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Member since: Thu Dec 6, 2012, 02:13 PM
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"It is certain, in any case, that ignorance, allied with power, is the most ferocious enemy justice can have." James A. Baldwin

Journal Archives

Will our troops in Syria be acting as human shields?

Investigative journalist, Finian Cunningham, has suggested a frightening possibility in regard to the actual rationale behind our Pentagon's eagerness to deploy American military personnel on the ground in Syria. If his theory is correct, and it well may be, we could now be only one unlucky Russian bomb away from a crisis that would make all of our current ones seem mild by comparison.

Ground combat in Syria (Reuters)

US Special Forces deployed as ‘human shields’ to salvage terror assets in Syria.

Obama’s decision to send Special Forces into Syria is being widely viewed as a US military escalation in the country. The troop dispatch also signals that the US trying to forestall Russian successes in wiping out Washington’s regime-change assets in Syria. In short, the US Special Forces are being used as “human shields” to curb Russian air strikes against anti-government mercenaries, many of whom are instrumental in Washington’s regime-change objective in Syria.

First of all, we need to view a host of developments, including the hastily convened “peace talks” in Vienna, as a response by the US and its allies to the game-changing military intervention by Russia. That intervention, beginning on September 30, has not only dealt massive blows to militants, it has completely changed the balance of forces to give the Assad government the upper hand in the war against foreign-backed extremists. That, in turn, has sent the US-led powers trying to topple Damascus into disarray.

Recall the scattered reactions from Washington and its allies, including Britain, France, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar. At first, Washington tried to rubbish Vladimir Putin’s order to aid his Syrian ally with airstrikes as “doomed to fail”. Then there were overblown, unverified, claims of civilian casualties from Russian strikes, plus there were American claims that Russian cruise missiles had gone wildly astray, hitting Iran. There was also much angst over Russia striking “moderate rebels” instead of the Islamic State terror network. All such accusations, encouraged with Western media amplification, were designed to undermine Russia’s military operation.


But here is perhaps the significant part of the story. “The move could potentially put the American troops in the cross hairs of Russia,” reports the New York Times. Significantly, too, the Pentagon will not be informing the Russian military of the exact whereabouts of its ground personnel. That suggests that the real purpose for Obama sending in the troops is to restrict Russian offensive operations by introducing the risk of bombing American forces. In effect, the US Special Forces are being used as human shields to protect American regime-change assets on the ground.


Read more at: https://www.rt.com/op-edge/320356-syria-us-troops-shields/

Posted by another_liberal | Sun Nov 1, 2015, 08:33 AM (2 replies)

Are we really this desperate to make Russia look bad?

I watched the State Department's John Kirby try and explain away questions about the source for recent allegations that Russian air strikes in Syria have repeatedly struck civilian targets, such as hospitals. His utter inability to offer actual sources for those claims was embarrassing for an American who loves his country to watch. Are we really so desperate as to try and excuse our crimes by spreading lies to make someone else appear equally disgusting? Kirby's performance convinces me that this is all a case of: "See folks, Russia does it too! Everybody bombs hospitals. We're not the only ones!"

State Department spokesperson, John Kirby.

US cites ‘press reports’ & secret ‘operational data’ as proof of Russia striking Syrian hospitals

See Kirby briefing video here: https://www.rt.com/news/320102-us-blames-russia-syria/
Posted by another_liberal | Fri Oct 30, 2015, 07:38 AM (53 replies)

Are Russian actions in Syria a "Checkmate" for the Pentagon?

It may be that the Russian Federation's airstrikes against terrorists and anti-government rebels in Syria have frustrated our military's plans for that country, but after what a horrifying mess our generals have made of every place where we intervened lately, can that really be such a bad thing? Why are the Pentagon types so upset that Russia is attacking terrorists anyway? Do they want al-Nusra front to seize yet more Syrian territory? Do they want the Islamic State to control Damascus? Perhaps we have to accept that, as American journalist Mark Glenn notes in an interview quoted below: "The game is over. As far as trying to sell the notion to the world that the United States did not create these groups, did not nurture them, did not give them their weapons, their training and their logistics . . ."

Russian attack aircraft being readied for takeoff at Hemeimeem airbase, Syria, Oct. 22, 2015

Russian Campaign in Syria 'Puts Washington and NATO Into Checkmate'

The times when Washington and NATO could "run roughshod over the world" are over thanks to Russia's counterterrorism efforts in Syria, American journalist Mark Glenn told Press TV, calling this Moscow's "checkmate."

In Glen's opinion, the Russian-led aerial campaign aimed at assisting Damascus is a taste of what's to come. Moscow appears to be saying that "the Russians are to stay militarily [in the Middle East]. Once they have finished with Western-created terrorists in Syria, they are going to move to Iraq, Egypt and Palestine. They are gradually going to militarily and politically push the United States and the West out of the region for good in the interests of global stability," he asserted. Those, who in Glenn's view support terrorists, will not abandon this policy, but rather change tactics:

"The game is over. As far as trying to sell the notion to the world that the United States did not create these groups, did not nurture them, did not give them their weapons, their training and their logistics, the game is up in that regard and now the US will have to go to Plan B."

Washington, the journalist believes, will be primarily focused on trying to counter Russia's growing political and military influence in the region, which has been marred in violence in no small part due to the US military engagement in Afghanistan and Iraq. These campaigns are largely blamed for the rise of ISIL and growing radicalism across the Middle East.


Read more at: http://sputniknews.com/politics/20151025/1029076000/russia-syria-us-airstrikes-isis-middle-east.html

Posted by another_liberal | Sun Oct 25, 2015, 09:16 AM (40 replies)

How Right-Wing is Eastern Europe?

To find just how right-wing Conservative the governments of Eastern Europe can be one needs only to look at this charming character, Hungarian Prime Minister, Viktor Orban. The following is excerpted from an interview he recently gave to Spanish television.

Hungarian Prime Minister, Viktor Orban.

Hungary's PM Suggests Multiculturalism 'Endangers European Values'

In an interview for Spanish television channel Intereconomia TV on Friday, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban suggested that the policy of multiculturalism endangers European values, creating 'parallel societies' which threaten the values of freedom of speech, religion, equal rights, and gender equality.

The prime minister, known for his outspoken and often controversial commentary on the migrant crisis, suggested that if large numbers of migrants come to Europe and "retain their own communities based on different values," co-existence will mean forcing Europeans to accept these values as well, a summary of the interview published on the president's official website explained.

Saying that the rise of such "parallel societies" may threaten many of the "pillars of the European way of life" – the rights and freedoms that Europeans take for granted, Orban suggested that the only way to prevent this from occurring is not to let migrants in, "not to allow them to create parallel societies."

The prime minister, well known for his defense of European civilization and its Christian roots, reiterated in his interview that the continent's future prosperity and greatness will depend on nations taking their "traditions and Christian roots seriously." Moreover, the leader lamented what he said was a grave mistake: "that an affirmation of Europe's Christian roots [was] not laid down in the European Union's fundamental documents."


Read more at: http://sputniknews.com/europe/20151024/1029047064/orban-hungary-multiculturalism.html

Posted by another_liberal | Sat Oct 24, 2015, 08:19 AM (2 replies)

Ukraine insists Russia accept debt reduction.

Ukrainian Prime Minister Yatsenyuk has warned Russia that unless they agree to write off a quarter of the debt Ukraine owes Russia Ukraine will launch what he calls a "Legal War" in retaliation. A German financial news web site has, as noted in the article quoted below, offered some cautionary advice to the combative P.M.

Ukrainian President Poroshenko encounters Russian President Putin, June 2014 (AFP)

German Media Slam Ukraine Over 'Ridiculous Legal War' Against Russia

Ukraine recently announced that it is ready to start "legal war" against Russia if the latter does not agree for restructuring of Ukraine’s debt. The debt amounts to about three billion dollars and Russia - one of the largest creditors of Ukraine - insists on its full repayment.

For months, Ukraine has been negotiating writing off a part of its debt with several creditors, with more than 75% of them voting in favor of the deal, Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk said on Thursday in Kiev. However, Russia – the main lender of Ukraine – has not agreed to participate in the debt-relief and is awaiting full debt repayment by the end of the year.

President Vladimir Putin had recently said that the IMF could lend Ukraine the three billion dollars so that the country would be able to repay the money to Russia. However, Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk said that Russia won’t be given any special conditions. He also warned that if the Russian government does not accept this fact, Ukraine will be ready to start a "legal war against Russia".

“Have you heard that before? The debtor gives the creditor a deadline, within which the creditor must approve a partial debt relief, or otherwise it will be sued!?!” German website finanzmarktwelt.de wrote. “This is not about whether one belongs to a ‘pro-Ukrainian’ or a ‘pro-Russian’ camp. This is about the fundamental relationship between a debtor and its creditor. As a debtor, I would act politely, objectively and, if I would like to get a haircut, then [I would do it] in a pleading form; but pushing, demanding, making deadlines?"


Read more at: http://sputniknews.com/europe/20151017/1028669322/german-media-slam-ukraine-legal-war-russia.html

Posted by another_liberal | Sat Oct 17, 2015, 08:06 AM (10 replies)

Russia considers joining anti-Islamic State attacks in Iraq.

It is no secret that a number of Shiite politicians and officials in the Iraqi government have voiced hopes that Russia's air attacks inside Syria will be expanded to include hitting Islamic State targets in Iraq. While no such request has officially yet come from Iraqi Prime Minister Abadi, Russia is said to be seriously considering how to respond if asked for help.

Washington D. C.

US Irate Over Iraqi Moves to Create Moscow-Baghdad Alliance to Fight ISIL

Citing diplomatic sources in New York, Israeli journalist Shlomo Shamir suggests that if Baghdad decided to ask Russia for military assistance against ISIL and Russia agreed, Russian-American relations would sink to levels unseen since the Cold War. In his piece, appearing this week in Israeli newspaper Maariv, Shamir cited "international diplomatic sources" who suggested that Russia "is planning to expand its military involvement in the region and to begin bombing targets on Iraqi territory."

Shamir noted that in a situation where US-Russian diplomatic relations are already rather frosty, and becoming even cooler, Russia's involvement in Syria "has been met with great satisfaction and enthusiasm among Iraq's Shiite politicians. They are even considering appealing for Russian intervention in the fight against ISIL in Iraq.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has already become the most popular and beloved foreign leader in Iraq, due to the Russian campaign of airstrikes against ISIL positions in Syria," an unnamed diplomatic source told the journalist.

Shamir noted that his diplomatic sources believe that the Kremlin "is paying close attention [to the situation], and is currently weighing the possibility of responding favorably to the request for military assistance in liberating Iraqi territory captured by ISIL." Furthermore, according to the journalist, Iraq's Shiite politicians and Shiite militia "are putting pressure on Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, demanding that he make an official request for Russian assistance in the battle against ISIL."


Read more at: http://sputniknews.com/analysis/20151015/1028564811.html

Posted by another_liberal | Thu Oct 15, 2015, 08:14 AM (0 replies)

Iranian troops to join Syrian forces in offensive near Aleppo.

I didn't see this one coming at all: Syrian troops are to receive boots-on-the-ground support from Iran in their offensive against Islamic State positions near Aleppo. I guess our sending all those new anti-tank missiles to our terrorist rebel proxies in Syria has elicited a response from an unexpected new actor?

1000s of Iranian Troops Enter Syria for Offensive Backed by Russian Strikes

With Russian airstrikes dealing heavy losses to the self-proclaimed Islamic State terrorist group, reports have surfaced that Iranian troops will soon launch a ground offensive alongside the Syrian army to retake Aleppo.

Last week, IS fighters managed to seize a large swathe of Aleppo, in Syria’s north. While Syrian forces have already reclaimed part of that territory, a ground offensive will be launched in the coming days to purge the terrorist group from the area. According to two senior regional officials, speaking to Reuters on condition of anonymity, the offensive will include a coalition including Syrian and Iranian troops, protected by Russian air support.

“The big battle preparations in that area are clear,” one of the officials told Reuters. “There is a large mobilization of the Syrian army…elite Hezbollah fighters, and thousands of Iranians who arrived in stages in recent days.” A second official, who is close to the Syrian government, reaffirmed the plan. “The decision to launch the battle of Aleppo has been taken…It is no longer hidden that thousands of Iranians are now in Syria and their role is fundamental.”


Read more at: http://sputniknews.com/middleeast/20151014/1028487170/Iranian-Troops-Aleppo-Offensive.html

Posted by another_liberal | Tue Oct 13, 2015, 10:05 PM (4 replies)

Saudis and Russia agree to cooperate in Syria.

This situation is changing very fast. First we heard our aircraft have been ordered to avoid Russian planes over Syria, by twenty miles distance, even to break off their attacks if Russian planes approach their target. Next, we're told American Patriot missiles are to be withdrawn from Turkey. The news now is that Saudi Arabia and Russia have agree to cooperate in Syria! The World (at least the Middle East) is being turned upside down.

Saudi Arabia Gives Up Its Resistance Against Russia - German Media

Russia’s military strength has apparently impressed Saudi Arabia. The new Saudi defense minister agreed with Russian President Vladimir Putin that both countries should cooperate in Syria, DWN reported.

Russia and Saudi Arabia have surprisingly agreed on establishing closer coordination in Syria despite a number of disagreements. A meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and the new Saudi Defense Minister Mohammed bin Salman al-Saud took place in Sochi.

After the talks, Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Dschubeir said that his country is in favor of a dialogue between the current Syrian government and the opposition and that it would support the idea of a transitional government in the war-torn country. Thus, the Saudis have given up their plan to immediately overthrow Syrian President Bashar-al-Assad, which can be considered a great achievement, taking into account the recent negative attitude of the Saudi authorities toward Russia’s military involvement in Syria.


Read more at: http://sputniknews.com/politics/20151012/1028397831/saudi-arabia-gives-up-resistance.html

Posted by another_liberal | Mon Oct 12, 2015, 08:24 AM (7 replies)

"US hawks will do whatever it takes . . ."

The following are excerpts from a novel and thoroughly convincing commentary on what to expect next in Syria. The author sees things there getting considerably worse before peaceful stability returns to that ravaged nation. Syria has clearly now become the latest arena for proxy warfare between World Powers. That is hardly news. War Hawks who dominate the direction of our foreign policy (despite President Obama's best intentions) have been cynically using the Pentagon's anti-IS airstrikes to try and direct that and other terrorist organizations efforts away from Bagdad and against Damascus; for example, they howled with outrage when recent Russian attacks hit al-Nusra front targets in Western Syria, and we now learn that those same terrorists were being supplied with training and weapons by our CIA! It appears we want to overthrow the Assad regime so badly we will give lethal aid to al-Qaeda affiliated groups if they will help in that effort.

Game-Changer: Russian Involvement in Syria Shifts Balance of Power

It is naïve to believe that Washington will eat its humble pie and admit that its decade-long policy in the Middle East has been a complete failure; it is more likely that US hawks will do whatever it takes to bolster their shrinking influence in the region. “Although the US may be a declining power, it is certainly not an impotent one; there are many countermeasures that Washington could take in response to the ascendance of Russian and Iranian influence [in the Middle East],” US geopolitical analyst and Stopimperialism.com editor Eric Draitser told Sputnik.


"Washington will also use Russia's involvement in Syria to solidify relations with its key allies in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Israel. Each of those countries has, in various ways, attempted to foster closer relations with Moscow in the last two years as they consider Russia's assertiveness on the world stage, as well as its vast wealth of both energy and military hardware. With Russia moving to destroy the terror networks that those regional actors support both overtly and covertly, this provides the US the perfect opportunity to pull these countries back into its orbit, rather than allowing them to develop even semi-independent foreign policies," the US geopolitical analyst told Sputnik.

According to Draitser, there is also the possibility that the US and its NATO allies will go even so far as to use Russian military involvement as a pretext for direct military engagement. Although it seems unlikely that US President Obama will risk a direct military engagement in Syria at the end of his presidency, one should keep in mind how unpredictable and/or irrational imperial powers can be when cornered and faced with the inevitable decline of their hegemony, the analyst warned.


Read more at: http://stopimperialism.org/

Posted by another_liberal | Sat Oct 10, 2015, 08:51 AM (4 replies)

U. S. Institute for Peace Chairman says we need Russians to die in Ukraine.

As former Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs in the second Bush administration, Stephen Hadley is well acquainted with the shoot first, then negotiate (if you really have to) style of American diplomacy, but his recent comments to a gathering in Poland go well beyond that, especially considering he is now the head of the United States Institute for Peace!

U.S. instructor trains Ukrainian troops near Lviv, Ukraine.

US ‘Institute Of Peace’ Chairman Wants Russian Body Bags

Stephen Hadley’s militant message in Poland was far from peaceful and advocates the complete opposite of what the institute supposedly stands for. It's just been revealed that the Chairman for the US ‘Institute Of Peace' was caught red-handed in Poland lobbying for the US to arm the Kievan military back in June. According to The Intercept: "In a speech at Poland's Wroclaw Global Forum in June, Hadley argued in favor of arming the Ukrainian government in part because that would 'raise the cost for what Russia is doing in Ukraine.' Specifically, he said, 'even President Putin is sensitive to body bags — it sounds coarse to say, but it's true — but body bags of Russian soldiers who have been killed.'"

This stands in stark contravention to everything that the institute reportedly represents, making Hadley a devil of war when he claims to be acting as an angel of peace. Not only that, but upon closer examination, one realizes how the ‘Institute Of Peace' (and many more organizations just like it) is simply ‘academic' window dressing for preconditioning the ‘naively enlightened masses' to accept controversial and militant government policies. Confronted with this disturbing reality, inquisitive individuals eager to discern the objective truth about the most pressing political issues of our time need to resort to a heavy dose of non-mainstream reporting in order to counteract the effects of such deceitful Washington-sponsored entities as the ‘Institute Of Peace'.

Hadley's warmongering advocacy couldn't have been more off-message from his institute's stated core principles and strategic plan. Here are some of the ways in which his aggressive plea violates the spirit of peace:

"Core Principles:

1. We believe conflicts can be resolved without violence

That's not what Hadley said in Poland. He continued from his controversial quote by further elaborating that '…when you're dealing with a Russian policy as we see in Ukraine, there's going to be no political solution that does not have a military element.'"


Read more at: http://sputniknews.com/columnists/20150804/1025389709.html

Posted by another_liberal | Wed Aug 5, 2015, 08:39 AM (57 replies)
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