موتوا بغيظكم… الإمرة للمقاومة أينما وجدت

 Hezbollah-Arsal Barrens

ابراهيم الأمين

هل من داعٍ لسجال جديد مع أنصار الإرهاب في لبنان؟

ماذا ينفع النقاش، بعد كل ما حصل وإزاء ما تقوم به المجموعات المسلحة في سوريا من أعمال إرهابية، مع من لا يزال يتحدث عن ثورة وثوار؟

ماذا ينفع النقاش مع من ينظرون إلى من يفوز بالمعركة، لا إلى من يخسر؟ هؤلاء ضد أن تخسر إسرائيل الحرب مع العرب إذا كان ذلك سيحصل على أيدي رجال محور المقاومة، فهل سيبالون بهزيمة أقذر المجموعات الإرهابية في العالم؟

ماذا ينفع النقاش مع من هم مقتنعون بأن المقاومة في لبنان فعل إجرامي يقوم به مرتزقة يتبعون لإيران، ولا يوجد أي بعد وطني لما تقوم به؟

طرد الاحتلال عام 2000، ومنعه من العودة عام 2006، كان بالنسبة إلى هؤلاء هزيمة، ليس لأن إسرائيل خسرت، بل لأن محور المقاومة ربح.

ماذا ينفع النقاش مع من لم يروا جريمة واحدة ارتكبتها الولايات المتحدة وأوروبا في عالمنا العربي؟ مع أفراد وجهات لا يريدون إحصاء عدد الذين قتلتهم أميركا والغرب في الحرب على العراق، ولا هم يسألون، اليوم، عن عدد المدنيين الذين تقتلهم أميركا وأوروبا في سوريا باسم قتال الإرهاب.

ماذا ينفع النقاش مع مجموعات تعيش على استغلال النازحين السوريين؟ التدقيق في مصادر دخل من يقودون حملات التضامن ضد المقاومة والجيش بحجة مناهضة العنصرية، وفي أماكن عملهم وأنواعه، سيبيّن لمن يرغب سبب غيرتهم على النازحين، وجلّهم لم يزر نازحاً في خيمته. وهؤلاء، كما فريق رئيس الحكومة الرسمي والسياسي والأمني والحزبي والديني، لا يريدون لنا أن نعرف كيف صرفت موازنات المساعدات العربية والدولية الخاصة بالنازحين، ولا أسماء المؤسسات والشركات والمطاعم والصيدليات والمكتبات والمحلات التي صارت مورداً لحاجات النازحين، ومن يشتري بونات المازوت أول كل شهر.

هؤلاء يريدون أن يقرروا، نيابة عن النازحين، أن موعد العودة إلى بلادهم لم يحن بعد. طبعاً، سمير جعجع وفارس سعيد وسعد الحريري ومعين المرعبي يعرفون دواخل النازحين، وهم تثبّتوا مباشرة، من النازحين أنفسهم، أنهم لا يريدون العودة إلى مناطق سيطرة النظام في سوريا، ولا إلى مناطق سيطرة المعارضة… لكنهم لا يريدون البقاء في لبنان، وهم ممنوع عليهم سؤال السعودية أو الكويت أو قطر أو الإمارات العربية أو فرنسا أو بريطانيا عن سبب عدم استضافتهم في بلادها الغنية!

ماذ ينفع أن تناقش فريقاً لا توصيف دقيقاً لمهنته سوى العمالة؟ العمالة التي تعني التآمر على أبناء بلده، والتعاون مع أعداء لبنان من أجل مصالحه الخاصة. والصدفة ــ ما أحلى الصدفة! ــ هي التي تجعل خصوم المقاومة قبل التحرير، والمطالبين برأسها مع القرار 1559، والداعين إلى تدميرها في 2006، ودعاة إلقاء السلاح بعد 2006، والساعين إلى الانقلاب عليها في 2008، والمستعدين لمحاصرتها وعزلها باسم العدالة والعقوبات ومكافحة الإرهاب… هم أنفسهم يريدون من المقاومة اليوم ترك التكفيريين يجولون ويصولون في العراق وسوريا ولبنان. وهم أنفسهم الذين فرحوا ويفرحون عندما يفجر الإرهاب عبوة ناسفة في الضاحية، أو عندما يُعلَن استشهاد مقاوم في سوريا. وهم أنفسهم الذين يموتون غيظاً لأن «أبو مالك التلّي» في أزمة. وهم أنفسهم الذين يستعدون لفعل أي موبقة ما دام لا يجب على محور المقاومة الفوز بهذه المعركة أو تلك…

أليس هؤلاء بعملاء، حتى ولو حملوا بطاقات عضوية في أحزاب موجودة داخل الحكومة أو المجلس النيابي، وحتى لو كتبوا طوال الليل والنهار في صحف ومواقع إلكترونية، أو احتلوا الشاشات المحلية أو العربية، حتى ولو كانوا رؤساء أحزاب أو نواباً أو وزراء أو مسؤولين في مؤسسات الدولة الرسمية والسياسية والأمنية والعسكرية والاجتماعية. وحتى ولو كانوا أصحاب مصارف أو متاجر كبيرة، أو كانوا من رجال الأعمال وأصحاب الشركات الكبرى، أو أساتذة جامعات أو مدارس أو أطباء أو مهندسين أو محامين أو خلاف ذلك.

لا تهمّ مواقعهم، ولا وظيفتهم في الحياة، ولا طائفتهم ولا مذهبهم ولا منطقتهم… هم عملاء وخونة وليس أي شيء آخر. وليس علينا سوى التعامل معهم على أساس أنهم عملاء وخونة!

غير ذلك، ستلاحق المقاومة كل تافه وحقير وتكفيري وعميل، وكل جندي أميركي وإسرائيلي، وكل مرتزق عربي أو إسلامي يعمل مع الاحتلال، وستقتلهم بندقية المقاومة في كل بلاد العرب وحيث أمكن الوصول، أما من لديه رأي آخر، فليبلِّط البحر بعد أن يشرب ماءه!

معالي الوزير… النازحون قبل سورية لا يثقون بكم

معالي الوزير… النازحون قبل سورية لا يثقون بكم

ناصر قنديل

يوليو 5, 2017

– رغم الخيبات كلّها التي أصابت رهاناتهم لا يزال وزراء تيار المستقبل يتنمّرون عندما يتناولون المسألة السورية، خصوصاً ما يتصل بالمصلحة اللبنانية الصرفة لضمان التنسيق بين الجيش اللبناني، والجيش الواقف قبالته عبر الحدود لتسريع عمليات التنظيف وضمان أمنها وسلاستها. وهذا ليس موضوعاً يتصل بدرجة الشوق والثقة والغرام، بل بتقدير العقل البارد للمسؤول لمصلحة بلده العليا، وعدم رهنها لسياساته الصغيرة وحسابات فريقه وارتباطاته الخارجية ومحاورها الإقليمية أما في ملف النازحين فيمارس وزراء تيار المستقبل المعنيون بملف النازحين، سواء الوزير الذي أنيط به الملف، ووزير الداخلية المعني حكماً به، سياسة ولغة فيهما تعمية على القضية وتهويل يستند للغموض، بحيث يصير منطق الحكومة إذا اعتبرنا مواقفهما تمثيلاً للسياسة الحكومية، لا لعودة النازحين.

– المطروح يا صاحبَيْ المعالي عودة نازحين وليس ترحيلهم، والترحيل تنطبق عليه ملاحظاتكم، عندما تتحدّثون بلغة الحرص على أمن النازحين وتبالغون بالتنمّر عن عدم الثقة بالدولة السورية، فهل نتحدّث هنا عن تجميع النازحين وتحميلهم كأثاث منزلي إلى الحدود وتسليمهم بالجملة للدولة السورية للتصرّف بهم؟ هل يخطر في بال أحد هذا المشهد حتى يكون الجواب «نريد معرفة المناطق الآمنة»، و«لا نثق بالدولة السورية في تحديدها ولا بأمن النازحين بعد عودتهم في ظلها»؟ أليس هذا تصويراً هوليودياً للقضية، وأنتم تعلمون أنّ المطروح هو عودة طوعية، رضائية، للنازح نفسه، يختار بكامل مسؤوليته وثقته هو، أنه عائد إلى بلده، وفي ظلّ دولته. وعندما يبقى مَن لا يثقون، وستبقى جماعاتكم وأصدقاؤكم وأحبابكم، لا أحد يقول أن تسلموهم للدولة السورية قبل أن تثقوا بإلى أين يذهبون، أما سواهم فما شأنكم بخيارهم الطوعي الشخصي بالعودة لبلدهم؟

– أما لماذا هذه مسألة تحتاج تدخل الدولة؟ ستقولون مَن يمنعهم فليذهب الراغبون؟ والجواب تعلمونه أنّ القضية قانونية ولوجستية، فالنازحون في أغلبهم جاؤوا بصورة غير قانونية، ويحتاج إدخالهم إلى سورية لوائح إسمية موزعة على مناطق العودة كمحافظات ونواحٍ، جرت تسوية أوضاعها القانونية لدى دولتها التي يثقون بها، ولا يهمّهم ثقتكم من عدمها، ولا يريدون منكم إلا تولي صفة المراسل الذي يفتح الملف ويعلن الدعوة لتسجيل أسماء الراغبين بالعودة، وتحديد مناطقهم وأوضاعهم وسجلاتهم وملفات مشاكلهم، ويقوم بصورة دورية بالتنسيق مع الدولة السورية، لتبادل اللوائح الجديدة للراغبين باللوائح المدققة للذين تمّت تسوية أوضاعهم، فيأتي الترتيب اللوجستي بأن تعلن الدولة اللبنانية مواعيد القوافل العائدة وأماكن تجمّعاتها وشروط الانضمام إليها، وتكون قد نسّقت الأمر مع الدولة السورية، وإذا أحببتم الشراكات الأممية فلا اعتراض عليها طالما تعزّز ثقتكم، ولو أنّ النازحين لا يثقون بها ويعتبرونها سارقة للمساعدات ومتاجرة بقضيتهم.

أنتم تتاجرون بقضية النازحين أيضاً سياسياً، تريدونهم سبباً للتسوّل الخارجي والمكرمات الملكية، وتتجاهلون الإجابة عن سؤال لو كان النازحون يثقون بكم وتياركم أول مَن طبّل وزمّر للنزوح، ورفض الاعتراف بوجود الإرهاب أصلاً، في عرسال وغير عرسال:

لماذا ذهبوا ينتخبون الرئيس بشار الأسد بصورة طوفان شعبي أذهلتكم وأخرجتكم مع حلفائكم عن طبعكم، فخرج بعضكم يقول، ما دام النازحون مع النظام فليرجعوا إلى سورية، حسناً هم يريدون العودة إلى سورية في أغلبهم، فسهّلوا لهم ذلك، ولا يطلب منكم أحد ثقة بالدولة السورية التي لا تثق بكم لا هي ولا شعبها، فمارسوا مسؤولياتكم الحكومية ولا ترهنوها لحسابات أضيق من مصلحة لبنان، وأنتم تعلمون ما يسبّبه ضيق الحال من توتر بالعلاقات بين النازحين واللبنانيين، وكيف ينتج شرخاً سيصعب ردمه إنْ استمرّ واستمرّت قضية النزوح، أم أنكم تريدون منع المواطنين السوريين الطيبين الراغبين بالعودة بتعقيد شروط هذه العودة، كي لا يبقى الذين احتضنتموهم للاعتبارات السياسية بلا غطاء شعبي، ولا يبقى المتجاوزون للقانون من شركاء المال والتجارة لبعض المسؤولين بلا غطاء قضية النزوح وتطبق عليه القوانين، فتتعطّل تجارة العقارات في سوليدير والحمرا وغيرهما؟

– يا معالي الوزير سواء أكنت وزيراً للداخلية أم لشؤون النازحين، كفى لعب سياسة بملف مصيري في حياة لبنان، الصورة واضحة وبسيطة، شكّلوا لجنة وزارية، تبدأ بترتيب الأصول القانونية لملف العودة وأشركوا الأمم المتحدة، وإنْ رغبتم وتنازلتم أجيبونا عن سؤال لماذا لا تنضمّون إلى أستانة ولقاءاتها، كدولة جوار لسورية لديها جبهة قتال وقضية نزوح، تشبهان ما لدى الأردن وهو من معسكركم نفسه ويشارك، وواشنطن أيضاً مشاركة، وبالمناسبة قضية المناطق الآمنة من أولى القضايا في اهتمامات استانة؟

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EU: Another Step Down the Slippery Slope

 

EU: Another Step Down the Slippery Slope

ANDREI AKULOV | 19.06.2017 | WORLD

EU: Another Step Down the Slippery Slope

The EU Commission has launched legal action against Hungary, the Czech Republic and Poland which refused to take in refugees from Italy and Greece. The three EU states have acted «in breach of their legal obligations», the Commission said in a statement, adding that it had previously warned the countries to observe «their commitments to Greece, Italy and other member states». The three member states «have not yet relocated a single person», the statement says. The EU members under fire remain defiant.

In September 2015, the EU committed to relocating up to 160,000 refugees from the two countries within two years. However, not all EU states have found the measures acceptable, saying that the migrant crisis cannot be solved through obligatory quotas. Hungary and Slovakia are currently challenging the decision in the EU Court of Justice, and an advocate-general of the court will issue an opinion on July 26. Slovakia was able to avoid legal action against it by responding to EU warnings and opening its doors to a small group of migrants.

Only 20,869 of the 160,000 refugees have so far been relocated in the EU. More than 1.6 million asylum seekers have arrived in Europe since the start of the refugee crisis in 2014.

Now the Commission has launched infringement procedures against the three nations refusing to comply, before possibly referring them to the top European court. The legal battle could last many months or, even, years. As a result, the three states could be imposed financial penalties.

The very fact of launching legal procedures heats up tensions inside the EU at the time the bloc is going through a period of instability and uncertainty, with its unity tested by Brexit, weak economies and growing support for Eurosceptic and nationalist-minded parties.

Perhaps, it’s easier to pay fines than take in refugees and face grave security problems as a result. Going to the bottom of it – it’s not fines that really matter. All the countries opposing the EU migration policy are net beneficiaries of EU funding. A mood is developing among the older EU members to withhold cohesion funds from countries that oppose the relocation of refugees, although no legal basis for this actually exists. But if it starts, the EU will become a battlefield to make the vaunted unity a pipedream. If the events turn this way, the EU will become very much different from what it is today.

The Visegrád countries (V4) – Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary – have found common ground in recent years opposing the EU’s relocation policy and rejecting the idea of a two-speed Europe, but also in advocating the preservation of the Union’s cohesion policy. Indeed, why should East Europeans share the burden of the immigration crisis, especially in view that security policy is a national, not European, competence? These countries call for strengthening of the national states in EU decision-making process.

Poland and Hungary have joined together recently to oppose Brussels stance on human rights.

The V4 also oppose the two-speed» and «multi-speed» concepts supported by EU founders. They believe that the idea would turn them into «second class» members of the bloc.

The «East European revolt» is just part of a bigger process with deepening EU divisions and alliances being formed inside the alliance.

Prospect for the future? The situation inside the EU has bleak prospects for improvement. It calls for a closer look at the recent developments inside the EU. In February, the European Parliament backed three resolutions on strengthening centralization of the bloc. One of the resolutions proposes limiting or even totally abolishing the right of individual member states not to comply with collective decisions – just exactly what the East European members oppose so vehemently. The adoption of the resolutions may be the first step towards a fundamental change in the EU Treaty.

In February, leaders of the lower chambers of parliaments of Germany, Italy, France, and Luxembourg published a letter demanding a «Federal Union» be implemented without delay. It was published by Italian La Stampa on February 27. They call for «closer political integration — the Federal Union of States with broad powers. «Those who believe in European ideals, should be able to give them a new life instead of helplessly observing its slow sunset», the paper reads.

The idea to create a «common European defense» is a dubious endeavor; it presupposes additional financial burden at the time the US increases pressure to make Europeans raise NATO expenditure. Add to this the need to pay more for the migrants against the background of stagnating economy to see how unrealistic all these plans are. Europeans have already been made pay more for US liquefied gas for political reasons, while Russia can offer supplies at much lower prices.

Guy Verhofstadt, the former Belgian Prime Minister and European Parliament’s chief Brexit negotiator, believes that the European Union must reform, or face the risk of collapse as a result of internal and external challenges. Noam Chomsky, a prominent US scholar, has predicted that the EU will disintegrate. The EU will collapse in 2017, predicts Mark Blyth, a lecturer in political economy at Brown University in the US, known for forecasts to come true.

The event marks a turning point in EU history. This is the first time EU members will face legal procedures for non-compliance with the rules established by Brussels. It shows how the migration crisis has divided the bloc. The process will not die away, migrants will continue their route north to the wealthier countries and the tensions inside the EU will grow. Rival blocs and perpetuate divisions will not disappear, turning the EU into a patchwork of blocs within blocs. The project of European integration does not look viable anymore. Legal actions cannot bridge the differences dividing its members.

Oligarchs Succeed! Only the People Suffer!

By James Petras

June 01, 2017 “Information Clearing House” – On a scale not seen since the ‘great’ world depression of the 1930’s, the US political system is experiencing sharp political attacks, divisions and power grabs. Executive firings, congressional investigations, demands for impeachment, witch hunts, threats of imprisonment for ‘contempt of Congress’ and naked power struggles have shredded the façade of political unity and consensus among competing powerful US oligarchs.

For the first time in US history, the incumbent elected president struggles on a daily basis to wield state power. The opposition-controlled state (National Public Radio) and corporate organs of mass propaganda are pitted against the presidential regime. Factions of the military elite and business oligarchy face off in the domestic and international arena. The oligarchs debate and insult each other. They falsify charges, plot and deceive. Their political acolytes, who witness these momentous conflicts, are mute, dumb and blind to the real interests at stake.

The struggle between the Presidential oligarch and the Opposition oligarchs has profound consequences for their factions and for the American people. Wars and markets, pursued by sections of the Oligarchs, have led opposing sections to seek control over the means of political manipulation (media and threats of judicial action).

Intense political competition and open political debate have nothing to do with ‘democracy’ as it now exists in the United States.

In fact, it is the absence of real democracy, which permits the oligarchs to engage in serious intra-elite warfare. The marginalized, de-politicized electorate are incapable of taking advantage of the conflict to advance their own interests.

What the ‘Conflict’ is Not About

The ‘life and death’ inter-oligarchical fight is not about peace!

None of the factions of the oligarchy, engaged in this struggle, is aligned with democratic or independent governments.

Neither side seeks to democratize the American electoral process or to dismantle the grotesque police state apparatus.

Neither side has any commitment to a ‘new deal’ for American workers and employees.

Neither is interested in policy changes needed to address the steady erosion of living standards or the unprecedented increase in ‘premature’ mortality among the working and rural classes.

Despite these similarities in their main focus of maintaining oligarchical power and policies against the interests of the larger population, there are deep divisions over the content and direction of the presidential regime and the permanent state apparatus.

What the Oligarchical Struggle is About

There are profound differences between the oligarch factions on the question of overseas wars and ‘interventions’.

The ‘opposition’ (Democratic Party and some Republican elite) pursues a continuation of their policy of global wars, especially aimed at confronting Russian and China, as well as regional wars in Asia and the Middle East. There is a stubborn refusal to modify military policies, despite the disastrous consequences domestically (economic decline and increased poverty) and internationally with massive ethnic cleansing, terrorism, forced migrations of war refugees to Europe, and famine and epidemics (such as cholera and starvation in Yemen).

The Trump Presidency appears to favor increased military confrontation with Iran and North Korea and intervention in Syria, Venezuela and Yemen.

The ‘Opposition’ supports multilateral economic and trade agreements, (such as TTP and NAFTA), while Trump favors lucrative ‘bilateral’ economic agreements. Trump relies on trade and investment deals with Saudi Arabia and the Gulf Emirates and the formation of an aggressive military ‘axis’ (US-Saudi Arabia-Israel -Gulf Emirates) to eventually overthrow the nationalist regime in Iran and divide the country.

The ‘Opposition’ pursues wars and violent ‘regime change’ to replace disobedient ‘tyrants’ and nationalists and set up ‘client governments’, which will provide bases for the US military empire. Trump’s regime embraces existing dictators, who can invest in his domestic infrastructure agenda.

The ‘opposition’ seeks to maximize the role of Washington’s global military power. President Trump focuses on expanding the US role in the global market.

While both oligarchical factions support US imperialism, they differ in terms of its nature and means.

For the ‘opposition’, every country, large or small, can be a target for military conquest. Trump tends to favor the expansion of lucrative overseas markets, in addition to projecting US military dominance.

Oligarchs: Tactical Similarities

The competition among oligarchs does not preclude similarities in means and tactics. Both factions favor increased military spending, support for the Saudi war on Yemen and intervention in Venezuela. They support trade with China and international sanctions against Russia and Iran. They both display slavish deference to the State of Israel and favor the appointment of openly Zionist agents throughout the political, economic and intelligence apparatus.

These similarities are, however, subject to tactical political propaganda skirmishes. The ‘Opposition’ denounces any deviation in policy toward Russia as ‘treason’, while Trump accuses the ‘Opposition’ of having sacrificed American workers through NAFTA.

Whatever the tactical nuances and similarities, the savage inter-oligarchic struggle is far from a theatrical exercise. Whatever the real and feigned similarities and differences, the oligarchs’ struggle for imperial and domestic power has profound consequence for the political and constitutional order.

Oligarchical Electoral Representation and the Parallel Police State

The ongoing fight between the Trump Administration and the ‘Opposition’ is not the typical skirmish over pieces of legislation or decisions. It is not over control of the nation’s public wealth. The conflict revolves around control of the regime and the exercise of state power.

The opposition has a formidable array of forces, including the national intelligence apparatus (NSA, Homeland Security, FBI, CIA, etc.) and a substantial sector of the Pentagon and defense industry. Moreover, the opposition has created new power centers for ousting President Trump, including the judiciary. This is best seen in the appointment of former FBI Chief Robert Mueller as ‘Special Investigator’ and key members of the Attorney General’s Office, including Deputy Attorney General Rob Rosenstein. It was Rosenstein who appointed Mueller, after the Attorney General ‘Jeff’ Session (a Trump ally) was ‘forced’ to recluse himself for having ‘met’ with Russian diplomats in the course of fulfilling his former Congressional duties as a senior member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. This ‘recusal’ took significant discretionary power away from Trump’s most important ally within the Judiciary.

The web of opposition power spreads and includes former police state officials including mega-security impresario, Michael Chertoff (an associate of Robert Mueller), who headed Homeland Security under GW Bush, John Brennan (CIA), James Comey (FBI) and others.

The opposition dominates the principal organs of propaganda -the press (Washington Post, Financial Times, New York Times, and Wall Street Journal), television and radio (ABC, NBC, CBS and PBS/ NPR), which breathlessly magnify and prosecute the President and his allies for an ever-expanding web of unsubstantiated ‘crimes and misdemeanors’. Neo-conservative and liberal think tanks and foundations, academic experts and commentators have all joined the ‘hysteria chorus’ and feeding frenzy to oust the President.

The President has an increasingly fragile base of support in his Cabinet, family and closest advisers. He has a minority of supporters in the legislature and possibly in the Supreme Court, despite nominal majorities for the Republican Party.

The President has the passive support of his voters, but they have demonstrated little ability to mobilize in the streets. The electorate has been marginalized.

Outside of politics (the ‘Swamp’ as Trump termed Washington, DC) the President’s trade, investment, taxation and deregulation policies are backed by the majority of investors, who have benefited from the rising stock market. However, ‘money’ does not appear to influence the parallel state.

The divergence between Trumps supporters in the investment community and the political power of the opposition state is one of the most extraordinary changes of our century.

Given the President’s domestic weakness and the imminent threat of a coup d’état, he has turned to securing ‘deals’ with overseas allies, including billion-dollar trade and investment agreements.

The multi-billion arms sales to Saudi Arabia and the Gulf Emirates will delight the military-industrial complex and its hundreds of thousands of workers.

Political and diplomatic ‘kowtowing’ to Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu should please some American Zionists.

But the meetings with the EU in Brussels and with the G7 in Siciliy failed to neutralize Trump’s overseas opposition.

NATO’s European members did not accept Trump’s demands that they increase their contribution to the alliance and they condemned his reluctance to offer unconditional US military support for new NATO members. They showed no sympathy for domestic problems.

In brief, the President’s overseas supporters, meetings and agreements will have little impact on the domestic correlation of forces.

Moreover, there are long-standing ties among the various state apparatuses and spy agencies in the EU and the US, which strengthen the reach of the opposition in their attacks on Trump.

While substantive issues divide the Presidential and Opposition oligarchs, these issues are vertical, not horizontal, cleavages – a question of ‘their’ wars or ‘ours’.

Trump intensified the ideological war with North Korea and Iran; promised to increase ground troops in Afghanistan and Syria; boosted military and advisory support for the Saudi invasion of Yemen; and increased US backing for violent demonstrations and mob attacks in Venezuela.

The opposition demands more provocations against Russia and its allies; and the continuation of former President Obama’s seven wars.

While both sets of oligarchs support the ongoing wars, the major difference is over who is managing the wars and who can be held responsible for the consequences.

Both conflicting oligarchs are divided over who controls the state apparatus since their power depends on which side directs the spies and generates the fake news.

Currently, both sets of oligarchs wash each other’s ‘dirty linen’ in public, while covering up for their collective illicit practices at home and abroad.

The Trump’s oligarchs want to maximize economic deals through ‘uncritical’ support for known tyrants; the opposition ‘critically’ supports tyrants in exchange for access to US military bases and military support for ‘interventions’.

President Trump pushes for major tax cuts to benefit his oligarch allies while making massive cuts in social programs for his hapless supporters. The Opposition supports milder tax cuts and lesser reductions in social programs.

Conclusion

The battle of the oligarchs has yet to reach a decisive climax. President Trump is still the President of the United States. The Opposition forges ahead with its investigations and lurid media exposés.

The propaganda war is continuous. One day the opposition media focuses on a deported student immigrant and the next day the President features new jobs for American military industries.

The emerging left-neo-conservative academic partnership (e.g. Noam Chomsky-William Kristol) has denounced President Trump’s regime as a national ‘catastrophe’ from the beginning. Meanwhile, Wall Street investors and libertarians join to denounce the Opposition’s resistance to major tax ‘reforms’.

Oligarchs of all stripes and colors are grabbing for total state power and wealth while the majority of citizens are labeled ‘losers’ by Trump or ‘deplorables’ by Madame Clinton.

The ‘peace’ movement, immigrant rights groups and ‘black lives matter’ activists have become mindless lackeys pulling the opposition oligarchs’ wagon, while rust-belt workers, rural poor and downwardly mobile middle class employees are powerless serfs hitched to President Trump’s cart.

Epilogue

After the blood-letting, when and if President Trump is overthrown, the State Security functionaries in their tidy dark suits will return to their nice offices to preside over their ‘normal’ tasks of spying on the citizens and launching clandestine operations abroad.

The media will blow out some charming tid-bits and ‘words of truth’ from the new occupant of the ‘Oval Office’.

The academic left will churn out some criticism against the newest ‘oligarch-in-chief’ or crow about how their heroic ‘resistance’ averted a national catastrophe.

Trump, the ex-President and his oligarch son-in-law Jared Kushner will sign new real estate deals. The Saudis will receive the hundreds of billions of dollars of US arms to re-supply ISIS or its successors and to rust in the ‘vast and howling’ wilderness of US-Middle East intervention. Israel will demand even more frequent ‘servicing’ from the new US President.

The triumphant editorialists will claim that ‘our’ unique political system, despite the ‘recent turmoil’, has proven that democracy succeeds … only the people suffer!

Long live the Oligarchs!

James Petras is a Bartle Professor (Emeritus) of Sociology at Binghamton University, New York.http://petras.lahaine.org

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

 

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Will Jordan get involved in the southern of Syria? هل يتورّط الأردن في جنوب سورية؟

Will Jordan get involved in the southern of Syria?

Written by Nasser Kandil,

It was not a coincidence that Daraa in the south of Syria was chosen to launch the fire ball, which became a world war on Syria, and it was not a coincidence the formation of the US operations room which is known by MOC in Jordan which organizes and trains the militants to fight in Syria, before Washington decided to be present directly under the cover of the fighting ISIS in the northern of Syria. The Syrian south forms the geopolitical entry to have control over the capital of Damascus and the Syrian borders with the Occupied Golan, which means what is related to the concept of the Israeli security which was and still the plea of the continuation of the war on terrorism.

All the attempts of organizing and assembling the militants to achieve the desired goals to threaten the security of the Syrian capital or to provide a real security belt for Israel have failed, despite the fact that the number of the armed groups became tens of thousands. It seems clear for the operations room of the war on Syria that what has not been achieved in the conditions of the rise of the armed groups and their progress will not be attainable in the conditions of their regression and the start of their decline despite the attempts of revival, either through the US strike at Al Shuairat Airport or through the threat to open the southern front under a Jordanian-Israeli-American- British partnership.

The Israelis who are supposed to be the owners of the main interest in forming the southern canton that is similar to the northern canton formed by both  the Americans and the Turks in the northern of Syria and was the farce of the Security belt sponsored by Moshe Ya’alon since he was the minister of the war, and nothing has left  of it but some Israeli bombs that were falling to protect A Nusra front in the depth of the Syrian south, and which are falling today near the border line, tried for several times to undermine the deterrence equations, but they were frustrated because these equations proved their stability, once on the day of their first raid on Quineitra and the martyrdom of Jihad Mughniyeh and the response in Shebaa’s farms, and in the two consecutive times for launching the Syrian missiles on their planes and their recognition that the equations change contrary to their interests.

The Saudis after getting the US approval tried to cover the presence of Al Nusra from the gate of Damascus’s invasion and the countryside of Hama, but their failure was abject, the victories of the Syrian army are still rolling. The Americans and the British people did not seem ready for more than sending special operations units under the slogan of war on ISIS, to entrust Jordan with a process to organize it and to cover the movement of the armed groups which were gathered and organized on the Syrian borders. It is an attempt to extract a part of the geography of the Syrian south under the title of safe areas for the Syrian immigrants as Turkey did, but the result will be the loss of Jordan and its falling into the trap that may lead to repercussions inside the borders and maybe in the capital. Syria today is different from yesterday and the international and the regional situation has changed radically. What is related to Israel has different considerations. So did the American and the British want to embroil Jordan in order to make the Jordanian territories a joint area that the units of ISIS which flee from Mosul and Raqqa across the Syrian and the Iraqi deserts can enter to?

 Translated by Lina Shehadeh,

 


هل يتورّط الأردن في جنوب سورية؟

أبريل 25, 2017

ناصر قنديل

– لم يكن مجرد صدفة أن يقع الاختيار على درعا جنوب سورية لإطلاق كرة النار التي صارت حرباً عالمية على سورية، ولا من باب الصدفة أيضاً إنشاء غرفة عمليات أميركية عرفت بغرفة الموك في الأردن تتولى تنظيم وتدريب المسلحين للقتال في سورية، قبل أن تقرر واشنطن الانتشار المباشر تحت غطاء قتال داعش شمال سورية، فالجنوب السوري يشكل المدخل الجيوسياسي للإمساك بالعاصمة دمشق وبالحدود السورية مع الجولان المحتل، وبالتالي خط الاتصال بمفهوم الأمن «الإسرائيلي» الذي كان ولا يزال حذر مواصلة الحرب على سورية.

– فشلت كل محاولات تنظيم وتجميع المسلحين للدرجة التي تسمح بتحقيق الأهداف المرجوة بتهديد أمن العاصمة السورية، أو توفير حزام أمني حقيقي لـ«إسرائيل»، رغم بلوغ الجماعات المسلحة أرقاماً بعشرات الآلاف، ويبدو واضحاً لغرفة عمليات الحرب على سورية أن ما لم يتم تحقيقه في ظروف صعود الجماعات المسلحة وتقدمها، لن يكون بالمقدور تحقيقه في ظروف هبوطها وبدء انحدارها، رغم محاولات الإنعاش التي تلقتها سواء، بالضربة الأميركية لمطار الشعيرات، أو بالتهديد بفتح الجبهة الجنوبية بشراكة أردنية «إسرائيلية» أميركية بريطانية.

– حاول «الإسرائيليون» الذين يفترض أنهم صاحب المصلحة الرئيسية بتشكيل كانتون جنوبي يشبه الكانتون الشمالي الذي أنشأه كل من الأميركيين والأتراك شمال سورية، وكانت مهزلة الحزام الأمني الذي رعاه موشي يعالون منذ كان وزيراً للحرب، ولم يتبقّ منه إلا بضع قذائف إسرائيلية كانت تتساقط لحماية جبهة النصرة في عمق الجنوب السوري وصارت تتساقط اليوم قرب خط الحدود، وعندما حاول «الإسرائيليون» مرات كسر معادلات الردع أصيبوا بالإحباط لتكريسها وتثبيتها، يوم غارتهم الأولى على القنيطرة واستشهاد جهاد مغنية والردّ في مزارع شبعا، وفي المرتين المتتاليتين لإطلاق الصواريخ السورية على طائراتهم، واعترافهم بأن المعادلات تتغير بعكس مصالحهم.

– حاول السعوديون بعد الحصول على الموافقة الأميركية تغطية حضور النصرة من بوابة غزوة دمشق وريف حماة وكان الفشل الذريع، ولا تزال انتصارات الجيش السوري تتدحرج، ولا يبدو أن الأميركيين والبريطانيين مستعدون لأكثر من إرسال وحدات عمليات خاصة، تحت شعار الحرب على داعش، لإسناد عملية يريدون للأردن تولّي مهمة تنظيمها وتغطية حركة الجماعات المسلحة التي تمّ تجميعها وتنظيمها لعبة الحدود السورية، ومحاولة اقتطاع جزء من جغرافيا الجنوب السوري، والمشروع تحت عنوان المناطق الآمنة للنازحين السوريين كما فعلت تركيا، لكن النتيجة ستكون خسارة الأردن ووقوعه في فخ قد يؤدي لتداعيات داخل الحدود وربما في العاصمة، فسورية اليوم غير الأمس، والوضع الدولي والإقليمي تغيّرا جذرياً، وما يتصل بـ«إسرائيل» حساباته مختلفة، فهل يريد الأميركي والبريطاني توريط الأردن لجعل الأراضي الأردنية مشاعاً تدخله وحدات داعش الهاربة من الموصل والرقة عبر الباديتين السورية والعراقية؟

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A Tale of Two Cities: How Fake News in the War Against ISIS Distorts Your Perspective

MARCH 28, 2017 BY

2 Fake News Syria Iraq
Martin Jay
21st Century Wire

How influenced do you think you are by western media and its biased reporting in the Middle East? Here’s a simple test. When you think of Aleppo in December being taken by Syria’s army, does the word “fallen” feature in your lexicon? Did Berlin also “fall” when in 1945 allied troops took its western flank in the last days of World War II? I’m sure, like most, you would think of Berlin being “liberated” as it was until that point controlled by an evil, fascist regime. So how did Aleppo “fall” for you? Are you also thinking about Mosul in Iraq being “liberated” soon by Iraqi forces with their US allies by their sides?

The gargantuan difference between how the two battles are reported on is not about military strategy or its battlefield logic, but media bias and in particular how western journalists of mainstream media are still stuck in a Cold War mindset when reporting on the Middle East. It’s as though Russia and its allies (Iran, Syria and Hezbollah) are on one side and the west the other and, if the situation is confusing, then falling back on the old east-west clichés will suffice for most readers who read all of the big titles who all used the word “fall” when Syrian regime forces kicked out extremists groups from the old city in December and restored public services and reconstruction.

Leading up to the old city being retaken by government forces last year, many western journalists were embedded with opposition groups in and around the old city. Typically many would cling to activist-type groups or with ‘moderate’ Syrian opposition fighters like the FSA. And it’s this ‘embedding’ which is at the heart of the malaise of poor journalism in Syria and Iraq and biased reporting. To really understand the embedding process and what its derivatives are though, you have to go back to the 60s.

In Vietnam, the US administration gave journalists an entirely free hand in the stories they wished to pursue and granted journalists the support of the military. There were no spin doctors or consultants hiding in the shadows and manipulating the fourth estate. Some of the bigger guns in the newsroom used to literally run out and jump into Huey helicopters and tell pilots where they wanted to go. The result was an unrivalled victory for reporting and serving the public’s needs for relevant information, holding the US government to account for its errors and more devious ploys often with civilians the main victims. But it was a cataclysmic disaster for the US administration which was losing the war on two fronts: both in the battlefield and also with hearts and minds of everyday folk back home.

Fast forward to Gulf War I in 1992 where ‘embedding’  US journalists on the front line of the ‘battle’ for Kuwait and we see a dichotomy of strategy which is to form the very basis of the unparalleled sloppy and entirely biased reporting from mainstream media today – which I would argue has fuelled citizen journalism via Twitter, which has taken from MSM much of their audience base. The first and second Gulf wars set a new precedent which was largely unchallenged by readers and viewers: that the biased ‘call centre journalism’ which you get from a journalist in a US military camp and who is being spoon fed so-called ‘facts’ could be overlooked for the sensational, ‘live’ reporting from the front line in a new, 24 hour news cycle.

But with the roll out of the internet, time has not been kind to this paradigm which is now feeding what we are now calling ‘fake news’.

In the second Gulf War in particular, the very early hard core Sunni extremists which were formed in cities in Iraq where Saddam Hussein had his loyalist base, learnt very quickly that US journalists were entirely biased and often wrote totally incorrect reports about the war in Iraq. A precedent was forged in their minds: the journalists are merely propaganda agents and not at all what Hollywood had portrayed them as. They never contact us to even get our comment or viewpoint on a given news subject and, as a consequence, are prone to making more and more innocuous errors, or even sometimes deliberate ones.

And the same precedent was set for autocratic governments who were happy to set up news websites which were entirely biased as a new generation of young journalists was emerging who knew no better anyway.

SYRIA
AFTERMATH: Large sections Aleppo were destroyed from 5 years of fighting (Photo: Vanessa Beeley @21WIRE)

In Aleppo most journalists are vexed by their proximity to opposition fighters and the fact that they know they are being led to breaking stories which portray the Assad regime and its allies as war criminals. They also know that some false information must be being fed their way and that more balanced stories about what those rebels are doing are not getting covered. But the opportunity to even give a ‘right to reply’ to the other side (the regime) is simply not there because of this polarization from the second Gulf War – and which I witnessed first hand in Afghanistan in 2008 where NATO spin doctors were distinctly unhelpful to me when I refused an ‘embed’ while reporting for Euronews.

The responsibility for any such ‘response’ from the Assad “regime” as western journalists can’t help calling it should be with the news desks in Beirut or Washington. But I don’t see that happening.

Consequently we are seeing a vastly misreported war against ISIS in Syria and Iraq. In Aleppo, many of the western journalists – by being with so-called rebels in the north and entering the region illegally are, by default, never going to enter the regime side officially as they are too afraid of being arrested and dying in a Syrian gaol. Subsequently, they have signed their pact with the devil and their copy reflects a deep bias. If a regime won’t even let me have a journalist visa to visit the capital one day, then all of the appalling things I am told about human rights violations and torture must be correct, is the mindset.

This mindset is apparent in the reporting. Journalists camped in Aleppo all used the word “fall” when the city was captured by Syrian army forces. And previous that moment, their reports were also tilted against Assad and his allies. An extraordinary amount of coverage was given to reports of civilian casualties from Russian bombing and the rescuing of victims trapped under rubble by the so-called White Helmets who even the most naive hack in Aleppo knows are opposition fighters on alternate days. Low hanging fruit? Possibly, as these stories write themselves. But the vocabulary is key and the Russians are always portrayed as an evil empire wishing to conquer humble, innocent people. But it is seldom reported that opposition groups in the region also had a lot of support from Aleppo residents, certainly at the beginning of the war back in 2011.

It’s an identical story in Mosul, but the boot is on the other foot.

With the battle to retake the city, western journalists seem reluctant to report on the civilian casualties leaving only the Russian network RT to do this.

Until just recently, when US bombing appear to have killed over 140 in one day in Mosul, journalists – American journalists in particular – seem to almost bypass the subject altogether while their colleagues in Aleppo were obsessed with it, when it was Russian planes dropping the bombs. What we are seeing in Aleppo is a slick American PR machine with the unwritten rules being quite rigorously applied and no one reporting on the real agenda Trump has there. Journalists are keen to write up the stories which paint the US operation as a liberation, almost a noble quest to save the world from the evil of ISIS. The constant accounts which are largely favourable to the ‘liberators’ win prizes for those hacks: special access to scoops.

But is the West getting all the information about the hideous brutality of the campaign with what could be the largest humanitarian disaster to date in the region? Unlikely. Journalists who feature this will be sidelined by US generals, just in exactly the same way I was in Afghanistan.

What we should be asking ourselves is in this environment of biased reporting, are we not encouraging a parallel of fake news to be fed into the system? The temptation from those peddling fake news is too great when they see how vulnerable journalists are to being manipulated. It’s a similar narrative with the celebrity bloggers who are given the bandwidth as bona fide journalists, like former British UK Louise Mensch who has set herself up as a conspiracy theorist recently claiming that President Putin was responsible for the murder of the Breibart founder – without a single shred of evidence to back up her assertions.

The push for Raqqa is expected to kick off in May. There will not be much reporting on civilian causalities or the atrocities expected to be carried out by the various groups who have been given their lottery tickets. Again, it will be one-sided reporting from embedded journalists who will be anxious to please their hosts and will be happy to be led to what they want them to see.

But it’s worse than that. In this atmosphere of cash strapped media giants who are scrambling to ‘break news’ many take short cuts with dire consequences. I have written about my comical experience in the past with CNN, where I was ordered by a loud mouthed producer to “sex up” a report (which I refused to do) and we all know of the incident where the US cable giant was stung in Syria by an activist paid by opposition groups to feed the US network with fake news.

But when you look at how many big guns in the news sector get their raw material you begin to wonder if anything we are reading from the Syrian battlefield has any resemblance to facts. Recently a bombing carried out by US forces in Idlib, Syria killed 42 civilians praying in a mosque and was reported by the giants of the MSM as from Russian planes. These agencies all cited an anti-Assad one man outfit based in the UK which is funded by the EU and has a very distinct agenda to report biased facts which please its masters in Brussels. After hours passed many corrected their initial reports but the incident is a good example which can he held up to demonstrate how sloppy and biased MSM is when most of its ‘facts’ are being reprinted verbatim from a propaganda outfit which is fed entirely by activists from the Syrian opposition.

You couldn’t make it up.

***
Journalist Martin Jay recently won the U.N.’s prestigious Elizabeth Neuffer Memorial Prize (UNCA) in New York in 2016, for his journalism work in the Middle East. He is based in Beirut and can be followed at @MartinRJay.

READ MORE SYRIA NEWS AT: 21st Century Wire Syria Files

Which “War Torn” Country? – U.S. Slaughter In Somalia, Yemen And Syria

Source


biggeroriginal tweet

When I saw the above tweet this morning I wondered which “war torn” country those Somalis were fleeing from when they were murdered. The tweet doesn’t say. Were they fleeing from the “war torn” Somalia? Or were the fleeing from “war torn” Yemen?

It is a sad world when has to ponder such.

It tuned out these people were fleeing from both wars:

Coast guard Mohammad Al Alay told Reuters the refugees, carrying official UNHCR documents, were on their way from Yemen to Sudan when they were attacked by an Apache helicopter near the Bab Al Mandeb strait.

An Apache attack helicopter shot up the refugees’ boat. There are Saudi, United Emirati and U.S. Apache helicopters in or around Yemen. It is unknown which of them ordered and which executed the strike. These helicopters, their ammunition and the service for them are a favored U.S. export to belligerent dictatorships like Saudi Arabia.

The UN warns that 5 million people in Yemen are only weeks away from starving. The Saudis, the U.S. and the Emirates block all land routes, air ports and the coast of Yemen and no food supplies come through. This is an ongoing huge war crime and literally a genocide. But “western” media seem totally unimpressed. Few, if any, reports on the war on Yemen get published. Never have they so openly displayed their hypocrisy.

Somalia is falling back into an all-out civil war fueled by the decades old unwillingness of the U.S. to condone an independent local unity government. The Islamic Court Union, a unity government created by the Somalis in 2006, was the last working instance of a real Somali state. It had no Jihadist agenda and held down local warlords. It was destroyed by the Bush administration:

A UN cable from June 2006, containing notes of a meeting with senior State Department and US military officials from the Horn of Africa task force, indicates that the United States was aware of the ICU’s diversity, but would “not allow” it to rule Somalia. The United States, according to the notes, intended to “rally with Ethiopia if the ‘Jihadist’ took over.” The cable concluded, “Any Ethiopian action in Somalia would have Washington’s blessing.” Some within the US intelligence community called for dialogue or reconciliation, but their voices were drowned out by hawks determined to overthrow the ICU.

During the last 10 years an on-and-off war is waged in Somalia with the U.S. military interfering whenever peace seems to gain ground. Currently a new round of war is building up. Weapons are streaming into Somalia from Yemen, where the Houthi plunder them from their Saudi invaders:

Jonah Leff, a weapons tracing expert with conflict Armament Research, said many [Somali] pirates had turned to smuggling. They take boatloads of people [from Somalia] to Yemen and return with weapons, he said.

The wars on Somalia and Yemen are the consequences of unscrupulous and incompetent(?) U.S. foreign policy. (Cutting down the size of the U.S. State Department, as the Trump administration now plans to do, is probably the best thing one can do for world peace.)

The U.S. military should be cut down too. It is equally unscrupulous and incompetent.

Last night the U.S. military hit a mosque in Al-Jīnah in Aleppo governate in Syria. It first claimed that the strike, allegedly targeting a large meeting of al-Qaeda, was in Idleb governate. But it turned out to be miles away west of Aleppo. Locals said a mosque was hit, the roof crashed in and more than 40 people were killed during the regular prayer service. More than 120 were injured. The U.S. military said it did not hit the local mosque but a building on the other side of the small plaza.

The U.S. maps and intelligence were not up-to-date. A new, bigger mosque had been build some years ago opposite of the old mosque. The old mosque was indeed not hit. The new one was destroyed while some 200 people were in attendance. Eight hellfire missiles launched from two Reaper drones were fired at it and a 500lb bomb was then dropped on top to make sure that no one escaped alive. Al-Qaeda fighters were indeed “meeting” at that place – five times a day and together with the locals they have pressed by force to attend the Quran proscribed prayers.

Had the Russian or Syrian army committed the strike the “western” outcry would have been great. For days the media would have provide gruesome photos and stories. The U.S. ambassador at the UN would have spewed fire and brimstone. But this intelligence screw-up happened on the U.S. side. There will now be some mealymouthed explanations and an official military investigation that will find no fault and will have no consequences.

Amid this sorry incident it was amusing to see the propaganda entities the U.S. had created to blame the Syrian government turning against itself. The MI6 operated SOHR was the first to come out with a high death count. The al-Qaeda aligned, U.S./UK financed “White Helmets” rescuers made a quick photo session pretending to dig out the dead. The sectarian al-Qaeda video propagandist Bilal Abdul Kareem, which the New York Times recently portrait in a positive light, provided damning video and accusing comments. The amateur NATO researchers at Bellingcat published what they had gleaned from maps, photos and videos other people created. The NATO think tank, which defended al-Qaeda’s invasion of Idleb, will shed crocodile tears.

Each new lie and obfuscation the U.S. Central Command in the Middle East put out throughout the day was immediately debunked by the horde of U.S. financed al-Qaeda propaganda supporters. This blowback from the “information operation” against Syria will likely have consequences for future U.S. operations.

In another operation last night the Israeli air force attacked Syrian forces near Palmyra which were operating against ISIS. The Israeli fighters were chased away when the Syrians fired air defense missiles. This was an Israeli attempt to stretch the “rules of operation” it had negotiated with the Russian military in Syria. The Russians, which control the Syrian air space, had allowed Israel to hit Hizbullah weapon transports on their way to Lebanon. Attacks on any force operating against Jihadis in Syria are taboo. The Russian government summoned the Israeli ambassador. Netanyahoo broke the rules. He will now have to bear the consequences.

Posted by b at 03:42 PM
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