US forces entering Iraq from Syria seek to foment civil unrest Reply

Press TV. Listen here.

There is growing concern that US forces that have entered Iraq after retreating from northern Syria seek to destabilize the country and foment civil unrest, says an American political analyst.

Iraq on Wednesday rejected any long-term presence of US troops in his country after their withdrawal from neighboring Syria. Baghdad said American forces crossing into Iraq could only be there in transit.

“it’s not surprising that the government of Iraq would make a decision not wanting American troops to be positioned within Iraq,” said Keith Preston, chief editor of AttacktheSystem.com.

“We have to consider that the United States invaded Iraq in 2003 and there was a very bloody war took place…so the Iraqis certainly are not anxious to have American troops return to Iraq,” Preston told Press TV on Thursday.

“Also there’s been civil unrest in Iraq in recent times; there may be concerns that the Americans may try to foment civil unrest within Iraq because of the fact that the Iraqi government has moved closer to Iran,” he added.

PressTV-US forces leaving Syria not allowed to stay in Iraq: PM

PressTV-US forces leaving Syria not allowed to stay in Iraq: PMIraq’s Abdul-Mahdi says American forces withdrawing from Syria don’t have permission to stay in his country and Baghdad is taking legal action to address the issue.

US forces have been deeply unpopular in much of Iraq since their 2003-2011 occupation of the country.

Iraq’s Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi said after a meeting with visiting US Defense Secretary Mark Esper on Wednesday that the American forces were not allowed to remain in Iraq and his government was taking “all international legal measures” to address the issue.

“We have (already) issued an official statement saying that, and we are taking all international legal measures. We ask the international community and the United Nations to perform their roles in this matter,” he said.

He asserted that any foreign troop presence on Iraqi soil must be authorized by the government first and should end upon Baghdad’s request.

Esper had initially told reporters that troops leaving Syria would go to western Iraq for further operations against scattered Daesh terrorists and “help defend Iraq”. But he backtracked on Tuesday, saying Washington aimed to eventually bring the troops home.

In a major U-turn in the US military policy, the White House announced on October 6 that the US would be withdrawing its forces from northeastern Syria, clearing the path for an expected Turkish incursion into the region.

Three days later, Turkey launched the offensive with the aim of purging the northern Syrian regions near its border of US-backed Kurdish militants, whom it views as terrorists linked to local autonomy-seeking militants of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).

US using Turks as de facto mercenaries in Syria Reply

The United States is using “the Turks as de facto mercenaries” in Syria in order to continue Washington’s destabilization effort in the war-torn country, an analyst says. Keith Preston made the remarks in an interview with Press TV on Sunday when asked about US President Donald Trump who had defended his decision to pull American forces out of northern Syria.

Screwing Over the Kurds: An All-American Pastime Reply

By Nicky Reid aka Comrade Hermit

Exile in Happy Valley

I have long been a vocal supporter of the Kurds, even before the Syrian clusterfuck sparked the Rojava Revolution. Part of this comes from my checkered past as a lapsed Tankie-Guevarist. I grew up gorging myself on New Left folk tails of Third World rebellion. The fearsome PKK were one of a dozen or so clans of crimson bearded renegades, fighting like Castro for some post-colonial utopia. I read everything I could find about the Bolshevik adventures of groups like FARC, Hezbollah and the Naxalites. But the thing that set the Kurds apart was their fourth quarter conversion to anarchism which closely mirrored my own.

Abdullah Ocalan discovered the works of Murray Bookchin right around the time I dropped communism for panarchy and syndicalism. And when the wrest of Syria sunk into CIA sponsored Salafi hell, the Ocalan influenced Kurds of the YPG created a successful stateless society that flourished amidst the chaos. It was proof positive that anarchism could work. But it was all over the moment the YPG accepted the poison gift of American military occupation. Anarchism quite simply cannot coexist with the greatest source of imperial tyranny on the fucking planet. The only sick comfort I took in this nauseating arrangement is that I knew it wouldn’t last. That’s because, dearest motherfuckers, screwing over the Kurds is a time-honored American pastime.

The original Kurdish screwjob was the work of that whimsical Bond villain known as Henry Kissinger. During his busy time as Secretary of State and National Security Adviser under Nixon and Ford, respectively, Henry cooked up a devilish little scheme with the help of his flunkies in Israel and the Shah’s Iran. Iraq was becoming suspiciously cozy with the Soviet Union. So they flooded Iraq’s long suffering Kurdish independence movement with Soviet hardware pilfered from the killing fields of Vietnam and the Sinai Peninsula. Mustafa Barzani, the founding father of the modern Peshmerga, didn’t trust the Shah farther than he could squeeze his ham-fist up his pinched little quisling asshole, no sane Mesopotamian did, but he believed in his heart of hearts that America was that shining beacon of freedom on the hill. Mustafa was a sucker. Once Henry and Co. managed to frighten Iraq into playing ball, we quickly drummed up a deal between them and Iran that included handing over the Kurds on a spit. Not only did old Henry, that Nobel pacifist, refuse to even return Mustafa’s frantic calls for help, he cut all humanitarian aide to the region as Helter Skelter came tumbling down. The Kurds were slaughtered and Kissinger summed up America’s Kurdish policy in a nutshell when he told a disgusted congress that “One should not confuse undercover action with social work.” If only the Kurds took his advice.

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Keith Preston: US war against Daesh was cover to undermine Syrian government Reply

Press TV. Listen here.

The US military intervention in Syria to fight the Daesh terrorist group was a cover for removing the government of President Bashar al-Assad, an American analyst in Virginia says.

“The way that the United States got involved in Syria was simply by sending troops to Syria ostensibly under the guise of fighting the Daesh, or ISIS as they’re called here,” said Keith Preston, chief editor of AttacktheSystem.com.

“In reality the objective was to undermine the regime of President Assad,” Preston told Press TV on Tuesday.

More…

Alexander Reid-Ross-Podhoretz-Kristol: State Department Anarchist 10

Mr. Antifa Intellectual serves up the “Anarcho-MSNBC” line. This kind of stuff is why I started attacking anarcho-social democrats and totalitarian humanists so vehemently 20 years ago. Regrettably, a substantial tendency has developed among “anarchists” that opposes regional or localized illiberalism more than it opposes imperialism, opposes marginal right-wing extremists more than it opposes the power elite, opposes redneck ruckus makers like the Bundys more than it opposes the FBI and ATF, opposes social conservatives more than it opposes the state itself, and (probably) opposes the reality show president more than it opposes the actual national security state.

I suppose they’re entitled to their opinion. Unlike many anarchists, I consider freedom of opinion and freedom of association to be paramount. But, seriously, how are these kinds of folks any different from the Democratic Party?

 

Lessons From Rojava Reply

A very important read. Absorb every word of this.

By Nicky Reid aka Comrade Hermit

Exile in Happy Valley

This holiday season was unusually kind to the anti-imperialists among us. Trump shocked the world the week before Christmas by actually putting America first for a change and calling for the immediate withdrawal of the some 2000 troops still illegally occupying North Eastern Syria. Regardless of his motives, which I’m sure had very little to do with anything vaguely resembling the Christmas spirit, it’s hard to deny that this executive decision was a decisive win for peace.

Hard but not impossible. The doves of the progressive left have enthusiastically jumped through their own pinched assholes to stomp on McGovern’s grave with talking points straight out of Karl Rove’s playbook. Sadly, their onslaught of non-stop pro-war agit-prop, aided and abetted by the rabid war junkies of Trump’s own administration, may have worked. The perpetually spineless Trump has moved the goal post for the pull-out from 30 days to 90 days to 3 months to ‘maybe later, we’ll see…’

Regardless, the rift within the Pentagon is likely irreversible and the chaos its caused can only be interpreted as the official failure of America’s 6 year imperial project for the region. Being the peace-loving bomb-thrower that I am, the one part of this splendid fiasco that feels truly tragic to me is the increasingly likely implosion of the Rojava Revolution.

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Keith Preston: UAE embassy reopening, US pullout prove failure of anti-Syria plots Reply

Press TV. Listen here.

The UAE’s reopening of its embassy in Syria and the US announcement that it will withdraw its forces from the country reflect the failure of plots targeting the government of Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad, says an American analyst.

“What has happened is that over the past seven years…, the United Arab Emirates as well as other [Persian] Gulf states have attempted to weaken and destroy the government of President [Bashar] al-Assad in Syria,” Keith Preston told Press TV from Virginia on Thursday.

The Syrian Information Ministry announced on Thursday that the United Arab Emirates had officially reopened its embassy for the first time since 2011.

The UAE closed down its embassy after Syria was hit by a foreign-backed militancy in 2011. The UAE have Saudi Arabia have for long been accused of funding militants fighting to topple the Syrian administration.

“Clearly, that objective has failed,” Preston said, adding their hopes that Washington could realize the plot have also been dashed.

“They were hoping that the Americans would eliminate the government of Syria, but that has failed,” he said.

US President Donald Trump has announced that has ordered a full and rapid withdrawal of troops from Syria.

“So, they’re trying a different strategy at this point…they’re backtracking,” Preston said. adding, “And the reason for this is essentially an admission of defeat by the UAE. They realized that the Assad government is going to remain in power and that they’re going to have to deal with this particular government.”

Preston also said the Syrian government’s victory is likely to push it closer to the nations and groups that have helped it win the war, including Iran and Lebanon’s Hezbollah.

“And I think that the UAE is also concerned that the American withdrawal is going to strengthen the position of Syria and strengthen the position of Syria’s allies in the region, and now, they’re thinking that they’re going to have to try extend the olive branch or the carrot rather than the stick,” the pundit noted.

Preston finally said he suspected that other Persian Gulf monarchies will be following in Abu Dhabi’s footsteps in reestablishing diplomatic ties with Damascus.

The Syria Withdrawal: Three Cheers Reply

Scott Horton is interviewed by Tom Woods. Predictably, this is the best overview and discussion of Trump’s withdrawal from Syria so far, including a discussion of Rojava and Chomsky’s endorsement of US intervention on behalf of the Kurds. Listen here.

———————————————————————

Scott Horton joins me to discuss the reality of the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Syria, and the hysterical establishment response, from center-left to center-right. We also discuss fears about the fate of the Kurds, whose safety has been used to justify a continued U.S. presence.

About the Guest

Scott Horton, managing director of the Libertarian Institute, is the host of Antiwar Radio on KPFK 90.7 FM in Los Angeles, and Opinion Editor of Antiwar.com. The Scott Horton Show features daily interviews on foreign policy from a libertarian perspective.

Read the original article at TomWoods.com. http://tomwoods.com/ep-1309-the-syria-withdrawal-three-cheers/

 

 

In clear U-turn, Israel says ready to reopen Golan crossing with Syria 1

Press TV. Listen here.

In a surprising change of tone, Israel has expressed readiness to reopen the Quneitra border crossing with Syria in the Golan Heights, now that the Arab country’s armed forces have purged militant groups from there.

“We are ready to open the crossing as it was before, and now the ball is in the Syrian court,” Israeli minister for military affairs Avigdor Lieberman told reporters as he toured the border area on Thursday.

Lieberman, who has a long history of hurling threats of doom and destruction against Syria and President Bashar al-Assad, added that Israel never wanted conflict with Syria and was ready to ensure a 1974 armistice agreement between the two sides is strictly observed.

“We said from the beginning that we have no interest in meddling in the … war within Syria and we have never intervened. What interests us is ensuring the security” of Israelis, Lieberman said.

The Golan Heights is a Syrian territory, which Tel Aviv has been occupying since 1967 and claims as its own territory despite international criticism.

In August, the United Nations Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF) returned to the border between Syria and the occupied territories, four years after it was shuttered due to militant attacks.

More…

US senator claims Britain’s MI6 is planning a fake chemical weapons attack on Syria Reply

By Laura Vozella

The Independent

Fresh off a sitdown with Syrian president Bashar al-Assad, Virginia state senator Richard Black turned up on Arab TV last week making an extraordinary claim about one of the US’ closest allies.

Mr Black said Britain’s MI6 intelligence service was planning a chemical weapons attack on the Syrian people, which it would then blame on Mr Assad.

“Around four weeks ago, we knew that British intelligence was working towards a chemical attack in order to blame the Syrian government, to hold Syria responsible,” Mr Black said on Al Mayadeen, an Arab news channel based in Beirut.

Mr Black said later that he meant the British were planning not to carry out an attack themselves, but to either direct rebels to do so or stage a phoney attack, with actors posing as victims.

“From what I can tell, they have been planning a fake attack, not a genuine one, but one where they actually move people out of a town and they have trained people to portray victims of a gas attack,” Mr Black said in an interview with The Washington Post. “And the plan is to use the White Helmets who have always been involved in these notorious deceptions, to portray an attack.”

Mr Black also said some chemical attacks previously reported to have occurred in Syria were British fakes, pulled off with help from volunteer first responders known as “White Helmets”.

“From what I can tell, they have been planning a fake attack, not a genuine one, but one where they actually move people out of a town and they have trained people to portray victims of a gas attack,” Mr Black said in an interview with The Washington Post. “And the plan is to use the White Helmets who have always been involved in these notorious deceptions, to portray an attack.”

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China says willing to team with Syria’s Assad in push to retake territory Reply

Asia Times

Photo: Reuters

China’s ambassador to Damascus has reportedly told Syrian media that Beijing is prepared to aid the government’s push to retake territory throughout the country.

Speaking to Syrian pro-government daily Al-Watan, the envoy, Qi Qianjin, expressed China’s support for what he referred to as Syria’s war against terrorists, according to a dispatch from the Middle East Media Research Institute.

stability of our countries. We – China and its military – wish to develop our relations with the Syrian Army. As for participating in the Idlib operation, it requires a political decision.’ He denied that there were military advisers or special Chinese forces in Syria today.”

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Iranians respond to the regime: ‘Leave Syria alone! Reply

Caveat: Al-Jazeera is owned by the state of Qatar, which is one of the Gulf States backing the jihadi war in Syria, along with Saudi Arabia.

By Ali Fathollah-Nejad

Al Jazeera

This is the second part of the article. Click here to read the first part focusing on the Islamic Republic’s efforts to control the official narrative on Syria.

While the Islamic Republic of Iran has been a staunch supporter of Bashar al-Assad‘s regime in Syria, little attention has been paid on public attitudes within the country.

While Tehran has tried to maintain complete control over information regarding the war in Syria and the narrative about its military involvement, it has not fully succeeded. The “war on terror” and “axis of resistance” rhetoric have not been enough to mollify the Iranian public and its demand for accountability.

Despite the Iranian state media’s blackout on issues related to the Syrian war, Iranians’ propensity to consult a myriad of Persian-language media sources abroad has kept them well informed.

Rising societal awareness about Tehran’s Syria military intervention has undermined the regime’s monopoly of interpretation, and Iranian officials have increasingly had to face questions from the public about its moral and economic dimensions.

Recent protests and public encounters have shown that Iranians are increasingly unhappy about their country’s involvement in Syria. The war is having an aggravating effect on already growing political and socioeconomic grievances at home.

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Bill Lind on Syria Reply

I concur.

By William S. Lind

Traditional Right

The latest cruise missile caracole aimed at Syria was militarily meaningless.  A few empty buildings were destroyed, residents of Damascus and Homs lost a couple hours of sleep and honor was satisfied.  The only thing missing was Handel’s Musick for the Royal Fireworks

What was not trivial was that America once again fell into its besetting policy of sacrificing the strategic level to the tactical.  Strategically, we need an alliance with Russia and we need to restore the state in Syria.  When someone, probably not the Syrian government, launched a minor tactical attack that may or may not have used chemical weapons we immediately forgot our strategic goals and interests and fired off some missiles.  This is the response of a spoiled child, not a serious nation.

As I have pointed out before, a rule of war is that a higher level trumps a lower.  No matter how brilliant your tactical performance, if you lose operationally, you lose.  You can win repeatedly at the tactical and operational levels, as Germany did in both World Wars, but if you lose strategically, you lose.  It follows that one of the most elementary errors in statecraft is sacrificing a higher level to a lower.  And the U.S. does it time and time again.

In this case, part of the reason for the idiocy was the dreaded words, “chemical weapons!”  Chemical weapons, which used to be called poison gas, are now considered a “Weapon of Mass Destruction” like nuclear weapons.  This is historical nonsense.

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International Journalist Tells The Truth About Syria Reply

A must watch.

A relevant post from a YouTube commentor:

“The Assad government may not be all roses and sunshine (And I dare anyone to find me a squeaky clean government, any government), but it is a secular and moderate government. Shiites, Sunnis, Alawites etc. and Christians all lived there peacefully, way more peacefully than ethnic groups do in the US. Women enjoy a great deal of rights, they are not required to cover their hair or face, the universities actually had more female students than male. Assad is by no means a dictator, if you look at the region, he is a rainbow farting unicorn in comparison to some of the murderous psychos on US payroll.”

 

Former UK Ambassador Reveals Truth About Syria – With Special Guest Peter Ford Reply

A must watch.

Former UK Ambassador to Syria Peter Ford joins today’s Liberty Report to share his vast experience in the region. He has notably deviated from the government/media narrative about the alleged Assad gas attack. How likely is it that Assad used gas? Why are inspectors being prevented from visiting the site? How is the “official narrative” holding up to increasing scrutiny?

What Are “Assad Apologists”? Are They Like Those “Saddam Apologists” Of 2002? Reply

By Caitlin Johnstone

Medium

Isn’t it fascinating how western journalists are suddenly rallying to attack the dangerous awful and horrifying epidemic of “Assad apologists” just as the western empire ramps up its longstanding regime change agenda against the Syrian government? Kinda sorta exactly the same way they began spontaneously warning the world about “Saddam apologists” around the time of the Iraq invasion?

The increasingly pro-establishment Intercept has published an article titled “Dear Bashar al-Assad Apologists: Your Hero Is a War Criminal Even If He Didn’t Gas Syrians,” condemning unnamed opponents of western interventionism in Syria for not being sufficiently condemnatory of Bashar al-Assad in their antiwar discourse.

Last week The Times published an article titled “Apologists for Assad working in British universities,” frantically informing the public that “top academics” are circulating information that runs counter to the official Syria narrative, followed this week by a Huffington Post article attacking those same academics in the same way. Yesterday, the BBC ran an article titled “Syria war: the online activists pushing conspiracy theories,” warning its readers about “pro-Syrian government” internet posts.

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Against NATO’s Imperialist Attacks in Syria Reply

Internationalist Commune of Rojava

It’s Going Down

The following statement comes from the Internationalist Commune of Rojava, and denounces the recent bombings carried out by NATO forces in Syria, which have been being planned for weeks, and carried out under the guise of ‘humanitarian intervention.’

From the Internationalist Commune of Rojava, in the Democratic Federation of Northern Syria, we denounce the bombings carried out this early morning by the NATO forces against the Syrian territory. These imperialist attacks led by the USA, with the collaboration of France and the UK, are a new example of the brutality and the imperialist thirst of the NATO forces in the Middle East.

The global powers make a display of their military industry, testing their weapons without considering the consequences of their actions on the civil population. The launch of high tech missiles under the pretext of a chemical attack which has not been proven abuses the instability in Syria making it testing grounds for the latest weaponry advances. The increase in market value of the companies building the missiles, which have increased their capital in over 5 billion dollars in a matter of hours, lays bare what war means for capitalism: profit.

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The ‘anti-imperialism’ of idiots 1

This is an interesting blog with an extensive amount of commentary about Syria. This blogger seems to hold to some kind of anti-Assad, Syrian leftist opposition perspective, and seems a bit soft on Western intervention. One thing I am not getting from this blog is an explanation of how the overthrow of Assad would not result in anything other than the coming to power of a Salafist regime, which is clearly what the Western powers, and their allies Israel and Saudi Arabia, want. When the Iraq War began in 2003, there were some pro-intervention liberals and leftists making the argument that the war was a “war against fascism” or whatever, and we know how that turned out.

By Leila Al-Shami

Once more the western ‘anti-war’ movement has awoken to mobilise around Syria. This is the third time since 2011. The first was when Obama contemplated striking the Syrian regime’s military capability (but didn’t) following chemical attacks on the Ghouta in 2013, considered a ‘red line’. The second time was when Donald Trump ordered a strike which hit an empty regime military base in response to chemical attacks on Khan Sheikhoun in 2017. And today, as the US, UK and France take limited military action (targeted strikes on regime military assets and chemical weapons facilities) following a chemical weapons attack in Douma which killed at least 34 people, including many children who were sheltering in basements from bombing.

The first thing to note from the three major mobilisations of the western ‘anti-war’ left is that they have little to do with ending the war. More than half a million Syrians have been killed since 2011. The vast majority of civilian deaths have been through the use of conventional weapons and 94 per cent of these victims were killed by the Syrian-Russian-Iranian alliance. There is no outrage or concern feigned for this war, which followed the regime’s brutal crackdown on peaceful, pro-democracy demonstrators. There’s no outrage when barrel bombs, chemical weapons and napalm are dropped on democratically self-organized communities or target hospitals and rescue workers. Civilians are expendable; the military capabilities of a genocidal, fascist regime are not. In fact the slogan ‘Hands off Syria’ really means ‘Hands off Assad’ and support is often given for Russia’s military intervention. This was evident yesterday at a demonstration organized by Stop the War UK where a number of regime and Russian flags were shamefully on display.

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