Thursday, May 24, 2018

Tag: Shias

Why Everything You’ve Read About Syria and Iraq Could be Wrong

The Iraqi army, backed by US-led airstrikes, is trying to capture east Mosul at the same time as the Syrian army and its Shia paramilitary allies are fighting their way into east Aleppo. An estimated 300 civilians have been killed in Aleppo by government artillery and bombing in the...

Petraeus Redux?

The news that President-elect Donald Trump called in disgraced retired Gen. David Petraeus for a job interview as possible Secretary of State tests whether Trump's experience in hosting “The Celebrity Apprentice” honed his skills for spotting an incompetent phony or not. Does Trump need more data than the continuing bedlam...

Shiite Militias Are Crashing the Mosul Offensive

Pro-Iran militias are looking to settle an old grudge in one of the Islamic State's strongholds in northern Iraq. One of the mysteries about the ongoing offensive in Mosul, where Iraqi security forces are now pressing into the northern, eastern, and southern edges of the city, has been the apparent...

Israel won’t let Iran have military presence in Syria, Netanyahu tells Russian PM

Israel will prevent Iran from establishing a military presence in Syria, and will continue to intervene to stop Iran arming Hezbollah and other Shiite militias there, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his Russian counterpart, Dmitry Medvedev, on Thursday in Jerusalem. Moscow is a staunch supporter of Basher Assad’s regime and...

Abadi says we are ready if Turkey wants war

What is Turkey up to? The question gained fresh urgency today as Turkish Defense Minister Fikri Isik and Land Forces Commander Gen. Zeki Colak inspected troops in Hatay near the Syrian border a day after Turkish forces backed by tanks and other combat vehicles massed near the town of Silopi on Turkey's border...

It’s Time to Negotiate With Iran Over Syria

The war won’t end until Assad’s most powerful backer has a seat at the table — and that isn’t Putin. Whenever there has been a glimmer of light in the Syrian war, it has always been quickly extinguished. Take the cease-fire agreement reached in September by Washington and Moscow. After...

Ukraine and Syria: Linked Together by Russia

The United States and Russia are now at daggers drawn over Syria. Following the collapse of the ceasefire negotiated last month by Secretary of State John Kerry and Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, the United States has abandoned talks with the Russians on Syria. Meanwhile, in a supposedly unrelated part...

How the US Armed-up Syrian Jihadists

The West blames Russia for the bloody mess in Syria, but U.S. Special Forces saw close up how the chaotic U.S. policy of aiding Syrian jihadists enabled Al Qaeda and ISIS to rip Syria apart, explains ex-British diplomat Alastair Crooke. “No one on the ground believes in this mission or this effort”, a...

US Special Forces sabotage White House policy gone disastrously wrong with covert ops in...

President Barack Obama is engaged in Felonious conduct, mis-using the US Military to provide training, equipment and logistical support to ISIS, Al-Qaida and other Terrorists in Syria, in violation of Title 18, United States Code 2339A and 2339B. These are “High Crimes and Misdemeanors” under American law and are...

Israeli think tank: Don’t destroy ISIS; it’s a useful tool against Iran, Hezbollah, Syria

Head of a right-wing think tank says the existence of ISIS serves a "strategic purpose" in the West's interests. According to a think tank that does contract work for NATO and the Israeli government, the West should not destroy ISIS, the fascist Islamist extremist group that is committing genocide and...

The Future of U.S.-Saudi Relations

The Kingdom and the Power. The relationship between the United States and Saudi Arabia has come under unprecedented strains in recent years. U.S. President Barack Obama has openly questioned Riyadh’s value as an ally, accusing it of provoking sectarian conflict in the region. According to The Atlantic’s Jeffrey Goldberg, when...

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...

Isis faces likely defeat in battles across Iraq and Syria – but what happens...

In the second of a four-part series examining Isis, Patrick Cockburn says the terror group may be under threat, but regaining the terrority it captured would not necessarily stabilise the region. Isis is under attack in and around the last three big cities it holds in Iraq and Syria –...

Iran Teams With Taliban to Fight Islamic State in Afghanistan

Tehran and the Taliban have been at each other's throats for decades, but the Islamic State's rise has the two historical enemies teaming up like never before. Iran is working with the Taliban to set up a buffer zone along its border with Afghanistan to keep out the Islamic State,...

Oil Politics: Iraqi Kurdish Official Calls for Country’s Split

Just hours after the Islamic State hit multiple sites in Shiite neighborhoods across Baghdad, killing over 90 civilians, the governor of Kirkuk province in the Kurdish north said that it was time for his region to split from the country. “Kirkuk needs to get away from Baghdad,” Dr. Najmaldin Karim...

Has the US found a new friend in Iraq’s Shiite militias?

On March 12, US Consul General Steve Walker visited Al-Sadr Teaching Hospital in Basra to pay his respects to wounded members of the Popular Mobilization Units. The visit marked the first time a US official has publicly met these troops. This is particularly remarkable as until now, the official US position toward the Popular Mobilization...

What the Saudi Leaks Tell Us: An Interview With Julian Assange

"What comes across from the cables is a small cloistered, intellectually isolated ruling elite with a paranoid worldview." Since June 2015 WikiLeaks has been releasing details of leaked cables and other documents that come from within the Saudi Foreign Office. They provide an insight into the internal workings of the...

How Barack Obama Turned His Back On Saudi Arabia And Its Sunni Allies

World View: A striking feature of the President's foreign policy is that he learns from failures and mistakes. Commentators have missed the significance of President Barack Obama’s acerbic criticism of Saudi Arabia and Sunni states long allied to the US for fomenting sectarian hatred and seeking to lure the US...

How Saudi Arabia Turned Its Greatest Weapon on Itself

For the past half-century, the world economy has been held hostage by just one country: the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Vast petroleum reserves and untapped production allowed the kingdom to play an outsize role as swing producer, filling or draining the global system at will. The 1973-74 oil embargo was...

Saudis, Turks Bid to Open Lebanon Front

With a series of blatant measures, Saudi Arabia and its regional allies are evidently trying to destabilize Lebanon. The development is apiece with how Saudi Arabia and Turkey have both sought to undermine the ceasefire in Syria and to escalate that conflict to a region-wide level. A New York Times report this week...

Saudi Arabia Cuts Billions in Aid to Lebanon, Opening Door for Iran

BEIRUT, Lebanon — Even as Iran and Saudi Arabia supported opposite sides in a bitter and bloody proxy war in Syria, the two adversaries managed to preserve a tense calm just over the border in Lebanon, where they have long competed for influence. Now, suddenly, it looks as if Saudi...

Syria: Another Pipeline War

The fossil fuel industry’s business model is to externalize its costs by clawing in obscene subsidies and tax deductions—causing grave environmental costs, including toxic pollution and global warming. Among the other unassessed prices of the world’s addiction to oil are social chaos, war, terror, the refugee crisis overseas, and the...

Israel’s Defense Minister Exposes Israel’s Divide-And-Conquer Regional Strategy

In addition to blowing the cover on Israel’s secret dealings with the Gulf states to target Iran, the defense minister expressed Israel’s hope that Syria might be divided up into ethnic enclaves, each ruled by mini-warlords. SEATTLE (ANALYSIS) - Israel’s defense minister spoke with uncharacteristic bluntness recently as he outlined...

The Battle of Aleppo Is the Center of the Syrian Chessboard

With ample Russian and Iranian help, regime forces have cut the rebels' main lifeline in the north, and they will likely steer their relentless steamroller to the west unless outside powers take action. On February 2, the Syrian army and its allies succeeded in cutting the northern road between Aleppo...

Saudi Arabia, Turkey Pushed Syrian Opposition to Leave Talks

As regime stepped up offensive, Riyadh and Ankara began to consider urging rebels to exit negotiations. GENEVA—The Syrian opposition abruptly withdrew from peace talks in Geneva this week under pressure from Saudi Arabia and Turkey, two of the main backers of the rebels, according to diplomats and at least a...

China’s New Grand Strategy for the Middle East

After decades of distance, China is moving closer to the region’s sectarian feuds — and its vital oil reserves. At the start of 2016, prospects weren’t good for what would later become one of Chinese President Xi Jinping’s most consequential international tours. The January execution of leading Shite cleric Sheikh...

Saudi Arabia and Israel: An Axis of Convenience

The Two Colonial Cat's-Paws Mauling the Middle East. Geopolitics makes strange bedfellows. Take Israel and Saudi Arabia for instance. The two Middle Eastern powers might be expected to have zero common ground. Israel is the arch-colonizer of Arabs and Muslims, while Saudi Arabia governs the motherland of the Arabs and...

The Saudi-Iran War Is America’s Fault

And now it’s Washington’s job to make sure it doesn’t spin out of control. The United States cannot ignore or choose to stay out of the brewing rivalry between Iran and Saudi Arabia. It is not a purely religious feud, and it is not someone else’s civil war — it’s...

Why Syria will pay for Iran-Saudi rift

TEHRAN, Iran — The UN special envoy for Syria, Staffan de Mistura, has stated that the breakdown in relations between Iran and Saudi Arabia is not affecting his efforts to advance the work of the International Syria Support Group (ISSG). However, there are reasons to believe that Riyadh’s cutting...

A New Saudi Arabia Is Suddenly in a Hurry in Era of Low Oil

Saudi Arabia, one of the most tradition-bound societies on the planet, where family structure and tribal patriarchy differ little from a century ago, is suddenly in a hurry. It has done more in the past week than in most years. Over eight days, it has executed dozens of militants, severed...

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