Russian Navy To Guard Iranian Oil Supplies To Syria Under Strategic Agreement – Report

South Front

 17.04.2021 

A Russian Navy assault team from the Russian Federation ship Severromorsk land by helicopter on the deck of the Italian Ship San Marco, the NATO flag ship to Operation Ocean Shield, during a NATO-Russia counter piracy exercise in the Gulf of Aden.

Russia, Iran and Syria have established a joint operation room that would work to guarantee the security and stability of oil and wheat supplies to Syrian ports through the Mediterranean Sea, Sputnik reported on April 17.

According to the agency, a series of intensive meetings between Russian, Iranian and Syrian officials was held recently with the aim of breaking the siege imposed by the US and European Union on Syria.

“The room’s work is to provide multi-sided coordination to secure the arrival of oil supplies, in the first place, to Syrian ports,” Sputnik quoted sources familiar with the matter as saying.

Syria has been facing an unprecedented economic crisis as a result the sanctions imposed by the US and the EU. The country’s natural resources in the northeastern region are also under control of US proxies. Furthermore, ships heading to Syrian ports face sanctions as well as the threat of direct attacks on some occasions.

In the framework of the joint operations room, Russian Navy vessels will protect Iranian tankers heading to Syria until the end of this year.

Iranian tankers will gather in the Mediterranean and sail to Syria in one convoy escorted by the Russian Navy. Recently, this protocol was successfully used to guard four tankers heading to Syria.

According to Sputnik’s sources, other ships loaded with supplied, including food and chemicals for the pharmaceutical industry, will arrive in Syrian ports. Several wheat shipments from Russia will also be sent to Syria until next June.

“The recent tripartite coordination, which resulted in understandings that could be described as strategy, would secure most of the Syrian market’s needs for basic commodities and materials,” the sources said.

The operations room demonstrates honest commitment of Russia and Iran to Syria and the Syrian people. Meanwhile, the US and the EU continue to place political conditions to easy their collective sanctions on the country.

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Yemeni/Syrian Uni students from Aleppo protest against ‘US-Saudi war’

Image

Description:

TV report by the Al Masirah satellite channel on a protest event held by Yemeni and Syrian students from Aleppo University, in condemnation of the continuing ‘US-Saudi war on Yemen’.

Source: Hona Al Masirah (YouTube Channel)

Date: April 4, 2021

(Important Note: Please help us keep producing independent translations for you by contributing a small monthly amount here )

Transcript:

Reporter:

From Aleppo, here is Sana’a and here is Yemen. The Yemeni Students’ Union at Aleppo University has held an event marking the National Day of Steadfastness under the auspices of the Ba’ath Arab Socialist Party’s leadership, and in the presence of the Yemeni ambassador to Syria and the accompanying delegation.

Abdullah Ali Sabri, Yemeni ambassador to Syria:

The war on our country is an American aggression par excellence. The blockade imposed on our people is primarily an American, British and Zionist aggression. And even though Saudi Arabia is spearheading this aggression, it is no longer able to end the war without a U.S. decision. You are witnessing (today) the great signs of ISIS’ defeat, thanks to God, Ansarullah, the army, the popular committees, the steadfastness of the Yemeni people and the skilled revolutionary and political leadership of Sayyid Abdul-Malek al-Houthi (may God protect him).

(…We are open to an) honorable and just peace if they are (indeed) serious about it; otherwise we are ready to fight, as they well know. We are at the beginning of the seventh year (of the US-Saudi-led aggression), and moving forward with the victory from God and His support {and that day the believers will rejoice, In the victory of Allah}.

Reporter:

Syria, represented in the event by the leadership of the Aleppo University Branch of the Ba’ath Arab Socialist Party, stressed its solidarity with the leadership and people of Yemen against the aggression.

Dr. Ibrahim al-Hadid, Secretary of the Aleppo University Branch of Ba’ath Arab Socialist Party of Syria:   

At the heart of aggression, and at the heart of the raging aggression, and the U.S. firepower against the Yemeni people, is that the Yemenis did not forget Palestine. They called for the right of Palestine, and stood by Palestine, despite that some were at the same time normalizing ties (with Israel); opening (Israeli) embassies; and boarding luxury aircrafts to al-Quds and Tel Aviv. The Yemenis have not and will not abandon this cause.      

 Reporter:

The event hall was filled with a large crowd of Syrian, Yemeni and Arab students, who have come, unified, to express their position against the aggression and praise the steadfastness and victories of the Yemeni people.

Adel al-Hadad, a member of the Yemeni Students’ Union at Aleppo university:

We came today, in this celebration of the National Day of Steadfastness, to express the feelings of Arab students, and Yemenis abroad in general, on the victory Yemen is achieving. We are hugely proud of every Yemeni fighter on the frontlines who achieved this victory for the dignity of this Ummah (nation) and the will of Yemen.

Abdullah al-Wasabi, chairman of the Yemeni Students’ Union at Aleppo university:

This is a message from all Yemeni students studying at home and abroad, that they do whatever possible to support the steadfastness of our resistant Yemeni people and convey their oppression and cause, as they are the intellectual elite and the leaders of the future.

Reporter:

(The crowds) stood together in solidarity with Yemen in the square of Aleppo University on the sixth anniversary of Yemen’s steadfastness, where they chanted in condemnation of the aggression’s forces.

The crowd:

“Down, down America”,

“Down, down America”,

 “Down, down Israel”.

Reporter:

At the end of the event, (the Union) honored the event’s sponsor, organisers, and Al Masirah channel for its role in the media confrontation.

Kinan Al-Youssef, Al-Masirah channel, Aleppo.

Oil Prices Rise After Targeting Thirty of Shaaban Operation

Oil Prices Rise After Targeting Thirty of Shaaban Operation

News – Middle East: Oil prices rose, Monday, after the Yemeni Armed Forces announced the implementation of a large-scale military operation in the depths of Saudi Arabia, which targeted the facilities of the Saudi oil company “Aramco” in Jeddah and Jubail.

According to “RT” website, oil prices changed direction after the announcement of the operation, as they were in the red trading, in the morning.

According to Bloomberg data, US West Texas Intermediate crude rose 0.22% to $ 59.45 a barrel, while Brent crude rose 0.38% to $ 63.19 a barrel.

The Yemeni armed forces announced, earlier, Monday, the implementation of the “Thirty of Shaaban” operation, in response to the escalation of US-Saudi aggression and its unjust siege.

Thirty of Shaaban Operation Hits Saudi Depth with 17 Drones, Ballistic Missiles

Thirty of Shaaban Operation Hits Saudi Depth with 17 Drones, Ballistic Missiles

News – Yemen: Yemeni Armed Forces announced, Monday, the implementation of the “Thirty of Shaaban” operation, which targeted the Saudi depth, in response to the escalation of the US-Saudi aggression and its unjust siege.

The Armed Forces spokesman, Brigadier General Yahya Sare’e, said in a statement that Thirty of Shaaban Operation was carried out by 17 drones and ballistic missiles.

He indicated that Aramco’s refineries in Jeddah and Jubail were hit with 10 Sammad-3-type drones, and sensitive military sites in Khamis Mushait and Jizan regions were also hit with 5 Qasif-2k-type drones and two Badr 1 ballistic missiles.

He pointed out that the operation lasted from yesterday evening until dawn today, Monday, and it has successfully achieved its objectives.

The Yemeni armed forces reiterated that their operations are continuing and escalating as long as the aggression and siege on our country continues.

Chosen Articles

معركة تحرير مأرب… أهميتها وتداعياتها The battle to liberate Marib … its significance and repercussions

** Please scroll down for the English Machine translation **

معركة تحرير مأرب… أهميتها وتداعياتها

حسن حردان

طرح البدء بمعركة تحرير مدينة مأرب، التساؤلات حول مدى أهميتها وتداعياتها على مسار الحرب والتسوية السياسية ومستقبل اليمن، لا سيما أنّ التقدّم الكبير الحاصل في الميدان الذي يحققه تحالف اللجان الشعبية والجيش اليمني قد أدّى إلى رفع منسوب درجة اهتمام الدول الغربية بمجرياتها.. لما لذلك من انعكاسات على موازين القوى على صعيدي الميدان والسياسة.

انّ الإجابة على هذه التساؤلات وأسباب هذا الاهتمام الغربي الذي عكس مستوى القلق من التطورات الميدانية في مأرب، إنما يكمن في العوامل التالية:

أولاً، انّ إنجاز تحرير مدينة مأرب يعني عملياً سقوط آخر وأهمّ معقل للسعودية وحكومة هادي التابعة للرياض، وحزب الإصلاح الإخواني في شمال اليمن، مما سيشكل هزيمة مدوية لقوى العدوان على اليمن، ويحسم سيطرة تحالف اللجان الشعبية والجيش اليمني على كلّ المحافظات الشمالية وصولاً إلى الحدود مع محافظات جنوب اليمن.. وإبعاد التهديد عن العاصمة صنعاء، وبالتالي انهيار أحلام الرياض وحكومة هادي في استعادة السيطرة على شمال اليمن انطلاقاً من مأرب…

ثانياً، إنّ مأرب تقع جغرافياً على الحدود مع المملكة السعودية لجهة مدينتي جيزان وشرورة السعوديتين من الجهة المقابلة لمأرب.. وهذا يجعل استمرار السعودية بالعدوان، في مواجهة احتمال انتقال المعركة البرية إلى قلب هاتين المدينتين، وهو ما تتخوّف منه الرياض، وتحاول القوى التابعة لها التهويل من خطورته بالقول انّ قوات صنعاء اذا سيطرت على مدينة مأرب سوف يؤدّي ذلك الى سقوط خطّ الدفاع الأوّل عن مدينتَي جيزان وشرورة، وسيفتح سقوطها الباب أمام حركة «أنصار الله» لتوسيع نفوذها إلى كامل الحدود السعودية المشتركة مع اليمن.. وقد ذهب مدير التوجيه المعنوي السابق لقوات هادي في مأرب، اللواء محسن خصروف، إلى حدّ القول: «إنّ سقوط مأرب مُقدّمة لسقوط الرياض».. وذلك في محاولة لدفع الحكومة السعودية للزجّ بكلّ قوّتها لمنع سقوط مأرب بأيدي قوات اللجان والحكومة الشرعية في صنعاء…

ثالثاً، إنّ تحرير مأرب سيؤدّي إلى تحرير الثروة النفطية والغازية الهامة الموجودة فيها، والتي كانت تستغلها السعودية والقوى التابعة لها، وتحرم أهل اليمن منها، مما سيمكن حكومة صنعاء من امتلاك موارد هامة تعزز صمود اليمنيين ومقاومتهم في مواجهة العدوان والحصار المفروض عليهم منذ بدء الحرب على اليمن.. الأمر الذي سيشكل تحوّلاً كبيراً لمصلحة تعزيز تحرر اليمن من الهيمنة والسيطرة الأميركية السعودية، إذا ما أخذنا في الاعتبار أنّ أحد أهداف الحرب على اليمن إنما هو منع اليمنيين من التحكم في استغلال ثروتهم، من الغاز والنفط، التي يُقال إنّ اليمن يحوز على كميات كبيرة منها، وخصوصاً في مأرب، وإذا أحسن استغلالها فإنها تمكّن اليمن من تنمية اقتصاده وتحسين حياة الشعب، وتحوّل اليمن إلى دولة قوية مستقلة..

كما يوجد في مأرب محطة صافر لتوليد الطاقة الكهربائية بالغاز التي تغذي العاصمة صنعاء وعدد من المحافظات الشمالية والوسطى.. فيما سدّ مأرب يوفر مياه الري لمساحات شاسعة من الاراضي الزراعية، ولهذا اختيرت مأرب، في القدم، عاصمة للدولة السبئية، خلال الألفية الأولى قبل الميلاد، وفيها عرش ومحرم بلقيس.. وكانت تشكل حصناً لصدّ الغزاة الذين سعوا إلى احتلال اليمن منذ أيام الإمبراطورية الرومانية التي عجزت جيوشها عن احتلالها.. وكذلك جيوش الدولة العثمانية.

رابعاً، إنّ تحرير مأرب سيؤدي إلى تعزيز الموقف السياسي لتحالف اللجان الشعبية والحكومة الشرعية في صنعاء، في أيّ مفاوضات مقبلة لتحقيق التسوية للأزمة اليمنية، ويحدّ كثيراً من قدرة واشنطن والسعودية وحكومة هادي على فرض شروطهم..

خامساً، انّ تحرير مأرب وما يعنيه من انهيار آخر وأهمّ معقل لحكومة هادي وحلفائها، سيؤدّي إلى خلق مناخ عام بالهزيمة، وانهيار معنويات مقاتليهم، الأمر الذي سيولد تداعيات سريعة في مناطق سيطرتهم في جنوب اليمن، تسعر من الصراعات، المحتدمة أصلاً في ما بينهم، حول المسؤولية عن الهزيمة من جهة، وحول السيطرة على الجنوب من جهة ثانية، مما سيؤدّي إلى نقمة شعبية واسعة تعزز موقف القوى المعارضة لوجود المجلس الانتقالي وقوات هادي المدعومة سعودياً، ويوفر ظروفاً مواتية كي يتحالف أبناء الجنوب مع اللجان الشعبية والجيش اليمني لاستكمال تحرير المحافظات الجنوبية، من سيطرة قوات هادي والمجلس الانتقالي.. المدعومين من تحالف قوى العدوان.

هذه النتائج والتداعيات المتوقعة من جراء تحرير مأرب، هي التي تقف وراء ارتفاع درجة اهتمام الدول الغربية بما يحصل في مأرب، وفي المقدمة الولايات المتحدة، والتي عبّر عنها بمسارعتها إلى إطلاق التصريحات التي تدعو إلى وقف هجوم أنصار الله والقوات المسلحة اليمنية في مأرب، لمنع حصول التحوّلات النوعية في موازين القوى، لمصلحة تحالف أنصار الله والقوى الوطنية، على حساب الموقف الأميركي السعودي الذي سيجد نفسه يجلس إلى طاولة المفاوضات المقترحة لحلّ الأزمة، وهو في حالة من الضعف بعد أن مُنيَ بهزيمة قاسية، الأمر الذي يجعل حركة أنصار الله وحلفاءها في موقع من يملك القدرة على فرض الشروط، قبل انطلاق المفاوضات بوقف العدوان والحصار، وخلال المفاوضات بفرض شروط للتسوية تعزز قدرة الشعب اليمني على تقرير مصيره بعيداً عن التدخلات الخارجية.

انطلاقاً مما تقدّم يمكن فهم لماذا يرفض تحالف اللجان والجيش اليمني وقف الهجوم لاستكمال إنجاز تحرير مدينة مأرب.. ولماذا يرتفع منسوب القلق السعودي الأميركي الغربي من ذلك..

فتحرير مدينة مأرب سيشكل انتصاراً نوعياً يتوّج الانتصارات التي تحققت على مدى سنوات الحرب، وهزيمة كبرى لدول العدوان والقوى التابعة لهم، وسقوط أهدافهم التي سعت إلى القضاء على انصار الله والقوى الوطنية وإعادة إخضاع اليمن ومنع خروجه من فلك التبعية، لما يمثله من موقع جغرافي هامّ على طريق التجارة الدولية وفي الخليج حيث تتركز السيطرة الاستعمارية الأميركية على ثروات النفط والغاز وطرق إمدادها في مياه الخليج وباب المندب… وهو ما جعل إدارة الرئيس الأميركي جو بايدن تدعو إلى وقف هذه الحرب لاحتواء تداعياتها السلبية على النفوذ الاستعماري الأميركي، وتعرب عن القلق من سيطرة حركة أنصار الله على مأرب، الأمر الذي قد يسهم في تسريع خطوات واشنطن لوقف الحرب، ومحاولة الحدّ من تداعيات الهزيمة، وتدفيع ولي العهد السعودي محمد بن سلمان ثمن هذه الهزيمة، وهو ما ظهرت مؤشراته من خلال إعلان البيت الأبيض انّ الرئيس بايدن سيتواصل مباشرة مع الملك سلمان، وليس مع ولي العهد، ومن ثم الإفراج عن تقرير الاستخبارات المتعلق بجريمة قتل الصحافي السعودي جمال خاشقجي.. وذلك في سياق إعادة تقييم العلاقات الأميركية مع السعودية.. ما دفع المراقبين إلى التساؤل عما إذا كانت إدارة بايدن تسعى الى تقديم محمد بن سلمان كبش فداء بتحميله مسؤولية الكارثة في اليمن، والظهور في صورة من أوقف هذه الحرب لإعادة تلميع صورة أميركا في اليمن، وتمكين الدبلوماسية الأميركية من لعب الدور المنوط بها للحدّ من الخسائر واحتواء تداعيات الهزيمة… وإعادة ترميم وتعزيز نفوذ أميركا في اليمن من خلال التسوية السياسية.. لكن السؤال هل ستتمكن من ذلك، خصوصاً بعد أن اصبح هناك مقاومة تحرّرية يمنية تملك مشروعاً للتحرر، وتسعى إلى تحقيق استقلال اليمن بعيداً عن الهيمنة والتبعية للولايات المتحدة والحكومة السعودية.. ونجحت بداية في الصمود في مواجهة العدوان، واحتواء اندفاعته، ومن ثم الانتقال من الدفاع إلى الهجوم، وفرض معادلات الردع بعد أن تكمنت من نقل الحرب إلى الداخل السعودي، وتحرير المحافظات اليمنية الشمالية من سيطرة تحالف العدوان، الواحدة تلو الأخرى، حتى أصبحنا على مقربة من تحرير واستعادة آخر محافظة شمالية، وهي محافظة مأرب الاستراتيجية من جميع النواحي، الجغرافية، والاقتصادية، والعسكرية، والسياسية.

The battle to liberate Marib … its significance and repercussions

Hassan Hardan

The start of the battle for the liberation of Marib raised questions about its importance and its implications for the course of war, political settlement and the future of Yemen, especially since the great progress made in the field achieved by the Coalition of Popular Committees and the Yemeni army has raised the level of interest of Western countries in their conduct. This has implications for the balance of power in the field and politics.

The answer to these questions and the reasons for this Western interest, which reflected the level of concern about developments on the ground in Marib, lies in the following factors:

First, the achievement of the liberation of Marib city means practically the fall of the last and most important stronghold of Saudi Arabia and the government of Hadi of Riyadh, and the Brotherhood Reform Party in northern Yemen, which will constitute a resounding defeat for the forces of aggression against Yemen, and resolve the control of the coalition of popular committees and the Yemeni army on all the northern provinces down to the border with the provinces of southern Yemen. The threat was removed from the capital Sana’a, thus collapsing Riyadh and Hadi’s government’s dreams of regaining control of northern Yemen from Marib…

Secondly, Marib is geographically located on the border with Saudi Arabia to the Saudi cities of Jizan and Sharorah on the opposite side of Marib. This makes Saudi Arabia’s continued aggression, in the face of the possibility of a land battle moving to the heart of these two cities, which Riyadh fears, and its forces are trying to downplay its seriousness by saying that if Sana’a forces take control of Marib city will lead to the fall of the first line of defense for the cities of Jizan and Shororah, and its fall will open the door for Ansar Allah movement to expand its influence to the entire Saudi border with Yemen. The former director of Hadi’s moral guidance in Marib, Major General Mohsen Khasrouf, went so far as to say, “The fall of Marib is a prelude to the fall of Riyadh.” In an attempt to push the Saudi government to put all its power to prevent the fall of Marib by the forces of the committees and the legitimate government in Sana’a…

Thirdly, the liberation of Marib will lead to the liberalization of the important oil and gas wealth in it, which was exploited by Saudi Arabia and its forces, and deprives the people of Yemen of it, which will enable the Government of Sana’a to have important resources that strengthen the resilience and resistance of Yemenis in the face of aggression and siege imposed on them since the beginning of the war. This would be a major shift in favor of strengthening Yemen’s liberation from U.S.-Saudi hegemony and control, considering that one of the objectives of the war on Yemen is to prevent Yemenis from controlling the exploitation of their wealth, from gas and oil, of which Yemen is said to have large quantities, especially in Marib, and if it is best exploited, it enables Yemen to develop its economy and improve the lives of the people, and turn Yemen into a strong independent state.

There is also a gas-fired safir power plant in Marib that feeds the capital Sana’a and a number of northern and central provinces. The Marib Dam provides irrigation water for vast areas of agricultural land, which is why Marib was chosen, in the old days, as the capital of the Sabean state, during the first millennium BC, with a throne and the Sanctuary of Balqis. It was a bulwark to repel the invaders who had sought to occupy Yemen since the days of the Roman Empire, whose armies were unable to occupy it. So are the armies of the Ottoman Empire.

Fourthly, the liberation of Marib will strengthen the political position of the Coalition of Popular Committees and the Legitimate Government in Sana’a, in any future negotiations to achieve a settlement to the Yemeni crisis, and greatly limit the ability of Washington, Saudi Arabia and Hadi’s government to impose their conditions.

Fifthly, the liberation of Marib and the collapse of the last and most important stronghold of Hadi’s government and its allies will create a general atmosphere of defeat, and the collapse of the morale of their fighters, which lead to a rapid collapse in their areas of control in southern Yemen, exacerbating the conflicts, already raging between them, over responsibility for the defeat on the one hand, and over control of the south on the other hand, which will lead to a broad popular revulsion strengthening the position of forces opposed to the presence of the Transitional Council and Hadi forces backed by Saudi Arabia, and provides favorable conditions for the people of the south to ally with the popular committees and the Yemeni army to complete the liberation of the southern provinces, from the control of Hadi forces and the Transitional Council … supported by the coalition of aggression forces.

These results and the expected repercussions from the liberation of Marib are behind the high level of interest in Western countries, and in the forefront is the United States, which was expressed its hasten to launch statements calling for an end to the attack of Ansar Allah and the Yemeni armed forces in Marib, to prevent qualitative shifts in the balance of power, in favor of the Alliance of Ansar Allah and national forces, at the expense of the American-Saudi position, which will find itself sitting at the negotiating table proposed to solve the crisis, while it is in a state of weakness after suffering a severe defeat, which makes the Ansar Allah movement and its allies in a position to impose conditions, before the start of negotiations to stop the aggression and blockade, and during the negotiations to impose terms for a settlement that enhance the ability of the Yemeni people to determine their own destiny away from foreign interventions.

Based on the foregoing, it can be understood why the coalition of committees and the Yemeni army refuses to stop the attack in order to complete the achievement of liberating the city of Ma’rib … and why the level of Saudi-American-Western concern is high.

The liberation of the city of Ma’rib will constitute a qualitative victory that culminates in the victories achieved over the years of the war, a major defeat for the states of aggression and their forces, and the fall of their objectives, which sought to eliminate Ansar Allah and national forces, re-subjugate Yemen and prevent its exit from the orbit of dependency, because of the important geographical location it represents. The international trade route and in the Gulf, where the American colonial control is focused on oil and gas wealth and its supply routes in the Gulf waters and Bab al-Mandeb … President Joe Biden’s administration is calling for an end to the war to contain its negative repercussions on U.S. colonial influence, and expresses concern about Ansar Allah’s control of Marib, which could speed up Washington’s steps to stop the war, try to reduce the repercussions of the defeat, and pay for the defeat, which was highlighted by the White House’s announcement that President Biden would communicate directly with King Salman, not the crown prince, and then release the intelligence report on the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi. This is in the context of a reassessment of U.S. relations with Saudi Arabia. What led observers to question whether the Biden administration is seeking to cast Mohammed bin Salman as a scapegoat by blaming him for the disaster in Yemen, appearing in the form of those who stopped this war to re-polish America’s image in Yemen, and enable U.S. diplomacy to play its role in reducing losses and containing the repercussions of defeat… Restoring and strengthening America’s influence in Yemen through a political settlement. But the question is will it be able to do that, especially after there has become a Yemeni liberation resistance that has a project for liberation, and seeks to achieve Yemen’s independence away from the hegemony and subordination of the United States and the Saudi government … and it succeeded at the beginning. In steadfastness in the face of aggression, containing its impulsivity, and then moving from defense to attack, and imposing deterrence equations after it transcended the transfer of the war into the Saudi interior, and the liberation of the northern Yemeni provinces from the control of the aggression coalition, one after the other, until we became close to liberating and restoring The last northern governorate, which is the strategic Marib governorate, in all its geographical, economic, military and political aspects.

More official proof of US supporting al-Qaeda terrorism in Syria

Where are the war crimes tribunals when you really need them?

By Jim W. Dean, Managing Editor

…by PressTV, Tehran

[ Editor’s Note: This is a rare open admisssion by a US senior diplomat, that using proxy terrorists to pursue ‘US interests’ was fair game, even if the group slaughtered innocent civilians in the process. Politicians often refer to this generically as ‘exporting American values’.

Ambassador James Jeffrey uses the typical weasel word language to couch his support for aiding and abetting terrorists, that it was “the least bad option” for implementing US strategy in Syria. The US has used drone assassinations against others doing just this.

This will be my shortest article lead in ever, due to there really being not anything else to say other than where are the war crimes tribunals when you really need them? But I do thank Mr. Jeffrey for the quote… Jim W. Dean ]

First published … April 03, 2021

Top US diplomat James Jeffrey has admitted that a Syrian rebranded al-Qaeda affiliate was a US “asset” for pursuing Washington’s hegemonic policy in the Middle East.

Jeffrey, who served as a US ambassador under both Republican and Democrat administrations and most recently as former US President Donald Trump’s special representative for Syria and later as the special envoy to the global anti-Daesh coalition, said the Syrian al-Qaeda-affiliated militant group known today as the Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS) terrorist group was “an asset” to the US to undermine the democratically-elected government of Bashar Assad.

The top US diplomat said the HTS militant group, which had emerged from Jabhat al-Nusra and later Jabhat Fateh al-Sham, was the “least bad option” for the United States for implementing its strategy in Idlib, Syria.

In an interview with FRONTLINE correspondent Martin Smith, Jeffrey said that Idlib was one of the crucial locations in the Middle East conflict.

“They are the least bad option of the various options on Idlib, and Idlib is one of the most important places in Syria, which is one of the most important places right now in the Middle East,” he said in the March 8 interview.

The US State Department had said that the group’s leader, Abu Mohammad al-Jolani, aimed to topple Assad’s government, making him an ally for the US.

Jolani’s “ultimate goal is the overthrow of the Syrian regime,” it said, noting that attacks carried out by his group “killed innocent Syrian civilians.”

US supported Al -Qaeda in Syria, Libya and Yemen.

*

James Jeffrey

James Franklin Jeffrey (born February 8, 1946) aka Jim Jeffrey is an American diplomat who served most recently as the United States Special Representative for Syria Engagement and the Special Envoy to the International military intervention against ISIL.[1][2]

He has held senior assignments in Washington, D.C., and abroad, including as United States Ambassador to Iraq (2010–2012); United States Ambassador to Turkey (2008–2010); Deputy National Security Advisor (2007–2008); and United States Ambassador to Albania (2002–2004). In 2010 Jeffrey was appointed to the highest rank in the U.S. Foreign Service, Career Ambassador. From 1969 to 1976, Jeffrey was a U.S. Army infantry officer, with service in Germany and Vietnam.

Jeffrey is a visiting fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, a member of the CIA External Advisory Board, a member of the American Council on Germany, and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He serves on the advisory board for America Abroad Media.[3] He is a frequent commentator on broader foreign policy, national security, and economic trends.

BIOGRAPHYJim W. Dean, Managing Editor

Managing Editor

Jim W. Dean is Managing Editor of Veterans Today involved in operations, development, and writing, plus an active schedule of TV and radio interviews. 

Read Full Complete Bio >>>

Jim W. Dean Archives 2009-2014https://www.veteranstoday.com/jim-w-dean-biography/jimwdean@aol.com

Will Israeli Supremacism continue to get a free pass?

Germany, France slam US over sanctions against ICC chief prosecutor |  Africa | DW | 04.09.2020

ICC Chief Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda said her inquiry will be conducted “independently, impartially and objectively, without fear or favor.”

By Jim W. Dean, Managing Editor -April 9, 2021

…from PressTV, Tehran

[ Editor’s Note: Israel does not really mind being a rogue nation, but would prefer the fact not get too much widespread attention. But this is exactly what the good people at the ICC had finally decided to do.

The Zionist regime, as expected, has responded that the ICC can stuff its investigation of Israel’s war crimes against the Palestinians where the sun does not shine. Everyone knows this is true, but most pretend that Israel is a ‘special’ situation.

In effect Israel is allowed to ‘do onto others that you would not want them to do onto you’ because they are…you know…special. Different rules apply for Israelis and their supporters that don’t apply to you and I, because, you know, we are not one of them.

Historical and contemporary media have swallowed this free pass for Israeli supremacism as some form of dispensation it must pay for the ‘Big H’, guilt for not preventing it. I am not even going to use the word, because the Israelis have inflicted the ‘Big H’ on the Palestinians and write it off as a just security matter.

The last time looked we had 75 to 80 million dead from WWII related causes, a number heavily biased because it left out a chunk of the 50 million Chinese dead estimates. One special group has reserved for themselves to be annointed the most horrible thing that happened during WWII, and everyone else can not only go to the back of the bus, but jump off or be thrown off.

That has always stuck me as rather impolite, and hence I have never had warm and fuzzy spot for Israeli, Zionist, Jewish supremacism, for those who practice it.

They may consider me a bad person for this, but I would consider it just a rational observation. I would even be open to hearing their raionale for one group being allowed to hold the number one supremacism spot as an unquestionable right, and dish out to the Palestinans whatever horrors it many want and that be no one else’s business

Jim W. Dean ]

First published … April 09, 2021

Prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu says Israel will tell the International Criminal Court that it will not cooperate with its investigation into possible war crimes in the occupied Palestinian territories.

Netanyahu said in a statement that Israel will respond to a notification letter from the ICC, telling it that Tel Aviv does not recognize the tribunal’s authority.

Last month, ICC Chief Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda announced in a statement the launch of a war crimes investigation into the Palestinian territories, which have been under Israeli occupation since 1967.

She said her inquiry will be conducted “independently, impartially and objectively, without fear or favor.” The Palestinian Authority (PA) welcomed the prosecutor’s announcement.

It is “a long-awaited step that serves Palestine’s tireless pursuit of justice and accountability, which are indispensable pillars of the peace the Palestinian people seek and deserve”, the PA foreign ministry said in a statement.

Hamas resistance movement also praised the ICC’s move.

“We welcome the ICC decision to investigate Israeli occupation war crimes against our people. It is a step forward on the path of achieving justice for the victims of our people,” Hazem Qassem, a Hamas spokesman said.

“Our resistance is legitimate and it comes to defend our people. All international laws approve legitimate resistance,” Qassem noted.

Palestine was accepted as an ICC member in 2015, three years after signing the court’s founding Rome Statute, based on its “observer state” status at the United Nations.

Both Israel and the United States have refused to sign up to the ICC, which was set up in 2002 to be the only global tribunal trying the world’s worst crimes, war crimes and crimes against humanity.

BIOGRAPHY

Jim W. Dean, Managing Editor

Managing Editor

Jim W. Dean is Managing Editor of Veterans Today involved in operations, development, and writing, plus an active schedule of TV and radio interviews. 

Read Full Complete Bio >>>

Jim W. Dean Archives 2009-2014https://www.veteranstoday.com/jim-w-dean-biography/jimwdean@aol.com

Yemen’s Blood Is on US Hands, and Still the US Lies about the War

Yemen’s Blood Is on US Hands, and Still the US Lies about the War

4/4/2021

By William Boardman – Towards Freedom

Six years ago, on March 26, 2015, the US green-lighted and provided logistical support for the Saudi bombing of Yemen that continues on a daily basis. The US/Saudi war, which includes as allies the several members of the Gulf Cooperation Council, is an undeclared war, illegal under international law, and an endless crime against humanity. The US and the Saudis have dropped cluster bombs on Yemen since 2009. Yemen has no air force and no significant air defenses. Two years ago, even the US Congress voted to end US involvement in the war, but President [Donald] Trump vetoed the resolution.

In 1937 the Nazis, in support of Franco in Spain, bombed the defenseless northern Spanish town of Guernica, massacring hundreds of civilians gathered in the town on market day. Pablo Picasso’s painting Guernica, a shriek of protest against the slaughter, is one of the world’s best known anti-war works of art. Yemen has had more than 2000 days of Guernicas at the hands of the US and Saudis, but no Picasso.

On February 4, 2021, President [Joe] Biden got a whole lot of good press when he announced that the US would be “stepping up our diplomacy to end the war in Yemen.” Biden also promised that the US would be “ending all American support for offensive operations in the war in Yemen.” Biden gave no specific details. The six-year bombing continues. The six-year naval blockade of Yemen continues. The humanitarian crisis continues, with the threat of famine looming. In effect, Biden has participated in war crimes since January 20, with no policy in sight to end the killing.

On March 1, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken acknowledged that:

The humanitarian crisis taking place in Yemen is the largest and most urgent in the world. Twenty million people, including millions of children, desperately need help. The United States is committed to doing our part, both to provide aid and to help address the obstacles standing in the way of humanitarian access.

That sounds a whole lot better than it is. Blinken did not acknowledge the US role in the air war on Yemen. Blinken did not acknowledge the US role in the naval blockade preventing food and fuel from reaching those 20 million Yemenis. Those obstacles to humanitarian access remain unchanged. The US has the power to remove either one unilaterally, just as it unilaterally chose to impose them. Blinken called on “all parties” to allow unhindered import and distribution of food and fuel, as if the US played no role in blocking both.

Blinken wasn’t done inventing a reality to fit US policy. He pledged support for “the well-being of the Yemeni people” but singled out the Houthis for pressure, even though the Houthis represent a large proportion of the Yemeni people. He called on the Houthis “to cease their cross-border attacks,” even though those attacks are a response to the US/Saudi undeclared war. And then he offered an analysis that would be hilarious if it weren’t so grotesque:

… the Saudis and the Republic of Yemen Government are committed and eager to find a solution to the conflict. We call on the Houthis to match this commitment. A necessary first step is to stop their offensive against Marib, a city where a million internally displaced people live, and to join the Saudis and the government in Yemen in making constructive moves toward peace.

The Saudis are so eager to find a solution to the conflict that they maintain their air war and naval blockade, effectively waging war by starvation – a crime against humanity. The “Republic of Yemen Government” is a fiction and a joke. Yemeni president Mansour Hadi, who is 75, was vice president of Yemen from 1994 to 2011, under the late authoritarian president Ali Abdullah Saleh. When Arab Spring protests erupted against Saleh, he stepped aside in favor of Hadi, who was “elected” president in 2012 with no opposition – a “democratic” result imposed by an international cabal. When you read media referring to his “internationally recognized government,” that’s the fiction they’re hiding. Hadi’s term as president ended in 2014, the international cabal extended it for a year, and that’s pretty much the extent of his legitimacy. That and US/Saudi firepower. By any rational calculation, Hadi is not a legitimate president. He also has no legitimate alternative. No wonder Hadi doesn’t feel safe in Yemen and remains in exile in Riyadh. The population in southern Yemen under the “government’s” control has recently attacked the government palace in Aden in protest against the government’s failure to provide sustenance and stability. A recent bomb attack aimed at a Hadi government minister reflects the reality that southern Yemen has long had a separatist movement quite independent of the Houthis in the north, in effect a second civil war. The most constructive move the Hadi government could make toward peace is to abdicate.

-Marib City, the capital of Marib Governorate, is roughly 100 miles northeast of Yemen’s capital in Sanaa. Marib City was established after the 1984 discovery of oil deposits in the region. Covering 6,720 square miles in central Yemen, the Marib Governorate is somewhat smaller than New Jersey. Marib contains much of Yemen’s oil, gas, and electric resources. Marib is the last governorate under the control of the Hadi government, but it has been under increasing attack by the Houthis since early 2020. Before that, Marib was relatively remote from the fighting in Yemen, providing refuge for a million or more Yemenis fleeing the fighting elsewhere. Marib City had a population of about 40,000 when the civil war broke out in 2014. Now the city has an estimated 1.5 million people.

This map of Yemen shows the oil fields of Yemen as well as the projected route [in dotted lines of the Trans-Yemen oil pipeline, protected by Al Qaeda forces, which, when completed will allow Saudi Arabia to avoid possible clashes with Iran at the Strait of Hormuz in the Gulf. Source: The Crash of Flight 3804: A Lost Spy, A Daughter’s Quest, and the Deadly Politics of the Great Game for Oil  by Charlotte Dennett  (Chelsea Green) Map by John Van Hoesen.

The Houthi offensive against Marib has intensified since January 2021. Their offensive has continued in spite of having no air support. For the US Secretary of State to call for the Houthis to stop their offensive is an indication that it’s going their way. By March 8, Houthi forces had breached the northern gates of Marib City. Hadi government forces are supported by the Saudi coalition and local tribes, as well as elements of Al Qaeda and ISIS. [Al Qaeda also fights independently against occupying forces of the United Arab Emirates along the Gulf of Aden coastline.]

Famine has arrived in pockets of Yemen.

Saudi ships blocking fuel aren’t helping.

This was CNN’s headline on March 11, for a story reporting with reasonable accuracy on the very real, years-old humanitarian crisis that the US/Saudi war has brought on the region’s poorest country. CNN quotes a “food insecurity” analysis by the world electronics trade association IPC that predicts that more than 16 million Yemenis (of a total population of about 30 million) are “likely to experience high levels of acute food insecurity” in the first half of 2021. “Out of these, an estimated 11 million people will likely be in Crisis, 5 million in Emergency, and the number of those in Catastrophe will likely increase to 47,000.”

Yemen is an atrocity from almost any perspective. Three US presidents – Obama, Trump, and now Biden – have lied about Yemen while taking the US into an endless nexus of war crimes and crimes against humanity. And for what? To support a Yemeni government that is a fraud? To support a Saudi ally that thought it could win a quick, dirty air war at little or no cost? This abomination, pun intended, never should have happened. So why did it? The formulaic answer in much of the media is usually some variation on this propagandistic patter from Reuters:

A Saudi Arabia-led military coalition intervened in Yemen in 2015 after the Iran-allied Houthi group ousted the country’s government from the capital Sanaa.

This essentially false version of reality in Yemen appears in news media across a wide spectrum, from Al Jazeera to ABC News to this version by CNN:

Saudi Arabia has been targeting Iran-backed Houthis in Yemen since 2015, with the support of the US and other Western allies. It had hoped to stem the Houthis’ spread of power and influence in the country by backing the internationally-recognized government under President Abdu Rabu Mansour Hadi.

The core falsehood in most versions is “the Iran-allied” or “Iran-backed” Houthis. The grain of truth in that characterization is far outweighed by the history on the ground. The Houthis live in Yemen. They are the only combatant force that lives in Yemen, other than elements of the Hadi government and assorted insurrectionists. Yemen is in the midst of a civil war that has flared over decades. The war that is destroying Yemen is waged entirely by outside countries, primarily the US and the Saudi coalition.

The Houthis, who are mostly Shia Muslims, have lived in northwest Yemen for generations and centuries. They fought a civil war against President Saleh and lost. They have long been an oppressed minority in Yemen. When the Hadi government perpetuated the oppression of the Houthis, they rebelled once again. This time, challenging an unpopular and divided government, they were more successful. In 2014 they captured Sanaa, Yemen’s capital, and captured Hadi himself. Then they released him and he fled first to Aden, then to Saudi Arabia, where he is a puppet figurehead.

Before it could become clear what kind of governance the Houthis would provide for their part of Yemen, the US and the Saudi coalition attacked the country. Their publicly stated motivation has always included the imaginary threat from Iran. But the Houthis have a long and independent history that does not rely on Iran for its coherence and force. Iranian support for the Houthis in 2014 was never shown to be significant. The US/Saudi war had had the perverse effect of incentivizing Iranian support for the Houthis, but there’s no evidence that support comes anywhere close to the strength of the US and Saudi coalition forces directed at the Houthis. The US and the Saudi coalition are waging an aggressive war against a country that did none of them any harm. Iran is providing support for an ally unjustly under siege.

The war in Yemen has been brutal on all sides, according to reports by more or less neutral observers. But only the US and the Saudi coalition are invaders, only they are committing international war crimes. The Houthis, as well as all the other sides fighting in Yemen, have also committed war crimes, but on a far lesser scale. Yemeni forces are not the ones waging war by starvation and disease.

Ultimately, the Houthis are the home team, along with other Yemeni factions. The Houthis have nowhere else to go. The only military solution to the Houthis is extermination, genocide, the very course the US and Saudis have been on for years, with the winking hypocrisy of most of the world.

In April 2015, with the Saudis’ saturation bombing already in its third week, the United Nations Security Council unanimously [14-0] passed Resolution 2216, which “Demands End to Yemen Violence.” The Resolution begins with an obscene misrepresentation of reality:

Imposing sanctions on individuals it said were undermining the stability of Yemen, the Security Council today demanded that all parties in the embattled country, in particular the Houthis, immediately and unconditionally end violence and refrain from further unilateral actions that threatened the political transition.

That is the official lie that has publicly defined the war on Yemen since 2015. The UN sees no terror bombing by foreign countries. The UN sees no invasion by foreign troops. The UN sees no terrorist groups in a country that has had little stability for decades. The UN cites only the Houthis for their sins, as if it were somehow the Houthis’ fault that, having no air force and no air defenses, they weren’t getting out of the way of the cluster bombs dropped on their weddings and their funerals.

Crucial interview of Foreign Minister Lavrov (MUST READ!)

Crucial interview of Foreign Minister Lavrov (MUST READ!)

Source

April 02, 2021

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s interview given to Channel One’s Bolshaya Igra (Great Game) talk show, Moscow, April 1, 2021

Vyacheslav Nikonov: The word “war” has been heard increasingly more often lately. US and NATO politicians, even more so the Ukrainian military, have no trouble saying it. Do you have more reasons to be concerned now than ever before?

Sergey Lavrov: Yes and no. On the one hand, the confrontation has hit bottom. On the other, deep down, there’s still hope that we are adults and understand the risks associated with escalating tensions further. However, our Western colleagues introduced the word “war” into the diplomatic and international usage. “The hybrid war unleashed by Russia” is a very popular description of what the West perceives as the main event in international life. I still believe that good judgment will prevail.

Vyacheslav Nikonov: Recently, the United States has ratcheted the degree of confrontation up to never-before-seen proportions. President Joe Biden said President Vladimir Putin is a “killer.” We have recalled Russian Ambassador to the United States Anatoly Antonov.

Sergey Lavrov: He was invited for consultations.

Vyacheslav Nikonov: Hence, the question: How do we go about our relations now? How long will this pause last? When will Mr Antonov return to Washington?

Sergey Lavrov: What we heard President Biden say in his interview with ABC is outrageous and unprecedented. However, one should always see the real actions behind the rhetoric, and they began long before this interview back during the Barack Obama administration. They continued under the Trump administration, despite the fact that the 45th US President publicly spoke in favour of maintaining good relations with Russia, with which he was willing to “get along,” but was not allowed to do so. I’m talking about the consistent degradation of the deterrent infrastructure in the military-political and strategic spheres.

The ABM Treaty has long since been dropped. President Putin has more than once mentioned how, in response to his remark that George W. Bush was making a mistake and there was no need to aggravate relations, the then US President said that it was not directed against Russia. Allegedly, we can take any steps that we deem necessary in response to the US withdrawing from the ABM Treaty. Allegedly, the Americans will not take these actions as directed against them, either. But then they started establishing anti-missile systems in Europe which is the third missile defence position area. It was announced that it was built exclusively with Iran in mind. Our attempts to agree on a transparency format received support during the visit to Moscow by US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and US Secretary of Defence Robert Gates, but were later rejected. We now have a missile defence area in Europe. Nobody is saying that this is against Iran now. This is clearly being positioned as a global project designed to contain Russia and China. The same processes are underway in the Asia-Pacific region. No one is trying to pretend that this is being done against North Korea.

This is a global system designed to back US claims to absolute dominance, including in the military-strategic and nuclear spheres.

Dimitri Simes can also share his assessment of what is said and written in the United States on that account. A steadfast course has now been taken towards deploying intermediate and shorter-range missiles in the Asia-Pacific region.

The INF Treaty was discarded by the Americans on far-fetched pretexts. This was not our choice. In his special messages, President Vladimir Putin suggested agreeing, on a voluntary basis and even in the absence of the INF Treaty, on a mutual moratorium with corresponding verification measures in the Kaliningrad Region, where the Americans suspected our Iskander missiles of violating restrictions imposed by the now defunct treaty, and at US bases in Poland and Romania, where the MK-41 units are promoted by the manufacturer, Lockheed Martin, as dual-purpose equipment.

To reiterate, this rhetoric is outrageous and unacceptable. However, President Putin has reacted to it diplomatically and politely. Unfortunately, there was no response to our offer to talk live and to dot the dottable letters in the Russian and English alphabets. All of that has long since gone hand-in-hand with a material build-up in the confrontational infrastructure, which also includes the reckless eastward advance of NATO military facilities, the transformation of a rotational presence into a permanent presence on our borders, in the Baltic States, in Norway, and Poland. So everything is much more serious than mere rhetoric.

Vyacheslav Nikonov: When will Ambassador Antonov return to Washington?

Sergey Lavrov: It’s up to President Putin to decide. Ambassador Antonov is currently holding consultations at the Foreign Ministry. He has met with the members of the committees on international affairs at the State Duma and the Federation Council of the Federal Assembly. He has had conversations at the Presidential Executive Office as well.

It is important for us to analyse the current state of our relations, which did not get to this point overnight, and are not just because of this interview, but have been going this way for years now. The fact that inappropriate language was used during President Biden’s interview with ABC shows the urgency of conducting a comprehensive analysis. This does not mean that we have just been observers and have not drawn any conclusions over the past years. But now the time has come for generalisations.

Dimitri Simes: Now that I am in Moscow, after a year in Washington, I see a striking contrast between statements by the leaders of the two countries. I think you will agree that when officials in Washington talk about relations with Russia, their pattern is simple and understandable: “Russia is an opponent.” Sometimes, Congressmen are more abrupt and call it “an enemy.” However, political leaders from the administration still call it “an opponent.” They allow cooperation with Russia on some issues that are important to the US, but generally it is emphasised that militarily Russia is “the number one opponent,” while politically it is not just a country with objectionable views but a state that “tries to spread authoritarian regimes throughout the world,” that “opposes democracy” and “undermines the foundations of the US as such.”

When I listen to you and President of Russia Vladimir Putin, I have the impression that in Moscow the picture is more complicated and has more nuances. Do you think the US is Russia’s opponent today?

Sergey Lavrov: I will not go into analysing the lexicon of “opponent,” “enemy,” “competitor” or “rival.” All these words are juggled in both official and unofficial statements. I read the other day that US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said that for all the differences with Russia and China, the US does not have anything against these countries. As for what the US is doing, it is simply “promoting democracy” and “upholding human rights.” I don’t know how seriously one can take this description of US policy towards Moscow and Beijing. However, if they are promoting democracy, practice must justify theory.

George W. Bush announced that democracy was established in Iraq in May 2003. Aboard an aircraft carrier, he declared that Iraq’s liberation from its totalitarian regime was completed and democracy was established in the country. There is no point in elaborating. It is enough to mention the toll of the US-unleashed war – hundreds of thousands of people. We should also remember that the “rule” of the notorious Paul Bremer resulted in the birth of ISIS, which was rapidly joined by members of the Baath Party, employees of Saddam Hussein’s secret services, who had lost their jobs. They simply needed to provide for their families. ISIS emerged not because of ideological differences. Relying on US mistakes, the radicals actively used this fact. This is what democracy in Iraq is all about.

“Democracy” in Libya was established by bombs, strikes and the murder of Muammar Gaddafi which was accompanied by Hillary Clinton’s cry of admiration. This is the result: Libya is a black hole; refugee flows bound for the north are creating problems for the EU that does not know what to do about them; illegal arms and terrorists are being smuggled through Libya to the south, bringing suffering to the Sahara-Sahel Region.

I do not wish to describe what the Americans feel towards the Russian Federation. If their statements about us being their “opponent,” “enemy,” “rival” or “competitor” are based on the desire to accuse us of the consequences of their reckless policy, we can hardly have a serious conversation with them.

Dmitri Simes: When officials in Washington, the Joseph Biden administration or Congress, call Russia an opponent and emphasise this, I think they would not agree that it is simply rhetoric. Nor would they agree that it is designed solely for domestic consumption. The Biden administration is saying that the US did not have a consistent policy towards Russia and that former US President Donald Trump let Russia “do everything the Russian Government of Vladimir Putin wanted.” Now a new sheriff has come in and is willing to talk in a way he sees fit without paying much attention to how Moscow will interpret it; and if Moscow doesn’t like it, this is good. This is being done not to evoke discontent, of course, but to show that Russia is finally realising that it cannot behave like this anymore. Is there any chance that this new Biden administration policy will compel Russia to show some new flexibility?

Sergey Lavrov: The policy you mentioned, which is promoted in the forms we are now seeing, has no chance to succeed. This is nothing new: Joseph Biden has come in, started using sanctions against Russia, toughening rhetoric and in general exerting pressure all along the line. This has been going on for many years. The sanctions started with the Barack Obama administration and, historically, even earlier. Like many other restrictions, they have simply become hypertrophied and ideology-based starting in 2013, before the events in Ukraine.

Dimitri Simes: They will tell you, and you know this better than I do, that this policy has not been pursued sufficiently consistently, that it was not energetic enough, and that now they and their NATO allies will get down to dealing with Russia seriously so as to show us that we must change our behaviour fundamentally not just when it comes to foreign policy but also our domestic policy.

Sergey Lavrov: Dimitri, you are an experienced person, you know the United States better than Vyacheslav Nikonov or I do. What else can they do to us? Which of the analysts has decided to prove the practicability of any further pressure on Russia? How well do they know history? This question is for you.

Dimitri Simes: Mr Minister, you probably know that I am not a fervent supporter of the policy of the Biden administration.

Sergey Lavrov: I am asking you as an observer and an independent expert.

Dimitri Simes: In my opinion, the Biden administration still has a sufficient set of tools it can apply against Russia, including new sanctions, the promotion of NATO infrastructure in Europe, a more “harmonised” pressure on Russia together with its allies, the advance of the US policy not closer to the traditional Old Europe (I am referring to Britain and especially to France and Germany) but to Poland, and lastly, the supply of lethal weapons to Ukraine. It is now believed in Washington that it is very important to show Russia that its current policy in Ukraine has no future and that unless Russia changes its behaviour it “will pay a price.”

Sergey Lavrov: My views on the current developments range from an exercise in absurdity to a dangerous play with matches. You may know that it has become trendy to use examples from ordinary life to describe current developments. All of us played outdoors when we were children. Kids of different ages and with different kinds of family upbringing played in the same places. In fact, we all lived as one big family then. There were two or three bad boys on every street; they humiliated other kids, disciplined them, forced them to clean their boots and took their money, the few kopecks our mothers gave us to buy a pie or breakfast at school. Two, three or four years later, these small kids grew up and could fight back. We don’t even have to grow up. We do not want confrontation.

President Putin has said more than once, including after President Biden’s infamous interview with ABC that we are ready to work with the United States in the interests of our people and the interests of international security. If the United States is willing to endanger the interests of global stability and global – and so far peaceful – coexistence, I don’t think it will find many allies for this endeavour. It is true that the EU has quickly towed the line and pledged allegiance. I regard the statements made during the virtual EU summit with Joe Biden as unprecedented. I don’t remember ever hearing such oaths of allegiance before. The things they said publicly revealed their absolute ignorance of the history of the creation of the UN and many other events. I am sure that serious politicians – there are still some left in the United States – can see not just futility but also the absurdity of this policy. As far as I know, the other day 27 political organisations in the United States publicly urged the Biden administration to change the rhetoric and the essence of the US approach to relations with Russia.

Vyacheslav Nikonov: This is unlikely to happen. I believe that your example with “tough guys” on every street is too mild. The United States has gone beyond the pale, let alone the street ethics, which have always been respected. We can see this happening in Ukraine. President Biden is one of those who created modern Ukraine, the Ukrainian policy and the war in Donbass. As I see it, he takes the situation very personally, and he will try to keep it in its current tense state. How dangerous is the situation in Ukraine in light of the ongoing US arms deliveries, the decisions adopted in the Verkhovna Rada on Tuesday, and the statements made by the Ukrainian military, who are openly speaking about a war?  Where do we stand on the Ukrainian front?

Sergey Lavrov: There is much speculation about the documents that the Rada passed and that President Zelensky signed. To what extent does this reflect real politics? Is it consistent with the objective of resolving President Zelensky’s domestic problem of declining ratings? I’m not sure what this is: a bluff or concrete plans. According to the information published in the media, the military, for the most part, is aware of the damage that any action to unleash a hot conflict might bring.

I very much hope this will not be fomented by the politicians, who, in turn, will be fomented by the US-led West. Once again, we see the truth as stated by many analysts and political scientists, including Zbigniew Brzezinski, being reaffirmed. They look at Ukraine from a geopolitical perspective: as a country that is close to Russia, Ukraine makes Russia a great state; without Ukraine, Russia does not have global significance. I leave this on the conscience of those who profess these ideas, their fairness and ability to appreciate modern Russia. Like President Vladimir Putin said not long ago; but these words are still relevant, – those who try to unleash a new war in Donbass will destroy Ukraine.

Vyacheslav Nikonov: The US and Western diplomacy have definitely accomplished one thing: they put Russia and China in one boat. Indeed, we have already become strategic partners in deeds not just in words. You have just come back from China. You go there more often than once a year, for sure. During this trip, was there anything new that you sensed from Chinese leadership, which has recently come under unprecedented and rude attacks from the Americans? How strong are the bonds that are being established between Russia and China? How high is the bar that we can or have already reached in our relationship?

Sergey Lavrov: Like Russians, the Chinese are a proud nation. They may be more patient historically. The Chinese nation’s national and genetic code is all about being focused on a historical future. They are never limited to 4 or 5- year electoral cycles. They look further: “a big journey begins with a small step” and many other maxims coined by Chinese leaders go to show that they appreciate a goal that is not just on the horizon, but beyond the horizon. This also applies to reunifying Chinese lands – incrementally and without haste, but purposefully and persistently. Those who are talking with China and Russia without due respect or look down on us, or insult us are worthless politicians and strategists. If they do this to show how tough they are for the next parliamentary election in a couple of years, so be it.

Winston Churchill famously said that “democracy is the worst form of government, except for all the others.” A big debate is underway about which one is more effective. The coronavirus infection has taken the debate up a notch. To what extent the Western democracies have shown themselves capable of opposing this absolute evil and to what extent countries with a centralised, strong and “authoritarian” government have been successful. History will be the judge. We should wait to see the results.

We want to cooperate; we have never accused anyone of anything, or mounted a media campaign against anyone, even though we are being accused of doing this. As soon as President Putin announced the creation of a vaccine, he proposed establishing international cooperation. You do remember what was being said about Sputnik V. At first, they said that it was not true, and then that this was propaganda and the only purpose was to promote Russia’s political interests in the world. We can see the ripple effect of this. On March 30, Vladimir Putin held talks with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron. We sensed a more realistic commitment to cooperate rather than try to engage in “vaccine discrimination” or “vaccine propaganda.”

Getting back to the heart of the matter, by and large, no one should be rude to other people. But what we see instead is a dialogue with a condescending tone towards great civilisations like Russia and China. We are being told what to do. If we want to say something, we are asked to “leave them alone.” This was the case in Anchorage when the discussion came to human rights. Antony Blinken said that there were many violations in the United States, but the undercurrent was clear – they would sort it out themselves and are already doing so. However, in Xinjiang Uygur, Hong Kong and Tibet, to name a few, things should be approached differently. It’s not just about a lack of diplomatic skills. It runs much deeper. In China, I sensed that this patient nation, which always upholds its interests and shows a willingness to find a compromise, was put in a stalemate. The other day, China’s Foreign Ministry spokesperson made a relevant comment. I don’t remember that ever happening before.

With regard to whether we are being pushed into the arms of China or China is being pushed into our arms, everyone remembers Henry Kissinger’s words that the United States should have relations with China which are better than relations between China and Russia, and vice versa. He saw this historical process and knew which way it could go. Many are writing now that the United States is committing a huge strategic mistake making efforts against Russia and China at a time, thereby catalysing our rapprochement. Moscow and Beijing are not allying against anyone. During my visit to China, Foreign Minister Wang Yi and I adopted a Joint Statement on Certain Issues of Global Governance in Modern Conditions, where we emphasised the unacceptability of violating international law or substituting it by some secretly drafted rules, of interference in other countries’ internal affairs and, overall, everything that contradicts the UN Charter. There are no threats there. The documents signed by the leaders of Russia and China always emphasise the fact that bilateral strategic interaction and multifaceted partnership are not directed against anyone, but focus exclusively on the interests of our peoples and countries. They build on a clear-cut and objective foundation of overlapping interests. We look for a balance of interests, and there are many areas where it has been achieved and is being used for the benefit of all of us.

Vyacheslav Nikonov: Have you noticed any change in China’s position? It is clear that Beijing is in a very tight situation. How far is China willing to go in its confrontation with the United States? It is obvious that they are now responding harshly. Sanctions are being introduced against Beijing, so it responds with tough counter-sanctions, and not only against the United States, but also against its allies, who are also joining the sanctions. Europe has joined this confrontation. Are we prepared to synchronise our policies with China, for example, our counter-sanctions, as we did with Belarus? Do we have a common strategy to counter the increasing pressure from the so-called alliance of democracies?

Sergey Lavrov: There is a general strategy, and I just mentioned it. Along with the Statement signed during my visit to China, a comprehensive Leaders’ Statement was adopted last year. Now we are preparing the next document, which will be signed by Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping, and dedicated to the 20th anniversary of the Treaty on Neighborliness, Friendship and Cooperation. Our strategic treaty will be renewed.

These documents spell out our line of conduct. We are not planning, and will not plan, any schemes to retaliate for what they are doing to us. I do not think that we will synchronise our responses to any new sanction acts against China and Russia.

Our level of cooperation continues to grow qualitatively.

You mentioned military alliances. There is popular speculation out there that Russia and China might conclude a military alliance. First, one of the documents signed at the highest level underscored that our relations are not a military alliance, and we are not pursuing this goal. We regard NATO as an example of a military alliance in the traditional sense, and we know that we do not need such an alliance. NATO clearly breathed a sigh of relief after the Biden administration replaced Donald Trump. Everyone was happy to again have someone to tell them what to do. Emmanuel Macron still occasionally tries to vainly mention the EU’s strategic autonomy initiative, but no one else in Europe even wants to discuss it. It’s over, the boss is here.

That kind of alliance is a Cold War alliance. I would prefer thinking in terms of the modern era where multi-polarity is growing. In this sense, our relationship with China is completely different from that of a traditional military alliance. Maybe in a certain sense, it is an even closer bond.

Vyacheslav Nikonov: The “alliance of democracies” will be created. This is obvious although fewer people in Russia still believe that it’s about democracy. In its election, its attitude towards freedom of the media and opportunities to express opposing views, the US has made it very clear that it has big problems with democracy. Europe also gives examples that compel us to doubt its efforts to promote a strong democratic project. After all, it still holds a position as a player under a big boss.

Vladimir Putin had a conversation with Emmanuel Macron and Angela Merkel via videoconference on March 30 of this year. Without Vladimir Zelensky, by the way. This is the Normandy format minus Ukraine, which resulted in a bitter response from Kiev.

They discussed a broad range of issues. Meanwhile, you have said more than once that our relations with the EU are frozen or absent altogether. Do you mean that we stay in contact or that contact is possible with individual EU members but not with the EU as a whole?

Sergey Lavrov: This is exactly the case, and this was also mentioned during the March 30 talks, and during Vladimir Putin’s conversation with President of the European Council Charles Michel. We are surprised that this assessment offends the EU. This is simply an objective fact.

It took years to develop relations between Moscow and the EU. By the time the state coup in Ukraine took place these relations included: summits twice a year; annual meetings of all members of the Russian Government with all members of the European Commission; about 17 sectoral dialogues on different issues, from energy to human rights; and four common spaces based on Russia-EU summit resolutions, each of which had its own roadmap.

We were holding talks on visa-free travel. It is indicative that the EU broke them off back in 2013, long before the crisis in Ukraine. As some of our colleagues told us, when it came to a decision on signing the proposed agreement, the aggressive Russophobic minority adamantly opposed it: Russia cannot receive visa-free travel status with the EU before Georgia, Ukraine and Moldova do. This is the entire background. What the EU did after that, braking all channels of systematic dialogue was a burst of emotion. They took it out on us because the putschists insulted the West by throwing out the document signed by Yanukovich and the opposition the day before, this despite the fact that Germany, France and Poland had endorsed this document. The first actions of the new authorities were to remove the Russian language from daily life and to expel Russians from Crimea. When Russian-speakers and Russians in Ukraine opposed this and asked to be left alone, a so-called “anti-terrorist operation” was launched against them.

In effect, the EU imposed sanctions on us and broke off all communication channels because we raised our voice in defence of Russian citizens and ethnic Russians in Ukraine, Donbass and Crimea. We try to discuss issues with them when they start making claims against us. They probably understand this; I hope they are still seasoned politicians. But if they understand this but don’t want to consider it in their practical policy, it means that they are being charged with Russophobia or cannot do anything about the aggressive Russophobic minority in the EU.

Dimitri Simes: I believe when we talk about the EU, it’s important to look at what the EU is and to what extent it has changed compared to what it used to be and what it was supposed to be when it was founded. The EU was primarily designed as an organisation for economic cooperation.

No political component was even envisioned at the start. It was about the EU contributing to European economic integration. The possibility was even mentioned of Russia playing some associated role in that process. But then they said the EU should also have some common values. At first, the idea was that those common values were the cement of the EU itself. Then a new idea emerged in Warsaw that it would be nice for those European values ​​(since they are actually universal) to spread to other regions, as well as for Russia to respect them, or even to obey them. When I look at the EU’s approach to Ukraine, the conflict in Donbass and the demands to return Crimea to Kiev, it seems to me that the EU is becoming a missionary organisation. When you deal with crusaders, trying to reckon with them or appealing to their logic and conscience is probably useless. Do you not think that the EU has journeyed to a place where there are limited opportunities for partnership and great potential for confrontation? Or am I being too pessimistic?

Sergey Lavrov: No, I agree with you, absolutely. This is a missionary style – lecturing others while projecting superiority. It is important to see this tendency, as it has repeatedly brought Europe to trouble.

This is actually the case. Established as the Coal and Steel Community, then the European Economic Community – if you look at the EU now, look at their values, they are already attacking their own members like Poland and Hungary, just because these countries have somewhat different cultural and religious traditions. You said it originated in Poland. I actually forget who started this…

Dimitri Simes: I first heard it from Polish delegates at a conference.

Sergey Lavrov: Now Poland itself is facing the consequences of its ideas, only not outside the EU, but within the organisation.

When anyone tries to impose any values on Russia, ​​related, as they believe, to democracy and human rights, we have this very specific response: all universal values ​​are contained in the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights that everyone signed. Any values invented now, which they try to impose on us or other countries, are not universal. They have not been agreed upon by the entire international community. Even inside the EU, look at those street protests! A couple of years ago, they had protests in France in defence of the traditional family, the concepts of “mother,” “father,” and “children.” This lies deep. Playing with traditional values ​​is dangerous.

As to the EU once inviting Russia as an associate member, we never agreed to sign an association document. Now the same is being done with regard to the Eastern Partnership countries – Armenia, Ukraine, and Moldova. As for Russia’s relations with the EU, which Brussels destroyed, only one thing remained – the basic document on the terms of trade and investment. It was indeed the subject of negotiation between the Brussels Commission and the Russian Federation. This is a document that remains valid. We cooperate with individual countries, but not with the EU, because those were the terms agreed upon, and their practical implementation is going through bilateral channels. The only thing the EU is doing in this respect now is imposing sanctions and banning its members from fulfilling some parts of this agreement because they want to “punish Russia.” That’s it, there are no other ties.

We are being told that we are deliberately derailing our relations (although the facts are simply outrageous), trying to shift our ties with Europe to bilateral channels, wanting to “split up” the European Union. We don’t want to split anyone up. We always say that we are interested in a strong and independent European Union. But if the EU chooses a non-independent position in the international arena, as we just discussed, this is their right. We cannot do anything about it. We have always supported its independence and unity. But in the current situation, where Brussels broke off all relations, when certain European countries reach out to us (we have not tried to lure anyone) with proposals to talk, to visit any of the sides and discuss some promising projects in bilateral relations, how can we refuse our partners? It is quite unfair (even a shame) to try to present such meetings as part of a strategy to split up the EU. They have enough problems of their own that split them up.

Dimitri Simes: This is a philosophical issue in Russia’s relations with the EU. When the EU has imposed anti-China sanctions, China made a tough response. This was an unpleasant surprise for the EU and caused indignation. Meanwhile, Brussels does not expect such a response from Russia in the firm belief that Russia has no economic levers to oppose the EU. To my knowledge, Russia has not imposed any serious sanctions on the EU.

This is an interesting situation. Russia supplies Europe with 33 percent of its gas. The figures for oil are about the same. I think during all this time Russia has proved convincingly that it won’t use energy for political leverage in Europe. Understandably, Russia has been interested in this, especially when it comes to the completion of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline. It seems to me that certain people in Europe have forgotten that if Russia does not do something, it doesn’t mean that it cannot do it, or won’t be compelled to do it if the EU’s pressure on Russia crosses a line. Do you think this is possible in theory? Or does Russia completely rule out such actions?

Sergey Lavrov: You are saying (metaphorically) that they either have not read (which is most likely) or have forgotten the epic about Ilya Muromets who slept on the stove while nobody paid attention? This is not a threat. We will never use energy supplies or our oil and gas routes in Europe to this end. This is a position of principle regardless of anything else.

Dimitri Simes: Even of you are disconnected from SWIFT and everything else?

Sergey Lavrov: We will not do that. This is a position of principle for President of Russia Vladimir Putin. We will not create a situation where we force EU citizens “freeze.” We will never do this. We have nothing in common with Kiev that shut down water supplies to Crimea and takes delight in it. This is a disgraceful position in the world arena. Frequently accusing us of using energy as an instrument of influence, as a weapon, the West keeps silence on what Kiev is doing with water supplies to Crimea. I believe the provision of basic needs on which the daily life of common citizens depends, should never be an object of sanctions.

Dimitri Simes: In this case, what do you mean by referring to “the phenomenon” of Ilya Muromets?

Sergey Lavrov: It is possible to respond in different ways. We have always warned that we will be ready to respond. We will respond to any malicious actions against us but not necessarily in a symmetric manner. By the way, speaking about the impact of the sanctions on civilians, look what is taking place in Syria under the Caesar Act. My colleagues in Europe and, incidentally, in the region, whisper that they are horrified by the way this act has eliminated any opportunity to do business with Syria. The goal is clear – to stifle the Syrians to make them revolt and overthrow Bashar al-Assad.

Now a few words about our and China’s responses to the European sanctions. After all, China also avoided suspending economic activity. It simply imposed sanctions on a number of individuals and companies that held certain anti-China positions. We are doing basically the same.

Vyacheslav Nikonov: As we know, Ilya Muromets did not shut down oil and gas supplies. He used other methods that were often symmetrical. I think we also have a solid set of instruments.

Don’t we exaggerate the importance of the EU in the modern world? It has an identity and there are European values. I know this since I have dealt with European MPs and experts for many years.

However, I have the impression that there are two main values: the first one is the euro and the second is LGBT and 60 more letters that describe this notion linked with sexual identity, their presence, absence, or mix.

The EU is undergoing a crisis – Brexit. Britain has left the EU. The economic crisis is very bad. Probably, in Europe it is worse than elsewhere. The economy has dropped by up to 10 percent in many countries. The vaccine-related crisis has shown that Europe cannot counter the virus and adopt a common policy. These problems are emerging at all levels. It cannot draft a common economic policy, migration rules, and so on. Maybe, we are really paying too much attention to Europe? Maybe we can act without looking back at this “falling” structure?

Sergey Lavrov: But where are we paying too much attention to Europe? We have a very simple position that President of Russia Vladimir Putin has set forth many times: we do not feel hurt. As we know, hurt people get the short end of the stick, or as we say in Russia, hurt people are made to carry water, something we are short of in Crimea. We will always be willing to revive our relations, practically to raise them from the ashes, but to do this we must know what the EU is interested in. We will not knock on a locked door. They are well aware of our proposals, just as the Americans know our proposals on strategic stability, cyber security and many other things. We have said to all of them: “Our friends and colleagues, we are ready for this. We understand that you will have some reciprocal ideas but we have not yet heard them. As soon as you are ready, let’s sit down and discuss them, seeking a balance of interests.” Meanwhile, now we are being accused of neglecting policy on the EU, so I don’t think we are courting this alliance or exaggerating its importance. It determines its place in the world itself. We have already talked about this today.

As for European values, we have many ongoing debates. Some people need European price tags more than European values. They want to travel there for shopping, recreation, buy some property and return home. As I said, our common values lie in our history, the mutual influence of our cultures, literature, art and music. They are great.

Vyacheslav Nikonov: As for modern European culture and art, have they really…

Sergey Lavrov: I am referring to our historical roots.

Vyacheslav Nikonov: Because I think today’s Europe is pretty empty in terms of culture.

Sergey Lavrov: There are some funny songs; we can listen to them in the car sometimes.

Dimitri Simes: Speaking of relations with the United States, I would like to ask you a personal question because you lived and worked there for a long time when you were Russia’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations. Of course, you have also been dealing with the US as the Foreign Minister of the Russian Federation. I lived in the US for almost 50 years.

Sergey Lavrov: Why past tense?

Dimitri Simes: I am now in Moscow. When I look at the United States today, I have the impression that it is undergoing a cultural revolution. I think that if many people in the Joseph Biden administration or the Democrats in Congress are told this, they would not feel offended in any way. They will say that a cultural revolution is long overdue, that it is finally necessary to eradicate racism, give equal and not-so-equal prevailing opportunities to sexual orientation minorities because they were also discriminated against and to develop a true democracy that requires that all those who want to vote can vote. In practice, this means that millions of people will have an opportunity to vote without necessarily being US citizens at all. This is why the Democrats emphatically oppose a ban on voting on Sundays. As you know, there was never any voting in the US on Sundays. Sunday is called God’s day. The Democrats wanted Sunday elections so that buses could go to Afro-American churches and take people to the polling stations.

Vyacheslav Nikonov: Why take them by bus? They can vote by mail.

Dimitri Simes: Both options are available.

Sergey Lavrov: Why not put a ballot box right in a church?

Dimitri Simes: Exactly. Do you believe the United States is, in many respects, evolving into a different country and that this is not necessarily an irreversible process, though a momentous one? Also, would you agree that this process is not a purely American internal matter because it goes hand in hand with the emergence of a new revolutionary ideology that requires that American values spread around the world and that these American models should not be resisted as they are now in Russia and China? Can this lead to an existential conflict?

Sergey Lavrov: We will talk about this but, first, let me finish what I was saying about European culture. Here is, in my view, a telling illustration of the state of European culture today. If we talk about revolutions, including a cultural revolution, the Eurovision  contest speaks volumes.  What they are doing now to the Belarusians is repulsive. This is sheer censorship that goes like this: since we – nobody knows who exactly, some anonymous individuals – fancy that we heard some innuendoes in your song, we will not allow you to take part in the contest unless you have another song. But then the same fate befalls another Belarusian song. What does this have in common with art, culture or democracy?

As for a cultural revolution in the United States, I do feel that processes which deserve to be described like this are unfolding there. Everyone probably wants to eradicate racism and, as for us, we have never had any doubt regarding this. We were trailblazers behind the movement to secure equal rights for all people, regardless of the colour of their skin. However, we should beware that we do not slip into another extreme, the one we have observed during the Black Lives Matter events, and into aggression against white people, white US citizens.

The other day we marked an international day designated to increase awareness of this issue and UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, speaking at a General Assembly meeting, said that the previous year had been a year of the most serious and numerous manifestations of white supremacy. I have asked to be given the full text of his speech, as I want to understand what specifically he had in mind. If this is about having a sense of a trend you talked about and the willingness to follow this trend, it is lamentable. This is still the United Nations Organisation and not a venue for promoting US concepts, some US trends.

As for why they need this, yes, they want to spread this to the rest of the world. They have a huge potential to achieve this goal. Hollywood has also started to change its rules, so that everything reflects the diversity of contemporary society, which is also a form of censorship, art control and the way of imposing some artificial restrictions and requirements on others. I have seen black actors perform in Shakespeare’s comedies. The only thing I do not know is when a white actor will play Othello. You see, this is nothing less than absurdity. Political correctness reduced to absurdity will lead to no good.

The other tool is social networks and internet platforms, as well as servers located in the United States. The US flatly refuses to discuss ways of either making internet governance more democratic or establishing common rules regulating social networks for the sake of avoiding the recurrence of the situation with TikTok and other social networks we encountered during the recent events in Russia, including the spread of abominable information, like personal abuse, pedophilia and many other things. We have already approached TikTok and other social networks about the need to establish elementary rules of respect and propriety but the Americans are unwilling to make these types of rules universal.

In Anchorage, US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan and Secretary of State Antony Blinken lectured the Chinese on human rights, ethnic minorities and democracy in China. Indeed, Mr Blinken said they [in the US] also had to address certain issues in this field but they would do it on their own. During talks with the Americans – the same goes for the Europeans – as soon as you start offering to discuss ways of democratising international relations or the supremacy of law on an international scale, they invariably get away from the subject. They want to replace international law with their own rules, which have nothing in common with the supremacy of law globally, on a universal scale. I already talked about large-scale rallies in France in defence of traditional family values. It appears that to secure the rights of one group of people, the rights of another group have to be infringed upon. That is, promoting these values around the world is not an end in itself, but rather a tool for ensuring their dominance.

Dimitri Simes: Richard Nixon once told Nikita Khrushchev that there would be no true harmony or true partnership between the Soviet Union and America unless the Soviet Union stops spreading its ideology. And that was a big problem in the Brezhnev era, I must say, because they discussed a détente while at the same time supporting a continued international class struggle. As I see it, Leonid Brezhnev was doing it without much conviction. But now, things have turned the other way around. Now the collective West is eager to proliferate its ideology and values. And they seem to be doing so with far greater conviction and perseverance than the Soviet Union under Leonid Brezhnev ever tried. Does this pose a risk of collision?

Sergey Lavrov: Under Leonid Brezhnev, the Soviet Union saw no threat to its existence. One can argue whether that stance was far-sighted enough, but that is how it was. Today’s West senses a threat to its dominance. It is a fact. So all those wiggling moves, including the invention of some ‘rules’ – as in the rules-based international order, something the West has come up with to replace the UN Charter – they reflect precisely this tendency.

I agree that we have swapped positions, or rather the Soviet Union and the modern West have. I don’t think this will offend anyone since this is not a big secret. I spoke with Rex Tillerson when he was US Secretary of State. He is a thoughtful and experienced politician and diplomat. It was good to work with him. We disagreed on most things, but we always wanted to continue the dialogue to bring our positions just a little bit closer at least. When he first told me they were concerned about Russia’s interference in some elections, I said they had not proved anything to us yet, and all we heard was accusations. When they began to accuse us of interfering in their elections, we repeatedly proposed using the special channel we had for exchanging information about threats to information networks and organisations. They refused. We had repeatedly offered dialogue even before that, when Barack Obama was president, from October 2016 until Donald Trump’s inauguration in January 2017. They always refused.

I pointed out to Tillerson that they had in fact directly stipulated in legislation that the US State Department should spend $20 million a year to support Russian civil society and promote democracy. That was not even a suspicion on our part as they did it openly (for example, the Ukraine Support Act). There was nothing to prove – they just announced that they would interfere. He told me that was totally different. I asked him why, and he said because we promoted authoritarianism, and they spread democracy. That was it.

Dimitri Simes: And he said it with sincere conviction, didn’t he?

Sergey Lavrov: Yes.

Vyacheslav Nikonov: Mr Lavrov, naturally, this policy leads to a drastic polarisation. The polarisation of international relations is a dangerous thing. We remember the early 19th century, and the early 20th century. It always ended in wars. The Americans, losing their global dominance, will create (they have already announced this) a new ‘alliance of democracies.’ I mean create American and pro-American alliances, compelling everyone else to make their choice. This polarisation will increase. What will this mean for the world and for the alliances where Russia is a member? I mean BRICS (which I think they will try to split up), the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS). How far can this go? How dangerous is it?

Sergey Lavrov: This is a deliberate policy and an extension of the agenda we are talking about – about the United States promoting democracy and spreading benefit. The Americans and Europe are very active (but the Americans are especially active) in Central Asia. They are trying to create their own formats such as C5+1. Russia is also part of a 5+1 format in Central Asia, in addition to the SCO, CIS, EAEU and CSTO – one that involves the foreign ministers of five Central Asian countries and your humble servant. That format is useful. True, the volume of economic ties that the US and the EU are now building with Central Asia is still incomparable with our economic interpenetration, but they are pursuing an unambiguous goal to weaken our ties with our allies and strategic partners in every possible way.

The numerous initiatives around the Afghan reconciliation and around the Indo-Pacific region envision Central Asia’s reorientation from its current vector to the South – to help rebuild Afghanistan and at the same time weaken its ties with the Russian Federation.

I could talk for a long time about the Indo-Pacific region and the Indo-Pacific concept. That multi-layered initiative is aimed at hindering China’s Belt and Road Initiative and limiting the Chinese influence in the region, creating constant irritants for that country. There have been some slips about creating an ‘Asian NATO.’ Although in the US interpretation the Indo-Pacific region is described as ‘free and open,’ the chances that positions will be worked out through an equal or open process there are slim. It is already obvious that it isn’t ‘open’. China has not been invited; rather, that country is declared a target for containment. We have not been invited either, which means the attitude to Russia is similar. I would say those are long-term trends. We are talking about this frankly with our neighbours and closest allies. I am confident that they understand all these threats. None of them even considers the possibility of anyone telling them who to talk or not talk to. It is their sovereign right to choose their partners.

The term ‘multi-vector’ has become semi-abusive, but we are not giving up the multi-vector approach. We are open to cooperation and friendship with everyone who is ready for relations based on equality, mutual respect, compromise and balance of interests. That our Western colleagues are clearly abusing this approach, especially in post-Soviet countries, is an obvious fact.

Vyacheslav Nikonov: Is it possible to avoid the actual military scenario in these circumstances? Isn’t it time to create an alliance of free countries given the role reversal that has taken place in the modern world? An alliance, perhaps, of genuine democracies that will oppose the ongoing all-out attack?

Sergey Lavrov: We will not get involved in this kind of political engineering. Russia is committed to the United Nations. When France and Germany put forward the effective multilateralism concept, we asked them what it meant. There was silence followed by joint articles written by the foreign ministers of France and Germany stating that the European Union is an example of effective multilateralism, and everyone needs to adapt to the European processes. Our question why the readily available and universal UN multilateral platform is not a good option remained unanswered. However, the answer is there, and we mentioned it more than once today. They are making up the rules that the international order is supposed to be based on.

Dimitri Simes: Mr Minister, we have taken up much of your time and we appreciate it. But we cannot let you go without asking you one more personal question. What is it like to be Russia’s Foreign Minister in this rapidly changing world?

You have worked in several completely different eras. When you were Russia’s Permanent Representative to the UN in New York, it was a period of Russia’s “romantic infatuation” with the United States, though perhaps not quite on the terms that were beneficial for Russia. In the early 21st century, Russia was in search of partnerships. Well, then we got what we are witnessing now. How do you, a person who, in many ways, is the architect of this era, a witness and a participant of this process, find your work in this very complex role?

Sergey Lavrov: To put it short, I never get bored. That is if we are talking about the different eras in my career. We all lived in these eras, and we have seen these transitions. You asked me earlier whether the United States has changed. It has. A lot.

Dimitri Simes: Have you changed?

Sergey Lavrov: Probably. It’s not for me to say. A person perceives the environment as a constantly evolving process. People grow up, get smarter or dumber, but they have no way of seeing it.

Dimitri Simes: Do you think we have all become disappointed in many ways, but we have grown, too, as a result of these experiences, and, of course, in the first place, a person holding such positions as yours?

Sergey Lavrov: This is true, of course. How can this not influence the formation of a person? The personality never stops to evolve. It is something that lasts until the end of our lives. Those revolutionary developments had a strong influence on me. I believe the 9/11 attacks were the turning point in the American life. I was in Manhattan, in New York, at the time, and I felt that odour. I was having a hard time trying to make a phone call, because the phones went dead. Since then, New York has become a different city. This free city, living its own life around the clock and enjoying it, became wary and started looking over its shoulder to see if there was someone around who could hurt it.

This suspicion then spread deeply into American society. There were probably serious reasons for that. I have to commend the US intelligence services, because since then, apart from the Boston Marathon, which we had warned them about, there have been no other terrorist attacks. However, wariness and aloofness can still be felt. Perhaps, there are people who want to take advantage of this in order to do things that you just mentioned. If 11 million Americans become eligible to vote, welcome to the one-party system, Back in the USSR.

Vyacheslav Nikonov: Mr Lavrov, thank you very much for the interview. Now that we are within the historic walls of the Foreign Ministry’s Mansion on Spiridonovka, a place where history and great diplomacy were made, including the diplomacy of the great powers, I would like to wish us all the return of diplomacy. If it comes back, as President Vladimir Putin is conveying to President Joe Biden, in the form of a live-stream dialogue, then The Great Game will be at your service and at the service of the two presidents.

Sergey Lavrov: Thank you. President Biden has already said that diplomacy has returned to US foreign policy. Your dream has come true.

source: https://www.mid.ru/en/foreign_policy/news/-/asset_publisher/cKNonkJE02Bw/content/id/4662534

DRONES OVER RIYADH, AS THE HOUTHIS PUSH TOWARDS MARIB

South Front

02.04.2021 

Yemen’s Ansar Allah are unrelenting in their fight against the Saudi-led coalition.

The fighting in Yemen shows no promise of stopping anytime soon, and in many locations it is a constant swing of back and forth.

On April 1st, Ansar Allah (also known as the Houthis) claimed that they had launched 4 suicide drones aimed at “sensitive and important” sites in the Saudi capital – Riyadh.

Houthi spokesman Brig. Gen Yahya Sari said that the operation had been successful, all targets had been struck and no other details were provided.

Not all such raids result in success, as a video was shared of a Saudi F-15 shooting down a Houthi Qasef-2K drone.

A few days earlier, 18 drones and eight missiles of Ansar Allah attacked targets in Ras Tanura, Rabigh, Yanbu and Jizan, ‘Asir, Najran as well as Kind Abdulaziz Air Base. This was their way of commemorating 6 years of war with the Kingdom.

On the other side, Riyadh carried out at least 15 airstrikes on various targets where the Houthi forces are currently concentrated. The Saudis were also behind at least 175 ceasefire violations in al-Hudaydah.

On the ground, clashes continue in the Yemeni Madghal and Hayfan districts. On March 31st, the Houthis captured Idat al-Raa, Dash al-Haqn and Hamat al-Diyab west of Marib.

Elsewhere in the Middle East, the Damascus government continues its operations to contain ISIS in the Syrian central region.

On April 1st, the Syrian Arab Army kicked off a large-scale combing operation in the southern and western Deir Ezzor countryside.

The Government forces are combing the outskirts of the town of al-Mayadin, from the area of al-Banja all the way to the area of Fayda Ibn Moin’a. They are being supported by the Russian Aerospace Forces.

On March 31st, Damascus deployed large reinforcements in Deir Ezzor to counter ISIS cells in the governorate, mainly near the border with Iraq.

In the same vein of containing ISIS, the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces are continuing their operation in the al-Hawl camp.

The SDF didn’t share the total number of suspects who were arrested on the fifth day. However, it announced that an Algerian leader of ISIS was apprehended. Muhammad Abdul Rahman Sharif Dabakh, was the ISIS military commander in the town of al-Shadadi in southern al-Hasakah.

On the fourth day of the operation, the SDF arrested more than 70 ISIS members. The total number of arrests as a result of the operation likely nears 150, or even more.

The containment of ISIS in Central Syria appears to be going well, and the Damascus government and Russian support appear to be carrying out a successful operation.

On the other hand, it is not exactly clear what is happening to the ISIS cell members being arrested by the SDF, as reports of them being extracted by US helicopters are not that uncommon.

ISIS VICIOUS CYCLE IN CENTRAL SYRIA

South Front

In a very busy month of March, the Russian Aerospace Forces, in support of the Damascus government, kept up a significant level of airstrike activity against ISIS every single day.

According to the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, Russian warplanes carried out more than 1,380 airstrikes on ISIS cells in Central Syria.

These reportedly resulted in the death of 57 ISIS terrorists, and the injury of 25 others.

The airstrikes could potentially seem excessive, but there is no other effective way to contain the terrorist group. On March 28th-31st, 100 Syrian service members were wounded in attacks by ISIS or by explosive devices planted by the terrorists.

Despite all of this, security in central Syria is not as compromised as it appears. Roads are open for traffic, and some semblance of normality is present. Gas and oil fields are tightly guarded and operational, and all urban centers are secured from terrorist activity.

On March 31st, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov claimed that the United States used ISIS terrorists to hinder any potential political solution to the Syrian conflict.

In seeming proof of this statement, on the same day, the US reportedly transported 40 ISIS terrorists from al-Houl prison, east of Hasaka city, to its base in al-Shadadi city. Out of these forty terrorists, two are notably ISIS members who operated in Deir Ezzor.

The US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) on March 28th began a security operation at the notorious al-Hawl camp, which houses 62,000 people, mostly women and children of ISIS terrorists.

Around 6,000 troops from the SDF, Asayish security forces and the People’s Protection Units are taking part in the operation.

The SDF has already announced the arrest of 53 alleged ISIS members, including a Sharia Judge of ISIS, Abu Muhammad al-Jumaili, and five other officials of terrorist cells that were carrying out various operations inside the camp.

There is plentiful footage, including videos and photographs showcasing the operation.

The situation in the camp has steadily been ramping out of control, with frequent killings taking place there. In the first three months of 2021 alone, at least 47 people have been murdered by terrorist elements. The United Nations has repeatedly warned of the deteriorating security situation in the camp.

Central Syria is secure, but still a hotbed of ISIS terrorists. The security operations by the Syrian Arab Army and its Russian support are unlikely to stop anytime soon, especially if the accusations against the United States are true.

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Iraqi Resistance Against US Forces to Persist Until Full Withdrawal – Asaib Leader

Iraqi Resistance Against US Forces to Persist Until Full Withdrawal - Asaib Leader

By Staff, Agencies

Leader of Iraq’s anti-terror movement Asaib Ahl al-Haq Sheikh Qais Khazali said the armed resistance against American forces occupying Iraq will continue until they are fully removed from the Arab country.

“As resistance groups, we have taken up and will continue to take up arms to destroy any US or US military presence on Iraqi soil,” Khazali said on Thursday.

“There is no room for American military bases, neither in al-Assad nor in al-Harir,” he said. “This is the decision and promise of the men of resistance.”

Iraqi lawmakers, last year, approved a bill requiring the Baghdad government to end the presence of all foreign military forces in the Arab country.

The Iraqi MPs’ decision came two days after the high-profile assassination of top Iranian and Iraqi anti-terror commanders – General Qassem Soleimani, commander of the Quds Force of Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards [IRG], and Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, deputy head of Iraq’s Popular Mobilization Units [PMU] – near Baghdad airport in a drone strike authorized by former US President Donald Trump.

Anti-American sentiments rose sharply following the assassination of the two top commanders, who played a major role in the defeat of Daesh [the Arabic acronym for terrorist ‘ISIS/ISIL’ group] in Iraq. It is estimated that there are currently 2,500 American troops in Iraq.

“We emphasize that the current operations of the resistance will continue and will increase everywhere in Iraq, in the west and in the north of the country. This is a fundamental issue which we want to be a national stance,” Khazali said.

He said demanding the expulsion of American forces amounts to the implementation of the country’s constitution.

The United States is set to resume strategic talks with Iraqi officials this month over the status of its combat forces in Iraq.

Talks between the US and Iraq began in June 2020 under the Trump administration. But the upcoming talks are the first under the Biden administration.

Elsewhere in his remarks, Khazali warned of certain countries’ agendas in Iraq, especially that of the United Arab Emirates, saying the UAE is seeking to impact Iraq’s election results.

“Therefore, we do not accept the result of an election handled by the Emirates’ rulers,” Khazali said, adding that the UAE’s plot will not be implemented as long as national forces and the anti-terror PMU forces are present in Iraq.

Earlier in March, Khazali warned of a conspiracy against Iraq hatched by an Emirati security team which is reportedly in the country to influence the Iraqi intelligence service.

In his Thursday remarks, he also lauded the PMU forces for their sacrifices in the fight against terrorism.

Khazali also warned of secret attempts aimed at normalizing Iraq’s ties with the ‘Israeli’ occupation regime, saying that Iraq will not yield to such attempts.

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US Occupation Agenda: QSD Kidnap Dozens of al-Houl Refugee Camp Residents, Seizes Houses in Vicinity of US Helicopters’ Helipad in Hasaka,

QSD Militia Kidnap Dozens of al-Houl Refugee Camp Residents

Posted by INTERNATIONALIST 360° on 

29 March، 2021
Hasaka, SANA

The US occupation-backed QSD militia has continued to impose a siege on al-Houl refugee camp, which is controlled by the militia backed by the occupation forces in Hasaka eastern countryside since last Friday, in coincidence with launching widespread raid campaigns against the residents’ tents in the camp and kidnapping dozens of them.

Local sources told SANA reporter in Hasaka that after imposing a siege on al-Houl camp in the eastern countryside of refugees which is inhabited by more than 70,000 people for the fourth straight day, dozens of QSD militants on Monday carried out massive raid campaigns inside the camp and kidnapped dozens of its residents among them women, under different pretexts, and took them to an unknown destination.

The sources added that two days ago, QSD militia cut off all roads between Hasaka city and al-Houl refugee camp, whose residents live in tragic conditions that threaten a humanitarian catastrophe in light of the severe shortage of survival requirements such as water, medicine, food, security…etc., in addition to preventing the residents from moving inside the camp.

On Sunday, dozens of QSD militants began deploying to the vicinity of al-Houl refugee camp and they set up 15 armed checkpoints around it, in preparation for storming it with the help of the US occupation forces and carrying out large-scale kidnapping operations in the camp.

Nisreen Othman/ Ruaa al-Jazaeri

US Occupation Agenda: QSD Seizes Houses in Vicinity of US Helicopters’ Helipad in Hasaka

Posted by INTERNATIONALIST 360° on 

28 March، 2021
Hasaka, SANA

The US occupation-backed QSD militia has displaced the owners of houses in the vicinity of the occupation helicopters’ helipad in Ghwairan neighborhood by force of arms, and issued eviction warnings to the owners of other houses.

Although the homeowners have documents and property deeds, they found themselves homeless without housing amid the silence of all humanitarian organizations about the crimes committed against the locals in Hasaka.

The QSD militia, which seeks to empty the civilian areas surrounding the whereabouts of the American occupation forces, had previously emptied three storey buildings in the al-Jabsah dwellings between Ghwairan and al-Zouhor neighborhoods to the south of the occupation helicopters’ helipad and expelled their people from them by force of arms.

Mahmoud, a young man from the locals of al-Zouhor neighborhood, told SANA reporter that the militia has started to tighten the noose on the locals in the area extending from the areas where the US occupation forces are deployed till al-Zouhor neighborhood as its militants have closed the road leading to the neighborhood with berms, and the locals are currently forces to travel for long distances to reach the city center.

The militia has also notified a number of the owners of nearby houses to evacuate them.

Mahmoud added QSD militia has turned the residential buildings which it has completely occupied into military sites to fortify and reinforce the positions of the US occupation forces.

Citizen Khudir whose house was seized by force, says “These actions are against the law and all international norms which the QSD militia doesn’t recognize as it seeks to implement US occupation schemes to completely empty the area of its original inhabitants.”

The locals in the region believe that the practices and violations of the QSD militia are not much different from the attacks of the Turkish occupation mercenaries in Ras al-Ayn in the northwestern countryside of the province, as it practices a policy of displacement and forcing the people to leave their property and it displaces them and seize their properties to use them for military purposes.

Bushra Dabin/ Ruaa al-Jazaeri

As Tide Turns, Houthis Reject US, Saudi “Peace” Deals for the Recycled Trash They Are

The Houthis — empowered by six years of perseverance amid one of the most violent wars against some of the world’s most powerful military forces, not to mention the ability to reject the proposals set forth by those same powers — have little incentive to accept Riyadh or Washington’s “peace” offers.

By Ahmed Abdulkareem

Source

SANA’A, YEMEN — March 26 marks the sixth anniversary of the U.S.-backed Saudi bombing campaign in the war-torn country of Yemen and massive demonstrations took place across the country on Friday in commemoration.

Hundreds of thousands of people took the streets in the Yemeni capital of Sana’a near the besieged Sana’a International Airport, and in Hodeida, home of the country’s largest and most important seaport. In fact, thousands of Yemenis gathered in more than twenty city squares across the northern provinces, carrying Yemeni flags and holding banners emblazoned with messages of steadfastness and promises to liberate the entire country from Saudi control. Images of the demonstrations show a sea of Yemeni flags, posters bearing pictures of Houthi leader Abdulmalik al-Houthi, and the slogan “Six years of aggression — We are ready for the seventh year — We will win.”

“We are here to send a message to both the United States and Saudi Arabia that we are ready to make more sacrifices against the Saudi-led Coalition,” Nayef Haydan, a leader of the Yemeni Socialist Party and member of the Yemeni Shura Council, said. “Any peace initiative must contain a permanent end to the war, lift the blockade completely, include a detailed reconstruction program, and compensate Yemenis,” he added.

Having bombed for six years, Saudis now talk peace

For six years, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, two of the richest countries on the planet, have relentlessly bombed the poorest nation in the Middle East, with crucial assistance from three consecutive U.S. administrations. For 2,160 days — six years straight — the Royal Saudi Air Force and the UAE Air Force have, with American assistance, launched nearly 600,000 airstrikes in Yemen. The bombing has targeted civilian homes, schools, hospitals, roads, funerals, food facilities, factories, mosques, water, pumps and sewage, markets, refugee camps, historical cities, fishing boats, fuel stations, a school bus full of children, and Bedouin camps, making any potential reconstruction very long and costly.

The bombing continues even as talks of new peace initiatives begin to surface. Just last Sunday, March 21, consecutive Saudi airstrikes destroyed a poultry farm in Amran province. The attack was especially egregious as Yemen is suffering from one of the most severe famines in recent history. In fact, the country faces a humanitarian, economic, and political crisis of a magnitude not seen in decades. According to the United Nations, almost 16 million Yemenis live under famine, with 2.5 million children suffering from malnutrition. And thousands of Yemeni state workers now face hunger as their salaries have gone unpaid for years after the Saudi Coalition seized control of the country’s central bank.

Relentless destruction

As the war enters its seventh year, the country’s war-weary masses face grim new milestones. The fastest growing outbreak of cholera ever recorded and outbreaks of swine flu, rabies, diphtheria and measles are among the man-made biological threats facing Yemen. Meanwhile, hundreds of Yemenis are dying of Covid-19 every day amid a collapsed and destroyed health system. Many of these diseases and crises are not natural but have been created, artificially and intentionally, by Saudi Arabia. The U.S.-backed Saudi Coalition has completely or partially destroyed at least 523 healthcare facilities and bombed at least 100 ambulances, according to a report from the Sana’a-based Ministry of Health issued last Tuesday.

Years after Saudi Arabia imposed a blockade on Yemeni ports, halting life-saving supplies, Yemenis are still suffering from a lack of food, fuel and medicine. Hodeida Port, which is the primary entry point for most of Yemen’s food imports, is still under a strict Saudi blockade; even humanitarian aid is prevented from reaching the port. Sana’a International Airport, which has been bombed heavily by the Saudi Air Force in the past two weeks, has been blocked almost since the war began, leaving thousands of medical patients to die prematurely because they were unable to travel abroad for treatment.

Yemenis for their part, have resorted to targeting the Saudi Coalition in its own backyard. Hoping that taking the battle to the Kingdom will exact enough of a toll on the Saudi monarchy to cause it to rethink its quagmire in Yemen, Houthi missiles and drones have had increasing success in striking Saudi oil infrastructure, airports and military bases, leaving Saudi soil exposed to daily bombardment for the first time since the Al Saud family established their state.

In a recent statement, the spokesman for the Ansar Allah-backed Yemen Army claimed that its Air Force had carried out more than 12,623 drone strikes and reconnaissance operations during the past six years and that, in the past two months alone, 54 high-precision ballistic missiles have been fired at vital Saudi targets, some of them deep inside Saudi Arabia.

Last Wednesday, Saudi Arabia’s Abha Airport was attacked by a number of drones, and on Friday, a facility belonging to Saudi state-owned oil giant Aramco in the Saudi capital of Riyadh was hit with six drones, causing damage to the facility, according to Yemen military sources.

Saudi futility

Despite its enormous onslaught, lethal Western weapons, and hundreds of billions of dollars wasted on this war, Saudi Arabia has been unable to crush the will of the Yemeni people, who continue to fight for independence and sovereignty. At the end of March 2015, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman promised confidently that it would all be over within a few weeks and that Ansar Allah would quickly surrender. Now, after six years of war, Bin Salman has not only been unable to defeat The Houthis. Instead, it is The Houthis remain steadfast in their resistance and have grown even more powerful, leading to much consternation in Saudi Arabia and a half-hearted attempt by Bin Salman to ask The Houthis to accept his country’s version of peace and free the Kingdom from the quagmire it has created for itself in Yemen.

As Yemenis make their final push to recapture the strategic city of Marib, amid failed U.S. efforts to protect their Saudi ally from Houthi ballistic missiles and drones, both Washington and Riyadh have presented peace initiatives in an effort to stem the tide of Saudi Coalition military defeats. Those initiatives, however, fail to address or alleviate the humanitarian plight of Yemenis, end the war, or even lift the blockade.

Sour wine in new bottles

On March 12, U.S. Special Envoy for Yemen Tim Lenderking announced an initiative to end the war during a webinar with the Atlantic Council. The plan is essentially a recycled version of a previous proposal presented by Mohammed Bin Salman and the Trump administration one year ago in Oman, dubbed “The Joint Declaration.” It contains a matrix of Saudi principles and conditions aimed at the surrender of the Yemen Army, the Houthis, and their allies, in exchange for an end to the war. Lenderking’s initiative gives no guarantee that the Coalition will take any measures to lift its blockade and end the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.

On March 22, Saudi Arabia announced its own “ceasefire initiative” to end the war it announced from Washington D.C. six years ago. Saudi Foreign Minister Faisal bin Farhan revealed the initiative, which would include a nationwide ceasefire under the supervision of the UN and a partial re-opening of the Sana’a International Airport to certain destinations. It also included a revenue-sharing plan that would guarantee the Saudi government access to a portion of the wealth generated by Yemen’s oil and gas deposits in Marib.

Come back when you’re serious

Both initiatives were rejected by Sana’a. “We reject the American and Saudi peace initiatives because they do not meet the demands of the Yemeni people,” Khaled Al-Sharif, chairman of the Supreme Elections Committee, said of the proposals during a meeting held in Sana’a on Monday. According to many Yemenis, including decision-makers in Sana’a, the U.S. and Saudi plans are not intended to achieve peace, but to advance their political goals in the face of an imminent military failure following six costly years of war. The measures, according to officials in Sana’a, are also about saving face and presenting an untenable plan, so that when it is inevitably rejected the tide of public opinion will turn in favor of the Saudi-led Coalition.

In a live televised speech commemorating the sixth anniversary of the war on Thursday afternoon, ِAbdulMalik al Houthi, the leader of the Houthis, refused Washington and Riyadh’s initiatives, explaining:

The Americans, the Saudis, and some countries have tried to persuade us to barter the humanitarian file for military and political agreements. We refuse that.

Access to oil products, food, medical and basic materials is a human and legal right that cannot be bartered in return for military and political extortion.

We are, [however], ready for an honorable peace in which there is no trade-off for our people’s right to freedom and independence or to Yemen’s legitimate entitlements.”

The Houthi leadership views the policies of the Biden administration as not far removed from those of his predecessor, Donald Trump. “Biden’s administration is following the same policies as those of former President Donald Trump. [They] have not offered a new plan for peace in Yemen. Washington has rather presented an old plan for the resolution of the conflict,” Ansar Allah spokesman Mohammed Abdul-Salam said, adding that the U.S. plan does not offer anything new. ”The plan has placed conditions for the opening of the Hodeida port and Sana’a International Airport, which are unacceptable,” he concluded.

No retreat, no surrender

The Houthis — empowered by six years of perseverance amid one of the most violent wars against some of the world’s most powerful military forces, not to mention the ability to reject the proposals set forth by those same powers — have little incentive to accept Riyadh’s offer. They see the end to the conflict coming from Washington in the form of an announcement of an immediate ceasefire, a departure of all foreign forces from the country, and lifting of the air and sea blockade as a pre-condition for any deal. “They should have demonstrated their seriousness for the establishment of peace by allowing food and fuel to dock at the port of Hodeida rather than put forth proposals,” Mohammed Ali al-Houthi said.

Over two thousand consecutive days of war have proven that Saudi Arabia is not ready to bring peace to war-torn Yemen. With the exception of a fragile ceasefire in Hodeida and a small number of prisoner releases, negotiations between the two sides generally reach a dead end, as Bin Salman looks for total surrender and nothing else. Numerous negotiations between Saudi Arabia and Yemen have failed, including UN-brokered peace talks in Switzerland in 2018. The Yemenis, who are now on the offensive, are unlikely to retreat or surrender. The offensive to recapture oil-rich Marib and sweep the shrinking areas that remain in Saudi control shows no signs of slowing down and, according to high-ranking military officials, the Saudi-controlled gas-rich province of Shabwa will be the next to be liberated. Moreover, retaliatory ballistic missiles and drone attacks against Saudi targets will continue.

Despite recent peace initiatives, the Saudi-led Coalition has only intensified military maneuvers in Yemen this week. Saudi warplanes are seen regularly above highly populated urban areas in the north of the country, dropping hundreds of tons of ordnance, most supplied by the United States. There is a near-consensus among the leadership of the Yemeni army and Ansar Allah that the current U.S. administration is participating in the battles taking place in the oil-rich Marib province. However, the Houthis have not directly accused the Biden administration of being involved in the fighting and are waiting for more evidence to do so. They may not have to wait long. On Tuesday, a sophisticated, U.S.-made MQ-9 Reaper drone was downed with a surface-to-air missile as it was flying over the Sirwah district in Marib.

Yemen: Trilogy of victory,, in the seventh year اليمن: ثلاثيّة النصر سنة سابعة

**English Machine translation Please scroll down for the Arabic original version **

Yemen: Trilogy of Victory, in the seventh year

Nasser Kandil

– None of the observers and followers of the Yemeni scene, supporters of the Yemeni people and their resistance represented by Ansar Allah, nor of their opponents supported the Saudi aggression to expected that the war will continue for this long, nor that the Yemenis can bear this amount of killing, destruction, siege, hunger and suffering, and stand at their goals to stop the aggression and lift the blockade as a condition for accepting any call for a cease-fire and the beginning of negotiations.

– Compared to all the wars that have been fought against the peoples of the region and their resistance forces, there is nothing that can be compared to the Yemeni case, as the six-years war is being fought directly by armies possessing tremendous military superiority, accompanied by a tight siege, which can be similar in terms of intensity of fire to the wars of Gaza and the 2006 aggression against Lebanon. But there is nothing like the Yemeni situation, they are wars of days and weeks, not years, and despite the fiery siege on Gaza, the Egyptian outlet remains a breathing lung for the besieged Gaza. In Syria Lebanon remained a lung to breath from, and in Syria, where the war continued for ten years accompanied by fierce sanctions, the fiery superiority of the Syrian state and its allies remained, and the sea remained under the hands of the Syrian state and its army, and a resource for armaments and imports that could be secured behind the back of the blockade, Whereas in Yemen, supremacy was for the camp of enemies, with fire and siege, and the six years continued and produced havoc, destruction, death, hunger and epidemics, and Yemen was steadfast

– During the sixth year, Yemen moved from steadfastness to regaining, developing missile salutations and drones, an unmistakable deterrent force despite the electronic jamming techniques possessed by the Americans and through them the Saudis, and within a year this weapon proved high technical capabilities that produced a military deterrence balance based on exceptional scientific superiority, and within a year the security of the Saudi rear in Yemen, and burned Aramco times, and became the security of the water The gulf and the energy corridors and ensure their flow in the hands of the Yemenis, and proved the failure of the war miserably to all those who were behind it, led by The American Joe Biden, who became president and was vice president on the day of its launch with the promise of ending it in weeks or months, and began maneuvers to get out of the war with the least losses, from trying to distinguish America from Saudi Arabia, to Saudi offers of a cease-fire, to U.S. calls for a political solution.

– On the eve of the seventh year, the Yemenis demonstrated their strength, so they presented the trilogy of victory, and their leader, Mr. Abdul Malik al-Houthi, appeared in a detailed explanation of the war, its objectives and context, and the conditions for accepting solutions through the duality of stopping aggression and lifting the siege, based on steadfastness, determination and clarity in reading the past and the present and drawing the horizon of the future. Within hours of the zero hours of the seventh year, the army and the resistance presented an intense and concentrated dose of deterrence elements, inflaming the Saudi depth with raids and missiles, saying with a full mouth that the threats of their leader had taken their way to implementation. During the day, hundreds of thousands of Yemenis gathered in the squares and streets, celebrating the Day of National Resilience, affirming their loyalty and cohesion with their leadership and army, the 2006 July scene of the destruction of the destroyer Sa’er, the speech of Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah, and scene of the people marching to southern Lebanon amid the cluster bombs in response to the call of the Leader of the Resistance. This trilogy victory was a harmonious symphony, drawing a clear ceiling in front of the American-Saudi alliance entitled, no place for maneuvers, the war will be a scourge, not a debate, and the negotiation path has a mandatory path: stop the aggression and lift the blockade, opening of the port and airport and the departure of foreign troops.

– Yemen enters the seventh year with the strongest confidence in victory, and the great victory has become the fruit of great patience, but this time it is really the patience of an hour.

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اليمن: ثلاثيّة النصر سنة سابع

ناصر قنديل

لم يكن أحد من المراقبين والمتابعين للمشهد اليمنيّ، من مؤيّدي الشعب اليمنيّ ومقاومته التي يمثلها أنصار الله، وحكماً من خصومه المؤيدين للعدوان السعوديّ ليتوقع قبل ست سنوات في مثل هذه الأيام، أن تستمرّ الحرب طول هذه المدة، ولا أن يتمكّن اليمنيون من تحمل هذا الكم من القتل والدمار والحصار والجوع والمعاناة، ويصمدوا عند أهدافهم بوقف العدوان ورفع الحصار كشرط لقبولهم بأية دعوة لوقف النار وبدء التفاوض.

بالمقارنة مع كل الحروب التي خيضت وتخاض ضد شعوب المنطقة وقواها المقاومة، ليس هناك ما يمكن تشبيهه بالحالة اليمنية، فحرب ست سنوات تخوضها مباشرة جيوش تملك تفوقاً عسكرياً هائلاً، يرافقها حصار محكم، يمكن أن تشبهه من حيث كثافة النار حروب غزة وعدوان عام 2006 على لبنان، لكنها حروب أيام وأسابيع، وليست سنوات، ورغم الحصار الناري يبقى المنفذ المصري رئة تنفس لغزة المحاصرة، وتبقى سورية رئة يتنفس منها لبنان، وسورية التي استمرّت الحرب عليها عشر سنوات وما يرافقها من عقوبات، بقي التفوق الناري فيها للدولة السورية وحلفائها وبقي البحر تحت يد الدولة السورية وجيشها، ومورداً للتسلح وتأمين المستوردات التي يمكن تأمينها من وراء ظهر الحصار، بينما كل شيء في اليمن تفوق لمعسكر الأعداء، بالنار وإحكام الحصار، والسنوات الست تتواصل وتنتج الخراب والدمار والموات والجوع والأوبئة، واليمن صامد.

خلال السنة السادسة انتقل اليمن من الصمود الى استرداد زمام المبادرة، مطوّراً سلاح الصواريخ والطائرات المسيّرة، قوة ردع لا تخطئ رغم تقنيات التشويش الإلكتروني التي يملكها الأميركيون ومن خلالهم السعوديون، وخلال سنة أثبت هذا السلاح مقدرات تقنية عالية أنتجت توازن ردع عسكري مستنداً الى تفوق علمي استثنائي، وخلال سنة صار أمن العمق السعودي بيد اليمن، واحترقت آرامكو مرات، وصار أمن مياه الخليج وممرات الطاقة وضمان تدفقها بيد اليمنيين، وثبت فشل الحرب فشلاً ذريعاً لكل من كان وراءها، وفي طليعتهم الأميركي جو بايدن الذي صار رئيساً وكان نائباً للرئيس يوم انطلاقها بوعد إنهائها خلال أسابيع أو شهور، وبدأت المناورات للخروج من الحرب بأقل الخسائر، من محاولة التميّز الأميركي عن السعودي، الى عروض سعوديّة لوقف النار، الى دعوات أميركية لحل سياسي.

عشية السنة السابعة أظهر اليمنيّون بأسهم، فقدموا ثلاثيّة النصر على الملأ، فظهر قائدهم السيد عبد الملك الحوثي في شرح مفصل للحرب وأهدافها وسياقها وشروط قبول الحلول تحت شعار وقفها، وتختصرها ثنائيّة وقف العدوان وفك الحصار، وعبر عن مستوى الثبات والعزم والحزم والوضوح في قراءة الماضي والحاضر ورسم أفق المستقبل، وخلال ساعات حلّت الساعة صفر من السنة السابعة فقدم الجيش والمقاومة، جرعة مكثفة ومركزة من عناصر الردع فألهبوا العمق السعودي بالغارات والصواريخ، قائلين بالفم الملآن إن تهديدات قائدهم قد أخذت طريقها للتنفيذ، مستعيدين مشهد تدمير المقاومة في لبنان للمدمّرة ساعر ترجمة لخطاب السيد حسن نصرالله، وخلال ساعات النهار احتشد مئات آلاف اليمنيين في الساحات والشوارع، يحيون يوم الصمود الوطنيّ، يؤكدون تمسكهم بثوابتهم وتماسكهم مع قيادتهم وجيشهم، مستعيدين مشهد زحف الشعب الى جنوب لبنان وسط القنابل العنقودية تلبية لدعوة قائد المقاومة، فكانت هذه الثلاثيّة سمفونية متناغمة، ترسم سقفاً واضحاً أمام الحلف الأميركي السعودي عنوانه، لا مكان للمناورات، الحرب ستكون وبالاً لا سجالاً، وطريق التفاوض له ممر إلزامي وقف العدوان ورفع الحصار، أي فتح المرفأ والمطار وخروج القوات الأجنبية.

اليمن يدخل السنة السابعة أشدّ ثقة بالنصر، وقد بات النصر العظيم ثمرة للصبر العظيم، لكنه هذه المرة فعلاً صبر ساعة.

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I Pray for Peace in Yemen

March 25, 2021

A reflection through the eyes of a small Yemeni child

Ragheb Malli – London

The streets are harsh. The sky too. I don’t think I remember what Yemen in peace looked like. Baba said we are lucky we are still alive, but I don’t think it is lucky to be alive just to survive. Taiz was my most beautiful city. I was planning to be a lawyer when I grow older, now I plan to just try and grow older. Mama said that I should be grateful we were still able to put food in our bellies, this isn’t food. My parents are too thin, as am I. Mama’s once pink, round cheeks are hollows of tears. Baba’s smile takes too much of his energy. I don’t know what we have done; all I know is I was living and playing – I swear, I did nothing else. There was an airstrike not too long ago near us, it killed many of Marwan’s relatives. The Saudi airstrike happened in the night, Baba said maybe they didn’t feel it as they must have been all sleeping. I know he is lying, the sounds of their planes always wake me up.

What I don’t understand is why no one is helping us. No one is shouting at Saudi to stop dispersing weapons and bombs. No one is shouting at them to leave our hospitals alone. No one is shouting at them to stop. The ongoing silence hurts me more than the snipers ever can. Yesterday Zahra came and asked me if I wanted to play, Mama grabbed my hand and screamed “Do you want to die?” and I screamed back, “No, I want to play”. She began crying and I felt bad, but I don’t know what I said.

I heard the radio this morning saying that a quarter of all the deaths in Yemen are children. Mama says that is a very big number for such a small people, we must be bad at hiding. Sometimes I try to make sense of this never ending disaster but I just don’t understand how so much suffering can go unnoticed. Baba says a lot of people are trying to help but the Saudi’s are making it impossible, they have blockaded supplies from coming in and now hospitals and everyone has no access to basic health care. I think they don’t want us to get better because Baba says people are afraid of the strong. But they have nothing to be afraid of, I just want to live and grow up and eat ice cream in the summer. Now I just worry where we will get our grains from because the news told us that Saudi planes have bombed the grains port. So now no help, no supplies and no food. People are already dyeing from all three, so maybe it has to be our turn next.

I have lost hope, just as I have lost most of my aunts, uncles, cousins and friends. I am just waiting and thinking about when and how it will happen. Maybe we will die together at home in an air raid, or maybe we will run out of food. I may step on a bomb or I may die of one of those new diseases that are going around. Either way, it will be our turn soon – we’ve been alive for too long, I just pray it doesn’t hurt.

In ten years time, I pray that Yemen will have found peace and that people are chubby. I pray that people will stand up for us and protect us. Baba said if people don’t put pressure on their governments this will continue until there is no Yemen left. He is wrong, there will be a Yemen, just no people left in it. I pray that one day on a hot summer’s day, I will eat ice cream outside without Mama crying.

Source: Al-Manar English Website

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MBS Has Lost the War in Yemen. It’s Time to End the Humanitarian Disaster

MBS Has Lost the War in Yemen. It’s Time to End the Humanitarian Disaster

By Madawi al-Rasheed, MEE

This week, Saudi Arabia announced an initiative to end the Yemen war and implement a nationwide ceasefire. The move was met with rejection by the Ansarullah group, the main protagonists on the other side of this six-year-old conflict.

The proposal, according to the Ansarullah, didn’t promise the total lifting of the blockade imposed by the Saudis on Sanaa International Airport and Hudaydah port, which, with Saleef Port, handle about 80 percent of Yemen’s imports including staples and fuel.

The Ansarullah are now on the offensive and are unlikely to retreat or surrender. It is most likely that they will continue their offensive in Marib and sweep the shrinking territories and fragile authority of the Riyadh-based exiled President Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi.

On Wednesday, Jawad Zarif, the Iranian foreign minister, said Iran backed a peace plan that would end the blockade and violence.

A weak position

Saudi Arabia’s announcement is triggered by its weak position following the collapse of the Arab coalition that supported its campaign and the vanishing international consent over this treacherous war on its southern borders.

Internationally, since 2015, the US under the Obama administration gave the Saudis the green light to start air strikes against the Ansarullah who swept the capital in September 2014 and later extended their control over most of the Yemeni population. Under the pretext of confronting Iranian expansion in this strategic part of the Arabian Peninsula, Saudi Arabia launched the Yemen war on 25 March 2015.

Later, former President Donald Trump continued to support the Saudis without encouraging them to seek a diplomatic solution to resolve the conflict. With the new Biden administration in office, the Saudis find themselves without this international cover as voices in Washington made it clear that one of the new administration’s Middle East policy pillars is to end the war in Yemen and relaunch negotiation with Iran, the Ansarullah’s main supporter, over its nuclear program.

Regionally, Saudi’s main ally, the UAE, pulled out of the war but still maintains a stronghold on the coast that guarantees its own maritime expansion all the way to the Horn of Africa. Its patronage over southern Yemenis had revived an old project to separate the southern coastal region from a unified Yemen.

The UAE’s intervention resulted in consolidating an independent canton, loyal to it. Saudi Arabia counted on Egypt and Pakistan but both hesitated to get involved on the ground, leaving the Saudis to fight a war without real capabilities despite its advanced airpower, thanks to a constant supply from Western governments, mainly the US and Britain.

This weak and lonely Saudi position contrasts with that of the empowered Ansarullah, no longer designated as a terrorist organization in Washington. The Ansarullah intensified their drone attacks at the heart of Saudi economic facilities over recent months, targeting oil installations and airports. They were quick to understand the weak Saudi position. The initial Saudi offensive strategy in the pursuit of securing its southern borders remains unfulfilled.

The Salman ‘doctrine’

The 2015 so-called Salman’s Doctrine, a flexing of muscles aimed at Saudi domestic audiences who are skeptical about the rise of King Salman’s son, Mohammad, to the highest positions in government, has stumbled in Yemen.

The then Saudi deputy crown prince and minister of defense needed a quick victory in Yemen that would grant him a new legitimacy as the savior and military commander.

MBS failed to achieve this. Instead, he is left alone to beg the Ansarullah to accept his ‘peace’ proposal, which falls short of alleviating the plight of the Yemenis and their aspiration to end the war.

This war was not inevitable but foreign military intervention by both Saudi Arabia and the UAE did not revive the project of a unified and democratic Yemen, nor affirmed the prospects for two stable Yemens – one in the north and one in the south – as historically has been the case…

A humanitarian catastrophe

Historically, Saudi Arabia favored maintaining patronage networks with the northern Yemeni tribes whose sheikhs regularly received subsidies and handouts to keep them loyal to the Saudi royal family. In Sanaa, the Saudis supported the late President Ali Abdullah Saleh but he turned against them and forged a new alliance with the Ansarullah, his previous arch enemies.

Mohammed bin Salman stopped the old patronage network and opted for outright war, believing that he would become the master of Yemen and its diverse population. Consequently, in addition to Saleh, most of the northern tribes shifted their allegiance to the Ansarullah.

Today, Yemen faces a humanitarian and economic crisis of a magnitude unseen in previous decades. According to the United Nations, almost 16 million Yemenis live under famine conditions, with 2.5 million children suffering from malnutrition. Yemen’s poor infrastructure is destroyed to the extent of making any potential reconstruction very long and costly.

King Salman and his son will go down in history as the destroyers of a country, people and resources. Without serious effort to contribute to the reconstruction of Yemen, the country will be drawn into several decades of upheaval and misery…

End the war

If the war stops without a detailed reconstruction program, there is a risk of many losing their livelihood and income. Local actors may not see an immediate benefit from a ceasefire in the absence of real alternatives that would allow them to survive in a destroyed country. 

The Saudi offer fails to detail how peace and economic reconstruction can resume once the air strikes stop. Today, the Yemen war has generated new forces that seem to be beyond the capacity of Saudi Arabia, which contributed to this destruction, to contain or reverse.

With the international community cutting its overseas aid and development programs – the British government is one of them – the prospect for peace in Yemen does not look imminent.

The United Nations should be given an international mandate to launch a fresh peace initiative whose main objectives should be political and economic. Politically, Yemenis should be encouraged to revive that historical moment in 2011 when all factions and groups sought democracy in the “Change Squares” of most Yemeni cities.

Economically, the international community, including above all Saudi Arabia, should pledge to contribute to a fund that starts the long and arduous journey towards recovery.

Dr Marwa Osman: Hands Off Yemen! Introduction to her program

“The one Who Accuses is the One Who Is” – President Putin’s Response to Biden’s Calling him a “Killer”

“The one Who Accuses is the One Who Is” – President Putin’s Response to Biden’s Calling him a “Killer”

March 24, 2021

By Peter Koenig for the Saker Blog

On March 16, 2021, ABC anchor George Stephanopoulos held an exclusive interview with President Joe Biden. In the context of the United States’ chief intelligence office releasing an unclassified report on foreign meddling in the 2020 US election, concluding that Russian President Vladimir Putin oversaw sweeping efforts aimed at “denigrating” President Joe Biden’s candidacy, Biden told Stephanopoulos that he had warned Putin about a potential response during a call in late January.

This is verbatim the ABC News Report of March 17, 2021:

“He will pay a price,” Biden said. “We had a long talk, he and I, when we — I know him relatively well. And the conversation started off, I said, “I know you and you know me. If I establish this occurred, then be prepared.”

Stephanopoulos then asked: “So you know Vladimir Putin. You think he’s a killer?”
“Mmm hmm, I do,” Biden replied
.

Stephanopoulos: “So, what price is he going to pay?”
Biden: “The price he is going to pay, well, you’ll see shortly.”

Stephanopoulos also asked Biden, when you met him (Putin, in the past), you told him that he didn’t have a soul… and Biden retorted: yes, I told him. And Putin responded, “we understand each other.”

When President Putin spoke later to the media in Moscow, answering a question about his reaction to Biden’s accusing him to be a “killer”, Putin just said, “I wish him good health, and I mean it without irony.”

Speaking on television, reflecting philosophically, Putin said, “I remember when we were young, playing in the playground and accusing each other of little things, we always see ourself in the mirror and project our own image of ourselves on to the other, like “the one who accuses is the one who did it”.

President Putin last Thursday (18 March) challenged Biden to talk, I invite President Biden to talk on Friday or on Monday publicly online live… to which Biden did not respond. Presumably Given Biden’s often confused mind, to put it benignly, he was advised to abstain from such a conversation with President Putin.

The tension between the US and Russia has hardly been stronger and the diplomatic relation between the two countries is at its lowest in the past decades. President Putin recalled immediately the Russian Ambassador from Washington for “consultation” – a euphemism for declaring a serious rupture in the relationship of the two countries.

Later in a small media gathering in Moscow, Mr. Putin said he would deal with America on his terms. He also philosophized about Biden’s thoughtless slandering, when he talked to ABC’s anchor Stephanopoulos. He referred to children accusing one another, the going saying is, “the one who accuses is the one who is”. This is equally valid for adults.

When later asked at a Press Conference whether Biden regretted having suggested Putin was a “killer”, the White House Press Secretary, Jen Psaki, replied, “No. The President gave a straight answer to a straight question.” – That reflects all too well the intellectual and diplomatic level of US Presidents and their entourage. Though Biden may be a special case of being a blind-folded bully, previous US Presidents’ track record is not much better.
——

President Putin is one of the world’s most brilliant Statesman. The other one is China’s President Xi Jinping. Together, their alliance, their vision and diplomacy, their conflict avoidance – and constant search for peaceful solutions to world disorders – have kept our planet out of a nuclear Armageddon for the last couple of decades. That’s quite an achievement, given the warmongers in Washington and by extension in Europe – and given the over two-dozen NATO bases in Europe, inching ever closer to the gates of Moscow and surrounding China – all the way through the South China Sea.

Obama once promised he would station more than half of the US Navy fleet in the South China Sea, making sure China was surrounded from everywhere. He made true on his promise. Its Obama’s infamous “Pivot to Asia”. And so, he did with Russia. That included and still includes deadly economic sanctions on countries that once-upon-a-time counted with Washington – and Europe – as partners.

How many people were killed by these sanctions in North Korea, Russia, China? How many were – and still are – being killed by the totally illegal sanctions – illegal by any standards of international law – in Cuba, Venezuela, Syria, Libya, Iran, Pakistan, DPRK (North Korea) – and by extension through Israel in Palestine – and many more nations of our planet? – Let alone the “eternal war on terror” – an invention to keep killing people for the good of the United States, for their control over humanity – and not least for the enormous profit bonanza of the US military industrial complex.

Shall we mention the mass killing caused by President Clinton’s initiated NATO intervention in former Yugoslavia; or the six still ongoing wars, initiated by President father Bush with the first Gulf war in 1991, then officially expanded by son Bush in 2001 and 2003 with the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, then further expanded by four more wars in the Middle East – Libya, Syria, Sudan and Yemen – under the Obama Administration. And how about the explicitly Obama-approved massive extra-judiciary drone killings around the world, with focus on the Middle East?

Aren’t we talking about tens and tens of thousands of deaths, assassinated people, a genocide by US presidents with the complicity of so-called European leaders (sic)?

Did President Putin and President Xi ever call them “killers” or murderers? – They could have, but they didn’t. However, that is what President Putin meant when he referred to Biden’s call him a “killer” – “It takes one to know one”, or rather “the one who accuses is the one who is”. The emperor and the emperor’s servants are a cabal of “killers” – a better fitting term is mass murderers.
——

Now President Biden, then VP to Obama was an intimate part of it, of clamping down on Russia and China. Biden was also part of the intensification of the Iraq war, as well as of the destruction of Libya and the brutal murder of President Qadhafi. Though Hillary’s initiative (then Obama’s Secretary of State), Biden fully supported her.

So, President Putin’s wise response was remarkable. See here https://www.reuters.com/article/us-russia-usa-reaction-idUSKBN2BA0S1?fbclid=IwAR2RWXH1UPWt3KhWjffR_TPbwugWlklMjf3k6UYhxdDX37NMS4b2FjS51NY “The one who accuses is the one who is” – he said, referring to a psychic wisdom that one looks in the mirror when accusing others of a crime or a sin. In other words, Biden projects his own character onto Putin. Mr. Putin, politely and diplomatically said, they were different, had different cultures and different values. He also wished President Biden good health – genuinely good health, no irony, he stressed.

Before closing on such a conciliatory note, Putin referred to some American atrocities, dating back to the very beginning of American history which started with the indiscriminate slaughter of tens of thousands of indigenous Americans, for which American Presidents were responsible.

Also mentioned should be the brutal killings in Iraq, with special focus on the notorious Abu Ghraib prison, as well as Afghanistan’s Bagram Airbase detention center and lately the infamous Pul-e-Charkhi Prison, also known as the Afghan National Detention facility, outside of Kabul – and renovated by the US Corps of Engineers to accommodate war prisoners taken by US / NATO forces. And not least, nor last, the Guantanamo Bay Detention Camp in Cuba.

These are just a few of the hundreds of detention camps around the world, where thousands of prisoners were tortured and executed under orders and supervision of the US / NATO. Since WWII an estimated 20 to 30 million people were killed due to direct or indirect US intervention around the world. War crimes abound.

Yet, Mr. Putin didn’t call any of the US Presidents a “killer”. But it is crystal clear what he meant, when he said, “The one who accuses is the one who is”.


Peter Koenig is a geopolitical analyst and a former Senior Economist at the World Bank and the World Health Organization (WHO), where he has worked for over 30 years on water and environment around the world. He lectures at universities in the US, Europe and South America. He writes regularly for online journals and is the author of Implosion – An Economic Thriller about War, Environmental Destruction and Corporate Greed; and co-author of Cynthia McKinney’s book “When China Sneezes: From the Coronavirus Lockdown to the Global Politico-Economic Crisis” (Clarity Press – November 1, 2020)

Peter Koenig is a Research Associate of the Centre for Research on Globalization.

التحالف السعودي يطوي عامه السادس منهاراً.. وصنعاء حارسة دمشق وبيروت

الكاتب: عباس الزين

المصدر: الميادين نت

24 آذار 18:26

فشل العدوان السعودي على اليمن بات أمراً مفروغاً منه، والحديث لم يعد يتعلق بما تخطط له الرياض عسكرياً لحسم المعركة لصالحها، بل حول الطريقة التي يجب أن تخرج بها من الحرب.

ينتهي العام السادس من العدوان، والسعودية غير قادرة على منع القوات اليمنية من استهداف منشآتها الحيوية
ينتهي العام السادس من العدوان، والسعودية غير قادرة على منع القوات اليمنية من استهداف منشآتها الحيوية

في تاريخ 21 نيسان/أبريل عام 2015 أي بعد حوالى شهر من بداية العدوان السعودي على اليمن، خرج المتحدث باسم “التحالف” حينها أحمد العسيري، ليعلن في مؤتمر صحفي أن “عاصفة الحزم” حققت جميع أهدافها الموضوعة.

وبمعزل عن أن الهدف الرئيسي والذي كان إعادة ما تصفها الرياض بـ”الشرعية” إلى العاصمة صنعاء لم يتحقق حينها ولا يزال، فإن “التحالف” أشار أيضاً إلى أن منع حكومة صنعاء من تهديد “دول الجوار وعلى رأسها السعودية” قد تحقق.. وها هي القوات اليمنية تختتم العام السادس من العدوان باستهداف ميناء “راس تنورة” ضمن عملية “توازن الردع السادسة”، وهو أكبر ميناء نفطي في العالم، تصدّر من خلاله السعودية ما يزيد عن 80% من صادراتها النفطية.

وبالعودة إلى الهدف الرئيسي لإعلان الحرب والمتعلق بإعادة حكومة عبد ربه منصور هادي إلى صنعاء وإسقاط “حكومة الإنقاذ”، فإن العام السادس ينطوي في الوقت الذي تخسر فيه حكومة هادي وحلفاؤها وقوى التحالف آخر معاقلها في شمال اليمن، باقتراب القوات اليمنية من حسم معركة محافظة مأرب لصالحها، مع الأخذ بعين الاعتبار أهمية هذه المحافظة من النواحي الاستراتيجية والأمنية والاقتصادية، إلى جانب كونها الثقل العسكري لقوى التحالف في اليمن.

فشل العدوان السعودي على اليمن في تحقيق أهدافه بات أمراً مفروغاً منه، لأعداء السعودية وحلفائها، والحديث لم يعد يتعلق بما تخطط له الرياض عسكرياً لحسم المعركة لصالحها، بل يتركز حول الطريقة التي يجب أن تخرج بها من هذه الحرب، بعد استنفاد جميع الطرق والوسائل التي يمكن لأي طرف استخدامها في أي حربٍ يخوضها. فالسعودية حشدت برياً وحاصرت من البحر والجو، وشنت عشرات آلاف الغارات واستخدمت مختلف أنواع الأسلحة والصواريخ والآليات، ولم تستطع ليس فقط التقدم في مشروعها، بل خسرت معظم مكتسبات حلفائها بفعل التوسع الجغرافي للقوات اليمنية واللجان الشعبية.

تحرير مأرب مقدمة لتحرير محافظات أخرى

وبعد انقضاء العام الخامس من الحرب بـ”صنعاء آمنة” على إثر صد القوات اليمنية واللجان الشعبية لأوسع هجوم على العاصمة نهاية العام الماضي، دخل التحالف السعودي العام السادس مثقلاً بالإخفاقات، وها هو يدخل عامه السابع من الحرب منهاراً في مختلف جبهات القتال لا سيما في مأرب، فيما تؤكد “حكومة الإنقاذ” أنها مستمرة في عملية تحريرها لمختلف المحافظات اليمنية، محددةً وجهات جديدة كـ شبوة وحضرموت، كما جاء على لسان عضو المجلس السياسي في اليمن سلطان السامعي، خلال حديثه للميادين منذ أيام.

وأمام هذا المشهد، خرجت السعودية مؤخراً بما وصفته “مبادرة سلام”، واللافت أن الأخيرة طرحت مبادرتها وكأن ما يحصل هو حرب في اليمن، لا حرب على اليمن تقودها هي، بمعنى أن الرياض وضعت نفسها في مكانة الدولة “الراعية للسلام” في اليمن، بينما هي طرف أساسي في الحرب.

وسريعاً، سحبت حكومة صنعاء البساط من تحت المبادرة السعودية بهدف تعريتها وإظهارها كما هي، من خلال ما قاله رئيس وفد صنعاء المفاوض محمد عبد السلام، بإن “السعودية جزء من الحرب ومبادرتها لا تتضمن شيئاً جديداً”، لا سيما وأن وزير الخارجية السعودي فيصل بن فرحان آل سعود، تحدث عن فتح مطار صنعاء لبعض الوجهات، وعن تخفيف الحصار عن ميناء الحديدة، مقابل إقدام حكومة صنعاء على تنازلات سياسية، أي أن السعودية تريد مقايضة الملف الإنساني الذي تُمسِك به جرّاء حصارها المستمر، مقابل أهداف سياسية، ومن دون أي ضمانات حتى، وهذا بحد ذاته ينفي صفة “السلام” عن أي مبادرة.

الخلافات بين الحلفاء

بانتقال الحرب إلى الداخل السعودي، وتحول المرافق الحيوية من منشآت نفطية وعسكرية وأمنية لأهداف لدى القوات اليمنية، وتوسع تلك الأهداف مع مرور سنوات الحرب والتطور الذي رافق استهدافها من الناحيتين اللوجستية والعسكرية، تكون الرياض قد فقدت عامل المبادرة كطرف قادر على لعب دور بين الأطراف اليمنية، وباتت الطرف الملزم بتقديم تنازلات لا بفرضها على الآخرين، إذ أن معادلات الردع اليمنية لم تكن موجهة ضد حلفاء التحالف في الداخل اليمني، بل ضد قيادة التحالف وتحديداً السعودية.

وبالحديث عن حلفاء السعودية في الداخل اليمني، لا بد من التطرق إلى الهشاشة والتضعضع الذي لا يزال التحالف السعودي يعانيه بعد معارك دامية، ومع استمرار الخلافات، بين سلطة هادي وحزب الإصلاح من جهة، والمجلس الانتقالي المدعوم إماراتياً من جهةٍ أخرى.

فرغم تشكيل حكومة جديدة موالية للتحالف في كانون الأول/ديسمبر تضم “الانتقالي” ضمن ائتلاف جديد انبثق عن “اتفاق الرياض”، إلا أن التباينات والصراعات بين المكونات اليمنية التابعة للتحالف لا تزال مستمرة، والتي كان آخرها اقتحام متظاهرين موالين للانتقالي قصر “المعاشيق” الرئاسي في عدن، من دون أي مواجهة مع القوات الموكل إليها حماية المجمع الرئاسي، وهي قوات “الحزام الأمني” التابعة للانتقالي، والتي سهلت بدورها عملية الاقتحام.

صنعاء والأهمية الجيوسياسية

ينتهي العام السادس من العدوان، والسعودية غير قادرة على منع القوات اليمنية من استهداف منشآتها الحيوية، وعلى منعها من التقدم الجغرافي على الأرض وتحرير المحافظات، وغير قادرةٍ أيضاً على إعادة التماسك لحلفها المتضعضع بين فريقين أحدهما مدعوم من شريكها الإماراتي. هي حقائق تظهرها الوقائع الميدانية والسياسية، بعد أن كان ولي العهد السعودي محمد بن سلمان يسعى لفرض نفسه زعيماً إقليمياً من بوابة الحرب على اليمن.

وهنا، نعود إلى مجموعة من المقالات والتقارير، ومن ضمنها مقال نشر في صحيفة “الحياة” السعودية في 22 نيسان/أبريل عام 2015 تحت عنوان “وجاء دور دمشق”، تحدثت جميعها عن مرحلة ما بعد “عاصفة الحزم”. هذا المقال المذكور تحديداً، أوضح بطريقة غير مباشرة الأهمية الجيوسياسية لصنعاء في العالم العربي بمرور سنوات الحرب، لما يكشفه من مخططات كانت مرسومة، باعتبار أن الإعلام السعودي الناطق بلسان النظام، والذي كان يعد العدة لـ”عاصفة الحزم 2″ في دمشق وبيروت، بعد صنعاء، بدأ الترويج لهذه السردية بكثافة وفحواها أن “عاصفة الحزم” تتعدى صنعاء لتطال عواصم عربية أخرى. لكن، وبعد سنوات ست، لا يزال الإعلام السعودي ومعه “التحالف”، عاجزاً عن تجاوز “المستنقع اليمني”.

لم تدافع صنعاء عن نفسها ومكانتها العربية فقط، بل كانت العمق الاستراتيجي لعواصم عربية أخرى وضعت ضمن دائرة الاستهداف السعودي بسبب تموضعها في المواجهة الإقليمية. بناءً عليه، فإن صمود اليمن وانتصاره لا يقرَأ كما تحاول السعودية إظهاره على أنه صراع داخلي وحرب أهلية، بل يتعدى ذلك إلى كونه يفتح مرحلة جديدة على صعيد الإقليم، تحولت خلالها اليمن إلى لاعبٍ أساسي ومؤثر في الصراع الدائر.. وهكذا، كانت صنعاء حارسة دمشق وبيروت!

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The Probe into the Israeli Vaccine Policy and its Outcome is beyond Damning.

 BY GILAD ATZMON

CP SIDE EFFECTS.jpg

Report by Gilad Atzmon

In Israel yesterday, an independent legal body that calls itself the Civilian Probe (CP)* published its finding regarding the catastrophic impact of the Pfizer vaccine on the nation.

In their report, which they submitted to the Attorney General and the Health Minister, the committee listed a chain of critical legal and ethical failures that point at a possible attempt to mislead not just Israelis but also the entire world. Since the beginning of January I have been reporting on an undeniable correlation between vaccinations, cases and deaths (here , here, here and here ). The CP confirms my suspicions but their study also presents alarming medical findings regarding the scale of lethal side effects.  

In the document the CP points at a government attempt to conceal its dealing with Pfizer. The document states that “the Pfizer-Israel agreement is suffocated with redacted segments, consequently, it is not possible to analyze it legally and/or fully grasp Its implications as far as public health is concerned… This concealment casts a heavy shadow over anyone who took part in the (Israeli/Pfizer) negotiations…”

The CP then continues arguing that “in order to generate demand (amongst the people) for the vaccine, the government and the Ministry of Health have launched an unprecedented aggressive campaign, aiming to make Israelis rush to ‘get vaccinated.’ During that campaign all the basic rules of medical caution and ethics were disregarded, and with them also key guidelines formed after WWII regarding participation in medical trials (the Nuremberg Code). Instead of transparent and clear explanations, the public was misled by repeated official statements that the (Pfizer vaccine) has been ‘approved by the FDA’ after passing ‘rigorous tests.’”

The CP is accusing the state of Israel of intentionally reckless conduct… “Monitoring systems that enable the detection of side effects are a basic and critical condition for granting a permission for mass use of any new medicine, certainly when a mass operation of treatment that is defined as experimental is given to millions, and especially when this treatment is given to an entire country…”.

But Israel failed to set such a monitoring system.

“On the one hand, the state did not inform the citizens that Pfizer’s vaccine is in experimental stages that have not yet been completed, and that at this stage they are actually taking part in the experiment. On the other hand, the state did not maintain transparent and open control and monitoring systems for the public. As a result, there is a serious concern that this critical and negligent omission stems from: (a) the fear that such disclosure could interfere with the fulfilment of the objectives that may be implied by the Israel-Pfizer agreement or (b) the fear of diminishing demand for the exceptional number of vaccines that were purchased by Israel in advance, and / or (c) the fear of revealing unflattering results of the ‘experiment’ being carried out in Israel.” 

The CP is brave to admit that the lack of a monitoring system isn’t just a potential crime against the Israeli people, it may also be a crime against the rest of the world (i.e., humanity):


“In the absence of a transparent monitoring system that reports on side effects, not only have the Israeli government and the Ministry of Health failed citizens by providing them with misleading information, the Israeli government have failed both Pfizer and the rest of the world awaiting the results of the (so called) ‘real world experiment’ (that is taking place in Israel).”

To remove any doubt, the CP alerts the Israeli Attorney General to the possible criminal act implied by Israel’s vaccine policy.

“This is an alleged deception, suspiciously criminal, which should be thoroughly examined before the Attorney General allows the Israeli government to continue the alleged campaign of deception of Israel’s citizens and the (rest of the) world.”

The CP extended their study well beyond the legal realm, as it also attempts to fill the wide hole created by the State’s lack of a monitoring system.

“What do we learn from the facts on the ground?” the CP report asks. “An examination of mortality data published by the government shows that there is a correlation between number of vaccinations and the number of deaths. The excess mortality is noticeable among people up to 70 and also among adults over the age of 70, and remains even after offsetting the deaths attributed to Corona. In the population over the age of 70 – in January 2021 an excess mortality of 19.5% was observed compared to October 2020 – the month when the corona data were highest, and 22.4% compared to January 2020. In the younger population – an excess mortality of 7% was observed in January 2021 compared to the month October 2020 – the month in which the corona death numbers were the highest, and 7% compared to January 2020. It should be noted that this trend continues in the following month as well.”

As mentioned above I have been writing about the devastating correlation between vaccines and deaths since early January. In Britain and the USA, we detect identical correlation between mass vaccination and death. However, far more problematic is the realm of side effects, something which governments, the WHO, the corrupted pharmaceutical industry, and of course social media giants attempt to suppress in the most Orwellian manner. The Israeli CP seems to have produced the first robust report on Pfizer’s vaccine side effects. They published a table of their findings, which they summarize here:

“As one can detect looking at the table – there are close to 200 deaths, and this – only by examining about 800 reports of cases of serious side effects. As mentioned, the CP is still working on analyzing side effects and we have hundreds of additional reports that are subject to analysis. Our study so far indicates that about 25% of deaths are from people under the age of 60. About 15% of them are under 50 years old. 7 of the deceased are at young ages – below age 30. Also, the study identified 27 cases of heart problems in people under the age of 60, of which 24 cases are among young people aged 17-30.  Regarding the issues to do with female medical complications (including labor-complication, delayed menstruation or irregular menstruation, etc.) – it should be noted that the committee has about 200 additional reports that have not yet been included in the final list of our findings.”

For many years, I doubted whether there was a force in the middle east that could face, let alone defeat, Israel. I am pretty convinced now that with Netanyahu at the helm and Pfizer taking care of the nation’s wellbeing, Israel doesn’t really need enemies. However, every world citizen who is concerned about the future of humanity should be alarmed by the CP’s findings and particularly by the desperate and relentless attempts to suppress free academic, scientific and ethical discussion about Covid, the so-called ‘vaccines’ or anything else.

*To read the CP report click here

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22 Years Ago: NATO’s Illegal and Criminal Invasion of Yugoslavia

By Nebojsa Malic

Global Research, March 23, 2021

Global Research 26 March 2005

This article by renowned author Nobojsa Malic was first published on March 26, 2005

In the early hours of March 24, 1999, NATO began the bombing of what was then the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. For some reason, many in the targeted nation thought the name of the operation was “Merciful Angel .” In fact, the attack was code-named “Allied Force ” – a cold, uninspired and perfectly descriptive moniker. For, however much NATO spokesmen and the cheerleading press spun, lied, and fabricated to show otherwise (unfortunately, with altogether too much success), there was nothing noble in NATO’s aims. It attacked Yugoslavia for the same reason then-Emperor Bill Clinton enjoyed a quickie in the Oval Office: because it could.

Most of the criticism of the 1999 war has focused on its conduct (targeting practices, effects, “collateral damage”) and consequences. But though the conduct of the war by NATO was atrocious and the consequences have been dire and criminal , none of that changes the fact that by its very nature and from the very beginning, NATO’s attack was a war of aggression: illegal, immoral, and unjust; not “unsuccessful” or “mishandled,” but just plain wrong.

Illegal

There is absolutely no question that the NATO attack in March 1999 was illegal . Article 2, section 4 of the UN Charter clearly says:

“All Members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United Nations.”

Some NATO members tried to offer justification. London claimed the war was “justified” as a means of preventing a “humanitarian catastrophe,” but offered no legal grounds for such a claim. Paris tried to create a tenuous link with UNSC resolutions 1199 and 1203 , which Belgrade was supposedly violating. However, NATO had deliberately bypassed the UN, rendering this argument moot.

Article 53 (Chapter VIII ) of the UN Charter clearly says that:

“The Security Council shall, where appropriate, utilize such regional arrangements or agencies for enforcement action under its authority. But no enforcement action shall be taken under regional arrangements or by regional agencies without the authorization of the Security Council.” (emphasis added)

Furthermore, Article 103 (Chapter XVI ) asserts its primacy over any other regional agreement, so NATO’s actions would have been illegal under the UN Charter even if the Alliance had an obligation to act in Kosovo. Even NATO’s own charter – the North Atlantic Treaty of 1949 – was violated by the act of war in March 1999:

“Article 1

“The Parties undertake, as set forth in the Charter of the United Nations, to settle any international dispute in which they may be involved by peaceful means in such a manner that international peace and security and justice are not endangered, and to refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force in any manner inconsistent with the purposes of the United Nations. […]

“Article 7

“This Treaty does not affect, and shall not be interpreted as affecting in any way the rights and obligations under the Charter of the Parties which are members of the United Nations, or the primary responsibility of the Security Council for the maintenance of international peace and security.” (emphasis added)

The attack violated other laws and treaties as well: the Helsinki Final Act of 1975 (violating the territorial integrity of a signatory state) and the 1980 Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties (using coercion to compel a state to sign a treaty – i.e., the Rambouillet ultimatum ).

Yugoslavia had not attacked any NATO members, nor indeed threatened the security of any other country in the region; it was itself under an attack by a terrorist , irredentist organization. What NATO did on March 24, 1999 was an act of aggression, a crime against peace .

Illegitimate

Perfectly aware that the bombing was illegal, NATO leaders tried to create justifications for it after the fact. They quickly seized upon a mass exodus of Albanians from Kosovo, describing it as “ethnic cleansing” and even “genocide .” But as recent testimonies of Macedonian medical workers who took care of Albanian refugees suggest, the Western press was engaging in crude deceit , staging images of suffering refugees and peddling the most outrageous tall tales as unvarnished truth.

Stories abounded of mass murder, orchestrated expulsions, mass rapes, seizure of identity papers, even crematoria and mine shafts filled with dead bodies. Little or no evidence was offered – and not surprisingly, none found afterwards. The stories were part of a Big Lie , aimed to justify the intervention, concocted by professional propagandists, and delivered by the KLA-coached refugees. The KLA ran every camp in Macedonia and Albania, and there are credible allegations they organized the exodus in many instances. Albanians who did not play along were killed.

Eventually, the “genocide” and other atrocity stories were debunked as propaganda. But they had served their purpose, conjuring a justification for the war at the time. They had allowed NATO and its apologists to claim the war – though “perhaps” illegal – was a moral and legitimate affair. But there should be no doubt, it was neither .

Unjust

Even if one can somehow gloss over the illegal, illegitimate nature of the war and the lies it was based on, would the war still not be justified, if only because it led to the return of refugees? Well, which refugees? Certainly, many Kosovo Albanians – and quite a few from Albania, it appears – came back, only to proceed to cleanse it systematically of everyone else. Jews, Serbs, Roma, Turks, Ashkali, Gorani, no community was safe from KLA terror , not even the Albanians themselves. Those suspected of “collaborating” were brutally murdered, often with entire families.

According to the Catholic doctrine of “just war ,” a war of aggression cannot be just. Even if one somehow fudges the issue, “the use of arms must not produce evils and disorders graver than the evil to be eliminated.”

The evil conjured by NATO’s and KLA’s propaganda machine was indeed grave. But it was not real. In contrast, what took place after the war – i.e., under the NATO/KLA occupation – is amply documented. At the beginning of NATO’s aggression, there were fewer dead, fewer refugees, less destruction, and more order than at any time since the beginning of the occupation. NATO has replaced a fabricated evil with a very real evil of its own.

Monument to Evil

What began six years ago may have been Albright’s War on Clinton’s watch, but both Albright and Clinton have been gone from office for what amounts to a political eternity.

For four years now, the occupation of Kosovo has continued with the blessing – implicit or otherwise – of Emperor Bush II, who launched his own illegal war in Iraq . Kosovo is not a partisan, but an imperial issue; that is why there has been virtually no debate on it since the first missiles were fired.

Albright and KLA leader Hashim Thaci, Rambouillet, 1998

Six years to the day since NATO aircraft began their onslaught, Kosovo is a chauvinistic, desolate hellhole.

Serbian lives, property, culture, and heritage been systematically destroyed , often right before the eyes of NATO “peacekeepers.” Through it all, Imperial officials, Albanian lobbyists, and various presstitutes have been working overtime to paint a canvas that would somehow cover up the true horror of occupation.

Their “liberated” Kosovo represents everything that is wrong about the world we live in.

It stands as a monument to the power of lies, the successful murder of law, and the triumph of might over justice. Such a monument must be torn down, or else the entire world may end up looking like Kosovo sometime down the line. If that’s what the people in “liberal Western democracies” are willing to see happen, then their civilization is well and truly gone

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