Aletho News


TYT sad to see US troops go

Hereticus Librarius | October 8, 2019

These two progressive liberals, Cenk Uygur and Ana Kasparian, apparently haven’t heard that Trump’s decision to pull out was expressed many months ago.

Suddenly TYT cares about the Pentagon weighing in on the US getting out of regime change operations.

Oh, the Kurds have no choice but to cooperate with Syria and Russia and Iran vis-a-vis Turkey? Good.

The lawful and sensible solution is to have Syrian reunification.

Also, Assad is a democratically elected head of state. The UN election observers in Syria endorsed the election process. Bashar al-Assad is not a dictator!

The progressive news outlet TYT is engaging in Deep State-Mainstream media war propaganda and are thus in league with international terrorism [regime change ops and affiliated methods].

October 11, 2019 Posted by | Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Progressive Hypocrite, Video | , , | Leave a comment

Jewish terrorist involved in Duma operation prepares to join Israel army

MEMO | October 11, 2019

Yedioth Ahronoth reported on Thursday that a Jewish terrorist who participated in the killing of members of the Dawabsheh family in the village of Duma, in the occupied West Bank, is currently located in an Israeli military establishment in preparation to join the Israeli army. Thus, Israel follows a policy of integrating terrorists who kill Palestinians in cold blood, as in the case of the killer and soldier to be, Elor Azaria.

The terrorist is in a preparatory institution for military service in the centre of the country. He was not identified at the time of his arrest, claiming that when the terrorist attack took place, he was 16 years old. He was referred to by the letter “A.”

Lawyers of terrorist “A” reached a plea bargain with the Public Prosecution, following which he was as acquitted of having a direct connection with the planning of the terrorist attack. They also claimed that he had never entered the Dawabshah family home; instead, the defence required the plaintiff to confess to conspiracy.

According to the prosecutors’ deal, “A” must remain in prison for five years, despite the brutality of the crime committed in July 2015. Back then, the Dawabsheh family home was burned down, leading to the death of the father, Saad, his wife, Reham, and their child, Ali, in addition to seriously wounding their other child, Ahmed.

According to the same deal, “A” confessed to burning a warehouse in the village of Aqraba, vandalising property and setting fire to a car in the village of Jubb Yusuf on racially motivated grounds, in addition to deflating tires in Beit Safafa. The Prosecution removed charges, including setting fire to the Abbey of the Dormition in occupied Jerusalem, as well as committing several crimes as part of the “price paying” movement. The deal also stipulated that prosecutors should not seek five and a half years sentence.

The District Court approved the deal in Lod on 12 May. In July last year, the same court ordered “A” to be placed under house arrest after spending two years in prison. Although the Prosecution objected to his release, the court decided to issue such decision upon the recommendation of the Department of Juvenile Justice.

This was preceded by another court decision, in April last year, abolishing the confessions of “A” and the terrorist Amiram Ben-Uliel, who was convicted of carrying out the terrorist attack, claiming that the confessions were obtained under torture.

The court claimed at the time that the boy was a minor and the period he spent in prison justifies a review of the sentence. The Department of Juvenile Justice also maintained that “A” changed his attitudes and expressed regret for his actions. However, the Prosecution confirmed that this was to mislead the court.

Israeli security officials, including former Shin Bet chiefs, have warned against the tolerant treatment of Jewish terrorists who commit crimes as part of the “price-paying” movement, particularly by refusing to treat them as terrorists.


Israel court sentences Palestinian to 18 years, $142,000 fine

October 11, 2019 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism | , , | 2 Comments

Trump Targets Turkish Economy, Gov’t Officials With Possible Sanctions Over Syria Invasion – Mnuchin

Sputnik – October 11, 2019

President Trump has called Turkey’s operation against Kurdish forces in northern Syria a “bad idea,” and said that in addition to possible sanctions, he would like to see something “much tougher” done against Ankara. Earlier, a group of senators said they were working on a package of “deep and devastating” “sanctions from hell” against Turkey.

President Trump will be signing an executive order giving US officials new powers to target Turkey and its government officials with “very significant sanctions,” Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin has announced.

Speaking to reporters on Friday, the official clarified that the “very significant” powers to sanction Turkey had been authorised, but not yet activated.

“I just met with president Trump, and he has authorised and will be signing a new executive order giving the treasury department, in consultation with himself and Secretary [of State Mike] Pompeo, very significant new sanctions authorities that can be targeted at any person associated with the government of Turkey, any portion of the government,” Mnuchin said. “This will be both primary sanctions and secondary sanctions that will be applicable.”

Mnuchin warned that the US would be able to “shut down” Turkey’s economy if necessary amid Ankara’s ongoing campaign against US-allied Syrian Kurdish forces in northern Syria.

“The president is concerned about the ongoing military offensive and potential targeting of civilians, civilian infrastructure, ethnic or religious minorities. Also, the president wants to make very clear that Turkey not allow even a single ISIS [Daesh] fighter to escape,” the secretary stressed.

On Thursday, lawmakers in the House of Representatives announced that they would support efforts by the Senate to impose sanctions on Turkey, with House Republican Conference chairwoman Liz Cheney saying “President [Recep Tayyip] Erdogan and his regime must face serious consequences” for the attack against Washington’s Syrian Kurdish allies.

Also on Thursday, President Trump told reporters that he was considering doing “something very, very tough with respect to sanctions and other things” over Turkey’s Syria operation.

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu later responded to Trump’s string of statements and tweets on the Turkish operation in Syria, saying Washington would not be able to change Ankara’s policy. On Friday, the foreign minister blamed the US for the Syria crisis, saying Ankara was forced to start its operations in part due to the supply of US arms supplies to the Kurds.

Turkey launched its new Syria campaign, dubbed ‘Operation Peace Spring’, on Wednesday, saying its aim was to clear the border area of Kurdish militants and Daesh (ISIS) terrorists and to establish a security zone. Turkey has repeatedly clashed with Syrian Kurdish forces during the long war in Syria, and classifies the YPG People’s Protection Units as ‘terrorists’, accusing them of having links with the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, a Turkish Kurdish militia and political movement which has been waging a guerilla campaign against the Turkish state for decades.

On Friday, Russian President Vladimir Putin said Moscow and other countries in the former Soviet space were concerned with the “real threat” potentially posed by the escape of Daesh fighters currently being held in Syrian Kurdish-controlled areas. “I’m not sure if the Turkish army can quickly take control of it,” he said, speaking at a Commonwealth of Independent States summit in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan. Putin and Erdogan held telephone talks on Wednesday, with the Russian president reportedly urging Ankara to assess the situation and to not harm the efforts to settle the crisis in Syria.

On Thursday, Iran, another co-guarantor of the Syrian peace process, called on Turkey to halt its offensive immediately and to pull out of Syria.

Damascus has repeatedly called on all uninvited forces operating in Syria to withdraw immediately, and accused Turkey of “aggressive intentions” and a “disgraceful breach of international law and UN resolutions that respect Syria’s sovereignty and territorial integrity” with its norther Syria operation.

October 11, 2019 Posted by | Aletho News | , , | 2 Comments

Israeli concern over the Turkish military operation against the Kurds

By Dr Adnan Abu Amer | MEMO | October 11, 2019

It was significant that the Israeli media presented extensive press and analytical coverage immediately after the start of the Turkish military operation in northern Syria against the Kurdish sites. It seems as if it were a purely internal Israeli affair, and not a regional or international issue. This opens the door to many sensitive questions regarding the reason for Israel’s concern over this operation and why Israel appears as if it were affected by the operation even though it is about 800 kilometres away from its borders.

The Israeli reactions, especially the official ones, reflect the magnitude of their concern and unease towards the Turkish military behaviour in the region. Most described it as a show of military power that was once unique to Israel alone. This current Turkish operation showed that there is a military force in the region that has influence, impact, and behaviour on the ground comparable to Israel’s and perhaps even superior to it.

We can talk about two kinds of Israeli reactions to the Turkish military operation in northern Syria against the Kurdish sites. The first are the official positions issued by the Israeli government and opposition leaders, which, agreed that Turkey should be attacked, despite their differences in most other issues.

Gilad Erdan, the Israeli Minister of Public Security, Strategic Affairs, commented the Turkish military operation in northern Syria by saying Erdogan is an “anti-Semitic racist who supports terrorism – slaughter the Kurds without us making a moral voice heard and calling on the world to stop it. We can’t stay indifferent on this.”

MK Zvi Hauser of the Blue and White party said, “As a nation-state of an ethnic minority in the Middle East, Israel cannot close its eyes to the suffering of the Kurds in the region. Fresh and deported Kurds will bring a wave of refugees, changing demographics, intensify instability and weep for generations, even from Israel’s point of view. Israel must internalise the new rules of the game concerning all challenges.”

Gideon Sa’ar, one of Netanyahu’s rivals in the Likud party, announced that Israel is must take a clear position on what he described as “Erdogan’s attack” on the Kurds and provide them with help. Former financial minister Yair Lapid said that given Turkey’s actions against the Turks, Lapid said “The time has come for Israel to officially recognize the genocide of the Armenian people and stop giving in to Turkish pressure.”

Ayelet Shaked, leader of the Yamina party and justice minister, said, “The Kurds are the world’s largest nation without a country, with a population of about 35 million people. They are an ancient people that share a special historical connection to the Jewish people,” adding, “They are the main force that fought against ISIS and endured thousands of deaths, under a special joint leadership of men and women. The Western world should stand with them.” Meanwhile, Netanyahu’s son, Yair, expressed his support for the Kurds by tweeting about Kurdistan under the hashtag #freekurdistan, indicating his separate support for the establishment of a Kurdish entity.

The second part of the Israeli positions involves the Israeli political and military analysis that gave itself a larger margin to criticise the American behaviour, thus “betraying” the Kurds, disappoint them, and delivering them to their inevitable fate before the lethal Turkish force. This requires Israeli decision-making circles to think hard about the American policy that has consistently let down its allies.

Haaretz newspaper’s military expert, Amos Harel, said: “Israel was surprised by U.S. President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw American forces from Syria and allow Turkey to begin a military operation in the area.” He added, “Several sources also said that the American decision was also not seriously discussed, and possibly even wasn’t discussed at all, during Sunday’s security cabinet meeting, which focused on Iran and the Palestinian arena.”

Meanwhile, Ben-Dror Yemini, a political analyst for Yedioth Aharonoth, said that Washington leaving the Kurds to face their fate against the Turks raises red flags in Israel, as Trump has been exposed, one time after another, as a leader who is not well-versed, and instead acts arbitrarily. He does not know what is expected of a leader of a global superpower, and the result is Trump has become an unreliable ally for Israel because his current behaviour is a knife in the back of both the Kurds and Israel.

However, Arab affairs expert at Channel 12, Ehud Yaari said that Israel was wrong from the beginning to embrace Trump, and it must stay away from him before it loses the American public, because his chatter will not benefit them. He no longer has anything to give Israel.

Before the start of the Turkish military operation in northern Syria against Kurdish sites, senior Israeli officials expressed serious concern regarding US President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw US troops from northern Syria, leaving its Kurdish allies as prey for Turkey, according to Israel.

More importantly, Israel was surprised by the American decision and saw it as an abandonment of the Kurdish forces that fought and contributed to the defeat of Daesh. Moreover, American action encourages Turkish-Iranian activity in Syria. All of this means that Israel cannot depend on Trump with regards to Syria, except for the political support for the Israeli attacks that target Iranian forces is well.

The US decision to withdraw from northern Syria suddenly spelled bad news for US allies in the region, specifically Israel. It is the second time that Trump surprises Israel after he decided to withdraw troops from Syria last December. All of the combined events create a new strategic reality in the region requiring Israeli readiness, because removing US troops in northeastern Syria, and letting Kurdish allies face their inevitable fate before the Turks, should be a serious, not artificial, source of concern in Tel Aviv.

The Turkish military operation in northern Syria, and the preceding and accompanying revelations, reveal the fear expressed by the Israelis and their desire not to reach a situation or scenario in which they are like the Kurds or Saudi Arabia, who did not receive American support or aid. This is because the Kurds’ disappointment from the Americans is a new indicator that he [Trump] will not fight anyone on behalf of Israel. It is worth noting that Israel lived some time under the assumption that the Americans will fight on behalf of it, but it has become clear that this assumption is completely mistaken and should not be built upon in light of the Turkish developments.

On the direct Israeli-Kurdish level, the Israeli concern over the Turkish military operation in northern Syria stems from Israel’s loss of its Kurdish allies and losing the great opportunity to establish a Kurdish entity or autonomy, which could result in forming a Kurdish-Israeli alliance that would serve both sides brought together by mutual strategic forces.

Israel and the Kurds are tied together by old historical alliances since the “minority alliance” theory emerged with the establishment of Israel over seventy years ago. Israel trained and armed Kurdish fighters who played a central role in helping Israel displace the Iraqi Jews in late 1969, moving Jews from their homes towards the border with Iran and then transferring them to Israel.

Israel’s interest in Kurdistan, which consists of parts of four countries, i.e. Iraq, Iran, Turkey, and Syria, manifested in a number of reasons that prompted Israel to strengthen ties between the two sides. Israel is almost the only country in the world to declare support for the establishment of a Kurdish state.

Israel seeks to keep the Kurds as a regional force in the area in order to prevent the revival of the “eastern front” threat, which poses a threat of a potential attack from that direction. The establishment of a Kurdish state or at least an advanced autonomy for the Kurds would solidify the division of Iraq on the one hand and surround Turkey and Iran on the other. It has been revealed that Israel has used the Kurdish region as a base to launch operations against Iranian facilities, which reveals the common ground for military and security relations between the Israelis and Kurds.

On an economic level, 75 per cent of Israel’s oil imports come from Iraqi Kurdistan, as well as significant economic cooperation, through the acquisition of a lot of investments by Israeli companies in Kurdistan, especially in the field of energy, construction, communications and security consulting.

Israel is assessing the Turkish-Kurdish developments around the clock because of its sensitivity. Perhaps the most important conclusion we can reach is that Israel joins the moderate Arab states and the Kurds are constantly and jointly assessing a position that is gradually becoming clearer. This position is that they are facing an American president that is unreliable because the US is living a phase completely separate to them all, even though they are supposed to be its most important and trusted allies in the region.

To conclude, the Turkish military operations in northern Syria, and the previous American withdrawal and abandonment of Saudi Arabia after the Iranian attacks [sic] on the country, all confirm to Israel that Trump is personally willing to sell it weapons and combat methods without military assistance. Therefore, in recent weeks, Israel has begun witnessing a state of agitation and disappointment that prevails in moderate countries, especially Saudi Arabia and the UAE.

From the Israeli point of view, this is a new cause for concern, because of the decline in confidence in Trump and the US as a trusted ally, as evidenced by his recent behaviour. The most recent of this behaviour is allowing the Turkish forces to attack the Kurds in northern Syria, this, which, in turn, would increase the Iranians’ interest in carrying out more attacks in the Middle East to establish their existence and control. It will be Israel’s turn sooner or later.


Kurdish-led SDF’s political arm in US repeats call for Syria no-fly zone

October 11, 2019 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Militarism, Wars for Israel | , , , , | 1 Comment

‘Ironic’: Congress Seeks to Punish Turkey’s Incursion, Even as US Troops Remain in Syria

Sputnik – October 11, 2019

Turkey’s “Operation Peace Spring” has kicked off in Syria and caused a divide in the US muddied by what US President Donald Trump has deemed a misunderstanding. With Turkish troops already clashing with Kurds, hundreds dead, and US politicians calling for sanctions on Turkey, the so-called confusion may trigger a larger conflict.

In response to Turkey’s offensive, GOP members of the US Congress have called for sanctions to be placed on NATO ally Ankara, and Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) issued a Thursday statement that said: “President [Recep Tayyip] Erdogan and his regime must face serious consequences for mercilessly attacking our Kurdish allies in northern Syria.”

This came hours after Senators Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) introduced their own proposal for sanctions.

While Turkey claims Operation Peace Spring is necessary for its security, Spain, another NATO ally, has also threatened to take action against Ankara and remove its Patriot missile defense systems from the country.

Peter Ford, the former UK ambassador to Syria, joined Radio Sputnik’s Loud and Clear on Thursday to explain the main point of confusion concerning Trump’s troop pullout and highlight the hypocrisy from US officials.

“There was never any serious talk of Kurdish region breakaway. Never. Not until the US presence,” Ford told hosts Brian Becker and John Kiriakou. “It’s actually been the US presence and guarantee which has been the real cause of destabilization.”

The former ambassador said that while the Kurds did have some grievances in the region, such as calls to have “more teaching of the Kurdish language in their schools,” Syrian Kurds have historically “been well integrated into the state.”

Trump’s statements on pulling out of Syria and bringing US troops home have been the subject of bipartisan ire, but the US president explained earlier this week that only approximately 50 soldiers were removed from the area.

Ford echoed the president’s claim and asserted that “all the hyperventilating” was over “the removal 50 guys.”

“The remaining hundreds of US forces are still there controlling about 20 to 25% of Syrian territory rich with oil and grain, preventing the reabsorption of those areas into the state of Syria. They still stand ready to act as a tripwire against the forces of Damascus,” he said. “Trump, for all his bluster about bringing the troops back, has taken only a very small step towards that goal.”

He went on to say that he believes that once the dust settles on this issue, those in the US currently outraged by Trump’s actions will realize how minimal the withdrawal is in reality. That is, unless there are Turkish “atrocities” in the area.

Ford concluded that in any case, he finds it quite “ironic that all these people who see no objection to the US occupying Syria are hyperventilating about another NATO power occupying Syria. The situation is very rich in irony.”

October 11, 2019 Posted by | Illegal Occupation, Militarism | , , | 2 Comments

Yemen’s Ansarullah offers new prisoner swap deal to Saudi-backed ex-govt

Press TV – October 11, 2019

Yemen’s Houthi Ansarullah movement has offered the Saudi-backed former government a new deal for exchange of prisoners over a week after the popular movement unilaterally released hundreds of detainees.

Head of Yemen’s National Committee for Prisoners Affairs (NCPA), Abdulqader al-Mortada, said Friday the group had told “local mediators” that it was ready to implement a prison exchange within one week.

“We are waiting for the other side to respond,” he noted, according to a report by Al Masirah TV.

The Ansarullah official said the deal offered to the other side would cover 2,000 prisoners in the “first phase”.

The offer came days after the Houthi movement released hundreds prisoners, including three Saudi nationals, in its latest goodwill gesture.

Through the release, the Ansarullah movement and its allies in the Yemeni army said they sought to underline their commitment to peace negotiations held in Sweden last December.

The talks with Yemen’s Saudi-backed former government resulted in an agreement, which calls for a ceasefire in Hudaydah, a prisoner exchange and a statement of understanding on the southern city of Ta’izz.

The unilateral release of prisoners proved Ansarullah’s “credibility in implementing the Sweden agreement and we call on the other party to take a comparable step,” the NCPA head said at the time.

The released detainees were “included in the prisoner lists of the Sweden deal,” Mortada said in a press conference.

Mortada noted that the Ansarullah movement launched the initiative due to the big delay in the implementation of the prisoner swap deal.

It is the latest goodwill gesture from the Ansarullah movement which called for a cessation of strikes in September.

President of the Supreme Political Council in the Yemeni capital, Mahdi al-Mashat, on September 20 said the Ansarullah movement would stop targeting Saudi territories with drones and ballistic missiles, hoping Riyadh would reciprocate the gesture.

Saudi Arabia and a number of its allies launched a devastating campaign against Yemen in March 2015, with the goal of bringing the former regime of Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi back to power.

The US-based Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project (ACLED), a nonprofit conflict-research organization, estimates that the war has claimed more than 91,000 over the past four and a half years.

The war has also taken a heavy toll on the country’s infrastructure, destroying hospitals, schools, and factories. The UN says over 24 million Yemenis are in dire need of humanitarian aid, including 10 million suffering from extreme levels of hunger.

October 11, 2019 Posted by | Illegal Occupation | , | 1 Comment

Everything Going Wrong in Okinawa

By Doug Lummis | CounterPunch | October 11, 2019

On 23 February 2016 Admiral Harry Harris, then Commander US Forces Pacific, testifying before the Senate Armed Services Committee, was asked how the construction of the Futenma Replacement Facility was progressing. This refers to the super airbase the Japanese Defense Ministry is building at Henoko in northern Okinawa to house the units of the First Marine Air Wing now deployed at Futenma Air Station, in crowded central Okinawa.

Admiral Harris, his voice betraying irritation, replied, ”it’s . . . a little over two years late. It was going to be done by 2023, now we’re looking at 2025 . . .”

This made the front pages in Okinawa, though probably nowhere else. The next day Suga Yoshihide, Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary, was asked about this at a press conference. He wanted to say Admiral Harris was wrong, but attempted to put it more diplomatically: “It’s too early to say”, – which amounts to the same thing.

Harris was indeed wrong, but not in the way Suga wanted his listeners to believe. A year before this, in 2015, the Okinawa Defense Bureau, the Defense Ministry’s branch in Okinawa, completed a report stating that their soil tests of the sea bottom of Oura Bay, scheduled to be filled to support the new airstrips, had yielded an N-value of zero. N-value is derived by dropping a 140 pound hammer on a hollow drill resting on the sea bottom. The number of blows required to drive it down six inches is the N-value. Thirty or more is considered a firm base. Zero means no blows were required; the drill sank of its own weight.

This information was kept from the Okinawan Government and public for two years, until an independent engineer managed to obtain a copy of the report. Judging from Admiral Harris’ statement, the information had also been kept from the US, and had not been taken into account in Harris’ (as we now know, wildly optimistic) “two years”. Before anything can be built on the “mayonnaise sea bottom”, as it is popularly known in Okinawa, it must be firmed up. The preferred way to do this is by implanting “sand piles” (pillars) into the slime. Huge hollow drills filled with sand are driven down until they reach bedrock. The drills are raised, the sand is left behind. The Okinawa Defense Bureau estimates that if this operation is repeated 77,000 times, the sea bottom will be sufficiently firm to begin construction. This is expected to take as much as five years. That means that 2025, the year Harris predicted the base will be completed, will be the year the sand pillar operation will be completed and sea wall construction on Oura Bay can begin – if all goes well.

If all goes well – and if Murphy’s law ceases to operate (Murphy’s law, If there is anything that could go wrong, it will).

But from the standpoint of the Okinawa Defense Bureau, everything is going wrong. First of all, they have failed to persuade (or to force) the Okinawans to give up their opposition to the new base, which they see as a danger, an environmental catastrophe and an insult. From the Governor’s office through the Prefectural Assembly through Okinawa’s two newspapers down to the daily sit-ins at various points where trucks can be blocked, from every direction, and using every non-violent tactic, including lawsuits, construction is being slowed. Then there is the fact that the site is surrounded by dozens of structures that violate FAA and DOD height regulations for airports. Then there are the two earthquake faults beneath the site, which the Defense Bureau has addressed by going into denial.

But it is on Oura Bay where Murphy’s law is doing the most damage. The Okinawa Defense Bureau’s soil tests have shown that in some places the mayonnaise sea bottom extends to 90 meters below sea level. Sand pillar implantation to 90 meters has never been attempted in Japan (some say, never in the world), nor do rigs exist capable of drilling to that depth. It’s not clear how the Okinawa Defense Bureau plans to deal with that – unless the comment by a government official that “maybe 60 meters will be good enough” can be considered a plan.

Until recently US government officials have avoided commenting on the problems plaguing the Futenma Replacement Facility project, saying, Japan is paying for it; it’s Japan’s problem. But that may be changing. This year’s Senate version of the FY 2020 National Defense Authorization Act contains a section (Section 1255) that would require DOD, in cooperation with the General Accountability Office (GAO), to do a full-fledged review of the project.

Let’s hope they carry out this review with the proper severity of a Marine Corps barracks inspection. They’ll need more than one pair of white gloves.

October 11, 2019 Posted by | Illegal Occupation, Militarism | , | 1 Comment

Imran Khan ‘Puzzled’ Over Vast Media Coverage of Hong Kong and ‘Disregard’ of Kashmir Issue

Sputnik – October 11, 2019

Ahead of last month’s UN General Assembly (UNGA) summit, Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan raised various concerns while travelling to New York, accusing world leaders of avoiding the Kashmir issue and the alleged humanitarian crisis in the Kashmir valley.

Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan took to Twitter​ to say how “puzzled” he is over the sharp contrast in international media coverage of the situations in Hong Kong and Kashmir while squarely blaming the press for not highlighting the situation in Kashmir properly.

He claimed that the media paid much attention to the ongoing Hong Kong protests while surprisingly avoided giving importance to the “dire human rights situation” in Indian-administered Kashmir.

Khan, who returned from China on Thursday, chose to highlight the issue hours ahead of the crucial second Informal Summit to be held between Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping.

China has already extended its full support to Pakistan on the Kashmir issue. In a joint statement, it has said: “The Kashmir issue is a historical dispute, and should be properly and peacefully resolved based on the UN Charter, relevant UN Security Council resolutions and bilateral agreements.”

China has already expressed its opposition to India’s unilateral action on 5 August to strip the special status of Jammu and Kashmir state and split the region into two federally administered territories. It has said the decision scrapping the special status of Jammu and Kashmir “complicates the situation”.

Pakistan Prime Minister Khan in his Tweet has said the communications blackout and curfew in Kashmir since 5 August is a growing humanitarian crisis.

“For over two months there has been a complete blackout of communications, thousands imprisoned, including the entire spectrum of political leadership and children, and a growing humanitarian crisis. In Indian administered Jammu and Kashmir 100 thousand Kashmiris have been killed over 30 years of fighting for their right to self-determination,” he added.

India and Pakistan have been at loggerheads over Kashmir since they attained independence from British Colonial rule in 1947. While the two neighbours both claim the entire territory, they administer separate parts of Kashmir.

October 11, 2019 Posted by | Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Progressive Hypocrite | , , , | 1 Comment

Iranian oil tanker hit by two blasts in Red Sea

Press TV – October 11, 2019

Two separate explosions, possibly caused by missile attacks, have hit an Iranian oil tanker operated by the National Iranian Tanker Company (NITC) near the Saudi port city of Jeddah, in what Tehran calls a “dangerous adventure”.

The incident took place some 60 miles from Jeddah early Friday, according to a statement by the NITC.

The explosions have hit the vessel’s hull, causing heavy damages to the vessel’s two main tanks, which has resulted in an oil spill in the Red Sea. The spill is currently stopped, according to officials.

Technical experts are currently investigating the cause of the explosion. They believe it was a “terrorist attack”, unnamed sourced told the Iranian Students News Agency (ISNA).

The statement by NITC said the SABITI tanker was hit by two separate explosions at 5:00 and 5:20 am Friday, probably after being struck by missiles.

It said the crew members are currently safe and none of them has been harmed in the explosions. The tanker is currently in a stable condition, the statement added.

The NITC later dismissed the reports that the vessel had caught fire, according to the Iranian Ministry of Petroleum’s official news agency SHANA.

‘Dangerous adventure’

Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman later described the attack as “a dangerous adventure”, warning that all the responsibilities fall on those behind it.

“The investigations conducted by the National Iranian Tanker Company indicate the Iranian tanker has sustained damages after being targeted twice, at half-hourly intervals, from a place near its shipping route in the east of the Red Sea,” Abbas Mousavi said Friday.

He expressed concern about the maritime pollution caused by the massive oil spill in the region after damages inflicted on the vessel’s tanks, and said, “All the responsibilities for the act, including the extensive environmental pollution in the region, fall on those behind the dangerous adventure.”

He also noted that a probe is being conducted on the details of the attack and those behind it, and the results will be announced once it’s done.

Earlier in the day, the US Navy’s Bahrain-based Fifth Fleet announced it is aware of media reports about the blast but had no further information.

“We are aware of the reports but we don’t have any further information,” a spokesman said.

The blasts have caused oil prices to jump by over 2 percent, media reports said.

The explosions came a few months after Iranian oil tanker Happiness-1 faced “engine failure” and lost its control with 26 on board off the Red Sea port of Jeddah, and was later transferred to the port city for maintenance.

According to Iranian officials, the incident had occurred on April 30 while Happiness I was on its way to the Suez Canal, and that water had leaked into the tanker’s engine room.

The Saudis refused to let the vessel leave and demanded that Iran pay $200,000 a day for maintaining the vessel in the port, some $10 million in total. It was finally released on July 20 and returned home.

October 11, 2019 Posted by | Aletho News | , , | 3 Comments

WADA is being weaponized to destroy Russians’ dignity

By Andrew Korybko | October 11, 2019

Most of the world remembers the controversy in recent years about Russian athletes allegedly failing to comply with the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) policies, but that scandal still continues to this day after the international organization recently threatened that country’s sportspeople with being banned from next year’s Tokyo Olympics on the same basis. The narrative is that there are supposedly “inconsistencies” with the lab data that Russia submitted to prove its adherence to WADA’s regulations, though that storyline is extremely suspect and also reeks of selective enforcement for political reasons.

To explain, it’s illogical that Russian athletes would continue to use banned substances after the agency globally humiliated them and the country that they represented several years ago on that basis, nor would their coaches and those responsible for them allow “inconsistent” lab results to be given to that international sports body if that was still the case (though it was always questionable to begin with the first time around whether there were actually any violations or not). Every stakeholder therefore has a self-interested reason in ensuring that the testing process proceeds smoothly and without incident, not to cheat the rules while under scrutiny.

Another valid point to make is that other countries’ athletes use questionable medication to treat certain health symptoms that might have actually given them an unfair advantage during competitions. For instance, RT reported last year on how Swedish media alleged that “70 percent of Norwegian medals in Olympic skiing events were won by athletes diagnosed with asthma”, yet those athletes aren’t under WADA’s microscope like Russia’s are. Quite clearly, the agency is only selectively enforcing its standards for what can only be presumed to be political reasons related to the New Cold War.

Russia is one of the US’ chief geopolitical adversaries across the world, and Washington is weaponizing all means at its disposal to wage a Hybrid War against Moscow, one that transcends the traditional definition of war to include intangible and unquantifiable aspects such as the degrading of national dignity. Understanding this, it makes sense why WADA is threatening Russian athletes, since that’s intended to damage their country’s dignity on the world stage as punishment for their government refusing to submit to the US’ foreign policy diktats. As a result, all Russians might be made to suffer.

This strategy isn’t just being carried out for the sake of schadenfreude, but as part of a far-fetched plan to decrease the population’s support of their government. The theory goes that average Russians might eventually be misguided by a forthcoming US-backed infowar campaign to somehow blame their government for this humiliation, which could contribute to increasing anti-government sentiment and then indirectly influence their political preferences in 2024 after President Putin’s final term ends. That idea might sound attractive in Washington think tanks and the halls of Langley, but it’s completely unrealistic in practice.

A supposedly apolitical international organization punishing a population for the disagreements that their government has with another violates all morality and exposes that said body for what it truly would be in that scenario, which is an American proxy organization being weaponized for Hybrid War ends. It doesn’t matter that the consequences of such a decision wouldn’t have any effect on political stability in Russia, but just that it would be very cruel to do to ordinary people who more often than not could care less about international politics and are more interested in patriotically rooting for their country’s team as they compete in Tokyo.

The Olympics are supposed to bring the world together for a few weeks by allowing everyone’s athletes to bask in glory that they deserve for being the best of the best selected to compete in this prestigious event, provided that they earned their place fairly. Singling out Russians for alleged “inconsistencies” while ignoring the much more credible case of Norwegians gaming the system — to say nothing of transsexuals now being allowed to participate, even without undergoing gender reassignment surgery — is a travesty of everything that the Olympics are supposed to stand for and actually degrades the international community’s dignity most of all.

Andrew Korybko is an American political analyst.

October 11, 2019 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | | 1 Comment