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Jolani gets a make-over in Idlib

By Steven Sahiounie | Mideast Discourse | February 9, 2021

The administration of [proclaimed] President Joe Biden may use a new tactic to bring Damascus to its knees. The ‘regime-change’ policy of Obama, which spawned ‘forever-wars’ in Libya and Syria, has a new twist.

Biden could choose to solve the Syrian conflict through diplomacy, but he may have tasked Secretary of State Anthony Blinken with re-inventing a terrorist following Radical Islam, and with a $10 million bounty on his head, as the new leader of Syria.

Abu Mohammed Al-Jolani, the leader of Syria’s Hayat Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS), which had been previously named Jibhat al-Nusra, and where the Al Qaeda affiliate in Syria, had changed their name in a previous bout of re-branding their image.

The US is now in the process of changing the mask on HTS in Syria, as the group is listed by the US, EU, Russia, the UN, and Turkey as a terrorist group. Jolani took off his guerrilla warfare uniform and switched to a business suit recently in a PBS “Frontline” interview with journalist Martin Smith. Western audiences may be fooled by the new look, but the residents of Syria know the true Jolani. Washing away the gallons of blood on his hands will take a much deeper sanitizing than a new suit. Biden may have a hard time explaining the support of Jolani to French President Macron, who has officially declared war on Radical Islam.

The US had justified their illegal occupation of Syria as necessary to fight Islamic State (IS) terrorist group. The group was successfully dislodged from the territory they had held in northeast Syria.

The sole remaining territory held by an armed group following Radical Islam is Idlib, in the northwest, an area which US officials once described as “the largest al-Qaeda safe haven since 9/11”. Western media describes Idlib as ‘a last stronghold of Syrian rebel groups’. The US and its media outlets have used the terms ‘terrorists’ and ‘rebels’ interchangeably, which has effectively re-branded blood-thirsty criminals into freedom fighters.

Trump had inherited the Syrian conflict from Obama, and he did not work toward any solution but held the status-quo, which saw US troops illegally stationed in Syria to steal the oil. Trump allowed Saudi Arabia to write the US foreign policy on Syria, due to his tight relationship with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

The US refused to beat HTS, instead, they protected them in Idlib, and have denounced Syrian and Russian attacks on the group. Now, the US has joined with HTS leader Jolani as their new man to lead Syria, still committed to the US policy of ‘regime change’.

The names change, but the essence is the same. In Syria, there were many armed groups, from the Free Syrian Army to Al Qaeda, and IS. Each had a leader, and a name, but in essence, all were the same: men killing people in the name of God. Their goal is ‘regime change’ and the regime they seek to install in Damascus is an Islamic government, with Sharia as the constitution and rule of law.

Turkey invaded Idlib and has 20,000 troops there, but has been reluctant to publically support HTS, because of the ‘terrorist’ listing. The US may begin a process to remove HTS from the terrorist label, which would open up greater aid and western investment in Idlib. At the same time, this close cooperation in Idlib between the US and Turkey could strengthen a fragile relationship between the two NATO partners. However, Turkey is ruled by a Muslim Brotherhood partyAKP, and there are calls by many in the US and the Arab Gulf states, to designate the Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist group.

The sizable Christian population in Idlib has suffered greatly at the hands of HTS and other Radical Islamic terrorist groups. Not only physical suffering but their properties were seized and they were made destitute and homeless.

The Russian-Turkish ceasefire remains fragile, while joint patrols along the M4 highway have essentially halted since August from terrorist attacks on trucks and civilians. The March 2020 agreement between Russia and Turkey explicitly calls for both sides to “combat all forms of terrorism, and to eliminate all terrorist groups in Syria as designated by the UN Security Council, which includes HTS.

Jolani fought in the post-2003 Iraq war as a member of the Islamic State of Iraq (ISI, which later became ISIS), and in 2011 brought ISIS to Syria. He left ISIS in 2013, and declared allegiance to Al Qaeda, and established their affiliate in Syria, Jibhat al-Nusra.

Al-Nusra became known for being more brutal than all others and was feared and loathed by the Syrian civilians who were their victims. The group carried out war crimes and massacres of unarmed civilians sleeping in their own homes near Latakia in 2013. Killing, maiming, raping, and kidnapping was their calling card.

Jolani has been recast as the local Syrian leader capable of governing Idlib. However, Syria is a much bigger place than Idlib, which is a small agricultural area, only known for its olives. What about the biggest city, Aleppo, or the capital Damascus: what would the residents there think of an ex-ISIS member being in charge of Syria? The Syrian people have lived under a secular form of government for 40 years, and have fought against Radical Islam for ten years. Morphing a terrorist into a leader is a fantasy conjured up in Washington, DC. but will not play well to a Syrian audience.

Steven Sahiounie is an award-winning journalist.

February 9, 2021 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Progressive Hypocrite, Wars for Israel | , , , | 1 Comment

More scandals on Dutch government’s involvement in supporting terrorism in Syria

SANA | December 6, 2020

Amsterdam  – A new chapter in the scandals of the Netherlands’s involvement in supporting terrorist organizations in Syria is unfolding in front of the world public opinion after Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte has recently admitted that he personally intervened to obstruct parliamentary investigations into his government’s provision of millions of dollars to terrorists, which shows the blatant hypocrisy in the policies of the Netherlands and the West regarding the allegations of fighting terrorism and protecting human rights.

The new development in the Dutch scandals file came after Rutte had been forced a few days ago to admit that he had obstructed the investigations by a fact-finding committee formed at the Dutch Parliament two years ago after Dutch media published files revealing the Dutch government’s involvement in supporting terrorists in Syria over several years and supplying them with technical equipment, especially for communication, military and logistical equipment, and hundreds of trucks and various vehicles.

At the time, the Dutch investigators did not reach any conclusion due to Rutte’s obstruction of the work of this committee and his deliberate concealment of secrets that prove his direct involvement with terrorists and his flagrant violation of the international and Dutch laws as the organizations that he supports financially and logistically in Syria are classified as terrorist organizations by the Dutch Public Prosecution itself.

The Parliamentary Investigation Committee was formed in the Netherlands after two media outlets revealed in a special documentary in 2017 the Dutch government’s support for about 22 terrorist groups, including the so-called “Levantine Front” organization, which is classified as terrorist even by Dutch institutions.

Rutte’s obstruction of the investigations has been met with great indignation by the Dutch people, as the media there has focused on his government’s involvement in providing millions of dollars, foodstuffs, medicines and telecommunication equipment to terrorists, while Dutch and European parties started to raise this issue at the public opinion platforms, calling for transparency and the truth while wondering about the benefit of democracy if it is not reflected on the ethical dimensions of the international policies.

The Dutch support for armed terrorist groups has continued throughout the years of the war on Syria, despite the pledges of the Amsterdam government to its parliament that only the organizations it described as “moderate” would receive support in harmony with the hypocrisy adopted by the United States of America, which has always claimed that it provides support and training to those whom it describes as “moderate opposition”, but later many reports have refuted these claims and confirmed that “Washington’s moderates” are nothing but terrorists who joined the ranks of terrorist organizations, including al Qaeda and Daesh “ISIS”.

The Dutch government has claimed that the reason behind its illegal interference to obstruct the investigations into the scandal is that the investigation would lead to the disclosure of secret information, in addition to exposing the alleged international coalition which had been formed under the pretext of fighting Daesh “ISIS” and the crimes committed by the Western states which are members of this coalition against Syrian civilians and the Syrian infrastructure under the pretense of fighting terrorism, while the facts on the ground confirm the involvement of this coalition in protecting Daesh.

The Netherlands, which is on the top of the European countries that export terrorists to Syria and Iraq, and the Dutch government’s support for terrorist organizations in the context of its submission to the American decision, makes it the last to have the right to talk about democracy and human rights in Syria or elsewhere and its government should be held accountable at the International Court of Justice.

December 8, 2020 Posted by | War Crimes | , , , , | 1 Comment

Joe Biden and Terrorism

By Daniel Lazare | Strategic Culture Foundation | November 28, 2020

As Joe Biden unveils his hawkish cabinet picks, it’s hard not to get the sense that we’re all hurtling back in time to those glorious days of regime change when the United States believed it had a sacred right to topple any government that got in its way. It also seems like we’re returning to the days that when jihadi terrorism aimed at America and its allies was horrible, terrible, a crime against humanity, and so on, while terrorism aimed at people the US didn’t like was, well, distasteful and unpleasant but not something to bring up in polite company.

While no one wants to blow up innocent civilians, in other words, what really counts is which civilians and in whose behalf.

With that in mind, it’s worth revisiting a talk that then-Vice President Biden gave at Harvard’s Kennedy School in October 2014. If you enjoy listening to an empty-headed politician spouting endless clichés, you can access all ninety minutes of it here. But if you’re not a glutton for punishment, you can jump to the 53:35 mark and zero in on Sleepy Joe’s specific thoughts regarding America’s Mideast partners and their inordinate fondness for ISIS and Al Qaeda.

The topic was the US-Saudi effort to overthrow Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, and here’s what the veep had to say, run-on sentences and all:

“The Saudis, the emirates, etc. what were they doing? They were so determined to take down Assad and essentially have a proxy Sunni-Shia war, what did they do? They poured hundreds of millions of dollars and tens of thousands of tons of weapons into anyone who would fight against Assad, except 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. … So now what’s happening? All of a sudden everybody is awakened because this outfit called ISIL, which was Al Qaeda in Iraq when they were essentially thrown out of Iraq, found open space and territory in … eastern Syria, worked with Al Nusra, who we declared a terrorist group early on, and we could not convince our colleagues to stop supplying them. So what happened? Now all of a sudden, I don’t want to be too facetious, but they have seen the Lord. … Saudi Arabia has stopped funding, Saudi Arabia is allowing training on its soil… the Qataris have cut off their support for the most extreme elements of terrorist organizations, and the Turks, President Erdogan told me, he’s an old friend, he told me, you were right, we let too many people through. Now he’s trying to seal their border….”

Words like these are worth savoring because they undermine years of propaganda about American exceptionalism and the US as a force for good. Obama, for instance, claims to oppose sectarianism. Yet here was his second-in-command saying that US allies didn’t merely want to topple Assad, but that they wanted to topple him by fomenting “a proxy Sunni-Shia war.”

In other words, they wanted to mobilize thousands of bigoted Sunni head-choppers in order to topple the Alawite president of one of the most religiously diverse countries in the Middle East.

Obama also claims to oppose terrorism and, of course, vehemently objects to any suggestion that Al Qaeda is a western creation. Yet here was Biden stating in the very next sentence that Saudi Arabia & Co. had “poured hundreds of millions of dollars and tens of thousands of tons of weapons into … Al Nusra and Al Qaeda” and that “we could not convince our colleagues to stop supplying them.”

So they did supply Al Qaeda despite US protests, which, in any event, were strictly private. While Biden went on to say that the Saudis have seen the light thanks to the dramatic rise of the Al Qaeda offshoot known as ISIS or ISIL (Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant), his wording was curious. Qatar, he said, had cut off support for “the most extreme elements,” while adding that Turkey, after admitting that it had let too many fighters traverse its border, was now trying to close the barn door after the horse had left.

But what does “most extreme” mean? That Qatar was still funding some Al Qaeda elements providing that they were not too outré? As for letting “too many people through,” was Biden suggesting that Turkey was right to let some Al Qaeda fighters cross, but that too many were spoiling the stew?

So it seems, and so numerous other reports attest. So not only did the Saudis fund Al Qaeda and ISIS to the hilt, they cut off aid to the latter only when they finally figured out, as Biden went on to say, “that ISIL’s target wasn’t Ramadi” in northern Iraq, but Mecca and Medina in their own kingdom. Killing thousands of people, raping and enslaving hundreds of Yazidi women, imposing a terrifying theocracy – such activities are permissible as long as they remain confined to Syria and Iraq. But once they threaten the House of Saud, well, that’s more than any civilized nation can bear.

The fresh-faced Harvard students who listened to such nonsense did not respond by booing, jeering, or tossing buckets of red paint. Amazingly, they instead responded with polite applause. Even more striking was the reaction when word got back to Washington. Instead of congratulating Biden for his forthrightness, Obama ordered him to go on what the New York Times described as “a Middle East apology tour” by phoning up Riyadh, Abu Dhabi, Ankara, etc. and conveying his personal regrets – not for being incorrect, that is, but for being indiscreet. Vice presidents are supposed to know what they can and cannot say in a public place.

All of which calls to mind something known as the Bush Doctrine. In case no one can remember that far back, it goes like this:

“Every nation, in every region, now has a decision to make. Either you are with us or you are with the terrorists. From this day forward, any nation that continues to harbor or support terrorism will be regarded by the United States as a hostile regime.”

So George W. Bush told a joint session of Congress just a few days after 9/11, and since no subsequent administration has expressly repudiated those words, presumably they’re still in effect. If so, then the next time reporters get an opportunity, they should ask the president-elect if he still supports the doctrine and whether he plans to sever ties with Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Turkey, and the UAE if he does.

They might also ask Hillary Clinton whether she would recommend a cut-off since, right around the time Biden was holding forth at Harvard, she was confiding in an email that “the governments of Qatar and Saudi Arabia … are providing clandestine financial and logistic support to ISIL and other radical Sunni groups in the region.” It’s yet another example of top US officials saying one thing in public and the opposite when they think no one is listening.

Of course, the chances of severing ties with the Saudis are zero, while the chances of America’s fearless press corps posing such a question in the first place are nil as well. The Saudis may be terrorists, but they’re America’s terrorists, and that’s all that counts.

November 28, 2020 Posted by | Deception, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Saudi-led coalition, mercenaries working with al-Qaeda, Daesh in Yemen: Foreign Ministry

Press TV | October 25, 2020

The Foreign Ministry of Yemen’s National Salvation Government says the Saudi-led coalition engaged in a campaign against the country as well as the allied militiamen loyal to former Yemeni President Abd Rabbuh Mansur are closely working with al-Qaeda and the Daesh Takfiri terrorists.

The ministry, in two separate identical letters addressed to the United Nations and the UN Security Council on Saturday, elaborated on clean-up operations carried out by Yemeni armed forces and fighters from the Popular Committees against al-Qaeda and Daesh terror cells in the central province of Bayda.

The letters emphasized that there were foreign nationals, mostly Saudi citizens, among the militant commanders and combatants slain in the operations.

Large amounts of weapons, bombs and explosive belts were also seized.

The foreign ministry highlighted that the Saudi-led alliance has been providing al-Qaeda and Daesh with air cover as of ‘March 26, 2015,’ in addition to monetary, military and logistical support, medical care, and facilitation of their free movement.

The letters read that the Yemeni army forces and the Popular Committees fighters had recovered sophisticated weapons and military equipment ‘only in the inventory of countries such as Saudi Arabia and the United States.’

The Yemeni foreign ministry underlined that it has obtained documents that disclose Saudi Arabia’s support for al-Qaeda and Daesh terrorists, including monthly payrolls and military ID cards.

Documents have also been discovered proving a number of al-Qaeda and Daesh operatives were treated in hospitals in Saudi Arabia and the central Yemeni province of Ma’rib.

“Prior to and after the al-Bayda Operation, a number of al-Qaeda and Daesh elements fled to some occupied areas, including those in Ma’rib, and hid within the ranks of Saudi-sponsored Hadi loyalists,” the foreign ministry said.

It added, “The relationship between al-Qaeda and Daesh with the aggressors and traitors has reached a point where the leaders of these two groups hold high positions in Hadi’s ousted government. Some of these elements have been designated by the US Treasury Department as sponsors of terrorism, though.”

The letters said the Aden-based Yemeni administration had called for the release of 96 al-Qaeda and Daesh terrorists during negotiations on the exchange of prisoners being held by the National Salvation Government in Sana’a.

Saudi Arabia and a number of its regional allies launched the war on Yemen in March 2015, with the goal of bringing Hadi’s government back to power and crush the popular Houthi Ansarullah movement. Ansarullah, backed by armed forces, has been valorously defending Yemen against the alliance.

October 25, 2020 Posted by | War Crimes | , , , | 2 Comments

BBC’s upcoming White Helmets ‘documentary’ aims at character assassination of those who challenge Syria war narratives

By Vanessa Beeley | RT | October 24, 2020

The BBC is preparing an attack against journalists, former diplomats, academics and scientists who challenge the dominant pro-war narratives against Syria underpinned by the pseudo-humanitarian White Helmets.

The British public broadcaster has sent out requests for comments to those who have dared to expose the role the UK government and its intelligence agencies have played in the destabilization of Syria, which look more like neo-McCarthyist charge sheets. The producer of an upcoming Radio 4 documentary series had been in email and telephone conversation with the author of this article, as well as Peter Ford, former UK ambassador to Syria, and members of the Working Group on Syria, Media and Propaganda (WGSMP) since June 2020. The result of those conversations, during which the evidence emanating from serious scientific research and on-the-ground testimony was presented to the producer, was a familiar list of accusations of “conspiracy theorism” and suggestions of “incentivized” Russian or Syrian bias.

Fellow independent journalist Eva Bartlett has spent long periods of time inside Syria, reporting from many of the most high-risk areas during the Syrian Arab Army allied campaigns to liberate swathes of Syrian territory from the US coalition-proxy occupation. She had this to say about the email she received a few days ago:

“The questions emailed to me by the BBC evidence a predetermined intent to character assassination. This approach shows an utter lack of journalistic integrity on the part of the BBC.

The BBC’s hostile insinuations against me arrogantly infer that neither I nor the Syrians I interview think for ourselves, but are puppets of the Syrian and Russian governments. My journalism dates back to 2007 and is quite extensive, with 13 years of on the ground experience, from Palestine and Syria, to Venezuela and eastern Ukraine, and elsewhere.

My focuses have been on giving voice to Syrians disappeared by corporate media, highlighting the terrorism they endured by terrorist groups which the West dubs “rebels,” and highlighting war propaganda by outlets such as the BBC.”

It was clear from the BBC’s line of questioning that this was not a genuine investigation into the life and times of White Helmets founder, and former British military intelligence officer, James Le Mesurier. It is effectively a damage limitation exercise designed to discredit the evidence that points to the White Helmets being a propaganda construct with extremist connections funded by the US/UK coalition to vilify the Syrian government and allies, thus justifying military intervention by proxy and aggression against a sovereign nation. The aggression includes economic sanctions that have devastated the Syrian economy and caused widespread poverty and food insecurity among the Syrian people.

The upcoming BBC programme – ‘Mayday’ – appears to be an attempt to whitewash British intelligence operations inside Syria. Operations that were recently further exposed following the leak of alleged UK Foreign Office documents, reported by Grayzone, which detailed the extent to which the UK government provided media and PR support to the armed groups in Syria. Those groups effectively include Al Qaeda and Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS) affiliates such as Jaysh Al-Islam and Ahrar Al-Sham, who are responsible for the horrific bloodshed and devastation of infrastructure in the areas they invaded and occupied.

The UK and EU government-funded Mayday Rescue organisation was established by Le Mesurier to provide an intermediary management of the funds the UK government was providing to the White Helmets as they embedded themselves with armed groups in extremist-controlled areas throughout Syria, more recently exclusively in Idlib, the last remaining and “largest Al Qaeda haven since 9/11.” Le Mesurier died in November 2019 having fallen from the balcony of his Istanbul home which he shared with his third wife, Emma Winberg. Three days before his death, which was ruled a suicide, Le Mesurier had reportedly admitted to defrauding Mayday Rescue of funds provided by UK and European governments.

It is also worth a reminder that the Dutch government had withdrawn funding from Mayday Rescue in 2018 following an extensive investigation that had concluded a lack of assurances that funds were not being hijacked by the armed groups in Syria, including Al Qaeda.

The BBC pins its arguments on the view that the White Helmets are a “humanitarian” organisation – an Oscar-winning illusion that has been dismantled by some of the most acclaimed independent journalists and researchers of our time, including Cory Morningstar, Rick Sterling, Eva Bartlett, Stephen Kinzer, Robert Parry, John Pilger, Gareth Porter, Ray McGovern, Phillip Giraldi, Craig Murray and former UN weapons inspector Scott Ritter, to name just a few.

The former UK ambassador to Syria, Peter Ford, also received the BBC bill of indictment and he issued this statement in response:

“The BBC have systematically tried to suppress views on Syria which run counter to the standard one-sided narrative. This programme’s efforts to smear dissenters takes BBC conduct to a new low. By alleging conspiracy theorising where there is only evidence-based reporting and analysis, the BBC is showing its frustration at being unable to stifle truth-telling.

The only conspiracy here is whatever coordination has taken place between the BBC and British authorities responsible for failing to achieve regime change in Syria despite throwing many millions of taxpayer money at the effort. Why is the BBC not drawing attention to the biggest failure of British foreign policy since Suez, as judged by its self-proclaimed objective of removing Assad, rather than busying itself with trying to take down unsupported individual dissenters who have ranged against them the vast wealth and resources of the establishment?

The charge of biggest failure since Suez as judged by its own objective of regime change is stinging because palpably true, and will with luck get some play in the follow up. It’s an angle that has been largely lost in the welter of detail.”

On October 5, the US and UK envoys to the UN Security Council (UNSC) led the campaign to ban the former Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) director general, Jose Bustani, from briefing the UNSC meeting presided over by Russian Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia. Nebenzia accused the US/UK-led truth-suppressors of bringing the UNSC into disrepute. One week later, the BBC, a de facto UK-state-media outlet, kicked off its attack on the individuals responsible for highlighting the corruption of the OPCW and the fraud that was the final report on the alleged Douma chemical attack in April 2018.

One member of the WGSMP, Paul McKeigue, has published his conversations with the producer. Regarding the Douma incident, McKeigue informs us that “a reader of this correspondence could reasonably conclude that […] Raed Saleh (White Helmets leader) has something to hide, and further that [the BBC producer] is, for some reason, colluding with him by helping him to avoid having to respond” to questions regarding the whereabouts of the bodies of the alleged chemical weapon attack victims. Part of my response to the BBC also alludes to the apparent suppression of evidence:

“A BBC producer, Riam Dalati, has stated publicly that the Douma hospital scenes, the site of the alleged chemical weapon attack in Syria, 2018, were staged. As has been pointed out repeatedly to Riam Dalati and the BBC, if the hospital scenes at Douma were staged so too were the films of the deceased in the Douma apartment block. The BBC have never reported this information, nor has it passed the information obtained by its producer to either the OPCW FFM or the IIT. It is extraordinary and completely unjustifiable that the BBC should be withholding this vital information from a UN linked organisation.”

Dr. Piers Robinson, the co-founder of the WGSMP, accused the BBC of suppressing truth:

“The BBC is also attempting to smear academics researching alleged chemical weapons attacks in Syria as ‘conspiracy theorists’, even though their work has been supported by the leading chemical and biological weapons expert the late Julian Perry Robinson and vindicated by whistleblowers and leaks from the OPCW itself. The BBC is not engaging in journalism but rather suppression of the truth.”

In conclusion, the BBC is not an honest broker. Our work as journalists and researchers is to mine for the truth. The BBC’s output, especially with regards to foreign affairs, is produced in lock-step with UK foreign policy objectives. In the context of the war against Syria, this has resulted in a pattern of omission and censorship that has underpinned UK FCO efforts to foment conflict within Syria and to overthrow the internationally recognised Syrian government.

The result has been an illegal war that has caused death and suffering for millions of Syrian people. Regarding the UK/US intelligence-incubated, Al Qaeda-linked, White Helmets, the BBC could be considered complicit in manufacturing consent for another “humanitarian war” through their lack of “rigorous journalism” and omission of the facts surrounding this UK state-client-propaganda-manufacturer. Just as the BBC defended the WMD “dodgy dossier” that decimated Iraq and led to the deaths of millions of Iraqis, we now see the BBC rallying around the chemical weapon “dodgy dossier” that has enabled the prolongation of the barbaric war against the Syrian people.

Editor’s note: RT has reached out to the BBC producer for comment on issues raised in Vanessa’s article. A BBC spokesperson gave this response:

“The BBC’s journalism is rigorous, independent and impartial, and that will be evident to anyone who listens to this new series.”


Vanessa Beeley is an independent journalist and photographer who has worked extensively in the Middle East – on the ground in Syria, Egypt, Iraq and Palestine, while also covering the conflict in Yemen since 2015. Follow her on Twitter @VanessaBeeley

October 24, 2020 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, False Flag Terrorism, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , | 1 Comment

As Trump vows to declare Antifa a ‘Terrorist Group,’ AG Barr equates rioting to domestic terrorism

RT | May 31, 2020

The US “will be designating ANTIFA as a Terrorist Organization,” President Donald Trump has said. The move comes amid anti-police-brutality protests and riots gripping the country, which he has blamed on the “radical left.”

“The United States of America will be designating ANTIFA as a Terrorist Organization,” Trump tweeted on Sunday, offering no further explanation. One day earlier, Trump, as well as Attorney General William Barr, accused the loose-knit group of orchestrating rioting and looting across the country, following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis on Monday.

If designated as a terrorist group, Antifa would join international groups like Al Qaeda and Hezbollah, as well as domestic organizations like the Aryan Nations and Black LIberation Army, on the government’s blacklist. Before the 9/11 attacks, the list was populated exclusively by foreign groups. However, the post-9/11 Patriot Act expanded the definition of “terrorism” to cover home-grown organizations.

Antifa – whose name is short for ‘antifascist’ – models itself on the European left-wing militias of the 1920s and 1930s. Rising to prominence since Trump’s election in 2016, the group is now known for attacking right-wing demonstrations and speeches, and instigating violence at rallies.

With riots gripping America’s major cities for the last five nights, reports of Antifa organizers directing rioters and providing them with weapons began to surface. Conservatives clamored for Trump to crack down on the militants, and Sunday’s tweet is the first indication that the president intends to do just that.

Immediately after Trump’s statement, Attorney General Barr announced that the Justice Department would use its network of 56 regional Joint Terrorism Task Forces to investigate “the violent radical agitators who have hijacked peaceful protest and are engaged in violations of federal law.”

“The violence instigated and carried out by Antifa and other similar groups in connection with the rioting is domestic terrorism and will be treated accordingly,” a statement from Barr read.

While any forthcoming designation would make it easier to use counterterrorism legislation against violent protesters, targeting Antifa as a group would be a difficult proposition. The organization has no clearly-defined hierarchy or membership, and many disparate groups of leftist militants have used its imagery and slogans.

Some left-wing commenters accused the Trump administration of attempting to “criminalize dissent.” However, the alleged militants have come under scrutiny before, and in countries more liberal than the US. In Germany, where the ‘antifascist’ movement began in the 20th century, intelligence agencies closely monitor Antifa groups, and police union head Ranier Wendt has described their actions as “the basic definition of terrorism.”

May 31, 2020 Posted by | Aletho News | , , | Leave a comment

Syria says will stand by allies on resistance axis to expel US from Western Asia

Press TV – March 12, 2020

A senior adviser to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad hails “constant coordination” between Damascus and its allies in the fight against terrorism, saying the Arab nation will stand by the resistance front to help drive the US out of not only Syria but the entire Middle East region.

Assad’s political and media adviser, Bouthaina Shaaban, made the remarks in an interview with Lebanon-based Arabic-language al-Mayadeen TV channel on Wednesday.

She said that Washington has been supporting the Takfiri al-Qaeda and Daesh terrorist groups, and that its sponsorship for the al-Qaeda-inspired al-Nusra Front terrorist outfit is of no surprise.

The Syrian people living east of the Euphrates River have been fighting against American occupation forces and enjoy the Damascus government’s backing for their resistance, she added.

Shaaban also stressed that the battle on eastern bank of the Euphrates is complicated and takes time, noting, however, that the Syrians will eventually expel US troops from their homeland.

The Syrian army has the backing of Iran, Russia and Lebanon’s Hezbollah resistance movement in its battle against a host of militant groups, which have been wreaking havoc on the country since 2011.

Thanks to that support, the Damascus government has managed to win back control of almost all regions from the foreign-sponsored militants.

Syria has been engaged in a liberation operation in Idlib Province, the last major bastion of terrorists in the country.

Shaaban further emphasized that her country supports its allies on the regional resistance axis to drive American military personnel out of the entire West Asia region.

Syria in constant coordination with Iran, Hezbollah

There is complete and constant coordination between Damascus on one side and Tehran and the Lebanese Hezbollah resistance movement on the other side in political and military spheres, the Syrian official pointed out.

She hailed Tehran-Damascus relations as historical and strategic, reiterating that both Iran and Russia prioritize Syria’s sovereignty and independence.

Taking advantage of the mayhem in Syria, the US has deployed troops to Syria under the guise of fighting Daesh. It has been running military bases in the eastern part of the country, which many reports have revealed serve as training camps for terrorists.

The US has also been supporting anti-Damascus Kurdish militants in the country’s northeastern regions, calling them allies in the so-called fight against Daesh, which lost its territorial rule in the Arab country in late 2017.

In recent months, Washington has also deployed more troops and military equipment near Syrian oil fields to “secure” them, in what Damascus, Tehran and Moscow have denounced as an attempt to steal Syria’s crude resources.

In turn, Turkey supports militants fighting to topple the Damascus government. Those elements continue to target Syrian troops and allied Russian personnel.

Last week, Russia and Turkey agreed on a ceasefire to stop clashes in Syria’s northwestern Idlib Province that brought the two countries close to direct confrontation amid a Moscow-backed Syrian counter-terrorism operation.

Idlib truce paves ground for more Syrian gains

Elsewhere in her interview, Shaaban said the Idlib truce has no confidential terms and paves the way for the liberation of the districts of Arihah and Jisr al-Shughur.

In recent weeks, she added, the Syrian army wrested control over 2,000 kilometers of the country and inflicted casualties on militants and Turkish forces.

Shabban also slammed Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan for serving Israel’s interests in the region.

Erdogan, she added, uses the Palestine issue as a mere bargaining chip and dreams of occupying Syria.

A meeting between Assad and Erdogan is not possible as long as Turkey occupies parts of the Syrian territory, she said.

Syria keen to forge ties will all Arab states

Additionally, Assad’s aide stressed that Syria welcomes relations with all Arab countries, referring to recent visits by Egyptian and Libyan delegations.

She also hailed Algeria’s position on Syria, adding, however, that there are no exchanges between the two states.

March 12, 2020 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Wars for Israel | , , , , , | 3 Comments

Russia rejects Turkish narrative on Syria

By M. K. BHADRAKUMAR | Indian Punchline | February 7, 2020

The Russian reaction to Turkey’s latest military moves in the northwestern Syrian province of Idlib has appeared in the form of a lengthy interview with the government daily Rossiyskaya Gazeta by Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov on February 4, which has since been followed by a formal statement by the foreign ministry on Thursday.

Moscow has underscored that the current Syrian operation in Idlib is about vanquishing the al-Qaeda affiliates supported by Turkey and the western countries.

Lavrov dwelt on the backdrop to the so-called Astana format, which resulted from the collapse of the regime change project of “our Western and other foreign partners” in Syria following the Russian intervention in 2015.

He outlined how the Astana process led to the “de-escalation zone” in Idlib where “terrorist groups herded together”. Russia and Turkey reached specific written agreements spelling out their commitments to oversee Idlib. However, to quote Lavrov,

“Regrettably, so far, Turkey has failed to fulfil a couple of its key commitments that were designed to resolve the core of the Idlib problem. It was necessary to separate the armed opposition that cooperates with Turkey and is ready for a dialogue with the government in the political process, from the terrorists of Jabhat al-Nusra, which became Hayat Tahrir al-Sham. Both are blacklisted as terrorist groups by the UN Security Council, so neither Jabhat al-Nusra nor the latest version, Hayat Tahrir al-Sham, has anything to do in Idlib.”

Even after repeated reminders from Russia, Turkey didn’t act. Equally, Lavrov repeated that the recent Turkish military deployments to Idlib were undertaken without any advance intimation to the Russian side. He said, “We urge them (Turkey) to strictly comply with the 2018 and 2019 Sochi accords on Idlib.”

The Russian Foreign Ministry statement of February 6, as reported by Tass news agency, disclosed that there have been Russian casualties due to the “increasing terrorist activities.” It justified the operations of the Syrian government forces as reaction to “the unacceptable rise in terrorist activities.”

Through the month of December, “over 1,400 militant attacks involving tanks, machine guns, infantry fighting vehicles, mortars and artillery took place.” During the past fortnight alone, “more than 1,000 attacks have been recorded” and hundreds of Syrian troops and civilians have been killed and wounded and the Russian base at Hmeymim came under attack repeatedly.

The foreign ministry statement says, “all this points to an unacceptable increase in terrorist strength in Idlib, where militants have complete impunity and free hands” which left the Syrian government with no alternative but to “react to these developments.”

In a rebuff to Turkish President Recep Erdogan’s demand that the Syrian government should terminate the military operations in Idlib and withdraw, the Russian statement said, “A thing to note is that the Syrian army is fighting on its own soil against those designated as terrorists by the UN Security Council. There can be no interpretations. It is the Syrian government’s right and responsibility to combat terrorists in the country.”

Curiously, both Lavrov’s interview as well as the Foreign Ministry statement drew attention to the transfer of terror groups from Idlib to northeastern Syria and from there to Libya in the recent weeks. The implication is clear — Ankara continues to deploy terrorist groups as tools of regional strategies in Syria (and Libya).

Russia has contacts with all parties in Libya, including Khalifa Haftar. The implicit warning here is that Erdogan will have a high price to pay in Libya where he cannot count on Russian empathy. Turkey is already under withering criticism from EU, France, Italy, Greece, Cyprus, Israel, UAE and Saudi Arabia for its military intervention in Libya, especially by deploying its proxy groups from Syria. Turkey’s regional isolation over Libya is now complete.

The Russian Foreign Ministry statement concluded saying, “We reaffirm our commitment to the agreements reached at the Astana talks, which envisage fighting terrorist groups in Syria on the condition of respect for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the country. We will maintain close coordination with our Turkish and Iranian partners for the sake of achieving lasting stability and security on the ground.”

It is highly significant that the Foreign Ministry statement singled out the “Iranian partners” for reference. On February 5, while receiving the new Iranian ambassador to Moscow, President Putin also said Russia and Iran were “key powerful players” in the fight against global terrorism and will continue their cooperation. Putin added, “(Russia’s) cooperation with Iran within the Astana framework has played an effective role in the settlement of the Syria conflict.”

What emerges is that Moscow senses that behind Turkish president Erdogan’s mercurial behaviour, there is the old pattern of Turkey using terror groups as proxies, with covert support from western powers. Moscow cannot but be aware that the US is making overtures to Erdogan with a view to shift the military balance against Russia and Iran on the Syrian-Iraqi chessboard in the downstream of the killing of General Qassem Soleimani.

Curiously, on Monday, a US appeals court agreed to “pause” a case alleging that Turkey’s state-owned HalkBank evaded US sanctions on Iran. The US Senate Finance Committee member Ron Wyden, a Democrat, has since addressed a letter to the US Attorney General William Barr asking if President Trump had tried to intervene on behalf of Halkbank!

A Reuters report said Senator Wyden asked Barr to detail his interactions with Trump, President Tayyip Erdogan and Turkish Finance Minister Berat Albayrak (who is also Erdogan’s son-in-law).

The HalkBank scandal implicates Erdogan and family members and an adverse court verdict can be highly damaging politically to the president and his son-in-law who is groomed as a potential successor. (A commentary on the scandal featured in the Foundation for Defense of Democracies authored by a former Turkish member of parliament is here.) The HalkBank case hangs like the sword of Damocles over Erdogan. Washington is adept at using such pressure tactics against recalcitrant interlocutors abroad.

On the other hand, if Trump has done a favour to Erdogan (or anyone for that matter), he’d expect a quid pro quo. And it is to be expected that the Trump administration would visualise that Erdogan’s cooperation can be a game changer in the geopolitics of Syria and Iraq. However, Moscow has kept the line open to Ankara.

To be sure, it is with deliberation that Moscow has highlighted the salience of the Russian-Iranian alliance in Syria where Washington is escalating tensions lately as part of its “maximum pressure” approach threatening Tehran with a region-wide war.

February 7, 2020 Posted by | Illegal Occupation | , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Syrian Army captured Saraqib. Netanyahu and Erdogan come to the rescue

South Front | February 06, 2020

In Greater Idlib the defences of Hayat Tahrir al-Sham and other favorites of the foreign powers supporting ‘Syrian democracy’ are collapsing.

On February 5, the Syrian Army, supported by Russian airpower, took control of a number of villages in southeastern Idlib and southwestern Aleppo including Resafa, al-Dhahabiyah, Ajlas, Talafih and Judiydat Talafih. They besieged a Turkish observation post established near Tal Toqan and reached another one, near al-Sheikh Mansur.

Late on the same day, the army’s Tiger Forces captured the eastern entrance to Saraqib and established fire control over the open roads leading from the town. According to local sources, Hayat Tahrir al-Sham and other al-Qaeda so-called freedom fighters started fleeing the town. The Turkish Army had stuck several observation posts right in the area, but these apparently did not help.

Early on February 6, pro-government forces seized the area of Duwayr, cutting off the M5 highway north of Saraqib. Thus, the road through Saramin remained the only way to flee for militants remaining in the town. However, it is under the fire control of the Syrian Army.

Several hours after this government forces took full control of Saraqib.

Saraqib Nahiyah is the largest subdistrict of the Idlib district of the province. The subdistrict is located on the crossroad of the M4 and M5 highways. Its pre-war population was approximately 88,000. The fall of Saraqib into the hands of Damascus and its allies will allow government troops to continue the operation clearing the entire M5 highway and open the road to Idlib city itself.

Right on cue, while the Syrian Army was storming Saraqib, the Israeli Air Force delivered a wide-scale strike on targets in the countryside of the Syrian capital, Damascus, and in the province of Daraa. The Al-Kiswa area, Marj al-Sultan, Baghdad Bridge and the area south of Izraa were among the confirmed targets of the attack.

Syria’s State media claimed that the Syrian Air Defense shot down most of the Israeli missiles before they were able to reach their targets. Pro-Israeli sources claim that the strikes successfully hit Iran-related targets destroying weapon depots and HQs of Iranian-backed forces. The Israeli leadership once again officially confirmed its participation in the club of terrorism supporters in Syria.

Another member of the al-Qaeda Rescue Rangers is Mr Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

On February 5, he vowed that Turkey would deploy locally made air-defense systems along the border with Syria. The President did not provide many details on the matter, but the aforementioned systems were likely the HISAR-A low-altitude air-defense system which will be deployed along the border with Idlib.

Additionally, Erdogan delivered an ultimatum to Syria claiming that “if the Syrian regime will not retreat from Turkish observation posts in Idlib in February, Turkey itself will be obliged to make this happen.” In other words, the Turkish president threatened to declare war on Syria if the Syrian Army does not withdraw from the territory it liberated from terrorists.

Video Report

February 6, 2020 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, War Crimes | , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Strange Death of White Helmets Founder Leaves Many Questions to Be Answered

By Paul Antonopoulos | November 13, 2019

James Le Mesurier, the founder of the Al-Qaeda affiliated White Helmets, known as an “aid organization” in the West but known everywhere else for fabricating chemical weapon provocations in Syria, was found dead in Istanbul on Monday under dubious and confusing circumstances, and many question marks are being raised about his death. Journalist Ramazan Bursa claims that the suspicious death clearly demonstrates the White Helmet’s connection with intelligence organizations, particularly the British MI6.

The connection between the M16 and the White Helmets is often overlooked by the Western media, but on Friday, the Russian Foreign Ministry made a startling revelation. Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova revealed that “The White Helmets co-founder, James Le Mesurier, is a former agent of Britain’s MI6, who has been spotted all around the world, including in the Balkans and the Middle East. His connections to terrorist groups were reported back during his mission in Kosovo.” A few days later he was found dead…

Of course, Karen Pierce, the UK Permanent Representative to the UN, denied the Russian allegation, claiming that they were “categorically untrue. He was a British soldier,” before describing the mercenary as a “true hero.” The claim he is a “true hero” is a curious choice of words considering he has a long history of working alongside terrorists, as Zakharova correctly highlighted.

He served in the NATO war against Serbia to defend the ethnic-Albanian terrorist Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) in 2000, who have now turned Kosovo into a heroin ‘smugglers paradise,’ and a hub for human trafficking, organ harvesting and arms trafficking in the attempt to create an anti-Russian “Greater Albania.” However, it was not in Kosovo where he achieved his fame, but rather his dubious work in Syria.

Not only did he establish and develop the White Helmets, but he secured significant funding from the UK, U.S., Turkish, German, Qatari, Dutch, Danish and Japanese governments, and helped raise money on Indiegogo. His deep connections to the British military and his expansive experience as a mercenary serving Gulf dictatorships made him the perfect figure to establish a “rescue group” aimed at legitimizing terrorists operating in Syria and to push for regime-change intervention.

Along with the White Helmet’s ties to terrorist organizations and faking chemical weapon incidents, the group also has a role in the execution of civilians and using children in their propaganda campaigns. Mesurier was without a doubt a man with deep connections and deep pockets, with every resource available to him from international intelligence agencies and significant experience in supporting terrorists in conflict zones.

The argument that the White Helmets are not a civil defense team, especially as they never operated in government-held areas despite claiming to be neutral in the war, can easily be made. Despite the constant colonial media claims that the White Helmets are a true civilian rescue organization without terrorist links, Syrian film producer Kareem Abeed was not allowed to attend the Academy Awards to support his movie about the White Helmets, “Last Men in Aleppo,” as his visa application was officially denied by the U.S. government as he was “found ineligible for a visa under Section 212(f) of the Immigration and Nationality Act.” The very fact that the U.S. found White Helmets members nominated for the Academy Awards to be a risk in the country shows that the White Helmets are just another classic example of Washington weaponizing terrorists to advance their own agendas, just as the KLA were used against Serbia or the mujahideen that morphed into Al-Qaeda were used against the Soviet intervention in Afghanistan.

Although the White Helmets played a pivotal role in the propaganda campaign against Syria from 2013 onward, they now have nothing to defend or any purpose to serve as they only operate in areas that are undeniably controlled by Al-Qaeda affiliated groups and other radical elements, in a very, very small area of Syria. They can no longer portray themselves as an innocent organization that only helps civilians, as there is now endless evidence of their ties to terrorism, foreign intelligence agencies and doctoring of footage.

If we consider that the founder of the White Helmets and the deceased in Istanbul is a former British Intelligence officer, we can clearly see that it is a network of civil defense organizations, in which British Intelligence is involved, and supported by other intelligence agencies. The dubious death of a former British intelligence member living in Istanbul with his family is thought provoking and must raise serious questions.

It is also thought-provoking that this person is based in Istanbul. The death of Mesurier could have been reported as the death of a British citizen or the death of a former member of the British intelligence, however, Turkish media reported it as the death of the founder of the White Helmets. In other words, the Turkish media seems to have tacitly admitted that White Helmets are not an innocent non-governmental organization. Of course, after Turkey’s invasion of northern Syria, there were some changes in the Damascus-Ankara relationship. The West’s approach to the Turkish invasion of northern Syria may have also played a role in changing the attitude towards the White Helmets.

A security source claimed that Mesurier had fallen from the balcony of his home office with his death being treated as a suspected suicide, with a third person – a diplomat – claiming the circumstances around his death were unclear, according to The Sun. This also comes as BBC journalist Mark Urban said in a series of now-deleted tweets that it would not “have been possible” to fall from Le Mesurier’s balcony, with him also Tweeting that “there’s a good deal of suspicion it may be murder by a state actor, but others suggest he may have taken his own life.”

Essentially, no one knows just yet whether it was murder, suicide or an accident. This has not stopped the British media from alluding that there may be a connection between the “Russian smear campaign” made on Friday and his death on Monday. However, when we look at the way the incident took place, there is every suggestion that this incident was murder, given that there were cuts on his face, fractures on his feet and that he was found dead on the street, according to Turkish media. The probability of murder becomes stronger.

The question then shifts to who might have done? It is too early to say who did it, and anything forth said can only be considered speculation, but the West does have a rich history of making their assets disappear when they are no longer needed.

The White Helmets no longer have a purpose to serve in Syria with the inevitable victory of government forces over the Western-backed terrorists. Rather, the danger the White Helmets pose is a full-scale revelation on how deep their ties with Western and Gulf intelligence agencies and terrorist organizations go. Although revelations are slowly beginning to emerge, Mesurier no doubt had a wealth of knowledge on many dirty secrets related to Syria and the imperialist war against it.

Paul Antonopoulos is a Research Fellow at the Center for Syncretic Studies.

November 13, 2019 Posted by | Deception, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , , , | 3 Comments

Founder of ‘White Helmets’ James Le Mesurier Found Dead in Istanbul

Sputnik – 11.11.2019

A law enforcement source has confirmed the death of James Le Mesurier at his home in Istanbul. However, the source added that at this time, it remains “unclear whether he was murdered, or committed suicide.”

Le Mesurier, a former MI6 officer, created the controversial ‘urban search and rescue’ organisation in 2013. The White Helmets have been repeatedly accused of staging fake attacks in the conflict in Syria in a bid to prompt a Western-backed military intervention in the war-torn country.

The White Helmets’ official Twitter account has confirmed Le Mesurier’s passing, saying the group was ‘shocked and saddened’ by the news and expressing its “deepest condolences to the James family.” The group commended the former intelligence agent’s “humanitarian efforts which Syrians will always remember.”

Earlier, an anonymous diplomat was quoted by Reuters as saying that Le Mesurier’s body had been found early Monday morning at his home in the city’s Beyoglu district.

Sözcü, a major Turkish daily newspaper, reported, citing police sources, that Le Mesurier may have killed himself, and that he had been taking anti-depressant medication for some time ahead of Monday’s incident.

Sabah, another major Turkish paper, also reported, citing law enforcement, that police consider suicide the most likely cause of Le Mesurier’s death, with the former spy possibly jumping to his death from the balcony of his 3rd floor apartment. No traces of gunshot or knife wounds were found his body, police told Sabah.

A source close to the investigation later said that there was no evidence of any unauthorised persons being near his residence at the time of his death.

Le Mesurier’s wife was quoted by Sabah as saying that she and her husband had dinner together on Sunday. “After that we took sleeping pills and went to bed. A few hours later I woke up from the ringing of our doorbell. It was the police. They told me that my husband had fallen from the balcony and died.”

Police are continuing their investigation.

Founder of Terrorists’ ‘Propaganda Arm’

Le Mesurier, a British private security specialist and former UK military intelligence officer, founded the White Helmets in Turkey in March 2013. Before that, he served as an intelligence officer in other theatres of conflict, including a stint in Pristina, Kosovo soon after the NATO intervention in 1999. In the 2000s, he went on to serve as vice president of special projects at the Olive Group, a private mercenary organisation which later merged with Blackwater-Academi into Constellis Holdings.

In a 2014 interview, Le Mesurier said that he spontaneously raised about $300,000 in initial funding from the UK, the US and other countries and trained 25 vetted operatives to create the White Helmets after witnessing the suffering in Syria, with the group soon accumulating over $150 million in cash after Western NGOs, Gulf countries, several European countries and Japan sent money and supplies to help the group. The group continues to enjoy widespread publicity and support in Western countries, and is a UK-registered non-governmental organisation.

Syria considers the White Helmets a “terrorist organisation,” citing the group’s regular operations in areas controlled by jihadist militants, including al-Qaeda offshoot the Nusra Front, as well as its creation of video fakes which seem designed to prompt Western military intervention in Syria. Independent journalists have repeatedly accused the group of serving as ‘al-Nusra’s propaganda arm‘, given its alleged ties to the militants.

White Helmets, seen here celebrating with Nusra extremists © Photo: Youtube / ΓΙΑΝΝΗΣ ALDEBARAN

In April 2018, the US, UK and France launched a series of air and cruise missile strikes against Syria following the publication of a White Helmets video appearing to show that a horrific chemical attack that had taken place in Douma, a city in the Damascus suburbs about 10 km from the capital. The Douma attack was later debunked by verified testimony from multiple eyewitnesses who appeared in the video, including that of an 11-year-old boy who revealed that he and his mother had been given food to participate in the video. Since that time, Damascus and its allies have repeatedly voiced concerns about the possibility of more fake videos and false flag attacks by the groups designed to prompt Western intervention.

Last week, the Russian Foreign Ministry urged London to investigate Le Mesurier’s possible ties to al-Qaeda. At a briefing on Friday, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova pointed to independent research indicating the former spy’s possible links to terrorist organisations going back to his work in Kosovo. “There is data suggesting that there were al-Qaeda members among his team there,” Zakharova said, adding that Moscow would “very much like to hear what London has to say about these facts.”

Earlier this year, Britain’s Home Office announced that some 100 volunteers and family members from the White Helmets had been resettled in the UK after being evacuated from Syria last year with the help of British government officials.

November 11, 2019 Posted by | Deception | , , , , , | 3 Comments

Russian MoD doubts Trump’s announcement of killing ISIS chief al-Baghdadi, rejects claims it assisted US forces in op

RT | October 27, 2019

There’s no credible data to prove a successful American raid took place against Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, Russia’s Defense Ministry said. The US coalition didn’t even carry out any airstrikes in Idlib recently.

Earlier, Trump made a rare Sunday address from the White House informing the world that al-Baghdadi was eliminated in northwest Syria in a “daring nighttime raid” with the involvement of US special forces, planes, helicopters and drones. The Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS) leader met his end “crying and screaming” in the face of the Americans’ might, he said.

But the Russian Defense Ministry insisted that “there were legitimate questions and doubts about the very fact [of the US operation] and, especially, its success.”

Moscow pointed out that it recorded no US coalition airstrikes in the Idlib area in northwest Syria on Saturday when the raid was held.

It also rejected Trump’s claims that Russian forces opened up the airspace under its control in Syria to American planes to facilitate the operation against the IS leader.

The ministry questioned the very possibility of al-Baghdadi’s presence in Idlib as the area is held by Al-Qaeda offshoot, Jabhat al-Nusra, who have always been mortal enemies of Islamic State.

Moscow noted that Islamic State was crushed in Syria in early 2018 in a joint effort by the government in Damascus and the Russian forces, meaning that yet another report of al-Baghdadi’s demise “bears no effect on the operational situation in Syria or on the actions of the remaining terrorists in Idlib.”

French Defense Minister Florence Parly also questioned the significance of the claimed US achievement, pointing out that the raid only marked “an early retirement for a terrorist [al-Baghdadi], but not for his organization.”

October 27, 2019 Posted by | Deception | , , , | 5 Comments