TURKEY’S ETERNAL CRUSADE ON PKK CONTINUES

South Front

Turkey is unrelenting in its crusade against the Kurdistan Worker’s Party and the People’s Protection Units, as two parts of a whole.

Ankara’s forces carry out frequent operations within and without the country, targeting both the Kurdistan Worker’s Party s (PKK) and the People’s Protection Units (YPG)’s interests and members. The Turkish government dubs both groups as terrorists, and does not shy away from invading the sovereign territory of other countries to pursue and “eliminate” their members and positions.

As a result, Turkey frequently encroaches on Syrian and Iraqi territory, and even has observation posts set up to target its Kurdish enemy.

It strongly opposes the Syrian Democratic Forces, a group whose core is comprised of the YPG, and receives heavy US support.

Most recently, between February 10th and the 14th, Turkey began its most recent operation in northern Iraq. In particular, it took place on the Gara Mountain in the Duhok Governorate of the Kurdistan Region. The result was such that both the PKK and the Turkish Armed Forces claimed victory, following the operation. The accounts of what transpired vary.

Turkey said it killed 53 PKK members, and captured 2. It admitted to losing 3 soldiers, while 4 of its troops were wounded in battle. According to the PKK, Turkey lost at least 30 soldiers, and dozens more were injured. A sort of collateral damage involved 13 Turkish hostages whose corpses were discovered in a cave network in the mountain area. Turkey and the US claimed that these were largely civilians, and some intelligence officers. The PKK claimed these were 13 Turkish military hostages. Turkey’s Defense Minister claimed many weapons and ammunition, as well as other equipment were seized.

In the aftermath, Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan vowed to expand military operations which showed progress to other regions where threats are still significant.

Ankara’s aggressive and assertive actions are making many of the involved parties dissatisfied. Regardless it keeps carrying them out and shows no intention of stopping.

In Iraq, the Al-Nujaba Islamic Resistance Movement issued a warning to the Turkish Army against invading the country any longer. It said that it would suffer the same fate as the American Army whose convoys and positions continue to be targeted. Iraq maintains the posture that Turkey must withdraw fully from its sovereign territory. It should simply pack up its bases in the north of the country and vacate the premises.

In response, Turkey maintains that the West, and Iraq’s government aren’t doing enough to counter the alleged terrorist threat. Ankara claims it has its right of self-defense, even if it requires invading other countries.

Operation Claw Eagle 2 was of questionable success, if the numbers by the PKK are to be considered, against those provided by Turkey. These operations, however, are unlikely to stop, both in Iraq and Syria.

Erdogan seems hell-bent on solving all “security issues” and expanding Turkish activities in regions that are deemed threatening to Ankara’s interests.

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SAA Kills and Injures 16 Turkestan Islamist Party Terrorists North of Hama

ARABI SOURI 

Turkestan Islamist Party terrorist group - Syria - الحزب الاسلامي التركستاني

The Syrian Arab Army (SAA) killed and injured 16 terrorists of the Turkestan Islamist Party in the northwestern countryside of Hama, central Syria.

The army units spotted a group of anti-Islamic Turkestan Islamist Party terrorists in the Al-Ghab Valley heading to their makeshift posts to attack Syrian Army posts in the area and targeted them with a guided-missile.

Local sources confirmed the killing of 7 terrorists at least and the injury of 9 others at the time of writing this report.

Turkish Madman Erdogan imported tens of thousands of radical terrorists from regions where his Muslim Brotherhood global radicalization groups operate, mainly in Central Asian countries all the way to the Chinese Xingyang Province of Muslim majority. The Turkestan Islamist Party is one of the backbones of these terrorist groups the Turkish pariah Erdogan uses in his regional influence spreading which spans from west China to Germany and from the Caucasus to north and western African countries.

The Syrian Arab Army and the Russian Aerospace Forces have increased their levels of readiness recently and resumed targeting the posts of terrorist groups sponsored by Turkey and the USA in Idlib and Hama provinces especially after the latest deadly attacks by ISIS and its affiliates against buses in the region. In the past week, the Russian Aerospace Forces carried out successful strikes against command centers, tunnels, and weapons depots in northern Idlib countryside, while the SAA targeted terrorist gatherings in the southern countryside of the province.

Terrorist groups designated as such by the United Nations Security Council are not included in the Moscow, Astana, and Sochi ceasefire agreements in which the Turkish regime of Erdogan is a signatory and he has not only failed to meet his commitments as per these agreements for the past 2 years, he has instead beefed up the terrorist groups operating under his command in northern Syria regions and sent thousands of Turkish army soldiers to serve as human shields between his terrorists and the Syrian Army units on Syrian territories.

Worth noting that Mike Pompeo, Donald Trump’s secretary of state delisted the Turkistan Islamist Party from the US list of terrorist groups last November 2020, despite the UNSC maintaining them as one of the most dangerous terrorist organizations with terrorist activities in a number of countries.

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NATO Supremacists New Round of Frenzied War Crimes in Syria

MIRI WOOD 

Hasakah people protesting cutting off alouk water

NATO supremacists illegally in Syria have gone into a frenzy of increased war crimes against the Levantine republic, on 17 January: The lame duck Trump forces continue to empty silos in the al Jazeera region of grain; Madman Erdogan forces have again turned off water to one million Syrians living in al Hasakah; Trump cannon fodder SDF terrorists have kidnapped more young Syrian men from al Susa and Hajin, Deir Ezzor countryside.

Featured image above, shows thousands of Syrians demanding their water rights, again turned off by Madman Erdogan’s illegal troops occupying the Allouk water station. Video below is a glimpse of the demonstration.

While the transatlantic stenographers do their belly-bumping phony piety in lamentations over the 6 January invasion of the US Capitol by Trump supporters and various undercovers, and fake rend their clothing over 25,000 National Guard soldiers (to protect 1,435 senators and congress members) they remain arrogantly mute over the ongoing kidnappings, murders, bombings, water deprivation and destruction of essential infrastructure in the Arabic, Muslim-majority country of Syria.

The twenty convoy trucks that smuggled more stolen Syrian grain into Iraq were protected by illegal, armored, US vehicles. NATO supremacy means stealing other people’s foods. This massive theft was a follow up to the massive Syrian barley theft of 10 January, which also had the NATO stenographer supremacists on mute.

Trump forces smuggle stolen Syrian grains to Iraq
Trump forces loot and smuggle Syrian grains to Iraq

Depriving a civilian population of their water is also a war crime. In October 2019, NATO Madman Erdogan bombed the electrical grid at the Alouk station. The Syrian electricity army repairs it, after which Erdogan bombed it again, after which it was again repaired, after which Erdogan’s forces invaded and occupied the water plant. NATO supremacy also means trying to crush other people’s countries by stealing their water.

The demonic SDF separatists were originally created under the NATO supremacist Obama regime, which collected international wetworkers to teach the subsequent cannon fodder how to terrorize the Syrian population. During the Obama years, atrocities against Syria were perpetrated ‘by accident,’ as when he meant to war criminally bomb ISIS but accidentally slaughtered 83 Syrian soldiers defending their homeland.

 

The Trump regime expanded on Obama’s war crimes, intentionally bombed Syrian soldiers for al Qaeda, and set up criminal military bases in Syria (whereas Obama only sent in ‘spec operatives.’ See “Cue the Illegal Orangettes,” here.).

Today, a “weapons shop” run under Madman Erdogan’s al Qaeda forces in Idlib, blew up. It was located in a crowded market, near to a school. Western propagandists have remained silent on this atrocity, also. Imagine such a scene in Paris, London, Berlin, Philly, or Los Angeles being normalized:

Idlib explosion in weapons shop kills one person

Since the “deadly siege” on the US Capitol, 6 January, western supremacists have been aghast, horrified by a small fraction of what those western supremacists do to non-western countries, with impunity, on daily basis. Our unindicted war criminals that drop NATO weapons into the hands of savage beasts in Syria, call the psychopaths “freedom fighters” and cheer the horrors they perpetrate on the Syrian people, in the name of the imperial paraphilia, “democracy.”

Here are some examples of our glorious freedom and democracy, in DC, today, as inauguration day approaches; it does give the appearance of a military occupation, the type of which our terrified politicians in the Capitol on the first Wednesday of the first month of the new year, have imposed on mostly brown-skinned and/or Muslim majority countries for decades.

 

Some of the detritus, hysteria, and shame/lessness of DC may eventually be put into a box labeled “Trump,” and we shall probably return to our collective criminal work as imperial NATO supremacists, entitled to tying up those tedious loose ends of uppity countries refusing to be crushed by western humanitarian democracy.

When that time comes, may we watch Syria’s President Bashar al Assad, walking freely and safely among his fellow countrymen and women, and may we honestly denounce the supremacists among us.

— Miri Wood

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SADAT: Blackwater… with a Turkish-Islamic Flavor!

ARABI SOURI 

Turkish SADAT Mercenary and security company - Erdogan

The following is the English translation from Arabic of the latest article by Turkish career journalist Husni Mahali he published in the Lebanese Al-Mayadeen news site Al-Mayadeen Net:

All the opposition’s questions and inquiries remain unanswered as long as the ambiguity hangs over the entire activity and activities of the “SADAT” company.

Turkey has been witnessing for days, far from the interests of the global media, an exciting debate related to the defense philosophy that President Recep Tayyip Erdogan believes in, at least according to the opposition’s perception. The International Defense and Consulting Services Company, SADAT, announced a few days ago, on its official website: “Organizing special courses in the field of assassinations, bombings, raids, ambushes, and special operations.” This was preceded by a webinar in which some thinkers from Islamic countries participated, during which they discussed “the necessity for Islamic countries to have a joint force in order to rise to the level of superpowers in defending themselves.”

The discussion gained additional importance, because the founder and chairman of the company, Adnan Tanri Wardi, was until January of last year a personal advisor to President Erdogan, as well as a member of the Supreme Commission for Defense and Foreign Policy Affairs in the Republican Palace.

Before getting acquainted with the nature of this company and its various activities, it is necessary to introduce the man and his interesting personality, as he was the commander of the special units in the Chief of Staff before he was expelled from the army in 1996 because of his religious activities, and he was also, a friend of Erdogan, a lecturer at the War College about war gangs when the latter (Erdogan) was mayor of Istanbul in 1994, and the current defense minister, Hulusi Akar, was one of his students.

Retired General Tanry Wardi established his company, “SADAT” on February 28, 2012, after being acquainted with the activities of private American security companies, the most important of which was “Blackwater”, in Iraq, Afghanistan and Yemen, and before that, Africa and Latin America.

Turkish newspapers published more information about the activity of this company, but without any official response to these allegations and the inquiries and questions of members of parliament by the opposition parties, including Unal Cevikoz from the Republican people, and Aton Geray about the “Good Party”, who called on the government to reveal the secrets of the company’s activities and secrets inside Turkey, and in Syria, Libya and other places. The company announced after its founding in 2012 that among its goals is “to provide security services to the armies and security forces in countries friendly to Turkey.”

The head of the “Good Party”, Maral Akshanar, spoke about the secret training camps of the aforementioned company near the cities of Konya and Tokat in central Anatolia, “and appealed to President Erdogan” to reveal the reasons, objectives and activities of these camps. ” The press information talked more than once about the company’s officers training the various Syrian factions in guerrilla warfare and the various arts of war and fighting since its establishment, especially after the failure of the CIA project to train the militants of the moderate Syrian factions in camps for Turkey in the year 2013-2014.

Spokesmen for the opposition parties accused the company of secretly transferring weapons and combat equipment to the aforementioned factions, after they obtained them from various countries, including Serbia and Ukraine. Journalist Mehmet Ali Gular said in the Cumhuriyet newspaper that Adnan Tanri Wardi persuaded President Erdogan during Sochi’s discussions with President Putin in September 2018 to establish Turkish military observation points in the vicinity of Idlib, despite the objection of the military leadership.

Adnan Tanri Wardi rose to prominence after the failed coup attempt on July 15, 2016, after President Erdogan appointed him as his personal advisor, and it was said that he plays a major role in rearranging the affairs of the military establishment, after Erdogan canceled, by presidential decree, all military colleges and schools to replace them with The National Defense University which is headed now by a professor of Ottoman history close to him, and civilians close to Erdogan head the military colleges of the aforementioned university, which is joined according to criteria that will contribute in the medium and long term to the “Islamization of the military establishment.”

During the past period, opposition newspapers published a lot of news and articles about the company’s activities and the activities of its owner, who was said to have had a direct role in training members of the armed factions in Libya since 2013. He also played an important role in transporting Syrian mercenaries to Libya and supervising their movements there, which is the case also in Karabakh.

Member of Parliament for the Republican People Party, Unal Cevikoz, referred to the confessions of President Erdogan, who last year spoke about “sending various groups to fight in Libya,” and asked: “What are these various groups? What is the aforementioned company’s relationship with it? What is the number of its members? How much the Turkish state pays it? What are its special tasks in Libya or Syria or anywhere else if it exists?

This may explain the call of Aula Jalbka and Andre Hahn, members of parliament for the left party of the German government, to “follow up the activities of the mentioned company and its relations with the Turkish community and Islamic mosques in Germany,” and French President Macron did not hide his concern “about the Turkish secret activity among the Muslim communities in his country and in Europe in general. “

The sudden change in the internal system of the armed forces came at the end of last month, as the intelligence and internal security forces would be able to use whatever they want from the army’s weapons, to increase the suspicions of the opposition, which accused President Erdogan in the past of “working to form armed militias loyal to him directly to be used in emergency situations,” without the opposition parties and forces being able to confront Erdogan’s projects and plans as long as he controls the majority in parliament and controls all state facilities and apparatus, the most important of which are the army, intelligence, security, money, and the judiciary, and 95% of the state and private media.

Erdogan seeks to silence his opponents through financial fines imposed by government authorities on opposition newspapers, while the Supreme Council of Radio and Television decides to close television stations or impose heavy financial fines on them, under the pretext that they broadcast news that contradicts “the national interests of the nation and the Turkish state,” which means objection to his policies.

All of this explains President Erdogan’s attack on the leaders of the opposition parties and all those who oppose him, accusing them all of “terrorism, national treason, and espionage.” In turn, the security and judiciary will prosecute anyone who objects to this statement and charge him with insulting the President of the Republic, which carries a sentence of between one and three years in prison.

The opposition says that what the Turkish president aims to do is prevent his opponents on the right and left from talking about the secrets of Turkish activities, official and unofficial, in the military, security, and intelligence sectors abroad, especially in Syria, Libya, Iraq, Somalia, and in its neighboring countries, and now in Azerbaijan and Ukraine.

All the opposition’s questions and inquiries remain unanswered as long as the ambiguity hangs completely over the work and activities of the “SADAT” company. “There is no difference between it and the notorious American” Blackwater “company in Iraq and other Arab and African countries, said Ozkur Ozal, a spokesman for the CHP.

Aiton Girai, a member of parliament for the “Good Party”, expressed “his concern about the activities of the aforementioned secret company in Libya,” saying that it is there to achieve balance with the Russian “Wagner” company that supports General Haftar’s forces.

In all cases, and with the continued ambiguity that hangs over the activities of the aforementioned company, everyone knows that it has a very important role in serving the goals, plans, and projects of the Turkish President, both internally and externally, without anyone being able to go into the details, as long as the issue is related to the national security of Turkey, which only Erdogan defines its concepts and standards!

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“بلاك ووتر”.. بنكهة تركيّة إسلاميّة!

حسني محلي

حسني محلي
المصدر: الميادين نت
18 كانون الثاني 15:48

تبقى جميع أسئلة المعارضة واستفساراتها من دون جواب، ما دام الغموض يخيم بالكامل على نشاط شركة سادات وفعالياتها.

قام الجنرال المتقاعد تانري واردي بتأسيس شركته

تشهد تركيا منذ أيام، وبعيداً من اهتمامات الإعلام العالمي، نقاشاً مثيراً له علاقة بفلسفة الدفاع التي يؤمن بها الرئيس رجب طيب إردوغان، على الأقل بحسب تصوّر المعارضة، فقد أعلنت الشركة الدولية للدفاع والخدمات الاستشارية “سادات” قبل أيام، عبر موقعها الرسمي على الإنترنت، “عن تنظيم دورات خاصة في مجال الاغتيالات والتفجيرات والمداهمات والكمائن والعمليات الخاصة”. وسبق ذلك ندوة عبر الإنترنت شارك فيها بعض المفكّرين من دول إسلامية، تم خلالها مناقشة “ضرورة أن يكون للدول الاسلامية قوة مشتركة حتى ترتقي إلى مستوى الدول العظمى في الدفاع عن نفسها”. 

واكتسب النقاش أهميّة إضافيّة، لأنّ مؤسّس الشركة ورئيس مجلس إدارتها، عدنان تانري واردي، كان حتى كانون الثاني/يناير من العام الماضي مستشاراً شخصياً للرئيس إردوغان، كما كان عضواً في الهيئة العليا لشؤون الدفاع والسياسة الخارجية في القصر الجمهوري.

وقبل الاطّلاع على ماهية هذه الشّركة وأنشطتها المختلفة، لا بدَّ من التعريف بالرجل وبشخصيّته المثيرة، فقد كان قائداً للوحدات الخاصة في رئاسة الأركان قبل أن يطرد من الجيش في العام 1996 بسبب أنشطته الدينيّة، وكان أيضاً، وهو صديق لإردوغان، محاضراً في الكلية الحربية حول حرب العصابات عندما كان الأخير رئيساً لبلدية إسطنبول في العام 1994، وكان وزير الدفاع الحالي خلوصي أكار من تلامذته. 

وقد قام الجنرال المتقاعد تانري واردي بتأسيس شركته “سادات” في 28 شباط/فبراير 2012، بعد أن اطلع على نشاط الشركات الأمنية الأميركية الخاصة، وأهمها “بلاك ووتر”، في العراق وأفغانستان واليمن، وقبلها أفريقيا وأميركا اللاتينية. 

ونشرت الصحف التركية المزيد من المعلومات عن نشاط هذه الشركة، ولكن من دون أن يرد أي مسؤول رسمي على هذه الادعاءات وعلى استفسارات وأسئلة أعضاء البرلمان عن أحزاب المعارضة، ومنهم آونال جاويكوز عن الشعب الجمهوري، وآيتون جيراي عن الحزب “الجيد”، اللذان ناشدا الحكومة للكشف عن خفايا أنشطة الشركة وأسرارها داخل تركيا، وفي سوريا وليبيا وأماكن أخرى. وقد أعلنت الشركة بعد تأسيسها في العام 2012 أنَّ من بين أهدافها “تقديم خدمات أمنية لجيوش وقوى الأمن في الدول الصديقة لتركيا”.

وتحدَّثت رئيسة الحزب “الجيد” مارال أكشانار “عن مخيمات تدريب سرية تابعة للشركة المذكورة قرب مدينتي قونيا وتوكات وسط الأناضول”، وناشدت الرئيس إردوغان “للكشف عن أسباب هذه المخيمات وأهدافها وفعالياتها”. وتحدّثت المعلومات الصّحافية أكثر من مرة عن قيام ضباط الشركة بتدريب عناصر الفصائل السورية المختلفة على حرب العصابات ومختلف فنون الحرب والقتال منذ تأسيسها، وخصوصاً بعد فشل مشروع المخابرات الأميركية في تدريب مسلحي الفصائل السورية المعتدلة في مخيمات خاصة بتركيا في العام 2013-2014. 

واتهم المتحدثون باسم أحزاب المعارضة الشركة بنقل الأسلحة والمعدات القتالية سراً إلى الفصائل المذكورة، بعد أن حصلت عليها من دول مختلفة، ومنها صربيا وأوكرانيا. وقال الصحافي محمد علي جوللار في صحيفة “جمهوريات” إن عدنان تانري واردي هو الذي أقنع الرئيس إردوغان خلال مناقشات سوتشي مع الرئيس بوتين في أيلول/سبتمبر 2018، بإنشاء نقاط المراقبة العسكرية التركية في جوار إدلب، على الرغم من اعتراض القيادات العسكرية على ذلك. 

وسطع نجم عدنان تانري واردي بعد محاولة الانقلاب الفاشلة في 15 تموز/يوليو 2016، بعد أن عيَّنه الرئيس إردوغان مستشاراً شخصياً له، وقيل إنّه يؤدي دوراً رئيسياً في إعادة ترتيب أمور المؤسسة العسكرية، بعد أن ألغى إردوغان بمرسوم رئاسي كل الكليات والمدارس العسكرية، لتحلّ محلها جامعة الدفاع الوطني، ويترأسها الآن بروفيسور في التاريخ العثماني مقرب منه، كما يترأس مدنيون مقربون منه الكليات العسكرية التابعة للجامعة المذكورة التي يتم الانضمام إليها وفق معايير ستساهم على المدى المتوسط والبعيد في “أسلمة المؤسسة العسكرية”. 

ونشرت صحف المعارضة خلال الفترة الماضية الكثير من الأخبار والمقالات عن نشاط الشركة وفعاليات صاحبها، الذي قيل إنّ له دوراً مباشراً في تدريب عناصر الفصائل المسلحة في ليبيا منذ العام 2013. كما أدى دوراً مهماً في نقل المرتزقة السوريين إلى ليبيا والإشراف على تحركاتهم فيها، وهو الحال أيضاً في كاراباخ. 

وأشار عضو البرلمان عن الشعب الجمهوري آونال جاويكوز إلى اعترافات الرئيس إردوغان الذي تحدث العام الماضي عن “إرسال مجموعات متنوعة للقتال في ليبيا”، وتساءل: “يا ترى، ما هي هذه المجموعات المتنوعة؟ وما علاقة الشركة المذكورة بها؟ وما هو عدد عناصرها؟ وكم تدفع الدولة التركية لها؟ وما هي مهماتها الخاصة في ليبيا أو سوريا أو أي مكان آخر إن كان موجوداً؟”.

وقد يفسر ذلك دعوة كلّ من آوللا جالبكا وأندريه هان، عضوي البرلمان عن حزب اليسار الحكومة الألمانية، “لمتابعة نشاط الشركة المذكورة وعلاقاتها بالجالية التركية والجوامع الإسلامية الموجودة في ألمانيا”، كما لم يخفِ الرئيس الفرنسي ماكرون قلقه “من النشاط السري التركي بين الجاليات الإسلامية في بلاده وأوروبا عموماً”.

وجاء التغيير المفاجئ في النظام الداخلي للقوات المسلّحة نهاية الشهر الماضي، إذ سيتسنى للمخابرات وقوى الأمن الداخلي استخدام ما تشاء من أسلحة الجيش، ليزيد من شكوك المعارضة التي اتهمت الرئيس إردوغان سابقاً “بالعمل على تشكيل ميليشيات مسلحة موالية له مباشرة لاستخدامها في الحالات الطارئة”، من دون أن يتسنى لأحزاب وقوى المعارضة أن تتصدى لمشاريع إردوغان ومخططاته ما دام يملك الأغلبية في البرلمان ويسيطر على جميع مرافق الدولة وأجهزتها، وأهمها الجيش والمخابرات والأمن والمال والقضاء، و95% من وسائل الإعلام الحكومي والخاصّ.

ويسعى إردوغان لإسكات معارضيه من خلال الغرامات المالية التي تفرضها السلطات الحكومية على صحف المعارضة، في الوقت الذي يقرر المجلس الأعلى للإذاعة والتلفزيون إغلاق محطات التلفزيون أو فرض غرامات مالية كبيرة عليها، بحجة أنها تبث أخباراً تتناقض مع “المصالح الوطنية والقومية للأمة والدولة التركية”، وهو ما يعني الاعتراض على سياساته.

 ويفسر كل ذلك هجوم الرئيس إردوغان على قيادات أحزاب المعارضة وكل من يعارضه، واتهامهم جميعاً “بالإرهاب والخيانة الوطنية والعمالة والتجسس”. بدوره، يلاحق الأمن والقضاء كل من يعترض على هذا الكلام، ويوجه له تهمة الإساءة إلى رئيس الجمهورية، التي تتراوح عقوبتها بين عام و3 أعوام في السجن.

وتقول المعارضة إن ما يهدف إليه الرئيس التركي هو منع معارضيه في اليمين واليسار من الحديث عن أسرار الأنشطة التركية، الرسمية منها وغير الرسمية، عسكرياً وأمنياً واستخباراتياً في الخارج، وبشكل خاص في سوريا وليبيا والعراق والصومال والدول المجاورة لها، والآن في أذربيجان وأوكرانيا. 

وتبقى جميع أسئلة المعارضة واستفساراتها من دون جواب، ما دام الغموض يخيم بالكامل على نشاط شركة “سادات” وفعالياتها. وقد قال آوزكور آوزال، المتحدث باسم حزب الشعب الجمهوري، “أن لا فرق بينها وبين شركة “بلاك ووتر” الأميركية السيئة الصيت في العراق ودول عربية وأفريقية أخرى”.

وعبّر آيتون جيراي، عضو البرلمان عن الحزب “الجيد”، “عن قلقه من فعاليات الشركة المذكورة السرية في ليبيا”، وقال عنها “إنها تتواجد هناك لتحقيق التوازن مع شركة “واغنر” الروسية التي تدعم قوات الجنرال حفتر”.

وفي جميع الحالات، ومع استمرار الغموض الذي يخيم على فعاليات الشركة المذكورة، يعرف الجميع أنَّ لها دوراً مهماً جداً في خدمة أهداف الرئيس التركي ومخططاته ومشاريعه على الصعيدين الداخلي والخارجي، من دون أن يتسنى لأحد الدخول في التفاصيل، ما دام الموضوع له علاقة بالأمن الوطني والقومي لتركيا، ولا يحدد أحد مفاهيمه ومعاييره إلا  إردوغان وحده!

Erdogan and Libya… Will the Ottoman Dream End?

ARABI SOURI 

Erdogan the Ottoman Caliph Wannabe - Syria Libya Yemen Africa Azerbaijan

The following is the English translation from Arabic of the latest article by Turkish career journalist Husni Mahali he published in the Lebanese Al-Mayadeen news site Al-Mayadeen Net:

The last week of last year witnessed interesting developments in the Libyan file, and it seems that it will become more hot and interesting during the next few days and weeks; after the fiery statements made by Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar calling for the “expulsion of the Turkish occupier”, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan did not delay in responding by sending the Minister of Defense Hulusi Akar and the commanders of the armed forces to Tripoli, in a new attempt from him to flex the muscles, which he relatively failed in after his “strategic ally” Fayez al-Sarraj refused to receive the delegation that met the pro-Ankara figures led by the Minister of Interior, Fathi Bash Agha, who has Ottoman origins, in the midst of information that started talking about differences, splits and conflicts between the forces, factions, and armed groups that support the government Al-Wefaq, some of which are loyal to Turkey, which the Misrata factions attach special importance to, considering that their militants are a remnant of Ottoman rule, according to President Erdogan’s classification.

Erdogan had talked about a million Libyans of successive Ottoman origins, since Sultan ‘Suleiman the Magnificent’ responded to the request for help from the Libyans to protect them from the attacks of the Knights of Malta and Rhodes in the year 1553, and this Ottoman rule continued until 1911 when Italy occupied Tripoli.

The press information also talks about an important role for Abdul Hakim Belhadj, who lives in Turkey, and who owns the “Wings” aviation company, which played an important role in the transfer of Syrian mercenaries to the Mitiga base near Tripoli. Belhadj, who fought alongside bin Laden, is considered one of the most important leaders of the armed factions in the relationship between Ankara and the rest of the Libyan groups that helped it to establish two air bases in Mitiga and Al-Watiyah, and another navy base west of Misrata.

The Turkish officers are training the Libyans in these bases on various types of weapons, including the use of drones and heavy guns, which explains the words of Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu, who said during his press conference with Lavrov in Sochi on December 29: ‘Haftar or any other country has no right to ask Turkey to leave the Libyan territories and stop its support for the legitimate government, Turkey will not leave,’ which is the main topic in the discussions of the Libyan parties under the auspices of the United Nations, and had previously agreed to hold elections on December 24, That all foreign forces and mercenaries be expelled from Libya until that date.

Everyone knows that this talk specifically targets Turkey, which is the only country that has officially sent military forces to Libya, and it is the only country that, with President Erdogan’s admission, transferred thousands of Syrian mercenaries to Libya.

And the entry of Egypt on the line of its crisis came to embarrass President Erdogan. The information expects that he will seek to host the Speaker of the Libyan Parliament, Aguila Saleh, in Istanbul, in response to Cairo’s efforts in dialogue with the Libyan parties in Tripoli, which was visited by an Egyptian military, intelligence, and political delegation a day after the visit of Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar.

The Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry’s call to his Libyan counterpart, Muhammad al-Sayala, and after that al-Sayala’s visit to Moscow and his meeting with Minister Lavrov, came amid information that talks about a joint Russian-Egyptian move to bring together Sarraj and Haftar at a summit that settles all matters on the road to final reconciliation.

This may mean ending the Turkish military role in Libya, in which Paris also seeks to play an important role in it, and at all levels, and everyone knows that this role was and will remain against the calculations of Ankara, which is facing many difficulties and problems in its relations with the European Union, and the main reason for this is the President Emmanuel Macron solidarity with Greece and Cyprus.

With Macron remaining in power in the next May elections, he will continue to create problems for Erdogan’s Turkey, and the latter will then find himself in an unenviable position, with possible pressure from President Biden, in the absence of his “traditional friend”, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who will give up her position in this coming September.

All these rapid and successive developments did not prevent Erdogan from continuing to implement his agenda in Libya, in which he sees his important arena to challenge his regional and international enemies, especially Cairo and Paris, which he hopes will return to its normal relations with Ankara in the event that Macron loses in the next elections.

Erdogan did not neglect the appointment of his new ambassador in Paris after he has found the right person for that, a former friend of Macron at the university. The information talks about the Turkish president’s desire to achieve a similar breakthrough in the relationship with Cairo, which Minister Cavusoglu spoke a few days ago about “open intelligence channels with it, as is the case with Tel Aviv,” and perhaps to face all future possibilities.

In all cases, whatever the possible results of the Libyan reconciliation efforts, which information of Ankara’s attempts to obstruct it, it has become clear that Erdogan will mobilize all his Libyan, regional and international capabilities to stay in Libya, for many reasons, the most important of which are psychological, and because he will not accept defeat easily.

Erdogan also does not want his efforts to go to waste, and he is the one who planned to obtain a share in Libyan oil and gas on land and in sea, and also planned to send Turkish companies to Libya, to contribute to the reconstruction of what the war has destroyed, which will bring Turkey a large income that will help it overcome its difficult financial crisis.

The wager on the ideological side that he attaches to special importance in all of his calculations and movements since the so-called “Arab Spring” remains. Without this aspect, Erdogan will not remain the leader of all Islamists in the world, and he will lose his most important weapon in addressing his supporters and followers at home, who are the ones he accustomed to his Ottoman national, religious and historical statements, and he succeeded in convincing them that the whole world is jealous of Turkey and envies it for its victories and feared its greatness!

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إردوغان وليبيا.. هل ينتهي الحلم العثماني؟

إردوغان تحدث عن وجود مليون ليبي من أصول عثمانية في ليبيا.
إردوغان تحدث عن وجود مليون ليبي من أصول عثمانية في ليبيا.
حسني محلي
باحث علاقات دولية ومختصص بالشأن التركي

حسني محلي 

المصدر: الميادين نت

يجري تداول معلومات عن تحرك روسي- مصري مشترك لجمع السراج وحفتر في قمة تحسم كل الأمور على طريق المصالحة النهائية، وقد يعني ذلك إنهاء الدور التركي العسكري في ليبيا.

شهد الأسبوع الأخير من العام الماضي تطورات مثيرة على صعيد الملف الليبي، ويبدو أنه سيزداد سخونة وإثارة خلال الأيام والأسابيع القليلة القادمة، فبعد تصريحات نارية أطلقها المشير خليفة حفتر، ودعا فيها إلى “طرد المحتل التركي”، لم يتأخر الرئيس التركي رجب طيب إردوغان في الرد على ذلك بإرسال وزير الدفاع خلوصي آكار وقادة القوات المسلحة إلى طرابلس، في محاولة جديدة منه لعرض العضلات، وهو ما فشل فيه نسبياً بعد أن رفض “حليفه الاستراتيجي” فايز السراج استقبال الوفد الذي التقى الشخصيات الموالية لأنقرة، وفي مقدمتها وزير الداخلية فتحي باش آغا ذو الأصول العثمانية، وسط المعلومات التي بدأت تتحدث عن خلافات وانشقاقات وصراعات بين القوى والفصائل والمجموعات المسلحة التي تدعم حكومة الوفاق، وبعضها موالٍ لتركيا التي تولي فصائل مصراتة أهمية خاصّة، باعتبار أن مسلحيها من بقايا الحكم العثماني، وفق تصنيف الرئيس إردوغان. 

وكان إردوغان قد تحدث عن مليون ليبي من أصول عثمانية متتالية، منذ أن لبى السلطان سليمان القانوني طلب النجدة من الليبيين لحمايتهم من هجمات فرسان مالطا ورودوس في العام 1553، واستمر هذا الحكم العثماني حتى العام 1911، عندما احتلت إيطاليا طرابلس.

وتتحدث المعلومات الصحافية أيضاً عن دور مهم لعبد الحكيم بلحاج المقيم في تركيا، والذي يملك شركة “الأجنحة” للطيران، التي أدت دوراً مهماً في عملية نقل المرتزقة السوريين إلى قاعدة معيتيقة قرب طرابلس. كما أن بلحاج الذي قاتل إلى جانب بن لادن يعدّ من أهم قيادات الفصائل المسلّحة في العلاقة بين أنقرة وباقي المجموعات الليبية التي ساعدتها لإنشاء قاعدتين جويتين في معيتيقة والوطية، وأخرى بحرية غرب مصراتة.

ويقوم الضباط الأتراك بتدريب الليبيين في هذه القواعد على مختلف أنواع الأسلحة، بما فيها استخدام الطائرات المسيرة والمدافع الثقيلة، وهو ما يفسر كلام وزير الخارجية التركي مولود جاويش أوغلو، الذي قال خلال مؤتمره الصحافي مع لافروف في سوتشي بتاريخ 29 كانون الأول/ديسمبر المنصرم: “لا يحق لحفتر أو أي دولة أخرى أن تطلب من تركيا مغادرة الأراضي الليبية ووقف دعمها للحكومة الشرعية، تركيا لن تغادر”، وهو الموضوع الأساسي في مجمل مباحثات الأطراف الليبية برعاية أممية، وسبق أن اتفقت على إجراء الانتخابات في 24 كانون الأول/ديسمبر القادم، على أن يتم إخراج كل القوات الأجنبية والمرتزقة من ليبيا حتى ذلك التاريخ.

ويعرف الجميع أن هذا الحديث يستهدف تركيا تحديداً، وهي الدولة الوحيدة التي أرسلت رسمياً قوات عسكرية إلى ليبيا، وهي الوحيدة التي قامت باعتراف الرئيس إردوغان بنقل الآلاف من المرتزقة السوريين إلى ليبيا.

وجاء دخول مصر على خط أزمتها ليحرج الرئيس إردوغان. وتتوقع المعلومات أن يسعى إلى استضافة رئيس البرلمان الليبي عقيلة صالح في إسطنبول، كرد على مساعي القاهرة في الحوار مع الأطراف الليبية في طرابلس التي زارها وفد عسكري واستخباراتي وسياسي مصري بعد يوم من زيارة وزير الدفاع التركي خلوصي آكار. 

وجاء اتصال وزير الخارجية المصري سامح شكري بنظيره الليبي محمد السيالة، ومن بعده زيارة السيالة إلى موسكو ولقائه الوزير لافروف، وسط المعلومات التي تتحدَّث عن تحرك روسي – مصري مشترك لجمع السراج وحفتر في قمة تحسم كل الأمور على طريق المصالحة النهائية. 

وقد يعني ذلك إنهاء الدور التركي العسكري في ليبيا التي تسعى باريس أيضاً لأداء دور مهم فيها، وعلى جميع الأصعدة، ويعرف الجميع أنَّ هذا الدور كان وسيبقى ضد حسابات أنقرة التي تواجه الكثير من المصاعب والمشاكل في علاقاتها مع الاتحاد الأوروبي، والسبب الرئيسي في ذلك هو الرئيس إيمانويل ماكرون المتضامن مع اليونان وقبرص.

وببقاء ماكرون في السلطة في انتخابات أيار/مايو القادم، سوف يستمر في خلق المشاكل لتركيا إردوغان، وسيجد الأخير نفسه حينها في وضع لا يحسد عليه، مع الضغوط المحتملة من الرئيس بايدن، بغياب “صديقته التقليدية” المستشارة الألمانية أنجيلا ميركل التي ستتخلّى عن منصبها في أيلول/سبتمبر القادم. 

ولم تمنع كلّ هذه التطورات السريعة والمتلاحقة إردوغان من الاستمرار في تطبيق أجندته في ليبيا، التي يرى فيها ساحته المهمة لتحدي أعدائه الإقليميين والدوليين، وبشكل خاص القاهرة وباريس، التي يتمنى لها أن تعود إلى علاقاتها الطبيعية مع أنقرة في حال خسارة ماكرون في الانتخابات القادمة.

ولم يهمل إردوغان تعيين سفير جديد له في باريس، بعد أن وجد الشخص المناسب لذلك، وهو صديق سابق لماكرون في الجامعة. وتتحدث المعلومات عن رغبة الرئيس التركي في تحقيق انفراج مماثل في العلاقة مع القاهرة، التي تحدَّث الوزير جاويش أوغلو قبل أيام عن “قنوات استخباراتية مفتوحة معها، حالها حال تل أبيب”، وربما لمواجهة كل الاحتمالات المستقبلية.

وفي جميع الحالات، وأياً كانت النتائج المحتملة لمساعي المصالحة الليبية، والتي تتحدَّث المعلومات عن محاولات أنقرة لعرقلتها، فقد بات واضحاً أن إردوغان سيستنفر كل إمكانياته ليبياً وإقليمياً ودولياً للبقاء في ليبيا، لأسباب عديدة، أهمها نفسية، ولأنه لن يتقبل الهزيمة بسهولة.

كما لا يريد إردوغان لأتعابه أن تذهب هباء منثوراً، وهو الذي خطط للحصول على حصة ما في النفط والغاز الليبي براً وبحراً، كما خطط لإرسال الشركات التركية إلى ليبيا، لتساهم في إعادة إعمار ما دمرته الحرب، وهو ما سيحقق لتركيا دخلاً كبيراً يساعدها على تجاوز أزمتها المالية الصعبة. 

ويبقى الرهان على الجانب العقائدي الذي يوليه أهمية خاصة في مجمل حساباته وتحركاته منذ ما يسمى بـ”الربيع العربي”. ومن دون هذا الجانب، لن يبقى إردوغان زعيماً لجميع الإسلاميين في العالم، كما سيخسر سلاحه الأهم في مخاطبة أنصاره وأتباعه في الداخل، وهم الذين عوَّدهم على مقولاته القومية والدينية والتاريخية العثمانية، ونجح في إقناعهم بأن العالم أجمع يغار من تركيا ويحسدها على انتصاراتها ويهاب من عظمتها!

بفضل الشهيد سليماني… حَسَمَت «حماس» أمرها!

الأخبار

من ملف : القائد الأممي

حسام عبد الكريم 

الإثنين 4 كانون الثاني 2021

منذ تأسيسها في أواخر ثمانينيات القرن الماضي كحركة مقاومة فلسطينية ضدّ الكيان الصهيوني، عانت «حماس» من عدّة أنواع من التجاذبات الداخلية. أول تلك التجاذبات، أنّها في الوقت ذاته حركة شعبية جماهيرية (مع ما يتطلّبه ذلك من تعاون / تعامل واقعي مع منظمة التحرير الفسلطينية أولاً ثم السلطة الفلسطينية لاحقاً) وحركة كفاح مسلّح أيضاً (بما يقتضيه ذلك من سرية التنظيمات الثورية واعتباراتها الأمنية). التجاذب الثاني، كان بين كونها حركة وطنية (فلسطينية) وحركة إسلامية (انبثقت من رحم «الإخوان المسلمين»). وثالث التجاذبات، كان يتعلّق بالموقف من النظام الرسمي العربي (وبالتحديد أنظمة مصر والأردن والسعودية) في مقابل العلاقة مع إيران.

وفي ضوء تلك التجاذبات والعوامل، سارت «حماس» على مدى أكثر من 25 سنة. وبناءً عليها، يمكن فهم التناقضات والمواقف المتضاربة التي اتخذتها الحركة سواء في الداخل الفلسطيني أو على المستوى الإقليمي. بعد اغتيال الشيخ أحمد ياسين في عام 2004، وظهور خالد مشعل كقائد «رسمي» للحركة، ازداد الميل الحماسي للتعامل الإيجابي مع النظام الرسمي العربي، وخصوصاً مع استقراره في قطر. بذل مشعل جهوداً كبيرة للتقارب مع السعودية، وسعى لإقناعها بجاهزية «حماس» لقبول الرعاية السعودية كبديلٍ للسلطة الفلسطينية، أو على الأقل إلى جانبها. ولكنّ مجهودات مشعل لم تثمر واصطدمت بتعنّت شديد، خصوصاً من طرف الأمير سعود الفيصل وإصرارٍ من السعودية على ضرورة قطع العلاقة مع إيران، أي أنهم وضعوه في خانة إما نحن أو إيران! وكذلك مع مصر، حاول مشعل كثيراً مع نظام حسني مبارك لكي يظهر له حسن النية والجاهزية للتعاطي بإيجابية مع الملاحظات والمطالب المصرية، وذلك بهدف التعامل مع «حماس» كشريك وطرف سياسي مقبول، ولكن جهود مشعل قوبلت بالصد ووصلت إلى حائط مسدود مع إصرار مصر على التعامل مع «حماس» على أساس «أمني»، ووضع ملفّها كاملاً بأيدي المخابرات المصرية، وليس وزارة الخارجية. ومع الأردن أيضاً، فشلت جهود خالد مشعل نظراً إلى حساسية جهاز المخابرات تجاه علاقة «حماس» بـ«الإخوان المسلمين» الأردنيين، وثبات السياسة الأردنية على مبدأ الدعم والشراكة مع السلطة الفلسطينية في عملية السلام (استخدمت الأردن العلاقة مع «حماس» كورقة في علاقتها مع سلطة عباس في رام الله تستعملها إذا اقتضت الحاجة من حين لآخر). باختصار، وجدت «حماس» صدّاً وردّاً ورفضاً من النظام العربي، وشروطاً تعجيزية، رغم كلّ محاولاتها وجهودها لنيل الرضا الرسمي.

وهنا ظهر رجب طيب إردوغان. بحلول عام 2009، شعر إردوغان أنه صار يمتلك من القوة داخل تركيا بما يمكنه من تغيير سياساتها وتحالفاتها الخارجية. وعندما بدأ يطلق سهامه السياسية تجاه إسرائيل ويتكلّم عن القدس وفلسطين، وجدت «حماس» متنفّساً كبيراً لها، خصوصاً مع «سنّية» إردوغان وعلاقاته الإخوانية القديمة. اندفعت قيادة «حماس» نحو إردوغان إلى أقصى مدى، بشكل متهوّر يمكن القول، حتى ارتكبت خطأها الأكبر عندما قرّرت قلب ظهر المجنّ لسوريا والانقلاب على إيران. في الفترة ما بين عامَي 2011 و2013، دخلت «حماس» طرفاً في الأزمة السورية، داعمة للمعارضة الساعية لإسقاط النظام، مدفوعة بجذورها الإخوانية وبموقف إردوغان ومتشجّعة بصعود محمد مرسي في مصر. كان ذلك الموقف طعنة في ظهر سوريا وخيانة لإيران.

قرّر سليماني بتوجيهات من القيادة العليا للجمهورية الإسلامية الإيرانية أن يغضّ النظر عن خطأ قيادة «حماس»


الجناح العسكري في «حماس»، «كتائب القسام»، كانت له دائماً أولوياته واعتباراته التي لا تتطابق بالضرورة مع قيادة خالد مشعل وسياساته العربية ومبادراته ومناوراته. لم تكن الدول العربية في وارد تقديم أيّ دعم عسكري على الإطلاق (بل كانت واقعاً في الخندق الآخر، الإسرائيلي، عندما يتعلّق الأمر بالمقاومة المسلّحة و«كتائب القسام»). وحتى تركيا إردوغان كانت تعرف حدودها، فاكتفت بالكلام السياسي والإعلامي، ولم تقترب أبداً من النواحي العسكرية لدعم القضية الفلسطينية.
الشهيد قاسم سليماني، بتوجيهات من القيادة العليا للجمهورية الإسلامية الإيرانية، قرّر أن يغضّ النظر عن خطأ قيادة «حماس» (أو خطيئتها بالأحرى) ومكتبها السياسي، وأن يستمرّ في البرنامج الاستراتيجي الذي أطلقه من سنين طويلة والهادف إلى تحويل «حماس» في غزّة إلى قوّة عسكرية حقيقية قادرة على مواجهة إسرائيل وتحدّيها، بل والتغلّب عليها، على نموذج حزب الله في لبنان. مبكراً جداً، دخل الشهيد سليماني على خط المقاومة في غزّة، متبنّياً التنظيمات المسلّحة، وأهمّها وأكبرها «كتائب القسام»، وداعماً لها تقنياً وفنياً، بالسلاح والعتاد، ولوجستياً ومادياً. سخّر الحاج قاسم إمكانيات إيران في هذا الاتجاه، فصارت تؤتي أُكلها وبدأت قدرات جديدة ومتطوّرة بالظهور في أيدي المقاومين الفلسطينيين، أنظمة صواريخ يزداد مداها يوماً عن يوم، قنابل وألغام متطوّرة، قدرات بحرية وحتى جوية! والأهم هو التأهيل والتدريب ونقل الخبرات من أجل ضمان الاستمرارية والقدرة على التصنيع والإنتاج. لم يتعامل الحاج قاسم مع «حماس» بمنطق ردّ الفعل، فلم يوقف برنامج الدعم العسكري لـ«كتائب القسام» ولم يطلب من «حماس» شيئاً، ولا ضغط عليها ولا ساومها لأجل تغيير موقفها السياسي من الأزمة في سوريا.

تعامل الشهيد سليماني مع «حماس» بمنتهى الصبر والهدوء، فلم يعاقبها بسبب «خيانتها» في سوريا وتجاهل، بثقة العالم العارف، خالد مشعل ومكتبه السياسي، وكأنّ شيئاً لم يكن. كانت القضية أكبر من الأشخاص عند قاسم سليماني، وفلسطين مسألة مبدأ وأكبر من خالد مشعل بل من «حماس» كلّها. إنها عقيدة الجمهورية الإسلامية غرسها الإمام الخميني في نفوس قاسم سليماني ورفاقه: إسرائيل غدّة سرطانية ولا بدّ أن تزول، وسوف تزول!

سرعان ما أدركت «حماس» خطأها. فمع صمود سوريا وفشل خطط إسقاط النظام فيها، وجدت قيادة «حماس» نفسها في مهبّ الريح، وخصوصاً مع إقرار إردوغان واعترافه بهزيمة مشروعه في سوريا، عام 2016. فلا النظام الرسمي العربي معها، ولا انتصر «الإخوان المسلمون» في مصر أو سوريا، وقد أبعدت نفسها عن إيران وأغضبتها، وكلّ ما حصدته من مغامرتها السورية هو الفشل والخيبة والظهور بمظهر الغادر الناكر للجميل. فكان التغيير الحتمي. توارى خالد مشعل ورموز مكتبه السياسي خلف الأضواء، واضطرّوا لإفساح المجال لصعود القيادة الجديدة في «حماس»، قيادة العمل العسكري و«كتائب القسام»، لتتسلّم زمام الأمور في غزة، ممثّلة بشخص المناضل العتيد والعنيد يحيى السنوار الذي لن يسمح بعد الآن للسياسيين «بالعبث» في إنجازات «حماس» العسكرية التي تحقّقت بفضل إيران وبالذات الشهيد قاسم سليماني. لا يبالي يحيى السنوار بغضب من يغضب ولا يداري، بل قالها علناً وعلى رؤوس الأشهاد: كلّ ما حقّقناه من قدرات عسكرية كان بفضل إيران ودعمها.

سوف يوجد دائماً في صفوف «حماس» وقاعدتها الشعبية من يعادون إيران على أسس مذهبية، وسوف لن تتوقف الأصوات التي تتحدّث عن الشيعة والسنّة، ولكن لن تكون لهم الكلمة بعد اليوم. تعلّمت «حماس» درسها ولن تغادر محور المقاومة بعد الآن، والفضل كلّ الفضل للشهيد قاسم سليماني.

قالها إسماعيل هنية في طهران ثلاثاً: شهيد القدس، شهيد القدس، شهيد القدس!

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How West, Central and South Asia are interconnecting

How West, Central and South Asia are interconnecting

January 02, 2021

By Pepe Escobar with permission and first posted on Asia Times

It’s one of those quintessential journeys that make people dream: Istanbul-Tehran-Islamabad by train. Let’s call it ITI.

Soon, in early 2021, ITI will become a reality. But, initially, just as a freight train. The deal was recently sealed at the 10th meeting of the transport and communication ministers of ECO (Economic Cooperation Organization) in Istanbul.

ITI’s official name is actually the ECO Container Train. Trial runs started in 2019. The 6,500 km overland journey should now take 11 days – compared to the roughly 45 days across sealanes for trade between Western Europe and Pakistan.

ECO is a very interesting – and strategic – organization, virtually unknown outside of Asia, uniting Turkey, Iran, Pakistan, the five Central Asian “stans”, Azerbaijan and Afghanistan.

Some of these players are also members of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO); some are part of the Eurasia Economic Union (EAEU); and almost all of them are partners to the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

They have come up with a ECO Vision 2025 that emphasizes connectivity as a springboard to “social and economic development”, privileging trade, transportation, energy and tourism. ECO seeks to de facto integrate West, Central and South Asia plus the Caucasus. For all practical purposes, ECO straddles most of the New Silk Roads developing across a large part of Eurasia.

That pesky Sultan, again

The ITI/ECO Container Train will be yet another layer of connectivity running in parallel to the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars (BTK) railway, centered on the Caucasus, and as we have seen in a previous Turkey/New Great Game column, a key plank of Ankara’s trade strategy.

Soon, ITI/ECO will also link with the European rail networks via that 76-km long engineering marvel – the undersea Marmaray railway tunnel in Istanbul. Of course opportunities abound for branching out to parts of the Middle East. By the end of the decade, ITI/ECO may well go high-speed rail – think Chinese investment.

The fascinating counterpoint to the Marmaray undersea tunnel is the Trans-Caspian: the actual connection between the BTK in the Caucasus and Central Asia.

As you can see here , the strategically designed layout of the ports allows instant roll on-roll off from the cargo trains to huge freight ferries.

Iran, for instance, is building a roll on-roll off shipping port in Bandar-e Anzalī on the Caspian Sea – which will be used to export merchandise but also oil and gas transiting via Russia or Kazakhstan, both Caspian nations, and thus bypassing any further blockade imposed by the US.

The interlink of ITI/ECO with BTK will solidify yet another important East-West trade corridor. Apart from the northern corridors linking with the Trans-Siberian, every East-West trade corridor across Eurasia goes through Turkey. That gives President Erdogan a wealth of options – as Beijing knows too well. The Xian-Istanbul corridor is as important as the Xian-Kazakhstan-Russia corridor.

Our previous Turkey/New Great Game column provoked serious debate in Istanbul. Political analyst Ceyda Karan remarked Erdogan “has only one card: Turkish geopolitics. He doesn’t care how many soldiers will die in Libya or Syria. He doesn’t care about the Turkish people”.

Esteemed Professor Korkut Boratav, now a nonagenarian eminence in macroeconomics, wondered how I could “ascribe those important roles to our chief”, referencing Erdogan.

Well, it’s all about playing geoeconomics. Erdogan certainly has leveraged his Rolodex across Eurasia, in terms of foreign policy, going no holds barred in the manipulation of all sorts of proxy gangs practicing all manner of extremisms. But ultimately what The Sultan really needs is trade and foreign investment in his battered economy.

So trade connectivity is essential. But the problem always remains his own strategy. Supporting, feeding and weaponizing an army of ISIS/Daesh, Jabhat al-Nusra, and Uighur/Caucasian jihadi proxies is not exactly a sound business strategy.

Erdogan seems to be everywhere – Libya, Azerbaijan, the Turkish-northwest Syrian border. Strategists in Beijing, Moscow, Tehran and Islamabad of course are asking questions: what for, exactly?

There’s no realistic geoeconomic scenario for him to bypass Russia. He may use Azerbaijan as a sort of de luxe messenger between Turkey and Israel – and perhaps, subsequently, profit from Israel’s courtship of Persian Gulf monarchies. After all, as far as allies in the Arab world are concerned, the only player he can really count on is Qatar. Follow the money: Doha by itself won’t finance an economic boom in Turkey.

Let a million trade corridors bloom

Silly rumors about the demise of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) are greatly exaggerated – considering they are a sub-section of American propaganda. CPEC is a complex, very long-term project whose implementation, according to the Chinese timetable, has not even started.

What Islamabad must be aware of is how much sexier, in comparison, is Tehran, when seen with Beijing’s eyes. Pakistan counts mostly on Imran Khan’s efforts. Iran has a wealth of oil, gas, gold and an array of crucial minerals. As India famously shot itself in the back – once again – by de facto abdicating from investing in Chabahar port in Iran, China stepped in. The $400 billion China-Iran deal is way more comprehensive than CPEC, at roughly $64 billion.

Back on the road, the good news is Iran-Pakistan seem to be focused on increasing connectivity. It boggles the mind that until recently there was only one crossing along their 900 km border. Finally they decided to open two more border gateways.

This is hugely important, because the first gateway is in ultra-sensitive Sistan-Balochistan province – constantly susceptible to Salafi-jihadi infiltrators – and only 70 km away from strategic Gwadar port.

As far as tourism goes – what the Chinese describe as “people to people exchange” – that’s an extra dimension, because Pakistanis can now easily cross the border, reach Chabahar, and then go by train to Iran’s holy sites Najaf and Karbala.

Finally, there’s the all-important Russian factor – which always commands Erdogan’s undivided attention.

Arguably Moscow’s top strategic priority is to decouple the EU from any US/NATO-imposed Dr. Strangelove impulses. So a EU trade alliance with Beijing – now in progress, via their investment treaty – cannot but be a win-win, as it spells out closer European integration with the Eurasian century, driven by China but with Russia, crucially, positioned as the premier security provider.

And as President Putin once again made it clear in his year end’s vows, BRI and the EAEU are increasingly merging.

Quite a few readers have noted that Russia has now achieved the tripartite capacity that Kissinger once declared essential for US strategic leadership: mastery of weapons exports; control of energy flows; and agriculture exports. Not to mention diplomatic finesse – widely respected all across Eurasia and the Global South.

Meanwhile, Eurasia goes with the flow: let a million trade corridors – Trans-Siberian, BTK, ITI/ECO – bloom.

Turkey and the West: confrontation or Taming? تركيا والغرب: صدام أم ترويض؟

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

تركيا والغرب: صدام أم ترويض؟

العميد د. أمين محمد حطيط*

من يراقب حركة تركيا في الفترة التي أعقبت الانتخابات الأميركية يجد انّ أردوغان يتصرّف وكأنه في سباق مع الوقت ويريد أن يقفل ملفات او يستجمع أوراقاً الى اقصى ما يمكنه جمعه قبل حلول الحاكم الجديد في البيت الأبيض الأميركي، لأنّ أردوغان يعرف أي علاقة تربطه بهذا الحاكم ويعرف مدى التباين بين المشروع التركي الخاص الذي يعمل من أجله والمشروع الغربي الذي تقوده الولايات المتحدة الأميركية والذي تعمل عليه بشكل واضح منذ العام 2010 في ظل حكم الديمقراطيين لأميركا وبوجود بايدن نفسه في مقعد نائب الرئيس الأميركي.

وهنا نتذكر بأنه عندما اندفع أردوغان في العام 2011 في قيادة العدوان الإرهابي على سورية تنفيذاً لخطة أطلسيّة بقيادة أميركية ظن أن الغرب والحلف الاطلسي الذي ينتمي اليه فوضه بحكم المنطقة وإقامة او استعادة الإمبراطورية العثمانية البائدة التي كان «الحلفاء» الأوروبيون قد أنزلوا الهزيمة بها وتقاسموا ممتلكاتها ومناطق احتلالها في غربي آسيا خاصة وكامل الشرق الأوسط بالمصطلح الغربي عامة.

تصرف أردوغان في سورية، ومنها في كامل المنطقة منذ اندلاع الحريق العربي (يسمّيه الغرب «ربيع عربي») تصرف على أساس انه سلطان المستقبل وبهذه الذهنية انقلب على تفاهماته وتوافقاته الاستراتيجية مع سورية وقاد العدوان الإرهابي عليها. وهنا كان التباين المستتر والخفي بين الظن التركي والتكليف الغربي الأطلسي، ففي حين عمل أردوغان بذهنية العمل لاستعادة سلطنة غابرة، كان الغرب يريد من أردوغان لعب دور رأس الحربة والقائد الميدانيّ لإسقاط محور المقاومة وتفكيكه من البوابة السورية التي تشكل القلعة الوسطى لهذا المحور، هدف تحتاجه أميركا من أجل إقامة النظام العالمي الأحادي القطبية وتعويض الإخفاق الذي عانت منه في افغانستان والعراق ولبنان.

وعلى هذا الأساس كانت الحرب الكونيّة التي استهدفت سورية منذ العام 2011 موضع تباين في النظرة من كل من الجانب التركي والاطلسي، وكانت عرضة للتنازع الخفي بين مشروعين، مشروع تركي يقوده أردوغان الحالم بإزالة آثار الهزيمة التي انزلت بالعثمانيين في الحرب الأولى، ومشروع أطلسي بقيادة أميركية جوهره تثبيت انتصار الغرب في الحربين العالميتين وتدمير القوى المقاومة للاستعمار والسيطرة الغربية وإنتاج بيئة تصفية القضية الفلسطينيّة، ويلتقي هذان المشروعان في سورية بشكل خاص على هدف إسقاط النظام السوري بقيادة الرئيس الأسد، لكنهما يتنافران بدرجات متفاوتة في أكثر من مكان وإقليم.

بيد أن أردوغان عندما فشل في سورية في موجة العدوان الأول عليها في سياق ما أسميناه يومها «استراتيجية الاخوان المسلمين للسيطرة على سورية»، وجد نفسه عرضة لسحب التفويض الغربي منه ونقله الى السعودية التي جرّبت حظها مع سورية في سياق ما أسميناه «خطة بندر»، الخطة التي لم تكن أفضل حظاً من خطة الاخوان، والتي انتهت الى فشل دفع أميركا الى النزول مباشرة الى الميدان وإنشاء تحالف عسكري بقيادتها بعد ان اصطنعت المبرر ودخلت في المرحلة الثالثة من العدوان على سورية والعراق هي «مرحلة داعش».

لم يكن أردوغان مرتاحاً للشعور الذي تشكل لديه نتيجة الفشل والإحساس بالتهميش الغربي له، واغتنم فرصة مدّ اليد الروسية والإيرانية له وانتظم في ثلاثي آستانة المشكل لمعالجة الوضع السوري ميدانياً، ورأى انّ ذلك يمنحه الوقت للمناورة الزئبقية ويتيح له العمل بطلاقة أكثر لتنفيذ مشروعه الخاص في سورية ومنها لنشره في الإقليم بعيداً عن المحدّدات او القيود الغربية. وقد نجح أردوغان في استثمار موقعه في استانة إلى حد بعيد ورغم التباين مع قطبي استانة الآخرين إيران وروسيا في أكثر من موضوع فقد بقي على علاقة معهما لا تتصف بالحميمية لكنها غير صدامية، علاقة يحتاجها من أجل مشروعه الخاص كما ذكرنا.

لقد مارس أردوغان مع كلّ من عمل معه في الشرق والغرب بسياسة سمتها الرئيسية الزئبقية المتقلبة، بحيث انه لم يجد نفسه مضطراً للإيفاء بوعد او لتنفيذ عقد او عهد وعمل بنَفَسٍ ميكافيليّ خالص باعتبار «انّ الغاية تبرر الوسيلة». وظنّ انّ «ذكاءه النشط» يجعله يحقق أهدافه من دون أن يعرضه الى أيّ خطر جدي، أي انه يخدع الآخر ويجعله يعطيه ثم يسكت على عدم الأخذ المقابل، معتقداً انّ الآخر بحاجة الى صداقته او على الأقل عدم عدواته نظراً لموقعه وتأثيره في المسرح الاستراتيجي الذي يتحرّك فيه.

بيد ان الأمور الآن وصلت نقطة لا يستطيع شركاء تركيا في الملفات المشتركة السكوت عنها أو مداراة تركيا فيها، ما جعل الانتصارات او الإنجازات التركية السابقة عرضة للنقض او الانهيار، وقد أحس أردوغان بالخطر الآتي واستشعر الحاجة لتدابير سريعة تحصّن وضعه ولهذا نراه الآن:

ـ يعود الى مغازلة أوروبا من الباب الألمانيّ بعد التهدئة مع اليونان لتجنب المواجهة الحادة مع أوروبا بعد أن وصلت علاقته بفرنسا وبماكرون شخصياً الى أدنى وأسوأ مستوياتها، وهو يظن بانّ ألمانيا التي ليس لها طموحات شرق أوسطية أقله حالياً لن تكون له منافساً في مشروعه الخاص، ويريد من أوروبا الآن أن تكون الظهير الاحتياطي الذي يعوّضه بعض الشيء عن الحضن الأميركي الذي يخشى برودته وجفافه مع بايدن.

ـ يسرع في تقويض الكيان الكردي الانفصالي في شمالي شرقي سورية قبل أن يصل بايدن الى البيت الأبيض، لأنه يعرف بأن مشروع بايدن هناك يقوم على استراتيجية التقسيم وإقامة الكيان الكردي المستقل أو شبه المستقل برعاية أميركية صهيونية، الامر الذي يخشى منه أردوغان لأنه يرى فيه مسّاً بالأمن القومي التركي.

ـ يعيد انتشار قواته في إدلب بشكل يخفض تداخلها مع الجيش العربي السوري على خطوط التماس ويقيم الخطوط والمواقع الحصينة المدعومة نارياً بشكل فاعل ليمنع أي محاولة سورية روسية لاستعادة المنطقة عسكرياً بعد فشل المحاولات جميعها لاستعادتها عبر منصة استانة واتفاقات سوتشي وموسكو.

ـ يهدّئ الصراع الذي فجّره في أذريبجان ويكتفي حالياً على حدّ وصفه بـ «الإنجاز الذي حققه في ناغورني كارباخ«، متوعّداً بالمزيد عندما تسنح الفرص.

بالخلاصة نرى أردوغان الآن في مرحلة مراجعة مواقفه بحثاً عن إجراءات متطورة من المشروع الغربي من اجل صياغة مشروع وسط في المنطقة يجمع العناصر الرئيسية للمشروع التركي العثماني الخاص والمشروع الأطلسي الأميركي، بحيث يحدّ من وجوه التناقض او التنافر بينهما ويمنع الاحتكاك او التناقض مع الغرب وبشكل لا يبقى مبرراً له لاتخاذ المواقف الحادة منه وصولاً الى فرض العقوبات الغربية على تركيا، كما حصل الآن. فهل ينجح أردوغان في سعيه هذا؟

قبل الإجابة نذكر بأنّ الحلف الأطلسي الذي أسّسته 12 دولة أوروبية وأميركية قبل تركيا فيه ليس حباً بها أو خدمة لها بل نتيجة إحساسه بأن تركيا تستطيع ان تقوم بوظيفة ودور أساسي في خدمة مهمة الحلف الدفاعية وأهدافه في وجه الاتحاد السوفياتي وأراد المؤسسون امتلاك قاعدة عسكرية متقدّمة تشكل جزءاً من الستار الحديديّ الذي اقامه الغرب في وجه الشيوعية، وبالتالي كانت عضوية تركيا في الحلف الأطلسي ناشئة من حاجة أطلسية لتركيا للقيام بدور وظيفي عملاني واستراتيجي، ولهذا جذب تركيا إليه كأول دولة بعد تأسيسه في العام 1949، وقبلها في عضويته في العام 1952 من أجل هذا الدور الوظيفي ولم يقبلها من أجل أن يمنحها فرصة منازعته النفوذ.

فتركيا في الأطلسي لخدمة أهداف الدفاع عن أوروبا أصلاً ولخدمة الأهداف الأميركية بعد تفكك الاتحاد السوفياتي حاضراً وليست من أجل استعادة الإمبراطورية العثمانية التي أسقطتها أوروبا، وعليه فانّ أيّ عمل او محاولة توحي بأنّ أردوغان يعمل في سبيل ذاك الهدف لن تلقى من أوروبا والأطلسي الا الرفض والمواجهة. فالغرب الذي قاسى الكثير من دولة بني عثمان لن يقبل بسهولة إعادة إحيائها بأيّ شكل وبأيّ صورة. وبالتالي لا مجال للمواءمة بين الطموح الأردوغاني والنزعة الغربية وهما أمران متناقضان. وهذا ما سيفرض على تركيا الاختيار بين التخلي عن مشروعها الخاص او التخلي عن التوجه غرباً، أما الجمع بين النقيضين فلن يكون ممكناً فأيّ خيار ستختار؟

* أستاذ جامعي – باحث استراتيجي.

فيديوات ذات صلة

Turkey and the West: confrontation or Taming?

Brigadier General Dr. Amin Mohammed Hatit*

Anyone who watches Turkey’s movement in the post-Election period finds that Erdogan is acting like he is in a race against time and wants to close files or gather papers as much as he can gather before the new governor of the U.S. White House, because Erdogan knows any connection to this ruler and knows the extent of the disparity between the Turkish private project he is working for and the Western project that the United States has been working on clearly since 2010 under the democratic rule of America and with Biden himself in the vice president’s seat.

Here we remember that when Erdogan rushed in 2011 to lead the terrorist aggression against Syria in implementation of an Atlantic plan led by the United States, he thought that the West and NATO to which he belonged delegated the rule of the region and the establishment or restoration of the former Ottoman Empire, which the European “Allies” had defeated and shared their property and areas of occupation in Western Asia in particular and the entire Middle East in the Western term.

Erdogan acted in Syria, and from it throughout the region since the outbreak of the Arab fire (the West calls it an Arab Spring) acted on the basis that he is the sultan of the future and with this mind turned on his strategic understandings and agreements with Syria and led the terrorist aggression against it. While Erdogan worked with the mentality of working to restore the Sultanate, the West wanted Erdogan to play the role of the spearhead and field commander to overthrow the axis of resistance and dismantle it from the Syrian gate, which forms the central fortress of this axis, a goal America needs in order to establish a unipolar world order and make up for the failure it suffered in Afghanistan, Iraq and Lebanon.

On this basis, the global war that has targeted Syria since 2011 has been the subject of a divergence of views from both the Turkish and NATO sides, and was subject to a hidden conflict between two projects, a Turkish project led by the dreamer Erdogan to remove the effects of the defeat inflicted on the Ottomans in the first war, The Project Atlantic, led by the United States, is essential to stabilize the victory of the West in the two world wars, destroy the forces that are resistant to colonialism and western domination, and produce an environment to liquidate the Palestinian cause, and these two projects meet in Syria in particular on the goal of overthrowing the Syrian regime led by President Assad, but they are competing to varying degrees in more than one place and territory.

However, when Erdogan failed in Syria in the first wave of aggression against it in the context of what we called the “Strategy of the Muslim Brotherhood to control Syria”, He found himself vulnerable to withdrawing the Western mandate from it and transferring him to Saudi Arabia, which tried its luck with Syria in the context of what we called “Plan Bandar”, a plan that was no better luck than the Brotherhood plan, which ended in failure to push America to go straight to the field and establish a military alliance led by it after it made the justification and entered the third phase of the aggression against Syria and Iraq is the stage of ISIS.

Erdogan was not comfortable with the feeling that formed him as a result of the failure and the sense of western marginalization, and took the opportunity to reach out to him and joined the tri-Astana problem to address the Syrian situation on the ground, and saw that this gives him time to maneuver mercury and allows him to work more fluently to implement his own project in Syria and from there to spread it in the region away from western restrictions or restrictions. Erdogan has succeeded in investing his position in Astana to a large extent and despite the contrast with the other Poles Astana Iran and Russia on more than one subject, he has remained in a relationship with them that is not intimate but non-confrontational, a relationship he needs for his own project as we mentioned.

Erdogan, along with all those who worked with him in the East and the West, practiced a policy that was characterized by a volatile mercury master, so that he did not find himself obliged to fulfill a promise or to implement a contract or covenant and worked with the same kind of Machiavelli, considering that “the end justifies the means”. He thought that his “active intelligence” makes him achieve his goals without exposing him to any serious danger, i.e. he deceives the other and makes him give him and then shut up about not taking the opposite, believing that the other needs his friendship or at least not his enemies due to his position and influence in the strategic theater in which he moves.

However, things have now reached a point where Turkey’s partners in the joint files cannot be silent or managed by Turkey, which has made turkey’s previous victories or achievements vulnerable to rebuttal or collapse, and Erdogan has sensed the danger coming and felt the need for quick measures to fortify his situation and that’s why we see it now:

He returns to flirt with Europe from the German door after the lull with Greece to avoid a sharp confrontation with Europe after his relationship with France and Macron personally reached its lowest and worst levels, and he thinks that Germany, which has no Ambitions Middle Eastern at least at least at present will not have a competitor in his own project, and wants Europe now to be the backup back who compensates somewhat for the American brood that fears his cold ness and dryness with Biden.

He is quick to undermine the Kurdish separatist entity in northeastern Syria before Biden arrives at the White House, because he knows that Biden’s project there is based on the strategy of partition and the establishment of an independent or semi-independent Kurdish entity under the auspices of the United States of Zionism, which Erdogan fears because he sees it as an affront to Turkish national security.

It redeploys its forces in Idlib in a way that reduces its interference with the Syrian Arab Army on the lines of contact and effectively establishes the lines and fortified sites supported by fire to prevent any Syrian-Russian attempt to retake the area militarily after all attempts to retake it through the Astana platform and the Sochi and Moscow agreements.

The conflict he has triggered in Azerbaijan calms down and is now content with what he described as “the achievement he has achieved in Nagorno-Karabakh”, promising more when opportunities arise.

In summary, We see Erdogan now in the process of reviewing his positions in search of advanced procedures of the Western project in order to formulate a middle project in the region that brings together the main elements of the Turkish-Ottoman special project and the Atlantic project of the United States, so that reduces the faces of contradiction or disharmony between them and prevents friction or contradiction with the West and in a way that does not justify him to take sharp positions from him to the imposition of Western sanctions on Turkey, as has happened now. Does Erdogan succeed in his quest?

Before answering, we recall that the NATO alliance founded by 12 European and American countries before Turkey is not in love with it or service to it, but as a result of its sense that Turkey can play a function and a key role in the service of the alliance’s defence mission and objectives in the face of the Soviet Union and the founders wanted to have an advanced military base that forms part of the Iron Curtain established by the West in the face of communism Turkey’s membership in NATO was therefore arising from Turkey’s Atlantic need for a functional and strategic role, which attracted Turkey as the first country after its founding in 1949, and accepted it as a member in 1952 for this role and did not accept it in order to give it the opportunity to dispute its influence.

The Iranian-Turkish Scandal Over Azerbaijan Is Just A Gigantic Misunderstanding

12 DECEMBER 2020

By Andrew Korybko

American political analyst

The Iranian-Turkish Scandal Over Azerbaijan Is Just A Gigantic Misunderstanding

President Erdogan’s recitation of a 19th-century Azeri nationalist poem during his attendance at Baku’s Victory Parade as his Azerbaijani counterpart’s guest of honor last week provoked harsh criticism from Iranian officials who regarded it as implying territorial claims on their country’s three northwestern provinces that form part of the historic Azerbaijan region (which also naturally includes the Republic of Azerbaijan), though the entire scandal is just a gigantic misunderstanding since it’s doubtful that the Turkish leader meant to convey any such intentions and simply wasn’t aware at the time of how negatively those words would be interpreted by the Iranian government.

The Aras River Poem

The Iranian-Turkish Strategic Partnership was rocked by a sudden scandal after Tehran strongly protested President Erdogan’s recitation of a 19th-century national Azeri nationalist poem during his attendance at Baku’s Victory Day parade as his Azerbaijani counterpart’s guest of honor last week. The controversial words that the Turkish leader uttered are as follows: “They separated the Aras River and filled it with rocks and rods. I will not be separated from you. They have separated us forcibly.” This poem has previously been used by some to imply territorial claims on Iran’s three northwestern provinces that form part of the historic Azerbaijan region, which was separated by the Aras River from what is nowadays the Republic of Azerbaijan (which forms the other half of that transnational region) as a result of Russian imperial conquests at the time.

Diplomatic Disagreements

Iranian Foreign Minister Zarif swiftly responded on Twitter by writing that “Pres. Erdogan was not informed that what he ill-recited in Baku refers to the forcible separation of areas north of Aras from Iranian motherland. Didn’t he realize that he was undermining the sovereignty of the Republic of Azerbaijan? NO ONE can talk about OUR beloved Azerbaijan.” The Turkish Ambassador to Iran was then summoned to that country’s Foreign Ministry over President Erdogan’s comments, after which the Iranian Ambassador to Turkey was symmetrically summoned to that country’s Foreign Ministry to deny the allegations made against their leader and complain about Tehran tweeting about this misunderstanding instead of utilizing diplomatic channels to resolve it. The resultant scandal has predictably emboldened opponents of their strategic partnership to become more vocal.

The Iranian-Turkish Strategic Partnership

Objectively speaking, however, the entire issue seems to be a gigantic misunderstanding. It’s extremely unlikely that President Erdogan was aware of the negative historical connotation associated with that nationalist Azeri poem, exactly as Foreign Minister Zarif suggested, but at the same time, Tehran felt obligated to publicly oppose anything that can even remotely be misportrayed by those will ill intent as encouraging Azeri separatism in northwestern Iran. Iran and Turkey are closer nowadays than at any time in recent memory as a result of their geostrategic convergence on several issues of common interest across the so-called “Greater Middle East” such as Nagorno-Karabakh, Syria, and even Libya. It’s therefore unthinkable that President Erdogan would knowingly jeopardize this historic moment just to earn more applause during a parade in Baku.

Azerbaijan’s Regional Integration Proposal

It can’t be known for sure, but President Erdogan might have had his Azerbaijani counterpart’s visionary proposal for a regional integration platform in mind — which he likely would have been briefed about before his trip — when he made the decision to recite that poem during the parade. President Aliyev told reporters after his talks with President Erdogan shortly before the parade started that a new multilateral platform should be created in the region for all the relevant countries to join. The day after, President Erdogan told a Turkish TV channel that “Mr. Putin has a positive view on this idea”, which the Turkish leader also said could include Armenia, Georgia, and Iran as well. If this ambitious platform is successfully created, then the Aras River — among other borders — would naturally transform from a regional barrier into a bridge for regional integration.

Iranian Interests

There’s a pretty good chance that most — if not all — of the relevant countries will decide to join, with the only possible uncertainties between Armenia and Georgia, the first of which might still be sour about its nearly three-decade-long occupation force finally being kicked out of Nagorno-Karabakh while the latter might refuse to join any platform alongside Russia due to their dispute over the status of Abkahzia and South Ossetia (which Tbilisi claims as its own while Moscow recognizes both of them as independent). In any case, Iran has everything to gain by strengthening multilateral strategic relations with Azerbaijan, Russia, and Turkey, especially those with a security dimension such as thwarting any separatist plots of ultra-nationalist radicals in its northwestern provinces who might be influenced by hostile third parties like the US and “Israel”.

President Erdogan’s Optimistic Mindset

Having established the background context of President Erdogan’s controversial remarks, it therefore can’t be discounted that was simply assuming the future successful implementation of the regional integration proposal that President Aliyev had just publicly unveiled immediately prior to the military parade at which his guest of honor was invited to speak. In the Turkish leader’s mind, the nationalist aspirations embodied by that poem could finally be fulfilled through peaceful means as a result of creating a transnational community of peace and prosperity through closer regional integration between Azerbaijan and Iran alongside the other members such as Turkey, Russia, and possibly even Armenia and Georgia that could also join this initiative. Had he known how negatively Iran would have reacted to his words, however, then he might not have said them in hindsight.

Clarifying The Turkish Leader’s Comments

All that President Erdogan seemingly intended to convey was that the era of regional divisions has ended as a new era of regional integration emerges in its wake following Azerbaijan’s glorious military victory over Armenia. He certainly didn’t mean to imply that the Azerbaijan would set its sights on the historic Iranian region of the same name next, but just that the Aras River which has separated the transnational Azeri people for over one and a half centuries might soon transform from a regional barrier to a gateway for regional integration in the event that President Aliyev’s visionary proposal is successful. Having presumably been briefed about it ahead of time, he probably thought that his recitation of that nationalist Azeri poem would speak to the heartfelt aspirations of this divided people without realizing how negatively the Iranian state would react to it.

Hindsight Is 20/20

It’s for this reason that observers can remain optimistic about the prospects of the Iranian-Turkish Strategic Partnership and the larger regional integration goals that their leaders share since both governments will probably realize just how gigantic of a misunderstanding this entire scandal really is after finally speaking to one another about it behind closed doors. President Erdogan likely only had positive intentions in mind, yet Tehran wanted to make sure that no one with ill intent exploited his words, hence its very harsh public reaction to them. In hindsight, perhaps President Erdogan shouldn’t have recited that nationalist poem, the same as Foreign Minister Zarif should have resorted to traditional diplomatic channels to resolve the misunderstanding instead of going public with it, yet neither state representative meant any harm by what they did.

A Sad Misunderstanding

It’s all simply a sad misunderstanding where one well-intended action unwittingly led to another. After President Erdogan recited the nationalist Azeri poem, the Iranian government felt compelled to publicly respond in order to make its displeasure known and preemptively thwart any potentially forthcoming Balkanization attempts by hostile third parties such as the US and “Israel”. It’s regrettable how everything turned out considering the original intent since this scandal has overshadowed President Aliyev’s visionary regional integration proposal. Moreover, the opponents of the Iranian-Turkish Strategic Partnership in both countries and abroad have become more vocal over the past few days, which could set into motion a self-sustaining cycle of distrust among their friendly people if such views aren’t moderated as soon as possible.

Concluding Thoughts

Looking forward, it’s predicted that this scandal will soon pass and that the Iranian-Turkish Strategic Partnership will emerge even stronger as a result, especially if both countries join Azerbaijan’s proposed regional integration platform alongside Russia and perhaps even Armenia and Georgia as well in the best-case scenario. As it stands, all sides should accept that this scandal is just a gigantic misunderstanding and realize in hindsight what they should have done better. Under no circumstances must they submit to the sudden pressure upon them to weaken their newfound strategic partnership since that would only ultimately end up playing into their geopolitical enemies’ hands. The larger region needs closer integration at this historic moment, not a return to the era of distrust and Balkanization plots, which both leaderships seem to understand very well.

James Jeffrey’s Confessions: Syria is the gift that continues to give to us, we are in control of northeastern Syria. Erdogan retreats under threat (2) اعترافات جيمس جيفري: سورية الهديّة التي تستمرّ بالعطاء لنا نحن المسيطرون فعلياّ على شمال شرق سورية.. وأردوغان يتراجع تحت التهديد (2)

**Please scroll down for the English translation**

نضال حمادة

نستكمل الجزء الثاني والأخير من المقابلة التي أجراها المبعوث الأميركيّ الخاص السابق الى سورية جيفري جيمس مع «المونيتور».

يقول جيفري جيمس يجب الفصل بين أردوغان وتركيا، وستكون أكبر التحديات التي يواجهها بايدن هي الصين وروسيا وكوريا الشمالية وخطة العمل الشاملة المشتركة الإيرانية والمناخ. هؤلاء هم الخمسة الكبار. المرتبة السادسة هي تركيا، حيث إنّ تركيا لها تأثير مباشر على اثنين من المراكز الخمسة الأولى: إيران وروسيا، وهذا له تأثير على الإرهاب رقم ثمانية أو تسعة.

ويضيف: تركيا دولة مهمة للغاية في الناتو يقع رادار الناتو في قلب نظام الصواريخ المضادة للصواريخ الباليستية الذي يواجه إيران في تركيا. لدينا أصول عسكرية هائلة هناك. لا يمكننا فعلاً «القيام» بالشرق الأوسط أو المؤتمرات الحزبيّة أو البحر الأسود من دون تركيا. وتركيا خصم طبيعي لروسيا وإيران.

ويتابع: أردوغان مفكر كبير في أساليب الحكم. حيث يرى ما يجذب يتحرّك، الأمر الآخر بالنسبة لأردوغان هو أنه متعجرف للغاية ولا يمكن التنبّؤ بما يفعله، وببساطة لن يوافق على حلّ يربح فيه الجميع. ولكن عندما يكون في عجلة من أمره – وتفاوضت معه – فهو ممثل عقلانيّ..

لذا، إذا رأى بايدن العالم مثل الكثير منا الآن، منافسة قريبة من الأقران، تصبح تركيا مهمة للغاية. انظروا إلى ما فعله (أردوغان) للتوّ خلال ثمانية أشهر في إدلب وليبيا وناغورني كاراباخ. كانت روسيا أو الحلفاء الروس هم الخاسرون في الثلاثة.

يصف جيفري أردوغان فيقول: أردوغان لن يتراجع حتى تظهر له أسنانك، هذا ما فعلناه عندما تفاوضنا على وقف إطلاق النار في تشرين الأوّل/ أكتوبر 2019، كنا مستعدّين لسحق الاقتصاد التركي.

هذا ما فعله بوتين بعد إسقاط الطائرة الروسيّة لقد أرسل الروس الآن إشارات قوية مرتين إلى الأتراك في إدلب.

يجب أن تكون مستعداً، عندما يذهب أردوغان بعيداً، لقمعه حقاً والتأكد من أنه يفهم ذلك مسبقاً. الموقف التركيّ ليس صحيحاً أبداً بنسبة 100 %. لديهم منطق وحجج معينة من جانبهم. نظراً لدورهم كحليف مهمّ وحصن ضدّ إيران وروسيا، فإنّ الأمر متروك لنا على الأقلّ للاستماع إلى حججهم ومحاولة إيجاد حلول وسط.

حول رغبة ترامب في مغادرة القوات الأميركية المنطقة يقول جيمس جيفري: الرئيس غير مرتاح لوجودنا في سورية. كان منزعجاً جداً مما اعتبره حروباً لا نهاية لها. هذا شيء لا ينبغي أن ينتقد بسببه. أسقطنا الخلافة (داعش) ثم بقينا. ظلّ ترامب يسأل، «لماذا لدينا قوات هناك؟» ولم نعطه الإجابة الصحيحة.

إذا قال أحدهم، «الأمر كله يتعلق بالإيرانيين»، فربما كان سينجح. لكن الأشخاص الذين كانت مهمتهم معرفة سبب وجود القوات هم وزارة الدفاع. وقد أعطوا الإذن (من الكونغرس) لاستخدام القوة العسكريّة، نحن هنا لمحاربة الإرهابيين.»

أعتقد أنّ سبب سحب ترامب للقوات كان لأنه سئم من تقديم كلّ هذه التفسيرات لسبب وجودنا هناك. كان هناك وعد ضمني له: يا رئيس، لا شيء خطأ، نحن نعمل مع الأتراك، ونعمل مع الروس. ومن ثم يحصل على هذه الكوارث.

لم أبلغ الرئيس بذلك. لقد فعل بومبيو ذلك وقدّم له الحجة، وركز على إيران. لكن ترامب كان غير مرتاح لهذه القوى، وكان يثق بأردوغان. سيواصل أردوغان طرح هذه القضايا حول حزب العمال الكردستاني، وسيستجوب الرئيس الناس، ويجب أن يكونوا صادقين ويعترفوا». بالطبع، الأمر أكثر تعقيداً من ذلك. الحروب معقدة، ويضيف: لقد شرحنا الأسباب للرئيس لكنه يستمع أيضاً إلى أردوغان. أردوغان مقنع تماماً بالنسبة له.

في وزارة الخارجية، لم نكشف للرئيس عن عدد القوات في سورية. إنها ليست وظيفتنا. لم نحاول خداعه. لكننا كنا نعطيه أرقاماً أقلّ بكثير من الأرقام الفعليّة، لذلك عند التحدث إلى وسائل الإعلام والكونغرس، كان علينا توخي الحذر الشديد وتجنبها. بالإضافة إلى أنّ الأرقام كانت مضحكة. هل تحصي الحلفاء الذين لا يريدون الكشف عن هويتهم هناك؟ هل تشمل ثكنة التنف؟ هل تحسب أن وحدة برادلي تأتي وتذهب؟

كنا خجولين لأنّ الرئيس أعطى الأمر بالانسحاب ثلاث مرات. كانت الضغوط مستمرة والتهديد بسحب القوات من سورية. شعرنا بالضعف الشديد وربما شربنا القليل من الخوف لأنه كان يعني الكثير بالنسبة لنا. أتفهّم مخاوفه بشأن أفغانستان. لكن المهمة في سورية هي الهدية التي تستمرّ في العطاء. نحن وقوات سورية الديمقراطية ما زلنا القوة المهيمنة في شمال شرق سورية.

كان الأكراد يحاولون دائماً جعلنا نتظاهر بأننا سندافع عنهم ضد الجيش التركي. وحثوا قوة المهام المشتركة، على الرغم من اعتراضاتي، على البدء في إقامة نقاط استيطانيّة على طول الحدود التركيّة.

James Jeffrey’s Confessions: Syria is the gift that continues to give to us, we are in control of northeastern Syria. Erdogan retreats under threat (2)

Nidal Hamada

We complete the second and final part of the interview that former U.S. special envoy to Syria Jeffrey James gave to Al-Monitor.

Jeffrey James says Erdogan and Turkey must  be separated, and Biden’s biggest challenges will be China, Russia, North Korea, Iran’s JCPOA and climate.

“Turkey is a very important NATO country, and NATO’s radar is at the heart of the anti-ballistic missile system that confronts Iran in Turkey.” We have enormous military assets there. We can’t really “do” the Middle East, party conventions or the Black Sea without Turkey. Turkey is a natural opponent of Russia and Iran.

“Erdogan is a great thinker in governance.” Where he sees what attracts he moves, the other thing for Erdogan is that he is too arrogant and unpredictable as to what he is doing, and simply won’t agree to a win-win solution. But when he’s in a hurry, (and I negotiated with him), he’s a rational actor.

So, if Biden sees the world like so many of us now, a close-up competition, Turkey becomes very important.   

“Erdogan won’t back down until you show him your teeth, that’s what we did when we negotiated a ceasefire in October 2019, we were ready to crush the Turkish economy,” he said.

The Russians have now sent twice strong signals to the Turks in Idlib.

You must be prepared, when Erdogan goes away, to really suppress him and make sure that he understands it in advance. The Turkish position is never 100% true. They have certain logic and arguments on their part. Given their role as an important ally and bulwark against Iran and Russia, it is up to us at least to listen to their arguments and try to find compromises.

“The president is uncomfortable with our presence in Syria,” said James Jeffrey. He was very disturbed by what he considered endless wars. This is something that should not be criticized for it. We brought down the caliphate (ISIS) and then we stayed. Trump kept asking, “Why do we have troops there?” and we didn’t give him the right answer.

If someone said, “It’s all about the Iranians,” maybe it’s going to work. But the people whose job it was to find out why the troops were present was the Ministry of Defence. They have given permission (from Congress) to use military force, we are here to fight terrorists.”

I think the reason Trump pulled the troops out was because he’s tired of providing all of these explanations of why we’re there. There was an implicit to him: President, nothing is wrong, we are working with the Turks, we are working with the Russians. And then he gets these disasters.

I didn’t report it to the President. But Trump was uncomfortable with these forces, and he trusted Erdogan.

At the State Department, we have not disclosed to the President the number of troops in Syria. It’s not our job. We didn’t try to fool him.

We were shy because the president gave the order to withdraw three times. Pressure was continuing and the threat of withdrawing troops from Syria. We felt very weak and maybe even drunk a little fear because it meant so much to us. I understand his concerns about Afghanistan. But the task in Syria is the gift that continues to give. We and the Syrian Democratic Forces are still the dominant force in northeastern Syria.

The Kurds were always trying to make us pretend that we would defend them against the Turkish army. They urged the Joint Task Force, despite my objections, to start establishing outposts along the Turkish border.

Turkey Making Ties With Israel

ERD3211

12.12.2020 

Author: Vladimir Odintsov

In recent years, one can more and more often find articles in various media about Turkey’s apparent desire to develop and strengthen its diverse ties with Israel. New Eastern Outlook has also repeatedly addressed the issue of assessing the current state of relations between the two countries, dealing with one issue in particular: Turkey and Israel: Enemies or Allies?

Relations between the two countries have developed in waves over the past decades, most notably sparking a crisis in 2010 after the Israelis shot and killed 10 Turkish activists who were trying to reach the shore on the Mavi Marmara in besieged Gaza in support of the Palestinians. Ultimately, in May 2018, Turkey expelled Israel’s ambassador and recalled its own because of Israeli attacks on Gaza and the United States’ decision to move its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. At the same time, it is no secret that economic ties have been maintained, and among the construction companies engaged in building Jewish settlements on Palestinian territory since the 1990s, there are also Turkish companies, such as the Yılmazlar Construction Group, which renewed its relationship with Israel in 2002.

As for Israel, it sees Turkey as a country with important financial flows for it and as one of the centers of world trade, a key and strategically important place for its domination in the Middle East. This explains Tel Aviv’s moves to agree to secret contacts with Turkey, one of which was the recent communication between the head of Turkey’s National Intelligence Service, Hakan Fidan, and Israeli officials as part of Turkey’s efforts to normalize relations. These latest contacts, according to sources, have involved, among other things, restoring ties between Turkey and Israel back to the envoy level.

As The Jerusalem Post notes in this regard, Turkey expects not only to show its friendly attitude towards Israel and the Jews, but also to get dividends in the eyes of Joe Biden’s administration. At the same time, the publication stresses that “this is a model that has been used before… However, it is still unclear whether Israel will pander to Turkey and ignore its support for Hamas.”

The other day there was another offer from Ankara to reconcile with Israel and end the lingering bilateral conflict. Cihat Yaycı, a retired admiral and political science professor who is close to Erdoğan, has published an article in the December issue of Turkeyscope, a monthly magazine of the Moshe Dayan Center of Tel Aviv University, proposing a solution to the maritime economic border between Israel and Turkey. He sees this, in particular, at the expense of reducing the interests of Cyprus, with which Ankara’s relations have recently seriously deteriorated against the background of Turkish expansion in the Eastern Mediterranean. It is true that in the comments to this article, the editor-in-chief of Turkeyscope, Dr. Hay Eytan Cohen Yanarocak, PhD in Oriental Studies, noted: “In order to raise the level of Israel’s relations with Turkey, in order to achieve a real normalization, it is necessary to restore mutual trust, for which, above all, it is necessary to return the envoys and consuls.”

The essence of the Turkish proposals is to establish a sea economic zone border between Turkey and Israel at the expense of Cyprus and, by redrawing the sea economic zones, to transfer a number of Cypriot blocks to Israel. In announcing these proposals, Ankara is trying to play on the fact that the border zones between Israel and Cyprus are still disputed, despite all the signed agreements. And since economic waters are concerned, where on the Cypriot side there is the Aphrodite gas field with 100 billion cubic meters of gas worth $9 billion, the new demarcation of the sea border is presented by Ankara as a very expensive gift to Tel Aviv, but only on one condition: Israel will only have business with Turkey and absolutely nothing with Cyprus, whose opinion does not interest Erdoğan in the slightest. At the same time, Ankara makes no secret of the fact that it, too, has “claims” to Cyprus, thus suggesting that Israel should conduct an “exchange of interests” by signing an agreement.

Admiral Cihat Yaycı also advises Israel not to build the expensive EastMed gas pipeline to Greece through Cyprus, but to connect to the Turkish pipeline for gas supplies to Europe, which is more practical and cheaper, clearly referring to the “Southern Gas Corridor” from Azerbaijan, which passes through Turkey.

It is worth noting that Turkey had already signed earlier a very similar agreement, only at the expense of Greece, with the Libyan government in Tripoli, which angered not only Athens, but also Brussels, Cairo and Tel Aviv. Moreover, it was the former Turkish admiral Cihat Yaycı, who suggested the idea of this agreement with Libya.

As the Israeli media commented on Yaycı’s proposal, this is the second time in the last four months that Ankara has used the energy sector in an attempt to negotiate a truce with Israel. The clearly targeted rapprochement on Turkey’s part is evidenced not only by the increasing frequency of contacts between representatives of the secret services of the two states, but also by the fact that Erdoğan himself has stopped his openly insulting attacks against Israel in recent months.

Regarding Israel’s proposed sea border agreement with Turkey, Israeli observers have already called it a “Turkish gambit,” in which Erdoğan intends to sacrifice another piece instead of a pawn… That piece being Cyprus, with which Israel has not yet agreed on a sea border.

Ankara’s proposed agreement on the mutually beneficial delimitation of the sea economic zone has so far been received rather negatively in Israeli expert circles. In particular, there is a clear warning that, if agreed on, it could pit Israel not only against Cyprus and Greece, but also against its new peace partner, the United Arab Emirates, whose formal ruler, Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Zayed, recently signed a defense treaty with Greece. At the same time, it is not ruled out that tensions between the UAE and Erdoğan with his partners in Qatar could also lead to a serious conflict between Tel Aviv and Abu Dhabi.

Under these conditions, experts believe that Israel certainly will not accept Ankara’s proposed agreement and betrayal of its ally Cyprus, which, in turn, casts doubt on the “Turkish gambit’s” success. As for Turkey, Tel Aviv insists that it must first change its public attitude towards Israel, stop delegitimizing it in the eyes of the Turkish population, and end its relations with Hamas. In doing so, Israel shows that if Erdoğan follows through, the Jewish state will find ways to restore the formal, mutually beneficial relationship between the two countries that it had in the past.

Vladimir Odintsov, political observer, exclusively for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook”.

Russian Forces Blow Up a Terrorists’ Command Cave in Idlib Countryside

  ARABI SOURI

Russian forces engineers blow up a cave used by terrorists in Idlib

Russian forces engineers operating in Syria blew up a cave formerly used as a command center by the ‘Izzat Army’, a NATO-sponsored terrorist group, in the province of Idlib.

The cave in the city of Khan Sheikhoun in southern Idlib countryside was used by the ‘Izzat Army’ as their headquarters, ‘Izzat Army’ is one of the thousands of the Free Syrian Army umbrella of terrorist groups.

A video report by the Russian Military TV Zvezda aired footage showing the cave with long corridors that diverge into separate rooms; the total area of ​​the cave is not less than 1,000 square meters. To build it, they used technology, and all the dirty and hard work, as is customary among the radicals, was performed with the help of slave labor.

The video is also available on BitChute.https://www.bitchute.com/video/sURkgbb4kzJ7/

The terrorist group stuffed the cave with massive quantities of weapons, munition, food and medical supplies, and comfort means for sleeping and other things. The idea was by the terrorists to use this cave for a very long period of time avoiding aerial strikes by the Syrian and Russian air forces before they hastily fled the region when the Syrian armed forces with their allies advanced toward them, just like the terrorists in all other areas with their large numbers fleeing the battlefields when faced with the determined owners of the land, the Syrian Arab Army men and their allies.

Russian engineers blow up a cave used by terrorists in Idlib
The cave was so big an army truck could move easily inside it

It took the engineering units of the SAA and the Russian corps more than a month to clear the cave of all explosives planted in it by the terrorists.

The Syrian Arab Army and allies cleaned Khan Sheikhoun from NATO-sponsored terrorists and from the Turkish army personnel in August last year, 2019. The SAA and its allies were advancing further north to clean the rest of Idlib before halting their military operation after the Turkish madman Erdogan begged the Russian President Putin for a ceasefire and pledged to implement the Astana agreements and withdraw his forces (the Turkish army and Al Qaeda terrorists – Nusra Front ‘HTS’ and others) from the province without showing his people they were defeated by the Syrian forces. Erdogan, the hypocrite anti-Islamic Muslim Brotherhood he is, of course, is yet to fulfill his pledge to this date despite the withdrawal of some of his forces

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كلمة الرئيس الأسد خلال مشاركته في الاجتماع الدوري لوزارة الأوقاف

كلمة الرئيس الأسد خلال مشاركته في الاجتماع الدوري لوزارة الأوقاف يوم أمس الموجودة على الرابط ادناه، تعد محاضرة فلسفية عميقة يتناول فيها

مفاهيم عقدية ومسائل دينية شائكة بنظرة عميقة وفاحصة، ويتحدث عن أخطار اللبرالية الحديثة (المفاهيم ما بعد الحداثوية) على أصل الإنسان والإنسانية، وعن مفاهيم المجتمع والاسرة في الدين

ومغالطات اطروحات فصل الدين عن الدولة والأخلاق، ويضع كل هذا في اطاره الموسع في نقاش العروبة والإسلام في المعركة السياسية والاستعمارية القائمة على اوطاننا

والمستمرة منذ زهاء القرن من الزمن، مع الاستدلالات الشرعية حسب الأصول.

القى الرئيس الأسد هذه الكلمة في جامع العثمان، فهكذا تكون الخطب الدينية بحق، وكان لافتا شموليتها، ناهيك عن الإجابة على بعض المسائل الفقهية

والفلسفية الشائكة التي كانت الإجابة عليها صعبة رغم كثرة الكُتّاب والخطباء.

عمرو علان

كلمة الرئيس الأسد خلال مشاركته في الاجتماع الدوري لوزارة الأوقاف

Erdogan Terrorists Looted and Burned Several Houses in Northern Syria

  ARABI SOURI

Hamza Division - Erdogan Hamzat Muslim Brotherhood terrorists

Terrorists loyal to the Turkish madman Erdogan burned several houses of local Syrians in the village of Bab Al Faraj, in the northern Hasakah countryside.

The anti-Islamic Muslim Brotherhood terrorists in their continuous crimes to Israelize the northern regions of Syria under their control looted the houses of the locals in Bab Al Faraj village in Abu Rassin area, southwest of Qamishli in the northern Hasakah countryside.

https://goo.gl/maps/4TXftsZYniwsp1e28

After looting the valuables, furniture, and electronic devices from the houses the terrorists burned it down to hide their crime and prevent the locals from returning to their properties. Erdogan promised the terrorists he’s bringing from other areas in Syria and from other countries to give them the houses of the locals in areas the Turkish army and its proxy Muslim Brotherhood and Al Qaeda armed groups take control of.

Two days ago, Turkey-sponsored terrorists desecrated and looted the Church of Mar Touma in the city of Ras Al Ain in the northern Hasakah countryside in order to expel the Christian communities still living in their city.

Trump Erdogan Putin Land for Terrorists - Israel 3
Trump Erdogan Putin Proposed Land for Terrorists – Israel 3

The Turkish regime of Erdogan is carrying out a demographic change within northern Syrian province where members of the radical Muslim Brotherhood organization are housed with their families and in turn, they operate as a buffer zone between secular Syria and Turkey being radicalized by Erdogan’s ruling Muslim Brotherhood AK Party. Secularism is contagious and the Turkish madman is afraid this would loosen his grip on the Turkish state in the future as if he’s living forever or his neo-Ottoman has a future in the region.

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Syria: The complicated scene

By Abir Bassam

November 24, 2020 – 10:49

It is a dirty war that has been going on in Syria, Libya, and Yemen. Almost nine and a half tragic years have passed. The three countries were subjected to all kinds of terror and brutally destroyed. Actually, what has been going on is a world war! All weapons were used and tested and many countries were involved.

It was a real dirty war, in which the West and the Americans and their allies in the region have used the worst kind of men: a group of collaborators and barbaric terrorists. 

The worst kinds of mercenaries from all over the world were sent to Syria. They practices the ugliest inhumane deeds: they decapitated heads, literally ate hearts, and burned people alive to death. 

These groups were directly led by generals from the U.S., France, and Turkey. This information was supported by different informed resources that reported capturing French, British, and Turkish officers since 2015, in particular, during the invasion of Idlib. The district was invaded by a tenth of thousands of terrorists from Nusra, especially its group Fateh al-Sham which is directly supported and trained by Turkey, and Ahrar al-Sham which was directly supported by the Americans. The invasion was directly led by the Turkish tank battalions and the NATO alliances. 

By December 2015, the northeast of Syria was also invaded by another terrorist group, the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria [ISIS]. ISIS was created with the utmost attention of Hilary Clinton, during Barak Obama’s administration. This was revealed by Donald Trump during his election campaign in 2016. ISIS swept over the al-Jazeera region and extended to Palmira through the Syrian Desert and occupied Homos, the biggest Syrian district. It was directly protected by the American extending military bases in northern Syria and the eastern base in al-Tanf. ISIS attacked both the Syrian government forces and the opposition factions. 

The plan was to allow ISIS invasion of northern-eastern Syria territories and western-northern Iraqi territories in order to terminate the opposition factions in the region. It was carefully planned by Obama’s administration and in particular his vice president Joe Biden, the new president of the United States of America.

Under the pretense of fighting terrorism, the Americans were back in Iraq and restored bases in Iraq, built new ones in Syria and reestablished new militia groups in the area of the northeast, mainly Kurdish groups. They were trained and equipped by the Americans. For the U.S., it was a necessary step to launch a Kurdish federalism on the Syrian territories.  

Nonetheless, the U.S. had set the return plan before withdrawing from Iraq in 2010. Upon its departure, the American administration empowered the al-Qaeda group in Iraq, and supported its existence, as Trump declared and accused Hillary Clinton of being the mastermind behind it. ISIS was basically the American approach to siege Syria, and eventually, apply the plan of division in the region and establish a Kurdish state. 

Saying that may seem to be naive and simple. However, executing the plan required initiating “revolutions” in other Arab countries, recruiting media specialists, recruiting special personnel to initiate eruptions by social media, and consuming billions of dollars in the process, of which the Saudi kingdom and Qatar were the main contributors.

In 1992, I was on a visit to al-Hassaka and al-Qamishli. I was just a young beginner in journalism. I was conducting an investigation report about the Yazidis. At that stage, a large number of Yazidis and Kurds were immigrating to Syria. They escaped the biased and brutal treatment of Saddam Hussein and the fanatic Turks. These Kurds were building a wide network in Europe. They bought sympathy and support to establish a federation in Iraq in 1996. The process was facilitated by the Americans after the second Persian Gulf War in 1991 as Saddam’s power was fading.

The idea of having a similar kind of federation in Syria became appealing to both the Americans and Israelis. The size of Israeli foreign intelligence service Mossad’s presence in the Iraqi Kurdistan is not a secret anymore. It is an established fact. The Americans also facilitated the Israeli presence in northeast Syria, especially those who came with American nationality to work in the oil fields.

The Turkish president Erdogan was one of the supporters of the American plan to dismantle Syria. Erdogan was able to recruit Qatar to the best interest of Turkey. Both countries were discontent with the Syrian government’s refusal to allow building the Qatari gas pipeline to Turkey through its territories. Syria saw that a move that would discomfort its allies in Russia and Iran. However, Erdogan had bigger plans in Syria. In the northwest region, Erdogan mainly saw the Idlib and Aleppo districts as the extent of Turkey, and a head starts to initiate the Ottoman dream. 

This dream vanished to thin air when Syria started liberating the area occupied by ISIS in West Euphrates, and al-Gab plain after cleaning the Damascus area, Homos, and the center of Syria from terrorism with unlimited support from Russia. The second shock Erdogan received when the Americans started supporting the establishment of the Kurdish federation in al-Hassaka. 

The Kurdish militia was founded in October 2015 under the name Syrian Democratic Forces [SDF]. SDF in its formation includes Kurds from Syria and others who came mainly from Turkey and other countries, most of them do not speak Arabic, unlike the Syrian Kurds. 60% of the militia includes Arab Syrians, according to the Pentagon. There are other nationalities included among the formation of SDF, who are Turkmens, Armenians, Circassians, and Chechens, who came from all over Asia.

In 2016, SDF updated its constitution from a separate federal state into an Autonomous Administration of Northern and East Syria [NES] and declared SDF as its official defense force, which complicated the Syrian political scene, furthermore. Now NES or SDF are cooperating with the official American forces in east-north of Syria and serve as “the Southern Lebanese Army, [SLA]” in South Lebanon during the Israeli occupation in South Lebanon. As SLA has tried to establish an independent state in South Lebanon, SDF or NES is trying to acquire the same course. 

Since 2018 the Syrian army, with the help of allies – Russia, Iran, and Hezbollah- has been able to liberate most of the occupied lands. However, the liberation coincided with the rise of economic pressure on Syria. The price of the Syrian lira if compared to the American dollar dropped and its purchasing value decreased. It was due to the economic sanctions that were imposed on Syria, and lately “Caesar Law” which was activated in the mid of June 2020. 

In 2018, the American troops withdrew from the north of Syria and were redeployed in the al-Hassaka district around the Syrian richest oil fields. The American companies, in particular ARAMCO, are now draining the Syria oil to the interest of NES and financing the American troops stationed in the northern-eastern area of the Euphrates in Syria. Actually, Syria is facing an internal problem with the lack of petroleum resources. The hard winter is coming and the lines for buying the diesel needed for heating the houses will be crowded as much as the lines for gasoline.

After burning and stealing the wheat plains in the al-Jazeera district by the Americans and the Turks, the bread prices went 25% higher. Shortage in bread supplies was triggered by the government’s decision to set the bread rations. The Americans were literally applying Kissinger’s policy which states that nations are ruled by bread, not by arms. The shortage of bread and petroleum products is new to the Syrian population; therefore, the successive Syrian governments are facing major challenges since the beginning of 2019. 

Caesar Law added additional pressure on the countries that may establish economic and commercial deals with Syria. The law was imposed at a time in which the world is suffering from COVID-19 epidemic, which spread in Syria as well. In addition, Syria needs to deal with the issue of the Syrian refugees. It is a dilemma that needs to be dealt with appropriately. The refugees’ dilemma is used as a political card to force the Syrians to submit to the American political demands, which are set on two levels: national and international.

On the national level, the international community wants to pressure the Syrian government into implementing a new constitution based on the sectarian division of power, just like Lebanon, which would diminish the presidential authority and redistribute it, as it happened in Tunisia and Sudan, which would divide the power of the head of the state. The second issue is related to the question of the forcibly disappeared people, who were kidnapped or killed by the rebel groups, and treating the killers and kidnappers as political opponents without subjecting them to trials. This issue will be a matter of conflict, and will not be accepted by those whose families and friends were kidnapped or killed. This fact was revealed a few days ago by the new Syrian Foreign Minister, Mr. Feisal Muqdad. 

On the international level, the requirements of the international community, i.e. the U.S., have become common knowledge.  Since 2003, after the invasion of Iraq, the U.S. secretary of state, Colin Powell, came to Syria and laid down the U.S. demands: dismantling Hezbollah arms, ending Syrian support to the resistance groups in Lebanon, Palestine, and Iraq, and ending cooperation with Iran in the region. The end means, as usually explained, is ensuring the security of Israel. 

Naturally, the Syrians refused American demands. Therefore, we should make no mistake and assume that what had happened in the Arab region under the pretense of “Arab Spring” was meant for the destruction of Syria in order to dismantle it into minor sectarian states that can be easily controlled to the best interest of “Israel” and America.

Hence, Syria requires two essential needs to start its reconstruction process: the first is lifting the sanctions imposed on it; and the second is to end the American occupation in the northeast area. However, the West insists on linking lifting the sanctions to the political process. But when it comes to the achievement of the liberation from the Americans this process cannot be realized unless the national resistance would be highly activated in the northeast of Syria. It is America that we all know. It did not end its occupation of Vietnam, Korea, and eventually Iraq in 2010 until the number of causalities becomes unbearable in the American community.

Syria’s essential needs were clearly stated by its president Bashar Al-Assad on two occasions, the first was during a video call with Russian President Vladimir Putin on the 10th of November. The second time was in his speech at the opening of the International Conference on the Return of the Refugee in Damascus [ICRRD] on the 11th of November.

During his visit on the 5th of November to the exhibition “Producers 2020” in “Tekia Sulaymaniyah” in the capital, Damascus. It was attended by producers from the Aleppo governorate whose facilities, workshops, and shops were damaged during the war. President al-Assad talked about the economic impact of the issue of shortage of oil supplies and burning the wheat fields in northeastern regions. 

He also explained that the economic problem was clearly becoming worse when the banks in Lebanon blocked the Syrian deposits. President al-Assad said that there is vagueness about the Syrian deposit’s estimations. Its assessment ranges from 20 billion dollars to 42 billion dollars. The blockade has been going on for years. He added the crisis began years before the Caesar Law and began years after the siege. It coincided with the money disappearance in the Lebanese banks. Furthermore, al-Assad declared that we do not know what the real number is, and this figure for an economy like the Syrian one is a frightening number.

Al-Assad’s declaration became one week before ICRRD to which Lebanon was invited. Was this a message to Lebanon? It could be, although many observers have denied it. The denial is basically based on Syria’s previous special treatment of Lebanon. Lebanon in the Syrian considerations are two contradictory facts: the first, Lebanon is an opening to the western world with bipolar swings. The first swing expressed in the historical Arab and regional ideology.

And the second swing is expressed in the lining towards a Western ideology, with the tendency to sign normalization agreements with “Israel”. The second group was of great concern to the Syrians since the creation of Lebanon. It is known as the right-wing groups, who allied with the Americans and the Israelis. 

The second fact, Lebanon as a state is based on providing services and tourism. It is considered to be the lung that Syria needs to breathe with. However, this lung health became worse since 2011, when the United States accused the Lebanese Canadian Bank of laundering terrorism money. And then again in 2016, since many banks faced the same accusations and were prohibited to deal with customers that the U.S. listed them as Hezbollah members.

Accordingly, the Lebanese banks froze several balances for many customers and in particular the Syrian customers that were importing goods to Syria through Lebanon after imposing an embargo on Syria. It is clear for the Syrians, regardless of the unique relationship with Hezbollah, it is about time that Lebanon should release these balances, and pay its debts to Syria, especially the debts that have been accumulating since 1990, which are the revenues from selling electricity.

Syria, as President al-Assad explained, will need its money in the process of rebuilding the country’s main infrastructure and vital installations, which were destroyed during the liberation war against the terrorist groups. It is a call for Lebanon to join forces with Syria to demand lifting the embargo and to be excluded from Cesar Law consequences because Lebanon needs to open up to Syria for commercial trades towards the east, in particular, to Arab countries, or Lebanon will be demanded to pay back its debts. 

The Americans were pushing Syria and the region since 1973 towards peace and normalization treaties with “Israel”. However, Syria has proven that such an agreement would be difficult to execute unless it was a “peace for land” agreement, which would ensure the right of return of the Palestinian people. An equation, nor the Israeli, neither the Americans are willing to sign for. In addition, Syria’s main condition, during the negotiations held in Oslo in 1992, was the return of all occupied Arab territories. However, the series of recognitions Trump has approved throughout his reign made the return to the negotiation table almost impossible. It also pushed into more complications with the relation between Syria and Lebanon since the assassination of Rafiq al-Hariri in 2005. The need to separate the Syrian-Lebanese course in the peace process is becoming a must for the Americans. A need until today could not be achieved.

Syria now is subjected to American pressure that requires its approval to initiate peace and normalization agreements with Israel. This goal so far was difficult to achieve, especially after Trump’s recognition of the Golan Heights as part of Israel. Even Syria’s allies, in particular Russia, cannot force the Syrians to give up part of their land. Syria’s war on terror has spared all its allies the tragedy of dragging this war into their own territories. 

Hence, Syria prepaid in blood for the security of its “friends” now. History will, sooner or later, reveal this fact. Syria’s insistence on the unity of its land, and its refusal to have any divided authority is now a fact. The Syrians cannot compromise it, and the allies cannot go against it. The course of negotiations the allies led in Astana and Sochi has affirmed it. However, this fact has complicated the Syrian scene furthermore. It might even force the Americans to lead directly the war in the region, whether in arms or diplomacy, since the proxies have proven their disabilities.

RELATED NEWS

President Assad Appoints Dr. Faysal Mikdad as Foreign Minister, Dr. Bashar Jaafari as his Deputy

 ARABI SOURI

Legislative Decree General Amnesty Syria - President Assad

President Bashar Assad issued three presidential decrees today naming the country’s new minister of foreign affairs, his deputy, and the new head of the Syrian mission to the United Nations.

The decrees follow the demise of the career diplomat former Minister of Foreign Affairs Walid Muallem.

Presidential Decree No. 322 dated 22 November 2020, President Assad appoints Dr. Faysal Mikdad as Foreign and Expatriates Minister.

Dr. Mikdad was born in Daraa in 1954 and is a graduate in English Literature from Damascus University. He holds a doctorate in English Literature from Charles University in Prague, 1992.

Dr. Mikdad served in the diplomatic body in a number of posts, including the head of the Syrian delegation at the United Nations, and Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs since 2006,

Presidential Decree 323 dated 22 November 2020, President Assad appoints Dr. Bashar Jaafari as Deputy Foreign and Expatriates Minister.

Dr. Jaafari was born in Damascus in 1956, he’s a graduate of Damascus University in French Literature, got two doctorates in political science, and in history of Islamic civilization in Asia southeast.

Dr. Jaafari’s served in the Syrian diplomatic body in many posts including Syria’s ambassador to Indonesia, and Council Minister at the Syrian Embassy in Paris. His last post was Syria’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations in New York.

Bashar Jaafari
Syria’s Permanent Representative to the UN, His Excellency, Bashar al Ja’afari. In February 2014, the Obama State Dept restricted his mobility to a 25mi/40km radius in order to censor his successful Town Hall meetings. None of Dr. Ja’afari’s colleagues complained.

Presidential Decree No. 324 dated 22 November 2020, President Assad appoints Mr. Bassam Al-Sabbagh as Syria’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations in New York.

Mr. Bassam Al-Sabbagh was born in Aleppo, he holds a degree in political science and was Syria’s ambassador to Austria and Syria’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations and International Organizations in Vienna since 2010.

Mr. Al-Sabbagh was also Syria’s Permanent Representative at the OPCW since 2013, a consultant at Syria’s Mission to the United Nations 2001 – 2006, and a diplomat at the Syrian embassy in Washington between 1995 and 2000.

Syria News wishes all esteemed diplomats the best in their new positions and the ability to serve Syria and humanity to the best. For sure, we will be missing Dr. Bashar Jaafari’s firing statements at the United Nations, we do hope he will increase the dose with this new promotion.

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Ayman Al Zawahiri, Al Qaeda’s Chief, and Erdogan’s Muslim Brotherhood Colleague Died

  ARABI SOURI

Ayman Zawahiri and Osama Bin Laden of Al Qaeda

Ayman Al Zawahiri is dead; Al Zawahiri was leading Al Qaeda after Obama said he killed Osama, he was one of the world’s main terrorists, and a colleague of NATO’s second top leader the Turkish madman Erdogan in the anti-Islamic Muslim Brotherhood radical organization.

The news of the death of the chief of the Saudi-CIA created and funded terrorist organization is yet to be confirmed by the terrorists themselves, it was reported by the Pakistani news outlet ‘Arab News‘ and conveyed by the Lebanese Al Mayadeen news.

Al Zawahiri, most likely and if confirmed, would have died of natural causes, especially that Trump said he killed the Pentagon’s Baghdadi and the killing of Al Zawahiri by a military stunt operation wouldn’t add much in the US elections where voters are more concerned about Trump’s virus than some foreign achievements. Furthermore, the regime of Donald Trump and the Taliban, Zawahiri’s allies, are on good terms, just like in the old days of Reagan and the ‘Mujahideen’.

Two of the presumed successors of Zawahiri were killed earlier, one of them Abu Muhsin Masri, aka Abdul Hadi Mustapha, was eliminated by the Afghani security forces last month. The other presumed successor to Al Zawahiri was someone by the name of Abdul Raouf, there’s not much reliable information on the method or date he was killed by or where or when.

We are not sure how much the Turkish madman Erdogan would be touched by the killing of his long time colleague Al Zawahiri in the radical Muslim Brotherhood organization, Erdogan is known for liquidating and jailing his closest friends and colleagues, especially those who helped him throughout his controversial career, therefore, the chances of Erdogan grieving or celebrating the death of Al Zawahiri would be 50/50, Al Zawahiri might have been Erdogan’s supporter in commanding terrorists worldwide, or he might have been Erdogan’s competitor in that regard.

Al Qaeda operations have been much lessened due to the extensive rebranding campaigns of its affiliates and offshoots after its name was over-consumed by NATO and especially by the Pentagon to justify their illegal interventions and their war on Islam worldwide.https://www.syrianews.cc/the-pentagon-threatening-to-revive-isis/embed/#?secret=wssjhnNJ2I

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For Trump’s Middle East allies, Joe Biden is a new nightmare

 Source

David Hearst
17 November 2020 14:19 UTC | Last update: 17 hours 25 mins ago

David Hearst is the editor in chief of Middle East Eye. He left The Guardian as its chief foreign leader writer. In a career spanning 29 years, he covered the Brighton bomb, the miner’s strike, the loyalist backlash in the wake of the Anglo-Irish Agreement in Northern Ireland, the first conflicts in the breakup of the former Yugoslavia in Slovenia and Croatia, the end of the Soviet Union, Chechnya, and the bushfire wars that accompanied it. He charted Boris Yeltsin’s moral and physical decline and the conditions which created the rise of Putin. After Ireland, he was appointed Europe correspondent for Guardian Europe, then joined the Moscow bureau in 1992, before becoming bureau chief in 1994. He left Russia in 1997 to join the foreign desk, became European editor and then associate foreign editor. He joined The Guardian from The Scotsman, where he worked as education correspondent.


The president-elect’s actions in the Middle East will be dictated by events. But the loss of Trump represents a body check for the ambitions and aspirations of Gulf hegemons
Then Vice President Joe Biden during a visit to Saudi Arabia in 2011 (Reuters)

You can detect the shadow of Donald Trump fading from the Middle East in the nervous twitches of his closest allies.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is accelerating settlements before the inevitable freeze or pause in construction in January when President-Elect Joe Biden takes over. Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi is releasing just a fraction of the estimated 60,000 political prisoners he has stashed in his jails.

Trump’s Middle East triumphs will soon turn to disaster

Read More »

Sisi’s television anchors are, from one day to the next, given different scripts to read out. Take the sad case of Nashaat al-Deehy. When Biden was a candidate, al-Deehy trashed him: “Joseph Biden will become the oldest US president in the history of the United States of America. On 20 November he will be 78 years old. This will impact his mental situation and he suffers from Alzheimer’s and therefore is not fit to be president of the United States of America.”

But once the US media had called Biden president-elect, al-Deehy became respectful. “We have just learned that President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi sent a congratulations cable to US President-elect Joe Biden. This man has great respect for Egypt and is known to be wise and he listens well. He does not take decisions frantically. He does not take decisions when he’s angry. All of this was missing in the case of Donald Trump, who was violent and stubborn and arrogant. All of this we’re seeing it.”

Small gestures

The Saudi ambassador in London is in an equal turmoil. One day he hints to the Guardian that jailed women activists could be freed during the G20 summit next week.

“The G20, does it offer an opportunity for clemency? Possibly. That is a judgment for someone other than me,” said Khalid bin Bandar bin Sultan bin Abdulaziz Al Saud. “People ask: is it worth the damage it is causing you, whatever they did? That is a fair argument to make and it is a discussion we have back at home within our political system and within our ministry.”

The next day he calls in the BBC to deny what he has just said.

Poor ambassador.

The king himself is by no means immune from wild policy swings. He has started being nice to Turkey.

A week after the earthquake in Izmir, Salman ordered the dispatch of “urgent aid” to the city. Then we learn that the king of Bahrain Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa and the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan were in talks. The occasion was to present condolences for the death of the Bahraini Prime Minister Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa. But direct contact with a satellite of Riyadh would have been impossible without a green light from the diwan, the Saudi royal court.

Ever since Erdogan refused to let the murder of the Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi in Istanbul drop, he has become a hate figure in Riyadh. Turkey has been declared – repeatedly –  a regional threat by Saudi social media and Turkish goods subject to a growing boycott. Now it has all changed.

These are small gestures, but telling ones, as Trump leaves office.

CIA bites back

Top of the list of nervous allies is the man who used Trump to fashion his rise to power.

Biden has every incentive to encourage MBS’ many enemies in the Royal family to step forward to prevent the over ambitious prince from becoming King

To become crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman (MBS) had to get rid of, and trash the reputation of his elder cousin Mohammed bin Nayef, who was at the time the CIA’s prime asset in the country and the Gulf region. Before he did this, bin Salman phoned Jared Kushner, Trump’s son in law and Middle East adviser, to ask permission. It was given, sources with knowledge of the call told Middle East Eye.

Biden knows bin Nayef personally. Bin Nayef’s chief of staff and former interior minister Saad al-Jabri has fled to Toronto. A few days after Khashoggi’s assassination in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul in October 2018, MBS despatched another crew from the Tiger Squad to kill al-Jabri, according to a lawsuit filed under the Torture Victim Protection Act in the US District of Columbia.

Al-Jabri was lucky. Border agents at Toronto International Airport detected the operation and sent it back home. All this is active evidence. None of this has been dealt with. The CIA’s own assessment that MBS ordered Khashoggi’s killing has never been published.

It is not just Biden himself the crown prince has to fear – although the presidential candidate reserved his sharpest words for the killing of Khashoggi – but the return of the CIA to the top table of decision making in the White House.

Overnight MBS goes from having a president in the White House who “saved his ass”, as Trump put it, to a successor who is not remotely interested in doing the same. Biden has every incentive to encourage MBS’s many enemies in the royal family to step forward to prevent the over-ambitious prince from becoming king. There are enough of them, by now.

Get out of jail card

An Oval Office under new management leaves MBS with relatively few options.

He could use Israel as his get-out-of-jail card, by pushing for recognition and normalisation. There is bipartisan support in Congress for the Abraham Accords signed between the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Israel.

How Mohammed bin Salman is quietly enabling an Israeli axis in the Arab world

Read More »

Although the incoming Biden administration will put more emphasis on restarting direct negotiations between the Palestinian Authority and Israel, it would not stop another major Arab state like Saudi Arabia from joining the party.

The opposition to Saudi normalisation with Israel would be at home, not abroad. Recognising Israel would be perilous domestically. However much Saud alQahtani’s social media trolls bully Saudi public opinion, it is ferociously pro-Palestinian and anti-Zionist.

Never more so than today, Palestine remains the key source of instability in the Middle East, the conflict that defines it, the conflict that endures as a symbol of European colonisation and Arab humiliation.

The custodian of the Two Holy Mosques recognising Israel? Not over many Muslims’ dead bodies.

Each time MBS has had to walk back on his wish to recognise Israel (and he was very near to flying to Washington and playing the role of smiling sponsor at the signing ceremony in the White House, before cancelling at the last minute) he has turned to his father, the king, to say that nothing has changed and reaffirm official state policy.

This is the Arab Peace Initiative published by his predecessor King Abdullah in 2002 and it only allows  recognition of Israel after a negotiated solution has been found based on 1967 borders.

US President Donald Trump waves to supporters on 15 November (Reuters)

US President Donald Trump waves to supporters on 15 November (Reuters)

The loss of Trump’s “крыша” – or protective roof – and the arrival of a hostile president in Biden will mean that MBS will need his father in the post as king even more than he has done in the past. We know from Saudi sources that at one point MBS was toying with the idea of forcing his father’s premature abdication on health grounds and seizing the crown himself.

The loss of Trump’s protective roof and the arrival of a hostile president in Biden will mean that MBS will need his father in the post as king even more than he has done in the past

In his latest round of purges, MBS targeted leading members of Hay’at al-Bayaa (the Allegiance Council) whose role is to approve a royal succession and the appointment of a new crown prince.

The latest arrests to purge the Allegiance Council of his critics would only have made sense if MBS himself was intending to becoming king. But that was in good times, when bin Salman’s star was rising and he could still visit London and Washington without creating flashmobs of human rights protesters.

In bad times, the king remains the tribal chief, who commands the loyalty of the royal family and the kingdom. Regardless of Salman’s actual mental condition, he is still the head of the family and there will be no rebellion against him. The same would not apply to his son if he pushed his father aside and seized the crown. He would be fair game for a palace coup. This is probably the main reason why the father is still king.

Regional alliance

The fate of the regional alliance that a future King Mohammed was attempting to build around himself also hangs in the balance. The real fight going on in the Sunni Arab world is about who would take over as leader and Western proxy.

Biden must end Trump’s alliance with Mohammed bin Salman

Read More »

The purpose of the alliance with Israel – in Emirati eyes – is not to increase wealth but power, power to become, with Saudi Arabia under King Mohammed, the regional hegemon.

That ambition still exists.

But the role that an “Arab Nato” alliance was intended to play to combat and curb Iran will now be diminished by Biden’s attempt to restore the nuclear agreement with Tehran. Iran’s rulers stared Trump in the eyes and did not blink first. They outlasted this US president as they have done to Jimmy Carter and every president who followed him.

The nuclear agreement (known as JCPOA) was Barack Obama’s crowning foreign policy achievement – although it was the fruition of years of negotiation involving many countries and past foreign ministers – the so-called P5 plus one, the permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany, and Turkey and Brazil before them.

However, each side’s moves are sequenced and whatever difficulties that lie on that path, Biden will pivot once more to restoring this nuclear agreement. Even if some sanctions continue, the policy of using them to exert “maximum pressure” will be over.

Detente will inevitably create a new reality in the Gulf region.

It will also create a new reality for members of the opposing alliance, Turkey and Qatar. Biden is no admirer of Erdogan, with whom he has spent many hours talking. He has apologised to Erdogan once for remarks suggesting that Turkey helped facilitate the rise of the Islamic State group. He is not about to do that again soon.

In a meeting with the New York Times’ editorial board filmed in December, Biden described Erdogan as an autocrat. Asked about how comfortable he felt with the US still basing 50 nuclear weapons in Turkey, Biden said his comfort level had “diminished a great deal” and that he would be making it clear to the Turkish leader that the US supports the opposition.

A volatile world

Once in power, Biden may find it more difficult to express this personal hostility. Whether he likes it or not, Turkey is a more confident regional military power than it was in Obama’s time.

Its military has proved itself as a counterweight to Russian military power in Syria and Libya, and it has just achieved a major breakthrough in Nagorno Karabakh, establishing for the first time access by road from the Turkish border to the Caspian Sea.

This is a strategic win for the Turkish state.

If he is going to partially lift sanctions on Iran, Biden will find that he needs Turkey as a regional counterbalance. There are today too many arenas, from Syria and Iraq to Libya, where Turkey has become a player. Biden has to deal with these “facts on the ground” whether he likes it or not.

Similarly, pressure will also now grow on Saudi Arabia to end its siege on Qatar. Their immediate neighbour, the UAE, will always regard Qatar’s pro-Islamist foreign policy as an existential threat. But the same does not apply to Riyadh, and quiet negotiations in Oman and Kuwait have already taken place.

Biden’s actions in the Middle East will be dictated by events. But the loss of Trump represents a body check for the ambitions and aspirations of Gulf hegemons.

It’s a more uncertain, volatile world.

The views expressed in this article belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Middle East Eye.

موسكو تهزم الإنجليز على ضفاف الفولغا وتطيح بالطورانيّة في القوقاز…!

محمد صادق الحسيني

قد لا يخطر لأحد حتى للمتابع الفطن للوهلة الاولى بأن سبب اندلاع حرب القوقاز الاخيرة انما يقف وراءها نزوع بريطانيّ شره قديم للسيطرة على مقدرات أمم القوقاز عاد وتجدّد في معركة السيطرة على قره باغ..!

فالحرب، التي شنها الجيش الأذربيجاني على إقليم ناغورني قره باغ الأرمني السكان، منذ 27/9/2020 وحتى توقيع اتفاقية وقف إطلاق النار، بين روسيا وأرمينيا وأذربيجان، قبل أيام معدودة لم تكن حرباً وليدة الساعة وليست ناتجة عن رد فعل اذربيجاني، على أطلاق نار من طرف قوات إقليم ناغورني قره باغ مثلاً، وإنما هي حرب تشكل استمراراً للحروب التي كانت تشنها بريطانيا في مناطق جنوب القوقاز ووسط آسيا (ما يعرف حالياً بالجمهوريات السوفياتية الإسلامية السابقة) بهدف وقف ما كانت تسميه لندن «التمدد الروسي» في آسيا… تلك السياسة التي لا زالت بريطانيا ومعها الولايات المتحدة ودول حلف شمال الاطلسي تمارسها حتى الآن، ليس تجاه روسيا فحسب وانما تجاه إيران أيضاً، التي تتهمها قوى الاستعمار الاوروبي «بالتمدد وتوسيع نفوذها» في «الشرق الاوسط»…!

للمتابع الفطن نقول إن هذه الحرب لم تقع صدفةً وإنما تم التخطيط لها بعناية فائقة، وبقيادة بريطانية أميركيةٍ، كان بطلها السفير البريطاني السابق في تركيا، ريتشارد مور ، الذي كان سفيراً فيها منذ بداية سنة 2014 وحتى نهاية 2017، وهو الصديق الحميم لأردوغان شخصياً ولمعظم السياسيين والجنرالات الأتراك، خاصة أنه يتكلم اللغة التركية بطلاقة ويدير مدوّنة شخصية باللغة التركية حتى اليوم، على الرغم من أنه كان قد سُمّيَ رئيساً لجهاز المخابرات البريطانية الخارجية أم 16، في شهر تموز 2020، وتسلم منصب قائد هذا الجهاز بتاريخ 2/10/2020 بعد إنهاء الإجراءات المتعلقة بتقلد هذا المنصب.

وهو كان ضابطاً فيه، حتى أثناء عمله كسفير في تركيا.

وهذا يعني أن الأب «الشرعي» لهذه الحرب هي بريطانيا، من تحت المظلة الأميركية، بينما لعب اردوغان وجنرالاته، ونتن ياهو وضباط جيشه ومخابراته، دور الأدوات لا أكثر، بهدف تنفيذ الخطة العسكرية لغزو إقليم ناغورني قره باغ وأجزاء من جنوب أرمينيا.

وقد كانت الأركان الرئيسية للخطة الشاملة تقضي بزعزعة الاستقرار في جنوب القوقاز وجمهوريات آسيا الوسطى، وصولاً الى الحدود الغربية للصين مع جمهورية قرقيزستان.

وإن الأركان الأساسية كانت هي التالية:

أولاً: أن يقوم الجيش الأذربيجاني بشنّ هجوم خاطف وسريع (ما يُسمّى بليتس كريغ أي حرب خاطفة باللغة الألمانية أصل هذه التسمية)، لا يستمرّ أكثر من أسبوع، لاجتياح إقليم ناغورني قره باغ وجنوب أرمينيا، وذلك انطلاقاً من حسابات المخطّطين العسكريين الأميركيين والبريطانيين والإسرائيليين والأتراك، الذين كانوا قد أعدوا الجيش الأذري بشكل جيد لمثل هذه المهمة، على صعيد التسليح والاستخبارات، ورفده بآلاف عدة من فلول داعش والنصرة الذين تمّ نقلهم جواً، عبر الأجواء الجورجية إلى أذربيجان، وغير ذلك من وسائل الدعم.

ثانياً: واستكمالاً لهذه الخطة العسكرية، التي بدأ تنفيذها بتاريخ 27/9/2020، يتمّ تفجير حرب ناعمة (ملوّنة)، موازية لهذه الحرب، ولكن في جمهورية قرغيزستان، المحاذية لحدود الصين الشمالية الغربية. وهو ما حصل فعلاً، حيث انفجرت يوم 4/10/2020، أعمال شغب وفوضى على نطاق واسع، احتحاجاً على نتائج انتخابية أجريت هناك، والتي كان للمخابرات المركزية الأميركية دور واسع في إشعالها وتأجيجها، خاصة أن الإدارة الاميركية كانت قد أُجبرت، سنة 2014، على إخلاء قاعدتها الجوية من شمال شرق قرقيزستان، والتي كانت تعتبر قاعدة متقدّمة ورأس جسر هام جداً، في إطار الحشد الاستراتيجي الأميركي ضدّ روسيا والصين.

ولكن هذه الحلقة من حلقات الحرب الناعمة الملوّنة قد فشلت، بتضافر جهود محلية وأخرى دوليّة، نجحت في وأد تلك المؤامرة «بشكل خاطف» وحاسم. وبالتالي وجهت ضربة استراتيجية لمخططات قوى الاستعمار الغربي، القديمة والجديدة، والتي كانت تهدف الى إحداث تغيير استراتيجي في موازين القوى في منطقة وسط آسيا.

ثالثاً: كان من المفترض، وبعد نجاح الجيش الاذربيجاني – حسب الخطة – في حسم الحرب وتحقيق أهدافه العسكرية، أن يعقد في باكو، عاصمة اذربيجان. أواخر شهر 10/2020، مؤتمر مجلس التعاون للدول الناطقة باللغة التركية، الذي تأسس في اسطنبول بتاريخ 16/9/2010، وأن يتم خلال هذا المؤتمر الإعلان عن تأسيس «جيش طوران العظيم».

وهذا يعني، عملياً وعملياتياً، إدخال اذربيجان في الأطر العسكرية التركية وبالتالي تلك الأطر التابعة لحلف شمال الأطلسي، تمهيداً لابتلاع بحر قزوين والتمدد، عبر تركمنستان، الى أوزبكستان وطاجيكستان وقرغيزستان، كما ذكرنا أعلاه. اي تطويق روسيا، عند حدودها الجنوبية، ليس فقط بقوات الاطلسي، وانما بعشرات آلاف العناصر الإرهابية، التي كان من المفترض ان تنقل الحرب الى داخل الأراضي الروسية شمالاً، أي شمال القوقاز، والى داخل الاراضي الصينيه شرقاً عبر قرغيزستان، والى داخل الأراضي الإيرانية في الجنوب الغربي، الى محافظة أذربيجان الغربية بدايةً وما يعنيه ذاك من تهديد للأمن القومي الإيراني، إضافة الى ما كان سيشكله من إخلال خطير بموازين القوى الاستراتيجية، في تلك المنطقة، خاصة اذا ما أخذنا العامل الإسرائيلي بعين الاعتبار وما كان يمكن أن يقوموا به من أدوار ضد الجمهورية الإسلامية الإيرانية.

رابعاً: لكن فطنة وحنكة الرئيس الروسي والتنسيق العميق، بين القيادة الروسية والإيرانية، لإيجاد حل دبلوماسي لتلك الحرب، انطلاقاً من اتفاقية لوقف إطلاق النار الفوري، قد نجحت في افشال الخطط العسكرية والسياسية، ذات الطبيعة الاستراتيجية، التي خططت لها قوى الاستعمار الغربي. وقد كان المنطلق الاساسي، لمهندس هذه النتيجة (وقف الحرب)، هو خلق نوع من التوازنات الميدانية عسكرياً، بما يفرض على الطرفين القبول بوقف إطلاق النار، تمهيداً للبدء في البحث عن وسائل ديبلوماسية وسياسية قادرة على خلق الاستقرار في كل منطقة جنوب القوقاز واواسط آسيا وإخراج المنطقة نهائياً من دائرة تجدد الحروب والنزاعات المسلحة، التي تقضي على كل فرص النمو والازدهار.علماً أن فشل الجيش الاذربيجاني، في اجتياح إقليم ناغورني قره باغ وجنوب أرمينيا، بالسرعة المطلوبة كان عاملاً أساسياً في الوصول الى النتيجة التي نراها أمامنا، والمتمثلة في ما يلي:

أ ـ نجاح روسيا، من دون أن تتدخل عسكرياً او تطلق حتى رصاصةً واحدةً، في وقف القتال، وبالتالي منع توسع نطاق الحرب الى دول مجاورة، جنوباً وشرقاً، او الى جمهوريات روسية جنوبية (جمهوريات منطقة الڤولغا).

ب ـ الأهمية القصوى لهذا النجاح بالنسبة لإيران، حيث إنه قد قضى على إمكانية انتشار العصابات الإرهابية المسلحة على حدودها الشمالية الغربية، وما كان سيرافق ذلك من تسلل إسرائيلي الى أطراف تلك الحدود الإيرانية.

ج ـ إخراج تركيا، كعضو في حلف شمال الاطلسي، وأردوغان كحالم بإمبراطورية طورانية جديدة، من توازنات القوقاز وأواسط آسيا، على الرغم مما تردده وسائل الإعلام المختلفة عن تنسيق تركي روسي يتعلق بمراقبة وقف اطلاق النار.

فمن يراقب وقف إطلاق النار ومنع التسلل التركي / الاطلسي، الى اذربيجان وبقية انحاء آسيا الوسطى، هو لواء القوات الخاصة الروسية، الذي انتشر على خطوط التماس، والقوات التي سيجري تعزيزه بها، اذا ما دعت الضرورة الى ذلك. ستكون هي القوات التي تمسك بالأرض، وهي التي ستشرف على الممرات الآمنة، بعرض 5 كلم، بين إقليم قره باغ (ممر لاشين) وأرمينيا، وبين إقليم نقچوان واذربيجان، عبر جنوب أرمينيا.

وهو ما يعني أيضاً استعادة روسيا زمام المبادرة الاستراتيجية في كل فضائها الجنوبيّ، وإن بشكل يختلف عن الوجود الروسي، في هذه المناطق، إبان الحقبة السوفياتية.

إنه حضور مرن قادر على التكيّف مع كلّ المتغيرات الجيو استرتيجية والحفاظ على مصالح روسيا العليا ومصالح حلفائها، على الصعيد الدولي.

لكن كلّ هذه النجاحات لا تعني انّ التآمر الاستعماري الغربي، خاصة البريطاني الأميركي، قد انتهى الى غير رجعة، وإنما يعني ان الأرضية الاستراتيجية لإنهاء هذه المؤامرات والأطماع قد وضع لها حدّ مبدئياً.

والتطبيق العملياتي لهذه الإجراءات هو الذي سيخبرنا عن قريب عن حقيقة حجم كلّ لاعب إقليمي او دولي هناك.

فضاء القوقاز هو فضاء تمّ حسمه بشكل نهائي لصالح روسيا في الحرب العالمية الثانية. ولن تسمح روسيا لأحد مشاركتها به إلا اللهم الدخول في حلف استراتيجي معها، وهو ما تتقنه إيران باستقلالية قرار قلّ نظيرها، وهو ما لن تقدر عليه تركيا لأنها تلعب دور مخلب الناتو رغم كل الضجيج الذي تثيره حول طموحاتها المتهافتة على سواحل البحار الخمسة من الأسود حتى المتوسط والخليج الفارسي.

فنون قتال لا يتقنها إلا كبار العقول
بعدنا طيبين قولوا الله….

The Karabakh war is over. The crisis is not. What comes next?

Source

The Karabakh war is over.  The crisis is not.  What comes next?

First, I want to begin this analysis by posting the full translation of an article posted yesterday by the Russian webzine Vzgliad.  I materially don’t have the time to make my own translation, so what I will post is just a minimally retouched machine translation, I apologize for this.

original Russian text: https://vz.ru/world/2020/11/12/1070326.html

Five main mysteries of the second Karabakh war

by Evgenii Krutikov

The end of the second Karabakh war gave rise to many riddles and conspiracy theories. Indeed, some of the circumstances of this conflict are extremely mysterious, or at least paradoxical from the point of view of conventional military logic. Apparently, the Armenian leadership itself provoked a political catastrophe.

Let’s list which riddles raise the biggest questions and provoke the appearance of “conspiracy theories” in Armenia (and not only).

1. Why was not a full-fledged mobilization carried out in Armenia, and full-fledged military units were not deployed to the conflict area?

Despite loud Patriotic statements, there was no real mobilization in Armenia. The permanent number of the Armenian army – about 50 thousand people-was increased only by volunteers. While the conditions of the fighting required to increase the number of defenders of Karabakh to 80-100 thousand people at least. At the same time, very soon the lack of specialists (for example, artillery calculations and MLRS) began to affect the front in the Armenian army. There was no one to fill in the losses.

It is inexplicable why Yerevan did not conduct a real mobilization. The Armenian leadership simply avoids talking about this topic. If there was a mobilization plan, no one tried to implement it. As a result, there was no rotation of military personnel on the first line, in some areas people were sitting in the trenches for a month without a shift. 18-20-year-olds were on the front line, and at some point the untrained youth made up up to 80% of the personnel. The Karabakh detachments, made up of professionals and veterans, suffered heavy losses in the first week, which there was no one and nothing to make up for, since there were simply no reinforcements.

Groups of volunteers in Armenia were formed along party lines. The scandal was caused by an attempt to form a separate detachment of the prosperous Armenia party named after the oligarch Gagik Tsarukyan, who is now Pashinyan’s main opponent. The two have been in conflict for more than a decade. Now the Prime Minister openly calls Tsarukyan “the culprit of the fall of Shusha”, since his phantom squad allegedly did not have enough at the front to win. These conflicts could have been avoided simply by having a mobilization plan and a desire to implement it.

The main military forces of Armenia did not move to Karabakh. But in order to relieve the tension created by Azerbaijani UAVs, it was enough to simply relocate early detection locators to Goris. And one army corps would have been enough to cover the southern direction even at the stage when the Azerbaijanis were languidly marking time in front of the first line of defense. Proper supplies were not organized, and after a month of fighting, this led to a shortage of missiles for the MLRS and shells for the barrel artillery. And without artillery support, the infantry can only die heroically.

All this borders on sabotage, although it may be partly explained by local sloppiness and unwillingness to weaken the defense of Armenia proper. The latter is a very controversial position and it looks like the Armenian leadership has simply abandoned Karabakh to its fate.

2. Why did the Northern front behave so strangely?

In the North and North-East of Karabakh, in the area of the Kyrgyz Republic, there was a large fortified area of the Armenian defense, which included very combat-ready units. And they really put up a serious resistance to the advancing Azerbaijani group and in the end actually stopped it (losing, however, several positions and significant villages).

But after that, the elite Yehnikner battalion suddenly retreated, although its commander managed to get the “Hero of Artsakh”. Moreover, since October 3, neither “Ehnikner” nor any military unit at all was removed from the Northern front and was not transferred to help the burning South. At the same time, the Azerbaijanis only once decided to simulate an offensive in the North again, clearly for distracting purposes. There was no need to keep up to 20 thousand people in the North.

The Karabakh Leadership informally explains all this with a lack of resources. But now the” lack of resources ” in Karabakh explains everything.

3. Why did the southern front collapse?

The fact that the main blow is being inflicted by the Azerbaijanis in the South, in the steppe zone, was visible to the naked eye already in the first few days of the war. Nevertheless, resources – human and technical-began to arrive on the southern front when this front was no longer in fact there. The steppe zone was lost, and the front stopped along the edge of the mountains from Krasny Bazar to Martuni. As a result, up to 30 thousand people defending Karabakh have accumulated in this area. They were threatened with complete encirclement and death, which was one of the reasons for signing the ceasefire agreement. At the same time, before the occupation of Jabrayil, the Azerbaijani troops advanced very slowly, disrupting their own pace of attack. This gave the Armenians a small, but still a head start in order to understand the situation and engage in relocation.

After the occupation of Jabrayil, the front began to fall apart, and the advance of the Azerbaijanis sharply accelerated. The moment was lost.

For some reason, the Armenian command has not made a decision about the transfer of additional resources to the southern front? This is another mystery.

4. Why did the Armenian side limit itself to passive defense?

During the entire war, the Armenian side only twice attempted a counterattack against the advanced units of the Azerbaijanis who were running far ahead. Both times this happened opposite Lachin in a narrow gorge, with the extreme vulnerability of the Azerbaijani battalion-tactical group (BTG). Once even successfully. But these operations were simply reduced to a massive attack by the MLRS on enemy clusters. Operations to block the gorge and encircle the enemy in other sections of the southern front were suggested. But not a single Armenian unit moved. An amazing war in which one of the parties did not conduct a single offensive operation on the ground, limited only and exclusively to passive defense.

A successful counteroffensive in the gorge before Lachin would have crushed so many Azerbaijani forces in the cauldron that they would not have thought about attacking Shusha for at least a couple of weeks. And later it was quite possible to destroy the Azerbaijani infantry in the ravine Averatec. But it took a lot of effort.

There is no explanation for why the Armenian side did not even try to counterattack or use other methods to use the operational advantage that it repeatedly had. The lack of resources can only be referred to endlessly in the last stages of warfare, but passive defense has been a constant tactic since the beginning of the war.

5. Why was Shusha handed over?

The most sensitive and incomprehensible question. The first assault on the city by Azerbaijani infantry was extremely unsuccessful. Then the second column of Azerbaijanis was covered by the MLRS strike. With some effort and assistance from Armenia, the Azerbaijani group that broke through to the city could be destroyed. However, suddenly a decision is made to leave the city without a fight and not to attempt to liberate it with the favorable operational and tactical situation remaining for another day.

It is believed that the decision to leave Shusha was made by NKR President Araik Harutyunyan and Secretary of the NKR security Council General Samvel Babayan, a local legend. Now, in protest against the signing of the armistice, he left his post and renounced the title of Hero of Artsakh. The Armenian YouTube channel “Lurer” (“news”) published a recording of Babayan and Harutyunyan’s talks, from which it follows that General Babayan really considered the possibility of recapturing Shusha even after its abandonment,but the further prospect of resistance was very gloomy.

Fragment of a conversation (not translated verbatim): “Let’s calculate the (combat) task. Twenty, thirty volleys of the “Smerch” MLRS blanket Shushi. We kill everyone there. Taking the city back. What’s next? The state of the army and the civilian population does not allow for war. We gave battle, took Shushi, then what? ( … ) we Can’t fight with the NATO army, with mercenaries, fully equipped… I tried to organize an operation with three battalions yesterday. We only have four howitzers. If we are not provided with artillery, how will you ensure the offensive or cut off his (the enemy’s) tails? (…) Today we must finally negotiate with Russia that we are handing over these territories and leaving them. Or they help us. Imagine that we have two Grads for the entire army today, a dozen howitzers, for which we have no shells.”

To sum up, General Babayan believed that resistance was useless at this stage of the fighting. We must refuse to continue the war and either surrender, or ask for ten days for an organized exit of the local population and the 30 thousand soldiers of the southern front who are completely surrounded. As an alternative, it was proposed to urgently ask Russia for direct military assistance in the form of PMCs or volunteers, equipment and ammunition.

But all this does not negate the question of why a small group of Azerbaijani infantrymen without heavy equipment, who broke through to Shusha, was not destroyed before the Armenian army began to panic. The retention of Shusha created a completely different architecture of political agreements for the NKR and Armenia. If this is a political decision, then who actually made it?

* * *

This list of mysteries of the second Karabakh war is far from complete. In addition, the Armenian leadership has accumulated many similar questions about preparing for war. This war was lost before it even started, precisely because of the inaction or strange action of Yerevan.

The proceedings will continue for a long time. The situation in the region has changed so radically in these forty days that all the old approaches to resolving the conflict and its military component have died out of themselves. And the new reality will require new solutions for Armenia. And it is not yet clear who will take these decisions.  


Personally, I do not see any dark conspiracy here.  What I do see is a truly PHENOMENAL level of incompetence from the Sorosite leadership of Armenia.  Simply put, the vast majority of the truly competent Armenian leaders, civilian and military, were either jailed or, at the very least fired en masse.  There is a very simple explanation for this too.

From Pashinian’s (and, from now on, when I say “Pashinian” I mean the usual suspects: MI6, CIA, Soros, etc.) point of view, the “old guard” of Soviet trained leaders had to be removed because they could not be trusted.  But what this imbecile, and his masters, did not realize is that the “Soviet educated” leadership was far more competent than the “woke and transgender friendly democrats” which took power in 2018.

[Sidebar: Did you notice something quite interesting? The “old” and “Soviet trained” military forces in general, and their commanders especially, are systematically much better trained that those forces trained by NATO or “the most powerful military in the history of the galaxy”.  Why is it that the democratic, progressive and advanced forces like, say, the Saudis, the Israelis, the Georgians, the Yemeni or all the other many “good terrorists” always perform miserably in combat?  I will let you ponder this question :-)]

By the way, Pashinian, who is hiding in a bunker or inside the US embassy compound in Erevan, is still at it!  Yesterday he called Macron, who is under pressure from the huge Armenian immigration in France to do something, to ask for his help and Macron promised to help find a solution acceptable to all sides, implying two things:

  1. That the “Russian solution” (in reality Armenian the acceptance by Erevan of the Azeri terms) is not acceptable and that
  2. That France has some kind of magic wand that Macron can wave a few times and forever turn the entire area of operation into a peaceful land of milk and honey were everybody would hold hands, sing Kumbaya, and “feel the love” forever and ever.

As usually, the Brits are much more devious, secretive and smart: the head of MI6 is in Turkey to meet with “senior officials”.  Yeah, right!  By the way, this guy, Richard Moore, is a former UK Ambassador to Turkey.  To get a sense of what this is all about, all you need to do is look into any history book to see that the Brits have always used the Ottomans as canon-fodder against Russia.

As for the US Americans, they are basically paralyzed by the chaos in their own country.  But either one of the dummies running might try something desperate to “show the flag” and prove that he is “tough on Russia”.

So what’s next?

For years now I have been saying the following about the Western political leaders: they are unable to build anything worthwhile, but they are most definitely able to spread chaos, anarchy, violence, insurgencies, etc.  So the first thing you can be sure of is that the AngloZionists will do everything in their power to egg on the Armenians, the Azeris and even the Turks to reject an outcome which the West sees as a triumph for Russia (and for Putin personally!).

Then there is Erdogan, who is furious at the Russian categorical rejection of his demands to be part of the peacekeeping force.  All the Russians have agreed to is to create a special “monitoring post” staffed by Russians and Turks, far away from the Nagorno-Karabakh region where a joint team of observers would “monitor” the situation by looking at computers.  There will be no Turkish soldiers in the peacekeeping area (see Russian military map above).

As a fallback option, the Turks are also demanding they they be allowed to fly their own drones over the area of operations.  In response, the Armenian side has declared that Armenia and Russia have jointly declared a no-fly zone over the entire area.  As far as I know, the Russians have not confirmed that “yet”, but you can be pretty sure that they will immediately shoot down any unauthorized aircraft approaching their positions.

To get a sense of how the Russians are acting, you need to know two things:

First, the Russian liberal media is already complaining that Russia has included “undeclared” weapons systems in its peacekeeping force (MLRS and APCs).  This is hardly surprising considering the very high probability of provocations (by both sides).  Besides, the vague language of the agreement allows Russian to bring in “specialized vehicles” which could mean anything and everything.

Furthermore, I am pretty confident that the Russian 102nd Military Base is a Russian military base in Gyumri will receive reinforcements and will serve as the logistical support hub for the Russian peacekeeping force.

Lieutenant General Rustam Muradov and Vladimir Putin

Second, it is worth looking at the career of the man who will be commanding the Russian peacekeeping force, Lieutenant General Rustam Muradov.  You can check his biography here and here.  I will simply summarize this man’s career by saying two words: Donbass, Syria.

He is not some kind of pretend-general whose qualifications are mainly as organizers and politicians.  This guy is a real combat general, the kind who personally comes under fire because he makes sure to regularly be with his men on the frontlines and who has experience dealing with the Axis of Kindness and its “good terrorists” (whether local or special ops).

The West perfectly understands this and is absolutely furious about being “cheated” by Russia again!

First, the Russians stopped the bloody war in Syria, now they stopped the war in Azerbaijan.  For the Empire, this means the total loss of the axis of instability which they lovingly tried to create in the Caucasus and the Middle-East to eventually hit the Russian underbelly.  They failed.  They won’t forgive this.

Second, most Armenians worldwide are absolutely horrified at the outcome of this war, and they have my sincere sympathy.  The problem here is that many of them blame Russia, rather than their own leaders.  Furthermore, there are many truly rabid nationalists amongst the anti-Pashinian forces in Armenia.  Right now, Pashinian is hiding somewhere and he still refuses to resign (backed to the hilt by the West, of course).  But this will change, I can’t imagine anybody staying in power after such a catastrophe.

However, Pashinian gone does not at all mean that pro-Russian, or even Russia-neutral, forces will succeed him.  In fact, as in most chaotic situations, it is the extremists who are most likely to seize power.  And God only knows what they might do next!

In a paradoxical way, the best outcome for Russia would be to have Pashinian stay in power just a little longer, just long enough to create a fait accompli on the ground which no nutcases could meaningfully overturn.

Right now, two things are happening: Armenian refugees are clogging the only roads which will allow them to flee to Armenia.  These poor people will never trust the word of an Azeri or, even less so, a Turk, could say (and who could blame them?!).

This is truly a heart-breaking tragedy which could have been completely avoided had Pashinian and his Sorosites done a few, really basic, things (preparing for war and settling for an imperfect peace agreement for starters).

Armenian-NK forces are also withdrawing, and it’s not like they have much of an option here: escaping with their lives is really all these poor soldiers could hope for (and by no fault of theirs, I would add!).

The next couple of weeks will be crucial and I can only hope that the Russians are fully ready to deal with any contingency, including a complete Armenian turnaround if Pashinian is overthrown very soon.

It is now a race against the clock: on one side, the West wants Russia out at quite literally *ANY* costs in Azeri and Armenian lives while the Russians are scrambling to make the agreement a well-defended reality on the ground.  In the Ukraine they say that “the West is willing to fight Russia down the the very last Ukrainian“.  I hope and pray that this does not happen in the Caucasus.

The Saker

PS: on the really sad and tragic side, I personally can’t imagine any refugees willing to come back, in spite of all the pious promises made by all sides.  Look, let’s be honest here: during the first NK war, which the Armenians won, the Azeris were brutally expelled, there were several instances of mass murder of Azeri civilians by the triumphant Armenian forces.  This time around, the Azeris made all sorts of promises, but if I was an Armenian I would not trust a single word the Turks or Azeris say (heck, these two still deny that there was any genocide of Armenians by the Ottomans!).  Keep in mind that in this short war, about 4000 civilians have died; that is the official figure, the real one is probably even worse!

Maybe in a decade or two, and only if Russia remains the peacekeeper of the Caucases, will some refugees, or their sons and daughters return to their historical homelands.  But right now, the Russian peacekeeping force will probably end up maintaining the peace in a very empty Nagorno-Karabakh.  This is a revolting outcome which, I will repeat this, could have been avoided by Pashinian and his gang of Sorosites.  May that be a lesson to anybody else taking these evil clowns seriously!

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