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Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Are we getting our money’s worth from the US intelligence networks?

Use ISIS and the US trained Iraq army as an example:


The Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu is a Lying Sack of Shit:

Those that knows Netanyahu agree:

Netanyahu is a liar:

Hamas and Islamic State on par: Netanyahu

In speech to the UN General Assembly Monday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyau denounced the militant Palestinian faction Hamas as the equivalent of Islamic State Sunni extremists.

Netanyahu says Iran greater threat than ISIL

Israel's prime minister describes Iran, ISIL and Hamas as part of a single team, and compares them to Germany's Nazis.

In a hard-hitting speech to the UN General Assembly Monday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyanu denounced the militant Palestinian faction Hamas as the equivalent of Islamic State Sunni extremists who have murdered their way across the Middle East. And he lumped Iran’s Shiite clerical regime with a conglomerate of terrorist groups seeking Islamic world domination.
“ISIS (The Islamic State) and Hamas are branches of the same poisonous tree,” he said. “ISIS and Iraq share a fanatical creed, which they both seek to impose well beyond the territory under their control.”
He added, “the Nazis believed in a master race, militant Islamists believe in a master faith.”
Israel has been widely criticized for its actions in a 50-day war against Hamas in Gaza, which it says was necessary to end rocket attacks into Israel by Hamas.
The more than 2,100 casualties in the densely populated strip brought accusations of indiscriminate bombing and shelling, denounced as “genocide” by Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas in an earlier UN speech.
Netanyahu hit back at Abbas, saying he was responsible for “war crimes” committed by coalition partner Hamas. He said that Israel had warned Palestinians in advance of attacks and “was doing everything to minimize casualties, Hamas was doing everything to maximize civilian casualties.”
Dramatizing the point by holding up an image of what he said was a Hamas rocket launcher in an area near children, Netanyahu added that the militants —who won a parliamentary election in 2006 — “cynically used Palestinian civilians” as shields by stockpiling rockets in mosques and even hospitals and firing from populated areas.
Netanyahu offered no new initiatives for peace with the Palestinians, but stressed that any territorial compromise must leave Israel able to defend itself.
The thrust of his speech was to rally the international community against both Hamas and Iran, which he said shared the global aims of the Islamic State, carrying out dozens of terrorist attacks outside its borders.
If Iran’s nuclear program went unchecked, he said, “the world’s most dangerous regime in the world’s most dangerous region would obtain the world’s most dangerous weapon.”
Instead of a peace plan, Netanyahu suggested a regional security accord with Arab neighbours who have a common goal of defeating terrorism. The spread of terrorism, he said, presented “a historic opportunity” for co-operation.
Israel was not the only country attempting to reshuffle the diplomatic deck after the Islamic State’s rise.
Syria’s foreign minister, Walid Al-Moallem, told the General Assembly earlier that those battling terrorism — the West and former Arab enemies — were now fighting on the same side as the Assad regime, something that gives the West pause.
Nor did Moallem protest airstrikes on the Islamic State inside Syria by a U.S.-led coalition, but warned they would not succeed unless coupled with an end to support for funding and training “terrorist groups.”
In a speech aimed at positioning the pariah state in the fold of counter-terrorism, he said “it is due time to pool all our efforts against this terrorism, since imminent danger is surrounding everyone and no country is immune to it.”
Syria is ready for a political solution including “dialogue with all honourable national opposition members opposing terrorism in Syria,” he said, pointing to a widely disputed presidential election as proof that the government of Bashar Assad had renewed legitimacy to negotiate.
The war in Syria began in 2011 after the Assad regime attacked protesters, whom it claimed were foreign terrorists. Since then unrest spiralled and the Islamic State made major gains. More than 191,000 people have died, 2 million have fled as refugees and at least 6 million are internally displaced.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Who are the major fighting forces in Syria who have for years been holding the line against ISIS? Answer: the Syrian army, Hezbollah troops from Lebanon, and Iranians, backed by Putin’s Russia.


 Patrick J. Buchanan
“Once war is forced upon us, there is no other alternative than to apply every available means to bring it to a swift end.
“War’s very object is victory, not prolonged indecision.”
So said Gen. MacArthur in some of the wisest counsel the old soldier ever gave his countrymen.
Yet, “prolonged indecision” would seem the essence of the war the president has begun to “degrade and ultimately destroy” the Islamic State.
For, following only one night of bombing in Syria, Gen. Bill Mayville, director of operations for the Joint Chiefs, asked to estimate how long this new war would last, replied: “I would think of it in terms of years.”
“Years,” the general said.
Yet, though we are already heavily into bombing, the president has no congressional authorization for this war in Syria.
Even Republicans are leery of voting for a war in Syria before the November elections. A third of the House GOP voted no to arming and training the Syrian rebels. The Democrats are even more wary.
And how are we going to “destroy” ISIS when Obama has ruled out U.S. combat troops and not one NATO or Arab ally has offered to send combat troops?
Consider Turkey. With its 400,000-man army, 1,000 planes, 3,600 tanks, 3,000 artillery pieces and self-propelled guns, the Turks, the largest military power in the Middle East, could make hash of the Islamic State.
Why have they not done so?
Because Turkish President Erdogan detests President Assad of Syria and has looked the other way as volunteers, including Turks, have crossed his border into Syria to join ISIS.
Up until now, this NATO ally has been a silent partner of ISIS. And, even now, Ankara has not volunteered to fight the Islamic State.
For Turkey is predominantly Sunni, and many Sunni see the Islamic State as a ruthless but effective ally against a Shia threat represented by Tehran, Baghdad, Damascus and Hezbollah.
If the Turkish army is not going to intervene in Syria against ISIS, and if Obama has ruled out U.S. boots on the ground in Iraq or Syria, where will the soldiers come from to dislodge the Islamic State from the Indiana-sized territory it has seized?
The Kurds can hold Erbil with U.S. air support. Iraq’s regime, backed by its Shia militias, can hold Baghdad. But can the Iraqi army retake Fallujah, Mosul or Anbar, from which they so recently ran away?
Who are the major fighting forces in Syria who have for years been holding the line against ISIS? Answer: the Syrian army, Hezbollah troops from Lebanon, and Iranians, backed by Putin’s Russia.
Denouncing the Islamic State for its beheadings of the two Americans and one British aid worker, Obama declared at the U.N.:
“There can be no reasoning — no negotiation — with this brand of evil. The only language understood by killers like this is the language of force. So the United States of America will work with a broad coalition to dismantle this network of death.”
Strong words, some of the strongest our Nobel Peace Prize-winning president has used in six years.
Yet, for three years, it has been NATO ally Turkey and Arab allies like Saudi Arabia and Qatar who have been clandestinely aiding this “network of death.” And it has been Assad, Hezbollah, Iran and Russia that have been resisting this “network of death.”
A year ago, the American people rose up to demand that Obama and John Kerry keep us out of Syria’s civil war, specifically, that they not carry out their threats to bomb the army of Bashar Assad.
Had it not been for Assad, Hezbollah, Iran, and Russia, the network of death Obama, rightly excoriated from that U.N. podium, might by now be establishing its caliphate, not in Raqqa but Damascus.
Before we go any deeper into Syria, Congress needs to be called back to debate and vote on whether to authorize this new war.
For this war against the Islamic State seems, for some in that blood-soaked region, not so much to be a war of good against evil, but the first of several wars they want America to fight.
For them, the Islamic State is to be destroyed by the Americans. Then the Assad regime is to be brought down by the Americans. Then Iran is to be smashed by the Americans. Everyone in the Middle East seems to have in mind some new war for the Americans to fight.
How many such wars are in our vital interests?
While, undeniably, the Islamic State has shown itself beyond the pale with its beheading of innocents and its massacres of soldiers who have surrendered, let us not forget that our allies abetted these monsters, while adversaries we have designated as terrorists and state sponsors of terror were fighting them.
Lord Palmerston had a point when he said Great Britain has no permanent friends, no permanent enemies, only permanent interests.
Those interests should determine our policy.
Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of the new book “The Greatest Comeback: How Richard Nixon Rose From Defeat to Create the New Majority.”

Sunday, September 28, 2014

If Bush and Blair had not embarked on their Iraqi adventure, does anyone think the US would be helping Assad to destroy his enemies today?

Galloway in six minutes wraps up the case against the newest plan for the Middle East:

Isis urges more attacks on Western ‘disbelievers’

Group spokesman Adnani seems to be encouraging attacks like the killing of Lee Rigby


Supporters of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria from all over the world should attack citizens of Western states such as the US, France and UK, according to a statement by the group’s spokesman.
Abu Mohammed al Adnani urged the group’s supporters: “If you can kill a disbelieving American or European – especially the spiteful and filthy French – or an Australian, or a Canadian, or any other disbeliever from the disbelievers waging war, including the citizens of the countries that entered into a coalition against the Islamic State, then rely upon Allah, and kill him in any manner or way, however it may be,” he said.

“Smash his head with a rock, or slaughter him with a knife, or run him over with your car, or throw him down from a high place, or choke him, or poison him.”

Adnani seems to be encouraging attacks like the killing of Lee Rigby in 2012 who was knocked down and stabbed in London by Michael Adebolajo and Michael Adebowale. The two Britons were members of al-Muhajiroun, a now-banned group which shared similar theories to Isis. There have been recent arrests of people suspected of planning similar attacks in Belgium and Australia.

Adnani also taunted US President Barack Obama and other Western “crusaders”, saying their forces faced inevitable defeat at the hands of Isis.

The US is building an international coalition to combat the extremist Sunni Muslim force, which has seized large expanses of territory in Iraq and Syria and proclaimed a caliphate erasing borders in the heart of the Middle East.

Adnani said the intervention by the US-led coalition would be the “final campaign of the crusaders”. “It will be broken and defeated, just as all your previous campaigns were broken and defeated,” he said.

French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said the group’s call showed once again “the barbarity of these terrorists [and] why we must fight them relentlessly”.

In a statement, he added, using an Arabic acronym for the militants: “We must also eliminate the risk that Daesh represents to our security.”

US and French warplanes have struck Isis targets in Iraq, and on Sunday the US said other countries had indicated a willingness to join it if it goes ahead with air strikes against the group in Syria as well.
Isis recently killed a British aid worker, David Haines, and has threatened to kill another, Alan Henning. A third, John Cantlie, has appeared on an Isis video promising a series of reports.

British jets have carried out reconnaissance over Iraq but have so far not bombed any Isis targets.

Addressing Obama directly, Adnani added: “O mule of the Jews, you claimed today that America would not be drawn into a war on the ground. No, it will be drawn and dragged... to its death, grave and destruction.”

In his statement, Adnani criticised Kurdish fighters who are battling the Isis militants in both Syria and Iraq. “We do not fight Kurds because they are Kurds. Rather we fight the disbelievers amongst them, the allies of the crusaders and Jews in their war against the Muslims,” he said.

A US State Department notice described Adnani, born under the name Taha Sobhi Falaha, as the “official spokesman and a senior leader of Isis”. It described the Isis spokesman as the “main conduit for the dissemination of official messages”.

On Monday, Syrian Kurdish fighters halted an advance by Isis to the east of Kobani, a predominantly Kurdish town near the border with Turkey.

Don't Cry for Me, Damascus

When Irony Fails: Obama’s Syrian Airstrikes

The moment America expanded its anti-Isis war into Syria, President Bashar al-Assad gained more military and political support than any other Arab leader can boast. With US bombs and missiles exploding across eastern and northern Syria, Assad can now count on America, Russia, China, Iran, the Hezbollah militia, Jordan and a host of wealthy Gulf countries to keep his regime alive. If ever that creaking old Arab proverb – that “the enemy of my enemy is my friend” – contained any wisdom, Assad has proved it true.
In his Damascus home, the Syrian leader can reflect that the most powerful nation on earth – which only last year wished to bomb him into oblivion – is now trying to bomb his most ferocious enemies into the very same oblivion. Sunni Saudis whose “charity” donations have funded the equally Sunni “Islamic State” now find their government supposedly helping the US to destroy it. As Shia Iran and its Hezbollah protégés battle the Sunni executioners and throat-slashers on the ground, US bombs and missiles rain down to destroy the enemies in front of them.
Not since Churchill found himself an ally of Nazi Germany’s erstwhile friend Stalin in 1941 can a president have found a fearsome antagonist transformed so swiftly into a brother-in-arms. But – and it’s a very big “but” – the Baathist Syrian regime is not so stupid as to take the word “friend” at face value. Neither should we. Obama is the last person with whom Assad would want to associate himself – as Vladimir Putin doesn’t need to remind him – and the Syrian regime will be watching with the deepest concern as America’s promiscuous use of air power spreads inexorably to include more and more targets outside its original stated aim.
Quite apart from the civilian casualties in Idlib province, America’s targeting of the al-Qaeda-linked Jabhat al-Nusra suggests that the Pentagon has more than Isis in its sights. How soon, for example, before a missile explodes in a Syrian regime weapons depot – by “mistake”, of course – or other government facilities? Since the US has decided to fund and train the so-called “moderate opposition” to fight Isis and the Syrian regime, why should it not bomb both sets of enemies? And how will Syrians who support whatever is left of these “moderates” react to the American bombs in Idlib which killed their fellow civilians rather than Assad’s forces – bombs, indeed, which appear to have been just as lethal as the munitions dropped on them by Assad’s aircraft?
As for the Gulf Arabs, not one has so far shown evidence that it has physically bombed any targets in Syria. Only Jordan has claimed to have attacked Isis; the rest of King Abdullah’s allies in the Arab “coalition of the willing” – how quickly we have forgotten that this was George W Bush’s expression for those nations which supported his 2003 Iraq invasion – appear to have limited their co-operation to providing airstrips, refuelling planes and perhaps patrolling the peaceful waters of the Gulf. In his hearings on Capitol Hill last week, the Secretary of State John Kerry was given an impatient grilling from Congressmen over just how many Arab aircraft would be dropping ordnance on Isis. Kerry fluffed his answers.
The Gulf Arabs, after all, have been here before. They remember clearly the exaggerated claims of military success in the air – of smart bombs that did not slaughter civilians, of cruise missiles that destroyed bunkers and training camps and “command and control centres” in 1991 and 2003. It all proved to be a very dodgy war menu. Yet now the Americans are re-cooking these old snacks for the Isis conflict.
Were these Islamist “warriors” really sitting around – drinking tea, perhaps – at “training camps” so that the Americans could kill them? Does Isis boast anything like a “command and control centre” – a bunker of computers and blinking target indicators – rather than just a clutch of mobile phones? Yet a “command-and-control centre”, no less, was said to have been destroyed.
And, as so often amid the excitement of yet another conflict escalation, the “experts” and decrepit ex-ambassadors on our screens need to leaf through a history book or two before explaining “our” actions. The “Islamic State” was created out of al-Qaeda in Iraq, which absorbed the anti-American resistance to American occupation, which in turn followed the illegal 2003 Anglo-American invasion of Iraq. If Messrs Bush and Blair had not embarked on their Iraqi adventure, does anyone think the US would be helping Assad to destroy his enemies today?
“Irony” doesn’t measure up to the words of the Middle-East’s “peace envoy” who this week transformed himself into a war envoy by holding out the prospect of more Western troops in the Muslim world. Is the Syrian regime supposed to laugh or cry?
Robert Fisk writes for the Independent, where this column originally appeared.