Monday, July 16, 2018

Saudi showdown with Iran nears danger point for world oil markets

The world's densest network of oil pipelines runs through Saudi Arabia's Shia heartland. It is now the epicentre of a deadly struggle. The Persian Gulf has become a strategic tinderbox. Saudi Arabia’s drastic decision to behead the Shia cleric Nimr al-Nimr marks a point of no return in the bitter Sunni-Shia...

Why Turkey is losing hope in Syrian border town of Azaz

While speculation continues about whether Turkey and Saudi Arabia will march into the Syrian war, Turkey is already fighting on two fronts without even entering Syria. In the first, Turkey is launching heavy artillery fire at Syrian Democratic Forces advancing toward Azaz in northwestern Syria, while declaring that the objective is to stop the advances of the...

Is Hezbollah’s Syria Approach Tied to End-Times Doctrine?

Knowing how Hezbollah Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah thinks regarding the predicted military strike by Washington against the regime of his ally, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, is a matter of concern and confusion for numerous observers in Lebanon, in the region and beyond. There are a number of important questions that arise...

Our Next Mideast War – Syria

Jeb Bush has spent the week debating with himself over whether he would have started the war his brother launched on Iraq. When he figures it out, hopefully, our would-be president will focus in on the campaign to drag us into yet another Mideast war – this time to bring...

Salafi armed groups increase attacks in Syria

UN Syria envoy Staffan de Mistura said April 22 that the cessation of hostilities that began Feb. 26 “is still in effect. None of the sides have renounced to it. ... But it is in great trouble if we do not act quickly.” Speaking in London the same day, US President Barack...

Private Donors’ Funds Add Wild Card to War in Syria

AL SUBAYHIYAH, Kuwait — The money flows in via bank transfer or is delivered in bags or pockets bulging with cash. Working from his sparely furnished sitting room here, Ghanim al-Mteiri gathers the funds and transports them to Syria for the rebels fighting President Bashar al-Assad. Mr. Mteiri — one...

US army denies coalition jets hit Assad forces in Syria

Syrian government accuses US-led coalition of striking its army for first time, killing three soldiers. A series of air strikes killed three Syrian soldiers in the country's east, Syria's government said on Monday, accusing the US-led coalition of responsibility for the attack. The US military denied any involvement. If confirmed, it would...

Congress authorizes anti-aircraft missiles for Syrian opposition

Washington, D.C. – Congress for the first time authorized the Department of Defense to provide vetted-Syrian rebels with anti-aircraft missiles. The provision is contained within the $619 billion Fiscal Year 2017 National Defense Authorization Act, which passed the Senate on Dec. 8 and the House on Dec. 2. Under the bill,...

EU to reimpose sanctions on Iran freight firms

The European Union is set to put 40 Iranian shipping firms back on a list of sanctioned groups in a blow to the Islamic Republic’s transport sector which has sought an easing of trade restrictions, letters sent from the EU showed. The move, which comes at a critical time in...

Jordan agrees deal for Russia to build nuclear plant

The $10bn power plant in energy-poor Jordan is scheduled to be completed in 2023. Jordan said Tuesday it has signed a framework agreement with Russia for the construction of the first nuclear power plant in the kingdom at a cost of $10bn. The deal was signed by Khaled Tukan, head of the Jordan Atomic Enegry Commission,...

Syria’s Kurds leave Geneva after being excluded from talks

But main Syrian opposition delegation flies in for UN-sponsored peace negotiations aimed at ending civil war. GENEVA (AP) — The main Syrian opposition delegation left Saudi Arabia for Switzerland on Saturday, however it remained unclear whether the delegation would actually participate in UN-sponsored peace talks aimed at ending Syria’s civil...

How the White Helmets Became International Heroes While Pushing U.S. Military Intervention and Regime...

Created by Western governments and popularized by a top PR firm, the White Helmets are saving civilians while lobbying for airstrikes. The following is Part 2 of a two part investigation into the forces cultivating Western public support for regime change in Syria. Read Part 1 here. It is rare for...

Saudi Arabia Continues Hiring Spree of American Lobbyists, Public Relations Experts

Saudi Arabia is in the market for a better reputation in Washington, D.C. In September alone, foreign lobbying disclosure documents show the Saudi government signing deals with PR powerhouse Edelman and lobbying leviathan the Podesta Group, according to recent disclosures. Edelman, the largest privately owned public relations agency in the world, is known...

Hillary Clinton Acknowledges Saudi Terror Financing in Hacked Email, Hinting at Tougher Approach

Saudi Arabia and the U.S. have maintained their alliance for seven decades despite disagreements over oil prices, Israel, and, more recently, the Obama administration’s rapprochement with Iran. Judging by a 2014 email purportedly written by Hillary Clinton to John Podesta, her current campaign chairman, and published by WikiLeaks, there have...

The U.S. Wants To Design Safer Anti-Aircraft Missiles for Syria’s Rebels

It’s not going very well. With the Syrian cease-fire in tatters, the country’s battered rebels are clamoring for one thing as bombs again fall on their cities and markets: shoulder-fired anti-aircraft missiles to strike back at the warplanes of Syrian strongman Bashar al-Assad and his Russian allies. In recent days, U.S....

How False Stories of Iran Arming the Houthis Were Used to Justify War in...

Peace talks between the Saudi-supported government of Yemen and the Houthi rebels ended in late December without any agreement to end the bombing campaign started by Saudi Arabia and its Gulf allies with US support last March. The rationale for the Saudi-led war on Houthis in Yemen has been...

Syrian Qaeda wing pledges loyalty to ISIL in border town

Syria's al Qaeda wing has pledged loyalty to the rival Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) group in a Syrian border town, a monitoring group said, boosting ISIL's control on both sides of the frontier. Fighters from Nusra Front, the Syrian wing of al Qaeda, took an oath...

Inside the Syrian Dust Bowl

The Assad family’s favorite international development organization tried to turn Syria into an agricultural powerhouse. Its failure sparked a civil war. On July 15, 2012, Mahmoud Solh at the International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA) received the news he’d long been dreading: Syrian rebel fighters had...
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British Government And White Helmets Exposed On The BBC

Dr Marcus Papadopoulos, editor of Politics First, recently talked to the BBC News about the west’s massive disinformation campaign targeting Syria, and misinformation and Britain’s irrational fear-mongering over Russia. This week, British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson called for “demonstrations outside the Russian embassy”, because of  what Johnson alleges to be ”war crimes”...

Russia opens way to missile deliveries to Iran, starts oil-for-goods swap

(Reuters) - Russia paved the way on Monday for missile system deliveries to Iran and started an oil-for-goods swap, signaling that Moscow may have a head-start in the race to benefit from an eventual lifting of sanctions on Tehran. The moves come after world powers, including Russia, reached an interim...

US-led air strikes in Syria kill at least 60 Assad soldiers

US military says strikes were halted after Russia said they hit Syrian army; UN Security Council meeting called. Air strikes blamed by Moscow and Damascus on the US-led coalition hit a Syrian army position in the east of the country on Saturday, killing more than 60 soldiers, the Russian army...

Assad: “Syria will be liberated, Aleppo will be the graveyard of Erdogan’s dreams”

Earlier today, in a speech addressing the Syrian parliament in Damascus, President Bashar Al-Assad praised the parliamentary elections that were held earlier this year, stressing the fact that an unprecedented number of voters had turned out at the ballot box despite the dangers of participation during the war, with...

Star pupil: Pied piper of ISIS recruits was trained by U.S.

Abu Omar al-Shishani, a former American-trained noncommissioned officer in the special forces of the nation of Georgia, is now the most important non-Arab figure in the Islamic State group hierarchy. KILLIS, Turkey — The 15 Chechens looking to cross the border from Turkey to Syria didn’t strike Abdullah as particularly...

Iraq’s leader to seek arms, with deferred payment, on U.S. visit

(Reuters) - Iraq's prime minister will seek President Barack Obama's help to acquire billions of dollars in drones and other U.S. arms to fight Islamic State during a U.S. visit next week but wants to defer payment for the purchases, a senior Iraqi official said. Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi is...

Syria rejects Russian proposal for Kurdish federation

DIYARBAKIR, Turkey — Dozens of Russian aircraft land daily at Khmeimim air base near Latakia, Syria. One such aircraft from Moscow that landed Sept. 17 didn’t attract attention, but its passengers, eight officials of Russia's Foreign and Defense Ministries, were carrying documents that one day could alter the political scene of...

France Deploys Special Forces in Syria as IS Loses Ground

ROME, ITALY - French special forces in northern Syria are assisting Kurdish-led militias in a drive to retake a pocket of territory west of the Euphrates River from the Islamic State terror group, according to French officials. The French news agency, AFP, reports the commandos are not participating in combat...

Yemen’s War Is Redrawing the Middle East’s Fault Lines

Saudi Arabia's ongoing war in Yemen does more to highlight the kingdom's isolation than its power. Yemen is the poorest country in the Arab world, bereft of resources, fractured by tribal divisions and religious sectarianism, and plagued by civil war. And yet this small country tucked into the bottom of the...

Saudi Arabia Warns of Economic Fallout if Congress Passes 9/11 Bill

WASHINGTON — Saudi Arabia has told the Obama administration and members of Congress that it will sell off hundreds of billions of dollars’ worth of American assets held by the kingdom if Congress passes a bill that would allow the Saudi government to be held responsible in American courts...

Saudis offer Russia secret oil deal if it drops Syria

Saudi Arabia has secretly offered Russia a sweeping deal to control the global oil market and safeguard Russia’s gas contracts, if the Kremlin backs away from the Assad regime in Syria. The revelations come amid high tension in the Middle East, with US, British, and French warship poised for missile...

The battle for Falluja: If they lose it, Isis is finished

Tens of thousands of lives – and the future of Iraq – are at stake as the country’s forces and Shia militias fight Isis for the city. On a narrow dirt road in the village of Sijar, a column of green Toyota pick-up trucks carrying Shia paramilitaries and rocket launchers...

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