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Joined up thinking for the Irish Left
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Interested in maladministration. Estd. 2005
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Syrian Refugees, ISIS / Al Nursa Butchers and Their Not So Secret Backing by Western Powers
In the last two months, the dramatic and sad photographs of 3 year old Aylan Kurdi, and his brother lying dead on the shores on a beach in Turkey have finally opened the curtain very slightly on the horrors and terror of war in Syria. It is hard to conceive the trauma of this family first seeing one of their other brothers beheaded by ISIS jihadists, then to flee and then for this man's wife and two remaining young children to drown in the sea whilst attempting to escape. If you were to listen to politicans from the UK all the way up to the present prime minister, you would think they were doing this so they could scab off the social welfare but as anyone knows, this was the act of a family desperate to flee the terror in their home country and get to safety at all costs. However Aylan Kurdi and his brother and mother aren't the only ones to drown or being killed in war, there are tens of thousands dead.
Up to now the corporate media has kept us distracted with titlation, celebrity and other inane stories; for it was social media that led to these pictures going viral and the media then just had to pick up the story. Previous to that, thousands have already drowned this year alone in the Mediterranean Sea fleeing from Libya -bombed out by NATO, and other war torn countries like Iraq and Afghanistan where Western powers dropped their democracy inducing bombs, invaded and occupied for over a decade, tortured people (Abu Ghraib anyone?), ran night raids terrorizing and murdering thousands, formented civil war, armed warlords and so forth. It is funny how we hear about all these conflicts and consider them remote and happening to others while the life of middle class consumerism continues but in fact we are vaguely aware of it in our sub-conscious and it disturbs us greatly when we are forced to focus on it to actually pay attention to reality. We know that we should be doing something but content ourselves with the fact that our lives are just too busy to allow us to do anything about it.
Neverthless at the height of this crisis before the Russians stepped in, it was the ISIS jihadists who were firmly center stage in the news and were the target witha rising chorus, to send a force to Syria to remove them, but this is simply another justification for war and hides the fact that previous attempts over the last 3+ years by the Gulf States primarly Saudi Arabia and Qatar and by the US, UK, France and Turkey, have failed at regime change despite the fact that they are 100% responsible for formenting the war and financing, training, arming and sending in thousands of mercenaries and jihadists extremists. And this means they are responsible for the wave of refugees and deaths such as Aylan Kurdi. So the narrative was that ISIS are so bad and out of control which is true, that they need to send in the troops. In other words they have previously failed to swing public opinion to commit a full scale assault and hopefully this can do it. This is what all the beheadings were about in the last year and destruction of some of humanity's greatest archaeological treasures was for and firmly aimed at the Western middle classes. Again though this has changed since the Russians started bombing ISIS and caught the Western powers by surprise and ruined their narrative at least to those paying attention.
So Who backs ISIS?When one looks there is quite a lot of evidence for who backs ISIS. First off, lets start with a Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) Aug 2012 report recently declassifed that Judical Watch managed to obtain through a FOIA request. The report was widely circulated through the US government. The report points out that the key event in the rise of ISIS was the corresponding rise of the insurgency in Syria which the USA with its allies fully supported. It confirms that reactionaries dominated the opposition from early on.
"The Salafist, The Muslim Brotherhood, and al-Qaeda in Iraq (AQI) are the major forces driving the insurgency in Syria" and in the next sentence says:
The West, Gulf Countries and Turkey support the opposition; while Russia, China and Iran support the regime. -so there you have it -the West & Co. support the terrorists. Later in the report it states:
If the situation unravels there is the possibility of establishing a declared or undeclared Salafist principality in Eastern Syria (Hasaka and Der Zor) and this is exactly what the supporting powers to the opposition want, in order to isolate the Syrian regime, which is considered the strategic depth of the Shia expansion (Iraq and Iran).
And this is what more or less happened. In June 2014 a few thousand ISIS fighters took over the northern Iraq city of Mosul with a population of 2.5 million and gained access to the oil revenues and at the same time looted a few hundred million dollars from the bank and picked up a vast amount of weaponry provided by the US to the Iraqi army. Around this time there was lots of media coverage showing ISIS in fleets of Toyota trucks advancing on different areas. Yet how come the US didn't attack them? The US had their famous 'turkey' shoot after the first Gulf War on the road from Kuwait to Iraq where they massacred the retreating Iraqi army. So why didn't they attack these very visible convoys? They rendition people from all over the planet to Guantanamo and other secret detention sites, and launch drone attacks in other countries like Afghanistan and Pakistan which even the US admits has killed over 2,000 civilans so far in the form of colateral damage -all to kill a few Al Qaeda leader -assuming they really did. Their radar and signals intercept satellites can pick up all movements and radio signals in vast areas and would be particularly focused on the entire Middle East -yet they were claim they were surprised. The whole episode looks more like tacit support by virtue of not intervening.
The US for the past year as part of it's cover story has been claiming it has been bombing ISIS but it has carried out very few sorties and in fact the Russians did more damage to ISIS in the first 3 weeks of their recent campaign than the US has in the last year. The US is likely dropping their bombs in the sand and have used it as a way to bomb infrastructure in Syria which harms Assad and the people rather than ISIS. Just recently they bombed the main power plant in Aleppo and cut power to 2.5 million people, yet when ISIS held parts of Aleppo there was a tacit agreement that neither side would damage the plant since both sides needed it. See Putin Cites US Bombing Attack on Aleppo Power Station as “Strange”
And just recently 50 intelligence analysts working in US Central command (CENTCOM) have said ISIS intelligence was cooked by senior officials in order to make it appear ISIS was weaker than they actually were. Src: http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2015/09/09/exclusive-50-spies-say-isis-intelligence-was-cooked.html
Additionally there were several cases of weapons drops that were supposed to be for other fighters such as the Kurds fighting ISIS in the town of Kobane which were dropped 'accidently' into the hands of ISIS. Once is a mistake, but this has happened several times and even got reported in the mainstream news. There are other reports such as these which say the US has been dropping weapons to ISIS on a regular basis. See for example: In Plain Sight: Coalition Forces Routinely Air-Drop Military Supplies to ISIS Fighters In Syria and in March 2015 Terrorists Supported by America: U.S. Helicopter Delivering Weapons to the Islamic State (ISIS), Shot Down by Iraqi “Popular Forces”
Last week, Head of the Iraqi Parliament’s National Security and Defense Committee Hakem al-Zameli announced that the helicopters of the US-led anti-ISIL coalition were dropping weapons and foodstuff for the ISIL terrorists in the Southern parts of Tikrit.
When we consider other aspects of ISIS like the fact that they are said to be excellent at social media and regularly use Facebook and Twitter to get their messages out, we have to wonder how the powerful NSA and cyber army of the US seems unable to close down their websites. They do it very quickly and easily when people are breaking copyright, or downloading free music. Likewise we are told ISIS are well financed and rich. So how come their banks accounts and assets aren't frozen? They managed to do this quite easily against Gadaffi at the time and recently against a range of Russia oligarchs with regard to the sanctions there.
Moving onto the arming of the "resistance" in Syria the evidence is much more in the open about the Gulf states' and Western backing of those fighting Assad and when it became increasingly clear the only 'Syrian resistance' was ISIS, the US media then pushed the line that it was US allies (-i.e. not the USA itself) supporting them. In Sep 2014 General Dempsey told the Senate Armed Services committee that their "Arab allies" were funding ISIS. Later in Oct 2014 Vice President Joe Biden publicly criticized US allies again for backing ISIS. Biden even apologized to Turkey and the United Arab Emirates for saying Middle Eastern allies are partly to blame for the strengthening of ISIS. At an appearance (Oct 2014) at Harvard University, he said the militant Islamist group had been inadvertently strengthened by actions allies took to help opposition groups fighting against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
"They poured hundreds of millions of dollars and thousands of tons of weapons into anyone who would fight against Assad. Except that the people who were being supplied were al-Nusra and al Qaeda and the extremist elements of Jihadis coming from other parts of the world," Biden said.
You don't just hand over millions of dollars and tonnes of weapons to anybody. If you try and claim on the social welfare for alot less you are checked and cross checked and have to make multiple verifications as to who you actually are. You also have to wonder why Biden came out in public and said this. It suggests that different factions of the elite in the US empire are at odds at how things should be happening. And yet the narrative they tried to push that their allies do thing outside of their control is not right either. It is said that Saudi regime can't take a pee without the US say so as they are joined at the hip. Without the US protection and security, the royals in Saudi would be overthrown in weeks if not days.
To help those still in doubt, an ISIS leader, Abu Atheer in 2013 stated: "We have good relations with our brothers in the FSA," and said ISIS bought anti-aircraft missiles and anti-tank weapons from the FSA.
Then we have the killing of US ambassador Stevens in Benghazi, Libya in Sept 2012. Stevens was killed by some faction of Al Qaeda and was funneling weapons seized from Gadaffi Libyan army stockpiles after his downfall and were shipped to the terrorists in Syria. Officially Stevens was killed by a faction of Al Qaeda but it is not actually clear who did it. The Steven's killing itself is interesting as once again it seems to shine a light on divisions in the US elite. There is also speculation that elements of lower ranks of special forces and Navy are so appalled at the actions of the CIA & politicos that despite having a unit nearby, none was sent to rescue Stevens. Regardless anyhow, according to documents obtained by Judical Watch:
Weapons from the former Libya military stockpiles were shipped from the port of Benghazi, Libya to the Port of Banias and the Port of Borj Islam, Syria. The weapons shipped during late-August 2012 were Sniper rifles, RPG’s, and 125 mm and 155mm howitzers missiles.Reports say that Britain's MI6 cooperated with the CIA on this weapons rat-line to Syria.
And just recently a trial in the UK of a Swedish man accused of terrorism in Syria, collapsed after according to this report:
The prosecution abandoned the case, apparently to avoid embarrassing the intelligence services. The defence argued that going ahead with the trial would have been an "affront to justice" when there was plenty of evidence the British state was itself providing "extensive support" to the armed Syrian opposition. That didn’t only include the "non-lethal assistance" boasted of by the government (including body armour and military vehicles), but training, logistical support and the secret supply of "arms on a massive scale" See Guardian June 2015 Now the truth emerges: how the US fuelled the rise of Isis in Syria and Iraq
Indeed it has been suggested that all the Jihadists going to Syria over the last year or two from Britain were helped in their efforts by the MI6 despite the media scare stories horrified that this was happening and clamouring for more police and surveillance powers. To spell it out, the British state uses the angry young Muslem men in Britain to put in the meat grinder to promote extremism and carry out terrorism abroad and at the very same time to scare the home population into accepting more draconian powers and ratcheting up of the police state. This is all about controlling the folks at home. You need to be made scared and confused all the time. What's even better for the neo-liberal capitalist system is that the waves of refugees and immigrants are the perfect tool for driving down labour costs and undermining working conditions and rights. It's a win-win.
This article from Voltaire network http://www.voltairenet.org/article188650.html
For months it was in the news that 400 Britons had joined the jihadis in Syria. Foreign Secretary William Hague himself said so. However, the number of these British jihadis is much larger and it has been revealed that some of them were trained to be Sunni jihadists by a jihad-seeking Saudi mullah in a British mosque under the watchful eyes of the MI6.Does anyone think there is no mosque in Britain that is not under surveillance?
For yet more coverage of how Western powers are backing the ISIS terrorists in Syria see this report from the Guardian in 2013. Notice how it is always couched in terms of helping moderates even though it should be absolutely clear there aren't any and the various governments and intelligence agencies know that too.
From West training Syrian rebels in Jordan Exclusive: UK and French instructors involved in US-led effort to strengthen secular elements in Syria's opposition, say sources
Reading between the lines, it is clear they have been blatantly training, arming and providing intelligence to the terrorists, which would include locations and movements of Assad's Syrian army. The sentence about maintain order in the event of Bashar al-Assad's fall is a laugh because if we check with what happened in Libya, it has gone from the African country with the highest standard of living and tolerance to a completely failed state, with infrastructure built over decades destroyed, and over-run with marauding gangs of Jihadists and criminals who have murdered literally tens of thousands since Gadaffi's fall.
For another angle on this, the former Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki warned that the war in Syria could engulf Iraq, yet the United States and its allies kept supporting the insurgency. The American bombing of ISIS, relatively light and sporadic, has only intensified the belief of many Iraqis that the United States doesn’t want to defeat the group. Maliki has been publicly accusing Saudi Arabia and Qatar of funding ISIS for months. He also blamed both countries for launching Syria's three-year civil war through al Qaeda-linked groups that now operate on both sides of the Iraqi-Syrian border, next to Anbar province.
"They are attacking Iraq through Syria indirectly. They absolutely started the war in Iraq, they started the war in Syria," Maliki said. ISIL has been one of the biggest fighting forces in Syria's civil war. Regarding Saudi Arabia: "Saudi Arabia supports terrorism against the world, Syria, Iraq, Egypt and Libya. See March 2014 Iraqi PM Maliki says Saudi, Qatar openly funding violence in Anbar province
Finally not forgetting the role of Turkey which is actually huge because without them it would have been much harder to supply, train and generally prop up ISIS and it affiliates. In this article Links between Turkey and ISIS are now ‘undeniable’ some of the details are exposed although many more can be found quite easily elsewhere. For example:
..Documents and flash drives seized during the Sayyaf raid reportedly revealed links “so clear” and “undeniable” between Turkey and ISIS “that they could end up having profound policy implications for the relationship between us and Ankara,” a senior western official familiar with the captured intelligence told the Guardian.
A bit more about the not so moderate Free Syrian Army openly supported by US, UK, France, Turkey, Saudi & QatarThe Free Syrian Army (FSA) is a terrorist organization responsible for indiscriminate killings, imposition of sharia law, murders, rapes, cannibalism and more. Even one of the FSA commanders, Bassel Idriss, recently admitted to openly collaborating with ISIS and al-Nusra, revealing yet another example of the fact that the “moderate rebels” are not moderate at all.
In an interview with the Daily Star of Lebanon, Idriss stated “We are collaborating with the Islamic State and the Nusra Front by attacking the Syrian Army’s gatherings in . . . Qalamoun . . . . Let’s face it: The Nusra Front is the biggest power present right now in Qalamoun and we as FSA would collaborate on any mission they launch as long as it coincides with our values.”
Idriss also admitted that many FSA fighters had pledged allegiance to ISIS. He said, “[ISIS] wanted to enhance its presence in the Western Qalamoun area. After the fall of Yabroud and the FSA’s retreat into the hills [around Arsal], many units pledged allegiance [to ISIS]”.
Abu Fidaa, a retired Syrian Army Colonel who is now a part of the Revolutionary Council in the Qalamoun, corroborated Idrisss’ statements by saying that “A very large number of FSA members [in Arsal] have joined ISIS and Nusra. In the end, people want to eat, they want to live, and the Islamic State has everything.”
Not only the FSA, but also the Syrian Revolutionary Front has also openly admitted to working with Nusra and al-Qaeda. The leader of the SRF, Jamaal Maarouf admitted that his brigades coordinate with Nusra and al-Qaeda regularly.
Salem Idriss, one of the men seen in the photograph with John McCain, is the commander of the FSA, the “opposition group” touted as a “moderate rebels.” In reality, of course, the FSA is nothing of the sort.
Former US Ambassador Robert Ford has admitted as much, saying that "for a long time, we have looked the other way" as US-backed groups worked with al-Qaeda’s affiliate, the Islamic State of Iraq spinoff al-Nusra Front. Many "moderate" rebels - "entire CIA-backed rebel units" - have joined al-Nusra Front and ISIS. Earlier this year, the main US-backed group, Harakat al-Hazm, couldn’t beat al-Nusra Front -- so it joined them
However as the rebels gained strength, the reports of war crimes and atrocities that they were committing began to create a bit of a public relations problem for Washington. It then became standard policy to insist that U.S. support was only being given to what they referred to as "moderate" rebel forces. This distinction, however, had no basis in reality.
Reuters had reported in 2012 that the FSA's command was dominated by Islamic extremists, and the New York Times had reported that same year that the majority of the weapons that Washington were sending into Syria was ending up in the hands Jihadists.
And the FSA's ties to Al-Nusra are just the beginning. In June of 2014 Al-Nusra merged with ISIS at the border between Iraq and Syria.
So to review, the FSA is working with Al-Nusra, Al-Nusra is working with ISIS, and the U.S. has been sending money and weapons to the FSA even though they've known since 2012 that most of these weapons were ending up in the hands of extremists but even that is too gentle a conclusion because as we know and cited above, they have been doing weapons and food drops directly to ISIS.
Former presidential candidate John McCain's meeting with ISIS leaderIn April 2013 former presidential candidate John McCain made an illegal visit to Syria and had a meeting in a rebel safe house with the heads of the "Free Syrian Army" in Idlib, Syria. Present was the top Al Qaeda terrorist leader Ibrahim al-Badri (aka Al-Baghdadi of ISIS, aka Caliph Ibrahim of the recently founded Islamic Empire) demonstrating the farce that is the so called War on Terror. We have to let the magnitude and significance of this sink in. This is the same group the American army were 'hunting' down in Iraq, the key brand name in the 14 year War on Terror but really War of Terror by the US and it's allies on Arab and Middle East states.
The meeting and photograph also demonstrates that the FSA and ISIS are very very close and largely one and the same and underscores that supplying arms and support to the FSA is effectively supporting ISIS. Even if they were truly separate, the very fact that you are arming one faction, diverts Assads forces away from dealing with ISIS and takes the pressure off them and thereby allowing them to advance and take over territory and of course to carry out their butchery.http://www.activistpost.com/2013/05/syrian-rebel-eats-soldiers-heart-paid.html
The New York times attempted to run a story to deny the visit and claim it was rumors, but the only other offering in the way of McCain’s defense is a statement by his own Communications Director, Brian Rogers, who claims that the man in the picture was not Baghdadi but another individual associated with the Northern Storm Brigade, ironically a terrorist organization in its own right. Northern Storm was famous for kidnapping a group of religious pilgrims crossing through Syria in September, 2012. Nevertheless, the comparisons of the photographs and the individuals in them lean toward the idea that the terrorist in the picture is Baghdadi. Regardless of who it was, the individual was a terrorist since McCain’s defense is that it was a fighter/commander with Northern Storm.
It should also be remembered that McCain traveled to Libya during the assault against Ghaddafi in order to meet with terrorists in that country and promote the barbarism which they would ultimately bring.
It should be noted that McCain is extremely close to the color revolution apparatus organization, the International Republican Institute, a wing of the National Endowment for Democracy and USAID. He is the current Chairman of the IRI.
It Was All Planned Years Ago.
There are still more sides to this story because all this mayhem was planned years ago. For those who don't know, U.S. General Wesley Clark was Supreme Allied Commander Europe of NATO from 1997 to 2000.
In an interview with Amy Goodman on March 2, 2007, Clark (Ret.), explains that the Bush Administration planned (in 2001) to take out 7 countries in 5 years: Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Iran.
It has all taken a little longer than expected but it is making good progress. Here is the latest update.
The Wave of RefugeesSo it should be quite clear that the current wave of refugees to Europe is directly as a result of the actions of the sponsors of terrorism in Syria. While the numbers are trying to enter Europe are in the hundreds of thousands, there are in fact several million in the countries directly bordering Syria. It is likely that the poorest are in places like Lebanon and Turkey while the ones reaching Europe had more money to pay the traffickers. The ideal solution is that the war would end and resources could be made available to rebuild the country and people's lives but this is not likely to pan out.
So far the refugee crisis is causing all sorts of political problems in Europe. Germany had said it will take 850,000 and Sweden expects to accommodate around 190,000 by the end of the year. For a country like Sweden this is a huge number and even for Germany too and one can only conclude that this is going to greatly fan the flames of the far right.
The Left in general seems to take the approach that we should let everyone in and it will all be fine but it won't. Nor do the Left say an awful lot about who has caused all the butchery or make any real effort at trying to understand what is going on. The Left simply play the role assigned to them. In the Libyan war they were fooled and thereby helped with the pretext for the justification for the NATO bombing of Libya. Then again in the Syrian war, they were fooled for a while into believing the FSA were Left wing rebels and again enabled the pretend game. And now in this instance by just reacting and not analysing and controlling their own narrative, they instead allow the mainstream media to get away with the lies that the refugees are the result of Assad. They are not. They are the result of terrorism. We also have to step back and see what is the bigger picture. For instance, Ulrich Grillo, the boss of Germany’s heavy industry and obviously a capitalist not a leftist, has welcomed the refugees. Why you would wonder? -because big business has profited from the occasion to abolish the minimum wage in several German federal states and is getting a huge influx of cheap labour. This is and will cause resentment from the German population. There has been suggestions that this was planned up to a year in advance primarily with President Erdoğan of Turkey who controls the 'valve' and therefore the flow of refugees from Syria through Turkey and onwards to Europe via the Balkans. Erdoğan in the last few weeks has managed to extract a promise of several billion euros from the EU to deal with refugees on Turkish soil. In this article Who is twitter-luring refugees to Germany? the author cites a study that shows the bulk of tweets inviting refugees to Germany and welcoming came not from the Germans but an army of bots operating from UK, USA and Australia. What exactly then is going on and what is the effect on Syria? It looks like the action by Erdoğan to readily accept refugees from Syria on the one hand and allow them to pass through Turkey to Europe is essentially an exercise to drain Syria of it's people and thereby dismantle the country. As more people leave and remember it is more likely to be the young, it tends to reinforce itself and trigger more to leave. These are the very people that are needed to both defend the country and rebuild it. And this crisis comes out a time when the efforts to topple Assad have failed and they are probably running out of fighters. The logic is that they terrorists sponsors will tap into the flood of refugees to recruit, arm and send back in a new fresh wave of bodies to the war. Traditionally refugees have been widely used for this sort of thing in all conflicts.
For the European side of the equation the benefit for the USA which after all is really the boss amongst the sponsors of this awful war (i.e. Saudi, Qatar, Turkey, France, Britain) is that if they can create enough problems in Europe it bogs them down and stops any reapproachment with Russia. For the US who incidentally fund 70% of the NATO budget, the role of NATO in Europe is one of occupation and control in the military and foreign policy sphere and America only remains strong so long as others are weaker. The geography of Europe and Russia would suggest that they should form a natural alliance and strong trading relationship, but if this was to occur, then combined an independent economic region extending from Europe into Russia would be far stronger than the USA. This can never be allowed to happen and the Ukraine war is part of the poison to disallow that. But so too must the present crisis be related to it, especially when you consider the vast majority of refugees are heading to Germany.
Links / References
http://www.judicialwatch.org/press-room/weekly-updates/the-truth-about-benghazi/These documents also show connections between the collapse in Libya and the ISIS war – and confirm that the U.S. knew remarkable details about the transfer of arms from Benghazi to Syrian jihadists
US to give arms, air support to Islamist militias in Syria - 10th Oct 2015