12,000 Foreigners Fighting in Syria

Terrorism expert says, "the conflict is well on track to becoming the most significant mobilization of foreign fighters that has ever taken place in living memory."
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Selling Fear and Lies to Control the Public

The media is selling fear of beheadings to the public. Syria is destroyed and so is Iraq, principally at the hands of the U.S. military machine and western partners. Oil pipelines and weapons deals are the reasons for this monstrosity that knows no end in its brutal occupation. The U.S. sold arms to Nouri al-Maliki to back his corrupt regime and backed his forces with drone strikes against ISIS, even though the American CIA also previously supported jihadist Sunni rebels, including the ISIS—procuring weapons for these groups, to attack the government of Bashar al-Assad. Hundreds of thousands of civilians are now dead in Syria—murdered by U.S. backed proxies. The ISIS are now in control of oil fields in Iraq thanks in no small part to U.S. weaponry, sold to Maliki, which they obtained after taking over major areas of the country.

The colonial powers and western energy conglomerates/capitalist investors are now dividing the spoils of oil resources for NATO geopolitical war machine control. U.S. bombing of Iraq to impose ethnic borders between the Kurds, the Sunnis and the Shias is the U.S. military strategy to make this war-ridden land safe for U.S. multinational oil investors who supply a never ending flow of oil to the global NATO war machine.

Even though the real reason for conducting brutalizing airstrikes against Iraq is to re-enforce American domination, the U.S. imperial corporate apparatus via the deceptive mass media sold the sustained vicious bombing to the American people as humanitarian intervention to save the Yazadi people and to avenge the deaths of two slain/beheaded western reporters. The military-industrial-corporate media complex will continue to foment war tensions through its success at demonizing enemies on numerous fronts—including Putin, who they claim is invading Ukraine, and the Ukrainian separatists who will not bend to Washington’s right-wing Neo-Nazi regime in Kiev.

The ISIS is a 100 percent product of the U.S. proxy destabilization policy against Syria, and their command of Iraq’s oil fields in Mosul, along with this group’s beheading of journalists, both function as convenient war propaganda to anger the American public and fuel the U.S. airstrike machine that benefits the capitalist armaments industry since Americans subconsciously believe as a result of their national security indoctrination that the petroleum of the Middle East is U.S. property serving “core interests” and protecting their “way of life.”

The Afghan region is still occupied via U.S. forces for the construction of the TAP (Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan) pipeline that controls the flow of Caspian Sea Oil against Russia. Over 1000 military bases in 130 nations still straddle the globe of the biggest and most brutal weapons manufacturing war economy militarist system in history that drone bombs children in Pakistan, Yemen and Iraq, even though the American people are not hearing about it in the controlled mass media.

Everywhere that one looks it is occupation and militarization for resource control. Sanctions and war, genocide and slaughter were the result of the 1990-1991 attack against the sovereign nation of Iraq. Depleted uranium munitions infecting the air particles Iraqis breathe and heavy bombing of infrastructure to smash a society and render the people helpless before their dictator is the manner in which the Washington military-oil-complex softened up Iraq. The U.S. war machine targeted electrical grids, sewage systems and water-treatment/sanitation facilities with bombing and combined this destruction of life support systems with sanctions to deny necessary materials to fix the destroyed national infrastructure, which resulted in the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people through disease. It was part of a deliberate disintegration of Iraqi society to weaken the people of this land for Anglo-North-American control of the vast petroleum reserves in the Persian Gulf.

The excuse for this aggression against the people of Iraq, to punish the dictator Saddam Hussein for invading Kuwait, obscures the fact that this act of aggression stemmed from Kuwait’s slant drilling into Iraqi oil fields and simultaneous refusal to relieve Iraq’s war debt, incurred from the Iran-Iraq war, that prevented Hussein from embarking upon re-industrialization/post-war reconstruction programs in this nation.

The U.S. government mass murders civilians for war profit. It does it with calculated ease. Rather than seeking revenge for beheadings of U.S. journalists, Americans supporting a renewed U.S. bombardment of Iraq need to look at the fact that the U.S. arranged for the training of ISIS in Jordan and that this group has nefarious connections to NATO allies Saudi Arabia and Qatar, who openly funded the ISIS as part of the proxy genocidal destabilization against Syria.

Let us also look at the anger that is resultant from the U.S. bombing, occupation, torture and murder of innocent Iraqi civilians beginning in 2003 that was part a shock and awe invasion/ counterinsurgency operation to build military bases in Iraq and have a foothold in the Persian Gulf to control Middle East oil. Why is the main focus in the mainstream media on Putin’s so called “invasion” of Crimea or his alleged deployment of troops into Eastern Ukraine rather than placing in the proper context the Project for a New American Century (PNAC) U.S. invasion of Iraq which, three years after commencing, is doing far more damage in terms of loss of human life with its blowback effects of the Saudi/Qatar/NATO backed ISIS beheading of civilians and shooting up Iraq out of anger for American atrocities from 2003-2011. Is this not far worse than anything Putin could ever do? Since the proper context of the ISIS beheadings is not presented in the controlled mass media, the blowback from this outright imperial slaughter-occupation that has enflamed fundamentalists throughout the region, who want to get even with Americans whose governing officials have ruthlessly and liberally applied counter-insurgency death squads in their nations, is not reflected upon by the American people. U.S. jets to re-bomb the area as a form of retaliation is only causing further hatred of American foreign policy.

The U.S.-backed government in Kiev engaging in a brutal coup-de-taut, backed through the National Endowment for Democracy and the U.S. State Department/European Union is also causing massive civilian casualties as these monsters bomb women, children and babies from airplanes in Eastern Ukraine cities such as Lugansk and Gorlovka and massacre civilians in Odessa. ISIS draws its weapons and funding from the U.S. Pentagon—accident or not, and they receive funding from NATO Allies-Saudi Arabia-Qatar. They commit rabid atrocities against civilian journalists as an act of retaliation against the European and North American colonial imperialist policies that are responsible for the destruction of the region but have also been funded by Arabian oil monarchy controlled governments who are NATO members cooperating as partners in this resource control project through their collaboration with the CIA and alliance with NATO in funding proxy guerilla death squads.

The U.S. 2015 discretionary spending budget of $1.16 trillion will appropriate approximately $640 billion or 55.2 percent of the entire discretionary budget on military spending compared to other expenses such as Food and Agriculture, Transportation, Science, International Affairs, Energy and Environment, Social Security, Unemployment and Labor, Medicare and Health, Housing and Community, Government, Veterans Affairs Benefits and Education. This gross appropriation on war and death only benefits a select few at the top of the income stratification and is squandering away the wealth of the working people on needless death and slaughter to continue the Pentagon strategic control of oil resources throughout the world.

William C. Lewis is a journalist, researcher and book collector from Yreka California. He blogs at http://politicalaffairs.weebly.com/

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Carrots and sticks: New Iraq crisis is part of US agenda to target Syria and Iran

By hook or by crook or by carrots or sticks, the US and its NATO and regional allies will not stop targeting Syria and Iran until they vanquish both. The crisis in Iraq is just a new phase in those objectives.

The anti-government forces ravaging Iraq and Syria are mostly the same overzealous or gung-ho head choppers, rapists, extortionists, thugs, and cannibals that were pillaging and senselessly devastating the Syrian countryside with the aim of occupying Damascus in 2011. These ever morphing and constantly name changing groups are not new at all. They have just been rebranded.

Some may recall the leaks about the training facilities and secret headquarters that the US and its allies erected for the Syrian insurgents in Jordan, where the buffoon King Abdullah II pretends to manage his discontent subjects while the US and Israel really run the show. The groups marauding Iraq have been trained in these not-so-secret Jordanian facilities.

But this is where the plot thickens. The US was using sticks for the last few years against the Syrians and Syria’s staunch ally Iran. That has changed. Poisonous carrots are now in use.

Dividing Iraq

It just so happens that the Irbil-based autonomous Kurdistan Regional Government made a de facto military annexation of Kirkuk. The Kurdistan Regional Government did this by sending its peshmerga forces into the oil-rich city when the so-called Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL/DAISH) caliphate was being carved out of northern Iraq, and northern Iraq was in disarray as the Iraqi military and security forces were repositioning themselves.

What is very telling is that there were very few clashes, if any, between the peshmerga and the DAISH/ISIL forces. Iraq was being carved into three chunks. Although the process did not take place overnight, the country was literally divided into an autonomous Kurdistan region waiting in the wings to declare its independence from Iraq, a pseudo-caliphate enveloping the areas of Iraq predominately inhabited by Sunni Muslim Arabs, and the federal territories enveloping the predominately Shiite Muslim Arab parts of Iraq in a matter of days. This division fell exactly into line with America’s Biden Plan and Israel’s Yinon Plan.

It also so happened that the mendacious Masoud Barzani President of the Kurdistan Regional Government said that the Iraqi Kurds were preparing to declare their independence. It was no mere coincidence that Israel also announced it was high time for Iraq to dissolve with the secession of Iraqi Kurdistan. No wonder there were reports from Baghdad that Israeli forces were assisting both the ISIL/DAISH forces and the Kurdish peshmerga in northern Iraq.

Nor should it be a surprise that American and Israeli weapons have been reported to be used by the pseudo-caliphates forces.

When the pseudo-caliphate was being carved in Iraq, the US declared that it was going to openly aid the insurgents in Syria. Looking past the Orwellian doublespeak, what this meant was that the US was going to help the pseudo-caliphate. The calculus is simple: insurgents in Syria are the same people that have helped takeover Mosul and carve the pseudo-caliphate in Iraq against the people of Iraq, particularly the Christians.

AFP Photo / Ahmad AL-Rubaye

Sending weapons to help or to divide Iraq?

When it was declared that the not-so-covert US-supported pseudo-caliphate in northern Iraq was fighting the Kurdistan Regional Government, the US and its NATO partners wasted no time in calling for more arms shipments to be sent to Iraq. Not wishing to be indicated, the US let France to take the lead in this.

The trickery lies here. Instead of sending arms to the national military of Iraq, the calls were for sending weapons to the Kurdistan Regional Government. Under the cover of a new crisis in Iraq, the Kurdistan Regional Government is being militarily armed and supported so that it can break away from Iraq.

When the US started bombing Iraq, it was not going after Abu Baker Al-Baghdadi’s forces. No man’s land was being bombed. The Pentagon was demarcating northern Iraq between the pseudo-caliphate and Iraqi Kurdistan. In other words, boundaries were being drawn out for both sides.

Destroying plurality and diversity

Consistently in the backdrop of the crises in Iraq and Syria, there has been a persecution of minorities and deliberate sectarianism aimed at creating sedition. It is no coincidence that Yazidis and Christians are systematically being targeted in Iraq, just like how Christians, Alawies, and Druze have been targeted in Syria.

It should be mentioned that while minority groups are being systematically targeted, the majority of people being killed by groups like ISIL/DAISH, Al-Nusra, and the Free Syrian Army are actually the innocent Sunni Muslims that oppose these troublesome militant groups.

The Foreign Minister of Lebanon Gebran Bassil, made an interesting connection between the Israeli war crimes against Palestinian civilians of Gaza and the ISIL/DAISH murder of Iraqis in Mosul. For Foreign Minister Bassil, himself a Maronite Catholic Christian, the connection was clear. Both Israel and ISIL/DAISH are working to redraw the ancient region by destroying all traces of plurality and diversity. This is why Bassil and the Lebanese government sent a request to the International Criminal Court to investigate the crimes of Israel against the Palestinians and the crimes of the ISIL/DAISH.

Using the crisis in Iraq to co-opt Iran and to attack Syria?

The US is still holding a stick behind its back. Washington could use its intervention in Iraq to open a gateway for intervention against Syria as a means of shifting the balance of power against the Syrian government.

Washington is now talking about intervening in Syria to bomb the same troublesome groups that it is supposedly fighting in Iraq. Pentagon military honcho, General Martin Dempsey, has stated that the ISIL/DAISH “cannot be defeated unless the United States or its partners take on the Sunni militants in Syria” on August 21, 2014. Speaking about the Pentagon strikes in Iraq, General Dempsey stated: “Can they be defeated without addressing that part of the organization that resides in Syria? The answer is no.”

At the same time Washington, London, Paris, and their cohorts are dangling carrots too. The US and its allies are talking about cooperating with Iran and Syria to fight the groups that the US and its allies have created and unleashed in Iraq and Syria.

AFP Photo / Ahmed Deeb

The Independent newspaper in London had this to report about the British government’s position on August 17, 2014: “Britain must prepared to ally itself with Iran to combat the ‘shared threat’ of Sunni Islamist extremists in Iraq and Syria who want to create ‘a terrorist state’ that could extend to “the shores of the Mediterranean,” David Cameron has said.”

What the US and its allies are dangling in front of Tehran and Damascus is not fully known yet.

Cooperation, however, is a poisoned chalice that neither Iran nor Syria should drink from. The whole world knows what happened to Muammar Qaddafi and the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya when Tripoli cooperated with the US, Britain, and France. Cooperation was used to infiltrate the Jamahiriya and to buy out officials. In the end it ended up in regime change in Tripoli and the murder of Colonel Qaddafi by NATO-controlled Libyan militants.

Nor should it be discounted that Washington wants to turn Tehran against Moscow. Iran and Russia are important partners for one another in bypassing sanctions, and the US is very unhappy with the oil-for-goods deal that has been authored by the two sides.

So on the one hand Washington holds its stick whereas on the other hand it dangles its poisonous carrots.

Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Hussein Amir-Abdollahian, however, has dismissed the chatter about cooperation with the US and its allies, saying that Iran sees no need to cooperate with the US and British governments to fight the terrorists plaguing Iraq that both the US and Britain have helped create.

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.

Uruguay Launches Syrian Refugee Resettlement Scheme

The number of refugees selected to enter the country is small, but it is “a 100 percent solution for each refugee.”

Uruguay officials will travel to Lebanon Friday to pick up the first group of Syrian refugees to resettle in the country, part of a humanitarian operation launched by President Jose “Pepe” Mujica.

The resettlement plan will involve bringing 16 families from Syria, some 120 people, fleeing the violence that erupted in their country in 2012. The first group of 40 will arrive in September and the rest are scheduled to come next year.     

Mujica announced the resettlement plan in late April, and since then organizations have been working to create a safe space where the refugees will stay, receive healthcare, education and take Spanish classes.

Javier Miranda, the human rights director of the presidency of Uruguay, will travel to Beirut this week to interview the 16 refugee families who have been pre-selected by the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR).  

Miranda admits that the number of refugees Uruguay is taking is a drop in the bucket compared to the thousands who have fled the violence in the country, but said that at least “For each refugee it is a 100 percent solution, and that is key.”  

Authorities said that victims of torture, children and families with at least one adult able to work – particularly in agriculture – were given priority for resettlement. 

Foreign Minister Luis Almagro said in a televised address last week that he hopes this will encourage other countries to take similar actions.  

"The idea is that this will serve as first aid," said Almagro, who added that "we hope that it can be trigger other countries, depending on their conditions, they can also receive many of these people."

According to recent UNHCR numbers, there are 1.1 million registered Syrian refugees in Lebanon, while another 32,929 await registration.  

The UNHCR currently does not operate any camps in Lebanon, so many refugees have to pay for a tent in private camps that are operated on private property.  

An independent poll shows that 66 percent of the Uruguayan public support the government initiative to take in Syrian refugees.

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UK authorities warn of returning Syria fighters

LONDON (AP) — British intelligence officials will be unable to keep track of hundreds of young Britons returning after fighting with militants in Syria and Iraq, a former spymaster has warned.

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