21st Century Wire says… It’s important to point out first, that while Saudi Arabia bombing civilians in the resistance-held territory, al-Qaeda continues to flourish in other areas. Hence, al-Qaeda has become a de-facto ally and pawn of the Saudi Arabia-US-UK axis (that is until they get a little too strong and the U. S. steps-in to carry out some messy, high-profile, special operations). In portions of southern Yemen, al-Qaeda members fight alongside Saudi-backed troops. Saudi Arabia and the U. A. E. employ local mercenaries to fight on their behalf. Interesting confab of mercenaries – all of who are presently allied with the USA in Yemen…
Authord by Burak Bekdil via The Gatestone Institute, “Erdogan’s claims that ‘There is no Islamic terror’ have left several Islamic terror organizations heart-broken. A press release from al-Qaeda’s press office read: ‘The prime minister’s remarks are very discouraging. We are doing our best!’” – Zaytung (satire website). In 2010, Barack Obama referred to Turkey as a “great Muslim democracy”. Obama should have seen that a democracy is a democracy — without any religious prefix. He would see in later years the difference between a democracy and a Muslim democracy. Turkey’s strongman, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, may have exhibited all possible features of political Islam since he came to power fifteen years ago, but at least he has been bold and honest about his understanding of Islamism: There is no moderate Islam, he recently said again. This comment does not mark any U-turn, or a radical deviation from his earlier freshman-self back in the 2000s. The problem is that his Western “allies” have stubbornly preferred to turn a blind eye to his poster-child Islamism. Worse, they still do. Several years ago, Erdogan’s ideological-self clearly stated that “Turkey is not a country where moderate Islam prevails.” In the same speech, his pragmatic-self — the one that wanted to look pretty to a chorus of Western praise — added that, “We are Muslims who have found a middle road”. But which “middle road?” In the several years that followed, Erdogan proudly exhibited another feature of Islamism in a make-believe assertion: Muslims never do wrong; if a Muslim does wrong then he is not Muslim.
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Dec 5, 2017.
On Friday, Dubai Lieutenant General Dhahi Khalfan unleashed a tweet-storm to millions of his followers – calling for the bombing of Al Jazeera, the Qatar-based media network. Khalfan’s tweet-storm was in response to the horrific terrorist attack in northern Sinai that killed more than 300 people, including at least two dozen children. Interesting enough, Al Jazeera was the only media outlet to report on their own bomb-threat as most outlets fell silent. Here is how Al Jazeera interpreted Khalfan’s tweets, ‘The alliance must bomb the machine of terrorism … the channel of ISIL, al-Qaeda and the al-Nusra front, Al Jazeera the terrorists,’ the former police chief and now head of security in the Emirate told his 2.42 million followers on the social media site. ‘For how long will they [Al Jazeera] continue to tamper with the security of Egypt and the Arab world?’ he tweeted.
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Nov 26, 2017.
Authored by Andrei Akulov via The Strategic Culture Foundation, The US Constitution says that only Congress can declare war for an extended time but there is a workaround. Congress approved the 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF), giving the president the authority to track down and destroy al-Qaeda and the Taliban. The resolution stipulates that ‘The President is authorized to use all necessary and appropriate force against those nations, organizations, or persons he determines planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001, or harbored such organizations or persons, in order to prevent any future acts of international terrorism against the United States by such nations, organizations or persons.’ The resolution’s 2002 version gave President Bush the authority to invade Iraq. Only 25 percent of the current members of Congress in the House and Senate were present when the current AUMFs were passed. Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., and several other Democrats are asking whether a new law authorizing the use of military force should be written. They are planning to introduce legislation that would prohibit Trump from starting a pre-emptive war against North Korea, absent an imminent threat or without express authorization from Congress. They call for one without a sunset date, saying that Congress needs to have a voice. The deadly incident in Niger last month ignited a push among many members of Congress to update the legal parameters for combat operations overseas. The revelation that the US is at war in Niger, without Congress even knowing, was startling. This is the perfect illustration of the US’s permanent war posture around the world, where battles are waged with little or no public scrutiny and no congressional authorization. All previous attempts to ditch the old authorization and force Congress to craft a new one have failed. For years now, Congress has abdicated its responsibility to debate and vote on US wars.
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Nov 2, 2017.
A television interview of a top Qatari official confessing the truth behind the origins of the war in Syria is going viral across Arabic social media during the same week a leaked top secret NSA document was published which confirms that the armed opposition in Syria was under the direct command of foreign governments from the early years of the conflict. And according to a well-known Syria analyst and economic adviser with close contacts in the Syrian government, the explosive interview constitutes a high level “public admission to collusion and coordination between four countries to destabilize an independent state, [including] possible support for Nusra/al-Qaeda.” Importantly, “this admission will help build case for what Damascus sees as an attack on its security & sovereignty. It will form basis for compensation claims.” As the war in Syria continues slowly winding down, it seems new source material comes out on an almost a weekly basis in the form of testimonials of top officials involved in destabilizing Syria, and even occasional leaked emails and documentswhich further detail covert regime change operations against the Assad government. Though much of this content serves to confirm what has already long been known by those who have never accepted the simplistic propaganda which has dominated mainstream media, details continue to fall in place, providing future historians with a clearer picture of the true nature of the war.
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Oct 28, 2017.
From the first moment chemical weapons were used on the Syrian battlefield, the American public was led to believe that only one side could possibly be responsible. The constant refrain in the echo chamber of US government officials and the mainstream media was that only the Assad government possessed chemical stockpiles and the technological capability of deploying such heinous weapons, therefore blame for each and every chemical attack from Ghouta to Khan Sheikhoun was laid at the feet of Assad and the Syrian military. And yet last Wednesday, for the first time, the US State Department casually dropped an important admission into its officialSyria travel warning for American citizens: that the core rebel group currently operating in northwest Syria not only possesses but has used chemical weapons – to the point that the State Department considers it a major enough threat to publicly warn citizens about. The armed opposition group, Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS), is referenced early in the document: “Terrorist and other violent extremist groups including ISIS and Al-Qaeda linked Hayat Tahrir Al-Sham [dominated by Al-Qaeda affiliate Jabhat Al-Nusra, a designated Foreign Terrorist Organization], operate in Syria.’ HTS is the group now holding Idlib province, which it captured in 2015 as part of a coalition of armed groups given direct support from a US-led operations room in southern Turkey – this according to prominent pro-opposition analyst Charles Lister.
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Oct 22, 2017.
Nothing distracts like fear. And today, former DHS chief Elaine Duke invoked one of the most traumatic episodes in US history to remind complacent Americans that Al Qaeda and ISIS are still out there, plotting deadly terror attacks meant to kill as many American civilians as possible. With the Islamic State in retreat following the surrender of its de facto capital to US-backed Arab and Kurdish fighters, Duke told reporters that remnants of the group have partnered with a resurgent Al Qaeda to plot a devastating terror attack on the scale of a 9/11 – thus generating a headline seemingly tailor made to make pulses quicken. ‘The terrorist organizations, be it ISIS or Al-Qaeda or others, want to have the big explosion like they did on 9/11. They want to take down aircraft, the intelligence is clear on that,’ the acting US secretary of homeland security said during a visit to the UK, as cited by British media. ‘The threat is still severe,’ she stated on Wednesday in London following her meeting with UK Home Secretary Amber Rudd, according to Russia Today.
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Oct 19, 2017.
President Trump has been notoriously inconsistent in his foreign policy. He campaigned on and won the presidency with promises to repair relations with Russia, pull out of no-win wars like Afghanistan, and end the failed US policy of nation-building overseas. Once in office he pursued policies exactly the opposite of what he campaigned on. Unfortunately Iran is one of the few areas where the president has been very consistent. And consistently wrong. In the president’s speech last week he expressed his view that Iran was not ‘living up to the spirit’ of the 2015 nuclear agreement and that he would turn to Congress to apply new sanctions to Iran and to, he hopes, take the US out of the deal entirely. Nearly every assertion in the president’s speech was embarrassingly incorrect. Iran is not allied with al-Qaeda, as the president stated. The money President Obama sent to Iran was their own money. Much of it was a down-payment made to the US for fighter planes that were never delivered when Iran changed from being friend to foe in 1979. The president also falsely claims that Iran targets the United States with terrorism. He claims that Iran has ‘fueled sectarian violence in Iraq,’ when it was Iranian militias who prevented Baghdad from being overtaken by ISIS in 2014. There are too many other false statements in the president’s speech to mention.
21st Century Wire says… Turkish troops have been entering northwest Syria for the last few days. Some reports have detailed the apparent compliance of Tahrir Al Sham terrorists with this maneuver by the Turkish military. HTS is a rebrand of Nusra Front aka Al Qaeda in Syria and the group controls the majority of Idlib province. al-Qaeda's Syria branch (HTS) escorts a group of Turkish troops as they enter Idlib via Atma border crossing. Looks like Turkey-AQ has a deal pic.twitter.com/pNgo8RUfvm — Ersin Satlyck (@e_sklt) October 8, 2017
Last November Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said his country ‘won’t allow Islamic State figures or other enemy actors, under the cover of the war in Syria, to set up next to our borders,’ but it appears this has already happened, to the point that a sizable ISIS training camp has been set up just across the Golan Heights border with Israel. Though Syrian al-Qaeda has long been a mainstay in southern Syria along Israel’s border, this constitutes the first widespread public acknowledgement and confirmation of a significant ISIS base of operations in the Golan region. Israeli media this week is reporting news of the base camp after Israel’s Channel 2 aired an extensive report with video and photographic evidence of what’s being described as a training and recruitment center which has already attracted hundreds of new terror recruits. Channel 2 is one of Israel’s most visible and established news broadcast channels and operates under “The Second Authority for Television and Radio” licensed by the Knesset and the Ministry of Communications. According to the Times of Israel: Israel’s Channel 2 said the commanders have made their way to an Islamic State-controlled enclave ‘close to the border’ with Israel. They have set up a training camp to which they have recruited 300 local youths, said the report, which showed footage apparently of the camp and training sessions. Among the commanders is one of Islamic State’s most notorious recruiters, Abu Hamam Jazrawi, the TV report said. The commanders are also now running Islamic State internet propaganda campaigns from their new base, in place of the former campaign headquarters in Raqqa, the extremists’ former de facto capital in northwest Syria where the fight to oust them has entered what appear to be its final stages.
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Oct 13, 2017.
Authored by Adam Dick via The Ron Paul Institute for Peace & Prosperity, In a new interview with host Jesse Ventura at RT, former United States presidential candidate and House of Representatives Member Dennis Kucinich stressed the importance of the American people challenging the ‘two-party duopoly that’s committed to war.’ In the interview, Kucinich discusses his work to expose the misinformation used to argue for US government interventions overseas before and during the Iraq War and, later, concerning the US effort to assist in the overthrow of the Syria government. Regarding the Iraq War, Kucinich, who is an Advisory Board member for the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity, explains that his research showed that ‘Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11, nothing to do with al-Qaeda’s role in 9/11, didn’t have any connection to the anthrax attack, didn’t have the intention or the capability of attacking the United States, and didn’t have the weapons of mass destruction that were being claimed.’
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Oct 10, 2017.
A months-long investigation which tracked and exposed a massive covert weapons shipment network to terror groups in Syria via diplomatic flights originating in the Caucuses and Eastern Europe under the watch of the CIA and other intelligence agencies has resulted in the interrogation and firing of the Bulgarian journalist who first broke the story. This comes as the original report is finally breaking into mainstream international coverage. Investigative reporter Dilyana Gaytandzhieva authored a bombshell report for Trud Newspaper, based in Sofia, Bulgaria, which found that an Azerbaijan state airline company was regularly transporting tons of weaponry to Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates (UAE), and Turkey under diplomatic cover as part of the CIA covert program to supply anti-Assad fighters in Syria. Those weapons, Gaytandzhieva found, ended up in the hands of ISIS and al-Qaeda terrorists in Iraq and Syria. While it’s long been understood that the US-Gulf-NATO coalition arming rebels inside Syria facilitated the rapid rise of the Islamic State as the group had steady access to a “jihadi Wal-Mart” of weapons (in the words of one former spy and British diplomat), the Trud Newspaper report is the first to provide exhaustive documentation detailing the precise logistical chain of the weapons as they flowed from their country of origin to the battlefield in Syria and Iraq. Gaytandzhieva even traveled to Aleppo where she filmed and examined labeled weapons shipping containers held in underground jihadist storehouses.
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Aug 28, 2017.
Eva Bartlett Mint Press In early 2016 the hillside town of Madaya, just northwest of Damascus, was the focus of sudden Western and Gulf media campaigns featuring harrowing photos of emaciated elderly and children splashed widely across print, online and social media. Throughout 2016, these stories continued in Madaya, as well as in al-Waer, Homs, and in eastern-Aleppo areas. The Syrian government was accused of not allowing in food and medical aid, of deliberately starving its people; the terrorists’ presence was largely unmentioned. On Madaya, The Telegraph ran a headline, ‘Starving Syrians in besieged town of Madaya are reduced to eating cats and dogs,’ and subheadline, ‘The people of Madaya outside Damascus – besieged by regime forces and Hezbollah since July – are surviving on boiled leaves and street animals,’ with no mention of al-Qaeda or Ahrar al-Sham. The Independent accused the ‘Assad regime’ of deliberately starving 40,000 civilians and, while citing the Red Cross in the article, neglected to cite that organization stating it had sent in food aid in October 2015, and also failed to mention al-Qaeda’s presence in the town. In the same vein, the New York Times ran a piece stating aid was denied from coming in, while also ignoring the realities on the ground and prior aid deliveries.
Qatar has remained defiant throughout its unprecedented summer diplomatic crisis with Saudi Arabia and other Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states which have brought immense pressure to bear on the tiny gas and oil rich monarchy through a complete economic and diplomatic blockade imposed by its neighbors. However, on Thursday it unveiled a stunning geopolitical realignment when it announced the restoration of diplomatic relations with Iran in a move that is arguably its greatest act of defiance yet. The Qatari foreign ministry announced early Thursday that “the state of Qatar expressed its aspiration to strengthen bilateral relations with the Islamic Republic of Iran in all fields” and reportedly informed Iran by phone of plans to return the Qatari ambassador to Tehran for the first time since it broke relations in 2016. The move is significant because the chief accusation leveled against Qatar by its former GCC allies, especially Saudi Arabia, is of growing too close to Iran while sponsoring and funding terrorism. For the Sunni gulf states “funding terrorism” is more often a euphemism meaning links to Iran and Shia movements in the gulf. Ironically, there is ample evidence demonstrating that both sides of the current gulf schism have in truth funded terror groups like al-Qaeda and ISIS, especially in Syria. But Qatar’s announcement sends an audacious and daring message essentially signalling that the country remains unbowed by Saudi pressure, and that the severe economic sanctions designed to bring Qatar to its knees may result in a geopolitical backfiring and new regional order as Iran stands to benefit.
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Aug 24, 2017.
On Monday it was reported that Younes Abouyaaqoub, the terrorist suspected of driving the van that killed 13 people in Barcelona last week, was shot dead by Catalonian police. A 14th fatality occurred when Abouyaaqoub stabbed and carjacked a motorist during his getaway from La Rambla, and a 15th occurred after other members of the terror cell drove their car into pedestrians and stabbed a woman in the town of Cambrils before being shot and killed by police themselves. Like the five suspects killed in Cambrils, Abouyaaqoub was also wearing a fake suicide bomb belt when police fired at him. It is interesting to note that the alleged perpetrators of the London Bridge attacks in June of this year were also supposedly wearing fake suicide bomb vests during their attack. It is also claimed that Abouyaaqoub shouted ‘Allahu akbar’ before police shot him, another recurring feature of recent terrorist incidents. Furthermore, while it was not initially clear whether there was a link between this incident and the attack in Barcelona, the white Ford Focus that rammed two police officers at a terror checkpoint on Thursday evening is now said to have been driven by Abouyaaqoub. Other developments in the narrative include that the terrorist cell’s imam, Abdelbaki Es Satty, allegedly the ideological ringleader of the cell, is believed to have been killed in the explosion that occurred last Wednesday night in the town of Alcanar. It is claimed that he was radicalized while serving time in prison for smuggling hashish, as during his prison term he met Rachid Aglif, who is serving an 18-year term for his role in the 2004 Madrid train bombings. However, some may find this explanation lacking as it is also being reported that Es Satty lived with Mohammed Fahsi between 2003 and 2005, shortly before Fahsi was accused of being an al-Qaeda recruiter and jailed for funding terrorism.
Does ISIS have the capability of taking out a civilian passenger jet? According to an alarming new report by Reuters the answer appears to be yes. The Islamic State has long been rumored as in possession of surface-to-air missiles, and now it appears a US ally is providing ground level confirmation of what might be a worst case nightmare scenario come true. The Lebanese Army has recently been engaged in a fierce campaign to root out ISIS terrorists from the Arsal border pocket – a northeast region of Lebanon bordering Syria which has seen fighting rage since 2014. As we previously reported, the operation is receiving some level of assistance from US special forces advisers as well as coordination from Hezbollah, while at the same time the Syrian Army is attacking from the Syrian side of the border in the Qalaman mountains. On Monday, Reuters issued the following report based on official statements of the Lebanese Army: Lebanon’s army found anti-aircraft missiles among with a cache of weapons in an area abandoned by Islamic State militants, it said on Monday. The arms cache also included mortars, medium and heavy machine guns, assault rifles, grenades, anti-tank weapons, anti-personnel mines, improvised explosive devices and ammunition. Not only did Lebanon’s army – which is working under the advisement of the Pentagon for the operation – confirm ISIS possession of anti-aircraft missiles, but last week it reported to have uncovered a similarly stocked Nusra (al-Qaeda in Syria) cache as well. According to the same Reuters report:
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Aug 22, 2017.
Roughly around the time Trump started his Afghanistan speech, Ron Paul tweeted out a cautiously optimistic note: “Hoping for the best in tonight’s @realDonaldTrump speech but fearful that foreign intervention is only going to get worse. #Afghanistan.” Alas it was not meant to be, and over 20 tweets later in what proved to be the angriest tweetstorm of the night, Ron Paul had come to a conclusion: Trump is now nothing more than the latest neocon, one whom even Lindsey Graham applauded. Below is a chronological rundown of Ron Paul’s progressively angier tweets, as he was live commenting on Trump’s speech: Hoping for the best in tonight’s @realDonaldTrump speech but fearful that foreign intervention is only going to get worse. #Afghanistan Steve Bannon brakes removed. Neocons feeling their oats. The military personnel are the victims of bad foreign policy. Sad that these wars the politicians argue for are unconstitutional yet we are told we are over there defending the Constitution. Mr. President it’s too bad you do not follow your instincts. Planned in Afghanistan? What about Saudi Arabia?? What’s wrong with rapid exit? We just marched in we can just march out. So far very discouraging. Sounds like pure neocon foreign policy. The promoters of war win. The American people lose. #Afghanistan Remember: there was no al-Qaeda until our foolish invasion of Iraq based on neocon lies. The American people deserve to know when we are going to war and MUST give you permission through their representatives in Congress! Emphasis on Pakistan just means the war going to be expanded! Emphasis on military alliance with India may well lead to more vicious war between nuclear states Pakistan and India. Smart? Terrorism is one thing, but what about massive collateral damage? Killing civilians creates more terrorism. Round and round we go. Shorter Trump: “Afghanistan: give us your minerals!” Nothing new. More of the same. Obama was wrong. This is NOT the good war. Sooner we get out the better. More killing is not the road to peace. The emphasis on the “grave danger” of terrorism is greatly exaggerated. But more intervention surely creates more terrorism. How many Americans are really sitting around worrying about an Afghan terrorist coming over and killing them? So many of our problems are self-inflicted by a deeply flawed foreign policy. US troops – and the family members – suffer the consequences. Big issue of the night: US expanding the war into Pakistan. Could precipitate more conflict between nuclear India and Pakistan. If Americans are tired of 16 year war, how will they feel about another decade or two? When will they wake up? Our ultimately “hasty” departure from Vietnam finally ended a lot of grief. Even if it came way too late. Beware! @LindseyGrahamSC loves Trump’s speech! Why are arch-neocons celebrating so much? Very telling! There’s nothing hasty about ending America’s longest war. @POTUS bowed to military-industrial establishment; doubled down on perpetual war.
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Aug 21, 2017.
We may have hit peak media crazy here. A prominent online news publication says, ‘Let’s blow up Mt. Rushmore.’ No, this is not al-Qaeda’s “Inspire” magazine or the Islamic State’s “Dabiq” propaganda publication – it’s Brooklyn based Vice News. On the same day a barbaric terror attack takes place in Barcelona, resulting in 13 deaths and 100 people injured, the popular liberal news org known for its edgy investigative approach and stylistic “cooler than thou” appeal to millennials tweeted out an article which advocates for blowing up Mount Rushmore.
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Aug 18, 2017.
ISIS’ strategy for fighting the West has certainly brought terrorism into the 21st century. Their battlefield is shifting away from the real world and into social media, where they can indoctrinate people living in the West, and convince them to carry out terror attacks in their name. And rather than being sophisticated attacks that cause mass casualties, ISIS promotes multiple smaller attacks that can be spread out throughout a targeted country. It’s easier to cause these kinds of incidents, and a lot harder for authorities to foil them. It’s a strategy that is as simple as it is brilliant. They can wreak havoc on the societies that oppose them with little cost, and without lifting a finger. It’s such an effective strategy that it’s now being picked up by other terror groups like Al-Qaeda. Ibrahim al-Asiri, who is the group’s chief bomb maker, recently published a document in a magazine (it should be noted that the idea of a terrorist group having a slick magazine is also borrowed from ISIS) that shows any would-be lone wolf terrorist how to inflict mayhem on a critical component of America’s infrastructure.
This post was published at shtfplan on August 15th, 2017.
There are two points I want to hammer home in today’s piece. First, we all need to accept that Donald Trump is not some sort of crazy aberration in U. S. politics, but rather basically just the ghastly continuation of the authoritarianism and militarism which has characterized our insane society since we experienced a civilization-wide mental breakdown following the attacks of 9/11. I’ve written about this ongoing cultural insanity on many occasions, but most passionately in my 2013 piece, How I Remember September 11, 2001: In the days following the collapse, all I wanted was for the towers to be rebuilt just like before. I wanted the skyline back to what I had know since the day I came into this earth at a New York City hospital to be restored exactly as I had always known it. Career-wise, I felt I should leave Wall Street. I thought about going back to graduate school for political science, or maybe even join the newly created Department of Homeland Security (yes, the irony is not lost on me). I read a lengthy tome on Osama Bin Laden and al-Qaeda. I was an emotional and psychological mess, and it was when I was in this state of heightened distress that my own government and the military-industrial complex took advantage of me.