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Has OPCW Become a Four-Letter Word?

By Martin Jay | Strategic Culture Foundation | May 21, 2019

The information war between those who believe that OPCW investigations in Syria over the chemical attack of Douma in 2018 was staged – verses those who choose to believe the West’s blithe claim that Assad poisoned his own people – is more or less over.

In recent months a number of curious elements of the investigation have been questioned by cynics who don’t swallow the West’s assertion that President Assad was dropping chemicals – sarin or chlorine – on his own people, such as the delay in the reaction of the OPCW itself in getting investigators there on the ground, through to the obvious bias of the way the investigation was handled. There was always a whiff of something quite unsavoury about the probe into the Douma chemical attack, which we should not forget resulted in air strikes being carried out in April of 2018 by France, the US and the UK.

And now we know what it is and a great deal of the mystery around the OPCW and its investigation can now be revealed.

The report was doctored.

Evidence which has emerged this week shows how, critically, engineers who were commissioned to carry out studies more or less immediately after the attack, had their findings blocked from making it into the final report, which was an opaque dossier which failed to really nail Assad, but also carefully avoided any suggestion that the West had set up the whole thing, using its Al Qaeda mercenaries in the region, which had been actually seen a couple of weeks earlier being trained by UK special forces in how to go about using chlorine.

Originally many skeptics such as myself were astounded that so much time had passed before the OPCW seemed to move – given that western figures like the then UK foreign minister Boris Johnson spoke about “evidence” and being “certain” that Assad had carried out the attack.

We now know though why it appeared that they hadn’t sent investigators there on the ground immediately. They had. But their findings proved controversial and didn’t support the West’s narrative that Assad had done the deed.

According to an incendiary report just published by a mostly British academic Assad-leaning group, the engineers’ findings – that the cylinder tanks were almost certainly not dropped from the air – were completely left out of the final report. Crucially, if this element had been put into it, the West would have had to admit that it had really got it wrong on Assad and that its own governments were faking the theatre of war, not to mention the fake news which is fed to MSM outlets in the days after. Who could, after all, forget the BBC report from the hospital showing the victims in agony, which finally was revealed to be staged video footage handed to the BBC who took it hook, line and sinker.

But now the cat is fully out of the bag. The OCPW report itself was also heavily redacted.

“It is hard to overstate the significance of this revelation. The war-machine has now been caught red-handed in a staged chemical weapons attack for the purposes of deceiving our democracies into what could have turned into a full-scale war amongst the great-powers” says firebrand maverick politico George Galloway on twitter.

But if this report is correct in its assertions, then we can be sure that most of what is being reported by western media is entirely false and part of a longer term strategy to build the case against Iran to carry out a strike “defending” the West. Just in the last few days there are reports of John Bolton planning to send 120,000 US troops to the region to intimidate Iran into accepting the demands of Trump over its weapons program. This coincides with an elaborate series of minor fake news stories over Iran presenting itself as a “threat” to the US, justifying a US aircraft carrier being sent to the Persian Gulf amidst tensions from reports of Iran moving troops to prepare itself to be on the receiving end of a strike. And then the oil tankers attacked off the UAE shores which the same fake news machine is hinting was done by Iran – which most seasoned hacks know could have easily been staged by the Saudis or Emiratis [or Mossad]. It’s interesting how no one was hurt in the so-called attacks.

But if the OPCW can get away with this report and its false assertion, then it’s hard to see how we can expect to understand what is really happening in the middle east if we are to rely on reporters working for western agencies who are happy to play their role in this nefarious ruse of Trump’s. If the truth about Douma is as ghastly as we are led to believe – i.e staged by the West so as to build the case against Iran and its proxies – then we shouldn’t be remotely surprised by the histrionics of tankers being attacked in the same region, with no casualties and Iran being accused, with no evidence. It’s hard to not be shocked by the implications of the doctored report and harder to understand how biased and poor western newsrooms have become over reporting on the region, with the BBC continuing to plummet in terms of standards of fact checking. The lack of on air corrections is also hardly edifying. We’re living in a new era, with a new syndrome. And it’s called O.P.C.W.

May 21, 2019 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, False Flag Terrorism, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Wars for Israel | , , , | Leave a comment

US Lawmakers Urge More Pressure, Full CAATSA Sanctions Against Russia, Iran

Sputnik – 21.05.2019

WASHINGTON US President Donald Trump should fully implement sanctions under the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act as a result of the activities of Iran and Russia in Syria, 400 US lawmakers said in a letter to the US president.

“Increase pressure on Iran and Russia with respect to activities in Syria”, the letter said. “America must continue economic and diplomatic efforts to counter Iran’s support for Hezbollah and other terrorist groups as well as Russia’s support for the brutal Assad regime. We encourage full implementation of sanctions authorized in the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA), a broadly supported bipartisan bill that you signed into law”.

The lawmakers expressed concern by the threat posed by terrorists and US adversaries in Syria and recommended steps the United States can take to limit the terrorists’ presence, counter adversaries as well as strengthen Israel’s security and continue to oppose international efforts to isolate and weaken the Jewish state.

“With the region in flux, it remains critical that we reiterate to both friend and foe in the region that we continue to support Israel’s right to defend itself”, the letter said. “We must also look for ways to augment our support in the context of the current ten-year Memorandum of Understanding between the United States and Israel and to ensure that Israel has access to the resources and materiel it needs to defend itself against the threats it faces on its northern border”.

The lawmakers also urged increasing pressure on Hezbollah by fully implementing the 2015 and 2018 sanctions against the organization and those who fund it.

“Additionally, we must continue to press UNIFIL to carry out its UN Security Council mandate, including investigating and reporting the presence of arms and tunnels on Israel’s border”, the letter said.

On 29 January 2018, the United States began imposing sanctions on foreign companies under CAATSA Section 231 on all major transactions made with the Russian defence or intelligence sector.

The US Congress passed CAATSA in response to allegations that Russia attempted to influence the 2016 US presidential election.

Russia has repeatedly denied involvement in the US political system.

May 20, 2019 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Wars for Israel | , , , , | 1 Comment

Palestinian cabinet not consulted on US-led Bahrain summit, PM says

Press TV – May 20, 2019

Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh says his government has not been consulted about an economic conference that the United States will hold in Bahrain next month.

The White House announced on Sunday that the first part of President Donald Trump’s so-called “peace plan,” which is spearheaded by his son-in-law Jared Kushner, will be unveiled in Bahrain’s capital, Manama.

The US will host the economic conference on June 25 and 26 to purportedly encourage investment in the West Bank, and the Gaza Strip.

“The cabinet wasn’t consulted about the reported workshop, neither over the content, nor the outcome, nor timing,” Shtayyed told Palestinian ministers in the presence of reporters on Monday.

Relations between the Palestinian Authority and the US took an unprecedented dip in late 2017, when Washington recognized Jerusalem al-Quds as Israel’s “capital.”

The Trump administration has said that its secret plan, which has been dismissed by Palestinian authorities even before being unveiled, would require compromise by both sides.

‘We don’t trade our political rights’

The Palestinian Authority is facing steep aid cuts. Since being shunned by Palestinians, Trump’s administration has slashed hundreds of millions of dollars to humanitarian organizations.

“The financial crisis the Palestinian Authority is living through today is a result of the financial war that is being launched against us in order to win political concessions,” Shtayyeh said.

“We do not submit to blackmail and we don’t trade our political rights for money,” he added.

Palestinians want the West Bank as part of a future independent Palestinian state with East Jerusalem al-Quds as its capital. However, Israel insist on maintaining the occupation of Palestinian territories.

‘High treason’

Also reacting to news of the upcoming conference, Bahrain’s main opposition group, the al-Wefaq National Islamic Society, has described the US “deal of the century” as a plan to sell Jerusalem al-Quds and Palestine, slamming it as “high treason,” the Arabic-language Lualua television network reported.

The group criticized the ruling Al Khalifah regime for hosting the conference, saying that is a departure from all national, Islamic and humanitarian principles.

Al-Wefaq further said the Bahraini people are opposed to the “desecration” of their country and efforts for converting it into a “station” to sign a new version of the Balfour Declaration – the document that led to Israel’s creation.

The group noted that the Al Khalifah regime’s move to host the “disastrous project” is no surprise, adding Manama’s recent rapprochement with the Israeli regime comes as it “lacks popular legitimacy” and seeks international support in an attempt to sustain its legitimacy.

Al-Wefaq called on all Bahrains and “free governments” to reject the initiative and stop the “dangerous development” from proceeding.

May 20, 2019 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Illegal Occupation | , , , , | 1 Comment

Saudi Arabia playing ‘Trojan horse’ for US amid tensions: Al Akhbar

Press TV – May 20, 2019

Saudi Arabia is fanning the flames of war between Iran and the US while both countries are against a confrontation, a Lebanese newspaper has said, accusing Riyadh of playing America’s “Trojan horse.”

In an article on Monday, Al Akhbar criticized Saudi Arabian King Salman for calling emergency meetings of the Arab League and the Persian Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC).

The paper warned Riyadh’s rulers that with their “subservience” to US President Donald Trump, they were essentially entering the kingdom into a conflict masterminded by Israel and America.

Saudi officials, it said, are only “adding fuel to the fire” of war that is aimed at partitioning the Middle East and destroying its heritage.

The official Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported on Saturday that Salman had invited Arab leaders to convene urgent summits in the city of Mecca on May 30 to discuss ways to “enhance the security and stability in the region.”

Days before the invitation, four oil tankers, including two Saudi ones, were purportedly targeted near the port of Fujairah on May 12, in what the United Arab Emirates described as “sabotage” attacks.

The invitation came at a time when hawks within Trump’s administration are actively trying to tip the scale in favor of a major confrontation in the Middle East.

Over the past few days, the US has put its political staff in its Baghdad embassy as well as in the American consulate in the Iraqi city of Erbil on high alert about what it insists are possible threats from neighboring Iran.

Washington also sent a carrier strike group as well as strategic B-52 bombers to the region in a “clear warning” to Tehran.

Saudi attitude spells doom

Al Akhbar wrote that the tensions have divided the region. It said Al Saud will not use these meetings to discuss Trump’s so-called “deal of the century” for Palestine — which is expected to be unveiled in early June.

Rather, the meetings will fan the flames of war to serve American and Israeli interests, because that is what they think would ultimately save them their crown, the paper wrote.

The article added that King Salman had decided to once again let aggressors use the Saudi airspace and territorial waters to wage war but this would only lead to his own demise and impose a great price upon Persian Gulf sheikhdoms which have tied their economy and security to America’s demands.

May 20, 2019 Posted by | Wars for Israel | , , | Leave a comment

Oman – Not Like the Rest of the Gulf

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By Andre Vltchek – New Eastern Outlook – 20.05.2019

Everyone who visits this once ‘hermit Sultanate’ could easily testify: Oman is ‘different’ from the other countries of the Gulf Region. Its people are warm, talkative and proud. Despite the fact that Oman is poorer than Bahrain or Saudi Arabia, it actually feels richer, because there is no extreme misery there; the citizens are clearly well taken care of.

While in Saudi Arabia, during Ramadhan, outrageous orgies of wasting food and vulgar wealth-flashing are performed on a daily basis; Oman is quietly trying to save children in neighboring Yemen instead.

An airport employee, Muhammad, explained to me:

“My country is habitually sending two flights per week to neighboring Yemen. During Ramadhan, the frequency increases. Our airplanes bring gravely injured and very sick men, women and children to Oman. Here, they get first rate and free medical treatment. Our doctors are trying to save their lives, as if they were our own people. Yemeni people are our brothers.”

This is quite shocking, considering that the militantly anti-Shia regime that is Saudi Arabia (KSA) is actually bombing big parts of Yemen back to the Stone Age, while an Omani neighbor – the United Arab Emirates (UAE) – is occupying the coastal area of Yemen, including its most important port of Aden.

The Syrians also have plenty of good things to say about Oman. I have heard praise all over the country.

In turn, the Syrian government is generally admired by Omani people; not by all, but definitely by the majority. Oman has always maintained diplomatic relations with Damascus, and never joined any coalition that has been trying to destabilize or to overthrow the legitimate Syrian administration. All this is in sharp contrast to Qatar and Saudi Arabia – countries that have been, for years, on behalf of the West and Israel, injecting and then supporting various terrorist organizations that have been brutalizing millions of Syrian citizens.

*

Oman does not have any US or EU military bases on its territory. It does not need them. It is not at war with anybody, and it is not trying to overthrow any regional governments. Hosting strategic bombers, US Navy ships, and ‘Central Commands’ are not how Oman’s rulers want to guarantee their country’s prosperity.

Instead, there is a magnificent opera house near the coast in Muscat, and right next to it, a lavish public palace dedicated to the arts. Despite the proximity of some luxury 5-star hotels, the beach remains public. The Ruler of Oman apparently loves music and the arts. A shocking contrast to places such as Saudi Arabia, where the arts and music are discouraged, or out rightly banned; considered ‘haram’.

I spoke to Omani people, and they appear to be satisfied with their lives, and with the direction in which their country is evolving.

I stopped a group of men (Sunni Muslims), leaving a mosque, and asked them about the Sunni and Shia divide, as well as their feelings towards Iran, which is presently facing an imminent threat from the United States.

The Shia, they replied, “are our brothers”:

“Here, it is nothing like in Saudi Arabia where they kill Shia Muslims. Nothing like in Bahrain, where most of people are Shia, but are treated with horrible spite, often having to live in total misery. We don’t differentiate and do not discriminate against Shia. In Oman, we inter-marry, and it is not a big deal. Sometimes we break the fast together, and we bring gifts to each other. We help our neighbors, when they are in trouble, and it matters nothing whether they are Sunni or Shia.”

Almost everybody here feels great sympathy for Iran and its people.

My driver has travelled to Teheran and Shiraz on nine occasions. He admires Iran’s culture, as well as the kindness and determination of the Iranian people. He strongly believes that they have the full right to live their own lives, free from the illegal sanctions imposed on them by Washington.

A group of worshippers, also expressed great admiration for Syria and its government, and then of the two countries that are now, apparently, reshaping the world:

“Without Russia and China, the United States and its allies would have already swallowed us all.”

Their support for the Palestinians, and their outrage over the Israeli actions and apartheid, appears to be genuine, not hypocritical or ‘theoretical’, as it is in the rest of the Gulf.

I have always felt comfortable here, even during my previous visits, but this time, in the era of global madness that is being spread by the West, I felt greatly impressed by the wisdom, kindness and civility of this ‘forgotten Sultanate’, which possesses a big heart and an impressive understanding of the global situation.

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It is not that Oman has been always such a gentle and considerate nation. In the past, its Muslim warriors, colonized and plundered the east coast of Africa, from Somalia to what is now Kenya, and all the way down to Tanzania. Like the Europeans, Omanis practiced the slave trade.

But things changed, and eventually, Oman turned into an introverted nation, and stayed as such for many decades. Then, when it began “opening up to the world”, it did it on its own terms, without becoming subordinate to foreign interests.

While Oman’s Duqm Port is now theoretically “open” to British ships, Oman is not hosting any permanent US military bases, like those located all around Saudi Arabia and Qatar.

Oman is maintaining a very close relationship with Iran, and no pressure from the West is managing to change this reality.

And while to ‘the world’ it is now opening up, it does not mean that “the world” is exclusively the West.

Sure, for my taste, there are still too many reports in the local newspapers, taken from the AFP and other Western press agencies and sources. Omani people are not immune to the ‘official narrative’ which is being injected into all the corners of the world by the West. But that is only a small part of the story. Interacting with Omani people, I realized that they are much more knowledgeable about the world than the rest of the Gulf.

What is especially significant is that China is becoming a close friend and an ally of Oman. This mutually beneficial relationship is here to stay.

My good acquaintance, a Chinese diplomat based in the Gulf, told me on condition of anonymity:

“China and Oman share a profound friendship of over 1,200 years. As early as 750 AD, a great Omani voyager Abu Obeid, made his journey to Guangzhou, China, and marked the beginning of the friendly exchanges between China and Oman, and also the exchanges between Chinese civilization and Arabic civilizations.”

Remarkably, that happened in the historic period when the West (Europe) was plundering and murdering its own people, as well as the populations of the ‘surrounding areas’.

On April 30, 2019, the Oman Observer, in an article, “Sultanate important partner in building Belt and Road”, interviewed Ms Li Lingbing, the Ambassador of China to Oman:

“Li Lingbing… stressed the Sultanate’s important role in the Belt and Road Initiative, pointing out the traditional friendly relations between the two countries, and the important role of the Sultanate on the belt and road since ancient times.

The Omani and Chinese sides announced last year the establishment of a strategic partnership and signed the Belt and Road cooperation document. Oman officially joined the circle of friends of “Belt and Road”, she said in a press conference held at the Chinese Embassy in Muscat. She noted that the Sultanate and China share a long historical heritage, adding that Oman enjoys an important geographical location and excellent ports, such as Duqm, Salalah and Sohar that have a natural advantage in participating in building the “Belt and Road”.”

It appears that Oman is one ‘sane’ nation in the middle of a region which has been colonized and usurped by the West. Oman’s rulers are more interested in the wellbeing of their people than in amassing tremendous wealth for the few, through shameless collaboration with Washington, London, Paris and Tel Aviv.

According to Dr Hamed Alhamami, an Omani citizen and the regional director of a UN office, “Oman is a special place in the region with many divisions. We play a neutral, impartial role and mind our own business. We support countries and people in need when we can, like Yemen and Syria, on humanitarian grounds.”

Oman is no one’s colony. It is now close to China. It is close to Iran. It helps the devastated people of Yemen, and it does what it can for Syria. It keeps friendly relations with the West and with other countries in the Gulf, but it takes no dictates from anyone. It has managed to survive this way for decades.

As a result, it is liked and deeply respected by most of the people of the Middle East.

Andre Vltchek is philosopher, novelist, filmmaker and investigative journalist. He’s a creator of Vltchek’s World in Word and Images, and a writer that penned a number of books, including China and Ecological Civilization.

May 19, 2019 Posted by | Timeless or most popular | , | 4 Comments

When North Korea’s Air Force Fought Israel

The Beginnings of Pyongyang’s Military Involvement in the Middle East and its Evolution Over Half a Century

Military Watch Magazine | October 7, 2018

While the Yom Kippur War is a well known Cold War engagement between Soviet and Western aligned forces which took place in the midst of the Vietnam War, pitting the forces of a number of Arab states including Egypt, Syria, Iraq and Algeria against their longstanding adversary Israel, the role played by personnel deployed from external powers remains less well known. One party which played a significant role in the conflict, the beginnings of its extensive involvement in the Middle East to undermine the Western Bloc’s regional interests which continues to this day, was the Korean People’s Army (KPA) – the armed forces of North Korea. Having waged an intensive and brutal war with the Untied States and its allies in the 1950s, where an estimated 20-30% of its population was lost primarily due to the American bombing campaign, North Korea well understood the importance of air superiority and set about rebuilding its air and air defence forces with the most capable Soviet made weapons systems available. North Korean pilots and air defence crews were tasked not only with guarding the country’s airspace in the event of a future war with the Untied States, but also of contributing to the war efforts of a number of friendly countries – which they continue to do to this day. North Korean pilots played a considerable role in the Vietnam War, and according to Korean sources downed several U.S. fighter jets over the country. As the air war over Vietnam neared its end in the early 1970s, the KPA Air Force dispatched pilots to Egypt to aid the Soviet aligned country’s own war effort.

North Korean pilots had been stationed to aid Egyptian forces in defending their airspace months before the outbreak of the Yom Kippur War, and according to the Egyptian Military’s Chief of Staff Saad Al Shazly, Korean assistance provided critical assistance at a time of great need. Recalling that personnel from the USSR had been flying approximately 30% of the Egyptian MiG-21 fleet and operating about 20% of the country’s surface to air missile batteries, he noted that following the departure of Soviet forces under the decree of Egyptian President Anwar Sadat the Egyptian Air Force had struggled with a significant shortage of trained MiG pilots. Regarding North Korea’s role in solving this issue, the General stated in his memoirs:

“The solution occurred to me in March 1973, during the visit to Egypt of the Vice President of the Democratic (People’s) Republic of Korea (official name of North Korea.) On March 6, while escorting their Vice Minister of War, General Zang Song, on a tour of the Suez front, I asked if they could support us – and give their pilots useful combat training – but sending even a squadron of men. I knew at that time that his country flew MiG-21s. After much political discussion, in April I went on an official visit to president Kim Il Sung to finalise the plan. My fascinating ten day tour of that extraordinary republic, an inspiring an example of what a small nation of the so called Third World can achieve with its own resources is, alas, rather outside the scope of this memoir, as is my stopover in Peking (former English name for Beijing.)

Korean pilots – all highly experienced, many with more than 2,000 hours, arrived in Egypt in June and were operating by July. Israel or her ally ( the United States) soon monitored their communications, of course, and on August 15 announced their presence. To my regret, our leadership would never confirm it. The Korean s were probably the smallest international military reinforcement in history: only 20 pilots, eight controllers, give interpreters, three administrative men, a political advisor, a doctor and a cook. Bu their effect was disproportionate. They had two or three encounters with the Israelis in August and September and about the same number in the war. Their arrival was a heartwarming gesture. I mention the story here mainly to pay tribute to them and to apologise for the churlishness of our leadership in not also doing so.”

While Egyptian forces had long claimed that the MiG-21 was poorly suited to engage the F-4E, Israel’s prime air superiority fighter, and that the Soviet jet lacked the necessary survivability against the heavier American made platform, they were proven wrong not only by the successes of North Vietnamese pilots against the United States – but also by North Korean pilots operating against Israeli Phantoms over Egyptian airspace itself. According to Israeli sources, reporting on an engagement between North Korean piloted MiGs and their own Phantoms, the Korean pilots demonstrated considerable skill and were effectively untouchable in close range engagements – taking full advantage of the MiG-21’s superior manoeuvrability to evade multiple Israeli strikes with impunity. Whether North Korean pilots downed any Israeli fighters remains unknown, though reports indicate that no Koreans were shot down by Israeli jets. A number of reports do indicate however that the poorly trained Egyptian surface to air missile (SAM) crews mistook returning Korean MIG-21 fighters for Israeli jets, and proceeded to fire upon them. This was a common error made by Egyptian SAM crews, one which cost the country a number of fighter jets.

North Korean pilots’ participation in the Yom Kippur War represented only the beginning of the country’s military involvement in the Middle East, nor the last time the country would aid Arab states at war with Israel. While Egypt pivoted towards the Western Bloc in the war’s aftermath, abandoning the Soviet Union and its Arab allies, the country would pursue a number of joint weapons projects with North Korea and continues to import significant quantities of arms from the country. The Egyptian ballistic missile arsenal has North Korean origins, and the Korean Rodong-1 remains the country’s most capable platform in service today. North Korean assistance was also commissioned to construct a war museum in Egypt commemorating the Yom Kippur War, which was based heavily on the larger Fatherland Liberation War Museum in Pyongyang commemorating the Korean War. North Korean forces have since the Yom Kippur War also formed close ties to Syria and Yemen, and the KPA is involved in wars against Western aligned forces in both countries.

Korean assistance has been key to upgrading Syria’s surface to air missile network, while special forces have reportedly been deployed for ground operations. KPA personnel were also reportedly involved in the Lebanon War in alongside their Syrian allies, and were later responsible for aiding the Lebanese militia Hezbollah to construct underground fortifications key to its military success against Israel in 2006. A number of key figures in Hezbollah’s leadership, including its leader Hassan Nasraallah, reportedly travelled to Korea for military training in the 1980s. Korean assistance has been key to strengthening the missile capabilities of Libya, Syria and Yemen, as well as Iran and Hezbollah, with all these parties relying heavily on a wide variety of the country’s missile designs until today. The East Asian state has since the Yom Kippur War played a considerable role in supporting regional forces against the Western Bloc and their allies, and is set to continue to do so for the foreseeable future.

May 19, 2019 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular | , , , , | 1 Comment

Saudi king calls for urgent meetings of Arab leaders

Press TV – May 19, 2019

Saudi Arabia’s King Salman bin Abdulaziz has called for emergency meetings of the Persian Gulf Cooperation Council ([P]GCC) and the Arab League, following mysterious “sabotage” attacks on Saudi and Emirati oil tankers as well as drone strikes targeting Saudi oil pumping stations.

The official Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported on Saturday that Salman had invited Arab leaders to convene urgent summits in the city of Mecca on May 30 to discuss ways to “enhance the security and stability in the region.”

An official source at the Saudi Foreign Ministry said that the Saudi monarch had called the meetings due to “grave concerns” about recent attacks on commercial vessels off the coast of the United Arab Emirates and drone strikes on oil pumping stations in Saudi Arabia as well as the effects of those incidents on supply routes and oil markets.

The summits are meant “to discuss these aggressions [sic] and their consequences on the region,” the source said.

The Emirates’ Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation has welcomed the Saudi call for the emergency meetings.

“The current critical circumstances entail a unified Arab and [Persian] Gulf stance toward the besetting challenges and risks,” the ministry said in a statement.

On May 12, four oil tankers, including two Saudi ones, were purportedly targeted near the port of Fujairah, in what the Emirates described as “sabotage” attacks. While Riyadh and Abu Dhabi failed to produce evidence of the attacks on their vessels, pictures emerged of a Norwegian-flagged tanker at the port having sustained some damage.

Two days later, drone strikes were launched on two oil pumping stations in Saudi Arabia. These attacks were believed to have been carried out by Yemen’s Houthi fighters in retaliation for the prolonged Saudi war against Yemen.

The attacks led Saudi Arabia to halt its main cross-country oil pipeline temporarily.

Saudi and Emirati officials have not said who carried out the attacks on the tankers and the pumping stations, but some political and media figures within the United States have claimed that Iran is responsible.

A day after the reported attacks on the oil tankers, Tehran called them “worrying,” and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif later called them “suspicious.”

Yemen’s Houthis also noted that the retaliatory drone strikes on the Saudi oil pipeline were an act of self defense and had nothing to do with Iran.

Pompeo calls bin Salman

On Saturday night, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman held a phone conversation with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

The SPA reported that the two sides exchanged views on the “developments in the region and efforts to enhance security and stability.”

Jubeir claims Riyadh doesn’t seek war

In a separate development on Sunday, Saudi Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Adel al-Jubeir claimed that his country did not want a war with Iran.

“The kingdom of Saudi Arabia does not want a war in the region nor does it seek that,” he told a press conference in Riyadh.

“It will do what it can to prevent this war and at the same time it reaffirms that in the event the other side chooses war, the kingdom will respond with all force and determination, and it will defend itself and its interests,” he added.

May 19, 2019 Posted by | False Flag Terrorism, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , , | 4 Comments

CrossTalk: Bolton War Machine

RT | May 17, 2019

Is Donald Trump’s National Security Advisor John Bolton a clear and present danger to America and the world? His saber-rattling in the Middle East, particularly against Iran, should concern us all. We are forced to ask a fundamental question – is Bolton the primary architect of Trump’s foreign policy?

May 18, 2019 Posted by | Video, Wars for Israel | , , | 2 Comments

US warns airlines risk ‘miscalculation or misidentification’ over Persian Gulf

RT | May 18, 2019

In a chilling reminder of the downing of Iran Air flight 655 by a US missile, an FAA notice said civilian aircraft flying over the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman are currently at risk of “miscalculation or misidentification.”

A Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) published by the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) late on Thursday said the risk stems from “heightened military activities and increased political tensions” in the area. Airliners operating in the region may also “encounter inadvertent GPS interference and other communications jamming” the warning said.

The tension in the proximity of Iran comes as the US deployed additional military assets in the region, including an aircraft carrier strike group and a battery of Patriot anti-aircraft missiles. Washington said it was a response to an undefined threat posed by Iranian forces. The US also withdrew non-essential personnel from diplomatic missions in Iraq. The show of force was reportedly triggered by intelligence provided by Israel.

For some, the FAA warning may bring back the dark memory of the 1988 incident, in which an American guided missile destroyer shot down an Iranian airliner, killing 290 people on board. It happened two months after the US sunk an Iranian frigate and a gunboat in retaliation for an incident a few days earlier, in which a US warship struck an Iranian mine.

Washington said the crew of the USS Vincennes misidentified Iran Air flight 655 for a warplane trying to attack the warship and acted in self-defense. The government rejected accusations that US military service members had acted recklessly, with President George H.W. Bush infamously declaring: “I will never apologize for the United States – I don’t care what the facts are… I’m not an apologize-for-America kind of guy.”

The US did pay compensation to the families of the victims, but never accepted legal liability or apologized to Tehran.

May 18, 2019 Posted by | Aletho News | , | 2 Comments

Who Really Gains from the Gulf Ship ‘Sabotage’

By Finian Cunningham | Strategic Culture Foundation | May 15, 2019

After dramatic and patently scripted warnings of “Iranian aggression” by bellicose US officials, there then follows – conveniently enough – an alleged sabotage incident in the Persian Gulf region implicating Iran.

Meanwhile, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo poses with a straight face that his country doesn’t want war with Iran. His comments warp credulity given that American forces have suddenly escalated firepower in the Persian Gulf for the purpose of “responding” to alleged Iranian infractions.

Typically, Western news media are “reporting” (or rather, “echoing”) the purported sabotage incident as if it were fact, basing their source of information on Saudi and Emirati officials, sources which have a vested interest in creating a war pretext against Iran.

Given the grotesque, barefaced lies that have emanated from the Saudi regime over the past year with regard to the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi and also its barbaric, mass executions of political dissidents, it is nauseating how Western media can affect to be so credulous in citing Saudi claims as reliable over the latest alleged shipping incident.

“Two Saudi oil tankers have been sabotaged off the coast of the United Arab Emirates posing a potentially serious threat to world oil supplies,” reports [sic] Britain’s Guardian, attributing the source of this information to the “Saudi government”. What the Guardian omitted was the key word “alleged” before “sabotage”. Notice how the impression given is one of a factual incident of malicious intent. Most other Western news media adopted the same reliance on the official Saudi and Emirati claims.

Tellingly, however, Saudi and Emirati officials gave no details about the “significant damage” allegedly caused to a total of four tankers.

What we seem to know is that the four vessels were somehow disabled off the UAE port of Fujairah early on Sunday. The location at sea is in the Gulf of Oman, which lies outside the Persian Gulf, about 140 kilometers south from the Strait of Hormuz. The latter is the narrow passage from the Gulf of Oman into the Persian Gulf, through which up to 30 per cent of all globally shipped crude oil passes each day.

Last week, Iran once again threatened it would blockade its territorial waters in the Strait of Hormuz “if” the US carried out a military attack on it. Such a move by Iran would throw the global economy into chaos from the anticipated crisis in oil markets. It would also doubtless trigger an all-out war between the US and Iran, with American regional client regimes like Saudi Arabia and Israel piling in to facilitate attacks against Tehran.

So far, there have been no official accusations explicitly made against Iran over the latest shipping incident. But the implications are pointedly skewed to frame-up the Islamic Republic.

Saudi energy minister Khalid al Falih, whom Western media have quoted uncritically, claimed that one of the vessels allegedly attacked was on its way to load up on crude oil from the Saudi port of Ras Tanura, destined for the US market. The Saudi official did not give any substantiating details on the alleged sabotage, but emphasized that it was aimed “to undermine the freedom of navigation”. He called on international action to “protect security of oil tankers”. Wording that the American self-appointed global “policeman” (more accurately, “thug”) invokes all the time to cover for its imperialist missions anywhere on the planet.

When the US warned last week that it was sending a naval carrier strike armada to the Persian Gulf along with nuclear-capable B-52 bombers, it assumed the right to hit “Iran or its proxies” for any alleged attack on “American interests”. The wording out of Washington is so vague and subjective that it lends itself to any kind of perceived provocation.

An oil tanker on its way to collect crude from Saudi Arabia for the US market? That certainly could qualify as perceived Iranian aggression against American vital interests.

Last week, Washington issued hammed-up warnings that “Iran or its proxies” was set to “target commercial sea traffic”. Days later, as if on cue, the alleged sabotage of four ships appears to fit the theatrical bill.

Iran, for its part, has said it would not start a war with the US; that it will only act to defend itself from any American offensive. The foreign ministry in Tehran called the latest sabotage claims “highly alarming” and demanded more clarity from the Saudi and Emirati authorities as to what happened exactly. We can be sure that neither will come clean on that score, given their past record of calumny.

The clarifying question is, of course, who gains from the latest twist in tensions? Certainly, it fulfills American, Saudi and Israeli desires to intensify aggression towards Iran.

Another important question is the location of the alleged sabotage. If Iran wanted to carry out such an operation, it would be much more feasible to do it near the Iranian territorial waters in the Strait of Hormuz. Seriously: how feasible is it for several Iranian commando teams to strike four oil tankers in waters some 140 kms away? Waters that are forensically surveilled by the US Fifth Fleet based in the Persian Gulf.

Suspiciously, as already noted, there is no verifiable information about the alleged sabotage. All we’ve got are claims from Saudi and Emirati officials, the same kind of people who claim journalists disappear into thin air while in consular buildings, or that children in Yemen are slaughtered in air strikes by “mistake”, or that peaceful women protesters from Saudi’s oppressed Shia minority are “terrorists” to be executed by beheading with a sword.

And, shamefully, the Western media tamely go along doe-eyed and gullibly with this risible charade.

Sequencing, timing, sources, agenda and motives plus the dutiful Western media servility. The bets are this is a false-flag operation to incriminate Iran.

If it doesn’t result in a pretext for American military attack, at the very least Washington and its Saudi and Israeli clients are trying to make sure the European lackeys are bounced into toeing the line for increasing economic warfare on Iran over the floundering nuclear accord. An international treaty, by the way, which has been torpedoed – verifiably – by American political sabotage.

What’s really going on here is another brazen case of reality-inversion. Compare with contemporaneous US mendacity towards Venezuela, Syria, Cuba, Russia, China, North Korea, and so on. American criminal aggression is, incredibly, again being laundered with a moral license by lying corporate mass media which have the gall to call their blatant war propaganda a “news service”.

Indeed, the world is being lied into a potentially catastrophic war by a congenitally criminal US regime.

May 15, 2019 Posted by | Deception, False Flag Terrorism, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , | 1 Comment

Trump considering replacing John Bolton: Report

Press TV – May 15, 2019

US media reports suggest that President Donald Trump is considering replacing his hawkish National Security Adviser John Bolton over his plans to push the United States towards a military conflict with Iran, Venezuela and North Korea.

Bolton “is headed for the exits, having flown too close to the sun on his regime change efforts for Iran, Venezuela and North Korea,” The National Interest magazine reported Tuesday, citing sources familiar with the matter.

“Hearing that Trump wants him out,” a former senior Trump administration official told the magazine.

There is speculation in Washington “that there’s now daylight between Trump and Bolton,” the report added.

The fighting has also expanded to include US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, officials say. A State Department official and a former White House official both report that Bolton and Pompeo are “fighting all the time.”

A former senior official in the State Department said Pompeo is enthusiastic about isolating Iran, but fearful of an actual war that might engulf much of the Middle East.

“John Bolton is the problem … Trump’s national security adviser is getting dangerous… particularly to the president’s ideals,” Douglas Macgregor, a Bolton rival and would-be successor, writes in Spectator USA.

Trump ran his election campaign on the promise to pull the US military out of Iraq, Afghanistan and Syria — unwinnable post-9/11 wars that have consumed American lives and military budgets.

That partial retreat remains one of Trump’s strongest points in his pitch to be the so-called outsider president.

But Bolton is working in exactly the opposite direction.

The United States has been ratcheting up economic and military pressure on Iran, with Trump recently urging Tehran to talk to him.

“What I’d like to see with Iran, I’d like to see them call me,” Trump told reporters at the White House on Thursday.

But then he said he would not rule out the possibility of military action in Iran amid escalating tensions before slamming former secretary of state John Kerry for his involvement in the issue.

His remarks came after Bolton said on Sunday that the United States was sending an aircraft carrier strike group and a bomber task force to the Middle East in a “clear and unmistakable” message to Iran.

The Pentagon announced on Friday that the US was deploying an amphibious assault ship and a Patriot missile battery to bolster an aircraft carrier and B-52 bombers already sent to the Persian Gulf.

May 15, 2019 Posted by | Militarism | , | 6 Comments

History’s Dire Warning: Beware False-Flag Trigger for Long-Sought War with Iran

By Whitney Webb | MintPress News | May 14, 2019

With the beat of Washington’s war drums continuing to grow, particularly following the Monday revelation of a government plan to send as many as 120,000 troops to counter Iran, the threat of an “accidental” provocation or a “false flag” is also becoming increasingly likely. As MintPress recently reported, the possibility of an “accident” leading to open conflict between the U.S. and Iran is now being openly stated by top European officials — such as U.K. Foreign Minister Jeremy Hunt — following meetings with noted Iran hawk and current Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

In Part I of this series, MintPress explored how current events — including seemingly unrelated regional events, such as the Israeli government’s bid to occupy the West Bank and the Syrian offensive against Al Qaeda-held Idlib — were converging to create a “now or never” scenario for those most eager for regime change in Iran and a U.S.-Iran military confrontation, particularly Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and U.S. National Security Advisor John Bolton.

This installment will also reveal how Trump’s top political patron Sheldon Adelson — who is also the top donor to Netanyahu and a long-time confidant of Bolton, whom he helped install in his powerful post in the Trump administration — may be the deciding factor whether Trump authorizes the use of military force against Iran.

Yet, while the endgame for Bolton, Adelson and Netanyahu, as well as Pompeo, has long been a U.S.-led war with Iran, public justification for such hostilities must be given in order to manufacture American consent for a war against a country significantly larger than Iraq, complete with a more powerful army. Historically, the U.S. government has frequently planned and used false flags in order to justify the initiation or expansion of hostilities, with the best-known examples being Operation Northwoods and the Gulf of Tonkin incident.

However, given the current situation, it is essential to revisit two other incidents that reveal that the key players pushing for war in Iran — Israel’s government and neoconservatives of the Bush era (Bolton chief among them) — have planned and attempted to execute false flag attacks to push the U.S. into a major war that the American public would not normally support.

Remembering the U.S.S. Liberty

On June 8, 1967, one of the worst attacks on a U.S. naval vessel during peacetime took place, an attack that the U.S. government has kept shrouded in secrecy over 50 years later in what many have called a cover-up.

Around two in the afternoon on a cloudless, sunny day, unmarked aircraft and torpedo boats attacked the U.S.S. Liberty — a largely defenseless naval intelligence vessel flying visible American flags — without provocation. The attack saw the aggressors commit several war crimes, including attacking with unmarked aircraft and vessels; shooting survivor-bearing lifeboats out of the water with machine-gun fire; and the jamming of the Liberty’s ability to use international distress frequencies.

Thirty-four American sailors lost their lives and 173 were wounded, and the Liberty — which cost U.S. taxpayers $40 million to build — was so badly damaged it was subsequently sold for scrap metal for pennies on the dollar.

During the attack and in its immediate aftermath, Liberty survivors were puzzled as to why the U.S. Department of Defense ordered the recall of U.S. ships that were on route to aid the Liberty from the hostile attack, which many sailors had assumed at the time was being conducted by Egyptian or Arab forces in light of the ship’s proximity to the Sinai Peninsula.

Indeed, the attack on the Liberty took place during the Israeli-Arab Six Day War, a war that Israel claimed to have started as a preemptive means of self-defense but that was later revealed to have been the culmination of years of planning for a war of aggression. This fact was openly admitted by former Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin in the early 1980s. Israel, an American ally, was not suspected by Liberty crewmen at the time of the attack as being their potential assailants.

However, no Arab nation had attacked the Liberty that day, though that assumption by Liberty sailors was what their true assailants had hoped they and the American public would believe. Instead, it had been Israeli aircraft and torpedo boats that had fired on the clearly-marked American vessel with torpedoes, machine gun fire and even napalm. The Israelis “officially” maintain to this day, with little challenge from the U.S. government, that the attack was an accident, a fact that has been and continues to be heavily contested by the attack’s survivors.

Yet, beyond the testimony of survivors, the most compelling evidence that the attack on the Liberty was no accident comes from the Israelis themselves. Intercepted Israeli communications from the time of attack, made public only in recent years, reveal that the ship had been identified as American prior to the attack and, despite that, the plan was to sink the U.S.S. Liberty and ensure that there were no survivors. The goal of the attack was to place the blame on Egyptian forces, which necessitated there being no American survivors who could dispute the claim. If the Liberty had been sunk, it would have provided the United States legal cover and popular support for a more central role in the conflict and its crucial diplomatic aftermath. Indeed, the Israeli attack on the U.S.S. Liberty was a false flag, one that failed to achieve its intended goal of goading the U.S. into a major war.

Instead of responding with indignation, then-President Lyndon Johnson — whether it occurred before or during the attack is disputed — ordered that the Liberty not be rescued during the course of the attack, allegedly not wanting to harm relations with or “embarrass” an ally even if it meant consigning the 294-person crew of the Liberty to death.

Damage to the starboard side of the USS Liberty following Israeli attacks, June, 1967. Photo | NSA Archive

Those who survived the assault of the Liberty owe their lives to the then-23-year-old Terry Halbardier, who valiantly navigated the Liberty’s napalm-glazed deck and managed to rig an antenna and send out an SOS signal to the Navy’s Sixth Fleet. Upon intercepting that distress signal, the Israelis immediately broke off the attack. Halbardier’s heroism prevented the massacre of all 294 crewmen and allowed them to live to tell their stories, despite Johnson’s having left them for dead.

Yet many Liberty survivors were unable to tell their stories for decades, as the U.S. government issued gag orders and threatened them with being court-martialed for speaking to anyone, even their spouses, about the incident. The Navy’s Board of Inquiry, which abetted the cover-up, was headed by Admiral John S. McCain Jr., the father of the late Senator John McCain of Arizona.

To this day, the U.S. government has failed to conduct a full, public inquiry into the attack. Liberty survivors who have since spoken out have been accused of “anti-Semitism” and of slandering Israel for discussing their personal and traumatic experiences of the attack, significantly compounding their suffering and post-traumatic stress.

While the survivors of Israel’s assault on the Liberty have been denied closure, the U.S. government’s response has endangered the lives of American personnel by clearly signaling to Israel that they will suffer no consequences for such “false flag” attacks, regardless of whether American servicemen are wounded or killed. As former CIA intelligence analyst Ray McGovern has previously noted for Consortium News, “the U.S. cover-up [of the attack on the U.S.S. Liberty ] taught the Israelis that they could literally get away with murder.”

In a 2015 interview on the Real News Network, McGovern warned that the attack on the Liberty still holds “current relevance” and that he felt that “the Israelis are capable of doing this kind of thing when they see their supreme national interests at stake.” McGovern further stated that Israeli officials may well have considered a provocation, such as false flag, to throw a wrench in the Iran nuclear deal, which was being negotiated at the time.

McGovern — in an open letter to President Barack Obama, co-authored with former Deputy National Intelligence Officer for the Near East in the National Intelligence Council Elizabeth Murray — noted that Admiral Mike Mullen, former member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff in the Bush administration, had flown to Israel in 2003 and told the Israeli government emphatically “to disabuse themselves of the notion that U.S. military support would be knee-jerk automatic if they somehow provoked open hostilities with Iran. According to the Israeli press, Mullen went so far as to warn the Israelis not to even think about another incident at sea like the deliberate Israeli attack on the U.S.S. Liberty.”

McGovern and Murray cited Mullen’s statements to Israeli officials as the first time that “a senior U.S. official braced Israel so blatantly about the Liberty incident.” In an email to MintPress, McGovern stated that he was unsure whether current Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Joseph Dunford “can be counted upon to play a similar restraining role” in preventing hostilities with Iran. Notably, Dunford was in attendance along with Bolton at the recent CIA meeting to discuss “highly sensitive covert actions” in relation to Iran.

An “accident” waiting to happen

Since Bolton announced the movement of the Lincoln carrier strike group towards the Persian Gulf, some have pointed out that the vessels could well be destined for use in a “false flag” provocation, such as one planned by former Vice President Dick Cheney in 2008 (to be discussed shortly) and another conducted by Israel in 1967. Indeed, as MintPress noted the day after Bolton’s announcement, the carrier strike group’s deployment was actually announced a month prior and was a routine deployment.

The political analysis blog Moon of Alabama also noticed that Bolton had framed this routine deployment as something more dire for his own purposes, writing:

The carrier deployment to the Gulf is routine. It had been announced on April 8. The U.S. has bombers on rotation in the Middle East since 2001. Moreover – a carrier in the Persian Gulf is a sure sign that the U.S. will not attack Iran. Within the restricted waters of the Persian Gulf a carrier is a too easy target. The idea though may be to provide for an ‘accident’’ as Iran’s Foreign Minister [Javad Zarif] described it in a recent CBS interview.”

In an interview late last month with CBS’ Face the Nation, Zarif explicitly told journalist Margaret Brennan his concern about an imminent “false flag” to trigger war with Iran by John Bolton in collaboration with Israeli, Saudi and Emirati leadership:

Foreign Minister Zarif | I don’t think military confrontation will happen. I think people have more prudence than allowing a military confrontation to happen. But, I think the U.S. administration is putting things in place for accidents to happen. And there has to be extreme vigilance, so that people who are planning this type of accident would not have their way.

Margaret Brennan | What do you mean? What kind of accident are you talking about?

Zarif | I’m talking about people who have — who are designing confrontation, whose interest —

Brennan | Who’s doing that?

Zarif | My ‘B’ team. I call —

Brennan | What do you mean ‘B’ team?

Zarif | I call the group ‘B’ team who have always tried to create tension, whose continued existence depends on tension. Ambassador Bolton, one ‘B,’ Bibi Netanyahu, second ‘B,’ Bin Zayed, third ‘B,’ Bin Salman, fourth ‘B.’ And I’m not just making accusations.

With an aircraft carrier little more than a sitting duck in the area amid rising tensions between the U.S. and Iran, an “accident” may well occur. As was noted in Part I of this mini-series, such a possibility was directly stated by British Foreign Minister Jeremy Hunt on Monday.

Hunt told reporters “We are very worried about the risk of a [U.S.-Iran] conflict happening by accident, with an escalation that is unintended really on either side but ends with some kind of conflict.” Hunt notably made the statement after meeting with Pompeo, who is currently in Europe meeting with European heads of state to discuss Iran. The Associated Press noted that the Trump administration had warned European officials, Hunt included, that “Iran or its proxies could be targeting maritime traffic in the Persian Gulf region.”

The possibility of such an “accident” is further compounded by Bolton’s aforementioned and “highly unusual” meeting about Iran and “highly sensitive covert actions” at CIA headquarters last week. Declassified CIA documents show that the agency had previously planned to stage terror attacks on U.S. soil and murder Americans to blame on Cuba in order to justify invading the Caribbean nation in the 1960s. That plan, known as Operation Northwoods, further called for the destruction of U.S. military vessels to be blamed on Cuba and also the staging of fires and mortar attacks on U.S. military installations in Cuba (i.e., Guantanamo Bay) or nearby (i.e., in Florida). Though Operation Northwoods was never enacted, the agency has been accused of orchestrating numerous “false flags” in the decades since.

As was recently seen with the alleged “sabotage” of Saudi oil tankers near Iran, there are many potential targets for provocation. However, the incident that would most assuredly force U.S. involvement in a military conflict would be an attack on an American military target. While some have dismissed Bolton’s announcement of the carrier’s movements as a self-serving manipulation of the facts, it may have had the added purpose of framing the lead-up to an unfortunate “accident” targeting American vessels in the area, particularly the Lincoln carrier strike group or one of the other subsequent U.S. naval deployments to the Middle East.

The neocon plan for a Liberty-like attack

If any sort of provocation blamed on Iran should occur, it is important to consider that a powerful group of U.S. politicians — the neo-conservatives — have long sought to plan provocations that would drag the U.S. into war with Iran. One of the most recent examples took place during the George W. Bush administration when then-Vice President Dick Cheney held a meeting with other administration officials in 2008 aimed at provoking war with Iran.

The details of that meeting were revealed by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Seymour Hersh, who described some of the ideas considered in that Cheney-led meeting as follows:

There were a dozen ideas proffered about how to trigger a war. The one that interested me the most was why don’t we build in our shipyard four or five boats that look like Iranian PT boats. Put Navy seals on them with a lot of arms. And next time one of our boats goes to the Straits of Hormuz, start a shoot-up. Might cost some lives.

And it was rejected because you can’t have Americans killing Americans. That’s the kind of, that’s the level of stuff we’re talking about. Provocation.

Silly? Maybe. But potentially very lethal. Because … if you get the right incident, the American public will support bang-bang-kiss-kiss. You know, we’re into it.”

It is unknown if any Bush officials now in the Trump administration were present at that meeting where the use of a “false flag” pitting Americans against Americans disguised as Iranian was discussed. However, what is known is that John Bolton — who was a member of the neo-conservative Project for a New American Century, along with Cheney, and who also served in the Bush administration — has zealously sought war with Iran for nearly two decades. Indeed, the New York Times recently described Bolton as “one of the administration’s most virulent Iran hawks, whose push for confrontation with Tehran was ignored more than a decade ago by President George W. Bush.” It is also known that Bolton has a history of playing fast and loose with unconfirmed intelligence and also distorting intelligence to fit his pre-determined narrative.

As MintPress reported last year, former Israeli Ambassador to the UN Danny Gillerman has stated that Bolton, when serving in the Bush administration, was prone to “direct fire on his own forces,” — i.e., the U.S. government — in order to advance the goals of the Israeli government, especially with respect to Iran. For instance, in more than one instance while in the Bush administration, Bolton traveled to Israel in violation of State Department rules and negotiated privately with Israeli officials, including the then-head of the Mossad, Meir Dagan, to lay the groundwork for a war with Iran. As journalist Gareth Porter has noted, Bolton did this in an effort to directly undermine Colin Powell, Bolton’s superior, just as Powell “was saying administration policy was not to attack Iran.”

Worse still, Bolton has pressured Israeli officials to initiate a war with Iran, even when they didn’t support such a move. One such case was Shaul Mofaz, former Israeli defense minister, who told Israeli media last March that Bolton “tried to convince me that Israel needs to attack Iran,” even though Mofaz did not see such a war as “a smart move — not on the part of the Americans today or anyone else until the threat is real.”

Pompeo’s Holy war and rapture

Furthermore, Bolton is not the only top Trump administration official who has long promoted a war with Iran, as current Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had also called for the preemptive bombing of Iran long before he joined the Trump administration. Pompeo’s desire to push the U.S. towards war with Iran is based on his fervent adherence to Christian Zionism. As a result of the admitted influence his beliefs hold over his foreign policy, Pompeo sees an “apocalyptic” war between Israel and Iran as a necessary precursor to the Second Coming of Christ and the “rapture.”

Pompeo is on record speaking about the rapture on several occasions, particularly as CIA director when he spoke about the event — which holds that “true believers” will ascend to Heaven prior to the tribulations and trials of the “end times” — so often that he made veteran intelligence officers uncomfortable. As a result, some have asserted that Pompeo is “a man who appears to view American foreign policy as a vehicle for holy war.”

The fact that the actions of the current Secretary of State are influenced by his Christian Zionist faith was on display last month, when American Christian journalist Chris Mitchell of the Christian Broadcasting Network asked Pompeo: “Could it be that President Trump right now has been sort of raised for such a time as this … to help save the Jewish people from the Iranian menace?” Pompeo responded that this was definitely “possible.”

If Adelson has his way . . .

Yet, perhaps the most dangerous force driving the U.S. towards a war with Israel is not the public face of the Trump administration’s foreign policy but its private face. Sheldon Adelson — the top donor to Trump, the entire Republican Party, and also the top political donor to Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu — has long sought war with Iran, and several of Adelson’s desired policies have already been enacted by Trump. These include recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, replacing H.R. McMaster with Bolton as National Security Advisor, and withdrawing from the Iran nuclear deal. Several reports have asserted that pressure from Adelson was a deciding factor in Trump’s fulfillment of these policies.

Adelson’s influence over Trump again takes on great significance, given recent events with respect to Iran, as Adelson has previously advocated for a U.S. nuclear attack on Iran without provocation, just so the U.S. could “impose its demands [on Iran] from a position of strength.”

Per Adelson’s plan, the U.S. would drop a nuclear bomb in the middle of the Iranian desert and then threaten that “the next one is in the middle of Tehran” to show that “we mean business.” Tehran, Iran’s capital, is home to nearly 9 million people with 15 million more in its suburbs. Were Tehran to be attacked with nuclear weapons, an estimated 7 million would die within moments, according to a 2013 study jointly conducted by researchers at the University of Georgia and Harvard.

Yet, any sort of diplomatic engagement with Iran, according to Adelson, is “the worst negotiating tactic I could ever imagine.”

In other words, Adelson has called for dropping nuclear weapons on a country, including its heavily populated capital city, for no reason other than to show that the U.S. “means business” and considers nuclear war a negotiating tactic.

While some media reports have suggested that Trump is unwilling to go to war with Iran and is uneasy with the hawkish policies of Bolton and Pompeo, he will have a hard time ignoring Adelson. Adelson, who poured $35 million into Trump’s 2016 campaign and spent $55 million on Republican primary campaigns last year, is the party’s most influential donor and angering him could well mean the end of Trump’s political career.

Would Trump resist a push for war from not just Netanyhu, Bolton and Pompeo but Adelson as well? It seems unlikely. Craig Holman of the watchdog group Public Citizen told ProPublica in 2018 that he “would put Adelson at the very top of the list of both access and influence in the Trump administration,” a sentiment that was also echoed by Alan Dershowitz, who has done legal work for Adelson and advised Trump. Dershowitz told ProPublica that Adelson “just calls the president all the time. Donald Trump takes Sheldon Adelson’s calls.” As MintPress has noted on several occasions, those calls often translate into policy decisions.

Unfortunately, Trump — even when he tries to follow a different path, as he attempted to do in Syria — often ends up conceding to the neo-conservatives and Zionist extremists who surround (and fund) him.

History issues a warning

The combination of current tensions and the documented history of both Israel and Bush-era neo-conservatives planning and even executing false flag attacks in order to justify U.S. military action against a desired target — should set off alarm bells. Instead, most corporate media outlets are playing up unfounded or baseless claims of the “Iranian threat” and Iran’s unproven role in recent acts of “sabotage” in Saudi Arabia and in the UAE in ways that are strikingly similar to the lead-up to the 2003 invasion of Iraq.

Furthermore, the history and mindset of both Bolton and Pompeo, in addition to the unprecedented influence of Sheldon Adelson in the Trump administration, add yet another layer to this increasingly complex yet undeniably troubling situation.

As a consequence, it is imperative for people around the world, particularly in the United States, to be skeptical of any act of violence blamed on Iran before a full investigation is completed, and to resist a rapid push to begin a conflict with Iran that could well follow such an act.

The time for resistance, ideally, would be before such an attack occurs, making critical the widespread dissemination of relevant information left unmentioned by the corporate media, such as that contained in Parts I and II of this series. The crucial context here is the well-documented willingness of both the Israeli and U.S. governments to sacrifice (i.e., kill) Americans in order to plunder the natural resources of “unfriendly” nations and pursue the objectives of the political and economic elite of both countries.

Whitney Webb is a MintPress News journalist based in Chile. She has contributed to several independent media outlets including Global Research, EcoWatch, the Ron Paul Institute and 21st Century Wire, among others. She has made several radio and television appearances and is the 2019 winner of the Serena Shim Award for Uncompromised Integrity in Journalism.

May 14, 2019 Posted by | Deception, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, False Flag Terrorism, Wars for Israel | , , , | 5 Comments