Lebanon’s future: Lebanon’s Mutasarrifate Take II:

August 10, 2020

A crossroads of civilizations, Lebanon has been often involved in wars, invasions, and sectarian warfare. Image depicts Lebanese soldiers in 1861, right after a big clash between Maronite Christians and Druze muslims.

by Ghassan Kadi for The Saker Blog

Most of the current instability in the Levant and the whole Middle East is inadvertently and inadvertently a result of the obsession about Israel’s security; both from the Israeli as well as the American sides. That said, many of the region’s problems are deep-rooted and go back to times before Israel was created and before America had any influence.

In the middle part of the Nineteenth Century, and whilst the entire Levant was under Ottoman rule, sectarian strife between Lebanese Maronites (a regional Catholic sect) and Druze (regional esoteric Muslim-based faith) left thousands savagely butchered, towns decimated, and civilians displaced. The strife escalated in 1860-1861, and as it was obvious back then that the Ottoman Empire was not far from its demise, the West was looking for half an opportunity to interfere in the Levant; and under the guise of protecting the Lebanese Maronites, coerced the Ottomans to give Mount Lebanon autonomy, under the auspices of the West.

This all happened prior to WWI, before Sykes Picot, and before any single Western nation could make a claim on Lebanon. The decision had then to be reached by consensus. This is why it was jointly reached by France, Britain, Austria, Prussia and Russia. The Ottomans had no choice but to accept and dilute their influence in the region by giving the West a post within the Ottoman Empire.

The French proposed that the ruler should be given the title of Plenipotentriary, and the word was translated to a Turkish word of Arabic origin, Mutasarrif, but that person was appointed by the West; not by Turkey, and the political entity itself was called the Mutasarrifate of Mount Lebanon.

For readers interested in my take and analysis on Lebanon’s recent history in a more detailed but concise narrative, they can go to this reference. In brief, Grand Liban (Greater Lebanon) was created by the French under the demand of the then Maronite Patriarch Howayyek in 1920. It was meant to give Lebanese Christians a sense of security, and to be a neutral country in the Middle East; with a Western outlook.

This article will not discuss the geopolitical changes that have happened since. They are in the link above. That said, with the many changes over the last century, the situation in Lebanon has become untenable.

In summary, and among other things, Lebanon has to find a way to deal with Israel, with Syria which is the heart of the axis of resistance and support of Hezbollah, its Arab neighbours who are predominantly against Syria and Hezbollah, devise a united policy as to the status and level of the presence of Hezbollah, find a way out of the current financial collapse and redefine the country’s position as either a neutral country or a spearhead of resistance.

But this is easier said than done not only because of the political divisions, but also because of the endemic corruption of its Mafia lords; Lebanon’s ruling elite and their cronies.

These are the family lines of the same lords that led Lebanon into the civil war. They all have little armies, real armies; some with tanks and artillery. The Lebanese Army is incapable of crushing them, and even if it attempts to, it will have to attack them all at once; not one at a time without risking being accused of impartiality and giving favours.

Those leaders are accused of having thieved $800 Bn from Lebanon and siphoned it overseas. And in as much as they loathe each other, they equally need each other because the existence of each of them is contingent upon that of the others.

Much has been blamed in the past on the disunity of the Lebanese themselves, but when literally millions took to the streets in October 2019, they were united, they carried the slogan of ‘kellon yani kellon’ (all of them means all of them). But before too long, meddlers and thugs were set up inside their camps wreaking havoc and disunity. The protestors were hoping that the Lebanese Army would make a move and start arresting the leaders and the cronies implanted amongst them, but the army itself is bogged down in the same game of dirty politics and loyalties.

In simple terms, the Lebanese people can become united if they have the will and they have done so in the past. They have learned this lesson the hard way, but they simply do not have the means and the power to dislodge the ruling families who control everything; all the way from daily bread to election results.

The country has been struggling for years with mountains of rubbish that the government has not been able to process, electricity shortages, water shortages, soaring unemployment just to name a few problems. It is little wonder why the economy collapsed and the Lira lost nearly 80% of its value in the last few months. Add to this COVID-19, the Caesar Act, and now the Beirut Sea-Port explosions.

Of interest to note is that the latest events in Lebanon have been capitalized on to raise the level of dissent against Hezbollah. According to some, Hezbollah was blamed for everything; even including the sea-port disaster.

Sometimes however, disasters offer silver linings. The cries of Lebanese citizens in the streets of major cities did not generate any global compassion, but after the massive blast, there seems a change in this respect.

Many nations have come forward and offered to assist the Lebanese people, and their governments are not shying away from stating that they will not entrust this aid to the Lebanese Government for distribution to those in need. This is because the whole world, not only the Lebanese people, no longer trust Lebanese officials.

Thus far, among a list of nations, aid and offers of aid came from Russia, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, the USA, and ironically, even from Israel .

But no aid offer has thus far come close to that of France. French President Marcon did not only make a promise, but he also visited Lebanon and walked on Ground Zero (thereby shooting the concept of nuclear attack in the guts) and made a very intriguing yet audacious promise. He promised Lebanon a ‘new political pact’.

What does a ‘new political pact’ exactly mean?

This promise harks back to the days of colonization when France did not only actually draw the map of the new state of Lebanon and gave it a constitution that was shaped on France’s own, but it also goes back to the days when the Mount Lebanon Mutasarrifate was created, does it not?

Macron went further and promised to return to Lebanon on the 1st of September 2020, a very ominous date indeed, a date that marks the centenary of the declaration of Grand Liban.

But Lebanon is no longer under French mandate, and France is unable to receive such a mandate without international support. That said, as unbelievable as it may sound, more than fifty thousand Lebanese have signed a petition asking France to take control of Lebanon for the next ten years. And speaking of former colonizers, if such a poll was taken for the return of Turkish rule, perhaps more would sign it as the popularity of Erdogan is growing within the Sunni street.

This is not to say that Lebanese people want to be ruled by a foreign entity. It is simply because they are feeling beaten, robbed, hungry, terrorised, so helpless and have lost total faith in their own leaders and political process and are desperately screaming out for help from outside.

If the events of 1860-1861 have generated enough Western ‘sympathy’ to ‘help’ the people of Lebanon, then the events of 2020 are much more prominent and offer a much bigger opportunity and lure for a new-style intervention.

But once again, France cannot get away with doing this alone. With Russia already on the ground in Syria and America looking for a new role in Lebanon, France would have to get them on board somehow. It is plausible that a new international conference that of course includes Russia but also Turkey, but not Iran, may soon be convened to discuss the political future of Lebanon.

This time, the West will have a significantly larger incentive than the one it had back in 1861, because this time around, it will have one small eye on Lebanon, and the bigger eye on the security of Israel, as well as seeing in this an opportunity they have not been able to achieve by other means in order to reach a deal that stamps out Iranian influence and presence just at the door step of Israel’s borders.

If the international community were serious about helping the Lebanese people and the Lebanese Army, it is quite capable of freezing the assets of the corrupt leaders and repatriating those funds to jump-start the economy again. Lebanon has a huge wealth of highly qualified professionals, many of whom currently are unemployed, and are desperately needing work in a country that desperately needs rebuilding. But would they be trusted, given their miserable track record, and who would they be answerable to if they breached the agreed mandate?

But such a plan, devised by an international conference would not bear fruit unless it puts teeth into the decision, sending troops to disarm the relatively small militia of the corrupt politicians, forcefully if needed. Theoretically, and with good intentions, this is conceivable. However, since when has such an operation ever been genuinely executed and free of abuse and various stakeholder’s pursuing their nefarious agendas. How could we forget Libya? That said, the intervention in Libya was NATO-based, the presence of Russia and possibly China in any international agreement over Lebanon will add more balance.

But no one will be able to disarm the formidable army of the true resistance, Hezbollah, any more than Hezbollah will agree to lay down its weapons.

According to my analysis and predictions, it appears likely that some type of intervention will occur to cleanse the country of the political elite and their private interest militias. The pact will draw a line somewhere in South Lebanon, keep an area under Hezbollah’s control, and have Hezbollah to agree to leave Lebanese politics. This would be the biggest concession that Hezbollah will agree to, if it does. This will not give Israel all of what it wants, because such an outcome will not safeguard it from Hezbollah’s rockets, however Israel cannot expect more than that, if it does.

Russia may use this ‘opportunity’ to reach a way out of the deadlock and find a political settlement with the USA over their differences in Syria. But for this to happen, Syria will also need to agree to remove Iranian influence and presence from Syrian soil, as this fact has caused so much growing divisiveness in the region and provided an excuse for further Israeli aggression and US presence in Syria.

Most ironically in this particular context, even Chairman Nasrallah referred to silver linings in his latest speech on the 8th of August 2020, following the sea-port disaster. He said “from the womb of the tragedy, opportunities are born, and that international discussions emerging from this incident are an opportunity that must be capitalized upon by the Lebanese” I do not profess to know what Chairman Nasrallah meant, but he did add that all of those who are hedging their bets on the failure of the resistance will eventually fail.

Lebanon has probably gone the full circle, and the age of Mutasarrifate Take II is possibly only around the corner.

If Marcon is true to his word, for better or for worse he needs to act fast because he knows that the condition of the Lebanese people is dire. But no doubt, given his country’s history great skepticism prevails.

Tragically, such an outcome will catapult Lebanon right back into the age of Western custodianship. Depending on its fine details, and unless it stipulates the lifting of sanctions on Syria, its outcome may have serious further economic repercussions on Syria. Furthermore, it will take away many of the achievements of the Axis of Resistance, realistically however, such an outcome is not far-fetched.

The murderous, greedy, filthy and corrupt Lebanese political leaders would not have only destroyed Lebanon’s economy, but also returned it to the doldrums of the age of colonization.

Iran and China terrify the Empire, but why?

Iran and China terrify the Empire, but why?

August 11, 2020

By Aram Mirzaei for the Saker blog

The proposed 25-year deal between the Islamic Republic of Iran and the People’s Republic of China, titled “Comprehensive Strategic Partnership between I.R. Iran and P.R. China” has been heavily discussed recently. While not all details in the deal are clear, it has been described by Iranian and Chinese officials as specifying the roadmap of developing and deepening Tehran-Beijing ties in “Political”, “Executive Cooperation”, “Human and Cultural”, “Judiciary, Security and Defence”, and “Regional and International” domains.

It remains unclear when such a deal will be formally clinched. But Iran’s government says the two sides have so far finalized at least 75 percent of the draft version of the pact. Once concluded, the text of the deal will be discussed for final approval in Iran’s Parliament. However, many lawmakers are already critical of the government for not consulting the deal before entering into negotiations with China.
What has so far been made public is that the 25-year cooperation roadmap will cover economy, security and military areas. Iran will reportedly supply the PRC (People’s Republic of China) with oil for 25 years. In return, China will invest heavily in Iran’s infrastructure as well as banking and telecommunications sectors, amounting to some 400 billion dollars. Reactions, both inside and outside Iran have been mixed. Some inside Iran have criticized the deal since they believe that the Islamic Republic has negotiated it from a position of weakness, in order to escape the failing JCPOA deal and its aftermath – Washington’s maximum pressure campaign. Supporters of the deal argue that the deal is a political victory against what Beijing and Tehran have identified as a common opponent.

Naturally, the US State Department and anti-Iran Farsi media outlets based outside Iran have denounced the possible deal without even knowing all the details. The US State Department went on to issue tweets in Farsi, comparing the potential Iran-China accord to the 1828 Treaty of Turkmenchay which was a peace treaty between Qajar Iran and the Russian Empire. By the treaty, Iran had to cede to Russia control of most of its areas in the South Caucasus.

As per usual, social media is the main tool they use for their propaganda. Certain think tanks led by Western governments, particularly the United States spread rumours and lies. For instance, they have created various hashtags like “No to Iran Sellout!” This has been picked up by Iranian analysts too:

“Based on our monitoring of social media, we spotted the first analyses on the Iran-China cooperation plan in US media. What the mainly US media claim is reproduced in social media, particularly Twitter. Those who are active in cyberspace and social media include users affiliated with the Zionist regime, users affiliated with the Mujahideen Khalq Organization as they are supposed to insinuate wrong interpretations into public minds in Persian language. MKO agents based in Albania and benefiting from Western funding are involved. The Zionist regime and Saudi Arabia are also cooperating by spending money and offering human resources. From as early on as 1995, Iran has been aware of the importance of the Beijing- Tehran axis as a counterweight to the U.S.-led global order. Iran and China share a desire to engage in revisionist regional moves without wanting to start a large-scale war; to put an end to US imperialism and military supremacy in the Persian Gulf region. It is a valid question however, whether this will not lead to a Chinese show of military might in the region.

Our ties with some nations may be focused on a single aspect like agriculture, culture and energy. But with China, we have reached the conclusion that we can cooperate in academic, cultural and IT and economic sectors. And regarding the strategic aspects, our ties with some countries may be periodic. But the Islamic Republic of Iran and the People’s Republic of China eye long-term cooperation. “ Hamed Vafai, China Affairs Analyst

The Iranians outside of Iran who oppose the deal are often pro-Western and echo the same lies spewed by Washington – for example when they claim that Iran has sold its soil to China, offering Beijing Iran’s Kish Island as a military base and so on. The sheer hypocrisy by Pro-US Iranians is mind-boggling. The things they accuse the Islamic Republic of doing for China are the same things their beloved “King” did for the US, if not even more. I don’t need to go into detail over how subservient the Iranian monarchy was to Washington.

Tehran has made it clear that this deal is to protect the Iranian economy from US sanctions, and that it will not cede any part of its soil to China. Tehran rejected the criticism saying is it aimed at appeasing the enemies of the Islamic Republic. “Unfortunately, a destructive line of propaganda has been initiated and directed from outside Iran against the expansion of Iran’s relations with neighbors and especially (with) China and Russia,” Iranian president’s chief of staff, Mahmoud Vaezi, said last week.

The Iranian foreign ministry spokesman, Seyed Abbas Mousavi dismissed unfounded claims of Iranian islands in the Persian Gulf being leased out to China, oil sold at exclusively low prices, or the deployment of Chinese armed forces in the Gulf, an invading force in Iranian waters that is. He said such claims were too ridiculous to even merit a denial. Apparently the Chinese response to the allegations was not so different.

So what’s in it for the parties involved?

There is no doubt that Washington’s withdrawal from the JCPOA and the subsequent sanctions imposed by Washington has left the Iranian economy in a very difficult position, especially since the EU has betrayed the deal as well. Part of the blame has been placed on the Rouhani government, which I believe to be wrong. It is counterproductive to assume that the Islamic Republic’s commitment to the JCPOA triggered the crisis since the pressure on Iran’s economy was no less severe before the JCPOA.

The trade deal itself is one of necessity as the West has failed to live up to their promises and proven once and for all that they can never be trusted. Not only have they reneged on their commitments, but they also continue to wage psychological warfare on Iran through propaganda and lies. Bearing in mind that Washington has forbidden many countries from doing deals with Tehran, I see no reason to be critical of this potential deal with the PRC as of yet. This is about the Islamic Republic’s very survival, something that the IRGC and the top leadership in Tehran have also recognized – which explains why they have remained so silent about it.

The potential partnership offers Iran a way out of the harsh US sanctions. For Iran this would translate into an injection of approximately 280 billion dollars for its energy sector and 120 billion dollars for manufacturing and transport infrastructure. In return for a discounted oil-flow to China and preferential Chinese access to various sectors of the Iranian economy, Iran would have its infrastructure given a much needed boost. The deal includes 100 projects which defy US unilateral sanctions against Iran.

China is the only remaining official buyer of Iranian oil and has strongly opposed Washington’s sanctions. It defies the US also economically together with Russia and Iran, as the three have attempted to replace the US dollar in their dealings, an act that inspired Pakistan and may have other regional states follow. Why wouldn’t the Islamic Republic with its free-falling rial want China as a potential shield against US sanctions and even motions at the UN Security Council? What other options does Iran have? To negotiate a new JCPOA with Washington, one which the US would at any time once more renege on? Besides, it should be known to all by now that the nuclear issue is not really why Washington is sanctioning the Islamic Republic.

The PRC is viewed in the West as a threat both because of its rising economic power, and more recently because of its potential political power, poised to challenge Washington’s hegemony. Crude accusations of Chinese imperialism and false expressions of “worry” for poor Asian and African countries aside, the West is worried because China’s entry into the Middle East would enhance Beijing’s position not only in West Asia, but in Central Asia and the Caucasus as well. For China, Iran could very well be a gateway into the Middle East, as it has historically also been. Iran has connections in Syria, Iraq and Lebanon where China has up until recently been absent, and their partnership could flourish as Iraq and Syria will rebuild their countries after decades of US imposed wars. The Islamic Republic can introduce lucrative projects to the Chinese who may not know the region quite well.

All this gives Washington clear reason to be annoyed since it would make the US sanctions rather useless. But Washington also knows that the implications of this potential deal are far greater than just helping Iran.

Washington knows that its position in the Middle East as the sole dominant power alongside Israel is being challenged by Russia, Iran and now China as well. The Zionist axis has lost the struggle for Syria and is desperately clinging onto the oil fields in the eastern parts of the country, they have lost in Iraq as Baghdad wants them out, and they will lose elsewhere too. Even Turkey – a NATO ally – is a loose cannon that Washington cannot trust, especially since Ankara has repeatedly refused to follow Washington’s orders. This leaves Washington with the vassal reactionary monarchies in the Persian Gulf and Israel as the only reliable “friends” of Washington’s. The birth of an alliance/united front with a common cause against the Zionist empire could potentially lead to an East-West divide situation not so different from the Cold War in Europe.

Personally, I welcome it. A bipolar balance in the region would deter Washington further from regime change attempts. The only reason for Washington’s audacity to start the Syrian and Iraqi wars were because of the power vacuum left after the dissolution of the Soviet Union – without a counter-weight against it, Washington has been free to do as it pleases in the region for the past 3 decades.

Necessity will drive China and Iran to deepen relations. Both share grievances against the US and its vassals, both are being threatened in their own regions by Washington and together with the Russian Federation, they can finally bring back a balance of power in the world. When it is all said and done, let’s see what these two ancient Asian cultures can achieve together.

President Assad: Elections are Historic Station Written by Our People Through Their Electoral Pens and Their Will

Source

Posted by INTERNATIONALIST 360° on 

President Al-Assad before the members of the People’s Assembly: The elections are a historical station, the details of which have been written by our people by the voters ’stances, their will and their defiance, and affirming their determination to adhere to the constitutional requirements.

12 August، 2020
Damascus, SANA

President Bashar al-Assad said on Wednesday that the people’s Assembly elections are a historic stage of the war phases that our people wrote their details through their electoral pens and their will.

President al-Assad added in a speech to members of the People’s Assembly’s third legislative term that today’s meeting was supposed to be held under the dome of the People’s Assembly as usual, but in light of the measures taken to confront the coronavirus, the session was held at the People’s Palace.

The President added that the elections you lately run were different, thus, in spite of coronavirus epidemic and its effect in the abstention of some people to take part in, there were multiplicity in the lists and a true competition, and this competition is a patriotic movement and any national movement is positive because it reflects the patriotic commitment.

The President added “We heard a lot of criticism about the people’s Assembly’s elections, and part of that might be true, but the most important positive side is to see our problems in a true manner.

President al-Assad added ‘We have to put into consideration that the victory in the war is not only by carrying it out military, economically or morally, but it also needs preparing for it through planning and organizing it.

“Regarding the organizing and the administrative side, it depends on right legislations which are the core of your Assembly’s work… It depends on the right legislations that organize the relation between the state’s institutions and between the citizens and establishments which create the justice and equal opportunities, thus they boost the national belonging to Homeland” President al-Assad added.

He added that the successful plans set off from strategic visions and your council has a central role in dialogue and it is an important bridge between the citizens and the Executive Authority.

The President affirmed that the war will not prevent us from assuming our duties, and the power of peoples is in adaptation with the conditions and subjugating them for their interests.

President al-Assad added “any defect in the legislations affects the institutions , weakens the citizen’s confidence, and weakens the morals and destabilizes the situation ..and both of the morals and stability are the core of the aggression on Syria and at the same time they are the core of defending it, especially that this war, which is not traditional from the military side through bringing in hundreds of thousands of terrorists from other areas of the world, depended on the psychological side that aimed at destroying morals , self-defeat and later the free surrender.”

President al-Assad added that Caesar Act is not a separate state of what had come of the blockade stages that have caused a big damage to the Syrian people.

The president added that the “act” has some additional harm and there is a lot of psychological warfare in it.

President al-Assad went on to say that through the general context of war, whenever terrorists fail in their missions, there are an escalation, one time they go to the Security Council, another time they escalating in the chemical issue or they bomb our forces, and after the liberation of the west of Aleppo and the south of Idleb, the title was economic aggression to weaken the achievements of our forces’ victories, making them pale and without meaning for the Syrian people.

“The question about why the last Israeli strikes in Al-Badya and the surrounding areas coincided with the issuance of the act, the answer is that because they came to facilitate the movement of Daesh as their cells are positioned in Al-Badya region and its surroundings and they are not sleeping cells, they are active ones , and this is another aspect of “ Caesar Act, “ so it is not only an act to impose economic sanctions, but it isalso a new stage of the escalation “ the president added.

The other side is to motivate the terrorists, throughout the past years, terrorists have lost trust in their leadership and began to hand over the weapons and began to change their positions and lost hope to achieve something.

“The US needs terrorists in the region, on top, Daesh, and it wanted from Caesar Act to express its support to the terrorists,” the President said.

He added that the Israeli aggressions on Deir Ezzor came to facilitate the movement of Daesh terrorists.

President al-Assad said that responding to the blockade will be through production and self-dependence.

The President said that we have to think about what could secure the livelihood of the citizen and distance him from poverty and we have to boost hope and work because without them there is no meaning for life.

President al-Assad added that we have to remember that our standing by the army was the reason behind all its achievements and our support to the Syrian Pound will be the reason for its power.

The President affirmed that unlike what some people think, the circumstance now is appropriate to inject money, adding that the foreign capital is coward but the national one must not be so, otherwise the homeland will lose.

“We have to concentrate on supporting the micro-investments as they are able to support the national economy and face blockade …the agricultural sector is the pillar of the national economy and it has to be supported,” the President added.

As for the factors that affect the Syrian pound, the President said they are known; the direct effect of the war that lead to slow down the economy by the destruction of infrastructure and a dramatic decline in investment, also the blockade that has prevented the import of essential necessary materials for the production process.

As for the measures applied by the institutions, the President affirmed that they aim at fixing the exchange price. But fixing the price or returning it to the best situation, this needs everyone’s cooperation because the Syrian pound is in everyone’s hands, not Justin the hands of institutions, and we have to the Syrian pound instead of abandoning it for the interest of other currencies.

He went on to say that deterrence is the last mean in combating corruption, adding “we are persistent in restoring the stolen public funds through the legal ways and institutions.

President aL-Assad said that” urgent reforms in agricultural sector are able to give swift and wide results more than any other sectors.

He added “we are in the heart of war and we are talking about the liberation of different lands and regions ,however, the return of state authority will be through the return of the rule of law, and not only the liberation of the lands, because Law and corruption cannot meet in one place.

“Homeland can’t withstand while it’s being snapped by terrorists and looted by corrupters,” the President said.

The president reaffirmed that Golan remains in the heart of every honest Syrian, its status won’t be changed by the annexation decision of the government of a Zionist entity or an immoral US regime, and our right to regain it is inseparable from our right to liberate all our lands from terrorism.

The President said that we have to think about what could secure the livelihood of the citizen and distance him from poverty and we have to boost hope and work because without them there is no meaning for life.

He added that there is no difference between a local or imported terrorist, a Zionist soldier, Turkish or American one, all of them are enemies on our territory.

Bushra Dabin/Baraa Ali/Mazen Eyon

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Illegal Trump Military Base in Syria Comes under Attack

August 6, 2020 Miri Wood

Abandoned illegal US Military base in northern Syria
An abandoned illegal US Military base in northern Syria

On this occasion, the bombing was on a Trump regime criminal base in the town of Ash Shaddadi. A previous one left two American illegals missing. Details are also missing because these areas of Syria — which is not part of the US, nor a NATO member state, nor a NATO lapdog — are under foreign military occupation…and also, perhaps, because Trump does not want to tell Americans that their illegals in Syria are being killed or wounded while engaged in criminal activities.

https://www.google.com/maps/embed?pb=!1m18!1m12!1m3!1d6605973.009257181!2d36.24243683975571!3d36.05513155770284!2m3!1f0!2f0!3f0!3m2!1i1024!2i768!4f13.1!3m3!1m2!1s0x154bd12e988b85c5%3A0x8c10d8a87e245922!2sAsh%20Shaddadi%2C%20Syria!5e0!3m2!1sen!2svi!4v1596716063911!5m2!1sen!2svi

It is unlikely that those attacking the imperial US bases are members of any faction of al Qaeda, including but not limited to ISIS; were bonafide ISIS terrorists engaged in military attacks on illegal, occupying forces, it is likely that Trump would take a page from Obama’s book of war crimes. Let us never forget that ”44″ was thwarted in his plans to do to Syria what he did to Libya, when the Syrian Arab Republic joined the OPCW in September 2013.

Obama was forced to wait another year before launching his war criminal “coalition” of 66 countries which bombed Syria from the sky, using the excuse of ISIS murdering western illegals as the cover story. Please keep in mind that none of those killed had any visible means of support, which gives some plausibility to various claims all were engaged in special operations to destroy Syria, from the ground.

Other recent attacks on American criminals in Syria, arrogant enough to set up military bases, have been scattered through other areas of al Hasakah and also Deir Ezzor, where the Trump regime is focused on stealing the oil that belongs to the indigenous people of Syria. Contrary to the NATO peak colonialists, Syria oil does not belong to America, nor to the Saudis, nor to the Israelis.

Syria News reminds western fraud liberal colonialists that Syrian oil also does not belong to the non-indigenous, murderous, treasonous, separatist Kurdish militia, to whom Obama gave the Orwellian name, SDF — even while much of its leadership consisted of foreign, NATO wetworkers — whose members Trump now uses as cannon fodder in the attempted ethnic cleansing of the Syrian people and their homeland.

Bomb detonated in front of Virgin Mary Church - Qamishli - Hasakah Syria
Bomb detonated in front of the Church of the Virgin Mary, in Qamishli, Hasaka, Syria.

The author humbly suggests that Americans take a moment from their partisan infighting to reflect on not only Trump’s double standards regarding illegals, but on the silence of the Trump haters, regarding the spate of attacks on those highly revered military troops, those illegals in the S.A.R.

— Miri Wood

Censorship: Dictator Erdogan Continues to Block Syria News in Turkey

August 7, 2020 Arabi Souri

Recept Tayyeb Erdogan - Turkey Sultan Wannabe

The Turkish madman and Sultan wannabe Recep Tayyeb Erdogan continues to block our site Syria News in Turkey, or better call it Erdoganstan, the site has been blocked since 2013.

A thread on Reddit reminded me of the blocking in Turkey, it’s been a while I didn’t check with our visitors from Turkey whether they can access the site normally in different regions of Turkey, do they need to use a VPN to access the site? I’d highly appreciate if we get the response in the comments.

This is the thread on Reddit of Turkish visitors who can’t access the site normally and need a VPN to override Erdogan’s censorship, yet still one of them, as I understood from the translator, he still couldn’t access the site:

Censorship: Erdogan continues to ban Syria News in Turkey

I used Google Translator to try to confirm that the discussion is about the censorship of Syria News in Turkey, and this is what it returned:

Turkish citizens don't have access to Syria News
  • Does the site syrianews.cc anti-AKP banned pro-Assad regime in Turkey?
  • I saw a news on Social Media, a link was given to this site. I said I’ll read, I clicked but “mafiş”. I used a VPN, it was turned on. Now I can’t say the problem is on my computer.
  • It doesn’t open for me

Obviously, the madman and loyal servant to the worldwide Political Zionism movement, Erdogan is working hard to fulfill his role as the “leading player in the Greater Israel Project” – in his own words, has managed in a short period of time to reverse most achievements Turkey has accomplished since its evolvement from the most hated Ottoman Sultanate to a modern country a century ago, now he’s doubling down on reviving that anti-Islamic criminal empire that fought fake religious wars in the name of Islam against everybody else.

Erdogan: ‘George W. Bush Assigned Me the Leading Regional Role in the Greater Israel Project.

Erdogan Intimidating Syrianews.cc to Silence Us

The Ottoman sultanate, and contrary to the propaganda its defenders try to spread, is a complete 180 degrees twist from Islamic teachings. This can easily be established by their ditching of the Arabic language, the language of the Holy Quran, as the state’s formal language and enforcing their Turkish language on the Muslims and others in the countries they invaded and destroyed.

The Ottomans infiltrated and then collapsed the last real Islamic Caliphate the Abbassid based in Baghdad, and continued to sideline the Damascus center of the former Omayyad Caliphate. They moved the center of their ‘Sultanate’ to Constantinople which they conquered and called it Astana then Istanbul, the furthest they could reach from centers of Islam in Mekkah, Medina, Quds (Jerusalem), Damascus, Fustat (Cairo), and Baghdad.

The Turks – Ottomans have great hatred towards Arab Muslims manifested in their constant invasions of other countries using Muslim youth from the Arab world to fight the useless bloodiest wars of the Sultan, not to spread Islam, but to make it a hated religion. Islam strictly prohibits invading and attacking other countries that did not pose any threat or invade Muslim countries. The only other context where Islam permits an attack against another country is when it prohibits its Muslim people from practicing their prayers, even in this case, if there’s a peace treaty with that country Islam prohibits attacking it. This explains how Islam easily and peacefully spread in regions as far as China and Indonesia without any war.

The Ottomans also worked hard to stop the advance of the Arab Muslim territories from science and education in all its fields and to prevent it completely, the succeeded in making more than 90% of the population of the regions they conquered illiterate. They stole the books to their capital, they oppressed, harshly the people of the regions under their control. That’s all very much un-Islamic and against a main teaching of Prophet Muhammad PBUH.

Their grandchildren now fighting freedom of speech, oppressing journalism, and attacking all their neighbors and beyond is not surprising, seems it runs in their genes.

We call on all governments of the world to block Erdogan’s propaganda sites in their countries until he allows freedom of speech back in his, after all, his propaganda sites are only used to recruit anti-Islamic terrorists in your countries.

All those who claim they are helping the Syrian people and shout their lungs out that they want us to gain freedoms we don’t have and democracy we lack, and to distribute our resources better, are the same ones who ban our voices, block our contributions, they jail their own citizens who do not align with their criminal policies, and steal our resources, burn our food, and prevent others from trading with us or even help us.

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Devastating Beirut Explosion: An Accident or Something More Sinister?

By Stephen Lendman

Global Research, August 05, 2020

On Tuesday, a massive explosion rocked Beirut, Lebanon’s port area.

Scores were killed, thousands wounded, dozens of people missing, along with widespread destruction and damage.

According to Lebanese authorities, around 2,700 tons of highly explosive ammonium nitrate were stored in a port area warehouse for six years without proper safety precautions — an unacceptable ticking time bomb.

The material is used in agricultural fertilizers and dynamite. Its detonation is believed to have caused what happened, perhaps by a negligent spark.

Lebanese President Michel Aoun convened the country’s High Defense Council to discuss how to deal with the disaster.

Lebanon’s Daily Star reported that rescue workers dug through rubble overnight searching for bodies and survivors, adding:

The high death and injury toll is expected to rise. A two-week state of emergency was declared.

The port of Lebanon and surrounding areas resembled the aftermath of a powerful bomb blast.

At least three Beirut hospitals were destroyed, two others damaged, a devastating blow to the city’s hard-pressed healthcare system when thousands injured from the blast need treatment, including surgery.

According to the Red Cross, dozens of wounded people are in critical condition. The organization is providing treatment for non-critical injuries.

President of Beirut’s Order of Nurses Mirna Doumit said what happened was a “catastrophe” to Lebanon’s “already bleeding” healthcare system, adding:

“I don’t find words to describe what happened. It’s like we are in a horror film.”

American University of Beirut’s Nasser Yassin said Lebanon needs international help to cope with what happened, adding:

“Like many issues for the last few months, we’ve seen the Lebanese government not taking the right decisions when it comes to the economy, or finances or social issues.”

“And I can imagine that this disaster, this catastrophe, will be dealt by the way Lebanese people do – relying on themselves and the support of their communities.”

According to Germany’s GFZ geosciences center, Tuesday’s blast was the equivalent of a 3.5 magnitude earthquake.Beirut Is Burning: Rebellion Against the Elites Has Commenced

A personal note: I experienced an earthquake of this magnitude over half a century ago in San Diego, CA.

I was in my 10th floor’s office at the time. Everything shook violently for what seemed like an eternity.

It was only around a minute or two. On the phone at the time, my initial reaction was to get under my desk to avoid falling ceiling debris that didn’t happen.

Damage reported in the city was minor. I, others in my office, and family feared something serious was happening, fortunately not so.

Major destruction and damage in Beirut affected around a four-square-mile area. It was heard and felt scores of miles distant from the port of Beirut.

An investigation was initiated to determine the cause and who bears responsibility.

Import traffic was diverted to the port of Tripoli. Most likely what happened was caused by negligence, not terrorism or another form of attack. The fullness of time will tell more.

Ammonium nitrate was responsible for deadly explosions in Tianjin, China (2015), North Korea’s Ryongchon rail station (2004) Toulouse, France (2001), Galveston Bay in the port of Texas City (1947), Oppau, Germany (1921), and Faversham, UK (1916).

The port of Lebanon is the country’s import/export hub. Vitally needed wheat supplies stored there were destroyed.

Massive destruction and damage,  along with the loss of essential food supplies dealt a major blow to already dire economic conditions in the country.

While negligence most likely was responsible for what happened, possible sabotage or something as sinister can’t be ruled out.

Lebanon has the misfortune of bordering Israel. According to the Netanyahu regime, Hezbollah controls the port of Beirut.

While no obvious Israeli fingerprints are on what happened, Tuesday’s blast was reminiscent on February 14, 2005.

At the time, a powerful car bomb blast killed former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri and 20 others, scores injured.

The blast left a 30-foot-wide/six-foot-deep crater. Syria, then Hezbollah, were falsely blamed for what happened, four Hezbollah members wrongfully indicted by a Special Tribunal for Lebanon (STL) in the Netherlands.

Israel was responsible for what happened, targeted killings one of its specialties.

At the time, Hezbollah-intercepted Israeli aerial surveillance footage and audio evidence showed Hariri’s route on the day of his assassination.

Criminal law expert Hasan Jouni called its evidence compelling.

North Lebanon Bar Association head Antoine Airout said “revelations by Hezbollah (were) very serious and objective.”

Syria and Hezbollah had nothing to gain from what happened. Israel clearly benefitted, including by false accusations against its enemies.

At the time, Middle East journalist Patrick Seale said “(i)f Syria (or Hezbollah) killed (Hariri), it must be judged an act of political suicide…hand(ing) (their) enemies a weapon with which to deliver (a destabilizing) blow.”

Israel’s fingerprints were all over what happened, Hezbollah falsely blamed.

While vast destruction and damage in Beirut on Tuesday most likely was caused by negligence, possible Israeli (or US) involvement can’t be ruled out.

*

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Award-winning author Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. He is a Research Associate of the Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG)

His new book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.

Featured image is from Syria NewsThe original source of this article is Global ResearchCopyright © Stephen Lendman, Global Research, 2020

Al-Moallem affirms, in a phone call with the Lebanese Foreign Minister, Syria’s support and solidarity to brotherly Lebanon

Source

Wednesday, 05 August 2020

Damascus, (ST) – Deputy Premier, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates Walid al-Moallem in a phone call to Lebanese Foreign Minister, Charbel Wahba, expressed  the sorrow and  sympathy of the Syrian Arab Republic upon hearing the news of the horrific explosion in the Beirut port, which killed a number of innocent people and injured others and caused enormous damage to public and private buildings and facilities.

Al-Moallem affirmed Syria’s sympathy and solidarity with brotherly Lebanon and its willingness to  to help Lebanon overcome the tragic accident.

Al-Moallem expressed his deep sympathy and sincere condolences to the brotherly Lebanese people, the families of the bereaved victims and wishes for a speedy recovery for the wounded.

The Lebanese Foreign Minister expressed gratitude for this fraternal stance, which reflects the true relationship between the two brotherly peoples.

Raghda Sawas

Ambassador Abdul Karim: Syrian Embassy doors are open to help the Syrians affected by Beirut port explosion

Beirut, (ST) – The Syrian Ambassador to Lebanon, Ali Abdul Karim, affirmed that the doors of the embassy are open to provide aid and assistance to the Syrians in Beirut, especially those affected by the massive explosion that hit Beirut port and killed dozens of people.

Abdul Karim in a telephone call with the Syrian TV channel on Wednesday spoke about the procedures that could be taken by the Embassy to help the Syrians in Lebanon , “The doors of the Embassy are open to all who need help, and the Embassy staff monitor, follow up and receive humanitarian cases that want to return to Syria and provide them with facilities”.

He indicated that there is full cooperation and substantial facilities from the relevant authorities in Syria, as well as from the concerned authorities in the Lebanese Public Security and the Lebanese Ministry of Interior.


Ambassador Abdul Karim expressed Syria’s sympathy and solidarity with brotherly Lebanon, and that it was affected as government and people by the horrific explosion in the port of Beirut on Tuesday, which killed a number of innocent people and injured others, and caused enormous damage to buildings and public and private facilities.

Raghda Sawas

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HAY’AT TAHRIR AL-SHAM ACKNOWLEDGED DEFEAT IN GREATER IDLIB BATTLE IN NEW VIDEO RELEASE

Source

05.08.2020 

Al-Qaeda-affiliated Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS) acknowledged its defeat in the last battle in the northwestern Syrian region of Greater Idlib in a new video release.

The video, titled Wa Tuhadithu Akhbaraha [Telling Its Stories], documents the battle from HTS’ point of view. The video was released by the group’s media agency, Amjad, on August 3.

In the documentary, HTS explains how its terrorists attempted to stop the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) attack on Greater Idlib in 2019 using an array of tactics.

The group built its entire strategy around a single principle, “the best defense is a good offense.” Under this strategy the group’s terrorists launched a series of counter-attacks and raids at the beginning of the battle.

While this tactic granted HTS some limited, temporary success in the battlefield, it failed to stop the SAA. In the first phase of the battle, the army managed to secure vast areas in northern Hama and southern Idlib, including the town of Khan Shaykhun.

Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham Acknowledged Defeat In Greater Idlib Battle In New Video Release
Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham Acknowledged Defeat In Greater Idlib Battle In New Video Release
Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham Acknowledged Defeat In Greater Idlib Battle In New Video Release
Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham Acknowledged Defeat In Greater Idlib Battle In New Video Release

As the army began advancing on the Damascus-Aleppo highway, the M5, in early 2020, HTS started to rely on more radical tactics.

The group launched large-scale attacks on other fronts, mainly Aleppo, to distract the army. The group also carried out more suicide attacks with booby-trapped vehicles and well-trained fighters who were left behind as sleeper cells.

Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham Acknowledged Defeat In Greater Idlib Battle In New Video Release
Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham Acknowledged Defeat In Greater Idlib Battle In New Video Release

Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham Acknowledged Defeat In Greater Idlib Battle In New Video Release
Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham Acknowledged Defeat In Greater Idlib Battle In New Video Release

Despite these efforts, HTS failed and sustained heavy losses. The army managed to reopen and secure the M5 highway by March of 2020.

HTS’ commander tried to justify their defeat with the heavy fire power of the SAA and the support of its allies, Russia and Iran. The group ignored the vast support it received from Turkey, which inflicted heavy losses on the Syrian Army.

Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham Acknowledged Defeat In Greater Idlib Battle In New Video Release

The documentary featured Abu Mohamad al-Julani, the leader of HTS, who acknowledged that the group was defeated and attempted to reflect this as an “achievement.”

“The battle has not ended yet, yes, we lost a round in the last eleven months, but the battle is not over and we should stay determined,” al-Julani said, adding “Even if we were left with a single inch of this land.”

Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham Acknowledged Defeat In Greater Idlib Battle In New Video Release

In the documentary the group also acknowledged the loss of some its top military commanders, like Abu Ubaidah Kansafra, Saif al-Rahman al-Uzbaki, al-Mu’tasim bi’llah al-Madani, Mansour al-Daghistani, Abu Suleiman al-Hamwi and Abu Jihad al-Shafei al-Ansari.

The documentary was released by HTS following reports of an upcoming attack by the SAA on Greater Idlib. The army is already amassing troops around the region.

By releasing this documentary, HTS is not only trying to justify its defeat but also to amass public support for a new battle with the SAA. The full elimination of the terrorist group is among the top goals of the army and its allies.

MORE ON THIS TOPIC:

Israel announces new attack against Syrian Army as border situation deteriorates

By News Desk -2020-08-03

BEIRUT, LEBANON (11:40 P.M.) – The Israeli Army announced this evening that its fighters launched an attack against military targets in Syria, describing the airstrikes as a response to an operation on Sunday.

According to a statement from the Israeli Army to Reuters, among the targets included in the strikes were Syrian observation sites, intelligence-gathering systems, anti-aircraft batteries and command bases.

The IDF spokesperson, Avichay Adraee, said in a tweet that the attacks came in response to the operation to plant improvised explosive devices that had been foiled yesterday in the southern part of the occupied Golan Heights.

He added: “The IDF considers the Syrian regime responsible for any operation that originates from its territory, and will continue to act with determination against any action that violates the sovereignty of the State of Israel.”

The source would add that their air defenses managed to intercept the enemy missiles; however, a military source told Al-Masdar that some of the Israeli projectiles did in fact hit the Al-Quneitra Governorate, at the strategic hilltop of Tal Al-Ahmar

جيش الاحتلال يصعّد غاراته على سورية… ونتنياهو يتحدّث عن إحباط تسلّل عبر الجولان!

كتب المحرّر السياسيّ

المواجهة بين محور المقاومة وجيش الاحتلال تنتظر محطة فاصلة مع الردّ المرتقب لحزب الله على عملية استهداف موقع للمقاومة قرب مطار دمشق، نتج عنه استشهاد المقاوم علي محسن، وبالانتظار حبس أنفاس مستمرّ في الكيان وصولاً لحد الهيستيريا التي تجلت بالإعلان بشكل شبه يومي عن إحباط محاولات تسلل، وردود مفترضة، لكن كل مرة بإطلاق ذخائر مدفعية وصاروخية وإطلاق نار متواصل، وحديث عن مواجهات واشتباكات لكن من دون اعتقال أحد أو إصابة أحد أو ضبط مواد تشير لعملية مفترضة تمّ إحباطها، حتى وصل الأمر بالجيش الواقف على «إجر ونص» أن يقدّم محفظة زرقاء مزركشة بصفتها الحقيبة التي كانت تحوي متفجّرات قرب حدود الجولان المحتل، تمّ ضبطها خلال منع عملية تحدث عنها رئيس حكومة الاحتلال بنيامين نتنياهو، بصورة تثير السخرية وفقاً لأبسط القواعد العسكرية للتمويه كما يقول الخبراء العسكريون، فيما الحديث يجري عن مقاومة لديها من الخبرات ما يثير رعب الاحتلال فكيف تنطلي كذبة هذا حجمها على أحدوليل أمس شهدت سورية مواجهة متعددة الجبهات بين الدفاعات الجوية للجيش السوري وطائرات جيش الاحتلال الحربيّة وحواماته، التي استهدفت مواقع قرب دمشق وأخرى على جبهة القنيطرة، من دون أن تسفر عن وقوع إصابات وفقاً لما نقلته وكالة سانا الرسمية التي نقلت الخبرويأتي التصعيد على الجبهة السورية محاولة لشد أعصاب الرأي العام داخل الكيان وطمأنته إلى جهوزية الجيش للتعامل مع أي مخاطر مقبلة، بينما حال الجيش ليست أفضل من حال الجبهة الداخلية، كما يجمع المحللون العسكريون على القنوات العبرية الذين ما إن سمعوا عن إطلالة للأمين العام لحزب الله السيد حسن نصرالله حتى بدأوا بالتكهنات حول ما سيقوله، والتداول بالفرضيات، لكن التحفظ والحذر سيطرا على التوقعات لجهة الاعتقاد بأن الرد يبدو متأخراً وإلا جاءت الإطلالة بعد العملية لو كانت قريبة، بينما قال آخرون إن السيد نصرالله يتلاعب بأعصاب قادة الكيان وجمهوره وهو يمسك على نقطة الألم ويشدّ، لأنه واثق مما لديه ولو تأخر في الضربة وصولاً للحد الأقصى من الاستثمار الممكن لحربه النفسية؛ بينما لبنانياً استبعدت التوقعات عن مضمون ما سيتحدث عنه السيد نصرالله، أن يتطرق إلى ما سيصدر عن المحكمة الدولية الخاصة بلبنان التي ستتلو قرارها يوم الجمعة، وأن يتناول في حديثه بمناسبة الإنتصار في حرب تموز 2006 خيار المقاومة وتطوره وتعزيز إمكاناته، وحتمية الرد على الاعتداء الذي حاول تغيير قواعد الاشتباك تاركاً للميدان أن يقرر المكان والزمان، وأن يتطرق لملف الوضع الحكومي لجهة تأكيد دعم حزب الله للحكومة وتماسكها والتمسك بها، وأن يمنح حيزاً خاصاً للتركيز على ضرورة التقيّد بالإجراءات الوقائية في مواجهة تفشي وباء كورونا الذي يسجل أرقاماً تصاعدية مقلقة.

في الشأن الحكومي كان تعيين السفير المتقاعد شربل وهبة وزيراً للخارجية خلفاً للوزير المستقيل ناصيف حتي، رسالة واضحة للداخل والخارج، وللوزراء المترددين، بأن القطار الحكومي لن يتوقف، وأن مساره لن يتأثر بمن يغادر القطار، وأن الركاب قد يتغيرون لكن القطار يواصل السير، وفقاً لما قاله مصدر حكومي تعليقاً على القبول السريع لاستقالة حتي وتعيين خلف له بأقل من ست ساعات، مضيفاً تعليقاُ على فرضية استقالة وزراء آخرين بعد حتي، بأن لا مؤشرات على ذلك، لكن لو حصل فلن يكون التعامل مع أي استقالة أخرى مختلفاًفالفراغ هو البديل الوحيد الذي تريد الترويج له الاستقالاتوهذا أمر خطير وطنياً، ينم عن عدم مسؤولية، ومن يتحملون المسؤولية معنيون بالتصرف وفقاً لإدراكهم هذه الخطورة، وعدم ترك البلد يسقط في الفراغ والفوضى.

وبحسب معلومات «البناء» فإن الوزير حتي ومنذ تأليف الحكومة التزم بسياسة رئيس الجمهورية والحكومة في القضايا الخارجية، لكن رئيس الحكومة وبعض الوزراء بدأوا بملاحظة تغيير في موقف حتي بعد جولته الاوروبية الشهر الماضي، لا سيما الى فرنسا والفاتيكان وبدأ بإطلاق مواقف في دوائره الضيقة ضد سياسة الحكومة ويتحدث عن فشلها في تحقيق برنامجها الإصلاحي وبدا انحيازه الواضح الى المحور الأميركي الأوروبي وصمته عن موضوع المقاومة بشكل يعبّر عن اعتراض على عملها ودورها، ما أثار امتعاض رئيسي الجمهورية والحكومةوبعد زيارة وزير الخارجية الفرنسي الى لبنان استثناه رئيس الحكومة عن الاجتماع المركزي الذي عقده في السرايا الحكومية وحضره وزيرا المالية والاقتصادأما القشة التي قصمت ظهر البعير فكانت مقابلته الأخيرة على قناة أم تي في ومواقفه الغامضة والملتبسة التي أعلنها من سورية والمقاومةعلماً انه وبحسب ما علمت «البناء» فإن حتي كان من الوزراء الذين دافعوا عن الحكومة وانتقدوا «الثورة» حتى الماضي القريب أي منذ مدة شهر ونصف، حيث أكد في أكثر من مجلس خاص بأن لا بديل عن الحكومة وإن جاءت حكومة أخرى فلن تستطيع الإنجاز أكثر من الحكومة الحالية التي ورثت مصائب ومصاعب العهود والحكومات الماضية، وبالتالي لا يمكن تحميلها مسؤولية الازمات المتراكمة، وشدّد آنذاك على أن الحكومة تعمل ما بوسعها وبكل طاقتها لتحقيق الإصلاحات لكن التعقيدات والعراقيل والصعوبات الداخلية معروفة وتقف عقبة أمام ذلك، الى جانب الأوضاع الصحية المتمثلة بكورونا الذي زاد في الأزمة وفي الانعزال عن الخارج وأخّر إمكانية الحصول على المساعداتفما الذي غير موقف حتي بهذه المدة القصيرة؟ولماذا اختار حتي خيار الاستقالة الفورية والمفاجئة بدلاً من خيار التلويح بالاستقالة للضغط على الحكومة للإسراع بالإصلاحات!

ووضعت مصادر مطلعة لـ«البناء» استقالة حتي في اطار المحاولات الاميركية المستمرة للتشويش على الحكومة والعمل على إسقاطها، متهمة الفرنسيين بممارسة ضغوط على لبنان تنفيذاً لرغبة وإملاءات الأميركيينوبحسب المصادر كانت الخطة الاستثمار السياسي في استقالة حتي ورهاناً على تحويل القضية الى خلاف بين رئيسي الجمهورية والحكومة ورئيس التيار الوطني الحر على تعيين اسم البديل فيعلن وزراء آخرون في هذه اللحظة استقالاتهم أيضاً بسبب عدم إنتاجية الحكومة ما يدفع برئيس الحكومة للاستقالة أو يعلن باسيل استقالة الوزراء المقربين من التياروفي هذا السياق سرت معلومات أمس عن استعداد بعض الوزراء لتقديم استقالاتهم وجرى حديث مقابل في الكواليس عن اتجاه لدى رئيسي الجمهورية والحكومة لخطة استباقية لإقالة 5 وزراء لعرقلتهم خطة الإصلاح الحكومية.

إلا أن مبادرة رئيسي الجمهورية والحكومة الى إجراء مشاورات والاتفاق على تعيين بديل عن حتي بمدة زمنية لا تتعدى الـساعات كانت ضربة معلم على رأس الأميركيين والفرنسيين كما وصفتها بعض الدوائر الأميركية، بحسب ما علمت «البناء». 

وأكدت مصادر في 8 آذار لـ«البناء» «أن لا اتجاه عند قوى الاغلبية النيابية الى اقالة الحكومة بل إن مربع الحزام الحامي للحكومة المؤلف من رئيس الجمهورية والتيار الوطني الحر وثنائي أمل وحزب الله مازال متماسكاً ومتمسكاً ببقاء الحكومة ولا مصلحة للبلد بالإطاحة بالحكومة، لأن المشروع الاميركي يريد إسقاط الحكومة لتعميم الفراغ وهذا يقضي على ما تبقى من دولة ونظام وتماسك داخلي وقدرة ماليّة واقتصاديّة على الصمود، وبالتالي يسرع بالانهيار الاقتصادي والمالي ويهدد السلم الاهلي والاستقرار الامني الداخلي».

وكان رئيس الجمهورية ميشال عون ورئيس الحكومة حسان دياب وقعا مرسوم قبول استقالة وزير الخارجية والمغتربين ناصيف حتي ومرسوم تعيين السفير شربل وهبة وزيرًا مكانه.

وأشار وهبي في حديثٍ للـ»او تي في» إلى أن «لبنان بلدنا والدولة تمر بصعوبة وعلينا أن نسعى للخروج منها»، وأكد أن «على الحكومة ان تعمل ولبنان عليه ان يسعى لفك الازمة بالتواصل مع الجميع». وقال: «لا ارى ان هناك حصاراً بل صعوبات ولدينا حضور فاعل في العالم ينبغي الاستناد اليه».

وشدد على أنه «يجب علينا ان نبادر بالإصلاحات ووزير خارجية الكويت اكد لي وقوف الكويت الى جانبنا قلباً وقالباً»، وأضاف: «أبلغني وزير الخارجية الكويتية انه سيوجه لي دعوة لزيارة»، واعتبر أن «الزيارات تأتي لتحقيق هدف ونحن وسورية بلدان جاران والأمر يكون بناء على توافق مجلس الوزراء، وعلينا التعاون بموضوع النازحين الموجود بيد وزارة الشؤون الاجتماعية، واذا احتاج الأمر التنسيق لن نتأخر»، وتابع: «أحترم المملكة العربية السعودية وكل الدول العربية وازور المملكة في أول فرصة تتاح». ورأى وهبة أن «رئيس الحكومة حسان دياب لم يخطئ مع فرنسا ويجب إعطاء الكلام حجمه والتهميش ليس من أسلوب عملي».

وكان حتي زار السراي صباح أمس، وقدّم استقالته للرئيس دياب وأصدر بياناً قال فيه: «قررت الاستقالة من مهامي كوزير للخارجية والمغتربين متمنياً للحكومة وللقيمين على إدارة الدولة التوفيق وإعادة النظر في العديد من السياسات والممارسات من أجل إيلاء المواطن والوطن الاولوية على كافة الاعتبارات والتباينات والانقسامات والخصوصيات…. شاركت في هذه الحكومة من منطلق العمل عند رب عمل واحد اسمه لبنان، فوجدت في بلدي أرباب عمل ومصالح متناقضة، إن لم يجتمعوا حول مصلحة الشعب اللبناني وإنقاذه، فإن المركب لا سمح الله سيغرق بالجميع».

وما أن أعلن حتي استقالته حتى انبرت قيادات سياسية تدور في الفلك الأميركي للترحيب وكيل المديح بوزير الخارجية الأسبق، فقال رئيس القوات سمير جعجع «إن شهادة حتي هي بألف شهادة كونها أتت بعد ممارسة عملية استمرت لأكثر من 6 أشهر ومن دون أي مصلحة سياسية»، مضيفاًلن يستقيم الوضع في لبنان طالما أن «حزب الله» و«التيار الوطني الحر» وحلفاءهما يمسكون برقاب السلطة في لبنان»، إلا أن جعجع وقبل أيام كان قد هاجم الحكومة وجميع وزرائها وأنهم فشلوا في كل شيء!

وفيما أبدت مصادر التيار الوطني الحر استغرابها من خطوة حتي، غرد نائب رئيس التيار لشؤون الشباب منصور فاضل على «تويتر» مخاطباً حتي من دون أن يسمّيه بالقول: «اذا كنت لا تعلم حجم الضغوطات والتحديات فمشكلة، اما اذا كنت تعلم واستقلت فالمشكلة اكبر …انا من المؤمنين الدائمين بضرورة إدارة البلاد من قبل أشخاص عصاميين مناضلين وأشداءعسانا مع تجربة ناصيف حتي نتعظ جميعاً ونتعلم الفرق بين السياسيين التقليديين والسياسيين المكافحين».

وفي أول تعليق فرنسي على استقالة حتي تؤشر الى ترابط بين الاستقالة والموقف الأميركي من الحكومة بعد زيارة وزير خارجيتها الاخيرة الى بيروت، كتب النائب الفرنسي Gwendal ROUILLARD على «تويترواصفاً حتي بأنّه «رجل دولة». ونوّه بأنه «كان في السلطة من أجل أن يَخدُم، وليس العكس، وكان متمسّكاً بالحياد الإيجابي، السيادة، الإصلاحات الضرورية، والعلاقات العميقة مع فرنسا».

وكتب المنسق الخاص للأمم المتحدة في لبنان يان كوبيتش عبر «تويتر»: «تعد استقالة وزير الخارجية ناصيف حتّي رسالة بحد ذاتها فهل تسهم تلك الصرخة التي تنبع من إحباط عميق في وضع لبنان على سكة الإصلاح».

وعكست أجواء السراي الحكومي امتعاضاً من استقالة حتي، معتبرة أنها من دون مبرر وتأتي في سياق سلسلة أحداث وضغوط دولية على لبنان وأوضاع اقتصادية ومالية ومعيشية وصحية خطيرة، رابطة بين الاستقالة والضغوط الخارجية على لبنان وزيارة وزير خارجية فرنسا الى بيروت والموقف الفرنسي المعترض على صلابة رئيس الحكومة امام التأنيب الذي وجهه لودريان الى الحكومة بأسلوب لم يكن موفقاًوتشير الأجواء الى أن الحكومة ورئيسها يتعرضان لحملة سياسية واعلامية غير مسبوقة تقف خلفها جهات سياسية ومالية في الداخل والخارجمشددة على أن «الحكومة مستمرة في أعمالها والرئيس دياب سيواصل تحمل مسؤولياته الوطنية بكل عزم وصبر حتى إنقاذ لبنان وإيصاله الى بر الأمان».

في غضون ذلك يطل الأمين العام لحزب الله السيد حسن نصرالله يوم غدٍ الأربعاء الثامنة والنصف مساء في كلمة يتناول خلالها الأوضاع الداخلية لا سيما موضوع الحكومة والتدخل الخارجي والضغوط الاميركية والظروف المعيشية والصحية مع انتشار وباء كورونا بشكل كبير في لبنانكما سيتطرق الى الملفات الداخلية التي لها علاقة بالإقليم، فيما يخصص خطابه في ذكرى انتصار تموز في 14 آب الى الملفات الاستراتيجية في المنطقةولن يتطرق السيد نصرالله بحسب معلومات «البناء» الى ملف قرار المحكمة الدولية المرتقب في 7 آب المقبل في قضية اغتيال الرئيس رفيق الحريريوتشير مصادر «البناء» في هذا الصدد الى أن حزب الله غير معني بالمحكمة ولا بقرارها، مستبعدة أن يؤدي القرار الى توتر مذهبي في الساحة الداخلية لكون المحكمة فقدت مصداقيتها منذ سنوات وظهر أنها مسيّسة ولم تعد محل ثقة اللبنانيين ولا حتى ثقة دول عدة، خصوصاً أنه سبق للمحكمة أن أصدرت قرارها الظني ووجهت الاتهام الى افراد من حزب الله ولم تظهر أي تداعيات في لبنان، وعلمت «البناء» أن «الرئيس سعد الحريري ليس بوارد التصعيد بعد قرار المحكمة بل يحصل تواصل واتصالات تنسيقية بين بيت الوسط والضاحية في اطار حصار تداعيات اي حدث يؤدي الى توتير الساحة الاسلامية وذلك في اطار ربط النزاع بين الحزب والتيار». وتحدثت مصادر «البناء» عن تحركات أمنية في بعض مناطق الشمال تحديداً في طرابلس متخوفة من أحداث أمنية في المدينة كعمليات اغتيال او استهداف للقوى الأمنية والجيش اللبناني في اطار التمدد التركي في المنطقة مستفيدة من الانقسام السياسي وبعض التساهل الأمني، لكن المصادر أكدت أن القوى الأمنية والجيش يقومان بدورهما في رصد وتعقب أي خلايا إرهابية تعمل في المدنية».

وكان المبنى «ب» في سجن رومية شهد مساء أمس، حالة من التوتر بعد أن عمد السجناء إلى الانتفاض وسط صيحات التكبير، وسُمع صوت إطلاق نار من قبل قوة مكافحة الشغب، وسُجلت حالات من الهلع والإغماء بين المساجين.

وتزامناً مع إعلان قرار المحكمة يطل رئيس «التيار الوطني الحر» جبران باسيل عبر محطات التلفزيون في ذكرى 7 آب متحدثًا عن المناسبة وأبعادها، وعن التطورات السياسية في لبنان، موجهًا كلامه للبنانيين عموماً وللمنتسبين الى «التيار الوطني الحر» بصورة خاصة.

ولم يغب الملف الصحي عن واجهة الاهتمام، اذ أعلنت وزارة الصحة العامة تسجيل 177 اصابة جديدة بفيروس كورونا وحالات وفاةوأشارت المعلومات الى أن «لجنة متابعة ملف كورونا سترفع توصية لرئاسة الحكومة بالتشدد بتطبيق الإجراءات الوقائية بما في ذلك المطار على أن تتضمن الإجراءات فرض منع تجول خلال فترة إقفال البلد بين 6 آب و10 آب ويبقى لرئاسة الحكومة اتخاذ القرار النهائي».

ويعقد مجلس الوزراء جلسة الخميس المقبل في السرايا الحكومية.

وسجل امس، تحليق طائرة استطلاع إسرائيلية من دون طيار من نوع «ام.ك» فوق نهر الليطاني ويحمر والشقيف وزوطر الشرقية والغربية والنبطية.

On the 75th anniversary of the establishment of the Syrian Arab army: President al-Assad: The Syrian Army has always been with the people during the terrorist war

 1945 – 2020 

Source

Saturday, 01 August 2020 07:54

Damascus (ST): President Bashar Al-Assad the commander in chief of the army and armed forces  has affirmed that that the men of the army have always been with our great people during different stages of the aggressive terrorist war, noting that  the achievements they realized were great.

In a speech delivered to the armed forces and published in “Jaish al-Sha’ab”  (the People’s Army) magazine on the 75th anniversary of army foundation, President al-Assad expressed high appreciation and pride in the great victories realized by the army men, noting that the Army Day represents the confirmation of the values of genuineness, belongingness and dignified future.

“ You, brave men of our armed forces, have always been with our great people during all the stages of the aggressive terrorist war at the time some parties imagined that they could subjugate your strong will, but you defeated their delusive arrogance. You have proved that you are the men of sacrifice and bravery who do not know fear or hesitation and who pay their lives as a dear price for the dignity of their homeland and people”, President al-Assad said, adding that the army’s great victories have been clearly manifested throughout the past nine years of the terrorist war during which the colonialist forces practiced all forms of terrorism and aggression against Syria and its steadfast people. 

The President concluded his speech extending congratulations to all army personnel on this glorious day in which army members renew their pledge to defend the homeland and its sovereignty, calling on them to press ahead with their heroic march of liberating the homeland from terrorism and occupation.

K.Q.

Memorial stamp issued on 75th army foundation anniversary

Created on Saturday, 01 August 2020 09:17 

Damascus (ST): The General Establishment for Post has issued a memorial stamp in commemoration of the Syrian Arab Army Day which falls on August 1st.

The Establishment said in a statement that people can get it from post offices in various Syrian governorates for 200 Syrian pounds.

Today is the 75th anniversary for founding the Syrian Arab Army.

K.Q.

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جيش سوريّ وطنيّ بتداعيات إقليميّة

د.وفيق إبراهيم

وحيدٌ بين الجيوش العربية في الشرق يدافع عن شعبه ودولته منذ عقد تقريباً بإرادة حديديّة مواصلاً حرباً مفتوحة في وجه الأميركيين والأتراك والإسرائيليين وبعض القوى الأوروبية محجماً المشروع الكردي ومئات التنظيمات الإرهابية المدعومة من الخليج.

هذا هو الجيش السوريّ الذي يحتفل بعيد تأسيسه الخامس والسبعين وسط حرب مفتوحة عليه لها بعدان، الأول محاولات تفتيته بذرائع مناطقية واخوانية وطائفية ورشى مالية ضخمة والثانية كسره في الميدان بفتح عشرات المعارك عليه في آن معاً لبعثرة قواه. فلا هذه أفلحت ولا تلك نجحت.. ولا يألو الجيش العربي السوري بعديده الذي ينيف عن ثلاث مئة الف جندي، من دون احتساب ألوية الردفاء والأنصار يجول في ميادين سورية من حدودها السورية مع الجولان المحتل والأردنية والعراقية والتركية، ولا ينسى حدوده مع لبنان لضبط حركة الإرهاب والتهريب.

كيف صمد الجيش السوري هذه المدة الطويلة متمكناً من تحرير سبعين بالمئة من بلاده، ومحافظاً على تماسكه؟

الإعداد الوطني المدروس لهذا الجيش، ادى الى تماسكه العسكري في وحداته وألويته بعقيدة قتال راسخة تقوم على حماية الدولة بما تشكله من شعب ومؤسسات وتاريخ يزهو على كل دول الإقليم.

هذا الشعور بالانتماء عميق لدى الجندي السوري الذي يتعلم في المؤسسات العسكرية انه يحارب دفاعاً عن أهله وشعبه وآلاف السنوات من عمر سورية.

قد يكون هذا الجانب مطلوباً، لكنه يتعلم أيضاً انه يدافع عن الشرق بأسره عندما يدافع عن ميادين بلاده.

هناك من المتخاذلين السوريين والعرب من يعزو انتصارات الجيش لتحالفاته الإقليمية والدولية، فيرد عليها إعلام أجنبي مؤكداً لها ان هذه التحالفات اتت الى سورية بطلب من دولتها ولوجود تقاطعات في المصالح تتعلق برهبتها من خسارة الدولة السورية وهذا معناه انتشار الإرهاب في بلادها.. ألم يقل الرئيس الروسي بوتين بأنه قاتل في سورية لكي لا يجد نفسه مضطراً لمحاربة الإرهاب في موسكو… وكذلك إيران التي تعرف أن هزيمة المشروع الاميركي ـ الخليجي ـ التركي ـ الإرهابي في سورية، يؤدي الى تخفيف الهجمات على إيران نفسها.

يتبين ان ادوار الجيش السوري متنوّعة لتنوع أهمية سورية في الشرق والإقليم، فضلاً عن مؤسسة الجيش نفسها التي تدرب أفرادها على اساس الانتماء للشعب والدولة.

داخلياً، قاوم الجيش إغراءات مالية من دول الخليج، شملت الأفراد والضباط والقادة بالمباشر حيناً وعبر أصحابهم حيناً آخر وبواسطة أصدقائهم وقرارهم وبلداتهم والمبالغ المعروضة تشكل ثروة وتصل مع القادة العسكريين الى ملايين الدولارات، مروراً بخمسين ألف دولار للجنود العاديين.

إلا أن هذه المحاولات عجزت عن اختراق الأسوار الوطنية العالية للجيش السوري، ولم يتأثر إلا نفر قليل لا يزيد عن ألفين او أقل، لم ينجح مشغلوهم ببناء تنظيم عسكري خاص بهم.. مكتفين ببعض الاعلانات التهريجية لصور عسكريين فارين اصبحوا عمالاً في الخليج وتركيا والمانيا، مخترعين صوراً لمدنيين، جرى إلباسهم ازياء عسكرية مع محاولات تمويهية لإخفاء وجوههم للزوم تمرير الاخبار الكاذبة.

هناك أربعة انواع من التداعيات انجزها الجيش العربي السوري في قتاله المستمر منذ نحو عقد:

الأول هو دفاعه ونجاحه بالحفاظ على وحدة سورية بتحريره معظم مناطقها وبشكل أجهض فيه أي إمكانية لتقسيم او كنتنة ناجحين، فحتى المناطق التي يسيطر عليها أكراد «قسد» في شمال شرقي سورية، لا تستطيع بناء دولة عليها، لافتقارها الى سواحل وطرقات متصلة بخارج متصالح معها وبعثرة مناطقها السوري ورفضها من قبل السكان السوريين من غير الأكراد الذين يشكلون الغالبية فيها، اما المناطق الداخلية فمستقرة في اطار الإيمان الكامل بالاندماج الوطني الداخلي.

لجهة الدور الثاني، فإن ضرب الجيش السوري للإرهاب في بلاده، أفشل حركته بالتموضع والانتشار في لبنان، معطلاً نموه في الأردن، ومحطماً بناه الممتدة الى العراق.

كما منع الإخوان المسلمين المتحالفين مع الأتراك من التموضع في أجزاء من سورية، مجهضاً إمكانية تحرّكها بحرية نحو الجوار المباشر لسورية.

كذلك فإن الجيش السوري دافع بقتاله للإرهاب في سورية عن الأردنيين انفسهم مبعثراً حركته نحو مدنهم وقراهم، علماً أن المملكة الهاشمية رعت في بدايات الحرب السورية، انطلاق الإرهاب نحو سورية وحمته وحاولت التقدم بواسطته نحو درعا عاصمة حوران، وهكذا يحافظ الجيش السوري على وحدة الأردن الذي شاركت دولته في محاولات تدمير سورية.

كذلك فإن لجم الإرهاب في سورية أسهم بإضعافه في العراق وإفساح المجال امام الجيش والحشد الشعبي فيه لتفكيك أوصال اقوى منظمات ارهابية كانت على وشك السيطرة على بغداد نفسها.

فيكون الجيش السوري بعمليات ضربه للارهاب اوقف من نموه في كامل الشرق لأنه حلقة متصلة، كانت تأمل بالسيطرة على سورية لتأمين حريات حركة واسعة لها في الإقليم.

ودول الخليج والأردن التي دعمت الارهاب هي في طليعة المستفيدين من تدمير الجيش السوري للإرهاب في سورية.

هذا ما جعل بوتين يعترف بدور سورية في منع الإرهاب من الانتقال الى مجمل الدول في العالم، ومنها روسيا، الأمر الذي يدعو الى مدى خطورة الرئيس التركي اردوغان الذي استثمر في الارهاب مهدداً بالسماح لمئات الآلاف من النازحين السوريين ومن بينهم ارهابيون الى اوروبا، وعندها بدأ الاتحاد الاوروبي يخصص مساعدات لتركيا كي تعيل بها النازحين فسرقتها وأعادت تنظيم الارهاب التركماني والاخواني بها.

بذلك يتضح دور الجيش السوري وطنياً واقليمياً وعالمياً في مكافحة الارهاب المعولم واجهاض حركته الدولية من جهة ووظيفته في تدمير الدولة السورية من جهة ثانية.

ألا يستحق هذا الجيش وساماً عالمياً على مثل هذا الدور الصانع للاستقرار في سورية والعالم؟ لذلك فإن هذا الجيش الذي يشكل مؤسسة طليعية من مؤسسات الدولة السورية، مثابر على تحقيق دور وطني يؤمن له وليس كمجرد وظيفة، إنه دور الدفاع عن سورية قلب الشرق، وبالتالي عن كامل الإقليم مسهماً في آن معاً في دعم الاستقرار العالمي.

السلاح الروسي في سوريا.. التجربة أهمّ من الابتكار


الكاتب: محمد منصور
المصدر: الميادين نت
1 اب

مثّلت الحرب في سوريا فرصة للجيش الروسي على مستوى القيادات العليا والميدانية لاختبار مدى القدرة المتوفرة على تحسين المستوى العملياتي والتنسيق المشترك بين الأسلحة والقيادات المشتركة.

السلاح الروسي في سوريا.. التجربة أهمّ من الابتكار
طريق “أم 4” جنوب محافظة إدلب السورية

أعاد حادث استهداف دورية روسية – تركية مشتركة كانت تنفّذ مهامها على طريق “أم 4” جنوب محافظة إدلب السورية، في 16 حزيران/يونيو الماضي، الحديث عن تجربة الأسلحة الروسية في سوريا، ومدى استفادة موسكو من التجربة القتالية على الأرض السورية، في قياس مدى حاجة منظوماتها الدفاعية والهجومية العاملة حالياً إلى التطوير، والقدرات الحقيقية لمنظوماتها الجديدة التي دخلت الخدمة مؤخراً، أو التي يجري إعدادها للدخول إلى الخدمة الفعلية

في ما يلي عرض لأهم التجارب التي تعرضت لها الأسلحة الروسية في سوريا.

عربات “تايجر” و”بي تي أر”.. تجربة مهمّة 

السلاح الروسي في سوريا.. التجربة أهمّ من الابتكار
ناقلة الجند المدرعة “بي تي أر-82 أيه”

أداء الآليات الروسية المدرعة خلال معارك سوريا بشكل عام، وتحديداً المعارك في محافظة حلب، والمنطقة الجنوبية في درعا، والمنطقة الشرقية في تدمر ودير الزور، كان جيداً إجمالاً. في حادث إدلب الأخير، تعرضت ناقلة الجند المدرعة “بي تي أر-82 أيه”، وهي الناقلة الأساسية للوحدات الروسية المتمركزة في سوريا، لهجوم مباشر من عربة مفخخة كانت متخفية على الجانب الأيمن للطريق.

ورغم قوة الانفجار، فإنَّ الأضرار التي أصيبت بها المدرعة الروسية كانت غير مؤثرة في حالتها التشغيلية، ناهيك بالإصابات الخفيفة التي تعرض لها طاقمها، بالمقارنة مع ناقلة الجنود المدرعة التركية الصنع “كيربي 2″ التي كانت خلفها، ومن المفترض أنها من فئة المدرعات المضادة للألغام الأرضية، المعروفة اختصاراً بـ”مراب”.

على امتداد المعارك السورية، لم تتضرر المدرعات الروسية من هذا النوع سوى في مناسبتين، الأولى كانت في شباط/فبراير 2016، قرب قرية الباردة غربي مدينة حمص، والمناسبة الثانية كانت جنوب إدلب مؤخراً.

السلاح الروسي في سوريا.. التجربة أهمّ من الابتكار
العربة التكتيكية المدرعة “تايغر-أم”

من العربات الروسية المدرعة التي تعرضت لاختبارات مكثفة خلال معارك سوريا، العربة التكتيكية المدرعة “تايغر-أم”، التي تعد العربة المدرعة القياسية لقوات الشرطة العسكرية الروسية، إلى جانب مشاركتها في مهام الاستطلاع، وحراسة قوافل المساعدات، وغيرها من المهام المساعدة.

وقد فقد الجيش الروسي خلال المعارك عربتين على الأقل من هذا النوع، الأولى تعرضت لأضرار بالغة على طريق خناصر – حلب في آذار/مارس 2017، والأخرى كانت تتبع لإحدى دوريات الشرطة العسكرية الروسية، وأصيبت بلغم أرضي أثناء تحركها قرب عين العرب في محافظة حلب في حزيران/يونيو الماضي.

السلاح الروسي في سوريا.. التجربة أهمّ من الابتكار
المدرعة المتعددة المهام “تايغر – نيكست”

هذه التجارب التي أظهرت بعض العيوب المتعلقة بتدريع هذه العربة، وضرورة إنتاج نسخ أكثر تسليحاً منها، أثمرت عن تطويرات جديدة على هذا النوع من العربات المدرعة. وقد ظهرت أولى ثمار هذا التطوير خلال منتدى (أرميا 2019)، الذي انعقد في حزيران/يونيو 2019، حيث تم عرض المدرعة المتعددة المهام “تايغر – نيكست”.

وفي هذه النسخة، تمت الاستفادة من التجارب الميدانية التي جرت خلال المعارك في سوريا، حيث تمت زيادة تدريع هذه العربة ليصبح من الدرجة الثالثة، بما يسمح لها بتحمل العيارات النارية الخفيفة والمتوسطة، إلى جانب الألغام، حتى زنة 6 كيلوغرام من مادة “تي أن تي”.

كذلك، تمت زيادة حمولتها الكلية إلى 1.6 طن ومحرّك ديزل جديد، بما يمكّنها من نقل 6 جنود بكامل عتادهم وتجهيزاتهم.

“البانتسير”.. أداء ثابت رغم التحديات المستحدثة

السلاح الروسي في سوريا.. التجربة أهمّ من الابتكار
هذه المنظومة يمتلكها الجيش السوري

تعدّ منظومات الدفاع الجوي الذاتية الحركة “بانتسير” من أبرز المنظومات التي تم نشرها لحماية أماكن تمركز سلاح الجو الروسي في سوريا، وخصوصاً قاعدة حميميم الجوية، حيث اعتمدت عليها قيادة الجيش الروسي من أجل دعم وحماية منظومات الدفاع الجوي البعيدة المدى “أس-400″، وأيضاً مكافحة نشاط الطائرات المسيرة التي هاجمت مراراً القاعدة. وفي كلّ مرة، أثبتت منظومة “بانتسير” نجاعتها في مواجهة هذه التهديدات.

والجدير بالذكر أن هذه المنظومة يمتلكها أيضاً الجيش السوري، واستخدمها في العام 2012 في إسقاط مقاتلة واحدة على الأقل من نوع “أف-4 فانتوم” تابعة لسلاح الجو التركي.

ورغم الأداء الجيد لهذه المنظومة في سوريا ضد الطائرات المسيرة وطائرات الجناح الثابت، فإنَّ التجربة أثبتت وجود بعض المشاكل المتعلقة باعتراضها للصواريخ المطلقة من الطائرات المقاتلة، وخصوصاً خلال الاشتباك مع الطائرات الإسرائيلية.

السلاح الروسي في سوريا.. التجربة أهمّ من الابتكار
منظومة “بانتسير-إس إم”

نتائج التجربة الروسية في سوريا أثمرت عن تحديث منظومات “بانتسير” جذرياً، ففي منتدى “أرميا 2019″، تم عرض النسخة الأحدث من هذه المنظومة تحت اسم “بانتسير-إس إم”، والتي تم تحديث الرادار الرئيسي الخاص بها، ليصبح ذا مصفوفة مسح إلكتروني نشط، ما يوفر للمنظومة مدى كشف أكبر يصل إلى 75 كيلومتراً بالمقارنة مع النسخ السابقة التي كان مدى الكشف الراداري فيها لا يتعدى 40 كيلومتراً. 

في ما يتعلّق بالتسليح، تم تزويد المنظومة بصواريخ ذات سرعة أكبر، تسمح لها بمدى استهداف أكبر يصل إلى 40 كيلومتراً مقارنة بـ20 كيلومتراً في النسخ السابقة. كذلك، تم تحميل المنظومة الجديدة على عربة ثمانية الدفع من إنتاج شركة “كاماز”. ويتوقع أن تدخل المنظومة الجديدة إلى الخدمة في الجيش الروسي في العام 2021.

منظومة “بريزيفت” الليزرية.. استخدام ميداني فريد من نوعه

السلاح الروسي في سوريا.. التجربة أهمّ من الابتكار
منظومة الليزر القتالية “بريزيفت”

في حزيران/يونيو 2018، تحدثت عدة مواقع عسكرية روسية، من بينها موقع “أفيابرو”، عن إدخال الجيش الروسي منظومة الليزر القتالية “بريزيفت” إلى ميدان العمليات السوري من أجل اختبارها ميدانياً. 

وقد ادَّعى الموقع أن هذه المنظومة اشتبكت فعلياً مع طائرات مسيرة إسرائيلية في عدة مناسبات، منها اشتباك حدث في 19 حزيران/ يونيو، تم فيه إسقاط طائرة إسرائيلية مسيرة من نوع “سكاي لارك” في أجواء مدينة الخضر شمالي هضبة الجولان المحتلة. وقد أعلن الجيش الإسرائيلي حينها أنه يشتبه في استخدام منظومة ليزر قتالية في إسقاط هذه الطائرة.

والجدير بالذكر أنَّ منظومة “بريزيفت” الليزرية تمّ الإعلان عنها لأول مرة في تموز/يوليو 2018، وهي منظومة ذاتية الحركة مضادة للصواريخ تم إدخالها بالفعل ضمن تسليح منظومة الدفاع الجوي الروسية المحيطة في العاصمة موسكو، وهي عبارة عن منصة إطلاق لأشعة الليزر، مثبّتة على متن شاحنات من نوع “كاماز”، وتقوم بمعاونة وحدات للرادار وإدارة النيران برصد واستهداف القذائف المعادية بكل أشكالها، مثل قذائف “المورتر”، وقذائف المدفعية الصاروخية، وصولاً إلى الصواريخ التكتيكية القصيرة والمتوسطة المدى والصواريخ الباليستية والجوالة.

الروبوتات القتالية.. تجربة محدودة لكن مهمة

السلاح الروسي في سوريا.. التجربة أهمّ من الابتكار
الروبوت القتالي المتعدد المهام “أوران-9”

اختبر الجيش الروسي خلال عملياته في سوريا نوعين من أنواع الروبوتات القتالية، الأول هو الروبوت القتالي المتعدد المهام “أوران-9″، الذي تم نشره بشكل محدود خلال في العام 2018. 

وقد تم الإعلان بشكل صريح عن نتائج اختباره في سوريا، وذلك خلال مؤتمر عقدته أكاديمية “كوزنتسوف” البحرية في سانت بطرسبورغ الروسية خلال نيسان/أبريل 2018. وتم تقييم تجربة هذا النوع من الروبوتات بأنَّها حقّقت نجاحاً محدوداً جداً، إذ ظهرت مشاكل في آلية عمل المدفع الرئيسي الخاص بهذا الروبوت، وهو من عيار 30 ملم، وفشل في الاستجابة لأوامر التشغيل عدة مرات، وخصوصاً خلال الحركة.

كما تعرض الاتصال بين وحدة التحكم والروبوت للانقطاع مرات عديدة، وتقلص مدى الاتصال بينهما إلى أقل من نصف كيلومتر، إضافة إلى مشاكل أخرى في أجهزة التهديف والاستشعار، وكذلك تروس نقل الحركة الخاصة بمحرك الروبوت.

السلاح الروسي في سوريا.. التجربة أهمّ من الابتكار
 كاسحة الألغام “أوران-6”

تم الكشف لأول مرة عن هذا الروبوت في أيار/مايو 2018 خلال عرض عسكري روسي، وتم تزويده بمدفع أوتوماتيكي من عيار 30 ملم، إلى جانب صواريخ “أتاكا” المضادة للدروع التي يصل مداها إلى 6 كيلومترات، ومدفع رشاش من عيار 7.62 ملم. ويستطيع هذا الروبوت التزود بصواريخ مضادة للطائرات.

النوع الثاني من أنواع الروبوتات القتالية هو كاسحة الألغام “أوران-6″، التي استعانت بها وحدات الهندسة العسكرية الروسية في عمليات نزع الألغام والعبوات المتفجرة في مدن مثل حلب وتدمر.

 عربات القتال الثقيلة.. “ترمينيتور” وما بعدها

السلاح الروسي في سوريا.. التجربة أهمّ من الابتكار
العربة القتالية الثقيلة “بي أم بي تي تيرميناتور”

من ضمن الآليات القتالية التي اختبرها الجيش الروسي في سوريا، كان العربة القتالية الثقيلة “بي أم بي تي تيرميناتور”، على أساس تجربتها في سوريا. وتمّ تطوير عدة عربات قتالية جديدة، منها النسخة الأحدث من عربة القتال الثقيلة “تي 15-أرماتا”، التي تم تزويدها ببرج قتالي يحتوي على مدفع قوي من عيار 57 مللم، إلى جانب صواريخ موجهة مضادة للدروع.

وتزوّدت هذه النسخة بمحرك تبلغ قدرته الإجمالية 1500 حصان، ويتكون طاقمها من 3 أفراد، إلى جانب 9 جنود من الممكن نقلهم، وتصل سرعتها القصوى إلى 70 كيلومتراً في الساعة، ووزنها الكلي يبلغ 48 طناً، ومداها الأقصى 550 كيلومتراً.

سلاح الجو الروسي.. الاستفادة الأكبر من عمليات سوريا

السلاح الروسي في سوريا.. التجربة أهمّ من الابتكار
طائرة من نوع “سوخوي”

أدخل سلاح الجو الروسي في كانون الأول/ديسمبر 2018 إلى الأجواء السورية مقاتلته الشبحية قيد التطوير “سوخوي 57″، كي يتم اختبارها بشكل عملي في أجواء شبه قتالية، وكان هذا تتويجاً لسنوات من العمليات الجوية الناجحة التي نفذها سلاح الجو الروسي في سوريا منذ نهاية أيلول/سبتمبر 2015 وحتى الآن.

تعود أهمية هذه التجربة إلى حقيقة أنّ آخر تجربة قتالية حقيقية للطيارين الروس، كانت خلال النزاع بين جورجيا وأوسيتيا الجنوبية في العام 2008. ومنذ ذلك التاريخ وحتى أواخر العام 2005، لم يدخل سلاح الجو الروسي في أية عمليات جوية حقيقية.

ظهرت أهمية التجربة الروسية في سوريا من خلال تصريحات وزير الدفاع سيرجي شويغو، الذي قال إن 90 في المائة من ضباط وأفراد القوات الجوية الروسية، بما في ذلك قادة وفنيّو القاذفات والطائرات المقاتلة والقاذفات البعيدة المدى وطائرات النقل، نفذوا عمليات قتالية في الأجواء السورية، وبعض الطيارين قاموا بأكثر من 200 طلعة قتالية، وهو ما يعني عملياً تمكّنهم من اختبار مناورات جوية مختلقة وتكتيكات هجومية متنوعة، وخصوصاً أن سلاح الجو الروسي استخدم كل أنواع الطائرات المقاتلة والقاذفة المتوفرة لديه، بما فيها قاذفات “سوخوي-24” و”سوخوي-25″، ومقاتلات “سوخوي-3” و”سوخوي-35″، والقاذفات الاستراتيجية “تي يو-160” و”تي يو-95″، وحتى المقاتلات البحرية “ميج-29كي” العاملة على متن حاملة المروحيات “كوزنيتسوف”. 

الطيارون الروس مروا في فترات عديدة من المعارك السورية بضغوط ميدانية كبيرة. مثلاً، خلال شهر آب/أغسطس 2016، نفّذ سلاح الجو الروسي ما متوسّطه 70 طلعة جوية يومية ضد أهداف للمسلحين في محافظة حلب. 

آخر ما تم اختباره من منظومات جديدة في سوريا، كان دبابات “تي-14 أرماتا” الروسية الجديدة ومنظومة “راتينك” الفردية القتالية. ففي أيار/مايو 2017، صرح نائب وزير الدفاع الروسي، يوري بوريسوف، أن روسيا اختبرت منظومة “راتينك” الفردية القتالية في سوريا، وهي منظومة تتكون من معدات الحماية والاتصالات والأسلحة والذخيرة، يتزود بها جنود المشاة، وتوفر لهم معلومات محدثة عن الوضع المحيط بهم في ميدان القتال، كما توفر لهم بقاء أفضل في الظروف القتالية المستمرة، إلى جانب معدات متقدمة للإعاشة والمبيت.

وفي ما يتعلق بدبابة “تي-14 أرماتا”، صرح وزير الصناعة والتجارة الروسي، دينيس مانتوروف، في نيسان/أبريل 2020، أن الجيش الروسي قام باختبار ميداني لدبابات “أرماتا” في سوريا.

دروس حرب سوريا.. قيمة التجربة الميدانية تظهر!

السلاح الروسي في سوريا.. التجربة أهمّ من الابتكار
مقاتل من الجيش الروسي في سوريا

أعطت المعارك الميدانية للقيادة العسكرية الروسية فرصة تطبيق أساليب عسكرية لم يتم تطبيقها من جانب روسيا سابقاً، ففي حرب أفغانستان، اعتمد الجيش الروسي على الكثافة العددية والقوة المدرعة بشكل أساسي، لكن في الحرب السورية، تم اعتماد العمليات الجوية، بالتنسيق مع وحدات المشاة الخفيفة الحركة ووحدات الجيش السوري والوحدات الحليفة المختلفة، إلى جانب عمليات الاستطلاع المتعددة، من أجل تنفيذ هجمات محدودة المدة والنطاق، بكثافة تضمن في كل مرة تحقيق نتائج سريعة وشاملة.

U.S., Israel and Arab puppets want to “Syrianize” Iran: Prof. Entessar

Source

September 25, 2018 – 11:9

TEHRAN – Commenting on Ahvaz attack Prof. Entessar says U.S., Israel, Saudi Arabia and UAE’s principal goal is to create chaos in Iran to disintegrate the country.

A terrorist attack during a military parade on people in Ahvaz, southwest Iran left tens of innocent civilians killed and injured.

Hours after the attack Saudi backed Al-ahvazi separatist terrorist group and ISIL claimed the responsibility for the terrorist attack.

To shed more light on the issue we reached out to Prof. Nader Entessar Emeritus of Political Science in University of South Alabama.

Following is the full text of his interview:

Q: Do you see any foreign elements behind this attack?

A: It is too early to identify the real culprits behind the recent terrorist attack in Ahvaz.  I hope that the appropriate authorities in Iran are taking this matter very seriously and conduct a thorough and professional investigation and eschew issuing contradictory and vacuous statements.  Once the investigation is completed, Iran must take swift and decisive action to respond to this heinous terrorist attack.  

Q: Saudi Arabia and UAE didn’t condemn the terrorist attack. Why?  

A: These two countries have become sworn enemies of Iran in recent years, and by that, I don’t mean just the Islamic Republic but the country of Iran.  Therefore, I was not surprised that they have not condemned the Ahvaz terrorist attack.  Besides, they may indeed be responsible for funding and organizing the terrorist attack.  Thus, they should not be expected to condemn it.

Q: How do you assess the U.S. administration’s reaction to the attack which it did not explicitly call the action as a terrorist act?  

A: I did not expect the Trump administration to call the attack a terrorist act.  If you recall, a similar attack occurred last June when a group of Takfiris gunned down innocent Iranians in the Majlis area, the Trump administration seemed to be giddy about it and intimated that Iran had it coming to it.  No terrorist act against Iran will be called a terrorist act by the U.S. administration no matter how dastardly it may be.  

Q: What can be the real goal of the attack perpetrators at this time?

A: The Ahvaz terrorist attack should not be considered an isolated incident.  Here are two interconnected axes operating against Iran today.  One is the Washington axis and the other one is the Saudi Arabia-Israel-UAE axis.  Although they may pursue different tactics against Iran, they have one overall strategy towards Tehran.  Their principal goal is to create chaos in Iran and thus hasten the demise of the Iranian government and even the disintegration of the country.  In short, these two axes want to “Syrianize” Iran by any means necessary.  At times, they may focus on economic strangulation of the country, at other times they may organize terrorist attacks inside the country, while at other times they may rely on a combination of highlighting their soft war strategy with “hard war” tactics.    

RELATED NEWS

Military Escalation in the Middle East: Is Israel Planning a Multi-Front War against Its Arab Neighbors?

Source

 July 31, 2020

If you watch the US mainstream media’s 24 hour news coverage on recent events around the world no matter what time of the day it is, Covid-19 and China dominate the headlines while ignoring recent escalations in the Middle East involving Israel and its Arab neighbors as they come closer to another war in an already devastated region.

The Times of Israel reported that the Israeli government

“sent a message to Hezbollah warning the Lebanese terror group against any retaliatory action in response to the killing of one of the organization’s fighters in an airstrike in Syria on Monday night, which was attributed to Israel.”

According to various reports, Israel has killed one of Hezbollah’s fighters Ali Kamel Mohsen Jawad in another cross-border attack in Syria last week and now fears that Hezbollah will retaliate, but Israel’s military and intelligence community has issued a statement aimed at Hezbollah, Lebanon and Syria warning them not to retaliate considering that Israel would most likely launch a multi-front attack on all entities involved. The report said that “the airstrike attributed to Israel on Monday night hit weapons depots and military positions belonging to Syrian regime forces and Iran-backed militia fighters, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.”

For the record, The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) is a UK government funded pro-opposition group to the Assad Government. In a statement by the Israeli army, “The IDF holds the Syrian regime responsible for the fire against Israel earlier today” and that “the IDF will continue operating with determination and will respond to any violation of Israeli sovereignty.” What was revealing was an unannounced meeting between the US Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley and Israel’s top military leaders including Defense Minister Benny Gantz:

US Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley, made an unannounced visit to Israel, meeting with Defense Minister Benny Gantz, IDF chief Lt. Gen. Aviv Kohavi and Mossad director Yossi Cohen, along with other top brass. 

Israeli television commentators speculated on the possible significance of the visit, particularly regarding the threat posed by Iran and its Lebanese ally Hezbollah. “In light of a situational assessment in the IDF and in accordance with the Northern Command’s defense plan, the IDF’s deployment will change in both the military and civilian arena. with the goal of strengthening defenses along the northern border,” the IDF said in the statement. In a tacit threat, the IDF preemptively warned Beirut that it sees the state of Lebanon as “responsible for all actions emanating from Lebanon”

Something big is about to take place as the IDF “cleared some troops out of positions directly along the border, moving them deeper into Israel, so that they would not represent a clear target for Hezbollah, while still allowing them to defend the frontier” according to the report.

However, Milley’s visit at the Nevatim Air Base in southern Israel is significant according to another report by the Times of Israel ‘US military chief visits Israel to talk regional threats, amid tensions in north’ stating that “the visit came at a time of heightened tensions with Iran and its allies across the Middle East.” General Milley was briefed by Israel’s Intelligence agencies including Mossad and Israel’s military intelligence unit, Aman on the threat they face from Iran and its allies. After the briefing, Gantz declared that “the need to continue the pressure on Iran and its proxies that threaten regional and global stability” signaling to it’s neighboring enemies “not” to test Israel.

Lebanon has two major problems to deal with besides another catastrophic war, for starters it has a severe economic crisis with a collapsing currency.

The other problem is their newly discovered offshore oil and gas reserves which the US and Israel would love to get their hands on. Lebanon’s offshore oil reserves is estimated to be at 865 million barrels and has gas reserves that range from 25 trillion cubic feet (an estimate published in 2018 by the Chatham House which is part of the Royal Institute of International Affairs, a think tank based in London) to 96 trillion cubic feet in 2013, an estimate claimed by the Lebanese Energy Minister at the time, Gebran Bassil. Either way, Lebanon hosts Hezbollah on its territory and has discovered an abundance of natural resources in its offshore territories, its a prime target for Israel and the US.

War Will Begin in the Middle East, Not Asia?

The recent incident involving Iran’s Mahan air passenger plane traveling from Tehran to Beirut over Syria and a US F-14 fighter jet who apparently came dangerously close to the plane according to Iranian media is a sign of aggression that sends a message to Iran and its allies including Hezbollah that the US and Israel is prepared for war. Israel does not want Washington to focus on China since the upcoming US elections are months away and Israel is not sure what is going to happen come this November with Trump and his pro-Israel administration. Israel cannot afford to have Washington start a new war with China so for the time being tensions between the US and China will lead to a new Cold War 2.0.

The Middle East is an important region that remains a strategic part of the world’s economy with its valuable natural resources, a fact too important to ignore for western Big Oil interests and Israel. The meeting between US and Israeli military officials is significant and should be taken seriously, but the world is consumed with news on Covid-19 and China. Another Middle East war can happen either before or after the November elections and that depends on how desperate Israel becomes. Israel can pull Washington’s strings and ignite a war between the US and Iran before the situation intensifies in the South China Sea.

While the world is occupied by a virus and the tensions in the South China Sea continue between the US and China and an upcoming Presidential election, a new conflict between Israel and its Arab neighbors is a real possibility, making it one of the most dangerous periods in human history.


By Timothy Alexander Guzman
Source: Silent Crow News

TURKEY CRIES FOUL ABOUT DEPLOYMENT OF EGYPTIAN TROOPS IN IDLIB. WHAT’S GOING ON?

The Egyptian military has deployed about 150 troops on the frontline in the Syrian region of Greater Idlib to support forces of the Damascus government, Turkish sources claimed on July 30.

“The troops were later deployed in the Khan al-Asal area in the western countryside of Aleppo and around the city of Saraqib in the southern countryside of Idlib,” the Anadolu Agency quoted its source as saying. The news agency claimed that the Egyptian service members had arrived via the Hama Air Base.

Later, Youssef al-Hamoud, a spokesman for the Syrian National Army, a coalition of Turkish proxy groups based in northern Aleppo, said that the number of Egyptian troops is in fact 148. They supposedly deployed in Syria in 3 groups via the Hama Air Base. According to him, 98 Egyptian personnel reportedly came from the city of Ismailia on July 26 and then were deployed in Khan al-Asal. 50 others arrived from Cairo Airport on July 27. They are supposedly deployed in Saraqib.

However, no flights from Egypt to the said base were recorded over the past few days. Furthermore, it is almost impossible to hide the deployment of foreign troops on the frontline in the conditions of the Syrian war, when almost every second fighter has a mobile phone and social media accounts and uses them to share pictures and videos from the battlefield.

Most likely, Turkish state media and proxy groups loyal to Ankara found a new original way to justify the illegal presence of their own forces in Syria. The accusation of other parties doing something that the Erdogan government does itself is something that Turkish media outlets regularly do.

In the earlier stages of the conflict, Turkey and its intelligence services openly allowed various terrorists aiming to join ISIS and al-Qaeda to use the territory of Turkey and camps on the Syrian-Turkish border as a transport hub on their route to Syria. At the same time, Turkey was actively involved in illegal oil trading with ISIS.

Later, when the Russian military operation, including mass bombings of ISIS oil infrastructure, convoys, and public revelation of the facts of Turkish cooperation with ISIS, put an end to this, Turkish official propaganda shifted its attention to accusations of all other parties involved in the conflict of cooperation with ISIS. It even claimed that its military operation against Kurdish militias in Afrin was aimed against ISIS.

Ankara sent almost 10,000 Syrian militants to Libya to support the Tripoli-based Government of National Accord. Nonetheless, Turkish outlets are crying foul about the small number of Russia-linked private military contractors hired by the UAE to support the Libyan National Army against Turkish-backed forces.

Over the past years, Turkey has occupied a notable part of northern Syria and deployed thousands of troops in Greater Idlib to protect al-Qaeda-linked terrorists there from the Syrian Army. Therefore, it would be logical for Ankara to find some ‘foreign force’ that it can accuse of deploying its own troops in the country.

At the same time, if the deployment of Egyptian troops to support the Syrian Army turns out to be true, this will be really bad news for Turkey. Ankara still seems to be unable to control its local al-Qaeda partners and the chances of a new round of escalations in the region are increasing.

The mighty Turkish Armed Forces have thus far failed to defeat the Syrian Army exhausted by years of conflict with terrorists. The outcome of the new escalation will be even more gloomy for Turkey if Egyptian forces will join the coalition supporting Damascus.

Authorities Confiscate Large Stash of Weapons and Munition Heading to Idlib

Authorities Confiscate Large Stash of Weapons and Munition Heading ...

July 31, 2020 Arabi Souri

The law enforcement authorities discovered and confiscated a large quantity of weapons and munition heading to the NATO-sponsored Al Qaeda terrorists in Idlib.

In its ongoing intensive work and thanks to the ever-vigilant Syrian security personnel and with the help of locals, the law enforcement units in Homs monitoring smuggling networks found one of the storing places used by the smugglers at the Homs – Hama administrative borderline packed with a large number of assorted weapons and their munition on its route to terrorists in the Idlib province further in the northwest.

This seizure included automatic rifles, medium machine guns, shoulder-fired missiles, RPGs, various-caliber mortars, a mortar, grenades, and a large amount of light and medium ammunition.

Authorities Confiscate Large Stash of Weapons and Munition Heading ...
Authorities Confiscate Large Stash of Weapons and Munition Heading ...
Authorities Confiscate Large Stash of Weapons and Munition Heading ...

Just a week earlier on the 22nd of July, Syrian law enforcement authorities confiscated a shipment of a large number of weapons and munition heading to the terrorists in northern Idlib countryside. That shipment included mainly medium and light ammunition, machine guns, ammunition, RPGs, medium machine guns, and propellers.

Due to the huge quantities confiscated by the Syrian law enforcement agencies all over the country, the Syrian Arab Army’s engineering unit has to destroy the found quantities as it ran out of storage places. Weapons and munition need to be stored in specially-designated high-security depots. Almost weekly, the engineering corps carry out such a procedure to destroy these weapons all over the country, they also have to notify the public beforehand and make sure the destruction site is as much far as possible from residential or farming areas.

See also:

SAA Units Discover a 20 Meters Depth Tunnel in Hama Countryside

https://www.syrianews.cc/saa-units-discover-20-meters-depth-tunnel-hama-countryside/embed/#?secret=OFr6CNGuWk

SAA Units Find Weapons, Caves & Tunnels in Cleanup; Erdogan’s Terrorists Breach CoH 19 Times

https://www.syrianews.cc/saa-units-find-weapons-caves-erdogans-terrorists-breach-coh-19-times/embed/#?secret=Y0zrHdTzeJ

NATO terrorists do not only rely on the direct supply route they have with NATO member state Turkey providing them with personnel, weapons, and logistics essentials, they have a number of supply networks established during the years when they were controlling much larger territories throughout the country. Routes from Lebanon, from the open Syrian desert connecting with Iraq and Jordan in the east and south, and naturally through the very long borders with Turkey in the north.

Our question to the citizens of the NATO member alliance, especially when a country like Germany, the locomotive of the European economy, fails to pay its dues to the NATO alliance which lead to Trump withdrawing a big number of his forces from there, wouldn’t investing in more useful things in your own countries, say healthcare, education, infrastructure, research and development…etc., be more beneficial to you and your children than investing in these terrorist groups killing and maiming Syrians? Just think about it, weapons and also its munition are not cheap, let alone the billions spent by the Pentagon and each of the NATO war ministries from your tax money as part of their contribution to the invading and destruction of other countries.

SAA Seizes 2 Shipments of NATO Weapons to Al-Qaeda Near Damascus

https://www.syrianews.cc/saa-seizes-2-shipments-nato-weapons-al-qaeda-near-damascus/embed/#?secret=Za0C2S9Z9s

Large Quantities of Weapons and Drugs Left behind by NATO Terrorists in Southern Syria

IMPRESSIONS FROM AN INFORMAL MEETING WITH ASMA AL-ASSAD, SYRIA’S FIRST LADY

By Eva Bartlett

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*(All photos taken from the Facebook page “Asma al Assad – Syria’s First Lady“)

I had been sitting in a small entrance room for what seemed less than a minute when the door opened and Syria’s first lady, Her Excellency Asma al-Assad, greeted me with a warm smile, welcoming me inside a slightly larger sitting room. In official meetings I had had over the years in Syria, I was accustomed to a secretary or assistant escorting me into the meeting room. Asma al-Assad, however, does things up close and personal.

Over the years in Syria, I had heard from people I encountered that she and President Assad routinely meet with their fellow Syrians in crowded venues, mixing and engaging with the people. I had also seen countless photos and videos of the Assads visiting Syrians in their homes around the country.

While I have been to Syria over a dozen times in the past seven years, it had never occurred to me to request a meeting with the first lady. But when that opportunity recently presented itself, I leapt at the chance to speak with one of the most beloved figures in Syria, and to hear her thoughts on her country, her fellow Syrians, and on the plights they are all in. And as it turned out, it was a chance to hear her poignant insights on her role as a mother, a citizen, the wife of the President and a leader in her own right.

Even before assuming the role of Syria’s first lady, Asma al-Assad made it a priority to focus on the development of Syria, and over the years since she’s headed organizations focusing on a range of development issues, including financial, educational and vocational. To effectively work on the many issues she does, her level of awareness of Syrians’ situation on the ground is crucial.

She has travelled widely around Syria, to the smallest villages, to meet with those who could benefit from the various organizations she heads. Videos abound of the first lady, and also the president, visiting wounded soldiers, families of martyrs, cancer patients, and impoverished Syrians, greeting them with hugs and kisses to their cheeks. They often sit with them on the floor of their homes, listening to them talk about their experiences.

In fact, in an interview she gave in 2002, Asma al-Assad explained:

“I wanted to meet [ordinary Syrians] before they met me. Before the world met me. I was able to spend the first couple of months wandering around, meeting other Syrian people. It was my crash course. I would just tag along with one of the many programmes being run in the rural areas. Because people had no idea who I was, I was able to see people completely honestly, I was able to see what their problems were on the ground, what people are complaining about, what the issues are. What people’s hopes and aspirations are. And seeing it first-hand means you are not seeing it through someone else’s eyes. It was really just to see who they are, what they are doing.”

As I already had an appreciation for what she’s accomplished I approached our recent meeting with a great degree of admiration for the person she is and the compassion she exudes.

Since this meeting was not a formal interview, I did not seek to record the over two hours of conversation with Her Excellency. Immediately after leaving, however, I did jot down as many notes about our conversation as I could recall, and will do my best to do justice to what Asma al-Assad said, sometimes quoting her but in general paraphrasing her words.

Also, while I wish to express the respect she deserves in her role as the first lady, and whereas most would call her Your Excellency, I’m also aware that she isn’t fond of titles and fanfare, one of many traits evidencing her humility. Thus, to find middle ground I will either refer to her as the first lady or Asma al-Assad.

Finally, although I’ve begun this essay with focus on Asma al-Assad and her character, what follows is really about Syria, through her eyes, and at some points my own. From the way she spoke, it is very clear that everything she does for her country is for her country, and she does so with an admirably passionate commitment.

I was admittedly anticipating our meeting, wondering how it might unfold. As it turned out, from the initial greeting, conversation flowed naturally and comfortably, which I attribute not only to Asma al-Assad’s ability to put those she meets with at ease very quickly, but also to the genuine interest and attention she pays everyone she meets.

She asked about my family, and was concerned about my own well being—to which my answer was something along the lines of: I’m very gratefully in the place I would most want to be right now. She asked about my experiences in Palestine in general, and my years in Gaza specifically. This was not feigned interest, as the first lady has consistently shown support for Palestine.

In late 2008/early 2009, when Israel was committing a massacre of Palestinian civilians in Gaza who had nowhere to flee, I was living in Gaza, and during the war riding in ambulances, documenting Israel’s war crimes. For three weeks, civilians were bombarded relentlessly—including with White Phosphorous, DIME, dart (flechette) bombs, drone strikes, Apache and tank shelling, and the massive one ton bomb airstrikes. In the end, Israel’s assault killed over 1400 Palestinians.

During an interview she gave to CNN at the time, Syria’s first lady spoke on the horrors which Palestinians were enduring during the massacre and also due to the inhumane Israeli siege on Gaza, rendering Gaza a prison. She spoke movingly of the over 80 percent of Palestinians in Gaza reliant on food aid to merely survive, the nearly 1 million (there are far more now) who don’t have access to clean water, and on many of the other sordid realities about life under siege in Gaza.

“This is the 21st Century. Where in the world could this happen? Unfortunately, it is happening. Just imagine your children living in Gaza. Mothers in Gaza can’t cook. Why can’t they cook? Because they don’t have access to fuel, they don’t even have access to the basic foodstuffs that are required to get a meal together, so children don’t eat. You put your children to bed at night and you expect to see them in the morning. That’s a luxury that people in Gaza just do not have. So what would it be like for you, living under those circumstances?”

WORKING FOR SYRIANS

During our meeting I commented on her work drive, knowing that throughout the past months when around the world things have slowed to a halt she has continued working on issues related to Syria’s development and empowering Syrians from all walks of life.

In May she participated in a workshop with staff of Jarih al-Watan (The Nation’s Wounded), a national veteran support program created in 2014 to help injured soldiers rebuild their lives and reintegrate back into society. The program provides support in several key areas including physical rehabilitation, mental health, education grants, vocational training and financial aid for small and medium enterprises.

The first lady explained that working hard is natural for her. She graduated from university quite young and started working professionally at age 21. When it comes to her work for Syrians, it’s more than her natural drive, it is something she is compelled to do for her country.

She talked to me about her cancer treatment (2018-2019), saying that people likely expected her to stay home, to discontinue work or at least work less because she was ill and undergoing treatment. But for her, how could she, for example, delay a child from getting treatment for a hearing aid, or delay a patient from getting medical care, “simply because I was feeling tired.”

Most people who have had a cold or flu would stay home during their illness, justifiably so. That Asma al-Assad refused to do so while enduring cancer treatment and all of the painful and exhausting side effects speaks volumes to her devotion to her people, a point worth stressing given that Western media has done their utmost to vilify her and the President.

Apart from her development work, the first lady quietly works to change antiquated mindsets on how to do things in Syria. She is also keen to encourage people in general, especially children, including her own, to think for themselves.

“We are trying to encourage young people to ask questions and think critically, which should be in line with democracy and freedom of opinion…”

Encouraging critical thinking and questioning of everything are traits that make for a more open society. For at least the past decade, the US and allies have preached about wanting freedom and democracy in Syria. But while gushing about freedom, they were funding and supporting terrorism, illegally occupying Syrian land, stealing Syrian oil, and prolonging terrorism in the country.

The forward-thinking approach Asma al-Assad embodies could lead to changes for the better in Syria. Yet, because the West is on a mission to impose a government which will do America’s bidding, people and policies that are actually good for Syria are dismissed and ridiculed by America and her allies.

Meanwhile, ironically, in Western countries, censorship has become increasingly rife, with dissenting voices being deleted from Youtube, Twitter, and Facebook, and with critical articles on current events being labelled as “fake news” by Western-government affiliated so-called “fact checkers”.

The first lady noted, “People are being steered by a narrative. They are not allowed to have an opinion any longer. There’s now no freedom of speech in the West.”

IMPACTS OF AMERICA’S DEADLY SANCTIONS

In June, America again ratcheted up its decades-old sanctions on Syria, adding a new round of sanctions meant to utterly debilitate the people of Syria— who’ve already suffered nearly ten years of war.

Every day where I am now in Syria, I hear and see things that drive home just how utterly brutal the US sanctions are: a friend whose aunt can’t get the medications needed for her cancer, another friend whose cousin died as a result of not getting the medications he needed for his chronic illness.

The sanctions are deliberately targeting Syrian civilians, and that is the intent of the United States. The US pretext of “helping Syrians” by sanctioning their country is sociopathic double-speak. The reality is they are slowly killing Syrians.

Under the latest sanctions, civilians are denied medicines, access to up to date medical equipment, and as a consequence, denied medical treatment.

The first lady spoke on how much harder life has gotten for Syrians.

“The medical equipment in Syria (like radiotherapy) needed to treat cancer patients is outdated and it is getting harder and harder to maintain these machines and keep them working. With the sanctions, chemotherapy drugs have become harder to source decreasing the likelihood of patients surviving cancer. If I was facing cancer now instead of two years ago, I wouldn’t be able to get the needed treatment. This is the case for Syrians now.”

I asked about importing the materials needed for local manufacturing. But the problem is, she told me, companies cancel contracts for fear of being punished by the US for violating sanctions.

The first lady asked me what I noticed in recent visits to Syria. I said that I had imagined things would be better after the 2018 liberation of eastern Ghouta and other areas occupied by terrorists and the cessation of their daily mortar and missile attacks on residential areas of Damascus.

But although there is peace, people I meet are despondent about the future. Young people want to leave, to find work or study abroad. And while Syria has started to rebuild, the truth is we don’t know how long that will take, particularly given that the latest sanctions target reconstruction as well. Nor do people know how or when the economy will improve.

The shattered economy is largely a product of ten years of terrorism, war, the sanctions, and the US-Turkish theft and destruction of Syria’s resources, particularly oil. The Syria-wide bout of crop fires in wheat and barley growing regions has devastated farmers and contributes to the country’s economic woes. Farmers blame US and Turkish occupation forces for deliberately setting some of the fires, with Turkish forces even allegedly firing on farmers to keep them from extinguishing the flames.

Destroying the economy, starving the people, bringing people to their knees, in hopes they will vote against their president. That is the US strategy.

However, the US and allies have from day one underestimated the Syrian people. Syrians have shown the world the meaning of steadfastness, facing the most powerful nations and their terrorist proxies, and rising undefeated. But doing so with untold, tragic losses.

HONOURING THE SACRIFICES OF SYRIAN SOLDIERS

The first lady spoke of supporting micro businesses as a long term strategy to improve the economy for all, not just for some. This is something she’s been doing for nearly twenty years in Syria, with a variety of initiatives on microfinance, funding and training.

Tied into this is the vocational training that enables startup projects.

This June, at Nasmet Jabal, in a mountainous area in northwestern Syria, I saw wounded former Syrian soldiers receiving vocational training, learning cheese and yogurt making, staples of the Syrian diet. In previous years, at a Damascus community centre supported by the Syria Trust, I saw women learning sewing skills, likewise to enable them to be employed or start their own businesses.

When speaking of her and her husband’s approach to raising their children, Asma al-Assad noted the importance of their children knowing the sacrifices of Syrian soldiers, stressing that her children are able to do the most basic things in life—walk, study, even just be alive—precisely because the army has defended Syria, and in many cases with soldiers paying a deep price in doing so.

This is one reason their three children frequently appear with the first lady and president in their visits to wounded soldiers.

Last month at the vocational training, I heard the testimonies of a number of such wounded soldiers, suffering injuries that should be life-shattering. But like wounded soldiers I’ve met over the years, they shared an inspirational drive to rebuild their lives, physically, materially and emotionally

In February 2011, Vogue published a surprisingly honest article on the first lady and her work for Syria, titled “Asma al-Assad: A Rose in the Desert.” Although Vogue later removed it from their website, I would encourage people to read the archived copy. It gives a detailed sense of the work and life of the first lady. The author spent several days with Asma al-Assad, getting informative glimpses into the workings of her foundations, and of the first lady herself.

I was told some months ago that when the first lady learned of the title, she was not pleased as one might have expected.

“I am not the only rose, you are all roses,” she said to a room of women at the Syria Trust for Development.

Throughout Syria’s history women have played prominent roles, from Queen Zenobia in the 3rd century AD, to women defending Syria against terrorism, to Nibal Madhat Badr first female Brigadier General in the Syrian Army, to the mothers of martyrs.

Syria’s Vice President, Najah Al-Attar, is a woman, as is Bouthaina Shaaban, media and political advisor to the president. Armenian MP Nora Arissian and former independent MP Maria Saadeh are among countless others.

Asma al-Assad also balked at the portrayal of Syria as a desert, a portrayal physically depicting the country as a vast sandy region, but also incorrectly implying a lack of culture and education, a sense of backwardness.

Just as the cultural mosaic is vast and varied, so is Syria’s landscape, with snowy mountains, steaming coastal areas replete with citrus and banana trees, rolling hills in the northwest, and yes desert areas to the east.

Anyone who has had the fortune to come to Syria likewise is aware of how empowered women are, how rich the culture is, and how valued education is. Art and music flourish here. Teenagers participate in science Olympiads.

In the past four months, I’ve had some opportunities to see more of Syria’s beautiful landscapes that I’ve described. Prior to the war, Syria was a popular tourist destination, particularly for its rich culture and landscapes, as well as for its ancient areas and cities and historic sites.

But historic and cultural sites aside, there is an aspect of Syria’s history and culture that the first lady is extremely worried about losing: the intangible culture, customs passed down through generations. A dialect gets lost because people who fled an area sometimes will not return.

She told me of a village woman who still hand makes Freekah (whole grains of wheat harvested while still green) in the traditional way. But most young people in the village have left, so that tradition won’t be passed down.

Syria is trying to document its intangible culture, a monumental task considering how much there is to document.

FINAL THOUGHTS

I’ll conclude by saying that whereas over the past decade there has been a systematic effort by Western media, politicians and government-aligned “human rights” groups to vilify the first lady, president and army, the reality on the ground is in stark contrast to the propaganda emanating from Washington.

Anyone who has followed the war on Syria, and the Western aggression against so many nations, will be aware that one of the first things America and allies does is to vilify the leadership, those same leaders they may have previously praised as being moderate.

The abrupt removal shortly after publication by Vogue of its feature on the first lady is a perfect example of the media being directed to not allow any positive reflections on Syria’s key figures. Only cartoonish denominations are allowed in Western media now. The 2002 interview with Asma al-Assad which I referenced at the start was published in the Guardian, an outlet which has since become a prime source of the most vile war propaganda against Syria and the whitewashing of terrorists’ crimes.

Meeting Syria’s first lady confirmed what I already knew from speaking with countless Syrians over the years, and from observing from afar the work she does: she is a strong, intelligent, down to earth, and compassionate woman dedicated to empowering and helping her fellow Syrians.

I am extremely grateful for the time I had with her. At a time of global instability, sitting with Asma al-Assad was calming and inspiring.

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مشروعان متناقضان… بينهما حرب وجود ونحن واثقون من انتصارنا

د. ادمون ملحم

ما نشهده في بلادنا من قتل ومجازر ودمار وتهجير في فلسطين والشام ولبنان والعراق والأردن ليس إلا مشاهد من حرب طويلة الأمد مفتوحة على أمتنا وعلى وجودنا الإنساني الحضاري. هذه الحرب فُرضت علينا منذ تأسست الحركةُ الصهيونيةُ العالميةُ بهدفِ إيجادِ وطنٍ قوميٍ لليهود في فلسطين مرتكزةً على فكرةِ «أرضِ الميعاد» الممتدةِ بين الفراتِ والنيلِ التي منحَها يهوه السمسارُ لشعبِه «المختار» من دونِ سائرِ الشعوبِ لتكونَ له ملكاً أبدياً كما جاء في قولِه لإبراهيم في سفر التكوين 7:17: «… أعطي لك ولنسلِك من بعدِك أرضَ غُربتِك، كلَ أرضِ كنعان، ملكاً أبدياً، وأكون إلهَهُم».

وهذه الحرب المصيرية أفرزت مشروعينِ متناقضينِ لا يمكنُ التسويةُ بينهُما:

المشروعُ الأولُ هو المشروعُ الصهيونيُ العدواني الذي يريدُ أن يُقوّضَ مُجتمعَنا من خلالِ طمسِ هويتِنا القوميةِ وتراثِنا المناقبيِ الإنسانيِ وتزويرِ تاريخِنا الحضاريِ وأساطيرِنا الجميلِة وسرقِة ثرواتِنا وكنوزِنا وآثارِنا الخالدةِ والحطِّ من قِيمِنا الأخلاقيةِ والدينيةِ الساميةِ وتشويهِ كلّ إنتاجِنا الحضاريِ ومسيرتِنا الثقافيةِ والسياسيةِ والإبداعية.

المشروع الثاني فهو المشروعَ القوميَ الوحدوي الواضح، مشروعُ سوريةَ الطبيعيةَ الحضاريةَ العريقةَ في جذورِها التاريخيةِ والغنيةِ في معطياتِها الإنسانيةِ والثقافيةِ الماضية.

المشروع الصهيوني هو مشروع استعماري سرطاني مدعوم من الغرب الرأسمالي ومتسلحٌ بأعنفِ الوسائلِ الماديةِ والعسكريةِ المدمّرةِ ويرتكز على مزاعم وهميّة خرافية.

أما المشروع القوميّ فهو مشروعٌ مجتمعيٌ إنسانيٌ راقٍ يرتكزُ على مبدأِ الاشتراكِ في الحياةِ والتفاعلِ الاجتماعيِ الطبيعيِ في البيئةِ الواحدةِ وعلى ملكيةِ الأمةِ التاريخيةِ لِوَطنِها وما فيه من ثرواتٍ وخيرات..

المشروع الصهيونيّ يعتمد البطش والإرهاب ولا يمثل إلا الباطلَ العنصريَ والنفسيةَ الهمجيةَ المتحجرةَ في مُعتقداتِها ومزاعمِها التاريخيةِ الخرافيةِ والمُفعمةِ بالحقدِ واللؤمِ والظلمِ والكراهيةِ والعداءِ للشعوبِ..

أما المشروع القومي فهو مشروعٌ حضاريٌ يمثّلُ النفسيةَ الجميلةَ الخلاّقةَ والمفعمةَ بالفضائلِ والقيمِ الساميةِ ويهدف إلى تحسينَ حياتِنا القوميةِ والمساهمة في رقيِ الإنسانيةِ جمعاء. وهذا المشروع تنهضُ به قوةٌ خلاَّقةٌ مؤمنةٌ بحياةٍ جميلةٍ تشعُّ فيها قيمُ الخيرِ والحقِ والجمالِ والحريةِ والسلام..

إنّ نتائج الحرب المصيرية تتوقف علينا نحن وعلى قدرة هذا المشروعُ القومي الطبيعي. فلكي ينهضَ هذا المشروع وينتصرُ يستوجبُ منا جميعاً الخروجَ من حالةِ الفتنِ المذهبيةِ والشرذمةِ والانقساماتِ إلى حالةِ الوحدةِ الاجتماعيةِ والتسامحِ القوميِ، حالةِ الوضوحِ واليقينِ والثقةِ بالنفسِ والعملِ بإرادةٍ واعيةٍ وخطةٍ نظاميةٍ واضحةِ الأهداف.

لا يمكنُ لنا أن نتغلبَ على الخطةِ الصهيونيةِ النظاميةِ الدقيقةِ ونحن نتبادلُ الأحقادَ الدينيةَ ونتقاتلُ على الجنةِ السماويةِ ونتخبطُ بقضايا الفئويةِ والمذهبيةِ والعشائريةِ والخصوصياتِ.. بل نتغلبُ عليها بعقيدةٍ جلّيةٍ واضحةٍ تُحيي حقيقتَنا التاريخيةَ الحضاريةَ وتعملُ لتأسيسِ مجتمعٍ مدنيٍّ ديمقراطيٍّ راقٍ يعي هويتَه وتاريخَه وقضيتَه القوميةَ ومقاصدَه الكبرى في الحياة.

لا يمكنُ لنا أن نتغلبَ على الخطةِ الصهيونيةِ بأنظمةِ الطائفيةِ والجهلِ والتخلفِ والفسادِ، أنظمةِ الهرولة وكبتِ الحرياتِ..

ولا نتغلَّبُ عليها بالسياساتِ الضيقةِ، بسياسةِ المماحكاتِ والخصوماتِ وبنهجِ التخاذلِ والتسكعِ والمساومات… بل نتغلبُ عليها بخطةٍ نظاميةٍ أشدُ نظاماً وأدهى، خطةٍ عقلانيةٍ واضحةٍ في الرؤيا والأهدافِ ودقيقةٍ في التخطيطِ والممارسةِ والإنجاز.. خطةٍ تعملُ لبناءِ الإنسانِ الجديدِ في فكرِه وقلبِه ووجدانِه، الإنسانِ الحرِ المؤمنِ بنفسهِ وإنسانيتِه، الممتلئ بقيمِ الحياةِ الساميةِ والمتسلحِ بقوةِ العلمِ والمعرفةِ والوجدانِ القومي، الإنسانِ – المجتمعِ الذي يعملُ لخيرِ مجتمعِه ورقيِه والذي يرفُضُ العيشَ الذليلَ ويحيا لقضايا الحياةِ العالية، حياةِ العزِ والشرفِ والانتصار.

ولا نتغلبُ على الخطةِ الصهيونيةِ بثقافةِ الهزيمةِ ولغةِ الإحباطِ، بنفسيةِ الخوفِ والصمتِ والخنوعِ وبأساليبِ الفوضى والتبعيةِ والاتكاليةِ والارتجالِ بل نتغلبُ عليها بخطةٍ ساهرةٍ وراصدةٍ وُمحرِّكةٍ إمكانياتِ المجتمع… خطةٍ هجوميةٍ ومصارعةٍ عواملٍ الضعفٍ والانحطاطٍ والفناء.. خطةٍ تُفكرُ برويةٍ وتستشرفُ المخاطرَ والتحديات.. تراهنُ على إرادةِ الحياةِ فينا وعلى ما يكمُنُ في نفوسِنا من قوةٍ مناقبيةٍ ومن خلقٍ وإبداع.. توقظُ النيامَ وتخاطبُ العقلَ والوجدان.. تنفخُ في الشعبِ روحَ البطولةِ والصراعِ والمقاومةِ وتُنَمِّي فيه روحَ الوعي والمعرفةِ العلميةِ والثقافةِ القوميةِ الصحيحةِ التي تزيلُ الغشاواتِ وتَقْضِي على المبادئ الفاسدةِ والثقافاتِ الرجعيةِ المسؤولةِ عن الكوارثِ القوميةِ التي حلَّتْ بنا.

في مواجهةِ المشروعِ الصهيونيِ لا خيارَ لنا إلا خيارَ المقاومةِ والصمودِ، خيارَ الصراعِ والبطولةِ المؤمنةِ دفاعاً عن الكرامةِ القوميةِ والوجودِ القوميِ والحقِ القومي. بفضلِ هذا الخيارِ فقط يمكن ان ننهي زمنَ الهزائمِ المتعاقبةِ على أمتِنا ونبدأ زمناً جديداً هو زمنُ الانتصاراتِ المشهودة، زمنُ المقاومينَ المؤمنينَ والشهداءِ الأبرارِ الذين بهم وحدهم نهزم المشروعَ الصهيونيَ – الأميركاني وسنهزمه حتماً لأن فينا قوة، كما يقول سعاده العظيم، لو فعلت لغيّرت وجه التاريخ.

What happened —and didn’t happen— at the Israel-Lebanon border?

By Sayed Hasan for The Saker blog

On the night of Sunday, July 19th, airstrikes hit Damascus International Airport. Though Israel didn’t claim responsibility for them, sticking to their longtime “zone of denial” policy, no one doubts they were the perpetrators. On Monday, the Syrian Army announced 7 soldiers were injured. It could have been one strike among hundreds of others, soon forgotten because of the lack of Syrian retaliatory measure. But the day after, Hezbollah announced the martyrdom of one of its combatants, Ali Kamel Mohsen, killed during the Israeli raid. As an Israeli commentator on Arab affairs put it in a tweet, this announcement “certainly changes the picture”. In fact, it is an understatement: it turned a tactical success into a PR disaster for the Netanyahu government, and a nightmare for the Israeli’s Army Northern Command and settlers living close to the Lebanese border. Because as everyone knew, a Hezbollah retaliation was inevitable.

We cannot understand what is happening now if we don’t put it in its broader context. Hezbollah’s rules of engagement against Israel in Syria were spelled out in January 2015, after Israel targeted two of their vehicles in Syria’s Quneitra region, killing 6 Hezbollah fighters (including Jihad Moghniyeh, son of Hezbollah’s martyred commander Imad Moghniyeh), along with an Iranian IRGC colonel. Back then, Nasrallah didn’t make any speech until the retaliation, which came out 10 days later, on January 28, when Hezbollah destroyed 3 vehicles in an Israeli convoy patrolling the occupied Shebaa farms, killing 2 to 5 soldiers —the sources differ— and wounding seven others (Israel retaliated by symbolic strikes, harming no Lebanese life or property but killing a Spanish UN soldier). Here is what Nasrallah stated in a speech two days later: https://www.dailymotion.com/embed/video/x7v64pq

“The Resistance operation happened in broad daylight (just before noon), at the highest state of alert of the Israeli enemy, who until now is incapable of understanding how it happened. […] Because they are cowards and not (real) men, and because “They will not fight you (even) together, except in fortified townships, or from behind walls” (Quran, 59, 14), they struck us treacherously and didn’t dare to claim responsibility for the attack. As for Hezbollah fighters, because they are (real) men who don’t fear death, they attacked them frontally, face to face, and we claimed responsibility for the attack immediately after it happened. […] My message today is the following: from now on, any Hezbollah cadre or commander, any young Hezbollah (combatant) who will be assassinated (in Lebanon or in Syria), we will blame Israel for it, and we will consider it our right to retaliate anywhere, anytime and in any way we see fit.”

This equation was put in practice and even broadened in August 2019, after Yasser Dhaher and Hassan Zbib, two Hezbollah combatants, were killed in an Israeli airstrike in Damascus suburbs, and an Israeli drone attack against Beirut’s southern suburb, a Hezbollah stronghold, was foiled. Here is what Nasrallah stated in an August 25th speech:

“We will retaliate from Lebanon, and not (necessarily) from the Shebaa farms! I declare to the Israeli soldiers at the border tonight: wait for us against the (separation) wall (standing) on one foot and a half (be ready to flee for your lives)! Wait for us on one foot and a half! Wait for us (because we’ll certainly come at you)! In one day, two days, three days, four days… Just wait for us!”

While Hezbollah used to attack Israel exclusively in the Shebaa farms, a Lebanese territory occupied by Israel, they now vowed to strike anywhere, a dramatic development which put tremendous pressure on the Israeli side, for whom any human loss is a national disaster. Drastic & unprecedented measures were taken to foil Hezbollah’s retaliation: Israeli forces didn’t “hole up” in their bases as Nasrallah had advised them to, but went as far as evacuating all their positions close to Lebanon, in a width of 5 to 7 kilometers, and along the whole length of the border line. All Israeli defenses were activated. Strict security measures were taken to evacuate some settlements and forbid the remaining settlers to perform most daily activities —video footage showed empty streets & closed shops, most people being holed up in their house all day long.https://www.dailymotion.com/embed/video/x7kl8ej

For 8 days, the mighty Israeli army appeared as the “spider web” it was, frightened and terrorized, its border barracks and outposts left deserted —as was shown by an RT crew who got inside—, its vehicles abandoned with dummy soldiers inside, with tanks scattered everywhere for days hoping to lure Hezbollah to attack an empty target (see all security measures Israel took detailed in Nasrallah’s speech back then).

Psychological warfare, perfectly mastered by Hezbollah, is a key element to understand what is happening —and not happening— right now, even before we speak of the retaliation itself. As Nasrallah put it in his 2019, September 2nd speech,

“We warned the enemy that he had to expect us (any time) from now on. This is a strength point of the Resistance. We could have remained silent, refrained from threatening (Israel of an imminent retaliation), not revealing our intentions, keeping quiet as we say, for 1, 2 or 3 days, then hit them by surprise. The military know that one of the most important aspects of a military operation is the element of surprise. But we have not done so, because our fight against the Zionist entity has a major psychological component, affecting the morale and soul of the enemy (which we strive to undermine). So we told them from the beginning to wait for us, because we were coming. In itself, it is an enormous challenge issued by the Resistance.[…] [This high alert of the enemy and the evacuation of the border outposts] are part of the punishment (we inflicted on Israel). Before we retaliated with our military operation, some people were (ironically) asking: where is your response? But (this terror situation on the Israeli side) was already a punishment and a retaliation. […] [The whole world saw the staggering difference between] our good Lebanese people (who) was normally moving in border areas, whether in villages or fields, and led a completely normal life, [while Israeli settlers were forbidden to approach “their” fields in occupied Palestine and where holed up in their houses].”

Thus, Israel seemed humiliated and defeated even before the retaliation came. It did happen on September 1st, when a moving Israeli military vehicle was destroyed in broad daylight by two anti-tank missiles near Avivim barracks, killing or wounding its occupants. While Israel had promised to hit Lebanon hard and return it to the Stone Age via all channels (diplomatic, media, etc.) in case of retaliation, the IDF didn’t hit back at all, merely firing “defensive phosphorous strikes aimed at building a smokescreen to protect themselves from further strikes”, as Nasrallah put it. Israeli TV channels showed the evacuation of a seemingly badly wounded soldier by helicopter, and his arrival at a Haifa hospital.

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But Netanyahu claimed there was not as much as a scratch in the Israeli side, and that everything had been staged in order to convince Hezbollah they had avenged their martyrs and avoid any further escalation. While this seems like a PR stunt aimed at damage control (especially when we consider that at the same time, Israeli media reported that a soldier stationed in the North was severely injured by a bizarre game of stone-throwing, suggesting a ludicrous cover-up only made possible by the strict military censorship), Nasrallah didn’t rule it out, and stated in a September 10th speech:

“Everything that was done by the Israelis in recent days, for example the Israeli dummy soldiers (in their vehicles), this shows the weakness of the Israeli army. And when things have come to what they called “the deception operation”, in which they allegedly staged the evacuation of soldiers with fake injuries that they carried on stretchers, covered in fake blood, and would thus have deceived Hezbollah (into believing that his goal was reached, to prevent him from launching new strikes). Let us imagine that you really tricked us: all that would prove is, in few words, that your renowned legendary and invincible army has turned into a Hollywood army, which makes movies for the cinema, because it became helpless on the ground, incapable, weak, fearful and cowardly, withdrawing from the border to a width of 5 to 7 kilometers (for fear of the promised response by Hezbollah.”

It would be difficult to conclude that this 2019 round ended in anything but a crushing defeat for Israel, be it on the military, psychological or PR level. Though all of this is little known to the Western public, where the media is but an echo chamber of the Israeli Army’s propaganda (even RT, Sputnik and most alternative media often take their claims at face value), there is no doubt that it was strongly present in the mind of Israel’s political & military leaders when they heard of a Hezbollah operative killed in their latest strike on Syria ten days ago. Israeli media reported the high alert status of the Army in the North, where military drills were canceled, reinforcements sent and units & defenses put in high alert in the expectation of an imminent Hezbollah attack. The usual huff and puff about Israel’s forceful response in case of an attack was heard from Netanyahu & Gantz. But as Israel is in the eye of the storm because of the coronavirus crisis & current civil unrest and daily & violent protests against Netanyahu, another round against Hezbollah, Israel’s most dreaded enemy, is the last thing they’d want. That’s why Israel took the unprecedented step of sending an apology letter to Hezbollah via the UN representative in Lebanon, as was reported by Lebanese & Israeli media, and confirmed by Hezbollah’s Deputy Secretary General Naim Qassem, though the latter wouldn’t speak of its contents, and only stated that Hezbollah didn’t and wouldn’t reply to it.

Commenting on this development, Senior Lebanese political analyst Anis Naqqash, closely linked to Hezbollah, stated the following in an interview to Al-Mayadeen on July 26:

Anis Naqqash: This letter is the greatest proof of Israel’s weakness and fear of Hezbollah’s response. (Recall that in the past) Israel slaughtered (civilians) by the hundreds, and did not apologize or send (explanatory) letters. Israel committed aggressions and occupied territories, and did not apologize or send (explanatory) letters. (But) today, fearing Hezbollah’s reaction, Israel sends an urgent letter via the UN as an apology, because they are afraid of the reaction.

First, the fact that Hezbollah did not make the contents of the letter public helps to make it irrelevant. If they had published it, they would have given the impression of wanting to make public what Israel said. Second, the fact that Hezbollah did not respond to the letter confuses Israel. Despite their apologies and asking for forgiveness, what is Hezbollah’s response? Absolute silence. This leaves Israel in a state of great disarray. (Hezbollah) has also confirmed (via its Deputy Secretary General) that Hezbollah will do what they have to do when the time comes, which also leaves more to fear (in Israel).

Therefore, today Israel is clearly in a state of continued confusion and fear, and the statements of Sheikh Naim (Qassem) today will not allow them to sleep peacefully, on the contrary, they are even more worried (after hearing him).

Journalist: Israel therefore stands on one foot and a half (Nasrallah’s formula to designate the fear and terror of Israeli soldiers, ready to flee at full speed at the slightest alarm) without even the Hezbollah Secretary General needing to speak (and warn them of an imminent response)?

Anis Naqqash: The last time he warned them, but this time they (already) know what to expect. It’s like an unruly pupil standing up and facing the wall on his own every time he does something silly. Today Israel stands up and faces the wall, and does so on one foot and a half, taking (drastic) precautions. No one can say if the response will come before the Eid-el-Kebir (on July 31st) or after, or even if the response will take the Eid festival into account or not. Everything is possible on the part of the Resistance.

Journalist: But isn’t the fact that Hezbollah has not made public the contents of the letter a sign of seriousness, respect and responsibility given that it is an official letter that has been delivered via the United Nations? Isn’t that an important sign (of maturity)?

Anis Naqqash: This can only be understood by comparison with what the Arab leaders and Presidents, and even the former leaders of the Palestinian resistance factions, used to do when they received such marks of attention from the (Israeli) enemy, or from the United States or Europe. The mere fact that one of these countries paid attention to them, made a mere gesture of consideration towards them, they were quick to show it to everyone (as a sign of pride), (boasting) that they had received a glance, a letter from such or such country, an apology, etc. Their opponents saw them as eager for any sign of recognition from the enemy.

As far as Hezbollah is concerned, it is quite the opposite. Hezbollah does not attach any importance to the enemy and its stances. Of course, they study them closely (one has to know its enemy very well), but they do not give them this importance; they don’t manifest this avidity (towards any sign of respect from the enemy). Hezbollah doesn’t rush to their people telling them, “Look, look, they’ve apologized to us!” The confidence of Hezbollah’s grassroots in the Resistance is much higher than that, and they know Israel is afraid of it regardless of what they can say in any letter. This is why Hezbollah does not attach importance to it and does not bother to respond to it, making it clear that for them, whether Israel sent the letter or not, it is the same thing and it will not change anything (about the inevitable response). We have to analyze this from the point of view of psychological warfare, of politics, in order to correctly assess the strategic capacities of the Resistance with regard to political, security and media battles. […]

While Israel’s “apologies” to Hezbollah are pathetic and can prevent in no way the inevitable retaliation, it must be emphasized that Israel certainly does everything it can to avoid hitting Hezbollah operatives when it strikes Syria —and therefore tries hard not to kill anyone at all—, going so far as warning them before hitting one of their vehicles, as we can see in this video from last April.

Israel was therefore left with the crushing pressure of the unknown, especially that Hezbollah didn’t comment on what it would do or not do, Naim Qassem merely stating that the rules of engagement previously stated were still in force, and that the coming days would answer everyone’s questions. There were no doubts in Israel & Lebanon that an imminent Hezbollah retaliation was coming. The pressure & nervousness —and downright panic— at the border are probably the cause of the death of an Israeli soldier on July 22 when his car crashed in the Shebaa farms, near the Lebanese border. As a Koweiti put it on Twitter, “Hezbollah’s silence is sometimes more powerful and painful to the Zionist enemy than their missiles, because they live hours, days and weeks in a state of fear, terror and high nervousness. Silence is a destructive weapon of psychological warfare against the Israeli entity, both at the political and psychological levels.” Avigdor Lieberman, former Israeli Defense Minister, stated that “I am still worried because the North is paralyzed by the killing of one single Hezbollah member in Damascus. Unfortunately, Nasrallah proved that he does what he says, an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth.”

In this extremely tense situation, on July 27th, the Israeli Army, parroted by the Western media (both mainstream and alternative), stated that it had foiled a Hezbollah attempt to infiltrate the Israeli-occupied Shebaa Farms, killing and wounding the operatives in the following skirmish while suffering no death or injuries itself. Later reports made no mention of Hezbollah casualties, alleging that their lives were willfully spared as a de-escalation measure. Here is the account of the “battle” by Haaretz’s military correspondent Amos Harel:

“While some of the details are still shrouded in fog, it’s clear that the IDF forces – soldiers from the Nahal Brigade, the elite Egoz unit and a tank crew – weren’t taken by surprise and were well prepared for their mission. An IDF lookout spotted the Hezbollah cell while it was still moving toward Har Dov (Shebaa Farms). When the cell had made it about 20 meters into Israel, in a hilly, wooded area where there’s no border fence, tanks and machine guns opened fire at it from a few hundred meters away.The Shi’ite militiamen quickly left the area.

There have been no reports of them taking casualties.

They entered Israel not that far from an IDF outpost and a road that serves troops in the area. (Har Dov is always closed to civilian traffic.) Their goal was presumably to carry out an attack – via sniper fire or bombs – on the IDF forces posted there. But given what has been reported about how the cell operated, the attempt does not seem to have been particularly sophisticated.

Thick vegetation makes it hard to hit an enemy moving cautiously even in broad daylight. The IDF has refused to say whether the soldiers were ordered to shoot to kill, or whether the plan was always to drive off the Hezbollah cell without causing casualties.

Nevertheless, there are fairly solid grounds for assuming that Israel deliberately decided on the latter course of action. Any such decision would have had to be made at the highest levels.

Had Hezbollah suffered losses in the incident, it might have felt compelled to mount an additional retaliation, and that could have escalated the situation along the border. Thus what looks like a tie with no casualties appears to be very convenient for both sides.”

This scenario makes Israel look good: according to this report, not only did they successfully foil an attack, but they did it with a concern for enemy human lives in order to avoid an escalation. Hezbollah’s “unsophisticated” attack, for a change, is supposed to make its outcome more plausible, and more acceptable to the Party of God, who can go along with it, claim he retaliated somewhat and climb down the ladder. Thus, this alleged round would give a military & PR victory for Israel, while allowing Hezbollah to save face, and Netanyahu & Gantz wasted no time in collecting their medal and warning Nasrallah that he was “playing with fire”, and that any further Hezbollah operations against Israel “would be a mistake and would be followed by a harsh military response”. Interestingly, both Netanyahu and Gantz left directly after reading their short statement, without taking any questions from the journalists. One wonders why they wouldn’t enjoy their victory.

In reality, this story is very unlikely, as the Israeli media themselves were quick to point out. In an article titled ‘Was Mount Dov incident another Hollywood show for Hezbollah?’, the Jerusalem Post recalled the Avivim mascarade and asked:

“In this day and age, everything is filmed. So where is the footage of the infiltrators crossing into Israel? Where is the drone footage of the area at the time of the incident?”

The IDF stated that they had footage of the incident and were considering releasing it, but haven’t done so far, which adds to the skepticism. Even Naftali Bennett, former Defense Minister, seemed to indirectly deny that any skirmish happenned, stating to Israel’s Channel 13 that in the region of the incident, one can get the impression that something is moving while there is nothing at all.

As for Hezbollah, they denied that any skirmish had taken place in the following statement:

“It appears that the state of terror in which the Zionist occupation army and its settlers on the Lebanese border find themselves, the high alert status and the extreme concern over the Resistance’s reaction to the enemy crime which led to the martyrdom of our mujahid brother Ali Kamel Mohsen, as well as the enemy’s complete inability to know the intentions of the Resistance, all these factors made the enemy extremely nervous on the ground and in the media, and he behaves as someone afraid of his own shadow.

Everything that the enemy media claim about Israel thwarting an infiltration operation from Lebanese territory into occupied Palestine, as well as their claims that there were martyrs and wounded on the Resistance side as a result of the bombardments which took place near the occupation sites in the Shebaa farms, is absolutely not true. This is just a futile attempt to forge illusory & bogus victories.

The Islamic Resistance affirms that there has been no clash or shooting on its part in the events of the day so far. Rather, it was one single part, meaning the frightened, anxious and nervous (Israeli) enemy, who fired all the shots.

Our response to the martyrdom of our mujahedin brother Ali Kamel Mohsen, who found martyrdom in the Zionist aggression on the outskirts of Damascus International Airport, will inevitably come, and the Zionists have only to await punishment for their crimes.

Moreover, the strikes which took place today on the (Lebanese) village of Al-Habaria and hit a civilian’s house will not go unpunished.

The next few days will soon deliver their verdict (our response to all of this is imminent).

Victory comes only from Almighty God.

Islamic Resistance in Lebanon”

Even if it was a matter of Hezbollah’s word against Israel’s, given their respective PR record, it would be safe to trust Hezbollah’s account. In fact, the Israelis themselves believe Nasrallah more than their own leaders, as was shown by polls held in Israel, Hezbollah’s huge credibility being one of its great achievements —as Norman Finkelstein statedIsraeli leaders carefully scrutinize Nasrallah’s every word. Anyway, Israel has gained nothing from what is most likely a new PR stunt. Whether the incident started as a mistake of Israeli troops firing at inexistent Hezbollah combatants conjured by their panicked imagination (IDF soldiers are world-class cowards), or whether it was all staged from the beginning in order to claim a fake victory before the inevitable, real retaliation, it is safe to believe that no Hezbollah attack happened, and that Israel further humiliated & discredited itself with this umpteenth lie.

However, it would be a mistake to think that all this show was futile. First, Hezbollah stated for the first time that the retaliation was coming indeed, though it was pretty much a given anyway. Second, they now have two reasons to strike back: their combatant killed in Damascus, and the attack against a civilian house, which puts all the Israeli settlers in the line of fire. Thus, Israel went from a bad situation to an even worse one. Back in August 2019, Nasrallah had already stated that the failed drone attack against Beirut’s southern suburb meant that from now on, the settlers would be seen as fair game:

« I declare to all the inhabitants of northern Israel and everywhere in occupied Palestine: do not live (normally), do not be in peace, do not feel safe, and do not think for one second that Hezbollah will accept such a scenario (where he would suffer such attacks in his neighborhoods without retaliating against settlers). »

Hezbollah still refrained from attacking settlements back then, focusing on military targets, but the latest escalation, even if it was likely accidental, could very well change their mind.

The only remaining question is when and where Hezbollah’s retaliation will come, and how will it unfold? As surprise is a major component of Hezbollah’s strategy, it would be vain to speculate, even if one can think that Hezbollah will take its time, in order to keep the enemy on tenterhooks. But Nasrallah gave us an interesting hint in his ‘Hollywood Army’ Speech:

“O Hollywood army, the lesson we draw from this experience, if indeed it is real (it remains to be proven true that you tricked us), is that the next time, you invite us not be content to hit one vehicle or one place, but several vehicles and several positions, so as not to be fooled by new Hollywood movies. (This comedy simulating injuries so that we’d stop hitting you) is a demonstration of weakness and helplessness (and not a sign of strength or intelligence).”

Also, many wonder if Hezbollah’s inevitable retaliation can lead to a war. It is most unlikely, and this idea has been dismissed by Hezbollah Deputy Secretary General, though he stated that they were always ready for war. But the daily threats from Netanyahu or Gantz should fool no one: Israel’s bite has never been a match for its bark, and their threats towards Hezbollah always turned out to be a damp squib. Netanyahu boasted of having won an imaginary round only because he knew that he had already lost the real one at all levels —military, psychological, PR—, and that when the deterrence & rules of engagement between Hezbollah and Israel change, it is only at the latter’s expense.

Donate as little as you can to support this work and subscribe to the Newsletter to get around censorship.

“Any amount counts, because a little money here and there, it’s like drops of water that can become rivers, seas or oceans…” Hassan Nasrallah

Hezbollah denies carrying out attack on Israel, vows imminent retaliation

Date: 28 July 2020

Author: lecridespeuples

Source: Al-Manar, Hezbollah TV channel

Translation: resistancenews.org

Commenting on the events that took place today, July 27, 2020, in the occupied area of ​​the Shebaa Farms on the Lebanese border with occupied Palestine, and the information and statements released about these events, the Islamic Resistance in Lebanon (Hezbollah) released the following statement:

“It appears that the state of terror in which the Zionist occupation army and its settlers on the Lebanese border find themselves, the high alert status and the extreme concern over the Resistance’s reaction to the enemy crime which led to the martyrdom of our mujahid brother Ali Kamel Mohsen, as well as the enemy’s complete inability to know the intentions of the Resistance, all of these factors made the enemy extremely nervous on the ground and in the media, and he behaves considering that any wind blowing the bushes announces an (imminent) attack on him (Israelis are afraid of their own shadow).

Everything that the enemy media claim about Israel thwarting an infiltration operation from Lebanese territory into occupied Palestine, as well as their claims that there were martyrs and wounded on the Resistance side as a result of the bombardments which took place near the occupation sites in the Shebaa farms, is absolutely not true. This is just a futile attempt to forge illusory & bogus victories.

The Islamic Resistance affirms that there has been no clash or shooting on its part in the events of the day so far. Rather, it was one single part, meaning the frightened, anxious and nervous (Israeli) enemy, who fired all the shots (against imaginary targets).

Our response to the martyrdom of our mujahedin brother Ali Kamel Mohsen, who found martyrdom in the Zionist aggression on the outskirts of Damascus International Airport, will inevitably come, and the Zionists have only to await punishment for their crimes.

Moreover, the bombardments which took place today on the village of Al-Habaria and hit a civilian’s house will not go unpunished.

The next few days will soon deliver their verdict (our response to all of this is imminent).

Victory comes only from Almighty God.

Islamic Resistance in Lebanon”

See also Israeli strikes in Syria: fearing imminent retaliation, IDF sends apology letter to Hezbollah

Donate as little as you can to support this work and subscribe to the Newsletter to get around censorship.

“Any amount counts, because a little money here and there, it’s like drops of water that can become rivers, seas or oceans…” Hassan Nasrallah

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