Episode #191 – SUNDAY WIRE: ‘The Big Pinch’ with Daniel Faraci, Emma, Basil Valentine

Episode #191 of SUNDAY WIRE SHOW resumes this June 25th, 2017 as guest host Patrick Henningsen brings you this week’s LIVE broadcast on the Alternate Current Radio Network…
LISTEN LIVE ON THIS PAGE AT THE FOLLOWING SCHEDULED SHOW TIMES:
5pm-8pm UK Time | 12pm-3pm ET (US) | 9am-12am PT (US)

This week we deliver another LIVE broadcast, this time from Britain’s former naval stronghold in Plymouth, as SUNDAY WIRE host Patrick Henningsen breaks down the biggest stories in the west and internationally, including a follow-up on the recent disaster in West London where we’ll speak to local resident Emma about the Grenfell Tower fire – the social and political fallout as well as questions about how many residents actually died in the fatal blaze. In the second hour, we’ll connect with geopolitical analyst Daniel Faraci from Grassroots Political Consulting in Washington DC to discuss how the recent fracture between Qatar and Turkey (and Iran) on one side – and the US, Saudi Arabia, UAE and the rest of Gulf, on the other. What will this mean for the region for Syria and for Yemen? In the final hour, we’ll try to connect with political pundit Basil Valentine to discuss the Queen’s top priority as Britain’s monarch; not government or Parliament – but horses, as well as a report from Glastonbury festival and the Corbynmania going on there. We’ll also get Basil’s thoughts on the Grenfell situation and how its thwarted the Tory plans to consolidate power.
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*NOTE: THIS EPISODE MAY CONTAIN STRONG LANGUAGE AND MATURE THEMES*
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This post was published at Spreaker on JUNE 25, 2017.

SYRIA: Vanessa Beeley on RT Covering Latest White Helmet Participation in US Extremist Atrocities

21st Century Wire says…
‘This obeisance to the United States and its collaborators as a benign force ‘bringing good’ runs deep in western establishment journalism. It ensures that the present-day catastrophe in Syria is blamed exclusively on Bashar al-Assad, whom the West and Israel have long conspired to overthrow, not for any humanitarian concerns, but to consolidate Israel’s aggressive power in the region. The jihadist forces unleashed and armed by the US, Britain, France, Turkey and their ‘coalition’ proxies serve this end. It is they who dispense the propaganda and videos that becomes news in the US and Europe, and provide access to journalists and guarantee a one-sided ‘coverage’ of Syria.’ ~ John Pilger

This post was published at 21st Century Wire on JUNE 25, 2017.

Frontrunning: June 23

One year after Brexit: Forget euro zone breakup, sterling now deemed riskier (Reuters) Senate Holdouts Seek Upper Hand in Perilous Health Bill Talks (BBG) Senate Bill Poses Risks to Health-Care Companies (WSJ) Trump’s Tape Ruse Risks Fresh Legal Jeopardy in Russia Probe (BBG) Arab states demand Qatar closes Jazeera, cuts back ties to Iran (Reuters) Qatar Seen Rejecting List of Severe Demands to End Gulf Crisis (BBG) Turkey rejects call to shut military base in Qatar (Reuters) From Music to Maps, How Apple’s iPhone Changed Business (WSJ) How Killing Obamacare Might Save Obamacare, For a While (BBG) Baghdadi death near 100 percent certain: Interfax quotes Russian senator (Reuters) Japanese warship takes Asian guests on cruise in defiance of China (Reuters) FBI Director Nominee’s Client List Could Hinder Oversight of Investigations (WSJ) Buffett’s Home Capital Bet Backs Turbulent Canada Housing Market (BBG) China’s authorities tighten noose around online video content (Reuters) Deadly London apartment blaze began in Hotpoint fridge freezer, police say (Reuters)

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Jun 23, 2017.

Syrian “Rebels” In Turmoil After Qatar Crisis

The ongoing Qatar crisis has had an unexpectedly adverse outcome among the Syrian “rebels”, in many cases formerly known as al-Qaeda, who expect the crisis between two of their biggest state backers – Saudi Arabia and Qatar – to deepen divisions in the opposition to President Bashar al-Assad. Together with Turkey and the United States, Qatar and Saudi Arabia have been major sponsors of the insurgency, arming an array of groups that have been fighting to topple Syria’s Iran-backed president. However, in recent weeks the Gulf support has been far from harmonious, fuelling splits that have set back the revolt.
Quoted by Reuters, Mustafa Sejari of the Liwa al Mutasem rebel group in northern Syria said “god forbid if this crisis is not contained I predict … the situation in Syria will become tragic because the factions that are supported by (different) countries will be forced to take hostile positions towards each other.”
“We urge our brothers in Saudi Arabia and Qatar not to burden the Syrian people more than they can bear” he said magnanimously, when what he really meant is that he needs Saudis and Qatar on the same page so that the supply of weapons and cash can resume.
To be sure, for the terrorists rebels the Qatar crisis comes at the worst possible time: the opposition to Assad has been losing ground to Damascus ever since the Russian military deployed to Syria in support of Assad’s war effort in 2015. As Reuters adds Assad now appears “militarily unassailable”, although rebels still have footholds near Damascus, in the northwest, and the southwest. These are unlikely to hold without a continued infusion of support from the feuding Gulf states.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Jun 19, 2017.

Turkey’s foreign minister heading to Qatar amid diplomatic crisis

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu will visit Qatar on Wednesday for talks with Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani, the foreign ministry said, amid a crisis in Doha’s ties with Saudi Arabia and other Gulf states.
Cavusoglu will also hold talks with Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani, a ministry statement said, as Ankara eyes with concern the crisis between its chief regional ally Qatar and its Gulf neighbours. The ministry said “recent regional developments” would be discussed, without giving further details.
On Tuesday, the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan slammed the economic and political isolation of Qatar as inhumane and contrary to Islamic values.
“Taking action to isolate a country in all areas is inhumane and un-Islamic,” Erdogan said in televised comments to his party in Ankara, after Saudi Arabia, UAE and Bahrain broke off relations with Qatar on June 5, accusing it of supporting “terrorism“.
In his strongest comments yet on the crisis, Erdogan added that Qatar was a country “on which a death sentence had in some way been pronounced“.

This post was published at France24

ERDOGAN: Whims of a Dictator or The New Turkey in the Islamic World?

Recep Tayyip Erdoan (aka the Prez) and his ruling Justice and Development Party (or AKP) have for years been working hard to alter the appearance as well as the substance of the nation-state that is Turkey. And in this respect, the figure of the Turkish President himself seems to have been the ultimate prime-mover, forcing the execution of effective changes while simultaneously constantly dominating the headlines.
Hence, many quite easily refer to the Turkish President as a dictator.
Tayyip Erdoan as a Dictator?!?
Dictators have been around for quite some time now, harking back to antiquity when the Roman ‘Senate could vote to grant absolute power to one man, called a dictator, for a temporary period.’
In modern times, the term has been more commonly employed to refer to a ‘ruler with total power over a country, typically one who has obtained control by force,’ as defined by the online Oxford Dictionaries. And in the 20th century such characters as Adolf Hitler, Mussolini or Franco stood out as prime examples of political leaders wielding dictatorial powers. In the 21st century, public opinion and the press alike habitually refer to certain rulers as dictators and will often characterise them as ‘the next Hitler,’ before summarily executing them through regime change operations – like with Libya’s Muammar Gaddafi or Iraq’s Saddam Hussein as the two most salient examples. Unlike Gaddafi, who had been an ‘international pariah’ throughout most of his public life, Saddam used to be a ‘close American ally’ until he crossed the line by invading Kuwait in August 1990 thereby forcing the U. S. to invoke the then ten-year old ‘Carter Doctrine.’ Saddam Hussein’s story – from very humble beginnings in a mud hut on stilts to palatial complexes fit to entertain guests like Donald Rumsfeld, acting as Ronald Reagan’s special envoy (20 December 1983) – could today very well act as a cautionary tale for certain political leaders, certain political leaders who were once equally close to Washington but have since changed direction.

This post was published at 21st Century Wire on JUNE 14, 2017.

Soft Power Masterstroke: Russia Sends Food Relief to Qatar

21st Century Wire says…
As 21WIRE reported earlier this week, the situation in the Gulf is now on a knife-edge, with Qatar and Turkey moving closer together – while Saudi Arabia, the UEA and the US also close ranks against the newly appointed emirate whipping boy.
Once again, Russia makes another shrewd move on the international stage, and increases its own geopolitical leverage in the process…
Andrew Korybko
The Duran
The Qatari-Saudi Cold War is a geopolitical scheme cooked up by the US and the UAE, as I explained in my 21st Century Wire article about ‘The Machiavellian Plot to Provoke Saudi Arabia and Qatar into a ‘Blood Border’ War’, but it’s not exactly a surprise that it happened.
My September 2016 forward-looking analysis about ‘The GCC: The Tripartite’s Big Barter In The ‘Eurasian Balkans” presciently forecast that a second round of Gulf tensions was bound to occur, and that the Great Power Tripartite of Russia, Iran, and Turkey could cooperate with Qatar in helping to break Riyadh’s stranglehold on the GCC. Moreover, my Geopolitica. Ru analysis from earlier this week about ‘Russia’s Energy Diplomacy In The Mideast: Boom Or Bust?’ accurately predicted that Russia will play a role in mediating tensions between the two feuding GCC countries, which has now officially come to pass with the Qatari Foreign Minister’svisit to Moscow this weekend.

This post was published at 21st Century Wire on JUNE 14, 2017.

The Qatari Conundrum: A Saudi Message to Turkey and Iran

The Middle East has been ablaze for many years now, but the Islamic Republic of Iran has so far largely escaped any direct harm. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, on the other hand, has also become the victim of numerous terror attacks over the past years… but now, the whole dynamic seems to have undergone a radical shift, a shift endangering Iran, Qatar, Syria, and Yemen… with potential ripple effects also touching upon Turkey and Russia.
All the while, the United States maintain a not-so hidden presence in the region that has the potential of even endangering the whole world…
Setting the Scene in Tehran
On Tuesday, 7 June 2017, the city of Tehran was rocked by simultaneous terror attacks: a ‘multi-prong terrorist attack has struck Iran’s capital city this morning. Gunmen and suicide bombers converged on three targets including Iran’s Parliament building and the mausoleum of Imam Khomeini, killing staff and members of the public.’

This post was published at 21st Century Wire on JUNE 13, 2017.

After rushing to Qatar’s aid, Turkey may have to rethink its Mideast ties

The only firm opposition to the “Let’s Teach Qatar a Lesson” operation currently underway in the Middle East is coming from Turkey. Even U.S. President Donald Trump initially loudly applauded the campaign led by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates – though he has since taken a more conciliatory tone.
The Turkish government, which had drafted a plan some time ago to send troops to Qatar to firm up a Sunni front against Iran, fast-tracked legislation needed to send troops abroad.
Turkish-Arab relations are passing through erratic times. Everyone was wondering what position Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan would take in the Qatari crisis. Erdogan had won the hearts and minds of the Gulf emirs and kings earlier this year by declaring the need to “prevent the Persian nationalist expansion.” Many observers thought he would take a pragmatic approach to avoid losing favor with many other countries just to please Qatar. Erdogan’s widely publicized but futile telephone diplomacy to solve the crisis was interpreted as a desperate attempt to avoid having to choose between Qatar and Saudi Arabia and its allies. But at the end of the day, Ankara decided to interpret the actions against Qatar as if they had been taken against Turkey.
Erdogan said there are other motives behind what is being done to Qatar, but he wasn’t specific.
It didn’t take Ankara long to reach the conclusion that, after Qatar, Turkey is the likely next target. After all, just like Qatar, Turkey had become a staunch guardian of the Muslim Brotherhood and was in full harmony with Qatar in the proxy war raging in Syria. All the reasons cited by the Saudi king and the U.S. president to declare Qatar a “supporter of terror” could easily be applied to Turkey. Full support of the sanctions against Qatar from Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, who had toppled the Muslim Brotherhood in his country, no doubt played a key role in Erdogan’s lining up with Qatar.

This post was published at ALMONITOR

Iran Sends 2 Warships To Oman, Flies Food To Qatar

If there was any confusion on which side of the Qatar crisis Iran found itself, it was swept away today after Iran’s Tasnim news, cited by Turkey’s Anadolu Agency, reported that Iran plans to send two warships to Oman on Sunday. The two ships will depart using Iran’s southern waters off the port city of Bandar Abbas for an overseas mission to the Arab Peninsula state and then on to international waters.
On Sunday, the 47th flotilla, comprised of an Alborz destroyer and Bushehr logistic warship, set sail from the southern port city of Bandar Abbas, Tasnim reported. From Oman, the ships will then head to the Gulf of Aden and international waters north of the Indian Ocean. At the same time, Iran’s 46th flotilla consisting of a Sabalan destroyer and Lavan logistic warship, is due to return to Iran on Sunday after completing a two-month mission to secure naval routes and protect merchant vessels and oil tankers in the Gulf of Aden.
Separately, Reuters reported that amid food shortages after Qatar’s biggest suppliers severed ties with the import-dependent country, Iran has dispatched four cargo planes of food to Qatar and plans to provide 100 tonnes of fruit and vegetable every day. Qatar has been holding talks with Iran and Turkey to secure food and water supplies after Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Bahrain cut links, accusing Doha of supporting terrorism. Qatar, which has claimed the terrorism-funding allegations are lies, on Friday hired John Ashcroft to serve as a PR crisis mediator in the US and to defend against terrorism accusations, for which he will be paid $2.5 million for 90 days of his time.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Jun 11, 2017.

NATO Cracks: Germany Withdraws Troops From Turkey’s Incirlik Airbase

Two days after Germany’s foreign minister Sigmar Gabriel – standing next to his Turkish colleague Mevlut Cavusoglu in Ankara – said his “country has no choice but to begin the process of pulling its forces out of Turkey’s Incirlik air force base” as the Turkish government will not allow all German lawmakers to visit troops there, Germany followed through on its threat and on Wednesday, the German Cabinet backed the withdrawal of the country’s troops from Incirlik air base in Southern Turkey.
***
The decision was announced on Wednesday by Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen after a lengthy and often bitter diplomatic impasse over the visits, raising friction between the NATO allies and according to some, putting the fate of the alliance in jeopardy.
Germany now plans to redeploy the 280 military personnel stationed at Incirlik, along with surveillance planes and refueling jets to an air base in Jordan. However, it stressed it wants to minimize any disruption to the US-led coalition operation against ISIS. In light of the complete failure in diplomatic relations between the two member nations, that may be problematic.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Jun 7, 2017.

North Korea Fires Multiple Ballistic Missiles

The day before “Berserker Thursday” with its UK elections, Comey testimony and the ECB decision, was supposed to be quiet. Instead we had the first domestic Iran terrorism in decades, Iran vowing revenge on Saudi Arabia, rising Qatar crisis tensions, South Korea telling the US it can go to hell, Syria threatening to strike US forces, the biggest crude crash in months, Germany pulling out of Turkey, Turkey approving the deployment of troops to Qatar, and stocks of course finishing the day higher.
And now, to top it all off, moments ago North Korea fired not one but multiple ballistic missiles, confirming the earlier story from Japan’s Asahi.
" – , "(2) 4 # # pic.twitter.com/I0WZtMypnS
— – (@yonhaptweet) June 7, 2017

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Jun 7, 2017.

US Coalition Airstrike on Syrian Army in Al-Tanf is Another Calculated War Crime, Aims to Destroy Arab Unity

The crimes committed by the US forces by bombing units of the Syrian Arab Army that were advancing to liberate the Al-Tanf crossing on the border with Iraq, and before it in Al-Thardah Mountain in Deir Al-Zour, and then Al-Shaerat Airport were not random or coincidental.
They were, as in the case of the war crimes committed by US aircrafts against the Syrian people and Syrian infrastructure, calculated, and are part of the general geopolitical scheme to divide the region.
The truth is that any connection between Syria and Iraq has been forbidden since the two countries’ independence in the middle of the 20th century. The Baghdad Pact of 1955, which included Britain, Iraq, Turkey, Iran and Pakistan was meant contain the Arab national tide on the one hand, and to counter what then was called Soviet influence in the region on the other hand. Although this alliance fell in 1958, President Dwight D. Eisenhower declared a set principles in a private letter to Congress, which became known as the Eisenhower Doctrine. According to these principles, any country could request US economic aid or aid of the US armed forces if subjected to threats from another country. This was what Camille Chamoun did in 1958, when the nationalists in Lebanon rebelled to pursue the Arab national line and against Chamoun’s attempt to rig elections. Eisenhower responded to Chamoun’s request and sent the Marines to Beirut to preserve the ‘neutrality’ of Lebanon’s foreign policy, despite its ‘sympathy’ with Arab issues.
After Sadat signed the Sinai 2 Agreement, and later the Camp David Accords, President Hafez al-Assad tried to compensate for the Arabs’ loss of Egypt by establishing a Levantine Front. He went to Iraq, Jordan and the Palestine Liberation Organization in Beirut.

This post was published at 21st Century Wire on JUNE 7, 2017.

Facebook’s Little Ethics Problem

Facebook has been aiding abusers of human-rights — such as China, Turkey, Russia and Pakistan — to curb the freedom of expression of their people. “On the same day that we filed the report, the ‘Stop Palestinians’ page that incited against Palestinians was removed by Facebook… for ‘containing credible threat of violence’ which ‘violated our community standards.’ On the other hand, the ‘Stop Israelis’ page that incited against Israelis, was not removed. We received a response from Facebook stating that the page was ‘not in violation of Facebook’s rules.’” – Nitsana Darshan-Leitner, head of The Israel Law Center. According to Darshan-Leitner, Facebook’s insistence that it cannot control all the content on its pages is disingenuous, if not an outright lie. After all, its algorithms are perfectly accurate when it comes to detecting users’ shopping habits. There is a problem at Facebook. On May 8, the social media platform blocked and then shut down the pages of two popular moderate Muslim groups — on the grounds that their content was “in violation of community standards” — without explanation.
Had these pages belonged to the radicals who incite followers to violence, however, the move would have been welcome, and would have corresponded to Facebook’s Online Civil Courage Initiative, founded in Berlin in January 2016, to “challeng[e] hate speech and extremism online,” in the effort to prevent the use of social media as a platform for recruiting terrorists.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Jun 7, 2017.

Turkey Approves Bill Allowing Troop Deployment To Qatar

Update: the bill has passed, Bloomberg reports:
TURKEY APPROVES BILL ALLOWING TRAINING TO QATAR SECURITY FORCES * * *
In the ongoing diplomatic crisis between Qatar and its Gulf/Arab peers, which is either the result of Saudi nat gas envy or – for those who watch CNN – Russian hacking, Turkey has emerged as a vocal supporter of the small but wealthy state. On Tuesday, Turkish President Recep Erdogan defended Qatar, saying he personally would have intervened if accusations that the tiny Gulf emirate supports “terrorism” were true and said he intends to “develop” ties with the embattled Gulf state hit by sanctions from Saudi Arabia and its allies.
“Let me say at the outset that we do not think the sanctions against Qatar are good,” Erdogan said in a speech in Ankara.”Turkey will continue and will develop our ties with Qatar, as with all our friends who have supported us in the most difficult moments,” he added in reference to last year’s failed coup. The support puts Turkey in a complicated position because while the NATO member has close ties with Qatar it also has good relations with the other Gulf states, especially Saudi Arabia.
Turkey’s support for Qatar also has ideological reasons as in the past both both have provided support for the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt and backed rebels fighting to overthrow Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Jun 7, 2017.

Turkey Fast-Tracks Bill Approving Troop Deployment To Qatar

In the ongoing diplomatic crisis between Qatar and its Gulf/Arab peers, which is either the result of Saudi nat gas envy or – for those who watch CNN – Russian hacking, Turkey has emerged as a vocal supporter of the small but wealthy state. On Tuesday, Turkish President Recep Erdogan defended Qatar, saying he personally would have intervened if accusations that the tiny Gulf emirate supports “terrorism” were true and said he intends to “develop” ties with the embattled Gulf state hit by sanctions from Saudi Arabia and its allies.
“Let me say at the outset that we do not think the sanctions against Qatar are good,” Erdogan said in a speech in Ankara.”Turkey will continue and will develop our ties with Qatar, as with all our friends who have supported us in the most difficult moments,” he added in reference to last year’s failed coup. The support puts Turkey in a complicated position because while the NATO member has close ties with Qatar it also has good relations with the other Gulf states, especially Saudi Arabia.
Turkey’s support for Qatar also has ideological reasons as in the past both both have provided support for the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt and backed rebels fighting to overthrow Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
Erdogan was careful not to criticise Riyadh, calling on the member nations of the Gulf Cooperation Council to “resolve their differences through dialogue”.
“Efforts to isolate Qatar … will not solve any problem,” said Erdogan, praising Doha’s “cool-headedness” and “constructive approach”.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Jun 7, 2017.

U.S., Russia hold secret talks over south Syria safe zone

U.S. and Russian officials have quietly stepped up contacts in recent weeks to try to advance a deal on the creation of a safe zone in southern Syria, Al-Monitor has learned.
The talks included a meeting in Jordan in late May, a former diplomat from the region said on condition of anonymity. Russia, Iran and Turkey negotiated the creation of four zones aimed at de-escalating tensions between Bashar al-Assad’s forces and the armed Syrian opposition in early May, and the Donald Trump administration is now trying to see what role the United States can play.
‘Last week, the Americans and Russia met in Jordan with the Jordanians to discuss these zones in the south,’ the former diplomat said. ‘The meeting in Jordan was one part where the U.S. and Russia, Israel and Jordan can work together to have de-escalation zone in the south of Syria.’
The United States is particularly concerned that any deal over the future of Syria preserves the stability of its close allies Israel and Jordan. Israel for its part has said it would not tolerate an Iranian presence on its border with Syria.
The source said Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is “in charge of dealing with Russia” amid allegations that the Trump presidential campaign conspired with Moscow. The former diplomat said Brett McGurk, the U.S. special presidential envoy to the global coalition against the Islamic State, and U.S. Syria envoy Michael Ratney participated in the Jordan talks. Neither official responded to queries.

This post was published at ALMONITOR

NATO Splinters: Germany Says “Has No Choice But To Pull Out” Troops From Turkey’s Incirlik Airbase

Diplomatic relations between NATO members Germany and Turkey hit rock bottom on Monday when Germany’s foreign minister Sigmar Gabriel said his country has no choice but to begin the process of pulling its forces out of Turkey’s Incirlik air force base as the Turkish government will not allow all German lawmakers to visit troops there.
“Turkey has made clear that, for domestic political reasons, it cannot approve visits of all lawmakers,” Gabriel told a news conference after meeting Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu in Ankara.
The scandal erupted last Thursday, when Turkey’s foreign minister said it is not possible to allow German lawmakers to visit troops stationed at Turkey’s Incirlik air base now, although he said Ankara may reconsider if it sees “positive steps” from Berlin. It was not immediately clear just what Turkey’s “demands” or expectations, monetary or otherwise, were from Merkel for it to change its view. Ties between the NATO allies deteriorated sharply in the run-up to Turkey’s April 16 referendum that handed President Tayyip Erdogan stronger presidential powers.
“We see that Germany supports everything that is against Turkey,” Mevlut Cavusoglu told a news conference in Ankara last week. “Under these circumstances it is not possible for us to open Incirlik to German lawmakers right now … If they take positive steps in the future we can reconsider.”

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Jun 5, 2017.

Putin is worse than ISIS? — John Batchelor Interviews Stephen F. Cohen

Batchelor opens with the statement from France’s new President Macron that equates Turkey’s Erdogan, Russia’s Putin and Donald Trump as equals, and raises the bar on new heights of histrionics and confusion with all the media hype and investigations that accompany it. Cohen in turn mentions the Manchester terrorist event and takes the discussion to the topic of whether or not Russia and the West (and especially Washington) will ever join forces to deal with ISIS. Cohen’s worry is that the latter may eventually use nuclear material in its attacks, and he maintains that both Putin and Trump have the same worries. The hurdles placed to sabotage any cooperation become today’s topic. For example, Cohen qualifies this with a Senator McCain statement that essentially makes the point that ISIS should be the ally against Putin, not the other way around. (This writer worries that given the bizarre thinking revealed in Washington that ISIS may actually be able to use a serious attack and the media may spin it to have Russia blamed. False flag events in the U.S. are a similar danger.)
Cohen in the next segment describes Putin’s support for the United States after the 9/11 attack and the American lives this saved in Afghanistan. In fact all (so called) terrorist attacks on the U.S. saw Putin offering help. All were rejected and/or sabotaged/ or betrayed (with NATO activities). All of this is well detailed by Cohen. That Trump had difficulties meeting minimal diplomatic expectations for the Russians is a severe impediment to cooperation and respect from the Russian view. (It is curious that Trump’s boneheaded missile attack on Syria did not come up in the discussion.)
Batchelor, who is back from a vacation to the Caucasus region, introduces his third segment with a description of NATO troops of several nationalities in the capital of Georgia, Tibilsi. They were present for training manoeuvres. Cohen points out that Georgia is not a NATO country but it is still a prospect – although this is denied by Washington/NATO. Cohen makes an argument that cooperation for Putin in Syria and elsewhere about fighting terrorism must be at a higher level, but the Kremlin is seeing Trump becoming crippled in this goal in Washington. Trump, however, saw his firing of Comey as part of the process of solving the problem. Again Cohen points out in detail that the firing has only added more complications.
In the final segment Batchelor describes some of his experiences in trying to explain to various nationalities in his travels what all the American news stories meant. Batchelor kept explaining that it was noise and nonsense and that ‘nothing is going on’. Cohen disagrees, but can only speculate that something is going on in the background. Communication with the Russians is certainly going on and has to go around official channels because the Intelligence Agencies are undertaking a surveillance and leaking campaign against Trump. This is also fraught in that this practice too can be spun as subversive. This all came from the Trump effort to communicate privately with the Kremlin over Syria. Russia is also potentially positioned to know if attacks are planned against the United States, and Cohen repeats that Trump seems to understand this and cares about it even if some of his other behaviors may be questionable. Cohen maintains also that Israel and Russia share intelligence with each other. (The whole debacle in Syria, however, may be winding down with the Assad clearly the winner and ISIS in disarray.)
From my perspective our pundits may be missing one element of this opposition to Trump and a relationship with Russia. It looks like there is a Deep State ‘official’ policy to accept any terrorism damage from ISIS as preferable to working with Russia. The motivation is that, as a side issue, the terrorism can be used politically to continue to promote and fund the growing security forces within the United States and wars in the M.E. This has the side benefit of supporting a greater control/surveillance program over the population which will be suffering a serious monetary and economic decline in the future – and given the reality of a false flag 9/11 event, and a Deep State indifference to cost in lives – the stronger argument is that the priority for the Deep State continues to be(?) complete control of the government of the United States. In other words, they simply may not care about the dangers of ISIS. We should be aware – as Trump’s adversaries surely are – that working with Russia against terrorism can only lead to a lessened war “opportunity” with Iran and a reduction of the creeping instability of extremism in the ‘stan’ countries. That leaves Washington with fewer war prospects.

This post was published at Audioboom

Turkey Refuses To Grant Germans Access To Incirlik Airbase

While Angela Merkel is busy sowing the seeds of the next cold war between Germany and the Trump administration (and therefore the US, if only for the next three and a half years), a troubling flashpoint for Germany continues to grow in Turkey where on Tursday, Turkey’s foreign minister said it is not possible to allow German lawmakers to visit troops stationed at Turkey’s Incirlik air base now, although he said Ankara may reconsider if it sees “positive steps” from Berlin. It was not immediately clear just what Turkey’s “demands” or expectations, monetary or otherwise, were from Merkel for it to change its view.
“We see that Germany supports everything that is against Turkey,” Mevlut Cavusoglu told a news conference in Ankara. “Under these circumstances it is not possible for us to open Incirlik to German lawmakers right now … If they take positive steps in the future we can reconsider.”

This post was published at Zero Hedge on May 30, 2017.