Since 2001, senior Pentagon and CIA officials have sacrificed American interests in weakening al-Qaeda to pursue their own interests
New York Times columnist Tom Friedman outraged many readers when he wrote an opinion piece on 12 April calling on President Trump to “back off fighting territorial ISIS in Syria”. The reason he gave for that recommendation was not that US wars in the Middle East are inevitably self-defeating and endless, but that it would reduce the “pressure on Assad, Iran, Russia and Hezbollah”.
On this week’s episode of On Contact, Chris Hedges is joined by Max Blumenthal, author and Senior Editor of AlterNet’s Grayzone Project, and Ben Norton, reporter for Alternet. Following the American missile attacks on a Syrian airbase in response to an alleged chemical weapons attack, they discuss the U.S. role in the Syrian conflict.
The video below may contain images depicting the reality and horror of war/violence and should only be viewed by a mature audience.
by Marcello Ferrada de Noli
SWEDHR chair The Indicter, March 6, 2017
March 10, 2017
An examination of a White Helmets video, conducted by Swedish medical doctors, specialists in various fields, including paediatrics, have revealed that the life-saving procedures seen in the film are incorrect – in fact life-threatening – or simply fake, including simulated emergency resuscitation techniques being used on already lifeless children.
Scholars have documented the consistent pattern. What makes a country far more likely to be invaded, attacked, “intervened in,” or in other words, bombed, is not its lack of democracy or its government’s crimes and abuses, or the crimes and abuses of some non-governmental group, but its possession of oil. Yet, with each new war, we are told to imagine that this one is different.
The world was shocked and horrified at the terror inflicted upon Paris on the night of Friday the 13th, 2015, when ISIS-affiliated militants killed well over 100 civilians in one of the world’s most iconic cities. An outpouring of grief, solidarity, support and condolences came in from across the world. The tragedy, and tyranny, of such terror cannot be underestimated, but it should also be placed in its global context: namely, that the chief cause of terrorism is, in fact, terrorism, and that the chief victims are the innocent, wherever they may be.
After Paris, macho language about “pitiless war” defines the contours of leadership. Little else is on offer. It is red meat to our emotions.
A week of horrible carnage – bomb blasts in Beirut and Baghdad and then the cold-blooded shootings in Paris. Each of these acts of terror left dead bodies and wounded lives. There is nothing good that comes of them – only the pain of the victim and then more pain as powerful people take refuge in clichéd policies that once again turn the wheel of violence.
If you want to start a war, the unwashed masses must be convinced to send their brothers, sons and fathers to die on the front lines. The specter of an external enemy must be etched into their collective mind through trauma, exaggeration and repetition. History must be whitewashed, twisted and cherry picked down to a politicized nursery rhyme. At no point should the real motives or consequences of such an endeavor be discussed. Transcript and sources: http://stormcloudsgathering.com/ww3-who-will-be-blamed.
Who is a terrorist? Undoubtedly, what comes to mind is Daesh (ISIL), al-Qaeda, MKO, Boko Haram, etc. What is terrorism? The events of 9/11 and the gruesome beheadings carried out by Daesh shape our visual perception of terrorism. What is left unmentioned and unrecognized in our collective psyche is the kind of terrorism that has been deliberately obfuscated: sanctioned terrorism or terrorism with a license – sanctions.
Chris Hedges and Loretta Napoleoni, author of The Islamic Phoenix spoke on December 2, 2014 at the New York Society for Ethical Culture and co-sponsored the event along with Seven Stories Press, New York Society for Ethical Culture, and AlterNet. Ted Rall was the moderator of the event.
Much of the evening gives one a brilliant clarification of how world policy starting after World War 1 carved up the Islamic State. The discussion then goes into how US foreign policy has interfered and created Islamic Fundamentalist Groups such as the Taliban and now a more state Islamic State driven group such as ISIL as a continuing reaction to outside interference within the region.
The video has opening statements by Chris Hedges and Loretta Napoleoni, then a dialogue between the two speakers. After 15 minutes Ted Rall asks audience questions to both speakers on topics including the history of ISIS, what the Caliphate is, and is ISIS accepted by other Islamic States?
Another day, another stitch up. On 6th March Syria’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations, the eloquent and elegant Mr. Bashar al-Ja’afari and the Syrian UN Mission had restrictions placed on them by the US State Department, limiting their travel to no further than twenty five miles from New York’s Columbus Circle intersection.
US-led Western regime change in Syria might be described as a process of creative destruction. Like Schumpeter’s economic concept of cyclical creative destruction, so too Washington’s political machinations in Syria seem to be playing out likewise.
We begin with the premise that the humanitarian crisis in Syria over the past nearly three years is largely as a result of a Western covert proxy war inflicted on that country. The objective is to destabilize, terrorize and eventuate regime change in the Arab country.
The titular head of al-Qaeda, Ayman al-Zawahiri, has reportedly disavowed the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). Videos emerged over the weekend of the Egyptian-born leader denying any organizational links with the ISIS.
The British Guardian reported that the move by the top al-Qaeda commander was an attempt to “reassert control” over the disparate militant groups fighting in Syria.
Criticism in the memoirs of former secretary of defence Robert M. Gates of President Barack Obama’s lack of commitment to the Afghan War strategy of his administration has generated a Washington debate about whether Obama was sufficiently supportive of the war.
But the Gates account omits two crucial historical facts necessary to understanding the issue. The first is that Obama agreed to the escalation only under strong pressure from his top national security officials and with very explicit reservations. Continue reading →