss adopting measures over Israeli actions at Al-Aqsa Mosque

Cairo and Amman discussed on Saturday possible measures that could be taken after the recent Israeli escalation against Palestinians at Jerusalem’s Al-Aqsa Mosque, according to a statement by Egypt’s foreign ministry.

Egyptian foreign minister Sameh Shoukry received a phone call from his Jordanian counterpart Ayman Safadi on Saturday where they discussed the “dangerous violations against Palestinians by the Israeli occupation forces.”

Jul 23 08:05

Yemeni Forces Strike Saudi Oil Refinery with Long-Range Ballistic Missile

In retaliation for the Saudi’s ongoing aggression against Yemen, Yemeni forces have targeted an Aramco Saudi oil refinery in Yanbu province with a long-range ballistic missile. The Saudi-led coalition tend to order anywhere from 20 to 70 airstrikes against various Yemeni provinces on any given day. Any province under control of Yemen’s Popular Forces is fair game. Hot spots currently include Taiz, Marib, the vital Hodeidah port town, and the densely populated capital city of Sana’a. So in retaliation, Yemeni forces have struck a Saudi oil refinery.

Jul 23 05:31

US dishes dirt on Saudis to flush Gulf blockade on Qatar

It’s been a bad week for the Saudi rulers in the US media. A slew of embarrassing stories got wide coverage, with the seeming intention of undermining Saudi Arabia and its Gulf allies. Not coincidentally, the Saudi-led bloc then capitulated in its standoff with Qatar.

The row between Qatar and the other Gulf states of Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Bahrain has been the worst flare up in relations among the US-backed oil and gas monarchies going back many years.

All of the energy-rich sheikhdoms are American allies, or more accurately, American intelligence came out to effectively back Qatar’s side in the row with the other Gulf states. The US assessed that the official Qatar News Agency website was hacked by “the government of United Arab Emirates” on May 24, which sparked the whole stand-off in the first place.

Jul 22 15:57

The Balfour Declaration: Time to say sorry. Time we made amends.

Stuart Littlewood reminds us of Britain’s overwhelming responsibility for the dispossession and ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian people, and explains why the British state must apologise for its duplicitous role in the crime.>>

Jul 22 10:50

Ramses II was King Solomon

Very few equivalences in ancient times are so certain as the equivalence of Ramses II with King Solomon. Indeed, no mainstream scholar has been able to present even the most minimal requisite evidence necessary to rebut my challenge to current chronology as posted at https://listhost.uchicago.edu/pipermail/ane/2003-July/009941.html

Egyptologists, Oriental and Biblical scholars do not like to be confronted with facts - rather, they continue to build their nice little houses of cards as if facts contrary to their ill-conceived theories and chronologies simply did not exist. The closed-minded majority of Egyptologists seem to have a limited capacity for critical thinking.

Just how long did Ramses reign? They assume it is 67 years of sole regency, but the evidence is against them.

It is quite clear that Ramses did not rule alone for 67 years but like Solomon only ruled 40 years as a sole regent.

Jul 22 10:42

Iran seizes Saudi Arabian fishing boat and arrests crew as tensions escalate in Persian Gulf

Iran's Revolutionary Guards have detained a Saudi Arabian fishing boat and arrested its crew, an Iranian state news agency reported on Saturday, at a time of increased diplomatic tension between the two regional powers.

Five Indian nationals on the vessel were detained on Friday after they crossed into Iranian territorial waters in the Gulf, Ardeshir Yarahmadi, a spokesman for the fisheries department of Bushehr province, was quoted as saying by the Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA).

Yarahmadi said it was the second time in the past month that a Saudi boat and its crew had been detained.

Jul 22 00:56

Legalised murder: US airforce kills 12 Afghan police

Just another day of the US terrorising the world. If Russia did this the media and establishment would call for WW3.

Jul 21 15:52

Yemen in grip of world's worst cholera outbreak

After nearly two-and-a-half years of war, Yemen is in the grip of a new battle - the world's worst cholera outbreak.

The disease, which should have been left in the 19th century, is spreading at a terrifying rate.

Pictures released by the United Nations show a hospital overwhelmed with so many victims they are being treated in corridors.

There are 5,000 new cases of cholera across Yemen every day.

Jul 21 12:17

The US Empire, the CIA, and the NGOs

The CIA recruited the Muslim Brotherhood to fight a proxy war against the Soviet Union in Afghanistan, which led to the withdrawal of the Soviets from the Hindu Kush. Since then, the CIA used the mercenaries to fight more proxy wars in the Balkans, Chechnya, and Azerbaijan. Due to the wars of aggression against Iraq, Libya, Syria and Yemen the US and its vassal states created sectarian violence that led to civil wars. Right now, the CIA and the Muslim Brotherhood are present in the form of ISIS in Syria and Iraq.

Jul 21 12:09

Bahraini inmates seeking medical attention punished with torture, solitary confinement

A Bahraini human rights group says detainees being held at a detention center in the tiny Persian Gulf kingdom will be punished by solitary confinement and torture in case they seek medical attention from prison authorities.

Duraz Youth Movement announced on Friday that inmates at Dry Dock Detention Center will be locked up in solitary cells and subjected to torture should they demand treatment, Arabic-language Lualua television network reported.

The movement noted that the practice has been drawn up by one of the prison’s senior figures identified as Ahmad al-Amadi.

It also expressed deep concerns over the deteriorating health conditions of Ali Majed Rabea and Hussein Mahdi Qassem, stressing that the pair faces serious health risks after continuously being denied proper medical care.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

What the Al-Khalifa monarchy is doing to these political prisoners is tantamount to committing war crimes; of course, neither the US nor the UK's government will ever confront the monarchy with this, because of the tactical importance of their naval bases on this island.

Jul 21 11:20

Turkey Poised To Invade Syria's Idlib Province As Inter-Jihadist Violence Rages

Two Salafi-jihadi factions in Syria's Idlib province have been engaged in a brutal inter-"rebel" (or rather inter-jihadist) war this week, prompting Turkey to prepare a potential invasion to protect its favored factions on the ground. On Thursday, Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS/Al-Qaeda) continued to capture towns in Idlib's countryside from rival Ahrar al-Sham and Turkish backed FSA groups after an uneasy truce between the rebel factions quickly collapsed days prior, causing the weaker Ahrar al-Sham to call in Turkish support.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The tragedy which has been Syria the last half-decade, appears to show no signs of ending any time soon; hopefully, the Russians will hold sway here, and influence Turkey away from even the concept of this invasion.

Jul 21 11:17

Russia Prevents Syrian, Iraqi Gov't From Collapsing - Iraq Vice President

The Iraqi vice president said that Russia preserved the entire Middle Eastern region from being destroyed by keeping its stance toward the Syrian and the Iraqi governments.

Jul 21 10:09

Our Relationship with Saudi Arabia Is an Embarrassment

When he was 17, five years ago, Mujtaba al-Sweikat committed the “crime” of participating in a pro-democracy rally in Saudi Arabia.

Instead of attending Western Michigan University, as he had planned to do that fall, he was put in prison. Reports are now leaking out of Saudi Arabia that al-Sweikat will soon be beheaded for his transgression.

It’s just the latest reminder that Saudi Arabia is America’s worst best friend. The U.S. does get something out of its relationship with Saudi Arabia; there is real intelligence sharing, and the Kingdom has used its power over OPEC to drive oil prices down when we want to humiliate Russia or accomplish some other goal. That’s not nothing.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

As a citizen of a country colluding with Saudi Arabia in its commission of war crimes in Yemen, I am deeply troubled by the US's (and the President's) BFF relationship to the Saudi monarchy, and the Saudi government.

And I will warn you: all these images are very graphic, but as a Christian witness to the evil being visited upon Yemen by Saudi Arabia, I think it is very important for the readers of this site to understand what is being done with their tax dollars, and in their name, in Yemen.

The Saudi bombings are killing and maiming Yemeni children for life.

Images: Yemeni children killed and maimed for life.

By blockading the Yemeni ports with US military assistance, the Saudis are insuring the Yemeni children are now dying from malnutrition.

Images: Yemeni children dying from complications of malnutrition

And when you have a starved, bomb-ravaged population, is you do now in Yemen, disease is sure to follow; cholera is now well-established in Yemen, and the diagnosed cases are right around 300,00 as I type this.

Cholera cases in Yemen pass the 300,000 mark, and climbing.

Saudi Arabia's Prince Salman did pledge 66 million dollars to deal with the cholera epidemic, to appear "humanitarian", even as his government slaughters Yemen's people with bombs and bullets.

Saudis, at War in Yemen, Give Country $66.7 Million in Cholera Relief

But did he actually give it to an aid organisation which actually understand how to get the job done, like the Red Crescent, or Doctors Without Borders?!?

With an intense cynicism that almost boggles the mind, Prince Salman donated this money to the UN, which is dysfunctional, dystopic, and disorganised beyond belief. He clearly understood that by the time that aid ever reached its target, the relief effort would be way too little, and way too late.

Oh, and did I mention that the Saudis are using DU weapons in Yemen?!?

Images: Saudis using depleted uranium weapons in Yemen

And of course, these weapons are having the absolutely same effect on the people and children in Yemen as they did in Falluja Iraq; massive spikes in cancers, birth defects, and still births are being experienced now by the Yemeni people.

Images, courtesy of Ruptly, of infants with severe birth defects, due to Saudi use of depleted uranium in Yemen.

It is profoundly disturbing for me to understand just how completely morally comfortable our government, the Saudi government, and our and their military are with this genocide in Yemen.

As both a Christian and an American citizen, I very logically must ask about the moral cost of this relationship between the US and Saudi Arabia, and the dark, bitter fruit it may well bear in the future, where the US government may use Saudi Arabia as a proxy antagonist to Iran, in a potential war against that country.

Jul 21 09:12

Is Iran in Our Gun Sights Now?

In 2007, all 17 U.S. intelligence agencies declared with high confidence Iran had no nuclear weapons program. They stated this again in 2011. Under the nuclear deal, Iran exported almost all of its uranium, stopped enriching to 20 percent, shut down thousands of centrifuges, poured concrete into the core of its heavy water reactor, and allows U.N. inspectors to crawl all over every facility.

Is Iran, despite all this, operating a secret nuclear weapons program? Or is this War Party propaganda meant to drag us into another Mideast war?

To ascertain the truth, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee should call the heads of the CIA and DIA, and the Director of National Intelligence, to testify in open session.

We are told we are menaced also by a Shiite Crescent rising and stretching from Beirut to Damascus, Baghdad and Tehran.

And who created this Shiite Crescent?

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Unfortunately, just because the creation of yet another war in the Middle East would be the most ham-fistedly, pig-headedly stupid thing the Unhinged Surveilled States of America could do right now, is absolutely no guarantee that it won't haul off, and do it.

Logic, rationality, and being able to think something through to its logical conclusion, are no longer requisite skills for those creating foreign policy in DC; what we seem to have happening here is a combination of "magical thinking, coupled with the used of a dart board, in the creation of US foreign policy.

Jul 21 09:10

Move Over, Please: China Increases Influence in US-Dominated Middle East

China is gradually increasing its economic, political and diplomatic efforts in the Middle East, a region mostly dominated by the United States in recent years. According to expert Stanislav Tarasov, Beijing wants its own independent policy in the region.

Jul 21 08:44

The DEEP STATE Kicks An Age Old Plane Manufacturer To The Curb, Steals Its Designs, As Obama Sells Planes To Kenya On His Last Day In Office.

There is a probe taking place in Washington right now about how Obama took a Defense contract away from a business , who had professionally handled these contracts for years.  Obama and the Deep State pulled the rug out from under a company called IOMAX, run by an Army aviation disabled veteran and a crew of Army special forces all working together to create the most advanced aircraft being used in the  various roles in the Middle East and even in the drug wars at our borders.

Jul 21 07:04

Trump ends CIA funding of ISIS linked terrorists in Syria

In 2014 – 2015, $500 million of US taxpayer's money was spent on training 54 so-called 'moderate rebels', most of whom immediately turned their weapons over and joined Al-Nusra or Al-Qaeda.

Jul 21 06:04

Washington's "Good Terrorists, Bad Terrorists" Policy In The Middle East

Karl Marx famously said that history repeats itself, first as tragedy, second as farce. The only difference between the Afghan jihad back in the ‘80s that spawned Islamic jihadists like the Taliban and al Qaeda for the first time in history and the Libyan and Syrian civil wars, 2011-onward, is that the Afghan jihad was an overt jihad: back then, the Western political establishments and their mouthpiece, the mainstream media, used to openly brag that the CIA provides all those AK-47s, RPGs and stingers to the Afghan so-called “freedom fighters” to combat the Soviet troops in Afghanistan.

Jul 20 07:11

Donald Trump Ends Covert CIA Program To Arm “Moderate” Syrian Rebels

President Donald Trump has elected to end the CIA’s covert program to arm and train “moderate” Syrian rebels fighting against the government of Bashar al-Assad in Syria according to U.S. officials who spoke to the Washington Post. 

Jul 19 17:39

CHILDREN AMONG CIVILIAN DEAD IN LATEST US-BACKED SAUDI COALITION AIRSTRIKE IN YEMEN

The United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) on Wednesday reported that an airstrike carried out by the U.S.-backed Saudi-led coalition in Yemen killed 20 civilians—including women and children—who were fleeing violence in their home province.

"The people of Yemen are being subjected to deprivation, disease, and death as the world watches."
—Stephen O'Brien, United Nations

"The incident was reported on Tuesday afternoon and the number of civilian casualties are still being verified with initial reports pointing to at least 20 deaths," the agency said in statement. "Most of those killed are believed to be from the same family. Injuries have also been reported with a number also taken to nearby hospitals for treatment."

Webmaster's Commentary: 

These are all war crimes, which which, apparently, the US and Saudi civilian and military leadership are quite morally comfortable.

I am profoundly alarmed to be a citizen of a country colluding in Saudi Arabia's horrific war crimes in Yemen; if Mike and I had the opportunity to become citizens of a civilised country which just doesn't do this, I would be delighted.

We are, unfortunately, both too old and too broke to make it happen.

Jul 19 16:19

Trump’s Bombing Campaign In Middle East Has Already Killed At Least 2,200 Civilians

By Aaron Kesel

U.S. President Donald Trump is creating dozens of innocent casualties a day as he takes on the Islamic State in a bombing campaign in the Middle East risking to double the numbers his predecessor Barack Obama had according to Airwars a watchdog organization who did an investigation for The Daily Beast.

“Airwars researchers estimated that at least 2,300 civilians died from Coalition strikes overseen by the Obama White House—roughly 80 each month in Iraq and Syria,” The Daily Beast wrote...

Jul 19 08:20

Russia delivers humanitarian aid to Yemen

UN officials have estimated that Yemen’s war, ongoing since 2015, has claimed the lives of over 10,000 civilians, with at least 2 million displaced because of the fighting. According to a UN backed report, some 60 percent of Yemenis, 17 million people, are currently in “crisis” or “emergency” food situations.

Jul 17 12:03

QATAR: Trump Steps in to Protect US Assets in the Persian Gulf Mafia Battle

The saga of the Saudi-Qatar dispute continues. This week saw some important developments, which might provide pointers to what is likely to happen in the coming weeks and months, and possibly years.

As expected, the US stepped in to ensure that the Saudis, UAE, and Bahrain did not escalate their actions against Qatar. In particular, it was necessary to prevent any military adventure, which the Saudi Crown Prince, Mohammad bin Sultan (MbS), was perfectly capable of launching, going by his record in Yemen.
This had to be done urgently if the Americans wanted to continue their operations at the Al Udeid air base in Qatar, the forward headquarters of CENTCOM.

Jul 17 10:40

A MERCENARY-LED SURGE WON’T SOLVE AFGHANISTAN

Private military contractors have spotted an opportunity as America’s longest war grinds on. Here’s a crazy idea floating around Washington these days, outlandish even by today’s outlandish standards: The United States should hire a mercenary army to “fix” Afghanistan, a country where we’ve been at war since 2001, spending billions along the way. The big idea here is that they could extricate U.S. soldiers from this quagmire, and somehow solve it

Jul 17 10:32

House NDAA Amendments Would Limit US Participation in Yemen War

The House version of the nearly $700 billion 2018 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) includes multiple amendments aimed at limiting US involvement in the Saudi War in Yemen, explicitly forbidding the deployment of ground troops there, or spending any money on military operations outside the scope of the 2001 AUMF.

The Nolan Amendment prohibits the deployment of troops to participate in any way in the war, which is seen not only as restricting ground troops being sent to Yemen to fight on the side of the Saudis, but also appears aimed at limiting mid-air refueling operations for Saudi warplanes.

The Lieu Amendment requires a report from the State Department and the Pentagon on whether or not the Saudis are complying with the US-provided “No Strike List” for Yemen, as well as their improvement of targeting capabilities to avoid hitting civilians.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Were I a betting person, I would not bet that these amendments will survive the compromise process in the Senate, and that... is a damned shame.

The US government and military are colluding with Saudi Arabia in their war crimes against the Yemeni people.

Innocent children and non-combatants are getting killed and maimed for life every day; the Saudi military, with US assistance, has blocked the Yemeni ports, meaning no food is getting in, hence massive deaths from malnutrition in Yemeni's children; depleted uranium has been documented to have been used in civilian areas, insuring a massive uptick in cancers; still births, and horrific birth deformities; and now, cholera has taken hold, infecting over 300,000 people as I type this.

As a Christian witness, who believes in telling the truth as I see it, I am profoundly morally uncomfortable, being a citizen of a country committing war crimes against some of the most poverty-stricken people on this planet.

Jul 17 08:44

TURKEY BEGINS BOMBING US-BACKED YPG POSITIONS IN SYRIA

It started two weeks ago, when Turkey warned publicly it was preparing for military intervention in Syria, while accusing the US of creating a "terrorist army" (it wasn't referring to ISIS, but US-backed Syrian Kurdish militia YPG). As a reminder, YPG forms a major part of the U.S.-backed campaign to capture Islamic State's stronghold of Raqqa, and whose forces are seen as a terrorist organization by Turkey. The group currently controls a pocket of territory in Afrin, about 200 km (125 miles) west of Raqqa.

Tensions between Turkish forces and the YPG have been mounting in the Afrin region in recent weeks: Turkey's military, which launched an incursion last August into part of northern Syria which lies between Afrin and a larger Kurdish-controlled area further east, has said that it has returned fire against members of YPG militia near Afrin several times in the last few weeks.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I have to wonder; with Russia doing everything it can to protect Syria's territorial integrity, how, and when, they are going to get Turkey to stop this, if they can?!?

Jul 17 06:59

UAE ‘hacked’ Qatari government social media and news sites to plant fake news

THE United Arab Emirates arranged for Qatari government social media and news sites to be hacked in late May in order to post fiery but false quotes linked to Qatar's emir, prompting a diplomatic crisis, the Washington Post reported yesterday, citing US intelligence officials.

The emir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, had been quoted in May as praising Hamas and saying that Iran was an “Islamic power,” the Post reported.

In response, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Egypt and Bahrain cut diplomatic and transport ties with Qatar on June 5, accusing it of supporting terrorism.

Qatar said in late May that hackers had posted fake remarks by the emir, an explanation rejected by Gulf states.

The Post reported that US intelligence officials learned last week of newly analysed information that showed that top UAE government officials discussed the planned hacks on May 23, the day before they occurred.

Jul 16 16:21

Report exposes abuse and neglect of illegally detained prisoners in Israel

Between 1996 and 2013 the number of prisoners in Israel has doubled but in 40 per cent of cases the space they occupy is less than 3 square metres.

A report by the public defender shows that only 11 per cent of prisoners have living space of more than 4.5 sq m, a quarter of the inmates are assigned a maximum of 2.9 sq m and more than half of the prisoners (59 per cent ) live in 3 sq m or less. Some 43 per cent of cells hold nine prisoners or more, and 75 per cent have more than four prisoners, though prison and detention regulations stipulate no more than four beds per cell. Across the Western world, the average space per prisoner is 8.8 sq.m...>>

Jul 16 07:39

LEAKED DOCUMENTS 'REVEAL SAUDI AND EMIRATI CROWN PRINCES' SUPPORT FOR AL-QAEDA AND IS IN YEMEN'

The nine-page document was published by Egyptian newspaper al-Badil in April - before the outlet was banned by Cairo - accusing Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and Abu Dhabi's Mohammed bin Zayed of providing aid to the two extremists.

The communique - sent to Qatar's foreign minister on October 26, 2016 - outlines the minutes of communications between Qatar's ambassador to Washington and the US Treasury Undersecretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence.

The New Arab could not independently verify the authenticity of the documents.

"The Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence reported that the information available to them indicated that Prince Mohammad bin Salman has been in constant communication with the figures listed in the report," the leaked notes read.

"The prince has managed, according to the Under Secretary, to assemble out of some groups loyal to al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula [AQAP] a force against the Houthis.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

IF, in fact, these reports are true, I find myself...totally unsurprised; this is absolutely typical behaviour for both Saudi Arabia, and Abu Dhabi.

Jul 15 09:55

Trump’s Yemen Policy Is Immoral and Counterproductive

Slaughter of the Houthis, indiscriminate bombing, famine, cholera — as recompense to the Saudis for the Iran deal? In his final year in office, President Obama’s foreign policy featured the bombing of seven Islamic countries by the U.S. military. Despite fears (and hopes) that President Trump would withdraw America from the world stage and institute a fortress-America foreign policy, the new guard has put Obama’s foreign policy on autopilot. The most significant adjustment Trump made was to give more discretion to his generals. The rate of bombing has increased in all seven nations.

Nowhere is this policy more craven and disastrous than in Yemen, where the U.S. has backed Saudi Arabia’s crusade to re-install Sunni general Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi in power.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

As a Christian witness to this US-enabled carnage and genocide, I am profoundly unhappy at being a citizen of a country which is absolutely, and unquestionably, colluding with the Saudi Government and Military in war crimes in Yemen.

If both Mike and I were much younger, and had anything approximating some tangible assets, we would migrate to somewhere relatively civilized, where collusion in war crimes just wasn't something the government of that country did; unfortunately, we are too old - and broke - to be able to accomplish that at this point in our lives.

The Saudis are assassinating and maiming Yemeni infants and children with wild abandon.

Images: children killed and maimed for life from Saudi bombings

Because the Saudis, enabled by the US military, have blockaded Yemen's ports, so no food can get in, Yemeni children are dying by the scores from complications of malnutrition.

Images: Yemeni children dying from malnutrition, due to Saudi blockades of Yemeni ports

Oh, and did I mention that the Saudi military is using depleted uranium munitions in Yemen?!?

Images: Saudi military using depleted uranium weapons in Yemen

This, of course, is creating precisely the same kind of cancers, stillbirths, and massive birth defects, as it did in Fallujah, Iraq.

Image: severe birth defects in Yemeni infant, because of Saudi Arabia using depleted uranium weapons in Yemen. Image courtesy of Ruptly

And now, as one might imagine would take place, cholera has firmly taken hold in Yemen, with over 300,000 cases, and the disease spreading almost exponentially through the population.

Images: Yemenis suffering one of the worst cholera outbreaks in history

We cannot know the degree to which the Saudis may have weaponised this disease; but it is pretty easy to introduce it into water resources where local people gather water, and then will get deathly ill from contamination.

And Trump's new BFF is Saudi Prince Salman?!? A man who kills and maims Yemeni children with indiscriminate attacks?!? A man who orders Yemeni ports blocked, so the children of Yemen are dying of malnutrition?!?

Mr. President, I understand the the arms sales to Saudi Arabia are good for the American military complex; but sir, this move was at a steep cost to your and this country's soul and integrity, when you know, with an absolute certainty, that these munitions will be used to assassinate more Yemeni infants, children, women, and the medically fragile elderly?!?

Oh, yes; he did give a 66 million dollar donation to the UN to fight the cholera epidemic, to "appear to have done something the slightest bit humanitarian" in a country where his military are slaughtering Yemeni people by the hundreds as I type this:

Saudi Prince Salman donates 66 million dollars to the UN to fight the cholera epidemic

But the Prince is cynically aware that the UN, and its agencies, move more slowly than do frozen molasses in January; by the time UN aid actually gets to Yemen (if it can get there at all) it will be far too little, and far too late to curtail the outbreak.

If he had really wanted aid to get there more quickly, he would have approached either Doctors without Borders, or the International Committee of the Red Crescent (the Middle East's equivalent the American Red Cross), and guaranteed them safe passage into Yemen.

And President Trump, a final work here; your hated and loathing of Iran is completely misplaced, and has no basis in reality. Iran does not pose a threat to the United States; they just want to continue living their lives, unimpeded by the dictates of other countries.

For Rex Tillerson to make public statements to the effect that the goal of the US foreign policy in Iran is to create "regime change" in Tehran, is utterly morally irresponsible.

Iran has, and continues, to live up to its responsibilities as a signator to the P5+1 treaty.

And Mr. President, if you have not seen the following documentary, this has to be on your "must see" list, and soon, please:

Don't Tell Mother I'm In Iran

Jul 15 08:49

Trump Hints at Abandoning Key Qatar Military Base in Talks With Saudi King

The latest in a series of moves by President Trump that appeared to throw a wrench into State Department efforts to calm the Qatar blockade situation saw him telling the Saudi King today that the US could well just abandon their largest military base in the Middle East, the al-Udeid Airbase in Qatar.

This is a hugely important base for the US, and that’s a big part of why State Department officials have been so desperate to try to resolve the dispute. President Trump, however, has treated this base with relative ambivalence, and in his talk with King Salman today said he was confident other countries in the region would “gladly” build the US a replacement base if they abandoned Qatar.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Mr. President, please: a word here; countries with which the US has carefully cultivated relationships are not, please, to be thrown around lightly, like some assets with absolutely no meaning or value; we are talking about thinking before making a move, which apparently, did not happen, prior to your conversation with Prince Salman yesterday.

And if the US government suddenly morphs from friend to frenemy to enemy with Qatar, how is this potentially going to influence other critical relationships in the Middle East we are working on developing, in terms of the US government having, proverbially, thrown Qatar under a bus?!?

Jul 14 13:11

Turkey has arrested Amnesty International’s local director

IT WAS the sort of intervention on behalf of a persecuted opposition politician that Amnesty International carries out hundreds of times a year. In 1998, after Recep Tayyip Erdogan, then the mayor of Istanbul, was jailed for a speech in which he read out a religiously themed poem, the human-rights group termed him a “prisoner of conscience” and wrote to the government demanding his release. Nineteen years later, Mr Erdogan, now Turkey’s president, presides over an increasingly authoritarian regime. And his police force has arrested Amnesty International’s own staff along with other human-rights activists. So it was to Mr Erdogan that the group found itself writing last week to demand the release of detainees. He shows little sign of softening.

Jul 14 12:57

Saudi Arabia: What’s Really Behind Trump’s Hypocrisy?

It is curious then that President Trump’s first trip abroad was to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, the sociocultural source code of the very extremism infecting both the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) as well as the wider, global extremism it inspires and fuels everywhere from Southeast Asia, western China and even in the streets of North America and Europe.

While the US postures to the world as engaged in a global war on terrorism, it is clear that those nations in the Middle East cooperating closest with Washington are in fact those also perpetuating this seemingly endless war. Why?

It turns out that perpetual war is a lucrative affair in both terms of acquiring wealth and power. It is this equation of wealth and power that takes precedence, even at the expense of narrative continuity and political legitimacy.

Dollars, Oil and Arms

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Perpetual wars are great for business, if you are part of the military industrial complex, but very lousy for the troops risking their very lives to fight them.

Patriotism cannot just be killing on command; it has to be more than this, by getting the Federal government to become infinitely more accountable for their actions and decisions than they are now to We the People.

And we know precisely where a lot of these munitions are headed; they will be part of the US government-enabled Saudi genocide in Yemen.

When I was a kid in school, even in college, I never imagined that I would be a citizen of a country participating in war crimes, which is precisely what the Saudis are doing in Yemen.

Infants, children, women, and the medically fragile elderly are being slaughtered and maimed for life; the Saudi military have been using DU weapons, which are causing massive cancers, still births, and horrific physical and mental deformities in Yemen's children; with US help, all Yemeni ports are blockaded, so infants and children are dying of complications of malnutrition; and now, cholera has taken a firm hold in Yemen, with over 300,000 stricken with the disease.

I love my country; but as a Christian pacifist activist, I must peacefully, calmly,and logically protest, and witness to, these activities on the part of my government.

We urgently need a national discussion on this, and demand from our Congressional representatives why in the name of Heaven is Yemen considered any kind of a "threat" to the US and/or Saudi Arabia?!? There is an article on this from last year, indicating that the real reason Yemen became a threat to Saudi Arabia was that, with rebel Houthi leaders there, there might be a huge Shia "awakening", with some assistance from Shia Iran, which would have negative implications for the Sunni, Wahabbi Saudi state. Why Saudi Arabia is hammering Yemen

Jul 14 09:03

U.S. DOUBLED FUEL SUPPORT FOR SAUDI BOMBING CAMPAIGN IN YEMEN AFTER DEADLY STRIKE ON FUNERAL

Last October, an airstrike in Yemen by the Saudi Arabia-led coalition hit a funeral, killing more than 130 people and drawing global condemnation. Yet in the months following that strike, the United States doubled the amount of fuel it provided to coalition jets, according to figures obtained from the U.S. military. The numbers underline the fact that U.S. support for the campaign has continued and even increased despite growing attention to civilian casualties and alleged war crimes by the coalition.

But the House of Representatives just passed over the chance to vote on legislation that would have tracked the fuel the Pentagon gives to the Saudi coalition and prohibited refueling of coalition aircraft unless the Pentagon could assure Congress that subsequent missions wouldn’t hit civilians or targets contained on no-strike lists.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

To be a citizen of a country which enables Saudi war crimes in Yemen is just repulsive to me.

And here is what these bombings accomplish; the assassination of infants; children; and the elderly physically infirm. Warning: the following image is very graphic; but as a Christian witness to this genocide, I feel compelled to share this with our readers:

Images: Yemeni children killed and maimed for life from Saudi bombings

This, folks, is what is being done in Yemen, with your tax dollars and in your name.

We urgently need to be having a national dialogue on how enabling this Saudi genocide in Yemen is "protecting" us, and our quality of life here in the US.
And the short answer is, it isn't; not one bit.

Jul 13 12:03

Message from UK High Court: Carry on arming the Saudis (and never mind the slaughter in Yemen)

Stuart Littlewood examines Britain’s complicity in the war crimes committed by Saudi Arabia in Yemen, and the role of notorious Israeli stooge Liam Fox, the UK’s secretary of state for international trade, in this.>>

Jul 12 14:51

Israel’s ever-more sadistic reprisals help shore up a sense of victimhood

Jonathan Cook argues that “Israel has taken collective punishment – a serious violation of international law – to new extremes, stretching the notion to realms once imaginable only in a dystopian fable like George Orwell’s 1984”.>>

Jul 12 13:59

a map of a future middle east.

The Middle East today consists of nations carved out by the French and British following the collapse of the Ottoman Empire at the end of World War I. Under the Ottomans, local rulers operated with considerable autonomy, and their subjects lacked any sense of political cohesion or nationalism. When the French and British took over, the states they formed were parcelled out to aristocrats who supported them along sectarian lines that they thought politically useful.

Jul 12 09:48

No One Would Buy My Photos, So Here They Are For Free: Mosul 2017

My name is Kainoa Little, and I am a Shoreline, Washington-based conflict photographer. I was in Mosul in April and May 2017, documenting Iraqi forces as they fought Islamic State militants to liberate the city.

I tried and failed to find newspapers and wire services who would purchase my photos. But the soldiers had fed me and given me a seat in their Humvees, and the refugees had tolerated my presence on some of the worst days of their lives. They very rightly expected that I would tell their story.

The worst uncertainty for me as a freelancer in conflict isn’t that I won’t be able to pay my rent; it’s that no one will see the story, and then I will have failed to give a voice to the voiceless. So I have tried to share them where I can, and hopefully people can imagine some of the human tragedy and triumph playing out in Mosul.

Jul 12 08:35

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.
Yemen's health, water and sanitation systems are collapsing after two years of conflict between pro-government forces and the rebel Houthi movement.
Cholera is an acute diarrhoeal infection caused by ingestion of food or water contaminated with the bacterium Vibrio cholera.

Most of those infected will have no or mild symptoms but, in severe cases, the disease can kill within hours if left untreated.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The Saudi and US leadership and military must be DELIGHTED with this current turn of events; fewer people to have to kill outright with bombs and bullets; just a couple of bulldozers for mass graves will be needed, as the epidemic continues to take hold here in Yemen.

And what really happened to that 66 million dollar donation last month to the UN from Saudi Prince Salman, allegedly, to ease the plight of this epidemic in a country with which Saudi Arabia is at war?!?

Prince Salman donates $66 million dollars to aid anti-cholera campaign in Yemen

Prince Salman very cynically understands that the UN, and its agencies move more slowly than do molasses in a cold January. IF he had really wanted something done quickly enough to stay the spread of this disease, this contribution should have gone to the ICRC (The International Committee of the Red Crescent, the Middle Eastern equivalent to America's Red Cross), or Doctors without Borders; both these organisations understand how to get medical boots on the ground, and quickly.

By the time the money is watered down at the UN, and bureaucratically disbursed, it will have been far too little, and far too late, but he will appear to have "done something" while the situation on the ground in Yemen simply translates into more bombings of innocent civilians; more malnutrition leading to death of Yemen's kids, due to the port blockades in Yemen; and more birth defects, stillbirths, and cancers from the Saudi use of DU in Yemen.

And one last question; I have to wonder if cholera has been deliberately placed in Yemen's drinking water, to hasten the rapidity of the spread of the epidemic?!?

Jul 12 08:17

Internal Coup Reported among ISIL Members after Confirmation of Al-Baghdadi's Death

Iraqi sources reported eruption of conflicts and clashes among ISIL members and commanders after the terrorist group confirmed the death of its notorious leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.

Jul 12 08:17

Turkey has sent almost 200 cargo planes to Qatar since dispute began: Economy Minister

Turkey has sent 197 cargo planes, 16 trucks and one ship to Qatar since the crisis broke out last month between it and other Gulf states, Economy Minister Nihat Zeybekci stated on July 12.

“Turkey has so far sent a total of 197 cargo planes, 16 trucks and one ship to meet the daily needs of Qatar. We will keep meeting its daily or longer-term needs in the coming period,” Zeybekci said, as quoted by Reuters.

At a meeting with Zeybekci in the Turkish capital Ankara, Qatari Economy Minister Ahmed bin Jassim al-Thani said Doha’s sea and air trade was continuing without disruption despite sanctions, adding that both countries want to boost their bilateral ties.

Al-Thani said more opportunities would likely be created for Turkish companies in their activities in Qatar.

Jul 12 07:33

Trump’s son-in-law tried to get $500mn loan from Qatar

US President Donald Trump's son-in-law and senior adviser, Jared Kushner, has “tried and failed” to get a $500 million loan from a key member of the Qatari royal family before pushing the president to toe hard line against the Persian Gulf nation, reports say.

Jul 11 14:37

Ken O'Keefe - US Military Fighting For Israel - Israel, not Iran, is the Threat!

Ken O'Keefe is re-releasing his epic expose of the Israeli/Jewish lies about Iran that are being employed just as the "WMD's in Iraq" lie was used to send American sons and daughters off to die for Israel in the invasion/occupation of Iraq. With Syria not all going to plan, the ultimate target of Iran and the World War III agenda looks to be in overdrive with President Trump continuing the sickening and sychonpantic role of Jewish US Presidents as Jewish whipping boys. How many more American sons and daughters will be sacrificed for Israel before genuine American patriots stand up and refuse orders and arrest the traitors in Congress? These questions and points and more are made in this, part 1 of a 2 part program that tells the truth about the what and why regarding Iran. If people want more such videos/commentary from Ken O'Keefe then visit https://www.patreon.com/kok and invest in Ken O'Keefe's work.

Jul 11 11:30

UK High Court Refuses to Block Saudi Arms Sales

The British High Court today handed down a pair of judgement on the lawsuit by the Campaign Against Arms Trade (CAAT), which was seeking to stop continued British arms sales to Saudi Arabia. The open judgement was that the sales can continue without restrictions.

The lawsuit was based on UK and EU law both forbidding arms exports when there is a “clear risk” the arms would be used to break international humanitarian law, and the widespread war crimes the Saudis are committing in the course of the Yemen War.

The judge in the ruling claimed the UK government necessarily has better information on the Saudi war crimes than CAAT would, though specifics are only in a secret “closed judgement” offered for “national security reasons.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is one of the most morally horrific, yet perfectly predictable, rulings to come from the British High Court in decades; I am quite certain that executives in Britain's defence industry are heaving a collective sigh of relief that the ruling went this way, and that these merchants of death can continue selling their wares to Saudi Arabia with no legal constraints.

The US and UK are now deep partners in Saudi war crimes in Yemen; and forgive me, but being a citizen of a country deliberately involved in the commission of war crimes makes me grieve over the complete and utter absence of any kind of moral compass by the US government.

The images I am about to share with you are very graphic, but this is precisely what Saudi Arabia is doing with those bombs which have been sold to them by the US and the UK.

The Saudi bombing is killing and maiming Yemeni children for life:

Images: Yemeni children, murdered and maimed for life courtesy of US-enabled Saudi bombing runs.

Because of US-enabled port closures in Yemen, Yemeni children are dying of complications of malnutrition:

Images: Yemeni children dying from complications of malnutrition

And when you have malnutrition, you are almost certain to see disease take hold, as it has been with epidemic of cholera in Yemen:

1,310 Yemeni dead from cholera: UN's World Health Organization also warns that as many as 300,000 people could be infected by the end of August.

The Saudi military is using depleted uranium weapons in Yemen, which have caused a massive spike in cancers; still births; and massive birth defects in Yemeni children. Courtesy of Ruptly, we have the following horrific image:

Massive deformations in a Yemeni infant exposed to depleted uranium

There may worse forms of child abuse than poisoning a child in the womb, but I am having a very hard time thinking what they are right now.

All of these horrific outcomes in Yemen are totally predictable; and yet, the Royal House of Saud, the Saudi Government, and the US government and its military are perfectly morally comfortable with what they are doing here.

I, for one, as an American citizens, am absolutely not at all morally comfortable with the tragedy which Yemen has become, and will continue to be a Christian witness to this behaviour for as long as I have breath.

Jul 11 11:25

Judea declares war on British musician Roger Waters

I am not the only musician whose career they are trying to destroy. The musician Roger Waters is also being subjected to a vile Zionist smear campaign. The Jewish press reports that a documentary titled Wish You Weren’t Here by Ian Halperin is about to hit the screens in every shtetl around the world...>>

Jul 11 09:11

WHITE HOUSE HIRES BILLIONAIRE WAR PROFITEERS TO AID IN WAR PLANNING

Blackwater founder Erik Prince and billionaire Stephen Feinberg reportedly "recruited" for war planning.

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.>>

Jun 27 12:26

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 27 10:06

Top Senator Blocks Gulf Arms Sales Over Qatar Crisis

While previous Senate efforts to limit US arms sales to Saudi Arabia over human rights concerns narrowly failed, Senate Foreign Affairs Committee chair Bob Corker (R – TN) has now withheld all consent for US arms sales to not just Saudi Arabia, but to the other Gulf Arab states, citing the ongoing Qatar crisis.

Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, and Egypt have all imposed a blockade on Qatar over the past several weeks, and have issued a long list of demands for Qatar to comply with as a condition for lifting it. Sen. Corker warned that this is undermining the ISIS war.

That’s been a concern from the beginning of the crisis, since the largest US military base in the Middle East is in Qatar, and much of the air war in Syria is based out of Qatar. So far,the Pentagon has insisted that hasn’t been impacted, but the longer the situation goes unresolved, the more likely it’s going to be a problem.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I sense that this is just a small hiccup in President Trump's plans to sell billions in weapons to Saudi Arabia, as well as to other Middle Eastern "bastions of democracy" and will be overcome quickly.

Jun 27 09:10

Saudis Demand Turkey Pull Troops From Qatar, Erdogan Says No Way

Following a demand by Riyadh that Ankara remove its troops from Qatar, Turkish President Reccip Tayyip Erdogan responded with a resounding “no.”

Jun 27 08:53

Bahrain blames Qatar for ‘military tensions’ in Persian Gulf crisis

Bahrain's foreign minister has accused Qatar of creating a military escalation in the Persian Gulf region in the wake of a recent move by Saudi Arabia and its allies to sever their diplomatic relations with Doha, and close their borders and airspace with the gas-rich kingdom.

“The disagreement with Qatar is a political and security dispute, and has never been military,” Sheikh Khalid bin Ahmed Al Khalifah wrote in a post published on his Twitter page on Monday.

He added, “But the deployment of foreign troops with their armored vehicles is a military escalation for which Qatar will bear the consequences.”

Jun 27 08:52

Yemeni forces target Saudi warship off Mukha coast: TV

The Yemeni navy has announced that its forces managed to target a warship belonging to the Saudi-led coalition waging war on Yemen off the coast of Mukha port city in Ta’izz Province.

A military source told the Arabic-language al-Masirah television network that the warship was targeted on Sunday night with an appropriate weapon, without elaborating.

The source noted that the warship was carrying out hostile acts in the territorial waters of Yemen when it was targeted.

Jun 27 08:12

No more US weapons for Gulf Arab states until Qatar spat resolved – senator

“Before we provide any further clearances during the informal review period on sales of lethal military equipment to the GCC states, we need a better understanding of the path to resolve the current dispute and reunify the GCC,” Corker wrote.

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