IGNORING THE MIDDLE EAST AT ONE’S PERIL: TURKEY PLAYS GAMES IN NATO

15.05.2022

Written by James M. Dorsey

Amid speculation about a reduced US military commitment to security in the Middle East, Turkey has spotlighted the region’s ability to act as a disruptive force if its interests are neglected.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan set off alarm bells this week, declaring that he was not “positive” about possible Finnish and Swedish applications for membership in the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) in the wake of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

NATO membership is contingent on a unanimous vote in favour by the organisation’s 30 members. Turkey has NATO’s second-largest standing army.

The vast majority of NATO members appear to endorse Finnish and Swedish membership. NATO members hope to approve the applications at a summit next month.

A potential Turkish veto would complicate efforts to maintain trans-Atlantic unity in the face of the Russian invasion.

Mr. Erdogan’s pressure tactics mirror the maneuvers of his fellow strongman, Hungarian Prime Minister Victor Orban. Mr. Orban threatens European Union unity by resisting a bloc-wide boycott of Russian energy.

Earlier, the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia rejected US requests to raise oil production in an effort to lower prices and help Europe reduce its dependence on Russian energy.

The two Gulf states appear to have since sought to quietly backtrack on their refusal. In late April, France’s TotalEnergies chartered a tanker to load Abu Dhabi crude in early May for Europe, the first such shipment in two years.

Saudi Arabia has quietly used its regional pricing mechanisms to redirect from Asia to Europe Arab “medium,” the Saudi crude that is the closest substitute for the main Russian export blend, Urals, for which European refineries are configured.

Mr. Erdogan linked his NATO objection to alleged Finnish and Swedish support for the Kurdish Workers Party (PKK), which has been designated a terrorist organisation by Turkey, the United States, and the EU.

The PKK has waged a decades-long insurgency in southeast Turkey in support of Kurds’ national, ethnic, and cultural rights. Kurds account for up to 20 per cent of the country’s 84 million population.

Turkey has recently pounded PKK positions in northern Iraq in a military operation named Operation Claw Lock.

Turkey is at odds with the United States over American support for Syrian Kurds in the fight against the Islamic State. Turkey asserts that America’s Syrian Kurdish allies are aligned with the PKK.

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu warned that Turkey opposes a US decision this week to exempt from sanctions against Syria regions controlled by the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).

“This is a selective and discriminatory move,” Mr. Cavusoglu said, noting that the exemption did not include Kurdish areas of Syria controlled by Turkey and its Syrian proxies.

Referring to the NATO membership applications, Mr. Erdogan charged that “Scandinavian countries are like some kind of guest house for terrorist organisations. They’re even in parliament.”

Mr. Erdogan’s objections relate primarily to Sweden, with Finland risking becoming collateral damage.

Sweden is home to a significant Kurdish community and hosts Europe’s top Kurdish soccer team that empathises with the PKK and Turkish Kurdish aspirations. In addition, six Swedish members of parliament are ethnic Kurds.

Turkey scholar Howard Eissenstat suggested that Turkey’s NATO objection may be a turning point. “Much of Turkey’s strategic flexibility has come from the fact that its priorities are seen as peripheral issues for its most important Western allies. Finnish and Swedish entry into NATO, in the current context, absolutely not peripheral,” Mr. Eissenstat tweeted.

The Turkish objection demonstrates the Middle East’s potential to derail US and European policy in other parts of the world.

Middle Eastern states walk a fine line when using their potential to disrupt to achieve political goals of their own. The cautious backtracking on Ukraine-related oil supplies demonstrates the limits and/or risks of Middle Eastern brinkmanship.

So does the fact that Ukraine has moved NATO’s center of gravity to northern Europe and away from its southern flank, which Turkey anchors.

Moreover, Turkey risks endangering significant improvements in its long-strained relations with the United States.

Turkish mediation in the Ukraine crisis and military support for Ukraine prompted US President Joe Biden to move ahead with plans to upgrade Turkey’s fleet of F-16 fighter planes and discuss selling it newer, advanced F-16 models even though Turkey has neither condemned Russia nor imposed sanctions.

Some analysts suggest Turkey may use its objection to regain access to the United States’ F-35 fighter jet program. The US cancelled in 2019 a sale of the jet to Turkey after the NATO member acquired Russia’s S-400 anti-missile defence system.

Mr. Erdogan has “done this kind of tactic before. He will use it as leverage to get a good deal for Turkey,” said retired US Navy Admiral James Foggo, dean of the Center for Maritime Strategy.

A top aide to Mr. Erdogan, Ibrahim Kalin, appeared to confirm Mr. Foggo’s analysis. “We are not closing the door. But we are basically raising this issue as a matter of national security for Turkey,” Mr. Kalin said, referring to the Turkish leader’s NATO remarks. “Of course, we want to have a discussion, a negotiation with Swedish counterparts.”

Spelling out Turkish demands, Mr. Kalin went on to say that “what needs to be done is clear: they have to stop allowing PKK outlets, activities, organisations, individuals and other types of presence to…exist in those countries.”

Mr. Erdogan’s brinkmanship may have its limits, but it illustrates that one ignores the Middle East at one’s peril.

However, engaging Middle Eastern autocrats does not necessarily mean ignoring their rampant violations of human rights and repression of freedoms.

For the United States and Europe, the trick will be developing a policy that balances accommodating autocrats’, at times, disruptive demands, often aimed at ensuring regime survival, with the need to remain loyal to democratic values amid a struggle over whose values will underwrite a 21st-century world order.

However, that would require a degree of creative policymaking and diplomacy that seems to be a rare commodity.

Dr. James M. Dorsey is an award-winning journalist and scholar, a Senior Fellow at the National University of Singapore’s Middle East Institute and Adjunct Senior Fellow at Nanyang Technological University’s S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies, and the author of the syndicated column and blog, The Turbulent World of Middle East Soccer.

A podcast version is available on Soundcloud, Itunes, SpotifySpreaker, and Podbean.

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الرئيس الأسد في طهران: الحلف القويّ يزداد قوّة

الجمعة 13 مايو 2022

المصدر: الميادين نت

جو غانم 

استراتيجيّات دمشق وطهران المشتركة، فقد تجاوزت بأشواط بعيدة هوامش العلاقات والمكاسب والمصالح السياسية.

الرئيس الأسد في طهران: الحلف القويّ يزداد قوّة

في الشكل السياسيّ العام، قد لا تُشكّل زيارة الرئيس السوريّ بشار الأسد إلى طهران، يوم الأحد 8 أيّار/مايو، مفاجأة لمتابعي الملفات السياسية في المنطقة والعلاقات بين البلدين الحليفين، حتى لو ابتعدت نحو 3 سنوات عن الزيارة السابقة، فهي تأتي ضمن الحراك السياسيّ البينيّ المتوقّع في أيّة لحظة، وذلك ربطاً بطبيعة العلاقات بين البلدين، وبتطورات المنطقة المرتبطة بكلّ تفاصيلها السياسية والعسكرية والاقتصادية بالعاصمتين اللتين شكّلتا محور الأحداث في المنطقة، ووجهة أهداف كلّ المشاريع الدولية للإقليم على مدى العقد الأخير على وجه الخصوص.

لكنْ، ومن جهة أخرى، إنّ هذه الزيارة بعيدة كلّ البعد، في الشكل والمضمون، عن كونها زيارة روتينيّة أو تواصلاً عاديّاً ودوريّاً بين قيادتي بلدين حليفين أو صديقين، فمعظم الحراك السياسيّ الإقليميّ والدوليّ الذي شهدته المنطقة في الأعوام الأخيرة، وما رافقه من تطورات اقتصادية مفتعلة أو قسريّة، وتحرّكات أو خطط وهجومات عسكريّة، كان يستهدف فكّ هذا الحلف المتين بين البلدين أو على الأقلّ إضعافه.

إن دمشق تحديداً تلقّت أكبر قدر من الاستهدافات والضغوطات والإغراءات التي تركّزت بمجملها على هذا البند – الإيرانيّ والمقاوم – الثابت في طريقة التعاطي معها منذ انتصار المقاومة الإسلامية في لبنان، واندحار العدو الصهيوني من الجنوب في العام 2000، ثم اجتياح العراق ودخول مشروع “الشرق الأوسط الجديد” حيز التنفيذ، حتى اللحظة.

تأتي زيارة الرئيس الأسد إلى طهران بعد أقلّ من شهرين على زيارته العاصمة الإماراتية أبو ظبيّ، والتي اعتبرها العديد من المحللين والمتابعين وقتذاك منعطفاً مفصليّاً في السياسة الدولية والإقليميّة حيال الشام، بعد 10 سنوات من محاولات تحطيم سوريا بكلّ السبل، وكسر إرادة دمشق الوطنيّة، وعزلها في أقصى زوايا الضعف السياسيّ والعسكريّ والاقتصادي، لترفع آخر راية بيضاء يمكنها نزعها من مزق خيمة المقاومة، بعد أنْ صبغ العالم الغربي وأدواته الداخلية والإقليمية خريطتها كلها بلون الدم الأحمر. 

لقد قيل الكثير عن زيارة الرئيس الأسد للإمارات، وما سيليها، وذهب البعض بعيداً في الحديث عن نجاح العمل الغربي – العربيّ بإحداث خرق على خطّ دمشق – طهران، متّكئين على تداعيات الحصار الخانق الذي تعانيه سوريا، وحاجتها إلى طوق نجاه يُبعد شبح الجوع المُخيّم على بيوت مواطنيها ومؤسساتها.

وهناك من تحدث عن تحقيق العرب المطبّعين مع العدو الإسرائيليّ نقاطاً جديدة تخدم مشروع العدو، على حساب مشروع المقاومة التي تقف دمشق وطهران على رأسه وفي قلبه.

وقد تحدّثنا حينذاك في “الميادين نت” عمّا أثبتته دمشق دائماً بأنّ كل تلك التحليلات والاستشرافات تثبت جهلاً بالسياسة السورية وثوابتها الوطنية والاستراتيجية، وتنمّ عن ضعف في قراءة حقيقة طبيعة العلاقات السورية – الإيرانيّة، واستسهال في دراسة النتائج والتحديثات الاستراتيجيّة المتتالية التي عمل ويعمل عليها محور المقاومة الممتد ميدانيّاً من طهران إلى أقصى الشمال والشرق السوريّيْن، مروراً باليمن والعراق ولبنان، وبمركزه فلسطين المحتلة.

لذلك كله، يأتي هذا التواصل السوري الإيرانيّ الجديد، وكل تصريح أو جملة وردت خلال هذه الزيارة على لسان الرئيس السوريّ بشار الأسد، والسيد علي خامنئي، والرئيس الإيراني إبراهيم رئيسي، لتعطي فرصة جديدة لمن يريد قراءة الحدث كما ينبغي، ولاستشراف مستقبل المنطقة انطلاقاً من إرادة “محور القدس” وخططه ومشاريعه لمنطقته وشعوبه، لا من زاوية المشاريع والخطط الأميركية والإسرائيلية للمنطقة، والتي تهاوت وتتهاوى تحت ضربات هجوم مضادّ على امتداد ساحات المقاومة في المنطقة وميادينها، وصولاً إلى ميدان الصراع العالميّ الأشمل حول العاصمة الأوكرانية كييف، وعلى مشارف الحدود مع حلف الناتو.

لقد أصرّ الرئيس الأسد بدايةً على تذكّر الشهيد قاسم سليماني، ودوره الكبير في النضال في مواجهة المشاريع الغربية في سوريا تحديداً، وفي المنطقة عموماً، ومحبته لسوريا ومحبة سوريا له، ودوره في ترتيب زيارة الرئيس الأسد إلى طهران قبل 3 سنواتٍ.

وحين يكون اسم اللواء قاسم سليماني، بكلّ ما يعنيه هذا الاسم لأهل المقاومة وأعدائها الذين استهدفوه شخصيّاً، فاتحة الحديث بين قادة البلدين، ويكون خلَفه اللواء إسماعيل قاآني الذي رتّب هذه الزيارة وحضر كل تفاصيلها، فهذا يعني أننا لسنا أمام لقاء روتينيّ وعاديّ لقادة سياسيين عاديين، بل أمام لقاء بين قادة ميدانيين يقاتلون كتفاً إلى كتف لبلوغ غايات استراتيجية كبيرة تتعدّى كلّ ما هو عاديّ وروتينيّ في العلاقات بين الدول.

نحن هنا، وبناءً على كلّ كلمة قيلت في هذه القمّة أو خبرٍ رشح عن كواليسها أمام لقاء بين قادة محور مقاومٍ يتحدّثون لغة واحدة، ويستهلّون كلامهم ويختمونه بالحديث عن المقاومة وحاضرها وجدواها ومستقبلها وطرق تصعيدها وحصد نتائجها، ويبحثون في السياسة من قلب هذا السياق تحديداً، وتبدو وحدة الحال بينهم أمتن وأقوى من أيّ وقت مضى، منطلقين من واقعٍ عمليّ واستراتيجيّ اشتغلوا عليه معاً لسنوات طويلة، وقدّموا فيه الكثير من الأثمان الباهظة والتضحيات النفيسة، ويرون أنّ نتائجه حتى اللحظة باهرة وعظيمة، وتستدعي ظروفه الراهنة لقاءً مثل هذا للتباحث والتشاور ووضع الخطط الاستراتيجية القادمة. 

إنّ فلسطين تشتعل تحت أقدام المحتلّ الذي يتخبّط تحت وقع عمليّات فدائيّة يعجز عن التعامل معها، كما يعجز عن القيام بردّ عسكريّ شامل ومدمّر كعادته في أزمان خلت على مدن فلسطين وقراها، حيث تهدّد قوى المقاومة الفلسطينية العدو بالويل والثبور إذا ما أقدم على ذلك أو على اغتيال أيّ قائد من قادة المقاومة، والعدو يعرف أنّ المقاومة جدّية وقادرة، وهي على قدر التهديدات هذه المرّة، ويعرف أنّ فصائل المقاومة الفلسطينية التي تُشكّل عصب هذا المحور، أذابت الكثير من الفروقات والتناقضات والخلافات لمصلحة الهدف الأسمى، كما يعلم أنّ هذا العمل استلزم جهد جميع أطراف محور المقاومة لبلوغه، وعلى رأسهم طهران ودمشق. كما أنّ الواقع الميدانيّ في سوريا واليمن والعراق، والسياسيّ – الانتخابيّ – في لبنان، يُظهر تقدّماً كبيراً وراسخاً لقوى محور المقاومة، مقابل عجز واضح للمحور المعادي وأدواته المحليّة.

وانطلاقاً من هذا كلّه، فإنّ حديث قادة المقاومة في سوريا وإيران خلال هذه الزيارة عن نظام عالميّ جديد هو حديث يصدر عمّن ساهم وشارك في صنع هذا النظام على مستوى الإقليم على الأقلّ، الأمر الذي ساعد كثيراً القوى الدولية الحليفة والصديقة، وعلى رأسها روسيا والصين، في السير باتّجاه المواجهة مع النظام العالمي الذي تقوده الولايات المتحدة، والسعي إلى إزاحته وإرساء نظام جديد.

لقد ساهمت دمشق وطهران وقوى محور المقاومة في المنطقة بشكل أساسيّ ومباشر وفاعل في كسر أخطر المشاريع الغربية والإسرائيلية لمنطقتنا في السنوات العشر الأخيرة وإفشالها، وها هو الرئيس السوريّ بشار الأسد يقف إلى جانب إخوة السلاح في طهران – بعد حديث عن لقاء جمعه بالسيد حسن نصر الله قبل الزيارة إلى طهران – ليعلنوا معاً تمتين هذا الحلف الاستراتيجي، ويبحثوا في سبل ترسيخه وتقدّمه على جميع المستويات، وخصوصاً الاقتصاديّة منها، وذلك بعد أنْ بلغ المستوى العسكريّ والأمني درجة كبيرة من الوضوح في التقدّم والأفضليّة.

 ولعلّ تدشين خطّ ائتمان إيراني جديد باتّجاه سوريا، بالتزامن مع الزيارة، لإمداد دمشق بموارد الطاقة اللازمة للفترة القادمة، أفضل مؤشّر على طريقة العمل الواثق الذي تنتهجه قيادة البلدين. 

من هنا تحديداً، يجب أن يعيد المهتمّون في الإقليم والعالم قراءة العلاقات الثنائية بين سوريا وإيران، قبل أيّ قراءة في تفاصيل النشاطات السياسية التي تضطرب وتعتمل في المنطقة، والتي تشتغل دمشق وطهران معاً على هوامشها المتاحة لتحقيق إنجازات سياسية واقتصاديّة مدروسة تماماً، ولا تخرج عن المصلحة العامة لاستراتيجية المحور، فيما قد تحقّق بعض الهدوء وربط النزاعات على عدة جبهات وميادين، قد يبدو أنّ المحور الآخر يستفيد منها مرحليّاً أو يحدّ من خسائره على الأقلّ. 

وحين يركّز قادة سوريا وإيران في أحاديثهم خلال هذه الزيارة على شعوب المنطقة العربية وموقفها من القضية الفلسطينية، والهوّة الساحقة بينها وبين قادتها وحكوماتها، وهو ما تجلّى في الاحتفال بيوم القدس العالميّ، فإنّ الرسالة تعني تماماً وتحديداً الثقة بقدرة أهل المقاومة وشعبها في المنطقة على عزل كيان الاحتلال الإسرائيليّ، ورهان قادة محور المقاومة الثابت على فشل كلّ محاولات التطبيع العربية مع هذا الكيان المؤقت، أو دمجه في المنطقة ككيان طبيعي ينتمي إلى جسم الإقليم. 

هذا الأمر تحديداً يُظهر موقف دمشق وطهران الدائم من التطبيع، ويضع حدّاً للتأويلات الجديدة والضعيفة التي برزت بعد زيارة الرئيس الأسد إلى الإمارات العربية المتحدة في آذار/مارس الماضي، وخصوصاً أنّ الرئيس الأسد أكّد في تصريح له خلال زيارته طهران أنّ مجريات الأحداث في المنطقة “أثبتت مجدّداً صواب الرؤى والنهج الذي سارت عليه سوريا وإيران منذ سنوات”، وخصوصاً في مواجهة الإرهاب والمشاريع الغربية للمنطقة. وغنيّ عن القول إنّ دمشق وطهران تصنّفان كيان الاحتلال قوّة إرهابية عالميّة مدمّرة، كما تصنّفان الجماعات الإرهابية المتطرفة أدوات لهذا الكيان وللغرب الراعي له.

من المفترض أن يكون كل تعويل خارجيّ أو إقليميّ على كسر حلف طهران – دمشق أو إضعافه قد سقط في هذه الزيارة، كذلك المراهنات على تداعيات الحصار الغربي لسوريا، والحديث عن محاولات عربيّة لإحداث خرقٍ من خلال الانفتاح على دمشق وتعويضها اقتصاديّاً وسياسيّاً، فالاستراتيجية الوطنية السورية تعمل على مسار آخر تماماً، بعيد كلّ البعد عن المقايضات السياسية والاقتصادية، وهي ترى أنّ أيّ انفتاح عربيّ أو دوليّ عليها فرضه صمودها وقتالها المرير على مدى 10 سنوات، وإلى جانبها الحليف والشريك الإيرانيّ، وباقي الحلفاء في محور المقاومة والعالم.

وقد كان تمتين الحلف الاستراتيجيّ بين البلدين وجميع قوى محور المقاومة الموضوعَ الرئيسيّ في هذا اللقاء، وجرى البحث في كلّ السبل الواجب اتّخاذها فوراً لتعزيز هذا الحلف، ولسدّ كلّ نقص اقتصاديّ على جبهاته الداخلية، فقد كان المسؤولون السوريون والإيرانيون يوقّعون اتفاقيات وتفاهمات اقتصادية جديدة، حين كان الرئيس الأسد يقول للمرشد الإيراني السيد علي خامئني والرئيس إبراهيم رئيسي: “إنّ ما يمنع الكيان الصهيونيّ من السيطرة على المنطقة هو العلاقات الاستراتيجية السورية الإيرانية”، وهو السياق الذي اتّبعه جميع المسؤولين في البلدين في تصريحاتهم أثناء الزيارة وبعدها.

ولعلّ قول وزير الخارجية الإيرانيّ السيد أمير عبد اللهيان بعد اللقاء إنّ “زيارة الرئيس الأسد فتحت مرحلة استراتيجيّة جديدة بين البلدين”، وحديثه عن “العزم الإيراني السوريّ على الرقيّ بالعلاقات الثنائية وصولاً إلى أفضل مستوى لائق”، يدلان بشكل واضح على النحو الذي ستجري فيه الأمور على هذا الصعيد في المرحلة القادمة. 

بعد زيارة الرئيس الأسد هذه لإيران، هناك زيارة لأمير قطر على رأس وفد رفيع إلى طهران، وذلك بعد وقت قصير من إعطاء واشنطن أمير قطر صفة “الحليف الاستراتيجيّ”، وفي هذا مؤشّر على أنّ طهران ودمشق استطاعتا وأد جميع الرهانات التي جرى العمل عليها طوال السنوات العشر الماضية، والتي كانت تهدف إلى إسقاطهما وهزيمتهما أو عزلهما تماماً على الأقلّ.

 ومن الواضح أنّ انتصارهما وتقدّم حليفيهما الروسيّ والصينيّ على الجبهات العسكرية والاقتصادية على مستوى العالم، يدفعان دول المنطقة إلى السّعي نحو تعزيز العلاقات معهما، باعتبارهما قوّتين لا يمكن تجاوزهما بعد الآن. 

أمّا استراتيجيّات دمشق وطهران المشتركة، فقد تجاوزت بأشواط بعيدة هوامش العلاقات والمكاسب والمصالح السياسية العادية بين الدول، وبلغت مرحلة العمل كقوّة واحدة مع الشركاء في قوى المقاومة في المنطقة، وها هي تلك الاستراتيجية تعمل بأقصى قوتها على أرض فلسطين المحتلة الآن، إذ تُكمل المقاومة الفلسطينية مهمّة رسم النظام الإقليميّ الجديد.

إن الآراء المذكورة في هذه المقالة لا تعبّر بالضرورة عن رأي الميادين وإنما تعبّر عن رأي صاحبها حصراً

Israeli media: Upcoming weeks pose huge challenge to Israeli army

30 Apr 2022

Source: Israeli media

By Al Mayadeen Net 

Israeli media comment on the speeches of Hezbollah Secretary-General and IRGC Commander on the occasion of International Al-Quds Day.

Israeli occupation soldiers

Israeli media underscored Friday that the upcoming weeks will pose a major challenge to the Israeli security and military establishment.

Arab affairs commentator on Israeli Channel 13, Hezi Simantov, said that Hezbollah Secretary-General Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah and Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Commander Major General Hossein Salami praised and encouraged Palestinian operations.

Simantov added that the two leaders called on more Palestinians to carry out operations in occupied Palestinian territories, knowing that it would be difficult to thwart them in advance.

The Israeli commentator pointed out that the Hamas movement will continue to activate one-man solo operations carried out by Palestinians in the occupied territories in the coming weeks, considering that this would be a major challenge to the Israeli occupation security and military establishment.

It is noteworthy that Sayyed Nasrallah underscored Friday in his speech on the occasion of the International Al-Quds Day that these operations exposed the fragility of the Israeli occupation’s security and the weakness of its security apparatus. He stressed that they also impacted the Israeli settlers’ trust in their government and army, which has vast tremendous repercussions.

In the same context, the Israeli newspaper “Israel” Hayom quoted an excerpt of Nasrallah’s speech, in which he said, “I found out that Iran informed normalizing countries that any aggression against Iran from these countries will be responded to, and this message has made it to [“Tel Aviv”]… Iran could strike Israel directly, and its preludes are becoming greater by the day.”

The newspaper indicated that in his statement, Nasrallah meant by the normalizing country the two Gulf states who signed the so-called “Abrahamic Accords”, namely the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain.

Remembering President Saleh Al-Sammad, 4 years after his assassination by US-backed Saudi airstrike

19 Apr 2022

Source: Al Mayadeen Net

Naseh Shaker 

On the 4th anniversary of his assassination, Al Mayadeen English interviews the secretary of President Saleh Al-Sammad about several topics including his memories with Al-Sammad. 

Q&A: Remembering President Saleh Al-Sammad, 4 years after his assassination by US-backed Saudi airstrike

Ahmed Al-Razehi, the secretary of Saleh Al-Sammad, former president of the Supreme Political Council, an executive body formed to rule Yemen, recalled Al-Sammad martyrdom with his six bodyguards on 19 April 2018 by a US-backed Saudi-led coalition airstrike. He said it was a “tragedy,” and since then, he has been devoting his life to publishing his memories with Al-Sammad on social media.

In an exclusive interview with Al Mayadeen English, Al-Razehi said he did not expect that the US-led coalition would target Al-Sammad in “this treacherous and cowardly way”.

An airstrike targeted the Al-Sammad convoy in Hodeidah after he delivered a speech at the local councils’ assembly along with the Hodeidah governor.

Late President Saleh Al-Sammad along with his secretary Ahmed Al-Razehi (left) during a popular event (Courtesy of Al-Razehi for Al Mayadeen English)

62 persons were accused of participating in the assassination of Al-Sammad according to the Specialized Criminal Court verdict. The primary figure accused of his assassination is US President Donald Trump, followed by Saudi Arabia, UAE leaders, and Yemeni military leaders of the Hadi Saudi-backed Government.

Al-Razehi talked about how Trump and other leaders of the Saudi coalition must be brought to justice. He sent his messages to the countries that were involved in the assassination of Al-Sammad, and mentioned the kind of relationship Al-Sammad wanted to establish with western and neighboring countries.

Here is  the full interview:

Q: First of all, tell us how did you survive the assassination of Saleh Al-Sammad and his bodyguards, and what was your reaction when heard the news about his assassination?

A: I wasn’t with President Saleh Al-Sammad during his last visit to Al-Hodeidah Governorate, during which he was targeted by the US-led coalition, and I wish I had been with him, to have the honor of martyrdom with an exceptional leader like President Al-Sammad, who made every effort to promote and defend Yemen and achieve the aspirations of the Yemeni people in liberation, independence, building a modern Yemeni state, and achieve victory for the oppressed Yemeni people.

The news of his martyrdom was a tragedy for me, and I did not expect that the US-led coalition forces would target him in this treacherous and cowardly way. For me, the news of his martyrdom was a target of the whole Yemeni state and an assassination of an entire country. His only concern was Yemen and building a state of institutions. He devoted his life to this goal. He was in the first ranks of the front lines to fight the Saudi aggression.

Despite my grief and sorrow, his assassination represented a source of pride for me, because President Al-Sammad offered his soul to this country as an exceptional leader. History has recorded his brave stance in its brightest pages, and the martyr President Al-Sammad will remain immortal in the hearts of generations inspired by his sacrifice and redemption.

Q: The first accused of the assassination of Al-Sammad is former US President Donald Trump… Why wasn’t the case brought to the International Court of Justice, as it is the judicial organ of the United Nations empowered to settle disputes between states?

A: The accused persons in Case No. 12 of 2019 are 62 persons, and the top person of interest is US President Donald Trump. The case took its own course in the national judiciary: the Criminal Appeals Division in Hodeidah Governorate convicted 16 defendants of the crime of assassination and were sentenced to death and to discretionary penalties, with all their properties confiscated.

Regarding the foreign defendants in the assassination of President Al-Sammad, including US President Trump, the first-instance verdict postponed the decision of panel proceedings against them and returned the case file to the Prosecutor’s Office for investigation.

Thus, there are two tracks in this heinous crime, the first is through the national judiciary, being the only competent body in this case, and the second track is the prosecution of the accused before the international judiciary. Some procedures are taking place in this aspect, by completing the file of this case and others tho prosecute the leaders of the aggressor countries and all those involved in committing war crimes against the Yemeni people, and all details will be revealed at the right time through the competent authorities.

Q: How can the leaders of the US-led coalition countries be prosecuted to punish the killers of Al-Sammad and his companions?

A: The judicial and concerned authorities have been collecting evidence to complete documents related to the crimes committed by the offenders and bring these judicial cases to national or international supreme courts  – in order to ensure that the leaders of these countries and all those involved in the assassination of President Al-Sammad and his companions will not enjoy impunity and remain unpunished.

The legal organizations and centers have been responding vigorously to the prosecution of  Presidents and military leaders in their countries. Therefore, there will be a day when they will be convicted for the grave crimes they committed against the Yemeni people.

Late President Saleh Al-Sammad with his secretary Ahmed Al-Razehi (right) (Courtesy of Al-Razehi for Al Mayadeen English).

Q: Why are Yemeni criminals fleeing from justice like Hadi and Al-Ahmer who are not yet arrested, seized, or their properties confiscated?

A: There are procedures carried out by the Yemeni judiciary as a judicial authority that operates independently and professionally in this aspect according to legal procedures, so the judiciary is taking its own course. 

There are also procedures taking place regarding the preventive detention of the property of the leaders of mercenaries and traitors affiliated with the US-Saudi-led aggression involved in committing war crimes against the Yemeni people and destroying their properties and capabilities. The offenders will not benefit from these leaders or prevent them from judicial or popular prosecution.

Q: Could you recall Al-Sammad’s discussions with the US and Britain, regarding the war on Yemen in light of his speech to The New York Times in 2015, in which he expressed the desire of Ansar Allah to establish normal relations with the US and KSA?

A: President Al-Sammad affirmed more than once Yemen’s openness to dialogue with various countries of the world, except the Zionist entity, and keenness to establish cooperative relations based on respect for Yemen’s sovereignty and independence and non-interference in its internal affairs, based on peer-to-peer and not subordination and dependency, taking into consideration the Arab and Islamic issues,  notably the Palestinian cause which is the central issue of the Ummah (nation).

President Al-Sammad also affirmed that Yemen is keen to enhance cooperation with its regional and international environment in a way that serves Yemen’s interest, security, and stability, and also achieves the security and stability of the region in the face of the challenges it faces.

Maybe this liberation trend didn’t attract his belligerents, and the countries of regional and international power felt threatened by this approach. They took this initiative as an attempt that would prevent them from exercising their hegemony over Yemen, and from plundering its resources, and violating its sovereign decision.

Q: What was Al-Sammad’s role that upset America and Britain and pushed them to take part in the cowardly assassination?

A: President Saleh Al-Sammad was an exceptional figure, the consensus of the national forces, and a unique leader in the history of Yemen, distinguished by his courageous stances, asceticism, and political acumen, stripped of all worldly ambitions and not even having a home for his family, except for his residency in Saada, which was also hit by the raids of aggression.

He led Yemen in a difficult period overwhelmed by the forces of evil and tyranny, and despite the challenges of aggression and siege, we witnessed during his presidency a lot of achievements, both at the level of the state institutions, laying the first rock of the modern Yemeni state through his national project, “A hand that protects and a hand that builds”.

President Al-Sammad’s liberation and renaissance approach, getting out of the mantle of dependency are precisely what disturbed the countries of aggression, led by America, Britain, and the international powers, which planned to target him. They thought they would succeed to eliminate his liberation project, but the result was the opposite.

Q: Finally, what message would you like to send to the international community on the fourth anniversary of President Al-Samad’s martyrdom?

A: The international community should be well aware that the assassination of the martyr President Al-Samad will not go unnoticed, and will remain a witness to its complicity in the crime.

The second message is that the assassination of President Al-Sammad will not weaken the will of the Yemeni people, but will rather increase their determination to continue steadfastness and persistence in the face of the forces of aggression and hegemony. This murder will be a strong motive for the leaderships in Yemen to follow his approach and pursue the building of a free and independent Yemen and to continue his project “A hand that protects and a hand that builds”. 

The third message is that President Al-Sammad will remain immortal in the conscience of the Yemeni people and inspire all the free people in the world in the face of arrogant forces to free themselves from political tutoring and dependence, and live with dignity and pride, whatever the challenges and difficulties could be.

And the fourth message on the [fourth] anniversary of the martyrdom of President Saleh Al-Sammad is that the Yemeni people will not forget this crime and its perpetrators will be punished sooner or later, as they are unbreakable people.

The opinions mentioned in this article do not necessarily reflect the opinion of Al mayadeen, but rather express the opinion of its writer exclusively.

Not Only Americans Milk Saudis, ‘Israelis’ Do Too

April 19, 2022 

By Staff | Haaretz

After the New York Times published a report that Saudi Arabia put $2 billion into Jared Kushner’s investment fund despite objections he was too inexperienced, the matter raised a big question for Etyan Avriel who asked: Does the deal have an ‘Israeli’ angle – and could former Mossad head Yossi Cohen be involved?

In an analysis entitled “Trump’s People Pocket Saudi Billions. What about Top ‘Israeli’ Officials?”, Avriel, the co-founder of TheMarker, the business newspaper of the Haaretz Group, tackled the ‘Israeli’ angle of the story. He uncovered that like Donald Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, in the ‘Israeli’ entity, too, politicians and senior officials receive payments for the “public service” they provide for tycoons.”

“We could fill an entire newspaper with examples, which raises the question of whether the Kushner deal has an ‘Israeli’ angle,” Avriel noted as he started to explain the following:

Kushner, who promoted ties between Saudi Arabia and the United States, is also the person most responsible for the Abraham Accords, the 2020 agreement between ‘Israel’ and the UAE and Bahrain. He obviously had ‘Israeli’ partners, including the former Mossad chief, Yossi Cohen, and the US ambassador to Tel Aviv at the time, David Friedman [this according to foreign reports].

The author then asks: Did they also get something like the generous investment received by Kushner from Bin Salman?

There may be no definitive answer to this question. But one could point to several facts that raise some questions. According to several media reports, Cohen, for example, had planned, to join former Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin’s fund. Instead, he was appointed head of the ‘Israeli’ operations of SoftBank’s $100 billion Vision venture capital fund.

The Saudi sovereign wealth fund is the anchor investor in the Vision fund, after putting at its disposal no less than $45 billion in 2017, with the UAE state investment company Mubadala providing a further $15 billion [SoftBank itself invested $28 billion].

In other words, the Vision Fund, which is funded almost exclusively by Saudi Arabia and the UAE, appointed to an important position that no doubt comes with a hefty salary and other perks Kushner’s partner in warming relations with the US and ‘Israel’, even though Cohen has no experience in business, high-tech or capital markets. Is this a coincidence?

There’s more. Last December, ‘Israeli’ Channel 12 television revealed that Cohen, while still chief of Mossad, helped his daughter Achinoam get a job as a director in a company controlled by Tahnoun bin Zayed, the UAE national security adviser, a counterpart to the head of Mossad in that country. One of bin Zayed’s companies has opened an office in Herzliya for the company employing Cohen’s daughter, but Cohen denies any improper ties. “I never turned to Sheikh Tahnoun on any topic connected to my daughter or her employment,” he claimed in comments to ‘Israeli’ Channel 12.

Other senior officials in the ‘Israeli’ Middle East diplomacy are linked to the same businesses. Friedman, for example, is a partner in the same Mnuchin’s fund that has received billions of dollars from the Saudis and Emiratis.

“Kushner, Mnuchin, Friedman and Cohen may have made ‘peace’ between ‘Israel’ and several Arab states, but they also leveraged the ‘peace’ into millions of dollars for each one of them personally, and in very short order,” the author concluded.

Deconstructing the Islamic Republic of Iran’s position regarding Russia-Ukraine Crisis

April 09, 2022

Source

by Mansoureh Tajik 

At the outset of Russia’s military operations in Ukraine, the Islamic Republic of Iran’s position and views were clearly spelled out by the Leader, Ayatullah Khamenei, and by the spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The crux of Iran’s stance is that the Islamic Republic of Iran does not condone foreign military advancements into any sovereign country by any power due to the fact that death of innocent civilians, destruction of critical civil infrastructures, regional instability, and unpredictable adverse outcomes become inevitable. At the same time, Iran considers the United States to be the main instigator and culprit of the crises in Ukraine. In an earlier article posted on the Saker blog (see here), I quoted Ayatullah Khamenei pointing to some of these concerns:

 “[United States of] America is a mafia regime and Ukraine, too, is a victim of this policy of crisis creation. [United States of] America brought Ukraine to this point by infiltrating into the internal affairs of that country, inciting uprisings against its governments by velvet movements or color revolutions, by presence of US senators in the gatherings of oppositional groups and by creating, toppling this government and replacing it with that government. Naturally, they led to this point. We, of course, are against wars and destruction anywhere. This is our fixed policy.”

This official and transparent stance is clearly devised with full awareness of geopolitical developments and events (both overt and covert) of the past few decades. It is quite evident that key decision makers in Iran neither condone Russia’s military advancement into Ukraine nor do they consider Ukraine to be a genuinely sovereign country free from foreign meddling and interventions.

In fact, we could imagine Ukraine to be just as independent as many other countries in Europe and Asia and the likes of United Arab Emirates, Saudi kingdom, Japan, South Korea, and more. These countries have allowed their respective lands to become stumping grounds for arrogant powers to set up shops to export crime and mischief to their neighbors and beyond. In the shortcomings of their rulers, people cannot be absolved of responsibility.

The Iranians have years of empirical evidence and first-hand field experience as proof that most of the above named countries and nations lack independent decision-making capacity. In private conversations, too, many of their [official] people make embarrassingly heart-felt confessions to our official people about their lack of core endoskeleton when it comes to reneging on their obligations to Iran due to incessant pressure from the United States.

It is not difficult to deduct, therefore, that officials in Iran consider Russia’s goals and concerns to be legitimate and well-founded. However, they also consider an all-out military advancement into Ukraine may not have been the most prudent and sagacious way to address Russia’s well-justified concerns.

So, what do they suggest? Exactly how long should Russia have waited to take any action serious enough not to fall on deaf ears? Should Russia have waited and fought the NATO-trained- Nazi-inspired foot soldiers of the West conduct operations in Moscow neighborhoods or are they suggesting an alternative? Did/does Russia have any alternatives? More significantly, how are all these convoluted aspects of Russian-Ukrainian crises teased apart in terms of the Islamic Republic of Iran’s foreign policy, its strategic partnership with Russia, Iran’s internal affairs, and the Resistance’s activities in the region?

In this essay, I hope to explore limited dimensions of some of these questions as well as discuss other contrasting views circulating in Iran about the subject. Hopefully, this exploration could illuminate Iran’s current position and possible future position.

Other Viewpoints about Russia-Ukraine Crises Circulating within Iran

Some alternative views that stand in stark contrast with the views expressed by our Leader, Ayatullah Khamenei, and the government officials here have been channeled through some well-known personalities such as Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, an ex-president of Iran. Mr. Ahmadinejad has been quite vocal about his views. In fact, Mr. Ahmadinejad issued an official statement in this regard addressing the government of Russia and the Russian people, the Ukrainian people, and Mr. Zelensky.

Ahmadinejad’s views obtained some currency in some circles but are regarded as fringe by a great majority of the public here. I think it would be useful to translate at least parts of his statements in order to have a more well-rounded understanding of various perspectives inside Iran.

In a videotaped statement he released about the events (see here), he declared (I transcribe and translate):

“Without a doubt, the attack and aggression by Russia against Ukraine is a critical event and an introduction to many more critical events that follow. Here, for the nth time and very frankly, I must severely condemn the attack and aggression of Russia against Ukraine. Before, I spoke about the plot to change the political map of the world by [the US] America, Russia, and China. These three countries, in a coordinated fashion, have devised a plan to secure their power and control over the world once again. That is, with this enormous wave of humans, of human awakening that has begun, they have become frightened. They say, very soon, this wave would surpass the world. They sat and made a decision that one would take Ukraine, the other one would take Taiwan, and this one would come for Iran. That means, they would remove their gravest worries and, at the same time, they dominate.

Now, if, in our mind, we review the world, if this happens, then there is no place for anyone to say anything. Today, and fortunately, the epic presence and the heroic resistance by the Ukrainian people have introduced serious obstacles in execution and completion of that plot. They hit a bump.”

I do not intent to translate the entire 13-minute statement. In the last couple of minutes of his script-reading speech, he finishes with the following pronouncements:

The Iranian nation holds in high esteem their [the Ukrainian people’s] participation and epic resistance and prays for their victory against the aggressors. The Iranian nation asks God to prevent the expansionist gluts from continuing and to end the war, and to make possible the sweet flow of life among all people, including two great people of Ukraine and Russia. At the end, once again, I hold in high regard the resistance of the nation of Ukraine, President Zelensky, and other officials in Ukraine. And I send to them the friendship and prayer of the Iranian nation.

I take refuge in God when He turns us into a lesson for others! Firstly, I wonder if Mr. Ahmadinejad realizes that he is reading an exact script written by major architects of the crises in Ukraine. Secondly, I am not too sure how many times he must be reminded that he is no longer the president of the Islamic Republic of Iran and he is not authorized to speak on behalf of this nation. Thirdly, his statement reflects an array of uninformed, non-critical, and non-strategic thinking in a matter that is rather convoluted, complex, and rather nuanced. It is unfair and unjust in what it deliberately omits.

In the entire 13-minute video statement, there is not a single reference to the events of the past few years in Ukraine (including 30 plus US-financed and operated biological weapons labs about which he wrote an official complaint to the UN and to which I referred in one of the essays I wrote last year about COVID in the Islamic Republic of Iran (See here). Neither is there any mention of the role the US-West, Inc. has played in destabilizing that country and using it as a lever against Russia and a launching pad for all sorts of mischief in the region.

I must open a parenthesis here and add that I do not find Ahmadinejad’s stance all that surprising. When Daesh/ISIS was advancing in Syria and was busy chopping heads right, left, and center, he came forcefully against Bashar Asad and the Syrian government. He fiercely objected to Iran’s involvement and help in that country and issued statements in that regard. I referenced some of these when discussing his disqualification in the Iranian presidential election in another essay published last year (See here). Had he been in charge of the Islamic Republic of Iran’s overall foreign policy, we have little doubt would have now been busy fighting ISIS or some other variants inside our own cities and neighborhoods. Close parenthesis. We thank God Almighty for His Blessings in the form of a wise Leader.

As I mentioned, the majority of the public in Iran do not share Ahmadinejad’s particular view. There are some though who would like him to join his brother in armchair, Mr. President Zelensky, in his fight in Ukraine. Perhaps after they have defeated Russia, they could have a live show discussing the following two videos on Ukrainian national television: Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Homosexuality versus Freedom Gay Fetish Dance with President Zelensky. Who knows, perhaps he could lead him to the Straight Path.

Again, I take refuge in God when He leaves us (due to our own arrogance and delusions of grandeur) to our own devices even for a nanosecond.

The Boundaries of Iran-Russia Relationship and Partnership

Successful collaboration and strategic coordination of operations between Iran and Russia in the battlefields of Syria, geopolitical and economic shifts in Asia and Eurasia, and perhaps a sense of comradery primarily due to the fact that both countries have been fierce targets for “crippling” sanctions by the US/West Inc. have all made the relationship between Iran and Russia to a phenomenon that is rather interesting and noteworthy. I discussed some contemporary and historical aspects of this relationship in another essay published last year (See here).

The Islamic Republic of Iran’s general framework for any foreign relation and partnership is firmly rooted in the jealously guarded Revolutionary motto of “Neither East, Nor West”, freedom, and full independence from any foreign pressure and interference. Its relationship with Russia, too, must be viewed, first and foremost, within that framework. So, what does this tell us about Iran’s policy and approach towards these particular crises?

Let us be rather frank and transparent and deal with the obvious first. Russian military’s advancement into Ukraine has suddenly resulted in some favorable outcomes for Iran and for some other countries friendly to Iran in the region. It has sent panic, disillusion about the US power, and insecurity to some other countries not so friendly to Iran.

Higher oil prices, halt in all sorts of restrictions on oil export, higher enthusiasm on the part of the US and Europe to reach an agreement with the Islamic Republic of Iran over JCPOA, which has been in coma and on life support for a while now, sudden visits by keepers of oil wells with flag masquerading as Arab nations to bury the hatchet and make nice with Iran have also been among the consequences.

Missile attacks by Yemen on Saudi Oil facilities had never produced any sort of meaningful change in the attitude of the aggressors (US-Saudi-Brits) before. With Russia’s retaliatory work and countermeasures, the last couple of missile attacks by Yemen, however, seem to have become highly effective since they occurred at the right time. Oh, our cup runneth over!

Why? Three important reasons: 1) The US-West Inc. cannot fight effectively in more than one meaningful front at a time; 2) The US and Western nations cannot weather the storms of high energy and oil-based products (which includes almost everything). So, it is attempting to temporarily put Iran and others in our region on the back burner; and 3) There are always always always limits to how much media magic shows can achieve. The US-West Inc. will realize this, as always, soon enough.

Regardless of Russia’s mode of dealing with Ukraine problem and current needs for the US-West, Inc. to keep oil prices low, I can state for a fact that the Islamic Republic of Iran will, God Willing, never sacrifice its long-term goals for any short-term superficial gains.

Iran’s two main priorities were and are the eviction of all US forces from our region in retaliation for the martyrdom of our great Sardar, Shahid Soleimani, and dismantling of the illegitimate Zionist regime to return the land of Palestine to its rightful owners, the true Palestinians (Muslim, Christians, Jews, Arabs, and non-Arabs). Her collaboration or deal with Russia or any other nation or group of nations with plus or minus designations in ANY activity, exchange, and operation, be they short-, medium-, or long-term, will be directly related to how such collaborations and activities bring her a step closer to achieving the Islamic Republic of Iran’s own main goals and priorities.

In this context, it is not too difficult to see how Russia’s potential concerns with the countries and regions to her south happen to be largely alleviated simply due to the fact that they may coincide with Iran’s independent priorities and activities, be they military, economic, and political, and her vigilance in achieving her stated goals.

When the United States, Inc. attacked Iraq and removed Saddam Hussein from power, most notable think tanks in the West claimed that the Islamic Republic of Iran emerged the biggest winner. With Russia attacking Ukraine, who knows what other oppressed nations could emerge as the winners. God works in mysterious ways.

Russia-Ukraine Crisis in a Larger Inter-continental Context

In an essay titled Afghanistan, Taliban, the Resistance, and the Region (see Here), I alluded to a method used by the US-West, Inc. on Iran, Russia, and China to dismantle stability and positive developments in our region. I wrote:

“Afghanistan is a major keystone species in this ecosystem. Disintegration of Afghanistan means the new “Silk Road” will first turn into a “Rough Road” and then into an “Abandoned Road” and ultimately destroys the concord among the main players in Asia. In addition, it can serve as a tool for the application of internal-external clamp-style customized and separate pressures on Iran, Russia, China, and other countries in the region.”

Clamp-style pressures include inciting unrest, instability and sedition within each country and using belligerent neighbors from without each country. For the Islamic Republic of Iran they did/do everything they can to drag Iran’s military into Afghanistan. There is not a day that goes by and we do not hear about the massacre of Shia in this mosque and that school, in this gathering and that outing. Then, there is the Republic of Azerbaijan to the north and the Iraqi Kurdistan to the west, the oil wells with flags to the south that have each turned themselves into US-West-Zionist regime’s concubines in some form or shape. Certainly, the Islamic Republic of Iran does not take any of these lying down but we have military operations that are loud and we have calculated military operations that are silent but deadly enough.

To pressure Russia, there is Ukraine + a handful of other has-been nations proudly flying rainbow flags pretending they count for anything. And finally for China there is Tao (Taiwan + AUKUS + Occupied territories of Japan and South Korea).

The goal is rather simple, as Connable & McNerney opined in their commentary titled “The Will to Fight and the Fate of Nations,”:

 “Overmatching Russian mass and equipment is one part of a more complex and important pathway to overmatching the Russians. It is worth repeating that Russians — and Chinese, Iranian, and North Korean soldiers, sailors, airmen, and political leaders — can be broken. The U.S. military simply does not devote enough attention to understanding how to break them, or at least erode their resolve, in order to make war less likely and to make our success in war more likely and less costly.”[1]

To have a good grasp of where the authors are coming from, I highly recommend two other documents published by RAND Corporation titled: “Will to Fight: Analyzing, Modeling, and Simulating the Will to Fight of Military Units,”[2] and “National Will to Fight: Why Some States Keep Fighting and Others Don’t,”[3] from which the authors’ commentary obtains its essence.

Russia’s military advancement into Ukraine seems to have provided the US-West Inc. with a field experiment necessary to assess their “Will to Fight Model” answering the following question: “What are the political, economic, and military variables that may strengthen or weaken national will to fight, and which are most important?” Or, put more succinctly and eloquently, they wish to confirm or refute their null hypothesis of “No relationship between ‘will to fight’ (at individual, unit, national, and leadership levels) and winning the game of chicken.”

Allow me just post an image of the WTF Model[4] I have referenced for those who may not search and study the documents:

I am quite curious to see how this conceptual model, its multiple constructs, and included variables fair in this test. However, given what we have been observing in the media, I very much like to suggest the following changes to the model (let’s suppose it is an iterative model) for the sake of accuracy and add another layer that is often omitted by gods of war:

Now, I think that looks much better and more accurate. With the new model, let’s see how things turn out. Meanwhile, War on the Rocks seems to believe “Ukraine shows how Taiwan needs more air defense,”[5] based on preliminary reports of fabricated data collected from the imagined field and reported through the beacon of honesty and accuracy, Tweeter. I do not know why but the article just flashed Miller’s Death of a Salesman play before my eyes. والسلام.

Refrences

[1] War on the Rocks, B. Cannable & M. McNerney (2018). “The will to fight and the fate of nations,” Accessed online at: https://warontherocks.com/2018/12/the-will-to-fight-and-the-fate-of-nations/

[2] RAND Arroyo Center (2019). “Will to Fight: Analyzing, Modeling, and Simulating the Will to Fight of Military Units,” by B. Connable, M.J. McNerney, et al., RR2341-A, 2019. Accessed online at: www.rand.org/t/RR2341.

[3] RAND Corporation (2019). “National Will to Fight: Why Some States Keep Fighting and Others Don’t,” by M. J. McNerney, Ben Connable, et al., RR-2477-A, 2019. Accessed online at: www.rand.org/t/RR2477.

[4] RAND Corporation Brief,(2019). “Will to Fight: Returning Human Fundamentals of War.” Accessed online at: www.rand.org/t/RB10040.

[5] War on the Rocks. “Ukraine Shows Why Taiwan Needs More Air Defense,” by H. Halem and E. Freymann, published on April 7, 2022. Accessed online at: https://warontherocks.com/2022/04/ukraine-shows-why-taiwan-needs-more-air-defense/

اليمن: السعوديّة تسلّم الأميركيّ السلطة

الأخبار السبت 9 نيسان 2022

ناصر قنديل

لم تستطع السعودية الذهاب الى الخيار الأمثل لوقف الحرب في اليمن عبر إعلان انتهاء عمليتها العسكرية التي بدأت قبل سبع سنوات ولم تنجح في تحقيق أيّ من أهدافها، بل زادت التعقيدات التي كانت عشية بدئها تعقيداً وتجذراً، فلم يكن يومها العمق السعودي تحت التهديد، ولا كان بمستطاع اليمن أن يفرض شراكته في أمن إمدادات الطاقة والملاحة في الخليج، ولا كانت مهابة السعودية كقوة إقليمية كبرى موضع تشكيك، وتعمق الجرح الموروث تاريخياً بين اليمنيين والسعوديين بصورة يصعب أن يعالجه الزمن، مع عشرات الآلاف من الشهداء ومئات آلاف الجرحى وملايين المهجرين والجياع، ولم يفد السعودية حشد حلف ضمّ الإمارات والسودان عملياً، وآخرين اسمياً، ولا الرعاية التسليحية واللوجستية والاستخبارية وأحياناً كثيرة العملياتيّة لأميركا وبريطانيا و”إسرائيل”.

وقف العدوان وفك الحصار كان شعار أنصار الله للبحث بأي حل سياسيّ، ورغم ذلك تجاوبوا مع الإعلان عن وقف الغارات من جهة والفتح الجزئي لمطار صنعاء وميناء الحديدة من جهة موازية، رغم عدم وضوحهما كإطار لفتح باب الحل السياسيّ، ولم تستطع السعوديّة الذهاب الى المطلوب مباشرة، رغم قراءة السعودية لتغير المشهدين الدولي والإقليمي، بصورة تجعل الاستمرار بالحرب مستحيلاً، وسبباً للمزيد من الخسائر، فلا الأميركي جاهز ولا هو حاضر أو قادر على تقديم المساندة في ظل همومه المتعاظمة، وصعود روسيا والصين لم يعد فرضية محتملة بل صار واقعاً غير قابل للإنكار، تبدو الحاجة لعدم استفزازه سياسة لا بد منها بمقدار من التوازن، والإسرائيلي في وضع لا يُحسَد عليه، وقد تبخر وهم الحديث عن (“إسرائيل” ليست عدواً بل حليف محتمل)، وتبخّرت صفقة القرن، وتبخّر التطبيع، و”إسرائيل” جحش أعرج وليست حصاناً يُسرَج عليه. و”إسرائيل” تحت ضربات الفلسطينيين تحتاج من يعينها، وليست في وضع يتيح لها تقديم العون، ومَن طبّع معها ومنحها امتيازات وموطأ قدم في بلاده، يستشعر بأنه جلب الدب الى كرمه، وفتح الباب لتهديد استقراره دون مقابل، وعلى الضفة المقابلة يبدو المحور الذي كانت الحرب أداة لتحجيم حضوره، وهو يتعاظم، والأميركي ينفتح على مفاوضات العودة إلى الاتفاق النووي مع إيران لبلوغ الاتفاق مجدداً، والأموال المجمّدة يفرج عنها تباعاً، والعودة للطلب على النفط الإيراني رغم العقوبات تضاهي ما كانت عليه قبلها، وما تمّ تدبيره في العراق أو ما خطّط له في لبنان يصطدم بالجدار. وفي فلسطين تنهض المقاومة بمعادلات ردع في قلب الأراضي المحتلة عام 48، ومعادلات اليمن الرادعة من جهة وصمود اليمنيّين في جغرافيا بلدهم من جهة موازية يجعلان الخروج من الحرب بأقل الخسائر خياراً وحيداً ممكناً.

ذهب السعوديّون الى خيار الباب الموارب، ففتحوا الباب لوقف النار والرفع الجزئيّ للحصار، واستداروا نحو تركيبة السلطة اليمنيّة، فأزاحوا “الشرعية” التي قالوا إنهم دخلوا الحرب لحمايتها، وسلموا رجل المخابرات الأميركية منذ عهد الرئيس علي عبد الله صالح مقاليد السلطة، وجمعوا حوله زعماء الميليشيات التي تقاتل معهم، بمن فيهم التشكيلات المنتمية إلى فكر تنظيم القاعدة وحزب الإخوان المسلمين، وأسموهم جميعاً مجلساً قيادياً مؤقتاً بصلاحيات رئاسية كاملة، وقالوا إن مهمة المجلس التوصل الى وقف للنار مع أنصار الله، وقال أركان المجلس الجديد إنهم يستعدّون للحرب والسلم معاً، لكن جوهر الخطوة السعوديّة في مكان آخر. فالرياض تقول لواشنطن، ها هي عدة الشغل في اليمن، وعلى رأسهم رجلكم فيه فتولوا أنتم القيادة، وخذوا القرارات التي تريدونها. فالسعودية لم تعد هي مرجعية الحرب، وتريد لوقف النار أن يمتدّ، لكنها غير قادرة على تقديم الأثمان التي يستدعيها ذلك.

المأزق هو نفسه سواء تسلّم الأميركي ام السعودي دفة القيادة العلنية. فالقرار بيد الأميركي بالأصل مهما كانت الواجهة، وأنصار الله لن ينشغلوا بالتفاصيل، بين الأصيل والوكيل، وبوصلتهم لن تتوه، فقضيتهم واضحة، سيادة كاملة ورفع كامل للحصار وانسحاب للقوات الأجنبية ينهي الاحتلال، طريق وحيد لفتح باب الحوار السياسي الداخلي حول تفاصيل إدارة شؤون الحكم والاحتكام في تكوين السلطة الجديدة إلى صناديق الاقتراع.

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فيديوات متعلقة

كيف ستعيد أميركا تشكيل العالم بعد أوكرانيا

 السبت 2 نيسان 2022

رأي أسعد أبو خليل

ملامح مرحلة جديدة في تكوين العالم وتوزيع القوى والقوّة فيه ترتسم بسرعة. الحكومة الأميركيّة في طور تأنيب الضمير (الإمبريالي) ومراجعة الذات (الحربيّة). هي غير راضية عن شكل الكوكب. كانت تظنّ أن انهيار الاتحاد السوفياتي سيضمن لها السيطرة على الكون لأجيال وأجيال. ما مِن إمبراطوريّة تظنّ أن سيطرتها يمكن أن تزول أو أن تضمحلّ. ضمان الاستمراريّة الأبديّة للسطوة الأميركية هي الشغل الشاغل لمخطّطي البنتاغون. كان واحد من أولى أعمال وزير الدفاع الأميركي الأسبق، دونالد رامسفيلد، تشكيل لجنة من الخبراء والمؤرّخين لاستخلاص دروس عن انهيار الإمبراطوريّات في التاريخ (أتى ببرنارد لويس، المستشرق الصهيوني، من أجل أن يشاركهم انطباعاته عن الخطر الإسلامي وعن دروس انهيار الإمبراطوريّات الإسلاميّة.). كل تقارير «استراتيجيّة الأمن القومي» التي تصدر عن كل إدارة جديدة تكون مهووسة بالأخطار المحتملة من جهات محدّدة، خصوصاً الصين. لم تكن أميركا تحسب حساباً للخطر الروسي. هي اليوم في مرحلة إعادة النظر. من المرجّح أن هناك إعادة تنظيم للميزانيّة العسكريّة والاستخباراتيّة لرصد ميزانيّة أكبر لمواجهة الخطر الروسي (الكونغرس زاد على رقم الميزانية التي طلبها منه بايدن). لا تزال أميركا تستخف بالقوّة الروسيّة مقارنة بخوفها من الخطر الصيني الداهم. القوة الاقتصاديّة هي أهم عناصر القوّة في الحسبان الأميركي لأنها هي التي تؤهل لميزانيّات عسكريّة ضخمة. ميزانيّة روسيا العسكريّة لا تصل إلا إلى 8 في المئة من الميزانيّة العسكريّة الأميركيّة العملاقة. اللحاق مسألة صعبة، والحصار الاقتصادي الخانق الذي باتت أميركا تتقنه لخنق الشعوب فعّال للغاية في إضعاف القوة العسكريّة. وحدهما إيران وكوبا، أوجدتا طرقاً ووسائل للخروج من الحصار الجائر بخسائر أقلّ (نسبيّاً، لكن الـ«إيكونومست» اعترفت قبل أسابيع أن اقتصاد إيران أفضل ممّا كان وممّا تريده له أميركا).

ميشال مورو غوميز ــ كوبا

أميركا غير راضية عمّا يجري في أوروبا اليوم. هي كانت واثقة أنها حاصرت روسيا وستمنعها من ممارسة أي نفوذ خارج حدودها. حتى في داخل حدودها، هي كانت ناشطة في التجسّس وفي الاختراق عبر منظمات المجتمع المدني ومن قبل الإعلام المُسمّى «جديد» و«مستقل» (ماذا لو أطلقنا على الإعلام المُموَّل من إيران وصف «المستقل» كما تطلق وسائل إعلام «جديدة» على نفسها وصف المستقلّة فقط لأنها تتلقّى التمويل من حكومات ومؤسّسات أوروبيّة رجعيّة، لكنها تجزم أن لا أجندة عند حكومات أوروبا لأنها منزّهة). وكان أي معارض روسي، ولو لم يحظَ بشعبيّة في بلاده، يتلقّى تغطية واسعة وبطوليّة في إعلام الغرب. وكل معارض روسي يمرض، يكون هدفاً لمؤامرة من بوتين. وقبل أسابيع نشرت صحف غربيّة خبراً عن مقتل صحافيّة روسيّة كانت قد انتقدت بوتين. هكذا كانت العناوين. لكن عندما تقرأ الخبر تدرك أن الموضوع هو عنف شخصي، وأن صديقها قتلها وأنه ليس من أسباب سياسيّة لما جرى. ولنتذكّر أن يحيى شمص (المتهم بصلات مخدراتيّة) تلقّى تغطية واسعة في إعلام الغرب فقط لأنه معارض لحزب الله. فلنتوقّف لبرهة عند هذه المفارقة: تلقّى يحيى شمص تغطية في إعلام الغرب أكبر بكثير من تغطية النائب محمد رعد، الذي نال أكبر عدد أصوات في آخر انتخابات. هذا يعطينا فكرة عن معايير وحسابات الغرب (أشكّ أن واحداً من المراسلين الغربيين، أو واحدة، التقت بمحمد رعد). أميركا قلقة من التحدّي الذي لاقته من بوتين في هذه الأزمة. لم تكن تتوقّع ذلك مع أنه كانت هناك مؤشرات على نقمة روسيّة-صينيّة من سلوك الغطرسة الأميركي والذي تجلّى في الغزو الغربي لليبيا.

الحكومة الأميركية غاضبة جداً وهذا يظهر في سلوكها. حظر الإعلام الروسي وإصدار تنبيهات تويتريّة عن روابط لإعلام معاد ــــــ مع دولة ليست أميركا في حالة عداء رسمي معها ــــــ يشي بحلول مرحلة جديدة في العلاقة الدوليّة وفي إدارة الوضع الداخلي. ما إن تحرّك الجيش الروسي حتى اضمحلّ الخلاف في الداخل الأميركي وأصبح اليسار الصغير في الكونغرس الأميركي متحمّساً للحرب، ويشارك القوى المتنفّذة في الحزبيْن في عنفوان الوطنيّة والإصرار على السيطرة الأميركية الكليّة. لم تعد مساحة النقاش في الغرب كما كانت حتى في سنوات الحرب الباردة. كانت هناك إمكانيّة مناقشة فرضيّات الإدارات الأميركيّة عن الاتحاد السوفياتي، لكن هذا غائب اليوم. تجول بين الصحافة الأوروبيّة والأميركيّة ولا تجد أي مساحة نقديّة. ليس هناك من رأي معارض أو مختلف. حتى الكتّاب الذين يعارضون ــــــ أو كانوا يعارضون ــــــ توجّهات إمبراطورية الحرب سكتوا، لا بل أسهموا من خلال كتاباتهم في المجهود الحربي (هالني مثلاً كتابات ميشيل غولدبيرغ، الكاتبة في «نيويورك تايمز»، والتي عرفتها بعد 11 أيلول وكانت في موقع «صالون» من القلّة المعترضين على التعامل الأميركي مع المسلمين).


ماذا ستفعل أميركا في خلال الأزمة وبعدها. على الأرجح أن الإدارات المتعاقبة ستلجأ إلى جملة من السياسات والأعمال بما فيها:

أولا- تدعيم حلف شمال الأطلسي وزيادة الإنفاق العسكري فيه. ألمانيا باشرت بزيادة الإنفاق العسكري وسيكون مطلوباً منها الأكثر. ألمانيا أعلنت على الفور زيادة إنفاقها العسكري بنسبة 112 مليار دولار، ممّا يزيد نسبة الإنفاق من مجمل الناتج القومي إلى 2 في المئة من 1.53 في المئة والتزمت ستّ دول في حلف شمال الأطلسي بزيادة الإنفاق العسكري بنسبة 133 مليار دولار. حتى السويد الحيادية المسالمة التزمت بالزيادة. وسويسرا ضربت بحياديّتها التاريخيّة عرض الحائط كي تمتثل للمطالب الأميركيّة بالإذعان والطاعة من قبل كل دول أوروبا، في «الناتو» وفي خارجه. ونسبة الـ 2 في المئة من الناتج القومي على الإنفاق العسكري كانت قد وصلته دول اليونان وكرواتيا وبريطانيا وإستونيا ولاتفيا وبولندا ولتوانيا ورومانيا وفرنسا ــــــ وهذه النسبة كانت قيادة «الناتو» قد طلبتها. أميركا كانت في مرحلة إعداد للمعركة المقبلة. وبدلاً من تخفيض عدد أعضاء الحلف، ستصرّ أميركا على زيادة الأعضاء وقد تصرّ في مرحلة لاحقة على ضمّ أوكرانيا إلى الحلف لاستفزاز روسيا واستدراجها إلى مواجهة عسكريّة. وليس مستغرباً لو أن أميركا أصرّت على حيازة ألمانيا على السلاح النووي (تحتفظ أميركا بسلاح نووي على الأرض الألمانيّة بالرغم من معارضة الشعب هناك لذلك في السبعينيّات والثمانينيّات). وعدد الأسلحة النوويّة الأميركيّة في أوروبا غير معروف (سرّي) وهو يُقدَّر بـ 100 منتشرة في ست دول على الأقلّ. وهذا السلاح نُشر منذ الخمسينيّات ولم يؤثّر انهيار الاتحاد السوفياتي على وضعه. أي أن أميركا تستعمله ليس فقط لتخويف الاتحاد السوفياتي بل لبسط سيطرة أميركيّة تامّة على القارّة.

ما إن تحرّك الجيش الروسي حتى اضمحلّ الخلاف في الداخل الأميركي وأصبح اليسار الصغير في الكونغرس الأميركي متحمّساً للحرب


ثانيا- التفكير الجدّي في إنزال السلاح النووي التكتيكي إلى الميدان. والسلاح النووي التكتيكي هو سلاح يقضي على أحياء في مدن بدلاً من تدمير مدينة بكاملها. و«نيويورك تايمز» نشرت قبل أيّام مقالة تحاول فيها جعل فكرة استعمال النووي التكتيكي مقبولة من العامة. وقد أدلى مسؤول استخبارات سابق في أميركا برأيه، وقال: «لا يمكنك إدارة الخدّ الأيسر كل الوقت». والحديث عن السلاح النووي التكتيكي سبق هذه الأزمة. ومن المعروف أن أميركا هدّدت نظام صدّام به. ففي اللقاء الشهير قبل الحرب في 1991 بين جيمس بابكر وطارق عزيز، هدّد جيمس بابكر، في تلميح كان أقرب إلى التصريح، بأن أميركا ستردّ بصورة فظيعة إذا أصاب جنودها سلاح كيماوي عراقي (لم يكن النظام العراقي يملك سلاحاً كيماوياً كما هو معروف). وأميركا كانت على وشك استعمال النووي التكتيكي في معارك تورا بورا في أفغانستان كي تهدم الجبال فوق رؤوس المختبئين فيها عندما أصيبت بالحنق من الفشل في العثور على حليفها السابق، أسامة بن لادن. طوّرت أميركا بعدها قنبلة الـ«مواب» وهي قنبلة ذات قدرات تدميريّة هائلة لا يفوق قدرتها إلا السلاح النووي. ولم تتوقّف أميركا عن رمي الـ«مواب» على أفغانستان ــــــ التي لم تعانِ، بنظر إعلام الغرب، وإعلام التمويل الغربي إلا بعد مغادرة جيش الاحتلال الأميركي لها.

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اليوم، أميركا في موقع صعب. كيف تقترب من الصين أكثر وهي تكنّ عداءً نحو الصين يفوق عداءها نحو روسيا؟ والعلاقة بين الصين وروسيا ممتازة

ثالثا- جعل حلف شمال الأطلسي حلفاً عالمياً. لقد رُفعت مرتبة قطر في التحالف مع أميركا. في الوقت الذي كان فيه حكام العرب ينتظرون الفرصة للقاء بايدن (الذي لا يزال يرفض مهاتفة محمد بن سلمان)، دعا بايدن الأمير القطري إلى لقاء خاص وحميم في البيت الأبيض، وتمّ الإعلان عن رفع مرتبة قطر إلى «حليف أساسي من خارج الناتو». واللقاء بين بايدن والحاكم القطري سبق الحرب على أوكرانيا وهو تضمّن حديثاً عن مدّ ألمانيا وأوروبا بالغاز القطري (يبدو أن أميركا كانت مستعدّة جيداً لهذه الأزمة، قبل أشهر من التدخّل العسكري الروسي). ولقد أخذت قطر مرتبتها الجديدة على محمل الجدّ وهي تحاول جاهدة الظهور بمظهر الدولة الغربيّة في عواطفها الجيّاشة نحو الشعب الأوكراني. لم يلقَ شعب فلسطين هذه العاطفة الجيّاشة من قطر من قبل. إعلام النظام القطري لم يكن في هذه الأزمة إلا اجتراراً لإعلام حلف شمال الأطلسي، وتتعامل «الجزيرة» وغيرها مع أوكرانيا أنها هي قلب العروبة النابض.

رابعا- إيلاء الحلفاء بين الأنظمة الاستبداديّة أهميّة أكبر وتولية مصالحهم في العلاقات. أسابيع فقط من الحرب الروسية على أوكرانيا وأميركا تصلح علاقاتها مع النظام السعودي والإماراتي. النظام القطري لا يحتاج إلى عناية خاصّة لأنه مطلق الطاعة والولاء ومرتبته التحالفيّة ارتفعت في نظر واشنطن. والنظام السعودي عبّر عن امتعاضه في حديث مع «وول ستريت جورنال» عن كثرة الإشادة الأميركيّة بالحليف القطري. لكن تحفّظ الحكومة السعودية والإماراتيّة، وحتى حكومة العدوّ، عن اعتناق موقف «الناتو» بالكامل (بالنسبة إلى روسيا) أزعج الحكومة الأميركيّة. لكن بدلاً من رفع العصا بوجه الحلفاء، عمدت واشنطن إلى إرضائهم وتكرار مواقف الدعم والتعهد بالدفاع عن أمن النظام. لم تعد أميركا تتحمّل رقصات توازن بينها وبين العدوّ الروسي. وأميركا هي اليوم في حالة عداء مطلقة ضد روسيا. والحلفاء من أمثال السعودية والإمارات سيحظون بالمزيد من الدعم الأميركي، السياسي والعسكري. سنسمع عن شحنات سلاح جديدة وعن قواعد أميركية جديدة وعن وفود وزيارات كثيرة. والحاكم السعودي الشاب بات في موقع تفاوضي حول صعوده إلى العرش، وحظوظ نيله الرعاية الأميركيّة لصعوده باتت شبه محسومة. الاهتمام بطغاة الخليج كان بادياً هذا الأسبوع، حيث حرص وزير الخارجية الأميركي، أنتوني بلينكن، على ترضية محمد بن زايد ومبعوثين سعوديّين. والأكاديمي الشاب، غريغوري برو، على حق عندما علّق قائلاً إن هذا الاهتمام من قبل إدارة بايدن بالأنظمة الاستبداديّة بالخليج ينسف نظريّة هنتنغتون من أساسها.

خامسا- حظر التسليح الروسي. هناك قانون أميركي من عام 2017 يُعرف بأحرفه الأولى، قانون «كاتسا» وهو يفرض عقوبات على الدول التي تدخل في عقود مع روسيا في مجال الدفاع والاستخبارات «بصورة كبيرة». أي إن القانون ضبابي وهو كان يفترض أن يعاقب تركيا والهند لاستيرادهم شبكة «أس 400». لكن مرتبة الحلفاء أدّت إلى التساهل كما أن علاقة تركيا بروسيا وبأوكرانيا أفادت أميركا لتمرير رسائل. لكن مساعي التفاوض التركيّة قد لا تكون مُحبّذة في واشنطن لأن أميركا تريد من هذه الحرب أن تستمرّ إلى ما لا نهاية لو أمكن من أجل استنفاد طاقات وموارد روسيا. وقد كتب ديفيد شينكر (عرّاب نخبة «ثوّار» لبنان) مع زميل له من «مؤسّسة واشنطن» مقالة في «وول ستريت جورنال» يدعوان فيها إلى التشدّد في العقوبات على الحلفاء الذين يستوردون السلاح من روسيا. لن تتساهل أميركا في هذا الخصوص بعد اليوم. أي إنه من المتوقّع أن تزيد المبيعات الأميركية من الأسلحة.

اليوم، أميركا في موقع صعب. كيف تقترب من الصين أكثر وهي تكنّ عداءً نحو الصين يفوق عداءها نحو روسيا؟ والعلاقة بين الصين وروسيا ممتازة

سادسا- التعامل مع مثلّث القوة في العالم. ريتشارد نيكسون نظر إلى توزيع القوى في العالم ورأى أن العالم المثلث الأقطاب يحتّم محاولة طرف فيه جذب طرف آخر له. هذا ما حفّزه على تجاوز موانعه العقائديّة من أجل أن يبيع تايوان ويغضّ النظر عن عدائه المرضي ضدّ الشيوعية لكسب الصين إلى صف أميركا. لم تصبح الصين حليفة لكن كل ما يحتاجه المُخطّط في العلاقات الدوليّة أن يكون طرفه أقرب إلى طرفٍ ثانٍ من الطرف الثالث في المثلّث. وهذا ما حصل وأضعف الموقع السوفياتي. كان وضع الاتحاد السوفياتي سيكون أفضل بكثير لو أنه اعتنى أكثر بإصلاح العلاقة مع الصين لتفويت الفرصة على التآمر الأميركي ضدّه. اليوم، أميركا في موقع صعب. كيف تقترب من الصين أكثر وهي تكنّ عداءً نحو الصين يفوق عداءها نحو روسيا؟ والعلاقة بين الصين وروسيا ممتازة وهي أوثق بعد أزمة أوكرانيا لأن الصين تحتاج إلى تعاون روسي من أجل اجتراح سبل تجاوز العقوبات الأميركية القاسية والوحشيّة (هي وحشيّة على الشعوب قبل أن تكون ضد الأنظمة). ومهما حاولت أميركا أن تُبعد الصين عن روسيا، فليس لديها ما تعطيه للصين غير تخفيف حدّة العداء الشديد. وتخفيف حدة العداء لا يغيّر من التخطيط الاستراتيجي الأميركي الذي يتعامل مع الصين على أنه الخطر الأكبر. أميركا كان لديها الكثير لتقدّمه للصين في عام 1970: عضويّة مجلس الأمن وطرد تايوان من الأمم المتحدة بالإضافة إلى إنشاء علاقة ديبلوماسيّة، بالإضافة إلى التعامل مع الصين على أنها دولة أكبر مما كانت في حينه. ماذا تستطيع أن تقدّم أميركا للصين اليوم؟ اعتبارها دولة عظمى وهي كذلك من دون مبالغة أميركية ديبلوماسيّة.

سابعا- جرّ روسيا إلى حروب إنهاك. هناك نظريّة أن الحرب الروسية في أوكرانيا لم تكن إلا فخّاً نصبته أميركا لها. وأميركا تحمّست كثيراً لهذه الحرب وكان واضحاً أنها كانت تعدّ لها. كانت القوّات الأميركيّة قد انتشرت في أنحاء مختلفة من أوروبا خصوصاً في بولندا، بالإضافة إلى تولّي أجهزة الاستخبارات الأميركيّة مهمّة تقرير أجندة الصحف الأميركيّة. فتحتُ ثلاث صحف من باب التجربة: «نيويورك تايمز» و«واشنطن بوست» و«غارديان» البريطانيّة. نفس الأخبار والعناوين موجودة في الصحف الثلاث، ومنسوبة كلّها لمصادر عسكريّة واستخباراتيّة أميركيّة. كانت الصحف البريطانيّة تتميّز عن الصحف الأميركيّة لكن ذلك تغيّر منذ الحرب في سوريا حين تطابقت التغطية بالكامل وأصبحت الـ«غارديان» أكثر تصلّباً في الصهيونيّة وفي تأييد آلة الحرب الأميركيّة من صحف أميركا. قد تصل أوكرانيا وروسيا إلى تسوية لكن أميركا ستعطّلها. طلع المبعوث الأوكراني إلى مفاوضات تركيا بين الطرفيْن بتصريحات متفائلة لكن وزير الخارجيّة الأميركي سرعان ما أبطل مفعول التفاؤل وخفّض منسوب الترحيب بشأن التقدّم في المفاوضات. أميركا تبحث عن حرب أفغانستان جديدة كي تغرق روسيا في حرب لا تنتهي إلا بانهيار الدولة. ليس هناك من تعداد للسلاح الذي هطل على أوكرانيا، لكن تذكّر أو تذكّري أن حتى السويد والنروج شاركت في الحرب الأوكرانيّة.

ثامنا- التركيز على دول العالم النامي في الاستراتيجيّة الأميركيّة لصنع تحالف عالمي ضد أعدائها. الصحف الغربيّة ضجّت بقوّة التحالف العالمي الذي تقوده أميركا (طبعاً تحت مسميّات الحريّة ــــــ وتحالف الحريّة هذا يضمّ مستبدّين من كل حدب وصوب)، لكن الوقائع في تصويت الجمعيّة العاميّة للأمم المتحدة أثبتت عكس ذلك. كانت أميركا تريد أن تحصل على إجماع كل دول العالم لكن تحالفها كان غربيّاً صرفاً. دول كبرى في العالم النامي حاولت الحفاظ على مسافة من موقف أميركا. الهند وجنوب أفريقيا والصين وباكستان كلّها تحافظ على علاقة وديّة مع روسيا. ستضطرّ أميركا إلى إنفاق المزيد من المال وشحن المزيد من السلاح وشنّ المزيد من الحروب لجلب المزيد من دول العالم النامي إليها. لقد فضحت هذه الحرب الطابع العنصري الصارخ للتحالف الغربي ومعاييره. لم يعد ممكناً ستر طبيعة سيادة العنصريّة البيضاء في صلب التحالف الغربي. لا يمحي ذلك الترحيب بمسؤول من هذه الدولة الآسيويّة أو نشر خطاب وزير الخارجية الكيني الذي هو في الأساس أداة بيد الإدارة الأميركيّة. (واختفى وزير الخارجية الكيني عن الساحة بعد خطابه في الأمم المتحدة، والذي أرادته البروباغندا الأميركيّة أن يصبح شهيراً لأنها استعملته بصورة عنصريّة كي تُكسي عدوانيّتها بلسان فرد أفريقي).

تاسعا- الحرب الدعائيّة ستستعر أكثر من أي وقت. رأينا ذلك على مرّ الأسابيع الماضية. «واشنطن بوست» (وهي أكثر مطبوعة ملتصقة بأجهزة الاستخبارات الأميركيّة) دعت جهاراً إلى تكرار تجربة الحرب الباردة في شنّ «حرب ثقافيّة» ضد روسيا وغيرها من أعداء أميركا. لكن الصحيفة نسيت أن الحرب الثقافية الماضية تضمّنت نشر عقيدة بن لادن وصحبه حول العالم لأن تلك العقدية كانت مؤاتية ضد الشيوعيّة.

نحن في مرحلة قلقة ومضطربة من العلاقات الدوليّة. صحف الغرب (وتوابعه في بلادنا) مشغولة بالتدخّل العسكري الروسي في أوكرانيا. لكن التدخّل الأميركي في أوكرانيا لا يقلّ عن تدخّل روسيا. هل من شكّ أن ضبّاطاً أميركيّين يقودون كل العمليات العسكريّة الأوكرانيّة؟ هل من شك أن هناك شركات علاقات عامّة تكتب خطب القادة الأوكرانيّين (لقد علمنا رسميّاً أن شركة علاقات عامّة استأجرتها حكومة بايدن كي تكتب خطب سفيرة أوكرانيا في أميركا). أميركا لن تتوقّف، هي ستستمرّ لأنها في طور الانتقام من تحدّي روسيا لها. والانتقام الأميركي، كما رأينا بعد 11 أيلول، أبشع بكثير من عوائد القبائل العربيّة القديمة.

* كاتب عربي ــــ حسابه على تويتر
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UAE cements its economic ties with Israeli Apartheid

5 Apr 2022

Source: Al Mayadeen Net

Marion Kawas 

This betrayal of the Palestinian people by the UAE despotic leaders will never be forgotten.

UAE Cements its Economic Ties with Israeli Apartheid

The United Arab Emirates has completed negotiations on a bilateral comprehensive free trade agreement with “Israel”. On April 1, 2022, the Emirati trade minister sat down in a hotel in occupied Al-Quds to sign off on the first full trade agreement with any Arab country. The negotiations themselves were apparently fast-tracked, and will further accelerate the reported $900 million trade between the two countries in 2021. The UAE is reportedly the second-largest economy in the Arab world and this new deal will cover 95% of “food products, agriculture, cosmetics, medical equipment, drugs and more” of goods currently traded with “Israel”.

The agreement, coming on the heels of the so-called “Negev Summit” (Summit of Shame) held last week, shows the expanding parameters of the economic and political cooperation between the Arab despot regimes and the Zionist state. 

So free trade now with the Emirates for illegal Israeli settlement wine and food products? While activists in Western countries are out on the streets campaigning hard to have such products removed from store shelves, here is an Arab country rushing to confer privileged trade status to these poison fruits of an aggressive and brutal military occupation.

In fact, one of the early economic deals after the signing of the Abraham Accords was between Israeli settler companies that produce wine, tahini, olive oil, and honey and the Dubai distribution company FAM Holdings. And prior to that, bottles from the Golan Heights Winery, in illegally occupied and annexed Syrian territory, were already on store shelves in Dubai.

In the last two weeks, Canadian activists have intensified their push to have Israeli apartheid wines de-shelved in publicly owned liquor stores, especially after multiple provincial governments in Canada rushed within days to remove Russian liquor products. In Vancouver and Victoria B.C., lively pickets and leafletting have taken place and a letter-writing campaign to the BC government has garnered over 1200 signatures to date; the campaign has some notable endorsers, including Roger Waters, former and current Vancouver city councilors, and local artists and professors amongst others.

Will this new free trade agreement cover cyber technology and other military defense products? Like what the newly created Elbit Systems Emirates is set up to offer? They were recently awarded a $53 million contract to supply technology to the UAE Air Force. 

It was reported on April 3, 2022, that the Emirati sovereign wealth fund, Mubadala Capital, was a major investor in the Israeli NGO group which produced the now-discredited Pegasus spyware. Mubadala is chaired by none other than Abu Dhabi’s crown prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahyan. In January of this year, Mubadala also reportedly invested $100 million in six different Israeli venture-capital firms.

The role of the UAE as an economic regional power, and even a global one in some areas, should not be underplayed. From Dubai Ports World which punished workers in Canada for supporting a #BlocktheBoat picket, to these Israeli defense subsidiaries being opened in the Emirates, to the combined punch of the five leading Emirati sovereign wealth funds that amounts to a staggering $1.4 trillion in aggregate assets: all these factors explain why “Israel” signed this “historic” free trade agreement with the Emirates.

While children in Yemen are starving to death, and UNRWA remains chronically under-funded, and the exorbitant cost of living in Lebanon impoverishes even more people, the obscene wealth controlled by these Emirati regimes is being used to help strengthen the economy and stability of the Zionist state. That wealth is strengthening a state that is beating and terrorizing Palestinians right now in Al-Quds, a state that is extra-judicially assassinating Palestinians in their towns and villages, a state that denies medical treatment to babies resulting in their untimely deaths, and a state that exists on apartheid and supremacism for its survival. This betrayal of the Palestinian people by the UAE despotic leaders will never be forgotten!

The opinions mentioned in this article do not necessarily reflect the opinion of Al mayadeen, but rather express the opinion of its writer exclusively.

Yemen & Ukraine: A tale of two wars

1 April 2022

Source: Al Mayadeen Net

Fra Hughes 

The media tries to make us believe that black is white, that the aggressors are the victims, and the oppressed are the villains.

Yemen & Ukraine: Compare and contrast a tale of two wars

Two very distinct and separate wars are concurrently happening in West Asia and Eastern Europe.

Both wars have their origins in people fighting to free themselves from a corrupt government.

The Yemini people rose in a popular revolution against a corrupt regime that acted in the interests of regional and international power blocks and not in the interests of its people.

The people of Ukraine found themselves the victim of a regime change operation in 2014 resulting in a coup that forced the democratically elected leader Viktor Fedorovych Yanukovych to flee for his life as a fascist junta was installed.

While the people of Yemen fought for independence and free sovereignty, the people of Ukraine were facing a government led by neo-Nazis, Russophobic ultra-nationalists who were determined to destroy one-third of the population who are Russian-speaking Ukrainians. The specter of the Great Patriotic war loomed over the people as echoes and ghosts from 1941 returned to haunt the people who had defeated fascism in Ukraine and liberated the country from the Nazi occupation.

So we have a tale of two wars.

When the people led the revolution of Yemen threatened the Saudi favored government, the incumbent President Abdrabbuh Mansur Hadi fled to Riyad and with the help of mercenaries, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, planes armed with American and British bombs directed and controlled by “Israel”i American and British military advisers, Hadi continued his war against the Yemeni people to regain power.

Yemen armed forces and the popular mobilization units of the Ansurallah resistance movement have resisted all the efforts to date by Hadi, Saudi Arabia, the Emirates, America, and the West to reinstall his puppet regime.

In Ukraine, we had a popular resistance to a foreign installed coup when the people of Donbas and Crimea fought for autonomy and the universal basic human right to live free from an unelected undemocratic fascist government hell-bent on destroying their culture and ethnicity and even their very lives of those who dared to resist.

Two separate conflicts both with similar origins and one common enemy 

In Yemen, the people fought a corrupt foreign-backed government. In Ukraine, the people fought against a foreign installed government. 

America backed the unpopular and elected unopposed President of Yemen.

America also backed financed directed and controlled the coup in Ukraine.

In the geopolitical machinations of American foreign policy, they effectively created both wars;

The war on Yemen presently occurring has the backing of the Biden administration as they help reinforce the illegal inhuman siege of the country while they also arm and direct the aerial bombing campaign which destroys Yemeni lives, infrastructure, hospitals, schools, roads and bridges. They also prevent food, aid medicine and fuel from being delivered, to alleviate the worst excesses of the war which they control.

It is a proxy war on Iran led by America Saudi Arabia the EU Britain and “Israel”. Every death has been and continues to be avoidable, if only the political will existed to hold a ceasefire and end the violence.

But the alliance of the unholy does not want peace, because war sells.

It sells weapons and it sells shares.

The military-industrial complex which finances and supports the American political system is making vast profits.

Profits that help bolster election campaigns and private bank accounts.

In Ukraine, after the people of Donbas and Crimea secured their freedom, a continued low-level conflict was encouraged to keep the drums of war beating,

Kiev refused to implement the Minsk Agreements of 2014 and 2015 which recognized the Republic of Donetsk and Lugansk and was the basis of a bilateral ceasefire that was constantly broken by Ukrainian shelling along the contact line killing thousand and injuring many more over the last 8 years.

Biden was the Vice President in 2014 when the coup was installed in Kiev.

Since his return to power as President, he has supplied the Ukrainian fascist forces with modern state-of-the-art armaments and encouraged Zelensky to saber rattle for war with Russia.

Biden has used Ukraine in a proxy war with Russia.

Putin and the elected government of Russia supported by Belarus and Georgia among others of the Russian Federation sent the army into Ukraine to prevent a potential massacre of the people of Donbas and Crimea as 120,000 Ukrainian battle-ready troops prepared to invade.

We have millions of displaced Ukrainians. We have thousands dead and wounded and a prospect of a long war between a resupplied Ukrainian army in the west of Ukraine and the now liberated areas of east Ukraine under Russian protection.

In Yemen, we have hundreds of thousands dead and injured. Millions of refugees and up to 25 million people face famine, death through starvation 

It is reported a Yemeni child dies every ten minutes from this sanction-induced man-made famine.

America Britain NATO and increasingly “Israel” are involved in both conflicts.

Western imperialism and American unipolar hegemony are increasingly leading to war conflict death displacement and starvation on a global scale.

While the poorest Arab country defends its sovereignty against a coalition of some of the richest countries on the planet, Yemen with its increasingly sophisticated drone and ballistic missile capacity equips its military with the expertise to target anywhere in Saudi Arabia the Emirates and even further afield, it is only a matter of time before Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates realized that their war which has already failed, may very well lead to the destruction of the Saudi and Emirati economies.

In Ukraine, the fallout from the Russian invasion has already led to fuel price hikes in America and Europe with more economic hardships to be suffered not by the rich elite who are fueling these wars but by the people already struggling under neoliberal austerity measures so much favored by the IMF and the privatization sector in western governmental structures that reinvents itself with each new administration.

While Yemen’s lives count for nothing in West Asia and Ukrainian refugees fleeing to Russia are invisible, we witness the propaganda machine, which brooks no dissent, savagely attacks Russia as the aggressor and promotes western Ukrainians as the victims.

While Yemen is portrayed as the aggressor and Saudi Arabia as the victim much like the Palestinians are terrorists and the “Israel” is are just a peace-loving nation that desires only to live without fear.  

The media tries to make us believe that black is white, that the aggressors are the victims, and the oppressed are the villains.

These may be two conflicts but it has one origin.

American foreign policy has no regard for morality, humanity, dignity or life, it is directed by the corporate desire to control the world markets, create division and profit, in equal measure, destroy any dissent and control the sovereign resources of other nations.

They used to do it by military occupation directly as they did in Iraq, Vietnam, and Ireland but now its proxy wars using unilateral coercive measures, financial sanctions, proxy wars and regime change black operations through the CIA and NGOs.

We must all stand with Yemen, Donbas and Crimea, Palestine and Cuba, Venezuela and Iran, Lebanon and Syria, North Korea and Nicaragua, indeed everywhere that stands against imperialism and for a multipolar world.

The destruction of the global south which sees the wealth of those nations flow to the Northern hemisphere must stop.

We are living in an ever-changing world.

I pray for the death of imperialism and the triumph of socialism in a multi-polar global economy where wealth and resources are shared for the benefit of the people, for all mankind, and not the elite.

Eat the rich, end the wars, support the resistance. 

The opinions mentioned in this article do not necessarily reflect the opinion of Al mayadeen, but rather express the opinion of its writer exclusively.

Sitrep: Operation Z

March 31, 2022

Source

By Nightvision

Let’s start with the largest and most impactful news today:

-Another emergency helicopter evacuation in Mariupol has been shotdown, ironically as claimed by DPR – with a requisitioned American Stinger missile. Remember I said those missiles are junk against Russian craft outfitted with advanced DIRCM (Vitebsk L-370 and Rychag AVM) but Ukr craft are not so fortunate.

There is various rumor out there and it’s too early for much of it to be confirmed but here’s some tidbits I can report:

-There was 3 helicopters previously shotdown in the past days, apparently whoever they were trying to evacuate is of extreme importance as they’re desperately sacrificing many choppers and crews for this.

-Today there are reports there were not one but 2 shot down, and 2 actually got away. Some say there were 4 total choppers that came for the evac at night flying extremely low to evade radars coming in over Berdyansk and then onto the Azov Sea. Maybe those Stingers in DPR hands weren’t so effective.

-Now this is very speculative rumor but Gleb Bazov reports the following claims:

“Sources indicate that, at #Azovstal, a group totaling 20—of #US (#American) & #UK (#British) military advisors of #Azov defenders, as well as several UK #SBU (#Ukraine|ian secrete police) advisors—is holed up, together with Azov fighters. They were too late to evacuate.

Sources indicate that, at #Azovstal, a group totaling 20—of #US (#American) & #UK (#British) military advisors of #Azov defenders, as well as several UK #SBU (#Ukraine|ian secrete police) advisors—is holed up, together with Azov fighters. They were too late to evacuate.”

-Take this with a large grain of salt BUT, if true then it would clearly explain the extremely disproportionate and desperate efforts to evacuate these surrounded VIP targets in Azovstal factory. Why else would Ukr command risk the downing of so many helis and crews which were lost in their attempt to exfiltrate these high value personnel?

There were at least 13 dead that we know of so far and at least 2 survivors. One of them is already being interviewed and giving up information, in fact he appears to be the source of the info about the other escaped choppers and how many there were total, etc. Here’s one of the survivors being interviewed: 

https://www.bitchute.com/video/htJxqyUZynZR/

Another of the survivors is said to be a high value Ukrainian GUR Military Intel officer pictured here: 

https://i.postimg.cc/mDt65GqJ/5343993649547033149.jpg

Here is a video of the aftermath, warning – many gruesome scenes are shown at the crash site.

I’m sure in the coming hours there will be a lot of important information extracted from them. But ultimately, these desperate last ditch operations are an obvious sign that Azov in Mariupol has collapsed and the rats are fleeing the sinking ship.

-In other news, South Ossetia has now joined DPR / LPR in announcing they will hold a referendum to join the Russian Federation proper. Ossetians immediately took to the streets in celebration:

1. The referendum will be held separately from the presidential elections, which are scheduled for April 10.
2. Consultations are already underway on legal and practical issues of organizing a referendum on joining Russia.
3. The State Duma declares that the dates for the referendum are May-June. Legislation allows South Ossetia to become part of Russia, if it expresses such a desire.
4. After the reunification of South Ossetia with Russia, South Ossetia wants to unite with North Ossetia so that all Ossetians can live in one subject of the Russian Federation.

It appears Russia is really consolidating its territories. We’ve already announced that LPR / DPR will be holding referendums once the hostilities are ended, in order to join the RF. Now earlier today Ukrainian Intelligence released a statement that Russia is “planning to hold an independence referendum in Kherson”. This could be propaganda from their side, but if not then it can be an inkling into Russia’s plans, and a confirmation of theories that Russia may intend to take not just LPR / DPR but the large swath of land stretching towards Odessa as well. Kherson is one of the regions where Russia is already setting up administrative infrastructure including Russian broadcasting, Ruble payments, etc.

This brings me to another important topic: Operation Z has clearly ruptured the world order and has precipitated tectonic shifts which are happening both as direct and indirect result of Russia’s actions. The unipolar globalist world order is now finally and truly crumbling and in its place, ushering in what China/Russia has now called the ‘Fair World Order’.

1. Syria’s Assad recently visited and was welcomed in the UAE, which was his first visit to an Arab country since the onset of the Syrian war in 2011. The rapprochement ended with the Crown Prince of UAE calling for all foreign powers illegally occupying Syria to leave and many bilateral trade/economic deals were discussed.

2. Saudi Arabia has just cried uncle and finally “sued for peace” to end the Yemen war after the Houthis bombed the Aramco terminal in Jeddah and humiliated the KSA on the eve of their large F1 race spectacle. https://english.alarabiya.net/News/gulf/2021/03/23/Full-text-of-Saudi-Arabia-s-new-peace-initiative-to-end-Yemen-war

3. India and China, the world’s 1st and 3rd most powerful economies by GDP PPP (a particularly relevant metric in light of what we’re talking about) are exploring increasingly major avenues of settlement mechanisms in native currencies. https://www.rt.com/business/552993-russia-india-swift-alternative-trade/

A tectonic reorganization of the world order is happening before our very eyes, and experts increasingly signal the coming death of not only the dollar, but the western financial system.

Now onto some developments on the ground. There aren’t a lot to speak of due to the fact that Russia is currently conducting its major reorganization and repositioning of troops in preparation for the beginning of Phase 2, as we all now know. Phase 2 will likely begin with the capture of Mariupol which now appears more eminent than ever, given today’s news of desperate, last ditch helicopter escape attempts.

In general, around Kiev and Kherson, Russia has dug in defensively. In Izyum and the north Mariupol/Donbass line, Russia continues to fight. The largest gains in the past 24 hours have been Russia seizing towns such as Zolota Nyva just east of Velyka Novosilka, which is an important Ukrainian command center in that region. It will likely be the first and biggest target to liberate once Phase 2 begins. For now it seems RF forces will continue surrounding it.

-A few comments on the operation in general. Many people continue to question the efficacy of Russia’s planning and general strategy. Here are a few reminders. From the horse’s mouth itself:

The advisor to Zelensky, Arestovych today has released a statement saying that, “Russia has practically destroyed our entire defense industry, and are now finishing it off.”

https://www.rt.com/russia/553061-ukraine-defense-industry-russia/

Here’s General Macgregor’s statement from earlier:

“Retired US Army Colonel McGregor:
✔️ I think in a few weeks people will know that the losses of the Ukrainian forces are very high, much more than anyone admits. I think there will be a different view on Russian operations.”

Here is one Russian analyst from Telegram whose view I mostly agree with. His description of the Operation Z so far:

“Let go of panic.
1. There is virtually no offensive near Kiev, Chernigov and Sumy. They hoped that they would take it with a light cavalry attack, as in 2014. But it didn’t work out.
2. The grouping needs to be rotated and increased. These are additional reserves.
3. The 2014 plan didn’t work. At the first stage, those territories that managed to occupy were lucky. Now just fight by all the rules. And this means combined arms combat and leveled with the ground, otherwise nothing. Attacking in all directions is unrealistic.
4. The first step is to finish off the grouping in the Donbass. Under it, it is realistic to collect another 15-20 thousand reserves and things will go more fun. Then Zaporozhye, Nikolaev and Odessa. It will not be possible to increase the grouping in all directions.
5. You can’t get through to Nikolaev from the south. There is the Southern Bug River Delta, there is no room for maneuver. You need to approach from Zaporozhye and Kryvyi Rih. Otherwise, the distances there are such that the enemy keeps under fire control a narrow supply line from Kherson itself.
6. Near Nikolaev and Odessa, a powerful enemy grouping is sitting, the second largest after the Donbass. Plus, units of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and the territorial defense from Kherson departed there. As a result, the light units of the landing force brush aside the second largest grouping there. And they successfully brush aside, no one can poke their nose at Kherson.
7. The grouping near Nikolaev is aggressive, it is impossible to leave it in the rear. There are no resources to simultaneously finish off the grouping in the Donbass and in Nikolaev, and even go to Kyiv. Therefore, we focus on the south direction.

This is not a drain, this is a revision of doctrine. Nobody is going anywhere.”

-So, the important takeaways. What he says is, Russia HOPED that they could accomplish another takeover like the 2014 Crimea scenario ‘without firing a shot’ by doing what he calls a ‘light cavalry attack’ on the major capital cities like Kiev and Kharkov. This is in reference to the Russian light VDV & Spetnaz assault which moved swiftly on those cities in the opening, with mostly BMD and Tigr vehicles and without much heavy support.

In short, this was a calculated gambit by Russia, but it in no way invalidates the greater overall plan, which still would have required those multiple fronts to be established for the reasons we’re now all familiar with (which I spoke about in the last update) of maneuver warfare and pinning strategies.

Think about it, if you have a chance to possibly end the entire war in a day or two in a fast lightning attack to symbolically capture key cities and possibly the country’s leadership, wouldn’t you take it? But as Andrei Martynov explained once, how military planning works is you never bank on just one strategy. There are many “envelopes” as he described in his video, and you take the first plan, if it doesn’t work, you open up the next envelope for the 2nd contingency, etc. So, of course naturally Russia would take the chance to see if it can quickly bring an end without much bloodshed, why wouldn’t it? But don’t think in a million years, Russia would ever have completely banked on such a low probability success, and in fact had full ‘main’ and much more reliable battle plans to fall back on if the gambit didn’t work out.

Now here are the reasons for why Russia would have had to open all those multiple fronts anyway, and why attacking in many directions at once was not just some foolhardy plan that “didn’t work”. In fact it succeeded in most of its important operational objectives as I will outline below.

Russia absolutely had to secure some of the key targets of potential false flags by the Kiev regime. This meant securing places like the Chernobyl plant, Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant, possibly the Kharkov nuclear institute, various important dams and infrastructural objects which, if detonated, could create mass civilian casualty false flags that would be blamed on the Russians, and of course the infamous Biolabs.

-Chernobyl was a must, because its name alone brings a haunted specter to most of Europe and the world, and Ukraine script writers would have loved (and attempted to) use it for a big false flag scenario. So this absolutely required Russian forces to enter from the northern axis to secure this.

-Zaporizhzhia. What most don’t know is this plant is not  only the #1 largest Nuclear plant in all of Europe, but in top 10 in the world, with only some Asian plants ahead of it.

So clearly such a high value target had to be secured as it had the potential for an unprecedented false flag (and we almost came to that if you recall) and various nuclear blackmail attempts from the Kiev regime. So this provides full validation for Russia’s axis from the south towards Zaporizhzhia.

In the same region as you know, Russia had to unblock the dam stifling all water to Crimea. And of course then there are the biolabs, which Russia had to capture in a timely manner not only to prevent them being used to stage false flags, but to prevent the U.S. intel exfiltration of important and incriminating documents which Russia luckily got in time from some of them. Seeing as how there are many biolabs in multiple directions, this alone justified Russian advances towards certain disparate fronts in the opening in order to capture these very significant targets.

So in short, there are extremely clear reasons for why Russia didn’t follow a simple-minded strategy some people seemed to think would have been ‘more conducive to winning the conflict quickly’ such as the idea of sending all troops only to the Donbass and clearing the cauldron first, while leaving the rest of the country to finish later. This idea is very shortsighted for the above reasons as there was a whole array of critical objectives Russia had to achieve simultaneously.

People not well versed in military matters tend to think in a very binary fashion, where something is either black or white. That’s not how things work. Operational objectives are conceived in a fashion where one action can achieve as many collateral objectives as possible for the sake of efficiency; in short: killing multiple birds with one stone. So as I’ve outlined, as an example, when Russia had to establish an offensive from the north to secure Chernobyl, and then to also pin down forces in Kiev nearby so that they could not relieve the groupings in the East, the other multifaceted objective would have also called to ‘attempt’ to seize Kiev with a quick lightning strike just to see if it was possible to end the war early with as little bloodshed as possible. Unfortunately, Ukrainians and 5th/6th columnist seemed to have misread this chancy gambit as some sort of major ‘Russian failure’ as if Russia’s sole and only objective was to take Kiev and now it has failed. No, as I have outlined above, it was a minor tertiary sub-objective as part of a much broader and more important operational battle plan which was fully successfully achieved.

Lastly, I wanted to repeat some of my calculations I’ve made in thread comments.

The other part of the collective west’s failure in correctly estimating Russia’s successes thus far has stemmed from what appears to be an incorrect calculation of Russia’s force disposition in Ukraine. You see, early on in the operation, the Pentagon made some statements about Russia utilizing 150-200k troops and “100% of all its allocated troops” and everyone, including most of us in the resistance sphere, just ran with those numbers and assumed them as base standards. But in reality, those numbers are highly questionable and there is no proof whatsoever that Russia has committed that many forces, nor has Russian MOD ever officially declared any amounts.

However, what we can glean is the following:

Russia is listed as having ~280k official troops in its ground army. However this is counting both kontraktniki and conscripts. The ratio I could find in RF armed forces is about 62% to 38% so that would leave about 173k of those as contract regulars which can be used in Ukraine (remember, Putin has prohibited conscript use)

There are an additional 45k VDV and ~15k Spetnaz and also Naval Infantry (Marines) of about 12k. The conscript percentages are much lower in them, so let’s just say there’s roughly 50k+ total usable troops from this group. Then there’s National Guard (Rosgvardia) which appears to have a massive 350k+.

My thought has been that Russia has so far not used anywhere near the ‘claimed’ 150-200k. It could be as little as 80-100k or less. But let’s just say even if they have used 150-180k, then according to my estimates, Russia could still have at the least (173k + 50k = 223k subtracted from the current estimates of troops in theater) 50-70k troops available still to inject, and much more if my own hunch is correct that Russia is using no where near the amounts the Pentagon claims (of course it conveniently fits Pentagon’s narrative to pretend Russia has exhausted all of its forces, etc). And this is not counting the National Guard simply because I’m not certain of the parameters of its use, though clearly we’ve seen many Rosgvardia troops in Ukraine. But this could add another huge amount.

So in short, I believe once Mariupol is fully captured, we could see the additional injection of tens of thousands of troops at the minimum, to finish off the Donbass cauldron. And recent reports from the frontline, written by a soldier in Izyum state that the “feeling in the air” is that a major Donbass battle / operation will begin soon, and it will go much faster than before. If Russia does inject these huge reserves and goes all out for Donbass, then we could see the cauldron collapse very quickly.

As for Mariupol, clearly it’s close to the end. Satellite photos today indicate rapid advances towards the absolute southern ends near the water.

And by the way, Putin’s approval rating in Russia continues to skyrocket. I reported a while back that prior to the operation it was in the 60% range (still much higher than any western leader like Biden (sub 40%), Macron and Johnson (both in the 20-30%). As the operation started, Putin’s rating went to 70, then to 80. Now the newest Levada center polls show a massive 83%, the highest approval rating of any world leader.

And as for the Ruble, it has regained 100% of all its losses: https://www.zerohedge.com/markets/ruble-regains-100-its-loss-after-russia-invaded-ukraine-why

And in fact on many index it is now LOWER than before the conflict. Some index had it at 83 to 1 dollar on February 22, and it is now showing as 79-81 on many indexes to the great chagrin of the west.

In fact in the biggest face slapping irony, the Ruble is now being hailed in financial circles as the greatest performing currency in the world for the month of March.

Lastly, the RF forces continue taking lots of Ukr prisoners all over:

While the Chechens and RF / DPR forces continue pounding the Azov Nazis all over:

https://www.bitchute.com/embed/f4lzCW7z15Ie/?feature=oembed#?secret=fZZFPrQzZ0

Kiev, meanwhile, can only mine roads and kill civilians as usual:

https://www.bitchute.com/embed/mE3VCWXRGiTK/?feature=oembed#?secret=6dwMe5govg

موسكو تقترب من إعلان النصر وواشنطن تتقهقر الى النقب…!

 الأربعاء 30 آذار 2022

محمد صادق الحسيني

تتسارع الخطى باتجاه إنجاز المهمة الروسية الخاصة في مسرح العمليات في أوكرانيا، بعد نجاح العملية استراتيجياً منذ عبور أول دبابة روسية الحدود باتجاه الدونباس او حوض الدون.

ومن يتابع بدقة كياسة موقف الرئيس الروسي وهو يلاعب مخلب الأطلسيين المراوغ المدعو أردوغان، الذي لم يتغيّر ولن يتغيّر في لعب دور الخادم الإقليمي الأمين لمصالح الأميركان وباعتباره حارس مرمى الناتو الجنوبي، يستطيع القطع بأنّ التخطيط للعملية كان محكماً.

 منذ الأيام الأولى للعملية العسكرية وهو مكلف بدور «الوساطة» بين ما تبقى من سلطات كييف لدى مالكها الأطلسي وبين موسكو التي تتقدّم بخطى ثابتة لإنجاز المهمة حسب الخطة المرسومة.

ولأنّ الأميركي المهزوم على كلّ البوابات المقاومة وعلى أسوار عواصمنا، يتوقع تسارع حركة النهضة الفلسطينية العربية على مشارف شهر رمضان المبارك، وما المؤشرات الخطيرة التي ظهرت من بئر السبع والخضيرة لعمليات نوعية فريدة من نوعها ولم يتبناها أحد إلا «مقبّلات» رمضان وما بعده كما يقول الراسخون في العلم، ولأنّ مفاوضات فيينا جوبهت بالصلابة الإيرانية المتوقعة، ولأنّ اقتحام أسد الشام عرينهم في لحظة ارتباك أميركي صهيوني شديد، فإنّ إدارة بايدن المضطربة والفاقدة للبوصلة والتي عمل اتجاه الرياح العالمية على غير إرادتها، فإنها باتت مضطرة للاعتراف قريباً بالهزيمة في أوكرانيا، من أجل الانتقال الى نسخة صيدلانية جديدة لها في كلّ من فلسطين وآسيا الوسطى والقوقاز.

لذلك هرولت الى فلسطين وهي تنسحب من أوكرانيا متقهقرة، محاولة الظهور بمظهر المنتصر لصالح اليهودي المرتعد خوفاً هذه المرة من الضفة المتراكمة غضباً ومن أراض الـ ٤٨ المتزايدة ثورة، بالإضافة الى غزة بسيفها المسلول، ولبنان المدجّج بالأسلحة الدقيقة والكاسرة للتوازن، فكان أن أشهرت مشروعها المزعوم والذي ستروّج له كثيراً:

«ناتو عربي ضدّ إيران»، وإظهاره وكأنه لحماية الأمن القومي العربي من الاجتياح الإيراني، خاصة إذا ما اضطرت للرضوخ لمطالب طهران بالتوقيع على اتفاق فيينا متجدّد…

فيما هي تقصد «تدافُع المهزومين أمام المقاومة الصاعدة»،

وما اختيارها لبئر السبع مكاناً للمتهالكين، إلا دلالة على ما نقول.

في هذه الأثناء، ولأنها تخاف سقوط العرش الأردني ومديرية رام الله الفلسطينية، بسبب خِسة اليهود وأطماعهم التي لا تجد لها حدوداً، فإنها مضطرة أيضاً لإعادة شدّ العصب في هاتين القوتين من النظام العربي الرسمي المتهافت خوفاً من ثورة قومية عربية تتدافع شرارتها من الداخل الفلسطيني ومن كلّ من سورية والعراق مع مظلة إيرانية دافعة للتغيير في حال قيام الثورة العربية على غرار ما حصل بعد العام ١٩٦٧ في عمّان يوم تجمّعت عوامل النهضة العربية وتبلورت معركة الكرامة الشهيرة .

 من جهة أخرى وهي تقاتل قتالاً تراجعياً وتنسحب القهقرى من أوكرانيا، ستحاول أيضاً تفجير آسيا الوسطى والقوقاز من جديد، موكلة الأمر لحارسها الأمين أردوغان ليتولى إثارة الاضطرابات في كلّ من اذربيجان التي بدأت تخاف واشنطن من قيادته التي بدأت تميل لموسكو ولطهران رويداً رويداً، ومن ثم في اوزباكستان وقرغيزستان وتركمانستان وسائر دول المنطقة على شاكلة ما فعلته في كازاخستان من قبل، في محاولة لخلق «نواتاة» ثورات ملوّنة جديدة، تعويضاً عن فشلها السابق هناك، وتشغيلاً لذراعها الجنوبي الطوراني المترنح في أنقرة لعلّ ذلك يضبط دقات ساعته على توقيت تل أبيب أكثر فأكثر.

من هنا يمكن تلخيص الموقف العام لما يجري من تداعيات هزيمة الأطلسي في أوكرانيا، بأنّ أولى ارتداداته ستكون في منطقتنا بنضوج أجواء انتفاضة فلسطينية، وتحوّل عربي قومي لصالح قوى الممانعة والمقاومة والتغيير، وتلاحم هاتين القضيتين بقصة التحوّل الكبير التي ترتعد منه الرياض وتتجنّب تحمّل أكلافه واشنطن لوحدها، ألا وهو الانتصار اليمني الكبير، وهو ما يمكن ان يشكل بمثابة الضربة القاصمة لاستراتيجية واشنطن في القتال بالوكالة، ايّ خسارة الكيانين السعودي والإماراتي ومعهما في الطريق طغمة المنامة، وهي خسارة ستكون هذه المرة أقوى من خسارتها لألوية جيوشها المسماة بداعش والنصرة في بلاد الشام والرافدين .

من الآن الى ذلك الحين، دعونا نتابع بصمات بوتين في صناعة العالم الجديد من خاصرة روسيا الصغرى أو ما بات يُعرف حديثاً بأوكرانيا!

بعدنا طيبين قولوا الله…

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Mercenaries in Yemen: Nationalities, numbers & horrors

March 29 2022

Source: Al Mayadeen Net

By Mona Issa 

American. French. Sudanese. German. Colombian. Yemeni. Eritrean. You name it.

Mercenaries in Yemen are a significant factor in what prolonged the war.

It’s the twenty-first century. Corporates have armies. With as little as a few ID papers and almost no governmental regulation, you can take up state-of-the-art arms and be sent to a war that’s not your war, not your battle, and kill people whose names you can barely pronounce. The trade offer? You receive some $10,000 a week. That’s $40,000 a month. That’s more than 30x the American minimum wage for some honest work. You need not read some Veronica Roth, because we’re already living in a dystopian novel. 

Let’s address the word “mercenaries.” In the very far away bureaucratic world of secret operations where sharp terms are smoothed down (recalling comedian George Carlin’s usage of post-traumatic stress disorder as a euphemism for shell-shock!), “mercenaries” is a taboo word. Instead, they’re called special forces to drive people away from the clandestine, underground nature of foreign soldier recruitment. An ancient ‘job’ dormant since the Middle Ages, the United States revived the mercenary industry with Bush’s War on Terror, and continued the venture into the UAE and Saudi-led war on Yemen, and now in Ukraine

Putting Saudi Arabia aside for now – UAE is the perfect orbit state for Washington. With a population of only 1 million with a total of 9 million expatriates, Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan does not want to risk it all for a wealthy population that can barely manage a home without housemaids – the UAE is largely operated by foreigners rather than locals. So how was the UAE going to fight this war? An army operated by foreigners – namely US lieutenants and colonels and allies.

But why mercenaries? One reason is numbers. There was no way MBZ was going to send soldiers from his local population of 1 million to war. A foreign population, however, is cost-effective, could be bought in abundance, and will guarantee to prolong the war – especially if major terrorists like ISIS are on the ground.

Another reason is accountability. Because mercenaries operate outside the scope of direct military command – or, at least that’s what we know – Abu Dhabi benefits from zero accountability. Mercenaries can kill, maim and commit other war crimes with no investigation from a legitimate governmental body. They’re bought and sold like a commodity, where corporates, on the long run, can transform into superpowers like states in the new world.

A third reason would be, as an ex-Navy SEAL – Erik Prince – once said: Muslim soldiers could not be counted on to kill fellow Muslims. Sending Muslim soldiers, Emirati or Saudi, to kill Yemenis will bear a conflict of interest. 

Read more: 7 years of aggression on Yemen, victims surpass 46,000

The Yemeni armed forces and the Popular Committees in Yemen can testify to witnessing American, Australian, Sudanese, Colombian, Eritrean, and even Yemeni mercenaries, working for Gulf and US interests in Yemen. Some were recruited out of ignorance and poverty, others were recruited out of coercion and deception, and many bear arms for major cash.

Kingfish

Erik Prince is a former US Navy SEAL who was behind the revival of the private security industry. 

He also calls himself ‘Kingfish.’ 

Notoriously known for Blackwater and his involvement in the Iraq War, he established another private military company called Reflex Responses – or R2 – after he sold Blackwater to investors as an escape from controversy. The UAE secretly hired both companies, Blackwater and R2, to go to Yemen. 

See more: Blackwater founder to charge $6,500 per seat on Afghanistan evacuation plane

Blackwater, which has massacred scores of Iraqis and is despised in Iraq more than the US soldiers themselves, has taken pride in employing Colombians and other Latin American military personnel, from soldiers to commanders. 

But, why did MBZ’s private army, a project originally launched by Blackwater, consist mostly of Colombians? 

As Professor of Strategy at the National Defense University Sean McFate put it, think of the private military industry as the t-shirt industry. In America, it costs 20$ to make, but in Bangladesh, it costs 1$ to make.

Colombian mercenaries are not only cheap, but they are also trained by Washington and are more violent and rigorous than others given they are hardened by guerrilla warfare in Latin America. 

The UAE hired 1,800 Colombians on the ground and tripled and quadrupled their salaries. 

“They’re pretty tough warriors in my experience,” McFate said. “They obey chain of command, and they have American training.

“When you take them out of Latin America and put them in the Middle East, they have no sort of political affiliation to any Middle Eastern action or country, so they’re just truly loyal to their paymaster. So they got a lot of Latin American ex-special soldiers in Abu Dhabi. Then, as the Emirates went to war with Saudi Arabia in Yemen, that’s when the Emirates deployed these mercenaries into Yemen to kill Houthis. And they did. And now we have mercenary warfare in Yemen almost like it’s the Middle Ages again.”

Under the guise of construction workers, Colombian mercenaries became part of an American mercenary army, led by Erik Prince, who scored a $529 million budget from the UAE to create a monster. 

“That is to me a pretty crazy part of the evolution of the mercenary business model that was taken from Erik Prince developing it in the US then exporting it to Abu Dhabi – then, all of the sudden, there are Colombians dying in Yemen. It’s hard to track,” said McFate. 

Spear: A Delaware-based firm with an Israeli touch

“Give me your best man and I’ll beat him. Anyone,” said Abraham Golan, the Israeli-Hungarian owner of Spear Operations Group that has also operated in Yemen to commit targeted assassinations. 

Golan was able to convince, over spaghetti and maybe some wine, the security advisor to MBZ that hiring his security company would be more effective than his own army – and, it worked. 

On December 29, 2015, a group of mercenaries from the Delaware-based military firm planted a bomb in the Islah political party headquarters in Aden, Yemen. Escorted by UAE military vehicles front and back, one of Golan’s mercenaries, Isaac Gilmore (also an ex-Navy SEAL and Delta Force veteran), jumps from the vehicle, fires bullets at civilians around the block, as his comrade rushes to plant the explosive device just under the building. With an Emirati soldier behind the wheel, the SUV zooms off as soon as the deed is done. 

Assassination targets handed out to Spears Group Operations’ mercenaries who were sent to operate in Yemen. (BuzzFeed News)

The group that Golan and Gilmore pieced together was a 12-man army, mostly consisting of former French legion officers and ex-US soldiers. The French officers were paid half of what Golan intended to pay – around $10,000 a month – which was even less than half of their American counterparts, a testimony to the commodification of military personnel and ‘market’ value. 

The assassination plot to kill Anssaf Ali Mayo, a leader of the conservative Islah party in Yemen, was plotted out over spaghetti at a UAE military base with MBZ’s security advisor and ex-Fatah member, Mohammed Dahlan. 

Dahlan fell from grace when he was accused of collaborating with the CIA and “Israel” – and that’s exactly what he did as he sat with Gilmore and Golan. The MBZ security advisor has his hands in a lot of political mess.

Read more: “Israel’s” piggyback on the Saudi-Emirati war on Yemen

A report by Al-Khaleej Online in 2018 exposes Dahlan’s complicity in holding secret training camps in occupied Palestine. 

The secret training camps, which held hundreds of Nepalese and Colombian mercenaries, were situated in the Naqab desert in occupied Palestine, where the geological nature of the region looks synonymous with that of Yemen.

Dahlan personally supervised the training and made regular visits and check-ups.

“Mohammed Dahlan visited these camps on more than one occasion to be informed,” sources revealed to Al-Khaleej Online. Dahlan was filled in on the progress of the preparations, in addition to the mercenaries’ training.

And by the way, the Aden operation failed. 

The price of Washington lip service? The blood of young Sudanese men 

There were two ways through which young Sudanese – even minors under 18 – got recruited to Yemen. By force and deception, and by Omar Al Bashir’s thirst for power. 

Estimates and reports suggest that up to 15,000 Sudanese mercenaries were fighting in Yemen. 

By force and deception: Many Sudanese became victims of forced conscription into becoming mercenaries for a private US firm, Black Shield Security Services. 

Responding to online job posts as “security guards,” the UAE-based company would trick the job applicants into signing the contract, only to the surprise of the young men that, all of the sudden, they’re redirected to a military training camp in the UAE to be sent off to either Libya or Yemen. They were offered ‘large’ sums of money, more than they can ever get in an average job in their country which has been experiencing an ongoing political crisis. 

The contracts signed by young Sudanese men, which had an e-Visa to enter the UAE from Khartoum attached to it, had “profession: Security Guard” written on them. 

Up to 15,000 Sudanese mercenaries were reportedly deployed in Yemen, who, according to the current Sudanese Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok, were reduced to 5,000. Many of them were children.

Official recruitment is also the culprit. Omar Al Bashir, Sudan’s old ruler, whose throne was strangled by sanctions and international pressures, sold his pro-Iran alliance for financial help from the Gulf – which meant sending thousands of Sudanese men and children to kill in Yemen. 

To go through with the recruitment, a private company – Rapid Support Forces – or the Janjaweed, a die-hard Bashir-backing militia, scored major bags with Saudi and Emirati officials. Both groups face allegations of systematic rape, indiscriminate murder and other war crimes from the Darfur war in which 300,000 people were killed. 

Arriving by the thousands from Sudan to Saudi Arabia, the Sudanese mercenaries were handed US-made weapons and uniforms. Then, they were taken to Al-Hudaydah, Taiz and Aden. Paid in Saudi riyals, 14-year-old amateurs were paid some $480 a month, while experienced officers from the Janjaweed were paid $530 a month – both cheaper than any other mercenary, including Colombians.  

The RSF profited $350 million from its role in Yemen. 

Ahmed, who was 25-years-old at the time when he was sent to Al-Hudaydah, commented on this experience: “The Saudis would give us a phone call and then pull back.

“They treat the Sudanese like their firewood,” he told the New York Times.

Other than Sudan, the UAE and Saudi Arabia have also been paying Eritrea to provide troops and assistance. In 2015, the UN Monitoring Group on Somalia and Eritrea revealed that Riyadh and Abu Dhabi signed a deal with Eritrea which allowed the coalition to use Eritrean military bases to attack Yemen. Chad isn’t left from the equation either: RSF mercenaries include hundreds of Chadian men, whose alignment lies with Bashir, hence maintaining an interest to keep him in power. 

There are also some 1,000 Pakistani mercenaries fighting in Yemen, despite a majority no-vote in Islamabad’s parliament. 

Yemenis fighting Yemenis 

As poverty, war and uncertainty brought millions of Yemenis to prolonged angst, many contemplated turning their back on their own kind. 

For around $1,200 a month, Yemenis were compelled to join the Al-Fateh brigade, a mercenary-militia based in Najran, Saudi Arabia, which was formed in 2016. The brigade is an all-Yemeni mercenary hub.

The Saudis recruited over 1,000 mercenaries to the Saudi-Yemen border to defend it.

In a report by the Middle East Eye, one mercenary that goes by the name Anees narrates that some thousand Yemenis were forced to advance towards Jabara valley in Saada province, Yemen, knowing that the valley is under control of the Yemeni armed forces, and that they were positioned just behind them in Najran. 

The leaders of Al-Fateh forced the mercenaries to move forward, assuring that Salafi fighters would follow and protect them.

He narrates, “Suddenly, the Houthis started to attack us from the mountains. We tried to withdraw but there were no Salafi fighters backing us up and only the Houthis besieging us from all directions.”

The Yemenis were besieged for four days, abandoned by both the Saudis and the Salafis. 

“We were about to die from hunger. We had run out of food. The Saudis and the Salafis did not break the siege on us, so we fought and pushed towards Najran and only few were escaped including me,” Anees said.

Bundeswehr

Last year, former German soldiers and police officers lodged in an offering to Saudi Arabia to form a group of mercenaries – or, according to German prosecutors, a terrorist organisation – to be sent to Yemen.

Two Bundeswehr soldiers were charged with terrorism by state prosecutors for conspiring to recruit 150 men and former soldiers from the Bundeswehr armed forces. The mercenaries were to be paid $46,400 a month to conduct operations in the Arabian peninsula.

The goal of the mercenary force to be formed was to capture land held by the Yemeni Armed Forces – however, it does not stop there. The mercenary force was also to be sent to other protracted conflicts around the world, with the two convicted terrorists in full conscious awareness that the fighters will have to commit murder and kill civilians to achieve strategic goals. 

The future

If the Saudi and Emirati armies were to fight and bleed, the war would not have lasted long with a population of 30 million willing to resist barefoot. Mercenaries played a significant role in the war on Yemen by sustaining the violence on the ground, continuously causing grief. 

Many experts would say that the future of warfare is private. The effectiveness of state armies is diminishing, while private firms have proven to get more tasks done – however bloody and sinister. 

As corporations overshadow governmental authority, warlords and investors will be more keen on keeping ‘security firms’ going in so-called “conflict zones in the Middle East,” where the flow of weapons and the funding for violence come from Western neoliberal democracies. 

While the use of mercenaries was dishonorable in recent times, the West has been promoting its use. As the foreign fighters are used to carry out targeted assassinations and other forms of murder, states and governmental bodies take in less and less responsibility and accountability for the humanitarian disaster that comes with the recruitment. 

A UN Mercenary Convention in 2001 forbids the recruitment of mercenaries in conflict: Only 36 countries supported the convention. Some of the countries that did not ratify it are the United States, the United Kingdom, China, France, India, Japan and Russia. 

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Palestinians Condemn ‘Summit of Shame’ Held in Israel

March 28, 2022

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken joined a meeting in the Naqab region, along with foreign ministers from Israel, Bahrain, Egypt, Morocco and the UAE. (Photo: via Blinken Twitter page)

The High Follow-up Committee of the National Islamic Factions condemned on Sunday the “normalization summit” that brought the foreign ministers of Israel and Arab states together in the Naqab, the Middle East Monitor reported.

Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid, Sameh Shoukry of Egypt, Sheikh Abdullah Bin Zayed of the UAE, Abdullatif Al-Zayani of Bahrain and Nasser Bourita of Morocco were joined at the meeting by US Secretary of State Antony Blinken.

Speaking at a press conference in the Gaza Strip, the Palestinian political groups described the summit as “the summit of shame in the occupied Naqab” and a “stab in the back” of the Palestinian people, who have been enduring “savage” Israeli attacks for more than seven decades.

The “summit of shame,” they added, was Israeli “exploitation” of the Arab states and their resources under the pretext of protection and forging a common security alliance.

“The real threat to the Arab people is the Zionist occupation,” Palestinian groups insisted. The summit, they said, was aimed at marketing the formation of an Arab-Zionist alliance as an extension to NATO.

The Palestinian factions concluded that the security, military and economic deals between Israel and the Arab states “will collapse due to the continuous Palestinian insistence on their rights and legitimate resistance against the Israeli occupation.”

(MEMO, PC, Social Media)

Ziad Al-Nakhalah to Al-Ahed: Iran Is Paying the Price for Supporting Palestine

Nov 28 2022

By Mustapha Awada

“Oh, people of our Arab and Islamic nation everywhere, our people in Palestine will continue their valiant uprising and revolution despite hunger, torment, and siege. They will continue defending the nation’s last wall and waging the battle of the nation, the whole nation, in defense of its faith and its land, in defense of its freedom, uprising, and independence. So, do not abandon them, and let us all rise together instead of being killed one by one.”

These are the immortal words of the founder of the Islamic Jihad Movement Dr. Fathi Shaqaqi. These words are still applicable in the second millennium amid the ongoing struggle by the Palestinian people and the development of their resistance designed to bring out the demise of the “Israeli” occupation on all Palestinian soil.

As Land Day approaches and two months before the anniversary of the al-Quds Sword Battle, the Secretary General of the Islamic Jihad Ziad al-Nakhalah sat down with al-Ahed News. The comprehensive interview covers a range of issues including the state of the Palestinian resistance, the development of its capabilities, the escalation of individual operations inside the occupied land, the coordination with the axis of resistance, the normalization by Arab regimes, and a solid relationship with the Islamic Republic of Iran.

Al-Nakhalah stressed that “the stabbing operations and other individual operations are a manifestation of the Palestinian people’s resistance to the Zionist enemy, and they are an expression of the state of oppression that inhabits all of Palestine.” He explained that “such an action should push the resistance forces to better organize their ranks and get closer to the people who know, today more than ever, that if they do not fight today, they will be killed tomorrow.”

Al-Nakhalah told al-Ahed that “Land Day is a historic day in the life of the Palestinian people, and it is a true expression of our people’s will to uphold their rights. The fact that our people take to the streets on this day every year confirms that the flag of Palestine is carried by its people, generation after generation in Al-Quds, in the valiant West Bank, throughout the 1948 territories, in the Gaza Strip, and the Diaspora. Neither misinformation campaigns nor defeats around them were able to defeat their awareness and will, and we will remain on this path, God willing, resisting, and steadfast until we topple the banners of the enemy.”

Touching on the normalization of ties between some Arab states and “Israel” and the state of some regimes, al-Nakhalah pointed out that “the mind is unable to explain the state of collapse of the Arab system as a whole in front of the Zionist project, and they see that our besieged people can resist and fight, and with all humiliation, they go in the other direction and ally themselves with the enemy. The recent summit of Sharm el-Sheikh is but one of the scenes that show the extent of the Arab weakness.”

On the other hand, al-Nakhalah points out that “in this world that is crowded with everything except justice, the Islamic Republic of Iran stands by the Palestinian people, supporting them. I can say that it is the only one that is paying the price for its support for the Palestinian people.”

The following is the transcript of the interview:

1- Two months ahead of the anniversary of the al-Quds Sword Battle, what is your assessment of the state of the Palestinian resistance?

The Palestinian resistance today is under enormous pressure, and attempts to contain it, directly or indirectly, have not stopped.

The Al-Quds Sword Battle is supposed to have opened new horizons for the Palestinian people and for the Arab world.

Unfortunately, the Palestinian side could not use it in the context of its conflict with the Zionist project in a positive way and with a serious national vision. Meanwhile, the Arab world, which decided in advance to remove Palestine and Al-Quds from its agenda in favor of the enemy, is conspiring with the enemy to contain the resistance by all the means available, to thwart and besiege it and give it some cheap temptations so that it opens up more and more to the Zionist enemy. Instead of betting on the Palestinian people and their will to resist the occupation and confront the nation’s historical enemy, it is siding more and more with the enemy.

Palestine is no longer the Arab regime’s cause. Palestine has become a burden on it, and it wants to get rid of it. Therefore, the challenges facing the resistance have become greater and more complex, and this imposes on us a greater responsibility than before and a different performance commensurate with the challenges we face.

2- The stabbing operations inside the “Israeli” entity do not stop, and the enemy expects an escalation during the next three months, starting with the holy month of Ramadan. Are the Palestinians really coming to a sensitive security stage?

Stabbing operations and other individual operations are a manifestation of the Palestinian people’s resistance to the Zionist enemy, and they are an expression of the state of oppression that inhabits all of Palestine. However, this is not enough to stop the enemy’s intrusion on our rights. It is also not enough for all of us as political forces to praise the heroic individual actions of the creative Palestinian youth. Such an action should push the resistance forces to better organize their ranks and get closer to the people who know, today more than ever, that if they do not fight today, they will be killed tomorrow – by insults, hunger, or being shot. It makes no difference. Whoever does not fight today will see that what remains of his land and homeland will vanish. Whoever does not fight today will see with his own eyes Al-Quds become Jewish; he will see that Palestine, all of Palestine, will become “Israel”; and whoever does not fight today will see himself standing in the queue of humiliation, working in his land as a slave for the enemy.

This is the challenge that our Palestinian people are facing today, and it is present throughout the month of Ramadan and other months.

3- The movement in the occupied areas of the interior is expanding, and the confrontations in Sheikh Jarrah in the face of the settlers are intensifying. Do you expect things to explode more there?

There is always a reason or reasons for confrontations with the enemy; the presence of the enemy on our land is a permanent reason for confrontation. The persecution of people and the non-stop killing of young people throughout Palestine, the confiscation of lands, and the demolition and destruction of homes are additional reasons that push people to resist. Resistance here is obligatory as long as there is occupation. Resistance is the natural response to occupation. There is no free people who accept occupation, and the Palestinian people are always resisting the occupation and did not stop for a single day.

4- What about the recently announced national committee for the defense of the internally displaced inside occupied Palestine? Are we facing a new type of confrontation expected with the Zionists?

This body was formed to communicate with our people in Palestine occupied in 1948, and it is an expression at the same time of the unity of the Palestinian people in all their places of residence and that we are one people in the face of one enemy.

5- How would you describe the relationship with the rest of the Palestinian factions?

The Palestinian situation suffers from severe weakness, and this affects the general performance, both politically and militarily. Partisanship is still dominant despite attempts to get out of it to a broader and more welcoming vision.

The Palestinian people know the front of their true enemies, but they see that the forces that control the official framework recognized as the representative of the Palestinian people lie on the doorstep of these enemies. Our people know their rights, but they no longer know whether their national forces want a Palestinian state or autonomy in Gaza or the West Bank [according to the “Israeli” program]. This ambiguity in the Palestinian political programs makes Palestinian relations problematic and in a state of constant confusion, and we are always looking for a common denominator. However, our relations as Palestinian forces are still governed by our party programs and our interests.

Organizations that see themselves as being closer in their programs are trying to develop joint struggle programs whenever possible, and in recently, there was a joint statement issued on behalf of the Jihad – Hamas – the Popular Front. This was a positive step that we can build on, but it is not enough.

6- What is your position on what is happening in Ukraine and the war going on there?

This war is a world war in every sense of the word, even if America and NATO countries are not directly involved militarily. They, however, are pushing for this war to continue with all their might. They are also providing enormous military and economic support for Ukraine in the face of the Russian Federation.

America created this war and prepared all the conditions for it, with the aim of draining Russia and limiting its international role, which has begun to emerge strongly in recent years. But I believe that the end of the war will change the direction of international relations and will impose new alliances other than those that were arranged at the end of World War II. The world relations and the balance of power will differ from what they were before.

What causes worry and fear is the effect of these variables on the situation of the Arab and Islamic worlds. Until this moment, we have seen nothing but a state of confusion and hesitation that prevails in the Arab region as it anticipates results. What is worse is them cozying up to the Zionist enemy and allying with it. The Sharm el-Sheikh conference attended by Egypt, the Emirates, and the enemy, as well as the conference that will be held in the Zionist entity, in which some Arab countries and America will participate, are nothing but an indication of the state of affairs and the state of the Arab identity being lost in favor of the enemy. Therefore, I see that siding with the Zionist enemy and allying with it is choosing subordination in advance to the American side and the Zionist enemy.

7- How would you describe the military capabilities of the resistance, specifically the Islamic Jihad?

The resistance depends above all on the Palestinian resistance and on its popular support from which it derives the will to resist the occupation. In our Palestinian case, a person goes through two stages. In the first, he is a fighter, and in the second, he is a martyr. When you are a fighter, you must be brave, and when you are martyred, you must be a role model. Then comes the talk about military capabilities, which are basically modest capabilities compared to what the enemy possesses, but we are betting on the fighter who has a message and does not fear anything or anyone but God. Even martyrdom will be a gift from God Almighty at the end of the journey of jihad and resistance. This is our real capabilities in confronting the enemy, in addition to what the resistance’s engineers produce in its non-stop workshops, offering innovations of great value and having an important impact on the battlefield, and the Al-Quds Sword Battle is proof of that.

8- In light of the sweeping wave of Arab and Gulf normalization, where does the Palestinian resistance derive its support from?

This wave of normalization is not new. Yes, it took a more rude and more immoral form. Since the Camp David Accords with Egypt and the subsequent Wadi Araba Accords with Jordan, as well as the Oslo Accords with the Palestine Liberation Organization, Arab taboos have been broken in the face of the Zionist enemy.

This was followed by the so-called Arab Peace Initiative, which was an Arab declaration that Palestine had become “Israel”, and they were only trying to tame the Palestinian people to accept the fait accompli.

But the Palestinian people still adhere to their right to Palestine and are creative in forms of resistance, based on their absolute belief in the justice of their cause and their historical right to Palestine and the state of solidarity and sympathy from the Arab and Islamic peoples, as well as the position of the Islamic Republic of Iran. It has spared no effort in supporting the resistance and the Palestinian people at the political, military, and moral levels and in confronting with all force and power the Zionist project that is targeting the entire region and is seeking to end the Palestinian cause in every sense of the word.

9- How do you approach this wave, especially since some Arab capitals have become open before the enemies of the nation?

Frankly, the mind is unable to explain the state of collapse of the Arab system as a whole in front of the Zionist project, and they see that our besieged people can resist and fight, and with all humiliation, they go in the other direction and ally themselves with the enemy. The recent summit of Sharm el-Sheikh is one of the scenes that shows the extent of the Arab weakness.

The Zionist occupation entity has become a major regional state, and the enemy’s prime minister, who has Palestinian blood on his hands, has become an essential partner in drawing up the policies of the Arab region; the Arabs have become partners with those who occupied their land and massacred their sons in all wars, while they are prisoners of war.

“Israel” its issue, the godfather of normalization, the Emirates, which has become a center for laundering Jewish money, and Egypt attended the Sharm el-Sheikh summit in Egypt.

Issues regarding some aid and promises were mentioned, while the Arabs’ central issue was absent – Al-Quds and its people as well as Palestine and its occupation were absent. If Gaza or the West Bank were mentioned, it was to see how they can we subjugate its people and make them more responsive to the “Israeli” security conditions.

10- What can be said about the relationship with the Islamic Republic today? Do you think that the Arab countries have completely abandoned Palestine?

In this world that is crowded with everything except justice, the Islamic Republic of Iran stands by the Palestinian people, supporting them. I can say that it is the only one that is paying the price for its support for the Palestinian people – sieges, sanctions, and conspiracies. Despite this, its position is becoming more solid and insistent on supporting the Palestinian people and their resistance. On the other hand, the Arab regime shamelessly bows down before the Zionist enemy and abandons Palestine and Al-Quds.

11- How do you comment on the upcoming visit of the Jordanian King to Palestine and effort he is reportedly leading to prevent an escalation in the coming month of Ramadan?

Frankly, if you had not asked me, you would have excused me from this answer. Unfortunately, this is a job that Jordan is doing for the enemy for free, especially since this visit comes at the request of the Zionist enemy, with the aim of calming the situation in the West Bank, which is expected to explode in the face of the enemy on the occasion of the holy month of Ramadan.

12- Ahead of Land Day, what do you say to the Palestinian interior and its youth who write the most wonderful epics with their awareness and their confrontation of the occupation?

Land Day is a historic day in the life of the Palestinian people, and it is a true expression of our people’s will to uphold their rights. The fact that our people take to the streets on this day every year confirms that the flag of Palestine is carried by its people, generation after generation in Al-Quds, in the valiant West Bank, throughout the 1948 territories, in the Gaza Strip, and the Diaspora. Neither misinformation campaigns nor defeats around them were able to defeat their awareness and will, and we will remain on this path, God willing, resisting, and steadfast until we topple the banners of the enemy and expel it from our country. Our duty today, more than ever, is to continue the jihad and resistance until God allows us to achieve a clear victory.

13- Imam Khomeini stressed on the necessity to mark the last Friday of the blessed month of Ramadan as the International Day of al-Quds. What do you pledge to the Imam and the nation on this day?

The blessed month of Ramadan is upon us, and it is the month of jihad and the month of great victories in the history of Islam. In it is Laylat al-Qadr [the Night of Decree], which is better than a thousand months. In it is Al-Quds Day, which coincides with the great nights of decree, and which Imam Khomeini chose to be a day in which Muslims unite in word and their banners for the liberation of Al-Quds are raised. Peace be upon Imam Khomeini on the day he was born and on the day he will be resurrected.

Final Word:

In past, the white West invaded and colonized Africa, transporting people to their country and turning them into slaves. In the modern era, invaders come to us to enslave us in our country, here in the holiest country, Palestine, and turn our people into slaves to build their settlements and work in their factories. Meanwhile, Arab and Muslim countries are opened to these murderous invaders, and they are received as masters who enjoy in Arab and Muslim countries. Hotels and resorts are opened for them, and everyone is at their service, in the service of the killers.

As for the victims, they must be besieged, starved, and tamed. Under the pretext of realism, the defeated and the oppressed accept what the invaders want; those who do not want to fight accept what the killers want, and whoever does not accept is killed in front of people’s eyes and his house demolished. He’d be into an example for others and another reason for the oppressed and defeated to say: We cannot face them, and we have to surrender. We have abandoned the rules of engagement, the rules of combat, and the rules of victory that God has set for us, so humiliation befell us.

The Almighty said: {Fight them; Allah will punish them by your hands and will disgrace them and give you victory over them and satisfy the breasts of a believing people.}

Would Syria Become the Main Gate for All Arabs?

March 26 2022

By Mohammad Sleem

Beirut – Last Friday, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad visited the United Arab Emirates [UAE] and met the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed [MBZ] Al Nhayan and the ruler of Dubai Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum.

In terms of timing, Assad’s visit to an Arab country is the first since the crisis erupted in Syria11 years ago.

During the meeting, Sheikh Mohammed wished that “this visit would be the beginning of peace and stability for Syria and the entire region.”

Moreover, the two leaders discussed “issues of common concern”, such as Syria’s territorial integrity and the withdrawal of the foreign forces from the country.

The Assad-Al Maktoum meeting “dealt with the overall relations between the two countries and the prospects for expanding the circle of bilateral cooperation, especially at the economic, investment and commercial levels.”

MBZ, Abu Dhabi’s Crown Prince of and deputy commander-in-chief of the Emirati Armed Forces – summed up the Syrian President’s visit as “a good, peaceful and stable start for Syria and the entire region.”

Over the years, the UAE’s words had been put into action; starting with the reopening of its embassy in Damascus in December 2018, in the most significant Arab overture toward the Syrian government. However, relations remained cold.

Last fall, the Emirati Minister of Foreign Affairs flew to Damascus for a meeting with Assad, the first visit by the country’s top diplomat since 2011. The United States, a close ally of the UAE, criticized the visit at the time, arguing that the US would not support any thawing in relations with the Assad government.

The visit also implies a remarkable dimension, namely that it coincides with the anniversary of the outbreak of the Syrian crisis in mid-March 2011, in an implicit message at this time that Syria is paving the way to consider solutions to its crisis, and that Assad is quite aware that the visit to the UAE will be a milestone in the road to resolving it.

Syria was expelled before from the 22-member Arab League and boycotted by its neighbors after the conflict broke out 11 years ago.

According to the aforementioned, the visit signals a clear message that some countries in the Arab World are willing to re-engage with Syria as several countries are reviving ties with the Syrian government, including Jordan and Lebanon.

US stance regarding Asaad’s visit

When asked about Assad’s UAE visit, US State Department Spokesperson Ned Price said that Washington was “profoundly disappointed and troubled by this apparent attempt to legitimize Bashar al-Assad, who remains responsible and accountable for the death and suffering of countless Syrians, the displacement of more than half of the pre-war Syrian population, and the arbitrary detention and disappearance of over 150,000 Syrian men, women and children.”

Price downplayed the US-led wars over the past 20 years, which resulted in the death of millions of people and the devastation of several countries.

Long ago Syria has been called the heart of Arabism. At present, amid the new political developments taking place between Syria and the UAE, Damascus might become the main gate for all the Arab countries. This step was first of its kind in terms of diplomatic relations between countries of the Axis of Resistance and the so-called neutral countries, who are normalizing ties with the Zionist entity.

Bearing in mind the crisis it has been confronting since 2011, Syria must definitely be granted the Medal of Honor for standing in the forefront of countries refusing to normalize relations with the “Israeli” regime. And the coming days will prove Syria’s real position in the Arab World.

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Amir-Abdollahian to Al Mayadeen: We will not accept any Israeli influence in the Gulf

March 25 2022

Source: Al Mayadeen

By Al Mayadeen Net 

Al Mayadeen Network CEO Ghassan Ben Jeddou interviews Iranian Foreign Affairs Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian in the wake of Yemen’s seven years of war, Vienna talks, Lebanon’s economic crisis, and the path of the Gulf-Iranian relations.

Al Mayadeen Network CEO Ghassan Ben Jeddou interviews Iranian Foreign Affairs Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian (Al Mayadeen)

In an exclusive interview with Al Mayadeen’s CEO Ghassan Ben Jeddou, Iranian Foreign Affairs Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian assured that Iran’s foreign policy is stable in terms of its political independence from both the West and the East.

Amir-Abdollahian stressed that President Ebrahim Raisi’s administration pursues smart diplomacy, openness, and effective cooperation with all countries, adding that “our foreign policy has steady tenets, but there may be differences in approaches between one government and another”.

“The Arab countries are an important part of the Islamic world, and we extend the hand of cooperation to various neighboring countries, most notably the Gulf countries,” he added.

Iranian-Saudi rapprochement: Ready for the 5th round of talks

On the Iranian-Saudi issue, Amir-Abdollahian told Al Mayadeen that relations with Saudi Arabia are not good, but Iran is not responsible for that, and has expressed its readiness for the fifth round of dialogue.

“Some contradictory and inappropriate behavior on the part of Saudi Arabia affects relations, including the execution of 81 Saudis,” he noted.

Amir-Abdollahian stressed that Saudi Arabia was the one to initiate cutting ties with Iran, confirming that Iran’s relations with most Arab countries are brotherly and good, including relations with Kuwait and the UAE.

“The Saudis do not want good relations with us, while we do not forget the martyrdom of 460 Iranian pilgrims in the Mina incident,” he said.

The top Iranian diplomat made it clear that despite Iran’s criticism of Saudi policies, it didn’t sever its relations with the kingdom.

The affairs of Yemen belong to the Yemeni people

Regarding the aggression on Yemen, Amir-Abdollahian confirmed to Al Mayadeen that Iran told the Saudis that the affairs of Yemen belong to the Yemeni people, affirming that linking everything that is happening in Yemen to Iran is erroneous.

“The Yemenis’ defense of their sovereignty is a matter of their own, but we welcome the cessation of the war and the lifting of the sanctions, and we won’t neglect to work towards this direction,” he added.

Vienna talks: The ball is in the US’ call

On the developments in Vienna Talks, Amir-Abdollahian said that all parties in the region will win if an agreement is reached in Vienna, adding that “we are approaching the point of consensus in the nuclear talks, but what is important for us is how sanctions will be lifted as well as guarantees.”

“In recent weeks, there have been the many US attempts to negotiate directly with us on the pending issues,” he stressed.

Amir-Abdollahian made it clear that if the Biden administration is serious, it must show goodwill before considering direct negotiations.

He went on to assure that Iran has informed the Western side that the US should prove goodwill by lifting one of the sanctions imposed on Iran.

Elsewhere in his remarks, he mentioned that he has traveled to Moscow and met with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov to obtain clarifications regarding the Russian demands, emphasizing that Moscow informed Tehran that it will support the nuclear agreement the moment it is reached.

“The ball is now in the Americans’ court with regard to the nuclear agreement,” he said.

The top Iranian figure added that the US was thirsty for a regional agreement in 2015 after the nuclear agreement was signed, stressing that all parties in the region will win if an agreement is reached in Vienna.

Egypt’s potential influential role

On the Iranian-Egyptians relations, Amir-Abdollahian said that Egypt has a position in the Arab world that allows it to have an influential regional role.

He divulged that Iran was not very happy with what happened in Egypt following the “Arab Spring”, however, he assured that the Iranian policy is set on strengthening relations with Egypt on solid and balanced foundations.

“We do not forget Egypt’s stance towards the Syrian issue, but there are common points with Egypt upon which we could build,” he added.

Regarding the Sharm el-Sheikh tripartite meeting, Amir-Abdollahian told Al Mayadeen that Iran considers any meeting with any Israeli official a betrayal of Al-Quds and Palestine.

“The meeting of Sharm El-Sheikh taking place immediately after President Al-Assad’s visit to the UAE was not a good sign,” he said.

He added that the Arab countries’ recognition of their wrong policies towards Syria is important.

“Zionist entity is in a very weak position”

The top Iranian diplomat stressed that Iran will never forget its red lines regarding the Palestinian cause in the framework of its good ties with the UAE.

“We will not accept any Israeli influence in the Gulf, and the peoples will reject normalization,” he added.

He went on to say that the Zionist entity is in a very weak position now and suffers from many issues.

Amir-Abdollahian told Al Mayadeen that the battle of Seif Al-Quds is a major turning point that has proven the weakness and fragility of the Israeli society.

Iran is ready to provide all aspects of assistance to Lebanon

Commenting on the economic crisis in Lebanon, Amir-Abdollahian reiterated Iran’s willingness to provide all aspects of assistance to Lebanon and its people to overcome the ongoing difficult crisis.

“We presented proposals to Lebanese officials to establish two power plants in the south and north, and to supply Lebanon with Iranian gas,” he added.

He went on to say that “we informed our friends in Lebanon that the US will not help them and will not allow others to help them”.

Regarding his meeting with Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah, the top Iranian diplomat divulged that he informed Sayyed Nasrallah of the latest developments in the Vienna Talks and the matter of lifting sanctions.

دولة الاحتلال وحركات المقاومة في ظل الهزّة الأوكرانية.. تقدير موقف

الخميس، 24 مارس 2022

تدور الحرب في أوكرانيا كما بات واضحًا بين معسكرين، أحدهما روسيٌ مدعوم صينيًا بشكلٍ أساسيٍ، وبدعمٍ غير مباشرٍ من دولٍ أخرى تسعى لكسر الهيمنة الأمريكية والأحادية القطبية. وفي المقابل، معسكرٌ غربيٌ بقيادة الولايات المتحدة الأمريكية، مع بعض الدول التي تخضع كليًا للنفوذ الأمريكي كاليابان مثلًا، لكن في وضع حلفاء أمريكا تفصيلٌ على ما سيأتي لاحقًا.

ويمكن قراءة أهداف كل معسكرٍ على النحو الآتي:

ـ تسعى روسيا بدايةً إلى هدفٍ مباشرٍ يتمثل في تحييد الخطر الأوكراني،الذي باتت تُشكِّله أوكرانيا عليها بعد أحداث “الثورة الملونة” في 2014، التي تم هندستها أمريكيًا، والتي أفضت إلى تنصيب نظامٍ عميلٍ للغرب، حيث باشر هذا النظام بدعمٍ وتوجيهٍ أمريكيين مساعي الانضمام لحلف شمال الأطلسي بصورة فعلية، في خطوةٍ تصب في مصلحة الأمريكي، لكنها تتعارض والمصالح القومية الأوكرانية بصفتها دولة جارة لروسيا، وتربطها بها علاقات تاريخية مميزة.

وأما الهدف الروسي الصيني الأبعد، فيتمثل في إلحاق هزيمةٍ إستراتيجيةٍ بالولايات المتحدة الأمريكية عبر إحباط خطتها في أوكرانيا، مما يثبِّت: أولًا، تراجع القدرة الأمريكية على الساحة الدولية. وثانيًا، فتح الباب أمام دينامية بعيدة المدى يمكن أن تفضي إلى إعادة تموضع دول الاتحاد السوفييتي السابقة خارج نفوذ حلف شمال الأطلسي، ويكون هذا حال حصل إعادة لعقارب الساعة إلى 1997.

ـ أما الأهداف الأمريكية المباشرة في هذه الحرب، فتتمثل في محاولة إنهاك روسيا عسكريًا قدر المستطاع في أوكرانيا كهدفٍ تكتيكيٍ، مما سيضعف من مكانة روسيا العسكرية إذا ما نجحت في ذلك أمريكا وحلف شمال الأطلسي. وأما إستراتيجيًا، فتسعى أمريكا إلى تدمير الاقتصاد الروسي وانهياره بشكلٍ كاملٍ، وذلك من خلال الحرب الاقتصادية الشرسة التي تشنها بالشراكة مع حلفائها ضد روسيا، في محاولةٍ لإنهاء الدور الروسي تمامًا، مما يمكن أن يفضي إلى تفكك روسيا الاتحادية لاحقًا، وتعي روسيا أن الحرب الاقتصادية التي بدأها الغرب عليها مستمرةٌ حتى بعد انتهاء المعركة العسكرية في أوكرانيا، ولا أدل على ذلك من تصريح رئيس وزراء بريطانيا حينما قال: إن إعادة تطبيع العلاقات مع بوتين كما حصل بعد 2014 سيكون خطأ، وكذلك تلك الدعوات التي خرجت من بعض الأوساط الغربية والتي تدعو إلى محاكمة الرئيس فلاديمير بوتين كمجرم حرب!

وأما على المدى المتوسط أو البعيد حسب تطورات الحرب ضد روسيا، فتهدف أمريكا من وراء تحييد روسيا عن ساحة التنافس الدولي إلى التفرغ لمواجهة الصين لاحقًا، بعد أن تكون قد أفقدت الصين حليفًا إستراتيجيًا، يعد وجوده عاملًا حاسمًا في المواجهة الأمريكية الصينية، وبعد أن بات الأمريكي يعتقد بصعوبة تكرار تجربة هنري كيسنجر مع الصين في حقبة الحرب الباردة.

إذن، فنحن أمام حربٍ دوليةٍ حاسمةٍ، يسعى كل طرفٍ فيها إلى تحقيق نصرٍ إستراتيجيٍ، لذلك الراجح أن تطول هذه الحرب وتزداد تعقيدًا مع مرور الزمن، وبات هذا المسار يتجلى في تصاعد حدة الخطاب الصيني في مواجهة الضغوط الأمريكية عليها، وفي المقابل في التصاعد التدريجي للضغوط الأمريكية على الصين، وذلك في محاولةٍ لإجبارها على الابتعاد عن روسيا في هذا الاشتباك، وتأتي العقوبات التي فرضتها أمريكا مؤخرًا على مسؤولين صينيين من خارج سياق الأحداث في هذا الاطار.

وتبرز هنا القضية التي يود تقدير الموقف هذا التركيز عليها، فلقد كان لافتًا موقف بعض حلفاء الولايات المتحدة الأمريكية التقليديين اتجاه الحرب الدائرة، حيث مازالت دولٌ كالإمارات والسعودية وتركيا ومعهم دولة الاحتلال تتململ في اتخاذ موقفٍ واضحٍ، يساند بشكلٍ كاملٍ وعمليٍ الولايات المتحدة الأمريكية ضد روسيا، وتتباين التقديرات حول خلفيات هذا التململ، فمنها ما يضع موقفيّ الإمارات والسعودية ضمن مناوراتٍ سياسيةٍ بهدف تحصيل مكاسب من الولايات المتحدة الأمريكية في ملفاتٍ إقليميةٍ، كملف العودة إلى الاتفاق النووي مع إيران وملف الحرب على اليمن، وأخرى تضع موقف تركيا ودولة الاحتلال في سياق حساباتٍ لدى هذين الأخيرين، تتعلق بعدم رغبتهما في إغضاب روسيا، لا سيما بعد أن بات لروسيا حضورٌ حاسمٌ في منطقتنا.

لكن أيً كان الحال، فالراجح أمران: 

ـ أن هذا التململ ما كان ليكون لولا تراجع سطوة الولايات المتحدة الأمريكية على حلفائها وفي العالم عمومًا، بغض النظر عن دوافع كل طرف لموقفه الضبابي اتجاه المعركة الراهنة.

ـ أنه نتيجةً لطبيعة المعركة الإستراتيجية كما تبين آنفًا، وارتفاع احتمالية أن تطول وتزداد تعقيدًا مع مرور الزمن، فمن الطبيعي أن يزداد الضغط الأمريكي على حلفائه لاتخاذ موقفٍ واضحٍ ضمن أحد المعسكرين المتقابلين، وهذا ما بدأت تظهر مؤشراته بالفعل.

وعليه، ستجد دولة الاحتلال نفسها مضطرًة للاختيار عاجلًا أم آجلًا، وعلى الأغلب لن تتمكن من المراوغة في مواقفه كثيرًا مع احتدام المعارك، وستكون من عجائب الدنيا إن اختارت التموضع في المعسكر الشرقي ضد المعسكر الغربي، فدولة الاحتلال ليست حليفًا للغرب وحسب، بل هي صنيعته بالكامل، ومرتبطٌة به عضويًا ووجوديًا، وتظل هذه الحقائق أمرًا حاسمًا في خياراتها، مهما تعددت علاقات دولة الاحتلال بدولٍ أخرى حول العالم كبيرةً كانت أم صغيرةً، ويشار هنا إلى الأنباء التي تم تداولها عن بدء الترتيبات لزيارةٍ محتملةٍ لرئيس وزراء دولة الاحتلال قريبًا للعاصمة الأوكرانية كييف.

توصيف “العملية العسكرية الخاصة” الروسية في أوكرانيا على أنها احتلال، ليس بالأمر الأبيض والأسود حسب القانون الدولي كما يحاول الغرب الترويج، فنجد مثلًا أن دولتين كبيرتين وأساسيتين كالصين والهند قد رفضتا إدانة “العملية العسكرية الخاصة” الروسية في أوكرانيا،


وكون هذه المعركة المحتدمة حاليًا تعد معركةً مصيريةً لروسيا وحتى للصين، فلابد أن يكون لتموضع دولة الاحتلال في المعسكر الغربي ـ كما هو متوقعٌ ـ أثرٌ بالغٌ على علاقاتها بروسيا وبالصين كذلك.

ويفتح هذا لحركات المقاومة لا سيما الفلسطينية منها، بابًا واسعًا للعب على تناقض المصالح بين روسيا والصين وبين الكيان المؤقت إذا ما أحسنت اقتناص الفرصة، ففي نهاية المطاف، الكثير من السلاح النوعي والكاسر للتوازن الذي حصلت عليه حركات المقاومة كان روسيًا وصينيًا.

ويبقى أخيرًا الإشارة إلى كون توصيف “العملية العسكرية الخاصة” الروسية في أوكرانيا على أنها احتلال، ليس بالأمر الأبيض والأسود حسب القانون الدولي كما يحاول الغرب الترويج، فنجد مثلًا أن دولتين كبيرتين وأساسيتين كالصين والهند قد رفضتا إدانة “العملية العسكرية الخاصة” الروسية في أوكرانيا، هذا ناهيك عن أنه لا خلاف على كون العقوبات الاقتصادية أحادية الجانب، التي فرضها الغرب على روسيا، تعد خرقًا سافرًا لقواعد التجارة الدولية، وقوانين حرية التجارة حسب منظمة التجارة العالمية “WTO”.

وأما بخصوص الموقف الذي تم وصفه من البعض بموقفٍ “أخلاقي”، والذي قالت به بعض الهيئات العربية التي باتت لبرالية الهوى في جل مواقفها، ومنسجمةً مع الدعاية الغربية في تَقييم غالبية الأحداث الدولية والإقليمية، بغض النظر عن توجه تلك الهيئات سواءً أكانت إسلاميةً أم علمانيةً أم يساريةً، فبإمكانهم مراجعة كلمة الرئيس الأوكراني أمام “كنيست” الكيان المؤقت، حينما ادعى أن ما تتعرض له أوكرانيا من “خطر وعدوان” روسي، يماثل ما يتعرض له الكيان المؤقت من حركات المقاومة، ويحق لنا توقع أن يعتمد الغرب هذه الرواية كونها تدغدغ مشاعره العنصرية وتنسجم مع مصالحه الاستعمارية.


*كاتب وباحث سياسي

Bennett, Sisi and MBZ Discuss Iran, ‘Mutual Security Interests’

23 Mar 2022

By Staff, Agencies

Zionist Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi Mohammed bin Zayed [MBZ] held a joint meeting in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt on Tuesday to discuss a joint defense strategy in dealing with what they referred to as the ‘Iranian threat,’ as well as ‘common security interests.’

What are the ‘common security interests’ that would pool the ‘Israeli’ entity with Egypt and the UAE?

Although the so-called ‘Iranian threat’ would come to mind first, there would be several other concerns. A hint to that is the Emirati comments to ‘Israeli’ The Jerusalem Post newspaper, which mentioned that “Abu Dhabi is shocked by the US behavior,” and that “it is hard for the UAE to deal with the US administration of Joe Biden in security affairs,” also noting that ties in general have been deteriorating.

The JPost cited a source in Abu Dhabi as saying: “The United Arab Emirates is very unhappy with the US move toward removing the Islamic Revolutionary Guard from its Foreign Terrorist Organizations list.”

Some in Abu Dhabi “are in great shock,” and they view the possibility of the IRG’s designation being removed in the same way as ‘Israel’ does, the source added.

The meeting took place as the nuclear deal between world powers and Iran was nearing completion.

The US and Iran have been indirectly negotiating in Vienna to rejoin the 2015 nuclear deal for the past 11 months. The deal placed restrictions on Iran’s nuclear development in exchange for the gradual lifting of sanctions.

Most of those restrictions expire at the end of 2025. In addition, in recent years, Iran has far surpassed the deal’s 3.67% uranium enrichment limit, enriching to 60% – weapons-grade uranium is enriched to 90% – and has converted some of it to a format that is hard to dilute or transport.

The Tel Aviv regime and the United Arab Emirates expressed dissatisfaction with American concessions to the Islamic Republic.

“The leaders discussed the ties between the three countries on the background of recent developments in the world and the region, and the ways to strengthen [the ties] at all levels,” Bennett’s office stated.

Bennett’s visit to Egypt was supposed to be secret, but once the press caught wind of it, Sisi’s office did not oppose placing a Zionist regime’s flag at the meeting for the photo-op.

Sisi also accompanied Bennett to his plane when he departed Sharm El-Sheikh on Tuesday, after spending the night in the Sinai resort town.

Concern in Tel Aviv about Washington’s intention to respond to the demand to remove the Iranian Revolutionary Guard from the list of terrorism

كيف يغار الأميركيّون من اليمنيّين؟

2022 الاربعاء 23 آذار

 ناصر قنديل

ينقل أحد الدبلوماسيين الأوروبيين رداً قاسياً لمسؤول أميركي كبير في أحد الاجتماعات عبر الفيديو المخصصة لتقييم الحرب في أوكرانيا، رداً على الانتقادات التي تلقاها من مسؤول أوكراني كبير مشارك في النقاش، حول ما وصفه بسياسة التخلي الأميركي عن الأوكرانيين واللجوء لسياسة رفع العتب لغسل الأيدي من دماء الأوكرانيّين، في حرب تركوا وحدهم يخوضونها بوجه آلة حربية ضخمة، يستحيل تحقيق النصر عليها، للقول في خاتمتها، لقد فعلنا كل ما نستطيع ففرضنا العقوبات على روسيا، وقدّمنا المال والسلاح لأوكرانيا والإيواء للاجئيها، وآسفون للنتيجة. ويقول الدبلوماسي إن المشاركين الذين توقعوا من المسؤول الأميركي جواباً بنبرة الاعتذار يتضمن شرحاً لتعقيدات التدخل المباشر، ومخاطر الحرب النووية، أنهم فوجئوا بالمسؤول الأميركي يسأل زميله الأوكراني، وكل منهما يتحدّر من اليسار الذي تحول لاحقاً إلى تيار المحافظين الجدد، ويتباهيان بخلفيتهما الفرانكوفونية الثورية، ويقول له هل تعتقد أنكم تمثلون شعبكم في خوض معركة مصيرية لقضية عادلة ومحقة، فتعال نقارن حالكم بحال اليمنيّين، الذين يقاتلون جاراً أشدّ قسوة ووحشيّة من جاركم، ولا تحاصره العقوبات، بل يلقى الدعم والمناصرة من غالبية دول العالم، وهم المحاصرون براً من كل الجهات، ورغم كل التوقعات بأن تُحسَم الحرب في غير صالحهم في ايام او أسابيع، ها هم يفاجئون العالم بأنهم لم يحققوا الصمود فقط، وقد أداموا حربهم لسبع سنوات ويستمرون، بل صنعوا خلال سنواتها معادلات جديدة، فرضتهم شركاء في معادلات ما كانوا ليتخيّلوا قبل الحرب شراكتهم فيها، كأمن البحر الأحمر وأمن الطاقة، فما الذي ينقصكم لتفعلوا المثل، وأنتم تلقون أكثر مما توفر لهم، وعدوكم يواجه ما لم يواجهه عدوهم، وما بينكم وبين عدوكم يشبه في الكثير من وجوهه ما بينهم وبين عدوّهم؟

بمعزل عن صدقيّة المقارنة، وعن درجة انطباقها على الحرب في أوكرانيا، وعن صدقية الأسباب الأميركيّة للتهرب من الدخول على خط الحرب، يدخل اليمن العام الثامن للحرب التي شنها عليه السعوديون بدعم أميركي، وصمت دولي كان ولا يزال العلامة الشائنة على ما يُسمّى بضمير الإنسانية، أمام هول الكوارث التي لحق بالشعب اليمني، وعاماً بعد عام وهم يدهشون العالم، بصمودهم الأسطوريّ، وشجاعتهم الاستثنائية، وحكمة قيادتهم وقدرتها على تقديم المقاربات السياسية والعسكرية التي تلائم كل لحظة وكل متغير، وقد حسم أمر نجاحهم بتحويل الحرب التي كان النقاش في بداياتها، حول حجم قدرتهم على الصمود في مواجهتها، الى النقاش حول حجم قدرة من خاض الحرب عليهم على تجاوز المأزق الذي وضعوه فيه، وقد تغيّر على أيديهم مفهوم الحرب، فأدخلوا العالم مستفيدين من كل ما ابتكرته حركات المقاومة، في عصر حرب جديدة، تقرّر مصيرها الطائرات المسيّرة والصواريخ المجنّحة، وينجح فيها شعب فقير محاصر بأن يبتكر ويقوم بالتصنيع، ويتفوق على الآلة الحربية العملاقة والمتوحشة التي تقف مقابله بكل أدوات الموت والدمار والحصار، وحوّلوا الحرب التي أرادها الأميركي مدخلاً لاستراتيجية السيطرة على المضائق والممرات المائية إلى باب لعنوان جديد هو، مأزق أمن المضائق والممرات في مواجهة حركات المقاومة، وقد جاءت سفن كسر الحصار التي جاء بها حزب الله من إيران الى سورية فلبنان ترجمة لهذا المأزق، وحوّلوا الحرب التي أرادها الإسرائيلي «نقطة تحوّل»، يسقط عبر تحالفاته الخليجية فيها معادلة نشوء محور للمقاومة، الى معادلة حضور جبهة جنوب الجنوب في أي حرب مقبلة الى مصدر قلق حقيقي، وربما وجودي، لكيان الاحتلال، بينما يخرج ملايين اليمنيين في مناسبات فلسطين، يعبرون فوق الحصار والدمار، يقسمون بالقتال لحريتها، وحوّلوا معادلة الإمساك السعودي الحصري بأمن الخليج بصفته أمن ممرات الطاقة العالمية، الى نقطة الضعف العالميّة في أمن الطاقة، حيث يمسك اليمن بأمن المنشآت النفطية الحيوية، وأمن ناقلات النفط العملاقة، في الخليج.

قد يكون في بال المسؤولين السعوديين أكثر من سيناريو لمبادرتهم نحو حوار برعايتهم في الرياض تحت عنوان الحل السياسي في اليمن، من سيناريو قطع الطريق على موقف إماراتي يفاوض على حل منفرد للخروج من الحرب، بجعل المبادرة تحت مظلة مجلس التعاون الخليجي إحراجاً لكل أعضائه، الى سيناريو جعل المبادرة مجرد غطاء لصفقة تنال السعودية بموجبها المزيد من السلاح الأميركي، تشكل صواريخ الباتريوت دفعته الأولى، مقابل تعهد السعودية بزيادة ضخ النفط في الأسواق العالميّة، الى سيناريو مخاطبة المتغيرات التي أنتجتها الحرب الأوكرانية والتي سينتجها الاتفاق النووي الإيراني، بإنشاء منصة قابلة للتعديل والتطوير، لكن الأكيد أنه لم يبق لدى السعودية خيار عسكري على الطاولة. وفي ظل الحيوية التي فرضها اليمنيون على ستاتيكو الحرب بدخولهم على خط التأثير على أزمة أمن الطاقة في العالم، سيكون على السعوديين والأميركيين أخذ الدعوات اليمنيّة لمراجعة خططهم على محمل الجد، وتلك فرصة لا يجب أن يفوّتها السعوديون على الأقل!

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