Tikrit and Najaf: the agony and the ecstasy

November 10, 2017

by Pepe EscobarTikrit and Najaf: the agony and the ecstasy

TIKRIT and NAJAF, Iraq – Nothing, absolutely nothing prepares you to revive, on the spot, the memory of what will go down in history as ISIS/Daesh’s most horrid killing field in Iraq or Syria since the death cult stormed across the border in the summer of 2014; the Speicher massacre of June 12, 2014 – when almost 2,000 Iraqi army recruits were assassinated in and nearby a former Saddam Hussein palace on the banks of the Tigris near Tikrit.

As Dylan would sing it, “ain’t it just like the night to play tricks when you’re trying to be so quiet”. In 2003, a few days after Shock and Awe and the fall of Baghdad, I took the road to Tikrit for Asia Times to survey Uday Hussein’s bombed palace as well as his father’s birthplace, only to return 14 years later to one of those palaces turned into a house of horror.

The Speicher killing field was gruesomely staged – and filmed – by Daesh only a few days after the fall of Mosul. Daesh’s Salafi-jihadi goons were feted as “liberators” by many a Sunni tribe around Trikrit just as 10,000 Iraqi Army recruits from different provinces, mostly Shi’ites, were being trained at an Air Force academy nearby.

With Daesh fast advancing and the Iraqi Army at the time dissolving by the minute, the youngsters were ordered to switch into civilian clothes, leave their weapons behind, and go home. As they were literally walking back to their home provinces they ended up falling in a lethal Daesh trap. Bearing echoes of the Nazi era, the youngsters were divided into Sunnis and Shi’ites – with the Shi’ites bundled in trucks described as their “transportation” home. Instead they were taken to what would become a killing field framed by decaying Saddamist architecture.

The horror, the horror

It’s late evening on a windless Monday – and I’m standing at the eerily silent exact spot of one of the killing field’s sites, captured by a Daesh propaganda video in part of this harrowing footage. Hayder Atamiri, the official representative of the Tikrit massacre committee, almost in tears, swears, “all the tribes in the area took part in this”. He’s convinced the massacre took place in “an icon of Saddam” and it was “revenge for Saddam’s death”.

Daesh leaders presided over a gruesome ritual from a balcony as three jihadis summarily killed the recruits with a bullet in the back of the head. Today, discreet shrines with pictures of the dead surround the balcony. So far 1907 victims have been catalogued – many from Iraq’s Shi’ite-majority and/or poorer provinces (for instance, 382 from Babylon, 254 from Diwaniya, 132 from Karbala, 119 from Diyala, 99 from Najaf.)

Atamiri says locals at the time found roughly 90 bodies “and the rest drifted away” along the Tigris. Nearby, Daesh goons “dug trenches, used bulldozers and covered the bodies with rocks.” No less than 14 mass graves have been found, 13 of them “already excavated.” Two more mass graves were identified “but there’s no proper storage for the remains yet.”

Other figures by the Iraqi Ministry of Health list 1,935 dead – with 994 bodies found, 527 fully identified, 467 under examination and still 941 missing. A systematic search for human remains only started in March 2015 – eight months after the massacre – when Tikrit was finally recaptured by Baghdad’s forces.

Compared with Ramadi or Mosul, Tikrit suffered very little damage as it was reconquered largely by Hashd al-Shaabi, a.k.a. the People Mobilization Units (PMUs), called into action by Grand Ayatollah Sistani’s 2014 fatwa. Atamiri is adamant “Hashd was the only force liberating Tikrit.” And crucially these fighters were not Shi’ites; they were Sunnis.

Yezen Meshaan al-Jebouri, the son of the governor of Tikrit, Raed al-Jebouri, head of the Salahuddin PMU brigade – and a member of the very prominent Sunni Jebouri family, which was historically inimical to Saddam Hussein, had previously confirmed to me in Baghdad; “Local tribal leaders encouraged the work of Hashd. They understood we believe in Iraq’s political system.” Almost a third of the PMU force – a total of around 20,000 fighters – is Sunni. As al-Jebouri stressed, “Tikrit returned to its people. And Tikrit University was protected.”

In the complex Iraqi tribal chessboard, the local consensus is that certain Wahhabi-tinged jihadis were part of the Speicher massacre, but that did not translate into a collective Sunni endeavor. Daesh killed Sunnis as well, and Sunnis helped at least a few Shi’ites to flee.

Atamiri is adamant, “only Hashd stood with us. Now they are maintaining peace and won’t allow any extra-judicial revenge”. He frames the whole battle ahead as the need to “eradicate extremist ideology” and notes that some Daesh jihadis, when captured, “tried to show remorse, but that is very difficult for us to believe. And some of them are now living in European countries.”

Families of the murdered youngsters silently exhibit photos of their sons and ask “international bodies to do something”. They all agree; the response from the “international community” has been shameful. Still, the Tikrit massacre committee vows to keep the memory of Speicher alive. Mothers of victims have been to Geneva to ask for help as well as mental health support for quite a few families, and plan to visit again in June 2018.

This has been one of Iraq’s most devastating nightmares of the past three decades. After such sorrow, what forgiveness?

Shrine honoring victims of a Daesh killing field by the Tigris, near Tikrit, Iraq. Photo Pepe Escobar

Keep walking towards redemption

It’s possible. From agony to ecstasy. There could not be a more radical contrast between darkness and light than taking the road to Najaf – the Iraqi Vatican, and fourth holiest city in Islam – and Karbala, alongside millions of black-clad pilgrims during the annual celebration of Arba’een, the “40th Day” of the martyrdom of Imam Hussein.

Countless tents, tea shops and impromptu restaurants, festively decorated, line up the road to Najaf and Karbala. Suddenly we’re thrown into the vortex of the largest gathering of humans in history, way outdoing the annual Hajj pilgrimage to Mecca; nearly 20 million people as opposed to about 1.5 million. Here is the record of my own pilgrimage in 2003 – a few days after the fall of Baghdad.

To be inside the Imam Ali shrine – in all its glimmering, refracted glory – is a religious experience in itself, the apotheosis of Shi’ite rituals of redemptive suffering (readers interested to know about Arba’een may consult scholar Seyyed Hosein Mohammad Jafri’s book The Origins and Early Development of Shi’a Islam.)

The Imam Ali shrine, in all its splendor, is managed, at the highest instance, by the marja’iya – the religious sources of emulation, mostly personified by Grand Ayatollah Sistani, whose office is in a narrow alley nearby; and in practice, by a foundation. According to its secretariat “more than 20 million people are registered in the shrine”.

Najaf welcomed refugees of the fight against Daesh by the tens of thousands; Sunnis from Anbar province, Christians, Shi’ite Turkmen from Tal Afar; “Now many are back to their communities”. The PMUs are incredibly popular – their white flags fluttering everywhere alongside black Imam Hussein and multicolored Imam Ali banners.

The shrine is proud to at least assist in helping victims from the Speicher massacre; “The government may be shorthanded”.

I was in Najaf last week, at the start of the pilgrimage. But the apex of Arba’een is today, November 10. And that happens in the most extraordinary of historical circumstances; the final defeat of Daesh.

Inside the Imam Ali shrine in Najaf, Iraq, a few days before Arba’een. Photo Pepe Escobar

The Syrian Arab Army (SAA) announced on Wednesday it had captured Albu Kamal, the last town held by Daesh in Syria – after Iraqi forces captured its sister town across the border, al-Qaim. In Baghdad, before leaving to Najaf, I was assured by a top PMU commander that al-Qaim would be retaken “in a matter of days”: four, in the end, to be exact.

None of this is getting traction in Western media. The final victory on the ground against Daesh, in Syria, was accomplished by the Syrian army with help from Russian strategy and air power, and in Iraq by the Iraqi army and the PMUs. Syrian and Iraqi forces are symbolically reunited at the border.

Meanwhile, at this very moment, millions of souls – Iraqis, Iranians, Afghans, Pakistanis, northern Africans, Central Asians, Persian Gulf nationals – are being soothed via the massive, cathartic walk from Najaf to Karbala. A pilgrim captured the spell – spiritual redemption merging with political statement – as he told me, with the flicker of a smile, the walk is also “a protest against terrorism”.

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The World Civil War: Will ISIS win or will be defeated? حرب أهلية عالمية: داعش ينتصر أم ينهزم؟

 

The World Civil War:  Will ISIS win or will be defeated?

أغسطس 21, 2017

Written by Nasser Kandil,

شرقاً درّ… الغرب منافق ومتآمر

The international scene does not seem promising as long as the political leaderships of the active and the ruling countries live in a state of alienation from reality. The first superpower which has political, economic, and military control in the world is headed by a white racist who talks in a language that bears the responsibility of more cracks in the humanitarian relationships between the ethnics, colors, and religions. In Europe, where there is the Islamic extremism which has the dark skin versus the Christian extremism which has white and blond skin, and where the black and the blue eyes become the criterion for belonging, dignity and later the death, the reluctant political leaderships rule and flatter the relations with the Gulf governments the source of extremism and atonement on one hand, and with the right –wing extremism in their countries with electoral considerations on the other hand. With the knowledge of these political leaderships the scenes of the opposite mobilization for a civil war are organized. They turn along with their security services into statistical system for victims and denouncing crimes. While in the Islamic rich capable countries, the center of rule is distributed between a sponsor of Wahhabism the origin of takfiri schools in Saudi Arabia and the reference of the Muslim Brotherhood between Ankara and Doha where the media, money, fatwas, mosques turn into schools for sending more of terrorists. In the poor and upper middle-class countries the wars are under ashes, the power is controlled by governments that most of them do not have solutions for the problems of the national independence or attitudes towards the major issues at their forefront Palestine, or plans of development that combat the poverty and ignorance and grant the priority to the security. Therefore thousands of them flee to the west coasts in search for better life, later they become under the pressure of the racist attraction and then fuel for the next war.

It is no longer possible to confine the search of the global security with the fate of ISIS, Al Nusra, and Al-Qaeda organization in Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Afghanistan, Egypt and Libya. The whole world turns into open battlefield where an army does not meet an army or security with terrorism but a white extremist kills the innocent ordinary people from the black or the Muslims, versus Black Muslim extremist kills good simple people of blue eyes. This is the unfair war in its two aspects; its victims are ordinary people. In this war only the racists and the takifiris celebrate their victory by the blood of victims through absorbing new waves of angry people who are similar to them and mobilize them as new soldiers in their unjust war. After every killing of innocents by the Takfiri of ISIS and Al-Qaeda they crowd tens and hundreds of the while Christians of Europe and America to the ranks of the new Nazis and racists, and after every killing that targets the Muslims and the Black in Britain and America they crowd tens and hundreds to the ranks of Al-Qaeda and its supporters and those who celebrate the joy of their criminal operations.

The world turns into dramatic theatre where victims kill other victims by turning around the killers, supporting them, and rejoicing the crime against the innocents and considering it a revenge of victims of similar crime unless a miracle happens. The world will move during few years to more difficult and complicate stage, we will witness during it mutual arming and the spontaneous sort of people by avoiding colors, the share of residence and work in the same areas in search for security and dignity, then it will be easy to see the closure of the districts by night in front of the other color as an enemy, and later closing the districts in front of the police for the sake of the mutual self-security, along with arming that will be followed by raising the opposite barricades. So neither Paris nor London nor Brussels, nor Amsterdam, nor Berlin, nor New York nor Chicago will be away from it. When the spark of this open war breaks out the wise will wake up where the hypocrisy will control the situation, and they will move electorally towards the culture of the white racism and towards the Wahhabism and the Muslim Brotherhood for interest and financial considerations, so maybe today they will be aware that unless there is firmness in confronting these two extremisms, and unless the banners of the civil just protecting country are raised the people in all the world will wake up to discover lately that they turned this beautiful planet into unviable place.

Those who prepare themselves to celebrate the victory on ISIS, they prepare for it and for Al-Qaeda the opportunity of celebrating a joint victory with the White racists against humanity, rationality, civilization, and the victory of death over life.

Translated by Lina Shehadeh,

حرب أهلية عالمية: داعش ينتصر أم ينهزم؟

ناصر قنديل

أغسطس 18, 2017

شرقاً درّ… الغرب منافق ومتآمر

– لا يبدو المشهد الدولي مبشّراً بالخير، طالما أنّ القيادة السياسية لدول فاعلة وحاكمة تعيش بغربة عن الواقع. فالدولة العظمى الممسكة بالدفة السياسية والاقتصادية والعسكرية الأولى في العالم، يتربّع على رأسها عنصري أبيض يتحدّث بلغة تتحمّل مسؤولية إنتاج المزيد من التصدّع في جدار العلاقات الإنسانية بين الأعراق والألوان والأديان، وفي أوروبا حيث ينمو التطرفان الإسلامي الأسمر اللون والبشرة، ومقابله التطرف المسيحي الأبيض والأشقر، وتصير العيون السوداء والعيون الزرقاء معياراً للانتماء والهوية ولاحقاً للموت، تحكم قيادات سياسية متردّدة تجامل العلاقات بالحكومات الخليجية مصدّرة التطرف والتكفير من جهة وبالتطرف اليميني في بلادها بحسابات انتخابية، وتتمّ تحت أعينها مشاهد التعبئة المتقابلة لحرب أهلية لا تبقي ولا تَذَر، وهي تتحوّل مع أجهزتها الأمنية إلى جهاز إحصاء للضحايا وتنديد بالجريمة، وفي الدول الإسلامية الغنية والقادرة يتوزّع مركز الحكم بين راعٍ للوهابية منشأ مدارس التكفير في السعودية، ومرجعية الإخوان المسلمين بين أنقرة والدوحة، حيث الإعلام والمال والفتاوى والمساجد تتحوّل مدارس لتخريج المزيد من الإرهابيين، وفي الدول الفقيرة والمتوسطة الحال، حروب تحت الرماد تمسك بالسلطة حكومات لا تملك في أغلبها حلولاً لمشاكل الاستقلال الوطني ولا وقوفاً على خط القضايا الكبرى وفي مقدّمتها فلسطين، ولا خطط تنمية ومكافحة للفقر والجهل، وتمنح الأولوية للإمساك بالأمن، فتنزح منها ألوف نحو سواحل الغرب بحثاً عن حياة أفضل بداية، لتصير تحت ضغط الاستقطاب العنصري لاحقاً وقوداً للحرب الآتية.

– لم يعُد ممكناً حصر البحث بالأمن العالمي بمصير داعش والنصرة وتنظيم القاعدة في سورية ولبنان والعراق وأفغانستان ومصر وليبيا، فقد تحوّل العالم كله ساحة حرب مفتوحة، لا يتقابل فيها جيش مع جيش، أو أمن مع إرهاب، بل يقوم متطرف أبيض بقتل الناس العاديين الأبرياء الطيبين من السود أو المسلمين، ومقابله يقوم متطرف أسمر مسلم بقتل الناس الطيبين البسطاء من ذوي العيون الزرقاء. وهذه الحرب الظالمة بوجهيها، ضحاياها هم الناس بكلّ ما تتسع له الكلمة من معانٍ وأبعاد. وفي هذه الحرب وحدهم العنصريون والتكفيريون يحتفلون بتبادل أنخاب دماء الضحايا بنصرهم، المتمثل باستيعاب موجات جديدة من الغاضبين من أبناء جلدتهم وتطويعهم جنوداً جدداً في حربهم الظالمة، فكلّ عملية قتل لأبرياء على يد تكفيري من داعش والقاعدة تضخّ العشرات والمئات من المسيحيين البيض في أوروبا وأميركا إلى صفوف النازيين الجدد والعنصريين. وكلّ عملية قتل تستهدف المسلمين والسود في بريطانيا وأميركا تضخ المئات والآلاف إلى صفوف القاعدة ومريديها ومؤيديها والمحتفلين بفرح بعملياتها الإجرامية.

– يتحوّل العالم مسرحاً درامياً مرّ الطعم والمذاق، الضحايا يقتلون الضحايا، بالتفافهم حول القتلة وتأييدهم، واحتفالهم فرحاً بوقوع الجريمة بحق الأبرياء واعتبارها انتقاماً لضحايا جريمة مماثلة وقعت بحق ضحايا آخرين، وما لم تحدث معجزة، يذهب العالم بأعين مفتوحة خلال سنوات قليلة لمرحلة أصعب وأعقد، سنشهد خلالها التسلّح المتقابل والفرز السكاني العفوي، بتفادي اللونين تشارك السكن والعمل في أماكن واحدة بحثاً عن الأمن والكرامة، وبعدها سيكون سهلاً رؤية إغلاق الأحياء ليلاً أمام اللون الآخر كعدو، ولاحقاً إغلاق الأحياء بوجه الشرطة لحساب أمن ذاتي متقابل، وسريان حمّى التسلح يتبعها ارتفاع متاريس متقابلة، لن تكون لا باريس ولا لندن ولا بروكسل ولا أمستردام ولا برلين ولا نيويورك وشيكاغو بمنأى عنها. وعندما تندلع شرارة هذه الحرب المفتوحة على الموت بلا حساب، سيستفيق الحكماء أنهم استقالوا من مهمتهم عندما كان النفاق سيد الموقف، تجاه ثقافة العنصرية البيضاء انتخابياً، وتجاه الوهابية والإخوانية لاعتبارات مصلحية ومالية، عساهم يدركون اليوم أنه ما لم يقع الحزم بمواجهة هذين التطرّفين الإثنين، وما لم ترتفع رايات الدولة المدنية العادلة والراعية والحامية، سيفيق الناس، كلّ الناس، في العالم، كلّ العالم، ليكتشفوا بعد فوات الأوان أنهم حوّلوا هذا الكوكب الجميل مكاناً غير صالح للعيش.

Related

At Least 13 Killed, 50 Injured In Barcelona Van Attack. ISIS Claimed Responsibility

At least 13 people were killed and 50 others injured when a van plowed into a crowd in the turist area in Barcelona, Spain, on Thursday. Catalonia’s interior minister Joaquim Forn officially confirmed these numbers.

According to some media reports, the death toll could be even higher, up to 20 people. However, this still has to be confirmed.

One suspect was arrested after the incident described as a terror attack by Spanish police.

Spanish police have identified one of the suspects as Driss Oukabir. He had allegedly rented the white Fiat van used in the attack. It is not clear if he is the person who has been arrested.

ÚLTIMA HORA | La policía identifica a uno de los implicados en el atentado de Barcelona: Driss Oukabir http://cort.as/yoxE 

A second van linked to the attack (assumed to have been used as getaway car) has been found in the town of Vic in Catalonia.

Rumors are also circulating that somebody has opened fire on police in Barcelona but no confirmation has appeared yet. Spanish media had also reported that two armed men were holed up in a bar in downtown. However, police later dismissed those reports.

Report: Somebody has opened fire on police in second possible attack. 

ISIS claimed responsibility for the attack via its news agency Amaq.

At Least 13 Killed, 50 Injured In Barcelona Van Attack. ISIS Claimed Responsibility

It was the latest terrorist attack using a vehicle in Europe. The incident followed similar attacks in Nice, Berlin and London that have resulted in killing of over 100 people in total.

Meanwhile, US President Donald Trump suggested to use General Pershing’s methods to combat terrorism. During his presidential campaign Trump cited a dubious legend of dipping bullets in pig’s blood, shooting 49 of 50 terrorists, and telling the last one to tell his friends what would happen if they committed further terrorist attacks.

Study what General Pershing of the United States did to terrorists when caught. There was no more Radical Islamic Terror for 35 years!

Photos from the scene:

At Least 13 Killed, 50 Injured In Barcelona Van Attack. ISIS Claimed Responsibility

At Least 13 Killed, 50 Injured In Barcelona Van Attack. ISIS Claimed Responsibility

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Mirzaolang Massacre: Wahhabis Slaughter, the World Watches Silently!!

Local Editor

Militants of Wahhabi ideology massacred dozens of civilians, mostly Shia Hazaras, in a brutal, inhumane way after attacking a village in a remote area of Afghanistan’s northern province of Sar-e Pul earlier this week.

Mirzaolang Massacre


The assailants were a mixed group of Taliban and Daesh terrorists inspired by the Wahhabi ideology, an extremist doctrine of Saudi roots.

 

Mirzaolang Massacre


Following are some of the many heartbreaking photos of the massacred and the survivors as well.

 

Mirzaolang Massacre

Mirzaolang Massacre

Mirzaolang Massacre

Mirzaolang Massacre

Mirzaolang Massacre

Mirzaolang Massacre


Source: Al-Ahed

11-08-2017 | 12:54

The Neoconservatives and the “Coming World”: A response to the questions of a virtual friend

July 31, 2017

by Amir Nour (1)

« In the emerging world of ethnic conflict and civilizational clash, Western belief in the universalityof Western culture suffers three problems: it is false; it is immoral; and it is dangerous »

Samuel Phillips Huntington

« The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order »

Dear friend, I have just read the The Neoconservatives and the “Coming World”: A response to the questions of a virtual friendgreat question you have asked me about the world’s future according to the American Neo-conservative’s vision. This question came quite naturally to your mind when reading the interview (2) given by one of the most impassioned advocates of this school of thought – Thomas Barnett – author of the controversial book “The Pentagon’s New map: War and Peace in the twenty-first century”.

Assuredly, we’re dealing here with a major issue whose understanding is a sine qua non condition for deciphering both the contingencies and the dominant trends characterizing the evolution of international relations, particularly since the end of the Cold War.

Indeed, the turmoil and convulsions the world is experiencing since the turn of the third millennium, more particularly in the region that should be of a paramount interest to you – i.e. the Arab-Muslim world – are one of the most significant manifestations of the process of multidimensional change underway. Most probably, they are harbingers of the “coming world”- in the words of Malek Bennabi- one radically different from that which we have known since the end of the Second World War to the fall of the Berlin Wall and the subsequent collapse of the Soviet empire in 1992.

The ensuing new international reality -the emergence of the United States of America as the sole global superpower- has also been a long shot since it has in turn faded as a result of both the financial and economic crisis that erupted in 2007-2008 and continues to this day, and the rise of new assertive international actors, including the BRICS members (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa).

In all likelihood, this new “coming world” will be multipolar. This is a frightening prospect for the proponents of the perpetuation of the Old Order established by and for the West several centuries ago. And it is quite naturally therefore that the West, under the aegis of its American hegemon leader, is fiercely trying to hinder the realization of this inexorable prospect.

In the first chapter of my aforementioned book (3), I tried to analyze the reasons for this “fear”. At the core of those is undoubtedly the persistence of the imperial ideology that took over American policy after World War II: Neo-conservatism.

As explained in a related Wikipedia article, neoconservatism is a political movement born in the United States during the 1960s of the twentieth century, among conservative-leaning Democrats who became disenchanted with the party’s foreign policy and the “New Left” culture. The first writings of the neo-conservative current appeared in the Jewish monthly New York Monthly Review Magazine Commentary, published by the American Jewish Committee. And the first neo-conservative theorist to have adopted this word and is considered therefore as the founder of this ideology is Irving Kristol (who was militant Trotskyist in his early days!). He is the founder of the famous neo-conservative think tank: Project for the New American Century (PNAC).

Neo-conservatism peaked in influence during the Republican presidential administration of Ronald Reagan whose doctrine was guided by anticommunism and opposition to the global influence of the USSR. It reached its climax at the turn of the last century with the Bush Doctrine of exporting democracy, including by means of military force if necessary. The prominent neo-conservative newspapers are Commentary and the Weekly Standard. There are also neo-conservative think tanks on foreign policy, including American Enterprise Institute (AEI), the Heritage Foundation, JINSA (Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs) and, of course, the PNAC (4).

In foreign policy, the Neocons defend “the military power of Democratic States in international relations in order to establish a new international order”. In a PNAC manifesto published in 1996, they laid out their quintessential thought and principles as follows:

-Moral clarity and benevolent hegemony;
-Preventing the emergence of a rival power;
-End of “complacency” towards dictatorships;
-Refusal of the decline of the American power because it is the first democratic power of the world;
-Upgrading of the military tool to respond to aggression.

The Neo-conservatives say they want a new international order based on freedom, according to the designs that are not those of Kant and Wilson, to which they reproach the impotence, but which take their source in the writings of Moses Maimonides and Saint Augustine. They criticize the United Nations and international law in the name of morality. At major international conferences, they prefer smaller coalitions according to the “mission-defines-the-coalition” principle. They support Israel. Their creed is interventionism. Therefore, the United States “must be recognized as the flagship nation of human rights and export democracy and freedom all over the world if need be by force”.

Among the emblematic ideas of the Neo-conservatives, features prominently the theory of “creative chaos” -developed mainly by Michael Ledeen, a former correspondent in Rome of the New Republic. It is a project aiming to “establish a state of war and permanent instability in the Middle East that would enable the Americans and Israelis to preserve their geostrategic objectives in the region, even by re-redrawing it’s map”. Neo-conservatives do not consider the stability of the world a good to maintain but instead advocate the virtues of destabilisation.

Such was the opinion of Robert Kagan, co-founder with William Kristol of the PNAC. He was the originator of the letter of 26 January 1998 sent to Bill Clinton asking him to conduct another policy in Iraq, one with a view to toppling Saddam Hussein to preserve American interests in the Gulf. The same can be said about Robert Cooper, a British partisan of neoconservatism who advocated a doctrine of “imperialist liberalism” granting the “right” to “civilized countries” to use force against their “foreign ennemies” (5).

It was, however, President G. W. Bush who is notoriously known for having endorsed and put in practice these neo-conservative principles. He did so by invading Afghanistan in 2001 and Iraq in 2003 through an extreme instrumentalization of the unfortunate though “miraculous” events of 11 September 2001. In his 31 December 2005 State of the Union Address, he explained that there is no question of satisfying the “false comfort of isolationism”, which ends in “danger and decline”. America must “lead” the world. It’s a security imperative. “The alternative to American leadership is a much more dangerous and anxious world.” In his view, America must therefore continue to “act boldly in favour of freedom”. And as in 1945 “when she liberated the camps of death, she must accept the call of history to deliver the oppressed”, Half the world lives in a democracy, he said. “We do not forget the other half, in countries like Syria, Burma, Zimbabwe, North Korea and Iran because the demands of justice and the Peace of the world also require their freedom” (6).

To do so, the Security Council of a United Nations, although until then so decried by the neo-conservatives, becomes the privileged instrument for conducting hazardous military expeditions with chaotic consequences for some “recalcitrant” States and their peoples, particularly in the MENA region (7). George W. Bush named as his Ambassador to this important UN body John Bolton, a neo-conservative “hawk” who recounts his UN experience in a book with a very significant title (8).

Almost a decade later, and notwithstanding the debacles of unilateralism and military interventionism he has been preaching ceaselessly, Robert Kagan continues to exert a strong influence on the American establishment. In his book (9) published in 2012, he strived to refute the thesis of the “Decline of America”. This book is said to have become the bedside book of President Barack Obama, who stated in his State of the Union Address in January 2012: “America is back. Anyone who tells you otherwise, anyone who tells you that America is in decline or that our influence has waned doesn’t know what they’re talking about”.

This vision is shared by Steve Bannon, the mastermind of the new administration (before being excluded from it) of President Donald Trump. As explained in the excellent article by Pepe Escobar (10), Steve Bannon “a man who eats history and political theory essays for breakfast (…) a post-truth Machiavelli behind the most powerful of Princes”, sees our current geopolitical juncture as “the ultimate battle between Good and Evil (no, Nietzsche’s verdict, for him, does not apply) ‘Good’ in our case is Christian civilization and its history of two millennia – with a possible place of honor for the Enlightenment and the Industrial Revolution. Its opposite, ‘evil’ is conveyed by a whole series of ‘existential threats’ – from the post-modern, technocratic/secular elites (the inner enemy) to Islam (the enemy in general)”.

For more insight into the roots of this neo-conservative ideology and its impact on the policy that characterizes the United States today, I recommend reading the analysis written by Paul Fitzgerald and Elizabeth Gould (11). Armed with a razor-sharp writing style and remarkably documented references, they dissect the history of the Neocon take over of the United States, through a four-step-process presented as follows:

– American Imperialism Leads the World into Dante’s Vision of Hell
– How Neocons Push for War by Cooking the Books
– How the CIA Created a Fake Western Reality for ‘Unconventional Warfare’
– The Final Stage of the Machiavellian Elites’ Takeover of America

The Neocons, the Arab World and Israel

Dear friend, after outlining this long but indispensable historic and geostrategic overview, I come to the other major question underlying the issue you raised: Why is the Arab-Muslim world the main victim of this American neo-conservative ideology, one that is supposedly the bedrock of the New World Order and the ultimate culmination of a long process of a history coming to an end – according to another neo-conservative theorist: Francis Fukuyama? We now know that History did not end; on the contrary, it is witnessing an unprecedented acceleration, and the American Empire, far from bringing peace and prosperity to the world, has led all mankind on the road to the great disorder in the world and destructive chaos in the Arab-Muslim world, especially through the ill-named “Arab Springs”.

Aided by a formidable “media compressor roller” in its enterprise of global domination on behalf of a so-called messianic “manifest destiny”, the American empire undertook to redesign the world map in order to be able to establish, in the long term, a kind of « World State » or a « World Government ». This presupposes the destruction of nations by dissolving them into regions and continental poles. This is probably what Herbert Marshall McLuhan, the Canadian sociologist and Vatican adviser – notably known for coining the expression « the medium is the message » – had in mind when he wrote in 1968 “War and Peace in the Global village” (12) his revolutionary book in which he depicted a planet made ever smaller by new technologies, and used the concept of “glocal”, a mixture of global and local, foreshadowing the fundamental architecture of the New World Order.

As is well explained in an article (13) published in 2012, after the fall of communism, the epicenter of this policy was set in the Middle East “where not only the great reserves of hydrocarbons are located, but also the State of Israel, the real mother house of Globalism, which has been impeding all attempts of peace in this region of the world since its creation”. The map of this part of the planet has long been redesigned within Judeo-American think tanks as well as by military commands whose ultimate goals are the fragmentation of nations on ethnic and religious bases (leaving Israel as the only regional superpower), but also by pushing Islam to operate its “Vatican II” so as to be integrated tomorrow into the vast global market in gestation. Because Europe « is being in Dormition, whether we like it or not, Islam is the only bulwark against the total stranglehold of the Tel-Aviv and Washington traders on the world”. This desire to subdue Islam also aims to “create a single religion” (which should bring together all religious currents). This will only be achieved through the division of Muslims, Sunnis and Shiites. In view of this, one can easily understand why the sacred Islamic State (14) is also planned, including Mecca and Medina, to better control Islam and integrate it into a new world order, which is not possible today. Indeed this religion does not have an identified hierarchy (15).

In his excellent book “Black Terror White Soldiers: Islam, Fascism & the New Age”, David Livingstone states that because they are far too ignorant of the histories of the rest of the world, and being aware of only the accomplishments of Greece, Rome and Europe, Westerners have been made to believe that their societies represent the most superior examples of civilization. This idea, he continues, derives from the hidden influence of those who believe in and teach that history would attain its fulfillment when man would become God, and make his own laws. Livingstone concludes that this is the basis of the propaganda which has been used to foster a Clash of Civilizations, whereby the Islamic world is presented as stubbornly adhering to the anachronistic idea of “theocracy”. Where once the spread of Christianity and civilizing the world were used as pretexts for colonization, today a new White Man’s Burden makes use of human rights and democracy to justify imperial aggression. And because, after centuries of decline, the Islamic world is incapable of mobilizing a defense, the Western powers, as part of their age-old strategy of Divide and Conquer, have fostered the rise of Islamic fundamentalism, to both serve as agent-provocateurs and to malign the image of Islam.

Few weeks after the Amercian invasion of Iraq, Ari Shavit wrote a thought-provoking piece in the Israeli newspaper Haaretz under the significant title « White Man’s Burden » (16). He stated that the war against Iraq was based on an « ardent faith disseminated by a small group of 25 or 30 neo-conservatives, almost all of them Jewish, almost all of them intellectuals (a partial list: Richard Perle, Paul Wolfowitz, Douglas Feith, William Kristol, Elliot Abrams, Charles Krauthammer), people who are mutual friends and cultivate one another and are convinced that political ideas are a major driving force of history. They believe that the right political idea entails a fusion of morality and force, human rights and grit. The philosophical underpinnings of the Washington neo-conservatives are the writings of Machiavelli, Hobbes and Edmund Burke. They also admire Winston Churchill and the policy pursued by Ronald Reagan ».

Quoting William Kristol, he added that this war was also based on « the new American understanding that if the United States does not shape the world in its image, the world will shape the United States in its own image ». At a deeper level, according to Kristol, it is « a greater war, for the shaping of a new Middle East. It is a war that is intended to change the political culture of the entire region. Because what happened on September 11, 2001, Kristol says, is that the Americans looked around and saw that the world is not what they thought it was. The world is a dangerous place. Therefore the Americans looked for a doctrine that would enable them to cope with this dangerous world. And the only doctrine they found was the neo-conservative one ».

This opinion is obviously shared by Charles Krauthammer for whom « the war in Iraq is being fought to replace the demonic deal America cut with the Arab world decades ago. That deal said: you will send us oil and we will not intervene in your internal affairs ». That deal effectively expired on September 11, 2001, Krauthammer says. Since that day, the Americans have understood that “if they allow the Arab world to proceed in its evil ways – suppression, economic ruin, sowing despair – it will continue to produce more and more bin Ladens”. America thus reached the conclusion that it has no choice: it has to take on itself the project of rebuilding the Arab world. Therefore, the Iraq war « is really the beginning of a gigantic historical experiment whose purpose is to do in the Arab world what was done in Germany and Japan after World War II ».

The article ends with a slightly divergent opinion expressed by Thomas Friedman, The New York Times columnist, who is not part of the group, although he didn’t oppose the war and was convinced that « the status quo in the Middle East is no longer acceptable. The status quo is terminal. And therefore it is urgent to foment a reform in the Arab world ». Friedman thought « it’s the war the neo-conservatives wanted. It’s the war the neo-conservatives marketed. Those people had an idea to sell when September 11 came, and they sold it. Oh boy, did they sell it. So this is not a war that the masses demanded. This is a war of an elite (…) I could give you the names of 25 people (all of whom are at this moment within a five-block radius of this office) who, if you had exiled them to a desert island a year and a half ago, the Iraq war would not have happened ». Still, he was of the opinion that « it’s not some fantasy the neo-conservatives invented. It’s not that 25 people hijacked America. You don’t take such a great nation into such a great adventure with Bill Kristol and the Weekly Standard and another five or six influential columnists. In the final analysis, what fomented the war is America’s over-reaction to September 11; the genuine sense of anxiety that spread in America after September 11. It is not only the neo-conservatives who led us to the outskirts of Baghdad. What led us to the outskirts of Baghdad is a very American combination of anxiety and hubris ».

Echoeing Ari Shavit, Stephen Green affirms (17) that since 9-11, a small group of neo-conservatives –many of whom are senior officials in the Defense Department, National Security Council and Office of the Vice President– have effectively gutted–they would say reformed–traditional American foreign and security policy. After reviewing the internal security backgrounds of some of the best known among them, he concludes that they had dual agendas, while professing to work for the internal security of the United States against its terrorist enemies.

Bill Christison (18) and Kathleen Christison reach the same conclusion (19). They say that since the long-forgotten days when the State Department’s Middle East policy was run by a group of so-called Arabists, U.S. policy on Israel and the Arab world “has increasingly become the purview of officials well known for tilting toward Israel”. These people, “who can fairly be called Israeli loyalists, are now at all levels of government, from desk officers at the Defense Department to the deputy secretary level at both State and Defense, as well as on the National Security Council staff and in the vice president’s office”.

An examination of the cast of characters in Bush administration policymaking circles, they say, reveals a “startlingly pervasive network of pro-Israel activists, and an examination of the neo-cons’ voluminous written record shows that Israel comes up constantly as a neo-con reference point, always mentioned with the United States as the beneficiary of a recommended policy, always linked with the United States when national interests are at issue”.

The two authors point out to a telling example of the drafting by Feith, Perle, and both David and Meyrav Wurmser of a policy paper issued, in 1996, by an Israeli think tank and written for newly elected Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu. Through this document, they urged Israel “to make a ‘clean break’ from pursuit of the peace process, particularly its land-for-peace aspects, which the authors regarded as a prescription for Israel’s annihilation”.

The document’s authors saw the principal threat to Israel coming, we should not be surprised to discover now, from Iraq and Syria and advised that focusing on the removal of Saddam Hussein would kill two birds with one stone by also thwarting Syria’s regional ambitions.

According to the Christisons, Elliott Abrams is “another unabashed supporter of the Israeli right, now bringing his links with Israel into the service of U.S”, after his appointment as Middle East director on the NSC staff.

Interestingly enough, the Christisons were of the view that the dual loyalists in the Bush administration “have given added impetus to the growth of a messianic strain of Christian fundamentalism that has allied itself with Israel in preparation for the so-called End of Days”. These crazed fundamentalists, they say, see Israel’s domination over all of Palestine as a “necessary step toward fulfillment of the biblical Millennium, consider any Israeli relinquishment of territory in Palestine as a sacrilege, and view warfare between Jews and Arabs as a divinely ordained prelude to Armageddon”, which raises the horrifying but very real prospect of an apocalyptic Christian-Islamic war”.

Writing a commentary in a recent issue of Foreign Policy magazine (20), Elliott Abrams –in his capacity as a senior fellow for Middle Eastern studies at the Council on Foreign Relation-, predicts that “even in the best-case scenario, with the Islamic State defeated and losing its control over a “state,” it may continue to exist as a terrorist group — and in any event al Qaeda and other jihadi groups will not disappear”. This, he concludes, “will not end our involvement in Middle East conflicts and may in fact lead it to increase. There will be no repeat of the Iraq wars, with vast American armies on the ground, but there will need to be a long continuation of the sort of commitment we see today”.

As is explained by Alison Weir in her book (21), « Few Americans today are aware that US support enabled the creation of modern Israel. Even fewer know that US politicians pushed

this policy over the forceful objections of top diplomatic and military experts ». Prodigiously documented, this book brings together « meticulously sourced evidence to illuminate a reality that differs starkly from the prevailing narrative. It provides a clear view of the history that is key to understanding one of the most critically important political issues of our day ».

All of the above fits perfectly with the thesis of the “New Sykes-Picot” that I develop in my book.

In conclusion, I believe I can assert that if Men are the main driving force of the events that make world history, they are certainly not the movers and shakers of its destiny. This -as the great Algerian thinker Malek Bennabi wrote in the past century in his flagship book “l’Afro-asiatisme” (22) – is realized “in spite of the will of men (for) human reason would be futile if it did not coincide with the processes of facts that impose God’s will on History. And it would be sacrilegious if it wanted to deflect the course of history as if it wanted to oppose God’s will and purposes”.

* *
*

Notes:

[1] Algerian researcher in international relations, author of the book « L’Orient et l’Occident à l’heure d’un nouveau Sykes-Picot » (“The Orient and the Occident in time of a new Sykes-Picot”), Editions Alem El Afkar, Algiers, 2014.  He is a fervent advocate of the henceforth vital “dialogue of civilizations”, the alternative option of which in today’s increasingly globalized and polarized world, is a catastrophic “clash of civilizations.
[2] “A future worth creating: Interview with Dr. Thomas Barnett“:
Http://www.checkpoint-online.ch/CheckPoint/Forum/For0078-InterviewBarnett.html
[3] Downloadable free of charge, in French and Arabic languages, by clicking on the following links: Http://www.mezghana.net/amir-nour.pdf  and
Http://www.mezghana.net/Sykes-Picot.jadeed-REAL.LAST.pdf
[4] Read the presentation made by l’Observatoire européen des think tanks:
Http://www.oftt.eu/think-tanks/monographs/article/pnac-project-for-the-new-american-century
[5] Robert Cooper “The Breaking of Nations: Order and chaos in the twenty-first century“, Atlantic Monthly Press, New York, 2003.
[6] Read the article in the French newspaper Le Monde of 01/02/2006 entitled ” L’Amérique doit conduire le monde, selon Bush» (America must lead the world, according to Bush).
[7] This episode is superbly analyzed by Hardeep Singh Puri, Permanent Representative of India in Geneva and New York (between 2002 and 2013) in his book “Perilous Interventions: the Security Council and the Politics of chaos“, Harper Collins, 2016.
[8] John Bolton, “Surrender is not an option: Defending America at the United Nations and abroad“, Threshold Editions, 2008.
[9] Robert Kagan, “The World America made“, Alfred A. Knopf, 2012.
[10] Pepe Ecsobar, “Will Andrew Jackson Trump Embody the Benno doctrine” Entelekheia, March 21, 2017.
[11] A four part analysis titled “The history of the Neocon takeover of America “, the Francophone Saker, 10 May 2017.
[12] “War and Peace in the global Village“, Bantam Books, New York, 1967.
[13] Read “Les coups tordus de l’Empire“, in the French magazine “Réfléchir et agir”, No. 40, Winter 2012.
[14] According to a readjustment of the boundaries of the Islamic geographical area imagined by Ralph Peters, member of the PNAC, in an article in the military journal Armed Forces newspaper of June 2006 entitled “How a better Middle East would look“.
[15] In “L’Iran, un pays en sursis “, French magazine ‘Nexus 66’, January-February 2010.
[16] See article « White Man’s Burden », Haaretz newspaper, April 3, 2003.
[17] See Stephen Green, « Neo-Cons, Israel and the Bush Administration », Counterpunch, February 28, 2004.
[18] Bill Christison was a senior official of the CIA. He served as a National Intelligence Officer and as Director of the CIA’s Office of Regional and Political Analysis.
[19] See « The Bush Neocons and Israel », Counterpunch, September 6, 2004.
[20] See « The United States Can’t Retreat From the Middle East », Foreign Policy magazine, July 10, 2017.
[21] Alison Weir, « Against Our Better Judgment: The hidden history of how the United States was used to create Israel », CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, February 2014.
[22] Malek Bennabi, «L’Afro-Asiatisme, conclusions sur la Conférence de Bandoeng », Cairo, Imprimerie Misr S.A.E, 1956.

Hezbollah Liberates Al-Nusra Stronghold in Eastern Lebanon

[ Ed. note – This is a major victory for Hezbollah. The last Al-Nusra stronghold in Lebanon, in the Arsal Mountains on the border with Syria, has been cleared of terrorists. In addition to the RT report above, I am also posting a Hezbollah statement expressing solidarity with Christians and paying tribute to Father Jaques Hamel, a French priest murdered by ISIS terrorists one year ago.

Christians all over the world should be grateful to Hezbollah for its defense of Christians in the Middle East. To the brave fighters of Hezbollah: we thank you. ]

From the Islamic Resistance in Arsal to Father Jacques Hamel… A Homage of Brotherhood and Loyalty

Alahed News

For all mankind, they fought. To all the oppressed, they dedicated their victories. Victims of terrorism spread everywhere like the plague; terrorism which does not distinguish among religions and races.

From the Lebanese Arsal outskirts, are Resistance fighters who offered their most precious in the battle of victory for just and humanity against Takfiri terrorism.

As Hezbollah Secretary General His Eminence Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah offered the victory in Arsal outskirts to both Christians and Muslims, the unjustly slain Father Jacques Hamel had his share of the victory.

The Islamic Resistance’s Mujahedeen in the outskirts did not forget their Christian brothers, particularly Father Hamel. Hence, they saluted his sacrifice via message to al-Ahed news website written in French.

The message reads: “Your spirit will never die. Generations will live on your memory. Rest in peace knowing that we will protect our Christian brothers. Peace be upon you. Your brothers in Hezbollah.”

Father Jacques Hamel, born on November 30th 1930, was a French priest in the parish of Saint-Étienne-du-Rouvray. He was murdered during the Normandy church attack by the Wahhabi Daesh [Arabic acronym for “ISIS” / “ISIL”] terror group on July 26, 2016.

Neither his age nor religious rank were able to spare the 86-year-old priest from the Wahhabi monsters’ claws who never gave any regard to religion nor humanity.

Today, the sons of the Islamic Resistance in Lebanon had triumphed for the spilled blood of the unjustly slain priest.

Despite the pain, the wounds and the hardships of Jihad, the Resistance – from the heart of Arsal Outskirts – did not forget to pay tribute to Father Hamel as to assert that the battle with Takfiri terrorism is one, and that their resistance is to defend all humanity and religions.

Accordingly, this is not the first time Hezbollah fighters had honored their fellow Christians as the land of Ma’loula which had been liberated from the Takfiris, bears witness to the purity of the battle these men are waging. This battle is the strongest evidence of the unity of religions in the face of the Takfiri terrorism.


A little bit more about Father Jaques Hamel from Wikipedia:

Hamel was ordained as a priest on 30 June 1958.[12][17] He served as a vicar at the St. Antoine church in Le Petit-Quevilly from 1958, a vicar at the Notre-Dame de Lourdes church in Sotteville-lès-Rouen from 1967, a parish priest in Saint-Pierre-lès-Elbeuf from 1975, and a parish priest in Cléon from 1988. He joined the church in Saint-Étienne-du-Rouvray in 2000.[18] He officially retired at the age of 75, but was allowed to keep serving in the parish.[13] As a result, he assumed his role as the parish’s assistant priest from 2005 to his death.[18]

With local imam Mohammed Karabila, the president of Normandy’s regional council of Muslims, Hamel worked since early 2015 on an interfaith committee.[12][19] After Hamel’s death, Karabila described him as his friend with whom he had discussed religion and as also someone who gave his life for others.[20]

Hamel died when his throat was slit by two Muslim men, Adel Kermiche and Abdel Malik Petitjean, who both pledged allegiance to the Islamic State.[21][22][23][24] The attack occurred while Hamel was saying Mass in his parish in Saint-Étienne-du-Rouvray on 26 July 2016.[25][26] During the attack, Hamel said “Satan, go!” when confronted by his killers.[3]


Saint-Étienne-du-Rouvray is in the French region of Normandy…


Report from July 27, 2017–one year and one day after Father Hamel’s death…”Satan  go…”…God works in mysterious ways…

Arsal Battle: Nusra Urged to Surrender or Face Death, Battle Almost Over

Alahed News

The Resistance’s accomplishments in its battle in the outskirts of Arsal had been quick and swift. In a few days’ time, the mighty revolutionaries were able to lift the banners of victory over the outskirts’ hills and mountains amid retreats among the ranks of terrorists.

Five days after the start of the offensive in Arsal, the Takfiri al-Nusra Front terrorists are facing an ultimatum: to leave or face eminent death.

As the offensive in the outskirts of Arsal reached its sixth day Wednesday, attention has turned to the looming deadline set by Hezbollah for negotiations with the al-Nusra, and a scheduled evening speech by Hezbollah Secretary General His Eminence Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah.

With the injury of the Nusra chief of operations Omar Wardi after being hit by resistance gunfire, the terrorist group’s militants retreated, Hezbollah War Media Center said.

The center further added that the area occupied by the Nusra terrorists in the outskirts of Arsal had shrank to 10%.

The coming hours will be crucial in determining the outcome of negotiations with Nusra militants whose positions on Arsal outskirts are besieged.

Source: Hezbollah War Media Center, Translated by website team

Independent Journalists Reveal America’s Sinister War in Syria

By Tony Cartalucci

May 29, 2017 “Information Clearing House” –  Syria is not experiencing a “civil war.” It is being targeted by both proxy and direct military force organized by the United States and its allies for the explicit purpose of dividing and destroying yet another Middle Eastern nation.

Worse than that, the United States is employing tactics to transform Syria’s heterogeneous multi-ethnic and religious communities into segregated ghettos, and using this as a means of dividing and conquering the nation and even the region.

The US is also widely employing the abhorrent tactics of socioeconomic, psychological, and armed terrorism to break the Syrian people completely and absolutely.

Unlike in Libya and Iraq, however, US plans in Syria have been confounded. And because of this, ample time has elapsed for independent journalists to travel to, record, and report what is actually transpiring versus the intentional, malicious, and continuous lies told by the West’s mainstream media.

One of these journalists is Patrick Henningsen of 21st Century Wire, whose recent trip to Syria had him cross paths and interview others frequently visiting and sharing their experiences and findings from the besieged nation.

The picture painted is one that cannot be ignored.

For those who have already decided to believe the Western media based on “activist accounts,” the accounts provided during a recent audio interview published by 21st Century Wire is at least as equally compelling. However, for those who truly desire to discover the truth, critical thought and additional research will reveal the latter to be telling a truth consistently and intentionally obfuscated by the Western media.

Imperialism’s Fingerprints: Weaponized Ethnic-Segregation

In an interview with British journalist Tom Duggan, the process of terrorists from internationally designated terror organizations like Jabhat Al Nusra and the so-called “Islamic State” targeting communities along sectarian lines is described. While the Western media has confirmed the sectarian nature of the ongoing conflict, what Duggan and Henningsen’s accounts reveal is that Syria was multi-ethnic, with communities enjoying integration and diversity based first on being Syrian, then based on their respective religious and ethnic identities, long before the conflict began.

Intermarriage and sociopolitical exchanges were common before the conflict, and only since 2011 has ethnic and religious tensions begun to expose fault lines within communities based solely on fear created and perpetuated by foreign-backed terrorist organizations like Al Nusra and the Islamic State.

Pointed out was the fact that both US foreign policy regarding Syria and Al Nusra and the Islamic State’s goals, both aim to see a Syria divided along sectarian lines.

While Al Nusra and the Islamic State attempt to cut Syria’s sectarian-diverse communities up literally with bullets and blades, the US has repeatedly presented multiple maps over several years of Syria divided into sectarian-based micro-states – effectively eliminating Syria as a functioning and unified nation-state. While the US omits the “secret ingredient” to make its fictional maps a reality, it is demonstrably clear that terrorist organizations are the ones on the ground attempting to draw these new maps.

Libya – besieged, divided, and destroyed by US-led NATO aggression in 2011 – has suffered a similar fate and currently exists as a cautionary example of what may become of Syria should US plans succeed. Libya will no longer contest US special interests geopolitically or otherwise in its current form as a failed, divided, and destroyed state.

The premeditated and systematic nature of this attempted division and destruction of Syria matches verbatim the tactics employed for centuries by the British Empire – and before that – the Roman Empire.

It is a fundamental tactic not of humanitarian-motivated interventionists, but of imperialists. The crass nature of these tactics – simultaneously promoted by the West and designated terrorist organizations – explains why the Western media has attempted to portray Syria as ethnically and religiously divided before the conflict began, rather than as a process of intentional division and destruction unfolding as part of US foreign policy.

Similar tactics have been employed in Iraq as well, with much greater success. And even as far as Thailand in Southeast Asia, the groundwork is being laid for similar tactics to be employed to divide and weaken states targeted by Washington for regime change – highlighting the global nature of America’s neo-imperial proclivities.

Daily Terrorism Carried Out By “Rebels,” Not Against Them 

While the Western media has flooded headlines for years regarding the alleged atrocities carried out by the Syrian government and its allies against so-called “moderate rebels,” it has muted coverage of atrocities committed in turn by militants fighting the Syrian government and its people. These accounts are muted, because while they are technically “reported,” the obvious nature of these atrocities is often glossed over – sometimes even spun or lionized – rather than presented in a the same straightforward manner accusations against Damascus are.

During Henningsen’s interview with Duggan, the destructive and indiscriminate nature of improvised artillery systems used by terrorists in Syria was described. The narrative is one that equals any tale of “barrel bombs” employed by the Syrian government – perhaps even surpassing them – because while the Western media claims the Syrian government is using helicopters to drop ordnance into areas using direct line of sight, improvised artillery used by terrorists called “hell cannons” do not have direct line of sight to their targets.

This means that those using hell cannons have no way of knowing who, or even what they are hitting. They are blindly firing canisters full of deadly shrapnel – according to Western reports – up to a mile away.

The Daily Mail would describe the hell cannon as:

Firing improvised explosives with a range of around a mile, this is the homemade weapon of choice of the Free Syrian Army known as the ‘hell cannon’.

The cannon has been widely used during the conflict in besieged cities such as Aleppo and usually fires out highly modified propane gas cylinders.

The hell cannon could only ever be used as an absolutely indiscriminate weapon. With no way to reliably aim it, and no way to know definitively where rounds are landing, the result is predictable mayhem brought upon government forces and innocent civilians alike. With the vast majority of those living down range from the terrorists’ hell cannons being civilians, not soldiers, the likelihood of innocent people being maimed or killed by them is much higher.

For average readers of reports like the Daily Mail’s, “Syrian rebels strike back with the HELL CANNON: Aleppo fighters build devastating homemade weapon that shoots propane gas cylinders,” five minutes of critical thought will lead them to this conclusion.

Those operating among the West’s media – trained in journalism and in reporting events – when writing articles like those appearing in the Daily Mail, are thus making the conscious decision to intentionally, maliciously, and continuously lie regarding the methods and means used by terrorists they repeatedly refer to as “moderate rebels.” The double standards illustrated by the Daily Mail alone regarding “barrel bombs” versus “hell cannons” indicates concerted and serial attempts to misinform audiences and manipulate public perception.

Similar revelations are revealed during Henningsen’s interview with Duggan regarding the terrorists’ use of hospitals, schools, and mosques as military centers – knowing full well that any attempt by Damascus and its allies to target them would be politically exploited by their Western sponsors both from behind the podiums of public offices and within press rooms across the West.

Perhaps most ironic of all – is that US operations in Syria allegedly targeting terrorists, when hospitals, schools, and mosques are hit – produce admissions from across the Western media that – indeed – terrorists are using such facilities as military bases – admissions the Western media refused to make during the Syrian government’s operations to retake cities like Homs, Hama, and Aleppo.

Keeping an Open Mind

For those attempting to make sense of Syria’s ongoing conflict, or any other conflict being reported on by the Western media – the deep and concerted conspiracy that surrounded the US invasion of Iraq in 2003 alone should provide pause for thought before unquestioningly believing narratives produced from these same collection of Western media sources regarding other conflicts.

There are alternative organizations and media platforms operating in Syria, producing videos, audio interviews, and pages of information on a daily basis giving alternative insight into the conflict that people around the world can watch, listen to, and read. While no one is bound to believe Western or alternative narratives – for those genuinely pursing the truth – both need to be considered, researched, and vetted factually, rationally, and within a historical and logical context.

Narratives of a “humanitarian” motivated West seeking to end conflict and bring a brighter future to Syria simply does not add up in any context.

The special interests promoting regime change in Syria have a decades-long track record of deceiving the public, dividing and destroying nations, and leaving a path of destruction cutting across entire regions of the planet. While Western audiences are tempted to believe Western narratives regarding Syria in pursuit of US-backed regime change, nations like Libya, Iraq, Afghanistan, and Ukraine smolder in the ruination of Western military intervention. By adding up the big picture, it is clear that alternative media sources are providing invaluable insight into global conflict the Western media has systematically and intentionally covered up for years.

Shifting in the minds of the global public the perceived reputation of Western media organizations versus their demonstrated serial deceptions is the first step toward truly ending conflicts like that raging in Syria, and truly bringing peace and a better future to the people trapped within these conflicts.

Tony Cartalucci, Bangkok-based geopolitical researcher and writer, especially for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook”.

This article was first published by NEO

The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Information Clearing House.

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Iraq and the dialogue of after the victory العراق وحوار ما بعد الانتصار

Written by Nasser Kandil,

In a pre-emptive smart initiative, the institute of the Iraqi Dialogue headed by the Sheikh Humam Hamoudi, the member in the body of the Head of Representatives in cooperation with the University of Baghdad, the Iraqi Parliament and, and with a remarkable participation from each of the President of the Republic, the Speaker of the Parliament, the Prime Minister, and the heads and the representatives of the main political components has called for a conference under the title of Iraq and the Dialogue after the victory, and in conjunction with a permanent search in the corridors of the Iraqi politics about the settlement’s  items that affect issues that were a matter of suspicion and fear to debate among the Iraqis for a decade ago. Iraq is a Levantine Arab citadel through its population, area, wealth, minds, and status according to active present history and geography.

Iraq will enter the year 2018, after it has freed from three successive burdens, a regime among it the Iraqis have divided till it fell, knowing that some of them felt of cold after it had fallen, and some of them on the early days of the US occupation felt of some kind of warmth comparing with the frost of the former regime. Despite the fact that the continuation of the division around the occupation did not last, but it led to a division around the new regime that is no less than the former regime, even if the opportunities of expression and the frameworks of change were more and available. But after Iraq and the Iraqis have been liberated relatively from the burden of the occupation, they got a heavier burden that re-imposes some of the occupation and some of the former regime along with some of the divisions around them, in addition to the burden of ISIS. But most importantly is that the majority of the Iraqis have agreed to wage the war of confrontation, salvation, and the search for a dialogue that renews the social coherence among the Iraqis on the basis that the first power of Iraq comes from the degree of the cohesion of its interior not the degree of the cohesion of some of its interior with some of its exterior against some of the other part of its interior with some of the other part of its exterior.

This time, the Iraqi Dialogue is a test of the experience before it is a national test that does not lack any of the Iraqis even if they were different in employing its keys and in determining its taboos, only the experience prevents them from turning the different judgments into new division. The experience here is the ability to get the message; first a unified Iraq where the dispute is ravaging in it is better for the components of Iraq than a secession that leads to the rule of the one vote in more than Iraq. Second, the concessions which allay the concerns and extinguish the fears of the partners are the reaping of tomorrow, while scoring the points of the winning on the partner is a revenge for the past. Third, who is the strongest is the one who is demanded to give but he gives up, the one who abandons a force leads, and the one who sticks to the force rules. The competitive Iraqis on tomorrow and their roles in it have to choose between either to run as candidates to lead Iraq or to rule it, remembering always that whenever one has the opportunity to rule, it will not be as it was at the era of the former regime and the occupation.

Iraq approaches from its victory while the world and region change, but the most change that occurs is that the important players are no longer as they were, and that the thoughts which prevailed and dominated during a quarter of a century ago since the fall of Berlin Wall and the rule of the philosophy of the end of the history, and the savage uni-globalization, which the occupation of Iraq was one of its vocabularies are retreating paving the way for everything national. Now America as a symbol of the era which has passed is preparing for the coming era through its nationalism no matter how crude and exaggerated to the extent of racism it is, and in the time of sticking to the special identities and nationalism it has the sovereignty and the legitimacy as two vocabularies that approached from the level of passing and falling in the past quarter – century. By the force of the legitimacy and the sovereignty the Iraqis will discover the points of strength that they did not consider before. As the geography and the history show present elements in the present-industry by drawing the results of the wars and the options of peace, and away from the partisanships, emotions, the warmth of emotions of the biases which were inherited in the time of division, and with the replacement of all of that with the reflection in the history and geography the Iraqis will be able to draw the road map of their future.

The most important conclusion is that the unified Iraq is a power for the Iraqis, at their forefronts those who imagine that the secession is the way of independence, but the weak independence is a dependency, and in order to turn the unity into power there must be a recognition of the joy of the privacies not a call for their abolition. Iraq and Syria are Levantine Arab and Islamic base for making politics, culture, and the economy for their region, through their separation the Levant falls and the Arabs and the Muslims enter the time of rivalry and non-politics. Together they form their roles as a bridge for a dialogue between all the components of the Arab and the Muslim neighborhood and the bases of alliances for its force as well as a rehabilitation of the concept of the national security which the Kurdish Saladin Al Ayoubi has formulated for the Arabs and the Muslims and which its compass is Jerusalem.

Translated by Lina Shehadeh,

العراق وحوار ما بعد الانتصار

ناصر قنديل
– في خطوة استباقية ذكية يدعو معهد الحوار العراقي الذي يرأسه سماحة الشيخ همام حمودي عضو هيئة رئاسة مجلس النواب بالتعاون مع جامعة بغداد ومجلس النواب العراقي، وبمشاركة لافتة لكل من رئيس الجمهورية ورئيس المجلس النيابي ورئيس الحكومة ورؤساء وممثلي المكوّنات السياسية الرئيسية، لعقد مؤتمر تحت عنوان «العراق وحوار ما بعد الانتصار»، بالتزامن مع بحث مستديم في أروقة السياسة العراقية حول بنود تسوية تطال قضايا كان يُنظر إليها بالريبة والخشية من المفاتحة والنقاش بين العراقيين لعقد مضى. والعراق قلعة عربية مشرقية بحجم سكانها ومساحتها وثرواتها وعقولها ومكانتها في كل من نابضَيْ البشرية اللذين لا يتوقفان عن الفعل والحضور، التاريخ والجغرافيا.

– يدخل العراق العام 2018 وقد تخفّف من ثلاثة أعباء متلاحقة، نظام حكم انقسم حوله العراقيون حتى الثمالة، فضاق ثوبه عليهم حتى تشقق وسقط، لكن بعضهم شعر بالوجود في العراء بعده، وبعضهم شعر في الأيام الأولى للاحتلال الأميركي ببعض الدفء بالقياس لصقيع النظام السابق، ورغم عدم دوام الانقسام حول الاحتلال، فقد أورث الاحتلال انقساماً حول النظام الجديد، لا يقل عن الانقسام في ظل النظام السابق، ولو كانت فرص التعبير أوفر وأطر التغيير أكثر، ومع تخفّف العراق والعراقيين نسبياً من عبء الاحتلال، فاجأهم عبء أثقل أعاد بعض الاحتلال وبعض النظام السابق وبعض الانقسامات حولهما، مع عبء داعش، لكنّ الأهم أن النسبة الأغلب من العراقيين بصورة عابرة للعرب والأكراد والطوائف تماسكت في خوض حرب المواجهة والخلاص والبحث عن حوار يجدّد العقد الاجتماعي بين العراقيين على قاعدة اليقين بأن قوة العراق الأولى تأتي من درجة تماسُك داخله لا بدرجة تمسُّك بعض داخله ببعض خارجه بوجه بعض آخر من الداخل متمسّك ببعض آخر من الخارج.

– الحوار العراقي هذه المرة امتحان خبرة قبل أن يكون امتحان وطنية لا تنقص أحداً من العراقيين، ولو تفاوتوا في الاجتهاد في توصيف مفاتيحها واختلفوا في تحديد محرّماتها. والخبرة وحدها هي التي تعصمهم عن تحويل الاجتهادات المختلفة إلى انقسام جديد، يحملون سلاسله الثقيلة تجرجرها أقدامهم ببطء يحول دون انطلاق مسيرتهم. والخبرة هنا هي في القدرة على استخلاص العبرة، وأولها أن عراقاً موحداً يعصف فيه الخلاف أفضل لكل مكونات العراق من انفصال يؤسس لحكم الصوت الواحد في أكثر من عراق. وثانيها أن التنازلات التي تهدئ الهواجس وتطفئ المخاوف لدى الشركاء هي استثمار في الغد، بينما تسجيل نقاط الربح على الشريك هو انتقام للماضي. وثالثها أن الأقوى هو المطالَب بأن يعطيَ ويتنازل، ومَن يتنازل عن قوة يقود، ومن يتمسك بالقوة يحكم، وأمام العراقيين المتنافسين على الغد وأدوارهم فيه أن يختاروا بين أن يترشّحوا لقيادة العراق أم لحكمه، متذكّرين دائماً أنه مهما تيسرت لأحدهم فرصة الحكم، فلن تتيسّر، كما كانت للنظام السابق وللاحتلال، وما دامت.

– يدخل العراق زمن نصره، والعالم والمنطقة يتغيّران، وأهمّ ما يتغيّر هو أنّ اللاعبين الكبار، لم يعودوا كما كانوا، وأن الأفكار التي توسّع انتشارها وطغت خلال ربع قرن مضى منذ سقوط جدار برلين وسيادة فلسفة نهاية التاريخ والعولمة الأحادية المتوحشة، التي كان احتلال العراق أحد مفرداتها، تتراجع مخلية المكان لعودة كل ما هو وطني. وهذه هي أميركا كدولة رمز للحقبة التي مضت تستعدّ للحقبة المقبلة بوطنيتها مهما بدت فجة ومبالغاً بها حدّ العنصرية. وفي زمن التمسك بالهويات الخاصة والوطنيات تمتلك السيادة والشرعية، كمفردتين قاربتا حد الزوال والسقوط في ربع القرن الماضي، بريقاً وجاذبية وفاعلية لم تمتلك مثلها في عصرها الذهبي، وبقوة الشرعية والسيادة سيكتشف العراقيون كثيراً نقاط قوة لم يقيموا لها حساباً مشابهاً من قبل، بمثل ما تظهر الجغرافيا والتاريخ عناصر حاضرة في صناعة الحاضر ورسم نتائج الحروب وخيارات السلم. وبالتجرد عن العصبيات والعواطف وحرارة انفعالات الانحيازات التي تمليها اصطفافات موروثة من زمن الانقسامات، واستبدال كل ذلك بالتمعن البارد في التاريخ والجغرافيا سيتمكن العراقيون من رسم خارطة طريقهم للمستقبل.

– أهمّ الخلاصات أنّ العراق الموحد قوة للعراقيين وأولهم مَن يتخيّلون الانفصال طريق استقلال. والاستقلال الضعيف تبعية. وأن الوحدة كي تصير قوة فهي جمع لا قهر ولا طرح ولا قسمة ولا ضرب بين مختلفين، بل اعتراف بفرح الخصوصيات لا دعوة لإلغائها. وأن العراق وسوريا قاعدة صناعة السياسة والحضارة والاقتصاد لمنطقتهم، مشرقية وعربية وإسلامية، بتفرقهما يسقط المشرق ويدخل العرب والمسملون زمن التناحر واللاسياسة، يصيغان معاً دورهما جسر حوار بين سائر مكونات الجوار العربي والإسلامي، وقواعد التحالفات لقواه، ورد الاعتبار لمفهوم للأمن القومي صاغه الكردي صلاح الدين الأيوبي للعرب والمسلمين بوصلته القدس.

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