Keith Preston: Trump in conflict with ‘deep state’ over troop deployment Reply

PressTV. Listen here.

The administration of US President Donald Trump is in conflict with intelligence agencies over deploying American troops to Syria to fight the Daesh (ISIL) terrorist group, an American political analyst in Virginia says.

“Right now there’s a great deal of conflict within the American government itself; the Trump administration and what we call the ‘deep state’ or a lot of conventional intelligence services are heavily in conflict with one another,” said Keith Preston, chief editor of AttacktheSystem.com.

Some political scientists, writers and journalists in the United States have for decades expressed concerns about the existence of a so-called “deep state” or state within a state, which they argue exerts control and influence over public policy, regardless of which political party controls the country’s democratic institutions.

Under the Trump administration, the term deep state has been used by some news organizations to refer to intelligence officials and executive branch bureaucrats guiding policy through leaking or other means of internal dissent.

“We saw that [conflict between Trump and the ‘deep state’] this week with the resignation of the national security advisor, General Michael Flynn; so there’s a great deal of turmoil within the foreign policy apparatus of the United States,” Preston told Press TV on Thursday.

The resignation of  Flynn on Monday and the continuing turmoil inside the White House have deeply rattled the Washington establishment.

Preston said there seems to be a conflict between the Trump administration and the deep state over the goal of the Western military intervention in Syria. Trump seeks to eliminate ISIL and keep President Bashar al-Assad in power, whereas some intelligence and military officials are pursuing the opposite goal.

CNN reported on Wednesday that the US Defense Department may recommend that the United States deploy regular combat troops to Syria to fight Daesh terrorists.


US combat troops

“It’s possible that you may see conventional forces hit the ground in Syria for some period of time,” CNN quoted a Pentagon official.

During the presidential campaign, Trump had openly supported deploying a large contingent of US troops to Syria.

The US has already sent several hundred of its special operations forces to Syria. However, their operations have been limited to what the Pentagon describes as training and assisting Kurdish fighters in their battle against Daesh (ISIL) and other terrorist groups.

When authorizing the limited deployments, then-US President Barack Obama had stressed that conventional ground troops were not an option.

The US and its allies have been carrying out airstrikes against alleged Daesh positions in Syria and neighboring Iraq since 2014.

My Take on the “Muslim Travel Ban” Reply

A number of people have for my views on the so-called “Muslim travel ban” imposed by the Trump administration. Here goes:

Statistically, the evidence shows that right-wing terrorists have been slightly more violent in the years since 9-11 than Islamists, at least in the US obviously. But the meaning I take from this data is that the neocons and other hawks are blowing the Islamic terrorism threat way out of proportion, while liberals and the Left blow the right-wing terrorism threat out of proportion. Both groups need these false narratives to be true for ideological reasons.

The neocons and other hawks want a permanent war against Islam and the Left wants a permanent war against whitey, so there always has to be some looming threat on the horizon. The real violence is the US comes mostly from inner city gangs that murder each other over drug dealing disputes, from fights and domestic violence that spirals out of control, and from the mentally ill or lone nuts like Adam Lanza, Dylan Roof, or Omar Mateen.

September 11, 2001 was a singular but spectacular incident that has predictably kept plenty of people up in arms ever since. The OKC bombing in ’95, which killed about 150, had the same impact on the Left. I remember how after OKC the Left was saying many more such acts were just around the corner. But over 20 years later there’s been no such thing. The same thing happened with 9-11. I remember people talking about how there was going to be nuclear destruction of US cities and terrorism with bioweapons and all kinds of stuff. But 15 years later there’s only been a handful of incidents like Orlando, San Bernardino, and Ft. Hood that were perpetrated by lone nuts or small groups of friends acting as freelancers.

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Keith Preston: Trump seeks to distance Russia from China, Iran Reply

Press TV. Listen here.

US President Donald Trump’s plans to reduce Washington’s foreign interventionism and focus on issues like immigration are part of a foreign policy plan that seeks to separate Russia from China and Iran, says an American analyst.

Keith Preston, director of attackthesystem.org, made the remarks while discussing Trump’s directives to curb immigration.

On Wednesday, the new president signed executive orders to begin the construction of a wall on the border with Mexico and to crack down on states that harbor immigrants.

Following his campaign pledge to ban Muslims from entering America, Trump is also expected to sign another executive order which blocks the entry of Syrian refugees and suspends the entry of any immigrants from Syria and other Muslim countries like Sudan, Somalia, Iraq, Iran, Libya and Yemen.

“He is apparently going to follow through with many things he said he was going to do on the campaign trail and I think primarily what he is aiming to do right now is to establish his own credibility,” Preston told Press TV on Wednesday..

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Nationalism vs. Globalism: What Route Should the World Take? Reply

The best discussion of the globalism vs. nationalism conundrum from an anarchist/libertarian perspective that I have seen to date.

By Tim Bryant

The Last American Vagabond

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars

Whether it’s the Brits voting for the Brexit, the Americans electing Donald Trump as president, or Marine Le Pen gaining momentum in France, the populist tides of nationalism are causing massive shifts in political power throughout the world. It’s not just these select cases either where populism has taken root. The reality is that anti-establishment populism through the medium of nationalism is igniting within pockets of society all over the world.

globalism

Unlike any time in known history, the world has access to an incredible amount of data due to the dawn of the Internet, which as a result has catapulted society into the Age of Information. With these new understandings of truth, third world countries are growing increasingly intent on ousting corrupt dictators who take massive foreign bribes in exchange for the sell off of their resources and the control of their democracy. Similarly, western societies are also coming around to some truths of their own, which has them equally intent on cutting off the outsourcing of their wealth, as well as eliminating the infiltration of their cultures.

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Korea and the Art of the Deal Reply

Bill Lind on why North Korea is just an extension of traditional Korea.

By William S. Lind

Traditional Right

As North Korea inches its way toward possessing an ICBM than can hit the United States with a nuclear warhead–both of dubious reliability–we can expect a Korean “crisis” to grow. In fact, there need be no crisis. A deal with North Korea is not difficult to envision, and America now has a president who is good at making deals.

The conventional wisdom presents North Korea as a rogue state ruled by a madman, Kim Jong Un. He, and it, are irrational, dangerous, and impossible to predict. Sanctions having failed, we must pile up more sanctions. There is no alternative to growing hostility between North Korea and the U.S., a course which is likely at some point to lead to war. In the meantime, we must keep thousands of U.S. troops in South Korea, a country far stronger than North Korea.

But there is another way to look at the situation, one that sees continuity rather than irrationality in North Korean policy. For centuries, Korea, then one country, was known as the “Hermit Kingdom”. Like Japan under the last Shogunate, Korea was closed to foreigners, trade, and all outside contact. Its government, a monarchy, was centralized, powerful, and all-controlling. An “ideology” of sorts, Confucianism, was the only tolerated way of thinking. The king was regarded as semi-divine.

From this perspective, today’s North Korea is merely an extension of historic Korea. The Kims are a new dynasty, behaving very much like the old dynasty. North Korea’s legitimacy is rooted in this continuity; it is South Korea, not North Korea, that is a historic anomaly.

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Trump Will Try to Smash the China-Russia-Iran Triangle: Here’s Why He Will Fail Reply

The best analysis of the Trumpian approach to foreign policy I have seen to date.

By Pete Escobar

South China Morning Press

China, Russia and Iran are the three key players in what promises to be the Eurasian Century.

Donald Trump may be The Joker; The Fool; The Ace of Spades; the ultimate trickster. What nobody can tell for sure is how this shifty chameleon will seduce, cajole, divide and threaten these three countries in his bid to “Make America Great Again”.

Considering the composition of his cabinet, as well as his motormouth twittering, the world according to Trump sees radical Islam as the No 1 threat, followed by Iran, China and Russia.

The strategy of Henry Kissinger, Trump’s unofficial foreign policy guru, is a mix of “balance of power” and “divide and rule”. It will consist of seducing Russia away from its strategic partner China; keeping China constantly on a sort of red alert; and targeting Islamic State while continuing to harass Iran.

All this has the potential to backfire splendidly. Even a real “reset” with Russia, of the non-Hillary Clinton kind, is not exactly assured.

Is a Trump-Putin bromance enough for a miracle in US-Russia ties?

Trump’s pick for secretary of state, Rex Tillerson, may in fact be a cipher, a privileged ExxonMobil dealmaker, or a Trojan Horse for Kissinger’s views. Tillerson is a trustee of the hardline Centre for Strategic and International Studies think tank, along with Kissinger.

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“Neo-Marxism” And “The New Middle East” Reply

I agree with this analysis but disagree with its conclusions. Ultimately, our enemies are all states everywhere, and our greatest non-state rivals are the Wahhabist/Salafist renditions of Islam. I consider the struggles of the Kurds, particularly the PKK and allied tendencies, to essentially be the same as the struggles of ATS.

By Andrew Korybko

Oriental Review

One of the most curious quirks of recent history is that self-proclaimed followers of the Cold War-era ideology of Marxism are on the upswing two and a half decades after the dissolution of the Soviet Union, and interestingly enough, they’re making on-the-ground progress in the Mideast of all places. This may come as a surprise to casual observers who have been convinced by the Mainstream Media that the region is only awash with religious radicalism, which while certainly true, doesn’t fully encapsulate the whole picture of all the extremism that’s active there nowadays.

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What Trump Wants From the International Order Reply

Trump may be a maverick, but not that much of a maverick.

By Leon Hadar

The American Conservative

We’re all familiar with “slippery slope” arguments. Allow Casual Fridays, and soon enough everyone will be coming to work in shorts and T-shirts. Ban assault weapons, and you’re on the road to repealing the Second Amendment.

In a way, the response of Western elites to the recent election reflects that kind of logic: as Donald Trump prepares to occupy the White House, we are about to see the collapse of the Western alliance and the breakdown of the post-World War II liberal international order. It’s the end of the West. We are closing the last chapter of the Age of Enlightenment.

But then, does anyone really believe that after four or eight years of a Trump presidency, the United Nations headquarters in Manhattan will turn into a new Trump Hotel (as recently proposed, tongue-in-cheek, by conservative columnist Charles Krauthammer)? Or that the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund will shut down their offices in downtown Washington, DC?

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The Trump Speech That No One Heard Reply

Interesting. Sounds like Trump’s faction of the ruling class may favor a foreign policy paradigm similar to that recommended by Bill Lind.

By Mike Whitney

Counterpunch

The US foreign policy establishment is gradually shifting its focus from the Middle East to the Far East, but the unexpected election of Donald Trump has thrown a wrench in the elitist plan to pivot to Asia. Trump wants to fundamentally change Washington’s  approach to policy, that is, he wants to abandon the destabilizing wars and regime change operations that have characterized US policy in the past and work collaboratively with countries like Russia that have a mutual interest in establishing regional security and fighting terrorism.

This has not been warmly received in Washington, in fact, Trump’s recommendations have triggered a firestorm among elites who now believe that he is a serious threat to their interests. Recent attacks in the media and preemptive provocations with Russia, suggest that an effort to remove the new president from office is already underway. We expect that these attacks will only intensify in the weeks ahead. Here’s an excerpt from the speech Trump delivered in Cincinnati on December 1 that is the source of the controversy:

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Keith Preston: Trump to use ‘one China’ policy as leverage in trade talks Reply

PressTV. Listen here.

Incoming US President Donald Trump will only use his opposition to the “one China” policy as a bargaining chip in trade talks with China and to the extent that would not disrupt relations with Beijing, says a political commentator.

 

Trump, who will officially take the oath of office on Friday, said he was not committed to a longstanding agreement with China known as the “one China” policy. Under the agreement adopted by the US in 1979, Washington has been recognizing Chinese sovereignty over Taiwan and maintaining only unofficial ties with Taiwan.

In an interview with Press TV, Keith Preston, the chief editor of AttacktheSystem.com said Trump would be using the issue “as leverage” in trade negotiations with China.

“He is looking for things he could potentially use against the Chinese as a means of encouraging a settlement in terms of the currency issue and trade issues that Trump is concerned about,” the analyst said.

Trump started questioning China’s claim over Taiwan just after his election in November, when he took a congratulatory phone call from Taiwanese leader Tsai Ing-wen in a major break from US diplomatic protocol in 37 years.

Beijing warned Trump on Monday against using the “one China policy” as a bargaining chip in trade talks.

Preston, however, said the incoming president would not go “so far to really disrupt the relations between the United States and China,” because according to him there is a very “important trade relationship” between the two countries.

He explained that the US foreign policy has always been “oriented to a peaceful co-existence with China for obvious strategic and geo-political reasons.”

“Even during the Cold War, the United State was very dependent on China as a source of manufacturing and labor and America imported a great deal of the consumer goods from China,” he added.

During his presidential campaign, Trump consistently complained about “unfair competition” with the Chinese, Preston said, adding that new president wants to “negotiate trade agreements that are more favorable to American business interests.”

The Deep State Goes to War with President-Elect, Using Unverified Claims, as Democrats Cheer 2

By Glenn Greenwald

The Intercept

Dwight Eisenhower delivered his farewell address after serving two terms as U.S. president; the five-star general chose to warn Americans of this specific threat to democracy: “In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.” That warning was issued prior to the decadelong escalation of the Vietnam War, three more decades of Cold War mania, and the post-9/11 era, all of which radically expanded that unelected faction’s power even further.

This is the faction that is now engaged in open warfare against the duly elected and already widely disliked president-elect, Donald Trump. They are using classic Cold War dirty tactics and the defining ingredients of what has until recently been denounced as “Fake News.”

Their most valuable instrument is the U.S. media, much of which reflexively reveres, serves, believes, and sides with hidden intelligence officials. And Democrats, still reeling from their unexpected and traumatic election loss as well as a systemic collapse of their party, seemingly divorced further and further from reason with each passing day, are willing — eager — to embrace any claim, cheer any tactic, align with any villain, regardless of how unsupported, tawdry and damaging those behaviors might be.

The serious dangers posed by a Trump presidency are numerous and manifest. There are a wide array of legitimate and effective tactics for combatting those threats: from bipartisan congressional coalitions and constitutional legal challenges to citizen uprisings and sustained and aggressive civil disobedience. All of those strategies have periodically proven themselves effective in times of political crisis or authoritarian overreach.

But cheering for the CIA and its shadowy allies to unilaterally subvert the U.S. election and impose its own policy dictates on the elected president is both warped and self-destructive. Empowering the very entities that have produced the most shameful atrocities and systemic deceit over the last six decades is desperation of the worst kind. Demanding that evidence-free, anonymous assertions be instantly venerated as Truth — despite emanating from the very precincts designed to propagandize and lie — is an assault on journalism, democracy, and basic human rationality. And casually branding domestic adversaries who refuse to go along as traitors and disloyal foreign operatives is morally bankrupt and certain to backfire on those doing it.

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Keith Preston: Intel services seek to cause ‘friction between US and Russia’ Reply

Press TV. Listen here.

The American intelligence community is seeking to cause “friction” between the United States and Russia as President-elect Donald Trump has signaled willingness to improve relations with Moscow, says a political analyst.

Keith Preston, the chief editor of AttacktheSystem.com, made the remarks on Wednesday in an interview with Press TV when asked about new legislation introduced in the Senate to impose sweeping new sanctions on Russia.

Five Democrats and five Republicans unveiled the new punishments on Tuesday after the intelligence community concluded in a report that the Russian government had sought to influence the outcome of the November election through cyberhacking and a smear campaign, a claim that Trump and Moscow have both rejected.

“It’s extraordinarily foolish for the American Congress to try to impose any kind of sanctions on Russia on the grounds that Russia has supposedly interfered in the American election, that has not been proven,” Preston said.

“The intelligence services are trying to create a greater degree of friction between the United States and Russia, and the Democratic Party is going along with this, in part because they want to blame the Russians for their loss in the election,” he added.

The proposed legislation would solidify many of the sanctions President Barack Obama’s outgoing administration has imposed against Russia and limit Trump’s ability to improve relations with Moscow.

Preston said, “the intelligence services and the political establishment are trying to undermine (Trump)’s efforts to bring the United States closer to Russia,” adding, “they have allies in Congress, particularly in the Democratic Party” to help them achieve their goal.

He said one reason they do not want better ties with Russia is that “the military industrial complex wants to expand NATO right up the Russia’s border and they also want to circle Russia with military bases in Central Asia.”

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US Intel Agencies Try to Strong-Arm Trump into War With Russia Reply

Mike Whitney

Counterpunch

Powerful elites are using the credibility of the US Intelligence agencies to demonize Russia and prepare the country for war. This is the real meaning of the “Russia hacking” story which, as yet, has not produced any hard evidence of Russian complicity.

Last week’s 25-page report, that was released by the Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, illustrates to what extent intelligence is being “fixed around the policy”.  Just as the CIA generated false information related to Weapons of Mass Destruction to soften public resistance to war with Iraq, so too, the spurious allegations in the DNI’s politically-motivated report are designed to depict Russia as a growing threat to US national security. The timing of the report has less to do with the election of Donald Trump as President than it does with critical developments in Syria where the Russian military has defeated US-proxies in Syria’s industrial hub, Aleppo, rolling back Washington’s 15-year War of Terror and derailing the imperialist plan to control vital resources and pipeline corridors across the Middle East and Central Asia. Russia has become the main obstacle to Washington achieving its strategic vision of pivoting to Asia and maintaining its dominant role into the next century. The Intelligence Community has been coerced into compromising its credibility to incite fear of Russia and to advance the geopolitical ambitions of deep state powerbrokers.

he “Russia hacking” flap shows how far the Intel agencies have veered from their original mandate, which is to impartially gather and analyze information that may be vital to US national security. As we have seen in the last two weeks, the leaders of these organizations feel free to offer opinions on  issues that clearly conflict with those of the new President-elect. Trump has stated repeatedly that he wants to reduce tensions and reset relations with Russia, but that policy is being sabotaged by members of the intelligence community, particularly CIA Director John Brennan who appeared just last week on PBS Newshour with Judy Woodruff. Here’s an excerpt from the interview:

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Overthrowing other people’s governments: The Master List Reply

Q: Why will there never be a coup d’état in Washington?

A: Because there’s no American embassy there.

By William Blum

The Empire Report

  • China 1949 to early 1960s
  • Albania 1949-53
  • East Germany 1950s
  • Iran 1953 *
  • Guatemala 1954 *
  • Costa Rica mid-1950s
  • Syria 1956-7
  • Egypt 1957
  • Indonesia 1957-8
  • British Guiana 1953-64 *
  • Iraq 1963 *
  • North Vietnam 1945-73
  • Cambodia 1955-70 *
  • Laos 1958 *, 1959 *, 1960 *
  • Ecuador 1960-63 *
  • Congo 1960 *
  • France 1965
  • Brazil 1962-64 *
  • Dominican Republic 1963 *
  • Cuba 1959 to present
  • Bolivia 1964 *
  • Indonesia 1965 *
  • Ghana 1966 *
  • Chile 1964-73 *
  • Greece 1967 *
  • Costa Rica 1970-71
  • Bolivia 1971 *
  • Australia 1973-75 *
  • Angola 1975, 1980s
  • Zaire 1975
  • Portugal 1974-76 *
  • Jamaica 1976-80 *
  • Seychelles 1979-81
  • Chad 1981-82 *
  • Grenada 1983 *
  • South Yemen 1982-84
  • Suriname 1982-84
  • Fiji 1987 *
  • Libya 1980s
  • Nicaragua 1981-90 *
  • Panama 1989 *
  • Bulgaria 1990 *
  • Albania 1991 *
  • Iraq 1991
  • Afghanistan 1980s *
  • Somalia 1993
  • Yugoslavia 1999-2000 *
  • Ecuador 2000 *
  • Afghanistan 2001 *
  • Venezuela 2002 *
  • Iraq 2003 *
  • Haiti 2004 *
  • Somalia 2007 to present
  • Honduras 2009
  • Libya 2011 *
  • Syria 2012
  • Ukraine 2014 *

Keith Preston: Obama wants to prevent close ties between Trump, Putin Reply

Listen here.

The administration of US President Barack Obama is trying to muddy the waters with Russia before the inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump, says an American political analyst.

Keith Preston, the director of the attackthesystem.com made the remarks with regards to Obama’s reported plans to introduce new sanctions against Russia.

Washington is set to announce measures designed to retaliate against what it considers Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election to allegedly help Trump with his victory, CNN reported Wednesday, citing government officials.

“Well, what this seems to be is a case of domestic partisan politics in the United States intruding into American foreign policy and international relations,” Preston told Press TV on Thursday.

Preston said the presidential race between Trump and his Democratic rival Hillary Clinton as “one of the most contentious” votes in the US history and the political fallout was inevitable.

“Hillary Clinton actually won the popular vote, Donald Trump was elected by to the electoral votes,” he said, noting that the Democratic Party was looking for a scapegoat.

Pointing to the Obama administration’s “unsubstantiated” claims that Moscow interfered in the vote, Preston predicted that the allegations would continue until Trump takes office on January 20.

“Given that the Democratic Party is till the ruling party for the time being… it appears that the Democratic Party is trying to retaliate against Russia, on the belief that Russia cost them the election,” the analyst explained.

“There are a lot of foreign policy hawks in the Obama administration with a very negative view of Russia,” he added.

Unlike the current administration, however, Trump and his incoming administration have taken a reconciliatory line with Moscow.

“So it maybe that various elements in the American government are trying to retaliate or act against Russia before Trump takes office,” Preston argued.

Economic sanctions against Moscow were originally introduced in March 2014, after the Black Sea peninsula of Crimea joined Russia following a referendum.

The new sanctions are going to be a “token gesture” more than anything else, Preston said.

According to Obama, the CIA and other US intelligence agencies are in possession of evidence that shows Russian President Vladimir Putin supervised the hacks, which targeted the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and John Podesta, a top aide to Clinton.

Putin has categorically denied Washington’s hacking claims, calling on Obama and his administration to either provide evidence or stop their accusations.

Keith Preston: US unremittingly aligned with Israel on Palestinian issue Reply

Press TV. Listen Here.

The United States has protected Israel from UN action and international criticism for decades, despite Tel Aviv’s violation of a broad range of international laws, and President-elect Donald Trump will maintain that cynical policy, an American political analyst in Virginia says.

“The United States has always been unremittingly aligned with Israel and when comes to the United Nations, rarely has the United States ever broken with Israel on any issues in the region, certainly when it comes to the Palestinian issue,” said Keith Preston, the chief editor of AttacktheSystem.com.

“Donald Trump will be continuing what previous presidents have done,” Preston told Press TV on Thursday.

“It was predicted, even during the campaign, that Donald Trump will have a very pro-Israel position and he seems to be following up on that,” he added.

On Thursday, Trump urged the outgoing Obama administration to veto a UN Security Council draft resolution that calls for an immediate halt to illegal settlement building on the occupied Palestinian land.

“The resolution being considered at the United Nations Security Council regarding Israel should be vetoed,” the incoming Republican president said in a statement.

“As the United States has long maintained, peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians will only come through direct negotiations between the parties, and not through the imposition of terms by the United Nations,” he said.

The UN resolution calls for “the cessation of all Israeli settlement activities is essential for salvaging the two-state solution,” stating that the activities are dangerously imperiling” and threatening the viability of any future Palestinian state in the occupied West Bank.

Last week, Trump nominated David Friedman, a hardline Zionist, as US ambassador to Israel, likely paving the way toward a controversial decision to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem al-Quds.

Over half a million Israelis live in more than 230 illegal settlements built since the 1967 Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories of the West Bank, including East Jerusalem al-Quds.

All Israeli settlements are illegal under international law. Tel Aviv has defied international calls to stop the settlements expansion in the occupied Palestinian territories.