Category: Provocation / Incitement

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A Sukhoi 25 airplane © Vladimir Astapkovich
There isn’t a grain of truth in John Kerry’s statement the Assad government isn’t trying to stop ISIS; the Syrian army has been fighting terrorists, while the West watched the country being destroyed, says Syrian presidential adviser Bouthaina Shaaban.

RT:Russia has joined the fight against Islamic State. How long have you been negotiating the move with Moscow?

Bouthaina Shaaban: The dialogue between us [Damascus] and Moscow has been ongoing since the beginning of the crisis. And, as you noticed, that Russia and China took a double veto four times against all that the West was trying to impose on Syria. Because the West didn’t understand what’s happening in Syria, while Russia understood all the way along. So, the dialogue between Damascus and Moscow is ongoing… [since] a decade ago; but during this crisis it has been intensive, it has been real, it has been continuous.


READ MORE: Russian Air Force in Syria deploying over 50 planes & choppers – Defense Ministry


RT:Is the involvement of Russian aviation a game changer in the fight against IS?

BS: Well, there are no Russian troops on the ground as you heard Putin and Lavrov [saying] – “our assistance is only [fighter jets].” But it’s not only against IS. I don’t know why people… forget about Jabhat Al-Nusra, although the [UN] Security Council resolution spoke about or considered both Al-Nusra and ISIL as terrorist organizations.

Besides these, there are tens of terrorist organizations in Syria. There are thousands of mercenaries and terrorists coming from all over the world. So, we certainly hope that with the help of the Russian assistance we will be able to undermine terrorism in Syria and we’ll be able to restore peace and security in our country.


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Down the Memory Hole: NYT Erases CIA’s Efforts to Overthrow Syria’s Government

Barack Obama (photo: Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP)

FAIR has noted before how America’s well-documented clandestine activities in Syria have been routinely ignored when the corporate media discuss the Obama administration’s “hands-off” approach to the four-and-a-half-year-long conflict. This past week, two pieces—one in the New York Times detailing the “finger pointing” over Obama’s “failed” Syria policy, and a Vox“explainer” of the Syrian civil war—did one better: They didn’t just omit the fact that the CIA has been arming, training and funding rebels since 2012, they heavily implied they had never done so.

First, let’s establish what we do know. Based on multiple reports over the past three-and-a-half years, we know that the Central Intelligence Agency set up a secret program of arming, funding and training anti-Assad forces. This has been reported by major outlets, including the New York Times, The Guardian, Der Spiegel and, most recently, the Washington Post, which—partly thanks to the Snowden revelations—detailed a program that trained approximately 10,000 rebel fighters at a cost of $1 billion a year, or roughly 1/15th of the CIA’s official annual budget.

In addition to the CIA’s efforts, there is a much more scrutinized and far more publicized program by the Department of Defense to train “moderate rebels,” of which only a few dozen actually saw battle. The Pentagon program, which began earlier this year and is charged with fighting ISIS (rather than Syrian government forces), is separate from the covert CIA operation. It has, by all accounts, been an abysmal failure.


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© Ammar Abdullah
As the Syrian civil war continues to rage and Islamic State maintains its foothold in the region, Virginia state Senator Dick Black told RT that “if the US stopped training jihadists and arming jihadists, the war will end.”

In a lengthy interview, the Republican state senator connected the crisis in Syria to the actions of countries such as Saudi Arabia and Turkey, who he said have armed extremists like Islamic State militants that are fighting against the Syrian government. He also blamed US meddling in the Middle East for the rise of terror groups like Islamic State (IS, also known as ISIS/ISIL).

It is my hope and prayer that the United States wakes up and says it is time to end this slaughter. It is time to stop trying to topple regimes, bring order to the Middle East [and] stop the bloodshed. If we stop training jihadists and arming jihadists, the war will end.

The US has been criticized for its efforts to thwart IS, particularly its plan to arm and train moderate Syrian rebels to battle the extremists. US Central Command said Friday that it learned that the commander of a Syrian rebel group trained by the US to fight Islamic State had “surrendered” a quarter of his unit’s military supplies to the Al-Qaeda-affiliated Al-Nusra Front in exchange for safe passage.


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RT America

Analysts claim CENTCOM altered reports to make war against ISIS look better than in reality © Stringer
One of the defense analysts claiming CENTCOM had prettied up reports on the campaign against Islamic State has been named, along with the two officials he fingered as culprits. House and Senate committees have taken an interest in the investigation.

Gregory Hooker, the same analyst who a decade ago criticized plans for the 2003 Iraq invasion as being “amateurish and unrealistic,” was named by the New York Times as one of the originators of the July complaint against the US Central Command (CENTCOM). Filed by Hooker and another analyst, the complaint was endorsed by 50 of their colleagues, the Daily Beast revealed earlier this month.

READ MORE: Revolt of the spies: DoD analysts claim CENTCOM doctored reports about war on ISIS

CENTCOM employs some 1,500 intelligence analysts composed of civilian employees, members of the military, and contractors at the MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, Florida. The complaint accuses two senior intelligence officials at CENTCOM, Major General Steven Grove and his civilian deputy, Gregory Ryckman, of altering draft intelligence assessments on the offensive against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq, according to the Times.

The man at the center of a revolt at CENTCOM over cooked ISIS intelligence, and the group of analysts he leads 

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Kremlin promises ‘counter-steps’ in reply to US deploying nuclear weapons to Germany

© Alexander Vilf
The planned deployment of the latest US nuclear bombs at the Buchel Air Base in Germany would disrupt the strategic balance of forces in Europe and could force a reaction from Russia, President Vladimir Putin’s press secretary has stated.

It may lead to the destruction of the strategic balance in Europe. Therefore it would definitely cause Russia to take corresponding counter-steps and counter-measures in order to restore the strategic balance and parity,” Dmitry Peskov told reporters on Wednesday.

This is another step and unfortunately it is a very serious step towards increase of tensions on the European continent. Such actions cannot be described as a step towards stronger trust and greater stability,” the Russian official added.

The statement was prompted by news this week circulated by the German television channel ZDF, which found out from US budget documents about the US Air Force’s plans to bring new B61 nuclear bombs to the Luftwaffe’s Buchel Air Base. It currently hosts Tornado multipurpose aircraft that are capable of carrying atomic weapons. Twenty older bombs are stored at the base under a nuclear sharing deal, while it is the only facility in Germany, which has kept nuclear weapons since 2007.

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If Assad asks, China can deploy troops to Syria

September 19, 2015, 7:51 pm


Turkey-backed Chinese Uyghur terrorists are gaining a stronghold in Syria from which to launch attacks on China.


Chinese Uyghur terrorists establishing base in Syria

A new article reported that 3,500 Uyghurs are settling in a village near Jisr-al Shagour that was just taken from Assad, close to the stronghold of Turkistan Islamic Party (TIP) that is in the Turkey-backed Army of Conquest. They are allegedly under the supervision of Turkish intelligence that has been accused of supplying fake passports to recruit Chinese Uyghurs to wage jihad in Syria.

The news comes on the heels of TIP capturing a Syrian airbase and acquiring MIG fighter jets as well as other advanced weaponry, similar to ISIS capturing Iraqi army’s advanced US weaponry.

It also comes on the heels of the Bangkok bombing at the shrine frequented by Chinese tourists, with Thai authorities now drawing a link to Uyghurs “and the same gang that attacked the Thai Consulate in Turkey” in reference to Turkey’s Grey Wolves.

This seems to corroborate IHS Jane’s analyst Anthony Davis’s assessment that Grey Wolves are the likely culprit, given their anti-Chinese protests and violent demonstration back in July.

Through Turkey’s support for the Army of Conquest, TIP has risen to prominence within the anti-Assad coalition and played a key role in defeating the Syrian army at Jisr al Shughour earlier this year.


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Russia ready to consider sending troops to Syria if Damascus asks

MOSCOW: Russia would consider a request from Syria to send troops if Damascus asks for it, the Kremlin’s spokesman said on Friday.
“If there is a request (from Syria), then in the framework of a bilateral dialogue it would be, naturally, discussed and considered,” Dmitry Peskov told journalists on a conference call. “For now, it’s difficult to speak hypothetically.”
The Syrian military, which has lost ground to rebels recently in a four-year-old civil war, has begun using new types of air and ground weapons supplied by Russia, a Syrian military source told Reuters on Thursday..




Putin’s consistency on Syria has Washington fuming

Russian President Vladimir Putin. © Sergey Guneev
It is increasingly difficult to watch the most recent coverage of the Syrian war and not be struck by how utterly illogical and convoluted it has become. But look through the media spin and it’s clear: the Russian leader’s steady moves in Syria are perplexing the US.

Whether it’s the latest neocon claim that the way to ‘help’ refugees is to drop more bombs and train more Al-Qaeda-linked rebels, or the conveniently-timed mass hysteria over Russia’s (never secret) support for Bashar Assad — or even the strange (and completely false) notion floating around that the West has ‘done nothing’ in Syria, all of this nonsense is becoming very difficult to take seriously.

It’s fairly easy to tell when Washington is scrambling to keep control of a story, because two things usually happen: firstly, the media coverage becomes muddled and frazzled, and secondly, the White House quickly looks for somewhere to offload the blame. These days the scapegoat is usually Russia, and hey, why fix what ain’t broken?

Obama’s fumbling vs. Putin’s consistency

On September 11, Barack Obama warned that Russia’s strategy of continued support for Assad was “doomed to fail” and a “big mistake.” In a patronizing little addendum, Obama said Putin was “going to have to start getting a little smarter.”

Russian involvement in Syria would be “destabilizing” …says the US after backing radical groups and illegally bombing Syria for a year.

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U.S. asks Greece to deny Russian flights to Syria

By Renee Maltezou, Tom Perry and Lidia Kelly

ATHENS/BEIRUT/MOSCOW Sept 7 (Reuters) – The United States has asked Greece to deny Russia the use of its airspace for supply flights to Syria, a Greek official said on Monday, after Washington told Moscow it was deeply concerned by reports of a Russian military build up in Syria.

The Greek foreign ministry said the request was being examined. Russian newswire RIA Novosti earlier said Greece had refused the U.S. request, adding that Russia was seeking permission to run the flights up to Sept. 24.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Moscow would not give any official reaction until there was a decision from Athens.

Russia, which has a naval maintenance facility in the Syrian port of Tartous, has sent regular flights to Latakia, which it has also used to bring home Russian nationals who want to leave.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry told his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov on Saturday that if reports of the build-up were accurate, that could further escalate the war and risk confrontation with the U.S.-led alliance that is bombing Islamic State in Syria.

Lavrov told Kerry it was premature to talk about Russia’s participation in military operations in Syria, a Russian foreign ministry spokeswoman told RIA Novosti on Monday.

Lavrov confirmed Russia had always provided supplies of military equipment to Syria, saying Moscow “has never concealed that it delivers military equipment to official Syrian authorities with the aim of combating terrorism”.


Peace in Syria? It’s Putin’s fault: Escobar

All one needs to know about the intellectual caliber of the Obama administration is that it is still pondering whether to persist in “ignoring” Russian President Vladimir Putin, or invest in a real partnership to solve the Syrian geopolitical/humanitarian drama. After all, when in doubt between diplomacy or chaos, the Beltway weapon of choice still veers towards the simplistic group think uniting neocons and neoliberalcons: regime change. Vladimir Putin and Bashar Assad shake hands in Moscow in 2006











And then there’s the non-stop The Russians Are Coming! hysteria — the Cold War 2.0 remix, now switching from the invasion/military occupation of Ukraine to the invasion/military occupation of Syria. The White House — which, same as the Pentagon, does not do irony — actually appealed to the Kremlin to behave in a “more constructive” way side-by-side with the spectacularly inefficient coalition of the dodgy opportunists which is in thesis fighting ISIS/ISIL/Daesh.

White House spokesman Josh Earnest clarified that when Obama decides that the Sisyphean task of picking up the phone and dialing K for Kremlin is actually in America’s interests, he will do it. The Shakespearean doubt may last days — even as Putin reaffirmed, via Kremlin spokesman Dmitri Peskov, he was always open to dialogue.

The White House at least is mulling an offer from Moscow to actually discuss the Russian buildup in Syria via direct military-to-military talks. The Pentagon will do the talking, seeking the “clarity” that so eludes the Obama administration.

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Macedonian policemen try to keep migrants and refugees under control before they cross the border line from Greece into Macedonia, near the Greek village of Idomeni, Sept. 10, 2015.

Macedonian policemen try to keep migrants and refugees under control before they cross the border line from Greece into Macedonia, near the Greek village of Idomeni, Sept. 10, 2015.

US Urged to Do More on Mideast Refugee Crisis


US Criticized On Refugee Crisis

Since the start of Syria’s civil war more than four years ago, the U.S. has taken in just over 1,400 Syrian refugees — a barely detectable fraction of the four million who have fled the country.

On Thursday, White House officials signaled they were ready to do more: they announced the U.S. would make preparations to take in at least 10,000 Syrian refugees in the upcoming fiscal year.

“The president has directed our team to consider how we can further scale up our response,” said White House spokesman Josh Earnest. “And one thing the United States can do is to begin to admit more Syrian refugees.”


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O’Malley: U.S. should accept 65,000 Syrian refugees

Washington (CNN)

“I support the call from humanitarian and refugee organizations for the United States to accept at least 65,000 Syrian refugees next year,” he said in a statement Friday. “If Germany — a country with one-fourth our population — can accept 800,000 refugees this year, certainly we — the nation of immigrants and refugees — can do more.”

Syrian refugees are flooding Europe following the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Syrians due to ethnic violence in the Middle East. The migrant crisis has engulfed Europe, leading many to ask whether the U.S. would take refugees from the continued fighting in Syria.

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Starting a New Cold War With Russia a Big Mistake – Sarkozy

Nicolas Sarkozy

Sputnik International

© RIA Novosti. Ekaterina Chesnokova
09:05 10.09.2015(updated 09:09 10.09.2015) 

The world needs Russia to end the civil war in Syria and flush out the Islamic State, French ex-President Nicolas Sarkozy said in an interview Wednesday. He also urged the West not to start a new Cold War with Russia.


Could the West ACCIDENTALLY start a war with Russia? Warning over aggressive military exercises – as U.S. fears build-up of Putin’s forces in Syria could spark conflict

  • Diplomatic and military leaders call on Russia and the West to ‘urgently’ begin talks to prevent conflicts being accidentally triggered
  • Comes as Russia holds an increasing number of military exercises
  • US asked Greece to deny Russia the use of its airspace for flights to Syria
  • Washington concerned by reports of Russian military build up in country
The European Leadership Network, a group made up of members from both Russia and Europe, has warned that relations are heading towards Cold War levels of hostility following events in Ukraine

The European Leadership Network, a group made up of members from both Russia and Europe, has warned that relations are heading towards Cold War levels of hostility following events in Ukraine

Diplomatic and military leaders are calling on Russia and the West to ‘urgently’ begin talks to prevent conflicts being accidentally triggered by an increasing number of military exercises and encounters

The European Leadership Network, a group made up of members from both Russia and Europe, has warned that relations are heading towards Cold War levels of hostility following events in Ukraine.

Meanwhile, the United States has asked Greece to deny Russia the use of its airspace for supply flights to Syria, a Greek official said on Monday, after Washington told Moscow it was deeply concerned by reports of a Russian military build up in Syria.


US Wary, Not Surprised, by Russia’s Syria Efforts

FILE - Russian President Vladimir Putin's spokesman Dmitry Peskov, left, speaks during a meeting in Moscow, Russia.

FILE – Russian President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov, left, speaks during a meeting in Moscow, Russia.

Top U.S. intelligence and security officials say Russia’s ramped up presence in Syria should come as little surprise though they remain concerned about Moscow’s increasingly aggressive posture.

“Russia has been very candid. There is some additional people and stuff that is on its way to Syria,” CIA Director John Brennan told a meeting Thursday of intelligence and security professionals in Washington.

“They are stating it is a dual purpose,” he said.

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Kiev protégé allegedly behind Mariupol and Odessa massacres – leaked tapes

Published time: May 15, 2014 14:25

Ihor Kolomoisky, Oleh Tsarev.(RIA Novosti / Natalia Seliverstova / Mikhail Markiv)

Ihor Kolomoisky, Oleh Tsarev.(RIA Novosti / Natalia Seliverstova / Mikhail Markiv)

Two leaked tapes have emerged on the internet where Kiev-appointed governor allegedly threatens an ex-presidential candidate who called for a referendum. The official may also be behind the Odessa massacre and Mariupol shootings, the leak adds.

On the first tape, which appeared on May 14, an oligarch and governor of the city of Dnepropetrovsk in southeastern Ukraine, Igor Kolomoisky, allegedly called ex-presidential candidate Oleg Tsarev and started threatening him. He told Tsarev to leave Ukraine immediately, saying it was in connection with the killing of Bogdan Shlemkevich, a soldier from Ukraine’s National Guard on May 9 in Mariupol, southeastern Ukraine. He was shot in clashes between anti-government protesters and soldiers sent by Kiev in an ‘antiterrorist’ operation in eastern Ukraine.

Tsarev, a Dnepropetrovsk businessman and People’s Deputy of Ukraine, submitted his candidacy as self-nominee for the presidential election scheduled for May 25. He is standing for federalization of the country as well as for referenda in all parts of Ukraine. He withdrew his presidential candidacy on 29 April in a protest against Kiev.

“We prayed for [Bogdan] Shlemkevich who was killed in Mariupol and they say that Tsarev is guilty,” Kolomoisky told the ex-candidate.

The Dnepropetrovsk governor says that now Tsarev and his family will be hunted down and killed.

“They put $1 million for your head, they will go after you everywhere,” Kolomoisky told him. “Tomorrow they will look for your people and relatives,” said the Ukrainian oligarch.


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Ukraine crisis leaves stain on West: Analyst

A cyclist rides past a burned Ukrainian army vehicle in the eastern Ukrainian village of Oktyabrskoe, near Kramatorsk, on May 14, 2014.

A cyclist rides past a burned Ukrainian army vehicle in the eastern Ukrainian village of Oktyabrskoe, near Kramatorsk, on May 14, 2014.
Wed May 14, 2014 12:22PM

The prevailing crisis in Ukraine following a US-backed coup will remain a stain on the reputation of Western governments, an analyst writes in a column for the Press TV website.

“The killings in East Ukraine by sending in the Right Sector thugs to do the dirty work will be remembered as an example of Western moral bankruptcy,” Jim W. Dean wrote.

He stated that the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and the coup government in Kiev organized a “stupid anti-terror operation” which led to dozens of deaths in the southern city of Odessa on May 2.

Dean described the status quo in Ukraine as “a disgraceful episode” for the Western governments, adding, “Some political careers deserve to be destroyed for their ill-planned and motivated failure. It was a criminal plan.”

The analyst said the Western governments “have made fools of themselves” in the eyes of people.


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Ukraine Crisis Leaves Stain on West: Analyst


Ukraine crisis leaves stain on West: Analyst

… by  Jim W. Dean, VT Editor,   … with Press TV,  Tehran


This poor woman must be avenged

[Update:  Our VT crisis team analysis concluded that the photographic evidence showed  the inconsistent burn injuries to be indicative of obscuring how and what was used to kill many of these people.

The only options really on the table was lethal gas, and we surmized Vx…something that lung tissue analysis would confirm or not.

We now have partial confirmation that we were right from RT today. “Victims of the Odessa fire massacre died within seconds, but not from smoke or carbon monoxide suffocation, the head of Odessa’s emergency service department, Vladimir Bodelan, said on his Facebook page.”

Witnesses reported bodies and people being herded into the basement, and then this dissapeared from the news. Not a word about “missing” people was mentioned by the Odessa authorities. And of course it is easy to have confusion here with witnesses hiding out who would like to stay alive.

Despite all the witnesses to building escapees being beaten to death by the Right Sector mob, Kiev preferred to give tag them as “jumpers”. Of course on a frame of video of a jumped has emerged. I wonder why?

Smoke inhalation deaths can be confirmed by visual autopsies simply from the visible soot residue in the lungs. The good news is that foreign experts are supposed to be involved, but after all of thise time the chain of command of the evidence will be in question.]


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