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An ambassador of the Syrian opposition coalition partakes in a conference with Zionists

By the order of Qatar, Najib al-Ghadban Partakes in Jewish Conference

Paris – by Nidal Hamade, Al Ahed news

Between August 15 and 19, an annual conference special for the Middle East was held in the Czech capital, Prague, titled “Middle East Regional Security and Cooperation Dialogues,” with the participation of a panel of “Israeli” and pro “Israel” Jewish figures from around the world.

Yet the conference has nothing to do with the Middle East, except for its name perhaps. Nonetheless, this time conferees celebrated the attendance of a new guest and an ally that is dear to “Israel.” It is the ambassador of the Syrian Opposition Coalition in Washington, Najib al-Ghadban!

Al-Ghadban partook in the conference in his capacity as the official representative of the Coalition, as presented by the organizing committee. There, al-Ghadban sat next to tens of “Israeli” officials like diplomat Dore Gold, “Israel” ambassador to the United Nations during the 1982 “Israeli” invasion of Lebanon, and other generals from the “Israeli” army!

There as well, sat Bassma Kodmani, vice Head of the Syrian National Council in 2012. She has already attended this conference’s 2012 February round in USA.
It seems that the Syrian opposition has become the sole Arab member entitled to attend the conference’s meetings, which remain behind closed doors.
Sources from the Syrian opposition said that al-Ghadban attended the meeting as commanded by the state of Qatar through Mustafa Sabbagh, Qatar’s man inside the Coalition. Sabbagh, a Syrian businessman residing in Doha, was Qatar’s candidate to chair the Coalition. He lost the bet before Ahmad Jarba, Bandar Bin Sultan’s candidate, and Michel Kilo, after Washington has handed the Syrian dossier management to KSA after Qatar.

Another opposition source also said that al-Ghadban’s attendance was part of the conflict game over earning the Jews’ affability many members of the Coalition are playing.

It seems that Qatar sought to annoy KSA, and this was just what made the Coalition’s Head Ahmad Jarba deny previous knowledge of al-Ghadban’s presence.
Jabra was so irate that he even denied any relation between the Coalition and al-Ghadban.
This annual international conference also hosts a similar meeting every year on key economic topics in the Middle East, simultaneously with the Doha International Forum.

What is the “Middle East Regional Security and Cooperation Dialogues?”

– It is a conference organized twice a year by the Center for Middle East Development (CMED) at the University of California-Los Angeles (UCLA).

– The Greek government used to host the conference, but it was moved to Prague due to the financial crises in Greece.

– This secret conference is held without any ads or publicities and under strict security guard, whereby participants work in specialized groups to engage in topics relevant to the regional security, the security of the Gulf, the promotion of the culture of democracy, economy and business, Palestinian-“Israeli” peace, Arab-“Israeli” peace, and others.

– During the conference, secret meetings are held between elected groups of experts, advisors, and academics, to discuss affairs related to peace, human rights, political normalization initiatives, security challenges, the risks of terrorism, joint economic projects between “Israel,” Palestine, Lebanon, Jordan, Iraq, Egypt, Syria, Algeria, Tunisia, and Gulf states, especially Bahrain, Kuwait and KSA. For the past two years, light was shone on the repercussions and reverberations of the Arab Spring uprisings.

– USA, “Israel,” and European governments such as Greece, Switzerland, France, Czech, and Germany, fund this conference.

– Around 500 to 700 experts and researchers from the Middle East, Turkey, Russia, and Europe participate in the conference. 50% of participants are “Israelis”. Scores of Zionists also partake herein, namely Dore Gold, General Amram Mitza, General Danny Yatom, General Ami Ayalon, Colonel Itamar Yaar, General Natan Sharoni, General Yuri Saghe, General Alec Ron, Shaul Shimoni, Dalia Rabin, Shlomo Gore, General Dov Tamari, Yuri Dore, Yoram Mittal, and too many others.

– This conference is attended by Syrian figures carrying different nationalities, such as Omar al-Adm, Murhaf Joueijati, Najib al-Ghadban, Salam Kawakbi, Farah Atassi, Wael Mirza, Bassma Kodmani, and others…

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Media disinformation: Mass resignations at Al Jazeera over “biased” Egypt coverage

Source

Reports suggest that 22 member of staff have resigned from the Egyptian arm of Al Jazeera after complaining of pro-Muslim Brotherhood bias within the organisation

Al Jazeera Mubasher Misr, the Egyptian arm of the Qatari-funded broadcaster has suffered major embarrassment today after 22 staff members walked out over accusations of bias.

The 22 staff resigned on Monday over what they alleged was coverage that was out of sync with real events in Egypt, according to a report by the Gulf News website.

Anchor Karem Mahmoud announced that the staff resigned in protest against “biased coverage” of the recent events in Egypt. He explained that there was a lack of commitment and Al Jazeera professionalism in media coverage, stating, “the management in Doha provokes sedition among the Egyptian people and has an agenda against Egypt and other Arab countries.”

Mahmoud added that the management used to instruct each staff member to favour the Muslim Brotherhood.

He said that “there are instructions to us to telecast certain news”.

In February of this year, Ghaffar Hussain, contributing editor to The Commentator wrote, “Since the Muslim Brotherhood has come to power in Egypt, Al Jazeera has done all in its power to portray the group in a favourable light. Protests against the Brotherhood-dominated regime are presented as being led by violent thugs with no political grievances, while Morsi’s poorly constructed and shallow speeches are given positive coverage.”

Haggag Salama, a correspondent of the network in Luxor, had resigned on Sunday accusing it of “airing lies and misleading viewers”. He announced his resignation in a phone-in interview with Dream 2 channel.

Meanwhile, four Egyptian members of editorial staff at Al Jazeera’s headquarters in Doha resigned in protest against what they termed a “biased editorial policy” pertaining to the events in Egypt, Ala’a Al Aioti, a news producer, told Gulf News by phone.

Original reporting by Ayman Sharif for Gulf News

Brzezinski: Saudi Arabia, Qatar, their western allies orchestrated Syria crisis

RB comment: Now when the plan began to fail , in which the true extent of the terrorist acts of the groups supported by the US/its allies is without a doubt revealed along with losing ground militarily fast, voices of ‘concern’ are raised. Isn’t it always like that?

Press TV

The former US national security adviser says the ongoing crisis in Syria has been orchestrated by Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and their western allies.

“In late 2011 there are outbreaks in Syria produced by a drought and abetted by two well-known autocracies in the Middle East: Qatar and Saudi Arabia,” Zbigniew Brzezinski said in an interview with The National Interest on June 24.

He added that US President Barack Obama also supported the unrest in Syria and suddenly announced that President Bashar al-Assad “has to go — without, apparently, any real preparation for making that happen.”

“Then in the spring of 2012, the election year here, the CIA under General Petraeus, according to The New York Times of March 24th of this year, a very revealing article, mounts a large-scale effort to assist the Qataris and the Saudis and link them somehow with the Turks in that effort,” said Brzezinski, who was former White House national security adviser under Jimmy Carter and now a counselor and trustee at the Center for Strategic and International Studies and a senior research professor at the School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University.

Criticizing the Obama administration’s policies regarding Syria, he questioned, “Was this a strategic position? Why did we all of a sudden decide that Syria had to be destabilized and its government overthrown? Had it ever been explained to the American people? Then in the latter part of 2012, especially after the elections, the tide of conflict turns somewhat against the rebels. And it becomes clear that not all of those rebels are all that ‘democratic.’ And so the whole policy begins to be reconsidered.”

“I think these things need to be clarified so that one can have a more insightful understanding of what exactly US policy was aiming at,” Brzezinski added.

He also called on US officials to push much more urgently to draw in China, Russia and other regional powers to reach some kind of peaceful end to the Syrian crisis.

“I think if we tackle the issue alone with the Russians, which I think has to be done because they’re involved partially, and if we do it relying primarily on the former colonial powers in the region-France and Great Britain, who are really hated in the region-the chances of success are not as high as if we do engage in it, somehow, with China, India and Japan, which have a stake in a more stable Middle East,” Brzezinski said.

Brzezinski also warned again any US-led military intervention in Syria or arming the militants fighting government forces there.

“I’m afraid that we’re headed toward an ineffective American intervention, which is even worse. There are circumstances in which intervention is not the best but also not the worst of all outcomes. But what you are talking about means increasing our aid to the least effective of the forces opposing Assad. So at best, it’s simply damaging to our credibility. At worst, it hastens the victory of groups that are much more hostile to us than Assad ever was. I still do not understand why — and that refers to my first answer — why we concluded somewhere back in 2011 or 2012 — an election year, incidentally that Assad should go.”

Foreign-sponsored militancy in Syria, which erupted in March 2011, has claimed the lives of many people, including large numbers of Syrian soldiers and security personnel.

the New York Times said in a recent report the CIA was cooperating with Turkey and a number of other regional governments to supply arms to militants fighting the government in Syria.

The report comes as the US has repeatedly voiced concern over weapons falling into the hands of al-Qaeda-linked terrorist groups.

Al-Nusra Front was named a terrorist organization by Washington last December, even though it has been fighting with the US-backed so-called Free Syrian Army in its battle against Damascus.

Syria: West-backed terrorists kill a priest, earlier a Muslim cleric & evacuate, loot Daraa historic sites

US-backed Takfiri militants behead 2 Christians including priest in Homs

Press TV

A shocking video has emerged on the Internet showing US-backed Takfiri militants in Syria brutally beheading two Christians including a priest in the western city of Homs.

In the gruesome footage recently posted online, the militants who are said to be members of the terrorist al-Nusra Front, cut off the heads of two handcuffed men, including Father Francois Murad, with a small knife in front of a crowd of people.

This is not the first time that the US-backed terrorists who are fighting against the Syrian government commit such grisly crimes against innocent civilians in the war-torn country.

In March, a Muslim cleric was beheaded in Syria’s northern city of Aleppo by militants, who decapitated Sheikh Hassan Saif al-Deen before dragging his lifeless body on the streets.

Local media blamed the beheading on the al-Qaeda-linked al-Nusra.

Foreign-sponsored militancy in Syria, which erupted in March 2011, has claimed the lives of many people, including large numbers of Syrian soldiers and security personnel.

The al-Nusra Front has been behind many of the deadly bombings targeting both civilians and government institutions across Syria since the beginning of the violence.

In an interview broadcast on Turkish television in April, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad said if the militants take power in Syria, they could destabilize the entire Middle East region for decades.

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Syria Terrorists Evacuate, Loot Daraa Historic Sites

Al Ahed news

An official source at Syrian Antiquities department said that 11 historic towns and sites in the Daraa came under attack and sabotage by the armed terrorist groups, causing huge damages to their layers and looting their rich values.

“The majority of regions which were subject to acts of secret excavations, sabotage and looting are in Daraa’s western countryside where the armed terrorist groups are active, ” the source added.

He further clarified that those regions are well-known of their historic richness as they are considered one of the most ancient sites in the world where they have witnessed the succession of a number of civilizations.

“Tal Shihab was one of the sites which witnessed acts of digging in the historic hill, the surrounding valley and on the two banks of the railway to the south of hill in addition to excavations of the walls and mills of Tal shihab,” the source said.

In parallel, he confirmed that “acts of secret excavations extended to Kharab al-Shahm town and to the bottom of the valley through hand-made tools and heavy vehicles, while Sahm al-Jolan has witnessed the demolition of historic houses and secret excavations in addition to the border villages of Abdeen, Tal al-Ashaari which are considered as one of the most important historic sites in Syria.”

“The families in the area notified the Directorate about the existence of groups dividing themselves to 5 workshops which periodically excavate the sites through heavy vehicles, and this indicates to a systemized looting process of the historic belongings of Tal al-Ashaarai,” the source said.

He confirmed that the systemized terrorism against Syria’s civilization and history is considered as a big crime, and those who trade with the Syrian treasures don’t differ from the perpetrators of bloody crimes.

The source called on the neighboring countries, particularly Jordan to assume responsibility, retune the looted ruins and extradite the thieves to the Syrian authorities.

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Russia denies reports on closure of embassy in Syria

Press TV

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has rejected as “speculation and provocation” reports suggesting that Moscow plans to close its embassy in the crisis-hit Syria, as well as its naval base in the Syrian port of Tartus.

“All these rumors are speculation and provocation aimed at preparing the public for the efforts to change the regime [in Syria],” Lavrov said in a press conference after talks with his Moroccan counterpart Saad al-Din al-Osmani in Moscow on Friday.

Lavrov added that “the Russian Embassy is working in a normal mode as regards the fulfillment of its functions as a diplomatic mission.”

Regarding the Tartus naval base, Lavrov said the “naval logistics facility operates normally. Evacuation of this base or its personnel is not on the agenda.”

Earlier in mid June, al-Hayat newspaper quoted Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov as saying that Russia had evacuated all military personnel from its small naval base in Syria.

UN General Assembly vote reflects shift in Syrian public opinion

by FRANKLIN LAMB, source

It’s not hard to find critics of the Assad government in the Governorate (Muhafazat) of Homs or for that matter, to varying degrees in Syria’s other thirteen Governorates according to Syrian analysts interviewed by this observer and reports from human rights groups including lawyers representing dissidents in Syria. However, after nearly 27 months of turmoil, the public opinion pendulum is markedly shifting back in support of the current regime.

One international political result was registered at the United Nations this past week when a US-Qatari-Saudi drafted General Assembly Resolution that was designed to increase pressure on the Assad government stumbled badly and fell far short of what the Saudi Ambassador to the UN and other US allies predicted would be an overwhelming vote in favor.

Effect of shift in popular opinion in Syria

Over the past four or five months it has become increasingly clear that public opinion in Syria is shifting for reasons that include, but are not limited to the following:

While inflation at the grocery stores in probably the most common complaint heard from a cross-section of society here, the population is adapting somewhat to higher prices and it appears to credit the government for efforts, some successful, to soften the impact of the illegal US-led sanctions that target this same Syrian population for purely political reasons to achieve regime change.

While Syrians demand dignity and freedom from oppressive security forces and an end to corruption, as all people do in this region and beyond, they are witnessing a return to near normalcy with respect to supplies of electricity, benzene, mazout fuel oil, bus schedules, schools, and a host of public services such as garbage collection, street sweeping, park maintenance, and sympathetic traffic cops who are rather understanding of short-cuts taken by drivers and pedestrians due to “the situation”.

In addition, public service announcement and even text messages demonstrate that the government is aware of the degree of suffering among the population, accept partial blame, and are focusing on remedial measure and crucially, ending the crisis with its horrific bloodshed. One observes here a definite trend of the pulling together of a high percentage of Syrians who share a very unique history and culture and who are deeply connected to their country and who are increasingly repelled by the continuing killing from all sides including the recent barbarisms of body mutilations and summary executions videotaped and broadcast on utube by [armed group] elements. The latter who these days come from nearly three dozen countries, paid for and indoctrinated by enemies of Syria’s Arab nationalism and deep rooted pillar of resistance to the occupation of Palestine.

In addition, many among Syria’s 23 million citizens, who initially supported the uprising following government reaction to event in Deraa in March 2011, now have serious second thoughts about who exactly would replace the current government. Events in Syria are also making plain that the army is still loyal to the Assad government, and according to Jane’s Defense Weekly, is actually gaining experience and strength as well as the well-known fact that as western diplomats are admitting, the “opposition militias” are hopelessly fractured, turning one another, many essential mafia outfits, and beginning to resemble their fellow [armed groups] from Libya, Chechnya and in between.

Opinion in Damascus and surrounding areas visited this past week, confirms this observers experience the past five months of a sharp and fairly rapid shift in opinion that now strongly favors letting the Syrian people themselves decide, without outside interference, whether the Assad regime will stay, and indeed, whether, the Baathist party will continue to represent majority opinion, not through wanton violence but rather via next June’s election. Many express confidence in the run up to this critical vote, noting that the election will be closely monitored by the international community to assure fairness.

Perhaps aided by the current glorious May weather, a certain optimism, that was more scarce in the past, pervades many neighborhoods.

For different reasons, foreign powers, including the USA, Turkey, European Union, the UK Jordan and even the majority population of the six Gulf Cooperation Council family run countries, according to Pew Research, are shifting their earlier positions which were based in part of the US administration, NATO, and Israeli assurances that the Assad government would surely fall quickly, “A matter of days, not weeks” US President Obama promised. That was two years ago.

As noted above, this trend has accelerated since the UN General Assembly vote with last weeks which did not go as planned on the biased and politicized non-binding draft resolution on Syria.

The public reaction in Syria and across the Middle East is substantially that the “Friends of Syria” non-binding GA resolution contradicts the reality on the ground, backs terrorism in Syria and hinders the international efforts to help achieve a political solution to the crisis in this country. Only 107 states voted in favor of the resolution, 12 against while 59 countries, mostly from Africa and Latin America, abstained from voting.

One reason the vote fell short of the 130 favorable votes that the basically same resolution garnered the past two times is that it is widely viewed as ignoring the crimes and atrocities committed by the armed – groups in Syria and the flow of thousands of international terrorists backed by the West, the Gulf states and Turkey who provide them with weapons and money. According to the Russian delegate, backed by several other speakers, “the resolutions ignores all the terrorists’ heinous crimes and denounces what it called the escalation of the attacks by the Syrian government”. Afterward one Latin American Permanent Representative told Inner City Press that the count would have been below 100 if not for some “last minute arm-twisting.” As it turned out, 15 countries didn’t vote at all, opting to “get coffee,” as one African Permanent Representative put it before the vote.

Syria’s Ambassador al-Jaafari exposes a hoax in the Gulf

Syria’s permanent Envoy to the UN Bashar al-Jaafari said his country regretted the adoption of a biased and unbalanced UN resolution, thanking the countries that rejected the resolution “for their responsible positions which support the UN principles and the international law articles”. He noted that the decrease in the number of countries that voted in favor and the increase of numbers of those who abstained from voting indicates the growing international understanding of the reality of what is happening in Syria due to the foreign interference, support of terrorism, the spread of extremism and incitement besides the refusal of dialogue.

“We rely on the UN and its member states to support Syria and its people against the culture of extremism and terrorism, and to encourage the comprehensive national dialogue to peacefully resolve the Syrian crisis.” he said. In a statement released after the vote on the UN draft resolution on Syria, al-Jaafari He said that the French delegation had foiled the issuance of a number of UN press releases to condemn the terrorist acts committed by al-Qaeda-linked armed groups in Syria which claimed the lives of thousands of Syrians as it foiled a UN release to condemn the attempt of assassination of the Syrian Premier.

After Qatar’s ambassador spoke in favor of the resolution his country drafted (and re-drafted several times), Ja’afari revealed that there existed an e-mail, from the representative of the Syrian opposition given to Syria’s embassy in Qatar, showing Qatar’s involvement in the kidnapping of UN peacekeepers by the Yarmouk Martyrs Brigade. He read out a phone number from the e-mail as several Gulf diplomats grimaced or scowled, and three left the Chamber.

Visibly stunned, the UK Permanent Representative Lyall Grant called the whole matter “deeply confusing”. Another Permanent Representative, from a militia contributing country, said that if true, it’s “very problematic.” The reasons include the fact that UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon had just thanked Qatar for its roles in the release of the UN Peacekeepers the earlier kidnapping of whom the Qatari government may have planned, paid for and executed.

Meanwhile, Ban Ki-moon’s spokesperson Martin Nesirky said he would not disclose any more about the “negotiations to free the peacekeepers or who was behind the crime.”

Score a major diplomatic victory for Syria’s UN Ambassador as public opinion shifts in favor of the Assad government and pressure as well as certain optimism builds in the run-up to the Geneva II conference being organized by the White House and the Kremlin.

FT: Qatar pays Syria mercenaries 50,000$ yearly

Moqawama

Financial Times magazine published a report Friday that mentioned that Qatar has invested in Syrian insurgents, paying up to 3 billion dollars over the past two years to rebels.

“The tiny gas-rich state of Qatar has spent as much as $3 billion over the past two years supporting the rebellion in Syria, far exceeding any other government, but is now being nudged aside by Saudi Arabia as the prime source of arms to rebels,” the report stated.

In dozens of interviews with the FT conducted in recent weeks, rebel leaders both abroad and within Syria as well as regional and western officials detailed Qatar’s role in the Syrian conflict.

The small state is the biggest donor to the political opposition, providing generous refugee packages to defectors [one estimate puts it at $50,000 a year for a defector and his family] and has provided vast amounts of humanitarian support.

In September, many rebels in Syria’s Aleppo province received a one off monthly salary of $150 courtesy of Qatar. Sources close to the Qatari government said total spending has reached as much as $3 billion.

For Qatar, its intervention in Syria is part of an aggressive quest for global recognition and is merely the latest chapter in its attempt to establish itself as a major player in the region, the magazine reported.
“According to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, which tracks arms transfers, Qatar has sent the most weapons deliveries to Syria, with more than 70 military cargo flights into neighboring Turkey between April 2012 and March this year,” FT said.

Moreover, the report stated that though Qatar’s approach is driven more by pragmatism and opportunism than ideology, it has become entangled in the polarized politics of the region, setting off scathing criticism.

“You can’t buy a revolution,” says an opposition businessman.

“Qatar’s support for fundamentalist groups in the Arab world, which puts it at odds with its peers in the Gulf States, has fuelled rivalry with Saudi Arabia,” the Financial Times remarked.

Coordinating with CIA, Qatari diwan, KSA control arms flow to Syria

Moqawama

Reuters reported Wednesday that Qatar, which has taken a lead in arming the Syrian opposition, is coordinating with the CIA.

Rebel fighters in Syria say that in recent months the system for distributing arms has become more centralized, with arms being delivered through opposition National Coalition’s General Command, led by Selim Idriss, a general who defected to the opposition and is a favorite of Washington.

Qatar mostly sends arms to rebels operating in the north of Syria, while Saudi Arabia, another rich Gulf Arab kingdom, sends weapons to fighters operating in the south, several rebel commanders said.

“The Qataris are now going through the Coalition for aid and humanitarian issues and for military issues they are going through the military command,” a commander in northern Syria interviewed from Beirut said.

He further stated: “Before the Coalition was formed they were going through liaison offices and other military and civil formations. That was at the beginning. Now it is different – it is all going through the Coalition and the military command.”

Today, Qatari shipments have resumed with controls exerted from the palace of Qatar’s emir, Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani, in consultation with the US Central Intelligence Agency, said a senior Qatari security official.

“There’s an operations room in the Emir’s diwan (office complex), with representatives from every ministry sitting in that room, deciding how much money to allocate for Syria’s aid,” the Qatari official said.
“There’s a lot of consultation with the CIA, and they help Qatar with buying and moving the weapons into Syria, but just as consultants,” he said. The CIA declined to comment.

Rebel commanders contacted by Reuters said they submit their lists of needs to the General Command led by Idriss, which forwards the requests to Qatar or Saudi Arabia.

One Western source involved in the process said that sometimes weapons sent in by Qatar do in fact reach hardline groups.

Several rebel commanders said they believed wealthy Kuwaiti and Saudi individuals were also sending weapons and money to rebel fighters outside the National Coalition’s distribution channel.

“They usually ask for a video proving that an attack took place with the name of the brigade that did it. Sometimes they ask for a statement expressing gratitude,” said a rebel commander in Damascus.

He said the Saudis and Qataris also occasionally send weapons into each other’s territory, bypassing normal controls.

“Sometimes the Qataris manage to send stuff to the southern part and the Saudis to the northern side. When they do so, they send it to brigades that are not part of the military command.”

According to the Qatari official, weapons supplied included AK-47 rifles, rocket propelled grenades, hand grenades and ammunition. Qatar also provides instructions on battlefield techniques such as how to rig weapons on vehicles.

The weapons are purchased mainly from eastern Europe by arms brokers based in Britain and France, and are flown from Qatar to Ankara and then trucked to Syria, the Qatari source added.

Hugh Griffiths, a researcher on arms transfers at the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, said 90 Qatari military air cargo flights were made to Turkey between 3 January 2012 and the end of April 2013.

He suggested the Qataris had made no particular effort to disguise the nature of the cargo.
The planes were Qatari air force aircraft flying from Al Udeid, a big air force base shared with the US military.

“This is quite unusual for arms deliveries intended for non-state actors in conflict zones, in the last 20 years or so the pattern has been to use private, commercial companies,” he said.

Pipelineistan geopolitics at work: Iran, Pakistan, Syria, Qatar.

(File photo)

by Pepe Escobar, source

Construction is nearing completion on a natural gas pipeline linking Iran and Pakistan, a project that portends a huge geopolitical shift. As regional powers strengthen ties in this key energy market, they’re looking to China, and away from the West.

Since the early 2000s, analysts and diplomats across Asia have been dreaming of a future Asian Energy Security Grid.

This – among other developments – is what it’s all about, the conclusion of the final stretch of the $7.5 billion, 1,100-mile natural gas Iran-Pakistan (IP) pipeline, starting from Iran’s giant South Pars field in the Persian Gulf, and expected to be online by the end of 2014.

Nobody lost money betting on Washington’s reaction; IP would put Islamabad in “violation of United Nations sanctions over [Iran’s] nuclear program.” Yet this has nothing to do with the UN, but with US sanctions made up by Congress and the Treasury Department.

Sanctions? What sanctions? Islamabad badly needs energy. China badly needs energy. And India will be extremely tempted to follow, especially when IP reaches Lahore, which is only 100 km from the Indian border. India, by the way, already imports Iranian oil and is not sanctioned for it.

All aboard the win-win train

When Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Pakistani President Asif Zardari met at the Iranian port of Chabahar in early March, that was a long way after IP was first considered in 1994 – then as Iran-Pakistan-India (IPI), also known as the ‘peace pipeline.’  Subsequent pressure by both Bush administrations was so overwhelming that India abandoned the idea in 2009.

IP is what the Chinese call a win-win deal. The Iranian stretch is already finished. Aware of Islamabad’s immense cash flow problems, Tehran is loaning it $500 million, and Islamabad will come up with $1 billion to finish the Pakistani section. It’s enlightening to note that Tehran only agreed to the loan after Islamabad certified it won’t back out (unlike India) under Washington pressure.

IP, as a key umbilical (steel) cord, makes a mockery of the artificial – US-encouraged – Sunni-Shia divide. Tehran needs the windfall, and the enhanced influence in South Asia. Ahmadinejad even cracked that “with natural gas, you cannot make atomic bombs.”

Zardari, for his part, boosted his profile ahead of Pakistan’s elections on May 11. With IP pumping 750 million cubic feet of natural gas into the Pakistani economy everyday, power cuts will fade, and factories won’t close. Pakistan has no oil. It may have huge potential for solar and wind energy, but no investment capital and knowhow to develop them.

Politically, snubbing Washington is a certified hit all across Pakistan, especially after the territorial invasion linked to the 2011 targeted assassination of Bin Laden, plus Obama and the CIA’s non-stop drone wars in the tribal areas.

Moreover, Islamabad will need close cooperation with Tehran to assert a measure of control of Afghanistan after 2014. Otherwise an India-Iran alliance will be in the driver’s seat.

Washington’s suggestion of a Plan B amounted to vague promises to help building hydroelectric dams; and yet another push for that ultimate ‘Pipelineistan’ desert mirage – the which has existed only on paper since the Bill Clinton era.

The Foreign Office in Islamabad argued for Washington to at least try to show some understanding. As for the lively Pakistani press, it is having none of it.

The big winner is… China

IP is already a star protagonist of the New Silk Road(s) – the real thing, not a figment of Hillary Clinton’s imagination. And then there’s the ultra-juicy, strategic Gwadar question.

Islamabad decided not only to hand over operational control of the Arabian Sea port of Gwadar, in ultra-sensitive southwest Balochistan, to China; crucially, Islamabad and Beijing also signed a deal to build a $4 billion, 400,000 barrels-a-day oil refinery, the largest in Pakistan.

Gwadar, a deepwater port, was built by China, but until recently, the port’s administration was Singaporean.

The long-term Chinese master plan is a beauty. The next step after the oil refinery would be to lay out an oil pipeline from Gwadar to Xinjiang, parallel to the Karakoram highway, thus configuring Gwadar as a key Pipelineistan node distributing Persian Gulf oil and gas to Western China – and finally escaping Beijing’s Hormuz dilemma.

Gwadar, strategically located at the confluence of Southwest and South Asia, with Central Asia not that far, is bound to finally emerge as an oil and gas hub and petrochemical center – with Pakistan as a crucial energy corridor linking Iran with China. All that, of course, assuming that the CIA does not set Balochistan on fire.

The inevitable short-term result anyway is that Washington’s sanctions obsession is about to be put to rest at the bottom of the Arabian Sea, not far from Osama bin Laden’s corpse. And with IP probably becoming IPC – with the addition of China – India may even wake up, smell the gas, and try to revive the initial IPI idea.

The Syrian Pipelineistan angle

This graphic Iranian success in South Asia contrasts with its predicament in Southwest Asia.

The South Pars gas fields –  the largest in the world – are shared by Iran and Qatar. Tehran and Doha have developed an extremely tricky relationship, mixing cooperation and hardcore competition.

The key (unstated) reason for Qatar to be so obsessed by regime change in Syria is to kill the $10 billion Iran-Iraq-Syria pipeline, which was agreed upon in July 2011. The same applies to Turkey, because this pipeline would bypass Ankara, which always bills itself as the key energy crossroads between East and West.

It’s crucial to remember that the Iran-Iraq-Syria pipeline is as anathema to Washington as IP. The difference is that Washington in this case can count on its allies Qatar and Turkey to sabotage the whole deal.

This means sabotaging not only Iran but also the ‘Four Seas’ strategy announced by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in 2009, according to which Damascus should become a Pipelineistan hub connected to the Caspian Sea, the Black Sea, the Persian Gulf and the Eastern Mediterranean.

The strategy spells out a Syria intimately connected with Iranian – and not Qatari – energy flows. Iran-Iraq-Syria is known in the region as the ‘friendship pipeline.’ Typically, Western corporate media derides it as an ‘Islamic’ pipeline. (So Saudi pipelines are what, Catholic?) What makes it even more ridiculous is that gas in this pipeline would flow to Syria and then Lebanon –  and from there to energy-starved European markets close by.

The Pipelineistan games get even more complicated when we add the messy Iraqi Kurdistan/Turkey energy love affair – detailed here by Erimtan Can – and the recent gas discoveries in the Eastern Mediterranean involving territorial waters of Israel, Palestine, Cyprus, Egypt, Lebanon and Syria; some, or perhaps all of these actors could turn from energy importers to energy exporters.

Israel will have a clear option to send its gas via a pipeline to Turkey, and then export it to Europe; that goes a long way to explain the recent phone call schmoozing between Turkey’s Prime Minister Erdogan and Israel’s Netanyahu, brokered by Obama.

Terrestrial and maritime borders between Israel and Lebanon remain dependent on a hazy UN Blue Line, set up way back in 2000. Damascus – as well as Tehran –  supports Beirut, once again against Washington’s will. And Damascus also supports Baghdad’s strategy of diversifying its means of distribution, once again trying to escape the Strait of Hormuz. Thus, the importance of the Iran-Iraq-Syria pipeline.

No wonder Syria is a red line for Tehran. Now the whole of Pipelineistan will be watching how far Qatar is willing to go following Washington’s obsession.

Has the Arab League mortally wounded itself by declaring war on Syria?

by Franklin Lamb, source

Frankly, it never was much of a “League” of Arab states.

And arguably it never really achieved a whole lot but two dozen lavish ‘summits’ offering inflated rhetoric, often calculated to assuage the Arab people about their central cause, Palestine.

This, despite high hopes across Arabia when its founders promulgated a Charter on March 22, 1945 and took a solemn oath to prevent the theft of Palestine by European colonists. Yet, notions of fundamental fairness require that we all acknowledge, that to its credit, the Arab League has tried to achieve a modicum of pan-Arab cooperation on issues involving economic and financial affairs, commercial relations, customs, currency and questions of agriculture and industry, communications including, railroads, roads, aviation, navigation, postal services, cultural affairs, nationality, passports, visas, execution of judgments and extradition of criminals and even a bit regarding social affairs and health issues.

Despite years of pledges to eliminate visas requirements, along the lines of the European Ginga visa it should be noted that only one Arab country has waived visas for their Arab sisters and brothers internationally.

That would be the Syrian Arab Republic.

It is Syria, along with Palestine, out of all the 22 Arab League members, who most consistently and steadfastly have represented Arab Nationalism, Arab resistance to occupation, and the stated goals enunciated 66 years ago when the Arab League was established.

Many are asking why the ‘sanctions of its members-happy’ Arab League consistently fails to act on what is happening in Palestine and why it never has kept its pledge to suspend the AL membership of countries that host Israeli embassies against their people’s will.

There was once upon a time, now appearing far, far, away, that the Arab League countries were trying to achieve the liberation of Palestine. Or so they claimed. Then suddenly, the association morphed into twenty countries claiming to being committed to solving the issues of Palestine and Lebanon. Low and behold it was not so long after that the Arab League became nineteen countries trying to solve the questions of Palestine, Lebanon and Somalia.

How we all change with time. This week, during the 24th “Arab Summit” eleven countries, being pressured by outside interests with hegemonic geopolitical visions for the region, claimed they wanted to solve life’s problems on behalf of the other members.

If there is an Arab summit ten years from now, what will its agenda like?

This week the global community saw that the Charter and by-laws of the Arab league has not been respected with respect to the Syrian crisis from the beginning despite its mission to bring together Arabs. Rather it has been actively working to prevent coming together especially with respect to Syria.

The organization was created at the time when a racist Zionist state was considered extremely unlikely by most countries but, to make sure, an association of Arab states was organized to prevent, at all costs, the rumored Zionist project from becoming a reality. The first decision of the newly established League of Arab States was to boycott any Jewish organization that would assistant in the theft of Palestine by the European financed Zionist movement.

Today unfortunately, and perhaps fatally for the AL, the complete obverse has obtained. In countless ways the Arab League is supporting the occupation of Palestine, while allowing itself to be preempted and shaped into an instrument of Western foreign policy as it plots against and among its own members their minders behalf. Far removed from its raison d’etre which according to its Charter is to focus on and ensue a coming together of its members, it does everything that would promote the desires of the Zionist occupiers of Palestine while dividing the Arabs and preventing any kind of real union among them.

Much as the USA and its allies have corralled and preempted the UN Security Council, its agents have hijacked the League of Arab states and five other regional organizations. Now in their sites according to congressional source who follows this issue. One international organization that has entered the sights of these western controlled hegemonic forces is the revitalized the Non-aligned Movement (NAM), currently chaired by the Islamic Republic of Iran.

Some Arab League analysts claim that here won’t be much left of the Arab League by 2020. One joke currently making the rounds on Capitol Hill is “Which will implode first, the Arab League or its master, the Zionist occupiers of Palestine?” Answer: “Too close to call.”

Last week in Doha, Qatar, the proceedings amounted to a deep self-inflicted, perhaps fatal, wound for the AL. Its legitimacy unraveled when it essentially declared war on one of its founding members and replaced it with its anointed, funded, staffed, armed, recognized, group with not the faintest pretense of abiding by its Charter including Article VIII, a main pillar of the concept of a League of Arab States:

“Each member-state shall respect the systems of government established in the other member-states and regard them as exclusive concerns of those states. Each shall pledge to abstain from any action calculated to change established systems of government.”

In summary, there is nothing in the Arab League Charter permitting that body to expel or even sanction Syria. In fact, doing so violates the Charter. As seen many times, but recently in Libya, foreign intervention is never humanitarian rather it is always geo-political. Syrians, not by outsiders can best solve its internal problems.

Is it now left to the BRICS states – Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa to stand up to the AL and to help halt the conflict in Syria? There is growing sentiment in Syria that this group of five emerging powers may become a major hope for the Syrian people that suffer from blatant foreign interference in their affairs and suffering from the Arab League acting against their interests. The AL members who voted to expel or sanction Syria are merely channeling the geo-political interests of the United States and Israel, which are increasingly viewed among the Arab pubic as “unofficial members” of the Arab League.

There is no escaping the fact that the result of the decisions made in Doha is that the Arab League has refused a peaceful settlement for Syria and that the AL recognition of the national coalition as the only legitimate representative of the Syrian people contradicts the Geneva Communique and makes irrelevant, as Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov pointed out this week, the mission of UN and Arab League mediator for Syria, Brahimi. Given that one of the founders of the mandate, the Arab League, proclaims that the national opposition is the only legitimate Government of Syria, advocates and joins in the arming of the forces anointed to oust the regime how can there be negotiations? This decision to supply arms to the Syrian opposition not only violates international law, but again in the words of Lavrov, “is a blatant encouragement of confrontation of the irreconcilable forces on both sides to make them fight this war to the bitter end.”

Saudi-Qatari battle of power over Syria

Moqawama

Divisions inside Syria’s so-called “opposition” that had recently erupted during the past few days reflected a regional battle of power between two main axes; a Qatari-Turkish axis and the other a Saudi one close to US policy.

This difference was manifested in the speech that Ahmad Maaz al-Khatib, Chief of the so-called opposition coalition, delivered at the Arab Summit held on Tuesday in Doha, where he slammed attempts of imposing custodianship on the opposition, and added, “Our people have paid the price of freedom, and their decision comes from their own interests and they refuse any custodianship.”

Meanwhile, around 70 Syrian opposition members refused, in a statement sent to the summit, “the excluding control” of the Muslim Brotherhood movement in the so-called coalition.

On this note, Professor of Political Sciences in the American University of Paris, Ziad Majed stated, “There is a tight competition between two axes essential to the opposition’s financial and military support; A Turkish-Qatari axis that supports the Muslim Brotherhood movement and a Saudi axis harmonious with the US.”

Majed added in an interview with Agence France Presse, “This disagreement leaves its mark on the opposition’s political structure and allegiances of difference military groups.”

Moreover, Majed referred “to the severe discussion that took place in the recent coalition meeting in Istanbul last week, between supporters of forming a transitory government and those who want to replace it with an executive authority responsible for administrating the armed groups’ territories.”

“The disagreement was not on [the newly elected Prime Minister of the transitory government] Ghassan Hitto’s character, but was rather a principle of whether to form the government or not in the first place,” he underscored, emphasizing, “The US-Saudi axis preferred to take it easy in forming the transitory government, while the Qatari-Turkish axis was in a hurry to form it.”

On another note, an opposition figure stated, “Saudis sent letters in many directions after Istanbul’s meeting to express their dissatisfaction of Hitto’s election, which drove the so-called Free Syrian Army to refuse admitting to it.”
Moreover, insurgents in Darayya told the AFP that they might lose control over the city, after having run out of ammunition and weaponry, after the Syrian Army had surrounded the area for more than three months. Meanwhile, Maaz al-Khatib was publicizing his initiative for dialogue with the Syrian regime, when suddenly a flow of weaponry reached the surrounded area.

This meant that the weaponry was present at the border, and Turkey and Qatar, who were not satisfied with al-Khatib’s proposal, chose to escalate matters and obstruct the initiative.
In the same context, an Arab expert on Syrian affairs listed different directions of funding and arming and different sources, and stated that the Qatari weaponry is being delivered to the extremist armed groups close to the Muslim Brotherhood via Turkey, while Saudis prefer to fund and arm the military councils that include dissidents from the Syrian Army.

Media, however, played a significant role in the unannounced conflict between the two axes, especially through Qatari al-Jazeera TV station, and the Saudi al-Arabiya TV station. Those who oppose Hitto and the “transitory government” could find al-Arabiya the suitable voice, while al-Jazeera focuses on the hospitability that Hitto was granted by the so-called FSA during his visit to Aleppo.

“The conflict is not limited to the current phase, but also to who would rule Syria after Syrian President Bashar al-Assad; The Muslim Brotherhood, as in Tunisia and Egypt, or others? Who will affect their foreign policies? Who will participate in reconstructing Syria and who will receive the most important investments there?” Majed concluded.

France will soon repent for backing al-Qaeda terrorists in Syria

(Syria- File photo)

by Yusuf Fernandez, source

In late February, some international agencies reported that hundreds of foreign rebels were fleeing from the Idleb Province in Northwestern Syria through Turkey under the claim that they were planning to join al-Qaeda militants in Mali in order to fight against French troops deployed there.

The reason of this withdrawal is not clear. Some observers said that the real reason behind it was the Syrian army´s offensive against terrorist groups in the province and the disappointment of some militants who have seen that their fight is not popular in Syria, as their recruiters had made them believe before going to Syria.

The irony is that France, which invaded Mali some weeks ago to theorically fight against radical groups in that country, will have to end up fighting against the same groups that the French government has been openly funding. These militants have used French money and training in Syria in order to gain combat experience and they will implement this newly-acquired knowledge against French troops in Mali.

According to observers, France has become the most prominent Western backer of Syria´s armed opposition and is now directly funding terrorist groups around Aleppo and other parts of the Arab country as part of a new attempt to overthrow the Syrian government. Large sums of money have been delivered by French government proxies across the Turkish border to rebel commanders, diplomatic sources have confirmed. The money has been used to buy weapons inside Syria and to fund armed operations against government forces.

On March 14, French FM Laurent Fabius announced that France and the UK would ignore a EU ban on sending weapons to Syria in order to supply terrorist groups fighting there with more arms. The goal remains the same: to overthrow Bashar al Assad´s government. The French newspaper Le Figaro also reported in those days that French military advisers had recently met with rebel groups inside Syria, in an area between Lebanon and Damascus. It is worth pointing out that sending military personnel to a country without the permission of its government amounts to a military invasion.

Despite all this support, the political goal of France in Syria seems to be as far as ever. “Things are not moving. The solution that we had hoped for, and by that I mean the fall of Bashar and the arrival of the (opposition) coalition to power, has not happened”, acknowledged Fabius on January 24. In December 2012, he had claimed that the “end is nearing” for the Syrian president. A senior Lebanese official who visited the France towards the end of last year told the daily Al Safir that “France was surprised by the fact that Syrian president Bashar al-Assad, his regime and his army could resist”.

For its part, the Syrian government has condemned this French interference in its internal affairs. “France is acting like a hostile nation”, said National Reconciliation Minister Ali Haidar to AFP. “It is as if it wants to go back to the time of the occupation,” he added, referring to the French rule in Syria after World War I. Damascus has made it clear that France´s current policies will weaken or even eliminate its political, economic and cultural influence in Syria, maybe forever.

Moreover, France is now getting nervous about the possibility of reprisals from the al-Qaeda-linked groups, similar to those it is funding in Syria, for its intervention in Mali. On March 1, three suspected militants were arrested in southern France for allegedly planning an attack in the deays ahead, the Paris prosecutor said.

Change of foreign policy

The boomerang effect of supporting terrorism in Syria is just one of the disastrous consequences of the change of the French policy towards the Arab and Muslim world, which started when the pro-Israeli and pro-NATO Nicolas Sarkozy became President. Prior to that fact, France had gained a solid reputation due to its Gaullist foreign policy, one of whose pillars was the independence of the country with respect to the United States. In February 2003, French Foreign Minister, Dominique de Villepin, was universally applauded when he opposed Colin Powell´s pathetic attempts to justify the then-forthcoming invasion of Iraq with blatant lies about the non-existent Iraqi weapons of mass destruction.

The new French foreign policy, under influence of Zionist politicians such as Sarkozy himself, Bernard Kouchner or Laurent Fabius and Zionist activists as Bernard Henry-Levy, changed the equation. France began to promote pro-Israeli and neo-colonial policies in Africa and the Middle East, where France adopted an even more radical stance against Syria and Iran than any other Western country.

In Africa, Paris has increased its military presence in recent years. France´s intervention in Mali, with a contingent of 750 troops, has sought to bolster the Malian army against the al-Qaeda rebels, who have controlled the north of the country for about two years. However, the war in Mali is still beginning and, even worse, it is becoming another asymmetric and far-reaching war which could involve France for years, although Paris has repeatedly announced its willingness to evacuate its army from the African country as soon as possible.

Qatar, France´s ally, supported extremists in Mali

On the other hand, Qatar, which just happens to be a major ally of France in the Syrian question, has criticized Paris´s intervention in Mali arguing that the force would not solve the problem. French officials have openly accused Qatar of funding the Mali rebels.

The first accusations of Qatari involvement with Tuareg separatists and al-Qaeda-linked groups came in a June 2012 article in French weekly the Canard Enchainé. The publication quoted an unnamed source in French military intelligence saying: “The MNLA (secular Tuareg separatists), al-Qaeda-linked Ansar Dine and MUJAO [movement for unity and Jihad in West Africa] have all received cash from Doha.” “The French government knows perfectly well who is supporting these terrorists. Qatar, for example, continues to send so-called aid and food every day to the airports of Gao and Timbuktu.”
The speculation is that Qatar is keen to increase its influence in Mali in order to develop business ties with this nation, which is believed to have significant oil, gas and uranium resources. Moreover, its presence in Mali “greatly increase the Emirate´s influence in West Africa and the Sahel region”, regional geopolitical expert Mehdi Lazar, who specialises on Qatar, wrote in French weekly news magazine L’Express in December. Qatar would also be trying to destabilize Algeria, one of the Arab countries remaining free from its political influence.

France, for its part, is determined to help the pro-French military junta rule the entire nation and sees Qatari activities in Mali with dismay. The Canard Echainé wrote: “Earlier this year, several notes from the DGSE (the French Intelligence Service) alerted the Elysee Palace on international activities and, dare we say, the emirate of Qatar.”

On 22 January, French news site France24 published an article entitled “Is Qatar fuelling the crisis in north Mali?” which claimed that Doha had taken sides with the Mali insurgents. According to author Segolene Allemandou, Qatari rulers aim to spread extremism in Africa with the help of these rebels. The subtle message was clear: the emirate´s support for terrorism will damage its long-term image in Europe.

Destroying a pluralist Syria

In this context, everyone can understand that Saudi and Qatari support extremists who fight against a multifaith and multicultural Syria and against all the religious groups supporting interfaith cooperation and coexistence, such as mainstream Sunni Muslims, Shiites, Alawites and Christians. After all, in Saudi Arabia only the Wahabi current enjoys full religious freedom. The rest of the faiths are discriminated, persecuted or banned. But some people can find it difficult to understand why the West, including France, is allied with extremist Salafist groups persecuting Christians and destroying churches.

The anwer is that France and other Western governments are actually not interested in democracy or political and religious freedom but in pursuing their own political, strategic and economic interests at any cost. French aggressions in Africa have led to the death of thousands of innocent people and have ruined the lives of millions of others, not to mention its involvement in the Rwandan genocide in 1994. With its current policies towards Syria, Paris only tries to reimpose their neo-colonial yoke on that country. However, after many decades of independence and of enjoying their sovereignty, Syrian people are not willing to become slaves of European goverments or of corrupt, backward, terrorist-friendly and despotic regimes as the Saudi or the Qatari.

By funding and delivering weapons to terrorist groups, the French government, alongside with its allies, is not only violating the international law but it is also destroying the possibility of a peaceful solution to the Syrian conflict and leaving its resolution in the hands of the military. In this way, Syria´s friends should take good note of this fact and multiply their military aid to Syria in order to prevent their own interests from being damaged. The Syrian state is strong and its people is indomable, but there is no doubt that Syria will need all kind of support from free people in the world in order to resist this aggression.

The oft-predicted fickle Syrian ‘tipping point’ has tipped

Can Washington and Her Allies Stop Syria’s Reconciliation Efforts?

by FRANKLIN LAMB, source

Damascus

This observer lost count more than a year ago of the sheer number of predictions by analysts and lobbyists that the “tipping point” signaling the Assad government’s collapse was a sure thing and would happen any time now. “It’s just a matter of days, not weeks” President Obama declared back in 2011.

Based on personal observations and interviews with a fair number of informed people who actually live in Syria, as opposed to the Zionist “think” tank-arm chair “expert” variety, this observer concedes that prognosticators are finally right.

In point of fact, I have concluded over the past few months that the long elusive “tipping point” in Syria has indeed been reached and the momentum has shifted decisively in this embattled.

But not the tipping point that the rebel promoters were hoping for, including the NATO countries.

But rather the momentum here has tipped in favor of the current regime due to its capacity to maintain a slowly rising level of popular support, and good relations with key foreign supporters during the current run up to next year’s Presidential election. Then, it will be up to the Syrian voters to decide who stays, goes, and/or joins in their next government.

I base my tentative conclusions, on among others, the following factors.

The Syrian population here is so tired, so exhausted and beaten down– the killing has gone on for so long, and the Syrian people, like Iranians and others I have observed, appear to exhibit a ( distinctly noticeable by this foreigner), profound and almost moral and religious bond with their countrymen and they personally feel acutely their country’s suffering. Such that people on the streets are very shocked and incredulous at what is going on and many in fact feel less strongly about either side in the conflict and just want the slaughter to end and for life to return to ‘normal’ even without deep revolutionary-across the board-changes for now.

Two days ago mortars hit the campus of Damascus University. By the grace of God there were no casualties-this time. But students report that on average about six mortars or explosive devices hit Damascus every week. While unreported in the media, the attack on Damascus University where the student body has pretty much stayed on the sidelines during the current crisis, is an example of the nerve shattering recognition here that rebels can more or less fire mortars or rockets at will into Damascus, from miles away. And these terrorist attacks are very difficult to stop and constitute an ever present danger for Damascenes. The relatively frequently used small US M252 81mm mortar that can be carried in a deep pocket or under a shirt when strapped, has a bit more than a one mile range (5700 meters). Larger ones can travel several miles when set at between 45 and 85 degrees to the ground according to military sources.

Also, according to students, about five days ago the Tishreen War Panorama Museum was hit with four or five rebel projectiles. The military museum was built to celebrate the October 1973 Yom Kippur War (“Tishreen” means “October” in Arabic), and this main tourist attraction is only two miles northeast of the Old City in Damascus.
One also experiences here an attitude that the Assad government is showing signs of learning some serious lessons about the direction that Syria must move in. While number estimates are difficult, increasing number of Syrians appears to believe that the current regime is the best solution- at least for now. For now, meaning, until next year’s election.

One also notices in Syria these days that people appear (maybe influenced a bit by the recent spring weather) somewhat more optimistic that things are getting “better”– warmer weather means less need for mazot (heating oil), people are car-pooling more to decrease dependence on limited benzene, some flour, which is not being produced here due to rebel burning fields, theft from supply warehouses and Turkish condoned destruction of a majority of manufacturing enterprises in Aleppo, that is still often difficult to find in appearing to a degree from bordering countries. . Plus many of the shortages–partly caused by the US-led sanctions- are for now somehow less severe due to the ingenuity of the Syrian people and Government in ameliorating the harsh conditions somewhat and are increasingly getting around the civilian targeting sanctions by employing some shrewd countermeasures.

This observer, along with others, has been critical of the Lebanese government for not doing more for the Syrian and Palestinian refugees forced into their country by the current crisis. While still a serious problem, there has finally developed a life-line of sorts operating from Lebanon into Syria. More consumer goods now move officially from the Masnaa Syrian-Lebanese border crossing where vehicles are checked, and much more food stuffs and essential goods arrive into Syria via many other routes between the two countries which ever since the French created Lebanon back in 1943 have been used for smuggling.

From before Choura to Majdal and Anjar, one comes across lines of massive fuel tankers as well as trucks loaded with Bekaa valley root vegetables like onions, potatoes, carrots, squash, radishes, wheat, barley, lentil, beets, zucchini, cabbage, cauliflower and beans of different varieties.

According to my driver, government’s regulations require that these life support large vehicles line up until 4 p.m. so as not to jam the narrow, windy, pot holed and frankly dangerous cliff hanging roads.

Even this observers favorite driver Ahmad, has become involved. No longer does he transport up to five passengers. Only me who rides“shotgun.” This is because he fills the trunk of his taxi and the back seat with about a dozen kilo tanks of pressured cooking gas. Ahmad pays $16 per filled tank in Lebanon and sells them in Syria for $50 each. I am not sure why he needs me to ride with him and why he give me a great price,but having an American board seems to help in some way with some of the checkpoints. Maybe the novelty distracts the soldiers somehow from his dangerous cargo and they decide to cut the driver some slack.

For about a decade, starting at about age seven, this observer would almost never miss a Saturday matinee at the Victory theater in Milwaukie, Oregon, I have known since that time that riding “shotgun” whether on a stage coach or covered wagon was not the best seat because you might catch an arrow from “wild Resistance Indians on the warpath” (for some reason) or a bullet from road bandits.

Things have not changed so much. Modernly, riding “shotgun” from Beirut to Damascus with a dozen tanks of pressured gas jammed into ones car invites instant immolation from a snipers bullet fired from some hill overlooking the main highway. Trying to make a joke, my driver reminds me from time to time that the US M24 specially adapted Remington 700 Sniper Weapon, some of which are in the hands of rebels around here, has a supposed range of more than two miles and one bullet into one tank and it’s all over fast for the both of us.

More seriously, regular views are expressed in Syria about the support levels for the current regime vs. support for the rebels. Admittedly based on nothing very scientific, this observer tends to agree with what he has been hearing from a cross section of the local population that the regime has the fairly strong backing of around 30% of the population. Less than half of that for the rebels. Syrian minorities, including Christians, Shi’a and Alawites , among others, seem to cast with the regime. For reasons that include that they are afraid of the [armed groups] types and the breaking up of their country.

One teenager who I asked why she supports the current regime explained that the Assad regime is doing their best and despite the rising prices that her parents chronically complain about she is grateful on one thing the government has done. Waiting for me to ask what, she explained: “And that is that despite all the rising prices the government has not allowed the cost of telephone service to increase so I can chat with my friends just like before!” The kid has a point because during this crisis and all the rumors ricocheting around people are staying to contact with loved ones more than ever it seems.

A bit more than 50% do not seem to express firm support for either side and just want the killing to stop and for some sort of ‘normalcy’ to return. While at the same time expressing an opinion something like, “how did our country into this mess. Let the foreigners go home and we can deal with our problems ourselves.”

Tragically this plea does not appear to be acted on anytime soon from Washington DC, Paris, London or Brussels, given the new pledges this week of “non-lethal” aid to the rebels factions.

If ever there was such an intense series of expressed meaning and logic destroying non-sequiturs as the past few days it is hard to remember when. Faced with the tipping point moving away from the foreign forces and toward the Syrian government and majority population, the “Friends of Syria” has stretched beyond recognition the meaning of ordinary phrases like “defensive APC’s and electronic devices of several sorts,” a variety of non-lethal aid” “a number of advanced devices to help pinpoint the locations of the Syrian Arab Army troops”, and “weapons to protect the civilian population,” as well as “humanitarian sanctions” that exempt “food and medicines.” In fact all of the new Friends of Syria “breakthrough assistance” target Syria’s civilian population and all are lethal given the uses to which they are put.

History instructs us that as a result of American wars, from Vietnam to the Middle East-that it is the civilian population who will pay the price of the Obama administration’s just announced “humanitarian assistance” to selected civilians in Syria. This history is well known here in Syria who understand well US Secretary of State, John Kerry’s strange paradox this week wherein he expressed Washington’s desire to find means to speed up the political process which aims at ending the crisis in Syria, and at the same time its desire to back the armed – groups in the country.

This week’s US and European decisions to back Syria’s rebels with direct aid will only lead to more bloodshed and encourage “terrorism” in the war-torn country, according to two Sheiks from Syria’s largest tribe who held court recently during tea in the lobby of the Dama Rose Hotel here.

What Washington fears, according to a source at the same interlocutor from the Russian embassy who spoke with this observer for nearly two hours, is the confirmation that the Syrian opposition is ready to immediately enter into negotiations with the Syrian government without preconditions and that President Assad’s departure or even his future status will not be part of the process.

The Russians believe that the rebels are finally coming around to a more realistic approach after the recent achievements of the governments is gaining support from the population here and on both military and political levels. This is more than anathema to Washington and its allies. It is not less than catastrophic and will not be allowed despite NATO’s rhetoric to the contrary. Thus the new fake proposals.

The new “Non-lethal aid” has been designed to somehow reverse the “tipping point” chosen by a majority of the Syrian population over the past few months. These aggressive actions, rather than constituting neutral humanitarian aid given to the 11 major objective and neutral international NGO’s operating across Syria, and pressuring all sides to show up at the dialogue table, is certain to prolong the conflict as they condemn countless more Syrians to death.

Qatari poet jailed for 15 years over verse deemed offensive to ruler

Press TV

A Qatari appeals court has sentenced a poet accused of incitement against the regime to 15 years in prison, his lawyer says.

The poet, Mohammed al-Ajami, was given a life term by a lower court last year for publicly reading a poem considered offensive to Qatar’s ruler.

Ajami was arrested in November 2011 after the publication of his “Jasmine poem,” which criticized Arab governments across the Persian Gulf region in the wake of crackdowns on the Arab Spring uprisings.

In a clear reference to Qatar, home to a major US base, he wrote, “I hope that change would come in countries whose ignorant leaders believe that glory belies in US forces.”

But, his lawyer Mohammed Nejib al-Naimi insists that “there was no evidence Ajami had recited the poem he is being tried for in public,” a key claim by the prosecution, and that he only read it “at his apartment in Cairo.”

Following the appeals court on Monday, Naimi said that “the appeals court was apparently politicized and does not differ much from the court of first instance,” which was held behind closed doors and did not give Ajami a chance to defend himself.

Naimi, who is a former Qatari justice minister, said that according to the charges against his client he was liable to a maximum of five years in jail.

Amnesty International has urged Qatar to release Ajami.

“It doesn’t matter if he’s in jail for a day, for 15 years or for life, it’s a flagrant violation of his human rights,” said Sunjeev Bery, the Middle East and North Africa advocacy director for Amnesty International…

Destroying a nation state: US-Saudi funded terrorists sowing chaos in Pakistan

by Guy Billout

Baluchistan, Target of Western geopolitical interests, Terror wave coincides with Gwadar Port handover to China. The Hidden Agenda is the Breakup of Pakistan

by Tony Cartalucci, source

Quetta, the capital of Pakistan’s southwest Baluchistan province, bordering both US-occupied Afghanistan as well as Iran, was the site of a grisly market bombing that has killed over 80 people.According to reports, the terrorist group Lashkar-e-Jhangvi has claimed responsibility for the attack. Billed as a “Sunni extremist group,” it instead fits the pattern of global terrorism sponsored by the US, Israel, and their Arab partners Saudi Arabia and Qatar.

The terrorist Lashkar-e-Jhangvi group was in fact created,according to the BBC, to counter Iran’s Islamic Revolution in the 1980′s, and is still active today. Considering the openly admitted US-Israeli-Saudi plot to use Al Qaeda and other terrorist groups across the Middle East to counter Iran’s influence, it begs the question whether these same interests are funding terrorism in Pakistan to not only counter Iranian-sympathetic Pakistani communities, but to undermine and destabilize Pakistan itself.

The US-Saudi Global Terror Network

While the United States is close allies with Saudi Arabia and Qatar, it is well established that the chief financier of extremist militant groups for the past 3 decades, including Al Qaeda, are in fact Saudi Arabia and Qatar. While Qatari state-owned propaganda like Al Jazeera apply a veneer of progressive pro-democracy to its narratives, Qatar itself is involved in arming, funding, and even providing direct military support for sectarian extremists from northern Mali, to Libya, to Syria and beyond.


France 24′s report “Is Qatar fuelling the crisis in north Mali?” provides a useful vignette of Saudi-Qatari terror sponsorship, stating:

“The MNLA [secular Tuareg separatists], al Qaeda-linked Ansar Dine and MUJAO [movement for unity and Jihad in West Africa] have all received cash from Doha.”

A month later Sadou Diallo, the mayor of the north Malian city of Gao [which had fallen to the Islamists] told RTL radio: “The French government knows perfectly well who is supporting these terrorists. Qatar, for example, continues to send so-called aid and food every day to the airports of Gao and Timbuktu.”

The report also stated:

“Qatar has an established a network of institutions it funds in Mali, including madrassas, schools and charities that it has been funding from the 1980s,” he wrote, adding that Qatar would be expecting a return on this investment.

“Mali has huge oil and gas potential and it needs help developing its infrastructure,” he said. “Qatar is well placed to help, and could also, on the back of good relations with an Islamist-ruled north Mali, exploit rich gold and uranium deposits in the country.”

These institutions are present not only in Mali, but around the world, and provide a nearly inexhaustible supply of militants for both the Persian Gulf monarchies and their Western allies to use both as a perpetual casus belli to invade and occupy foreign nations such as Mali and Afghanistan, as well as a sizable, persistent mercenary force, as seen in Libya and Syria. Such institutions jointly run by Western intelligence agencies across Europe and in America, fuel domestic fear-mongering and the resulting security state that allows Western governments to more closely control their populations as they pursue reckless, unpopular policies at home and abroad.

Since Saudi-Qatari geopolitical interests are entwined with Anglo-American interests, both the “investment” and “return on this investment” are clearly part of a joint venture. France’s involvement in Mali has demonstrably failed to curb such extremists, has instead, predictably left the nation occupied by Western interests while driving terrorists further north into the real target, Algeria.

Additionally, it should be noted, that France in particular, played a leading role along side Qatar and Saudi Arabia in handing Libya over to these very same extremists. French politicians were in Benghazi shaking hands with militants they would be “fighting” in the near future in northern Mali.

Lashkar-e-Jhangvi is Part of US-Saudi Terror Network

In terms of Pakistan’s Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, as well as the infamous Lashkar-e-Taiba that carried out the 2008 Mumbai, India attack killing over 160, both are affiliates of Al Qaeda, and both have been linked financially, directly to Saudi Arabia. In the Guardian’s article, “WikiLeaks cables portray Saudi Arabia as a cash machine for terrorists,” the US State Department even acknowledges that Saudi Arabia is indeed funding terrorism in Pakistan:

Saudi Arabia is the world’s largest source of funds for Islamist militant groups such as the Afghan Taliban and Lashkar-e-Taiba – but the Saudi government is reluctant to stem the flow of money, according to Hillary Clinton.

“More needs to be done since Saudi Arabia remains a critical financial support base for al-Qaida, the Taliban, LeT and other terrorist groups,” says a secret December 2009 paper signed by the US secretary of state. Her memo urged US diplomats to redouble their efforts to stop Gulf money reaching extremists in Pakistan and Afghanistan.

“Donors in Saudi Arabia constitute the most significant source of funding to Sunni terrorist groups worldwide,” she said.

Three other Arab countries are listed as sources of militant money: Qatar, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates.

Lashkar-e-Jhangvi has also been financially linked to the Persian Gulf monarchies. Stanford University’s “Mapping Militant Organizations: Lashkar-e-Jhangvi,” states under “External Influences:”

LeJ has received money from several Persian Gulf countries including Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates[25] These countries funded LeJ and other Sunni militant groups primarily to counter the rising influence of Iran’s revolutionary Shiism.

Astonishingly, despite these admission, the US works politically, financially, economically, and even militarily in tandem with these very same state-sponsors of rampant, global terrorism. In Libya and Syria, the US has even assisted in the funding and arming of Al Qaeda and affiliated terrorist groups, and had conspired with Saudi Arabia since at least 2007 to overthrow both Syria and Iran with these terrorist groups. And while Saudi Arabia funds terrorism in Pakistan, the US is well documented to be funding political subversion in the very areas where the most heinous attacks are being carried out.

US Political Subversion in Baluchistan, Pakistan

The US State Department’s National Endowment for Democracy (NED) has been directly fundingand supporting the work of the “Balochistan Institute for Development” (BIFD) which claims to be“the leading resource on democracy, development and human rights in Balochistan, Pakistan.” In addition to organizing the annual NED-BFID “Workshop on Media, Democracy & Human Rights” BFID reports that USAID had provided funding for a “media-center” for the Baluchistan Assembly to “provide better facilities to reporters who cover the proceedings of the Balochistan Assembly.” We must assume BFID meant reporters “trained” at NED-BFID workshops.

There is also Voice of Balochistan whose every top-story is US-funded propaganda drawn from foundation-funded Reporters Without Borders, Soros-funded Human Rights Watch, and even a direct message from the US State Department itself. Like other US State Department funded propaganda outfits around the world – such as Thailand’s Prachatai – funding is generally obfuscated in order to maintain “credibility” even when the front’s constant torrent of obvious propaganda more than exposes them.

Perhaps the most absurd operations being run to undermine Pakistan through the “Free Baluchistan” movement are the US and London-based organizations. The “Baloch Society of North America” almost appears to be a parody at first, but nonetheless serves as a useful aggregate and bellwether regarding US meddling in Pakistan’s Baluchistan province. The group’s founder, Dr. Wahid. Baloch, openly admits he has met with US politicians in regards to Baluchistan independence. This includes Neo-Con warmonger, PNAC signatory, corporate-lobbyist, and National Endowment for Democracy director Zalmay Khalilzad.

Dr. Wahid Baloch considers Baluchistan province “occupied” by both the Iranian and Pakistani governments – he and his movement’s humanitarian hand-wringing gives Washington the perfect pretext to create an armed conflagration against either Iran or Pakistan, or both, as planned in detail by various US policy think-tanks.

There is also the Baloch Students Organisation-Azad, or BSO. While it maintains a presence in Pakistan, it has coordinators based in London. London-based BSO members include “information secretaries” that propagate their message via social media, just as US and British-funded youth organizations did during the West’s operations against other targeted nations during the US-engineered “Arab Spring.”

And while the US does not openly admit to funding and arming terrorists in Pakistan yet, many across established Western policy think-tanks have called for it.

Selig Harrison of the Center for International Policy, has published two pieces regarding the armed “liberation” of Baluchistan.

Harrison’s February 2011 piece, “Free Baluchistan,” calls to “aid the 6 million Baluch insurgents fighting for independence from Pakistan in the face of growing ISI repression.” He continues by explaining the various merits of such meddling by stating:

“Pakistan has given China a base at Gwadar in the heart of Baluch territory. So an independent Baluchistan would serve U.S. strategic interests in addition to the immediate goal of countering Islamist forces.”

Harrison would follow up his frank call to carve up Pakistan by addressing the issue of Chinese-Pakistani relations in a March 2011 piece titled, “The Chinese Cozy Up to the Pakistanis.” He states:

“China’s expanding reach is a natural and acceptable accompaniment of its growing power—but only up to a point. ”

He continues:

“To counter what China is doing in Pakistan, the United States should play hardball by supporting the movement for an independent Baluchistan along the Arabian Sea and working with Baluch insurgents to oust the Chinese from their budding naval base at Gwadar. Beijing wants its inroads into Gilgit and Baltistan to be the first step on its way to an Arabian Sea outlet at Gwadar.”

While aspirations of freedom and independence are used to sell Western meddling in Pakistan, the geopolitical interests couched behind this rhetoric is openly admitted to. The prophetic words of Harrison should ring loud in one’s ears today. It is in fact this month, that Pakistan officially hands over the port in Gwadar to China, and Harrison’s armed militants are creating bloodshed and chaos, attempting to trigger a destructive sectarian war that will indeed threaten to “oust the Chinese from their budding naval base at Gwadar.”

Like in Syria, we have a documented conspiracy years in the making being carried out before our very eyes. The people of Pakistan must not fall into the trap laid by the West who seeks to engulf Baluchistan in sectarian bloodshed with the aid of Saudi and Qatari-laundered cash and weapons. For the rest of the world, we must continue to uncover the corporate-financier special interestsdriving these insidious plots, boycott and permanently replace them on a local level.

The US-Saudi terror racket has spilled blood from New York City, across Northern Africa, throughout the Middle East, and as far as Pakistan and beyond. If we do not undermine and ultimately excise these special interests, their plans and double games will only get bolder and the inevitability of their engineered chaos effecting us individually will only grow.

Israeli attack on Syria: ‘Desperate bid to save failed US-NATO covert war’

by Tony Cartalucci, source

Israel has conducted airstrikes in Syria based on “suspicions” of chemical weapon transfers, in a flagrant violation of the UN Charter, international law, and in direct violation of Syria’s sovereignty. The Guardian in its report titled, “Israel carries out air strike on Syria,” claims:

“Israeli warplanes have attacked a target close to the Syrian-Lebanese border following several days of heightened warnings from government officials over Syria’s stockpiles of weapons.”

It also stated:

“Israel has publicly warned that it would take military action to prevent the Syrian regime’s chemical weapons falling into the hands of Hezbollah in Lebanon or “global jihadists” fighting inside Syria. Israeli military intelligence is said to be monitoring the area round the clock via satellite for possible convoys carrying weapons.”

In reality, these “global jihaidists” are in fact armed and funded by the US, Saudi Arabia, and Israel since at least as early as 2007. They are also in fact the direct beneficiaries of Israel’s recent aggression. The Israeli “suspicions” of “weapon transfers” of course, remain unconfirmed, because the purpose of the attack was not to prevent the transfer of “chemical weapons” to Hezbollah in Lebanon, but to provoke a wider conflict aimed not at Israel’s defense, but at salvaging the West’s floundering proxy terrorist forces inside Syria attempting to subvert and overthrow the Syrian nation.

The silence from the United Nations is deafening. While Turkey openly harbors foreign terrorists, arming and funding them with Western, Saudi, and Qatari cash as they conduct raids on neighboring Syria, any Syrian attack on Turkish territory would immediately result in the United Nations mobilizing. Conversely, Turkey is allowed, for years, to conduct air strikes and even partial ground invasions of neighboring Iraq to attack Kurdish groups accused of undermining Turkish security. It is clear the same double standard has long applied to Israel.

Israel, along with the US & Saudi Arabia, are Al Qaeda’s chief sponsors.

It must be remembered that as far back as 2007, it was admitted by US, Saudi and Lebanese officials that the US, Israel, and Saudi Arabia were intentionally arming, funding, and organizing these “global jihadists” with direct ties to Al Qaeda for the explicit purpose of overthrowing the governments of Syria and Iran.

Reported by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Seymour Hersh in his New Yorker article, “The Redirection,” it was stated (emphasis added):

“To undermine Iran, which is predominantly Shiite, the Bush Administration has decided, in effect, to reconfigure its priorities in the Middle East. In Lebanon, the Administration has coöperated with Saudi Arabia’s government, which is Sunni, in clandestine operations that are intended to weaken Hezbollah, the Shiite organization that is backed by Iran. The U.S. has also taken part in clandestine operations aimed at Iran and its ally Syria. A by-product of these activities has been the bolstering of Sunni extremist groups that espouse a militant vision of Islam and are hostile to America and sympathetic to Al Qaeda.”

Of Israel it specifically stated:
“The policy shift has brought Saudi Arabia and Israel into a new strategic embrace, largely because both countries see Iran as an existential threat. They have been involved in direct talks, and the Saudis, who believe that greater stability in Israel and Palestine will give Iran less leverage in the region, have become more involved in Arab-Israeli negotiations.”

Additionally, Saudi Arabian officials mentioned the careful balancing act their nation must play in order to conceal its role in supporting US-Israeli ambitions across the region:

“The Saudi said that, in his country’s view, it was taking a political risk by joining the U.S. in challenging Iran: Bandar is already seen in the Arab world as being too close to the Bush Administration. “We have two nightmares,” the former diplomat told me. “For Iran to acquire the bomb and for the United States to attack Iran. I’d rather the Israelis bomb the Iranians, so we can blame them. If America does it, we will be blamed.””

It may interest readers to know that while France invades and occupies large swaths of Mali in Africa, accusing the Qataris of funding and arming Al Qaeda-linked terrorist groups in the region, France, the US, and Israel are working in tandem with the Qataris to fund and arm these very same groups in Syria.

In fact, the US-based think-tank, the Brookings Institution literally has a “Doha Center” based in Qatar while US-Israeli citizen Haim Saban’s Brookings “Saban Center” conducts meetings and has many of its board of directors based likewise in Doha, Qatar. Doha also served as the venue for the creation of the West’s most recent “Syrian Coalition,” headed by an unabashed supporter of Al Qaeda, Moaz al-Khatib.

These are part of the brick and mortar manifestation of the conspiracy documented by Seymour Hersh in 2007.

The Wall Street Journal, also in 2007, reported on the US Bush Administration’s plans of creating a partnership with Syria’s Muslim Brotherhood, noting the group is the ideological inspiration for linked terror organizations including Al Qaeda itself. In the article titled, “”To Check Syria, U.S. Explores Bond With Muslim Brothers,” it states:

“On a humid afternoon in late May, about 100 supporters of Syria’s largest exile opposition group, the National Salvation Front, gathered outside Damascus’s embassy here to protest Syrian President Bashar Assad’s rule. The participants shouted anti-Assad slogans and raised banners proclaiming: “Change the Regime Now.”

The NSF unites liberal democrats, Kurds, Marxists and former Syrian officials in an effort to transform President Assad’s despotic regime. But the Washington protest also connected a pair of more unlikely players — the U.S. government and the Muslim Brotherhood.”

The article would also report:

“U.S. diplomats and politicians have also met with legislators from parties connected to the Muslim Brotherhood in Jordan, Egypt and Iraq in recent months to hear their views on democratic reforms in the Middle East, U.S. officials say. Last month, the State Department’s intelligence unit organized a conference of Middle East experts to examine the merits of engagement with the Brotherhood, particularly in Egypt and Syria.”

It describes the ideological and operational links between the Brotherhood and Al Qaeda:

“Today, the Brotherhood’s relationship to Islamist militancy, and al Qaeda in particular, is the source of much debate. Osama bin Laden and other al Qaeda leaders cite the works of the Brotherhood’s late intellectual, Sayyid Qutb, as an inspiration for their crusade against the West and Arab dictators. Members of Egyptian and Syrian Brotherhood arms have also gone on to take senior roles in Mr. bin Laden’s movement.”

Yet despite all of this, the US, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar, along with Israel and Turkey are openly conspiring with them, and have now for years been arming and funding these very sectarian extremist, terrorist groups across the Arab World, from Libya to Egypt, and now in and around Syria.

Israel’s fears of these terrorists acquiring “chemical weapons” is absurd. They have already acquired them with US, NATO, British, Saudi, Qatari and even Israeli help in Libya in 2011. In fact, these very Libyan terrorists are spearheading the foreign militant groups flooding into Syria through the Turkish-Syrian border.

What Israel’s strike may really mean.

Indeed, Israel’s explanation as to why it struck neighboring Syria is tenuous at best considering its long, documented relationship with actually funding and arming the very “global jihaidists” it fears weapons may fall into the hands of. Its fears of Hezbollah are likewise unfounded – Hezbollah, had it, the Syrians, or the Iranians been interested in placing chemical weapons in Lebanon, would have done so already, and most certainly would do so with means other than conspicuous convoys simply “crossing the border.” Hezbollah has already proven itself capable of defeating Israeli aggression with conventional arms, as demonstrated during the summer of 2006.

In reality, the pressure placed on Syria’s borders by both Israel and its partner, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s Turkey in the north, is part of a documented plan to relieve pressure on the Western, Israeli, Saudi-Qatari armed and funded militants operating inside Syria.

The above mentioned, Fortune 500-funded (page 19), US foreign-policy think-tank, Brookings Institution – which has blueprinted designs for regime change in Libya as well as both Syria and Iran– stated this specifically in their report titled, “Assessing Options for Regime Change.”

….

Brookings describes how Israeli efforts in the south of Syria, combined with Turkey’s aligning of vast amounts of weapons and troops along its border to the north, could help effect violent regime change in Syria:

“In addition, Israel’s intelligence services have a strong knowledge of Syria, as well as assets within the Syrian regime that could be used to subvert the regime’s power base and press for Asad’s removal. Israel could posture forces on or near the Golan Heights and, in so doing, might divert regime forces from suppressing the opposition. This posture may conjure fears in the Asad regime of a multi-front war, particularly if Turkey is willing to do the same on its border and if the Syrian opposition is being fed a steady diet of arms and training. Such a mobilization could perhaps persuade Syria’s military leadership to oust Asad in order to preserve itself. Advocates argue this additional pressure could tip the balance against Asad inside Syria, if other forces were aligned properly.” –page 6, Assessing Options for Regime Change, Brookings Institution.

Of course, airstrikes inside Syria go beyond “posturing,” and indicate perhaps a level of desperation in the West who appear to have elected their chief villain, Israel, to incrementally “intervene” just as they had planned in regards to attacking Iran – also documented by Brookings in a report titled, “Which Path to Persia?

In regards to Iran, in Brookings’ “Which Path to Persia?” report, it states specifically (emphasis added):

“Israel appears to have done extensive planning and practice for such a strike already, and its aircraft are probably already based as close to Iran as possible. as such, Israel might be able to launch the strike in a matter of weeks or even days, depending on what weather and intelligence conditions it felt it needed. Moreover, since Israel would have much less of a need (or even interest) in securing regional support for the operation, Jerusalem probably would feel less motivated to wait for an Iranian provocation before attacking. In short, Israel could move very fast to implement this option if both Israeli and American leaders wanted it to happen.

However, as noted in the previous chapter, the airstrikes themselves are really just the start of this policy. Again, the Iranians would doubtless rebuild their nuclear sites. They would probably retaliate against Israel, and they might retaliate against the United States, too (which might create a pretext for American airstrikes or even an invasion).” page 91, Which Path to Perisa?, Brookings Institution.

And in this statement we can gather insight behind both Israel’s otherwise irrational belligerent posture throughout its brief history, as well as its most recent act of unprovoked aggression against Syria. Israel’s role is to play the “bad guy.” As a regional beachhead for Western corporate-financier interests, it provides a “foot in the door” to any of the West’s many desired conflicts. By bombing Syria, it hopes to provoke a wider conflict – an intervention the West has desired and planned for since it tipped off Syria’s violent conflict in 2011.

For Syria and its allies – the goal now must be to deter further Israeli aggression and avoid wider conflict at all costs. If NATO’s proxy terrorist forces are as weak as they appear – incapable of tactical or strategic gains, and tapering off into desperate terrorist attacks, it is only a matter of time before NATO’s campaign grinds to a halt. As mentioned before, such a failure on NATO’s part will be the beginning of the end for it, and the Western interests that have been using it as a tool to achieve geopolitical hegemony.

Israel should be expected to commit to increasingly desperate acts to provoke Syria and Iran – as its leadership represent directly corporate-financier interests abroad, not the Israeli people, or their best interests (including peace and even survival). For the people of Israel, they must realize that their leadership indeed does not represent them or their best interests and is able, willing, and even eagerto spend their lives and fortunes in the service of foreign, corporate-financier interests and global hegemony.