Washington’s Choice: WWIII or Saving Face in Syria

Authored by Tom Luongo via The Strategic Culture Foundation

Comment:
Amidst a plethora of op-eds that point toward the probability of a major upcoming conflict in Syria vis-à-vis Idlib and go on to suggest such a scenario would carry the potential of turning into an escalated war between the West and Russia, Tom Luongo presents a drastically different opinion.

 

Sometimes when I step back from the overwhelming flow of geopolitical insanity I’m reminded of the old adage that coming close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades. To which, I always add, “And nuclear war.”

I’ve been watching the build up to the operation to liberate Idlib in Syria which includes the endless neocon and Israeli moral preening warning Assad against using chemical weapons with a sense of detachment.  And I keep thinking to myself, “Do they really think we’re that stupid?”

Three times the chemical weapons canard has been used to justify further aggression against Syria and three times a full-blown U.S. invasion has been averted. First, by Vladimir Putin’s deft diplomacy, and General Dunford’s refusal to implement a ‘no-fly zone’ in 2013, and then during the Trump years with ineffectual air strikes on Syrian airbases.

How much of that ineffectuality of those airstrikes were designed by Defence Secretary James Mattis to avoid a wider conflagration and how much was Russian EW/missile defence is anyone’s guess.

The truth most likely lies somewhere in the middle.

That is why everyone who is worrying about the U.S.’s blustering over Syria’s Idlib campaign needs to take a big step back and think the scenario through.

Because the neoconservatives and Israel are forcing the situation to its crisis point, thinking they can manipulate the headlines and the levers of power to still eke out a victory in Syria that will allow them to continue on their quest to destroy Russia first and conquer the rest of Asia after that.

And they are willing to blackmail us with the threat of WWIII over 50,000 head-chopping mercenaries to get their cookie. 

However, when you factor in the men actually in charge of the U.S. military chain of command, Trump and Mattis, and you realize the lengths to which Mattis’ field commanders have gone to avoid direct confrontation with Russian forces, you come to the conclusion that the men who will actually fight this war the neoconservative provocateurs and laptop bombardiers are clamouring for won’t actually pull the trigger.

The reasons for this are manifest:

First, the potential for the conflict to go nuclear is too high for rational men to take that chance.  Mattis and Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu are hard-bitten, no-nonsense men.  Neither underestimates the other’s resolve to defend their men and national interests.

So, once the shooting starts expect it to get ugly quick.  Therefore it is unlikely to get to that point.

Second, there is no profit in that kind of escalation for the people who profit from war. 

The banks and the military weapons makers thrive in low-intensity, frozen conflicts which keep sales flowing and governments indebted to pay for them.
In an age of nuclear weapons, proxy wars fought by mercenaries with drones are far more profitable than any large-scale invasions.  I hate to say this but from a discounted cash flow perspective Lockheed-Martin wants predictability to cover their quarterly dividends to shareholders more than they want to bring about the supposed Zionist plan for Greater Israel.

Sorry to burst everyone’s conspiracy theories.

Third and most importantly, the U.S. cannot afford a non-nuclear confrontation with Russia that punctures the illusion of U.S. military superiority.  Too much of the world’s confidence in the dollar itself rests in the U.S.’s ability to project power and defend its interests militarily.

This confidence is a mixture of that military capability and the U.S.’s traditional position of a country with an excellent legal framework within which to do business.  It is fashionable among geopolitical critics, myself included, to get caught up in the rhetoric and projection of a sclerotic and weakening United States, but legally it is still one of the best places on earth to do business.

But, as Martin Armstrong pointed out recently, Trump’s domestic opposition has openly declared sedition against him this week in the New York Times.  Former Secretary of State, John Kerry, is doing the talk show circuit calling for a constitutional crisis over Trump allegedly being unfit for office.  And George Soros is paying protesters to disrupt the confirmation hearing of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court.

If allowed to run its course to impeachment in the event of the Republicans losing control of the House in November, this would be a death blow to the U.S.’s reputation as a nation of laws rather than a nation of men.  The U.S. dollar would not recover from such a blow to its credibility, especially in light of Trump’s nearly-unhinged use of sanctions and threats of tariffs, weaponizing the dollar indiscriminately.

And this is why Vladimir Putin openly showed his hand to the world in March. Strategically, he let everyone know that any confrontation between Russia and the U.S. would result in the U.S losing its status as the world’s pre-eminent military power.

This is why the neocons and the U.S./U.K. Deep State have been so adamant in accelerating its provocations against Russia.  They have to present us with the Faustian bargain of WWIII before Russia has these weapon systems fully deployed.

It’s also why Trump and Mattis are allowing them to have their head.  It feeds Trump’s “Art of the Deal” strategy for negotiations while also allowing him the opportunity to save face after Idlib is liberated regardless of whether another chemical weapons attack is staged.

I think we won’t see one here.

The way out of Syria for the U.S. with its face-saved is to thunder and bluster, threaten fire and brimstone just like Trump did with Kim Jong-un and use that to explain why Assad showed restraint and didn’t use chemical weapons this time.

I can even see Trump tweeting something about three strikes and he would be out.

Once Idlib is liberated Mattis will happily begin pulling vulnerable troops out of al-Tanf and Afghanistan.  That’s why I believe he went there to the surprise of the CIA house-organ Washington Post last week.

And then the neocon and Israeli muddying of the waters will move to the Geneva talks, but we’ll cross that Rubicon when it approaches.

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America’s War on Yemen Exposed

August 14, 2018 (Tony Cartalucci – NEO) – As atrocities and scandal begin to mount regarding the US-backed Saudi-led war on the impoverished nation of Yemen, the involvement and hypocrisy of the United States and other Western backers is coming to full light.

Global condemnation of Saudi airstrikes on civilian targets has brought public attention to Washington’s role in the conflict – a role the Western media has attempted to downplay for years. It is ironic, or perhaps telling, that alternative media outlets targeted as “Russian influence” are leading coverage of Yemen’s growing humanitarian catastrophe.

US Denies Role in Proxy War That Couldn’t be Fought Without It 
In a recent press conference, US Secretary of Defense James Mattis – when asked about the US role in the Yemeni conflict in regards to Saudi atrocities – would claim:

We are not engaged in the civil war. We will help to prevent, you know, the killing of innocent people.

Yet nothing could be further from the truth.

Mattis himself would lobby US Congress earlier this year to continue US support for Saudi-led operations in Yemen.

A March 2018 Washington Post article titled, “Mattis asks Congress not to restrict U.S. support for Saudi bombing in Yemen,” would admit:

Defense Secretary Jim Mattis made a personal appeal to Congress on Wednesday not to restrict the United States’ support for the Saudi-led bombing campaign in Yemen, as the sponsors of a privileged resolution to end Washington’s involvement announced that the Senate would vote on the matter next week.

Support includes US intelligence gathering for Saudi operations, the sale of of US weapons to the Saudi regime, and even US aerial refueling for US-made Saudi warplanes dropping US-made munitions on Yemeni targets selected with the aid of US planners.

In essence, the US is all but directly fighting the “civil war” itself.

Abetting War Crimes, Sponsoring Terrorists to What End? 

As to why the US believes it must continue supporting a proxy war Saudi Arabia is fighting on its behalf – beginning under US President Barack Obama and continuing in earnest under current US President Donald Trump – the Washington Post could conclude (emphasis added):

The war in Yemen has inspired much controversy in Congress, as lawmakers have questioned why the United States has involved itself so closely on the Saudi-backed side of a civil war against the Iranian-backed Houthi rebel forces. Successive presidential administrations have presented the campaign as a necessary component of the fight against terrorism and to preserve stability in the region. As Mattis put it in his letter to congressional leaders Wednesday, “withdrawing U.S. support would embolden Iran to increase its support to the Houthis, enabling further ballistic missile strikes on Saudi Arabia and threatening vital shipping lanes in the Red Sea, thereby raising the risk of a regional conflict.”

However, Mattis, his colleagues, and his predecessors have categorically failed to explain how Iran constitutes a greater threat to either US or global security than Saudi Arabia.

Saudi Arabia is a nation admittedly sponsoring Al Qaeda worldwide, including in Yemen as revealed by a recent Associated Press investigation, and the nation which both radicalized the supposed perpetrators of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attack on New York City and Washington D.C. and from which most of the supposed hijackers originated from.

If Iran is indeed waging war against Saudi Arabia and its terrorist proxies in Yemen, Iraq, and Syria, the real question is – why isn’t the United States backing Tehran instead?

The obvious answer to this question reveals the crumbling moral authority of the United States as the principled facade it has used for decades falls away from its hegemony-driven agenda worldwide.

The US and its allies created the “War on Terror” and intentionally perpetuated it as a pretext to expand militarily around the globe in an attempt to preserve its post-Cold War primacy and prevent the rise of a multipolar alternative to its unipolar “international order.” It has done this not only at the cost of hundreds of thousands of human lives across the Middle East, North Africa, Eastern Europe, and Central Asia, it has done it at the cost of trillions of taxpayers’ dollars and the lives of thousands of America’s own soldiers, sailors, aviators, and Marines.


Canada Too 

A recent row between Canada and Saudi Arabia over supposed “human rights” concerns appears to be a vain attempt to salvage the credibility of at least some nations involved in the now 7 year long war – the last 3 years of which has seen direct military intervention by Saudi Arabia, its partners, and its backers – including Canada.

The Guardian in an article titled, “‘We don’t have a single friend’: Canada’s Saudi spat reveals country is alone,” attempts to portray Canada as taking a lone, principled stance against human rights abuses in Saudi Arabia – abandoned even by Washington.

The article would claim:

The spat appeared to have been sparked last week when Canada’s foreign ministry expressed its concern over the arrest of Saudi civil society and women’s rights activists, in a tweet that echoed concerns previously voiced by the United Nations. 

Saudi Arabia swiftly shot back, making plans to remove thousands of Saudi students and medical patients from Canada, and suspending the state airline’s flights to and from Canada, among other actions.

The Guardian would also claim:

…the US said it would remain on the sidelines while Saudi officials lashed out at Canada over its call to release jailed civil rights activists.

Canada’s feigned concern for “human rights” in Saudi Arabia comes at a time when the Canadian government continues approving of hundreds of millions of dollars worth of arms sales to Riyadh. This includes small arms and armored personnel carriers Saudi forces are using in their ongoing invasion and occupation of neighboring Yemen.

The feigned divide between Ottawa and Washington over Saudi human rights violations is overshadowed by years of commitment by both North American nations in propping up the Saudi regime, and aiding and abetting the very worst of Riyadh’s human rights abuses unfolding amid the Yemeni conflict.

Canada’s apparent role is to help compartmentalize the worst of the West’s decaying moral authority, containing it with the US, and taking up a more prominent role in the West’s industrialized “human rights” and “democracy” leveraging racket.

While Canadian armaments help fuel genocide in Yemen – Canadian diplomats around the world fund agitators and directly meddle in the internal political affairs of foreign nations predicated on promoting “human rights” and “democracy.”

In Thailand for example, the US has receded into the shadows, allowing Canada, the UK, and other European nations to openly engage in political meddling on their behalf. US funding and support continues, but the public face of Western “outrage” is increasingly becoming Canadian, British, and Northern European.

However, Canada faces the same problem that has permanently eroded American credibility. And as its role in perpetuating real human rights abuses worldwide continues to be exposed, its feigned concern over token or even manufactured human rights concerns will increasingly appear hypocritical and hollow, undermining the West’s collective ability to leverage and hide behind human rights and democracy to advance their self-serving agendas.

US Secretary of Defense James Mattis thinks America has “Moral Authority”, what a joke

Mattis: Putin Is Trying To “Undermine America’s Moral Authority”

By Caitlin Johnstone

At a graduation ceremony for the US Naval War College (barf), US Secretary of Defense James Mattis asserted that Russian President Vladimir Putin “aims to diminish the appeal of the western democratic model and attempts to undermine America’s moral authority,” and that “his actions are designed not to challenge our arms at this point but to undercut and compromise our belief in our ideals.”

This would be the same James Mattis who’s been overseeing the war crimes committed by America’s armed forces during their illegal occupation of Syria. This would be the same United States of America that was born of the genocide of indigenous tribes and the labor of African slaves, which slaughtered millions in Korea, Vietnam, Cambodia, Iraq, Libya and Syria for no legitimate reason, which is partnered with Ukrainian Nazis, jihadist factions in Syria and Iranian terror cultists, which supports 73 percent of the world’s dictators, which interferes constantly in the electoral processes of other countries as a matter of policy, which stages coups around the world, which has encircled the globe with military bases, whose FBI still targets black civil rights activists for persecution to this very day, which routinely enters into undeclared wars of aggression against noncompliant governments to advance plutocratic interests, which remains the only country ever to use nuclear weapons on human beings after doing so completely needlessly in Japan, and which is functionally a corporatist oligarchy with no meaningful “democratic model” in place at all.

 

A casual glance at facts and history makes it instantly clear that the United States has no “moral authority” of any kind whatsoever, and is arguably the hub of the most pernicious and dangerous force ever assembled in human history. But the establishment Russia narrative really is that cartoonishly ridiculous: you really do have to believe that the US government is 100 percent pure good and the Russian government is 100 percent pure evil to prevent the whole narrative from falling to pieces. If you accept the idea that the exchange is anything close to 50/50, with Russia giving back more or less what it’s getting and simply protecting its own interests from the interests of geopolitical rivals, it no longer makes any sense to view Putin as a leader who poses a unique threat to the world. If you accept the idea that the west is actually being far more aggressive and antagonistic toward Russia than Russia is being toward the west, it gets even more laughable.

In order to believe that the US has anything resembling “moral authority” you have to shove your head so far into the sand you get lava burns, but that really is what is needed to keep western anti-Russia hysteria going. None of the things the Russian government has been accused of doing (let alone the very legitimate questions about whether or not they even did all of them) merit anything but an indifferent shrug when compared with the unforgivable evils that America’s unelected power establishment has been inflicting upon the world, so they need to weave a narrative about “moral authority” in order to give those accusations meaning and relevance. And, since the notion of America having moral authority is contradicted by all facts in evidence, that narrative is necessarily woven of threads of fantasy and denial.

Establishment anti-Russia hysteria is all narrative, no substance. It’s sustained by the talking heads of plutocrat-owned western media making the same unanimous assertions over and over again in authoritative, confident-sounding tones of voice without presenting any evidence or engaging with the reality of what Russia or its rivals are actually doing. The only reason American liberals believe that Putin is a dangerous boogieman who has taken over their government, but don’t believe for example that America is ruled by a baby-eating pedophile cabal, is because the Jake Tappers and Rachel Maddows have told them to believe one conspiracy theory and not the other. They could have employed the exact same strategy with any other wholly unsubstantiated conspiracy narrative and had just as much success.

In reality, Russia is nothing other than a rival power structure that the US-centralized empire wants to either collapse or absorb, but they can’t just come right out and tell the public that they’re dangerously escalating tensions with a nuclear superpower because westerners live in an invisible empire ruled by insatiably greedy plutocrats, so they make up nonsense about Putin being some kind of omnipotent supervillain who has infiltrated the highest levels of US government and is trying to take over the world.

Of equal interest to the Defense Secretary’s “moral authority” gibberish is his claim that Putin’s actions “are designed not to challenge our arms at this point but to undercut and compromise our belief in our ideals.”

I mean, like… what? So Russia isn’t challenging America militarily and isn’t taking any actions to attempt to, but it’s trying to, what, hurt America’s feelings? All this new cold war hysteria and nuclear brinkmanship has basically been America acting like a bitchy high school drama queen because Russia is saying mean things about it behind its back? How does a guy named “Mad Dog” get to be such a thin-skinned little snowflake?

I’m just playing. Actually, when Mattis says that the Russian government is trying to “undercut and compromise our belief in our ideals,” he is saying that Moscow is interrupting the lies that Americans are being told about their government by the plutocrat-owned media. As we’ve been discussing a lot recently, control of the narrative is absolutely essential for rulers to maintain their rule. When you hear establishment policy makers babbling about “Russian propaganda” and Putin’s attempts to “undercut and compromise our belief in our ideals,” all that they are saying is that the plutocrats who rule America need to be able to control the way Americans think and vote, and that the Russian government is making it a bit harder for them to do that.

More and more, the threads of the establishment narrative are ceasing to be unconsciously absorbed and are being increasingly consciously examined instead. This development has ultimately nothing to do with Russia and everything to do with our species moving out of its old relationship with mental narrative as it approaches evolve-or-die time in our challenging new world. I am greatly encouraged by what I am seeing.

Caitlin’s articles are entirely reader-supported, so if you enjoyed this piece please consider sharing it around, liking her on Facebook, following her antics on Twitter, checking out her podcast, throwing some money into her hat on Patreon or Paypal, or buying her book Woke: A Field Guide for Utopia Preppers.

This article was originally published by “Medium

Mad Dog Mattis, the destroyer of Raqqa, frets about losing moral authority

Mad Dog Mattis, the destroyer of Raqqa, frets about losing moral authority

Mad Dog Mattis, the destroyer of Raqqa, frets about losing moral authority

It’s parallel universe time when US Pentagon chief James ‘Mad Dog’ Mattis complains that America’s “moral authority” is being undermined by others – specifically Russian leader Vladimir Putin.

This is the ex-Marine general who gained his ruthless reputation from when illegally occupying US troops razed the Iraqi city of Fallujah in the 2004-2005 using “shake and bake” bombardment of inhabitants with banned white phosphorus incendiaries.

A repeat of those war crimes happened again last year under Mattis’ watch as Pentagon chief when US warplanes obliterated the Syrian city of Raqqa, killing thousands of civilians. Even the pro-US Human Rights Watch abhorred the repeated use of white phosphorus during that campaign to “liberate” Raqqa, supposedly from jihadists.

These are but two examples from dense archives of US war crimes committed over several decades, from its illegal intervention in Syria to Libya, from Iraq to Vietnam, back to the Korean War in the early 1950s when American carpet bombing killed millions of innocent civilians.

For Mattis to lament during a speech at a naval college last week that America’s moral authority is being eroded by Putin is a symptom of the delusional official thinking infesting Washington.

According to Mattis, the problem of America’s diminishing global reputation has nothing to do with US misconduct – even though the evidence is replete to prove that systematic misconduct. No, the problem, according to him, is that Russia’s Putin is somehow sneakily undermining Washington’s moral authority.

Mattis told his audience: “Putin aims to diminish the appeal of the western democratic model and attempts to undermine America’s moral authority.” He added that the Russian leader’s “actions are designed not to challenge our arms at this point but to undercut and compromise our belief in our ideals.”

The US Secretary of Defense doesn’t elaborate on how he thinks Russia is achieving this dastardly plot to demean America. It is simply asserted as fact. This has been a theme recycled over and over by officials in Washington and Brussels, other Western government leaders and of course NATO and its affiliated think-tanks. All of which has been dutifully peddled by Western news media.

It is classic “in denial” thinking. The general loss of legitimacy and authority by Western governments is supposedly nothing to do with their own inherent failures and transgressions, from bankrupt austerity economics, to deteriorating social conditions, to illegal US-led wars and the repercussions of blowback terrorism and mass migration of refugees.

Oh no. What the ruling elites are trying to do is shift the blame from their own culpability on to others, principally Russia.

American political analyst Randy Martin says that Mattis’ latest remarks show a form of collective delusion among Western political establishments and their aligned mainstream news media.

“What a powerful delusion Mattis and Western leaders like him are encumbered with,” says Martin. “The US undercuts and compromises its own avowed beliefs and ideals because it has lost any moral integrity that it might have feasibly pretended to have due to decades of its own criminal foreign conduct.”

The analyst added: “America’s so-called moral authority is the free pass it gives itself to topple democracy in Ukraine, replacing it with neo-Nazis; it has turned economically prosperous Libya into a wasteland, after murdering its leader Muammar Gaddafi; it funds and openly sponsors the MKO terror group in Iran for regime change in Tehran; and it is neck deep in fueling the Saudi coalition’s genocidal war in Yemen.”

Despite this litany of criminality committed by the US with the acquiescence of European allies, Washington, says Martin, “preaches a bizarre doctrine of ‘exceptionalism’ and somehow arrogates a moral right to dominate the world. This is the fruit of the diseased minds of sociopaths.”

This week, three headline-making issues speak volumes about America’s declining moral authority.

First, there are the harrowing scenes of thousands of migrant children being ripped away from parents at the Mexican border, forcibly housed in wire cages, sobbing relentlessly from the trauma. There has been an outcry around the world over the heartless “zero-tolerance” policy by the Trump administration. The United Nations condemned it as “unconscionable”.

One editorial writer for the Washington Post called Trump’s policy “barbarous”, and said it was inflicting “great damage to the fabric of our democracy”.

Secondly, the Trump administration is recklessly pushing ahead with a trade war against China and its Western allies. The unilateral imposition of tariffs by the White House in disregard for international trade laws has prompted European officials to deplore how Trump is “undermining the global rules-based system”.

Thirdly, there is widespread horror at the humanitarian catastrophe unfolding in Yemen where millions of civilians are in danger of starving to death due to the US-backed Saudi and Emirati offensive on the critical port city of Hodeida.

Lastly, the US withdrawal this week from the Geneva-based United Nations Human Rights Council, which UN ambassador Nikki Haley lambasted for being a “cesspool of prejudice” against Israel, caused consternation that Washington was cynically trying to shut down criticism of its support for Israel and its illegal occupation of Palestinian territory.

In all three issues, US global standing is tarnished by its own policy-making, decisions and conduct. Increasingly, Washington is becoming the full-fledged rogue regime that many observers had already concluded it was from decades of illegal wars and subterfuges. What is different now is that the rogue image is becoming impossible to not notice or to conceal by self-serving propaganda and myths that the Western media indulged in for decades.

Mattis’ protests about the US losing its moral authority are more to do with a growing fear of one’s own nakedness. Like the emperor who had no clothes, the naked ugliness of American global power is becoming more and more exposed.

Arguably, it is not a case of US power becoming more malevolent or wayward over time. That has always been the case; only in the past the perniciousness was handily concealed by an efficient, servile news media.

With increasing global communications and alternative sources of news and analysis, the erstwhile media monopoly that the US enjoyed along with its Western lackeys is no longer dominant. Western public in particular have more information sources to allow a more critical, independent assessment of their governments and the official narratives. This is why the supposed “moral authority” of the US government is being challenged. People are seeing through the veil of lies and misinformation, and making the correct conclusions.

Not only no clothes, but the emperor’s hands are covered in blood from massive crimes against humanity and atrocious wars of aggression that were previously denied or hidden.

One suspects that what’s really agitating Mattis and other apologists for US illegal wars and malevolent conduct is that the unvarnished truth is being told by alternative sources.

America’s purported “moral authority” is not being lost. It never had any in the first place. What’s being lost is the illusion of authority

الجنوب السوري للتحرير «وإسرائيل» تترنّح على صفيح الجولان…!

يونيو 13, 2018

محمد صادق الحسيني

الهجوم النهائي لقوات حلف المقاومة على مواقع المسلحين الإرهابيين في أرياف القنيطرة ودرعا، وصولاً إلى حدود الجولان وما بعد بعد حدود الجولان والحدود الأردنية بات قاب قوسين أو أدنى…!

في هذه الأثناء تلقى رئيس الوزراء الإسرائيلي ووزير حربه رسالة سرية نقلت إليهما بواسطة الطرف الروسي، تضمّنت تحذيراً شديد اللهجة لـ»إسرائيل» من التدخل، بأيّ شكل من الأشكال في المعارك المقبلة، وإلا فإنّ الردّ لقوات حلف المقاومة على أي استفزاز «إسرائيلي» سيكون أقسى بكثير مما يتوقعه العدو…!

في هذه الأثناء، فإنه وعلى الرغم من عاصفة الضجيج التي يثيرها رئيس الوزراء الإسرائيلي، في تناغم مع تصريحات تصدر على الموجة نفسها من الجنرالات العسكريين والأمنيين الأميركيين، حول العديد من المواضيع المتعلقة بالعدوان الأميركي الإسرائيلي الرجعي «العربي» على سورية، فإنّ انتصارات الجيش السوري وحلفائه مستمرة على كلّ الجبهات متجاهلة كلّ التهديد والعويل الأميركي الإسرائيلي السعودي والذي يتمحور حول ما يطلقون عليه «توسّع النفوذ الإيراني» في سورية وغيرها من الدول العربية.

ولكن عاصفة الضجيج هذه لم تتمكن من إخفاء الهزائم المتلاحقة التي يتكبّدها المعسكر الصهيوأميركي المعادي لحلف المقاومة، ولا هي قادرة على تهدئة روع القادة العسكريين والأمنيين والسياسيين الإسرائيليين الذين انتقلوا الى القدس المحتلة، لعقد اجتماعاتهم في النفق أو مركز القيادة المحصّن ضدّ كلّ أنواع الأسلحة والمُقام في باطن الأرض عند المداخل الغربية لمدينة القدس، وذلك منذ بداية شهر أيار الماضي.

فكيف لنتن ياهو، الذي يهدّد بإخراج إيران من كلّ سورية وليس فقط من الجنوب السوري، ويهدّد بضرب الجيش السوري، أن يكون رامبو في الإعلام ويختبئ تحت الأرض في الوقت نفسه خوفاً من صواريخ الجيش السوري وحلفائه!؟

إنّ هذا الواقع يؤكد مجدّداً هزيمتكم الميدانية أيها الصهاينة وكذلك هزال المعنويات الداخلية والتي تجعلكم تعيشون حالة خوف دائم، والتي تعزّزت بعد المستجدات التالية:

أولاً: فشل الاجتماع، الذي عُقد بين رئيس أركان الجيش الروسي، الجنرال فاليري غيراسيموف، ورئيس هيئة الأركان المشتركة للجيوش الأميركية، الجنرال جوزيف دانفورد، والذي عقد يوم 8/6/2018 في هلسنكي، عاصمة فنلندا، في التوصل الى أيّ صيغة مشتركة، بين الطرفين، لانتشار الجيش السوري في جنوب سورية، وكذلك موضوع تمركز وحدات مقاتلة من حزب الله إلى جانب مستشارين عسكريين إيرانيين، يدّعي الطرف الأميركي الإسرائيلي أنهم ليسوا كذلك وإنما هناك وحدات من الحرس الثوري الإيراني تنتشر مع وحدات الجيش السوري ويرتدي أفرادها اللباس العسكري السوري للفرقة الرابعة والخامسة وقوات الحرس الجمهوري السوري، حسب «المعلومات الاستخبارية» التي تحدّث عنها الجنرال الأميركي خلال الاجتماع. وهي بالطبع معلومات ملفقة سبق أن نفى صحتها الرئيس السوري بشارالأسد شخصياً، بالإضافة الى وزير الخارجية وليد المعلم.

وهذا يعني:

 ـ أنّ الطرف الروسي رفض الاقتناع بما ساقه الطرف الأميركي من تلفيقات حول طبيعة القوات العسكرية المنتشرة في الجنوب السوري، خاصة أنّ القيادة الروسية على علم تام، بحكم التنسيق الدقيق بين القيادتين الروسية والسورية، بكافة التفاصيل العسكرية المتعلقة بمختلف الجبهات السورية، وبالتالي فهي على وعي كامل بأنّ ما طرحه الجنرال الأميركي ليس الا تخرّصات وخرافات.

 ـ رفض الجانب الروسي التدخل في قرار سيادي سوري بحت أو مناقشته او الموافقة على تدخل الطرف الأميركي «الإسرائيلي» في ذلك، واعتبار الموضوع خارج نطاق البحث، ما يعني رفضاً روسياً واضحاً لابتزازات الطرف، الأميركي الإسرائيلي المهزوم، ودحضاً لادّعاءات نتن ياهو وغيره أنّ هناك خلافاً روسياً ـ إيرانياً حول المشاركة العسكرية الإيرانية في صدّ العدوان الذي تتعرّض له سورية منذ ما يزيد على سبع سنوات.

ثانياً: فشل تصريحات وزير الحرب الأميركي، الجنرال جيمس ماثيس، التي أدلى بها على هامش اجتماعات وزراء دفاع حلف شمال الأطلسي في بروكسل يوم 9/6/2018، في تهدئة روع الإسرائيليين وتخفيف شعور قيادتهم السياسية والعسكرية بالهزيمة واقتراب موعد استعادة الجولان السوري المحتلّ وصلاة قوات حلف المقاومة قريباً في المسجد الأقصى المبارك.

تلك التصريحات التي قال فيها الوزير الأميركي بأنّ ما يُطلق عليه التحالف الدولي لمحاربة الإرهاب سيستمرّ في محاربة داعش، وأنّ القوات والقواعد الأميركية باقية في سورية حتى إلحاق الهزيمة الكاملة بداعش، أيّ أنه يقول للإسرائيليين بصريح العبارة إننا باقون لحمايتكم ولا داعي لقلقكم.

ولكن الوزير الأميركي يعلم أكثر من غيره، كما يعلم الجنرالات العسكريون والأمنيون الإسرائيليون، أنّ كلامه بعيد عن الواقع، وأنه غير قادر على الحفاظ لا على قواعده العسكرية الاحتلالية في سورية، ولا على توفير الأمن لقاعدته العسكرية على أرض فلسطين والتي تسمّى «إسرائيل»، وانّ مَن يحدّد بقاء القوات غير السورية على التراب الوطني السوري هو القيادة السياسية السورية، ممثلة بشخص الرئيس بشار الأسد، بصفته القائد الأعلى للقوات المسلحة السورية، والذي ينطلق قراره من موازين القوى في الميدان والوسائل القتالية اللازمة لإنهاء الوجود الإرهابي المسلح والمدعوم من قوات وقواعد الاحتلال الأميركية في التنف والحسكة وغيرها من مناطق الشمال الشرقي السوري.

ثالثاً: أنّ الخزعبلات والتفاهات والتضليلات، التي تصدر عن هذا المهرّج المسمّى بنيامين نتن ياهو، والتي كان آخرها ما صدر عنه عصر يوم 10/6/2018 من ادّعاءات بأنّ «إسرائيل» متفوّقة في مجال تنقية المياه ومواجهة الجفاف وأنها مستعدة لتقديم العون التكنولوجي للشعب الإيراني لمساعدته في تنقية المياه ومواجهة شحّها في إيران…!

وبأقواله هذه فإنّ نتن ياهو لا يمارس الخديعة على الشعب الإيراني فقط، وإنما يمارس الكذب على كلّ شعوب العالم بادّعاءاته هذه وإنكاره أنّ تخفيف أزمة المياه في فلسطين المحتلة لا يرجع إلى عبقرياته واختراعاته التكنولوجية والمائية الهيدروليكية وانما يعود ذلك، وبكلّ بساطة، الى سرقة المياه الفلسطينية الأردنية السورية اللبنانية من نهر الأردن وروافده ومن بحيرة طبريا الفلسطينية السورية. وهو ما نجم عنه جفاف نصف البحر الميت الجنوبي، الذي كان يتغذّى بالمياه من نهر الأردن، الذي لم يعد نهراً بعد تحويل مجراه وسرقة مياهه من قبل أسلاف نتن ياهو.

لذلك، فإننا نقول له إنّ الشعب الإيراني الذي يمتلك آلاف العلماء، في كافة مجالات العلوم بما فيها العلوم النووية، ليس بحاجة لك ولا لأكاذيبك وادّعاءاتك الزائفة. كما أنّ هذه الترّهات لن تنجح في تهدئة روعك أنت وقيادتك العسكرية والأمنية وليست قادرة على إعادة الطمأنينة الى قلوب المستوطنين الإسرائيليين.

رابعاً: استدعاء وزارة الحرب الإسرائيلية، وبشكل عاجل، جنود الاحتياط لترك بيوتهم ومراكز عملهم والالتحاق بالجبهة فوراً، وذلك عقب ما قالت عنه مصادر عسكرية إسرائيلية إنه اقتراب بدء هحوم الجيش السوري وحلفائه على جبهتي القنيطرة ودرعا في الجنوب السوري، ذلك الاستدعاء، وحسب بيانات وزارة الحرب الإسرائيلية، الذي يهدف الى عرقلة الهجوم السوري إذا لم يكن ممكناً احتواؤه…!

مما يعني أنّ قيادة جيشك، أيّها الطاووس الأجوف، لم تعُد تواجه خطر تقدّم قوات حلف المقاومة لتحرير الجليل الأعلى من الاحتلال، وإنما أصبحت تواجه جبهة تشمل مستوطنات وسط الجولان، مثل مستوطنة ميروم جولانMerom Golan، ومستوطنات جنوب الجولان مثل مستوطنة ميفو حمه Mevo Hama ومستوطنة تل كاتسرين TEL Katsrin، وكذلك مستوطنات جنوب غرب بحيرة طبريا مثل مستوطنة دجانيا الف Deganya Alef ومستوطنة دجانيا باء Deganya Bet، وغيرها من المستوطنات الواقعة في تلك المنطقة وصولاً الى مدينة بيسان وغيرها من المدن الفلسطينية المحتلة، جنوب بحيرة طبريا وغربها.

وهذا يعني أنّ حديث مستوطنيك، على طول خطوط المواجهه، لن يدور حول ما أطلقته من بروباغندا تضليلية فارغة حول شحّ المياه في إيران، وإنما سيدور حديثهم في مستوطنات وسط الجولان حول ما إذا كانت القوات السورية، التي ستدخل المستوطنات وتحرّرها من جيشك، هل ستكون هذه القوات من الفرقة المدرعة الرابعة في الجيش السوري أم من وحدات حزب الله؟

بينما سيدور حديث مستوطنيك في مستوطنات جنوب الجولان وجنوب غرب بحيرة طبريا حول ما إذا كانت القوات، التي ستدخل المستوطنات وتحرّرها من احتلالكم، ستكون من الحرس الجمهوري السوري فقط أم أنها ستشمل أيضاً قوات النمر المعزّزة بوحدات من الفرقة المدرّعة الخامسة في الجيش السوري ووحدات من لواء أبو الفضل العباس في قوات الدفاع الوطني السوري؟

هذه ستكون محاور حديث أولئك المستوطنين الذين تقوم بخداعهم وتعرّضهم لأخطار الحروب والدمار. كما أنّ ما يطلبونه منك ليس حلّ مشكلة المياه في إيران وانما إيجاد مأوى لهم عندما تعترف بهزيمتك ويبدأ تفكيك «إسرائيل» بعد تحرير معظم فلسطين التاريخية من قبل قوات حلف المقاومة وعودة أهلها الفلسطينيين إلى ديارهم التي هجّروا منها قبل سبعين عاماً.

كفّوا عن الكذب والخداع واعترفوا بهزيمتكم وابدأوا بتنظيم انسحابكم المنظم من فلسطين قبل اضطراركم إلى الانسحاب تحت النار، الأمر الذي سيضاعف خسائر «جبهتكم الداخلية» عشرات المرات.

بعدنا طيّبين، قولوا الله…

US Warns India Not to Buy Russian Weapons

US Warns India Not to Buy Russian Weapons

PETER KORZUN | 01.06.2018 | SECURITY / DEFENSE

US Warns India Not to Buy Russian Weapons

The US does not shy away from openly threatening its allies and friends into submission. America’s major defense partners could face tough sanctions for purchases of Russian military equipment. Since January 29, the US has been imposing punitive measures under the CAATSA on foreign entities and individuals who cooperate with Russia in the field of defense or intelligence gathering. Congress is not inclined to give the administration the right of waiver to make an exception from the rule for some close allies. Despite that, many of them remain adamant in their intent to purchase the weapons they need from Russia.

Washington is exerting pressure on Turkey to make it abandon the plans to purchase Russia S-400 Triumf state-of-the-art air defense systems. So far, Ankara stood tall refusing to bow. US Congress is already considering the proposals on halting US arms sales to that country.

Unlike Turkey, India is not a NATO ally but its desire to acquire the Triumf triggers a negative reaction in the US. American lawmakers not only express concern over the planned deal but also issue warnings that sensitive American military technology may be banned from being shared with India in future. According to House Armed Services Committee Chairman Mac Thornberry, “There is a lot of concern in the US administration and Congress with the S-400.” India’s decision will be made final before the October Russia-India summit. During the informal talks in Sochi in May 2018, President Putin and Prime Minister Modi discussed the ways to get around the US potential sanctions when the deal goes through. Both countries have pledged to jointly create a plan to keep it out of CAATSA. New Delhi has just concluded price talks on the S-400 deal with Moscow, saying it will go ahead, no matter what the US says or does.

Those who follow the news on arms trade know well that India is interested in purchasing 22 American Predator Guardian drones for its Navy. It’s also willing to acquire the weapon the US has not sold anyone so far: 80-100 Avenger (Predator C) armed drones for the Air Force. The price may be as high as $8 billion. The F-16 production on Indian soil is also in doubt. All these projects are questioned as the US sticks to its guns implementing the “do it or else” policy. But it will hardly work with India, a nation known for its independent foreign policy. It has never bowed to any pressure from outside since its independence.

Iraq, Egypt, the UAE, Qatar, Morocco, Indonesia and Vietnam are among the countries threatened by sanctions if they go on with the plans to purchase Russian weapons. Many of them are particularly interested in the S-400. There is a catch here. If you make an exemption, others will feel humiliated and demand waivers too, but if you punish nobody then what is CAATSA for? Perhaps, the entire policy of punishing others in case of non-compliance with US laws is fundamentally wrong. It may not push Russia out of the international arms market but rather make its products a commercial success. After all, it’s an open secret that the S-400 is much more capable than the US Patriot air-defense system.

Turkey is told that if it buys Russia arms, the US won’t sell it F-35 aircraft. India may not get drones in case it purchases the S-400s. The essence is the same: sovereign countries are to be deprived of their right to have the best. They’d better be satisfied with what the US imposes or face punitive measures for daring not to comply. But many of them will not. For instance, there is little doubt that the pressure will make US-Indian relations hit a rough patch.

Defense Secretary James Mattis sought waivers for allies buying Russian weapons but failed to persuade Congress to give the administration this right. Besides, State Secretary Mike Pompeo holds a different view on the issue.

The “arms twisting” approach is prevalent in US foreign policy and even NATO allies are no exception. According to The Times, President Trump is expected to scale back America’s commitments or even issue an ultimatum over further American involvement in Europe.

No world leaders taking part in the St. Petersburg’s economic forum (SPIEF-2018) in May were happy about the US ultimatums as well as the sanctions against Russia, especially at a time it is leaving recession behind and oil prices are going up. The complains were made heard and concerns voiced at the conference held in the country, which is the prime target of American attacks. Nobody admired the trade wars the US has unleashed. May was the month the US stepped up its attacks on the Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline – the project Germany, Austria and some other European countries want to go through so much.

Israel was the only country to greet the US withdrawal from the Iran deal. Nobody endorsed the President Trump’s decision to cancel the meeting in Singapore with the North Korean leader (it may still take place, the talks are underway).

The US and its European allies appear to go separate ways on defense. On May 27, Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz called for a European operation in North Africa to stem the immigrants’ flows. Austria will take over the EU Presidency for six months starting in July. The idea has been being floated since a long time ago. Europe’s main security concern is the protection of its borders, not taking part in US ventures in faraway places or provoking Russia by deploying forces near its borders. The EU is gradually moving to its own deterrence and defense posture, which may not necessarily meet US interests.

The US policy of diktat will backlash, bringing together those who are threatened by US sanctions. The EU is about to fight back, Turkey sticks to its guns, India has refused to bow. American allies will have to work out their own approaches to international problems, using quite different instruments to achieve the desired goals. The US global standing will be weakened. By trying to isolate others America will isolate itself. But the addiction to teach, dictate and bark orders is too great to get easily rid of. It takes time to realize that the times have changed. What worked well yesterday has become counterproductive today.

US Intransigence Scuttled the Trump-Kim Negotiations, Not North Korea

US Intransigence Scuttled the Trump-Kim Negotiations, Not North Korea

By Steven Chovanec

President Trump has cancelled the Singapore summit with North Korean leader Kim Jung-Un. He cited North Korea’s “hostility” as the reason, while using language that leaves open room for future reconciliation.

North Korea then sent back a respectful letter, which Trump described as “warm and productive.” I expect the situation to continue improving, as both sides seem to want negotiations, despite the malign influence of spoilers like National Security Advisor John Bolton.

The media, on the other hand, immediately interpreted Trump’s cancellation and the breakdown of negotiations as proof of North Korea’s bad-faith and intransigence, that it is not serious about its commitments, and that Kim was simply “playing” the victimized US.

A little recap of the actual recent events is therefore in order.

The US Scuttles Peace

North Korea has recently made a number of important concessions. It had agreed to halt its missile tests and has made good on that commitment. It also agreed to accept the end-goal of denuclearization as a prerequisite of negotiations. These were the two main preconditions the US was demanding.

Furthermore, it recently released a number of US prisoners as a further show of good-will, and has completed the destruction of its only known nuclear test site, which foreign journalists were allowed to witness.

It has also pulled-back from its earlier position regarding the US-South Korean military drills, instead accepting that they will take place.

The US, in turn, had scaled back the military drills to not include “strategic assets”, meaning nuclear-capable aircraft. As well, it halted its position of enmity against the North. This can be seen in the marked shift from the beginning of the year when tensions were mounting and the threat of nuclear war was over the horizon.

In short, North Korea made extension concessions, while the US made extremely minor ones. Essentially, the US halted an already illegitimate posture of threatening to destroy a small nation which poses it no threat, while continuing highly threatening military drills, albeit ones that didn’t come with the threat of nuclear destruction attached. However, there were concessions on both sides and the chance of a possible peace settlement was therefore hopeful.

Recently, William J. Perry, who was directly involved in the 1994 negotiations between North Korea and the Clinton administration, described how the success of the current round of negotiations depends on building a mutual “sense of trust” and good faith on both sides.

Its important to note that the 1994 negotiations were the first time the US seriously pursued diplomacy with the North, which proved to be the only strategy that has ever yielded results. The US was able to obtain a temporary halt to the North’s nuclear development. When the Bush administration came in and rejected diplomacy in favor of its own brand of “maximum pressure”, the progress was undermined and North Korea went on to obtain nuclear weapons and to further build up its arsenal.

How did the administration take Perry’s advice and enhance the “sense of trust” in the face of multiple North Korean good-faith concessions? First, John Bolton, who was a key figure in the Bush administrations derailment of Clinton’s North Korea diplomacy, demanded complete capitulation from North Korea while threatening to destroy the country.

In an interview, Bolton said the US was pursuing the “Libya model” for the negotiations. Libya gave up its nuclear program following US pressure, which then freed the US to later attack and destroy the country. Libya is therefore an example of US duplicity and a testament to the necessity of possessing a nuclear deterrent to ward off US aggression. Evoking the “Libya” model was a barely-disguised threat against North Korea and an effort to derail the negotiations.

Secondly, the US conducted more threatening military drills along the North’s border, which the US would of course find threatening if similar drills were conducted by Russia or China along the Canadian border. This time, the drills were to include nuclear-capable B-52’s, a reneging of the previous US concession to scale back the drills.

According to reports, the original decision to include the B-52’s was done against the will of South Korea, which, if true, exemplifies the neo-colonial relationship the US exerts over its South Korean client, erroneously described as a mutually-beneficial “alliance” in the media.

With these moves, the US tarnished the mutual trust and good-faith that had been building, and North Korea responded by denouncing Bolton and threatening to cancel the Trump-Kim summit. The North was taking advantage of how badly Trump wanted the summit to take place; his desire to be seen as “the great statesmen” and a purveyor of world peace, a leader deserving of the Nobel prize.

The media responded to North Korea’s letter by proclaiming it was proof of the North’s subterfuge and untrustworthiness, blaming them for the breakdown of trust. The obvious effect of these kinds of narratives being to support state power and provide ideological cover to policies aimed only at power projection; to shield policymakers from scrutiny about what they are actually doing in the world, making aggressive actions seem defensive and justified.

In response to North Korea’s denunciation of Bolton and the US’ threats, the administration began to back off. It cancelled the participation of the B-52’s and attempted to roll back comments about the “Libya model.” Trump also walked-back his public demands of complete and immediate denuclearization, saying that a gradual denuclearization was perhaps a possibility.

However, at the same time Trump issued a new threat, saying that if no deal was reached the Libya model would be back on and the US would engage in “total decimation” of the country. In short: either make a deal or we’ll murder you.

Vice President Pence then doubled-down on this by evoking Trump’s ultimatum while directly threatening the country, saying that if they don’t make a deal it will “end like the Libyan model ended” for them.

North Korea responded by lashing out against Pence, saying that it will not be intimidated and will not capitulate to unilateral US demands. The press, again, latched onto this as proof of North Korean intransigence. Journalists cited what they called North Korea’s threat of nuclear war as proof that it was being aggressive. In reality, the statement was much less dramatic and contained no threat:

“Whether the US will meet us at a meeting room or encounter us at nuclear-to-nuclear showdown is entirely dependent upon the decision and behavior of the United States,” North Korea’s vice foreign minister wrote.

Not mentioned was how the US had threatened to “totally decimate” their country first, the North’s response therefore being incredibly mild. Also not mentioned was how North Korea has a no-first-use nuclear policy while the US maintains the right to a first strike. Nor that the entire reason for the North even having nukes in the first place is to ward off a US attack, a position that is only further justified by continued US threats and intransigence.

North Korea essentially responded by saying: we’ll accept negotiations, not demands and threats. So if you’d like to go back to threatening us with nuclear destruction, then we’ll respond without backing down.

So, while North Korea employs vitriolic and insulting language, in actuality their position is entirely understandable and has remained consistent throughout the years.

The Unsayable Reality

The core issue of the entire North Korea situation is, and has been, the threat of US attack.

The US divided Korea in pure colonial fashion. It “decimated” its population during the Korean War, burning down “every town in North Korea” while erasing at least 13.5% of its population. It followed this with economic and political strangulation, which is partly responsible for the starvation and famine that has transpired throughout the country’s history, as is conceded in the internal US record.

Throughout all of this, the US maintained a posture of threatening hostility against the North, repeatedly threatening them with nuclear attack. In response to this existential threat, North Korea developed a nuclear arsenal as a deterrent to US aggression. This has repeatedly been the assessment of US intelligence, and was recently reiterated by James Clapper, the former director of national intelligence.

The position of the US during the negotiations has been one of demanding that North Korea give up its only means of defense against US aggression.

When officials evoke the “Libya model” or demand full denuclearization as a prerequisite, they are demanding that North Korea give up its defenses without any recognition of the country’s legitimate security concerns; that it essentially bow on its knees in complete capitulation to US diktats, which would likely mean the eventual destruction of its country.

It may not seem like much to us in America that our government decimated their population during the Korean War, or that their nation is under existential threat from US power, but it means something to North Koreans. Although Western pundits and analysts in effect have no skin in the game one way or the other – the only way the US is threatened by North Korea is if it launches an attack against them first, provoking a defensive response – for North Koreans and people living on the Korean peninsula it is a matter of life and death, especially when US policymakers threaten their security by making threats, ultimatums, and attempting to fly nuclear-capable aircraft along the peninsula.

Yet for the ideological indoctrinators who service state power, i.e. journalists and “experts”, nothing short of complete North Korean capitulation is acceptable. Anything less and its “proof” of North Korean subterfuge, intransigence, and deviousness.

It is literally unsayable to discuss the relevant history and the core root of the problem. It cannot be said that the US is the aggressor, that the threat of US aggression is the main reason behind North Korea’s nuclear deterrent. These blasphemies contradict the ideological doctrines that the US is always defensive, that it always has the right to threaten or use force and violence against the world, while the world does not have the right to defend themselves against it.

So, while the system of propaganda—commonly referred to as the “free press”—will do everything in its power to back up Trump’s claim of the US simply responding to North Korean “hostility”, the reality shows something entirely different.

*

This article was originally published on Reports from Underground.

Steven Chovanec is an independent journalist and analyst based in Chicago, Illinois. He has a bachelor’s degree in International Studies and Sociology from Roosevelt University, and has written for numerous outlets such as The Hill, TeleSur, MintPress News, Consortium News, and others. His writings can be found at undergroundreports.blogspot.com, follow him on Twitter @stevechovanec.

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