Syria and beyond, news and analyses

Tony Cartalucci: Implausible Deniability – West’s ISIS Terror Hordes in Iraq:

“The US has pledged assistance for victims of and even possible “airstrikes” against terrorists who have surrounded and threaten to eradicate thousands of religious minorities in Iraq. However, the terrorists themselves are a product of US foreign policy in the Middle East and North Africa, and instrumental in achieving Western objectives across the region. Punitive strikes and aid to the victims of what is essentially a Western mercenary army is part of maintaining plausible deniability.

The terror hordes originated from NATO territory and have inundated Syria, Iraq, and now Lebanon. The goal of this well funded, heavily armed, professionally organized mercenary force is clearly to supplant pro-Iranian political and military fronts across Tehran’s arc of influence – from Baghdad to Damascus, to Lebanon and Hezbollah along the Mediterranean. In the process, the heavily indoctrinated rank and file have committed horrific atrocities ranging from rape and torture to mass executions and sectarian genocide. While such war crimes have been taking place in Syria since 2011, it is becoming increasingly difficult to cover up similar crimes beyond Syria’s borders under narratives of “civil war” linked to the so-called “Arab Spring.”

While the world is meant to believe ISIS spontaneously rose from the desert and “stole” billions in cash, weapons, and gear, a much simpler and documented explanation exists – Western state sponsorship – and state sponsorship that continues even as the West denounces the monsters of their own creation.

ISIS Origins

Beginning in 2011 – and actually even as early as 2007 – the United States has been arming, funding, and supporting the Muslim Brotherhood and a myriad of armed terrorist organizations to overthrow the government of Syria, fight Hezbollah in Lebanon, and undermine the power and influence of Iran, which of course includes any other government or group in the MENA region friendly toward Tehran.

Image: ISIS corridors begin in Turkey and end in Baghdad.  

Billions in cash have been funneled into the hands of terrorist groups including Al Nusra, Al Qaeda in Iraq (AQI), and what is now being called “Islamic State in Iraq and Syria” or ISIS.

One can see clearly by any map of ISIS held territory that it butts up directly against Turkey’s borders with defined corridors ISIS uses to invade southward – this is because it is precisely from NATO territory this terrorist scourge originated.ISIS was harbored on NATO territory, armed and funded by US CIA agents with cash and weapons brought in from the Saudis, Qataris, and NATO members themselves. The “non-lethal aid” the US and British sent including the vehicles we now see ISIS driving around in.

They didn’t “take” this gear from “moderates.” There were never any moderates to begin with. The deadly sectarian genocide we now see unfolding was long ago predicted by those in the Pentagon – current and former officials – interviewed in 2007 by Pulitzer Prize-winning veteran journalist Seymour Hersh.

“US President Barack Obama, before deploying his golf holidays in Martha’s Vineyard, casually dropped that bombing the Caliph’s goons in Iraq will take months.

Obama also confirmed the US was showering Iraq again with humanitarian bombing “to protect American interests” (first and foremost) and, as an afterthought, “human rights in Iraq.”

One could not possibly expect Obama to declare the US would now bomb “our” allies the House of Saud, who have supported/financed/weaponized IS, in Syria and Iraq. The same erstwhile ISIS that thoroughly enjoyed the marvels of US military training in a secret base in Jordan.

Obama also could not possibly explain why the US always supported ISIS in Syria and now decides to bomb them in Iraq.

Obama’s bombing of the Caliph’s goons has absolutely nothing to do with US ambassador to the UN Samantha Power’s much beloved R2P (‘responsibility to protect’) doctrine – as in the responsibility to protect up to 150,000 Yazidis, not to mention Kurds and remaining Christians, from a ‘potential’ genocide carried out by the Caliph’s goons.

The whole fighter jets + drones bombing exercise, lasting ‘months’, has to do with the Benghazi syndrome.

The Caliph’s goons were dead set on conquering Irbil – the capital of Iraqi Kurdistan. The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) is led by the wily Massoud Barzani – a long-time US client/vassal.

The US maintains a consulate in Irbil. Crammed with CIA types.

This is an electoral year. Obama is absolutely terrified of another Benghazi – which Republicans have been trying non-stop to blame on his administration’s incompetence. The last thing Obama needs is the Caliph’s goons killing ‘diplomats’ in Erbil.

That would certainly raise a tsunami of questions all over again about the shady CIA weapon-smuggling racket – as in arming Syrian ‘rebels’ with weapons from Libya – at the time Benghazi took place.

This Obama administration warped R2P – protection for Americans first, refugees second – will accomplish nothing for a key reason; no bombing – ‘humanitarian’ or otherwise – exterminates a political/religious movement, even one as demented as IS. The Caliphate prospers, somewhat, and expands, because unlike that pathetic Free Syrian Army (FSA) it’s winning territory, desert and urban, in both Syria and Iraq; an area bigger than Great Britain already, holding at least 6 million people.

As for the much-peddled Washington myth of ‘good’ and ‘bad’ jihadists, the Caliphate also exploded it. Virtually every jihadi Washington – and Riyadh – weaponized and trained in Jordan and in the Turkey-Syria border is now among the Caliph’s goons, wallowing in cash raised from oil smuggling, hardcore blackmail and ‘donations’, and weaponized to their teeth after looting four Iraqi divisions and a Syrian brigade.”



(from June, 2014, but important reading) Caleb Maupin: ISIS and Wall Street’s Plan for Sectarian War:


“In Syria, a campaign of violent terrorism has been going on since 2011. Over 150,000 people are estimated to have already been killed. Millions have been displaced, forced to become refugees, either within Syria, or in neighboring countries.

Since beginning of this violent insurgency campaign against the Syrian Arab Republic, the terrorists have received foreign support for their efforts. Support has come from US aligned regimes such as Turkey, Qatar, Jordan, and Saudi Arabia, as well as directly from the United States.

The US aligned gulf states have not denied arming and supporting the violent insurgent groups. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia especially, has been vocal in its support for the violent overthrow of the Syrian Arab Republic. Most of the insurgent groups fighting the Syrian government are fanatical Sunni Muslims. They talk of creating a “caliphate” in Syria, and punishing, if not exterminating all with contrary religious practices such as the Christians, the Alawites, and the Shia.

The violent terrorist group called the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), now in the spotlight of world media, did not simply materialize out of thin air. It has operated in Syria for a long time, engaging in a campaign of violence and terrorism alongside other insurgent groups like the Al-Nusra Front and the Free Syrian Army. Recently, the Syrian government arrested several ISIS fighters, who had come to Syria all the way from Malaysia.

When US officials describe the violent Syrian insurgents who are now receiving direct US funding and weapons, they are always called “opposition” “militants” “revolutionaries” or some other colorful euphemism. Words like “terrorist” are not used. The western media has always portrayed the Syrian government as the villains, and often cast the insurgents as romantic revolutionaries.

Now that one particular terrorist group, ISIS, has entered Iraq, and seized a large part of its territory, US officials have suddenly begun to speak of them with hostility.

…even those defending the Saudis point out that the bulk of the large budget of ISIS comes from “donors” in Saudi Arabia and other US aligned gulf states.

The fact that Saudi money is the basis for the ISIS campaign of terrorism in Syria and Iraq is not disputed. All that can disputed is whether the funds come from the official Saudi state treasury, or merely from generous private patrons of terrorism.

The reason western media is highly motivated to “disprove” the reality of Saudi money flowing to ISIS because of the fact that Saudi Arabia is not an independent geo-political actor. Saudi Arabia is directly accountable to the United States. Saudi oil is controlled by US oil corporations. Saudi Arabia receives millions of dollars in US aid. Saudi Arabia now has the fourth largest military budget on earth, according to recent SIPRI report, and the weapons are being almost exclusively purchased from the United States.

…The leaders of the US do not want to replace Maliki with a leader who is more trustworthy and accountable, who can finish off ISIS and build a peaceful and stable Iraq. The billionaires who run the US wish to replace Maliki with IEDs, snipers, kidnappings, beheadings, and warlords battling each other for power. They are funding and arming the Iraqi government, and ensuring that Saudi money continues to fund ISIS, so the killing can escalate.

In all the countries that have recently become victims of US military aggression, none of them have become “more secure” as a result. Libya once had a state owned oil company that was the top exporter in Africa. In Libya, the oil profits were used to subsidize food, housing, and education for the population, providing the highest living standard on the African continent. Now, Libya is in ruin. NATO bombs did not replace Gaddafi with “a peaceful transition government”, but with warlords battling for power amid poverty and chaos.

Afghanistan is not “more stable” since the US removal of the Taliban. The country is now filled with violence and chaos. The poppy fields that the Taliban once burned have been restored, and the chaos of heroin cartels are now also a major factor in Afghan life.

The campaign of violence the US has unleashed in Syria is not leading toward “creating freedom and democracy.” The country has instead been thrown into a catastrophic crisis, with millions forced to become refugees, and radical religious forces slaughtering innocent civilians as well as each other.

All the countries that are currently being targeted by the United States for attack have one common factor: independent economic development.

…The hope of Wall Street and London is that soon Iraqi Sunni and Shia will be killing each other, in a bloodbath that can spread throughout the region.

Like the Roman empire, that plowed salt into the soil after defeating Carthage, the US wants to make sure nothing stable, peaceful, or economically prosperous ever sprouts there again.”


Patrick Cockburn: Isis consolidates:

As the attention of the world focused on Ukraine and Gaza, the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (Isis) captured a third of Syria in addition to the quarter of Iraq it had seized in June. The frontiers of the new Caliphate declared by Isis on 29 June are expanding by the day and now cover an area larger than Great Britain and inhabited by at least six million people, a population larger than that of Denmark, Finland or Ireland. In a few weeks of fighting in Syria Isis has established itself as the dominant force in the Syrian opposition, routing the official al-Qaida affiliate, Jabhat al-Nusra, in the oil-rich province of Deir Ezzor and executing its local commander as he tried to flee. In northern Syria some five thousand Isis fighters are using tanks and artillery captured from the Iraqi army in Mosul to besiege half a million Kurds in their enclave at Kobani on the Turkish border. In central Syria, near Palmyra, Isis fought the Syrian army as it overran the al-Shaer gasfield, one of the largest in the country, in a surprise assault that left an estimated three hundred soldiers and civilians dead. Repeated government counter-attacks finally retook the gasfield but Isis still controls most of Syria’s oil and gas production. The Caliphate may be poor and isolated but its oil wells and control of crucial roads provide a steady income in addition to the plunder of war.

The foster parents of Isis and the other Sunni jihadi movements in Iraq and Syria are Saudi Arabia, the Gulf monarchies and Turkey. This doesn’t mean the jihadis didn’t have strong indigenous roots, but their rise was crucially supported by outside Sunni powers. The Saudi and Qatari aid was primarily financial, usually through private donations, which Richard Dearlove, the former head of MI6, says were central to the Isis takeover of Sunni provinces in northern Iraq: ‘Such things do not happen spontaneously.’ In a speech in London in July, he said the Saudi policy towards jihadis has two contradictory motives: fear of jihadis operating within Saudi Arabia, and a desire to use them against Shia powers abroad. He said the Saudis are ‘deeply attracted towards any militancy which can effectively challenge Shiadom’. It’s unlikely the Sunni community as a whole in Iraq would have lined up behind Isis without the support Saudi Arabia gave directly or indirectly to many Sunni movements. The same is true of Syria, where Prince Bandar bin Sultan, the former Saudi ambassador to Washington and head of Saudi intelligence from 2012 to February 2014, was doing everything he could to back the jihadi opposition until his dismissal.

Turkey’s role has been different but no less significant than Saudi Arabia’s in aiding Isis and other jihadi groups. Its most important action has been to keep open its 510-mile border with Syria. This gave Isis, al-Nusra and other opposition groups a safe rear base from which to bring in men and weapons. The border crossing points have been the most contested places during the rebels’ ‘civil war within the civil war’. Most foreign jihadis have crossed Turkey on their way to Syria and Iraq. Precise figures are difficult to come by, but Morocco’s Interior Ministry said recently that 1122 Moroccan jihadists have entered Syria, including nine hundred who went in 2013, two hundred of whom were killed. Iraqi security suspects that Turkish military intelligence may have been heavily involved in aiding Isis when it was reconstituting itself in 2011. Reports from the Turkish border say Isis is no longer welcome, but with weapons taken from the Iraqi army and the seizure of Syrian oil and gasfields, it no longer needs so much outside help.”


Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya Deconstructs US false picture of the Middle East – Interview

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