Aletho News


Current News and Analysis

Turkey’s Actions Show the Despair of the Regime Change Camp

By Dan Glazebrook | RT | November 25, 2015

Soccer-Game-FTurkey’s shooting down of a Russian jet today shows the utter desperation currently sweeping through the regime change camp as Russia closes in on the death squads in Syria – and does so with massive international support.

At 9.30am on Tuesday morning, a Russian SU-24 jet was shot down by Turkish fighter planes. Its pilots were then allegedly killed by Syrian Turkmen anti-government militias, with the body of one paraded on camera in a video that was immediately posted on youtube. Turkey claimed the jet had encroached on Turkish airspace, but Russia maintains the plane was shot down well inside Syrian territory, 4km from the Turkish border. Rather than calling Russia to defuse any tension arising from the attack, Turkey then immediately called an emergency NATO meeting to ramp it up – “as if we shot down their plane”, Putin commented, “and not they ours”.

To make sense of this apparently senseless provocation, it is necessary to cut through the multiple layers of obfuscation which surround Western narratives around Syria and ISIS. … continue

Turkish newspaper editor in court for ‘espionage’ after revealing weapon convoy to Syrian militants

RT | November 26, 2015

A Turkish prosecutor asked a court to imprison the editor-in-chief of Cumhuriyet newspaper pending trial for espionage and treason. In May, the outlet published photos of weapons it said were then transferred to Syria by Turkey’s intelligence agency.

Besides the editor, Can Dündar, the prosecution said it is seeking the same pre-trial restrictions for Cumhuriyet’s representative in Ankara, Erdem Gül.

Dündar arrived at an Istanbul court on Thursday, saying that he and his colleague “came here to defend journalism.”

“We came here to defend the right of the public to obtain the news and their right to know if their government is feeding them lies. We came here to show and to prove that governments cannot engage in illegal activity and defend this,” Dündar was cited by Today’s Zaman.

The articles, published on Cumhuriyet’s front page in May, claimed that Turkey’s National Intelligence Organization (MİT) is smuggling weapons in trucks into Syria and was caught doing so twice in 2014. The trucks were allegedly stopped and searched by police, with photos and videos of their contents obtained by Cumhuriyet.

The arms were reportedly delivered to extremist groups fighting against the Syrian government of President Bashar Assad, whom Ankara wants ousted from power.

The Turkish authorities denied the allegations, saying that the trucks were carrying aid to Syrian ethnic Turkmen tribespeople and labeled their interception an act of “treason” and “espionage.”

Turkish Warplanes Enter Iraqi Airspace, Resume Strikes on Kurdish Bases

Sputnik – 26.11.2015

Turkish jets reportedly intruded into Iraqi airspace without warning in a fresh tide of airstrikes against Kurdish PKK fighters’ bases, local news reported Wednesday.

Several bases of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) militant organization were hit during air raids by Turkish air forces in Iraqi Kurdistan, local news outlet Rudaw reported on Wednesday.

“Turkish F-16 warplanes are continually bombing PKK bases in the area of Barwari Balla and Kesta village in the town of Zakho,” a Rudaw reporter broadcast from the scene.

No casualties were acknowledged at the time of the report late Wednesday. … Full article

NATO Attack On Russian Air Forces: Reasons and Consequences

By Christopher Black – New Eastern Outlook – 26.11.2015

The NATO attack on a Russian military jet on Tuesday November 24, using the Turkish air force to do its dirty work, is a dangerous act of war against Russia with very dangerous consequences for the world. The murder of one of the pilots, shot by ISIS terrorists while parachuting to the ground, is a war crime for which Turkey and the NATO countries are collectively responsible. President Putin has rightly called it a stab in the back by Turkey, a betrayal that cannot be forgiven and will forever be remembered.

If anyone ever doubted that the joint criminal enterprise called NATO was supporting and directing the terrorist groups in Syria, the same groups, they claim, that conducted the attacks in Paris and on the Russian airliner over Sinai, they now have the proof.  Can there be any doubt that this attack on Russian forces in Syria is intended to disrupt the Russian-Syrian campaign against those NATO supported terrorist groups? Can there be any doubt that if they are willing to shoot down one Russian aircraft they are willing to shoot down more? Can there be any doubt that this attack is intended to push Russia to react with counter force against Turkey resulting in a claim by NATO that it is under attack, resulting in a general war?

This attack is intended to both test Russian resolve in Syria and to provoke it into a reaction that will be used to justify further military actions by the Turkish and US military forces against the Russian forces. It was preceded by hysterical claims by NATO leaders that Russia and the Syrian government are the reasons ISIS exists and calling for action against both. It was preceded by the sudden appearance of the refugee crisis in Europe and then the attacks in Sinai and Paris and the constant fear raising alerts in Belgium, Germany, Britain and the United States. … continue

Seven Yemeni civilians killed in Saudi attack on Sa’ada

Press TV | November 26, 2015

At least seven Yemeni civilians have been killed in aerial attacks carried out by Saudi fighter jets in Yemen’s northern Sa’ada Province on Thursday.

Yemen’s al-Masirah TV reported that the victims lost their lives when Saudi warplanes hit their vehicle in the city of Baqam.

Saudi fighter jets reportedly targeted a number of different areas in Sa’ada. There were no reports on casualties from those attacks

Al-Masirah also reported that the Yemeni army, backed by the Popular Committees loyal to the Houthi Ansarullah movement, gained complete control over a Saudi military base in the Saudi city of Najran. … Full article

Arbitrary arrest of two internationals in Hebron

International Solidarity Movement | November 26, 2015

Hebron, occupied Palestine – Sunday 22nd November 2015, two international solidarity activists were arrested by Israeli forces on the claim of ‘staying in a closed military zone’ in occupied al-Khalil (Hebron).

One German human rights defender passed a checkpoint manned with a group of half a dozen soldiers with two Palestinians and another international. They were not stopped on their way by the soldiers and were allowed to pass without any problems. After visiting a house in the neighbourhood however, they were immediately stopped by soldiers when stepping on the street only twenty minutes later. Soldiers immediately questioned them about what they were doing and ordered them to walk down the hill instead of up, the direction they were headed. When the internationals asked for a reason, soldiers called the police, but allowed the Palestinians in the group to leave. An American activist was also allowed to leave as she was Jewish, whereas the German was detained by the soldiers and not allowed to leave. According to the soldiers, the detained activist was ‘the reason for everything bad in the world’ and ‘should go to Syria’ to die there ‘as the world would be a better place without her.’

Another group of internationals was going to a shop in the same neighbourhood. The three of them were yelled at by soldiers, and one out of the group was ordered to come towards the soldiers whereas the other two were ordered to leave immediately or they would be arrested. Even though in the beginning the international argued that then she would be entering a closed military zone, which she wasn’t allowed to do, soldiers kept insisting. In the end the French activist did approach the soldiers as they kept requesting her to do so – only to be arrested for entering a ‘closed military zone.’ … continue

Israeli forces seize buses from Palestinian transport company

Ma’an | November 26, 2015

NABLUS – Israeli forces early Thursday seized eight buses belonging to a Palestinian transportation company in Nablus after the organization transported Palestinian youths to partake in demonstrations, local sources said.

The offices of the al-Tamimi bus company were stormed, locals said, and the eight buses were transferred by Israeli forces to Huwarra military checkpoint south of the occupied West Bank city.

Regular demonstrations — often organized by local universities — have taken place since last month near the Israeli military checkpoints that surround and control movement in and out of Nablus, leading to large-scale clashes between youth and Israeli soldiers.

Two Palestinians have been killed at the Huwwara checkpoint this week. Both youths were 16 years of age and from the New Askar refugee camp in Nablus, sparking outrage among Palestinians across the area.

Both teens were killed after alleged attacks at the checkpoint. No injuries of Israeli military or civilians were reported in either case. … Full article

Israeli army bulldozes road used by Jordan Valley villagers

1008375690Palestine Information Center | November 25, 2015

JORDAN VALLEY – The Israeli occupation army on Wednesday morning destroyed a road leading to al-Hadidiya hamlet in the Jordan Valley.

Aref Daraghmeh, Chief of the Bedouin council in the Jordan Valley, said that an Israeli military bulldozer escorted by patrol jeeps razed a road serving the Palestinian residents of al-Hadidiya hamlet.

Daraghmeh asserted that the Israeli occupation army deliberately prevents the Palestinian Bedouins in the Jordan Valley from having any means or service that would facilitate their lives.

He added that the demolition policy pursued by Israel against the residents of al-Hadidiya hamlet in particular is aimed at forcing them to leave their lands in order to expand three nearby settlements.

Leaving an ashtray inside a store results in a 5,000 NIS fine

SILWANIC | November 25, 2015

Silwan, Jerusalem — The occupation municipality issued a ticket to s Jerusalemite merchant under the pretext of finding an ashtray inside his store in the neighborhood of Ras Al-Amoud in Silwan.

Wadi Hilweh Information Center was informed that the occupation municipality raided several commercial stores in Silwan especially in the neighborhoods of Ras Al-Amoud, Bi’er Ayoub and Ein Al-Lozeh and checked stores’ and establishments’’ permits and asked the owners to follow-up with the competent departments.

The center added that municipality crews raided a fruits’ store in Ras Al-Amoud owned by Izz Eddin Abdelrahim Barbar and issued him a 5-thousand NIS ticket under the pretext of the presence of an ashtray on the stores’ table. They also issued another person a 1,000-NIS fine for smoking inside the store. … Full article

Israeli army uses Palestinian neighborhood for military training exercises

International Solidarity Movement | November 25, 2015

occupied-rooftop1-400x300Hebron, Occupied Palestine – In Qaitun, a Palestinian Neighborhood of Hebron, situated in Oslo-defined Area H2, Israel has the authority for administrative and security control.

Israeli administrative control results in Apartheid: Palestinians will never get permission for doing anything, as building, extending or repairing their houses, and all other sort of things. Israeli citizens get permission for almost everything they want in occupied Hebron H2.

Israeli security control results in the abuse of many human rights including extrajudicial executions and using the Palestinian neighborhoods for military training – as today.

Three teams of at least seventeen soldiers each, invaded several Palestinian homes on a random basis, and detaining the family. They went inside the house to the rooftop and tried observation and shooing possibilities from there. After some 15 minutes they went down again for raiding another home. … Full article

Israel meets with Google and YouTube to discuss censoring Palestinian videos

MEMO | November 25, 2015

Israel’s Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely has met with representatives of YouTube and Google to discuss ways to cooperate in what she calls the fight against “inciting violence and terrorism.”

Israel’s Maariv newspaper reported yesterday that Hotovely agreed to work with Google and YouTube in order to establish a joint working mechanism to monitor and prevent the publication of “inflammatory material” originating in the Palestinian territories.

Since the latest escalation of violence between Palestinians and Israeli security services that erupted at the beginning of October, many people have been sharing videos depicting Israeli aggression towards Palestinians to highlight the Palestinian perspective of the conflict. London-based Arab newspaper Al-Araby Al-Jadeed has expressed concerns that the meetings suggest moves towards censoring Palestinian material on the part of the Israeli state.

The Thanksgiving Myth: Reflecting on Land Theft, Betrayal, and Genocide

By Sarah Sunshine Manning | The Hampton Institute | November 24, 2015

As Thanksgiving approaches, many schools throughout the U.S. are making preparations for the standard, and all too cliché, Thanksgiving Day lessons, and fairy tale-esque Thanksgiving plays.

And more often than not, the school Thanksgiving activities are largely based on what ultimately amounts to myth, created to serve the imaginations of the dominant society, and simultaneously functioning to erase the tragedies of Indigenous nations. … continue

Human resources: Walmart hired Lockheed Martin to keep tabs on employees

RT | November 25, 2015

Walmart hired global security giant Lockheed Martin a few years ago to monitor activism in its massive workforce, according to new documents. The defense contractor tracked employees’ social media and reported protest participation to the retail giant.

Lockheed Martin, the world’s largest defense contractor, provided Walmart, the world’s largest retailer, with intelligence-gathering and surveillance services in 2012, according to a lengthy report by Bloomberg Businessweek. The news has emerged just before Black Friday protests by a union-funded group called OUR Walmart, the report claims. Participants demand higher wages and reliable scheduling for Walmart employees. … continue

‘Human error’ behind Kunduz hospital attack, US General claims

Press TV – November 25, 2015

c19d9f6e-0334-4412-bda9-be60616d8329The United States says the deadly airstrike that recently destroyed an Afghan hospital in the northern city of Kunduz was the result of a “human error, compounded by process and equipment failures.” […]

MSF General Director Christopher Stokes responded to Campbell’s remarks that were accompanied by a 3,000-page US military report.

“The US version of events presented today leaves MSF with more questions than answers. It is shocking that an attack can be carried out when US forces have neither eyes on a target nor access to a no-strike list, and have malfunctioning communications systems,” Stokes said, adding, “It appears that 30 people were killed and hundreds of thousands of people are denied life-saving care in Kunduz simply because the MSF hospital was the closest large building to an open field and ‘roughly matched’ a description of an intended target.”

The MSF official accused the US forces of violation of the rules of war, further reiterating calls for an independent probe into the incident. … Full article

Drone Pilots have Bank Accounts and Credit Cards Frozen by Feds for Exposing US Murder

By William N. Grigg | The Free Thought Project | November 25, 2015

The U.S. Government failed to deter them through threats of criminal prosecution, and clumsy attempts to intimidate their families. Now four former Air Force drone operators-turned-whistleblowers have had their credit cards and bank accounts frozen, according to human rights attorney Jesselyn Radack. […]

This was done despite the fact that none of them has been charged with a criminal offense – but this is a trivial formality in the increasingly Sovietesque American National Security State.

Michael Haas, Brandon Bryant, Cian Westmoreland and Stephen Lewis, who served as drone operators in the US Air Force, have gone public with detailed accounts of the widespread corruption and institutionalized indifference to civilian casualties that characterize the program. Some of those disclosures were made in the recent documentary Drone; additional details have been provided in an open letter from the whistleblowers to President Obama, Defense Secretary Ashton Carter, and CIA Director John Brennan. … Full article

Argentina: Mauricio Macri’s Dubious Dictatorship Ties

teleSUR English | November 23, 2015

macri_crop1448327498362.jpg_916636689The election of Mauricio Macri in Argentina’s presidential race comes as a welcome victory to the country’s business elite and right-wing parties across Latin America, but the president-elect has some dubious ties that could signal a lasting legacy in the new head of state of darker times in Argentina.

Macri has been particularly criticized for his indirect ties to the last military dictatorship in Argentina in the late 1970s and early 1980s that cracked down on left-wing activists and political opposition.

While many of Macri’s powerful economic backers and corporate allies propped up the dictatorship that benefited them economically, Macri’s closest ties to the dictatorship are through his own family business Macri Society, known as Socma.

Macri, a long-time business magnate and former mayor of Buenos Aires, has been a director of his father’s Socma corporate conglomerate since a young age. The Macris are one of Argentina’s wealthiest families, and Socma was among the companies that directly benefited from the dictatorship.

In 1973, prior to the 1976 military coup that ousted the civilian Peronist government of President Maria Estela de Peron and installed a dictatorship, Socma owned seven companies. When the dictatorship ended 10 years later, in 1983, the Socma corporate empire had expanded to 46 companies.

Among Socma’s dozens of companies were various businesses that benefited the Macri family economically by providing services to the dictatorship regime. … continue

Netanyahu Paves the Way for a New Era of Tyranny

By Jonathan Cook | Dissident Voice | November 24, 2015

With dismaying predictability, Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu lost no time in exploiting the massacre in Paris. As he has done many times before, he claimed Europe’s trauma was just a taste of the suffering Israelis have long known.

Discounting decades of a brutal Israeli occupation as the cause of the recent wave of Palestinian attacks, he said: “It is the terrorists who are to blame for terrorism, not the territories, not the settlements and not any other thing.”

Rather than criticising the occupation, he added, the world should learn from Israel’s “aggressive policy” how to defeat its enemies. Last week, he unveiled the latest measure, outlawing the northern wing of the Islamic Movement, a popular party among Israel’s Palestinian citizens, one in five of the population. … continue

The Phony Torture Debate: Why Trump is Wrong about Waterboarding — It’s Probably Not What You Think

By Sam Husseini | November 25, 2015

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump — to the outrage of liberals everywhere — says he wants more waterboarding. Reports the Washington Post: “‘Would I approve waterboarding? You bet your ass I would — in a heartbeat,’ Trump said to loud cheers during a rally at a convention center [in Columbus, Ohio] Monday night that attracted thousands. ‘And I would approve more than that. Don’t kid yourself, folks. It works, okay? It works. Only a stupid person would say it doesn’t work.’

“Trump said such techniques are needed to confront terrorists who ‘chop off our young people’s heads’ and ‘build these iron cages, and they’ll put 20 people in them and they drop them in the ocean for 15 minutes and pull them up 15 minutes later.’

“‘It works,’ Trump said over and over again. ‘Believe me, it works. And you know what? If it doesn’t work, they deserve it anyway, for what they’re doing. It works.’”

There’s no shortage of people denouncing or pretending to correct Trump’s remarks. Virtually all miss the point. The fact is torture produces bad but useful intelligence. That is, it gives you “intel” that some bigwig with a conniving agenda wants to push. Like that Iraq had WMDs and we needed to invade. … continue

Israelis – Not Muslims – Cheered in Jersey City on 9/11

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by Glen Ford | November 25, 2015

In debunking Donald Trump’s big lie about Jersey City Muslims celebrating the destruction of the World Trade Center, the corporate media have told an even bigger lie of omission. There was, indeed, shameless cheering on the banks of the Hudson River on 9/11. But it was by young Israelis, as was widely reported at the time. Fourteen years later, corporate media are covering up for Israel – which makes them even bigger liars than Trump. – Read article

Breaking international law in Syria

By Sharmine Narwani | RT | November 25, 2015

The war drums are getting louder in the aftermath of ISIS attacks in Paris, as Western countries gear up to launch further airstrikes in Syria. But obscured in the fine print of countless resolutions and media headlines is this: the West has no legal basis for military intervention. Their strikes are illegal.

“It is always preferable in these circumstances to have the full backing of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) but I have to say what matters most of all is that any actions we would take would… be legal,” explained UK Prime Minister David Cameron to the House of Commons last Wednesday.

Legal? No, there’s not a scrap of evidence that UK airstrikes would be lawful in their current incarnation. … continue

Turkey Provokes Russia with Shoot-down

By Robert Parry | Consortium News | November 24, 2015

President Barack Obama – always sensitive to neocon criticism that he’s “weak” – continues to edge the world closer to a nuclear confrontation with Russia as he talks tough and tolerates more provocations against Moscow, now including Turkey’s intentional shoot-down of a Russian warplane along the Turkish-Syrian border.

Rather than rebuke Turkey, a NATO member, for its reckless behavior – or express sympathy to the Russians – Obama instead asserted that “Turkey, like every country, has a right to defend its territory and its airspace.”

It was another one of Obama’s breathtaking moments of hypocrisy, since he has repeatedly violated the territorial integrity of various countries, including in Syria where he has authorized bombing without the government’s permission and has armed rebels fighting to overthrow Syria’s secular regime.

Obama’s comment on Turkey’s right to shoot down planes — made during a joint press conference with French President Francois Hollande on Tuesday — was jarring, too, because there was no suggestion that even if the SU-24 jetfighter had strayed briefly into Turkish territory, which the Russians deny, that it was threatening Turkish targets. … continue

Patrick Henningsen Discusses Turkey Shooting Down Russian Jet on RT International

Crusades 2.0? Church backs use of armed force in Syria

RT | November 25, 2015

War in Syria may be necessary and the Church of England must back armed force if it helps refugees, according to Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby.

Welby told the Guardian that after debating the issue in London the Church is effectively committed to backing military action in Syria.

He said “the implications are enormous” and that action is now “almost inevitable” given the seriousness of the Syrian crisis.

The motion passed by the Church had specific remit to back armed force in the establishment of safe passage for refugees fleeing the region, a cause which Welby has been advocating for over a year. … Full article

ISIS survives largely because Turkey allows it to: the evidence

UndercoverInfo | November 20, 2015

The real frontline confronting ISIS is not US or French bombers (the latter currently targeting Raqqa, a city with 140,000 civilians, who are virtual prisoners of ISIS) but the Kurds of Iraq and northern Syria. Just over a week ago the combined Kurd forces, under the command of the Yezidis, liberated Sinjar from ISIS. For the Kurds, their war is not just about defeating ISIS, but about creating their own autonomous region – a region that would link all the Kurd cantons. This will not be easy, especially as the Iraq-based Kurds (Peshmerga) are allied with Iran and benefit from US support (nor are the Iraqi Kurds in any hurry to secede from Iraq). But the largest hurdle to an autonomous Kurdistan is Turkey, which not only has rekindled its war with the PKK (Kurdish Workers Party), but has done everything it can over the last 12 months or so to ensure Kurd victories against ISIS were minimised. So where is the evidence for this? It comes from a a range of sources, including the Institute for the Study of Human Rights (Columbia University) and leading commentators/analysts Nafeez Ahmed and David Graeber. See below

Turkey violated Syria sovereignty by attacking Su-24 in its airspace – Syrian FM

RT | November 25, 2015

The downing of the Russian warplane, which aggressively violated Syria’s sovereignty, is proof to the world of Turkish support for terrorism. This has been going on for years, the Syrian foreign minister said.

“This incident has shown the world that [Turkish President Recep] Erdogan and his government are helping terrorists in Syria,” Walid Muallem said after meeting Speaker of the Russian Parliament Sergey Naryshkin. … continue

Russia to deploy S-400 missile defense systems to Syria: Defense minister

Press TV – November 25, 2015

Russia will be deploying S-400 missile defense systems to Syria, the Russian defense minister says.

“The S-400 anti-aircraft missile system will be deployed to the Hmeimim airbase,” Sergei Shoigu said on Wednesday, referring to the Russian airbase outside the port city of Latakia in western Syria.

The system is the most advanced one owned by Russia in the field of air defense. The missile system, an upgrade of the S-300 family, is capable of intercepting and destroying airborne targets such as aircraft and ballistic and cruise missiles at distances of up to 400 kilometers (250 miles). … continue

‘Turkish jets gave us no warning before shooting’ – rescued pilot of downed Russian Su-24

RT | November 25, 2015

The navigator of the Russian Su-24 shot down by a Turkish fighter jet on Tuesday insists that his plane did not cross into Turkey’s airspace, and says he was given no visual or radio warning before being fired at.

“It’s impossible that we violated their airspace even for a second,” Konstantin Murakhtin told Russia’s Rossiya 1 channel. “We were flying at an altitude of 6,000 meters in completely clear weather, and I had total control of our flight path throughout.”

As well as denying Ankara’s assertions that the plane was in Turkey’s airspace, Murakhtin also refuted Turkish officials’ claims that the pilots were warned repeatedly.

“In actual fact there were no warnings at all. Neither through the radio, nor visually, so we did not at any point adjust our course. You need to understand the difference in speed between a tactical bomber like a Su-24, and that of the F16. If they wanted to warn us, they could have sat on our wing,” said Murakhtin, who is currently recuperating at Russia’s airbase in Latakia, northern Syria.

“As it was, the missile hit the back of our plane out of nowhere. We didn’t even have time to make an evasive maneuver.”

One of two Russian pilots picked up by Syrian army: Russian envoy to France

Press TV – November 25, 2015

The Russian ambassador to France says one of the two pilots of a Russian jet downed by Turkey inside Syria has been picked up by the Syrian army.

Turkish fighter jets shot down a Sukhoi Su-24M Fencer, which they accused of having violated Turkish airspace, on Tuesday. Russia says the plane did not violate Turkish airspace.

The two pilots of the Russian jet ejected out of the targeted jet as it was going down in flames. While one of the Russian pilots was killed by militants in Syria, no information was available about the second one – until now.

“(He) managed to escape and according to the latest information we have, he was picked up by the Syrian army and will be taken to the Russian airbase (in Syria),” Russian Ambassador to France Alexander Konstantinovich Orlov told Europe 1 radio on Wednesday.

The Russian Defense Ministry has officially reported the death of the other pilot, whom, Orlov said, “was wounded when he parachuted down and killed in a savage way on the ground” by militants. … Full article

Russian FM Lavrov’s Address Following Downing of Su-24 by Turkey

Sputnik – November 25, 2015

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has addressed journalists following the downing of the Russian Su-24 jet by an air-to-air missile launched from a Turkish F-16.

The Russian minister held a phone conversation with his Turkish counterpart Mevlut Cavusoglu earlier in the day.

“Moscow is not avoiding contacts with Ankara — my phone conversation with the Turkish FM is proof,” Lavrov said.

Turkey’s foreign minister expressed his sincere condolences to Sergei Lavrov, the Russian Foreign Minister said. But the Turkish minister tried to excuse the incident, Lavrov added. … continue

Mastermind of The Bamako Terror Attack Mokhtar Belmokhtar: A CIA Sponsored “Intelligence Asset”?

By Michel Chossudovsky | Global Research | November 22, 2015

In response to the tragic Paris events of November 13, Central Intelligence Agency director  John Brennan  warned that “ISIL is planning additional attacks… It is clear to me that ISIL has an external agenda, that they are determined to carry out these types of attacks.” (Quoted in Daily Telegraph, November 16, 2015)

Five days later following the CIA Chief’s  premonition, the Bamako Radisson Hotel Blu in Mali’s capital was the object of a terrorist attack, resulting in  21 people dead. Following the attack and the taking of hostages by the terrorists, French and Malian special forces raided the hotel. US. Africa Command (AFRICOM) also confirmed that US special forces were involved.

The Bamako terror operation was allegedly coordinated by Mokhtar Belmokhtar (aka Khaled Abu al-Abbas)leader of an affiliate of Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), the Islamist al-Mulathameen (Masked) Brigade, or “Those who Sign with Blood.”

Belmokhtar’s group was created in 2012 in the wake of the war on Libya. His organization has also allegedly been involved in the drug trade, smuggling as well kidnapping operations of foreigners in North Africa.  While his whereabouts are said to be known, French intelligence has dubbed Belmokhtar “the uncatchable”.

In June he was reported dead  as a result in a U.S. air strike in Libya. His death was subsequently denied. … continue

Cooking the Books for Israel: How The NY Times Plays a Numbers Game

By Barbara Erickson | TimesWarp | November 23, 2015

Jodi Rudoren today in The New York Times puts up a numbers barrier to hide the reality of Palestinian casualties in the latest spate of violence in Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories. The aim, as usual, is to maintain the claim of Israeli victimhood and to obscure the criminal brutality of the occupation.

89395ca8-21c2-4605-881a-a0864cbe6536In a story about four who died yesterday in alleged attacks in the region, Rudoren writes that more than 90 Palestinians have been killed since Oct. 1, “about half while attacking or trying to attack Israelis and the rest during demonstrations where they clashed with Israeli soldiers.”

We are to believe from this statement that only violent activists have died at the hands of Israeli forces, but in fact, several Palestinians have been killed in circumstances that were anything but “clashes”—at checkpoints, for instance, when trigger happy troops shot and killed unarmed victims. One of the dead was a 73-year-old grandmother on her way to lunch with her sister.

To omit these cases is to ignore the findings of human rights groups that have charged Israel with committing extrajudicial executions in recent weeks, and Rudoren’s statement, in the face of their evidence, is an effort to distort the facts.

The misrepresentations do not end there, however. Rudoren goes on to say, “At the same time, 17 Israeli Jews have been killed and dozens wounded in 70 stabbings, 10 shootings and 10 vehicular attacks.”

Note what is missing here: the number of Palestinians that have been wounded and the attacks against them in Israel, the West Bank and Gaza. Her aim is to minimize the huge discrepancy in casualty counts by omitting the number of Palestinians wounded by Israeli forces and settlers.

Ninety compared to 70 sounds like something approaching parity, but Rudoren has deliberately omitted the logical comparison—the number of injuries. This, according to United Nations data, was 133 Israelis and 9,171 Palestinians injured as of Nov. 16. … continue

Kerry Unwavering in Support of Tel Aviv Regime

IMEMC News & Agencies | November 24, 2015

US Secretary of State John Kerry on Tuesday expressed support for Israel’s right to “defend” itself from “terrorism” and “senseless violence,” in comments which will most likely be viewed in stark contrast with the reality faced by Palestinians.

Speaking before a meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem, Kerry said: “It is very clear to us that the terrorism, these acts of terrorism which have been taking place, deserve the condemnation that they are receiving.”

He expressed his “complete condemnation for any act of terror that takes innocent lives and disrupts the day-to-day life of a nation.”

Kerry made no mention of either Palestinians or Israel’s nearly 50-year military occupation of the Palestinian territory in the comments, according to Ma’an News Agency.

At least 93 Palestinians have been killed by Israelis since the beginning of October. While Israel alleged many of those were attempting to attack Israelis when they were shot, Palestinians and rights groups have disputed Israel’s version of events in a number of cases. … Full article

British Labour Party dumps G4S over its involvement in Israeli prisons, human rights violations

Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network | November 23, 2015

lab15-04070-1024x736The National Executive Committee of the party voted 12-4 to boycott G4S over its involvement with Israeli repression against Palestinians – providing security systems and control rooms to Israeli prisons imprisoning Palestinian prisoners and equipment to Israeli police training centers in Jerusalem. […]

This comes as 220 Palestinian and international organizations are calling on the United Nations to stop doing business with G4S. The UN provides G4S, the world’s largest private security corporation, with $22 million in business annually. A week of action began on Monday with a protest in New York City during the UN’s commemoration of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, calling on the UN to join the boycott of G4S.

G4S security systems and control rooms are used in the Israeli prisons that imprison Palestinian political prisoners, and in the interrogation centers where Palestinians – including children – are tortured and abused. G4S is also providing equipment to the Israeli police training center in Jerusalem, training Israeli police in the suppression of Palestinians in Jerusalem. Through these contracts, G4S is involved in the imprisonment of over 6,500 Palestinian political prisoners and the Israeli attacks on Palestinians in Jerusalem, including Israeli attacks on Al-Aqsa Mosque. … Full article

Cameron must investigate ISIS terror funding by Gulf allies – Lord Ashdown

RT | November 24, 2015

Prime Minister David Cameron must examine financial links between UK-allied Gulf regimes and terror groups, or risk facing awkward questions about Conservative Party links to “rich Arab Gulf individuals,” says former Liberal Democrat leader Paddy Ashdown.

Speaking on ITV’s Lorraine program on Tuesday, Ashdown – who is also a former soldier and has served as an ambassador to Afghanistan and Bosnia – said he is deeply concerned about how terrorism and Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) are being funded, and the UK government’s response to this.

“Who is arming ISIS, who is providing safe havens for ISIS? To get there you have to ask questions about the arms everyone’s sold in the region, the role of Saudi Arabia in this. I think there are some very big questions and we have to be careful,” Ashdown said. … continue

Russia deploys missile cruiser off Syria coast, ordered to destroy any target posing danger

RT | November 24, 2015

Moscow plans to suspend military cooperation with Ankara after the downing of a Russian bomber by Turkish air forces, Russian General Staff representatives said on Tuesday. Further measures to beef up Russian air base security in Syria will also be taken.

Sergey Rudskoy, a top official with the Russian General Staff, condemned the attack on the Russian bomber in Syrian airspace by a Turkish fighter jet as “a severe violation of international law”. He stressed that the Su-24 was downed over the Syrian territory. The crash site was four kilometers away from the Turkish border, he said.

Rudskoy said the Russian warplane did not violate Turkish airspace. Additionally, according to the Hmeymim airfield radar, it was the Turkish fighter jet that actually entered Syrian airspace as it attacked the Russian bomber.

The Turkish fighter jet made no attempts to contact Russian pilots before attacking the bomber, Rudskoy added.

Gifts From Uncle Sam: Al-Qaeda Wages War in Syria With US Weaponry

Sputnik – 23.11.2015

1030563787The Al-Nusra Front, Al-Qaeda’s affiliate in Syria, has released a grateful video, where they openly thank the Free Syrian Army (FSA), which the US has touted as a “moderate opposition group”, for supplying them with US-made anti-tank TOW missiles (“Tube-launched, Optically tracked, Wire-guided”).

A recently released video shows an Al-Nusra Front field commander thanking the FSA commanders for giving his forces TOW missiles, according to a report released by the Iranian news agency FARS.

The agency reminds readers that the two groups, the Al-Nusra and the FSA, formed an alliance in March, the Army of Conquest, or Jaish al-Fatah in Arabic, to fight against the forces of President Assad.

Since then, they have fought together “at almost every single battle in Aleppo, Lattakia, Hama, and Idlib Governorates of Syria.”

Through this alliance several militant groups like the Al-Nusra Front and the Ahrar al-Sham movement have been given access to FSA’s US-made heavy weaponry, which has been supplied to the militant group by the US, Saudi Arabia and Qatar. … continue

One Dead as Russian Mi-8 Helicopter Attacked During Rescue Mission in Syria

Sputnik – 24.11.2015

A Russian Mi-8 helicopter came under attack while conducting a search and rescue operation, searching for the crew of the downed Su-24 in Syria. One naval infantry soldier was reported killed, the helicopter destroyed by mortar fire.

The Russian General Staff said that two Mi-8s were involved in the operation to save the crew of the downed Su-24.

One helicopter has been shot down, its crew evacuated to the Russian base at Hmeymim. … continue

PARIS & the City of ‘ISIS’: Major Occult Symbolism, Hypnosis & the Massive Psy-Op Now Underway…

The Burning Blogger Of Bedlam | November 24, 2015

paris-mindcontrolA week now after the attacks in Paris that news broadcasters keep telling us has “changed the world forever”, it looks less and less likely that this was a straightforward ISIL terrorist attack and more likely that something much more sinister may have gone on.

And not just a staged, false-flag operation, but a pre-fabricated, mass Psy-Op designed to bring about radical changes and to shape or re-configure public perception and psychology.

It has become evident to me *why* it was Paris and why it was Friday 13th; the answers are unsettling. I will get to the significant occult symbolism shortly.

But any time we’re told over and over again that something “has changed the world forever”, we’re best served to be suspicious. In regard to terror attacks, the only other time this mass psychological conditioning has occurred was with 9/11, which probably did change the world forever and which we were repeatedly *told* would change the world forever. Other terror attacks have simply been treated as precisely that: as terror attacks – 7/7, Boston, and others weren’t sold to us as ‘world changing’ or historic, but just as terrorism.

The 13/11 Paris attack seemed pre-packaged from the start as something much more important. This is mass psychological programming we’re witnessing right now; and everyone should pay attention so they can observe how it works. … continue

Israel was prime force behind 9/11 attacks: American scholar

Press TV – November 24, 2015

An American scholar and journalist in Wisconsin says not only was the Zionist regime the primary force behind the 9/11 attacks, it was Israeli spies working for Mossad – not Arab Muslims – who celebrated the burning Twin Towers on September 11, 2001.

Dr. Kevin Barrett, a founding member of the Scientific Panel for the Investigation of 9/11, made the remarks in an interview with Press TV on Monday, a day after an international Jewish organization based in the US denounced Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump’s claim that dozens of Arab Muslims cheered as the World Trade Center collapsed on September 11 as unsubstantiated.

“It is unfortunate that Donald Trump is giving new life to long-debunked conspiracy theories about 9/11,” the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) said in a statement on Sunday, after Trump said in an interview with ABC News that there were “people over in New Jersey that were watching it, a heavy Arab population that were cheering as the buildings came down.”

The ADL statement said there is no basis for Trump’s claim, calling it irresponsible and factually challenged. “This seems to be a variation of the anti-Semitic myth that a group of Israelis were seen celebrating as the Twin Towers fell.”

Commenting to Press TV, Dr. Barrett said the Anti-Defamation League is “correct that Trump is factually challenged when he talks about the Arabs celebrating the destruction of the World Trade Center on September 11th.”

“But he in fact is referring to a true story, which is that Israeli spies working for the intelligence agency Mossad were in fact arrested after they were caught celebrating the September 11th attacks,” he added. … continue

Mass Demonstration Demands Closure of US’ Notorious ‘School of Assassins’

CUcQCFcWcAARQhiSputnik – 24.11.2015

Georgia’s infamous ‘School of Assassins’ was besieged by hundreds of activists from across the country, calling for the closure of the military training center and a halt to the militarization of Latin America by the US.

The 25th anniversary protest march was held over the weekend in the town of Lumpkin in northern Georgia, and at the gates of Fort Benning army base, where the former US Army School of the Americas (SOA), hidden now under the name of the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation (WHINSEC), is located, along with the nearby Stewart Immigrant Detention Center, the country’s largest for-profit immigration prison.

Dozens of nonprofit organizations and some 1,400 activists joined the rally, which aimed to protest against the notorious “School of Assassins,” as SOA is referred to, for its production of “death squads” that commit mass murders, torture and other human rights’ violations and military crimes across the globe, activists claim.

Watchdogs maintain several Latin Americans dictators and many more security officials, who have perpetrated such crimes, graduated from SOA. … continue

‘Turkey good example of West’s duplicity towards ISIS’

By John Wight | RT | November 24, 2015

In shooting down a Russian jet operating over Syria, Turkey’s nefarious role in the Syrian conflict has intensified. It also presents a damning indictment of the West’s seriousness in confronting extremism and terrorism.

In the aftermath of the spate of ISIS atrocities – first the downing of the Russian passenger plane, Metrojet Flight 7K9268 over the Sinai at the end of October, killing all 224 on board, followed by the killing of 43 civilians in Beirut in a suicide bomb attack, and most recently the slaughter of 130 people in Paris in multiple suicide bombings and shootings – we now know who is serious about confronting this medieval death cult and who is not.

More, we are starting to uncover those who speak the language of anti-terrorism while in practice working to facilitate and support it.

Turkey is a key culprit in this regard. A murky relationship has long existed between Ankara, ISIS, al Nusra, and other jihadi groups operating in Syria. Indeed, on the most basic level, without their ability to pass back and forth across the Turkish border at will, those groups could not have operated as easily and effectively as they had until Russia intervened. … continue

NASA looking for alternatives to Russia’s Soyuz

Press TV – November 24, 2015

The US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is determined to end its reliance on Russian technology for space travel, paying billions of dollars to Boeing and SpaceX to come up with an alternative to Russia’s Soyuz spacecraft.

The organization, which risks losing its reputation for reliability over a series of failed launches, is hiring Boeing and the private aerospace manufacturer and commercial space transport company, SpaceX, to carry out manned missions to the International Space Station (ISS), the ABC News reported Monday.

Boeing received a $4.2 billion order for sending a crewed flight to space in May, and SpaceX was assigned a $2.4 billion order this Friday.

“It is important to have at least two healthy and robust capabilities from US companies to deliver crew and critical scientific experiments from American soil to the space station throughout its lifespan,” NASA’s Commercial Crew Program Manager Kathy Lueders said in a statement.

NASA expects to blast off its first commercial crew mission in late 2017.

If successful, the new plan will put an end to NASA’s long-standing reliance on Russian technology for such purposes. … continue

Tracking ISIS to DC’s Doorsteps

By Ulson Gunnar – New Eastern Outlook – 23.11.2015

The problem with America’s “anti-ISIS coalition” is not a matter of poor planning or a lack of resources. It is not a matter of lacking leadership or military might. The problem with America’s “anti-ISIS coalition” is that it never existed in the first place. There is no US-led war on ISIS, and what’s worse, it appears that the US, through all of its allies, from across the Persian Gulf to Eastern Europe and even within Washington itself, are involved in feeding ISIS, not fighting it.

Going from Syria itself, outward according to geographical proximity, we can trace ISIS’ support all the way back to Washington itself. And as we do, efforts like the “talks” in Vienna, and all the non-solutions proposed by the US and its allies, appear ever more absurd while the US itself is revealed not as a stabilizing force in a chaotic world, but rather the very source of that chaos. … continue

Kerry calls for faster, bigger US intervention in Syria

Press TV – November 24, 2015

US Secretary of State John Kerry has urged “faster” and broader American military and political intervention in Syria to fight against Daesh (ISIL).

“The key is to destroy Daesh rapidly in Syria and in Iraq,” Kerry told reporters on Monday. “The president would like to see us go faster.” […]

The US is escalating its involvement in Syria amid Russia’s intensifying campaign in the country to assist Assad in fighting against ISIL terrorists.

Daesh terrorists, who were initially trained by the CIA in Jordan in 2012 to destabilize the Syrian government, now have parts of Syria and Iraq under control. – Full article

Russian Su-24 fighter jet shot down over Syria – Russian MoD

RT | November 24, 2015

A Russian Su-24 fighter has been shot down in Syria, the Russian Defense Ministry said, adding the plane hadn’t violated Turkish airspace and was flying at an altitude of 6,000 meters. … continue

NATO’s Provocative Policy

21st Century Wire | November 24, 2015

… Turkey is well-aware that Russia is now the leading member of the international coalition waging airstrikes against ISIS and al Qaeda in Syria, and seeing that ISIS does not have an air force of its own – it makes no sense that Turkey would shoot down a Russian plane and risk an international incident – unless this was a move green-lighted by either the US, or NATO command in Brussels. NATO previously hawkish rhetoric towards Russia last month over alleged violations of Turkish air space only indicates that their agenda is quite clearly an aggressive one. Another tense incident last month saw Turkey accuse Russia of violating its airspace. Turkey calmed down quickly over it, but NATO then seized on the incident in order to escalate tensions with Russia who had just recently entered the conflict by invitation of the Syrian government.

Regardless of how you look at this incident, the fact that Turkey, a NATO member, would knowingly shoot down a Russian fighter jet involved in operations against ISIS and al Nusra (al Qaeda) terrorists – is defacto proof that Turkey is not only coordinating with terrorist paramilitary forces on the ground, but is effectively providing counter air defense for the terrorist forces on the ground. … Full article

Guam, Marianas brace for massive US military redeployment

RT | November 23, 2015

… Originally the Pentagon envisioned a shift of 8,600 Marines and some 9,000 dependents from Okinawa, raising alarm among some residents of Guam that their island, with an area of only 212 square miles (549 km sq.) and a population of 160,000, would be overwhelmed.

Pressure from the activists representing the native Chamorro people, organized in a group called We Are Guahan, compelled the Pentagon to trim that number down to 4,800. Two thirds of that number would be there on rotation, without their families, reducing the pressure on the island even further.

The activists are not resting on their laurels, however, and are pressing on against the Pentagon’s plans to install firing ranges on the islands of Tinian and Pagan. … Read full article

Israeli Woman Stabbed in Retaliation for Killing of Palestinian Girl

Al-Manar | November 23, 2015

A Palestinian man stabbed and killed an Israeli woman on Sunday, after occupation police and settlers shot and ran over a Palestinian girl on the same day.

The attack took place near the so-called Gush Etzion block of settlements south of al-Quds.

The Palestinian attacker was shot dead by occupation forces afterwards, Israeli police said. He was identified as Issam Thawabteh, 34, from Beit Fajjar near Bethlehem.

The Israeli woman was stabbed in retaliation for the brutal killing of a 16-year-old Palestinian girl who was shot and run over by occupation police and Zionist settlers earlier on Sunday.

Also on Sunday another Palestinian was shot dead by occupation police, who claimed he was attempting a stabbing attack against occupation forces.

Guardian admits its cowardice over Paris

By Jonathon Cook | The Blog From Nazareth | November 23, 2015

From the horse’s mouth: For fear of upsetting readers, the paper silenced any commentary in the first days after the Paris attacks that might have suggested there was a causal relationship between western foreign policy in the Middle East and those events.

Instead, writes the Guardian reader’s editor Chris Elliott, the paper waited several days before giving some limited space to that viewpoint:

On the Opinion pages, one factor taken into consideration was timing – judging when readers would be willing to engage with an idea that in the first 24 hours after the attacks may have jarred. The idea that these horrific attacks have causes and that one of those causes may be the west’s policies is something that in the immediate aftermath might inspire anger. Three days later, it’s a point of view that should be heard.

In other words, the liberal Guardian held off offering a counter-narrative about the attacks, and a deeply plausible one at that, until popular opinion had hardened into a consensus manipulated by the rightwing media: “the terrorists hate us for our freedoms”, “we need to bomb them even harder”, “Islam is a religion of hatred” etc.

Excluding legitimate analyses of profoundly important events like those in Paris when they are most needed is not responsible, careful journalism. It is dangerous cowardice. It is most definitely not a politically neutral position. It provides room for hatred and bigotry to take root, and allows political elites to exploit those debased emotions to justify and advance their own, invariably destructive foreign policy agendas.

In the paragraph above, Elliott happily concedes that this is the default position of mainstream liberal media like the Guardian.

South Korea Holds Live-Fire Drill Near Disputed Border With North

Sputnik – 23.11.2015

South Korea conducted artillery exercises on Monday near a disputed Yellow Sea border with North Korea, despite Pyongyang’s promise to retaliate for the drill, media reported.

According to South Korea’s Yonhap news agency, live-fire artillery drills were conducted near the front-line islands of the inter-Korean maritime border.

On the eve of the artillery exercises Pyongyang warned Seoul that it would retaliate if South Korea dropped shells in North Korean territorial waters.

Current artillery drills coincide with the 5th anniversary of North Korea’s attack on South Korean front-line Yeonpyeong Island that left two soldiers and two civilians dead. Pyongyang announced at the time that it had been provoked by similar live-fire drills in the area.

The United Nations named the Yeonpyeong exchange one of the most serious incidents since the end of the Korean War in 1953. The two countries, still legally at war since that time, have only an armistice in place following the collapse of peace treaty negotiations.

Argentina’s New President Poised to Roll Back Gains for Multipolar World

Sputnik – November 23, 2015

On Sunday, Argentina held a runoff vote to pick its next president, resulting in a narrow victory for conservative Let’s Change coalition candidate Mauricio Macri over his center-left Front for Victory coalition opponent, Daniel Scioli. The question on everybody’s mind now is: what should Argentinians, and the world, expect from the new government?

An estimated 80% of Argentina’s 32 million eligible voters went to the polls on Sunday to elect their next president, in a runoff vote between the two leading candidates from the first round of voting, held in late October. With 51.5% of the votes cast in favor of conservative candidate Mauricio Macri, the favorite of the country’s big business and private media, the country is set for a hard right turn.In the run up to the election, analysts in both Latin America and across the loose global coalition of countries opposed to a unipolar world order had worryingly suggested that a Macri victory would result in a rollback to the policies pursued by Buenos Aires over the past decade aimed at challenging US hegemony, both in the region and around the world.

Daniel Scioli, the candidate of the Peronist, center-left Front for Victory electoral alliance, had promised to continue outgoing President Cristina Fernandez’ center-left-oriented politics domestically, and to pursue an independent foreign policy course abroad. … continue

Who Should Pay For the Syrian Refugees?

By Ron Paul | November 23, 2015

Last week the US House dealt a blow to President Obama’s plan to resettle 10,000 Syrians fleeing their war-torn homeland. On a vote of 289-137, including 47 Democrats, the House voted to require the FBI to closely vet any applicant from Syria and to guarantee that none of them pose a threat to the US. Effectively this will shut down the program.

The House legislation was brought to the Floor after last week’s attacks in Paris that left more than 120 people dead, and for which ISIS claimed responsibility. With the year-long US bombing campaign against ISIS in Syria and Iraq, there is a good deal of concern that among those 10,000 to be settled here there might be some who wish to do us harm. Even though it looks as though the Paris attackers were all EU citizens, polling in the US shows record opposition to allowing Syrian refugees entry.

I agree that we must be very careful about who is permitted to enter the United States, but I object to the president’s plan for a very different reason. I think it is a sign of Washington’s moral and intellectual bankruptcy that US citizens are being forced to pay for those fleeing Washington’s foreign policy. … continue

November – 2015

October – 2015


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,125 other followers