لا تغيير في نهج ترامب أميركا أولاً… والانسحاب سيّد الموقف!

سبتمبر 14, 2019

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محمد صادق الحسيني

إنّ أيّ تحليل عميق لنهج الرئيس الأميركي دونالد ترامب، ومنذ أن بدأ حملته الانتخابية التي أوصلته الى البيت الابيض، لا يمكن إلا أن يؤكد عدم ميله ترامب الى إنشاء ادارة أميركية قوية، كتلك الإدارات الأميركية السابقة والمتماسكة والتي كانت تعمل كمحرك، تنسجم جميع مكوناته، في إنجاز عمل متكامل، عبر نسق من الآليات، خدمة لمصلحة الامن القومي الأميركي في العالم، بل إنّ ما يصبو اليه هو تحقيق رؤية ترامب لمصلحة الامن القومي الأميركي والمعروفة للجميع.

إنها باختصار شديد:

1. التركيز على الوضع الداخلي الأميركي، وإعادة إحياء الاقتصاد والبنى التحتية المتهالكة، في الولايات المتحدة.

2. إعادة التركيز على ضرورة العودة الى مبدأ الرأسمالية المنتجة الصناعية والحدّ من تغوُل رأسمالية المضاربات أسواق البورصات التي يسيطر عليها اليهود .

3. تخفيض الإنفاق العام للدولة وذلك لتوفير الأموال اللازمة للاستثمارات الضرورية للنهوض بالاقتصاد وخلق فرص عمل جديدة إلى جانب تحسين قدرات الولايات المتحدة التنافسية في الأسواق الدولية، لضمان فرص أفضل لمواجهة الصين على الصعيد الاقتصادي والتجاري، حالياً ومستقبلاً.

من هنا قام الرئيس ترامب بالتخلي عن كلّ من عارض توجهاته الشخصية، لتحقيق رؤية ترامب المشار اليها أعلاه، منذ وصل البيت الأبيض حتى الآن. وكان آخر من طرد من المركب هو مستشار الأمن القومي لترامب، جون بولتون، أحد أكثر المحافظين الجدد تطرفاً والصديق اللصيق لنتنياهو، وداعية الحرب ضدّ إيران وروسيا وكوريا الشمالية وفنزويلا وكلّ من يعارض توجهاته العدوانية الخطيرة، والتي يمثلها تيار بعينه في الولايات المتحدة الأميركية.

انطلاقاً من انّ إدارة ترامب ليست إدارة أميركية كلاسيكية ذات استراتيجية واضحة، وبالتالي تعتمد في تنفيذها على أدوات محدّدة، فإننا نرى انّ الرئيس ترامب قد أعطى كلّ واحد من مراكز القوى في الولايات المتحدة ما يريد تقريباً.

فهو أعطى سماسرة الحروب والدولة العميقة، بما فيها البنتاغون، دعاة الحرب بولتون وبومبيو. كما أعطى اللوبيات اليهودية، في الولايات المتحدة، كلّ ما طلبه نتنياهو، من صفقة القرن الى كلّ الأدوار التفضيلية في كلّ المجالات.

ولكنه في الوقت نفسه انتظر موسم الحصاد. فإذا به موسماً لم ينتج شيئاً، حيث إنّ جميع مشاريع الحروب، التي كان يديرها دعاة الحرب، قد فشلت تماماً. لم تسقط الدولة السورية ولم يتمّ القضاء على حزب الله والمقاومة الفلسطينية في غزة وهزم مشروع داعش، في العراق وسورية وبمساعدة إيران قبل أيّ كان. كما هزم المشروع السعودي في اليمن على الرغم من مرور خمس سنوات على أكثر حروب البشرية وحشية وإجراماً، مورست ضدّ شعب أعزل ومسالم ودون أيّ مسوغ.

اما أمّ الهزائم فهي هزيمة دعاة الحرب في المواجهة الدائرة مع إيران، سواء على الصعيد الاقتصادي او على الصعيد العسكري، بعد إسقاط طائرة التجسّس الأميركية العملاقة وعدم قيام الرئيس الأميركي بالردّ على إسقاطها، ما جعل جون بولتون يلجأ الى مؤامرة احتجاز ناقلة النفط الإيرانية، بالتعاون مع بعض غلاة الساسة في واشنطن ولندن، على أمل ان يتمكن هؤلاء من توريط الرئيس الأميركي في حرب مع إيران.

اما في ما يتعلق بشريك بولتون في التآمر والكذب، نتنياهو، فلم تكن نتائج مؤامراتة وألاعيبة ومسرحياته أفضل حظاً من ممارسات بولتون. نفذ اعتداءات جوية على سورية ولبنان والعراق وأخذ كلّ ما أراد من الرئيس الأميركي. صفقة القرن، بما فيها من نقل السفارة الأميركية الى القدس والاعتراف بالمدينة عاصمة لـ»إسرائيل» وصولاً الى الاعتراف بسيادتها على الجولان.

ولكن الرئيس الأميركي تيقن من انّ نتيجة كلّ ذلك هو صفر. حيث أَمر نتنياهو، بصفته وزيراً للحرب، جيشه بترك الحدود مع لبنان والانسحاب مسافة سبعة كيلومترات الى الخلف. أيّ انّ جيشه ليس قادراً حتى على حماية نفسه من هجمات محدودة من قوات حزب الله.

فماذا كان قرار ترامب على ضوء كل هذه الحقائق؟

أ وقف الاتصالات الهاتفية مع نتنياهو، على الرغم من مواصلة الأخير استجداء ذلك، منذ اكثر من أسبوعين.

ب إعلان الرئيس الأميركي أنه سيبدأ مفاوضات سرية، مع أنصار الله اليمنيين، في عُمان.

ج تأكيده عشرات المرات على رغبته في التفاوض مع إيران وتعيينه الجنرال مارك إِسبر وزيراً للدفاع والذي أعلن في تصريح تلفزيوني أنه لا يريد حرباً مع إيران وإنما يريد الوصول الى حلّ دبلوماسي للخلاف.

د طرده لجون بولتون من البيت الأبيض ووضعه لمايك بومبيو على لائحة الانتظار، والذي لن يطول انتظاره اكثر من ثلاثة أشهر. ربما حتى نهاية شهر تشرين الثاني المقبل 11 / 2019 .

وهذا يعني أنّ ترامب قد قرّر العودة الى التركيز على شعارات حملته الانتخابية الاولى، بدءاً بما ذكر أعلاه اقتصادياً ومالياً ووصولاً الى:

الانسحاب العسكري الشامل، من كلّ «الشرق الأوسط» وليس فقط من افغانستان وسورية، وما يعنيه ذلك من تخلٍ كامل عن «إسرائيل» في اللحظة المناسبة… من الناحية العملية، وربما من مناطق عديدة أخرى في العالم وذلك خفضاً للنفقات العسكرية الأميركية تملك واشنطن اكثر من ألف قاعدة عسكرية خارج الولايات المتحدة .

الاستعداد لتحسين العلاقات الأميركية الروسية ومحاولة منع قيام تحالف أو حلف عسكري روسي مع الصين، ربما تنضم إليه دول اخرى.

إيجاد صيغة ما للتفاوض مع إيران وتطبيع العلاقات معها، وما يعنيه ذلك من تخلّ فعلي عن أدوات واشنطن الخليجية وسقوط لهم لاحقاً، ونعني بالتحديد ابن سلمان وابن زايد.

اذ انهم، كما نتن ياهو، فشلوا في تحقيق أيّ نجاح في المهمات التي أوكلت اليهم في طول «الشرق الاوسط» وعرضه، الأمر الذي جعلهم عبئاً لا طائل من حمله.

ولكن ترامب، رجل المال والصفقات، لن يترك ابن سلمان وابن زايد ينجون بجلودهم ويذهبون في حال سبيلهم، دون أن يعصر منهم المزيد من الاموال. اذ انه، ومن خلال الخبراء الأميركيين المختصين، يعمل على الاستيلاء على عملاق النفط العالمي، شركة أرامكو للبترول، وذلك من خلال طرحها للاكتتاب الخصخصة في بورصة نيويورك ومنع طرحها في بورصة طوكيو.

كما أنّ احتياطي النفط الهائل في محافظة الجوف اليمنية، الذي يزيد على كل احتياطيات النفط السعودية، هو السبب الرئيسي وراء رغبة ترامب عقد محادثات سرية مع أنصار الله، بهدف انهاء الحرب. فهو في حقيقة الأمر يريد التفاوض مع ممثلي الشعب اليمني ليس حفاظاً على أرواح اليمنيين وإنما من اجل ضمان إعطاء حقوق استثمار حقول النفط الموجودة في محافظة الجوف لشركات أميركية واستبعاد الشركات الروسية والصينية وحتى البريطانية من هذا المجال.

بعدنا طيبين، قولوا الله…

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Trump Foreign Policy as Theater of the Absurd

A nightmare that one never wakes up from

PHILIP GIRALDI • SEPTEMBER 10, 2019

One might be forgiven for thinking that the foreign policy of the United States is some kind of theatrical performance, like a comic opera, with new characters appearing on stage willy-nilly and then being driven off after committing an incredible faux pas only to be replaced by even more grotesquely clownish figures. Unfortunately, while the musical chairs and plot twists contrived by a Goldoni or Moliere generally have a cheerful ending, the same cannot be said about what has been taking place in the White House.

The latest White House somewhat unexpected departure was that of ex-real estate lawyer Jason Greenblatt, who has been hanging around for over two years putting together the Deal of the Century for the Middle East. The Deal will reportedly end forever the possibility of any real Palestinian state but has run into a problem because Israel does not want its hands tied in any way while the Saudis and friends are reluctant to come up with the cash to fund the arrangement. Back to square one, though the Administration has replaced Greenblatt with thirty-year old Avi Berkowitz, whose only qualification for the position is that he is a friend of presidential son-in-law Jared Kushner whose most recent job at the White House consisted of managing “daily logistics like getting coffee…” The president is nevertheless still insisting that the peace plan will be revealed in all its glory after the Israeli election on September 17th.

Another administration notable who now appears to be waiting for the hook to come out from offstage and take him away is National Security Adviser John Bolton. Bolton has long been regarded by those who still believe that Donald Trump actually has a heart and a mind as the eminence grise seated behind the throne who has encouraged the president’s bad angels. That may indeed be so, but leaks are now suggesting that the president has been disagreeing with his chief minister and marginalizing his presence in meetings. But as bad as Bolton truly is, one should not dismiss from consideration Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Vice President Mike Pence, both of whom, like Bolton, have exhibited extraordinary ability to provide bad advice and to simultaneously say and do stupid things.

Pence’s recent error plagued trip to Ireland left one exasperated Irish journalist complaining that it was as if the Vice President had been invited to someone’s home and had “shat on the new carpet in the spare room, the one you bought specially for him” before his departure. Pence had unwisely made comments about Brexit that were both uninformed and regarded as “humiliating” by his hosts. But his real crime was that he blamed his boss for the ridiculous decision to stay at a Trump property 180 miles away from Dublin. President Trump denied the claim and, as he does not like being embarrassed by his subordinates, there is already talk that Pence will be replaced on the Republican ticket in 2020. Unfortunately, Attila the Hun is no longer available but it is certain that the GOP will be able to come up with someone else who will, like Pence, offend almost everyone. Tom Cotton maybe? Nikki Haley?

Now that North Korea is not cooperating with Trump’s distinctive brand of diplomacy, the Great Negotiator has turned to America (and Israel’s) enemy number one, suggesting a sit down with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani. The only problem with that is that Rouhani is not playing because the United States has been engaged in nothing less than “maximum pressure” economic warfare against his country. End the sanctions and Rouhani would consider talking directly.

Israel, of course, is deeply concerned lest American and Iranian heads of government actually get together to discuss things. According to some observers, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is believed to be somewhat nervous over that possibility and wants to get a hotter war going in the region to disrupt any consideration of entente between Tehran and Washington. That is why the Israelis have been escalating their attacks against claimed “Iranian targets” in Syria, Iraq and Lebanon, an initiative intended to provoke an Iranian reaction which will then be escalated by Netanyahu to draw Washington in supporting Israel while also putting an end to any consideration of top-level talks.

As a side show to the deep thinking going on in the White House, there is the Iranian tanker saga. One might recall that the tanker Adrian Darya 1, which claimed to be registered in Panama while carrying alleged Iranian oil allegedly bound for Syria, was halted in Gibraltar by the British at the request of the American State Department even though it was in international waters at the time. The U.S. has been sanctioning nearly everything having to do with Iran, to include its export of oil, and is also enforcing sanctions imposed on the government in Syria. Pompeo claimed, in fact, that he had “reliable information” the ship was transporting oil to Syria in defiance of wide-ranging U.S. and European Union initiated sanctions directed against the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad over false claims that it had been using chemical weapons. The Treasury Department added that the vessel was “blocked property” under an anti-terrorist order, and “anyone providing support to the Adrian Darya 1 risks being sanctioned.”

After six weeks detention, the British released the tanker on August 18th when a Gibraltar judge ruled that there were no grounds for seizing it in the first place, adding that it could not be turned over to Washington. Since that time, it has been making its way across the Mediterranean headed for ports unknown. It is, inevitably, being stalked by the United States Navy, which may or may not attempt to take control of it before it heads to shore in Lebanon or Syria.

The entire situation is farcical, but here is where the fun comes in: Brian Hook, a true Trumpean know-nothing who somehow has been designated U.S. Grand Poobah for Iran, sent an email on August 26th to the ship’s Indian captain Akhilesh Kumar. The message said “This is Brian Hook . . . I work for secretary of state Mike Pompeo… I am writing with good news.”

The “good news” consisted of an offer to give Captain Kumar millions of dollars if he would sail the Adrian Darya 1 to a port that would impound the ship for the U.S. Kumar did not respond to the offer to turn pirate and steal the vessel, so “Captain” Hook dropped the hammer in a second email, writing that: “With this money you can have any life you wish and be well-off in old age. If you choose not to take this easy path, life will be much harder for you.”

The sublimely ridiculous proposal to Kumar comes on top of a similar appeal from the Department of State, which last week offered rewards of up to $15 million for information that would enable the disruption of the financial mechanisms used by Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC). State, acting through its humorously named “Rewards for Justice” program, will pay money for any information regarding the revenue sources of the IRGC, which was listed as a foreign terrorist organization in April.

The State Department announced the rewards at a briefing late last Wednesday morning, with Brian Hook saying that “The IRGC trains, funds, and equips proxy organizations across the Middle East. Iran wants these groups to extend the borders of the regime’s revolution and sow chaos and sectarian violence. We are using every available diplomatic and economic tool to disrupt these operations.”

Having experienced schemes involving paying rewards for information while I was overseas with the CIA, I can with considerable confidence predict that the U.S. Embassies in Turkey and Dubai will be flooded with desperate Iranians peddling what stories they have made up in exchange for money or visas. The actual information obtained will be approaching zero.

The American beneficence towards the Middle East currently also includes, apparently, intervening yet again in Syria to prevent the Syrian Army and its Iranian and Russian allies from eliminating the last major terrorist pocket in the country’s Idlib province. Fact is, it is the United States being led by the nose by Israel that has both supported terrorists and created most of the unrest and violence in the Middle East, central Asia and North Africa.

Additionally, also last week, the Treasury Department’s Office for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence headed by Under Secretary Sigal Mandelker, an Israeli, sanctioned more than two-dozen entities and individuals as well as 11 ships allegedly supporting IRGC oil shipments going to Bashar al-Assad’s Syria and other “illicit actors.” One has to wonder if the Treasury’s Office “for Terrorism” might actually be “for Terrorism” as long as it is carried out by the U.S. and its “best friend and closest ally” in the Middle East.

All in all, one hell of a week. A Greenblatt gone replaced by a Berkowitz, possibly Bolton and Pence going, piracy on the high seas, cash for info schemes, and lots more sanctions. Can’t get much more exciting than that, but let’s wait for next week to see what Donald Trump will give his good buddy Benjamin Netanyahu as a pre-electoral gift. Rumor has it that it will include American recognition of Israel’s right to annex most of the rest of the West Bank plus security guarantees that the U.S. will have the Jewish state’s back no matter what it seeks to do with its neighbors. Stay tuned!

Philip M. Giraldi, Ph.D., is Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest, a 501(c)3 tax deductible educational foundation (Federal ID Number #52-1739023) that seeks a more interests-based U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East. Website is councilforthenationalinterest.org, address is P.O. Box 2157, Purcellville VA 20134 and its email is inform@cnionline.org.

Steve Bannon’s Gift

Steve Bannon’s Gift

September 08, 2019

By Chris Faure for The Saker Blog

If you thought that the demonization of Russia and incessant Russophobia over the past years from the West, with hardly a highly likely shred of evidence, was unconscionable and the absolute pinnacle of all demonization campaigns ever, get ready for the demonization of China. In true Hollywood Blockbuster style, the China Fear campaign promises to be bigger and better theater than the complete demonization of Russia. The campaign is focused, has a highly skilled leader, is sophisticated and has a clear set of objectives and operating objectives and plans. It even has its own very special movie, called “Claws of the Red Dragon”.    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RvIKUIbKc6w

And like all such campaigns, it seamlessly rolls Russia in and now, Russia/China just rolls off the tongues of the imperial Hegemon.

We have grown accustomed to the Russia Bad campaign and understand and recognize how and when it is waged. This article will focus on what I call ‘the China Fear’ campaign through the eyes of Steve Bannon.

Bannon himself is credited with Trump’s 2016 win specifically on social media in combination with Peter Thiel. He is further credited with Bolsonaro’s Presidential win in October 2018. He is an extremely intelligent man and I would not want him for an enemy. Skilled in mining raw data, drawing raw emotion from social media and expressing and crafting that bounty to adjust and spread believable narrative messages and tell the story as he wants the story to be told, he has all the skills to ‘sell, hammer and freeze hard into the social fabric the China Fear narrative’.   Just like Elliot Abrams is the main man and still trying for Venezuela regime change, Bannon looks to be the main man for regime change in China, via Hong Kong or any other area where the social fabric is not cohesive or where it can be deliberately frayed with social control techniques, attempting to socially terraform whole nations.

After helping Trump win, and then Bolsonaro win, and then spending some quiet time in Europe setting up The Movement, trying to start a populist revolt which nobody wanted to start with him, (“All I’m trying to be is the infrastructure, globally, for the global populist movement,”) it looks like Bannon was called back to ‘deal with China’. About 4 to 5 months ago, we started seeing a series of interviews with Bannon on China, using the Hong Kong riots to re-freeze himself into this sphere and calling the rioters ‘the kids’ with a smile, to make them seem ‘oh so innocent’. They’re only kids, they are only trying their best to fight for their freedom and democracy, is the message.

So what is it really that Bannon is rolling out? Only a garden variety revolution with creative peaks to topple the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) and therefore China, or a scorched earth or total dominance policy. From the movie, we can see that Huawei is the proverbial Pokemon of the policy and in his own words: “Huawei is the greatest national security threat that America has ever faced … even greater than the threat of nuclear war.

Look at that statement for a moment – a technology company is a greater threat than nuclear war? Is this a reasonable statement to make? It is however par for the course for Bannon given his penchant for data and information technology type asymmetric warfare.

I’ve been surprised that alternative journalists, even good and experienced ones, are frequently confused by the Hong Kong riots. We see questions like: Is this a true revolution with young Hong Kong people fighting for their freedom? How can we distinguish between a color revolution or a true freedom movement? James Corbett asked: “What is America’s role in the current Hong Kong protest movement? Does Washington’s involvement in the protests delegitimize the movement itself? And where does that leave us, looking from the outside in at a situation like this?”

To answer the bolded question, is to take a look at the Gift from Bannon. Why do I call this a gift from Bannon? ‘Elementary, my dear Watson’. Because such a demonization campaign that jumped into high gear +- 4 or 5 months ago, is a double edged sword. Not only does it do its demonizing, it also without a doubt signals the plans of the imperial hegemon and this is the gift that we have from Bannon.  He not only signals, he literally spells out the philosophy, objectives and operating plan for the China Fear campaign.   We then can answer the question from Corbett: “Does Washington’s involvement in the protests delegitimize the movement itself? “ with a clear “Yes James, Washington’s involvement delegitimatizes the Hong Kong movement itself, because it is not a grassroots movement, but an orchestrated and paid for destabilization campaign that fits into a larger philosophy, policy and plan of creating fear toward China and uses US State Department officials, NGO’s and other influence peddlers to carry out the campaign.

‘The Kids’ are being orchestrated and their leaders in the so-called leaderless movement are trained actors and paid for their actions. And what is headlined as a leaderless movement, clearly has leaders.   The leader of Hong Kong’s leaderless protest movement is a philosophy student behind bars.

Destabilization of Hong Kong is also not new and has been tried before. Refer to the Umbrella Movement and what was described as the Fishball Revolution of 2016 .  Those failed, but now there is a whole new impetus and organization behind it.

There are three aspects to this new China Fear policy that stand out:

1. Bannon has learned from the Russia demonization program that it can be used to effectively divide a people as we have seen in the United States with the Russia Collusion efforts.

Bannon now wants to unite the US political classes and he says so clearly, talking about the Hong Kong riots:

“The one topic that unites everyone in the US, is the Hong Kong Protests …. Everybody in this country has come together, …… Nancy Pelosi, Chuck Schumer, Marco Rubio – they are all united in telling the CCP and putting them on notice that this is not acceptable, particularly police brutality”

and

“Containing the CCP is beginning to be a bigger and bigger issue in the US – we’re managing to unite Democrats as well as Republicans around containment of the CCP.”

2. Then, he wants to unite the West and he says so clearly:

“Boris Johnson initially wanted to cut a deal with the CCP but now he is saying that the 1984 agreement must be completely in place. There has been a shifting of opinions (from the videos linked you will see that he is talking about creating a western coalition) and that has been because of the brutality of the police forces and the arrogance of the CCP – putting soldiers on the border, and this put it up to the height that the world came together, the CCP is backing off .. they don’t have a thought through plan they would clearly like to go in ans do a brutal putdown because they don’t want this contagion to spread – There are different factions, just like in Tianenmen … I think Xi is torn and leans more to the crackdown phase …”

(OK, since Bannon said this, Boris Johnson has had his seating area smartly kicked but that makes no nevermind to the focus of this China Fear campaign, to unite the west and again create a western coalition, this time against China).

3. Then, he wants to have Trump win in 2020 with a ‘Trump is tough on China’ message. To do this, to get Trump’s base to understand the message, Bannon has to scare the American population that has grown tired of Russia, Russia, Russia, with a new message: Fear China, Fear China, Fear China. This is how he is preparing his ground to present the 2020 message that Trump is Tough on China. With a simple sleigh of hand, China Fear has become the order of the day, China is the new main adversary and Trump is Tough on the main adversary. Bannon can now prepare the western population for action against China but of course, China itself must be set up as the perpetrator.

The rest is garden variety demonization and garden variety attempts at regime change with a garden variety ideology hidden behind virtue-signaling statements such as: It is only the Chinese that can change their system. It is never mentioned that the Chinese might not want to change their system, but the message is presented as a fait accompli. (It reminds me of the excuse given to the US self-defined Patriots. This message is: No, we most certainly do not want to regime-change Iran. We only want to help them to get rid of their bad Mullahs). True doublespeak.

What is a garden variety attempt at regime change? Or, How do you get your own people to cooperate and believe you?

  1. Identify what you need as the ‘public mood’ to get the public to support your initiative – eg. fear, or nationalistic pride or financial issues .. there may be a few of these that are usable, even collective memory, or previous conditioning and in the case of the US, the people have been conditioned to distrust anything ‘other’ than their own way of life.
  2. Create a demon as an opponent – eg. he wants to destroy our way of life or Huawei is more dangerous than a nuclear bomb and they are abusing their own people or Putin is a dictator : There are many messages that can be used here.
  3. Select and/or fabricate ‘evidence’ to demonstrate that the demon exists – eg. he’s rigging our elections, they have ‘bad behavior’ and we must counter their ‘bad behavior’ or We cannot stand idly by while authoritarian nations attempt to reshape the global security environment to their favor at the expense of others (See the complete Mark Esper quote in the next section).
  4. Present the narrative or story to the public and make it appear real, reasonable, scientific is a good word to use, or logical – For this part, Pompeo, Esper and Bannon with a side dish of Pence are rolling the theater screens, one after the other, Message, Rinse, Repeat, Message Rinse Repeat until the population believes it. “What was reported out of the media was that Secretary Pompeo took a very hard line – hey, this is about freedom and democracy.” Bannon says.

You will find point one through four depicted in the following list of Bannon quotes. Bannon, skilled as he is in social change methods, brings his own creativity to the China Fear campaign. Just as Trump during his campaign for president used many phrases beloved by the people (e.g., I like Wikileaks or Lock her up), Bannon uses this technique as well. To remain on the right side of Trump’s base, he pushes a button that is near and dear to the hearts of the ‘deplorables’. This is the hatred existent in the population for the Corporate Elites or Wall Street or the New World Order or the 1%’ers who, according to Bannon, close their eyes to all of the human rights abuses in China:  (USA; USA; chants the base supporters!).

“They know all of it, and they don’t care.” Involvement with the Chinese regime “means more money. It means higher stock prices. It means lower slave labor [costs],” Bannon said.

“Wall Street’s the cheerleader. And corporate America has been the lobbyist.”  (Playing a little too hard on the Occupy movement here don’t you think?  This man is mustering all the troops!)

“They have no moral authority. They have totally bought into a system that’s completely corrupt, and they know all about it,” Bannon said. Yet, they “mock Donald Trump and say, oh, he’s the barbarian. He’s the wild man. He’s the disruptor to the system.”

And of course, no comment on China from Bannon is complete without a reference to Tiananmen Square (link at the end if you are not sure what happened here).

“I think that if they use the same force that they used in Tiananmen, it will be the end of the CCP. I think the CCP will ultimately collapse.”

Why do we know that Bannon’s China Fear campaign is real?

We only have to listen to Defense Secretary Dr. Mark T. Esper:

“ … the political and economic leverage wielded by the Chinese is already eroding the sovereignty of some nations”, as well as citing “China’s Economic Warfare”.

and

“This is not because we are naive about other threats or seek to rekindle another Cold War,” Esper said. “Rather, we are aligned in this focus because of the magnitude of the threats Russia and China pose to U.S. national security and prosperity today, and the potential for those threats to increase in the future.”

https://www.defense.gov/explore/story/Article/1954110/esper-russia-china-want-to-disrupt-international-order/

and

“[We] cannot stand idly by while authoritarian nations attempt to reshape the global security environment to their favor at the expense of others,” Esper said. “Doing so would invite continued aggression and diminish our ability to deter future conflicts. As such, America’s National Defense Strategy makes it clear that great power competition is once again the primary concern of U.S. national security.”

This is what Bannon says, taken from a series of videos and interviews and these are listed below in order not to overwhelm the reader with just too large a list of videos and links in the text. How does one even present this flurry of China Fear messages that is becoming such a large body of work, that to choose one or the other does not do justice to either the size of the campaign, or to the depth of demonization and fear mongering. I would suggest looking at the first video presented and noted as most representative and then at the article presented because it will literally take weeks to work through the massive amount of material gathered over a short four months in time.

Bannon hammers in the average western understanding of China and sets his scene

These words are repeated over and over again: Tiananmen Square, Red Communism, CCP, freedom and democracy, China’s police brutality, China is abusing their own people, the Uygers, Hong Kong, Taiwan, the Dalai Lama, Chinese Christians, Tibet and totalitarian surveillance state. He works hard to create the very necessary environmental conditions to create the joint enemy as listed in the 4 Points of preparing your own population for Regime Change somewhere else in the world.

I think that if they use the same force that they used in Tiananmen, it will be the end of the CCP (Chinese Communist Party). I think the CCP will ultimately collapse.

Containing the CCP is beginning to be a bigger and bigger issue in the US – we’re managing to unite Democrats as well as Republicans around containment of the CCP.

The rhetoric from the West is getting increasingly tougher … The one topic that unites everyone in the US, is the Hong Kong Protests …. Everybody in this country (USA) has come together Nancy Pelosi, Chuck Schumer, Marco Rubio – they are all united in telling the CCP and putting them on notice that this is not acceptable, particularly police brutality.

China’s strategy is to become a world Hegemon

And of course Bannon supports Trump’s delusionary idea: China is just waiting for Trump to leave office and then they can deal with the democrats.

This point of course is devoid of any reason as China finds itself in a hybrid warlike situation where they are arming and having to fight an existential battle. Once the local western population are convinced that they have to fear China, of course the imperial hegemon can do anything it likes and it can count on the support of its people.

The first video is the most representative where most of the foregoing quotes can be found.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_xDQs5M7lHw

This interview, mainly consisting of Bannon quotes is most representative of a complete demonization campaign directed at China – there is no end to it. I selected just a few and this is no cherry-picking: This is perhaps representative of 20% of the interview and one cannot choose which one is more representative of a full-out China Fear campaign. They are all finely crafted statements to convince a population of the new adversary.

Talking about Huawei:

“Huawei has a methodology, a high-tech methodology to basically have domination over the world

Pressing the message that the corporate elite is responsible, as Bannon knows the Trump base will respond to this:

Wall Street and the corporate elites are “going to be held accountable by history for what went on in this time and place, what went on in China, and what they knew about and looked the other way.”

Here is the message that Trump is Tough on China:

Donald Trump, the central reason he’s president is this: He said, we have to return America to her former greatness. We have to make America great again. And the way we’re going to do that [is] we’re going to confront the [CCP]. Wall Street has shipped those jobs over there, and I am going to bring them back,” Bannon said.

Aligning the ‘corporate elites’ with the Chinese Communist Party:

The Chinese Communist Party is the Frankenstein monster created by the elites in the West—the capital provided by the elites in the West, the technology that’s provided by the elites in the West,” Bannon said.

Hammering in the China Fear message:

“When you see the tear gas, you see the beatings, you see the rubber bullets, you see exactly what they are. This is a gangster organization that doesn’t believe in any individual rights”

“What they’ve done to the Uyghurs, what they’ve done to the Dalai Lama, the Tibetan Buddhists, what they’ve done to the Evangelical Christians, what they’ve done to Falun Gong, what they’ve done to the underground Catholic Church is unacceptable,” Bannon said. “These are criminals that don’t abide by any rule of law.”

I said this man is intelligent. Here he focuses on what is near and dear to the US Patriots, telling them that the Hong Kong protests are akin to the American Revolutionary War.

“Those young men and women are exactly what the patriots of 1776 were in the United States. They have the grit, they have the determination, they have the indefatigability. They are not going to back down. They’ve been tear-gassed, they’ve been beaten, they’ve had rubber bullets shot at them, and time and time again, they show up.

“I think they’re heroes of the modern world. I think they deserve to be nominated for and win the Nobel Prize for peace.

Now Bannon promises the people that his China Fear campaign is just and honest and good, because of course, the Chinese people will themselves revolt, if given a little help from the west.

Eventually, Bannon believes, the Chinese people will stand up and say, “‘We’ve had enough of 100,000 people or 50,000 people ruling a country of 1.4 billion and stealing all our money, stealing all our wealth, taking it for themselves, making us live in a totalitarian surveillance state.”

“Only the Chinese people can free the Chinese people”

The pursuit of truth and pursuit of your higher moral self comes at a great cost. It’s just like in Hong Kong. There is a huge cost they are paying. They’re being jailed. They’re being beaten. They are being [told] your careers are ruined, your careers are finished. This is a high cost in the modern society, and yet they refuse to back down,” he said

And then, he must end up on an emotional note and build up The Kids, who are in reality beating up old people in Hong Kong. Sounding like a proverbial preacher man, Bannon announces:

“They will rise up to their higher, highest self.”

Do you see why I say Bannon has given us a gift? There is no confusion or question now about what the next steps of the imperial hegemon is going to be, so, we can identify them and we can follow them, as they happen, or not. So, some tasks on their to-do list will be successful and others not.  It is good to note that the base of Russia demonization is seamlessly rolled over to the China demonization.  And for the skilled observer it is clear to see that what China is being accused of, is exactly what the imperial hegemon is doing itself.

Does this look to you as if the current imperial hegemon understands that it is losing power? Or does this look to you as if we have a new attempt at a full spectrum dominance battle on our hands?.  Looking at the size of Bannon’s strategy, I cannot for one moment believe that these are only ‘winning the trade war’ strategies.  It clearly is bigger than this.

Over near term history, we have seen the west operating without clear strategy or objectives. We’ve seen them flail and fail in most of their regime change operations. Is the west fixing this with Bannon setting the strategy for the new adversary? Is the imperial hegemon setting its sights on China; First decouple the economy and then aim the guns? Has the imperial hegemon decided all these other little countries (Iran, Venezuela, Syria, North Korea, Venezuela, even Afghanistan) are just too little to bother with and in their hubristic folly, they select the spectacular Hollywood finish and go directly for the Red Dragon using all modes of war, from hybrid methods to eventually guns blazing? I believe this and similar scenarios may be highly prioritized in the Pentagon’s war and scenario planning department. Looking at Bannon’s preparation of the US citizens for China Fear, we may be looking at a still outlying, but distinct scenario from the imperial hegemon to attempt to grab the Red Dragon by its throat, before the PetroDollar disappears completely as a reserve currency, and before China has completed a hard weapons defensive perimeter position, supported by fully trained defense forces.

…………………………………..

Additional information and reading;

View from Russia:

Further Bannon interviews are here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qH5QzuzD01A

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oYraLI04WiU

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dy4FZr6zPtk

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=znXZ-XgM0KU

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TqHLBBcUYeg

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QuAZKNEcj2g

Further Reading

https://steemit.com/china/@corbettreport/clash-of-civilizations-2-0

The Chinese are not talking

http://www.globaltimes.cn/content/1162942.shtml

https://steemit.com/news/@corbettreport/the-truth-about-tiananmen

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/wikileaks/8555142/Wikileaks-no-bloodshed-inside-Tiananmen-Square-cables-claim.html

https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2019-09-05/its-american-hegemony-thats-being-backed-corner-dollar-more-risk-yuan

The Chinese communist party – Godfree Roberts – http://www.unz.com/article/the-chinese-communist-party/

The End of the “Greater Middle East Project”: The Case of Kurdistan

Donald Trump’s victory in the 2016 presidential elections has had dire implications for the American “Greater Middle East” project which has guided US foreign policy in the Middle East since it was first put forward in 2003. Trump’s reorientation toward internal US problems (migration, economy, protectionism), the emergence of new geopolitical rivals (China and Iran) and the turning point being reached in the war against Daesh in Syria have resulted, more or less, in a new balance of powers in the Middle East. While the situation is still rather chaotic, one fact is certainly clear: the Americans have lost their dominant position.

On top of all of this, following the events of July 2016, Turkey, one of the central players in the Middle East, headed for geopolitical rapprochement with Russia and began to distance itself from the United States. Turkish authorities accused Washington of having played a role in the attempted coup, driving a wedge in the relationship of the long-time allies. Up to this point, Turkey, together with Israel, were seen as outposts for pushing US foreign policy interests in the Middle East. However, contradictions began to emerge over the US’ reliance on the Kurdish separatists, who are locked in a state of open conflict with the Turkish government. As a result of disagreements over this issue, America began to lose one of its most important regional partners. After the coup attempt, hostilities between Turkey and the West escalated even further: Turkey openly discussed the possibility of a withdrawal from NATO, the West countered by threatening Turkey’s ongoing EU integration process.

Unsuccessful negotiations between Washington and Ankara over the extradition of accused coup leader Fethullah Gulen only complicated matters further, as did disputes over Turkey’s detention of Pastor Andrew Branson. The contradictions eventually reached their sharpest point as the US attempted to dissuade, and ultimately, threaten Turkey over their purchase of Russian S-400 missile defense systems.

In parallel with these processes, Saudi Arabia and Qatar began to adjust their foreign policy accordingly. Realizing that the West could no longer fully control the situation in the region, Qatar began to seek support from Russia, which had successfully shown the strength of its influence in Syria.

Qatar, being a traditional ally of Turkey (predominantly via the Muslim Brotherhood), began to follow Turkey’s lead, even improving relations with Iran. Saudi Arabia, a regional adversary of Qatar, was forced to follow a similar strategy… of course, not in terms of improving relations with Iran (their main regional adversary) but by establishing ties with Russia. This is evidenced in Riyadh’s attempt to buy S-400s from Moscow against Washington’s wishes.

Thus, the United States has lost most of its regional partners, with only the invariable Israel remaining a part of the Greater Middle East project. Trump has bent over backward to keep this relationship secure, even if it means finally destroy Washington’s relations with the Islamic world altogether and instead rely on the Kurds… a plan as obvious as it is failed.

Revising the Greater Middle East Strategy

The Greater Middle East project was the guiding light of US foreign policy strategy in countries like Afghanistan, Pakistan and Central Asia for decades. As of 2011, the project grew to include the Arab nations of North Africa and Syria in particular. On a project map designed by J. Kemp and R. Harkavy, the Republic of Turkey and Kazakhstan were also included.

The project aimed to spread and deepen “democracy” in the region. The plan had two sides: the official one, which was supposed to contribute to a rise in power for states led by pro-Western reformers (initially completely unrealistic) and the unofficial one, which was to actively destabilize existing Islamic regimes, support color revolutions, riots and even bring about regime change.

Creating controlled chaos has always been a central goal of the project. This goal was realized in Libya and Iraq, but its implementation in Syria was disrupted by the effective policy of Russia and Syria’s alliance with Iran and Turkey. In addition to these major powers, Hezbollah played a critical role in disrupting Washington’s plans.

However, the plan also involved the creation of a wider arc of instability – from Lebanon and Palestine to Syria, Iraq, the Persian Gulf and Iran – right up to the Afghanistan border, where NATO garrisons are located. The levers of the project were numerous: large-scale financial investments in the economies of the Middle Eastern countries, support for extremist groups, information warfare, alongside open provocations and false-flags operations. During the implementation of the project, many Middle Eastern countries underwent “color revolutions” backed by Western operators who induced controlled chaos and exploited social media networks in order to use various countries’ social, political, religious, ethnic and economic problems against them. During the “Arab Spring”, this strategy led to regime change in 3 states: Tunisia, Egypt and Libya, while Libya and Syria were left in a state of civil war.

The US and EU were never completely unified over the project. At one G8 summit, the Greater Middle East project was criticized by French President Jacques Chirac, arguing that Middle Eastern countries do not need this kind of forcibly exported “democracy.”

The strategy for “spreading democracy” in the region had essentially become thinly , if at all, veiled US intervention in the domestic political life of Middle Eastern states. Military assaults began in Afghanistan, Iraq, Tunisia, Libya, Egypt, Sudan and Syria. However, the results were less than favorable for most, resulting in floods of refugees, including representatives of terrorist organizations. Western Europe was forced to face the brunt of the backlash for Bush and Obama’s Middle Eastern adventures. The globalists and neoconservatives were united in their efforts, and although their destructive goals were achieved, the majority of Americans did not even understand why these costly and brutal operations were being prioritized.

Trump properly grasped the mood of voters and promised to curtail the Greater Middle East project. After coming to power, he at least began to move in that direction: in December 2018, he decided to withdraw all American troops from Syria.

Project Implementation Opportunities

After the wave of color revolutions and the Arab spring, some states in the Middle East realized the real threat posed by America’s evolving strategy. Before their eyes, centralized and well-ordered states were turning into ruins. It was not just a change of leadership: the very existence of entire countries was threatened. Hence, many leaders concluded the need for a new emphasis on sovereignty. For example, Turkey, an important player in the region, focused on geopolitical interaction with Russia and China, reorienting itself toward the Eurasian axis which caused a crisis in relations with the United States (the purchase of the S-400s from Russia led the United States to refuse to sell Turkey F-35 fighter jets as previously agreed).

The region around Syria was gradually cleared of extremist groups, with the remaining militants relegated to the province of Idlib and the south-east of the country. When Imran Khan became Prime Minister, Pakistan also moved further away from the United States and began to develop pro-Chinese policies while establishing strategic relations with Russia.

Looking at all of these factors, we can conclude that the Greater Middle East project has already been curtailed.

However, the American strategy only partly depends on who runs the White House. That’s why it’s important to understand the role of the so-called Deep State in US politics. The Deep State has its own logic and direction, something which Trump needs to take into account. Due to the Deep State’s influence, America continues to take advantage of a number of complex problems for the region, one critical example being its tactic of fomenting conflict through support for the forces fighting for an independent Kurdistan. This conflict in particular is shaping  up to be the “last battle” of the Greater Middle East project.

The Kurdish Map

The Greater Middle East project, according to Ralph Peters and Bernard-Henri Levy (the plan’s most important European propagandists), involves the creation of an independent “Free Kurdistan” which includes a number of territories in Turkey, Iraq, Iran and Syria. The creation of a single state entity through the unification of the 40 million Kurds residing in these countries could lead to a number of serious problems.

The idea of ​​creating an independent Kurdish state openly and clearly began to emerge at the end of the 19th century (the first Kurdish newspaper in Kurdish began to circulate in Cairo in 1898). At the end of the 19th century, the Kurdish people seemed as though they might actually embrace Turkey. The founder and first president of the Republic of Turkey, Kemal Atatürk, was positively greeted among the Kurds – some Alevite groups interpreted the role of Atatürk as Mahdi, the last successor of the prophet Muhammad. However, after the collapse of the Ottoman Empire, the Kurds did not receive their desired autonomy, which began to cause problems.

Historically, the “Kurdish map” has always been an ace-up-the-sleeve of various geopolitical powers striving for influence in the Middle East: Woodrow Wilson first supported the creation of an independent Kurdish state after the fall of the Ottoman Empire, the US again supporting Kurdish forces in the 1970s in an attempt to overthrow the Iraqi Ba’ath party… in 2003, it used the Kurds to overthrow Saddam Hussein. The Iranians used the Kurds against Iraq in the 70s as well, while in more recent times the Syrians have tried to use the Kurdish issue against Turkey. Israel has strongly supported the Kurdistan project in order to weaken the Arabic States.

The fragmentation of the Kurds who live in Iraq, Iran, Syria, Turkey, as well as in the Caucasus, is one of the reasons why it is currently impossible to build a single Kurdish state. The Kurdish people have historically been prone to clan and political fragmentation. There are several factors which strongly separate the various groupings of Kurds.

One complication to the formation of an independent Kurdistan is linguistic fragmentation – Soran is spoken in eastern Iraq and Iran, while Kurmanji is spoken by Syrian, Iraqi and Turkish Kurds. Some Kurds in Iraq speak yet another dialect – Zaza.

Religious issues also hinder the unification of Kurdish tribes and clans into a single state: the majority of Kurds are Sunnis (with a large number of Sufi tariqas),  while Zoroastrian styled Yazidism is less widespread. Meanwhile, In Iran, Kurds are mainly followers of Shia Islam. Yazidism is considered the Kurdish national religion, but it is too different from orthodox Islam and even from the rather syncretic Sufi Tariqas.

Yazidism is prevalent mainly among the northern Kurds – Kurmanji.

New year celebrations in Lalish, 18 April 2017. (Source: Wikimedia Commons)

The Religion is a mixture of Zoroastrianism (manifested in the doctrine of the seven Archangels and a special attitude to fire and the sun, along with a strong caste system) with the Sufi teachings of Sheikh Abi ibn Musafir. The unexplored and closed sources of the Yazidi religion strongly complicate the Kurdish factor. The Muslim nations surrounding them often characterize the Yazidi Kurds as worshipers of Shaitan. Shiite-style Kurds (mainly residing in Iran) are a separate group, difficult to reduce to the Shiite branch of Islam as such, and are more approximately a Zoroastrian interpretation of it. Interestingly, Shiite Kurds believe that the Mahdi should appear among the Kurds, suggesting a degree of ethnocentrism.

Another important factor in assessing the chances of creating an independent Kurdistan is their cultural specificity in the Iranian context: the Kurds, unlike other Iranian peoples, maintained a nomadic lifestyle far longer than others.

We can conclude that building a unified Kurdistan is essentially a utopian idea: the rich diversity of the religious, linguistic and cultural codes would be impossible obstacles in building a traditional nation-state… and this is without taking into account the stiff opposition to the project from other states in the region, including Turkey, Iran, Iraq and Syria. For these countries, the implementation of the Greater Kurdistan project would actually mean the end of territorial integrity and a fundamental weakening of their sovereignty, and perhaps even their complete collapse (particularly given the fact that other ethnic minorities would likely want to follow the Kurdish path).

Although an independent state might be a pipe-dream, Turkey’s current tactical ally, Russia, could play a positive role in solving and regulating the Kurdish issue by other means. Being neutral in the conflict, despite historically positive relations with the Kurds, Russia could act as a mediator and guarantor of Kurdish rights while fighting to maintain the territorial integrity of existing states. Russia could assist in providing the Kurds with the possibility of cultural unification, protection and the development of their identity, but this implies the concept of a cultural and historical association rather than a political one. This association could grant the Kurds a certain degree of autonomy while preserving the territorial borders of the states in which they live.

In Iraq, a solution to the Kurdish issue is possible through the construction of a tripartite confederation between the Shiite majority, the Sunnis (with the rejection of Salafism and extremism and with the Sufis playing a predominant roe) and the Kurds (mainly Sunnis). It is also necessary to take into account Assyrian Christians, Yezidis and other ethnic-religious minorities of Iraq.

At present, Iraqi Kurds have the maximum autonomy and prerequisites for the implementation of the Kurdistan project under the leadership of Masoud Barzani. The origins of the relative independence of Iraqi Kurdistan are in American operations during the 2000s. It was during this period that Iraqi Kurds gained a maximum degree of autonomy. At the moment, Iraqi Kurdistan has its own armed forces, currency and even its own diplomats. Its main income comes from oil sales. Interestingly, the per capita GDP in Iraqi Kurdistan is quite high and exceeds that of Iran and Syria.

Moreover, in September 2017, the autonomous region’s leadership held a vote on secession from Iraq – 92.73% voters voted in favor of creating an independent Iraqi Kurdistan. Erbil’s plans in this direction have been met with negativity both in Iraq and in Turkey (despite Erdogan’s partnership with Barzani).

However, the situation in Iraq has its own difficulties and complications – the Barzani clan controls only half of the region, the second part of Iraqi Kurdistan, including the capital located in Sulaymaniyah, is controlled by the Talabani clan (the “Patriotic Union of Kurdistan” party is subordinate to it). Conditional partnerships have been established between the Barzani clan and the Talabani clan, but their orientations differ due to their diverging political priorities: this also manifests itself in terms of foreign policy: The Talabani clan is focused on Iran while the Barzani clan is focused on Turkey. This situation shows that even in the strongest part of Kurdistan there are heavy internal contradictions which make state-hood impossible.

In Turkey, the project faces several particularly sharp problems, a notable one being the ruling circle’s strong views on the Kurdish issue. Erdogan came to power in part by playing on the Kurdish factor (in efforts such as the Western-supported Kurdish–Turkish peace process), but, as relations with the West worsened, he began to return to a national Kemalist course, which traditionally takes a tough anti-separatist position, seeing any compromises with separatists as weakening Turkey’s national unity. As a result, Erdogan is now pursuing a policy of suppressing the movement for Kurdish autonomy – the PKK has responded in turn by carrying out terrorist attacks and issuing ultimatums.

The most stable situation for the Kurds in the Middle East is the one in Iran. The Kurds there live in four provinces – Kurdistan, Kermanshah, Western Azerbaijan and Ilam.

Source: Wikimedia Commons

The second seed of the Kurdish state is a network of associations of followers of the partisan leader Abdullah Ocalan, a left-wing politician, and the mastermind/creator of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party. Ocalan’s teachings are about creating a special political union of Kurds in the spirit of “democratic confederalism”. This project promotes the creation of a virtual Kurdish state, based on socialist ideas. The center of this teaching is currently Syrian Kurdistan (Rojava), which has raised strong concerns from Turkey who sees the Syrian Kurds as an integral part of the PKK. Consequently, Erdogan’s policy is based on the uncompromising political rejection of the Syrian Kurds political formations, which is why he is preparing for military operations in northeastern Syria.

In Ocalan’s ideas, we find the interesting postmodern political project of creating a post-national virtual state called a “confederation” which relies on disparate associations, clans and tribes rather than a formal nation. This network-based society surprisingly coincides in its general features with postmodern theories in international relations, promoting the end of the era of nation-states and the need for a transition to a virtual structure of power. In philosophical terms, the idea is inspired by left-wing French postmodernists, in particular, the Deleuzian concept of the “rhizome” – a scattered mushroom in which there is no center, but everything is still connected in a network. The idea is manifested in the Kurdish anarcho-communist project which combines leftist ideas, postmodern philosophy and feminism. Representatives of anarchist communities inspired by globalist financier George Soros also have sympathy for the idea of a virtual rhizomatic state.

The main enemies of Ocalan’s project are Turkey and Syria (in Syria, the followers of Ocalan are based in the North – they call themselves the Democratic Federation of Northern Syria). Support for the Syrian Kurds has also come from the US government… for several years, they have sent financial assistance to the Kurds to fight Daesh terrorists. In the Western media, far more attention was paid to the Kurd’s fight against Daesh than the actual large-scale victories of the Syrian and Turkish armies.

Israel is betting heavily on the Kurds in its regional policy since the Israelis are well aware that a Kurdish state would be a fundamental problem for all of their regional opponents (Iran, Iraq, Turkey and Syria). Although the Kurds are Muslims, and therefore hardly enthusiastic about Israeli policy toward Palestine, the pragmatic interests of Kurdish nationalism often outweigh confessional solidarity.

Following the recent strengthening of Assad’s position in Syria, Iran’s tough opposition to US policy and Turkey’s geopolitical reversal toward multipolarity, America is also increasingly putting its money on the Kurds, literally and figuratively. In 2019, the Ministry of Defense allocated $300 million to support Kurdish forces in the war against Daesh. The United States, according to UWI sources, continues to supply arms to Kurdish militants from the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) today, using them as a weapon in the struggle to overthrow Assad. A report by the Carnegie Foundation notes that Kurdish groups in Syria and Iraq that successfully conducted operations against Daesh are “key US allies.” In the Western media, the Kurds are usually portrayed as “peacekeepers.”

The Americans (who are well aware of the difficulties involved) believe that the process of trying to build a Kurdish state will weaken or destroy their Middle Eastern rivals. After all, the creation of a free Kurdistan would entail the territorial division of Syria, Iran, Iraq and Turkey, creating a wide-ranging but controlled chaos.

An Alternative to the Greater Middle East Project

It has become apparent that the Kurdish issue needs to be resolved in the framework of a new project, an alternative to the globalist’s Greater Middle East strategy. It is important to create an alternative project that could rely on Ankara, while taking into account the interests of Baghdad, Tehran and Damascus. It should be Moscow, and not Washington (at least, not the American deep state) that plays the central mediating role. The project should work to preserve the territorial integrity of existing nations and even strengthen their overall sovereignty… at the same time, it is extremely important to take into account the diversity of peoples in the Middle East, and the Kurds in particular. Within this new political framework, the Kurds should have certain powers and guarantees – but at the same time, they must not be allowed to be exploited by globalist forces looking to destabilize the region to their own advantage.

In the context of the transformation of the Middle East, powers should reorient themselves towards cooperation with the Eurasian pole. China and Russia could become the key players in resolving the Kurdish issue, ensuring a balance between real Kurdish interests and the countries seeking to maintain their territorial integrity. The only way out of the current Kurdish impasse is finding a strict, consistent and integrated approach to solving the problem of Kurdish identity.

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انتبهوا: تغيّرت قواعد الحرب وليس قواعد الاشتباك!

سبتمبر 3, 2019

جاء وعد الله…جاء نصرالله
المقاومة تغير قواعد الحرب وليس قواعد الإشتباك

1ايلول 2019 : سقوط الخطوط الحمراء

ناصر قنديل

وحدَه السيد حسن نصرالله كان يعلم ماذا يفعل بوضع تصنيف عملية الردّ التي قررتها المقاومة على الغارة التي سقط فيها شهيدان للمقاومة في سورية، ضمن إطار العودة لقواعد الاشتباك المعمول بها منذ العام 2006، ومنع المحاولة الإسرائيلية لتغيير قواعد الاشتباك، والردّ الذي نفذته المقاومة جاء بفعل هذا التوصيف تحت غطاء وطني مثله بيان مجلس الدفاع الأعلى وتأكيده حق اللبنانيين بالدفاع بكل الوسائل. وبفعل هذا التوصيف كانت المتابعات التي رافقت العملية تائهة في علوم الحرب، بين عقول سياسية وعسكرية تقليدية قرأت العملية الجديدة للمقاومة كردّ موضعي مدروس بحساب عدم تصعيد الوضع ويشكّل رسالة رد على تمادي جيش الاحتلال، ترافق مع عدم وجود رغبة دولية وأميركية خصوصاً بالتصعيد، ما جعل كيان الاحتلال يحتوي العملية ويمتنع عن الذهاب لرد يؤدي للتصعيد، خصوصاً أنه على أبواب انتخابات لا تحتمل المخاطرة بتصعيد قد يؤدي للانزلاق للحرب.

محبّو المقاومة من أصحاب العقول التقليدية وضعوا نهاية الجولة برد رفع عتب من جيش الاحتلال وما رافقه من كذب بشأن وقوع الإصابات، في إطار حرص المقاومة بعدم توجيه ردّ يُحرج جيش الاحتلال ويكفي لتحقيق الهدف بتثبيت قواعد الاشتباك، وكارهوها ولو أظهر بعضهم خلاف ذلك تحدّثوا عن رد ورد على الرد متفق عليهما، بقنوات اتصال غير مباشرة، بعضهم قال روسية وبعض آخر قال فرنسية، لمنع التصعيد. فهل هذه هي الصورة الحقيقية لما جرى يوم الأحد في الأول من أيلول 2019 الذي صار يوماً تاريخياً؟

المقاومة تؤكد أنها لم ترد بعد على عملية الطائرتين المسيّرتين اللتين خرقتا سماء الضاحية ومثلتا محاولة جيش الاحتلال لتغيير قواعد الاشتباك، وأن الردّ عملياً محدّد بكلام السيد حسن نصرالله، عن توقيت ونوع التعامل الذي سيجري مع الطائرات المسيَّرة لجيش الاحتلال، باعتبارها منذ تاريخ عملية الضاحية، أكبر من انتهاك للسيادة يترك للدولة التعامل معه في إطار توثيق انتهاكات جيش الاحتلال للقرار 1701، لتصير عملاً عدوانياً سيتعرض للمواجهة، واستهداف ما تيسّر من المسيَّرات ضمن حساب يكفي لجعل حركتها مقيدة ومعقدة، ويحول دون استنزاف المقاومة لمواردها وقدراتها في حرب الطائرات المسيَّرة.

عملياً ردّ المقاومة كان على الغارة التي استهدفت مجاهدي المقاومة في سورية، وحملت اسمي شهيدي الغارة. وهنا نحتاج لبعض الهدوء والتأني في القراءة لنعرف ما جرى، ونضع من خلاله رؤية أي سياق يفتتح، وأي معادلة يرسم. فوجود المقاومة في سورية ينتمي لمرحلة ما بعد معادلات وقواعد اشتباك 2006، وما يحكم التعامل مع هذا الوجود لم ترسم له بعد قواعد اشتباك موضوعية يلتزمها الطرفان، المقاومة والاحتلال. بل هناك محاولات من الاحتلال لجعله هدفاً مشروعاً باعتباره وجوداً خارج لبنان، وسعي من المقاومة لجعل كل اعتداء يؤدي لسقوط شهداء موضوعاً للردّ المشروع. وكانت تجربة ثنائية عملية القنيطرة لجيش الاحتلال عام 2015 والرد عليها في مزارع شبعا عام 2015، النموذج الوحيد لهذه المحاولات، التي لم تتحول إلى قواعد اشتباك.

عملياً رد المقاومة فرض هذه المعادلة لحماية دماء مجاهديها في سورية وأي مكان في لبنان وخارجه، والآن صار اسمها قواعد اشتباك أضيفت لما سبقها الذي كان ميدانه الجغرافيا اللبنانية حصراً. فالردّ هنا فرض لقواعد اشتباك جديدة من جانب المقاومة وليس تثبيتاً لقواعد الاشتباك القديمة، لكن الرد يبدو أكبر من ذلك بكثير، بحيث يصير من السذاجة تصديق مجرد التفكير باعبتاره محدوداً وموضعياً ومدروساً. فكيف بالقول إنه متفق عليه؟ فنحن أمام أول عملية تستهدف جيش الاحتلال داخل جغرافيا فلسطين المحتلة عام 1948، من حدود دولة جوار عربي، ينتهي دون رد إسرائيلي بحجم ما يمثل، فيما العمل العسكري لجيش الاحتلال موضوع الردّ كان على وجود المقاومة خارج لبنان. وهو وجود لا يحظى بتغطية دولية تشرعنه، واستهدافه من جيش الاحتلال يحظى بالتفهم الدولي، وبالمقابل رد المقاومة يعتبر عدواناً على ما يعتبره المجتمع الدولي أرضاً إسرائيلية وليس أرضاً لبنانية محتلة، أو متنازعاً عليها، أو أرضاً عربية محتلة كالجولان أو الضفة الغربية، وهذا يعني ببساطة أن وجود المقاومة خارج لبنان بات محمياً بخط أحمر، وأن مواقع الاحتلال داخل فلسطين الـ 48 لم تعد خطاً أحمر.

ردّ المقاومة وما تلاه يقولان شيئاً جديداً كلياً، عبّرت عنه الخارجية الأميركية بما يشبه إعلان الخيبة من تهرّب جيش الاحتلال من الردّ، ومن يقرأه يظن أن الأمور ذاهبة إلى جولة تصعيد، بما تضمنه من تغطية لما وصفه بالحق المشروع لإسرائيل بالدفاع عن نفسها ، ولغة عصبية في الحديث عن تحميل حزب الله مسؤولية التصعيد وزعزعة الاستقرار في لبنان والمنطقة، والاستقرار لم يتزعزع ولا من يزعزعون. وقد مسح الاحتلال بجلده الإهانة وكذب بشأن إصابته لتفادي التصعيد، وجاء البيان الفرنسي مليئاً بالمعاني أيضاً بالتأكيد على الوقوف على مسافة واحدة من طرفين هما المقاومة و إسرائيل . وهو يباهي باتصالاته بكل منهما لمنع التصعيد. وهو يعلم أن أحدهما تعرّض للاستهداف خارج حدوده ، أي المقاومة، والثاني تعرض للاستهداف داخل حدوده ، أي كيان الاحتلال، وأن أحدهما دولة تقيم أفضل العلاقات مع فرنسا، والثاني حركة سياسية عسكرية تصنِّف فرنسا جناحها العسكري المعني بالرد على لوائح الإرهاب.

الذين كانوا في لبنان ينتظرون رد المقاومة ويفركون كفوفهم بانتظار الرد الإسرائيلي على الردّ أصابهم الإحباط، فقد سقطت نظرياتهم عن تعريض المقاومة لبنان لخطر حرب. ونعيق البوم والغربان عن الخراب والدمار ذهب هباء. فقد خذلتهم إسرائيل ، ولم يجدوا إلا الحديث عن حزنهم على غياب الدولة، أو عن قبول مسبق من جانب إسرائيل لصفعة وجودية تاريخية، اخترعوا له وجود تفاهم ضمني أميركي إيراني موهوم لضبط الردّ والردّ على الردّ.

ردّ المقاومة نصف حرب وليس عملاً موضعياً ولا يصلح ليكون رداً متفقاً عليه مع أي كان، فكيف مع الاحتلال المصاب في كبده اليوم، ليصير الردع الذي يحكم معادلة المقاومة والاحتلال، وقد ترسمل بقواعد جديدة بمدى ونوع أعمق بكثير من أن تفسره الانتخابات، أو حسابات نتنياهو، بل حدود قدرة الكيان سياسياً وعسكرياً وشعبياً على تحمّل اختبارات الحرب، الكيان الذي قدّم لنا السيد الإثبات أنه أوهن من أوهن من أوهن من بيت العنكبوت، وها هي إسرائيل المصابة في روحها أمام أعيننا، والأعمى وحده لا يريد أن يرى.

وحدَه السيد يعرف ماذا فعل، فقد غيّر قواعد الحرب وهو يتحدث عن منع العدو من تغيير قواعد الاشتباك، وما جرى سيغير معادلات حركة جيش الاحتلال في سورية والعراق وفلسطين، وكما كل مرة المقاومة تسجل السابقة وتفتح الطريق لتصير قانون حرب.

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Donald Trump has no measure

Donald Trump has no measure

August 27, 2019

by Paul Schmutz Schaller for The Saker Blog

Some weeks ago, I was convinced that Trump would be quietly re-elected in 2020. His position was very confortable. His political program “Make America great again” has made its way. He has finally taken the reins in his government. And in the relations of the USA with the other countries, he has established the style “as long as you dance to my tune and give me enough money, you can do and think what you want”. Hence, he has created a quite clear, new image of the USA, which is easily to sell in an election campaign. (Be aware, please, that all this is a description, not a judgement of quality.)

On the other side, the political leaders of the opposition are weak. They keep their program of a “moral” imperialism. The world should not only accept the USA as the unique leader, but also think like the USA. Consequently, they more strongly back open interference in other countries; China/Hong Kong is a typical example. Their message to the population in the USA seems to be restricted to “give us the power, we then know what to do”.

So, the stage for the elections in 2020 seemed to be set. Regarding from outside, Trump had just to continue as before and calmly attend the elections. However, apparently, he has not this capacity. I understand now that he never will be satisfied with his achievements. This is an unhealthy attitude.

Trump has no measure. May-be, many knew this since quite some time, but for me, it became evident in the last weeks. Here are some examples. On 22 July, Trump declared that, in order to win the war in Afghanistan, he could kill 10 millions Afghans (but he does not intend to do so). Later, he repeated his claim, “specifying” that this can be done without nuclear arms. On 27 July began some tweets on Baltimore, describing this city as a rat hole in which, as Trump wrote, “no human being would want to live”. On 31 July, sanctions against the Iranian foreign minister Zarif were announced by the US-government; one immediately asked for the logic of this action, given the fact that Trump repeatedly demanded negotiations with Iran. Later on, it was revealed that Zarif was probably “punished” since he – in accordance with Tehran – did not accept to meet Trump in the White House. (By the way, the expression “maximal” pressure against Iran also illustrates the lack of measure.) On 15 August, Trump’s wish to buy Greenland from Denmark became public; he even cancelled a state visit to Denmark – scheduled for September – with the justification that Denmark was not ready to consider selling Greenland. Of course, Greenland has a big strategic value in the Arctic so Trump’s idea is not silly, abstractly speaking. But it was completely silly to think that a country in Western Europe, even a small one, would consider selling some part of its territory; politically speaking, the latter is just unthinkable. Finally, and this happened on 23 August, Trump tweeted that “American companies are hereby ordered to immediately start looking for an alternative to China”. The crucial word here is of course the word “ordered”. In a subsequent tweet, Trump insisted that he, as the president, has the right to order such kind of things.

Each of these acts, looked at separately, may follow a logical plan. But on the whole, Trump’s behaviour is excessive and looks far too extreme; the result is certainly counterproductive (judged from his point of view).

Having no measure is a grave weakness for a leader. He or she lacks sovereignty and makes a driven impression. In the Christian tradition, having no measure is considered as a severe sin, very near to the so-called deadly sins.

One should distinguish the lack of measure on the one hand and being unconventional on the other hand. During the campaign for the election in 2016, Trump made an unconventional impression and frequently attacked the political establishment. This made him quite popular. After his election, he continued in this manner from time to time. However, no one of the examples mentioned above is of this type. Also, Trump regularly used the tactics to bluff first and withdraw later. Again, no one of the examples mentioned above is of this category. Nor can they be interpreted as a manifestation of a sound self-confidence.

It is of course useful for the world to figure out the weaknesses of the US president. This supports the fight against his aggressive politics. It will be the same for the successor of Trump; it will be better to quickly grasp his or her weak points.

I now feel that the outcome of the 2020 elections in the USA is far from clear. Trump has this capital defect of having no measure. Moreover, actually, the international situation is changing fast. Major events are expected to occur in the next months. Quite probably, they will have a substantial influence on these elections.

PS: I do not at all intend to say that Trump is (mentally) sick. In politics, labeling a person as sick is just a simple – indeed rather primitive – method in order to disqualify this person. It does not help to understand whatsoever.

* * *

I, Paul, am a retired, trained mathematician from Switzerland. Since nearly 50 years, I am an active anticolonialist. More recently, I came to the conclusion that Western societies have lost the capacity to positively contribute to the development in the world. Generally speaking, I support China, Russia, Iran, Syria, Hezbollah, and similar forces. My values are autonomy, humility, perseverance, and positivity.

US Leaves INF Because “Russia,” But Points Missiles at China

 

August 9, 2019 (Gunnar Ulson – NEO) – We’re told that the US withdrawal from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty singed in 1987 between the US and Soviet Union was based on claims that Russia had violated it.

While we continue waiting for Washington to provide evidence to prove these claims, the US itself admitted it had already long begun developing missiles that violated the treaty.

A February 2018 Defense One article titled, “Pentagon Confirms It’s Developing Nuclear Cruise Missile to Counter a Similar Russian One,” admitted that:

The U.S. military is developing a ground-launched, intermediate-range cruise missile to counter a similar Russian weapon whose deployment violates an arms-control treaty between Moscow and Washington, U.S. officials said Friday. 

The officials acknowledged that the still-under-development American missile would, if deployed, also violate the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty.

Just as the US did when it unilaterally walked away from the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty in 2002, the goal is to blame Russia for otherwise indefensible and incremental provocations aimed at Moscow. For example, after the US walked away from the ABM Treaty in 2002, the US began deploying anti-missile systems across Europe.

But if Russia is the problem, why did the US also begin deploying similar missiles in Asia?

It is Washington’s goal of hemming in its competitors anywhere and everywhere that is at the heart of these serial treaty terminations, not any particular “violation” on Moscow’s part.

China Too   

That the US already had missiles under development that would undoubtedly violate the INF Treaty before it accused Russia of such violations, is one indicator of Washington’s true intentions. Another is the fact Washington is rushing to encircle China with both defensive and offensive missile systems as well.

China is not a signatory of either the ABM Treaty or the INF Treaty. Its missiles are deployed strictly within its mainland territory with no plans by Beijing to deploy them anywhere else in the future.

The only threat they pose is to any nation that decides to wage war on China, in or around Chinese territory.

Washington’s behavior post-INF Treaty indicates that it was its intent to violate the treaty all along, creating the same precarious security crisis in Asia the treaty sought to prevent in Europe.

The New York Times in its article, “U.S. Ends Cold War Missile Treaty, With Aim of Countering China,” would explain:

The United States on Friday terminated a major treaty of the Cold War, the Intermediate Nuclear Forces agreement, and it is already planning to start testing a new class of missiles later this summer. 

But the new missiles are unlikely to be deployed to counter the treaty’s other nuclear power, Russia, which the United States has said for years was in violation of the accord. Instead, the first deployments are likely to be intended to counter China, which has amassed an imposing missile arsenal and is now seen as a much more formidable long-term strategic rival than Russia. 

The moves by Washington have elicited concern that the United States may be on the precipice of a new arms race, especially because the one major remaining arms control treaty with Russia, a far larger one called New START, appears on life support, unlikely to be renewed when it expires in less than two years.

Here, the NYT admits that despite Washington claiming its termination of the INF Treaty was prompted by Moscow, its own actions since indicate Washington was already well underway of violating it itself. It did so not only to threaten Russia, but also to threaten China.

After months of accusing Russia of undermining the INF Treaty, the NYT itself reveals it was Washington who solely benefited from it, and specifically in terms of targeting China:

…the administration has argued that China is one reason Mr. Trump decided to exit the I.N.F. treaty. Most experts now assess that China has the most advanced conventional missile arsenal in the world, based throughout the mainland. When the treaty went into effect in 1987, China’s missile fleet was judged so rudimentary that it was not even a consideration.

The prospects of the US signing a new treaty with either Russia or China (or both) are nonexistent. The NYT article also reported that:

Chinese officials have also balked at any attempt to limit their missiles with a new treaty, arguing that the nuclear arsenals of the United States and Russia are much larger and deadlier.

The NYT fails to mention the other, and perhaps most important factor preventing Beijing from signing any treaty with Washington; Washington has already demonstrated categorically that it cannot be trusted. It just walked away from the INF Treaty based on deliberate lies implicating Russia while Washington all along was developing missiles it planned to deploy around the globe to hem in both Russia and China.

Dangerous Desperation 

While the Cold War is remembered as a precarious time, it was a time when agreements like the ABM and INF treaties were not only possible, they were signed and for the most part adhered to by two global powers who could agree an uneasy balance of global power was preferable to large scale war (nuclear or not) between the two.

During the Cold War, Washington was confident that it could not only maintain that balance of power, but eventually tip it in its favor, resulting in global hegemony. The collapse of the Soviet Union and the US invasion of Iraq certainly seemed to prove those behind this mindset right. But the window was already closing on the establishment of an uncontested US-led international order.

Today, Russia, China and a number of other emerging regional and global powers have all but assured US hegemony is no longer a viable geopolitical objective. The confidence that allowed the US to sign previous treaties and uphold them along with their Soviet counterparts no longer exists.

We live in a world today where the US has become a tremendous danger to global peace and security. The inability of treaties to exist that were even possible during the tense days of the Cold War takes us into unprecedented and dangerous territory.

Only time will tell if both Moscow and Beijing can find other mechanisms to avoid a dangerous and wasteful arms race in their backyards as a stubborn United States not only refuses to leave, but insists on bringing in incredibly dangerous weapons that will wreck havoc not on the territorial United States, but on the nations of Europe and East Asia should Washington’s desperation progress even further amid its wanning global power.

Gunnar Ulson, a New York-based geopolitical analyst and writer especially for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook”.

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