Thursday, May 24, 2018

Israeli Missile Strikes on Homs Syria, Intercepted.

SANA

A military source announced on Thursday that the Syrian Air defense intercepted a missile aggression on one of the Syrian military airbases in the central region.
The source added that the air defense confronted a hostile rocket strike on one of the military airbase in the central region and prevented it from achieving its goals.
The new aggression comes in coincidence with the successive continued defeats of terrorist organizations in front of the Syrian Arab army which fulfilled the purification of Damascus surroundings and forced the terrorists to hand over their weapons and get out of Homs and Hama countryside.

Israeli media is covering this most recent news:

Arutz Sheva
“One of our military airports in the central region was exposed to a hostile missile attack, and our air defense systems confronted the attack and prevented it from achieving its aim,” SANA reported Thursday evening.
The pro-Hezbollah Al Mayadeen outlet claimed that four missiles had been fired in the attack.
Video footage of a Russian-made S-200 surface-to-air missile launching from a Syrian position was later released to social media networks, purportedly showing Syrian air defense units firing on Israeli fighter jets.
Some Lebanese outlets claimed Israeli fighter jets had crossed over Lebanese airspace en route to Syria.
An Israeli army spokeswoman refused to comment on whether the IDF was responsible for the explosions, Reuters reported.
Haaretz
Some witnesses in Syria claimed that aircraft flying from Lebanese airspace conducted the strike, following earlier reports of Israeli aircraft being seen above Lebanon.

Times of Israel
"A military air base in western Syria was hit in an airstrikes Thursday night, sparking large explosions, which were heard throughout the area, state media reported.
The targets of the strike were munitions depots belonging to the Iran-backed Hezbollah terrorist group, located on an air base south of the city of Homs, according to the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitoring group, which also said the strikes were most likely carried out by Israel.
“Six missiles were fired at the Daba’a military airport and surrounding area in the western sector of Homs province, targeting Lebanese Hezbollah weapons warehouses,” Rami Abd el-Rahman, director of the Observatory, told AFP."

From earlier:

US Led Coalition Attacks Syrian Army Positions in Deir Ez Zor Countryside

Related:

"U.S. Gave Jerusalem to Israel, Will Syria's Golan Heights Be Next?"


"U.S. Gave Jerusalem to Israel, Will Syria's Golan Heights Be Next?"

Yah, that's actually  the Newsweek headline

Talked about this a few days ago.

Congressman urges US to recognize Syria’s Golan as Israeli territory
"Israel has been pressuring the U.S. to recognize its self-proclaimed ownership of the Golan Heights, a southwestern Syrian territory seized by Israel during a 1967 conflict and later annexed without international recognition.

Israeli Intelligence Minister Israel Katz made the revelation in an interview with Reuters on Wednesday, saying such a follow-up to Washington's recognition of the disputed city of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel would likely come within the upcoming months. Katz said accepting Israeli control of the Golan Heights would target not only longtime foe Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, but also an even more powerful enemy: Iran.

Israel has targeted Iranian and pro-Iran positions in Syria for years and Katz said President Donald Trump's recent decision to move the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem and exit from the 2015 nuclear agreement meant it was "the perfect time" to escalate the administration's anti-Iran campaign.

"The most painful response you can give the Iranians is to recognize Israel’s Golan sovereignty—with an American statement, a presidential proclamation, enshrined [in law]," he told Reuters. "You want to destroy [U.S. ally Israel], to generate attacks [against it]? Look, you got exactly the opposite."
The Israeli/US push to recognize Golan as Israeli walks side by side with......

Likud MK Pushes Israel to Recognize Kurdistan as Independent

US Led Coalition Attacks Syrian Army Positions in Deir Ez Zor Countryside

Surely aiding and abetting ISIS, as usual
Deir Ezzor, SANA-The US-led “international coalition” aircrafts have carried out an aggression on some of the Syrian Arab Army’s positions in the south-eastern countryside of Deir Ezzor on Thursday at dawn.
“Some of our military positions between al-Bukamal and Hmeimea were hit this morning in an aggression by “American coalition” warplanes,” a military source said.
The source added that only material damage was caused .
The new attack comes in the framework of the coalition’s explicit support to the terrorist organizations and uncovers its fake claims  about fighting terrorism.
The aggression came less than 24 hours after the Syrian army and the allied forces thwarted a terrorist attack by Daesh on a number of military points in al-Mayadeen Badiya (Desert) in the countryside of Deir Ezzor; the army killed over 10 of the attacking terrorists, among them terrorists of foreign nationalities, injured scores others and destroyed a vehicle mounted by a heavy cannon.
ABC News:
 The Syrian government-run media blamed the strikes on the U.S.-led coalition fighting the Islamic State group.
The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which tracks the war through a network of activists on the ground, said the fatalities were not Syrian nationals but foreign fighters. It said the coalition was likely behind the strikes.
The Pentagon said it had "no information" to substantiate reports the coalition was behind the latest airstrikes.
 ABC does not link to an original source for their out of context quote. 
Though, I will add if the Pentagon has "no information" to substantiate the claim- They have no information to discount the claim either? 
 We're left with SANA and SOHR both reporting the airstrikes occurred- both suggesting it was the coalition that was likely behind the strikes.  As the Pentagon claims to have "no information"? Where we seem to have discrepancy on the two validating reports of airstrikes is on casualty counts- SANA reports only material damage. SOHR reports a number of fatalities.

 If anyone wonders why I don't express 100 percent confidence in RT's reporting?
Or continue to question what RT is really about? The RT report linked below should help explain my non confidence in RT being the product it's alleged to be: Reports on US-led bombing of Syrian Army are incorrect – Russian military source 

The out of context quotations and alleged but unnamed Russian sourcing of information seem designed to muddy the waters.. Interesting that Pentagon reporting seems to be the actual basis of this report
"Overnight reports on US-led coalition strikes on Syrian Army positions are not “consistent with the reality,” according to a military source. (Alleged in the headline to be Russian??) Earlier, the Pentagon said it has no information on the operation. 
Early Thursday, Syrian state media reported that US-led coalition warplanes targeted Syrian Army positions in the eastern Syrian province of Deir ez-Zor. The allegations, however, appear to not be completely accurate.
The information about the alleged attack on Syrian positions by the US-led coalition “is not consistent with the reality, a military source said.
Shortly after reports on the attack emerged, a Pentagon spokesman said the US military has “no operational reporting” about any operation against the Syrian government.
Though the reports on the strike appear to be untrue this time, the US-led forces have repeatedly hit Syrian Army positions or allied forces. In one infamous case, a US-led strike killed 60 Syrian troops near the city of Deir ez-Zor in 2016. The US military later admitted it was a mistake. 
Are these recent reports of an airstrike really untrue RT? SANA has actually, in my experience with them as a media outlet, been reliable. I'll be watching this one
However, that was not the only attack on pro-government forces gaining ground against Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS) terrorists in Syria. In February, US forces launched a drone strike that destroyed a tank of the pro-government forces in eastern Syria, and earlier that month, a separate attack killed around 100 pro-government fighters. The Pentagon claimed both bombings came in retaliation for alleged attacks on the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) – US allies in the region. 
The presence of the US contingent and its operations in Syria have not been sanctioned by either Damascus or the UN Security Council. The Syrian government has repeatedly called their presence an illegal aggression against a sovereign state"

I've often wondered if RT is the wolf in sheep's clothing?

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Syria’s looming Deraa offensive risks raising Tensions with Israel

Israeli-supported rebel groups among the targets of an expected government offensive near Deraa

Nestled in southern Syria near the point where the edge of the Israeli occupied Golan Heights meets Jordan, the rebel-held town of Deraa has long been in the regime's sights. With the recent recapture of Eastern Ghouta and Yarmouk Palestinian camp on the edge of the Syrian capital, regime forces and their allies are looking to push south.
However, the offensive has the potential to be the powder keg that sparks a major regional escalation.
Israel has provided support for rebels and civilians on the border with the Golan Heights since at least 2013, (I'd say Israel was involved in 2011 and prior to that in preparation for the destabilization) treating them in their hospitals and providing weapons and other aid. After the United States ended a CIA-run program based in Jordan to support rebels in southern Syria in January, Israeli media reported that the Jewish state had increased aid to seven rebel groups in February.
Past Israeli beneficiaries have included extremist groups, such as Al Qaeda’s former Syrian affiliate.
Now, with the forces of Syrian president Bashar al-Assad beginning to mass in recent days and appearing to be preparing to start their push toward the southern border concerns are rising that the deployment of Tehran-backed forces could escalate the already tense standoff between Iran and Israel in the area.
The media, no matter from where on the planet, wants to make this all about Iran- It's such an Israeli friendly narrative

Iranian troops and Iranian-supported militia forces already play a key role in the Syrian government’s military capabilities.
Yazid Sayegh, senior fellow at Carnegie Middle East Center, told The National that he wasn’t sure if the offensive in the south was about to begin. However, he said Israel and the US knew it would be difficult to dislodge Iranian forces despite their acute and general attempts to impact Tehran’s abilities to operate.
The Iranians, faced with the possibility of escalation with the US, are going to be manoeuvring to try and push back — they are engaging in a sort of test of wills to see where the red lines are in Syria, whether it’s a response to recent Israeli strikes or a reminder that Iran hasn’t been deterred and they have the means to escalate in the south," he said.
“The Israelis probably know they can’t remove Iran from Syria fully — and probably what comes out of it is something halfway, a set of understandings worked out either through trial and error on the ground or with a bit of Russian negotiation,” Mr Sayegh said.
It is unlikely, though, that Iran would seek a wider confrontation with Israel in Syria right now, said Hanin Ghaddar, a fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy.
It's not likely Iran is looking to confront Israel- since that seems really irrational all things considered.  It seems to me that it's Israel looking for the confrontation. After all Israel has been bombing Syria for years and years now- long before the Iranian threat meme began to spread so widely.  Israel has been involved from day one of the Syrian destabilization

Recall?  March 30/2011: What role is this man, Fardi Ghadry, ready to play in Syria??

 "Don't fear the fall of Bashar Assad. Syria will not fall into the hands of the Muslim Brotherhood," exile Farid Ghadry told Ynet Monday in a reassuring interview in the US.- Israel should not fear the prospect of Bashar Assad's downfall, as the Syrian people are not interested in war with Israel, a leading Syrian dissident says.

 April 2011: Farid Ghadry spins a tale, for a receptive audience

 Not only was this man previously grovelling to Israel, he is proclaiming his alleged knowledge to the world, via FrontPageMag.com
I hate to even link to such crap, but, you gotta read this perception management garbage for yourself, I can only stomach posting so much of it here


June 2011: Israel warns Assad: Attack us and we will assassinate you

The (Israeli) government sent a message to Syrian President Bashar Assad in recent days, warning him that if he started a war with the Jewish state in order to divert attention from domestic problems, Israel will target him personally, Kuwaiti newspaper Al-Jarida reported on Tuesday.

Israel has been involved from the get go! 

From earlier:

Life Sentence for “pure evil” acid attacker

Related to Syria:

The Age of Economic Warfare Begins. Will It Lead to a Conventional War?

 



Life Sentence for “pure evil” acid attacker

This was not my intended post for today, however, it was one that really needed much more attention. For the reasons that will be explained below.

 This is a news story that you are most probably completely unaware of. I stumbled across it quite accidentally. The perpetrator and the victim are not quite ‘push the agenda’ right
The crime just doesn’t fit the present day meme pushing undertaken in order to manage your perception. More commonly we see this type of story getting global coverage if it fits these acceptable stereotypes
  • - occurring in a third world nation
  • - man as perpetrator (misogynist) against woman
  • - white man (privileged of course) oppressing black person (male or female)

  The news below fits none of our commonly presented concepts- so it’s not been pushed onto our global awareness. There’s no hashtag to spread the news via twitter.  No facebook outrage.
And very limited news coverage. You’ll understand why soon enough. 

 The incident occurred in Ireland. Not Pakistan. The perpetrator is a beast. Clearly a liar. Probably a psychopath. In my opinion the perp is, without a doubt, a sick psychopath.
 Not only did the perpetrator plan out this attack, calculating how to carry it out then choosing afterwards to not aid the victim , instead opting to sit and chat on the phone and revel in the misery, pain and harm caused by this attack

Perpetrator Berlinah Wallace- Female, black

Victim- Mark van Dongen (left)  Male, white.

Belfast Telegraph
 A fashion student has been jailed for life and ordered to serve a minimum of 12 years in prison for throwing acid over her former partner, who later died by euthanasia, in “an act of pure evil”.

Berlinah Wallace, 48, poured sulphuric acid over face of Mark van Dongen, 29, was he slept in her flat in Westbury Park, Bristol at 3am on September 23 in 2015.

She laughed and told the engineer: “If I can’t have you, no-one can,” before calmly chatting to an ex-boyfriend on the phone as Mr van Dongen fled in agony.
The graduate was left in a coma for four months, suffered extensive burns to his body, was left blind in one eye, paralysed from the neck down and had to have his lower left leg amputated.
He suffered 15 months of excruciating pain before dying by euthanasia at a hospital in Belgium on January 2 2017.

Wallace was acquitted of murder but convicted of throwing a corrosive substance with intent following a four-week trial at Bristol Crown Court.
Mrs Justice Nicola Davies described how Wallace bought a litre of 98% concentrated sulphuric acid on September 2 2015 after Mr van Dongen left her for another woman.

She viewed 82 websites about sulphuric acid including post-mortem images – and came up with her defence based on a court case of a man accused of tricking his partner into drinking it.
“You chose your moment for the attack,” the judge told Wallace, who remained emotionless.
bottle from scene of crime
“It occurred when Mark van Dongen, wearing only boxer shorts, was asleep in the bed which you had shared in your flat"
    Your intention was to burn, disfigure and disable Mark van Dongen so that he would not be attractive to any other woman. It was an act of pure evil.
    Mrs Justice Nicola Davies
“Vulnerable, almost naked, he awoke but had no real opportunity to avoid the focus of your acid attack, namely his face and then his body.

“Immediately before you threw the acid, you said to Mark: ‘If I can’t have you, no-one can.’
“Nothing better demonstrates your malicious and callous intention than your refusal to provide any help, even when Mark was screaming in pain,” the judge said.
Mr van Dongen suffered burns to two thirds of his face, a large percentage of his upper chest, arms and upper thighs – with 25% of his body affected.

A consultant at Southmead Hospital, where Mr van Dongen was taken after neighbours called 999, said he had never seen a patient with such extensive injuries following a chemical attack.
The judge said Wallace had told “lie after lie” about a man who had been unable to defend himself.
Mr van Dongen told colleagues and his father that he was “scared” of Wallace, who had previously poured boiling water over him and scratched him.

“He was right to be so because he had some idea of what you were capable of,” the judge said.
Your conduct can properly be described as sadistic. Mrs Justice Nicola Davies
“On the clearest evidence you have been shown to be a manipulative and controlling woman who has lied without compunction or conscience in an attempt to avoid culpability.”
Speaking outside court, Mr van Dongen’s father said Wallace’s actions had “completely ruined” his family’s lives.
 You can listen to an audio of the police interviewing her
 Additional reading here

Evil wears many masks

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

The Age of Economic Warfare Begins. Will It Lead to a Conventional War?

 Valdai Club
"In the early hours of May 10, a day after the US withdrawal from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), Israel launched a missile attack on “Iranian military facilities” in Syria, allegedly to punish the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) for having fired 20 missiles at Israeli military positions. This happened in the Golan Heights area, where, to believe the Israelis, some elements of Iran’s Al-Quds unit are deployed. The attack killed a number of Syrians. During the period of hostilities, the Israeli military launched over 100 strikes at the Iranian contingent in Syria, which cooperates with the Russian force. But Moscow never retaliated against Israel, nor even criticized it, although occasionally Russian military equipment that had been sold to Iran came under fire.

Following this serious event, there were media reports that the Middle East was on the verge of war. The Israeli Defense Minister, Avigdor Lieberman, made a more restrained statement to the effect that Israel was not seeking to escalate tensions. “I hope we finished this chapter and everyone got the message,” he said. Although countries like Israel and Saudi Arabia are dreaming of escalating their confrontation with Iran in order to open the gate to war, they want it to be fought by the United States and are unwilling to become involved directly. Israel has the bitter experience of waging (and losing) a war in Lebanon from 1982 to 2000; Saudi Arabia is facing a similar failure in Yemen. Despite their resolute efforts, Israel, the US and Saudi Arabia are in a deadlock, being unable to change the balance of power in Lebanon against Iran and its ally, Hezbollah, for the last 36 years."
Good thing Israel can be so persuasive
Where is the conflict headed?

"All of this is occurring against the background of Trump’s withdrawal from the nuclear deal, under which Iran has halted its nuclear program in exchange for a reduction in sanctions.

The Iranians have been fully complying with the JCPOA, but this did not stop Donald Trump from walking away from the nuclear agreement with Iran. Despite the best efforts of the Iranians to convince the rest of the world that they are faithfully adhering to the 2015 agreement, the JCPOA itself is now on life support, if not dead already. And, of course, the Iranians realize that the EU, no matter how “angry and humiliated,” will hardly be able to withstand Trump’s pressure. According to deputy head of the IRGC, Hossein Salami, the Europeans are powerless to save the deal. Although the EU is going out of its way to show – particularly in the days immediately after Trump’s announcement – that they are not America’s “vassals” and will continue to implement the deal, that they are even ready to challenge the US unilateral sanctions against Iran at the WTO, etc., this looks increasingly utopian"
flashback May 15/18: US To Turn Heat Up on EU as Trump Admin. Hits Iran Central Banker with "Terror" Sanctions

"Just look at what has happened only recently. A Danish shipping company, Maersk, has declared that it will not berth merchant ships at the Iranian coast in the Gulf and has already stopped sending ships to Iran; Merkel has stated that her government will not be able to compensate damage to German companies, which will come under US sanctions because of their cooperation with Iran; Macron has declared that France “has no intention to engage in a trade war with the United States.” Total, the biggest French oil and gas company, has announced that it intends to withdraw from its project with Iran unless supported by the EU and granted a special waiver from the US. All of this suggests just one conclusion: the Iranian economy will continue to be strongly affected because international banks and companies will in every way seek to avoid US sanctions"
Thursday May 17/18: The EU Caving to US Edicts Begins: Total and Maersk Out/Iranian Oil Off the Market
"Note, too, that oil prices surged immediately in the wake of these events (both Trump’s statement at 9 pm on May 8 and the exchange of missile strikes in the early hours of May 10). It certainly cannot be overlooked that there are speculators who will benefit from Iran’s isolation from the European markets.
 Given the US withdrawal from the nuclear deal, the way of presenting Iranian missile strikes on Israel is also aimed at creating a negative image of Iran as an extension of Trump’s statements. Right now, it cannot be predicted how the conflict will develop, for this depends on domestic politics in Iran and the country’s ability to manage relations with the international community. Still, as I see it, there will be no military conflict in the near future.
First, the age of economic warfare has begun. After Iraq, it will be very hard to convince the US legislators and Americans in general that military operations are required. The US has grown fond of sanctions as an alternative.[1]

If we take the worst-case scenario and assume that Tel Aviv and Riyadh will pressure the unpredictable Trump into war or that this will happen because of a miscalculation similar to one that led the US to plunge Iraq into chaos, it is clear that strikes on select facilities is the only possibility. But what comes after that? Of course, any outcome will affect the Iranian economy, hitting ordinary citizens the hardest.

Is there a way out?

Who would have predicted such a subversion of orientalist expectations? It is not Iran’s reliability but the reliability of its Western partners that is in question. The Europeans should think how to oppose the US rather than cave in to the pressure. They should revise their priorities in light of the history of their relations with the US and Iran in the 21st century, during which time the United States has imposed policies on the EU that benefitted itself in exchange for bolstering the economically vulnerable European bloc.

What are Iran’s options?

Iran maintains hope for partners like Russia and China, but regrettably this strategic triangle is unable to reshape the entire system of international relations. Besides, Russia and China are interested in advancing their interests outside of their alliance with Iran. For example, the next day after Netanyahu’s latest visit to Moscow, Moscow backed off its intention to sell to Syria or deploy there its S-300 systems and thus protect it from further air attacks."
I disagree with the author's contention regarding the sale or supply of the S-300 to Syria - Read anew or rereadthe May 11/2018  post titled: After Netanyahu Visit to Russia, Russia backs off Supply of S-300's to Syria

"It is clear that Iran will continue to promote its interests internationally in the same way. But it is still an open question whether or not it will change its priorities. It is quite probable that the countries with ongoing nuclear programs will soon pool efforts to create a mechanism to contain US political and economic pressure. At the same time, it would be fair to assume that Iran will continue with its good-neighbor foreign policy, using the tools of cultural diplomacy to cultivate and maintain real allies in the fight against US hegemony"   

Monday, May 21, 2018

Likud MK Pushes Israel to Recognize Kurdistan as Independent

'Cause when you just wanna get along with your neighbours taking every action to antagonize them makes perfect sense..... not! 
As US Congressman DeSantis pushes for the recognition of Syria’s Golan as Israeli territory we have an Israeli MK pushing for Israel to recognize Kurdistan as an "independent" state.

 Can anyone deny that the US and Israel are being intentionally provocative pushing these concepts? It seems to me neither the US or Israel are hiding their desire for a regional war.

The move of the US Embassy to Jerusalem was a provocation

Flashback: May 14/18- PROVOCATIVE Opening of US Embassy in Jerusalem

Flashback : Ivanka & Jared In Israel for US Jerusalem Embassy Opening: Palestinians Die

 The push to recognize annexed Syrian territory, as Israel's is a provocation

Earlier today:  Congressman urges US to recognize Syria’s Golan as Israeli territory


And the idea of recognizing Kurdistan as independent is obviously yet another provocation- Not even hidden.

Jerusalem Post: Likud MK Pushes Israel to Recognize Kurdistan As An Independent State 

Amid tensions with Turkey, Israel should back Kurdish statehood, Likud MK Yoav Kisch proposed in a motion to the Knesset’s agenda this week.

“Facing Iran’s increasing strength in the region, Turkey’s extremism and the dissolution of Syria, Israel must lead and support the Kurdish effort to establish an independent state,” is the title of Kisch’s motion.

The Likud MK’s proposal came as diplomatic relations between Jerusalem and Ankara have soured, with Turkey withdrawing its ambassador in protest over Israel’s response to violent riots in Gaza, and Israel reacting in kind.

According to Kisch, Turkey isdistancing itself from the West and calling out against Israel, supporting terror and continuing to oppress the Kurds in its territory.”

As such, “recognizing an independent Kurdistan can be good for Israel’s interests,” Kisch said, adding: “There is a reason why Israel was the first to publicly congratulate moves towards Kurdish independence in northern Iraq.”

If the Knesset approves Kisch’s motion, the topic will likely be moved to the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee for further discussion. The committee may then hold a vote on support for Kurdish independence, but such a move is not required.

I’ve long talked here about the Israeli push for an Israel 2.0 aka Kurdistan. I've talked for so long about this topic, in fact, it's become tiresome to me- Yet still people don't grasp that Kurdistan is simply Israeli expansion, obscured.


Posts you may have missed over this long holiday week end (here in Canada, anyway)-